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  1. HOW I FINALLY HEALED MY ENDOMETRIOSIS AND GOT PREGNANT NATURALLY….TWICE Having endometriosis controlled nearly half my life. 1 in 10 women are affected with endometriosis and 30-50% of women with endometriosis are infertile. Thats approximately 176 million women in the world! It is difficult to imagine how so many women are affected daily by this debilitating disease. For some women there may be no symptoms of pain. For others (myself included) we experience excruciating pain each and every month. I remember reading threads, forums, websites and many other resources online knowing that there was simply no cure. I just couldn’t accept it. The pain that I endured, seemed unbearable to me. The reality that i would have to live my life like this seemed intolerable. The fact that I managed to heal my endometriosis and birthed two beautiful children naturally is something that means so much to me that I want to share my story in the hope that you too can heal yourself from this awful condition. Because this post is SO long, feel free to skip to any relevant sections which I have subheaded Lets start from the beginning My story HOW I FINALLY HEALED MY ENDOMETRIOSIS AND GOT PREGNANT NATURALLY…TWICE I first noticed I had ‘problems’ with my menstrual cycle when I was having serious pain every time I was due on my period. At the time, I was only a teenager. It seemed strange that my friends didn’t suffer the same way I did. I was always nervous in school that I would leak & blood would show on my school clothes. None of my friends seemed concerned that this would happen to them but my period was so heavy, that even if I wore a ‘super plus, night time’ sanitary towel & a “super plus” tampon, I was still afraid to leak. I was constantly rushing to the toilet. After going to see my ‘helpful’ doctor at the time, I was told that I just had period pains and that every woman has them. ( I felt unheard, as though it was all in my head) This went on for years My doctor explained that as my own mother had suffered heavy periods, I was also likely to have the same. I was given painkillers, and in a polite way, told to deal with it. Over the years, I had no relief. I would miss school, work & eventually college & university with the pain. It was excruciating I would dread the end of each month, knowing what was coming. In a bid to control the pain, I took various hormone replacements. The medications didn’t do anything to help & at times made me feel worse & very anxious. At some point, 7 years later (yes 7 years!!) i went to see a gynaecologist (one that i had seen years previously who had told me to deal with it. She told me I probably have endometriosis and that the only thing left to do was to permenatley stop my periods until i decided to have a baby. I was barely 20 years old! Who knew when I would want to have kids, that could have been another 10 years away (which it was). I asked her if there was anything else I could do. The simple answer was no. I was given no further information. it seemed ridiculous that I wouldn’t have a period for all that time. It didn’t seem normal to me and I’m glad I listened to those instincts. Endometriosis can only be diagnosed by a laparoscopy, which – for the NHS (Government health service in UK) they were unwilling to do. In the meantime I was given an injection that permentaly stopped my periods….for over three years. I hated it. The whole time. It seemed so unnatural The only positive aspect was that I was finally pain free which completely changed my life. The pain management was temporary and it took over 10 years before I was finally able to receive a laparoscopy and confirm my endometriosis. And it still wasn’t easy to get it then! By this point, My symptoms were so severe. I was house bound and had to permanently leave my job. It wasn’t just my monthly cycle that was painful either. My whole abdomen was swollen and looked as though I was pregnant. I was also in excruciating pain, all the time. And I know that in comparison to others, I have it easy. Yet there doesn’t seem to be much awareness. And there is a serious lack of compassion for those suffering. After my laparoscopy, I carried on with various medications and was put through the menopause. Yes you read that right, put through the menopause. Just to clarify, I was in my mid twenties. via GIPHY I was told that this would be a part of my life. My fertility was probably going to be affected and I would have to endure multiple surgeries throughout my life. I was heartbroken. It seemed like nobody cared. Nobody understood the pain and difficulty it caused me Years later The most devastating part of my endometriosis journey was when I realised I wanted a baby and I didn’t think I was able to conceive. My fertility, like other endo sufferers, was most likely affected from scar tissue. Plus, I literally couldn’t stop my hormone replacement. My menstrual cycle was so messed up that it would cause too much pain and to go without treatment My lifestyle was at this time .. I was already an avid nutrition nerd. I had multiple qualifications in various nutrition, health & exercise practices. I had tried & tested multiple diets over the years, slowly finding what was working well for both me and my clients. I was working as a holistic health coach and personal trainer helping other mums get fit and healthy. When I wanted to conceive I thought I was super healthy and that there wouldn’t be any issues. I was ‘clean eating’ had barely any processed foods, a lot of protein powder, low carbs, no sugar and exercising everyday. A typical paleo style diet. I was pescatarian but only ate fish on occasion. I had a lot of eggs, yoghurt & other ‘healthy vegetarian choices’ I should have been the picture of health. However, this wasn’t the case. I was full of acne, I had serious sugar cravings which i was always trying to fix with healthy treats & protein smoothies. The other thing was that my endometriosis was still controlling a large portion of my life Thats when I started getting acupuncture and getting rid of toxins and drinking super green smoothies daily (more on this later). I initially did this because I wanted to eliminate my painful cystic acne. Luckily, I found out about veganism and I started to transition my diet from a paleo diet to a plant based one. The low carb approach clearly wasn’t working that well. You can read the best nutrition books that I suggest here By this point, I ate hardly any fish. Meat had been out of my diet for a long time already. The only thing left was dairy & eggs. I didn’t think i was consuming much but after going vegan I realized i was having way more than what I thought. After educating myself on how a vegan diet was optimal for health and realizing that nearly all my favorite things to eat were vegan already I decided that I would go all in and change my diet overnight. if you’re currently vegetarian and think its still healthy I encourage you to read these books and watch this short video I won’t get side tracked and tell you how amazing it was when i switched my diet over. You can read that here Ill stick to the topic, which is how i healed my endometriosis. So did a vegan diet cure my endometriosis? Honestly it’s such a huge topic and I tried so many things that I can’t put it all down to that. However, I am sure that i wouldn’t have healed it if i hadn’t changed my diet – I mean, it hadn’t worked before, but it worked after. I truly believe that going plant based along stopped my endometriosis from returning and spreading I also believe its what helped me get pregnant How a vegan diet can heal endometriosis first let me say that endometriosis is a curable disease. No matter what you have been told before What a relief to hear that right! In eastern medicine, endometriosis is curable and it doesn’t involve going on medication and having multiple surgeries for the rest of you’re life! In the west we view illness and disease differently. Many health professionals are specialists in particular areas (gastroenterologist, endocrinolgist, cardiologist) When we look at the body as a whole, an interconnected system we can see that everything is interlinked. Not one part of our body works independently. Thats why we must find the root cause of illness and look at the body as a whole. Thats not to say that specialist medicine doesn’t work because it absolutely does and I think there’s a place for western medicine. However, I think it is usually better suited to acute & emergency situations (surgery etc). The issue lacking in modern medicine is not addressing the root cause of disease, simply putting a band aid on it and treating symptoms. So how can we treat the body as a whole? First we must understand what endometriosis is What is endometriosis? According to live science “ Endometriosis is a medical condition that occurs when the lining of the uterus, called the endometrium, grows in other places, such as the fallopian tubes, ovaries or along the pelvis. When that lining breaks down, like the regular lining in the uterus that produces the menstruation, it has nowhere to go. This causes cysts, heavy periods, severe cramps and even infertility. The endometrial tissue may also grow in the vagina, cervix, bowel or bladder, and in rare cases it may spread to other parts of the body, such as the lungs. Dr sara gottifred, a harvard endocrinologist (& yoga teacher) categorises the different hormones related to endometriosis Lets have a quick look at all the hormones involved and how they work together Progesterone Too little progesterone causes PMS, irregular menstrual cycle, endometriosis, depression & anxiety Too much progesterone causes weight gain, mood swings & breast tenderness estrogen Too much estrogen causes painful, heavy periods, water retention, increased PMS & decreased sex drive§ Too little estrogen causes absent or irregular periods, depression, headaches, fatigue Thyroid Too much estrogen causes too little thyroid function. To little thyroid function can drop progesterone levels exasperating PMS Cortisol high cortisol levels have a greater affect on estrogen and progesterone. High cortisol also blocks progesterone receptors causing progesterone levels to plummet What I did to heal my endometriosis This is a lost of things that I did on my journey to healing my endometriosis. Note that I didn’t set out to heal my endometriosis. I was simply trying to eliminate other health issues (cystic acne, depression & gut issues) Healing endometriosis was simply a side affect as my body became more balanced. #1 Acupuncture Accupuncture works by stimulating the nerves system. Acupuncture was the ONLY way I managed to get off my hormonal medications. Note that I hadn’t gone plant based at this time so maybe this wasn’t the only way to come off medication. Also note that is it ESSENTIAL to get an excellent acupuncturist, not just you’re average Jo! #2 Cleansed my body to eliminate heavy toxins I added a hella lot of vegetables to my diet. Fiber is crucial for endometriosis. Fiber helps to excrete excess estrogen (along with cholesterol) out of the body via feceas. #3 Green smoothies Almost daily. I added lots of veggies & included superfoods such as this one #4 Came off all hormonal treatment #5 Yoga & Meditation Not daily but on a regular basis #6 Cut caffeine consumption As an avid English tea drinker, I went down to one cup of tea or coffee per day only. And drank loads of herbal teas #7 Reduced stress I get that this is so difficult to do. What helped me was reading through various books on personal development. Simply changing how you react and view difficult situations in life can have a dramatic shift on stress levels. This was the first book that opened my eyes about this concept and its totally transformed my life and how I view things #8 Eating a whole food plant based diet You can learn how to start a healthy whole food plant based diet here #9 Reduced toxins in the home I swapped chemical house cleaners for natural cleaners, vinegar & lemon #10 Reduced toxins in the body I stopped using chemicals on my skin. The skin is the bodies largest organ. Whatever you put ON TOP of your body will ultimately end up IN your body. For natural body care, here’s what I did (and used) HAIR/FACE/BODY Coconut oil all.the.time. I used this on my hair & my body (but not my face as it increased my acne) HAIR Natural Haircare(shampoo & conditioner) My skin was in a terrible state after being on so many hormonal medications over the years. These were THE best products I tried. They literally made a difference in my skin when nothing else worked. My skin was noticeably clearer within one week! FACE Facial cleansers I alternate with this one (great for acne prone skin) and this one (great for sensitive and dry skin and it smells amazing!) Facial moisturisers Daytime (for acne prone skin) Daytime (for dry and/or, sensitive skin) Nighttime (for acne scars & discoloration) Nighttime (to smoothie wrinkles & plump skin) I also LOVE LOVE LOVE this organic facial oil. It leaves my skin dewy looking without bringing me out in acne and it smells divine! BODY Body Wash I love these lavender and peppermint body washes that are made with organic hemp, olive and coconut oils. They are full of natural ingredients so they are gentle enough on kids. Whats even better is the price! They are such a bargain! PERFUME I stopped using perfume & opted for natural essential oils such as these gorgeous smelling ones. I just love this women balance aromatherapy blend which promotes calmness and helps to balance menstruation I also seriously limited the amount of makeup I put on. Lipstick has some of the worst chemicals for disrupting hormones! Yikes! Whenever you use makeup go for products which contain the most natural ingredients Other tips Some tips and tricks I learnt along the way that I would encourage others to do when healing their own endometriosis 1. Limit caffeine. Caffeine distrusts cortisol levels. Limit caffeine to 1 cups of tea or coffee per day if necessary. Choose herbal teas that lower cortisol and promote relaxation. this tea also works well with balancing hormones The exception is this amazing coffee which contains medicinal mushrooms – not the ones that get you high;) Mushrooms are nutrient power houses. This coffee gives you a natural energy boost and is rich in nutrients, leaving you fresh and focused – minus the anxiety For coffee lovers, this is the one for you. I promise you will love it! 2. Take herbal supplements. The following supplements can be helpful for balancing hormones Vitamin B12 vitamin D supplement if you can’t get adequate sunshine levels. A vegan DHA supplement can help alleviate PMS Magnesium, always get a topical magnesium selenium – you can get your daily amount by eating 1 brazil nut daily probiotics Good quality multi vitamin 3. Practice abdominal massage To improve blood flow and increase lymphatic drainage 4.Use non toxic sanitary products So important to hormonal health! l researched this menstrual cup later on and wish I had started using it sooner The detox period when I first started healing myself from endometriosis it was a gradual process (because I didn’t plan on healing my endometriosis. Instead I was trying to heal my body from other health complaints. The more vegetables I ate and green smoothies I drank the more I detoxed my body. I actually had quite severe detox symptoms even though I was on a very clean and healthy diet. Detox symptoms included diarrhoea cystic acne general low mood dry brittle hair that constantly fell out I was also an emotional rollercoaster I didn’t know I was detoxing at the time, it’s only when I look back when I realised with all the steps in place that’s exactly what I what was happening. Now I know that that’s what was happening and even though the detox symptoms were very unpleasant, I would still do it all over again. However, I wouldn’t do it in a gradual approach, I would go ALL IN. The longer the detox, the longer the process of healing My mistakes Not going plant based sooner Eating too high protein/high fat and low carb The result So what happened? It took at least 2 years until I felt like my body had stabilized. It took this time for me to completely transition to a whole food plant based diet. However coming off medication & healing my acne and other issues were gone in a matter of weeks. I was also able to conceive naturally and very quickly. In fact I was able to get pregnant after 1 month of trying! And to top it off, it happened again the second time round! Can I heal endometriosis faster? Absolutely! I don’t want you to be put off with 2 years! Im sure if you did what took me 2+ years to learn straight away you would have fast results.Thats just how long it took me to realize what to do and to completely heal my body, not just from endometriosis. In conclusion I know how painful and how difficult endometriosis can be and I wish I had found the post like this years ago. It would have saved me so many tears. Having reassurance that endometriosis can be cured and that it doesn’t have to control your life was life changing for me. I hope you find relief, optimism and useful information in this post. If you know anyone who is going through endometriosis then I encourage you to share this post with them. I would have done anything to have read an encouraging post like this when I was in the thick of it all. I want to end this with a quick disclaimer, I am not suggesting that I know for certain that everyone can be healed from endometriosis 100%, I have no way of knowing this. What I do know is that we are the only species on the planet that has health conditions that are a result from diet and lifestyle When our bodies are in balance, illnesses and disease cannot spread. I know that this has been an extremely long post but endometriosis ruined so much of my life that I think you deserve special attention If you would like to know anything else, please feel free to leave me a message in the comment section below how i healed my endometriosis and got pregnant naturally The post HOW I FINALLY HEALED MY ENDOMETRIOSIS AND GOT PREGNANT NATURALLY…TWICE appeared first on Holistically Lizzie. View the full article
  2. Essential Vegan Nutrition Guide: Everything You Need To Be A Healthy Vegan When I first went vegan I googled everything there was to know about veganism like a crazy woman! As the only vegan (at the time ) in my family and with a solid background in nutrition, I wanted to make sure that I was fully prepped before my big “announcement” I first went vegan because of the health benefits. And after studying (and trying) SO MANY DIETS and ways to eat over the years I felt like I had found something that was exactly what I was looking for. It sounds crazy, but maybe you can relate. I was so fed up of going from diet plan to another, ALWAYS trying something new and never feeling fully satisfied. I always had an intuition telling me it wasn’t quite right. When I fell into veganism I felt like everything had fallen into place. I just knew that it was the right way to eat for me. And boy am I glad I did it! And even though they’re a million different ways to eat vegan, I go with science, my knowledge and experience and also my own judgment. When considering a vegan diet, you may be asking a few questions: Can I actually get all the vitamins, minerals, protein and other essential nutrients from only eating plant foods? Am I going to lose weight? Will my hair will fall out? Can I become really healthy (because you’ve heard a lot of stuff saying it isn’t)? Does it require strict regulations? Is it something that one day your family will get on board with? Is it safe for your family and throughout different life stages? Am I going to get enough protein? Will it WORK and can it be sustained for the rest of my life? Although I’ve written several posts on vegan nutrition, weight loss, and benefits on a plant-based diet, think of this as a Vegan Nutrition for Dummies. What exactly do you need to know before starting a vegan diet? Vegan Nutrition Basics For Beginners Why should you eat more plants? Research shows that a diet filled with whole plant foods length lifespan treats obesity and decreases or in some cases reverse common illnesses such as high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes and heart disease. The British Dietetic Association confirms that a plant-based diet is healthy and suitable for all stages of life. Is It Healthier To Be Vegan? The short answer, it depends. Of course, eating a vegan can be extremely beneficial. In fact, I believe it to be the most healthful diet we can consume. But just by not eating meat in our diet, doesn’t make it a healthy diet either. A vegan diet can be filled with processed food, just the same as a SAD diet. Vegans can still suffer from health issues, being overweight & a shortened lifespan. But, when done right, a whole foods vegan diet can give the following benefits: Weight loss Improve cardiovascular health Decreased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, cancer, and heart disease Increased energy Improves kidney function Clear skin, strong hair, and nails Improved mood There’s a big difference between a vegan and plant-based diet. A person may go vegan for a variety of reasons including health, animal welfare, and environmental impact. A vegan will adopt veganism in all aspects of their life including clothes and skincare. A person who adopts a plant-based lifestyle is primarily doing it for health reasons they may still choose to wear non-vegan items of clothing, consume honey and other non-vegan items. You can still be vegan and adopt a whole foods plant-based diet. That way you are able to be vegan but ensure you are eating a high nutrient dense diet. A well-balanced diet is essential for optimal health, sustainable weight loss, increased energy and longevity. What foods do vegans eat? A healthy and balanced vegan diet should contain the following: Fruits and vegetables – Eat a wide range of colourful fruit and vegetables every day. Eat more vegetables than fruits. Aim for 4-6 portions of veg and 3- 4 portions of fruits daily Legumes – beans, lentils, tofu, tempeh, soymilk, soybeans, peanuts Healthy fats – avocado, nuts, seeds, coconut, cold pressed oils Starches – sweet potatoes, yams, white potatoes, squashes Grains – whole grain rice, quinoa, amaranth, millet, couscous, freekah, pasta Little sweeteners: maple syrup, coconut sugar, date syrup & other natural plant-based sweetness are better choices What nutrients are lacking in a vegan diet? Vitamin B12 – RDA 2.4mcg V A common nutrient missing in a vegan diet is vitamin B12. B12 actually comes from a bacteria, animals ingest this bacteria when they eat soil. We used to be able to get vitamin B12 from fruits and vegetables but our soils are depleted of nutrients now, so even non-vegans should supplement. BENEFITS: B12 increase energy levels, support brain health, boosts mood and promotes healthy skin and hair. Symptoms of B12 deficiency fatigue poor memory tingling depression dizziness hair loss dry skin eczema acne Vegans can get vitamin B12 straight from the source by getting a high-quality B12 supplement (LINK) Omega 3 DHA & EPA – RDA 1.6g for men, 1.1g for women BENEFITS: Omega 3 supports healthy brain tissue, eye health, fights anxiety and depression, improves joint pain and fights against autoimmune diseases. The SAD is very high in omega 6 which is pro-inflammatory low in omega 3 which is anti-inflammatory. The ideal ratio should be 2:1. There are concerns about a lack of omega 3 fatty acids on a vegan diet, but they can be easily obtained through a healthful diet. Vegan foods highest in Omega 3 include: Flaxseed chia seed hemp seed walnuts Dietary algae supplement (LINK) microalgae Vitamin D – RDA 600-100IU Vitamin D acts more like a hormone than a vitamin. we can get vitamin D from direct sunlight but if you live in a cold dark climate, pregnant or breastfeeding you may need to supplement with extra. BENEFITS: Adequate Vitamin D enhances the immune system, relieves joint pain & headaches, facilitates healthy hormone production, reduces the risk of developing cancer, type 2 diabetes, kidney disease, and cold and flu. Vitamin D is found in: sunlight fortified foods such as milk, cereals, soy products, and orange juice mushrooms Calcium – RDA 1000mg BENEFITS: Regulates blood pressure, improves kidney health, prevents diabetes, supports bone and joint care. Plant-based calcium sources are absorbed better by the body than animal sources. Foods high in calcium include: tahini sesame seeds tofu soybeans figs oranges kale collard greens broccoli almonds Iron – RDA 18mg Women typically need iron more than men due to menstruation and pregnancy. BENEFITS: Prevents anemia, helps brain functioning, boosts energy levels, improves mood, supports immune function Foods high in iron include: cashews tempeh dried apricots chickpeas kidney beans lentils swiss chard spinach pumpkin seeds Zinc – RDA 15mg BENEFITS: Balances blood sugar, improves fertility, reduces acne and scarring, fights depression, heals wounds. Foods high in zinc include: pumpkin seeds pinenuts walnuts chickpeas kidney beans lentils oats cacao powder and nibs Iodine – 150ug BENEFITS: Important for healthy thyroid function, powerful detoxifier, promote weight loss, healthy clear skin. Foods high in iodine include: sea vegetables – kelp, pulse, nori iodised salt Do vegans live longer? On average vegans and vegetarians live longer and experience fewer health problems as they age. Studies show a strong correlation to many diseases and a significantly shortened lifespan the more animal produce is consumed. What are the health risks of becoming vegan? How do vegans get enough nutrition? getting enough calories eating a diet high in nutrient density consuming a wide range of whole plant-based foods eating a diet that’s hormonally optimal What are the benefits of being vegan? increased energy clear glowing skin stronger hair and nails better athletic performance (link to athletes) reduced or eliminated health conditions Suggested reading: 10 life-changing benefits go going vegan that will blow your mind Do I need to count calories or macros? There is quite a debate about how many calories a person needs to eat. Unfortunately, it depends from person to person. Age, gender, pregnancy and other changes in our life can affect how much food we need to consume. A plant-based diet is naturally low in calories. For those wanting to drop a few pounds, it will be much easier to do as you will need to consume a high quantity of produce. You don’t need to count calories and macros when you eat a wide range of whole plant foods. Just eat when you’re hungry and stop when you’re full. Your body weight and hunger levels will adjust and go to its natural set point. Do vegans have to take supplements? It’s recommended to get enough protein, fats, carbohydrates, essential vitamins and minerals by eating a high nutrient plant-based diet. However, due to poor soils, toxins in our food and environment and lack of essential sunshine, it’s important for everyone to take the following: multivitamin vitamin D probiotic DHA Do vegans lack protein? The protein myth If you eat enough calories from a wide variety of whole plant-based foods you will get enough protein. Protein is found in many plant foods such as nuts beans tofu legumes grains vegetables Animal protein has been linked to cancer kidney disease osteoporosis cardiovascular disease type 2 diabetes On average, vegans still get 70% more protein than what is required every day. As long as you are eating enough calories you will get enough protein. Is a plant-based diet good for you? Suggested Reading: 10 Best Vegan and Plant-Based Books To Radically Improve Your Health Vegan nutrition chart There are many different vegan nutrition charts to choose from, each with their own recommendations based upon which vegan ‘diet’ you choose you to do. Here are some examples: Drfuhrman.com Veganeasy.org Veganfoodpyramid.com You can even get a vegan nutrition wall chart that I think is amazing to have something visual to help understand vegan nutrition. This one looks especially good for kids! Ready to go vegan? It’s very important to keep learning! The more you know how much better being a vegan is for your health, the planet and the environment you’ll never look back. If you’re stuck where to go next, try reading these incredible vegan plant-based nutrition books One of the best ways to put everything in to practice is to create recipes that are affordable, convenient, and taste great. You can find a great selection that even kids love here Id love to know what has helped you go on a vegan diet or what made you decide to look into veganism/plant-based diet. Let me know in the comments. The post ESSENTIAL VEGAN NUTRITION GUIDE:EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO BE A HEALTHY VEGAN appeared first on Holistically Lizzie. View the full article
  3. 25 HEALTHY & DELICIOUS NO BAKE VEGAN ENERGY BALLS Do you crave something sweet after dinner? Feel like a lil summon summon at 3pm to give you a bit of an energy boost? For AGES I was trying out different ‘treats’ that would help combat my sugar cravings. (I used to be a serious sugar monster) But since removing nearly all refined sugar from my diet I wanted something that was going to satisfy my sweet tooth – without spiking my blood sugar. Why is it important to keep your blood sugar stable? Our blood sugar rises and drops when we eat. When we eat refined carbohydrates (pastries, donuts, cakes, biscuits & white bread) our blood sugar rises drastically. We get a sudden burst of energy. However, what comes up…. must also come down. Soon after eating these types of foods we have a huge drop in our blood sugar. This makes us EXHAUSTED, IRRITABLE & STARVING. Instead, we want to keep our blood sugar levels stable. By keeping our blood sugar levels stable we keep our energy levels stable and we keep the hangry monster at bay! We do this by using whole unrefined ingredients and whole plant sources of sugar (from dates and other dried fruit). Hence the name energy balls Back to the balls. The thing that kept me on a healthy sugar-free path wasn’t just the sweet taste. I also wanted something quick and simple. Since becoming a mum, my life depends on quickness! Yes, brownies, donuts, and other healthy treats are amazing. BUT for us mamas out there, the faster we can do something the better! The other great thing about energy balls is how simple they are. You don’t have to cook anything, you don’t have to have lots of fancy ingredients. You just need a food processor & 5 minutes and you’ll end up with a whole stash of energy balls that can last weeks (or in my case days). They’re also a fantastic healthy snack for kids! How long can you keep energy balls? It depends on what the balls are made with. If they contain fresh fruit or chocolate they will perish quicker. Energy balls made with dried fruit & nuts will last a long time. There is a great way to get around the shelf life and that’s by putting them in the freezer. Can you freeze energy balls? Yup! Energy balls can be frozen, I much prefer them frozen. You can either eat them straight out the freezer or wait a few minutes for them to lightly thaw. Are protein balls good for you? There are lots of different types of energy balls. High protein, low fat, nut free, etc. Some high protein ones contain protein powder which makes them higher in protein than others. But nuts, seeds & coconut are also a great source of healthy plant-based protein so they are already ‘protein balls’ without adding anything else. Can you make low-fat vegan energy balls? If you’re trying to reduce your fat intake you can also sub the nuts, seeds or coconut for oats, quinoa or another grain ground into a flour. Heres 25 healthy & tasty no-bake vegan energy balls #1 Almond Butter Energy Balls (Paleo, Vegan, GF) by The Work Top Get full recipe here: https://www.theworktop.com/breakfast-brunch-recipes/almond-butter-energy-balls-paleo-vegan/ INGREDIENTS 3/4 cup almond butter 1/4 cup maple syrup 1/4 cup coconut flour 2 tablespoons ground chia seeds 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon #2 Chocolate & Peanut Butter Energy Bites by Anna Banana Need a chocolate fix? These chocolate energy balls are perfect! Get full recipe here: https://annabanana.co/chocolate-peanut-butter-energy-bites/ Ingredients 300 g smooth peanut butter 30 g cocoa powder 50 g coconut flour 75 ml maple syrup 1 tsp vanilla bean paste (optional) #3 Energy Balls Medjool Dates by Dinner Mom These energy balls are made with delicious medjool dates Get full recipe here: https://www.dinner-mom.com/energy-balls-medjool-dates-recipe/ Ingredients 8 medjool dates pits removed 1 cup uncooked old fashioned oatmeal 1/2 cup ground flax seed 1/3 cup unsweetened coconut flakes 1/3 cup mini chocolate chips 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1/2 cup sunflower seed butter (or peanut butter) #4 BLUEBERRY MUFFIN BITES BY FEASTING ON FRUIT Get full recipe here: https://www.feastingonfruit.com/blueberry-muffin-bites/ INGREDIENTS 1/4 cup (65g) nut/seed butter (I used SunButter) 1/4 cup (60g) applesauce 1/4 cup (80g) maple syrup 2/3 cup (70g) coconut flour 1/2 tsp salt 1 tsp vanilla extract 1 cup (150g) fresh blueberries #5 Carrot cake energy balls by Running On Real Food Super healthy energy balls Get full recipe here: https://runningonrealfood.com/carrot-cake-energy-balls/ INGREDIENTS 1 cup (100 g) rolled oats 2 cups (450 g) tightly packed, pitted dates 3/4 cup (75 g, approx. 1 medium carrot) lightly packed, finely grated carrot 1 cup (70 g) unsweetened shredded coconut 1 tsp cinnamon 1/4 tsp sea salt #6 No Bake Energy Bites by Gimmesome Oven Healthy energy balls low calorie Get full recipe here: https://www.gimmesomeoven.com/no-bake-energy-bites/ INGREDIENTS: 1 cup (dry) oatmeal (I used old-fashioned oats) 2/3 cup toasted coconut flakes 1/2 cup peanut butter 1/2 cup ground flax seeds 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips (or vegan chocolate chips) 1/3 cup honey or agave nectar 1 tablespoon chia seeds (optional) 1 teaspoon vanilla extract #7 Vegan No Bake Raspberry Energy Bites Get full recipe here: https://cookilicious.com/appetizers_snacks/vegan-no-bake-raspberry-energy-bites/ INGREDIENTS: 1 cup (dry) oatmeal (I used old-fashioned oats) 2/3 cup toasted coconut flakes 1/2 cup peanut butter 1/2 cup ground flax seeds 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips (or vegan chocolate chips) 1/3 cup honey or agave nectar 1 tablespoon chia seeds (optional) 1 teaspoon vanilla extract #8 No Food Processor Protein Balls by Nourish Everyday Get full recipe here: https://nourisheveryday.com/no-food-processor-protein-balls/ Ingredients 1 cup peanut butter – smooth, 100%. Or use a different nut or seed butter 1/4 cup honey or another liquid sweetener of choice 1/2 cup rolled oats – gluten free 1/4 cup desiccated coconut 1/2 cup protein powder – I recommend vanilla or chocolate flavour 1/2 cup desiccated coconut EXTRA for rolling #9 No Bake Keto Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls by The Big Man’s World Get full recipe here: https://thebigmansworld.com/no-bake-keto-chocolate-peanut-butter-balls-paleo-vegan-low-carb/ Ingredients 2 cups smooth peanut butter 3/4 cup coconut flour 1/2 cup sticky sweetener of choice 2 cups sugar-free chocolate chips Get the recipe here #10 Low Carb Hazelnut Chocolate Bliss Balls Get full recipe here: https://ketohh.com/low-carb-hazelnut-chocolate-bliss-balls/ Ingredients 100 gms Dark Chocolate- I use 85% couverture 75 gms almond meal/almond flour 50 gms desiccated coconut 50 gms finely chopped hazelnuts 2 tablespoons coconut oil 2 tablespoons cocoa powder/cacao powder or dutch cocoa powder 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 teaspoon Erythritol and Stevia blend- optional or to taste- see note A pinch of salt 15-20 whole hazelnuts for centres #11 Peanut Butter Energy Balls by Deliciously Ella Get full recipe here: https://deliciouslyella.com/2016/07/02/peanut-butter-energy-balls/ Ingredients 400g medjool dates 100g of oats 100g of roasted peanuts 2 tablespoons of peanut butter 2 tablespoons of coconut oil #12 Energy Balls With Dates (Low Histamine, Vegan, Nut Free, DF) by Through The Fibrofog Get full recipe here: https://www.throughthefibrofog.com/energy-balls-dates/ Ingredients 1 cup dates 1/2 cup oats (use gluten-free if you are sensitive to gluten or coeliac) 1 tbsp chia seeds 1tbsp pumpkin seeds 1/2 tsp cinnamon tiny pinch of pink Himalayan salt approx. 2 tbsp desiccated coconut optional – 2 tbsp almond butter or sunflower seed butter #13 Chocolate Peanut Butter Energy Balls by Sneaky Veg Get full recipe here: https://www.sneakyveg.com/chocolate-peanut-butter-energy-balls/ Ingredients 250 g dates chopped. Soak for 10 minutes in boiling water if dry 50 g oats 3 tbsp peanut butter 3 tbsp sunflower seeds Pinch of salt optional 1 tbsp chia seeds optional 2 tbsp cacao powder #14 High Protein Cookie Dough by Blooming Nolwenn Get full recipe here: https://bloomingnolwenn.com/high-protein-cookie-dough/ Ingredients 400 g kidney beans, cooked 130 g gluten-free oats 110 g medjool dates (6) 65 g peanut butter 120 g non-dairy milk 4 tbsp cacao powder 1 tbsp vanilla extract 1 pinch of salt chopped hazelnuts or chocolate chips – highly recommende #15 NO BAKE OATMEAL RAISIN COOKIE ENERGY BITES BY TWO PEAS & THEIR POD Simply swap the honey for a liquid sweetener of choice Get full recipe here: https://www.twopeasandtheirpod.com/no-bake-oatmeal-raisin-cookie-energy-bites/ Ingredients 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats 1/4 cup ground flaxseed 2 tablespoons chia seeds 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon A pinch of sea salt 1/2 cup creamy almond butter 1/4 cup honey 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 1/4 cup raisins #16 Fruit Nut Energy Bites by The Pioneer Woman Get full recipe here: https://thepioneerwoman.com/food-and-friends/how-to-make-fruit-nut-energy-bites/ Toasted Coconut & Macadamia Nut Ingredients 12 pitted medjool dates 1 cup blanched almond flour 1 cup salted macadamia nuts 1 1/2 cup toasted shredded unsweetened coconut 1-inch piece of ginger (chopped) 1/2 teaspoon lime zest Almond Joy Ingredients 12 pitted medjool dates 1 cup whole raw almonds 1 cup blanched almond flour 1 cup toasted shredded unsweetened coconut 4 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder pinch of sea salt Pulse in 1/3 cup of mini dark chocolate chips at the very end. Spiced Apple Ingredients 12 pitted medjool dates 1 cup whole raw walnuts 1 cup whole raw cashews 2 cups crispy dried apple chips 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves pinch of sea salt Raspberry Hazelnut Ingredients 12 pitted medjool dates 1 cup whole raw cashews 1 cup whole raw hazelnuts 1 1/2 cups freeze-dried raspberries 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest pinch of sea salt #17 Salted Caramel Coconut Bliss Balls By Choosing Chia Get full recipe here: https://choosingchia.com/salted-caramel-coconut-bliss-balls/ INGREDIENTS 1 cup pitted Medjool dates (packed) 1 cup almonds (I use blanched sliced almonds) 1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut (+extra for rolling) 1/4 tsp salt These peanut butter balls are great for kids #18 Peanut Butter Protein Balls by A Life well Consumed Get full recipe here: https://www.alifewellconsumed.com/wp-content/cache/all/peanut-butter-protein-balls/ Ingredients 1 cup dry oatmeal – I used quick oats 2/3 cup toasted coconut flakes 1/2 cup peanut butter smooth or chunky 1/2 cup ground flax seeds 1/2 cup chocolate chips or cacao nibs optional 1/2 cup honey or agave syrup – I used toasted coconut agave syrup for that extra flavour 1 tbsp chia seeds 1 tsp vanilla extract #19 Chocolate Peanut Butter Energy Bites by Gimmesomme Oven Get full recipe here: https://www.gimmesomeoven.com/chocolate-peanut-butter-bake-energy-bites/ INGREDIENTS: 1 cup (dry) oatmeal (I used old-fashioned oats, although use gluten-free oats if making this GF) 2/3 cup toasted unsweetened coconut flakes 1/2 cup peanut butter 1/2 cup ground flax seed 1/3 cup honey or agave nectar 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 1 tablespoon chia seeds (optional) 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, store-bought or homemade #20 No bake chocolate orange protein energy balls Get full recipe here: https://www.nourishyourglow.com/no-bake-chocolate-orange-protein-energy-balls-recipe/ Ingredients 1/2 cup natural cashew butter 3 tablespoons agave nectar 2/3 cup lightly packed all-natural protein powder zest and juice of 1 small orange 1 tbsp cacao #21 Cinnamon Energy Balls by Running on Real Food Get full recipe here: https://runningonrealfood.com/cinnamon-energy-balls/ INGREDIENTS 2 cups (200 g) oats 1.5 cups (283 g) packed, pitted soft dates 1 tbsp pure maple syrup 1–2 tbsp cinnamon (see notes) 1/2 tsp sea salt (optional but recommended, do not use table salt) #22 3-Ingredient Raw Cacao Bites by Simple Vegan Blog Get full recipe here: https://simpleveganblog.com/3-ingredient-raw-cacao-bites/ Ingredients 1 cup walnuts (115 g) 1 cup Medjool dates (200 g) 2 tbsp raw cacao #23 No Bake Protein Balls by The Skinny Chicks Cookbook Get full recipe here: http://theskinnychickscookbook.com/no-bake-protein-balls/ Ingredients ¾ cup dry old-fashioned oats ¼ cup shredded coconut ¼ cup creamy peanut butter ¼ cup semi-sweet or dairy-free chocolate chips 2 tbsp pure maple syrup or agave nectar 1 tbsp chia seeds 1 tsp vanilla extract #24 Turmeric & Ginger Energy Balls By Healthy Living James Get full recipe here: https://healthylivingjames.co.uk/turmeric-ginger-energy-balls/ Ingredients 1/2 cup almonds 1/2 cup walnuts 6 medium sized dates pitted 1/2 tbsp ground ginger 1/2 tbsp ground turmeric 1 tbsp water #25 Chocolate Coconut energy Balls With Pecans and Dates by Bowl of Delicious Get full recipe here: https://www.bowlofdelicious.com/chocolate-coconut-energy-balls-with-pecans-and-dates/ Ingredients 1/2 cup pecans 15 whole pitted dates roughly chopped 1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut divided 1 tablespoon coconut oil 1 1/2 tablespoons cocoa powder 1 pinch kosher salt 1 tablespoon water I just couldn’t help but add an extra one in! I mean who doesn’t love apple pie?! #26 Apple Pie Energy Balls by Every Last Bite Get full recipe here: https://www.everylastbite.com/2014/07/09/apple-pie-energy-balls/ Ingredients 1 1/2 cups chopped dried apple 1/2 cup dates 1/2 tbsp honey or other sweetener 1 tsp nutmeg 2 tbsp cinnamon 1/2 cup toasted pecans So there you have it! 26 Delicious energy balls that are super healthy and that will satisfy any sweet tooth. Plus each one will take no longer than 10 minutes to make. Hoorah! What flavor are you going to try out? What are your go-to healthy snacks? I’m ALWAYS happy to try something new. Leave your suggestions in the comments The post 25 HEALTHY & DELICIOUS NO BAKE VEGAN ENERGY BALLS appeared first on Holistically Lizzie. View the full article
  4. 30 Beginner-Friendly Vegan Green Smoothies For Weight Loss Want to know how to have more energy, make your skin glow and get shiny bouncy hair? Err yes! via GIPHY Now I know you would have heard so many good things about green smoothies, I mean its a hot trend! But did you know that green smoothies are very alkalizing compared to regular smoothies? Heres what I mean.. The more alkaline your body, the better the cleansing & the better it is for your digestion and overall health. More alkalinity means = clearer skin, better health and increased energy! Whats not to love? I first got into green smoothies when I was trying to heal my body, balance my hormones and clear my terrible cystic acne. At the time I was bloated, had extremely brittle hair and awful digestion. (Ill spare you the details ) Although I love eating other things for breakfast, green smoothies have stayed a part of my diet over the past few years and I really notice the effect when Im drinking them on a more regular basis. Do green smoothies help you lose weight? Yes definitely! Replacing your breakfast with a nutritious green smoothie a few days a week can do wonders for your waist and your health. But it will only work in conjunction with a healthy diet that’s high in micronutrients and a healthy lifestyle Drinking a green smoothie for breakfast and eating a burger for lunch won’t give you the results your after Are smoothies a good way to lose weight? Absolutely but it’s important to have the right type of green smoothies Although green smoothies are healthy, many green smoothies, especially those found at cafes, can be very high in fat (milk/yoghurt based) which is very acid forming, difficult to digest and very fattening. They often contain too much fruit and fruit juice too. This make s them more palatable but defeats the point of getting a smoothie rich in greens. Can smoothies help lose belly fat? Drinking green smoothies high in veggies and lower in fruits are a great way to lose belly fat and de-bloat. Smoothies in general are great for belly fat and weight loss as the blender(LINK) pre-grinds the fruit and veggies down before you have it. This means that your digestive system is working LESS to process and digest. Digesting food takes A LOT of energy. With less time digesting, the body can get on to fat burning and doing a whole lot of other things What smoothies are best for weight loss? Smoothies that contain lots of vegetables, particularly green leafy’s are the best for weight loss They add tons of fiber which makes you feel fuller without the calories. Smoothies that are very high in fruit, particularly fruit juice can destabilize blood sugar levels making you feel hungry more quickly and can lead to increased belly fat. To get the full benefits of a green smoothie, make sure you add some type of plant fat. This can be avocado, seeds or nuts. Not only will it taste better but it will be more filling and the fat will help the nutrients get absorbed better. Want to try a 7 day smoothie wight loss diet plan? Ive got a great 7 day vegan detox coming your way very soon! To get the detox meal plan (plus tons of other free goodies), enter your email address below and sign up for my free vegan resource library here. So if your after detox smoothies that help to shed belly weight your in luck! How do you make green smoothies? I cant stress how important it is to invest in a good blender! With the right blender you will get a super smooth and silky finish to your smoothies- not a horrible lumpy one I use a vitamix and its the best blender Ive ever used and it lasts a lifetime. (You can read my honest opinion and full review here) All these green smoothies are nutrient packed, help flatten your tummy, contain healthy fruit and vegetables and are super simple to make! Here are 30 Beginner Friendly Vegan weight loss smoothies for weight loss #1 Cleansing Apple Avocado Smoothie by Well Plated by Erin #2 Fat Burning Green Smoothie by North South Blonde #3 Kale Pineapple Healthy Breakfast Smoothie by Well Plated by Erin #4 The Yummiest Green Smoothie Ever by Plain Jane Lifestyle #5 Classic Vanilla Green Smoothie by Spices n Flavors #6 Easy Morning Green Smoothie by Real and Vibrant #7 Matcha Smoothie by Yummy Yummy Kitchen #8 Wake Me Up Green Smoothie Recipe by Happy Healthy Mama #9 Five-Ingredient Go-to Green Smoothie by The Real Food Dietitians #10 Classic Green Monster by Oh She Glows #11 A Nice Green Smoothie With Mint + Turmeric by Vivid Life #12 Green Apple Smoothie {vegan, paleo and gluten-free} by Healthy Seasonal Recipes #13 Coconut Vanilla Matcha Smoothie by The Graden Grazer #14 Ginger Banana Green Smoothie by Fooduzzi #15 Green Spinach And Mint Smoothies by Little Kitchen Big World #16 Favorite Green Smoothie by Choosing Chia #17 Glowing Green Spirulina Smoothie by Unsweetened Caroline #18 Orange Avocado Smoothie by Making Thyme For Health #19 Pineapple, Spinach & Mint Smoothie by Harriet Emily #20 Popeye’s Spinach And Spirulina Smoothie by Will Cook For Friends #21 Super Green Spiriluna Smoothie (5 Ingredients!) by Minimalist Baker #22 Refreshing Green Kiwi Smoothie by Vegan Sandra #23 Pink Grapefruit Green Smoothie by Get Inspired Everyday #24 Creamy Cashew, Banana + Spiriluna Smoothie by This Rawsome Vegan Life #25 Get Your Greens In’ Smoothie by Waitrose #26 Green Vanilla Vega Protein Smoothie by The Blender Girl #27 My Favorite Green Smoothie by Minimalist Baker #28 Avocado Kale Smoothie by The Little Epicurean #29 Almond Matcha Superfood Smoothie by Against All Grain #30 Healthy Key Lime Pie Smoothie by Bless This Mess WOW what a great selection of green smoothies, don’t ya think? Let me know which one you’re going to try next. And let me know if you have a favorite green smoothie, I love easy healthy smoothies, especially when they’re packed with tons of greens! The post 30 BEGINNER FRIENDLY VEGAN GREEN SMOOTHIES FOR WEIGHT LOSS appeared first on Holistically Lizzie. View the full article
  5. 14 Easy ways to end exhaustion & have more energy as a new mom When I became a mum for the first time, I was stressed, overwhelmed & exhausted. My life was tuned upside down by this baby I loved more than life itself. But all I could think about was, How do I stop being so tired? Slowly I began to incorporate these tips and over time started to feel more like ME again. Being tired is the number one issue I feel new mums deal with. By using the practical suggestions below, you’ll have your energy back in no time! So, How Do You Get Energy When Your Tired? Heres 15 tips on how to get more energy when your tired as a new mom: #1 Hydrate Hydration is the first step, and the easiest one to do, in boosting energy levels. Even being patricianly dehydrated can affect your mood, ability to focus & of course, your energy levels. Drinking water only when thirsty? Your already mildly dehydrated. Dehydration has been linked to Headaches & migraines Constipation Premature ageing Inability to lose weight Joint Pain Dandruff Poor memory & concentration Suggestions: Always keep a bottle of water with you and refill it throughout the day. #2 Sleep WHENEVER you can I knew this is easier said than done but catching up on any lost sleep is essential. When your baby sleeps trying to forget about jobs and other tasks and get some shut eye Suggestions: 1)Feel too busy to sleep? Allow yourself a grace period for the first few weeks of your new arrival to sleep whenever you can & to leave any jobs or non essential tasks. Even if life picks you up after this time, at least you’ve had a period of rest. 2)Keep curtains closed in one bedroom so you can quickly get some shut eye while your baby naps.. A dark room greatly helps with sleep quality. #3 Stock Up On Healthy Meals In the beginning, it will be hard to find the time to eat. but grabbing things on the go without any preparation can make you choose unhealthy options These unhealthy options can make you feel lethargic & drained of energy What Is The Best Food For New Moms? Suggestions: You might not be able to eat 3 proper, uninterrupted meals per day, so learning a few food prep tricks & quick meal ideas that don’t require much thought or time can be extremely helpful #4 Take the Right Supplements During the first few weeks/months of your babies life, it will be difficult to ensure you are eating a healthy diet that is nourishing to yourself & your baby , if you are planning to breastfeed. Although supplements are not a swap for a high nutrient diet, they can be a great protector to ensure you are still hitting your daily requirements when you fall short on time. Being low or deficient in the following vitamins & minerals can leave you lethargic, anxious & prone to sickness. Energy Supplements For New Moms: Suggestions: Good quality multivitamin to cover your bases High strain probiotic DHA, I always recommend a plant based DHA source as its come from the original source & doesn’t contain unhealthy pollutants from fish Vitamin D, if you live in a place where you get little sun exposure, taking vitamin d can really give your energy levels a boost. #5 Ask for Help The one thing we constantly get reminded of as new parents but rarely take up! When a friend, coworker, family member or spouse asks if you need them to do anything, please take them up on the offer. Im sure you would mean it if you said the same thing to someone. Other moms know how tiring it can be with a newborn and will happily assist. Suggestions: Get friends & family to cook you meals Use a healthy delivery service Hire a cleaner few hours per week Request babysitting, if you have other children at home #6 Get Social Have people visit and keep you company even when tired. We usually have more energy when were surrounded by people who uplift us. Suggestions: 1) Give yourself a period of time after your baby arrives before letting people come to visit. This will allow you to settle in to your new life, both yourself & your baby. 2)Let people know when your ready to see them so they can come by to see you and your new baby. You can ask them to bring something (bread, milk, a cooked meal :)) with them too! #7 End Productivity Don’t worry about doing All.The.Things, at least in the beginning. Theres 2 things you should focus on as a new mom. 1) keeping yourself alive 2) keeping your baby alive. As long as thats happened then its been a productive day! Suggestions: AT the end of each day, if your stressing about a clean home ask yourself 1)Am I alive? 2)Is my baby alive? If you answered yes to both of these, you’ve done a brilliant job mama! #8 Get Your Body Moving Although exercises probably th e least thing you even want to think about, put lots think you feel like doing moving your body really will increase energy levels you don’t Need to do anything strenuous either, a few light stretches a quick brisk walk will instantly make you feel better. Studies show that being in fresh air instantly boosts energy levels too. Suggestions: Combine a quick brisk walk daily when you feel an energy slump hit. Listen to a motivating podcast or audiobook. Or better still, go with a friend to get some social interaction. #9 Breathe Deeply For Five Minutes Although five minutes might seem like a lifetime when you have a newborn, trying to consciously take five minutes out of your day to breathe properly can maximise energy. When we we breathe through our chest instead of our belly we the in less oxygen. The more oxygen moving in and out of your body, the more energy you will have. Suggestions: When feeling low on energy, stressed out or have a general feeling of overwhelm, place one hand on your belly and one on your chest. Breathe in deeply for amount of four and feel your hand on your belly expand. Hold for a count of 4 & exhale for a count of 4 letting your belly slowly soften. #10 Include More Self Care In To Your Daily Routine As a new mum, self care can pretty much go on the last of your to do list. You are so wrapped up with your little bundle that there badly seems a moment where you can focus on YOU. Energy Boosters For New Moms: Suggestions: Each of the following take less than than 5 minutes, pick one to do daily. Take a few minutes each day to do one of the following: Enjoy a cup of energising tea Use essential oils on your wrists, solar plexus and pulse points. These one are very uplifting & help with focus Apply coconut oil to your body Play upbeat music Read a few pages of a book or listen to an audiobook Do a few easy stretches Breathe or meditate #11 Have a Five Minute Break Meditation can be a powerful energy booster. But the thought of adding another thing to you day may leave you feeling more overwhelmed. Instead aim to take 5 minutes, either before your baby wakes, or before you go asleep to reconnect Suggestions: listen to a calming guided meditation where you can switch off and listen to someone else, without being left with your own thoughts Jot down 5 things you feel grateful for that day. Even if it feels like the worst day, there will still be things were good. #12 Be Careful With Caffeine Coffee is usually the go to drink as caffeine can make you feel more alert & energised. However, caffeine has a half life of approximately 6 hours which means it can be in your system for a 24 hour period. If you drink a cup of coffee midday, you will still have 50% caffeine in your body close to bedtime. Not only does caffeine make it difficult of run to fall asleep but it greatly affects the quality of our sleep too. Not what we need before taking the day with a new born Suggestions: 1) Limit to 1 cup per day, preferably before noon. 2) Try these non caffeine, energising alternatives instead #13 Eat A Diet High In Micronutrients Most diets are focused on macronutrients (Eg Fat, Protein & Carbohydrates) But rarely focus on micronutrients (all the vitamins, minerals & fiber. When we eat a diet based on macronutrients – low fat, low carb, high protein, high fat etc etc. We cannot guarantee we are recieving the highest nutrition available. Instead opt for a diet that is high in nutrient density. When we focus on adding nutrient dense foods, (think vegetables, fruits, beans, seeds, nuts), we supply the body with a high dose of vitamins, minerals & antioxidants. These foods powerfully boost energy, keep blood sugar stable, assist recovery & aid in longevity. Suggestions: Aim to eat a whole food plant based diet that is high in fruits, vegetables, beans, seeds & nuts #14 Know That Everything Is A Phase The famous saying, this too shall pass is very appropriate! Having a newborn is one of the most challenging & rewarding times of your life. One of the greatest things I was ever told when I became a new mum was that, Everything Is A Phase. If your already a mum, you will know this! But as a new mum, overwhelmed by the change in your life you can feel at times as though you will be stuck in this difficult period forever! Suggestion: Whenever you feel down, discouraged or exhausted remember Everything is a phase Id love to hear from you mama, what’s your best tips for getting more energy? Lets help all the mums out there by leaving suggestions in the comments below The post 14 EASY WAYS TO END EXHAUSTION AND HAVE MORE ENERGY AS A NEW MOM appeared first on Holistically Lizzie. View the full article
  6. 10 Free Yoga Flows For Digestion & Belly Fat Do you suffer from a noisy gassy tummy? Do you wish you could ease constipation without taking strange colored medicine or eating bags of dried prunes? There is an easier way, ladies. Yoga, I believe, should be a part of everyone’s life and health plan. Yoga offers SO MANY BENEFITS. Improving digestion and getting a flatter belly are just a few reasons to start! Yoga has helped me in my own healing journey, from back pain, anxiety to yep you guessed it bloating. via GIPHY What yoga poses are good for digestion? There are several yoga poses that are good for digestion and detoxification Many of which include twisting and poses where there is pressure on the digestive tract. Some examples are: Cat/Cow Triangle Pose Bridge Pose Downward facing dog Wind relieving posture Seated forward fold Supine twist Savasana How do you get rid of bloating from yoga? You can combat bloating through yoga by practicing regularly, incorporating lots of twisting poses and practicing deep breathing techniques. However, no amount of yoga – or any other exercise can outweigh the results from eating a healthy diet that is high in fiber and nutrients. Does yoga help with bloating? Certain yoga poses apply pressure on the digestive tract which stimulates digestion, relieves gas and eases constipation. Does Pranayama help with digestion? Pranayama, defined by yogapedia as: Pranayama is the conscious awareness of breath. It’s the life force that both energizes and relaxes the body. The term is derived from the Sanskrit, prana, meaning “life force,” and ayama, meaning “extension.” Pranayama (breathing practices) can be a great way to ease digestive discomfort. When we deeply breathe through our belly, we are able to access the parasympathetic nervous system. This puts the body in the “rest & digest” mode allowing more blood flow to the digestive tract which helps to stimulate digestion. Yoga poses for digestion after eating It’s important to know that yoga should ideally be practiced on an empty stomach but that is not suitable for a lot of people (myself included) so don’t practice yoga directly after a meal. Instead, wait a few hours before you roll out your mat. Yin yoga for digestion Yin Yoga involves low passive poses held for a long duration. This type of yoga is great for deeply stretching the muscles and connective tissues and for relaxation and stress. Scroll down to find the video on yin yoga for digestion. Yoga for bloating and digestion Here are 10 of the best yoga flows for digestion, detoxification and debloating. #1 Yoga For Digestion | Yoga for When You Overeat! | Yoga With Adriene #2 Yoga for Bloating, Digestion, Ulcerative Colitis, IBD & IBS #3 Yoga for Digestion & Detox – 20 Minute Beginners to Intermediate Yoga Workout Erica Vetra #4 Perfect Full Body Yoga Detox & Digestion Flow #5 Yin Yoga for Digestion 30 min Class – Reduce Bloating & Cramps #6 12 Minute Yoga for Digestion #7 Yoga for Holiday Meal Digestion | The Yoga Solution With Tara Stiles #8 Yoga for Constipation Relief, Cramps, and Fatigue | 20 Min Yoga Sequence #9 1 Hour Detox Yoga Flow Vinyasa (For Digestion) | Fightmaster Yoga Videos #10 YOGANUARY #30 | Yoga Flow for Digestion, Detox, Bloating | CAT MEFFAN There you have it, 10 amazing yoga videos to help you debloat and improve your digestion. And if you’re interested in yoga for weight loss, check out this post Over to you, Mama. What video are you going to try? Do you find yoga helps you in your digestion? The post 10 FREE YOGA FLOWS FOR DIGESTION & BELLY FAT appeared first on Holistically Lizzie. View the full article
  7. 25 VEGAN SOUP RECIPES FOR WEIGHT LOSS THAT YOU CAN MAKE IN THE VITAMIX Do you want delicious healthy soups that require minimal time to prepare? One of my favorite things to eat is homemade soup. I absolutely love it. But as much as I’d love to eat it way more than I usually do, it’s because I often struggle to find HEALTHY soup recipes that are QUICK! I can get lost on Pinterest looking at all the delicious recipes to try and before I know it its been an hour and I don’t even have a soup recipe to try! Do you ever do the same? One thing that’s helped me eat more healthy soups (and more healthy foods in general) is my amazing Vitamix blender. If you’ve never heard of a Vitamix, it’s THE BEST blender you can ever get. Its an expensive kitchen appliance, but with all the things it can do with it, its easy to whip up healthy meals daily. Which Vitamix can make hot soup? All Vitamix models including this one, this one, and this one have powerful blades that have been precision engineered to chop and pulverize food to a super smooth consistency. Because the blades are so powerful, the Vitamix can actually heat up food just from the speed alone! Think healthy, quick, hot soups you can literally make in minutes! via GIPHY You can check out the latest prices and models here Are soups a good way to lose weight? Soups are a fantastic way to lose weight, as long as your eating the right kind! Soups are naturally filling and can be low calorie so are a great choice when wanting to shed a few pounds. What type of soup is good for weight loss? Plant-based soups are the healthiest. They contain healthy vegetables, may contain pulses or grains and are made without dairy or heavy animal fat. When choosing a soup, it’s important to have one with lots of veggies. The fiber from veggies, plus a high water broth will help keep you full without adding excess calories. What is the healthiest soup to eat? Eating soups with lots of veggies (particularly green leafy’s) is an obvious choice. But a vegetable-based soup alone will not be filling. Some vegetables require fat to absorb the nutrients properly. You can achieve this by blending the soup with seeds and nuts (cashews are great for creaminess) coconut milk or other plant-based milk. Some raw soup recipes call for avocado which also adds a healthy source of fat. Beans, lentils are great for added protein and fiber which will stabilize blood sugar and help keep you feeling fuller for longer. Any soup can be topped with fresh herbs or spices for an extra boost of nutrition. Filling soups for weight loss To get the most of out soups, think of them as the main course. If you have a vegetable-based, clear soup, you are likely to be very hungry shortly after. This isn’t sustainable and does not provide the body with enough nutrients and calories that it needs. By adding beans, lentils or wholegrain’s you will feel fuller for longer. A clear vegetable-based soup is great but you will need to pair it with something else to maximize the nutrient content and to make sure that you’re consuming enough calories. Can you lose weight on a soup diet? Yes, you can lose weight on a soup diet but it may not be the healthiest and can often provide a loss of water weight, not actual fat. Many people make the mistake of eating low-calorie soups as part of a “fast” or “cleanse” thinking they will lose weight more quickly. Unfortunately, this doesn’t work as the person is left feeling ravenous and so can only be sustained for a short period of time. This lack of calories signals hormones to be released making the body think its a time of famine and so will slow metabolism down. On top of that, glucose will be burned as a fuel source not fat itself. Any weight lost will be water weight (or if carried on for an extended period of time) muscle loss. This is why we can see the numbers go down on a scale but we are quick to regain weight, plus more, very quickly after. A slowed metabolism, muscle loss and increase in the stress hormone cortisol is a one-way ticket to rapid weight gain! Is it bad to eat soup every day? Soup is great an everyday meal. It can be had like a one-pot dish full of wholegrain, beans, vegetables and some healthy plant fat. Or as Asians and many other cultures around the world, part of a main meal along with a vegetable dish, a whole grain, and healthy plant protein. Vegan soup recipes with coconut milk For a healthy alternative to cream and animal fat, try using coconut milk! Coconut milk gives soups a smooth creamy texture and a gorgeous flavor. Pair coconut milk with spices, Thai, Chinese, and Indian for an Asian flair! How do you make tomato soup in the Vitamix? Scroll down to find easy and healthy tomato soup recipes to make in the Vitamix. HEALTHY VEGETABLE SOUP RECIPES FOR WEIGHT LOSS #1 GREEN GODDESS VEGAN BROCCOLI SOUP + KALE CHIPS #2 LAZY DAY VEGAN TOMATO BISQUE #3 CREAMY VEGAN CAULIFLOWER SOUP #4 CREAMY ROASTED RED PEPPER TOMATO SOUP #5 ROASTED BUTTERNUT SQAUSH SOUP #6 BEET AND AVOCADO SOUP WITH CASHEW CREAM #7 VEGAN NO COOK BLACK BEAN SOUP #8 CREAMY SPICED CAULIFLOWER SOUP #9 NO OIL ROASTED ASPARAGUS AND PEA SOUP #10 VEGAN SPICY CREAM OF CORN SOUP #11 THAI CURRIED BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP #12 TURMERIC TOMATO DETOX SOUP #13 RAW RED PEPPER AND TOMATO SOUP #14 RAW VEGAN CREAM OF GREEN SOUP #15 THAI PEA SOUP #16 WARMING CARROT, GINGER AND TURMERIC SOUP #17 GOLDEN SOUP #18 CREAMY VEGAN POTATO LEEK SOUP #19 VEGAN ZUCCHINI SOUP #20 VEGAN CREAMY MUSHROOM SOUP #21 VEGAN CREAM OF ASPARAGUS SOUP #22 CREAMY VEGAN POTATO SOUP #23 RIDICULOUSLY EASY CREAM OF BROCCOLI SOUP #24 SPANISH GAZPACHO #25 VEGAN SWEET POTATO SOUP In conclusion, soups made in the Vitamix can be quick, easy and can help with weight loss. Just remember the points above and ensure you are eating a soup that is healthy, filling and nourishing. Soups diets can be a weight loss gimmick in general! But by including the soups mentioned in this post, you will be flooding your body with a wide range of nutrients that will help you drop pounds and give you glowing skin! Over to you, what soup recipes are your favorite? And what soup recipe are you going to try next? The post 25 VEGAN SOUP RECIPES FOR WEIGHT LOSS THAT YOU CAN MAKE IN THE VITAMIX appeared first on Holistically Lizzie. View the full article
  8. THE ESSENTIAL AND REALISTIC HOSPITAL BAG CHECKLIST FOR MOM AND BABY Do you wonder what you should pack in your hospital bag? I mean what do you really need? With my second baby due very soon, I thought I’d create a checklist with all the essentials that either I had with my first delivery and found super helpful, or wish Id had that I will be packing for baby no. 2. There are SO MANY checklists on what to pack in your hospital bag for labor and delivery but ultimately we’re all different and it’s totally up to you! I hope I can provide a few tips and suggestions that are extremely helpful but not unrealistic! The mistake I had with my first born was that I brought EVERYTHING. I was so unsure what to expect that I brought an entire suitcase – and not the small travel size ones either! via GIPHY What should I pack in my hospital bag for labor? Firstly I like to categorize the essentials. Mom Dad Baby Yes, it’s important to think of dad too! It’s essential that everything is thought of because on the big day you want everything to be organized and calm with zero stress! What do I really need in my hospital bag? Some people like to bring everything (myself included the first time around) but honestly, you won’t use half of it. Have the essentials and things that will provide comfort and help for you both during and after the delivery. It’s ok if you still bring items you don’t really need but you really don’t need to go over the top. Plus there’s the unpacking to think of when you get back home. What should I pack in my hospital bag for the C section? You won’t need many more things to pack than you would for a natural delivery. The only things I suggest are extra clothes and underwear for you and baby as you will need to stay in the hospital for a longer period. Make sure that you take clothes that are loose around your waist that is easy to get on and off. What should I pack in my baby bag? Below is a list of all the things I suggest to bring in your hospital bag: What dads should pack for the hospital? It’s unlikely that dad will be staying for the entire time as there will most likely be restricted visiting hours. Also, its good for dad to go home to get some rest so he can take over and look after your baby while you get some rest. Do I need to bring my own diapers to the hospital? Hospitals usually provided diapers for your baby but to be sure you should call ahead and check. Also, if you want to use particular nappies, such as organic natural disposable or reusable cloth ones then you should bring your own. I also like to bring a pack of water wipes and cotton wool to clean baby and bays bum in the first few weeks. What should I pack in my baby bag for the hospital? You can choose to bring a separate baby bag or keep everything together in your own bag. If you want to bring a separate bag for your baby items, I’ve got this one and it’s amazing I highly recommend it! All baby items will be listed in the below checklist. When should I pack my hospital bag? In my hypnobirthing course, it states “baby comes when the baby is ready” and really there’s not too much you can do about it! That is unless you have a planned C – section. Hospital bag size? You don’t need a suitcase ladies (been there, done that!) A small travel sized bag, ideally on wheels will be perfect. What should I pack for an overnight hospital bag? Below is a realistic list of all the hospital bag essentials things I suggest to pack: For Mom DARK old towels Heavy + nighttime sanitary towels/pads Cheap big knickers, a few sizes bigger than you don’t mind throwing away after. Black Disposable briefs/knickers. I got these ones from Mothercare (LINK) X2 Maternity/nursing bras X2 pajamas Dressing gown Comfortable outfit for going into the hospital and for the leaving the hospital Water bottle to refill Lose baggy shirt or dress you can wear for the labor + delivery Pillow – Essential in my opinion! Hair bobbles + clips Important items Birth Plan Insurance Passport/ Id depending on hospital requirements Passport photos (if needed depending on hospital regulations and birth certificates) Mobile phone & charger (delete some pics to free up space before) Camera + charger Change for parking Snacks and drinks for mom + dad (more on this below) Toiletries Note that all the products I’ve recommended are vegan-friendly, organic, and contain natural ingredients that are safe for you and baby! Shampoo and Conditioner. Use travel size ones to save bringing big bottles. Toothbrush and Toothpaste Cleanser Facial moisturizer Lip balm Massage oil for labor. I’m using coconut oil but I’m sure I’ll get this one. Essential oils. Rollerballs with essential oils can be useful and they are easier to use on the day. I love these ones and use them daily (LINK) Deodorant Hand sanitizer Body moisturizer or Coconut oil Cooling facial water spritz to keep you hydrated Great for when you’re tired too! Hairdryer – optional. I packed a travel one for my first birth but I didn’t use it. Plus, I live in a warm climate so I didn’t need one. If you have hair that takes a while to dry (or you want nicer post birth pics then it might be a good idea to bring one with you). Makeup – get a small bag of your essentials only. You won’t have the time or care about having a full face of makeup on. For me, it’s a tinted moisturizer, under eye concealer, mascara, and eyebrow pencil. Prenatal vitamins Arnica tablets – can be taken after delivery and are helpful to reduce bruising and swelling Hypnobirthing/Birthing Items Headphones to listen to music (wireless is better) Bachs Herbal Rescue Remedies Spray to use in labor to ease anxiety and stress Written affirmations and positive birth statements Hypnobirthing music/relaxation tracks Printable hypnobirthing relaxation notes for a partner to read Birthing ball/ Gym ball. This time i’m bringing my own because they didn’t have one available last time. It sounds ridiculous but you’ll be glad on the day! Breast and Bottle Feeding: Setting up a breastfeeding station at home is a great way to have everything ready for you for when you arrive back so you can quickly and easily access everything you need. For the hospital: Breast pads, disposable or Re-usable Nipple cream – This one is THE BEST and safe for your baby. You can also use coconut oil but it’s not as effective for painful, cracked nipples! Nipple shield. This is optional and a bit of a controversial topic but if it helps the baby latch on and establishes breastfeeding then its a go in my opinion. Formula – If your choosing to bottle feed. (note that hospitals usually provide this but double check beforehand and if you want particular one for your baby then be sure to bring it) Miscellaneous: Magazines, books etc Honestly, I brought my kindle with me for my first birth and it was a total waste of time! IF you have any time during labor and delivery, sleep mama sleep! I suggest using these as tools before you go to the hospital to help ‘distract’ you and stay in a calming mood before labor is truly established. I promise you that when you’re in established labor if Mrs. J.K Rowling is there in person, YOU WON’T CARE! Freebie Alert Hospital Bag Checklist PDF You can get the full printable checklist by subscribing HERE. You’ll also receive a whole resource library with additional resources for pregnancy, birth & healthy living. For Baby: Sleepsuits-X3 Vests-X3 Going home outfit. Optional but I’m so glad I had this for my first. It was extra special and it was great for all the first pics you’ll take! Newborn nappies Muslin cloths-X3 (you can never have too many!) Baby Towel. (Sometimes the hospital provides this but it’s nice to have your own soft one) Socks Scratch mittens Hat Blankets. X1 cellular blanket for wrapping while baby sleeps + X1 warmer blanket Coat/snowsuit depending on weather Cotton wool for cleaning baby bottom or use water only baby wipes Newborn nappies Presents for other children if needed Baby sling or nursing wrap Car seat – installed before you leave the hospital. Make sure you’ve installed it correctly and safely. For Dad Change of clothes + underwear Notepad and pen Toiletries Magazines, books something to keep busy (while your resting of course ) Hospital bag snacks and drinks I highly suggest you bring lots of snacks with you. Labour can be LONG and TIRING. And as much I think it’s us, mamas, doing all the work, it can be a long slog for partners too. So, packing enough food is essential. However its equally as important to bring QUALITY, NUTRITIOUS snacks with you. You are bringing a child into this world mama AND you are going through a time when you need all the energy you can get! This isn’t the time to eat Mcdonalds! It requires a bit of preparation before but it’s essential to give you sustained energy, keep your blood sugar stable and to recover quickly. Its the one time when you really need to make an effort with what foods you are eating! To make sure it’s as easy as possible for you, you’ll need healthy snacks that you can make ahead of time that is portable and easy to eat. Try these meal prep tips, recipes and snack ideas that you can prepare before the baby arrives! Over to you Mama! What are the essentials that you packed in your hospital bag? What do you wish you would have packed? Let me know in the comments. The post THE ESSENTIAL AND REALISTIC HOSPITAL BAG CHECKLIST FOR MOM, DAD & BABY appeared first on Holistically Lizzie. View the full article
  9. 7 DAY REJUVENATING VEGAN MEAL PLAN TO DETOX & LOSE WEIGHT Feeling down about your weight? Maybe bloating, cellulite and skin breakouts? I hear ya, mama! Detox can be the word that springs to mind. So if you’re looking to: lose weight debloat get clearer skin stop cravings reset taste buds Increase energy Then you’ve come to the right place. When I hear women saying they’re doing a detox, I suddenly think of a very low-calorie diet consisting of nothing but juice and water. It’s not that I don’t think fresh pressed juices aren’t healthy, but it’s important that when ‘detoxing’ we do it correctly and safely. Do we need to detox? There are some conflicting debates about detoxing. Your body is naturally detoxing all the time so many people believe it’s not necessary to do a detox. However, I support the camp that helping our bodies detox can be super beneficial. Here’s why: We were never designed to eat the types of foods we’ve probably all ate at some point in our lives. Even though I eat a very healthy, high nutrient, plant-based diet now, I’ve still had processed foods over the years and I definitely didn’t always have a diet as good as it is today. And it’s not just what we put into our bodies that have an impact. We’re constantly being bombarded with toxins. Pollution chemicals in the water we drink household cleaners medications alcohol coffee stress birth control cigarette smoke Although our bodies have the ability to handle all of these things, it’s not necessarily good for us, agree? How do vegans detox? There are plenty of types of vegan detoxes out there. water only fasts juice fasts gluten-free sugar-free raw vegan And they can all serve a good purpose, depending on what your body needs at the time. However, the type of detox and meal plan I’ve got for you focuses on natural cleansing with an abundance of whole plant-based foods. The 7-day detox diet plan is full of recipes that help support the body (and mind – no restriction here!) and is so healthy you could actually eat like this for life. Plus you’ll be eating actual food, something that usually doesn’t happen on a detox. Whoop! Whoop! How do vegans lose weight fast? People make the mistake thinking that by going vegan they are eating healthier. There’s a big difference between a vegan and plant-based diet. To lose weight quickly (and healthfully) vegans need to eat an abundance of whole plant-based foods that are high in nutrients and those help balance hormones. Will I lose weight if I go vegan? If you’re transitioning from a SAD/meat eating diet then yes, you will lose weight quickly and feel better immediately. But there are many different ways to eat vegan and not all of them are healthy. If your struggling to lose weight on a vegan diet then a whole food, a high nutrient detox diet can be just the thing you need to kick start your weight loss. If you’re serious about losing weight, improving your health and feeling amazing, you can learn about the coaching services I offer here. How can I cleanse my body in 7 days? The meal plan is set out to give you everything you need to eat for the next 7 days to detox and flood the body with nutrients. On top of that, some other things to try to encourage further detoxification are: Body brushing – help increase blood flow, boost lymphatic drainage and decrease appearance cellulite. Massage – treat yourself for a massage, preferably a deep tissue massage that will encourage waste to be eliminated. Drink a boat load of water. Seriously, the more you drink, the more toxins you flush out and the better the detox will be. Infuse water – add lemon, fresh fruit or mint add even more nutrients and antioxidants. Rest and sleep – give your body the chance to heal deeply, restore and renew. Get a colonic – I know, it sounds drastic but thinks of it as a deep clean in your digestive tract. Colonics have so many benefits which you can read about here (LINK) Move every day. This detox isn’t intense. It should make you feel great and have more energy. But if you’re experiencing detox symptoms (see more below) then take it easy and keep it gentle Be A daily walk, swim or yoga practice can all be beneficial. Meditate – meditation is incredibly beneficial in healing the body, and helping if your feeling tired or stressed. The aim of the detox is to remain as relaxed as possible to let your beautiful body do the work it needs. What are the benefits of going vegan Going vegan or plant-based can literally save your life! You can read a full list of amazing benefits you can expect when going vegan here. Detox symptoms and side effects If you’ve never detoxed before, you might experience the following side effects. tiredness lethargy headaches nausea Depending on how ‘clean’ your diet has been before you may experience stronger detox side affects more than others. This is typical if you’ve come from a SAD. However, in this 7-day meal plan, I’ve included LOTS of high nutrient dense foods. This is designed to crowd out all the nasty toxins that will leave your body (the reason we get detox side effects) So symptoms should be a minimum if not at all. In conclusion Here’s what benefits you can expect from the 7-day vegan cleanse and detox meal plan Clearer skin Stronger nails Flatter tummy Weight loss ( not water or muscle loss) actual fat loss Improved health Better immunity Decreased inflammation Decreased joint pain More energy Less cravings How the 7-day vegan detox meal plan works Receive all the deets on how to shop, prepare and get ready for the amazing week ahead! What’s included in the daily meals? Breakfast For 6 days out of the week, you’ll be starting your day with green smoothies or smoothie bowls. You can learn all about the benefits of drinking green smoothies and get even more recipes here. The reason for starting the day with a smoothie is so your body uses less energy digesting and more energy detoxing. It’s also a great way to add veggies to every meal to ensure you’re getting lots of antioxidants in your gorgeous bod. Lunch Expect colorful buddha bowls and filling salads. By adding a HUGE salad for lunch every day you can expect to feel more energized while increasing the speed of weight loss. Dinner Consists of generous soups, stews, and heart bowls. Again, this helps to minimize energy spent digesting. This leaves you feeling satisfied and bloat free. You’ll be in those skinny jeans in no time mama! Snacks Although snacking should be kept to a minimum during a detox phase (it helps the body to burn fat and cleanse better) It certainly won’t be a problem to add in some healthy, delicious snacks. Its more important to listen to your body, eat when you feel hungry and if you want a dessert then go ahead! Try to stick to one snack per day to eat the most out of the detox. What you get Full 7-day meal plan with all recipes included Different meals every day to beat boredom and infuse your body with nutrients Approved snack recipes Detox guidelines Meal prep tips Pantry staples Suggested foods to eat that promote detoxification (fruit, veggies, frozen) printable shopping list You can get all of this for FREE (+ so many more guides & printable) when you sign up to the resource library here I’d love to know what you think of the 7-day vegan detox meal plan! You can let me know in the comments how you got on, even better I’d LOVE to see some before/after pics. Tag me your pics in Instagram @holisticallylizzie. Here’s the link to the free detox plan again. The post 7 DAY REJUVENATING VEGAN MEAL PLAN TO DETOX & LOSE WEIGHT appeared first on Holistically Lizzie. View the full article
  10. HOW TO COPE WITH LABOUR PAIN: AN IN-DEPTH GUIDE TO NATURAL PAIN RELIEF Labor can seem scary and if this is your first baby, it’s hard to know what to expect. If this is your second pregnancy, it can be equally as daunting as you know what’s coming! Maybe you’re wondering… How can I ease the pain of natural birth? What helps with labor pains at home? How do you deal with labor pains without medication? My first baby took a whopping 30 hours to deliver. What I learned was that as much as you plan for your labor and delivery, you never know what’s going to happen and there’s not much you can do to control it! BUT, I firmly believe there are lots that you can do to feel more in control, feel more relaxed and have better pain relief, naturally. via GIPHY For the birth of my daughter, I had a great head start at home, using hypnobirthing practices for natural pain relief. Note that if you’ve never tried hypnobirthing, I strongly recommend that you try it, it can change the whole way you about labor and birth. Hypnobirthing is not only beneficial for you but also for your partner. It’s so important that they know what to do and what they can help with on the day. My partner panics if he sees me in pain so I knew I needed him to know what to expect and some of the things he could help me with. You can do classes like we did or you can take an online course or even just buy a book (this is the one I’ve got and I know loads of people who have this same one) and download relaxation and hypnobirthing tracks here. Before diving into the tips let’s take a quick look at how long you can expect to be in labor and the different stages. How long does labor last? Labor and delivery vary greatly from woman to woman and can last can last between 8-20 hours. What are the different types of labor? Early labor: Stage 1 – cervix is dilated to 3cm Active labor: Stage 2 – cervix is dilated 3-7cm Transition labor: Stage 3 – cervix is fully dilated 10cm Can you sleep through early labor? Some women find they can, others find they cant. Taking paracetamol and getting rest while you can, can help you relax and save some energy for later on. How can I ease contractions at home? Ok, let’s move on to some tips on natural pain relief methods and things you can do towards the end of your pregnancy to help cope better on the big day. I can’t stress how important it is to feel prepared and to educate yourself on what to expect during labor and after you birth your baby. Towards the end of pregnancy, you might have a ‘nesting’ period where you feel the urge to have everything prepared and ready for when your baby arrives home. With baby no. 2, I started getting early contractions and the first thing that was running through my mind was that I didn’t have things ready. This is unnecessary stress that you really don’t need to have on the day you go into labor. I’ll probably repeat this over and over but the key to a successful, quick and painless birth is to RELAX. #1 Be prepared Create your birth plan, you are the one who can decide what happens but is realistic. Go to prenatal classes if this is your first baby. It’s essential and so helpful. Get your hospital bags packed. Meal prep some meals and snacks that you can have after the birth, You’ll be starving! Know what pain relief options you can have during labor (if you choose to use it) and the pros and cons of each one. Educate yourself on what to expect after birth. (For example, delivering the placenta, uterine contractions, blood loss, soreness etc) It’s not pretty but at least you won’t be in shock! You can read the complete list of everything you need to do before the baby arrives here. #2 Practice Hypnobirthing You can start practicing hypnobirthing at any point in the pregnancy, although the longer you do it for the more it reinforces it. – link to post Some typical hypnobirthing practices include: Breathing exercises Guided relaxations Watching natural birth videos Reading positive affirmations Reading positive birth stories #3 Ensure that the baby is in an optimal position Making sure that you’re baby is in the right position for delivery can help avoid complications and long labor. Some ways you do that is by: Booking an appointment with a chiropractor Practicing certain yoga poses Visit the spinning babies website for lots of useful tips #4 Take the right Supplements Some of these are helpful both during pregnancy and labor. Bachs herbal rescue remedy – fight feelings of stress and anxiety. Great for when in labor. Magnesium spray – Used in pregnancy and labor. Magnesium naturally relaxes muscles and is a great natural pain remedy. Use topical when possible as it’s absorbed much better. Essential Oils – lavender and frankincense both promote relaxation. I love these rollerball essential oil sticks and I’m planning on using these for the birth of baby no. 2. Paracetamol – Can be used during pregnancy and labor. Ensure to tell the midwives/doctors what pain relief you’ve taken when entering the hospital. Red Raspberry Leaf Tea – tones and strengthens the uterus. Great to start drinking at the end of the third trimester. of your pregnancy. Eat Dates – studies show that eating 6 dates a day can help quicken labor! Any excuse #5 Alternative therapies Acupuncture – can help pregnancy aches and pains, can help turnabout’s breech baby an can even induce labor. (if needed naturally) Chiropractor– book an appointment close to your due date. Chiropractors can help with aligning pelvis properly to make a quicker and smoother delivery. Yoga – Practice yoga when possible and focus on poses that help open the pelvis. Physiotherapist – Seeing a physiotherapist can help with birth by working on pelvic floor muscles and doing specific exercises that can help open the pelvis. Acupressure points – Learn how to use acupressure to alleviate pain during labor and delivery. How can I ease the pain of natural birth? #6 Spend as much time at home as you can When we look at animals and how they deal with labor and delivery, the one thing you notice is that they hide somewhere, usually a closed space so that they feel safe. By getting into a safe space, our bodies naturally relax. We can get in the zone’ easier and quicker and labor is much faster. Sometimes getting in a car or arriving at the hospital can stop labor in its tracks. It may not be possible (or something you want) to have a home birth so this may not be avoidable. But staying at home for as long as you possibly can help the labor progress quicker as you will feel safe and comfortable. #7 Distract Yourself Easiest when done at the very start of labor. Distracting yourself can pass some time before the contraction/surges start getting more intense. Some helpful ideas include: Watching something funny Going for a walk Listening to an audiobook, I LOVE audible Read a magazine Read a book (an easy one!) #8 Play Music Some women find loud music helpful to distract themselves, others find it better to have quiet music. However loud and whatever you listen to, make sure its music that promotes RELAXATION. You can listen to your own music or Download hypnobirthing tracks. Top tip – use wireless headphones. they block out noise better and you won’t get tangled in the cables! #9 Meditate Guided or non-guided meditations. Make sure you have ones that you can access without internet connection in case you can’t get WiFi. If you’re at home, you can use many of the free ones on youtube or use the app insight timer. It’s the meditation app that I personally use. It has so many great guided meditations and music and it’s totally free. #10 Use Visualisation’s Visualization is a big part of hypnobirthing. It’s extremely helpful when guided. Use as part of a meditation or get your partner to read scripts to you to help you use visualization effectively. Try this guided body scan relaxation video & see how deeply you will relax! #11 Focus on Deep Breathing Breathing is probably the best way to manage labor pain naturally. There are so many types of breathing techniques that can help during delivery and birth, including: Up breathing – best for the first 2 stages of labor Down breathing – best for the ‘pushing’ part of labor and delivery Relaxation breathing – inhale through the nose for a count of 4, exhale count of either 4/6/8 Blow out the pain – feel yourself literally blowing the pain out of your body Rainbow breathing Yogic breathing – Nadi Shodana or known as alternate nostril breathing #12 Keep moving The more you stay upright and keep moving, the more you can let gravity do its job! If you were out in the woods and you needed to – excuse the phrase – go for a poop. You just wouldn’t even consider lying down to do it! Birth is the same. Stay upright to allow the baby to come out quicker and easier Things you can try: Keep upright Try these yoga poses Walk around as much as you can Squat Use a birthing/gym ball Rock your hips and do hip circles (both on and off the birthing ball) Remember, let gravity do its job! #13 Get into the right positions to ease labor pain There are certain positions that you can get into that can really help ease the pain of labor. Try these: All fours squatting Pulling or leaning on something Top tip – Avoid lying down if possible #14 Keep your mouth open Ever noticed that when you feel stressed your jaw is tight shut? Keep your mouth open to not to tense your jaw. This will allow for deeper breathing and will help you relax the rest of your body. #15 Go to the toilet Needing to wee – (which especially happens in labor as the baby is putting lots of pressure on your bladder) adds additional abdominal pressure. Make sure you’re going to the toilet every 30-60minutes, or get your birth partner to remind you! #16 Get Support Picking the right birthing partner can determine how relaxed, secure and in control, you will feel during you’re labor and delivery. You need the right person who will get you through the toughest moments. A top tip is to go through what you want them to help you with before you go into labor so you feel confident they’ll know what you want on the day. Me and my husband took a hypnobirthing course together (which I really recommend). If this isn’t something you’re partner can do consider hiring a doula. Print out a list of all the things you want to do during labour and what you want your partner to do. Some things might include: Make sure the room is how I want it and remind the staff of what I want according to my birth plan. Remind me to drink water, filling up a bottle regularly. Remind me to go to the toilet. Breathe me through each surge/contraction reminding me that at the height of the contraction it is coming back down. Count my inhales and exhales. Read me positive affirmations. Speak softly and calmly. Remind me of the end goal. Encourage me on doing so well. Say positive affirmations. Use stroking and massage. Read guided scripts. Rebozo techniques. Tell me to breathe and do it with me! If your anything like me, you’ll forget – and so will your partner! To make it easier, you can get a free summary of all these tips along with partner roles & things to do checklist HERE # 17 Relax As repeatedly mentioned, keeping your body relaxed is your no1 priority for you and your baby. The more you can relax, the more you can allow nature to do its job properly. The more stressed you are = the more pain and more difficult the labor will be. #18 Block it out Remember what animals naturally do? Keep yourself private, safe and hidden. This can be harder in a hospital setting but you can. Ask to dim lights down as much as possible. Pack an eye mask in your hospital bag. Request for as much silence as possible, use low voices when talking. #19 Wear comfortable clothes For the birth of my daughter, the midwives put me in a gown immediately as I walked through the hospital ward. I remember I was exposed to EVERYONE. Although I stopped noticing at one point, I’m sure in the back of my mind it was something that bothered me otherwise I wouldn’t remember, would I? Pack something in your hospital bag that you comfortable in but also something you feel protected in. #20 Heat and Water Both water and heat can really help ease labor pain naturally. If you can’t use a birthing pool, consider taking a hot shower or bath or applying a hot water bottle. You’re birthing partner can help hold it in place. #21 Try A Tens machine A tens machine passes electrical impulses to help with pain management. You can ask to hire it out at the hospital or you can buy one here. #22 Use Positive affirmations Use plenty of positive affirmations. Get your partner to read them out loud or consider hanging them around your room so you can see them visually. #23 Try Rebozo-ing via GIPHY A Mexican shawl is used to help the mother with pain relief naturally and is said to work a charm! Try these 5 ways to use a rebozo. #24 Avoid scary words A simple thing to do. Instead of scary words like contractions, use the words waves surges rush #25 Use Massage video There are many ways to use massage to help ease labor pain naturally. Applying sacral pressure or using gentle stroking can both help but discuss with your partner before so they know what to do. Using essential oils can be added a bonus as the smell can help you feel calmer and relaxed. #26 Get less physical examinations and fetal monitoring Regular Interruptions from hospital staff can greatly slow down labor. As part of your birth plan, you can request to have minimal examinations and monitoring. #27 Refuel It’s SO important to stay hydrated in labor, even when it’s the last thing you feel you want to do. Use a refillable water bottle and get your partner to fill it constantly. When it comes to food, eat something while you can in the easier stages. There will become a point where you won’t want to eat and you’ll need all the energy you can get! #28 Rest When possible, try to rest. Try to sleep as much as you, while you can. Get your birthing partner to remind you to rest in between surges. #29 Know you can do this! We are born to do this. Giving birth is a natural, empowering moment for women. Our bodies are designed to do it so trust yourself and trust the process. On A Final Note There is absolutely no shame in getting pain medication, its there for a reason! As much as I wanted a totally natural birth with my daughter without any intervention at all, I did have an epidural. The labor had stalled and my contractions were very regular for a VERY long time. (There were some problems with my baby.) You know your body best. But, knowing what I now know has helped me clarify what went wrong and things that I can do differently next time. You never know what’s going to happen but you can do a lot to take control of the situation and help yourself more. That’s why I created this huge list (and a printable summary) of all the things that both my partner and I could do to stay in control as much as possible We can do this mamas! Let me know in the comments, how did your birth go? What did you try for natural pain relief and did it work? I’d LOVE to know. The post HOW TO COPE WITH LABOUR PAIN: AN IN DEPTH GUIDE TO NATURAL PAIN RELIEF appeared first on Holistically Lizzie. View the full article
  11. IS A VITAMIX WORTH THE COST? HONEST REVIEW & THE BEST BUY TO BUY This post may contain affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using this link. Are you stuck for time but want healthy meals? Maybe you’ve recently gone vegan and you’re trying to get a repertoire of recipes that are quick and easy to make? In case you didn’t already know, I LOVE food and when I started out on my vegan journey I was constantly coming across people using a Vitamix for delicious, fast and healthy vegan recipes. It seemed like these people thought it was a necessity and yet I just couldn’t wrap my head around the price! It seemed ridiculous at the time to spend so much money on a blender. I thought, its just a blender and there are plenty of great models out now that would surely do the same job. But after going vegan it became clear how much of a necessity this blender is. Here’s why: Yes, you can eat vegan food without fancy kitchen equipment. You can easily get by on rice, veggies, beans, fruits, avocado, nuts, and seeds. BUT….if you want to create really delicious energy balls, nut butter, quick soups, sauces and dressings (or you have a hard time chopping veggies) then I assure you, it will become your best friend. What swayed me the most was that it was a one-off purchase that I knew would last me a lifetime. I was so fed up of burning out blenders (even high-quality ones) to make banana ice cream and nut butter. And the cheaper ones weren’t so cheap. It was actually more cost effective to just buy a good quality one that did everything I wanted and that I wouldn’t have to keep replacing. What is so special about Vitamix? Top Benefits of A Vitamix Blender You can blend virtually ANYTHING. The Vitamix is so powerful that you can make nut butter, blend frozen fruit without any liquid and blend grains into flour in a matter of minutes. It makes healthy eating quick and easy It cleans itself. Yes, that’s right, you just squirt a bit of washing liquid in the blender with some water and put it on high. 1 minute later a self-cleaned blender SOLD You can heat up food. Because the Vitamix is so powerful, the speed of the blades can actually heat up food. SO if you want a quick soup or sauce you can literally throw in some ingredients and blend on high for 5 minutes and voila a quick and healthy dish awaits! Motor burnout is extremely rare. You get what you pay for. The expensive blenders are industrial strength, are built to last and have a long term warranty. I was forever going through blenders due to the motor burning out. Although a Vitamix can be an expensive purchase, I spent more over the years replacing blenders. Knowing what I know now, I’d rather have mad the purchase sooner to save all the money I wasted. What can a Vitamix do? The Vitamix is not an average blender. It can do SO much more than an average blender such as grind nuts and seeds, whole grains, frozen fruit, and vegetables. For more inspiration, check out these 2 posts on how you can use a Vitamix: How to make nut butter in a Vitamix 50 surprising things you can make in a Vitamix Do you struggle to create healthy meals QUICKLY? Juggling everything else in life (kids, home life, work life) makes cooking healthy meals just another-thing-to-do. Why is it difficult to create healthy meals quickly? There are so many reasons why it’s difficult to create healthy meals quickly, some might include: Cooking a meal from scratch takes time Maybe you’re feeling tired and there’s a lack of inspiration You don’t know how to cook You don’t know WHAT is healthy to cook Its easier to get a takeaway We’ve all been there! But healthy eating doesn’t need to be hard or complicated. In fact, you can make simple and delicious meals quickly in a Vitamix Here are a few quick & Healthy Meal Ideas You Can Make With A Vitamix Create healthy soups in 5 minutes Cook grain of choice, open a tin of beans and add a quick sauce and dinner is served Chopping up vegetables and onions to make a stew? A Vitamix can do that in 2 minutes flat Make a smoothie for breakfast Chop some veggies, cooked or raw and add a 2-minute salad dressing for a healthy lunch recipe Have some Humous, veggie sticks and toasted pita bread for an easy lunch or snack Make a batch of energy balls for healthy snacks and desserts Best Vitamix Blenders & Which One to Choose There are many different Vitamix Blenders to choose from. Smart System Vitamix Blenders Vitamix A3500 Ascent Series Smart Blender, Professional-Grade, 64 oz. Low-Profile Container, Graphite Buy Now Vitamix A2300 Ascent Series Smart Blender, Professional-Grade, 64 oz. Low-Profile Container, White & Buy Now Classic Vitamix Blenders Vitamix Professional Series 750 Blender, Professional-Grade, 64 oz. Low-Profile Container, Black Buy Now Vitamix Professional Series 750 Blender, Professional-Grade, 64 oz. Low-Profile Container, Heritage Buy Now Space Saving Vitamix Blenders Vitamix S30 S-Series Blender, Professional-Grade, 40oz. Container, Black Buy Now Vitamix S55 S-Series Blender, Professional-Grade, 40oz. Container, Brushed Stainless Finish Buy Now Certified Refurbished Vitamix Blenders Vitamix 5300 Blender, Professional-Grade, 64 oz. Low-Profile Container, Black (Certified Refurbished) Buy Now Vitamix Standard Programs Blender, Professional-Grade, 64oz. Container, Platinum(Certified Refurbished) Buy Now Vitamix Explorian Blender, Professional-Grade, 64 oz. Low-Profile Container, Black (Certified Refurbished) Buy Now Every day I make myself and my daughter a green smoothie. Is a fantastic way to get her to eat veggies and fruits! Any leftovers I pour into lolly moulds that she can have as a healthy treat The whole family loves energy balls too! We make a big batch most weeks because we eat A LOT of them! Do I Need a Vitamix? Do you want to create quick meals, sauces, dips, dressings, smoothies, and ice cream? YES Do you want simple ways to make healthy foods? YES Do you want to add more nutrients to your diet by eating more raw vegan foods? YES Do you want to experiment with new recipes to wow your tastebuds? YES Do you want to stick to very basic vegan cooking and don’t want to try new recipes? You probably don’t need one just yet. Can I Juice With My Vitamix? The Vitamix is a blender so it will blend all the fruits, veggies, nuts and whatever else you want to add into a smooth liquid. This keeps all the fiber and nutrients intact. You can add oats, nuts, seeds, superfood powders, plant milks for a healthy meal replacement. A juicer extracts the fruits and vegetables, removing the fiber. You are left with a watery juice. Although very nutritious, having a juice is not very filling. Unless you are juicing vegetables, fruit juice without the fiber can spike insulin too much which can cause blood sugar imbalances. If you want to have a juice, you can simply make a smoothie in the Vitamix and then strain through a nut bag or mesh cloth to remove the pulp. I personally prefer smoothies as overhang is intact, including the fiber. This makes them way more filling and some might agree, more nutritious The Last Thing You Need To Know About Buying A Vitamix A Vitamix can be a costly expense to start with but if you want to create quick and healthy meals it’s a great investment! If you want a reliable kitchen appliance that will help you stay healthy, then it’s a fantastic investment as it will last you forever. The customer service is EXCELLENT! It’s the best customer service I’ve EVER experienced. When I moved to house my blender jug was lost, they sent a free replacement within 2 days! Then, I’ve had a new tamper (Free) & the motor checked when a chopstick got stuck in the blender. #momlife They picked it up the next day, fixed it and brought it back fixed, from the UK (it was bought in the states) ….and it was 5 years after purchasing!!! Do you have a vitamix? What recipes do you love to create in a vitamix? Has it helped you eat more healthily? Let me know in the comments! The post IS A VITAMIX WORTH THE COST? HONEST REVIEW & THE BEST ONE TO BUY appeared first on Holistically Lizzie. View the full article
  12. 30 EASY VEGAN TREATS & DESSERTS THAT ARE SECRETLY HEALTHY Don’t you just love cake? Do you want flavorful recipes that your special other won’t be able to tell its healthy and vegan? Maybe you need something quick and easy to rustle up for your girlfriends? I have such a sweet tooth but since changing my diet to a whole foods plant-based diet, I always try to eat as healthy as possible – including my desserts. That may sound boring, but seriously, there are so many delicious tasting recipes that will hit your sweet tooth, without having to wear stretchy pants to compensate. As much as valentines day can be …a little over the top sometimes via GIPHY It is nice to create something special for your loved one. It’s not often we get the chance to celebrate love for another so for one day a year, I think its worth it! These healthy vegan desserts and treats are so easy to prepare and even easier to eat. With 30 delicious recipes to choose from, you can be sure to find something that suits you and your special other. Heres what’s included: gluten-free vegan desserts vegan truffles 5-minute vegan desserts naturally sweetened vegan desserts easy vegan desserts vegan valentines day candy vegan chocolate #1 Rhubarb Rose Dark Chocolate Parfaits by Eat Love Eat #2 Raw Vegan Raspberry Cheesecakes by Choosing Chia #3 No Bake Cacao Coconut Tart by Plant Baked #4 Easy Paleo & Vegan Chocolate Pudding (Dairy-Free) by Paleo Running Mama #5 Coconut Macaroons by Chocolate Covered Katie #6 No Bake Chocolate Caramel Slice Recipe by Nest & Glow #7 Vegan English Pancakes by A Virtual Vegan #8 Raw Nutella Bars by The Healthy Maven #9 The World’s Easiest Cinnamon Rolls by Minimalist Baker #10 Quick and Easy Raw Chocolate Cake by One Green Planet #11 Vegan Strawberry Cheesecake (Oil-free) #12 Easy Raw Vegan Cake Pops by Sprouting Zen #13 Vegan Chocolate Peanut Butter Hearts by Detoxinista #14 Vegan Chocolate Raspberry Coconut Cups by Nutritional Foodie #15 3-Ingredient Vegan Chocolate Pots by Feasting On Fruit #16 Hot Fudge Cake by My Darling Vegan #17 Festive Vegan Meringue Kisses by Lauren Caris Cooks #18 Flourless 5-minute S’mores Molten Lava Cake (Vegan) by Veggies Don’t Bite #19 3-Ingredient Chocolate Crunch Doughnuts (Vegan) by Nadia’s Healthy Kitchen #20 Healthy Caramel Pumpkin Pudding by Desserts With Benefits #21 Healthy Vegan Paleo Salted Caramel Fudge by The Big Man’s World #22 Homemade Ferrero Rocher Truffles by The Clever Meal #23 Banana Coconut Chia Pudding by The Blender Girl #24 Chocolate Chip Cooke Pie Vegan (Gluten-Free) by Dadaeats #25 5-Minute Raw Banana Splits by Minimalist Baker #26 Vegan Chocolate Truffles by My Darling Vegan #27 Cherry Berry Almond Crumble Paleo Vegan by Gourmand In The Kitchen #28 2-Ingredient Vegan Strawberry Ice Cream No Churn Dairy by Salt And Lavender #29 No Bake Chocolate Dipped Strawberry Macaroons (Gluten-free, Paleo + Vegan) by Bakerita #30 Salted Almond Chocolate Truffles (Paleo + Vegan) by Bakerita I’d say there are some pretty epic vegan desserts and treats right there! So, ladies, there’s your excuse, you can have your cake and eat it…Literally! Isn’t it amazing to be able to be on a ‘diet’ where you’re able to eat cakes, truffles, pudding and treats that are super healthy for you? Hell to the Yeah in my opinion! I hope you enjoy these vegan desserts and treats as much as I do! And let me know, what one are you going to try for valentines day this year? I’m still deciding between no bake cacao and coconut tart and vegan chocolate raspberry coconut cups! Drool! Let me know in the comments which one you’re going to make! The post THESE 30 HEALTHY VEGAN VALENTINES DAY DESSERTS ARE SUPER QUICK TO MAKE appeared first on Holistically Lizzie. View the full article
  13. This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using this link. Feeling stressed and overwhelmed? Stop it with these 10 powerful tips Stressful jobs, school pickups, and never-ending to-do lists can leave us frazzled, overwhelmed and burnt out. With such hectic lifestyles, there’s no wonder why stress and anxiety are on the rise. I’ve had my own personal struggles too. Twice in my life, I suffered from terrible anxiety and depression. At the time I felt lifeless like there was no way out and everything seemed pretty bleak. Luckily I’ve found that there are SO MANY ways to overcome anxiety, stress, and depression and more importantly, how to prevent it from happening again. I believe the key is to ensure that you are taking the right steps to ensure that stress, anxiety, and depression won’t take a hold of your life – before it reaches that point. If you’ve got a type A personality (like me ), you’ll know it can be difficult to switch off. You may become easily overwhelmed and anxious with all the thing you MUST GET DONE. But it’s not a good way to live and I’ve learned that the hard way. We should be doing so much more to ENJOY life and have less WORRY about the past or future. 10 Signs you are anxious and overwhelmed 1) Too much or too little sleep 2) Feeling exhausted 3) Getting sick more often 4) Undereating or overeating 5) Feeling ‘frazzled’ 6) Brain fog and difficult to focus 7) Procrastination and feeling unmotivated 8) More emotional than usual 9) Strong feelings of dread 10) Have any inflammation in the body (pain) Here are 10 ways to naturally reduce anxiety and overwhelm. #1 SPEND TIME IN NATURE Spending time in nature lowers stress and anxiety, boosts our mood and increases feelings of happiness. ACTION: Spend time outside and walk barefoot Invest in some plants at home Go to a park, beach or a walk around your neighbourhood #2 BREATH…DEEPLY When we are in a state of stress or anxiousness, our breath becomes more shallow and we breathe through our chest instead of our belly. ACTION: Finding yourself in a stressful situation? Place 1 hand on your belly and 1 on your chest. Feel the hand on your belly move in and out. Slow your inhales to a count of 4, followed by an exhale for a count of 4. Repeat 5 times #3 PRACTICE YOGA Yoga is a wonderful way to exercise as it encourages focus, deep breathing, and the mind-body connection. ACTION: Take a few minutes in the morning upon waking and before going to bed to sit quietly and do a few gentle stretches. Join an online yoga subscription for access to all types of yoga that will meet your goals Suggested Post: Yoga For Weight Loss: 10 Free Videos For A Toned Body #4 EAT VITAMIN C RICH FOODS Vitamin C supports progesterone production which helps to calm the nervous system. ACTION: Eat foods rich in vitamin c such as citrus fruits, berries, broccoli, spinach, pineapple, kiwi, peppers and kale #5 USE ESSENTIAL OILS Lavender is very soothing and can help us feel calm by reducing stress and anxiety. ACTION: Use lavender essential oil by adding a few drops into your bath, on your pillow before bed or diluting with a neutral carrier oil and massaging into the body What you need to know about essential oils #6 INCREASE HEALTHY FATS Stress and anxiety can deplete healthy fats in our body making us feel low and unfocused. Healthy fats contain magnesium and tryptophan. Tryptophan increases melatonin and serotonin, neurotransmitters that promote relaxation, a feeling of wellbeing and a restful nights sleep ACTION: Eat fibrous foods that are high in omega 3, such as avocado, walnuts, chia seed, and Flaxseed #7 LIMIT CAFFEINE Caffeine increases cortisol (the stress hormone) affects the quality of sleep and can even trigger depression When too much caffeine is consumed, it can make you feel moody, jumpy and anxious These are all GREAT coffee substitutes. Each one has health benefits, won’t spike adrenalin and will keep your mood calm and steady. Green tea has a smaller amount of caffeine than coffee and contains l-theanine. L-theanine lowers anxiety and keeps energy levels stable. Chamomile tea is also an excellent choice. Chamomile is caffeine free and promotes relaxation. ACTION: Drink coffee before noon Replace coffee with green tea or caffeine-free substitutes, linked above #8 QUIT SUGAR Sugar gives us a false sense of energy and is very addictive! We get a sugar high followed by a crashing low. This blood sugar imbalance makes us eat more sugar overall to boost energy levels. ACTION: Eat a smaller amount of dessert or share with a friend Try to cut obvious sources of sugar from your diet When eating sugar, combine it with a small amount of fiber, protein, and fat to slow its absorption (Eg, Strawberries, almonds and a few pieces of dark chocolate) #9 EAT CARBOHYDRATES Healthy carbohydrates in the form of fruits, vegetables and wholegrain boost tryptophan and serotonin levels which promote a better nights sleep ACTION: Choose wholegrain varieties of bread and kinds of pasta Swap white rice for brown Experiment with different grains such as quinoa, couscous, and freekah Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables #10 SLEEP MORE – BUT NOT TOO MUCH Poor sleep affects the hormones responsible for our mood and appetite. When we sleep less, we turn ON the hormone that makes us hungry and we turn OFF the hormone that makes us full However, too much sleep can make us feel lethargic and unmotivated. Anywhere from 6-9 hours works well for most people ACTION: Regularly wake and go to bed at the same time each day Avoiding using electronics 1 hour before bed Avoiding stimulating foods such as caffeine, spicy foods and chocolate Sleep in a cool, dark and quiet environment Apply topical magnesium. Magnesium promotes relaxation and a restful night sleep PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER AM Wake up early at the same time each morning Take a few deep breaths followed by light stretches for 5 minutes Drink large glass water, followed by 1 cup of coffee (if desired) In the afternoon, go outside for a walk and get some fresh air Meals Breakfast – Oats with berries and toasted mixed seeds Lunch – Wholegrain wrap with hummus, avocado, and rocket, followed by fresh fruit Snack – Banana and peanut butter Dinner – Chickpea or chicken curry with brown rice and green beans Dessert – Orange slices and a few squares of dark chocolate PM Switch off mobiles and TV 1 hour before bed Do a few light stretches before bed Drink chamomile tea Place a few drops of lavender essential oil on your pillow Get an early night! Have you ever suffered from anxiety, stress or overwhelm? Let me know in the comments what was the one thing that really helped you? The post FEELING STRESSED & OVERWHELMED? STOP IT WITH THESE 10 POWERFUL TIPS appeared first on Holistically Lizzie. View the full article
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