Recipes – The JOYful Table

Looking for healthy recipes? Susan Joy lives and breathes healthy food. She shares her recipes online and is a regular guest on 98five radio.

Sue’s recipes are tasty, nutritious and based around her paleo philosophy. Her paleo foundation takes into account a simpler time where food came from natural sources and where they weren’t genetically modified or saturated with chemicals. The recipes are gluten free and refined sugar free.

What are you eating?

Food as Medicine. How are we going to cook and prepare food that will nourish us? What are we doing to our planet? Our food comes from our planet. Did it walk on the land, grow in the soil, swim in the ocean?

The Magic Pill is a thought provoking documentary. View the trailer below.

Winter Wellness 101

Hygiene – wash your hands, wash door handles and wipe over phone handsets and remote controls with antibacterial wipes. A drop of eucalyptus oil on a cotton pad is great for door handles.  Teach children to put them hand over their mouth when they sneeze or cough. Remind adults to do this as well!

Babies and the elderly – please be considerate of young children and babies and our older generation when you are unwell. The elderly can have weaker immune systems and a cold or flu can leave them unwell for weeks and develop into further infection. Probiotics are particularly useful for children in day-care.

Your herbal immune squad – look for herbal formulas containing Echinacea root, Olive leaf extract and Andrographis for strengthening your immune system, fighting infections, boosting white blood cells and helping to reduce the symptoms of colds and flus, mucous and congestion. The herb Astragalus is marvellous as an immune tonic and can be used long term for people prone to sore throats, colds, flus, and when recovering from illnesses such as glandular fever, shingles and chronic fatigue syndrome. The amino acid lysine is clinically proven to reduce the recurrence of cold sores and shingles.

Essential minerals and vitamins – zinc, vitamin C and vitamin D are essential for healthy immune function. Take these supplements daily during winter. Your GP can test your vitamin D levels and your Naturopath can test your zinc levels. I recommend a good quality practitioner only supplement zinc and vitamin C powder taken daily throughout winter. Vitamin C is also a natural antihistamine.

Food as medicine and fuel – remember to continue to eat well and keep up your vegetable intake. This can be harder in winter when we crave warm food rather than a simple salad or green smoothie. Think of roasted and steamed veggies, protein in each meal (lean chicken, tuna, fish, organic tofu, lentils). There are great recipes online such as  Broths and home-made chicken soup are wonderful for the body and the soul. Keep up your fluids with a thermos of herbal tea during the day, this will keep you warm as well.

Sinus congestion – essential oils are a natural, non-toxic way to help clear congestion and aid breathing. Read the labels carefully and use 100% pure essential oils. A drop on a tissue can be inhaled during the day or put under your pillow when you sleep. Always be cautious with children and mix with a carrier oil before applying to skin.

This is general non-specific advice and I recommend a naturopathic consultation for specific health conditions and a targeted immune protocol.

Protein – the building blocks

Protein is an essential macronutrient that comes from our diet. The body breaks down protein into amino acids which are the building blocks for our bodies. They are essential for most functions in the body.

Why do we need protein?

  • To rebuild and repair tissue and muscle, joints, bones and skin
  • To support muscle recovery after exercise
  • To balance blood sugar and help reduce carbohydrate cravings
  • To maintain balanced energy levels and reduce fatigue
  • To support healthy concentration, memory and sleep
  • To support normal hormone function

Foods containing protein:

  • Whey protein (whey protein isolate)
  • Eggs
  • Legumes, lentils, beans, dhal
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Nut butters
  • Rice protein
  • Pea protein
  • Lean meat and chicken
  • Tuna and prawns

Sleep – practical tips

Sleep is essential for the renewal of our mind, body and soul. Try these simple tips for a good sound sleep:

  • Avoid stimulants in the evening.
  • Eat and drink no later than three hours before bed.
  • Go to bed before 10pm in a dark, quiet room and switch off phones and wifi in the room.
  • Progressively relax each body part after you get into bed.
  • Keep a notepad and pen next to the bed. If you have thoughts running through your mind or things you need to remember, write them down so you can remember and address them the next day.
  • Try calming teas such as passion flower, chamomile and lemon balm.
  • Place a drop of lavender essential oil on the sole of your feet. Just one drop.
  • Place a drop of lavender essential oil on a tissue and place it under your pillow.

Fruit and Veggies – the essentials

Fruit and vegetables are essential. We NEED to consume these daily. The scientific evidence of the health benefits of eating vegetables and fruit has been reported for decades and continues to strengthen. Vegetables and fruit are full of essential nutrients, vitamins, minerals , antioxidants and fibre. They taste magnificent and should be enjoyed daily in each meal.

The minimum recommended intake of vegetables for adults is five to six serves per day.

A standard serve of vegetables is 75 grams or:

  • half a cup cooked green or orange vegetables (i.e. broccoli, spinach, carrots, pumpkin)
  • half a cup cooked dried or canned beans, peas or lentils
  • one cup leafy or raw salad vegetables
  • half a cup sweet corn
  • half a medium potato or other starchy vegetables (i.e. sweet potato)
  • one medium tomato

A standard serve of fruit is 150 grams of fresh fruit or:

  • one medium apple, banana, orange or pear
  • two small apricots, kiwi fruits or plum
  • one cup diced or canned fruit (with no added sugar)

Tips for adding vegetables to your meals:

  • Try using a zucchini noodles (you use a spiraliser to easily cut long strands of zucchini) to use instead of pasta
  • Dice cauliflower and grill it lightly in a pan with extra virgin olive oil as a substitute for rice
  • Add layers of thinly sliced vegetables (sweet potato, eggplant, zucchini) to lasagne
  • Try a smoothie – a handful of fresh spinach leaves, half a frozen banana, a handful of blueberries and some coconut water, then blend in a high speed blender