Saturday, February 23

Embrace Your Reality

                            


Alexandra Jaye Johnson offers a timely reminder about life!  Love the clarity and simplicity of this message - and this way of thinking: it's a great antidote to stress :)  Like Alex says:

"Life will give you whatever experience is most helpful for the evolution of your consciousness.  How do you know this is the experience you need?  Because this is the experience you are having at the moment."

~ Eckhart Tolle

Friday, February 22

Paleo Sleep

           


This is fascinating and worth a look, sleep being a key component of a healthy lifestyle and naturally a key component of the Paleo lifestyle.  And sleep having been entirely different in the days pre-dating the light bulb and access to "open all hours" technology.

Recently I have found myself wanting to sleep early and waking between 12.30 and 2 pm at night before going back to sleep, later.  I was unsettled by this, mostly, on reflection because we are told that good sleep is solid, uninterrupted sleep and "best" for eight hours and over.  That thought set up a judgment in me that I would suffer the next day due to a "sleepless" night.  In fact and whilst wrestling with that thought, it became apparent that it was that thought that was causing me the stress not the pattern of sleep cycle that I was experiencing.  It was a problem of perception!

This TED talk considers this and reminds us of numerous records through time of biphasic sleep patterns (sleep broken in two four hour segments) with the first beginning about two hours after night fall.  Separating the first sleep from the second sleep was a period of wakefulness for prayer, meditation or deep connection with a partner, the light being still dark outside and the connection pretty intense.

I found reference to this period of wakefulness shared by A. Roger Ekirch (a sleep historian) who recounts the tale of Robert Louis Stevenson and his biphasic sleep experience trekking through the French Alps in 1878.  Falling asleep shortly after sunset

"He awoke around midnight, smoked a cigarette, and, only after enjoying a hours contemplation, fell back asleep.  That hour, that "one stirring hour" moved him; Stevenson had never before experienced a "more perfect hour".  He had awoken not because of an interloper, a night terror or any other external actor but because of what he later described as a wakeful influence that goes abroad over the sleeping hemisphere and is unknown to those who dwell in houses"

So I am going with it.  Learning to drop the judgment that comes with thought and embrace this period of wakefulness and the sometimes unexpected pleasures that comes with it ;)

How about you?




Thursday, February 21

Paleo Apple Crisps


Half term heaven for the kids and half term heaven for me, returning home from work yesterday to find a new Paleo snack on the table courtesy of the Oliver junior team.  Well, a bit of self interest never hurt anyone and proof positive that necessity is truly the mother of invention when it comes to paleo snacks for these children left to their own devices in a biscuit free environment!  It transpires that as well as adding our recipe collection to the Pinterest board, Poppy had taken a good look round at other paleo offerings and had been truly inspired. So read on and enjoy:

Ingredients

Apples
Cinnamon

Method


  • Pre- heat oven to 180C
  • Thinly slice the apples using a mandolin slicer
  • Place the delicate slices on to a baking tray lined with parchment paper
  • Sprinkle with cinnamon
  • Bake for one hour, turning half way through.

Tuesday, February 19

on Weight Loss

                                 


"Losing Control" by Kathrine Brown a short film by Nic Askew.

This short film explores the profound subtlety hidden in the fight for control of our waistlines.  And our lives.  This film captures the unmet need in many of us, women in particular for whom the fight for weight loss is not about weight but about the unmet hunger to live a bigger life....



Monday, February 18

Paleo Snacks


Ever catch yourself standing in front of the fridge, door open and no idea why?  Habit, that’s all and it’s time to tackle that and get creative in the kitchen.  Reports from the front line confirm that the more we become aware of the habit of snacking, the easier it is to make a different choice.  In these transition days when we often work the brain too hard, we could use a technique to assist. 

So here are the top ten paleo snacks from Paleo Works.  Choose carefully and soon the habit to snack will pass out of the food day.  

We never used to snack by the way, it was an invention of the food industry: a finger of fudge, milky way – the snack you can eat between meals and won’t fill you up, maltesers, the lighter snack and we fell for it, hook line and sinker.  Check out this fantastic documentary by Jacques Peretti and listen, don’t get fat, get even and then...fight back! 

Scooby Snacks for the Discerning Eater!

  • Coffee with cream
  • Berries with cream
  • Avocado slices with bacon bits
  • Macadamia nuts
  • Hard boiled eggs
  • Devilled eggs
  • Eggs mashed with butter
  • Half a pear with some strong cheese
  • Kale Chips
  • Half an apple with some almond butter

PS. Whatever else you are looking for it's not in the fridge.  

PPS.  Fat loss is a hormonal process not a calories process.  High insulin levels from carbohydrate consumption fuels fat!

PPPS.  Sugar addiction (carbohydrates) comes largely down to mood.  We relapse only when we feel the need for a chemical pick me-up.  Coaching to master our eating habits can be a life-saver...  Call us now and take advantage of a FREE discovery session.  We'll explore eating habits together. take stock of your diet history and give you an idea of how we can partner together to develop an eating philosophy for life.

Kate Oliver spent years struggling with her weight and ineffective weight loss solutions – until she discovered a remarkable solution (backed by 2,000,000 years of evolution and experience) that helped her permanently lose 60lbs in eight months with no pills, calorie counting, potions, exercise or weight loss surgery.  Three years later, her weight remains stable - now that's worth celebrating! 


Friday, February 15

Walk Like Giants - Barry Andreas


Roast Peppers




Old habits die hard and that includes the habit of standing and staring in front of an open fridge!  Not sure ever what we are looking for but often the answer does not seem to be inside.  Still here's something that is.  Roasted pepper slices in olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  Stick your finger in the pot and enjoy!

Ingredients

Sliced chunks of bell pepper (red, yellow and orange)
Sliced chunks of tomato
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Balsamic Vinegar to taste
Salt and Black pepper

Method

Roast the bell peppers.

Slice up the bell peppers, toss with salt and pepper, extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar to taste

Keep in the fridge for about a week - great to add flavour to just about anything you are cooking great to snack on when you are standing staring into the fridge.

Kate Oliver spent years struggling with her weight and ineffective weight loss solutions – until she discovered a remarkable evolution solution that helped her permanently lose 60lbs in eight months with no pills, potions, calorie counting, exercise or weight loss surgery.  For your free discovery session to find out how the Paleo path can help you conquer your food habits e-mail: kate@paleoworks.co.uk.  Talk soon.

Thursday, February 14

Hot Valentine's Day Breakfast



Working daily with others to facilitate the transition to a paleo lifestyle always brings with it fantastic insights and reminders and for that I am truly grateful.  And yesterday was no exception.  During the afternoon, as we started to build on the concept of creating an eating philosophy, a guide for life; so it became obvious all over again that the wonderful key to eating paleo is simplicity.  How complex life is.  How so many of us have brought that complexity into the food we eat and how letting go frees up the taste buds in glorious, unexpected ways.

Bringing the food back down to simple single ingredient food.  Breakfast this Valentine's morning becomes bacon, liver, avocado and eggs (over easy) and fried in bacon fat.  Delicious.  Satisfying.  Simple.  Try it and see.

Share your best simple eating meals in the comments below.

Wednesday, February 13

Brisket Tea and Cabbage


Supper was based around a slow cooked brisket tonight.  We added some roasted butter nut squash to the mix about an hour before serving and ate it with roast sweet potatoes and butter for the children and green cabbage leaves again with butter and fresh cracked black pepper.

Tuesday, February 12

Simple Supper



This was a simple clean meal with cooked chicken, boiled eggs and salad.  We added some dressing, a little chilli, olive oil and balsamic vinegar; tossed the salad and served.  It was enough and we ate well and simply last night.  Thanks Paleo

Monday, February 11

Plan B


So it came round to Friday and I felt rebellious.  Full-time working mums can see where this is going - and there it was, NO TEA.  Walking in through the door after work, a little late may be but truthfully not on purpose, four hungry mouths open and looking at me.  What's a girl to do?  Order out?  Run to MacDonalds?  Run away?

In truth, I did none of the above.  Rustling in the back of the freezer I located a pack of sorry looking frozen pollocks - which seemed kind of appropriate!  Using the baked cod recipe from during the week I rallied the troops and we created "Cheesy Fish".  OK the title is not great.  Don't dwell on it. You will see for the purposes of this post we have chosen to call this dish "Plan B."

The dish contained the fish, olives, chorizo (bits found in tray in fridge), onion and dried tomatoes each offering triumphantly presented by the kids charged with exploring the back of the fridge, and was served topped with greek yoghurt and cheese.  And it worked!  Tasty, hot, delicious and filling (served with dark green leafy vegetables). Which goes to prove two things a) it can be done, even after a less than promising start b) always keep frozen fish in the freezer.  

Take from this what you will.  Me, I love the fact that this paleo way of eating fits in with us, all of us.  Family means no-one gets left behind or forgotten.  This time, we are all in this together.  (Cue song).

Til next time..

Friday, February 8

Triggers


Triggers are everywhere.  We can’t avoid them.  The key is to discern a method of dealing with the feelings that wash over when the trigger kicks in.  Ice-cream, cheese, chocolate, sponge cake, Belgian buns for some of us these trigger indescribable feelings of comfort and love.  But that is not about the food.  It‘s never about the food.  Part of the journey is learning why we eat.  And emotions don’t come into it.  They are filed under another place.

Be very clear deep inside why we eat: for energy and for building blocks for maintenance and repair.  Anything else isn’t eating.  Anything else is a poor substitute for deeper connection and self- love.  Learn not to be afraid.  Learn to voice the intention behind an action.

So in that moment the trigger bites: focus on forming a single word that captures the essence of your intention:  the bigger picture; hold on and then let go.  And trust.

And keep breathing.  Things have a way of working themselves out in the end.  Promise.



Paleo Casserole



Almost the end of my week-long experiment with slow cooker meals.  It works, I think, front loading my day with meals ready for when we walk in from work, school ,college, volunteering, shopping, driving.  This last dish was a chicken casserole with sausage (as that is what was left over in the fridge) and a selection of vegetables and some tinned tomatoes.  Tasty and with enough sauce leftover to make a nourishing "soup" for both adults to eat at some point during tomorrow, all happy.

Ingredients

6 chicken thighs (boned or boney, whatever you have)
Spicy sausage (gluten-free)
Mushrooms, chopped
Red pepper, chopped
Onion, chopped
Celery, chopped
Chicken stock (2 cups)
1 x tin of tomatoes
2 bayleaves
Sea salt and cracked fresh black pepper
2 tbspn coconut oil

Method

1.  Fry the chicken in the coconut oil to brown the skin

2. Place in a slow cooker with all the other ingredients

3.  Cook for about 6 - 8 hours

4.  Take a cup of the broth out with some of the veggies and puree.

5.  Add some ground arrowroot if desired to thicken the consistency

6.  Return to slow cooker

7.  Serve with steamed spring greens and a knob of fresh butter

Thursday, February 7

Paleo: The Golden Ticket



"And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places.  And those who don't believe in magic will never find it."  Roald Dahl









Wednesday, February 6

Balsamic Brisket

This slow cooker meal is not for the faint hearted as the spectacular taste could blow your socks off.

Warnings aside, it took a good ten minutes to prepare in the kitchen before setting off in the slow cooker (the meat not me).

Yesterday however, I had awarded myself a day off and so the ten minutes seemed a small price to pay in the sure and certain knowledge that when the kids and Michael opened the front door after a long day at work, the smell of slightly spiced warm beef floating around the corner would be reward in itself and would help to convince all that I had been hard at it all day as opposed to watching Jeremy Kyle with my feet up, wrapped in a blanket. Shhh...don't tell: the occasional day off is a very necessary part of life.Indeed it's in the contract!

Ingredients

2lb brisket
1 tsp coconut oil
1 tsp each sea salt, fresh black pepper, smoked paprika
1 tsp each onion powder, garlic powder
1 large onion
1/2 cup tom sauce (passata - organic sugar free)
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup water
2 tbspn red wine (er..no, I didn't, it was 9 am tempting tho)
For tee-totallers or those without wine, you can use beef stock

Method

1.Combine sea salt, pepper, smoked paprika, onion granules and garlic powder

2  Combine vinegar and tomato sauce

3.  Season the brisket with the spice blend, all sides top and bottom

4.  Slice onion thickly and line bottom of slow cooker

5.  Heat oil and lightly brown each side of the spiced up roast in the frying pan turning over and over til sealed

6.  Place the meat on top of the onions

7.  Add the water and slosh of wine into pan to de-glaze to include scraping all the lovely sticky bits in the bottom of the pan.  Throw over the meat and onions.

8.  Pour the tomato and vinegar mixture over the top.

9.  Cook on low for as long as necessary

Served this with jacket potatoes for the boys, jacket sweet potatoes for the girls and a serving of butter touched asparagus (yes reduced aisle in Tescos again - that's me in the rain coat, well if they will give it away..)

Tuesday, February 5

Simple Prawn Curry

Light, easy meal with fresh, delicate, zingy taste; served up with basmati rice for the kids who prepared that while I drove home.  It works and I love it!

Ingredients

3 tbspn coconut oil
1 medium onion
1 Tbspn fresh ginger
1.5 tsp garlic, curry powder (garam masala)
1 cup of coconut milk
1 cup of chicken stock
1 1/2lbs prawns, peeled
Sea salt
Dash of cayenne pepper
2 tbspn fine chopped mint
1.5 tspn lemon zest

Method

1.  Heat oil, add onion and cook to soften (about ten mins)

2.  Add ginger, garlic and curry powder (inhale deeply), cook spices with onion for about two minutes

3.  Add coconut milk and stock and simmer over medium heat til reduced about a third of the liquid (about ten mins)

4.  Add prawns

5.  Season with salt and cayenne pepper and simmer for about five minutes

6.  Stir in the mint and lemon zest and serve immediately

On Nourishment



When food is life, choose food that will enhance life.  If we eat processed food, food tainted by industry, food so far away from its natural state we can no longer tell what it is, we are losing life essence.  Life essence is when we climb a tree, pull an apple off a branch that has been ripened by the sun and take a big bite of it.  That is nourishment.

Slow Cooker Ribs

Pulled it off with grace and style last night and my star is very definitely in the ascendant!  Why?  Ribs, that's why and this has to be the easiest meal ever made.  Perhaps the best thing was the cost.  The price of the meat (two packs of spare ribs - the plateful shown) was £4.25 (thank you Tesco's reduced aisle) and all of us late in after work, school, volunteer jobs and college. The sauce was cooked up in 20 mins from store cupboard staples and we served it with salsa and a few sweet potato crisps (not Walkers but not far off)!  The beef stock came from the ribs in the slow cooker which produced exactly the right amount even though no liquid was added to the recipe.   Alchemy at work ;)

Ingredients

Ribs (2lbs)
Sea Salt and fresh cracked black pepper
1 onion


Sauce

1.5 cups of beef stock
3 cloves of garlic
6 oz tomato puree
1/4 cup apple cyder vinegar
1/4 cup mustard
2 tbspn honey
1 teaspoon each onion powder, chilli powder
1/2 teaspoon each ground cumin, sea salt, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper

Method

1.  Slice onion and set in bottom of slow cooker

2.  Add the ribs, pile them in and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper

3.  Slow cook on low all day

For the sauce

1.  Add the garlic to the stock and simmer for about 5 mins

2.  Whisk in the remaining ingredients

3.  Simmer on medium-low for 20 minutes




Monday, February 4

Why Do We Eat?


Seriously, why do we eat?

We eat for energy.  Some of us say we eat for “fun” but that is not an essential reason in fact on closer examination, it’s not even a reason and for some of us not even fun anymore.  The other scientific reason we eat is to replace tissue and gather up building blocks for repair and maintenance of our bodies.

Building blocks and fuel.  We need both.  We can’t have one without the other as we need fuel for energy to gather up the blocks and the energy to fuel the bio-chemical reactions to keep up the repair.

Nowhere does it state we eat to cheer us up, to comfort us or because we deserve it.  Really, eating does not have a role to play here. 

And the building blocks we need for maintenance and repair are protein and fatty acids.  Not carbohydrates.  In fact we can get all the carbohydrates we require from protein and fat.  There is zero requirement for carbohydrate in our diet.  And yes you did read that correct.  Check out this great article by Ron Rosedale MD

There are two kinds of fuel our bodies can process: sugar and fat.  The body stores excess energy as fat.  That is evolution.  That is the body’s desired fuel that will sustain us and allow us to live through times of lack and scarcity.  The body stores only a little bit of sugar.  That is for turbo-charging purposes only and is not the body’s desired fuel choice.  Our bodies function at optimal levels burning fat, not sugar.

In fact if we had to rely on our sugar stores for energy, we would be dead by the end of the day!

The brain does require glucose (blood sugar) to function but can receive this by burning by products of fat-metabolism called ketones.  In times of fasting, this is what happens.  Try it.  It keeps us lean and mean.  We love the feeling of clarity and focus ketosis brings and always advocate it as an efficient means of weight loss when we need to get back on track.  

Glucose was meant to be fuel used in life or death situations: dodging fire,  racing a sabre-toothed tiger or wrestling a woolly mammoth.  It is turbo charged rocket fuel and we dig into our glycogen stores (sugar stores) and raid this rocket fuel when the situation calls for it.  And to be frank, these days , that's not often is it?  We have different stresses and that's a whole other post.

What to take away from this article?  To function strong and well we need to be burning fat for energy and repair.  To be slim, strong and vital we need to be burning fat.  What gets in the way of burning fat?  Sugar consumption from carbohydrates!  What does the modern western diet consist of?  Carbohydrates (sugar)!  Get out of the carbohydrate cycle and we are more than half way home. Get our bodies into effective fat burning machines, now we're talking action and results and that's when Paleo Works!

Kate Oliver spent years struggling with her weight and ineffective weight loss solutions – until she discovered a remarkable solution (backed by 2,000,000 years of evolution and experience) that helped her permanently lose 60lbs in eight months with no pills, calorie counting, potions, exercise or weight loss surgery.  Three years later, her weight remains stable - now that's worth celebrating!  

Saturday, February 2

Did You Watch This Last Night?


Russell Brand talking to Jon Snow on Channel 4 yesterday.  Extraordinary that it "plopped" into prime time UK news viewing.  Extraordinary and very powerful.  Here's to the power of connecting and connection ;)


           

Friday, February 1

Do you still play?


"The struggle of maturity is to recover the seriousness of the child at play" Nietzsche

Chilli-lime Marinade for Paleo Chicken

The marinade was easy to make before work and I left the chicken pieces taking on the flavour in the fridge.  As it happened, the traffic got me and the kids were home first.  They threaded the meat onto kebabs and boiled some basmati rice for their supper.  Mike and I ate the grilled chicken meat (although not much left) (!), folded into the dark purple cabbage leaves (the meat that is not us) (doh).  Long day ;) Helped along by good food and an early night.

Ingredients

For each pound of chicken

3 tablespoons of oil of choice
1 1/2 Tbsps of red wine vinegar
1 lime juiced
1 tsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp paprika, onion and garlic powder
Cayenne pepper to taste
Salt and cracked fresh black pepper

Method

Whisk ingredients together

Pour mixture over meat and leave to flavour up for as long as you wish (breakfast through til tea for me)

Thread onto skewers and grill

Would also work to slow cooker the chicken and shred the meat after 6 hours to serve as tacos wrapped in salad leaves with avocado and tomato or try some salsa