High Protein, Low Carb Smoothie Bowl

High Protein, Low Carb Smoothie Bowl

Read time: 5 minute read

Smoothie bowls are the most delicious, refreshing sugar hit, perfect for a summer breakfast or snack. But are they good for you?

Despite smoothie bowls being packed with healthful ingredients – fruit, greens, honey, seeds – it is an extremely high carbohydrate meal option.

Carbohydrates (particularly sugar) in high amounts can be problematic for some individuals, for example those with diabetes, excess weight, high stress levels, fatigue, or hormonal issues such as PMS and PCOS. In all of these scenarios lies an issue with the hormone insulin – it doesn’t function as well is it should, mopping up excess carbohydrates and burning them for fuel.

A typical smoothie bowl (or smoothie) comes with 100gms+ carbs, mostly in the form of sugar. In addition, they don’t contain enough protein to balance this sugar spike out.

When you have issues with blood sugar regulation, one of the easiest ways to take care of yourself nutritionally is to avoid sugar, particular that sugar which does not come packed with fibre, or which comes in high on the glycemic index scale.

The solution? A high protein, Casein Custard smoothie bowl! All you need to make it is chopped fruit, protein custard, water, and chia seeds. This protein smoothie bowl is higher in protein than it is in carbs, so it will digest well, whilst tasting delicious at the same time

Ingredients:

  • Choose 250gms any fruit. Keep in mind that apples, pears, berries are the lowest on the glycemic index. I choose 150gms from these fruits (usually berries) and 100gms from other – generally banana, mango, pineapple or pink dragonfruit (of a combo!)
  • Add 15gms chia seeds
  • 45gms Muscle Nation Protein Custard – I use vanilla flavour, but you can use banana or strawberry too to compliment the fruit flavour

Instructions:

  • Chop up all the fruit, add in the chia seeds, and 3/4 cup water. Soak this for 20-30mins while the chia seeds expand
  • Add the protein custard
  • Blend with a blender or bullet
  • Empty out into a bowl and top with anything you want (not included in the macros below).

Why is it so low in carbs? Generally you need quite bit of fruit in order to get the thick consistency, but because the custard thickens up in water (can be eaten as a protein custard snack), it makes it thicker without you needed to add heaps of fruit!

Macros (without topping):

  • Protein: 38gm
  • Carbs: 38gm
  • Fats: 8gm
  • Calories: 376

As I am tracking calories at the moment and having this as a snack, I just topped it with some puffed multigrain, which is virtually calorie-free, and a few of the frozen berries from the fruit allowance. You can top it with anything you like though! Micronutrients include fibre, vitamin C, folate, potassium, vitamin A, calcium and iron.

Hope you enjoy 🙂

 

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Golden Latte – an Anti-Inflammatory Drink

Golden Latte – an Anti-Inflammatory Drink

Read time: 2 minute read

There are so many benefits to turmeric, or more specifically the yellow-pigmented active ingredient curcumin. It has been used as an anti-inflammatory for many years is natural medicine and, as of late has been the subject of numerous scientific studies.

As I have had a lot of issues with inflammation in the past, when trying to incorporate it into my diet I struggled to find a tasty way to do it. It has a pretty strong flavour and can overpower whichever meal you add it to, especially when you are trying to get a good dose in.

Then I came across the ‘Golden Latte’.

I have seen it in café’s since but I enjoy making my own as I think it tastes better. So if you’re looking for an anti-inflammatory drink to get you through the winter, you should try this!

Heat up 250ml milk in a saucepan. I use home-made almond milk as it is tastier and sweeter than store-bought almond milk (and I am not a fan of dairy), but you can use any milk. Once it is warmed up you put one-teaspoon of ground turmeric, and one-teaspoon organic honey or maple syrup, 1 pinch of nutmeg or cinnamon, one pinch of black pepper, stir it through and VOILA! You have a beautiful, creamy Golden Latte.

If you want it extra fluffy, chuck it in the blender before drinking it, or blend with a hand-held blender. If it’s too strong you just add extra sweetness with either raw sugar or some stevia.

Enjoy!

Fat vs Sugar – Which is the Biggest Weight Loss Saboteur?

Fat vs Sugar – Which is the Biggest Weight Loss Saboteur?

Read time: 4 minute read

Fat or sugar, which is worse?

in 2014-15, statistics showed that 63.4% of Australians were overweight or obese, so is it sugar or fat that is causing it? Both have been demonised in the past, but this is an interesting experiment!

Two men, identical twins, went on opposite diets for one month. One had access to endless amounts of sugar, and one to endless amounts of fat. The aim was to find out whether it was fat or sugar that was contributing to obesity.

End of month results were as follows! The high-sugar twin lost 1kg, 500gms of fat and 500gms of muscle, and his insulin response to carbohydrates strangely improved. The high-fat twin lost 3.5kg, but it was 1.5kg body fat and 2kg of muscle. His insulin response was much worse after not eating any carbs and he was pre-diabetic. Not only did he lose heaps of muscle, he also become quite sick. Neither twin gained ANY body-fat at all

After exposing rats to the same diet, they worked out that a diet high in carbohydrates OR fats alone, actually didn’t cause them to over-eat, as was the same result with the twins. So, they then experimented with foods that have both fats & sugar together. All of a sudden the rats ate at more regular intervals, and gained a lot of weight.

This rat experiment suggests that it is the COMBINATION of fat and sugar in a particular food/meal that causes us to over-eat. Further studies showed that this combination of macronutrients basically switched off the brains reward system, overpowering the body’s natural ability to know when it has had enough to eat.

What was the perfect combination? 50% fats, 50% sugar. The closer the food was to this ratio of fat & sugar, the more people preferred it. Man-made, processed foods are the ONLY foods available to us that have both the macronutrients together. Natural food sources only contain ONE OR THE OTHER. If you want to remain healthy and maintain a healthy body composition, don’t eat processed foods

ALDI’s is Going Organic

ALDI’s is Going Organic

Read time: 4 minute read

So apparently Aldi’s is going organic

This is awesome. I often tell people who aren’t ready to follow eating guidelines to make one simple change – to either buy their groceries from the farmers market, or if they don’t want to get up on the weekend and do that (as they usually close up around 1030-11am), then buy as much as possible from Aldi’s. The reason being, European sourced foods are often lower in additives, genetically modified ingredients and pesticide.

When I was in Europe in 2013, it opened my eyes to a lot of things food-related. In Australia I was unable to eat coconut, berries, dairy or gluten without having an allergic reaction, but over there I was able to eat almost everything without any adverse effects. It was the EXACT SAME FOOD, but clearly something about it was different. And on top of that, I learned what berries ACTUALLY tasted like. They taste a lot better over there than they do over here.

Fast-forward to 2016 and Aldi’s has announced that they are going to do two things; start introducing less processed foods, and change the product placement of health foods to better serve the consumer. This means they are increasing the amount of fresh and organic food they’re stocking, as well as introducing healthier snack options.

In the US it has been stated that they are increasing the sales of organic fresh meat, removing products with synthetic colours and MSG, ensuring all diary is free of artificial growth hormone and increasing their gluten-free and health-based food and snack range. I have seen signs in Australian stores making similar statements of their plans for the future.

Another store I found in Europe (that I wish was in Australia) was Whole Foods. While in America this year, given I have a history of food allergy, I bought most of my food from there including breakfast, snacks, and sometimes meals from the buffet, and I had one or two meals in a cafe/restaurant each day. Most people say they don’t feel too great after travelling in the US. I personally didn’t feel unwell once, and although I ate a bucket-load of calories, I actually lost weight in the process.

It is said that Aldi’s fresh food move may even rival Whole Foods. Which doesn’t mean much for us as we don’t have access to Whole Foods, but it will make healthier options more easily available for us, and cheaper too.

Obviously for those who don’t struggle with illness or excess body-fat, this won’t mean much to you. But if it does, then I would suggest keeping your eye out on your local Aldi’s store and consider buying some of your produce from there

Nutrients are required for your health. They are extracted in your gut from whole foods. Not fake foods. Fake foods give you calories, but no nutrients!

Nutrition is about living life to the fullest

Nutrition is about living life to the fullest

Want to master this topic? Check out my super-affordable mini-course on NutritionRead time: 3 minute read

Nutrition is not low fat. It is not low calorie. It is not being hungry and feeling deprived. It’s nourishing your body with real, whole foods so that you are constantly satisfied and energised to live life to the fullest.

Long term deprivation can lead to fear of food and brings you nothing but misery in the long run. Nutrition is here to be enjoyed, and you can’t escape the fact that you need it to survive. It’s okay to cut back for a short time to achieve a specific goal, but the balance needs to come back once you’ve reached it.

Eat all the food groups, balance your macros so you FEEL good, be consistent and patient, and the results will come. Make sure you’re eating enough to fuel your day-to-day activities as well as your training.

No matter what you do, deprivation and starvation are not going to bring you the same results as balance and health will.

Want to master this topic? Check out my super-affordable mini-course on Nutrition

 

 

 

 

 

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