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<h2><b>From The Andes To Our Supermarket Shelves</b></h2><p><b>Quinoa</b> is a great superfood.  Have you heard of it?  Have you tried it?  </p><p><b>What Is Quinoa? </b></p><p><b>Quinoa</b> (pronounced <i>keen-wah</i>) is an amazing food as it is both a <b>protein</b>, and a <b>carbohydrate</b>. The body needs protein to grow and repair itself and carbohydrate for energy.</p><p>Quinoa is probably the <b>healthiest grain</b> you can eat.  It contains <b>all 9 </b>of the <b>essential amino acids</b>, fibre, phosphorous, magnesium and iron. It is gluten free and easy to digest.  It’s possibly as close to a <b>perfect </b>ingredient as you can get.</p><p><b>How Do I Cook it?</b></p><p>Think of making Quinoa <b>like rice</b>:</p><ul><li>Rinse or soak it first to remove its bitter coating<br/></li><li>Bring two cups of water to the boil to one cup of quinoa<br/></li><li>Simmer and cook for approximately 15 minutes or until the germ separates from the seed.  </li></ul><p><b>What Is It Like?</b></p><p>Once cooked, it has a <b>fluffy texture</b> with a slight bite to it and slightly<b> nutty </b>flavour. The grains quadruple in size and become almost<b> translucent.</b></p><p>You can <b>use it like</b> you would <b>rice or pasta</b> or hot cereal.  So, have it with <b>chilli </b>or in a mixed bean salad, add it to stews and soups or make porridge from it for breakfast.   You can also use ground quinoa in bread, biscuits and muffins.</p><p><b>Where Can I Get It From?</b></p><p>Quinoa originated from the <b>Andes</b> and has been eaten there for thousands of years.  It has been available in <b>health food shops</b> for several years.  However, as it’s becoming more popular, you may well now find it in your<b> local supermarket.  </b></p><p><b>Give it a try!  </b></p>

From The Andes To Our Supermarket Shelves

Quinoa is a great superfood.  Have you heard of it?  Have you tried it?  

What Is Quinoa?

Quinoa (pronounced keen-wah) is an amazing food as it is both a protein, and a carbohydrate. The body needs protein to grow and repair itself and carbohydrate for energy.

Quinoa is probably the healthiest grain you can eat.  It contains all 9 of the essential amino acids, fibre, phosphorous, magnesium and iron. It is gluten free and easy to digest.  It’s possibly as close to a perfect ingredient as you can get.

How Do I Cook it?

Think of making Quinoa like rice:

  • Rinse or soak it first to remove its bitter coating
  • Bring two cups of water to the boil to one cup of quinoa
  • Simmer and cook for approximately 15 minutes or until the germ separates from the seed.  

What Is It Like?

Once cooked, it has a fluffy texture with a slight bite to it and slightly nutty flavour. The grains quadruple in size and become almost translucent.

You can use it like you would rice or pasta or hot cereal.  So, have it with chilli or in a mixed bean salad, add it to stews and soups or make porridge from it for breakfast.   You can also use ground quinoa in bread, biscuits and muffins.

Where Can I Get It From?

Quinoa originated from the Andes and has been eaten there for thousands of years.  It has been available in health food shops for several years.  However, as it’s becoming more popular, you may well now find it in your local supermarket.  

Give it a try!  

Top 10 Reasons to Eat Breakfast Every Day

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With regards to healthy eating, one of the best things you can do is to eat breakfast every day. It is the most important meal of the day as it breaks the overnight fast. 

It has an effect on overall energy levels, appetite control and total calories consumed through the day. Recent studies have shown that people who eat breakfast are far better at maintaining their weight than those that don’t. 

Here are the TOP 10 reasons why eating a healthy breakfast is important: 

  1. Hunger - eating breakfast will help you avoid a craving for high calorie, high sugar snacks mid morning.
  2. Stress - breakfast foods rich in wholegrain starchy carbohydrates like oats and granary bread, lift serotonin levels, the ‘feel good’ hormone. They are also a great source of the B vitamins that are essential for energy.
  3. Mood - after an overnight fast, a breakfast rich in healthy carbohydrates and nutrients will give you a lift.
  4. Hydration - in the morning, have a drink of nutrient packed freshly squeezed fruit juice or vegetable juice or a herbal tea to boost your hydration levels. Avoid too much caffeine as this may make you feel twitchy and irritable through the morning.
  5. Immunity - nutrients that help maintain a healthy immune system and help protect us and help us recover from illness include the A, C and B vitamins, as well as minerals such as zinc. Adding citrus fruit or berries to your breakfast is a great way to give the immune system a lift, so try sprinkling them on cereal or yoghurt, or even have them as a smoothie. You can also help to boost your immunity by adding a tablespoon of nuts and seeds to your breakfast, or perhaps try eggs or oily fish for a change!
  6. Concentration and alertness - after an overnight fast, the brain needs a carbohydrate injection. This alleviates tiredness and fuels the brain helping you concentrate and stay focused at work. Research has shown a much lower incidence of work-based accidents for people who have had breakfast!
  7. Memory - breakfast refuels the brain cells that depend on glucose, by elevating blood sugar levels. This will help us process and manage complex and challenging information, including the formation and retrieval of memories.
  8. Weight - a nutritious breakfast that is also low in fat has been shown to help manage hunger and energy levels through the morning, helping us make more sensible choices at snack and meal time, and showing an overall lower total number of calories are consumed through the day. This helps manage body fat levels.
  9. Metabolism - having breakfast gives the metabolism some encouragement to get going in the morning.
  10. Energy - choosing breakfasts based on wholegrain starchy carbohydrates will release energy slowly through the morning and help maintain energy levels through the morning.

So, if you haven’t been eating breakfast every day, add it to your healthy eating list of things to do and start now!

Steps to Healthy Eating: Taking Action to Achieve Success

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Believe it or not, sustained weight-loss success is straight-forward! It isn’t quick and easy, but I promise you that it is possible and that you can do it with the right guidance and by taking action step by step. 

To be successful, you have to do some work:

  • Writing some things down and 
  • Making many small changes to what you are doing currently. 

You may be familiar with the saying ‘If you always do what you’ve always done, you always get what you’ve always got’.  So if you want things to change, you need to make some changes to what you do now.  

First things first. You need to: 

  • Have a broad understanding of what healthy eating is
  • Write your goals down 
  • Create and write down some positive statements around your goals
  • Have your mind in the right place

Doing all these things will certainly help you succeed.  

The changes you need to make involves learning:

  • Why nutrition is important for your body to work as well as it should
  • What foods you should be eating to lose and then maintain your ideal weight and health

Next, it’s about changing what you eat and doing some exercise to help the process along. In the short term it also involves keeping a record of the food you’re eating and the exercise you are doing.  You won’t need to do this forever, but just for a few weeks as a way to learn and help you. 

Setting yourself up for success is key to achieving success. Once you know about all these things, you will have all the tools you need to achieve the long-term results you desire: weight loss and optimum health for life

Be successful by actually taking action. Once you actually make these changes, you will achieve weight loss and optimum health for life.

So, let’s recap:

  • Write down your overall goal
  • Break this down into smaller goals to get you there in steps, 
  • Learn what changes you need to make, 
  • Put into practice the new things you learn, 
  • Review your goals regularly (if not daily) and 
  • Monitor your progress. 

Once you achieve your initial goals, congratulate yourself, celebrate and set some more goals to take you to the next stage and closer to your ultimate goal. If you need to make changes to your goals along the way as other things change, then that’s fine.  The important thing is to get started.

Successful people in all walks of life follow this approach. It doesn’t just relate to weight loss and health, so adopt this formula for anything you want to achieve in life! Just see what you can achieve - you might be surprised! 

How to get in the right frame of mind to achieve weight loss and eat healthily

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Achieving success with weight-loss and healthy eating takes more than just following nutritional information; it also takes getting in the right state of mind.

As all of our actions are governed by our thoughts and if it is true that thoughts create reality, then it is important to create an environment that will support your success.  

Here are a few things you can do to create a strong, positive foundation that will help you achieve your health and weight-loss goals.

  • Clear Your Mind

Clear your mind of all media information and hype. This means not believing everything you hear from health and nutrition experts on TV and radio and in magazines and books. Forget all the other diets that you’ve tried. If old habits keep bringing you to the same place - overweight, unhealthy, or unhappy - then you need to change your approach.

  • Believe in What You Are Doing

To be successful, you need to believe in yourself. You can change your habits. You can feel great. You can change your health and your weight.  When you begin to make a lifestyle change, you will encounter people who will try to sabotage your new healthy habits. People will say, “Go on, one won’t kill you” or “Eating like that is no fun.”  Truly believe in your new way of life and what you are doing for yourself, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. 

  • Set Goals and Positive Affirmations

Before you start making the food and lifestyle changes I’m recommending, choose three or more of your goals and turn them into positive statements.  These will then motivate you to stick to your new eating habits. 

Examples could be:

  • I can achieve a healthy lifestyle.
  • Eating fresh, wholesome food makes me look and feel great. 
  • I have time in my day to take care of myself by going for a 30 minute walk. 

As with your goals, it is best to write these positive statements down and keep them somewhere visible, e.g. as a bookmark, stuck to the bathroom mirror, on the fridge. Ideally review your goals and repeat your statements at the start and end of each day

  • Eliminate Negative Thinking

You need to free yourself from any negative thinking. If you ever think, “What’s the use? I’ll only gain it back anyway,” then stop that thought. From this point on, replace each negative thought with a positive one. The moment you find yourself thinking, “I know I’m going to fail,” try instead, “I know I can successfully change my eating habits and my life.” If you repeat this statement often enough, you will begin to feel more positive and confident about your efforts to adopt a new healthy lifestyle.

  • Commit Yourself to Doing the Work

Think about your biggest accomplishment to date. What did it take for you to achieve that goal: months of overtime to achieve a promotion at work? countless hours helping your children learn a new skill? years of practice to become successful at a sport or hobby? Accomplishing anything requires a great deal of hard work, commitment, and dedication. Think about all those people winning medals at the Olympics - they wouldn’t have won without their hard work, commitment and dedication. Achieving your health and lifestyle goals will also require work. Remember, I’m advocating begin a healthy eater for life rather than adopting a quick-fix diet that only works in the short-term. Work hard at it and you will see results. 

Don’t underestimate the power of setting goals and making positive affirmations to help your achieve what you want to achieve. Work hard, stick with it and you’ll get there! 

Try to Adopt Healthy Eating Principles One Step at a Time

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Becoming a totally healthy eater is unlikely to happen overnight as it takes time to change habits, learn what foods you need to eat to be healthy and introduce all the principles into your diet. It’s great if you can do it, but it’s unrealistic for most people. 

It’s more likely that you will implement the healthy eating principles I’m sharing with you over a period of time. Most diets want you to make significant changes to your normal eating patterns and foods for a limited period of time and then afterwards you go back to eating normally again and regain any weight you lost. By adopting healthy eating principles over a period of time, you are more likely to adopt them as a lifestyle and not a temporary diet fix. 

Most diets want you to ‘give up’ your favourite foods to reach your ideal weight and good health.  By following my healthy eating principles, you don’t need to give up anything! My philosophy is about lifestyle change rather than crash dieting. Living the life you want to live may require you to focus more on certain healthy foods over others, but does not require you to give up every food you love. So you can still have chocolate and wine; the difference will be that you will know how to fit them into your meals whilst still reaching and/or maintaining a healthy weight.  

Don’t worry if you can’t do everything every day and certainly don’t give up or throw in the towel if you stray off course. This is not about all or nothing; it’s about implementing each principle the best you can, each and every day.

My advice is to take charge of your health and your weight one step at a time. If you do what you can in the short term, the principles will become a permanent part of your lifestyle in the long term. One small change at a time is the best way to go to finding a new sense of health and vitality. Not only will you feel great, you will be able to keep the weight off permanently, once and for all.

The steps required in achieving your ideal weight and health are like any long term goal so look out for more information from me on setting your goals and starting with the right mindset. 

5 Quick Tips to Get You Started with Healthy Eating

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Do you wonder what to do and what not to do when it comes to eating healthily? Do you know where to start?  

It can be a minefield with all the information that is out there particularly when so much of it is conflicting. How do you know which information is correct? 

My aim is to give you completely truthful and trustworthy information so you know what healthy eating really is and what you need to be eating and avoiding

What is healthy eating? 

Healthy eating is a way of balancing the food you eat to keep your body in great health. You’ll have energy all day, get the vitamins and minerals you need, stay strong for activities you enjoy, and maintain a healthy weight.

Below, you’ll find 5 QUICK TIPS designed to help you get started with healthy eating.

1. Don’t skip meals, do eat regularly 

  • Eating 3 meals with snacks in between is the ideal way to maintain both energy and a healthy weight.  
  • You really shouldn’t skip meals and get really hungry, because you’re more than likely to choose foods that aren’t very good for you.  
  • If you are away from home, take healthy food with you or know where you can buy healthy food from.

2. Don’t deep fry food and add salt to everything, do learn other ways to prepare foods

  • Instead of deep frying or microwaving, try grilling, stir frying, baking, and boiling. 
  • Try fresh or even dried herbs and spices to add flavour to your food rather than adding salt because there is generally enough salt in our diet without needing to add any. 

3. Don’t have too much sugar, do reduce your sugar intake in drinks

  • Drinks that contain sugar are a major source of empty energy. 
  • What this means, is that the drinks contain a lot of energy that your body may not need, and it doesn’t contain any vitamins or minerals. 
  • It is best to avoid sugary drinks, but if you do plan to drink them, limit yourself to 1 a day.  
  • If you add sugar to hot drinks currently, try to reduce the amount you add slowly so you get used to having less and eventually reduce it to zero, if you can’t cope with the taste of having none straight away.  

4. Don’t think about diets, do think about the quality of food you are eating

  • There are foods that are good for you and foods that are less good for you but all food can be a part of a healthy diet, when eaten in moderation. 
  • You don’t need to buy any low carb, fat free, or even diet foods, as these foods normally have lots of other added unhealthy ingredients to replace the carbohydrates or fat that have been removed. 

 5.  Don’t eat processed food; do eat fresh, natural foods 

  • Cut out all processed foods, pre-made meals as well as anything high in fat and sugar
  • Instead buy fresh, natural foods and create a meal from scratch
  • This will make a huge difference both to how healthy you are and to your weight. 

What is a healthy food?

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People often don’t know where to start when it comes to eating healthily.  

You may wander around supermarkets aimlessly looking for healthy food when you really don’t know what you are looking for. It’s because there is so much mixed information out there. 

You will need to start looking out for healthy food and need to know what to buy, so a key question is ‘what makes something healthy’? Is it the amount of calories or the amount of fats? Actually, though these things are important, they are only part of the equation.

This is why so many diets may fail. 

People don’t know what to look for and they often end up buying the wrong foods. They then get discouraged when they can’t lose anything and they give up

The problem is that they don’t know what healthy food is, and they don’t know what to look for. Advertisers often call something a healthy food when they honestly have no right to do so. There are many foods that are advertised as healthy that don’t fit the bill. You really have to do your own work to decide if something is healthy and hence whether you want to eat it or not. If you don’t, you may well fail on your quest to lose weight and journey to becoming a healthy eater.

The most obvious healthy food is one that is grown naturally. This means fruits and vegetables are almost always healthy, as long as you aren’t adding anything unhealthy to them. If you top a cup of peas with two tablespoons of margarine, you have just turned a healthy food into something more unhealthy. Many people mistakenly turn good foods into something much less healthy, which they should be avoiding with a ten-foot pole when trying to lose weight. You want to make sure you are not adding unhealthy saturated fats and sugars to foods that are otherwise considered good for you. 

If you want a healthy food you should look for a natural food. This means you need to buy things that are not processed and have no additives. If something is described as a number on an ingredient list or you can’t pronounce it, skip it. If it is not a natural food, your body doesn’t know what to do with it. As a nation, we have become more obese due to the amount of processed food, and hence fats and sugars we eat. When you are looking for healthy food, skip the marketing hype and zero in on the ingredients. Read what is on the label as that is where the truth of the matter lies.

Healthy Eating and Exercise

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We need to become healthy eaters rather than dieters to reach and maintain a healthy weight. 

This means losing weight “naturally”, without the assistance of weight loss pills or shakes. While it is often a lot easier said than done, it is more than possible to lose weight naturally.

What you need to know about losing weight naturally is that it requires quite a bit of hard work and restraint on your part. It is definitely not a quick fix, but as a result, it is a far more healthy way to do it.

 As we all know, the TWO most important components of losing weight are healthy eating and exercise. Without these two components of weight loss, there is a good chance that you will not lose any weight, in fact, you may keep on gaining more.

When it comes to eating healthily, there are many people who don’t know where to start. One of the first things that you will want to do is to start looking out for healthy foods and healthy recipes. Once you know what to buy and what to cook, it makes it much easier to start eating healthily.

It is important that you do not keep on eating the same foods over and over again, no matter how good they taste. If you do, you are likely to get bored and this can lead you off the healthy eating path. Variety is also a good thing for nutritional reasons as you get different nutrients in different foods. 

As mentioned, exercise is the other important component of losing weight. So, if you really want to lose weight, you need to be exercising. When it comes to exercising, you have a number of different options. It’s important to do something you enjoy, so that you are more likely to carry on doing it on a regular basis.

Whilst for many people this means going the gym, it can also mean going for a walk or a run or following an exercise DVD at home. Exercise is important for your general health and your weight loss goals. 

To help keep you motivated, you may want to think about seeking support from your friends and family either to keep you on track or to become your workout buddy and exercise with you. It’s far easier to do exercise, if you are doing it with someone, as it becomes a social event too and you won’t want to let each other down by not going. 

The combination of healthy eating and exercise is sure to lead to success. While it does take a lot of hard work and determination to lose weight, you will ultimately be more than pleased with the results than if you opt for a quick fix solution, which only provides short-term weight loss.

Healthy Eating

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In order to reach and maintain a healthy weight, we need to become life-long healthy eaters rather than dieters.  Being a healthy eater means becoming informed and smart about what healthy eating actually is. Being food smart isn’t about learning to calculate grams or fat, or is it about studying labels and counting calories.

Healthy eating is all about balanced and moderate eating, consisting of healthy meals at least three times per day. Healthy eaters eat many different types of foods, not limiting themselves to one specific food type or food group.

Eating healthily requires you to always fuel your body and your brain regularly with enough food to keep both your mind and body strong and alert.

Healthy eaters have learnt to take care of themselves and are always aware of what they eat and know the effect that it will have on their bodies.

Restricting food intake is never a good thing. The best way to achieve long-term weight loss without jeopardising your health is through proper nutrition and exercise. Healthy eating needs to be a way of life; something that you can do to enhance your body or your lifestyle. If you've thought about making your life better or wanting to feel or look better, eating healthily is the place to start.