Self-discipline and stress management

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Just came back from an amazing holiday in Sweden. Thailand heat and much less Mosquitos than normally! As always after my holidays I feel relaxed mentally but quite worn out physically….and this is only due to my much-worse-than-normal-diet whilst on holiday. Cheese, wine, processed rubbish bread, candy and a daily ice-cream. And a drastic reduction in the amount of vegetables that I consume. Needless to say inflammation is running high in my body. Thankfully the only way it exhibits itself currently is tiredness!

I’m sure some people think, relax you’re on holiday woman, and fine I hear you. Not just sure if I want to risk playing this kind of Russian roulette with the longevity of my body. A little bit of bad is good, but lots of bad is just bad!

So what it boils down to is…..I need to learn self-discipline. I know it sounds sooo boring but I can see how many aspects of my life would drastically improve if I can just get slightly better at it.

I want to be able to NOT eat the marshmallow! Watch this video and you will understand, it’s very cute, funny and thought-provoking

I also need to (again) get better at dealing with stress. (if I was better at self-discipline I would do lots more yoga and meditation and I would be much more zen-like)

I would also use my beloved Yantra mat more often, it’s really good for calming my body down in just 5 min!

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Wish me luck!

Overindulgent kids free time and a green kale, avocado and pineapple smoothie

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Last weekend was a rare and lovely event of nearly 48 hours of me and husband time without the kids. Not that I don’t love spending time with my kids but I find it important for us as a couple to recharge, regroup and just being two people in a relationship rather than just mummy and daddy sometimes. We spent a month looking forward to it which in itself is a treat. ( it’s always good to have things to look forward to ) I’m very lucky to have a sister and brother-in-law who are willing to sacrifice their weekend peace and quiet for us to have some is time.

We decided to not go away for our weekend but to actually be tourists at home in London and we turned into two kids in a candy shop and tried as many restaurants, bars and coffee places that we could possibly try in a weekend. All these places that you can’t go to with a buggy and 2 kids that are unable to sit still for no more than 10 minutes!

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Although the weekend was amazing it wasn’t exactly amazingly healthy. I have a fairly addictive personality to put it mildly, it’s all or nothing, on or off, do or don’t. (Yes I have been betting on most games during the World Cup! ; )
I’m working hard to learn moderation but didn’t succeed this weekend so after a hedonistic 48 hours I’m getting back to my latest favourite, smoothie meals! Sometimes I have one for breakfast, sometimes for lunch and if I don’t have time for a proper sit down meal in the evening I might even squeeze in a smoothie for dinner. I always thought I would go hungry having just a smoothie as a meal but if you do it right then it can be very filling.

Advantages of a smoothie as a meal;
You’re giving your digestive system a well-deserved break, it’s fast and easy and it’s easy to load the smoothie with nutrients.

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Green breakfast smoothie with quinoa and kale

Serves 1

1 cup of kale (roughly 2 medium leaves)
1 cup of coconut water
1 cup of chopped pineapple
1 oz of cooked quinoa
1 tablespoon of wheatgrass
1 tablespoon of chia seeds
1/3 of an avocado

Cook the quinoa. If you’re having the smoothie for breakfast the quinoa can be cooked the day before to save time in the morning. Crush the chia seeds a little bit to get the most omega 3 out of them. Add everything to the blender and blend until smooth. Breakfast is served!

Getting rid of the small clouds before they take up your entire sky

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I have been an expert in not dealing with the small clouds for a long long time. You know, stuffing unopened letters at the bottom of the drawer because I know I’m not going to like the content….

Leaving difficult conversation until they are no longer difficult, they have become as easy to do as climbing Mount Everest with your hands tied up or as easy as counting your own hair!….

Ignoring the hard decisions until it feels like whatever you do it’s going to be the wrong decision….

Not going to the doctor because you don’t really want to know what’s wrong with you until this little cold that you have, has become in your head a couple of serious illnesses combined…..

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Why do I do it, why do people do this? Because many of us are ostriches that really hope that the difficult stuff will go away if we just ignore it. I learnt that it won’t, it just gets bigger and bigger and bigger the longer we wait. And we waste an awful lot of energy in the process of waiting that could be spent on much better things.

From now on I will try my best to deal with the small clouds as soon as they form on my sky in order to have less dark clouds hanging over me. I like the thought….

Have a great weekend everyone

Too hooked and a salad Niçoise

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Sometimes I get a little bit too hooked on health food. I mean I do always tend to want to eat healthy, nutritious food rather than processed rubbish. But sometimes I get too concerned that it has to be 100% healthy and forget that if there’s an element of a dish that I’m not too happy about that I might overlook some divine dishes that are at the same time super nutritious.

For example I love Salad Niçoise but yes potatoes are starchy ( but a very good source of vitamin B6 and a good source of potassium, copper and vitamin C and more) and yes there’s mercury in tuna ( but a great source of omega 3 and selenium and more) I wouldn’t eat potatoes or tuna every day but it’s a much healthier treat than most other treats. And keeps me away from, again processed rubbish ( anyone gets the sense that I firmly hate processed food)

I tend to use tinned tuna for this dish and tinned food is not good due to it containing BPA but since I have cut out almost all tinned food every now and again my body can most likely deal with it.

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Some of the many good benefits of salad Niçoise;

Olives; anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits that helps the cardiovascular system, respiratory system, nervous system, musculoskeletal system, immune system, inflammatory system and digestive system…..so more or less all of the body. Very good indeed.

Watercress, a superfood indeed. Vitamin K and Vitamin A which has health benefits for the skin and the eyes. Also contains glucosinolate compounds which have shown to have anti-cancer effects.

Green beans ; great source of folate, fibre and vitamin K

Eggs, high in protein and a whole range of vitamins and minerals. The best source of Choline which is being used to build cell membranes.

Salad Niçoise
Serves 2

120 grams of spinach, rocket and watercress
120 grams of green beans
20 black olives
1 can of tuna
10-15 anchovy fillets (we get ours from the counter in any Italian delicatessen)
6-7 new potatoes
3 eggs
1 shallot
Some extra virgin olive oil
Salt and black pepper to taste

Wash and boil the potatoes with skin on until tender ( about 10 min) . Boil the eggs for 10 min as well. Chop off the ends of the green beans and steam for 7 min. Wash the salad and add to a large bowl. Then add the tuna, anchovies and olives. Finely chop the shallot and add to the bowl. When the potatoes are cooked, half or quarter them depending on size. Add the potatoes, cooked green beans, the olive oil and some salt and black pepper and mix it up. Peel the eggs, half them and add them last to the salad on top.

When choosing Tuna you want to choose a smaller Tuna such as skipjack or tongol and stay away from larger tuna such as albacore or yellowfin since the larger tunas contains significant more levels of mercury. You also want to look for pole and line caught tuna since it’s the sustainable way of fishing tuna. No other marine life is harmed in the process.
I was happy to learn that Sainbury’s own brand tuna is skipjack and is pole and line caught. Another great option is Fish4ever.

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Busy bee and a turmeric, ginger and spirulina health insurance shot

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Sorry for having been so quiet lately. My life had suddenly got very busy…..in a good way. I’m feeling quite exited indeed. So some things that are happening;

I’m sorting out the blog, not changing it massively but it has lately felt too restricted which means I lost a bit of my spark so I’m making some small changes to make me exited again. I do think this is how we should always deal with things in life. If something has lost its spark we need to look at what we need to change to make it inspiring again…or move on. Don’t stay stuck in something spark-less!

I have also have started to seriously go for my dream of running a marathon, yes I have runners knees, yes I have a crappy, way too tight IT band and yes I have MS. Why should that stop me from running a marathon? I see absolutely no reason. So I have got new running shoes, new insoles and a personal trainer who is helping me to build strength in the right places. I’m also hopefully going to go and see my favourite physio. I’m icing my muscles and am using the foam roller to ease my ITband muscles. And if that doesn’t work then well I’ll try something else. Maybe I will become a barefoot runner…..

Adding to that I’m doing something that I have been wanting to do more of for a loong time…..dancing. Did jazzdance on Monday and Flamenco yesterday…..Flamenco was amazing, such passion and beauty. And the jazzdance was cool. I seriously kicked ass!! We’ll at least in my head which is all that matters ; )

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One part of sorting out my knees is to reduce inflammation in my body which is not only good for my knees but also for my Multiple Sclerosis and my health in general.
Chronic low-level inflammation has been linked to many western diseases such as cancer, diabetes and heart disease.

If you want to read more about why reducing inflammation is very very very important here are some articles to read;

Mindbodygreen
Sciencedirect
Mercola

To reduce inflammation in my body things that I want to include in my diet on a daily basis are Turmeric, Ginger and Spirulina. I try to add turmeric and ginger in my cooking as often as possible but I don’t use it every day so I decided to make a little shot of these ingredients and drink it daily. It’s my health insurance for much less than £1 per day! I use capsules of turmeric which has a higher percentage of curcumin (the beneficial component of turmeric) than the spice from your regular shop.

I was fairly sure that I had to write a post about how sometimes we have to ingest things not because we like them but for the incredible health benefits…… But to my surprise I found that there is a way that actually makes it taste…..not-quite-Saturday-treat-ish but really really ok..

Turmeric, ginger and Spirulina health shot

1 capsule of Turmeric ( I use Terra Nova )
1 teaspoon of Spirulina ( I use Creative Nature’s Spirulina Powder (Hawaiian)
Freshly grated ginger (2cm cube)
5 tablespoons of coconut milk
A pinch of freshly ground black pepper ( enhances the health benefits of turmeric )

Open up the capsule and add to the coconut milk, add the spirulina, the freshly grated ginger and some black pepper.
Stir and enjoy! Or neck it down if it still doesn’t suit your taste : )

Ginger is very good at relieving motion sickness and nausea in general, it’s a digestive aid, anti-inflammatory, it fights cancer and is good at dealing with colds and flu

Turmeric is a very potent anti-inflammatory, wards off dementia, fights cancer and inflammatory diseases such as multiple sclerosis.

Spirulina is high in protein, helps allergies, removes toxins from your blood, reinforces your immune system, is anti-inflammatory, helps you control high blood pressure and cholesterol, is a great source of various nutrients such as B12 and helps protect you from cancer.

Bye bye baggage and a buckwheat, chia seed and grilled vegetables wrap

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4 weeks ago I did an intensive crash course in self-improvement. Think psychology meets self-help books meets new ways of thinking. It has changed my life (me thinks at this point) but I’m still not sure how to write about it so I won’t….just yet. It’s called Landmark forum and no it’s not a cult and yes they do use some intensive selling methods and no they don’t do brainwashing….well sort of. In my case my brain was “washed” from negative, draining thoughts that I have been living with for years. From what I could see that happened to a lot of people who did the landmark forum with me. For the last couple of weeks I have felt lighter, much much lighter….Think decades of baggage just gone. In 3 days.

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Anyhow since I’m all go go go at the moment instead of maybe, I’m not sure, another day, I don’t have time, I don’t have money, I’ll think about it….you know the mentality, I have less time to cook so I’m looking for even easier recipes that will keep me well nourished to keep the energy going.
This is a gluten free, vegetable and nutrition packed recipe that can be prepared in advanced and then enjoyed for several days.

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Buckwheat and chia seed wrap with grilled vegetables and hoummus!

Grilled vegetables
Enough for 3 meals
Feel free to use any leftover vegetables or favourite ones.
I used;
6 medium carrots
4 turnips
2 parsnips
2 spring onions
1 teaspoon of rosemary
1 teaspoon of thyme
2 teaspoons of coconut oil
Coriander (for when you put the wrap together)

Preheat the oven to 180ºC ( 350ºF ) Peel and chop the vegetables into similar sizes pieces. I kept mine fairly small since it’s then easier to put them in a wrap.

Put vegetables and coconut oil in an oven proof dish and sprinkle the herbs over. Put in oven. Stir after a couple of minutes to make sure all vegetables gets coated with the coconut oil and cooked evenly. Cook for 45-55 min.

When the vegetables are cooked and has cooled down put them in a glass jar (toxin-free ; ) and they can be stored in the fridge for 3-5 days.

Buckwheat wraps

2 cups of buckwheat flour
2 eggs
3 tablespoons of chia seeds
3 1/2 cups of water
1 teaspoon of salt
1 tablespoon of coconut oil

Mix all the ingredients together apart from the coconut oil and make sure there are no lumps. Let in stand for at least 10 minutes.
Melt a little bit of coconut oil (or butter if you prefer and add enough batter to cover the pan and about 5mm thick. Cook for a couple of minutes. Then turn over and cook on the other side.
These wraps can be put in freezer. Make sure you add baking paper in between.

When making the wrap put some vegetables in the middle of the wrap, add a dollop or two of hoummus and some coriander. Wrap up and enjoy!

The wraps can be enjoyed as pancakes as well with fresh fruit. And the vegetables are yummy with a piece of fish. It’s a very versatile dish that can create several meals during the week and hence save a lot of time!

Health benefits of buckwheat see here

5 possible areas to start removing toxins

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On a daily basis it’s unbelievable how many toxins we get into ourselves. But don’t freak out, our bodies are very clever and they are designed to be able to deal with some toxins. The only problem is the amount of toxins we have to deal with these days might just be a touch too many for our hardworking bodies.
This is not going to be the perfect post about all the toxins out there that we need to/ should remove. I want this post to just be a gentle voice from our bodies that says, please please just give me a break, I need a holiday!!!

One of the problem that I think a lot of people struggle with is that there are so many things in regards to our health that we “should” get better at that it’s just soooo much easier to stick to your old ways than trying to find alternatives that helps AND work. Hence nothing gets done.

So what does one do? Well it’s easy, we all leave our jobs, move to a cottage as far away from civilisation as possible and start storing all our foods and liquids in glass containers. If that option isn’t really tempting for you then there are lots of areas in our lives where we can start cutting down on toxins.

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Next time you run out of washing up liquid, mascara, deodorant, shampoo or any other possible toxin laden product instead of taking the easy option and just buying what you always buy, do yourself ( and nature ) a favour and spend that extra 5-10 minutes to find a better alternative. If you don’t have time or energy to research all the toxic ingredients in the world pop into your local organic/ health shop and talk to them. Even if you don’t get recommended a product that is completely toxin-free the chances are that they contain lots lots less. And if there’s one product that you can’t live without give yourself a break and use it. If it becomes too hard to remove toxins and that will cause you to not do anything about it, then use the bad deodorant, colour your hair, open that occasional tin of beans, but do try to remove as many toxins as possible!

Water bottles
If you constantly drink water (or other drinks) from plastic bottles the chances are that you are getting some toxins into yourself such as BPA and antimony. And it seems as if the longer it has been stored in the bottle or if it has been heated up the more toxins has leaked out into the water. Try to mainly drink your water from a glass but when you’re on the move here’s some alternatives;

Glass bottles ( in a protective sleeve )
www.flaska.eu/
www.lifefactory.com
Stainless steel bottles
www.kleankanteen.com

Tins
Are sooooo convenient, but also contains BPA. Instead of tins of tomatoes try tetra pak. Cook large batches of beans and freeze them. Always use fresh fruit and vegetables instead of tinned ones.

Beauty products
Consider how many products you apply to your skin and hair on a daily basis and if all of them are chemical-laden that’s quite a scary thought. The good news is that there are so many toxin-free excellent products or products that at least contains much less toxins, out there now. And here’s where the spending 5-10 minutes extra before you purchase a new product comes in. If you need a new nail varnish, google toxin- free nail varnish and you will see that there’s lots of great products out there. Check out your products at EWG skin deep. You can even download an app for free and bring with you when you go shopping.

Beauty products
www.drorganic.co.uk
www.weleda.co.uk
www.lavera.com

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Nail varnish
London based Jacava does not contain Formaldehyde, Camphor, Toluene, Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP), Formaldehyde Resin, Phthalates or Animal Ingredients www.jacava.com

Scotch naturals nail varnish are free from formaldehyde, Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP),Toluene, Camphor, Formaldehyde Resin, ethyl acetate, butyl acetate, nitrocellulose, acetone, and heavy metals.www.scotchnaturals.com

Deodorants
Most contains aluminium which has in several studies has been possibly linked to cancer ( in particularly breast cancer) Some claim that there are no firm evidence to support these links. I personally do not want to put aluminium so close to my breasts and risk it.

I find this deodorant from Alva to be really good

www.alvanaturalskincare.co.uk

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Gym evaluation and an alkaline raw porridge

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I have now finished my one month of testing how the gym makes me feel and as I said I will now evaluate it. Just as I really started to get into it and had created some sort of a routine, I have to leave which is a bit annoying but as they say; do something for 21 days and it becomes a habit. Exercise is now a habit ( so precious and I need to make sure I don’t loose it ) Next I am going to test Hot yoga!

So how was the gym experience;
Fairly good I must say, absolutely amazing to get to use my muscles for something other than doing zoom zoom zoom with my kids (which is pretty amazing too but only works the arms….and stomach….and legs) Also really enjoyed some good cardio to get the heart pumping. Now to the evaluations categories.

How much have my spirits lifted ( do I feel on top of the world? )
Quite regularly I do feel on top of the world whilst being at the gym. The happy happy techno/ disco music and the full-on positive self-talk, that I learnt after my MS diagnosis, makes me feel that way. 8/10

How happy do my muscles feel (stretched, no pain, stronger etc)
I feel stronger, muscles are aching in both a positive and negative way. I do get little aches and pains from the gym, especially if I don’t stretch properly which isn’t so good. 4/10

How calm and at peace do I feel
As calm as a testosterone-filled, Duracell bunny rabbit on jugs of Java! But I guess I do loose a bit of negative energy 3/10

How happy does it make me feel
I do feel happier. Healthier hence happier ; ) but not ridiculously happy hormone levels 5/10

How clean and refreshed do I feel
Sparkly clean! I love the sauna and shower straight after gym combo. I know I know since I have MS apparently I shouldn’t use the sauna but hey apparently I should take medicine to suppress my immune system rather than eating lots of healthy stuff to make my immune system as strong as possible, so…….I don’t always believe everything being said about how to deal with MS. Please note if you have MS, don’t take my word for it. Sauna works for me but might not for everyone. I do take it fairly easy in the sauna and make sure I regularly leave the sauna for ice-cold showers. 10/10

Fitness and cardio levels
Stronger and easily did a 4k run on Thursday so very happy with fitness and cardio. My body is slowly starting to be less of a Picasso painting and more like….well less like a Picasso painting at least! 8/10

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So for today’s recipe I want to add a raw food porridge that I have become totally hooked on. A friend recommended this breakfast that she had got from a fab Swedish website that talks about the alkaline diet, smartamaten.se. As you probably know I’m not a big fan of putting a name on how you are eating but if there’s one “diet” out there that makes sense to me this would definitely be it. This is pretty much how I believe one should eat to be healthy. A humongous amount of plant based food, and a low amount of meat, dairy and gluten. But with the alkaline diet there’s no no-no foods. As long as you eat alkaline food 80% of the time you can eat acid food 20% of the time. If you want to read more about it here’s an article in the Telegraph. For you Swedes out there, do check out smartamaten.se where you can read more, get a free ph-list and subscribe to getting more great recipes.

Raw food porridge

Serves 1

1 banana
1/2 an apple or pear
A handful of raspberries ( I use frozen )
A handful of almonds
A handful of pumpkin or sunflower seeds
1 tablespoon of crushed sesame seeds
2 Brazil nuts
A couple of teaspoons of cacao nibs ( I use Creative Nature )

Mix everything apart from the cacao nibs with a handheld blender. Sprinkle the cacao nibs over. Enjoy! This breakfast keeps me full until lunch!

I put all the nuts and seeds to last me for ten breakfasts or more in a large jar which makes the mornings much easier

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Perfect exercise and a quinoa, peanut butter, hemp, chia seed protein bar

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Right, the search for the exercise or combination of exercises that will make me feel the best, physically and mentally has started. I will try on a monthly basis all kinds of normal and not so normal ways of get my body moving. Then I will evaluate them. You know, as a fun experiment that you can do on yourself. I have started with something that I’m quite familiar with, the gym. A bit boring I know but a really great deal came up and I thought picking something familiar can be a good way to get back into doing some exercise. Maybe I’m just a creature of habit…..
Next on the list is bikram (hot) yoga, again another great deal, and after that some personal training thanks to a dear friend who very kindly passed on some sessions that she can’t use.

Things I also want to try are dance (salsa, flamenco and old school jazz dance), recliner Pilates, running (if my knees are up for it) and various kinds of non-hot yoga. I’m sure I will think of some more fun ways of getting fit and if anyone has something to recommend please leave a comment below.

Evaluation categories will be as follows;

How much have my spirits lifted ( do I feel on top of the world? )
How happy do my muscles feel (stretched, no pain, stronger etc)
How calm and at peace do I feel
How happy does it make me feel
How clean and refreshed do I feel
Fitness and cardio levels

I will post the evaluation of my gym sessions by the end of this week.

After one of my visits to the gym this week I was in the need of something to eat. My muscles and body felt tired and stomach screamed feed me so I thought about getting a protein bar to give my muscles something to feel better. Until I read the ingredients list…….seriously, do we go to the gym to get fitter and healthier or to get unwell? It’s like; Great you have done a fantastic workout to make yourself healthier. Now, stuff some rubbish into yourself because too much of this healthy stuff can be bad for you…….honestly!

Anyhow I decided to make my own protein bars and stay away from 15 types of sugars and sweeteners and e-numbers and milk and gluten and fillers and flavourings and whatnot. And it is so easy to make your own. Then I know I’m giving my body some really good healthy nutrient filled protein rather than just a lot of rubbish. These bars contains appx 9g of protein and appx 225 of calories. They are lower in protein than the standard gym bars but since I’m not a body builder and not currently doing really hard exercise I don’t feel I need more. If you feel you need more protein just add a scoop or two of some whey protein powder.

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Quinoa, dates, hemp seeds, chia seeds, peanut butter, cacao powder

10 bars

1/3 cup quinoa
2/3 cup of water
10 pitted dates
1/2 cup cashews or almonds
6 tablespoons of peanut butter (no added sugar)
4 tablespoon of Chia seeds
4 tablespoons of shelled hemp seeds

Soak the chia seeds in 3 tablespoons of water. Rinse the quinoa. Add the drained quinoa to a saucepan with 2/3 of a cup of water. Bring to the boil then lower the heat and cook covered for 15 min. Take it off the heat and let it stand covered for 5 min.

In the meantime add the remaining ingredients to the blender and blend until smooth-ish consistency. Add the quinoa and blend for another couple of minutes. Add to a 30x20cm pan and flatten it out with your fingers or a spatula. Put in fridge until cool. Cut into 10 pieces. Wrap individually in baking paper, pop in freezer and when you’re going for some exercise bring one along and it will defrost during your workout.

Healthy living rules and a gluten, dairy free banana/ cacao bread

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Victory and success!!!! Yeah!!! I saw the neurologist the other day and walked out of her office deliriously happy. And no there hasn’t been any miracles. I still have MS (the lumbar puncture confirmed it) And that I have had new lesions since 2007 is still a fact. But but…..I asked her what it means that I have had new lesions but hardly no clinical symptoms.
She said that a) it’s a very good sign and b) it seems that my brain is so strong that it can find new ways of transporting the signals to body parts even with new lesions. (She did actually seemed a bit surprised about this ) Her saying this is to me significant. It means that I am on the right path and all this kale stuffing, vegetable juice slurping, perfect exercise searching and finding more happiness quest is working! It means that I have made my body strong enough to deal with whatever rubbish comes its way. I even asked her if she thinks that all the things that I’m doing is working and she said YES! (This is coming from a neurologist and they normally just believes in steroids and immune suppressing medications…..)

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Of course I am still dreaming though that one day there will be no new lesions. And my long term goal is to be fully fit and capable to dance with my son at his wedding. If he’s anything like his dad whom I married on his 40th birthday (my son is only 18 months old) I have to keep fit for a very long time ; ) But no problems I can do it! If he’s not getting married (which I’m totally fine with) I guess I’ll aim for completing a marathon on my 80th birthday. I actually couldn’t care less if my son gets married or not but after having left the neurologist my body was filled with such an enormous amount of happiness hormones it did some weird things to my brain. I had this Hollywood happy ending vision in my head and I looked at my son and said; hey sweetie, you know what, I am absolutely fine and if you decide to get married one day in the future, I’ll definitely dance with you!

Anyway I’m delighted and feeling very encouraged to continue on my path to happier, healthier living….

Since I have recently gone gluten-free I’m searching for some gluten-free goodies to eat and I found a recipe for a yummy banana cake

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Altered from Lemonstripes.com
Ingredients:
1 cup rice flour
1 cup Doves gluten-free white bread flour (can be substituted with another cup of rice flour)
1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 eggs
4 ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup applesauce (unsweetened)
1/3 cup sunflower oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons of cacao

Preheat the oven to 175 °C.
In a bowl, combine the flours, bicarbonate of soda and salt.
In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, bananas, maple syrup, applesauce, oil, vanilla and 2/3 of the walnuts.
Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until well mixed. Divide the mixture into 2 bowls. Stir in the cacao into one of the bowls.
Add the mixture without cacao into a 8″ x 4″ loaf pan coated with a little bit of oil. Then poor the cacao mixture on top. If you are after a more marbled effect you can use 2 spoons and dollop the mixtures into the cake tin alternately. Top the cake with the remaining walnuts.
Bake for 45-55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the centre comes out clean.
Enjoy a slice with a cup of your favourite tea!