Tag Archives: eating

Yoghurt and Mint Salad Dressing

Yoghurt and Mint Dressing (enough for a salad dressing for 6-8 people)

Ingredients

1 shallot finely diced

Juice of 1 small lemon (about 2 tablespoons)

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

2 tablespoons of chopped mint

2 tablespoons of chopped parsely

2chopped spring onions

1 cup full-fat plain yoghurt

2 crushed garlic cloves

1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil

Salt and black pepper to taste

Method

This is super easy to make, mix everything together and it’s done! Keep in the refrigerator for up to a week and use as needed

This dressing is delicious over a green salad, with endives, sliced radishes and fresh fennel.

Jubus Crackers

These delicious crackers will sustain you for hours. They are tasty packed with seedy goodness. This quantity makes around 12 crackers.

Ingredients

1 cup rolled oats

3/4 cup of pumpkin seeds

1/2 cup of sesame

1/3 cup of sunflower seeds

3 tablespoons of poppy seeds

3 tablespoons of chia seeds

3 tablespoons whole wheat flour

1 teaspoon of salt

4 tablespoons of olive oil

3/4 cup of water (at room temperature)

Method

Pre-heat the oven to 375F

Mix the seeds, flour and salt together in a bowl. Add the oil and the water.  Mix together and leave for 10 minutes.

Press into the cookie cutter
Press into the cookie cutter

Line 2 baking trays with greaseproof paper or a silicon mat.

Using a cookie cutter and spatula, press enough mixture to make ¼ inch thick flattened cracker.

Repeat until all the mixture is used.

Repeat the process
Repeat the process

Cook for 15-20 minutes then carefully turn over the cracker to cook the other side for another 15- 20 minutes.

Once cool these sustaining crackers are good with butter and cheese, or just by themselves. Enjoy!

Ginger and date steamed pudding

This is a traditional dessert from the cold north aka the United Kingdom. It’s easy and absolutely delicious. This recipe has no added sugar and uses dates to create a delicious winter-time pudding. You will need a 2 pint bowl to cook the pudding in.

Ingredients

75g of spelt flour
25g of coconut flour
100g of chopped dates
2 eggs
2 teaspoons baking powder
4 tablespoons of milk
1 tablespoon of fresh ginger, grated
100g of softened butter (and extra to grease the bowl)

First of all grease the bowl (known as a pudding basin in the UK) with butter.

In a separate mixing bowl add all the other ingredients and beat together for a minute or two.

Spoon the mixture into the cooking bowl and cover with a piece of greaseproof paper then with foil. Tie around the foil with string to secure.

Stand the basin in a saucepan of water to come about half way up the bowl. Bring to a simmer then simmer for 1 1/2 hours. Top up the water if necessary. Alternately, if you have a slow cooker you can use it to cook the pudding just put the basin in the slow cooker half filled and cook on high for 2 hours (1/2hour to allow the water to increase).

Tip out the pudding when ready and serve with whipped cream or custard.

Leptin and appetite

Your appetite is regulated by a hormone called leptin, which is produced by fat cells.

Leptin actually drives your behavior. It is a messenger. It communicates with the hypothalamus in the brain to control appetite. Normal levels of leptin send the message to stop eating.  Conversely, if you are starving, with low levels of leptin in your body, you will prioritize finding food to eat, and will feel hungry. This mechanism would have helped our ancestors to survive when food was scarce.

When the hormone was first discovered in the 1990s scientists thought it might be a cure for obesity. People were injected with extra leptin, but they did not lose weight. Why not? It seems that when our bodies produce excess leptin, or are given extra, they become resistant to it.  Scientists do not yet know how we become resistant to the hormone. However, when people become obese (and have high leptin levels), they may become resistant to the hormone’s messages to the brain. They feel as though they are starving, driven to eat more in the same way as a person who has low levels of leptin due to starvation.

Leptin is involved in more than appetite control. Low levels of leptin, affect the body’s fertility, and ability to enter puberty. There is research showing leptin is also important in the proper functioning  of the immune system.

Remember, you might feel that you are choosing all your behaviors, but there is also the chemistry of your body, your hormones, which drive your actions. If you are obese, you may be leptin resistant, and this could be affecting your appetite so you feel hungry even when you already have enough fuel on board.

 

David Millett Publications

Break the hungry cycle

The amount of food we eat is influenced by various things like culture, availability of food, calorie-dense nutritionally poor foods, habit, cost of food, stress and emotion. We also eat when hungry. It is hard to resist the sensation of hunger. Hunger is the signal to our bodies to re-fuel, and it is regulated biochemically. Unfortunately, sometimes the biochemical system can be upset, leading to extra appetite for food even when we have actually eaten enough.

When things are working without a hitch, hormones signal to the brain to either stimulate or supress appetite. But when the system gets disrupted, hunger keeps on nagging. We eat more, the system gets more upset, we get hungrier, we gain weight, and so on.

There are many chemicals including hormones which communicate with the brain to regulate the system. A few of the key hormones involved are ghrelin, insulin, and leptin. Hormones  provide controls and messages for the body’s cells and organs.

Ghrelin is produced in the stomach. An empty stomach produces ghrelin, which signals hunger to the brain. It is time to eat.

After eating, insulin is produced in response to increased level of blood glucose (sugar). It is the hormone that signals the body to store energy from food as fat. Thanks to insulin blood sugar is sent to our fat cells to be stored for later. If we eat foods that dump large amounts of glucose into the bloodstream (foods like added sugar, white bread or pototoes, or drinks like juice or sodas) then we get a much bigger amount of insulin released to send the glucose into our fat cells. Subsequently, there is a crash in blood glucose, which makes us feel hungry again.

When things are working properly, insulin levels go up after eating, and leptin is released from fat cells signalling to the brain that we have eaten enough.

But if we eat foods with added sugar and without fiber on a regular basis our bodies are constantly producing large amounts of insulin in response. This has the damaging effect of making the cells of our body resistant to the effects of insulin, which means we produce more and more insulin to compensate. This may lead to pre-diabetes, then diabetes.

With high levels of insulin comes high levels of leptin. Leptin tells us to stop eating so it should be a good thing. Unfortunately, it seems that with high levels of leptin we also become leptin-resistant, which has the effect of making us feel the need to eat more and expend less energy.

To keep your appetite functioning normally avoid eating anything with added sugar, minimize eating white bread, white rice, white pasta, foods made with white flour, and potatoes. Stick with high fiber, wholegrain foods. You will find that feelings of hunger decrease. If you want a snack between meals eat a few nuts or a piece of fruit.