Prebiotic foods


Prebiotic foods
You may have heard of probiotics but Prebiotics are also a great way to look after your digestive system and support a healthy body.

Prebiotics are basically foods that probiotics feed on to thrive. They are fibres that our bodies don’t digest but support healthy populations of gut bacteria  and in turn keep our gut lining healthy supporting our immune system.

Prebiotics are definitely something to look at if you have a sensitive bowel or suffer from inflammatory conditions.

Here are a list of a few prebiotic foods that you can use daily to support your body.
Apples, avocados, banana, dandelion greens, lemon, oats, garlic, onion, leek, carrots, coconut, flaxseeds and chia seeds .

5 Nutritious and delicious, healthy after school snacks.

Try out these simple to make recipes for easy go to healthy snacks that the kids will love but also the parents.

KALE CHIPS

Ingredients

1 bunch of kale

2-3 tbs Olive oil

Sea salt or Himalayan pink salt

Preheat your oven to 180C

Line a baking sheet or two with baking paper

Remove the kale leaves from the stem and tear or chop into small pieces (chip size)

Wash the leaves in water and pat dry on a tea towel.

Transfer the Kale to a bowl and drizzle in the olive oil and mix through with your hands.

Spread the oiled kale onto your baking sheets and sprinkle with salt.

Bake for approximately 10min or until crisp.

Nb: You can get creative and make the adult version with a little cayenne pepper or other spices like garlic or cumin powder or apple cider vinegar.

Sweet Pepita Bliss Balls

Pumpkin seeds or Pepitas are a great ingredient for a bliss ball base when you want to go nut free. They are also rich in zinc, magnesium  and essential fatty acids and this recipe with it’s natural sweetness will have your little ones loving them.

Ingredients

¾ cup Pepitas

¾ cup Dates

Shredded Coconut (to coat)

2 bs Coconut oil

1 tsp Rice Malt Syrup or Honey

½ tsp Cinnamon powder

½ tsp Ginger Powder

Directions

Gently melt the coconut on low heat in a saucepan  and add the dates to soften for a few minutes. Remove from the heat and add your syrup/honey and cinnamon and ginger powder.

In a food processor, blitz the pepitas until they are ground into almost powder.

Add the Pepitas to the date mix and combine.

Take spoonfuls of mixture and roll with your hands into bite sized balls.

Coat with coconut until lightly covered.

Keep in the fridge for snack time.

Kiwi Crush Iceblocks

Ingredients

1 Kiwi fruit

½ Lemon

½ cup pineapple

¼ cup water

Remove the skin from the kiwi fruit, pineapple and lemon and chop into chunks.

Add ingredients to a blender.

Use your blender to keep the fibre in this juice(as pictured) or a juicer for a more liquid juice.

Process and pour into iceblock molds.

Freeze and enjoy.

Fruit kebabs

FRUIT KEBABS

Rainbow Fruit kebabs

A healthy, simple and attractive snack for kids and adults.

These are always first to go at the snack table when we have little visitors. Give your kids real colours and flavours full of nutritional value. Kids love the rainbow colours and eating them off the stick. These fruit kebabs are a great alternative to other brightly coloured sweet snacks available.

Your children will love to help you make these up or you can have them ready for an after school snack or a party.

Ingredients

 Red and green Grapes

Blueberries

Pineapple

Rockmelon

* You will need bamboo skewers.

Cut the rockmelon and pineapple into bite size pieces and rinse the grapes and berries and pat dry.

Thread a red grapeonto the skewer, then the blueberry, green grape, pineapple and lastly the rockmelon.

Enjoy!

Chocolate Beetroot Brownies

These gluten free super moist brownies are a great way to hide your veggies!

Ingredients:

1 cup (250 g) Butter

250g dark chocolate

3 eggs

1 cup beetroot (cooked and grated)

200g coconut sugar

¾ cup gluten free self raising flour

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 180C

Prepare a square baking tin by lining with baking paper.

Melt your chocolate and butter.

In a mixing bowl, combine the sugar and eggs and slowly beat in the chocolate.

Sift your flour and add to your bowl.

Finally add the grated beetroot. Stir gently to combine.

Pour the brownie mix into your prepared tin and bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes.

Check that they are done by inserting a skewer. It should be still moist on the skewer but not runny.

Cool and then slice into squares.

This a rich and decadent treat. Enjoy in moderation.

FRIED RICE

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This quick go to meal suits the whole family on a busy weeknight with just a few ingredients.

Ingredients:

3 cups cooked Basmati or jasmine Rice (Ideally leftovers from yesterday and refrigerated.)

2 Carrots

¾ cup Corn kernels

¾ Peas frozen

2 Eggs

1-2 tbs Tamari (wheat free soy sauce)

Olive oil

Sesame oil

Salt

Pepper

Chop the carrots and set aside

Crack eggs into a bowl and whisk.

Heat olive oil in a fry pan or wok.

Pour in the egg and roll around the pan to create a thin omelette. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt. Cook through and remove and set aside.

Add more oil to the pan.

Add the carrot and cook for 2 minutes, add the rice and cook another few minutes.

Add peas and corn and tamari to taste.

Stir through all ingredients and season with salt and pepper.

Slice the omelette into small pieces and add to the rice and stir through.

Serve hot.

Watercress soup

Picture by Ivy Vo Campbell

Watercress soup

Watercress soup is such a comfort food that reminds me of my mum bringing fresh bunches of green home from the fruit and veg store, ready to be turned into this delicious meal. Watercress is high in iron, calcium and antioxidants. Just a few good reasons to include this vegetable in your diet.

Ingredients

1 bunch Watercress

1 Onion

½ Fennel

1 large Potato

6 cups Water

Vegetable stock cube (optional)

Olive oil

1 clove Garlic

Salt  

Pepper

1 small Carrot chopped (optional)

Wash watercress thoroughly. Chop the stems and leaves finely. Set aside.(Divide into1/2 and1/2)

Peel and chop onion finely, along with fennel and potato.

Add a small amount of olive oil to a large pot and set to high and add the onion and fennel to sauté for a few minutes.

Chop the garlic finely and add, followed by potato.

Add 6 cups water and stock cube. Once the water reaches a boil, turn down to simmer, add ½ the watercress and cover for 20 minutes.

Turn off the heat and add ½ of the watercress that is left.  keeping some aside for the garnish)

Use a stick blender to puree.

Add salt and pepper to taste.

Serve with a sprinkle of fresh watercress and a dollop of yoghurt (optional).

Chickpea & Haloumi curry

Chickpea and Haloumi Curry

Ingredients:

Curry:

1 can Chickpeas

400g Tomato passata or crushed tomatos in can

100g Haloumi

1 Onion

1 Garlic

1 tbs olive oil

½ tsp Cumin

¼ tsp Cayenne powder

½ tsp Coriander powder

Salt to taste

Yoghurt Sauce:

Fresh Coriander to garnish

½ cup Greek Yoghurt

Salt to taste

Cumin powder to taste

Directions:

Chop the onion, haloumi and garlic.

Heat a saucepan with some olive oil.

Add the onion and sauté until soft.

Add the garlic for a minute and then the spices cumin, coriander, cayenne and salt and cook for 1 minute.

Add the Passata sauce and chickpeas and simmer for 10 minutes.

Add the haloumi and simmer for a further 5 minutes.

Whilst curry is cooking, add the cumin and salt to the yoghurt and stir through.

Wash the coriander and remove the stems, keeping the leaves for garnish.

Serve your curry into individual bowls and top with yoghurt and coriander.

are you in the equation of your life?

I have noticed that the times that I get irritated, frustrated or run down are the times where I have shut off including myself in the equation.

When I don’t pay attention to cues from my body or continue to ignore the things that feel really light and joyful to me instead choosing the list of what I ‘should ‘ be doing, I notice things can seem really heavy quickly.

So today I’m choosing for me. I wonder what wonderful things will show up?

BENEFITS OF FIGS

Just a few notes on this wonderful fruit. The fig is high in nutrients and fibre so they’re great for digestion and also known to support in prevention of major health risks like heart disease and diabetes.

Figs are high in calcium and magnesium for musculoskeletal health along with iron, copper, antioxidants and vitamin K so anyone on blood thinners should be careful with how many they have.

Figs are also a focus of study for their effects on antitumour activity and dermatitis so hopefully more good things will be discovered about this wonderful fruit to report soon.

Fresh figs are the best option to consume as dried figs have higher sugar levels.

It also helps that they are naturally sweet with low calories but should still be enjoyed in moderation.

It’s so versatile in the kitchen whether your eating raw or cooking. Some beautiful ways to enjoy figs are to eat them fresh, rocket and feta, through salad with pomegranates or on top of cake.

I’m curious, how do you like figs?

Sesame crusted Tofu Quinoa bowl

This is such a great recipe for powering up vegetarians.

Its high in protein and contains great nutrients for optimising red blood cells, maintaining healthy bowels and supporting great skin.

You can also make a few servings to have for another lunch or dinner.

Ingredients:

500g Firm Tofu

½ Avocado

1 cup Quinoa

3 tbs Sesame seeds

Canned Lentils

1 bunch Spinach

Vegetable stock 2 cups

3 Tbs Tamari

1 tsp ginger

Drain and slice your tofu into squares.

Place in a bowl with tamari and grated ginger.

Marinate whilst preparing quinoa.

Place quinoa in saucepan with stock to cover. Heat  until stock  is absorbed. (Approximately 10—15minutes )

While quinoa is cooking, slice your avocado and set aside.

Rinse your spinach, chop into small pieces.

Drain the tin of lentils

Add the spinach to the quinoa to wilt for the last 5 minutes.

Heat a non stick frypan and add sesame seeds for a minute to toast. Set aside in a bowl.

Add the tofu to the frypan and cook for 4-5 minutes on each side. Take each tofu slice and coat in sesame seeds.

Serve the quinoa and spinach in a bowl. Add a few slices of tofu, some of the lentils and garish with avocado.

Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Natural Remedies for Hayfever

It’s Spring time and all those gorgeous blooms are coming out along with a high pollen count.

If you suffer from hayfever, you may like to try some of the following natural remedies for support.

  1. Vitamin C is great for stopping secondary infections and is also a natural antihistamine.

2. Homeopathic desensiting. Did you know that you can desensitise yourself to known allergens like grass and pollen, cat fur, dustmite etc through a homeopathic desenstitising treatment which involves taking oral drops of natural antihistamines and your allergens.

3) Garlic and horseradish are well known for their immune antihistamines properties. Tablets are readily available from your local chemist or health store.

4) Raw Local Honey contains bee pollen which may help you desentise to pollens in your area

5) Ginger: Consuming ginger in food,juices or tea may reduce inflammation and help your hayfever symptoms.

6) Eucalyptus or Lavender essential oil inhaled may assist the opening of your sinus passages and reduce inflammation and irritation.

7) Probiotics can help balance your gut bacteria which effects your immune response.

8) Kiwi Fruit contains bromelain which is a natural anti-inflammatory. Consuming them may help reduce sinus pressure and irritation.

This is a general advice only. For ongoing sinus, allergic issues, seek specific advice from your natural health care professional.

To learn more about homeopathic desensitising for your allergies, Contact Dragonfly Natural Therapies Centre for more information.

Flower essences for Sadness

Flower essences for Sadness

Did you know that there are many essences made from flowers which support our emotional and mental states? Flower essences are different from essential oils. They are not related to aromatherapy.

There is a flower for just about every thought and feeling you could have. When thoughts or feelings become very intense or consuming, it’s sometimes hard to find your natural balance.

Here’s 3 flower essences that support you when you feel sadness.

These 3 flower essences belong to the Bach flower remedies:

Gorse: When sadness is the dominant feeling and there’s no enthusiasm or motivation to do much else.

Mustard: When you find sadness an feelings of depression comes in waves and not quite sure of the reason.

Gentian: For those who feel sadness after disappointments or get easily discouraged by peoples words.

Flower essences are wonderful to support a persons health holistically in conjunction with other therapies to effect positive change. They are safe for children, pets and the elderly.

*This information is a guideline only. For complex mental and emotional health concerns, please seek the advice  and support of your trusted practitioners.

Bach flower remedies can be purchased from Dragonfly Natural Therapies Centre.

If you would like to know more about flower essence consultations and remedies contact  Dragonfly Natural Therapies.