My People…

Everyone has them. Those people who make up their little black book of recommendations that treat everything from aching muscles to perfect brows to ‘serious life-changing stuff’.

Here are mine. My people. Feel free to call them anytime for yourself.

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The Brow Guru: Lien Davies

It wasn’t until I met Lien that I really understood the power of good eye brows. I’d had them waxed and plucked, but never professionally shaped, and to me they seemed like an after-thought to my makeup or hair or skin. Not so, I quickly discovered. Brows are the ultimate game-changers when it comes to framing your features and looking just that little bit more groomed, but above all, I found that having perfect brows gave me more confidence than ever. After almost 10 years together, Lien is my go-to for everything from life advice to chai tea (she makes a mean one), proving that beauty isn’t just skin deep after all.

The ‘Absolutely Anything’ Healer: Rick Schlederer at Universal Health

Where do I start with Rick? He’s the man who fixes anything. From anxiety to fatigue to skin conditions to all the emotional shit you lug around with you for what seems like eternity, he’ll fix it. With his countless tools and techniques for ‘shit shifting’ like NET (Neuro-Emotional Technique) to acupuncture, kinesiology and everything in between, no issue is too small (or too big) for Rick. See him!

The Chiro: Dr Andrew Stevenson at The Chiropractor at North Sydney

Once terrified by the idea of someone cracking my joints and shifting my bones, I shied away from chiropractic care. Until I met Andrew, whose gentle techniques nursed me through my pregnancy and beyond, leaving my aches and pains in its wake.

The Massage Man: Glenn Walsmley

Glenn’s Sydney-based practice is so busy he commutes from his new home of Byron Bay once a month or so to ensure his clients are attended to. His specialty? Myotherapy massage, an intensely deep therapy that relieves on-going muscular injuries after just one treatment. After I gave birth to Arlo my left hip completely seized up, leaving me in agony and unable to walk without shooting pain. Glenn was my go-to guy, and after a few seriously painful sessions, my hip was completely healed. Thanks, Glenn!

The Unofficial Baby-Maker: Gavin Hodges

I don’t want to go around making outrageous claims, but I give Gavin a good dose of credit for getting me pregnant. You see, Alex and I had just started trying so I thought I’d treat myself to a Ka Huna Massage (Gavin’s specialty) to open my energy fields and release any negative stuff that could inhibit my baby making skills. It worked! I left my treatment feeling open and goddess-y and ready to receive, making a baby that very same day.

The Body Blitzer: Steph O’Brien at Vision PT Randwick

When it comes to personal trainers, Steph is right up there with the best. She’s knowledgable and fierce without being scary and before you know it your body is strong and lean and buff and getting you sideways glances on the street. I even have back muscles now, and can blitz Saturday morning run club without coughing up a lung. If you want serious training that’s guided by an expert, Steph is your gal.

The Toning Queen: Emma Seibold at Barre Body 

Em and I have been friends for years, even working together to create BodyLove Bootcamp, so it’s little wonder I’m a huge fan of Barre Body. With a clever fusion of yoga, barre and pilates, Barre Body tones those tiny little muscles your often forget about, giving you long, lean limbs that look pretty good in denim cut-offs. Expect your muscles to burn the next day, this workout isn’t for the fainthearted (or lazy).

The Yogi: Nadia Rihani at Yoga Village

When I was pregnant with Arlo I was doing yoga 4 times a week. Yoga Village became my second home, allowing me to tap into my inner yogi and create a safe, calm and peaceful belly for my baby to grow in. While the studio offers prenatal yoga, their specialty is vinyasa flow and ashtanga, which Nadia is an absolute guru at. But the thing I love most about Nadia and her sacred school, is that it teaches you yoga, rather than just show you yoga moves. It’s personal and true to the yogic practice, leaving you with a heart full of joy and head full of calm whenever you walk in (and out) the front door.

Tell me Happies…

Who are your people?
Have you been to any of mine?

 

Stay Happy,

Yaz x

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What’s the Deal with Superfoods Anyway?

Are superfoods really all that super?

That’s the question I just keep asking myself, because in my opinion, all food is super, so long as it’s fresh and real and from a farm rather than a factory.

So is it just catchy marketing luring shoppers into yet another purchase, or do certain foods contain a higher nutrient density than their peers? Like kale, or acai, or cacao.

Turns out, there are some standouts in the crowd. A study by the CDC took an objective look at 47 different foods and measured their nutrient values. If they contained at least 10% of your total recommended daily value of 17 essential nutrients per 100 calories, then they were considered super.

Here’s what came out on top…

Watercress: 100.00
Chinese cabbage: 91.99
Chard: 89.27
Beet greens: 87.08
Spinach: 86.43
Chicory: 73.36
Leaf lettuce: 70.73
Parsley: 65.59
Romaine lettuce: 63.48
Collard greens: 62.49

Bottom line: GREENS. When it comes to getting your daily intake of essential vitamins and minerals, you really can’t go past greens (meanwhile, where’s kale on that list?) but there are other foods, not on this list, that also boast other benefits, like high antioxidant values or immune boosting capabilities.

Which is partly why the superfood list keeps growing; there are so many different things to measure that it just depends what you’re looking for in order for a certain food to be deemed ‘super’. The key? Variety. Eating as many different fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and even grains will give your diet the greatest cross-section of vitamins and minerals. No one food has it all, but all foods have a little something, ergo, the more variety you have, the more you benefit.

Here, my favourite ‘super’ foods…

1. Cacao – life without chocolate is vanilla, but rather than gorge on the heavily processed, sugar-laden stuff I choose raw cacao instead. It’s packed with flavonoids, which act as natural antioxidants to protect against ageing free radicals, plus it tastes bitterly delicious. Add it to your morning smoothie for a chocolate thick-shake that’s totally guilt free or use it in raw sweet treats for an energy boost throughout the day.

2. Cress – we know greens are good, and cress is considered the most nutritious of them all. Despite the painstaking removal of leaves from stem, the hard work is paid in full when you think about all the goodness you’re giving your body. Add it to salads, sandwiches or even green smoothies.

3. Kefir – cultured, fermented foods are my ultimate ‘super’ food as they flood the gut with immune-boosting good bacteria. My daily hit of coconut kefir keeps germs at bay, while also giving me energy and vitality long term.

4. Turmeric – inflammation in the body is the root cause of many dietary (and skin) issues, so reduction is key. Of all the spices we use to cook with, turmeric and its active ingredient – curcumin – is probably the most beneficial, with studies showing it has the potential to ward off dementia and cancer, fight cold and flu, reduce risk of heart attack and stroke and even help with weight loss.

5. Berries – it’s the high antioxidant value of berries that make them a must-have addition to your diet. But don’t play favourites based on good marketing, play the field and enjoy the health benefits of blueberries, açai, raspberries, mulberries, blackberries, goji berries… you get the gist.

6. Spirulina – As I don’t eat much meat, spirulina is my protein go-to as it contains all 8 essential amino acids and 10 non-essential ones. It’s also high in iron, vitamin B12 and chlorophyll, and is the perfect addition to my morning muesli or smoothie.

Wondering how to get more in your diet? Try these picks…

IsoWhey Superfood Powders (shown here: Organic Sacha Inchi, Turmeric and Gubinge)

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Or, for the non-cooks in the house: Bioglan Superfood Tablets and Capsules range, $29.95 each (for 100)

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Tell me Happies…

Do you eat superfoods?
Which ones are on high rotation for you?

Cheat’s Poached Coconut Chicken Curry

One pan. Twelve ingredients. Thirty minutes. How hard could this be?

As it turns out, Happies, it’s not hard at all. This cheat’s coconut curry scored me serious brownie points with the hubby and is great for those nights when you feel like something fancy, but just can’t be bothered slapping away in the kitchen for hours.

Here’s what I’m talking about…

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And here’s what you need…

1 whole clove
2 garlic cloves
1 small can coconut milk (I like the Ayam one as it doesn’t have any preservatives)
1 teaspoon ginger powder
1 teaspoon of coriander powder
2 kaffir lime leaves
2 organic chicken breasts
1 head of broccoli
1 fresh chilli (optional)
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 cucumber
1 bunch fresh coriander

And here’s how you do it…

1. Place the clove, garlic, coconut milk, ginger and coriander powder, and chilli in a blender and whiz until smooth and well combined.

2. Pour sauce into a deep-based fry pan with chicken breast and bring to a slow boil on a low heat. Pop lid on and simmer for around 15 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through*.

3. Remove chicken from pan and allow to rest, but continue to cook sauce with the lid off, allowing it to reduce. After about 5 minutes, throw in broccoli, fish sauce and fresh coriander.

4. Once cooked, place broccoli on the plate with chicken on top, drizzle with coconut sauce and serve with cucumber, fresh chilli and coriander as a garnish.

*I slice a small incision down the fatter side of my chicken breast so it cooks more evenly.

SERVES 2

Enjoy,

Yaz x