Brilliant new Candida Cookbook available

How many Candida cookbooks can you think of?

(If your response is: “What’s Candida?” and you feel fine then forget I asked…

But if you don’t know what Candida is and you experience any, or a combination of the following symptoms…

food allergies and intolerances, recurrent thrush and cystitis, migraines, foggy brain, muscle aches, PMS, menstrual irregularities, joint pains, respiratory allergies/symptoms, chronic tiredness, itchiness/skin disorders, sensitivity to chemicals, bloatedness, flatulence, diarrhoea and/or constipation…

Then please read on…)

Easy solutions for Candida
The truth is there just aren’t many recipe books for Candida out there – and possibly none with 100 photographically illustrated recipes. In other words, nothing that makes dealing with Candida seem easy.

Show candida who's boss
Show candida who's boss

No books, that is, until Rebecca Richardson’s ‘Candida Can Be Fun!‘ came along. Her book is crammed with advice on food and shop brands and supplements – but mostly it’s full of colourful easy to follow recipes to help you get cracking on defeating Candida. (What’s more, Rebecca recommends our web site: goodnessdirect.co.uk as a resource for information and for purchasing many of the products mentioned in her book.)

Define Candida…
If you still don’t know what Candida is, it is a yeast which destroys your gut’s friendly bacteria and becomes a fungus which invades the rest of your body. It can be dealt with simply through changing your diet and taking a range of supplements. However, most people feel that their life is over when they hear what they can’t eat (eg. sugar, fruit, nuts, wheat, gluten, preservatives, dairy and alcohol).

‘Candida Can Be Fun!’ contradicts that. It shows just how much you can do.

Rebecca Richardson suffered from Candida herself, first experiencing symptoms in her childhood, and when she found out what she couldn’t eat she cried too! But that led to the determination to write this book to SHOW you what you CAN eat to help other people who are all alone and suffering like she did, so that you can tell the Candida who is boss.

The book is also suitable for coeliacs, diabetics and ME sufferers.

Until the 31st May ‘Candida Can Be Fun!’ is on offer for £14.99 – that’s 25% less than the normal price, so buy now and take your chance to begin your fight back!

 For more information on Candida, the author and how to purchase your copy of “Candida Can Be Fun!” please visit: www.candidacanbefun.co.uk

Lose the extra fat with pomegranate juice – new discovery

Drinking pomegranate juice for one month may reduce middle aged spread.

If you want to deflate that spare tyre and get rid of the extra flab a bottle of pomegranate juice every day could be the help you need.

An Edinburgh University research group found that volunteers who drank a daily dose of half a litre of pomegranate juice were less likely to develop fatty cells around their abdomen.

Pomegranate juice could help shift those pounds
Pomegranate juice could help shift those pounds

They also had much lower blood pressure, therefore reducing their risk of heart attacks, strokes and kidney disease. 500ml of pomegranate may also lead to a reduced likelihood of developing type II diabetes – associated with abdominal fat.

More tests still need to be done as none of the research volunteers were particularly overweight. But many people, worried about their weight, will be trying out the tangy fruit drink for themselves.

If that is what you are doing it makes sense to buy a 100% pure pomegranate juice which won’t have lots of added sugar in it. Both Organic Village’s pomegranate juice and Biona Organic’s pomegranate juice are not made from concentrate so there’s no added water or sugar or anything in them, just 100% pomegranate goodness.

If you find the drink a little tart make a litre with 500ml pomegranate and 500ml of water, but you don’t want to buy it diluted. A 100% pure pomegranate drink is the way to go – and it’s also one of your five a day.

‘Antioxidants for Dummies’

I was trying to explain the importance of antioxidants the other day and I came across this easy explanation:

“Antioxidants are a bit like rust protection for the body.”

As with everything that goes rusty over time, the oxidation of our cells is damaging and leads to the early onset of diseases particularly associated with old age. Antioxidants – in various things from raisins to cacoa – reduce the effects of oxidisation and repair the damage as well, which helps you to have a longer life.

So there you go, even humble raisins can be superfoods nowadays.

Don’t forget, if you need to ask us questions about antioxidants or anything else you can always contact us by Twitter, email or phone 08710871 6611.

More Vitamin D could protect you from disease

Vitamin D works with your cells to protect you from a number of diseases. In fact the list of illnesses it is known that Vitamin D can help with is still growing.

Multiple sclerosis, diabetes, cancers, rheumatoid arthritis – all of these can now be conected to a deficiency in Vitamin D. The sunshine vitamin is also known to help, in some cases significantly, with osteoporosis, immunity, muscular pain, coronary illness and depression.

As an anti-depressant, Vitamin D can reduce depression and enhance your mood, sociability and overall sense of wellbeing. Yet more than half the UK population is deficient in this vitamin.

If you live north of Birmingham you won't get enough Vitamin D from the sun in the winter
If you live north of Birmingham you won't get enough Vitamin D from the sun in the winter

And, this is interesting, if you live roughly north of Birmingham (above 52 degrees north) your body will not be able to make Vitamin D in the winter because of the lack of sunlight. In fact, a key reason why so many people developed rickets during the industrial revolution was because everywhere was covered in dense smog.

So how do you get more of the vitamin?

As well as sunlight Vitamin D can also be gained from fish and shellfish, and a little from eggs, dairy produce and green vegetables. But there are calls for the RDA of Vitamin D to be increased because it is such a significant health-giving nutrient.

But, given that so many people suffer from a lack of this sun-sourced friend, it’s useful to take Vitamin D in tablet form. A good vegan source of Vitamin D can be found in Viridian Vitamin D2.

Bilberries – good for eyesight

A customer asked me about bilberry powder just now – not a food I’d considered before. I quickly learnt that it is very good for good eye health and stabilizing blood sugar.

A health boost with Bilberries
A health boost with Bilberries

It is high in antioxidants from the flavonoid anthocyanoside which helps to improve blood flow and the delivery of oxygen to the eyes. Anthocyanoside is also believed to regenerate rhodopsin, a purple pigment in the retina required for good night vision. Eye conditions such as cataracts and degenerative retinal conditions such as age related macular degeneration may benefit if you include bilberries in your diet.

Bilberries used to be a popular English food, traditionally used in the north of the country. Not to be confused with blueberries, they can be eaten fresh, but are normally used in jams and pies. According to the great medieval herbalist John Gerard, the fruits are the northern counterpart for strawberries in cream.

As a powder they are a readily available ingredient to drink in your morning smoothie. Try this health giving recipe:

Blend together:

1 cup of milk
1/2 cup of coconut water
a handful of frozen berries or a banana
1 tblsp of oat bran
1 tblsp of greek yoghurt
2 tsp bilberry powder
2 tsp wheatgrass powder
1 tsp spirulina powder
honey or sweetener to taste

Chocolate muffin recipe – dairy-free with no added sugar

I just found this great video on making Birch Syrup, which is a bit like Maple Syrup but is also a natural source for Xylobrit Xylitol which is much healthier than sugar.

Xylitol is found naturally in many plants, it is just as sweet but has nearly half the calories as normal sugar (40% less) with a low GI of 7. This means it is good for diabetics and hypoglycemics. And becasue Xylobrit Xylitol is made from birch rather than corn it can be used as a safe alternative for people with candida. Plus it actually lessens tooth decay and fights bacteria!

We all know that sugar is bad for you, so it makes sense to use Xylitol for baking your cakes, biscuits, crumbles and muffins*.

Chocolate muffins – dairy-free with no added sugar

2 eggs
1 1/2 cups xylitol
3/4 cup sifted cocoa
1/2 cup oil
1 cup apple juice
1 3/4 cup wholewheat spelt flour
1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
pinch of salt
1 cup boiling water

1. Beat eggs (with a whisk) for 10 minutes, add xylitol and reduce whisking speed. Add cocoa and mix well.
2. Add oil to the mix, then apple juice and dry ingredients including salt.
3. Add boiling water to the mixture.
4. Line muffins tins with muffin cups. Fill each cup to ¾ full. Bake for 20 – 25 minutes at 180 C. Cool on rack.

*Xylitol inhibits yeast so cannot be used in dough that requires yeast.

Cup of tea? Sounds like my kind of medicine

Isn’t it nice to know that you don’t have to do anything to stay healthy? Drinking three or four cups of tea or coffee everyday has been shown to reduce the risk of diabetes by 25%. That’s good news if you have a family history with the condition, and it’s especially good news for the 80% of Britons who won’t need to change a thing (except maybe make sure you have that extra cuppa when you finally put your feet up).

In all seriousness, a total of 18 studies have found that drinking one of the popular beverages cuts the diabetes risk and if you drink decaf then you could drop the risk by a third. That’s useful to know when you consider how diabetes has been on the increase. A healthy lifestyle and diet is still going to benefit you the most however, so don’t put down those new year resolutions just yet.

Researchers are still guessing which ingredient in tea has the desired effect but various herbal teas are known to have benefits. Ginkgo assists our circulation, peppermint is for digestion, chamomile for calming, valerian for sleep, ginger for sickness and warmth, raspberry leaf helps with stomach cramps for ladies, Pau d’Arco helps with weight control, to name but a few. A selection of unusual teas makes a great trendy gift too.

It’s not surprising really. Tea was always used to heal both body and soul. The Chinese have been applying their wisdom to this traditional remedy for centuries. Now Yogi Organic Teas have combined ancient practices with Oriental Tao philosophy to bring you five delicious health giving teas.

These are based on the five elements of Taoism and I’ve looked into this and noted the following: Lotus tea is believed to lower appetite; Rose is thought to relieve menstrual pain; Mandarin is good for digestion; Ginseng brings energy; and Jasmine boosts your health.

So, some more herbal knowledge to add to your armoury, after all, nothing quite warms the heart like a healthy cup of tea.

Green tea heals body and soul

My friend recently got into green tea. He was reading a self-help book on how to reduce stress, took the hint and is now practically addicted to the stuff. (It makes for neat little gifts to him: green tea and nettle, green tea with orange and lotus flower, green tea with interesting red bits…)

Because green tea is steamed rather than fermented, like the more familiar black tea, that is what holds its antioxidant and anticancer properties. The latest report out this month is that drinking five cups a day would reduce your risk of getting blood and lymph cancers by over 40%. In fact so well documented is the healing effect of green tea that 1000s of studies now exist into its benefits. My friend thinks he’s drinking something to help him de-stress but he could be helping to prevent heart disease, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, diabetes, osteoporosis and weight-gain. Not bad for a cup of green stuff.

Incidentally, green tea contains half the caffeine of coffee and slightly less than black tea, so you can drink it before bedtime. Since it aids digestion and cleanses the pallet it is also good to drink after a meal or in the afternoon as a pick me up. It is best made with spring or filtered water and usually brewed for only a short time. Personally, I like to drink it before the evening begins as it really does help clear away the day’s stress. If you’re anything like me (or my friend) you’ll find it will help relax you, giving you composure for the twilight hours.

What do you do for more energy?

I used to have a friend who was addicted to Red Bull. He was a lovely, funny guy but he used to drink several cans a day! I think he got off on the buzz. Now, you might say I’m overly cautious, but I don’t think that’s a good way to live. Personally I avoid energy drinks because I don’t like the idea of filling my body with lots of harsh chemicals.

So what am I supposed to think when I come across a drink which claims to boost your energy and be made from natural ingredients?

Here are the ingredients, you can see for yourself:Need energy?

Sparkling spring water, natural fruit sweetener, lemon juice partially from concentrate, yerba mate leaf extract, natural flavours, VITABT™ L-carnitine, barley malt extract, guarana extract, natural caffiene, vitamin c, vitamin B3 niacin, vitamin B5, vitamin B1, vitamin B9 folic acid, vitamin B12, ginger natural extract, lemon grass raw extract.

It’s a drink called Attitude. And it says it’s suitable for people with diabetes and for vegans. But, while the advertising says it’s made from organic ingredients, it doesn’t go so far to claim it’s 100% organic.

There are other more traditional, helpful ways to increase energy, like getting more sleep. My dad used to tell me to make sure I got enough exercise and fresh air as that would help me sleep and I have to say he was right. But I’m still working on other things that are supposed to help, like drinking lots of water and eating the right healthy foods – I’m not very good at that, bananas before I go to bed are definitely a bad idea.

Surely though, exercise, rest, a good diet, all of these things taken together should be enough to give a person the energy they need? No one should have to consume stimulants daily? Once in a while maybe but not daily? And if you do, isn’t it wiser to think about changing your lifestyle?

However, perhaps you know that energy drinks work for you (and, if you’re not scared of high levels of caffeine), then maybe Attitude could be your drink of choice – all those added vitamins certainly sound useful.

I’ve just remembered. There is something I use as a stimulant occasionally when I feel groggy (nope, not coffee, that never worked for me). I drink green tea, it always refreshes me and after about half an hour I can easily notice the difference.

But I guess I’ll throw this one open… What do you do to get the energy you need? Do you nibble on cacao beans? Drink acai berry juice? Or just walk around with bottled water? Or is Attitude just the drink you’ve been looking for?