Monthly Archives: September 2014

The link between my physical and mental health – and a recipe for Hazelnut Nut-Ella Biscuits

I’m starting to realise how much my physical health affects my mental health. I wrote previously about considering coming off my anti-depressant medication, which I take primarily for anxiety, although I consider anxiety and depression to be different sides of the same coin. I have taken this medication for over six years, and it has only been this year – in my busiest, most sleep-deprived year yet – that I have felt in a place where I am ready to *try* living without it. I put this down to cutting out processed foods and fructose. I have felt so much healthier this year, and my frame of mind has followed suit. I feel more optimistic, happier, more resilient and able to cope with daily challenges, and had less mental exhaustion.

Comparatively, when I’m sick my mental health declines too. I am a terrible patient. If I get a cold or flu, ALL HOPE IS GONE. I am miserable. Pessimistic. A total negative nancy. The negative self-talk, self-loathing and paranoia goes into overdrive, and along with it, the need to indulge in unhealthy comfort food. I realise now that this once served to keep me trapped in a cycle of mediocre physical and mental health. Continue reading

Sweet potato pikelets with cinnamon cream cheese and candied pecans

Every now and then, my husband goes on a pancake making frenzy. Flour, egg, milk. Fry them in oil and served them drenched in butter and pure maple syrup. The Sunday morning before last was one such frenzy. I encouraged him to consider using different toppings, but he was adamant they be served the ‘traditional way’.

As I skewered a wedge of syrup covered pancake on my fork, I tentatively said, ‘I’ve realised, the problem with having maple syrup this way is that we have so much of it, and it’s 40% fructose.’

‘It’s a treat!’ He replied defiantly, and determinedly munched his way through a stack. A few minutes later, he followed up quietly: ‘It is very sweet though. I reckon I’d be happy using rice malt syrup these days…’

Occasionally, I use a small amount of maple syrup in baking and cooking, but usually this means no more than a few tablespoons, in something that is going to be divided into many serves, such as bliss balls. Pouring it over pancakes in that extravagant way that we do, is another matter. But, whatever. I didn’t want to complain because he’d gone to all that effort.

Half an hour later we were both rolling around the floor. ‘I feel like I’ve been poisoned!’ He complained, running to the toilet. We felt awful – hungover, and seedy. My head ached, and my stomach hurt. We drank a lot of water. Continue reading

Making the consumer difference, one free-range egg at a time

‘If you’re so against animal cruelty, why aren’t you a vegan?’ Said the carnivore, to the vegetarian.

Lately, I have spent a lot of time beating myself up about my own hypocrisy in making better choices as a consumer.

  • I take reusable ‘green bags’ to the supermarket, but use masses of cling wrap and freezer bags at home.
  • I buy local, free-range eggs but frequently buy garlic at the supermarket, which is imported from overseas.
  • I avoid buying products that contain palm oil, but use chemicals to clean the toilet.
  • I make my own baby purees, but there are thousands of dirty nappies in landfill from my two children.
  • I very rarely use my clothes dryer, to reduce power usage, but even as I write this the heater is on.
  • I avoid buying Nestle products, but my son wears Nike shoes.

Continue reading

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