This month's Wellbeing Monthly article comes from Marissa Carrarini at Snowsfields Wellness Clinic. To book 30% off an appointment on your nutrition, see our Wellbeing@Work offer here.
After a – hopefully – indulgent and merry festive holiday, January is a nice time to start thinking about eating for body and brain again. I needn’t have to tell you that January is big business for little waists. Even my clinic (Snowsfields Wellness) is busy with people who want to loose weight and or be healthy again. We like healthy but we don’t like weight loss for weight loss’s sake. Especially in January. The winter months are not a time to live solely on salads with no fat. They are a time we really have to focus on protecting the body and keeping it well-nourished. Otherwise our immunity, energy, ability to burn off extra energy and brain function will be compromised.
For the winter I recommend whole, nutrient-dense and colourful foods to keep you strong, well, fit and thriving throughout the year.
Here are my winter eating tips:
1. Make protein a focus of almost (if not all) your meals. Not only do we need protein for energy and to help repair post-exercise muscles, we need it for our immunity.
2. Fatless meals don’t taste nice and stop you absorbing immune-boosting, fat-soluble nutrients. Fat is also important for mental health and for keeping your skin soft like a baby’s bottom. Avoid processed margarine and vegetable oils and lap up olive oil, coconut oil, lovely butter and nuts & seeds.
3. Bin the iceberg. Pale green foods, such a lettuce, are fine but I would recommend that you fill your plate with the darker greens. Dark green brassicas are amazing foods that are rich in health-giving phytonutrients, vitamins and minerals (including the calming magnesium). Very lightly sauté kale, broccoli, chard or cabbage in butter or olive oil and chilli and serve it with everything.
4. Swap baked potatoes for baked beetroot, sweet potatoes or squash. I don’t have a problem with spuds (they are rich in potassium and taste delicious) but the more colourful roots are far more nutrient dense and are rich in vitamin C, beta carotene, folate and minerals.
5. Enjoy (mineral) baths and early bed. If you have been partying and / or running after exhausting kids over the festive period, then use January as a time to catch up on some sleep. Putting Epsom salts or magnesium salts in your bath will hep you sleep that little bit deeper as well as relaxing those tight muscles.
6. Enjoy my winter smoothie
- 2 oranges
- 1 lemon
- 1 lime
- 1-2 teaspoon manuka honey
- Handful fresh or frozen cranberries
- 1 cup of fresh or frozen mango
- 2 handfuls of kale
- Tablespoon of flax seeds
Juice the citrus fruits and then blend the juice with the flax, mango, honey, kale and cranberries. You may need to add a little water for consistency. This smoothie is rich in essential oils, protein and beta carotene, magnesium and vitamins C & E.