Exciting News…

This year falda_eats has partnered up with Dunbar Morley Associates to bring you Fitness and Wellbeing retreats.  

This winter, Dunbar Morley Associates will be hosting a series of wellness and fitness courses, including: healthy plant based weeks in the sun, a yoga for beginners retreat and health and happiness week with special guest Dr Nicola McNally.

Available winter 2017/18, keep an eye out for more exciting information.  Keep up to date on Instagram and Facebook.

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A hard but wonderful week…

It’s been a couple of weeks since my last post and I have been super busy.  Mum is back from Spain which is lovely.  Lithy has been staying with us for the past three weeks which means I have my favourite walking, talking and watching buddy by my side.  And I am in the final few weeks of my degree (PHEW).

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Mums Home!!!

It has also been a really difficult few weeks – sometimes it’s ok to feel really teary and overwhelmed especially at almost seven months pregnant!

Reasons last week was hard:

  1. Until Friday night I had not slept more than two hours consecutively for around 6 days (something which apparently affects almost 80% of pregnant woman!)
  2. I have just two weeks until exams and less than one week until my extended assignment is due – not a lot of time!
  3. Work was a struggle due to all of the above.
  4. Everything makes me teary (mostly because of the lack of sleep)
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Hello Third Trimester!

Reasons last week was blooming fabulous:

  1. Officially in my third trimester it’s now under 11 weeks until my due date!!  Lack of sleep for a healthy happy baby is a super small price to pay.
  2. 4th year is almost finished and (hopefully) I will soon graduate.
  3. Despite the tiredness  I managed work – no bother!
  4. Most of the week was spent with my wonderful husband and sister.
  5. Another week running regularly done – despite thinking I was going to give up at around 18 weeks.
  6. Monday was my  two year wedding anniversary – the most wonderful two years.
  7. We finally picked a pram which I can use for running too (thanks mum!)
  8. My Nutri Bullet broke so I bought a brand new Nutri Ninja!!
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Two years married to the most wonderful guy 🙂

My happy and healthy green juice of the week:

2 Celery Sticks

Cucumber

Juice of one Lemon

½ Grapefruit

1 Frozen avocado

Water

My body is perfect…and so is yours.

This morning I watched a youtube video which discussed body confidence and referred to self love.  I am a huge advocate of both.  The health benefits both physically and mentally of embracing and looking after your body are essential to health and happiness.  However, what I was hugely disappointed by was the statement that your body is meant to be ‘imperfect’ or comments such as ‘your arms are meant to hug’.

I am irritated by these comments because not only do they validate the idea that our bodies are imperfect and that’s how they are meant to be but also because it is simply untrue.  My body is perfect not because how it looks aesthetically but because of its ability to meet my physical needs.  My eyebrows and eyelashes are not perfect because they are waxed or extended but because they keep dirt and sweat out of my eyes.  My arms and legs have not evolved so that I can hug my husband (although that is a bonus) they are long and strong so I can use them as tools – my legs are strong and lean and allow me to get from A to B and my arms so that I can use them as tools be it in cooking, lifting, holding, or breaking my fall.  My body is perfect because it has evolved over millions of years to be useful.

With the pressures of our society, maintaining this is difficult.  My body is not required to work as hard as my ancestors – I can take the bus, pull my suitcase on wheels, I buy my food from the supermarket without need to scavenge for it.  My body often feels underused.  Of course, this is the case for many bodies and probably why so many people are gaining such substantial amounts of weight – not only are our foods calorie laden and nutrient lacking, we also have no need to use our bodies physically.   It is therefore paramount to use my body to ensure that it remains strong and useful to me.  In pregnancy, I have seen the importance of having a strong and nourished body, with so many changes to my size and the aches and pains as a result not to mention the changes in my hormones I can appreciate the need for a strong body to cope with and thrive on these changes.  Not least, a fit and healthy body which will help me care for my baby once it arrives.

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My body is perfect because it keeps the dirt from eyes, because I can run for 26 miles, because it tells me when I’m tired or hungry and because not only can my body  carry a child I can feed and nourish my baby from it.

A body is not perfect because of how it looks, a body is perfect because it is strong, resilient and nourished.  Be kind to your body: use it and nourish it.  

Travel, Food and Ikea…

After a marvelous trip to the Netherlands visiting Tom and Olivia where I had a great time enjoying their company and good food  I am delighted to be home and relaxed again with Andrew.    That’s it for the next while, no more trips just calmness and preparing for the baby – IKEA is involved.

This week I will also be returning to yoga and focusing on good nutritious clean foods.  My running is slowing down a bit, however it’s no problem as I am walking and carrying on with some strengthening exercises.  All in all I am feeling pretty good!

Here is last Monday’s menu.  Seems a lot but I am filling my boots!

Breakfast 

1 Green Smoothie (kale, spinach, celery, grapefruit, apple and lemon )

1 Bowl of porridge with chia seeds and frozen raspberries

Morning Snack

1 Handful of red grapes

1 Handful of Almonds

Lunch

1 Carrot and ⅓ Cucumber with Hummus

1 Couscous Food doctor Pot

1 Piece of vegan carrot cake!!

Afternoon snack

1 Handful of Almonds

1 Handful of Red Grapes

Tea

3 Bean Chili with rice and rude health (vegan) creme fraiche

Evening Snack

Leftover homemade apple crumble with almond yogurt.

Heart-full or Heart-less?

This week we have listened to daft excuses from coffee drinkers that they can’t either a) pay an additional 25p for their takeaway hot beverage to accommodate the environmental cost of their “disposable” cups OR b) they don’t want to be carrying a “permanent” cup for filling up repeatedly,  for around £3.50 OR c) they won’t take their own flask of coffee with them.

Meanwhile we still have the vast majority of people in the West and increasingly in developing countries, eating up the Earth’s resources, polluting everything in sight for the sake of gorging on animal meat that we don’t even need, unless you live in an Igloo and you have no other recourse than to eat creatures from the sea (which is not the case for most of us!)

What to do, what to do?  How about taking a bit of responsibility and investing in equality and social cohesion?  How about aiming to live in a cruelty free and heart-full not heart-less society?

How about focusing on a wee bit of common human decency that is humane and moral.

 

 

Plant-based retreats…

Lithy and I had a great weekend visiting mum in Spain for Mother’s Day.  The weather wasn’t great but we were high up in the olive grove hills north of Malaga and it was really peaceful.  A trip to Cordoba to visit the third largest Mosque in the World was awesome.  On Sunday Lithy made Mother’s Day pancakes and we had them with strawberries and lemon – fabulous.

We also visited an amazing villa where Mum is hosting all inclusive nutrient rich plant based retreats throughout May.  These retreats will introduce plant based eating to improve health and well-being.  Working in small groups and one-to-one you will work out your own six week plan with online backup. And have an amazing inspirational, relaxing holiday.

If you are interested in long term health and also want to shed a few pounds before summer get in touch with Mum (Susan) directly:  contact@dunbarmorley.com.  

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I will also be on hand helping out although I might be waylaid by the baby.  Every day I can feel more movement and morning sickness has been replaced by lower back aches.  Warm baths and gentle strolls seen to be the order of the day.  

Thank goodness my diet is really healthy.  The amount of food I am packing away right now would have me the size of a tank if I was eating badly.   I just can’t get enough and there is no way I will be slowing down anytime soon!

Nourishment…

 

I attended a wonderful wedding on Saturday with Andrew and Lithy.  It was totally vegan and the food was amazing.  The company was fantastic and we had a superb time celebrating.  Thank you Teresa and David and congratulations once again on what I am sure will be a marvellous journey together.  

I was rereading some newspaper articles about the increasing prevalence of mental health in children and young people.  In one article the graphic that went along with it showed a picture of prescribed pills.

I am no longer a child but, being under 25, I am still technically classed as a young person.  As such, I feel both sad and frustrated at the myriad of reports that seem to consistently give advice from mental health professionals that ignore the issue of nutrition as part of the solution.

If, as parents say here, that children in mental health hospitals are not improving, why don’t we make a focus on what they are putting into their bodies?

When I was younger I had, like many young girls, body confidence issues to the point that I was much too thin and dangerously low in body weight. Mum suggested that I focus not on calories but on nutrition.  She made it acceptable for me to eat very little, but what I did eat had to be fully nutritious.

On that basis I was freed of calorie counting and could stuff myself with the nourishment that I needed for my body and importantly my brain to function well.  Over a short while I began to make better choices because – I slept better, thought better and I had loads more energy.

I am not a mental health professional but surely we should focus on the evidence and collaboration in research that what we eat significantly affects how we think?

Read more on Mum’s blog, this week she is talking about how to put nutrient eating into practice!

Another happy week…

What a great week. The baby is kicking, my grandma called to see how I was doing with my pregnancy and I’m off to see mum in Spain soon with Lithy. Overall, though, I feel I’m bursting with health. Okay, yeah, the hormones get to me sometimes and I get a wee bit weepy, but “happy” weepy!

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I was thinking about an article I remember reading a couple of years ago. It recounted how so called “vegan” parents were charged with abuse because their child was admitted to hospital with a degenerative bone disease which was attributed to the “vegan” diet she had been fed from birth.

Now, I don’t doubt that the physicians were right with their diagnosis – who am I to argue against the medical establishment?  However, my view and practice of living a “vegan” lifestyle is synonymous to me with good health and happiness.

My diet is based around my increasing knowledge of the importance of the range of nutrients that I need to consume to ensure that I maintain optimum health for both myself and the baby.

And my approach to activity is the same.  Sure, I can train for a marathon from time to time and that is a great mental and physical challenge (admittedly not everyone’s cup of tea). On a day to day basis, though, I practice a sustainable level of exercise.  I build it into my daily living. For example, instead of driving or using public transport  walk to work and walk to the shops, carrying my shopping home.  For some folk that would be enough, others might like to add in some yoga or swimming.

Returning to the “abusive” parents above. Surely it is not irresponsible to bring a child up plant based, but rather it is irresponsible to feed a child badly, isn’t it?  Let me know what you think….

Mum has started a new blog check it out here 

This week she is talking about so called “non treat” days.

 

Big Announcement…

It has been a wee while since I last posted.  And I have great news that has preoccupied me for the past 15 weeks!

I am going to have a baby, due early August.  I am so excited, have been pretty unwell with morning sickness but that seems to have passed and now I am totally energized and raring to go.

It’s the happiest news ever for my husband and myself and delighted to share with all our friends.

My focus as you can imagine is to ensure that I keep well and active, full of nutrients and enjoy this fabulous experience.

Vegan pregnancy and vegan babies – YES!  And so far no one has mentioned my diet in a negative way – so I think the message is really getting out there – you don’t need meat or dairy in your diet and you need to keep a really good hold on healthy foods.

In the past weeks, when I have felt pretty nauseous, I have been really reliant on green smoothies and lots of fruit – very luckily it just seems to be what I crave!

I will keep you posted with my on going baby news!

Why do you eat meat?

We vegan’s get a lot of flack from meat eaters who claim that we are pushy and judgemental.

Well, to be honest I am a bit pushy about promoting animal welfare, the consequences of poor diet and of course what we are doing to our environment.  And yes I am a little judgemental about the general lack of care and bad behaviour by those around me who don’t care about these things.   

So what, I am human as well as vegan and I am allowed to feel frustrated and sometimes downright angry over issues that are seriously close to my heart!

But here’s the rub.  I don’t spend all that much time carping on at folk to change their behaviours as I don’t think it a particularly effective way to encourage change.  BUT,  I am constantly asked curious questions about veganism and very often I am on the receiving end of accusations, head shakes and claims that my diet is unhealthy!  I have noticed that many of  my accusers are generally overweight and inactive people!  

Here are a selection of the more “nicely put” questions.

  • “Why are you vegan?”
  • “Where do you get your protein?”
  • “Do you think your diet has something to do with you getting the common cold?”
  • “But bacon!”
  • “You can’t be fit and healthy on a vegan diet”
  • “Being Vegan doesn’t make you better than me”

Considering that all these questions and oh, so many more have been answered by science and good old common sense I won’t dwell on them for too long.  

First of all I am vegan because I don’t  want to be involved in the unnecessary suffering of my fellow creatures.

 

I get my protein from a whole range of sustainable and healthier sources than a meat eater that includes: beans, lentils, vegetables, nuts and seeds.  

Being vegan does not make me more susceptible to illness.  However just as with meat eaters, vegans, vegetarian or paleo, not eating well, doing little exercise and generally not looking after oneself will very possibly make you more susceptible to illness.  

Bacon – well if you are really reduced to continuing to eat a meat filled diet because you like the taste of bacon then perhaps you should seek some help – you are literally the reason for the unnecessary torture of pigs – sentient animals with more intelligence than cats, dogs and some children.  

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Here’s me and my Vegan Mum-Multiple half marathon and full marathon runners!

For the fit and healthy thing – not only do I maintain a healthy fit body,  I run long distances up to marathons, workout 5-6 times a week and eat a well balanced diet full of deliciously, colourful greenness.  

Finally, I am one of three siblings raised as vegetarian and we have all became vegan in recent years – we are all tall, fit and strong.   

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Here’s me and my little sister- super healthy and super strong!

Am I a better citizen, well yes I am!  As a vegan I have a reduced carbon footprint, my good health will overall reduce my NHS bill and I am not responsible for the slaughter of sentient beings.

Now, tell me – Why are you not vegan?

  • Does the increasing threat to our planet not concern your conscious?
  • Are you happy to be the reason animals suffer?
  • Are you really ignorant of your increased risk of heart problems, cancers, diabetes and  immunity to antibiotics?
  • Does bacon taste that good? If human flesh was so tasty would you eat that too?

So, before you ask a vegan why they have chosen an ETHICAL lifestyle, please stop and ask yourself why you have not.

The team at Falda_Eats