This is one of the best salad plates you'll ever have to learn. Simply, because you don't really have to learn anything at all. So long as you have some fresh produce around, then you'll be able to throw something like this together any evening. I have however, for ease and education, given this recipe as a foundation to create amazing summer salads for lazy evenings, or for when you need to impress friends with limited time.  The key is to always have a few staples on hand. I always have a jar of tahini in the pantry, a good quality cold-pressed oil like hemp, avocado or organic olive, and a range of nuts, seeds and ancient grains in the pantry. From there all you need is seasonal produce which can vary widely to suit all your tastes, and then optional haloumi, meat of your choice or salmon to add some protein. To keep this vegan, simply add some nutritional yeast and an extra serving of mixed nuts and seeds or throw home made falafel together to serve.  Salad plate (recipe serves 4) You are welcome to create this on each plate by spreading the ingredients evenly across 4 plates,...

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Why bother with juice? In a nutshell, to remove processed food from our diet while nourishing it with vegetables and fruit! Our body is a complicated machine and like any other working machine, there are some things we need to do to make sure it is at its optimum. We clean our windows so they don't rot the frames, change the oil so the engine doesn't stall, and shut our browsers down when the computer gets too slow, yet we ignore poor sleep quality, gut upsets, low energy, weight gain and bad skin on almost a daily basis. We assault our bodies daily with exposure to pollution, stress, plastics, medications, chemicals and pesticides in both our food and our environment. On top of this, we have a love affair with too much sugar, too much alcohol, too much caffeine, and way too much processed 'food'. So can eliminating processed foods help with these symptoms? Google 'effects of processed foods on your health' and you will find literally hundreds of pages of information with regards to the risks involved with artificial fillers, additives and preservatives and the short and long term effects these have on your health. So how can even a short break from such processed food...

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Highly processed breads are being avoided by more and more people and for great reason. Being so heavily refined, and with almost zero health benefits, people are making the choice to use more nutrient dense whole foods in their lifestyle instead, and reaping the benefits of nourishing fats, quality plant protein and tasty options.  The Midnight Baker has shaken the system and has been sending her amazing loaf of seed and nut bread around Auckland and even opened her own cafe where her perfect toast is on the menu in so many stunning ways. Vegan, gluten free, refined sugar free is totally the new black.  If you are not in Auckland and have to make your own then you can find a great recipe here I created with inspiration from other seed loving nutritionists, and below I look at a sweet and savoury option you can choose to top yours with.    For the savoury lover - Miso, avocado and edemame smash with chargrilled broccoli This is undeniably one of my favourite combinations. It works perfectly at any meal of the day and you can even add your own hand-smoked bacon or a poached egg if you eat either. A great calcium source...

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Bone broth is created by the addition of apple cider vinegar to a stock and combined with plenty of time. It is fundamental to help heal and strengthen the gut and is fantastic at helping boost digestive function. If you want better skin, more energy, healthier mindset and fantastic gut health then your diet is going to be a major player.  Here we share a very simple, yet nourishing bone broth recipe. You can make this VEGAN by leaving out the animal bones, and in the final 30 minutes of simmering/cooking, adding 1/2 cup plain glutamine powder.  Organic chicken bone broth recipe You'll need 1-2 chicken frames*3-4 cups of mixed vegetables and herbs - I use ends of root vegetables, discarded carrots, old herbs, onion peels, whole garlic, celery leaves,anything left in the fridge that you wouldn't eat anymore.1 large whole lemon, chopped in halfEnough water to cover all the ingredients3 Tbl apple cider vinegarSalt, pepper and turmeric powder to taste Directions In a large pot, place the chicken bones and all other ingredients on top. Bring to the boil and allow to boil for 2-3 minutes, and then cover with the lid and simmer for 4-6 hours. If you use a crock pot...

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Eating healthy can end up being a very expensive journey of obscure health foods, failed recipes, and awful tasting plates of “oh but it’s good for you,” so how exactly do we navigate health without breaking the bank?   Firstly, the boring point is that like all good things over time, there must be some planning and effort involved to create a vibrant, energetic, and successful lifestyle on a budget BUT I promise it will be worth it if you just stick to the following tips and get back to the basics. This isn’t complicated but if you’re in desperate need of starting somewhere then this is the perfect place. It may seem contradictory to explain affordable ways to start out when we are a holistic company selling higher priced whole food, but holistic is the key word there. We want to look at everything and everyone. Some weeks you'll be able to afford plenty, and other weeks you're saving for a holiday. Cutting down on some costs at home might even give you the flexibility to relax and enjoy our products on busy weeks where you don't want to risk take-out and crashing through rubbish food. Planning Boring I know,...

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We all know how amazing a well made raw cheesecake is, but it's quite daunting to make our own sometimes. Our guest recipe this week comes from a very talented nutritionist, blogger and dietician in the making Amanda Whitford, and it is simple and fast to create.  Dairy, refined sugar and gluten free for a decadent yet healthy option to share with good friends, raw vegan desserts are in fact a great chemical free alternative to traditional cheesecakes and ice creams - especially great to share on these warmer evenings.  Base 1 cup ground almonds3/4 cup raw almonds, soaked for an hour3/4 cup dates, soaked and drained1 tablespoon cacao powder1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract Place almond meal nuts and cacao in a food processor and process until combined. Add the other ingredients and blend until the mixture forms a ball. You may need to break this up and re blend if it is not well mixed – depends how good the food processor is. Press this mix into the base of a lined loose bottomed cake tin (I only line the bottom). Filling 3.5 cups soaked raw cashews (at least 4 hours of soaking)3/4 cup cacao powder, or pure cocoa...

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Recipe for 4 2 chicken breasts*6 cups of mixed greens (I used a mesculin and microgreen mix)1/2 cup walnuts2 large avocado 2 tablespoons tahini2 tablespoons olive oil2 tablespoons black sesame seeds *I cooked a whole roast chicken and allowed it to cool. I shredded the chicken breasts and set aside for this salad while sharing the rest of the chicken with friends for a light dinner the night before. You're welcome to simply roast two chicken breasts or cook falafel for a plant-based only option.  Arrange equal portions of salad greens onto plates, and top with walnuts and shredded chicken. Mix the olive oil and tahini in a small bowl.  Slice 1/2 an avocado per plate and place onto the chicken, pouring a little dressing on each and topping with sesame seeds to garnish.  If you're taking this for a picnic simply throw all the ingredients into one large bowl, mix well and take combined. 

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We are absolutely spoiled for choice in our backyard when it comes to landscape, views and stunning walks. As the weather really starts to heat up and our long days are ending in BBQ's with friends let's make the most of the daylight and get out and about to explore this backyard of ours.  We have compiled a list of just a few of our favourite places in the North Island to adventure out to that double as exercise along with beauty. Use it as a list to complete before the end of summer or grab a couple of friends one weekend to go somewhere you haven't been yet. We always suggest taking a small cooler bag with some water, juice, fresh fruit and a couple of your favourite snacks.  Okura Track - North Auckland When my colleague Amanda and I were studying we used this track as our mental-health walk. The perfect place to escape the stressful week and escape through the native bush, past a waterfall and out to the East Coast with stunning views. We hardly ever saw more than 1 other person on the track which made it extra special, but I imagine in the weekend you'll have a few...

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The constant fear of missing out seems to attract us all into forfeiting the scientifically suggested 8 hours, for a restless 4 hour shut-eye and a double-double flat white as we meander into work 10 minutes later than yesterday. What is this doing to our health and wellbeing and how on earth can we fix it? In our bustling lifestyles, where we don’t like to miss the sunrise but struggle to put ourselves to bed at any hour we know is reasonable, and where everything in between is full of high action and intensity, how do we make the most of the sleep we allow ourselves? More importantly though, what are we doing by avoiding the pillow? If your routine has developed into something of a reliance on artificial energy, the constant feeling of being tired and the 3pm sugar binge to make it through your working day, then chances are your goodnight rest is everything but. Lack of sleep wrecks havoc on your cellular system when you don’t allow your body to shut down and rest efficiently. With the rising numbers of immunity related diseases such as cancer and coeliac disease, or just that nagging cold that won’t be...

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If you haven't got Netflix yet, then this may just give you a reason to do so. We are all about getting out and about, rather than sitting in front of even more screens, but here in Auckland - NZ, we have had some strange weather patterns (climate change is real) and so there have been some stormy nights where a good doco has been on the cards.    As much as a good Rom-Com can warm your evening up, we've been watching some astounding and eye-opening documentaries and if you need some inspiration, these are our absolute must-watch ones this year. A couple of oldies, but some new ones too. Make a healthy dinner and settle in.  In no particular order, and covering a wide-range of tastes, here are our top picks! Girl Rising - this is an insight into girls who crave education yet are not offered what many privileged western children are. We all forget how lucky we are, and this is a good reminder to quit complaining about not having the latest shoes or iPhone.  Happy- One of the best documentaries looking at who is happy, why and why not. Again, it's a great reminder that the pah to success and money you dream...

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Have you set goals that look great but you're not making the progress you thought you'd be? Sometimes it takes more than a few less potato chips and more boot camps to really start to move those unwanted kilos but what if you think you're on the right track, but something is still missing? What most people don't realise about losing weight is that it is often limited or negatively affected by exposure to toxins, gut health, processed foods, sleep quality, and most importantly stress. If you're one of those very common people who may binge one evening and then feel guilty about it for days, starving yourself to "un-do" that one night, then you're actually putting more stress on your body and doing more damage than that burger and ice cream did at the time. What is important is creating a mindset that moves away from negatives, long lists of food to avoid, and rules you'll just break. Instead you need to focus on self-love, healing, and nourishing your body from the inside out. You can't see positive changes on the outside, if you're not creating positive changes on the inside - both mentally and physically.  What are the top three common...

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I'm a firm believer that cravings are telling your body that you need something - not necessarily a particular food group or nutrient, just that there is a reason why you're craving and for the most part it will be emotive, habitual or hormonal.  If you're tired, stressed, upset, or physically drained then this is when you crave certain 'bad foods' the most. This is usually due to blood sugar instability, and the stress response that causes it to happen. For women especially, this is usually 10am or 3pm and ends in chocolate biscuit or crisp binges at their office desk. Simply put, you’ve used up a lot of energy stressing your body (physically or mentally) and now your body is craving the energy it needs to continue to function, and this is often sugar since this is the fastest and most easily absorbed energy source we can consume. This can be due to work stress, deadlines, children, traffic, physical stress (including exercise) and lack of sleep to name a few. Our body will innately crave something to help boost our energy levels, and if we can understand that this will almost always be for something sweet, then we can...

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Gut health is very importantly one of the leading areas of research in nutrition, mental health and weight management. We understand now, more than ever that the link between our gut bacteria and our mental and physical health goes hand in hand. Let's look at how we can take real notice of what our toilet habits may be telling us. When every cell in your body, every hormone and every organ relies on your gut absorbing the maximum amount of nutrients in order to function at its best... when stress, toxicity exposure, processed food, alcohol and especially medications like the pill and antibiotics compromise the ability for your gut to do its job, then you start to understand why all health starts in the gut and this is where we need to look first if you are not meeting your goals.  How do I know my gut is working how it's meant to? You should feel energised after you eat your meals, not lethargic  You should not be bloated, or have painful gas or cramps when you eat You should have two-three easy to pass bowel motions everyday. They should be solid, brown, and not awful in smell You should sleep well...

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We’ve spent the last couple of years exclaiming quite proudly, our ability to function with a lack of sleep, copious gym work outs, dancing all nighters and lack of perceived need for quality shut eye… now we are less than proudly displaying it under our eyes, in our skin, with our mood and in our bodies. If sleeplessness is catching up on you, or your body is just telling you it’s time to take it easy then here are our top tips for a good night, sans partying.1. Say ‘no’ more oftenIt’s coming up to one of the busiest seasons in our year and it is in most people’s heart to want to say yes to everything and everyone to please them. Working all day combined with late nights make us look and feel older than we should and cause cellular damage that can take a lot of repair. It is important for you to prioritise and be aware that you don’t have to say yes to everything. Learn to say no thanks, run yourself a bath, light your favourite candle, and take a break this coming weekend.2. Drink more teaHerbal teas at night do wonders for hydration and for calming the body. Replace your...

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  Our favourite foodie heaven in Melbourne You can read a top 10 favourite places to go in Melbourne written by 5 different people and you'll find it rare to have the same thing twice. That isn't because we don't all agree, it is simply because you're so spoiled for choice when you eat and drink your way through Melbourne's stunning city, beautiful botanic gardens and ultra-cool suburbs.  If you're heading there soon then Chantal wrote just a few suggestions of places to go below, and while there are so many amazing choices, here are some awesome suggestions on where to start. 1. Vegie Bar(Official Page) Brunswick St, is by far one of the best (and most affordable) vegetarian and vegan restaurants. Don't stress if there is is a waiting list, just relax in the back bar with a kombucha cocktail. 2. Drugstore Espresso on Toorak Rd gave me the best brekkie ever. Beetroot and quinoa fritters on pumpkin and cauli purée, great coffee and epic service. If you're staying in South Yarra like we were, then this can't be missed and is an easy 3 minute walk to Chapel Street. 3. Take a trip up to the slightly secret 55th floor...

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The GOOD and the BAD you should expect on your health journey. It's common to start your weight loss or feel great journey with a real bang and expect to feel amazing, to kick ass, and to look how you want to within a few weeks only. The reality is often the complete opposite, so we touch on some of the good and the bad expectations of your health journey.  A couple of important things we want everyone to understand is that health is most definitely not a box that once you're there, you'll just hang out with all the other healthy people forever, happily ever after. More realistically it is a terrain full of obstacles and hurdles that for every step closer you get to "healthy" the goals change and the direction you need to travel is different to last week.  THE BAD It's not easy.  In fact, sometimes it feels damn near impossible. Someone brought some ice cream over, and you promised yourself you wouldn't have any, but two bowls in, you're feeling awful, yet still spooning more into your mouth. It happens, but it is important to figure out to get over it.  It hurts.  Starting out is...

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We are surrounded by websites, facebook pages, groups and people who are telling us how to live our lives and be the best we can be. But, is it actually working?  Are we learning how to make sustainable changes? Are we understanding what the processes are behind why we make choices that may be negative, or are we simply learning what new fads, new beauty products and new foods are being advertised by these people and groups?  What is good and bad motivation? We love empowerment when it comes with positivity. If a simple post of a beach makes you strive to get outdoors and take a moment to yourself then in our world, this has worked in a positive and empowering way. If seeing an image of a green smoothie gives you the inspiration to go make one for your afternoon snack, then great! This is what the power of social media in health is designed for.  On the other side though, you've just seen your favourite trainer put their 4th new pair of shoes up in a single week. You feel just a little self-conscious that you've had a dental bill come in and a car fail its...

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We completely understand how miserable winter training can be when you have to battle to get out of your warm bed. We know you're often battling headaches and a constant runny nose that even a pre-school child would have trouble competing with. We also know that the idea of a pie, a burger, and a second glass of wine with your chocolate sounds better and tastier in the winter than a spinach smoothie or another kale salad. BUT we also know that once you've warmed up, exercise makes you feel better and fight illness. We know that the feeling of walking out of the gym with a post-sweat glow is much better than the feeling of regret for another endorphin hit missed. We know that hot soups, warming vegetable based slow cooker meals, and homemade cereals can be just as healthy as the colder choices you'd enjoy in the summer.We want to encourage you to feel better, stronger, fitter and more energetic this winter, than any other winter. We want you to do this by regular movement and by quality whole foods, vegetable juices and some self-love! Why it matters more to maintain regular movement and healthy eating habits in...

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We all love the sweet smell and wonderfully bitter taste of that perfect espresso mixed seductively with velvety milk, but it should be the enjoyment of the taste and association we go back for, not the requirement to function. So how do we keep our addiction in check? Caffeine itself is a stimulant that releases small amounts of adrenaline into your blood. It blocks receptors in your brain responsible for fatigue and drowsiness which can be incredibly handy when you need to be alert and focused on a task, but it is not so helpful when you are trying to sleep. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter released in your brain when you consume coffee, and it is responsible for feel good aspects in your body; often referred to as your brain’s happy-drug. It is also released when you laugh and when you exercise so if you combine good coffee with good friends, your mood can be elevated by a simple $4 cup of joy. What are the negatives?Everyone has different levels of caffeine tolerance and while some can build this up over weeks or years of increased caffeine intake, my recommendation is to keep your tolerance low. If you consume more than required; like many...

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