I love the Hozier song Take Me to Church, there is a line in this song that says “I’m a Pagan of the good time”. When I heard it, I thought, ME TOO! I am definitely a Pagan of the good time! Yep, I love a good party and celebration. I wanted to be a singer when I was younger and I swear my inner rock star regularly comes out! I will be the one that wants to stay out late and keep going at the end of the night and the one that dances too much at the party. Have you seen that video going around the internet of the girl in a red dress at a wedding dancing crazy? Well, that is totally me! The dichotomy I have with my rock star self is that, as you would know, I am also a professional Nutritionist! These two parts of me don’t always see eye to eye on life and what is best for me. My rock star meets my Green Smoothie Goddess and says BORING! My parents loved a good party or get together too, I was raised on them so I guess it is in my DNA.
So, I make it my life’s work to bring these two aspects of myself into some sort of alignment and balance, and then I try to teach that to my patients. What I learn, they learn. I am not the Nutritionist to see if you are looking for perfection. No, that doesn’t work for me and I prefer to be honest with people and real about who I am. I drink some wine, eat chocolate and sometimes even chips and pasta (wowsers, am I going to Nutritionist hell?)! But ALL the time I add extra vegetables, drink green smoothies and juices, fast and try to balance it all out. And if I notice my health is altering or symptoms are popping up that are out of the ordinary I address these through diet, supplementation and other healing modalities. Does my rock star self get in the way of me knowing how to heal your gut, enhance your immune system, help your anxiety, identify nutritional deficiencies or help with your fatigue? Hell no!
So if you are looking for a way to improve your health and wellness from someone who gets the pull to enjoy life! I’m for you! I focus on progress not perfection.
After the Easter weekend I totally need to rein things in as it got a little too crazy up in here! So I am fasting and detoxing and shaming my rock star self and feeling like I filled my cup and completely happy at the same time! Why over joyed with happiness? Because I had fun with my family and that is the best thing for me! What I have realised so far in my quest for balance and whole hearted living is if I don’t let my party self out to play she will roar out with a vengeance. And that’s when shit gets a little crazy. For me, this looks like too much mundane living, doing too much mothering and wifing and not enough for me and not having enough fun! If I include having fun as a priority, like dancing, going to the beach, going out to dinner with friends & being a little crazy in my every day, I can see things stay within balance. We all need to be real and human however that looks for us, some people are the masters of balance and others are learning and in the end it’s all fucking good!
Love Cassandra x
PS. Go on and dance like no one is watching and see how good it really feels! Increase your endorphins and gain more energy from fun and laughter.
1-2 handfuls of greens (spinach, kale, chard, lettuce) 250mls coconut water or filtered water Fruit of choice(frozen banana, berries or mango are delicious) 2 tsp chia seeds 1-2tsp Flaxseed Oil or Hemp Oil 1 tsp Turmeric (if too much for taste add 1/2) 1/2 tsp Cinnamon 1 handful of cashew nuts or 1 tsp nut butter Protein powder (optional) clean proteins only no mass building ones! Blend and serve!
Green Smoothie Options and Flavours are endless! What makes a green smoothie? The green leafy vegetables of course!
1/2 Cup Chia Seeds 2 Cups Coconut/Almond or Milk alternative 1-2 Tablespoons of Maple syrup or Honey Berries or Fruit of choice Cinnamon or vanilla or spice to taste Mix all ingredients together in a bowl & let stand for 10 minutes! Viola a simple, yummy breakfast or snack or dessert! The flavour options are endless! I love using 1-2 tablespoons of Cacao or Dutch Coco to make a yummy chocolate pudding. Just use in replace of other spice. Mint also goes really well with these puddings. And they make a fabulous on-the-go breakfast or snack option!
Celery Carrot Leafy green of choice Beetroot Red apple ½ Kiwi ½
Juice all ingredients and add filtered water if desired. Juices are great as snacks
Rainbow salad is just a salad that has various vegetables in it including various colours.
Examples – Beetroot ferment, sweet potato, avocado, cashew nuts, boiled eggs, spinach, grated carrot, red capsicum with tahini dressing.
Make sure salads have oil added such as olive or flaxseed, it is a good way of increasing good fats.
Add nuts and seeds to salads.
Always need protein such as eggs, chicken, fish, beans or leftovers.
Make them tasty; Instagram, Pinterst and Google have endless options & ideas!
1-2 tablespoons (or to taste) Tahini (sesame seed paste)
Large squeeze lemon
Mix paste, lemon and garlic pour in hot water and mix until combined and forms a sauce consistency. Great for meats such as turkey or chicken or over veggies.
Blend olive oil, pine nuts, macadamia’s or cashews, basil, kale & spinach with garlic and lemon juice.
Almond or other nut butter, coconut cream or coconut milk, garlic, lemon and turmeric use as marinade or sauce.
1 chicken carcass (organic free range) 2-3L filtered water 2-3 cloves of garlic 1 teaspoon ginger 2 teaspoons Turmeric 2 tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar Herbs of choice (thyme, bay leaves, etc) Any vegetables in fridge (carrot, leeks, broccoli, celery etc)
Place everything in a slow cooker and leave to cook (on low) overnight or all day (minimum 6 hours). Use your Broth as a stock in soups or other recipes requiring stock.
2tbs Cold pressed Olive Oil
1 Brown or red onion
2-3 cloves garlic crushed
3-4 stems of kale leaves (stalks removed)
1 cup of beans of choice (white, red, balck eyed)
½ cup frozen peas
½ cup red cabbage
½ red capsicum
1 can tinned organic tomatoes
1-2 tsp oregano
1-2 tsp basil
1 tsp Turmeric
1-2 tsp paprika
1 tbls fresh parsley
Squeeze of half a lemon
5 cups chicken bone broth
Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic. Cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Add, carrot, zucchini, capsicum, oregano, paprika, basil, turmeric. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes. Add tomatoes with lemon juice and stock. Cover. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover. Simmer for 30mins, skimming surface occasionally to remove scum. Add cabbage & kale. Partially cover. Simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in peas, beans and parsley. Simmer for 5 minutes or until peas are cooked. Season with salt and pepper. Serve with cooked Quinoa (cook according to packet instructions).
This is a Jamie Oliver recipe here is the link
I use chicken bone broth as my stock, I don’t use chilli or nutmeg and I use whatever beans/lentils I have in the cupboard. I serve mine with zucchini noodles, cauliflower rice or over spinach. I serve my children’s with rice.
2-3 Tablespoon ABC Spread Nut Butter (to taste)
1 can organic coconut cream
2 tablespoons tamari
2 garlic cloves (crushed)
1 tsp ginger
1 tbs raw honey
1 tsp turmeric
Squeeze ½ lemon
1 Bok Choy or handful of spinach or kale
1 cup chickpeas (organic canned or precooked from dried)
In a saucepan over medium heat, stir & heat the garlic, ginger, turmeric, nut butter. Add lemon, coconut cream, tamari and honey. Stir or whisk over heat until sauce looks relatively smooth. Once slightly simmering add all vegetables and cook until just soft. Serve with brown or red rice, cauliflower rice or zucchini noodles.
NB/ for my children I serve with rice or rice noodles
1 whole chicken (organic/free range if possible)
1 Lemons (cut into quarters)
3 cloves garlic
Mexican Spice Rub (see recipe below)
Place whole chicken in slow cooker, drizzle with olive oil & squeeze of lemon, rub with Mexican Spice Rub, place lemon and garlic in cavity. Cook on low overnight or on high for minimum 6 hours. Shred chicken and stir through sauce and extra spice mix. Serve with rainbow salad, guacamole, fermented vege and Paleo wraps (brought or homemade).
1 teaspoon chili powder (add more if you like)
1 teaspoon garlic powder.
1 teaspoon onion powder (or 2 teaspoons crushed dried fried onions)
2 teaspoon dried oregano.
2 teaspoons paprika.
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
2 teaspoons ground cumin.
Season with salt and pepper
Mix all herbs & spices in a bowl, store in an airtight container, use for to rub over chicken, fish or meats and add to tomato based sauces for Mexican flavoured dishes,
1 tablespoon tomato paste 1/2 teaspoon cumin 1 can (approx.400g) organic tomatoes or ¾ jar Organic Passata Sauce 2 tablespoons rice malt syrup 1 tablespoon cider vinegar 1 tablespoon honey (optional) 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard A few dashes Tabasco (optional) Freshly ground pepper & salt (pink or sea salt)
In a saucepan over low heat mix the tomato paste and cumin. Add the tinned tomatoes or Passata Sauce and all remaining ingredients. Stir until combined and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes, until thickened to your liking. Taste and adjust salt, pepper, or other seasonings as you see fit.
This sauce will keep refrigerated for about 2 weeks or can be frozen for up to 3 months.
Green – spinach, lettuce, kale, watercress, broccoli, rocket, zucchini, beans, kiwi fruit, avocado, nori seaweed, grapes, green capsicum.
Red and Pink – watermelon, strawberries, tomato, pomegranate, red capsicum, raspberries, chilies, red apples.
Yellow and Orange – carrots, yellow capsicum, sweet potato, oranges, mango, yellow nectarines
Blue and Purple – blueberries, blackberries, beetroot, purple carrots, purple potato, red cabbage, purple grapes, fresh figs, kidney beans, red rice.
Black – black rice, black beans
White – garlic, onion, potato, mushrooms, white beans
I have just come back from 12 days in New Zealand and I am lucky enough to be going away again in 2 weeks to Bali for another mini break. I don’t normally jet set this much but we are squeezing in an extra trip before my littlest turns 2 and we have to start paying full fare! So whilst I was in New Zealand I over indulged as I do on holidays, and I know I will do the same in Bali. I must say I love it! I love just chilling out with everything, my food included. I still exercise and move my body and I am conscious of what I am eating but I certainly relax with everything and consume a little too much wine, if I am honest :).
As I only have a week and a bit before I leave again I want to give my body a boost and pump it full of as many nutrients as I can over this next week. I want to give it a break from certain foods and over digesting and give it some extra love and fuel. I am calling this my Nourishment Week, I normally eat 80:20 sometimes 90:10 depending on what I am working on. And I don’t believe we need to be perfect all the time, however when I have overindulged I always try to give back to my body a little. Some people may call this a detox but I prefer to use the word Nourishment so it doesn’t feel like I am depriving myself of anything, I am doing the opposite, I am filling up my reserves.
Nourishment Week is about pumping up the nutrients and really giving your body some extra nutrition to help it function at its best! It will kick off Monday and end Sunday and my hope is that you get some inspiration and ideas of meals and “add in’s” that you can KEEP in your diet even when you stop Nourishment Week. If it is too much for you to do the whole week, no worries, maybe you will just follow a couple of the meals or keep the information for a later date. It is flexible and you work with what you can. You may also decide that you can do Nourishment week for longer than a week, maybe 2 or 3 and that is completely safe too.
For this one week (I would normally do between 1 & 4 weeks but I only have time for 1) I am not 80:20 I am 100%. I like to pump up the nutrients whenever I can but this week I am paying particularly strict attention to each meal to g
et the most out of it and adding in whatever I can to improve the nutrition. I am also removing a few things that I know my body could do with a break from. You may find you just get a couple of hints and tips out of it that you can then implement into your normal diet everyday to pump up the nutrients all the time and that would be amazing as we
Please Note/ The below meal plan is a suggested only for healthy individuals, it is not recommended for pregnant or lactating women, children or people in altered health states.
Hints & Tips
Recipes and Shopping List coming! x
I am the biggest fan of Dr Brene’ Brown, her books and work are my ethos and my long term dream is to qualify as a coach in her work (I am working on it!). Dr Brown is a researcher of shame and vulnerability and she has written 3 books (google her if you want more information). One of her biggest messages to the world is that vulnerability is courageous and leads us to connection. So in the spirit of vulnerability and courage I will share a story with you;
I occasionally get floored by a feeling of immense vulnerability, it may be similar to anxiety but I don’t fully know as I have never had an anxiety attack as such so don’t like to label it as that. It feels like butterflies in my stomach and that I’m walking around with my heart on the outside of my body and people could poke it. When this feeling happens I feel unsafe and like a child in an adult’s body.
I probably have always had this feeling on and off my whole life, coming and going in various capacities. It rears up particularly when I am living outside of my comfort zone and putting myself out there in the world more often, (Dr Brown refers to it as “living in the arena”) this is mostly with my work. Since I have made the decision to get back on the horse and ride on into the arena of life and start living my dreams professionally this feeling has been popping up more often. As it is an unsafe kind of feeling I know it also started to appear more often after both my parents passed away as they were my safety net in the world. When I used to fall into this feeling of being a child and vulnerable I could still be parented by my parents, so since they have left this earth I have had to learn to address this myself. If there was any gift in both my parents passing away (it’s very hard to find a gift in both your parents passing away from cancer) it was that I had to learn to have my own back and be my own parent, I could no longer run to the familiar safety of them and in this I learnt a strength I would not have otherwise known, I would have preferred to learn that lesson in another way but that’s not how my life turned out.
Anyway, when this feeling pops up I know exercise helps, ensuring I am taking my supplements & eating healthy food helps (as there is always a biochemical link) and leaning into my family and very close friends helps, it also helps to be very careful about who I expose myself to when I am feeling like this. However, recently when this familiar vulnerability came up and seeming to last a few days I decided to surrendered to it, I had a ‘me day’ and lay on the couch. I tuned out of the world to tune into myself! I just sat with the feeling and accepted that I need to learn how to manage this so I can continue to live in the arena. After a few hours it had shifted and by the next day I was ready to face the world again. I had to feel the feeling; I had to dive into it, allow it and let it have a voice so I could feel functional again and move forward. That is very new for me and very rare in our society to sit and just be without trying to change it.
In our fast paced world we are being steered away from feeling our feelings, encouraged to strategize them out, rise above them and not to show them in our Facebook perfect lives. Where does connection lie in that? Where connection lye with ourselves in that world and if we cannot connect with ourselves it can be hard to connect properly with others. What we resist persists, so I am encouraging people to feel their feelings, all of them, even when it’s unpleasant. They will change and you will change and if you don’t they will only get stuffed on down waiting to rear up at a later date in a more dramatic way.
I know it won’t be the last time I feel this feeling of immense vulnerability/anxiety but next time I will know that perhaps I need to surrender and take some time out from the world and recharge. My hope is that we can all live “in The Arena” and all learn to feel what we need to feel and learn what we need to learn.
If you have any concerns about your health or want some support please contact me.
“What’s the point of working as hard as you do to grow your business if you can’t reap the benefits of a quality lifestyle in the future”. It’s important to prioritise & care for yourself so you have enough energy and vitality to enjoy life.
A lot of minor health complaints can be alleviated from simply drinking more water. Majority of the population are dehydrated. Coffee and Tea is not included- caffeine actually dehydrates.
Eat as close to nature as possible and eating more fruit and vegetables will ensure you are receiving adequate amounts of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals as well as the innate life force within these foods. Without these essential nutrients the body ages & breaks down faster!
Poor posture puts stress on the body & nervous system & increases the risk of degenerative arthritis & poor health. Make the conscious choice to move more, take the stairs & get up out of your chair more throughout the day.
When we are grateful or giving thanks for things in our life, no matter how small, we are in a happier/ more positive frame of mind. It is amazing how much more motivated and full of energy we can be when we are in this state of mind. Say thank you for as many things as you can think of every day & observe your improved emotional wellbeing!