Monthly Archives: March 2015

Attune to Autumn

As summer is waning the crispness of autumn is arriving. We may start to notice imbalances in our systems triggered by autumn weather. Most common, is a vata imbalance in the respiratory system. Vata is the ayurvedic dosha made up of air and ether elements. Vata is predominately cold, dry and light, the same qualities as autumn. Think about the qualities of autumn leaves, light, dry and crackling. In ayurveda ‘like’ increases ‘like’ so if the environment is cooler, dry and lighter our mind and body will start to feel the same.

Fortunately ayurveda provides plenty of tools to help us to attune to each season. Following are some tips for autumn.

Diet
Add more warm nourishing meals to your diet. Spice up your food with herbs that are warm, sweet and nutritive. Autumn is a good time to use fennel, garlic, cumin, coriander, curry leaves and black pepper in cooking and home remedies. It is a good time to swap raw desserts and food for warmer meals especially in the evening. See my Spicy Apples and Coconut Cream recipe.

Lifestyle
Exercise that generates heat helps to pacify vata(wind and ether elements), it also helps to do more grounding and fluid styles of exercise rather than pushing too hard with anything too vigorous or stressful. When you are busy and rushing vata is easily aggravated as the weather is also in transition. This may show up as feeling scattered, spacious or anxious. Routine is great to help counteract this as it helps you feel grounded, it maybe routine in your exercise a morning routine or a structure to your day and week. Meditation, sleep and rest are all wonderful and helpful to calm the wind and ether elements in […]

Baked Spicy Apples with Coconut Cream

As Autumn marks the transition from summer to winter, it is the perfect time for my baked spicy apples with coconut cream. They are also delicious with regular cream! The perfect food as the nights become cooler.

Ingredients
5 or 6 Apples peeled and cored, I like to use Granny Smith
Spicy mix
1 Tbs chopped almonds
1 Tbs currants
1 Tbs chopped pumpkin seeds
½ Tbs sunflower seeds
2 tsp goji berries
2 Tbs of ghee or butter (room temperature so it’s soft for mixing)
1 tsp Chinese five spice
1 tsp cinnamon
1 Tbs coconut sugar
Coconut cream
Remove all the cream from the top of a tin of coconut milk; you can reserve the liquid for a smoothie. Whisk the cream and add some vanilla extract (optional). If you prefer not to use a can of coconut milk you could also use fresh coconut and a high-speed blender if you have them.
Directions
Preheat oven to 150 degrees. Place peeled and cored apples in a baking dish. Add all ingredients of spicy mix in a bowl and combine. Fill the apples with spicy mix. Bake in oven for 1 hour. Remove and serve with coconut cream.

enjoy!
Justine
x

Eat your Weeds

In my Revive + Thrive yoga health-coaching group, we are working on introducing more plants to the diet.

We are looking at the energetic benefits that each part of the plant provides, for example root vegetables like potatoes, kumara and pumpkin provide comfort, grounding and nourishment while the leaves and flower add lightness and space to the body.

A great way to introduce a wider variety of plants into the diet as well as adding more nutrients is to go wild and add weeds to your meals.

Dandelion is one of the most iconic weeds. Dandelion is high in iron, calcium, vitamins A, B6, E and K, thiamin, antioxidants and beta-and alpha-carotene. Dandelion tea is known to be great for the liver and did you also know; if you add a dandelion leaf to your red wine an hour before you drink it, the toxic effects on the liver are reduced. Other weeds like thistle and stinging nettle are packed with vitamin C and calcium and are great for the skin.

Green leafy veggies have the highest nutrient per calorie ration of any food and weeds naturally growing in our ecosystem are 2-3 times more nutrient dense than anything we can grow. This is because weeds have to struggle to survive, think of the weeds growing up between cracks in the concrete. This builds up resilience in the weed and increases the nutritional value of the plant. As opposed to a cultivated crop in a field that is protected from bugs where they don’t need to struggle to grow. I also think it makes them taste better.

Urban living doesn’t give much opportunity for foraging for wild weeds, (they could be sprayed by local councils) but there is opportunity […]