Food, Uncategorized

Healthy Chocolate Ice cream in 2 minutes

If any mom realises a chocolate ice cream can be made at home within 2 minutes with just 4 healthy ingredients, she would definitely not let her child have a store-bought ice cream. Store bought ice creams are not just sugar laden, but also in additives such as artificial colours, flavours and preservatives which are known to cause health problems not just limited to obesity, ADHD, behavioural issues and cancer .

This recipe serves 3 and uses just 4 ingredients , more can be added according to your family’s tastebuds. The main ingredient avocado is nutrient dense and contains good fats . It is also rich in vitamin A, E, K, B6 , C , Folate and Magnesium.

Ingredients

  • 2 avocados/butter fruit
  • 250-300 ml chilled whole milk ( Raw milk is the best option)
  • Organic cacao powder( yes, cacao and not cocoa. more details on this at the end)
  • 4-5 tbsp of unrefined cane sugar or date syrup
  • Almonds, Cashews and Pistachios( Optional)
  • Cardamom Powder (optional)

Method

  • Cut avocados vertically into two halves. Remove the seed and scoop the flesh with a spoon.
  • Transfer all ingredients except the nuts to a blender , Blend it for 30-45 sec. ( Can be even mashed with hand and mixed in a vessel if you wish to skip using the blender)

Tada… The easiest and healthiest chocolate ice cream you can ever imagine is ready.

IMG-20170611-WA0011

Transfer the mixture into a bowl and serve at room temperature or chilled.

If you are adding nuts, add it at the end and blend once. This will add a crunch factor to the ice cream.

If you find the mixture too thick, add little more milk and blend again. If it is too dark or bitter for your taste, add a little more sugar or date syrup.

 

What’s the difference between cacao and cocoa powder?

Cacao is the unprocessed, powdered cacao beans. Rich in Copper, Selenium, Iron, Magnesium, Manganese, Zinc, Vitamins and antioxidants.

Cocoa is cacao processed at a higher temperature and with alkali and usually had added sugar. This changes its nutrients, and structure at the molecular level and doesn’t offer much health benefits. While you read about dark chocolate being good for heart, it’s the cacao that is actually meant. However, when it reaches the magazines and newspapers, it is modified to be read as chocolate. Forget about chocolate (dark/milk) you eat being heart protective, the way it is processed will just clog your arteries.

How about the chocolate milk that we give kids? Be it boost, bournvita , nesquik or milo; it is highly processed, loaded with sugar, salt , synthetic vitamins and chemicals which will harm kid’s health.

Read more about hidden sugar in processed foods here.

If you want to give milk to your child by altering the taste, try cacao powder, or home-made dry fruit powder like almonds with cardamom or fennel seeds. They are wholesome, nutritious, delicious and give the real energy boost.

If they don’t like milk, just chill. Milk is not the only source of calcium/protein in this world.

If you liked  this recipe, share it with your friends too.

Interested in sustainable weight loss through lifestyle changes and not crash diets? Check out our programs.

Food, Uncategorized

Dill Leaf – The Winter Green

 

Dill is a green leaf that is known for its health benefits. It is available easily in Indian, American and other markets too. The other names include Sabbasige soppu /Chatakuppa/ Soa-Kura  and Soa

Why should you include it ?

Dill leaf is rich in Flavonoids, Antioxidants, Folate, Vitamin A, Calcium , Manganese, Iron, Magnesium, Potassium, Phosphorus and Fiber.
Gives the warmth and immunity you need for the harsh and dry winter. It is also a natural aphrodisiac.

What are the other winter foods you should include in your diet? Watch my video on Winter Diet .

Who should include it ?

  • If you have painful and irregular periods, PCOS – Helps in regulating the menstrual flow.
  • If you are nearing menopause – Strengthens bones and regulates hormones.
  • If you feel bloated, constipated or gassy often -Cleanses and deworms your digestive system, improves your digestive juice secretion.
  • If you are a lactating mom – The age-old tradition of giving new moms this herb is still prevalent to improve lactation and to strengthen bones.
  • If you have bad breath or mouth ulcers – Chew on its seeds.
  • If your little one is crying due to colic – Boil water with a few sprigs of dill and give them to drink.
  • If you feel depressed or struggle to sleep – Include it in your diet or drink water boiled with dill leaf .

How can you include it ?

  • Sprinkle on top of dosa or mix with dosa/idli batter – Easy even on a busy weekday morning.
  • Season your potato curry at the end with chopped dill leaves.
  • Mix  dill with wheat flour when you make chapathi or roti.
  • Make a concoction/tea by boiling water and adding a few leaves in it and drink it.
  • Season/Garnish hot lentil soup/Dal/Pappu with chopped dill leaves.

Make sure you use it when the leaf is fresh, else the flavour and properties diminish quickly.

 

If you found this post informative, share it with your friends too.

Interested in sustainable weight loss through lifestyle changes and not crash diets? Check out our programs.

 

Food, Uncategorized

Hidden Sugar

Consumption of sugar has increased manifolds in the last few decades. With our modern and fast paced life, our kitchen and pantry shelves are filled with packaged food more than ever before. Sugar is in the top three ingredients of most of the packaged and processed foods. Excess sugar in our diet not just spikes our body fat, but also makes us prone to obesity, diabetes, heart diseases, hormonal disorders like Thyroid & PCOS, increases insulin resistance and inflammation which further leads to arthritis, High blood pressure and other diseases. Even though we are much more health conscious than any generation that lived on the planet, the occurrence of the above listed issues has been skyrocketing.

The daily intake of added sugar recommended by WHO is less than 6 teaspoons or 25 grams of sugar a day (This doesn’t take into count the naturally sweet foods like fruits).  While, we are unlikely to hit  even 3/4th of this threshold if we eat home cooked food, just a can of soft drink is enough to make us go overboard. After all, we do not eat gulab jamuns, cakes or payasams every day.

Let us see where does the hidden sugar in our diet comes from and which are the foods that might wreak havoc in our body, without our knowledge.

  1. Breakfast cereal and Snack bars– All breakfast cereals are highly processed, devoid of nutrients and are loaded with sugar, salt, cheap oil, and other additives. They spike the sugar levels right at the start of the day.
Special K
Special for the amount of sugar and price.

What is so special about the ‘Special’ cereals endorsed by actresses who look super fit? Their sugar levels and price are higher than the regular varieties.

 

cheerios
The several names of sugar in the same cereal
snack bars
Way too many sweetners

For those of you who are wondering what is high fructose corn syrup, it’s a cheap sweetener which is genetically modified and has several health implications

Alternative – Flattened Rice flakes/avil/poha, puffed amaranth/millets

  1. Soft drink/bottled juices – Soft drinks are nothing but a mixture of carbonated water, sugar/high fructose corn syrup and cancer causing additives like artificial colours and flavours. Just 350 ml (12OZ) of any soft drink will make you go over and above the 25 gm sugar limit.
    coke
    A can of coke has sugar way more than your day’s limit.

    This does not mean fruit juices have all the goodness of fruits, (even though some tag lines suggest it). Most fruit juices are water, sugar and added colours with fruit concentrate and flavour .

    juiceHow about the 100% fruit juice? Fruits and vegetables get oxidised easily when exposed to air, meaning the nutrients vanish in the air. Since they don’t have any amount of fibre, they spike the sugar levels too. This does not happen when you consume the whole fruit. Read more about juices and smoothies here.

Alternative – Freshly squeezed lemon juice, coconut water and plain water can quench thirst &  hydrate, and fresh fruit for a sweet tooth fix without piling on the pounds.

  1. Ketchup,jams, dressing, spreads – If dosa, idli or chapathi has to packed in lunch, most kids demand and most moms yield to squeezing jams or ketchup into the box . ketchup, jams and dressings are not just sugar laden but also filled with additives such as artificial flavours and colours that are known to be harmful to brain and cause ADHD.
    ketchup
    Ketchup , HFCS is the third main ingredient
    jam
    Sugar is the highest ingredient in any jam

    Most of us consume more empty calories from the ketchup we use as a ‘Side’ for the pizza, than the pizza itself.

Alternative – Home made chutneys and powders, filled with goodness of protein, fibre and love. Real Italian pizzas are neither loaded with cheese, nor served with ketchup .

  1. Bread, biscuits/cookies – Even the best protein biscuit has 29.8 gm of sugar for every 30 gm of protein, for which we pay a very high amount.
    threptin
    29.8 gms of sugar for 30 gm of protein, for every 100 gm.  Good for diabetics to stay diabetic lifelong.

     

     

    fibre one


    Need less to say all other digestive and cream biscuits have similar list, labels and numbers for sugar. As grown ups, if we decide to switch to the low fat chips/cookies, we are heading for even more trouble as those foods contain more sugar than the regular ones.

     

    Bread is a convenient food, not a healthy one. Watch my video about the healthiest bread.

    bread
    That’s the label of a whole wheat bread

Alternative –  Chapathis/rotis, Home made snacks, even if deep fried will not have the additives and sugar and are healthier and fresh than store-bought packaged ones. Home made phulkas or rotis have only three ingredients – flour , water and a pinch of salt.

  1. Fruit Snacks and flavoured yogurt – Snack bars , fruit bars , fruit snacks and so are the names. All they have is high fructose corn syrup, sugar, artificial colours & flavours and so on.
    fruit snack
    Corn syrup, Sugar , synthetic colours, flavours and so on

    fruitsnack
    Why buy a flavoured yogurt which is sugar laden and has artificial flavour ?

    yogurt
    Just a cup has more sugar than your daily limit- 26 grams

Alternative –  Plain home-made yogurt and fresh whole  fruits instead of processed and packaged ones.

I can hear most moms cribbing that my child/family  wont have food without flavour or the sweetness. Well, that’s because their taste buds and brain are tricked to like these flavours with the additives in these packaged food. Moms know Miracles don’t happen overnight, especially in case of kids. Constant , steady changes and educating the family about food and nutrients will help them to make better choices even if they are alone.

And for grown ups like us, lets learn to understand what is real food and what it does to body. Priority matters.

If you found this post informative, share it with your friends too.

Interested in sustainable weight loss through lifestyle changes and not crash diets? Check out our programs.