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Friday 30 June 2017

Alzheimer's and the benefits of low carb higher fat diet.

Yesterday Phil a reader and commenter here, sent us a link regarding some news regarding diet and Alzheimer's. The full article is here.

"The Mediterranean diet is associated with a variety of health benefits, including a lower incidence of dementia. Now, researchers have identified a specific ingredient that protects against cognitive decline: extra-virgin olive oil. In a new study, the researchers show that consumption of extra-virgin olive oil protects memory and learning ability and reduces the formation of amyloid-beta plaques and neurofibrillary tangles in the brain -- classic markers of Alzheimer's disease."

At this time there is no cure for Alzheimer's, once diagnosed it progresses at various speeds in different people. Jan's mother passed away around three years after diagnosis, a friend of our's dear wife, was in a care home for eighteen years before she succumbed. If we cannot cure Alzheimer's can we prevent this horrible disease. Can a healthier diet help? is there a healthy diet? that could give us a better chance to stay mentally fit for longer. It appears there is, some extracts from a very interesting paper.

Nutrition and Alzheimer's disease: The detrimental role of a high carbohydrate diet.

"Alzheimer's disease is a devastating disease whose recent increase in incidence rates has broad implications for rising health care costs. Huge amounts of research money are currently being invested in seeking the underlying cause, with corresponding progress in understanding the disease progression. In this paper, we highlight how an excess of dietary carbohydrates, particularly fructose, alongside a relative deficiency in dietary fats and cholesterol, may lead to the development of Alzheimer's disease. 

Recent population studies have confirmed a correlation between low blood serum cholesterol and both dementia and Parkinson's disease. A study published in 2007 compared three elderly population groups: subjects with dementia, subjects with depression, and controls. They found that those with dementia and depression had significantly lower serum cholesterol levels than the controls.Another study looking at Parkinson's disease among the elderly showed that those with the lowest LDL had 3.5 times the risk of Parkinson's disease compared to those with the highest serum LDL levels.

Simple dietary modification, towards fewer highly-processed carbohydrates and relatively more fats and cholesterol, is likely a protective measure against Alzheimer's disease."

As you would expect, our little team believes, a whole fresh food lifestyle, is the only way to go, to give a person a fighting chance to stay healthy. Unfortunately there are no guarantees in this life. The good news is, in the nine years we have been using and writing about, the low carb higher healthy natural fats lifestyle, we have never ever encountered or learned of any downsides whatsoever. The upsides have been many.


Herb-crusted cod anyone, or would you prefer ...

We actually enjoyed a very similar dish to this mid-week, and it was very tasty ... I should have taken some photographs! I know that many do see Friday as a traditional fish day, so I thought I would share this recipe suggestion. Please feel free to add green beans and/or broccoli to your plate too!

Serves Four
4 cod fillets
3tbsp cream cheese
100g (3½oz) fresh breadcrumbs
zest and juice of 1 lemon
2tbsp parsley, chopped
1tbsp chives, chopped
black pepper and salt
4 vines of cherry tomatoes
1tbsp olive oil
crisp green salad, to serve

1. Preheat the oven to gas 7, 220ºC, fan 200ºC. Lightly grease a baking sheet. Place the cod fillets and onto the prepared baking sheet.
2. Spread the cream cheese over the top of the cod fillets. In a bowl mix together the breadcrumbs, lemon zest and juice, chopped parsley and chives, and season to taste.
3. Place the cherry tomatoes on the baking sheet next to the cod. Drizzle the cod and tomatoes with the olive oil then bake for 15 minutes, or until the cod is cooked and the crust is golden.

Each serving, as per original recipe idea, is:
Carbohydrate 0.8g Protein 39.1g Fibre 0g Fat 19.2g
From an original Tesco real food recipe here

However, if you'd rather enjoy a chicken dish, this one is nice
Provençal Chicken - recipe is here

or how about a vegetarian meal, like this one
Bean and Artichoke Crown - recipe is here

Decisions, decisions ... what will you choose?

All the best Jan

Thursday 29 June 2017

Insulin resistance and cancer joining the dots.

This week on Twitter I got involved in a heated debate, the subject of the exchange was cancer. I never started the debate, and probably should have kept out of it, but a person implied, a low carb diet could be a useful tool, in the fight against cancer. This person was swiftly labelled as dangerous and spouting quackery. At one point I was accused of saying a low carb diet cures cancer, and that I run a site promoting low carb as a business. Firstly, I have never earned a penny, in any way, for working on our sites or anywhere else helping others. Secondly and most importantly, I have never ever stated anywhere, a low carb diet cures cancer or any other disease, including diabetes.

The $64000 question does a low carb diet have a role in preventing cancer? I believe it does, and here is why. Type two diabetes is a chronic disease, it's primary cause is insulin resistance. There are around 400 million diabetics in the world, approximately 90% type two, almost all type two diabetics are insulin resistant. It is estimated countless millions are pre-diabetic.

A person can be pre-diabetic and insulin resistant for up to 10 years before type two diabetes diagnosis. Some experts have said up to 15 years. The fact is, most of these people do not know they are insulin resistant, until it is too late, and they become full blown type two diabetics. Of the 90% type two diabetics, approximately 80% are overweight, many rated as obese. A point worth noting, a person can be very slim, never overweight and be a type two insulin resistant diabetic, as is Graham.

Andrei Kucharavy PhD researcher at John Hopkins, joined the debate today, and stated on twitter today, and I quote "Insulin resistance? No association with cancer shown, despite some targets down its pathway involvement in some cancers" Far for me to tell a PhD they are very wrong. Just Google insulin resistance and cancer and you will be reading scientific papers for a long time.

It is beyond all doubt, obesity raises the risk of heart disease, cancer, type two diabetes, and many other degenerative diseases. In fact Dr Richard Bernstein, Director Emeritus of the Peripheral Vascular Disease Clinic of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and world renowned diabetes expert, has stated. Highly elevated blood glucose numbers can damage every tissue in the body. Abnormally high blood glucose numbers, in type two diabetics, is brought about for almost all by insulin resistance, not a lack of insulin. In fact at diagnosis an overweight type two diabetic, can have up to 3 times the circulating blood insulin as a slim non diabetic. Taking charge of BG at diagnosis, can ensure a type two diabetic never has a need for injected insulin, in fact in some cases requires no diabetes medication at all, ever. 

Joining the dots. We know insulin resistance is the root cause of type two diabetes. The majority of type two diabetics are heavily overweight at diagnosis. We know obesity can cause a myriad of serious healthcare problems, including a higher risk of cancer. Therefore, it seems logical to me, if we can avoid becoming insulin resistant, we reduce the risk of many serious diseases. We can avoid becoming insulin resistant with a diet very low in sugar and highly processed carbohydrates. BTW carbs turn to sugar once digested.

Sounds too good to be true, many medical professionals and researchers, may say I am talking nonsense, but bear this in mind. For decades most of the medical professionals, have been recommending a high carb low fat diet to diabetics. That advice has proved to be disastrous, on an epic scale. Could it be, Doctors will be serving their patients well, by recommending a low carb diet, to ward off cancer. Only time will tell, but one thing is for sure, a low carb diet is proving to be the salvation of diabetics all over the world.

The last word to Doctor Malcolm Kendrick. Many medical professionals agree with Malcolm and are standing above the parapet of failed dogma, greed and ludicrous dietary advice. 

“The reality is that over the years, and around the world we have killed literally millions of diabetics by advising them to eat a high-carb diet and avoid fats. Only now is it being recognised that previous advice was and remains useless, dangerous and scientifically illiterate"


Apricots ... just full of summer sunshine

Apricot is a relative of the peach, nectarine, plum and cherry. Apricots are fragrant, with a soft, velvety skin that ranges from pale yellow to deep orange. Inside there's a large kernel that will fall out easily if the flesh is ripe.

Apricots need a warm climate to thrive - in the summer most come from hot European countries, and there's also a short winter season for apricots grown in Chile and South Africa.

The British apricot season is from May to September.

Choose the best:
An apricot's colour is not always a reliable guide to flavour, but steer clear of very pale varieties, and always avoid wrinkled or blemished skins. The flesh should feel moderately firm with some give.

Prepare it:
Halve by running a blade around the kernel following the line of the fruit's natural dimple, then gently twist apart and flip out the stone. Brush the cut sides with lemon juice to prevent the flesh from discolouring.

Store it:
At room temperature if not completely ripe (they'll ripen in a day or two in the fruit bowl), otherwise in the fridge.

Try peach or nectarine.

Apricots are an excellent source of vitamin A (in the form of pro-vitamin A carotenoids), and a good source of vitamin C, copper, dietary fibre and potassium. You can see an in-depth nutritional profile here

A few fresh slices of apricots with double (heavy) cream can be nice, in one apricot there is approx. 3/4g carb, see more details here

You can also serve fresh apricots in your green salad. I just like to use some apricot, goats cheese, pecans and rocket (arugula) salad leaves, but the original recipe pictured here includes a few more ingredients... 

variety of articles and recipe ideas are within this blog, not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues these must always be taken into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

All the best Jan

Wednesday 28 June 2017

Dr Rangan Chatterjee: The lifestyle changes that can cut type 2 diabetes risk

Type 2 diabetes affects approximately 3.5 million people in this country and is thought to cost the UK around £20bn per year in both direct and indirect costs.

This is a staggering amount of money spent on a condition largely caused by our lifestyle choices and environment.

On Doctor in the House, I try to help 39-year-old La-Vern. Her mother, Doreen, already has type 2 diabetes and is worried that La-Vern is going down the same route.

La-Vern is a busy, single mother who does two jobs and, as a result, is exhausted and stressed.

She has not yet crossed our diagnostic threshold where we would say she has type 2 diabetes, but her blood sugar and fasting insulin levels are not "normal" either. Her results suggested that she was on the road towards type 2 diabetes.

This is an ideal opportunity to practise true preventive medicine. Type 2 diabetes is a late event. By the time you get a diagnosis, things will have been going wrong in your body for many years.

La-Vern's symptoms of fatigue have already affected her quality of life. However, her lifestyle is not only causing her to feel unwell, but is driving her towards a type 2 diabetes diagnosis further down the line.


This is one of the big problems in medicine today - things are often said to be black or white, normal or abnormal - but what about optimal?

I am an advocate for trying to recognise problems before they happen. Why should we wait for people to get a type 2 diabetes diagnosis before we take action?

Type 2 diabetes is often viewed as a dietary illness. That is partially true as diet is a big contributor.

However, other lifestyle factors such as insufficient sleep, long-term stress, and inappropriate physical activity all contribute, as well. For many of my patients, addressing these factors can be as important as their food choices.

Most cases of type 2 diabetes are caused by a condition called insulin resistance.

Insulin is an important hormone and one of its functions is to keep your blood sugar tightly controlled. If you are in optimal health and not insulin resistant, a sugary bowl of breakfast cereal will cause your blood sugar to go up. Your body will then release a little bit of insulin to bring it back down again.

As your health deteriorates and you start to become insulin-resistant, you need more and more insulin to keep your blood sugar under control. Your body has become deaf to insulin's sound.

It is a little bit like alcohol - the very first time you have a drink, it may only take a few sips of wine to feel tipsy but as you become accustomed to drinking more and more, you need more and more alcohol to have the same effect - your body has become resistant to the effects of the alcohol.

This is similar to what happens in insulin resistance.

This raised level of insulin can itself cause many problems. And when the insulin can no longer keep your blood sugar under control - at that point, we give you a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes.

As I explained in a TED talk, there is a problem with blood sugar in type 2 diabetes, but it is not a blood sugar problem. By the time your blood sugar goes into the diabetic range, things have been going wrong in your body for many years.

The four areas of treatment I focused on with La-Vern are the same four areas I look at with almost all of my patients: food, movement, stress and sleep. Problems in these areas can all contribute to the development of insulin resistance.


The main change I made with La-Vern's diet was to cut out highly processed junk food. Because of her insulin resistance, she was unable to efficiently process foods that quickly converted to sugar in her body, so I advised her to eliminate refined carbohydrates in her diet such as sugary breakfast cereals, white rice and bread.

I encouraged her to increase her intake of healthy, natural fats such as avocados, nuts, and olives as well as healthy protein sources such as salmon and anchovies.


La-Vern had trouble sleeping and this was contributing to her exhaustion. However, sleep deprivation can also cause insulin resistance. Like many of us, La-Vern was glued to her smartphone every evening. This late-night usage can cause major sleep issues. There are two main reasons for this:

  • Light - The blue light emitted from smartphones is not seen in nature in the evening. This blue light can suppress your body's melatonin levels, a critical hormone that gets you to sleep.
  • Switching off - An inability to switch off is one of the biggest causes of sleep disruption. Staying "on" while mindlessly scrolling through social media feeds and emails is a sure-fire way to keep your mind active. This in turn can affect your sleep.

I advised La-Vern to switch off all electronic screens at least one hour before going to bed. I also gave her some amber glasses to wear in the evening to reduce the amount of blue light hitting her eyes.

These small changes had an immediate impact - her sleep improved and her energy levels increased.

3. Exercise and stress

La-Vern is a very typical case of what I see in my practice. She's extremely busy - a single mother working two jobs and highly stressed.

I explained to La-Vern how her energy reserve is a bit like a bank account - you cannot keep making withdrawals without going into overdraft.

She had very little energy reserve left with the demands of being a single mum, her two jobs and lack of sleep.

Whatever time she did have left, she spent going to the gym three times per week for an intense one-hour workout session, which left her feeling drained.

La-Vern was simply doing too much and her exercise regime was actually putting more stress on her body. This is a common problem these days - we have been conditioned to think that more exercise is always better.

I persuaded La-Vern to swap these intense workouts for yoga, a more restorative practice. This was life-changing. At the end of her yoga session, La-Vern not only felt as though she had worked out but also felt rejuvenated and energised. Plus, it was the only "switch off" time she had all week.

By addressing these four areas of health - food, movement, sleep and stress - I not only helped La-Vern feel significantly better, but, just as importantly, I've reduced her risk of following her mother down the road towards type 2 diabetes.

La-Vern is unstinting in her praise of Dr Chatterjee. She says he "saved" her life.

She adds: "[That's} a profound statement I know; however he came into our lives at such a crucial time. By sharing his knowledge he has given me, my mum and my family the tools to implement very subtle changes that have literally turned our lives around.

"As humans we take certain things for granted but do we realise how such things like stress, the food we eat and a lack of sleep, the quality of the sleep actually has such a detrimental impact on the way we think, our overall health and general well-being? Until now, I certainly did not.

"Our lack of understanding meant we were tackling aspects of our lives and health believing it was for the best when in fact we were doing more harm than good. With the benefit of hindsight, this is quite a scary concept.

"We felt truly blessed to have had the opportunity to have Dr Chatterjee in our lives. He is a very wise, caring and such a genuine person and we are so grateful to him for helping us to bring about changes that are having such a positive impact."

Too much of our focus in medicine is reactive and treatment kicks in only once you have a disease.

If there is any hope of saving our NHS, we have to be much more proactive at recognising and treating problems early on.

The future of healthcare needs to be preventive and personalised.

It's what I call progressive medicine, and there is an ever-growing need for us to practise it right now. Type 2 diabetes: a real need for preventive medicine.

For those in the UK the Doctor In The House episode is now available on BBCi Player 


Eight Health Benefits of Cauliflower

"Cauliflower is an extremely healthy vegetable that’s a significant source of nutrients. It also contains unique plant compounds that may reduce the risk of several diseases, including heart disease and cancer. Additionally, it’s weight loss friendly and incredibly easy to add to your diet.

Here are 8 science-based health benefits of cauliflower.

1. Contains Many Nutrients

The nutrition profile of cauliflower is quite impressive.
Cauliflower is very low in calories yet high in vitamins. In fact, cauliflower contains some of almost every vitamin and mineral that you need.

Here is an overview of the nutrients found in 1 cup, or 128 grams, of raw cauliflower:
Calories: 25
Fiber: 3 grams
Vitamin C: 77% of the RDI
Vitamin K: 20% of the RDI
Vitamin B6: 11% of the RDI
Folate: 14% of the RDI
Pantothenic acid: 7% of the RDI
Potassium: 9% of the RDI
Manganese: 8% of the RDI
Magnesium: 4% of the RDI
Phosphorus: 4% of the RDI

Summary: Cauliflower is an excellent source of vitamins and minerals, containing some of almost every vitamin and mineral that you need.

2. High in Fiber
Cauliflower is quite high in fiber, which is beneficial for overall health. There are 3 grams of fiber in one cup of cauliflower, which is 10% of your daily needs.
Fiber is important because it feeds the healthy bacteria in your gut that help reduce inflammation and promote digestive health.
Consuming enough fiber may help prevent digestive conditions like constipation, diverticulitis and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
Moreover, studies show that a diet high in fiber-rich vegetables like cauliflower is linked with a lower risk of several illnesses, including heart disease, cancer and diabetes.
Fiber may also play a role in obesity prevention, due to its ability to promote fullness and reduce overall calorie intake.

Summary: Cauliflower contains a high amount of fiber, which is important for digestive health and may reduce the risk of several chronic diseases.

3. Good Source of Antioxidants
Cauliflower is a great source of antioxidants, which protect your cells from harmful free radicals and inflammation. Similar to other cruciferous vegetables, cauliflower is particularly high in glucosinolates and isothiocyanates, two groups of antioxidants that have been shown to slow the growth of cancer cells.

...cauliflower contains high amounts of vitamin C, which acts as an antioxidant. It is well-known for its anti-inflammatory effects that may boost immune health and reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer.

Summary: Cauliflower provides a significant amount of antioxidants, which are beneficial for reducing inflammation and protecting against several chronic diseases.

4. May Aid in Weight Loss

Cauliflower has several properties that may help with weight loss.
First, it is low in calories with only 25 calories per cup, so you can eat a lot of it without gaining weight. It can also serve as a low-calorie substitute for high-calorie foods, such as rice and flour.
As a good source of fiber, cauliflower slows digestion and promotes feelings of fullness. This may automatically reduce the number of calories you eat throughout the day, an important factor in weight control.
High water content is another weight loss friendly aspect of cauliflower. In fact, 92% of its weight is made up of water. Consuming lots of water-dense, low-calorie foods is associated with weight loss.

Summary: Cauliflower is low in calories but high in fiber and water — all properties that may assist in weight loss.

5. High in Choline
Cauliflower is high in choline, an essential nutrient that many people are deficient in. Choline has several important functions in the body. To begin with, it plays a major role in maintaining the integrity of cell membranes, synthesizing DNA and supporting metabolism. Choline is also involved in brain development and the production of neurotransmitters that are necessary for a healthy nervous system. What’s more, it helps prevent cholesterol from accumulating in the liver.
Those who don’t consume enough choline may have a higher risk of liver and heart disease, in addition to neurological disorders like dementia and Alzheimer’s.
Not many foods contain choline. Cauliflower, along with broccoli, is one of the best plant-based sources of the nutrient.

Summary: Cauliflower is a good source of choline, a nutrient many people are lacking. It is involved in many processes in the body and works to prevent several diseases.

6. Rich in Sulforaphane
According to some studies, sulforaphane may also have the potential to stop cancer growth by destroying cells that are already damaged.
Sulforaphane appears to be most protective against colon and prostate cancer but has also been studied for its effects on many other cancers, such as breast, leukaemia, pancreatic and melanoma.
Research shows that sulforaphane may also help reduce high blood pressure and keep arteries healthy — both major factors in preventing heart disease.
While more research is necessary to determine the extent of sulforaphane’s effects in humans, its potential health benefits are promising.

Summary: Cauliflower is rich is sulforaphane, a plant compound with many beneficial effects, such as reduced risk of cancer, heart disease and diabetes.

7. Low-Carb Alternative to Grains and Legumes
Cauliflower is incredibly versatile and can be used to replace grains and legumes in your diet. Not only is this a fantastic way to increase your veggie intake, but it is also especially helpful for those who follow low carb diets. This is because cauliflower is significantly lower in carbs than grains and legumes.

For example, a cup of cauliflower contains 5 grams of carbs. At the same time, a cup of rice contains 45 grams of carbs — nine times the amount of cauliflower.

Here are some examples of recipes that can be made with cauliflower instead of grains and legumes:
Cauliflower rice: Replace white or brown rice with cauliflower that has been grated and then cooked.
Cauliflower pizza crust: By pulsing cauliflower in a food processor and then making it into a dough, you can make a delicious pizza.
Cauliflower hummus: Chickpeas can be replaced with cauliflower in hummus recipes.
Cauliflower mash: Instead of making mashed potatoes, try a low-carb cauliflower mash.
Cauliflower tortillas: Combine pulsed cauliflower with eggs to make low-carb tortillas that can be used for wraps, taco shells or burritos.
Cauliflower mac and cheese: Cooked cauliflower can be combined with milk, cheese and spices to make mac and cheese.

Summary: Cauliflower can replace grains and legumes in many recipes, which is a great way to eat more veggies or follow a low-carb diet.

8. Easy to Add to Your Diet
Not only is cauliflower versatile, but it is also very easy to add to your diet. To begin with, you can consume it raw, which requires very little preparation. You can enjoy raw cauliflower florets as a snack dipped in hummus or another healthy vegetable dip.
Cauliflower can also be cooked in a variety of ways, such as steaming, roasting or sautéing. It makes an excellent side dish or can be combined with dishes like soups, salads, stir-fries and casseroles.

Summary: There are many ways to add cauliflower to your diet. It can be consumed cooked or raw and makes a fantastic addition to just about any dish.

The Bottom Line
Cauliflower provides some powerful health benefits.
It is a great source of nutrients, including a few that many people need more of. Plus, cauliflower contains unique antioxidants that may reduce inflammation and protect against several diseases, such as cancer and heart disease.
What’s more, cauliflower is easy to add your diet. It’s tasty, easy to prepare and can replace high-carb foods in several recipes."

The above words have been taken from Authority Nutrition site.
To see the full article with all information / research links use this link here

Parmesan Crusted Cauliflower - see more here

We bring a variety of articles, studies etc. plus recent news/views and recipe ideas to this blog, we hope something for everyone to read and enjoy.

Please note, not all may be suitable for you.

If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues these must always be taken into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

All the best Jan

Tuesday 27 June 2017

All Medical Professionals should be trained in basic human metabolism.

From NHS nurse posting on twitter.

She was 100% wrong. The facts, published on our website here eight years ago.

Diabetics, and even some health professionals, often confuse two quite distinct metabolic processes - ketosis and ketoacidosis. Ketosis is a perfectly natural and healthy state during which the body uses stored or dietary fat for fuel. In order to enter this state, carbohydrate intake needs to fall below a certain level. Ideally, a healthy metabolism should regularly use ketosis, while fasting overnight for example, to fuel the body's processes and utilise stored fat reserves. Most of the body's organs, the heart for example, in fact run very efficiently on ketones.

Ketoacidosis is quite different and is typically the result of a chronic lack of insulin, not a lack of carbohydrate. With insufficient insulin, the body attempts to fuel itself by breaking down fat and protein stores in an uncontrolled way, a process which results in the blood becoming dangerously acidic. In short, ketosis usually occurs when blood sugars are at the lower end of the normal range, and ketoacidosis occurs when blood sugars are dangerously elevated. Ketosis is a result of low carbohydrate intake, ketoacidosis is a result of inadequate insulin levels.


Mustard and Sage Chicken with Celeriac Mash

Swapping potatoes for celeriac lowers the carbohydrates in this lovely mid-week dinner suggestion ... ready in under half an hour and tastes great!

Serves Three
1 celeriac, p
eeled and cut into chunks
3 chicken breasts, skinless
1 tbsp. English mustard powder
2 tsp olive oil

2 garlic cloves, crushed
8 sage leaves, chopped
100g low-fat crème fraîche, plus 2 tbsp. for the mash

1 chicken stock cube
2 tbsp. wholegrain mustard
To Serve:
275g cooked green veg, such as thin-stemmed broccoli, peas or Savoy cabbage,

1. Put the celeriac in a bowl, add a splash of water and cover with cling film. Pierce the cling film and microwave on High for 10 minutes or until really tender.
2. Meanwhile, put the chicken breasts between 2 sheets of cling film and lightly bash with rolling pin until they are an even thickness. Dust with the mustard powder. Heat the oil in a large frying pan, add the chicken breasts and brown on both sides. Add the garlic and sage to the pan, stirring in the gaps between the chicken, for 30 secs. to 1 minute, then crumble in the stock cube. Pour in 100ml hot water and add 100g crème fraîche. Stir the sauce around the chicken, then cover the pan with a lid and cook over a medium heat for 8 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through. Stir through the mustard and season with plenty of black pepper.
3. While the chicken cooks, drain any liquid from the celeriac, season, add the remaining 2 tbsp. crème fraîche and mash (or blitz to a purée in a food processor). Serve with the chicken and some green veg.

From an original recipe

Please note this recipe works well with chicken thighs instead of chicken breasts, and also some readers may prefer to use 75g full fat crème fraîche instead of the low fat type ...

You can learn more about Celeriac ...
A beginners guide to this great lower carb vegetable
and a delicious Celeriac Dauphinoise recipe here

All the best Jan

Monday 26 June 2017

Parma ham, walnut and roquefort salad

This is a favourite salad of ours, although I do not add the optional croutons. It always looks so colourful and inviting on the plate ... and from the first mouthful to the last is delicious! 

Serves Four
300g Parma ham
2 large chicory heads, trimmed, leaves separated and washed
50g walnut halves, roughly broken
150g Roquefort cheese
50g parmesan
4-5tbsp ready-made salad dressing - check the carb content
fresh bread for croutons - optional
20ml oil
4 hardboiled eggs
4 salad tomatoes, quartered
few rocket (arugula) leaves for garnish


1. Cut the larger chicory leaves in half lengthways, place all the leaves in a large bowl and sprinkle with the walnuts. Cut the Roquefort into small cubes and scatter over the salad.
2. Shave the parmesan into wafer-thin slices using a potato peeler and sprinkle on top. Drizzle over the dressing and toss the salad thoroughly. Arrange on 4 plates and add the Parma ham, egg, optional croutons and tomatoes. Finally, garnish with a few rocket (arugula) leaves.

Per Serving:
Carbohydrate 12g Protein 42.4g Fibre 2.9g Fat 53g
From Tesco Real Food Here

Did you know Chicory, also known as endive, is a forced crop, grown in complete darkness, which accounts for its blanched white, yellow-tipped leaves. It has a distinctive, cigar-like shape, about 12cm long, and the crisp leaves have a mildly bitter flavour.

All year round, but the British season is from January to mid March.
Choose the best

Look for firm, crisp leaves and avoid those with green tips, as they'll be very bitter.
Prepare it

If the end is cracked or discoloured, trim it off, then remove any limp outer leaves. Then, depending on how you want to use it, either leave whole, separate the leaves, or slice lengthways into halves or quarters. Once cut, brush with lemon juice to prevent discolouration.
Store it

It will last for around a week in a perforated bag in the fridge.

Try radicchio.

A variety of recipe ideas and articles are found within this blog, and not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues these must always be taken into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

All the best Jan

Sunday 25 June 2017

Pot-roast chicken with chilli and coconut

Shake up your Sunday (or mid-week) roast with this pot-roast chicken with chilli and coconut recipe suggestion from Sainsbury's magazine.

Serves Four
1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
25 g root ginger, peeled and finely chopped
2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
28 g coriander
1 x 1.5kg chicken, at room temperature
1 tbsp. oil
300 ml hot chicken stock
400 ml tin coconut milk

1. Preheat the oven to 200°C, fan 180°C, gas 6. In a bowl, mix the chilli, ginger and garlic. Finely chop half the coriander and add to the chilli mixture. Loosen the chicken skin from the breast meat with your fingers and carefully spread as much of the chilli mixture as you can under the skin, reserving a little for scattering over the top. Put the remaining coriander into the cavity of the chicken, reserving some sprigs to garnish and put the chicken in a casserole dish. Drizzle the chicken with oil; season and scatter over the reserved chilli mixture. Add the hot chicken stock to the casserole and pot roast the chicken for 1 hour, uncovered, or until cooked through.
2. Put the chicken on a carving board, tipping any juices from the cavity back into the casserole dish. Cover the chicken with foil and leave to rest.
3. Put the dish over a medium heat and pour in the coconut milk. Whisk into the juices and simmer for about 5 minutes until reduced slightly. Check the seasoning. Carve the chicken and serve with the coconut sauce drizzled over and garnished with the reserved coriander sprigs.

Each serving provides
3.8g carbohydrate 0.7g fibre 43.6g protein 47.3g fat

Pak Choi goes nicely with this dish - just stir fry some for approx. two minutes.
Some readers may wish to include some baby potatoes in with the pot roast, but this is optional.

A variety of recipe ideas and articles are found within this blog, and not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues these must always be taken into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

If you would like to read more about the low carb higher (healthy) fat lifestyle see this post here

All the best Jan

Saturday 24 June 2017

Artists for Grenfell - Bridge Over Troubled Water (Official Video)

A charity single produced by Simon Cowell for the victims of the devastating Grenfell tower fire

Everything Syco Music and Sony Music receives from the single will be donated to The London Community Foundation, charity no. 1091263, and distributed by them to those affected by the fire.

Bacon Burger Stack : LCHF

Yum, such great tasting food - can you 'handle it' ...

Serves Four
6g carbs per serving

7oz. / 200 g bacon
11⁄3 lbs / 600 g ground (minced) beef *
2 tablespoons cold water
2 teaspoons chili paste
1 teaspoon garlic powder or onion powder (optional)
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil

For serving
3 oz. / 85 g dill pickles
3 oz. / 85 g sliced cheddar cheese
3 oz. / 85 g lettuce
2 sliced tomatoes
1 red onion sliced
2⁄3 cup / 160 ml

* You may of course vary the ground (minced) meat. Lamb and turkey both work well with the bacon. A mixture of ground (minced) pork and beef or even ground (minced) wild boar meat can be fabulous if you can find that in your supermarket! Also feel free to add some herbs - finely chopped rosemary and oregano can really complement the flavours of the meat.
Recipes can always be adapted / amended to suit the individual ...

For full recipe instructions please see Diet Doctor site here

Sit and enjoy

All the best Jan

Friday 23 June 2017

Catherine Collins RD out to lunch?

Catherine Collins is a senior dietitian and a member of The British Dietetic Association. Catherine has decades of experience, in all matters dietary. A dietary expert, and clearly follows her own dietary advice it would appear, from photographs circulating the internet. Catherine is also a very busy person on social media such as Twitter. Catherine believes only dietitians, can be trusted to give sound dietary advice. In fact, nothing gets her Rubenesque buttocks clenching tighter, than a highly respected, highly qualified medical professional, such as say a Cardiologist, giving dietary advice on social media. 

Think about this. A man trusted, to carry out highly complex invasive medical procedures, on peoples hearts. Where one simple mistake, could lead to the patients death, but cannot be trusted to analyse the health benefits (or lack of) a Walls pork sausage. To me this is like saying a rocket scientist who helped get men to the moon and back, has no right to comment, on a kids balsa wood toy glider. Give me a break! It's almost as crazy, as a Corn Flake flogger taking on an A1 rated science Professor. Only in a world this crazy.

As you can see below, Catherine is bleating about being blocked on twitter. She implies "Meeja Docs" refuse to engage, and they are concerned their thin veneer of nutritional experience will be exposed. I have no medical qualifications whatsoever, although I have nine years experience, in helping fellow diabetics to lose weight, and obtain safer blood glucose numbers. I appreciate I am only a messenger, no more than a layman, with some highly knowledgeable medical professional friends. In the rarefied air of dietary Gods, I am a nobody.

Bearing this in mind, the highly experienced expert Catherine, was unable to answer some simple questions from me, as can be seen here. You can imagine I was taken aback, nay, I was staggered to learn, the dietary advice given to diabetics by the BDA comes from Diabetes UK a charity. My takeaway from that comment is the BDA relies on others for their diabetes dietary advice. Yet she has the barefaced effrontery, to complain about others, medical professionals no less, giving dietary advice. The Lard clearly works in mysterious ways.

Just as an aside, Catherine blocked me swiftly who would have thought it, oh the bitter sweet irony. 


Coming soon to this blog. How following BDA dietary advice almost killed me FACT. 


You Just Can't Beat Getting Out and About ...

a windy day at the South Coast - taken by Eddie on his mobile phone

No matter whether you are young or old, or somewhere in-between, you just can't beat getting out and about. It can help relax you, put a spring in your step - you just feel better for it. You may not get down to the sea, you may not get down to the woods ... but I'm sure there must be a space nearby where you can go! The options below were written with children (grandchildren) in mind, but really whatever our age you just can't beat getting out and about ...
Consider these options.

1. Go rock-pooling ...
Poking around in tide pools on the beach is one of the best parent-child shared experiences. Coaxing your little one to press a finger into ruby anemones and feel the corresponding suction, discovering skittering crabs hiding in seaweed, making a fabulous collection of strange-shaped, sea-smoothed stones, pretty shells and, if you’re lucky, fossils, these are just some of the fabulous finds awaiting you. And then of course there’s the pure physical joy of running in and out of surf and leaping down sand dunes.

2. Or pond-dipping ...
Streams, rivers and ponds hold an endless fascination for children. (Make sure you give little ones your full attention.) You can spend hours making a dam together, playing Poohsticks, chasing darting minnow and pond-dipping. All you need is a net and a bucket to examine underwater creatures scooped up, including pond snails, frogs, toads, water beetles and perhaps even a newt.

fishing with Grandad can be fun too - even if it was raining

3. Visit a farm ...
Shockingly, one in three children have never heard a real cow go “moo” or a sheep go “baa”. That’s according to a poll of 1,000 children by farming group LEAF (Linking Environment and Farming), which organises open farm days throughout the UK every year. The annual
Open Farm Sunday was on 11 June 2017 this year, and will be on the 10th June in 2018. Each Open Farm event is unique with activities ranging from machinery displays, tractor and trailer rides, through to demonstrations and opportunities to collect eggs, see cows being milked and feed animals. The picture below, although taken a while ago, shows two of our grandchildren having fun when they went down to the farm ...

You don’t need to be near countryside to get a taste of life on the farm, with
city farms making a great family summer trip. Many have a variety of tame animals to pet such as chickens, pigs, goats, sheep, ponies, rabbits, guinea pigs and donkeys and children can help at feeding times too.

4. Build a den in the woods ...
Den-building came out as parents’ favourite childhood memory in a recent survey, which makes perfect sense. There is something magical about creating a special hideaway, and even better if it’s in the woods. You could make a den from branches and logs laid against a bigger tree, with bracken on top, or find a perfect climbing tree to claim. The picture shows one of the grandchildren enjoying his den, it was pouring with rain when he was sitting here, he didn't mind one bit.

5. Simple pleasures ...
Simple really can be best with kids, especially if they’re basking in your total attention with all the time in the world, no school runs or homework. Here are some suggestions: teaching them to skim stones or blow a grass whistle, making daisy chains while you loll in the sun chatting, lying back and cloud-watching with big debates about what the different shapes are, catching grasshoppers or watching ants feverishly shoring up their nests.
Simply enjoying a walk and discovering a different colour letter box to the usual UK red one, as two of our grandchildren did earlier this year ...why is it gold, more details here

6. Under and over ...
If you want your children to have a curiosity and sense of wonder in the natural world, encourage them to look under and above. Turning over stones and logs or peering into hollow tree trunks will uncover a crowded mini-world of millipedes, centipedes, slugs, snails and, if you’re lucky, a frog or toad looking for cool shelter. Help your children learn to climb trees to enjoy the challenge and thrill of being King of the Castle with a whole new viewpoint of the world below.

ooh look, a tiny bug!

three of our grandchildren - cousins together
walking and skipping - the thrill of being outside

I hope you enjoyed reading, most words were taken from an article here.
I did however add a few personal anecdotes. All the pictures you see are personal ones, taken on mobile phones, showing our five grandchildren. Eddie and I are certainly looking forward to more fun times and getting out and about with them later in the summer ...

Have you got any outings planned or thought about?

All the best Jan

Thursday 22 June 2017

Follow the money!

Always follow the money! He who pays the piper calls the tune. Most so called 'health' organisations are either controlled, sponsored or funded by junk food and big pharma. No such thing as a free lunch in this world, and none of these outfits, will be recommending a whole fresh food, lower carb, higher natural fats healthy diet anytime soon. 

British Dietetic Association

Danone, Abbott Nutrition, Nestle, Cereal Partners, BelVita Breakfast Biscuits and Coca Cola. 

Diabetes UK The diabetes charity

Abbott Bayer Boehringer Ingelheim Bristol Myers Squibb Bupa Bunzl Everyclick First Capital Connect Flora pro.activ Kodak Lilly Lloyds Pharmacy Menarini Merck Serono Morphy Richards Merck Sharp & Dohme Limited Novartis Novo Nordisk Nursing Times PAL Technologies Ltd Pfizer Rowlands Pharmacies Sanofi-aventis SplendaTakeda Tesco Diets

HEART UK -The Nation’s Cholesterol Charity

Abbott Healthcare Alpro UK AstraZeneca BHR Pharma Cambridge Weight Plan Cereal Partners UK (Sh Wheat) Food & Drink Federation Fresenius Medical Care (UK) Limited Genzyme Therapeutics Hovis Kellogg’s (Optivita) Kowa Pharmaceutical Europe Co Limited L.IN.C Medical Systems Limited Merck Sharpe & Dhome PlanMyFood Pfizer Premier Foods Progenika Biopharma s.a. Roche Products Limited Unilever (Flora) Welch’s (Purple Grape Juice)

The British Nutrition Foundation

However, the organisation's 39 members, which contribute to its funding, include – beside the Government, the EU – Cadbury, Kellogg's, Northern Foods, McDonald's, PizzaExpress, the main supermarket chains except Tesco, and producer bodies such as the Potato Council. The chairman of its board of trustees, Paul Hebblethwaite, was or is, also chairman of the Biscuit, Cake, Chocolate and Confectionery Trade Association.

The European Food Information Council

Current EUFIC members are: AB Sugar, Ajinomoto Sweeteners Europe, Bunge, Cargill, Cereal Partners, Coca-Cola, Danone, DSM Nutritional Products Europe Ltd., Ferrero, Kraft Foods, Mars, McDonald's, Nestlé, PepsiCo, Pfizer Animal Health, Südzucker, and Unilever.

The British Heart Foundation

Unilever Flora margarine.


Chicken Skin Is Good For You !

Don't know about you, but we love chicken skin in our house ...

This article was written in April 2015 by Michelle Pfennighaus who is 'certified as a health coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and the American Association of Drugless Practitioners', and 'tries to get delicious, real food on the table every night.'

I thought it a good one to share.

She wrote ... " At a recent presentation, I made my audience gasp when I suggested they stop peeling the skin off chicken. And for heavens sake, stop paying top dollar for boneless, skinless breasts.

After all …chicken is a whole food. Until you start taking things away.

Ever really think about that?

When we talk about whole foods, we mean food that is minimally processed. A product of nature – in its natural form. Eating a whole food means eating all the edible parts. For instance, the fat found naturally in milk. The stem on kale. The skin on apples and potatoes and…yes, chicken.

But we’ve been told that chicken skin is terrible for us. Unlike beef, which is marbled with fat, the fat on chicken lies just below the skin. We strip it away and breed our chickens to be less and less fatty.

This quest for a low fat diet…ummm…it hasn’t exactly worked. Just look around.


So let me suggest that we stop manipulating food and allow our complex bodies, with systems scientists can barely wrap their heads around, eat food as nature provides it. We are not smarter than nature.

If this theory of whole food eating is still sinking in, here are 6 straightforward reasons why eating chicken skin is actually good for you.

I definitely recommend eating the highest quality animal products you can get your hands on. That means being picky about your source. If you don’t live near a trusted farm, you can order free-range poultry here

1. Let’s talk about the kind of fat you’ll find in chicken skin. It’s mainly monounsaturated, in the form of oleic acid. Oleic acid, also found in olive oil, is known for beneficial effects on cholesterol.

2. Of course there are also saturated fats in chicken skin. This is no accident. Nature provides what the body needs. The body does not need soda. The body does not need cotton candy. Or Gatorade. The body does, in fact, need some saturated fat. So eat it.

3. If you’re in the calorie-counting camp, there’s roughly a 50 calorie difference between chicken with or without skin. Seems a small price to pay for a huge increase in flavor and satisfaction.

4. Did I mention flavor and satisfaction? When your food satisfies your taste buds and body’s cravings, you don’t need to eat as much or as often. Sugar cravings subside and you can go back to loving food instead of fearing it. That’s huge, people.

5. Fat doesn’t make you fat. If it did, the lowfat/nonfat craze would have given us a country of slender people. Instead, we have an obesity epidemic. It just doesn’t add up. Here’s a thought. Eat the skin that occurs naturally on chicken. Don’t eat I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter, Power Bars, Eggo Waffles or other foodstuffs made in lab. See what happens.

6. Forget marinades, seasonings and complicated recipes! Naturally occurring fats make chicken delicious, as-is. Cooking is easy.

Go forth and actually enjoy your food."

Michelle's article and recipe suggestion is here

Find Your Balance Health Blog here

All the best Jan

Wednesday 21 June 2017

David Diamond - An Update on Demonization and Deception in Research on Saturated Fat...

Published on Jun 17, 2017
This lecture is part of the IHMC Evening Lecture series. the past 60 years there has been a concerted effort to demonize saturated fats, found in animal products and tropical oils, and cholesterol, in our food and blood. Despite the well-established health benefits of diets rich in cholesterol and saturated fat, flawed, deceptive and biased research has created the myth that a low fat, plant-based diet is ideal for good health.


Seafood Omelette - with a creamy mix of garlic, fennel and chili

Omelettes are so quick, easy and tasty and come with so many variations ...

How about this 'for a fresh take on a fabulous, and ready-in-fifteen-minutes meal.' It's a 'seafood omelette, dressed in a creamy sauce, with garlic, fennel, and chili.' A very nice mix indeed ...

Serves Two
2g carb per serving

2 tablespoons olive oil
5 oz. / 140 g cooked shrimp or seafood mix
1 red chili pepper
2 garlic cloves (optional)
½ teaspoon fennel seeds or ground cumin (if preferred)
½ cup / 120 ml
1 tablespoon fresh chives
6 eggs
2 tablespoons olive oil or butter
salt and pepper to taste

If you may be feeling indulgent you could always swap the shrimp for canned lump crab meat ...

Instructions can be found at Diet Doctor site here

Chives ... The smallest and most delicate member of the onion family, chives are a popular herb used in European cookery. They have long, thin green blades that are hollow inside. They have a mild, grassy flavour similar to baby spring onions or young leeks. There is also an Asian variety of chive called Chinese chives, garlic chives or kuchai.

Buyer's guide:
Chives are in season in spring and summer. Fresh chives are widely available from supermarkets and garden centres.

Keep fresh chives refrigerated for up to three days.

Snip chives with scissors instead of chopping them, and do not subject them to much cooking as they are delicate. Instead, use chives in garnishes, salads, egg mayonnaise sandwiches, vegetable stocks, soups, creamy sauces, potato dishes and omelettes, adding the herb to the dish just before serving. Purple-blue chive flowers are also eaten and used as a garnish.

I hope you may enjoy this recipe suggestion ...

We bring a variety of recipe ideas to this blog, but please note, not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues these must always be taken into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

All the best Jan