Fruits and Vegetables: Fresh or Frozen?

Let’s talk about FRUITS and VEGETABLES. You either love em or hate em! Don’t worry, I am not going to tell you to “EAT YO FRUITS AND VEGGIES!” (although you should)

Due to my busy schedule (I shop once a week), budget and just out of convenience, I opt for frozen veggies and fruits (berries). I get asked a lot if frozen is good for you. So today we’re going to talk about that!

Fresh or Frozen?

We’ve always been told to eat fresh foods instead of frozen. That is true, but when it comes to fruits and vegetables, it can be a bit tricky.

Fresh may not always be best.

Research has shown that in many cases, frozen produce are just as nutritious as fresh produce and sometimes, they contain more nutrients! This is because nutrient levels gradually decrease over time (during transit from farm to supermarkets). This is the part where if left for too long, become brown/black, soft and rot!

Frozen fruits and vegetables are picked at their peak, when they have the highest amount of nutrients. The process of freezing slows the ripening process, retains these nutrients and prevents them from breaking down (slows enzymatic reactions).

Of course, this does not apply to all frozen foods but it does give you more options when you don’t have time to buy fresh produce!

Keep in mind that the method of cooking also affects the nutrient levels in food. For example, water soluble vitamin Bs can be loss in the cooking water. Other vitamins such as vitamin C are heat sensitive.

Another handy tip when buying fruits and vegetables is to buy whatever is in season! That way, you get to eat a wide variety each time and of course, cost efficient!

Personally, I find it stressful if I buy a heap of veggies that would not even last the week in my fridge! I end up throwing them away, which is such a waste. So for me, I mix fresh and frozen!

Let me know if you have any questions!

 

2 Weight Loss Myths

Hi guys!

It’s just me, trying to save the world from misinformation.a52879e2a5587c67f910bac41a19f327

And today, I will be smashing these 2 common weight loss myths.


Myth 1: Eating small frequent meals will boost your metabolism

We are often encouraged to eat 6 small meals a day (instead of 3 big meals) to boost our metabolism and keep it firing.

But there are 3 possible problems with this claim.

food-timing-meals

Problem 1:

When we eat, our metabolism does increase as we need to process the food. But there is no evidence that this is of any significance when it comes to weight loss [1].

Problem 2:

By constantly eating around the clock, we are potentially preventing our bodies from burning fat. When we eat, the body releases insulin. In short, this can prevent the breakdown and release of glucose and fats.

Problem 3:

Snacking can potentially be a window to overeat. Eating just a little bit could leave you feeling unsatisfied and wanting MORE!

This study found that a decrease in eating frequency could help manage appetite [2].

Then again, some people find that they can manage their hunger better by eating frequently. That is, if they make the right snack choices.

The bottom line is that there is no one-size-fits-alls method. Choose what works BEST for YOU!

Just keep in mind that there are no metabolic advantages with eating more frequently.


Myth 2: Detox and juice cleanses help to remove toxins and promote weight loss

Juice and detox cleases, ranging from 3 to 7 days (or X days), are pretty popular especially among celebs and influencers.juice-cleanse-bottles

Do they work?

You’ll probably lose some weight but it’s most likely just water. You’ll immediately gain it back when you start eating again. Plus, you might end up feeling HANGRY from all the food that you’re depriving your body of (and potentially eating a whole lot more!).

The thing is that we have our very own super powerful and effective detox systemliver and kidneys. There is no evidence that going on a juice cleanse will make it work any better. Reports of people feeling “better” just after 3 days is probably because they’ve stopped eating all the processed food.JuiceCleanse2

Essentially, it is nothing more than a marketing gimmick for juice companies to sell their juice.

The bottom line is that there are no quick fixes when it comes to weight loss and health. If there were, everyone would be looking fit and healthy.

If you do plan on going on juice cleanses as a way to kickstart new lifestyle habits, just keep in mind that it does not help with weight loss or removing toxins from your body.


Want to lose weight?

Cultivate good LIFELONG habits! Gradual, small and sustainable changes are the key to long term results.

  • A little MORE fresh nutrient rich foods
  • A little LESS ultra processed foods
  • A little MORE movement

#simple

Let me know if you have any questions!

Creamy Raw Blueberry Bars

I was craving for some cheesecake the other day. So, I went on a hunt for some raw cheesecake recipes! The first few that popped up were all vegan – meaning they did not have CHEESE. 

The raw vegan “cheesecake” recipes sounded interesting and I’ve always been curious about the taste! I looked at a few and they all had pretty similar ingredients. From all the different recipes, I picked out the ingredients and changed the amounts needed. Basically, I picked the ingredients that I had at home or was convenient to get at the store.

Thankfully, they turned out pretty well! I definitely wouldn’t call it a “cheesecake”! But it was still good! It was a refreshing snack and I had it for breakfast every day (dessert for breakfast? YES PLEASE!).

As promised, here is the recipe!

Creamy Raw Blueberry Bars

Ingredients:

The base:

  • 1.5 cups of rolled oats
  • 1.5 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1.5 tbsp Manuka honey (or sweetener of choice)

Creamy filling:

  • 1 cup of cashew nuts
  • 1/4 cup of coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup of Manuka honey (or sweetener of choice)
  • 1 cup of blueberries
  • 1 tsp of vanilla essence
  • Juice of 1 lemon

Process:

  1. Preheat the oven at 180 degrees. Mix the ingredients for the base and spread it out on a baking tin.
  2. Bake for 15 mins.
  3. For the creamy filling, blitz the cashew nuts in a mixer/food processor. Slowly add in the coconut oil and Manuka honey.
  4. Add in the rest of the ingredients and mix until it becomes smooth and CREAMY!
  5. Pour the creamy filling over the COOLED base (make sure you let the base cool for about 10 mins before you pour the filling.
  6. Freeze for 2-3 hours and ENJOY!

Enjoy!

Let me know if you made this and if you liked the taste!

#AdeleWFOTM – Kartini

This month we have ultra marathonerKartini!


I got to know Kartini personally through the Puma Running Club. It has been great watching her running journey! I truly admire her determination, discipline and passion for running!

Read on to find out more about this girl and how she gives back to the running community!

My 1st Ultra at Pink50 2015 – 60km in 8:06


  1. What’s your fav sport/event?

    Running because I don’t know how to cycle or swim (Phobia from a childhood incident)!

  2. How long have you been running?

    Exactly 5 years this month!

  3. How did you start?

    Actually, I hated running. It all started back in 2012 when I managed to register for 10KM We Run KL (I was on my comp and iPad for over 2 hrs to secure a slot!).

  4. Do you join any groups/community? If yes, which group?

    I am a MURA member (Malaysian Ultra Running Assosiation) and I do join a few other running clubs for their weekly training sessions (eg. SARC, KyserunKrew, Puma Night Running Club, Run89Crew)

    Malaysian participants at The 16th International Jeju Ultramarathon Race 2017

  5. Your profession:

    Administrative and accounts manager.

  6. How do you juggle work and running?

    Well, there is a saying that when you do what you love and love what you do, you will find a way to make it work. Work is my priority but I’ll try to follow my schedule, and rest when my body needs to.  After my injury, I learned how to listen to my body!

    My very 1st solo #runcation trip at Laguna Phuket International Marathon 2015 – 4:32

  7. Do you have a training schedule? What is it like?

    Yes I do. It looks something like this:

    Weekdays (afterwork): Easy/Tempo/Speedwork/Cross training

    Weekend: LSD/Hill training/Running Events

    Rest: 2-3 days a week

  8. Who do you usually train with?

    I usually train with my running buddies (running crew) and sometimes just myself.

  9. Have you ever had injuries? How did you cope?

    Yes, I suffered a major one last year. It was a week before SCKLM 2016. This event was meant to be my sub 4 mission and I was working really hard for it. At first, I couldn’t accept it. I kept running, hoping it will get better. I was wrong. Things got worse and I was more frustrated. I decided to take a break from running until I recovered.

    Bali Marathon 2015 – 4:16

    Making a comeback is a whole different story. It is tough but I will never give up!

  10. Which was the most memorable event and why!

    To be honest, I love all of them (even the ones where I got injured, DNS or DNF…hahaha).  Every event has its own story regardless of the distance. But Borneo International Marathon would always be my fav event since 2014 (I skipped this year due to my injury). This event was where I completed my first full marathon (in 2014) and my parents were there to witness. Last year, I also managed to smash my full marathon PB (Personal Best), securing 3rd place in the Women’s Open category.

    My fav moment at Borneo International Marathon 2016 with my loyal supporters #myfamily – 4:06

  11. You have done quite a few ultramathons. Tell us, what do you think about when you are running an ultra?

    The rewards (FOOD!) after I cross the finish line (the BIGGEST motivation) and the lil voice in my head – “What did I get myself into? Is this going to be the last one? I will never register for an ultra marathon ever again! #insaf”.

    Of course, that’s a lie (haha!). I’ve already signed up for 2 ultra marathons – one in 2 weeks and the other in December 2017.

  12. Favourite distance: 42.195km (26 full marathons since May 2014 and 9 ultra marathons).

  13. My take on volunteering as a crew member and pacer for running events, and giving back to the running community:
    Being selected to be an official pacer is another dream come true. It’s fun but it’s not as easy as you think. As much as I want to see some improvement in my running journey, helping fellow runners to achieve their goal by pacing them and sharing some experience or tips about running is another satisfaction. A fellow pacer said this in his blog – “Nothing more rewarding than a handshake or a thank you from the runners after crossing the finishing line, knowing that you played a role in bringing them home, whether it is the entire course or partially.”#givingbacktorunningcommunity – Official Pacer
     
    Volunteering or being part of the crew for running events is fun too… in a different way. HAHA! I remember when I was assigned to be at one of the water stations 2km before the finish line. We came in early in the morning to set up the station, cheer for the runners and leaving the race village only after the job was done. It is tiring but the experience was priceless. I encourage you guys to give it a try! GOOD LUCK AND HAVE FUN!
     

Kartini is not only someone who RUNS but she also gives back to the running community! Definitely a fine example for us all. This is a COMMUNITY. We are STRONGER TOGETHER.

Let’s continue to support each other in our own special way! Thank you, Kartini, for sharing!

All the best in your running journey! KEEP IT UP GIRL!

The Keto Diet – Everything You Need to Know

There’s been a lot of hype about the keto diet.  More and more people are going keto to manage their weight and overall health.

If you’re curious or wondering if this diet is for you, read on! I’m here to give you a quick low down on the KETO DIET!


 

Keto2-1-1200x616

What is it?

The ketogenic diet or keto diet, is a strict low carb high fat diet. The idea is to put the body into a state of ketosis.

Ketosis is a metabolic process where the body uses fat for fuel instead of glucose. This occurs when the body has drained all of its carbohydrate stores – during times of fasting, starvation or when carbohydrate intake is limited. The process involves the breakdown of fats in the liver to produce ketones.

Ketones are an alternative fuel,  which can continue to fuel the brain (the brain can only run on glucose or ketones) and the body.

Essentially, you become an efficient fat burning machine.


The benefits

The keto diet promotes FAT loss.  As mentioned, carbs are so limited that the body is forced to tap into its fat stores for fuel, leading to weight loss. Studies have found that it trumps the low fat diet [1]. Fat increases satiety and you are less likely to feel hungry in between meals.

Also, the low carb intake reduces the production of insulin. When you eat carbs, insulin is constantly being produced. Insulin prevents the breakdown of fats and encourages the conversion of glucose to fat. How-Weight-Loss-Works-02

The nature of this diet is also benefitial for people with Type 2 diabetes, prediabetes or insulin resistance [2]. This is because fat does not impact insulin the same way as carbs and proteins [3]. Low carb intake helps with managing blood sugar levels. Also, weight loss can improve insulin sensitivity.

Less carbs = Reduced blood sugar and insulin levels751d33ec93eeac18f86f285f892e2314

The keto diet also seems to improve markers associated with other metabolic diseases [4]. Other health related benefits include neurological (Alzheimers, epilepsy, seizures) [5, 6], cancer [7], improves blood lipid profile and reduces inflammatory markers.
In terms of the keto diet for athletic performance, there is limited research. This diet is thought to be suitable for endurance based sports at submaximal effort (such as the marathon or ultramarathon) where high intensity sprints/bursts are not involved [8].
Then again, there are some high performing athletes that can thrive off a keto diet. It all boils down to their unique genetic make up, how well they can tolerate and adapt to the diet.

LOW carb, HIGH fat

There are different degrees of “low carb” within the keto diet.ketogenic-dietBut the standard protocol looks like the image above.

5% of carbs = 15-20g of carbohydrates a day!

1 small banana = 23g of carbs

Carbs are found in foods such as cereal, bread, pasta, rice, noodles, legumes, fruits and some starchy vegetables (beetroot, parsnips, potatoes etc).


What to eat?keto-diet-picture

Vege

  • Non starchy vege (leafy greens, brussel sprouts, broccoli, kale, spinach, rocket, bok choy etc)

Protein

  • Fatty fish (salmon, mackerel, tuna, herring etc)
  • Red meat (grass-fed beef, pork, lamb etc)
  • Turkey, chicken (free range)
  • Omega-3 eggs

Dairy

  • Unprocessed cheeses (mozzarella, cheddar, cream cheese etc)
  • Full fat milk (limited amounts as milk contains the sugar lactose)

Fats and oils

  • Avocado
  • Nuts and seeds (almonds, flaxseeds, macadamias, walnuts etc)
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Coconut oil
  • Coconut milk
  • MCT oils
  • Grass-fed butter and cream
  • Grass-fed ghee

What to avoid/eliminate?

  • High sugar foods (Ice cream, cake, fruit juice, soda, sweets, some sauces and condiments, sweet breads, highly processed low-fat/diet products, foods with sugar alcohols etc)
  • Cereal/grain products (breads, pasta, rice, breakfast cereals etc)
  • Highly processed fats and oils (vegetable oil, margarine)
  • Highly processed foods (chips, biscuits, cookies etc)
  • Alcohol
  • Legumes (kidney beans, chickpeas, lentils, red beans etc)
  • Fruit (Most fruits except lower sugar fruits such as berries)
  • Starchy vegetables (potatoes, parsnips, sweet potatoes, peas, carrots etc)

IMPORTANT NOTE:

This is NOT your GREEN LIGHT to load up on highly processed fatty foods and junk food.

It is about moving away from highly processed foods, vegetable oils, foods filled with trans fat and omega-6, and margarine. This practice should apply to EVERYONE, not just for people on a keto diet.


Bottom line:

  • The keto diet is scientifically sound and valid
  • It is pretty extreme and it is not for everyone
  • It is great for people wanting to lose weight or have a metabolic disease
  • Before you get into ANY diet, pls do your research + get help/advice from your doctor and dietitian
  • Thanks to our uniqueness, two people on the exact same diet can have very different results!
  • For any diet to work, you need to make it work for YOU
  • It needs to be sustainable and not get in the way of your life
  • Most importantly, you need to ENJOY eating and FOOD!
  • Find your sweet spot and happy balance!

Let me know if you have any questions!

xoxo