A Holmly café

A bubbly welcome and shelves packed full of home cooked goodness. This is what you get when you visit Café Holm on Victoria St in Potts Point.

Recently taken over by Italian  born Elisa, Holm has a sense of family about it. From the warm smiles and thick Italian accents of Elisa and her sidekick Sofia, to the recipes Nonna made and delightful atmosphere, a cosy seating inside or alfresco on the busy footpath.

itlalian girls

And it’s always busy too. I’ve been a regular for the past four months since we moved to the area, and even though there was apprehension when we heard the café was sold, the new owners have been a real treat.

The coffee here is fresh, dark and full bodied and goes down nicely with the many delectable tarts, cakes and slices baked daily. Breakfast and lunch are pretty yummy too and you get the chance to sample some of the girls’ favourite dishes like cannelloni, corn fritters, and Zaatar bread.

ilatialn food

Overall, I’d say not only is Café Holm part of Potts Point, but we, the people who visit there, are also part of Café Holm!

Buon Appetito!

iltalian coffee

And she glowed from the inside out…

When I started operation nutrition my skin was dull, slightly red and it didn’t look as smooth as I’d probably like it to.

Now, 11 weeks on (almost to the day) my skin has a glow about it. The redness is subsiding and it’s smoothing out. My cheeks don’t look so dull and the softness is returning.

At the start of the journey back in September

At the start of the journey back in September

After the 11 weeks!

After the 11 weeks!

It’s amazing what a difference food can make. Just by putting the right nutrients inside your body you can make a real difference to the outside appearance as well.

For example, if you are stuffing your face with fast food, processed food and bad fats, your skin will start to reflect the amount of grease and saturated fats you’re ingesting.

Similarly, foods that are good foryour body weight seem to be equally as good for your skin. So if you consume a lot of fruits, veg, lean meats, nuts, legumes, etc then your skin will reflect this freshness and radiate health! This is what I’m now starting to see!

And, appearance aside, after 11 weeks I’m really starting to FEEL a difference as well. My energy is up, I’m finding that by eating the right types of food for my body I now have more energy to do longer gym workouts or to push myself more which in turn equals fat loss (bonus!!). I am getting less tired during the day, I feel happier in general and my mood swings are not so frequent. Even my periods are becoming more regular and less painful (which any woman knows is a bloody good thing!).

Bloating was a regular thing at the start of the journey

Bloating was a regular thing at the start of the journey

At the 11 week mark, bloating is gone!

At the 11 week mark, bloating is gone!

When I started on this journey with my wonderful nutritionist Jessica Cox I had an idea of what I wanted to get out of it. I really wanted to learn what foods weren’t right for me and I wanted to learn how to replace those foods with ones that were right for me. I have certainly achieved this! I suppose in the back of my mind I wanted to be eating better so I could lose some weight, which I also achieved! Simply feeling better in general was the main purpose of seeing a nutritionist in the first place. This, I have absolutely achieved. The cramps, nausea, fatigue, headaches and bloating have pretty much stopped completely. Of course I’m still adjusting to this lifestyle so there are occasional slip ups which leave me a little bloated but these are few and far between now.

They say new habits are formed and results start to happen after 12 weeks and I think this is pretty spot on! One important thing I’ve learnt throughout this journey is that you need to be patient and you need to be kind to yourself and your body. Health is a journey and there is no quick fix. Sticking it out is the only way to prosper. And getting support, such as I did with Jess, makes the journey soooooo much smoother and soooooo much easier. I could not have made these changes without her!

So for all of those working on their 2014 resolutions, if getting your health back on track pops up, see a nutritionist. You will not regret the investment. And if you give it a bit of time and stay positive and on track, when you get to the 12 week mark you WILL be able to look back and see some stand out changes to your health, your body and your skin!

Check out www.jessicacox.com.au –make health your priority next year!

PS she has some DELICIOUS recipes on the site as well!

Hold the gluten

I was feeling a little peckish this afternoon for a sweet treat. So I wandered up to a local café and asked about their gluten/wheat free cakes.

A gentlemen pointed me in the direction of a caramel slice assuring me it was free of my foe – wheat.

Fast forward an hour and my stomach feels like it’s being ripped apart by knives gashing at my insides. I am bloated, nauseous and I feel like I’m want to go back to said café and throw up over said gentlemen’s shoes.

I have been eating pretty darn perfectly since my last appointment about 3 weeks ago with my nutritionist Jess Cox (ps check out her website here www.jessicacox.net) and I have an appointment booked with her for tomorrow arvo as well. This is why I can feel the difference. This is how I know this little caramel culprit is the one to blame for my internal suffering. Because when you eat foods that make you feel good, you can really feel when something goes into your body that is not so good for you. And what’s worse, my little treat for the week was spoiled because the gentleman at the café couldn’t be bothered finding out what in the shop was actually gluten/wheat free. And I paid the price for that.

Now there is another problem here. I’m lucky, because although I feel ill, that’s the worst of it. Some people are deathly allergic to things like gluten. A friend of a friend is one such person. If she, or any other person with a serious allergy, had eaten this, they would likely be in the hospital right now.

So, the lesson to be learned here is to always check, and double check, that what you are eating is what it is supposed to be. Don’t just take someone’s word for it or you may end up with a yukky tummy or worse.

 hold-the-gluten

My inner voice has spoken up!

I recently cut red meat from my diet (something I need to discuss with my nutritionist Jess at our appointment next week!). This isn’t the first time I’ve done this; it’s actually something I do quite frequently. I go Vego for a few months and then add meat back in for a while. The reasoning behind it is simple really; it’s a moral decision. I’m a big believer in and supporter of animal rights so I feel like a bit of a hypocrite scoffing down a juicy steak.

embarrassed look

Going off meat temporarily isn’t too tough for me, but after a while it always seems to get harder. Why? A: like the taste (I know, I know… don’t judge) B: My iron levels are low and sometimes my body needs the extra fuel. However, now that Jess is on the case regarding my iron and my levels are rising I feel that problem may be combatted for good, so that excuse is no longer relevant.

And today, just when reason B was about to wreck everything, my little inner voice who until now only pipes up when I don’t want it to, actually came to my rescue. Here’s the story…

I’m in my lunch break, driving to get some sushi and one of my fav pieces is the Aburi Ngiri (rice with seared wagyu beef). When I realised I wasn’t going to be able to have that now I’ve gone back to not eating red meats, I thought, oh well I suppose it doesn’t matter, one sushi won’t kill me. Then, enter stage left my inner voice who said very calmly… ‘Lahnee, you can eat the sushi if you want, but remember that you made the conscious choice not to eat red meat because it goes against your morals. It’s a choice you made, and it’s a choice you can keep.’

Hmmm, wise words little voice.

So I suppose the moral (pun intended) of this story is that some foods you may want to eat but you can’t because you are allergic or intolerant. Such is the case with me and my old pal wheat. Other foods you are actively choosing not to eat for one reason or other. And you are in total control of your actions. You are the only person who can be blamed if you break your own rules. This goes for weight loss too. No one forces you to eat a piece of cake. You pick that sucker up and put it in your own mouth.

Relationship-with-food

Our relationship with food really shouldn’t be as complicated as it is sometimes. Basically, if your body can’t handle something, don’t eat it. If you know something is bad for you, don’t eat it. If you’ve made a moral decision not to eat something, don’t eat it.

There… super simple really!

Nutrition for dummies

The saying goes, you are what you eat.

And it appears to be rather correct.

You see, I’m starting to realise that if you stuff your face full of fattening foods, guess what, you get fat. If you eat lean foods, shock horror, you get leaner!

This is pretty generalised but you get the drift.

In my search for information about ‘being what you eat’ I came across this gem of a list…

It’s called Nutrition for Dummies… I now have it posted on my wall at work…I’m particularly fond of rule number 15, and remember, nobody accidentally eats cake 😉

1. Don’t eat anything bigger than your head. Unless it’s a watermelon. Or you have a tiny head.
2. If your meal arrives through a car window via a teenager wearing a headset, don’t eat it.
3. If it comes in an exciting range of fluorescent colours, don’t eat it.
4. Don’t confuse the marketing on the front (of the pack) with the nutritional information in the teeny-tiny box on the back.
5. Nobody accidentally eats cake. Own your choices and your behaviours.
6. Calories consumed in secret count. Your friends might not know but your arse will.
7. If dieting was an effective way to lose weight permanently, nobody would ever diet twice.
8. Don’t confuse ‘what your head wants’ with what your body needs. Your mind is a lying bitch.
9. If the ingredient list is full of weird-sounding numbers and words ending in ‘ose’, throw it away.
10. If you haven’t had a poo since June, maybe cut back on the processed food. And try a little fibre. Just saying.
11. If it comes with orange-coloured cheese, throw it away.
12. Most cereals are shit. Avoid them. Unless you want diabetes by Friday.
13. Amazingly, following a generic eating plan from a magazine is not your best bet.
14. If food is your lover, you need to get out more.
15. If you’re considering taking your kids to McDonalds for a treat, punch yourself in the face.

IMG_2353

(work wall inspiration!!!)

You aid what you eat!

carrotA sliced Carrot looks like the human eye. The pupil, iris and radiating lines look just like the human eye… And YES, science now shows carrots greatly enhance blood flow to and function of the eyes.

tomatoA Tomato has four chambers and is red. The heart has four chambers and is red. All of the research shows tomatoes are loaded with lycopine and are indeed pure heart and blood food.

grapesGrapes hang in a cluster that has the shape of the heart. Each grape looks like a blood cell and all of the research today shows grapes are also profound heart and blood vitalizing food.

nutA Walnut looks like a little brain, a left and right hemisphere, upper cerebrums and lower cerebellums. Even the wrinkles or folds on the nut are just like the neo-cortex. We now know walnuts help develop more than three (3) dozen neuron-transmitters for brain function.

beanKidney Beans actually heal and help maintain kidney function and yes, they look exactly like the human kidneys.

celeryCelery, Bok Choy, Rhubarb and many more look just like bones. These foods specifically target bone strength. Bones are 23% sodium and these foods are 23% sodium. If you don’t have enough sodium in your diet, the body pulls it from the bones, thus making them weak. These foods replenish the skeletal needs of the body.

avoAvocadoes, Eggplant and Pears target the health and function of the womb and cervix of the female – they look just like these organs. Today’s research shows that when a woman eats one avocado a week, it balances hormones, sheds unwanted birth weight, and prevents cervical cancers. And how profound is this? It takes exactly nine (9) months to grow an avocado from blossom to ripened fruit. There are over 14,000 photolytic chemical constituents of nutrition in each one of these foods (modern science has only studied and named about 141 of them).

figFigs are full of seeds and hang in twos when they grow. Figs increase the mobility of male sperm and increase the numbers of Sperm as well to overcome male sterility.

potatoSweet Potatoes look like the pancreas and actually balance the glycemic index of diabetics.

oliveOlives assist the health and function of the ovaries

orangeOranges , Grapefruits, and other Citrus fruits look just like the mammary glands of the female and actually assist the health of the breasts and the movement of lymph in and out of the breasts.

onionOnions look like the body’s cells. Today’s research shows onions help clear waste materials from all of the body cells. They even produce tears which wash the epithelial layers of the eyes. A working companion, Garlic, also helps eliminate waste materials and dangerous free radicals from the body