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Food as a medicine: Real food challenge

Interestingly as I am reading in one book about all the medicinal values in many of our everyday food, and the benefits of the herbs we use in our cooking. I am also following the 30 Day Real Food Challenge, which is a gorgeous 30 day menu put together – it’s uber healthy, detoxifying and leaves you and your body feeling so amazing. It also has the most scrumptious recipes you can imagine, so I dislike calling it a diet or detox perse as that makes it sound like a chore or even worse a burden. When actually it’s a complete treat, it is really best for our bodies, and the way they function to step away from the processed food and relearn some of the many new ways we can cook fresh food, and how much a few herbs or different recipes can enhance the flavours, tastes and even change the palate.

Some of the simplest foods in our cupboards have at times surprising magical qualities. Did you know that Rosemary has always been known to improve memory and mental clarity, and hence the ancient Roman students would wear it around their neck or rub their hands with it on the way to their exams. Cinnamon is not only deliciously tasting and smelling, it is also an antiseptic, stimulates your circulation and balances your blood sugar. Turmeric is being declared a new superfood for its powers as a digestive tonic, anti-inflammatory and in how it supports our immune system. The list is actually pretty endless if I noted down all the qualities of all the fresh foods and herbs we’d both be here all day – it is incredible though, and this these hidden benefits is not going to be found in a can of spam or baked beans…..

I’d like challenge you to try do the 30 day real food challenge, the menu plan, shopping list and recipes can be found here. And see how much healthier, clearer (in mental clarity), fitter and more energized you feel after 30 days.

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Creativity = Sanity

Life can get a little crazy, endless time spent behind your computer, working, thinking bills, rent, moving, shopping, organising, chores etc.  Yet life/ soul/ spirit I fully believe also needs some time to play, this isn’t something reserved for kids – as adults we think of play or downtime as just running on the treadmill or plonking down in front of the TV, maybe even take a walk on the wild-side and head out to the pub or restaurant.  Creativity, play and ‘letting your imagination run loose’ rarely if ever makes it on to one’s agenda or to do list.

Eucalyptus Leaf print

Eucalyptus Leaf print

Yet it’s so healing, it’s freeing and incredibly satisfying. This last week I’ve spent hours working on everything so I took yesterday off to just play.  I finished the top I’d been sewing and a crochet hat. I went foraging for leaves to do some eco-dying on silk – which turned out brilliantly, while foraging I took the camera out and took some photo of the amazing Eucalyptus flowers that I’d been meaning to get on film for over a week. The leaves and plants inspire me, and hence I also used some of them to dye my apron.   I finished the new label for my body oil, and made a new batch that was just for me (yes, I have the luxury of having an extra large jar just for me :)), and I made a lovely detoxing; Comfrey, Burdock, St. Johns Wort infusion to drink over the next week.  Am doing the 30 day real food challenge, going into week 3, and could do with some extra tonic support.

Leaves with inkodye

Leaves with inkodye

So at the end of extremely relaxed, chilled day, I have a new top, a gift for a friend’s child, a apron, some captured moments on film, so lovely eco-dyed silk which I am going to make into t-shirts/ tops, some luxurious body oil, and a detoxifying elixir.

I can’t recommend enough making some time in your life to just play, have fun, let your imagination run wild, spend some quality time in nature – be creative, and your life will be all the more richer for it.

And in the words of Robin Rose Bennett;

“It is within your power to make your life more magical. Let yourself think magically. Symbolically. Metaphorically. Loosen up and let the boundaries between mundane and magical living become thinner. Invite yourself to see like an artist, to think like a poet’.

If your interested in trying any of the above check out:
Eco-Dying: I recommend India Flint and her book Second Skin: Choosing and Caring for Textiles and Clothing, which is incredibly inspiring, she has fabulous workshops worldwide. Check out her blog here.

Inkodye: Sun Dying ink

Infusion & Healing Herbs, recommend Robin Rose Bennett’s book The Gift of Healing Herbs: Plant Medicines and Home Remedies for a Vibrantly Healthy Life , I made my own blend, however she has endlessly yummy useful recipes and detailed explanation in her book.

Top: One-Piece Wearables: 25 Chic Garments and Accessories to Sew from Single Pattern Pieces (Domestic Arts for Crafty Girls) , has some great – easy to make patterns from just one piece of fabric.

30 Day real food Challenge. Highly recommend this, it’s the second time I am doing it, and so love the recipes, the food, and how I am feeling even after the first and second weeks. The benefit is the boosted health, energy and loss of any excessive fat.