Permanent or Temporary?

Just this morning with my weekly milk delivery I found a little brochure proclaiming that the milk I was holding had NO PERMEATE ADDED.  I have to confess my ignorance as all that flew into my mind was a visual of sitting at the hairdressers in the 80’s with a big contraption over my head and chemicals causing tears to flow.  Given that I have had one and only one ‘perm’ in my life, with the end result being me resembling a show poodle, even my knowledge of this is shaky.  Surely my milk has not become involved in this too? Significant research later reveals that ‘permeate’ is the term used to describe the milk-sugar (lactose) and minerals part of whole or full-cream milk.  As you would expect, cows milk has regional and seasonal differences resulting in varying levels of fat and protein in the milk collected from farms.  The composition of our milk is governed by the Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) Food Standards Code which is considered to be one of the best in the world.  Basically permeate is produced when milk is passed through a fine sieve (ultrafiltration) to separate the lactose, vitamin and mineral components from milk protein.  From here, dairy manufacturers may adjust these components to make various milks such as low fat, high calcium and no fat to meet consumer demands. Under the same Food Standards Code, these components can be added to or withdrawn from milk to standardise the normal variations in fat and protein.  A similar situation occurs with 100% fruit juice as the sweetness of fruit also varies according to the season and the Code allows the addition of a certain amount of sugar to these products. So, no chemicals, heads in buckets or tears in the eye.  Of course, at the moment there are tears in the eyes of many a dairy farmer for a completely different reason.  The ongoing battle of price.  Any thoughts?

Gluttony Glee

Is there a switch in our brains that goes off when we stand in front of a buffet table laden with food?  The switch that turns you into a slobbering dog that needs to taste every little thing in front of you and then some.  Ooohh, I have 1cm left in my massively extended stomach, I think I will just have my tenth piece of cheesecake to make sure it is truly filled up. I don’t like buffets or the all you can eat deals, they make me anxious.  Not because I don’t know what to do (I know all too well) but because the thought of a bloated Christmas style stomach is just too much to bear. A couple of years ago while holidaying in Singapore we booked in to the Ritz Carlton for their super deluxe lunch buffet.  We stayed for 5 hours.  Sure, that does sound excessive but it was completely necessary in order to navigate ones way around the massive room.  I am certainly not proud of my performance that day and I still don’t like to dwell on the delightful feeling that accompanies eating more than your body weight in one sitting. So what to do?  Well, you can choose not to go.  However, if it is unavoidable I like to think of myself as having a laser beam on my head scanning the sumptuous feast.  I do a drive-by of the whole thing to work out what I REALLY want to eat and then snub the rest.  I try really hard to put only little bits of each on my plate and then have a little chat with myself about whether I truly need vs want to go back to get more.  I know this sounds like a little too much psychoanalysis but it really only takes a second and I am a strategy kind of girl. Plus it saves spending the rest of the day lying on the floor rolling around in agony. Anybody got any good anti-gluttony strategies they would like to share?

Keeen-Waaaa

A few days ago  I was having dinner with my dear friends Jude and Dan and whilst solving the problems of the world we hit upon the subject of fancy-pants names.   Have you ever noticed that sometimes things that are out of date suddenly become new, sometimes just with the change to a fancy name? This happened to a suburb of Perth called Balga, that became like new when it was renamed Westminster a few years ago.  To me it conjures up images of the Queen and palaces and is infinitely more poshish.  So I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised to find that a a simple grain that I learn’t about in uni a few years back has had its moniker altered too.  I am referring to good old Quinoa, a crop that originates in South America and was held sacred by the Inca’s, in fact they called it ‘mother of all grains.’  Quinoa is actually a pseudocereal rather than a true cereal or grain and it is closely related to beets, spinach and tumbleweeds. Yum. Quinoa has a very high protein content and like oats, it contains a balanced set of essential amino acids (building blocks of protein) for humans making it an unusually complete protein source in the plant world.  Quinoa is gluten free, a good source of fibre and a source of iron (although the iron is not easy to absorb) and magnesium. My first taste experience with Quinoa was at a picnic on the shores of the the Swan River. It was part of a tabbouli like salad and it was no taste sensation. Thankfully Jude has come to the rescue via a cookbook written by Michelle Bridges of the Biggest Loser fame.  She claims to have found the answer to enjoying Quinoa in the form of Quinoa Porridge with Cranberries and Raisins which I will share with you right now. 3/4 cup quinoa, rinsed and drained 500ml water 375ml low fat milk 1/3 cup dried cranberries and 2 tablespoons raisins 1/4 cup chopped walnuts Combine the quinoa and water in saucepan and bring to the boil.  Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, covered for 10 minutes.  Stir in 1 cup of the milk and the dried fruit and nuts.  Cook, covered, for another for another 10 minutes and then stir in the remaining milk. I will embark upon the porridge this week, complete with a report and would love to know if anybody else gives it a try. So when, Jude and I proposed, did Quinoa become Keeen-Waaaa? Ok, so I am exaggerating a little.  The food is known as quinoa in English but the spelling and pronunciation differs depending on the region in South America.    In some parts it is known as ‘kinwa’ or ‘keen-wah’ or ‘kwi-NOH-a.’  I don’t care, I am sticking to Quinoa.  Its not fancy or trendy but hello, its just a pseudocereal.

Coffee – what about it?

Mini-Byte

Coffee is once again in the news, good news that is. A Swedish study of almost 35 000 women aged 49-83 years who consumed at least one cup and even up to 5 cups of coffee per day were reducing their risk of suffering from stroke by up to 25%. The Swedish researchers do acknowledge that these results are preliminary and further research is required into this area but in the meantime I will continue to enjoy my coffee.

Keeeeen-Waaaa or Quinoa?

A few weeks back I was having dinner with my dear friends Jude and Dan and whilst solving the problems of the world we hit upon the subject of fancy-pants names. Have you ever noticed that sometimes things that are out of date suddenly become new, sometimes just with the change to a fancy name? This happened to a suburb of Perth called Balga, that became like new when it was renamed Westminster a few years ago. To me it conjures up images of the Queen and palaces and is infinitely more poshish. So I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised to find that a a simple grain that I learn’t about in uni a few years back has had its moniker altered too. I am referring to good old Quinoa, a crop that originates in South America and was held sacred by the Inca’s, in fact they called it ‘mother of all grains.’ Quinoa is actually a pseudocereal rather than a true cereal or grain and it is closely related to beets, spinach and tumbleweeds. Yum.

Quinoa has a very high protein content and like oats, it contains a balanced set of essential amino acids (building blocks of protein) for humans making it an unusually complete protein source in the plant world. Quinoa is gluten free, a good source of fibre and a source of iron (although the iron is not easy to absorb) and magnesium.

My first taste experience with Quinoa was at a picnic on the shores of the Swan River. It was part of a tabbouli like salad and it was no taste sensation. Thankfully Jude has come to the rescue via a cookbook written by Michelle Bridges of the Biggest Loser fame. She claims to have found the answer to enjoying Quinoa in the form of Quinoa Porridge (see below).

So when, Jude and I proposed, did Quinoa become Keeen-Waaaa? Ok, so I am exaggerating a little. The food is known as quinoa in English but the spelling and pronunciation differs depending on the region in South America. In some parts it is known as ‘kinwa’ or ‘keen-wah’ or ‘kwi-NOH-a.’ I don’t care, I am sticking to Quinoa. Its not fancy or trendy but hello, its just a pseudocereal.

Recipe of the Month

Quinoa Porridge with Cranberries and Raisins

3/4 cup quinoa, rinsed and drained
500ml water
375ml low fat milk
1/3 cup dried cranberries and 2 tablespoons raisins
1/4 cup chopped walnuts

Combine the quinoa and water in saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, covered for 10 minutes. Stir in 1 cup of the milk and the dried fruit and nuts. Cook, covered, for another for another 10 minutes and then stir in the remaining milk.

We are both trying this together, I’m new to this sensation as well. Let me know how you go.

Don’t be a slave to the scale!

weightloss_-_feet_on_scale

Is it usual for my body weight to be higher at the end of the day in comparison to the beginning?

Yes. Some people find that their body weight differs, sometimes significantly, from morning to night. It is likely that you will be lightest first thing in the morning before breakfast because you have had nothing to eat or drink for several hours. As the day wears on, body fluid may increase due to food or fluid intake and be reflected in an increase on the scales. But this is not permanent and is gone again the following morning. Of course, if you are eating more than you need to on a regular basis, extra weight may become a permanent fixture.

Weighing yourself every five seconds is a great way to make yourself upset. There is no need to weigh yourself more than once per week, really. It gives you a chance to see some real action and not just fluid playing games with you.

Have you heard?

For those of you who are able to listen to talkback radio in the mornings, my segment on 6PR is aired alternate Wednesdays (next on air 30th March) at 10am with Paul Murray. We will be talking about the latest nutrition hot topics and answering listeners questions. Just tune the dial to 882AM………

Have you ever walked through your office around 3pm and noticed your staff gazing into space or getting up close and personal with the desk? Many businesses are surprised to learn that their staff may be productive for only 2 hours each day and certainly not after 3pm. The health and performance of your employees increases your bottom line. Give me a call and I will tell you how.

Finally, don’t forget to check out my Peak Performance Blog – a weekly post about improving your every day health and productivity.
Yours in health and performance,
Julie