Welcome to our Natural Bathroom: it’s all about makeup and skincare!

ournatural bathroom

In the last Our Natural Bath blog: The Theme is Clean we showed you all the ways we naturally clean in the bathroom; ourselves and the room itself. This time ’round we’re talking all things natural skincare and cosmetics!

Women often ask me what natural makeup I use so I’m excited to finally be talking about it! Included too is what modern caveman Clint uses, so there’s something here for both the ladies and the gents!

Let me just point out.. how fricken hard it is to find natural cosmetics on the market that are not sell-a-kidney kind of expensive and natural body products that contain ingredients we can actually understand when reading the list on the label! Shopping for these items is a nightmare! Am I right or am I right?!

It certainly has been challenging for me on this journey to natural health and wellness to transition over to natural skincare. It’s been the last of my paleo lifestyle standard-to-healthier changes because 1. the cost involved and 2. the difficulty in sourcing products that actually work well

I will admit right here right now that my makeup items are still not 100% natural. I have a selection of eyeshadows that aren’t even close to being natural, but I use them very rarely. And a couple other products I think are semi-natural; not quite what I want but better than the standard chemical alternatives I used to use. The main thing for me is.. MOST of the makeup I use is natural and good quality. The rest of what I use on my skin definitely is, so I’m in the right direction I think!

Skincare, I think, is easier to get a hang of than makeup. Looking for “natural” is so overwhelming because there’s just so many products in stores and online claiming to be natural when in fact they’re not. Or the ingredients are ‘derived’ from natural sources but after all the processing and manipulating, are barely a resemblance to their original state. Plus, so many products have so many ingredients! Have you noticed? You’re reading the label of a moisturiser product on the shelf in your local health food store and can’t fathom why there needs to be 30+ ingredients just to moisten skin?! I find that a little crazy and unnecessary to be honest.

But.. when I decided I wanted to go more ‘Paleo‘ when it came to what I put on my skin, I found the process of choosing products and concoctions so much easier. I thought to myself.. “if I don’t want to put  grains into my body, why would I want to put grain oils on my body?” and this concept has really worked for me. Instead of simply looking for ‘natural’ and ‘organic’ options (which can be so full of so many ingredients they still cause nasty reactions and symptoms or just don’t work at all) I started looking for paleo-friendly ingredients.

Basically, I’m looking for oils, fats, and other ingredients that could be classed as “Paleo”. This leaves out a whole stack of natural products on the market but it suits me better because I’ve found paleo-friendly products have very few ingredients, which I really like.

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My makeup tray

With most of my skincare, I stopped buying actual products almost all-together. Instead I use plain oils. Oils I had in the kitchen! Seriously! Olive oil, coconut oil.. so many edible oils are great used topically.  I mentioned in the last blog how I use olive oil to remove makeup from my face every night, well I also use the same jar of it as my arms and legs moisturiser! I did start out using coconut oil, because alllll the natural wellness blogs and social media allllways rave about how coconut oil is the answer for eeeeevery health condition under the sun and has a zillion uses… ok that’s a slight exaggeration but you get my point here. We’re basically being told to put coconut oil on everything.

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So I used it as a makeup remover, moisturiser, hair gel, everything. But with my skin, I found it to be too greasy. It didn’t absorb in well enough, it would immediately rub off onto things I touched and my skin would feel dry again before the end of the day.

I tried olive oil instead, because if you do a bit of searching on the internet you’ll find out it’s pretty much just as useful as coconut oil! I use a Coles brand organic olive oil in the kitchen and in the bathroom, just in a jar. I don’t need to use it on my arms and legs during Summer, but I do all Winter because of the dry weather.

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The ONLY moisturiser I do buy is the Ecology Skincare range. Why do I bother when I already use oils that are so inexpensive? Because it’s one of the only paleo-friendly products on the market and it’s absolutely AMAZING!

Based on grass-fed beef tallow, which is really similar to our skin, these tubs of fluffy, creamy, soft, delicious-smelling moisturiser are just heavenly. Clint and I both use them! Clint suffers from dryness under his beard because of gut issues (which he is sorting out, don’t worry) and finds Ecology really helps reduce redness, dryness and itchiness. Especially when he’s trimmed his beard, the skin seems to get really irritated by that and becomes really red and sore very quickly. So he  puts some Ecology cream on and it helps a lot.

We’ve been trying the new Pete Evans range lately too and are happy to report they are just as good as the original range Crystal makes! We prefer the scents of the originals, but as moisturisers, they are on par.

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My non-makeup skincare collection

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Ecology Skincare creams are really fluffy and soft

Oh and I also use Ecology Skincare on my lips at night! I used to use Paw Paw cream until, as with many products I used to use, I found out it’s incredibly toxic and stopped using it.

In the mornings after my shower I like to apply a few drops of Kosmea rosehip oil to my face. I have bad skin, I always have, due to my chronic health issues. So the blotchiness and scarring is quite bad and I’m trying to minimise it as much as possible. I used to use Bio Oil every day, for a few years, until I read how toxic it is. Oops. But then I stopped using it and switched to rosehip oil. I’ve tried a few brands, cheaper options, but this brand is by far my favourite because it definitely works well. It’s also great for stretch marks.

That sponge-ish looking thing in the image above is a new foot scrubber I’ve been trying out. It’s a SAFIX brand and made from coconut fibre. I find it way too scratchy on my arms and legs but it works well on knees and feet for exfoliating. Being barefoot 95% of the time my feet are pretty nice but sometimes it’s handy to exfoliate, especially my knees due to Winter dryness.

I don’t use anything to exfoliate my face apart from a wet face washer while in the shower.

As for deodorant.. that’s another tricky one for many people. Natural options have been on the market for a long time, but really, has anyone ever found those crystals to actually work?! I don’t know anyone who has and they never have for me! I use the same principle with deodorant as I do with moisturisers.. I look for paleo-friendly products that have few ingredients and actually work.

 

The reason for going natural in the pit region is mainly to avoid using aluminium there which is in all standard deodorants on the market. But again, many of the natural varieties are full of confusingly-named ingredients or contain a whole bunch of things I just don’t think I need on my skin.

The only product I’ve tried that contains minimal ingredients, is Paleo and works extremely well is Simple Chemistry. Erika from Brisbane makes terrific deodorants, we both love using them. But recently I decided to try making my own as an experiment. I’ve just melted together aluminium-free bicarb soda, arrowroot powder, coconut oil and lemon essential oil. It works really well, but it’s grainer than Erika’s products, so I prefer hers!

There’s loads of websites with DIY options but my advice is to remember to buy the bicarb that doesn’t contain any aluminium, as if it’s a brand that does, it may cause a reaction to your skin.

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Mineral makeup combo. Terrible lighting in the bathroom made for a terrible photo.. sorry!!

Makeup I don’t use the paleo-friendly concept with, it’s too hard to even worry about that, I just want as natural as possible.

Foundation and concealer are what I use the most of so I want them to be natural and safe. I’ve tried a few brands, including Nude by Nature which I don’t think is totally natural but it was affordable for me for a long time. And it worked well!

Now I use a combination of 2 shades of Claytime foundation powders mixed with, wait for it… olive oil! Yes, yet another use for olive oil! haha

I get a lot of sun now, with no sunscreen on, so in Summer my skin colour darkens and in Winter, even though I still do get lots of sun the UV is lower so my skin lightens up a bit. So to ensure I can get my makeup to match my skin tone (and there’s nothing worse than a lady wearing totally the wrong makeup tone for her skin) I mix my own colour! I use a light shade powder and a darker one, mostly the darker one now that my skin is tanned, shaken into a spare tub I had, then I add a few drops of olive oil and stir to get the right consistency. I always check it on my face and adjust as I need. Claytime and olive oil together give me excellent coverage (I often get complimented on how nice my skin is!), the tubs are not expensive to buy, and even though I’m doing some work to get the foundation created, it doesn’t take long at all.

To make concealer I just use a bit of the lighter powder in the lid of the foundation mixture tub and some of the foundation, to give me a slightly lighter – but too much – mixture to then dab onto the spots I have on my face and for under my eyes.

I’ve tried other brands as well, and am a big fan of Eco Minerals. Nourished Life is a great website with a few brands to choose from. When buying natural foundation and concealer, look for mineral makeup but do some research as to how natural they really are. I’ve heard stories of ladies stopping to use those pop-up consmetic brand stores in shopping centres, advertising ‘mineral’ and ‘natural’ makeup then asking to look at the ingredients to find out they are not at all totally natural. So be careful and do some research!

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With my eye colours, I’m a natural-look kinda gal, opting mostly for brown and black shades so I don’t buy a lot of different eyeshadows. Plus when you’re buying mineral options you’ll notice there aren’t anywhere near as many colours available as with regular options.

I use Claytime (brown, black and light purple) as well as Nude by Nature (browns and a cream colour) eyeshadows, Claytime black mascara (which I LOVE!), Claytime brushes plus a packet of regular plastic (not at all natural) eyeshadow pads, and very-not-natural eyeliner pencils. I’m yet to be able to afford quality pencils, they are just so expensive and unfortunately Claytime don’t make any 😦 I figure though because I only use them on the edge of my lids, it’s not much and can’t be doing too much damage to my health.

My eyebrows are brown but lighten really easily from the sun, so I like to define them using the Nude by Nature dark brown eyeshadow I have. You can see below the difference it makes!

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Right side eyebrow is without colouring. Right side eyelid has the Claytime black eyeshadow

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Claytime brown eyeshadow gives a nice soft colouring which I usually define more with the brown pencil

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The Claytime mascara applies really well and gives me the amount of definition I like

Most of the time I use an Eco Minerals bronzer powder as my blush, because it’s a nice colour on me and a quality product.  I also own a pink Claytime tub and darker pink Nude by Nature which I rarely use. The brush came in the set of Claytime natural brushes.

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Eco Minerals bronzer. I shake a little into the lid then lightly dab my brush into it

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The Eco Minerals bronzer gives a nice colour and contour to my cheeks

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The Claytime pink blush is nice and subtle. It’s what I use when I’m wearing a ‘pretty’ outfit

I think that’s about all we use as far as skincare and makeup goes! As you can see, I’m not totally there with 100% natural but I’m very close and that suits me at the moment 🙂

What natural products and DIY do you use? I’d love to know!

Stay tuned for the next instalment of Our Natural Bathroom! It might be about our oral health and we think you’ll find it pretty interesting actually.. 😉

Bye for now!

Aimee x

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Become a Movement Hunter

Movement.  It’s what we have a brain for and it’s fundamentally who we are.

Without movement we’re dead.

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And with very little good movement and so much time spent being sedentary and in poor posture, we’re sick, injured, sore and tired.

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So, if this is the case, why do so many people have such a hard time getting movement into their day and week?  Why is the world around us setting us up with opportunities and means to do less movement than ever before?  One thing I know for sure is it’s making us sicker and weaker.  Sure our overall life expectancy has risen, humans are living longer, but what kind of life is it if we struggle to move our body in the most basic of ways?  I’ve decided I am definitely not going to go down the path of limited movement and becoming decrepit when I’m in my older years.  I’ve made a conscious choice to  take control of my life and become a “movement hunter”.

A movement hunter is someone who actively seeks out opportunities to move, compared with  most humans who let modern comforts and laziness rule.

Every single person living right now has the opportunity to become a movement hunter!

Most people today have limited movement opportunities throughout their day and think that movement needs to be in the form of exercise to be effective and drive results in the improvement of health and fitness. For example, it’s a general belief that 30 mins gym time a day is required, or 20 mins a few times a week at home performing pushups, crunches and following a workout DVD is essential, or that going for a 40 minute run with the heart rate being in a particular range is the key to good fitness and weight. These people are stuck inside a box and these perceptions are flawed and limiting.

It’s sad humans nowadays need to make an effort to seek out general and truly beneficial movement, but it’s just how it is. And more people need to be aware of this.

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So many of us as adults are lacking imagination and creativity because of our lazy lifestyles and how quick and easy we access what we want to have thanks to the internet and modern comforts. But it really doesn’t take much searching to find more ways to enjoy more mindful movement in our day!

The best thing about becoming a movement hunter is that you open your eyes up to the endless movement possibilities.  Really the only limit to movement is your imagination and the more movement you do now, the better off you’ll be in the long run.  So allowing yourself to generate curiosity, imagination and creativity when it comes to movement, which may feel kind of  challenging at first, will be worth the effort later on.

Becoming a movement hunter really isn’t a hard task, but it may cause some minor inconvenience and may slow you down a little. But is that really such a bad thing in such a fast-paced world? We think not!

For a year or so now, Aimee and I have been seeking ways to gain more movement within our day-to-day lives on top of the times we set aside specifically for play and natural movement sessions.

Some of the ways we’ve adopted the movement hunter lifestyle include:-

  • Sitting on the floor more often and sitting on the lounge less often. Sitting on the floor forces our bodies to change positions frequently as floor sitting can become uncomfortable quicky. Removing the ‘prop’ allows our body to give us accurate feedback and signals of when adjustments need to be made. We’re not relying on the comfort of a lounge to do all the work for us, our muscles, joints and mind are getting a workout while we sit on the floor, and the muscles, joints and mind benefit greatly from that!

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  • Sleeping on a thin mattress on the floor. This makes us get up from a lying down position instead of just putting our feet down onto the floor. It means our joints are getting more full-range movements and we’re more capable humans because we can easily get from lying down to standing whenever we need or want to.

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  • Walking to the shops instead of driving. We often leave the car at home and walk to the grocery store, markets and butcher. This allows us to get the benefits of walking, fresh air, good conversation time and we see and experience more because there’s always something interesting to see when out and about!
  • Adding to that one.. we carry a basket at the shops instead of using a shopping trolley, then carry our groceries home in eco-bags.

Healthy-Shopping bags

  • Putting the washing basket on the ground outside while hanging wet washing instead of on a trolley at waist height. This makes us have to bend down to pick clothes up so we get a full range of movement in from such a low position to then high when reaching to peg washing to the line.
  • Placing pieces of string between door frames, forcing us to step over each time we want to enter and exit the rooms. This stepping over motion is great for the hip joint, lower back, ankles, knees, basically the entire lower body, as well as the brain because we have to stop and think about it each time. The brain like this!

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  • And just for fun and as an experiment… placing pieces of string between walkways to then be able to crawl under to get to where we want to go. We did this recently for a week in the lounge room so every time we wanted to get to the lounge area we had no choice but to crawl. It wasn’t the most convenient method of getting more movement but it was challenging, enjoyable and beneficial. We’re going to use this tool as a sometimes option, taking it down when we want to but making a conscious effort to place it back up and crawl regularly.

crawling 1 crawling 2

As you can see adopting a movment hunter attitude is really easy to implement. There are many more ways in which you can do it other than the ideas we’ve mentioned above, you just need to switch that creativity on in your brain, get it working and come up with some ways you can add more functional movement into your own life.

One of movement ‘gurus’ we look up to and greatly respect, Rafe Kelley, coincidentally, posted a video to his Facebook page while I was writing this blog post, about this very same topic. Talk about timing! Watch here for more inspiration on how to add more movement to your day

The challenge though is to stick with it.  After time these adjustments will become second nature, if you let them.

Don’t become/stay a slave to laziness and the negative effects too much comfort can have. Hunt some more movement, enjoy the journey and reap the benefits!

If you decide to become a movement hunter I’d love to hear about it!  Please share any photos on our Facebook page or tag us in Instagram!

 

Thanks for reading!

Clint

 

Recipe: Paleo Meatballs & Veggies with Noodles 2-Ways

I don’t always consume nightshades because I have a bit of sensitivity to them, so I often enjoy creating variety with meals totally leaving out tomato, chilli, garlic, paprika.. basically all the good stuff lol and finding flavour without those common flavour options.

As most of you know, I also like to create meals that are quick, easy and super healthy. Sometimes my creative moments actually work out well and the other night was one of those occasions when I created a new meat and veg dish that got double thumbs up from Clint, woo! AND it made 4 meals worth in one go, bonus!

I decided to make meatballs, a non-tomato sauce and have some noodles… and I created Meatballs and Veggies with Noodles 2-Ways – delicious, super healthy, really easy to make, a total win!

Here’s the basic recipe I created but feel free to play around with it and make it work best for you and your family 🙂

Pumpkin Sauce Meatballs meal

MEATBALLS & VEGGIES WITH NOODLES 2-WAYS

Makes 4 serves

You’ll need:

500g mince (I used turkey, you could use chicken, lamb, beef etc)

1 cup pumpkin, peeled and diced

1/2 cup bone broth (grab our free e-book here if you don’t already know about bone broth)

1 large brown onion, peeled and finely chopped

2 large carrots (peel if not organic), finely chopped

Fat/oil for cooking in (I use rendered grass-fed animal fat, ghee or coconut oil)

2-4 tsp each of cumin powder, coriander powder and turmeric powder

Himalayan salt, pepper to taste

1 large zucchini, ‘zoodled’ using a noodle machine of some kind, or just peeled into long narrow strips

Optional: 1 packet konjac ‘Spaghetti’ noodles (available from supermarkets and health food stores) (I used these because Clint’s not a fan of a lot of zoodles, and these have great texture, more like ‘real’ noodles)

 

Do this:

  1. Make small balls with the mince, by rolling around even amounts into balls in your hands
  2. Heat a large fry pan to medium temp and add the fat/oil, carrot and onion. Place the meatballs in then put the lid on and allow to cook through
  3. In a medium saucepan of boiling water add the pumpkin and allow to book completely through so when you pierce a piece with a knife it easily cuts through. Strain the water and place pumpkin in a food processor or blender
  4. Add the spices, salt, pepper and bone broth to the pumpkin mix and blitz until totally combined and there are no more chunks. It won’t take long to become a sauce
  5. Pour the sauce into the frypan with the veggies and meatballs, carefully stir, place the lid back on and allow to cook for a couple of minutes
  6. Place noodles on plate or in a bowl ready then when the frypan mixture is ready (the sauce should be a little thicker, the meatballs are cooked through, the carrot and onion are soft) spoon it on top of the noodles
  7. Done! Easy!

This made 4 serves so Clint had lunch ready for work the next day, it’s fine to have cold, and I had my dinner sorted for the next night. Yay!

Pumpkin Sauce Meatballs meal 2

Kids will love this  because pumpkin gives sweetness, noodles and meatballs are fun and it’s a bright coloured dish!

It’s so healthy because it’s jam-packed full of nourishing veggies, a little bit of meat, the bone broth contains gelatin and essential minerals, the turmeric is anti-inflammatory and the fat in there balances it all out nicely.

You could add some coconut amino (with or without chilli and garlic in it) to the sauce to give it a flavour boost. You could use different noodles. You can add different herbs and spices. This recipe is so versatile!

Enjoy! Please let me know how you go and how this idea helps you in the kitchen!

Aimee x

 

5 Things I’m Grateful For Today:

  1. a fun day cooking with a friend
  2. a really fun Primal Fitness Class yesterday
  3. the Daniel Vitalis sleep podcast I listened to while writing this
  4. going for nice walks at sunrise
  5. walking barefoot everywhere and how good it feels

 

Good health takes more than popping a supposed magic pill

I often say that the easier we can obtain things we want in life and all the ways we can receive instant gratification these days is making us sicker, weaker and less likely to set and achieve long-term goals.  It’s something I’ve experienced personally and know that quite often it can lead to people setting unrealistic expectations because we generally expect a certain level of results right away.

Our lives are filled with so many time-saving gadgets, plans and devices – apparently all aimed at helping improve our health, work situations, fitness levels, mindset and happiness and our relationships. But at the end of the day, by using these tools are we really saving ourselves time, or just setting ourselves up for a more miserable existence in the future?

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One thing I’ve become mindful of with my own health and fitness goals is the importance of resisting the urge to seek the quick fix or the easy answer.  Sure I could go out and exercise my guts out every day at a gym filled with unnatural equipment, count steps I walk using a pedometer, record calories I eat using a phone app and possibly then get the results to help me fit the look of the stereotypical Personal Trainer image, but at what cost to my physical and emotional well-being?  A broken down body, adrenal issues and appearance hang-ups?  No thanks.

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Instead, I now focus my sights on my long-term health, fitness and happiness. Achieving my goals in a slower but more sustainable and less stressful (mentally and physically) way.   The hard work I put in now, over a longer period of time (by hard work I mean taking things slower, honouring what my body wants and needs in the form of exercise, nutrition and mindset) will ensure my health and fitness levels will stay at a higher level well into my future and I’m less likely to have really high ups and crazy low low’s (or “yo-yo living” as I like to call it) across all aspects of my lifestyle.

Instead of seeking the quick fixes and overnight results for health and wellness problems that probably didn’t come about as quickly as overnight, let’s look at the big picture, take our time and set and achieve goals in a more long-term manner.

short-term-long-term-goals

Part of our vision at Primal Influence is to encourage people to look at their long-term health and fitness as a journey, not a destination.  You are in this very point in your life right now because of the actions, or lack of actions, you have taken in your past right up to now.

long-term-goals

To celebrate our Facebook page hitting 3000 likes recently, quite a milestone for all the hard work we’ve put into our social media platforms, we’ve decided to launch a big competition! This competition won’t be for everybody, because it will require a bit of effort to enter, but that’s exactly why we’ve set it up that way! We want the person who wins this comp show us that they are willing to put a little bit of work in for long term success!

Is this person you? Do you want to better health, wellness and fitness without taking a magic pill? Are you ready to take your health to the next level and on a more interesting, fulfilling and enjoyable journey?  Then our PRIMAL WELLNESS PACKAGE competition might just be for you!

Sunny Coasters have the chance to win a great prize aimed at achieving and maintaining long-term health and happiness…

WIN (2)

Enter via our website here and GOOD LUCK!

Clint

Health & Fitness Coach | MovNat Trainer

 

The glutes: a holistic approach to strengthening them

“Gluteus maximus is the largest of the gluteal muscles. The general functions of the muscle are believed to be extension of the hip, adduction, and external rotation. There is also evidence pointing to the significant role of glute max in force closure or compression stabilization of the SI joint. While there is some debate in the medical literature of the role of glute max, it is fairly obvious it is an important hip stabilizer.” -Breaking Muscle

glutes

At the Aware Relaxed Connected workshop on Sunday, hosted by one of our mentors and friend Craig Mallett, we learnt a terrific glute activation technique. Yes, there are a lot of them out there; any physio, chiro or PT will have half a dozen you can do on your lounge room floor. And that’s great. And we’ve been given and tried many ourselves over our years within the health and fitness industry as both coaches and also as clients/patients.

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What we liked about Craig’s approach on the weekend though was the truly holistic (whole-istic) perspective. Instead of just lying down to perform a select few leg raising exercises, or some standing up, Craig explained the usefulness and true functionality of activating the glute muscles in ALL movements and angles. From getting up off of the floor in all different ways, standing upright and bending in different directions, to walking up and down stairs. Why set limits?

That was the theme of the day really… move well in ALL directions. Be a ‘generalist’ with movement. Adapt to different positions, angles, heights, environments so you can better handle being in different positions when needed, or when you want to. This really blew our minds! By the end of the day we were happily overwhelmed with this new (but not really ‘new’) concept and have been incorporating this idea into our everyday lives ever since.

So anyway, back to the glute relevance!

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The workshop started with us practising glute activation in all sorts of different positions, heights and movements. We want to share a couple of them with you guys that you can easily start implementing and hopefully benefit from.

SOME GLUTE ACTIVATION IDEAS FOR YOU TO TRY:

Standing position with straight back: bend knees slightly, keep back straight, lean forwards bringing your chest toward the ground. When you feel your butt is at full stretch stop. Then, concentrating, squeeze or ‘turn them on’ and as you continue to keep them switched on, slowly raise your torso back to standing position but take it slightly further by pushing your pelvis forward to finish. Repeat this 10-20 times to get the hang of it.

 

Standing position different angles: this is similar to the previous movement but instead bend the knees at different angles, feel the stretch in one or both glutes and stand to upright position squeezing them the whole time. Play around with every possible angle you can come up with, including a rounded back.

 

Standing from sitting on the ground: sit on the floor/ground in all different positions, activate your glutes as much as possible in each position, then get to standing position keeping the glutes on the entire time. This is a tricky one and takes a lot of concentration (which the brain likes because the brain and body work best together, not separately).

 

Step ups: this one you can do with stairs in your home (we often use 2 at a time to get the full glute stretch) or anything stable you can step up and down with. Simply place one foot up on the step, concentrate on squeezing that glute and stand upright keeping it squeezed the entire time. Do this a few times on one leg then swap to the other leg. Then play around with different foot positions and knee angles. If you automatically step up with your knee facing inward, try breaking that habit and step up with it outward a few times. Change the step height when you can and vary this movement up as much as possible.

 

Easy peasy!

We’ve been making a conscious effort to do these at home. It’s hard, they’re not something we were doing previously so to add the movements into our day has taken some mental effort. But even when we think of it sometimes and just do a few standing with straight back, or we remember to stand up with glutes on from sitting on the floor watching TV, then that’s something. And that’s all you need to do. Practice as many of these as you can manage and you’ll be doing your body some good. Especially your pelvic stabilisation, which is so important.

Remember to check out Craig’s website Aware Relaxed Connected for lots of great resources, grab the current videos on the Tutorials page and check back regularly for new videos. We urge you to spend a few bucks on them and benefit from the content. All the money Craig receives from the purchase of videos and workshop attendance goes toward him learning more from his own mentors and teachers. Eventually that seeps back to all of us.. so it’s really a positive cycle!

Let us know if you have any questions and have fun with your new movements!

Clint & Aimee

 

5 things we’re grateful for today:

  1. Attending Craig’s brilliant workshop last weekend
  2. Forest play time
  3. Meeting new lovely people at all of our recent free library talks
  4. You guys reading our blog posts!
  5. All the cherry tomatoes we’ve been picking from our container garden lately

This blog pro­vides gen­eral infor­ma­tion and dis­cus­sion about med­i­cine, health and related sub­jects.  The words and other con­tent pro­vided in this blog, and in any linked mate­ri­als, are not intended and should not be con­strued as med­ical advice. If the reader or any other per­son has a med­ical con­cern, he or she should con­sult with an appropriately-licensed physi­cian or other health care worker.

Never dis­re­gard pro­fes­sional med­ical advice or delay in seek­ing it because of some­thing you have read on this blog or in any linked materials. If you think you may have a med­ical emer­gency, call your doc­tor or 000 immediately.

The views expressed on this blog and web­site have no rela­tion to those of any academic, hospital, practice or other insti­tu­tion with which the authors are  affiliated.

 

Recipes: Jelly + Jaffa Panna Cotta

The Sunshine Coast Real Food Festival on the weekend was fantastic! We were thrilled to be a stallholder and even more so that I was invited to do a Gelatin Cooking Demo as well. What an opportunity!

Yesterday I showed a group of about 40 people how to make Orange Juice Jelly, and Jaffa Panna Cotta – 2 of my favourite gelatin dishes.

aimee demo 1

Not only are they healing and nourishing for the body, but also easy and affordable to make  and delicious! What could be better?!

I promised the attendees I’d provide the recipes for these, so here they are…

JUICE JELLY

Fruit jelly in the glass bowl toped with fresh fruit.

You’ll Need:

2 cups organic juice (pulp-free, or not if you want fruit/seed texture)

1-2 tbsp pure beef gelatin powder (depending on how wobbly or firm you want it)

Optional: raw honey or other healthy liquid sweetener (I love Hello Honey Australia honey, it’s beautiful!)

Do this:

1.  Pour juice into a medium-large saucepan sitting on the stove, but without turning the stove on

2. GENTLY and SLOWLY sprinkle gelatin powder, from the tablespoon, evenly over the surface of the juice

3. Let it soften for a couple of minutes until gelatin becomes translucent from absorbing the liquid. This process is called ‘blooming’. The thicker the liquid being used, the more of a ‘brainy’ effect will occur!

blooming

4. Once all the gelatin seems to have softened turn the stove to a medium-high heat and grab a whisk or fork ready to stir and finish dissolving the gelatin granules as the liquid heats up

5. The gelatin won’t take long at all to finish dissolving. Once it has, remove saucepan from the heat and either pour through a strainer if you think you ended up with some clumps of gelatin, or straight into a container. If making jelly cups for a party, pour into those. If just making a batch of jelly to take serving sizes from later, pour into a large container (glass is  best)

6. Place in the fridge to set over a few hours. The smaller the container/s, the quicker the setting process will take, and it’ll depend on how cold your fridge is also.

7. If making jelly cups, pretty-them-up a bit by adding grated or diced fresh fruit and/or a dollop of pure Ayam coconut cream to the top as a garnish and for added flavour and texture

Jelly cups are perfect for school and work lunchboxes and jelly in general is a terrific snack or with part of a main meal. I actually have banana jelly for brekkie every morning along with an egg yolk and some grass-fed lamb or beef mince.

To make fruit jelly simply bloom the 1-2 tbsp to 2 tbsp water (instead of the juice as per recipe above) in a saucepan. Follow blooming and dissolving process then pour into a blender with fruit (banana works great) and set in the fridge as you normally would. Easy! Banana jelly does go brown in the fridge but the soft fluffy texture and taste are not compromised.

To make lollies: simply use 2 cups of liquid to 4 tbsp gelatin powder!

JAFFA PANNA COTTA

IMG_20150308_172227

You’ll Need:

1 tsp – 1 tbsp pure beef gelatin powder (depending on how wobbly or firm you like your panna cotta)

400ml 100% pure coconut milk (or cream if you want a thicker, richer result. I use the Ayam brand)

2 tbsp pure organic cocoa powder

2-4 tbsp raw honey (depending on how sweet you want it) (I love Hello Honey Australia honey, it’s beautiful!)

Rind of 1 orange, keep some aside for garnish

½ tsp pure vanilla essence

Do this:

1. In a small or medium saucepan add 1 cup of coconut milk, orange rind, cocoa, honey and vanilla

2. Whisk to combine

3. Turn the heat off JUST BEFORE the mixture bubbles then leave there for the flavours to infuse

4. In a shallow container add the remaining coconut milk

5. Using a spoon to gently sprinkle the gelatin powder on top of the coconut milk, aim for an even layer completely covering the surface of the milk. This method is called ‘blooming’

6. Let the gelatin mixture rest for about 10 minutes. In this time the mixture on the stove would have infused

7. After 5-10 minutes, heat the mixture on the stove again being careful to not let it bubble, as with before

8. Remove it from the heat and whisk the gelatin mixture into the warmed mixture

9. Once it’s completely combined, pour through a strainer into a large container or individual serving containers then place in the fridge to set

10. It will take 2-3 hours to set depending on how cold your fridge is and size of panna cotta. Cups will take less time than one big container full.

11. Once it’s set, use a knife or spatula to scrape around the edges to make it easier to remove then turn the container/s upside down onto a serving plate until set panna cotta comes out. It has a jelly/pudding-like consistency so it should come out with no breakage if it’s set properly

Alternative you could serve it still in the containers

12. Garnish with remaining orange rind then serve!

There you go, 2 really healthy and easy sweet dishes for you to make and enjoy!

If you live on the Sunshine Coast feel free to grab some of the ingredients from our Primal Pantry catalogue – pretty much all are less than RRP and absolutely all are quality.

If you’d like to grab ALL of my gelatin recipes you can purchase the Sweet Goodness with Gelatin e-book, which contains everything I know about gelatin and all the sweet recipes you’ll ever need so you can make any recipe you come across online, and be creative with flavour combinations for the techniques you’ll learn.

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The Paleo Kitchen Creations e-book Dan the Aussie Paleo Chef and I created together also has an amazing melting cheese recipe using gelatin and doesn’t contain any dairy or nuts. It’s incredible!

Aimee and Dan ebook 1

To learn to make loads of other healthy, easy and affordable paleo-friendly dishes book in for a private cooking workshop with me! They are always a lot of fun 🙂

Please let me know if you have any questions about gelatin or paleo living in general feel free to get in touch, I’d love to hear from you!

If you were at the demo yesterday.. thank you for coming and I hope you enjoyed it!

Aimee x

5 Things I’m Grateful For:

1.A fabulous weekend at the Real Food Festival

2.Educating people on the health benefits of gelatin

3.Primal Fitness Class on today, because I can’t wait to play!

4.Roast veggies because they’re just so easy and delicious

5.Forest play time

Forest Therapy: using nature to heal the body and the mind

On Sunday we held our second Forest Therapy Workshop, this time in the Mapleton Falls National Park. It was just me, Aimee was still a bit unwell (yes, Forest Therapy probably would have helped!), and I met with 4 lovely ladies at 9am, all eager to go for a relaxing and rejuvenating walk through the bush.

 

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I see a tree like this and of course I’m going to climb it!

 

What exactly is Forest Therapy anyway?

Forest bathing

Taking a walk in a forest, or “forest bathing” as it’s often called, can have some amazing effects on our mind and body. The scientifically proven benefits of Forest Therapy include:
• Lowers blood pressure
• Lowers pulse rate
• Reduces cortisol levels
• Increases vigour
• Reduces anger
• Reduces depression

 
From a personal experience making Shinrin-Yoku part of our weekly practice we’ve noticed:
• Deeper and clearer intuition
• Increased flow of energy
• Increased capacity to communicate with the land and its species
• Increased flow of life force
• Deepening of friendships
• Overall increase in sense of happiness

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Remember to look up! The view upward to the canopy is something special

Miyazaki of China University said forests gratify the five senses by providing the sounds of birds, cool air, green leaves, the touch of trees, wild plants and grasses. “The atmosphere of forests makes people calm” he said. Based on studies on the effects of forests, the public and private sectors are now promoting forest therapy.

 

Stuck in the office and can’t get outside? Even looking at a picture of a forest has been linked to reducing blood pressure, stress and improving cognitive performance. So one tip is to bring up an image of a forest onto your computer screen every hour or so, look at it for a couple of minutes, focusing on relaxing your mind and body, breathing deeply and imagining yourself in that forest. Take note of how you feel afterwards 🙂

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These old trees can make us healthier and happier

 

Because Aimee and I are big fans of this little-known therapy we hold workshops so we can invite others to experience and enjoy the benefits. I really enjoyed the workshop on Sunday; all the ladies seemed to as well and all have said really positive things since. Such as Amanda who gave this feedback…

 

“Refreshed, invigorated, regenerated and inspired is how I feel right now. A short wandering walk in the company of some pleasant folks which ended with some meditation beneath the green canopy. Like a balm for the mind, body and soul, it seems a little dose of forest therapy is just what I needed right now. Clint presented himself with thought and care and it was evident that he truly believes in what he does. Certainly worth the two-hour drive up from Brisbane. Thanks guys!”

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Take a deep breath and breathe in the beauty

 

The workshop was just $6 which included an info sheet for everyone, a can of coconut water from a local supplier, and the total profit went to charity! Until the end of June we’re supporting the Red Cross Australia Nepal Region Earthquake Appeal and so far we’ve given them over $30 which isn’t much but hopefully it’ll help in some way.

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Me barefoot and balancing (as usual!) and one of my guests enjoying the surrounds

And hopefully the attendees on Sunday can now use Forest Therapy to improve their health and happiness well into the future. We’re so lucky here on the Sunshine Coast to have a variety of forest, dotted all over the region, to take advantage of.

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The nice view over the Sunshine Coast hinterland

And the bonus? Forest Therapy is FREE! Sure beats popping a pill doesn’t it!

 

If you’d like to find out about our next Forest Therapy Workshop so you can come along, just register for our Primal E-News newsletter so you don’t miss out!

Now go find a forest and get some therapy 🙂

Clint

 

5 Things I’m Grateful For:

1. Facing the Flinch – something I’m new to and really enjoying

2. Getting people moving

3. Family and friends

4. Winter Solstice has passed! Longer days, yay!

5. Forest time