My Truth about Diets and Making that step towards a Healthy Tum

I know it’s been a long long while since I have posted anything on Healthy Tums. I guess this is a good reflection of my state of mind and attitude towards my health. In the last year or so, I stopped looking after myself. Between trying to establish myself creatively, finding a steady job, having family issues, moving house, no self esteem. I simply became “too busy” to put in that extra care into my health and soon developed some awful eating habits. I was eating lots of burgers and chips, snacking on high sodium foods, even snacking on meats, anything I could get my hands on.

I could never find the energy to do anything! One thing that I did do was watch A LOT of TV shows. I got through House of Cards, Orange is the New Black, Parks and Recs and more basically all in a couple of months! Sitting on the couch instead of going for my daily runs or Pilates like I use to do. 

I knew I was gaining some weight and I knew I wanted this to stop. I would obsessively look up skinny girls or the new diet that could change everything. I bought into the whole healthy market and now have a stack of vitamins and pills in my collection. 

The problem was I kept trying new diets and then give up in a couple of weeks if I couldn’t see results, and if I did see fast results I just assumed that was enough and go off the diet because it was too hard to stick to.

*** I just want to state that these are all my own experiences according to my personal lifestyles, body type, heritage, background, fitness, mentality etc. We are complex beings and this is a small window into what I’ve gone through for the past year. You may be able to draw similarities but you will probably disagree at some point with my personal results and that’s perfectly fine because we are different people :) ***

Diets I’ve tried:

Juicing

This involved a lot of fruits and veggie and a juicer. Totally was not worth it and I gained a lot of weight from it. As soon as I was done with juicing I would just go back to my normal foods and had terrible skin. I wasn’t getting any of the fibre from the fruits and veggies and it simply wasn’t enough for me to live by. I wanted to find something that I can be on for the rest of my life, not just a 2 week diet. 

Gluten Free

I gave up gluten based carbs completely once, which was so impossible because I was just hungry and losing energy constantly. I tried to stick to complex carbs like grains and nuts but trying to consume enough was really affecting my energy. I have over the past few years have been doing vast amounts of research and I felt like I couldn’t ignore the fact that eliminating gluten completely was good for me. Unfortunately it took me a long long time to figure that one out. 

Paleo / High Fat

I went on a Paleo diet but that didn’t agree with me as I felt totally blocked up and basically never went to the toilet. I felt heavy every single time I ate, and most of the time would have a little nap after food. Then after seeing a friends result I switched to more high fat diet with low carbs and moderate protein… sorry for the TMI but my shit stank! I could not have been more unhappy on that diet, I didn’t even like meat that much and here I have to eat it constantly! My skin got SO bad, I had always had amazing smooth skin and that was something I was really proud of but now suddenly I’ve been breaking out and feeling hormonally very unbalanced. Not to mention the shopping costs.

The most important thing I learnt from this diet was that I really didn’t like to eat much meat at all, I felt that I was only eating meat weekly because of social norms and this becoming a completely acceptable way of life. My father is a farmer and would always stress to me the importance of animal fat and protein in your diet, this is how I grew up and this is how I lived my life for a while.

When I was on this lifestyle, I kept asking myself “Is this normal? To be eating meat/animal products every single day 3 times a day? Is this what my body wants?” I kept thinking how unrealistic it would be for me to keep this diet if I was in a different era, how meat isn’t THAT accessible and to be realistic about the food industry. I started looking at my supermarket meat aisle in a very different way… almost in disbelief at the amount of animals I’m eating just in one week. Then I suddenly found a way…

Changing my life around

I’m not entirely sure what happened and where exactly it “clicked” for me. It could have been a number of things. Sick and tired of being sick and tired. Didn’t want to mope around anymore as this was seriously affecting my relationship. I’m very lucky to have a completely supporting boyfriend who just wants to see my best self and help me while I discover that. Ultimately it is a self discovery and journey you take on your own. At one point I didn’t believe I had anyone around me that really genuinely cared about me, but once I believed I was worth that care, I suddenly found some very genuine people who indeed loved me.

I found a lifestyle that is so far really agreeing with me! I’m very energetic at the moment and can barely contain myself. I can’t sit still so I’ve been doing a lot of walks and running which has given me a lot of endorphins. I’m happier and feeling lighter. The scales haven’t changed much but it’s only been one week! I don’t expect a fast change as I’ve learnt now the quicker it goes off the quicker it comes back. I’m never ever hungry until meal times and I barely snack and when I do I don’t feel guilty. I’m feeling guilt free not only because I’m eating better foods for myself but also feeling guilt free for my contribution to the environment. 

How did I find what was right for me? I went back in time a little and discovered what I had been eating for the majority of my life.  Before I started to over think about ‘diets’ and changing my eating to achieve the ‘ideal’ body type, I use to be very healthy just by eating what was normal for me. I come from an Asian and Mediterranean background and I grew up on certain foods that my body has become accustomed to. All I did was basically go back to that and it really has changed my life around. I stopped over thinking about food and just ate what was needed for my body. I looked at my ethical standings, my moral beliefs, and my motivations and found my own formula to my happiness. This is all just in a week? Hard to believe… and even I’m still waiting for the punch line but I think I had to get through a lot of shit before I discovered all of this. 

My skin is slowly clearing up, I’m taking action on my future (going to do my Masters Degree), waking up feeling optimistic and in general a little less anxious. I’m not saying it’s a miracle and all my problems are fixed but I definitely feel like I’ve found something worth talking about and sharing. 

In the next few posts you’ll see what I’ve been eating on a daily basis, exactly what my new diet lifestyle is, and the yummy recipes I’ve come up to keep my tum happy. 

Let me know what you’ve been doing to find the motivation and if you have a similar story. 

gluten free paleo paleo diet juicing fasting diets weight loss clean eating animal products meat healthy healthy lifestyle happiness flat belly flat tummy truth about diets dieting life changing skin acne problems acne solution motivation thinspiration story personal journey

Organic Yogurt and Blueberries
A simple way to start your day with pro-biotics from the yogurt and a healthy dose of antioxidants from the blueberries! 
1 cup Organic Yogurt
1/2 cup blueberries
1tbsp Flaxseed

Organic Yogurt and Blueberries

A simple way to start your day with pro-biotics from the yogurt and a healthy dose of antioxidants from the blueberries! 

1 cup Organic Yogurt

1/2 cup blueberries

1tbsp Flaxseed

healthy breakfast healthy eating recipes

Beetroot Salad from Crabapple
Choosing the healthy options while going to restaurants. This was a delicous salad from Crabapple, a new cafe that poped up around the corner from my place :)

Beetroot Salad from Crabapple

Choosing the healthy options while going to restaurants. This was a delicous salad from Crabapple, a new cafe that poped up around the corner from my place :)

restaurant food healthy

Epsom salts are amazing!
They are made up of a naturally occurring mineral that is found in water. More properly known as magnesium sulfate, Epsom salts derives its popular name from the town of Epsom, England, where the compound was first distilled from water.
Epsom salts are easily obtained at any drug store or supermarket. Inexpensive and versatile, the salts can be used for a number of different applications around the home. Many of the applications have to do with expediting healing, as well as improving the quality of the skin and helping with basic grooming.
Relaxing and sedative bath: Soak in warm water and 2 cups of Epsom salt
Homemade detox bath: Minerals and salts make the bath water feel silky and leave your skin cleansed and soft.
1 cup sea salts2 cups baking soda1 cup Epsom salts1 to 2 tablespoons glycerin per bath
Combine the sea salts, baking soda, and Epsom salts in a bowl. Stir to blend. Pour 1/4 cup or so into the bath while the tub is filling. Add 1 to 2 tablespoons glycerin to keep your skin from drying out (more for dry skin, less for oily skin) and essential oils of choice.
Preparation time: 2 to 3 minutesShelf life: IndefiniteStorage: Glass jar with a screw top
Soak sprains and bruises: Epsom salt will reduce the swelling of sprains and bruises. Add 2 cups epsom salt to a warm bath, and soak. 
Face cleaner: To clean your face at night, mix a half-teaspoon of epsom salt with your regular cleansing cream. Just massage into skin and rinse with cold water.
Homemade skin mask: Apply the mask to damp skin.
For normal to oily skin, mix:
1 tablespoon of cognac,
1 egg,
1/4 cup of non-fat dry milk,
the juice of 1 lemon, and a
half-teaspoon of epsom salt.
For normal to dry skin, mix:
1/4 cup of grated carrot
1 1/2 teaspoons of mayonnaise
half-teaspoon of epsom salt
Skin exfoliator: Massage handfuls of epsom salt over your wet skin, starting with your feet and continuing up towards the face. Have a bath to rinse
Remove excess oil from hair: Epsom salt soaks up excess oil from hair. Add 9 tablespoons of epsom salt to 1/2 cup of oily hair shampoo. Apply one tablespoon of the liquid to your hair when it is dry; rinse with cold water. Pour lemon juice or organic apple cider vinegar through the hair, leave on for 5-10 minutes, and then rinse. 
Remove hairspray: Combine 1 gallon of water, 1 cup of lemon juice, and 1 cup epsom salt. Combine, cover and let set for 24 hours. The next day, pour the mixture into your dry hair and let it sit for 20 minutes. Then shampoo as normal.
Hair volumizer: Combine equal parts of deep conditioner and epsom salt. Warm in a pan. Work the warm mixture through your hair and leave on for 20 minutes. Rinse.

Epsom salts are amazing!

They are made up of a naturally occurring mineral that is found in water. More properly known as magnesium sulfate, Epsom salts derives its popular name from the town of Epsom, England, where the compound was first distilled from water.

Epsom salts are easily obtained at any drug store or supermarket. Inexpensive and versatile, the salts can be used for a number of different applications around the home. Many of the applications have to do with expediting healing, as well as improving the quality of the skin and helping with basic grooming.

Relaxing and sedative bath: Soak in warm water and 2 cups of Epsom salt

Homemade detox bath: 
Minerals and salts make the bath water feel silky and leave your skin cleansed and soft.

1 cup sea salts
2 cups baking soda
1 cup Epsom salts
1 to 2 tablespoons glycerin per bath

Combine the sea salts, baking soda, and Epsom salts in a bowl. Stir to blend. Pour 1/4 cup or so into the bath while the tub is filling. Add 1 to 2 tablespoons glycerin to keep your skin from drying out (more for dry skin, less for oily skin) and essential oils of choice.

Preparation time: 2 to 3 minutes
Shelf life: Indefinite
Storage: Glass jar with a screw top

Soak sprains and bruises: Epsom salt will reduce the swelling of sprains and bruises. Add 2 cups epsom salt to a warm bath, and soak. 

Face cleaner: To clean your face at night, mix a half-teaspoon of epsom salt with your regular cleansing cream. Just massage into skin and rinse with cold water.

Homemade skin mask: Apply the mask to damp skin.

For normal to oily skin, mix:

1 tablespoon of cognac,

1 egg,

1/4 cup of non-fat dry milk,

the juice of 1 lemon, and a

half-teaspoon of epsom salt.

For normal to dry skin, mix:

1/4 cup of grated carrot

1 1/2 teaspoons of mayonnaise

half-teaspoon of epsom salt

Skin exfoliator: Massage handfuls of epsom salt over your wet skin, starting with your feet and continuing up towards the face. Have a bath to rinse

Remove excess oil from hair: Epsom salt soaks up excess oil from hair. Add 9 tablespoons of epsom salt to 1/2 cup of oily hair shampoo. Apply one tablespoon of the liquid to your hair when it is dry; rinse with cold water. Pour lemon juice or organic apple cider vinegar through the hair, leave on for 5-10 minutes, and then rinse. 

Remove hairspray: Combine 1 gallon of water, 1 cup of lemon juice, and 1 cup epsom salt. Combine, cover and let set for 24 hours. The next day, pour the mixture into your dry hair and let it sit for 20 minutes. Then shampoo as normal.

Hair volumizer: Combine equal parts of deep conditioner and epsom salt. Warm in a pan. Work the warm mixture through your hair and leave on for 20 minutes. Rinse.


epsom salts beauty health

Left over pasta salad
How to make last nights left over pasta into a delicious and nutrious salad for todays lunch!
Ingredients:
Last nights pasta (in my case it was salmon, feta and broccoli bow tie pasta)
1 cup flat leaf parsely
1/4 cup chickpeas
1/4 cup organic white quinoa
3 organic home grown cherry tomatoes
sprinkle of walnuts
season with salt & pepper
drizzle with olive oil

Left over pasta salad

How to make last nights left over pasta into a delicious and nutrious salad for todays lunch!

Ingredients:

Last nights pasta (in my case it was salmon, feta and broccoli bow tie pasta)

1 cup flat leaf parsely

1/4 cup chickpeas

1/4 cup organic white quinoa

3 organic home grown cherry tomatoes

sprinkle of walnuts

season with salt & pepper

drizzle with olive oil

recipes quinoa healthy lunch healthy eating pasta salad organic

Balsamic baked field mushroom with salad
Ingredients:
1 field mushroom
balsamic vinegar 
baby spinach
4 slices haloumi 
half cucumber, sliced
basil
olive oil
salt & pepper 
lemon juice
Method:
Preheat oven at 200 degrees Celsius.  Season mushroom with salt and pepper, drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Place in oven for 15 - 20 minutes until cooked.
Heat small frying pan, place haloumi cheese slices onto hot pan with now oil. Drizzle with some lemon juice and bring out of pan once both sides are slightly browned. 
In a bowl place washed baby spinach, cucumber, haloumi and basil. Toss with lemon juice and olive oil. Place mushroom on top and season with salt and pepper

Balsamic baked field mushroom with salad

Ingredients:


1 field mushroom

balsamic vinegar 

baby spinach

4 slices haloumi 

half cucumber, sliced

basil

olive oil

salt & pepper 

lemon juice

Method:

Preheat oven at 200 degrees Celsius.  Season mushroom with salt and pepper, drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Place in oven for 15 - 20 minutes until cooked.

Heat small frying pan, place haloumi cheese slices onto hot pan with now oil. Drizzle with some lemon juice and bring out of pan once both sides are slightly browned. 

In a bowl place washed baby spinach, cucumber, haloumi and basil. Toss with lemon juice and olive oil. Place mushroom on top and season with salt and pepper

Healthy lunch mushrooms haloumi easy cooking recipes

Fresh Chicken Salad
Ingredients:
1/2 cup Chicken (steamed)
1/2 cup chickpeas
2 celery stalks, sliced
4 cherry tomatoes, quartered 
1 small bunch flat leaf parsely
olive oil
salt & pepper
lemon juice 

Method: 
Mix all into a bowl 

Fresh Chicken Salad

Ingredients:

1/2 cup Chicken (steamed)

1/2 cup chickpeas

2 celery stalks, sliced

4 cherry tomatoes, quartered 

1 small bunch flat leaf parsely

olive oil

salt & pepper

lemon juice 

Method: 

Mix all into a bowl 

healthy lunch weight loss recipes salad chicken

This is a very quick breakfast but will keep you energised and full until lunchtime. 
Banana and Sesame breakfast
2 large Bananas
1 tablespoon Sesame seeds
mix ingredients together and enjoy. 

This is a very quick breakfast but will keep you energised and full until lunchtime. 

Banana and Sesame breakfast

2 large Bananas

1 tablespoon Sesame seeds

mix ingredients together and enjoy. 

breakfast recipes bananas healthy eating

Pumpkin soup with a twist
Ingredients
1.5L Chicken or Vegitable stock
1 whole pumpkin, chopped 
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
1 nob of ginger
1 cup coriander 
handful of parmesan cheese 
Method
oil in pot and saute onion, ginger and garlic until aromatic. Add all the pumpkin and make sure to coat the flavours through out the pumpkin. After a few minutes, pour in stock and cover pot with lid. 
Cook until pumpkin is soft. Add 1 cup of coriander then take off heat and blend all the ingredients. Once completely smooth put back onto heat for a few minutes. Mix in parmesan and also garnish on top. 
enjoy this wintery meal!

Pumpkin soup with a twist

Ingredients

1.5L Chicken or Vegitable stock

1 whole pumpkin, chopped 

3 cloves of garlic, minced

1 onion, diced

1 nob of ginger

1 cup coriander 

handful of parmesan cheese 

Method

oil in pot and saute onion, ginger and garlic until aromatic. Add all the pumpkin and make sure to coat the flavours through out the pumpkin. After a few minutes, pour in stock and cover pot with lid. 

Cook until pumpkin is soft. Add 1 cup of coriander then take off heat and blend all the ingredients. Once completely smooth put back onto heat for a few minutes. Mix in parmesan and also garnish on top. 

enjoy this wintery meal!

recipes pumpkin soup healthy dinner

TCL (tomato, cheese, and lettuce) on lunch slices
1 tomato, sliced
2 slices of coon tasty cheese
Iceberg lettuce
2 Vita-Weat lunch slices: sunflower Oats & Chia

TCL (tomato, cheese, and lettuce) on lunch slices

1 tomato, sliced

2 slices of coon tasty cheese

Iceberg lettuce

2 Vita-Weat lunch slices: sunflower Oats & Chia

recipes healthy eating lunch

Soft boiled egg on avocado covered rye toast
Ingredients:
1 x Rye bread slice
1 x egg
1/2 avocado
salt & pepper to season 
Method: 
The perfect egg: 
Pour cold water into a pot. Place egg into the pot. Turn heat on high and wait until water starts to boil. When water is boiling, turn heat off and rest in water for 1 minute. Tak out and rinse under cold water
Spread avocado on toast, place boiled egg on top and season with salt & pepper.

Soft boiled egg on avocado covered rye toast

Ingredients:

1 x Rye bread slice

1 x egg

1/2 avocado

salt & pepper to season 

Method: 

The perfect egg: 

Pour cold water into a pot. Place egg into the pot. Turn heat on high and wait until water starts to boil. When water is boiling, turn heat off and rest in water for 1 minute. Tak out and rinse under cold water

Spread avocado on toast, place boiled egg on top and season with salt & pepper.

eggs breakfast healthy eating recipes

Marinated lamb salad with home made tzatziki 
Serves 2
Ingredients:
Lamb sirloin
1 tsp ground cumin, paprika, white pepper, black pepper, minced garlic  
pinch of salt
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tablespoon olive oil
Spinach leaves
1 x tomato, sliced
1/2 cucumber, sliced
tzatziki:
1 cup light Greek yogurt 
1 minced garlic clove
salt & pepper
1 tsp olive oil 
1 tablespoon diced cucumber
Method:
Rub cumin, paprika, white pepper, black pepper, minced garlic, lemon, salt, and oil. Marinate for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Heat grill with no oil. Sear lamb 2 minutes on each side. Take lamb off heat and leave on a board for 5 minutes to rest.
In a small bowl, combine greek yogurt, garlic, cucumber, salt and pepper. Mix well and ready to use.
Combine all ingredients to spinach. Enjoy 

Marinated lamb salad with home made tzatziki 

Serves 2

Ingredients:

Lamb sirloin

1 tsp ground cumin, paprika, white pepper, black pepper, minced garlic  

pinch of salt

Juice of 1/2 lemon

1 tablespoon olive oil

Spinach leaves

1 x tomato, sliced

1/2 cucumber, sliced

tzatziki:

1 cup light Greek yogurt 

1 minced garlic clove

salt & pepper

1 tsp olive oil 

1 tablespoon diced cucumber

Method:

Rub cumin, paprika, white pepper, black pepper, minced garlic, lemon, salt, and oil. Marinate for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Heat grill with no oil. Sear lamb 2 minutes on each side. Take lamb off heat and leave on a board for 5 minutes to rest.

In a small bowl, combine greek yogurt, garlic, cucumber, salt and pepper. Mix well and ready to use.

Combine all ingredients to spinach. Enjoy 

lamb salad tzatziki salad healthy recipes

Healthy soft tacos
Severs 2-3
Ingredients:
1 cup grated tasty cheese
1 x grated carrot
1 x diced tomato 
1 x diced onions
1 cup light sour cream
1 Avocado
Lettuce
500g lean mince beef
Whole grain wrap
1 x sachet of taco spice mix
Bean mix:
1/2 green capsicum 
1/2 large chilli
200g can of mixed beans
1 tsp ground cumin  
salt & pepper
Method:
1. Grate cheese and carrot and place in individual bowls. Dice tomato, pour salsa sauce and sour cream in separate bowls. 
2. Heat pan with a little oil and sauté onions until soft. Add minced beef, separate beef using wooden spoon until cooked. Add taco spice mixture to beef with water and cook until sauce thickens. 
3. In a pot place mixed beans, capsicum, and chilli on heat. Add 1/4 cup water with cumin and paprika, cook for 5-8 minutes until sauce thickens. 
4. Place wraps in microwave for 10 seconds. 
Place everything on individual bowls and construct your own wrap! enjoy 

Healthy soft tacos

Severs 2-3

Ingredients:

1 cup grated tasty cheese

1 x grated carrot

1 x diced tomato 

1 x diced onions

1 cup light sour cream

1 Avocado

Lettuce

500g lean mince beef

Whole grain wrap

1 x sachet of taco spice mix

Bean mix:

1/2 green capsicum 

1/2 large chilli

200g can of mixed beans

1 tsp ground cumin  

salt & pepper

Method:

1. Grate cheese and carrot and place in individual bowls. Dice tomato, pour salsa sauce and sour cream in separate bowls. 

2. Heat pan with a little oil and sauté onions until soft. Add minced beef, separate beef using wooden spoon until cooked. Add taco spice mixture to beef with water and cook until sauce thickens. 

3. In a pot place mixed beans, capsicum, and chilli on heat. Add 1/4 cup water with cumin and paprika, cook for 5-8 minutes until sauce thickens. 

4. Place wraps in microwave for 10 seconds. 

Place everything on individual bowls and construct your own wrap! enjoy 

healthy eating recipes tacos