I actually wrote this a few days ago from London with a view out of my apartment window of the grey misty rain outside. It appears the weather has really started to turn. I’m not going to lie, I’m not a big fan of this kind of weather and it is at this time of year, I turn to a few essentials to boost my immune system and brighten my mood.
Supplements like Vitamin D (the sunshine Vit) are really useful, particularly when there is not much sunshine around at the moment. Oily fish is also a good source of Vit D. A lack of vitamin D can really affect your mood and energy levels.
With the colder weather there can also be a rise in flu and colds and to combat this, it can be helpful to boost your immunity with Vitamin C & Zinc supplements, Echinacea drops (10 days taking the drops, 10 days off).
Also making sure you are getting enough probiotic; Sauerkraut is a great option here, or natural Sheep/Goat yoghurt or even probiotic Coconut yoghurt.
I have also heard that Clove tea is good at cleansing your system of pollutants and parasites, it also provides some powerful antioxidants to support your immune system. Just put a teaspoon of whole cloves into a pestle and mortar and give them a bash around to release the natural oils and put into a pot with boiling water to steep for 5 minutes, strain and pour. 1-2 cups a day should really help prep your body for the colder months ahead.
Now let the sunshine in with Sun butter!
I love sunflowers, they are not only so vibrant and cheerful they also produce some incredibly nutritious seeds that can really transform you health. Packed full of Selenium, Calcium, Magnesium, Copper and Vitamin E they really have the whole package in terms of promoting bone health, preventing cell damage, alleviating stress, and reducing inflammation in the body – easing joint pain.
Hello health! Welcome back! 🙂
I first discovered Sun butter when I lived in California – I mean where else but the golden state would they name it sun butter! I soon discovered that it is really easy to make and much cheaper. Here is how:
It really depends on how much you have – you want at least 500g of sunflower seeds to make up a decent batch. 1KG will give you a good yield (fills about a 1litre kilner jar). My example below was with about 500g. Best deals for nuts & seeds can be found online.
Start by lightly toasting the seeds in a frying pan (dry – no oil) low – medium heat. You will need to do this in batches so that the “toast” is even and make sure you regularly toss and shake the pan. Be careful not to over do it – too much and the sun butter will taste burnt, too little and the flavour won’t be as rich. This pic below is a little uneven – I needed to do a bit more tossing here!
Once you have toasted the whole batch, throw them in a food processor and leave to cool for at least 15 minutes (they retain their heat pretty well).
Now set the blades ‘a whizzing. You will see at first it goes to a dust like consistency and gradually they start to clump together.
This is when you need to use a spatula to scrape around the sides and pull it altogether, between whizzes.
You need to keep doing this until the natural oils from the seeds have started to release and it is becoming more paste like.
Then add a good pinch of Himalayan salt (the least processed the better) and gradually start to add in, a good quality Olive oil. You will start to see the paste becoming smoother and smoother. The amount of oil you add is really personal preference, I like quite a lot so it has a good sheen! Keep tasting and checking the smoothness of the paste. For a touch of sweetness I like to add 1-2 tsps of Maple syrup to taste (remember this is high GI – so less is more)
As you can see, Sunbutter, unfortunately does not a pretty picture take!
It looks kind of like cement!
But trust me, it tastes delicious and is great served on Gluten free toast, but I love having it with crudites or slices of apple. It is a great little snack buddy and easily assembled in a little tupperware if you are going to be out and about.
A little organisation goes a long way… you only have one body in this lifetime, why not make it a healthy, happy one?