29 September 2013

Time for a quickie... Raspberry lollies recipe

I love making lollies at home with good quality gelatin. They're fairly easy to make, you can choose a kazillion different flavours (ok maybe not that many! But lots anyway!), and gelatin is a major contender to be added to the sought-after lists of 'Superfoods' as it's so incredibly healthy.

Tonight I made raspberry lollies, to go with the AWSEOME grain-free mini burgers I made (recipe here). Tomorrow I'm returning to my ketosis journey after having been sick for two weeks and not worrying about eating for ketosis due to the raw honey I was consuming by the big jar load. So tonight was a nice dinner and dessert before a few weeks of mostly low-carb (30g or less per day!).

Okay so these lollies were pretty darn good, even if I do say so myself!

Here's how I made them...

2-2.5 cups raspberry pulp - which I got after simmering a whole pack of frozen conventional raspberries (don't judge me for not using organic berries, it's all I had in the freezer!), blending, straining through a sieve to remove most of the seeds, then blending again
Stevia - to your liking. Alternatively use organic honey
6 tbsp gelatin powder (use Great Lakes or another grass-fed variety if you can)
3 tbsp pure coconut milk (I use Ayam from the supermarket)

1. In a large saucepan on medium heat, add the raspberry pulp, stevia and coconut milk
2. While constantly whisking the warm liquid, slowly add in the gelatin, bit by bit
3. Once all gelatin is mixed in well, add mixture to blender and blend well. I do this to ensure the gelatin is completely mixed in and doesn't leave lumps
4. Pour mixture into flat square or rectangle shape containers and place in the fridge for 2-3 hours to set. If you use round containers the end shape is a bit odd!
4. Once set use a rounded knife (butter knife) to separate edges from containers, cut into strips, then carefully lift out each strip. 
5. Cut the strips into small squares and there you have it... DIY healthy lollies!

These lollies would be quite bitter if no stevia or sweetener of some kind was added. The coconut milk also helped reduce the intensity of the flavour and gave a slightly creamy taste. Clint and I ate most of this container - they're so moorish, so be warned!



sushine coast, personal training, primal, paleo, yum, healthy

Aimee :)

My 5 gratefuls today are:
1. Making yummy healthy food we love to eat
2. Going fishing yesterday at the lovely Ewen Maddock Dam
3. Soaking in a magnesium bath
4. Country music
5. Rodeos

25 September 2013

Are you drinking bone broth yet? If not, why the heck not!

Bone broth is basically just stock. But with a whole lotta health benefits than just a simple beef or vegetable stock you'd use in cooking.

Bone broth is a big part of our lives and we drink it regularly. I'm sure you're wondering why that is, so I'm going to tell you my story!

A beautiful site - freezer full of broth!

I first got onto the bone broth bandwagon late last year when a patient where I worked told me how good it was for bone and general health. The conversation sparked interest in me, mainly because I've had a degenerated intervertebral disc in my spine (between L4 and L5) for some time and it's caused me a heck of a lot of pain, stress and immobility  When I learnt how bone broth can help improve bone and joint strength I knew I just had to try it.

So I did some research. The info wasn't hard to find because I was already inside the 'paleo-sphere' and of course bone broth is big in the paleo/primal circles. When I read about how it can actually put cartilage back into bones and joints, that was it, I was trying it!

In November I started making it at home and drinking it daily. Within just 2 weeks I noticed less back pain. Over the following weeks and months the pain reduced so much that it was non-existent for about 90% of the time! That was HUGE for me because up until then I was in pain every day. Some days I was in pain most of the day. I was loving this no pain thing, I can tell you!

For the past few years I'd been experiencing pain at the site of the problem and also often down my right leg. I was limited to how much exercise and general movement I could do. I also had to be careful how I sat, and for how long. I couldn't even sit down casually with one leg underneath me for a couple of minutes or I'd quickly pay for it. The only exercise I was able to do for a long time was walking. Boring! I enjoy walking, I've always walked, but just walking gets kinda frustrating, especially when I used to do kickboxing, running and lifting heavy weights. I'd try and do some boxing or something else if I'd not had pain for a couple of days but the pain always came back really quickly and with more intensity as a result.

But I'm happy to report that since drinking bone broth, my pain is almost gone! It's not fixed but for most of the day and usually for days on end, I don't feel any pain whatsoever. I can now do more exercise and movement with no problem.

I'm still cautious and I don't overdo anything because I don't like pain and I don't want to feel more of it if I can help it! I still need to incorporate pain-prevention techniques and certain lifestyle factors to maintain my back but I can say with 100% certainty that bone broth has dramatically improved my back health.

Now I don't drink it every day but I always have some in the freezer and I'd probably drink it about 2-5 times a week. 

Bone broth doesn't just reduce pain. It has many other health benefits. It really is amazing stuff!

PLUS: it's super easy to make, it's really cheap, it's easy to store, and it's real food and not a synthetic supplement.

So now you're probably wondering how this weird-sounding concoction does such amazing things... right? 

There's stacks of info about bone broth on the internet, but here's a great article given to me by Graeme Sait from Nutri-Tech. Graeme has kindly allowed me to pass on this article to anyone who wants to learn about the beauty of bone broth.

It's a few pages in length but I strongly urge you to take a few minutes to read through.

Download the article and recipe here


Here are today's 5 gratefuls...

1. Going for a walk on the beach this evening with Clint
2. Meeting really amazing and interesting people on the Coast, to be friends with and network with
3. Our family
4. Our cool car
5. Country music!

19 September 2013

Why it's important to take a holiday!

How many times have you said to your partner "Hun we need to get away, have a break, relax and unwind. Let's take a holiday!" then not actually taken the step plan a holiday away?! Be honest now, you've probably done that a few times over the years..?!

So why did you get the idea to have a holiday in the first place? 

Most likely some, if not all, of these reasons were contributing factors:

  • You were under emotional stress
  • You felt the desire to experience nature
  • You weren't taking much time out for yourself 
  • You felt cooped up just being at home and at work all the time
  • You were experiencing regular sickness and lethargy

stress, health, money, family, busy, work, sickness

Today we met with Jenny, the owner of Mapleton Falls Luxury Accommodation in the hinterland and felt so inspired by the beauty of her guest house and the surrounding area that we were reminded of how important it is to get away to nice places like this from time to time and to enjoy a relaxing and rejuvenating holiday.

Clint & Jenny standing in front of the beautiful historic guest house

Gorgeous view from the huge back veranda

We spend so much time in the workplace, at home, at the shops, and in the same ol' places day in, day out. Not only can this become boring but it also has negative effects on our health.

This is because we end up spending less time in nature, less time relaxing, less time just for ourselves and less time not thinking about work and life stressors. So of course this contributes to stress, sickness and just utter tiredness.

By taking holidays to nice places, spending time relaxing and enjoying nature we can focus on recharging the batteries. Even if we love our lives and don't feel obviously stressed or drained, it's still important to take time out for ourselves once in a while. 

Some of the benefits of taking a holiday in the country or near the water are:

  • Breathing in cleaner air
  • Walking barefoot on the grass, sand or dirt
  • Enjoying lovely views that help you feel relaxed and at peace
  • Meeting new people
  • Taking part in recreational activities such as surfing lessons, kayaking, bushwalking, bike riding etc
  • Focusing less on work, chores etc and having more time to just 'be' and do a whole lot of nothing!
  • Enjoying spending quality time with your partner or family
  • Experiencing new places - it's a big world and there are lots of amazing things to see
  • Relaxing and unwinding by getting massages and doing yoga or meditation

sunshine coast, relax, unwind, hinterland, primal influence, personal trainer

Help improve your mood and your general health by taking holidays to beautiful locations and spending some time relaxing, unwinding, having fun, and soaking up the beauty around you. 

Where will your next holiday be to??

Clint & Aimee

Here are today's 5 gratefuls...

1. Spending time out in the lovely hinterland today
2. Walks on the beach
3. Meeting wonderful people and networking 
4. Fishing
5. Organic coffee! (Aimee)

16 September 2013

So what's this 'primal' caper all about?!

Essential; fundamental.
Relating to an early stage in evolutionary development; primeval.

'Primal' to us might be totally different to what 'primal' means to you, so let's explain what living a primal lifestyle means to us...

When we think of primal we think 'living naturally'. In the early stages of evolutionary development the world was a cleaner and less-toxic place and people lived cleaner and less-toxic lives. 

The food they ate and the water they drank wasn't ridden with man-made chemicals, the exercise they did wasn't performed in a gym, they weren't exposed to radiation from electronic devices, they weren't cooped up indoors or sitting at desks for long periods of time, the air they breathed wasn't polluted, and they had a lot less emotional stresses to deal with. 

These days it's a little different. We eat food that's often grown using chemicals, our water supply comes from water treatment plants that add fluoride and other poisons, many of us exercise in gyms on machines and with made-man equipment, we are constantly surrounded by electronic devices and radiation, we spend much of our time sitting down and being indoors, the air we breathe is polluted and we have a heck of a lot of emotional stress in our lives.

What does all that lead to? Sickness. So many of us are riddled with sickness and illness. Viruses are reinventing themselves so they can resist the medicines we make. That's kinda scary! How many people do you know are sick with something? Whether it be regular headaches or migraines, colds and flus, injuries, gut problems, cancer; most of the population is sick!

Today we aren't thriving, we are just barely surviving. Wouldn't you agree?

We'd like to get back to living how nature intended and giving our bodies the best chance at being healthy! And it's possible to do! Okay, so we can't completely avoid all the chemicals, toxins, EMF's etc but we can certainly minimise our exposure to them and try to lead as natural an existence as possible.

So what do we do to live a more primal lifestyle?  Here are just some of the ways we actively live more primal...

  • Eat mostly grass-fed chemical-free meat

grass fed chemical free paleo primal personal training health fitness natural nature organic sunshine coast maroochydore qld

  • Eat mostly organic or spray-free fruit and vegetables

grass fed chemical free paleo primal personal training health fitness natural nature organic sunshine coast maroochydore qld

  • Minimise consumption of foods we haven't yet evolved to eat safely and that cause health problems such as grains, legumes, sugar etc

grass fed chemical free paleo primal personal training health fitness natural nature organic sunshine coast maroochydore qld

  • Exercising safely and functionally for the body to minimise injury and inflammation by performing natural, primal movements

grass fed chemical free paleo primal personal training health fitness natural nature organic sunshine coast maroochydore qld

  • Spending a lot of time outdoors and going barefoot on the earth to get the health benefits from being among nature

grass fed chemical free paleo primal personal training health fitness natural nature organic sunshine coast maroochydore qld

  • Using mindfulness techniques and natural therapies to help us tap into our inner wisdom, to quiet our minds, to rejuvenate, relax and stress less

grass fed chemical free paleo primal personal training health fitness natural nature organic sunshine coast maroochydore qld

  • Using chemical-free and environmentally-friendly products around the home and on our bodies 

  • Incorporating sustainable practices such as growing our own food, recycling, buying recycled products, composting, picking up rubbish in public, buying locally and buying less plastic

grass fed chemical free paleo primal personal training health fitness natural nature organic sunshine coast maroochydore qld

You might be thinking.. "So, you're Paleo then?" well yes and no. We do use some Paleo principles but we don't label ourselves as 'Paleo' or any other definition because we don't follow any one particular set of guidelines. 

We're very proud of the positive steps we've made to live a more primal lifestyle, for our own personal benefit but also for the benefit of the environment and other people. We want to become healthier, happier people but we also want others to become healthier and happier. We feel it's everyone's right to have the best chance possible at achieving good health and wellness. 

We want us and everyone out there to THRIVE, not just survive!

But, we're far from perfect. We sometimes eat things that aren't the healthiest for us, we sometimes drink tap water, we sometimes don't do a few of those things listed above. But for the most part we do live by them and that's another aspect we believe is part of primal living... balance. We aren't caveman and we have temptations and other obstacles all around us, so the key is to find a balance that makes us happy. We believe we live a 90% primal lifestyle and that's pretty good as far as we're concerned!

We haven't yet reached a point where we feel we lead a 'perfect' lifestyle; we aren't as healthy and happy as we'd like to be. But we're striving for it and we'll continue to learn and grow every day and make the most of our lives.

If you like the idea of living a more primal lifestyle.. you can totally do it! Start small, use baby steps, make little changes every day and you'll start to notice positive changes in your health and your happiness.

Our website and this blog are aimed at providing information and inspiration for you to add more primal aspects into your life, so please feel free to use any of the information at any time. And go ahead and share it around to benefit others!

Do you live a primal lifestyle? Feel free to tell us about it in a comment below!

Or shoot us any questions you might have!

Clint & Aimee

We've decided it'd be a cool thing to do to end each blog post with 5 things we're grateful for, so here are today's 5...

1. Having this blog so we can express ourselves and help inspire others
2. All the sunny days we've had lately
3. Having a nice home and nice belongings
4. Camping trips
5. Knowledge about health and wellness that we're constantly gaining

6 September 2013

Recipe: apple blueberry goji coconut crumble

Last night I felt like eating something sweet after dinner and even though the kitchen was pretty bare I still managed to come up with a few ingredients I could mix together to create a healthy, rustic and yummy crumble!

It turned out pretty well and received the thumbs up from Clint so I thought I'd share it with you.

So, what makes it healthy? Here's why...

* grain-free
* gluten-free
* dairy-free
* nut-free
* low sugar
* no added sugar
* no heating of vegetable or nut oils
* contains a mixture of carbs, protein and fat

Aimee's Apple, Blueberry, Goji Coconut Crumble

Grab this
1 organic green apple, peeled
1/2 cup organic frozen blueberries
1 tbsp goji berries
1 tsp coconut flour (optional, see note below)
1/2 cup organic coconut flakes (sulphite-free)
1 tsp coconut oil, melted
1 tsp cinnamon powder
1/2 tsp pure vanilla

Do this
1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees Celsius
2. Chop apple to small cubes
3. Place apple, blueberries, goji berries, cinnamon, and vanilla in a bowl and mix well with a spoon
4. Place berry and apple mix in a baking dish then sprinkle the coconut flakes on top 
5. Drizzle the coconut oil over the coconut flakes
6. Place in the oven and bake for about 30 minutes or until the coconut is golden brown
When you pull it out of the oven and stab a middle piece of apple with a knife it should feel very soft and that means all the apple has cooked through

Idea: serve with a dollop of pure coconut cream on the side

Note: the coconut flour helped absorb some of the juice from the apple and blueberries but isn't essential 

Also: you could add crushed nuts but try and do this after it's been baked, otherwise the oil in the nuts changes during the cooking process and becomes unhealthy

This recipe is suitable for participants of the MindBodyReboot program! 

Coconut oil and other products can be purchased by Sunny Coasters online at the Primal Pantry

If you share this recipe please remember to mention that it came from Primal Influence, thanks a bunch!

Enjoy :)


3 September 2013

Welcome to our blog!

My partner Aimee and I will be regularly adding new and interesting (hopefully!) blog posts in the hopes of educating and inspiring you to live a more primal lifestyle. We're the owners of Primal Influence and the creators of the Sunshine Coast Primal/Paleo/Real Food Meetup Group and are very passionate about living a balanced life with clean food, natural movement and, of course, happiness. We hope to inspire you so you can live a more balanced life as well!

We want to share with you some of our ideas, experiments, recipes, successes and failures and our general experiences with thinking and living outside of the conventional wisdom box. Aimee's always experimenting with food creations in the kitchen (some good, some not so good...!), she's really into finding natural alternatives for using in the home and on the body and she's an amateur organic gardener, so she'll be sharing her experiences and adventures on all those areas. While I'm really into getting outdoors among nature and playing (climbing, jumping, crawling, you name it, I love it!) and am constantly learning about food and health in general. 

If you are looking for a scientifically-based page then this blog is not for you! But we will often provide links to other resources where you may find more research and information.

Please feel free to have a read, interact, offer feedback and share your ideas or questions with us. We love interaction!

We're looking forward to having you along on our journey to awesome health and wellness :)