Healthy, Homemade Whipped Cream

THIS is my new favorite treat/snack.

Completely natural and homemade with verrrryyy little sugar. Amazingly delicious with berries for breakfast (or dessert!) and on top of ice cream. Try it on top of The Best Chocolate Ice Cream Ever.

 

All it takes is a few ingredients and a little patience.

Dairy Version Ingredients:

2 cups organic cream

2-3 Tbsp. coconut sugar (mildly sweet) or 1 packet of stevia for a fully sugar-free version

 

Dairy-Free Version Ingredients:

1 can full fat coconut cream

2-3 Tbsp. coconut sugar (mildly sweet) or 1 packet of stevia for a fully sugar-free version

 

Method:

Place ingredients in a large mixing bowl

Use a whisk to gently whisk the cream (you want air to get in so you are looking for bubbles here).

Keep whisking (about 15 min) until the liquid becomes thick and creamy.

Feel free to take breaks as needed.

Enjoy thoroughly.

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Dairy-Free “Cream Cheese” Frosting

Source.

Yummmmm.

Just writing this post makes my mouth water.

Bonus: It’s healthy AND easy to make

Oh, and did I mention absolutely delectable?!

Once again we can thank the brilliant Detoxinista for this recipe!

You will need a food processor or very strong blender for this recipe.

Makes 1 1/4 cups

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup raw cashews (*You will need to soak and then rinse these for at least 30 min and preferably 2-3 hours in filtered water. The longer they soak the easier they will be to blend and make creamy.*)
  • 2 Tbsp. melted extra virgin coconut oil
  • 3 Tbsp. raw honey
  • 1 tsp. all natural vanilla
  • 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp. celtic/himalayan sea salt

–> You might need to add 2-3 Tbsp. of water while processing/blending this mixture

Method:

  1. Throw your ingredients into your food processor and whizz away adding water as needed
  2. Adjust the flavor if needed then add to a bowl and chill in the freezer for at least 1 hour (so it thickens) or in the fridge over night (the longer you let it chill the thicker it will be)

Delicious served on the side with fruit or on your favorite healthy baked goods! My fiancé’s favorite way to have this is with the Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Bars which makes for a very rich dessert.

I also recommend spreading on top of the:

Grain-Free Banana Bread

Decadent Brownies

Healthy Pumpkin Bars 

Fluffy, Golden Pancakes 

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Quinoa: Optimal Beauty Benefits + How To Cook It

I love grains and I don’t care what anyone else says. ;p

I’ve done my research and know how amazingly beneficial they are! Gluten-free grains such as millet, brown rice, buckwheat, amaranth and of course, quinoa are a big part of my diet. I thrive off of them.

Quinoa takes the cake for most beneficial in my eyes, though because it is a complete protein. It’s an ancient grain and it has all 8 essential amino acids.

Here I’ve made a big batch of Quinoa (pronounced: keen-wah) for the week ahead. It can be stored in an air tight container or glassware with cover in fridge and eat throughout the week.

Preparation is one of the key ingredients to excellent self-care and healthy living.

Prep:

Soak your quinoa in filtered water overnight (Place in bowl and fill with water- about 2 inches above quinoa). The next morning rinse and drain.

Cooking:

  1. Place in pot and add filtered water- again 2 inches above your desired amount.
  2. Cook on medium heat until it boils.
  3. Turn off the stove and then leave it sitting on the stove for 15-20 more minutes until fluffy.
  4. Drain, rinse again (optional), flavor (like you would brown rice) and enjoy!

Tip: If you choose to eat it warm (eating it cold is great too) I recommend warming it up in the oven vs. the microwave as the microwave will kill all the of delicious nutrients your body is craving.

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Tips for Your Optimal Beauty Traveling Adventures

Source. 

I travel quite a bit. And I’m not talking about short domestic trips, I’m talking trips across the world. So, healthy preparation and travel tips have become an expertise of mine simply through trial and error.

For those of you who don’t know me very well, I’m from America but I live in New Zealand. I am very family oriented and have amazing friends I grew up with so I like to go home every 6-7 months.

When I travel across the country I might be embarking on 24+ hours of straight travel without much sleep and multiple plane rides.

Today, I am going to share with you my favorite Optimal Beauty travel tips! You can use these on any international or domestic flight and road trips too.

  1. Prep your food! Many people don’t know that you can bring any food and any amount of food you want (as long as it fits the carry-on baggage requirements) and doesn’t contain liquid which you can deal with after you get through security. The trick here is making sure the food you’re bringing is A) Filling B) Delicious so you’re not tempted and satisfied C) Nutritious so you can thrive as much as possible. Fab food to bring can be a quinoa salad with nutritional yeast and lemons on the side, quinoa or other grain prepped with coconut oil, salt and pepper, pancakes (yes they travel well!), veggie sticks, fruit, nuts & seeds, 100% dried fruit bar, healthy chocolate such as Luvju from Loving Earth (for sweet cravings). I also bring various selections of tea bags. I bring 3 types 1) for relaxation such as chamomile or Yogi’s Bedtime 2) green tea or peppermint for revitalization 3) favorite tea of the moment which could be anything from vanilla rooibos, Yogi Skin Detox, etc. I also make sure to bring an empty water bottle with me, fill it up in the airport after security as well as buying 2 extra Liter bottles. I also pack super foods in a  baggy to take to the nearest juice/smoothie bar (there is almost always somewhere in an airport with a blender) and ask them to blend it with ice and water and sometimes fruit too. Just make sure to tell them NOT to add sugar because a lot of the time they will think you want it. An example of a good super food blend might be: green powder, cacao powder, maca powder, cinnamon, desiccated coconut, brown rice/pea protein powder.
  2. Equipment. I highly recommend a neck pillow which you can pick up at the airport. They’re small enough to carry around/find a spot for in your bag and very comfortable. Lavender essential oil is always in my bag of goodies for relaxation. Put a few drops on your temples and rub in a circular motion. This will help you relax. Same method with citrus or peppermint essential oil for when you need to wake up. Bring layers. It tends to be very cold on flights and domestic flights don’t always have blankets and international flights don’t always have extras (which I always find I want). A sleep mask. They do give you one on international flights, but you might want to bring your own just in case. The darkness the mask provides will help you fall asleep more easily as light kills the melatonin you need to promote sleep. A good book. Music on your iPod, iPhone, etc. I also bring Chlorella or Spirulina tablets to take in between meals as they help curb appetite and contain a huge array of vitamins and minerals. I also make sure I bring a sufficient amount of my vitamins and supplements depending on travel time. Probiotics, digestive enzymes, milk thistle, B-Vitamisn are all on my list. You might want to bring along some organic stevia for sweetening your herbal tea with and you might want to carry on some toothpaste, a toothbrush, a hairbrush, deodorant and natural perfume. After long flights you’re likely going to be a littttttle stale. Better to have these things with you than searching for them in-between flights.
  3. Starbucks is very useful. You can always get a cup of hot water to steep your organic tea in and if you’re not allergic to gluten you can oder their oatmeal (contains small amount of gluten) without the toppings and steeped in hot water. Flavor with stevia and cinnamon (provided there) and eat as a healthy, filling meal or snack! Delish.
  4. Stretch and walk. During your layovers and on your flights walk around and stretch. Blood clots can occur from sitting for too long. Keep your circulation in motion by stretching and walking as much as possible. Also, it is helpful to wear loose clothing for better circulation and that way your feet and ankles will be less likely to swell up.
  5. Hydrate. I mentioned the importance of stocking up on water above but it’s important to know that flying is extremely dehydrating and you should make a point to drink even more than usual. Coconut water is the perfect energy drink/way to completely hydrate and replenish your electrolytes. If you can find coconut water at the airport you can mix it with green powder for one of the most nutritious snacks in the world.
  6. Be prepared to just relax and chill out. This is important for international flights. They ARE SO LONG and if you’re antsy to “do something” you’re just simply out of luck. It will help a lot with boredom if you just accept that this is a time for you to relax.

I hope this helps!

Do you have any other tips to add to the list?

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Walking Barefoot Has Actual Health Benefits

The hippies in the 70’s might have been on to something…. 😉

Did you know that walking barefoot in nature has actual health benefits for your precious body?

It’s true!

Whether it’s at the beach or in your back yard you reap the benefits. As long as you are walking on ground that is au naturel you’re good to go!

It has been proved in various scientific studies that walking barefoot (or “earthing”) on natural ground can improve health in various ways because of the relationship between the electrons in the earth and our bodies.

“The theory behind earthing — which essentially means walking barefoot — is that the earth is one of the most powerful energy sources; when our bodies make direct contact with the ground, we absorb the earth’s beneficial, natural energy in the form of electrons. The electrons allow us to absorb the positive and let go of the negative. It used to happen naturally when cavemen walked barefoot, allowing them to have closer connection to the earth — and look how healthy they were!”

Amazing huh!?

Some of the benefits include:

-Reduced stress levels

– Fight varicose veins

– Decreased feelings of depression

– Strengthens and stretches your muscles, tendons and ligaments in your feet, ankles and calves

– Increased antioxidants levels

– Reduced inflammation

– Improve sleep

– Thins blood & creates better circulation making for improved cardiovascular health

But, don’t take my word for it! Take 15-30 minutes to walk barefoot today and see how good you feel afterwards.

Source: Journal of Environmental and Public Health

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Sweet Biscuit Cookies (Perfect for decorating!)

This recipe is from one of my favorite cooking books- I Quit Sugar by, Sarah Wilson

GUESS WHAT.

There is NO sugar in this recipe! Well, I would never post a recipe that uses regular sugar, but this recipe doesn’t even contain non-refined/healthy sugar (a.k.a. raw honey, dates, coconut nectar, rice malt syrup, maple syrup)!

So, if you’re trying to curb your sweet cravings, but are ready for something sweet and comforting this recipe is definitely for you.

It does contain a good amount of coconut oil a.k.a. healthy fat so you will feel satisfied, energized and your blood sugar levels will become stabilized.

Not to mention, I believe these are perfect for holidays. Whether it’s Christmas, a birthday party, Valentine’s  Day or Easter you can use a cookie cutter/decorations with these babies.

Ingredients:

  • 2  1/2 cups almond meal
  • 1/2 tsp. aluminum free baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. celtic/himalayan sea salt
  • 120 g  extra virgin coconut oil (or if you’re not dairy-free REAL butter will be great too)
  • 1/3 cup powdered stevia
  • 1 tsp. vanilla powder

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 C or 356 F
  2. Line your baking tray with baking paper
  3. Pulse the almond meal, baking soda and salt briefly in a food processor
  4. Add the coconut oil, stevia and vanilla powder and blend a little more
  5. Scoop heaped Tbsp. of dough onto baking tray and press down with your hand to flatten
  6. Now, it’s time to decorate (if you want)
  7. Bake for about 8 min until golden .
  8. Cool on wire racks
  9. Enjoy!

Here you can see that I made kangaroo biscuits (with poppy seeds) for Australia Day when I was living over there!

Video: Do you have a food allergy or food intolerance?

So many people today have a food allergy or even a food intolerance (less severe) and don’t know it!

It can be easy to mistake a food allergy or intolerance with fatigue, an upset tummy, bloating, headaches, irregular bowels, nutrient deficiency, weight gain or weight loss.

If you have an inkling you might be allergic to something then go get tested. Or, if you are convinced you are allergic or intolerant to something try eliminating it from your diet for 2 weeks and pay close attention to your body especially after you eat. I would suggest doing this even if you are also going to get tested properly as many tests aren’t 100% accurate.

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