Do you know what is the healthiest kind of sugar?

When I was growing up in Colombia, I remember going with my family to the Cane sugar plantations. Wow!It was amazing to see how they extract the sugars from this amazing trees.

Back in years, I did not care about the number of calories a gram of sugar it has but I just remember the taste and the sugar cubes we take from my mum’s cabinet. IN Colombia the chocolate is sold like a big rectangle full of cocoa and sugar, I will say nineteen percent of sugar plus 10 % of cocoa. The method of cooking is fantastic and easy as you just have to drop a rectangle of chocolate inside a litre of milk, let it boiled and listo!Pure Colombian Chocolate with a hint of cinnamon. Delicioso!

There are lots of different kind of sugars nowadays and so much information that we don’t really know what is good or what is bad for our bodies.

There is a different kind: The Natural and the Artificial sugars. Let’s explain what is the difference so you know from now on what you are putting in your mouth.

Honestly, whether you are talking about Coconut Sugar Or Honey or Maple Syrup or table sugar, these sweeteners are all sugar, some are Sucrose, some are fructose so they affect the body in a different way.

What is SUCROSE: is a disaccharide (Glucose + Fructose)

What is FRUCTOSE: is a monosaccharide

SUCROSE: is broken down into glucose and fructose before going into the bloodstream and raising your body glucose levels. High levels of blood sugar can damage blood vessels and lead to cavities and gum disease.

FRUCTOSE: Does not go into the bloodstream like Glucose. It has to go to the liver first to be processed so it does not raise blood sugar levels, but If you are consuming an excess of calories coming from Fructose it can increase the levels of Triglycerides which makes it mildly worse than glucose in that regard.

So, too much sugar in the form of Sucrose, Glucose, or Fructose can lead to health problems like being overweight, high triglycerides, high cholesterol, diabetes.

EAT THE SUGAR YOU LOVE IN MODERATION AND EAT IT SLOWLY and until you are satisfied, never in excess. Just remember any extra sugar you eat today means an extra kilogram for tomorrow as the glucose is turned into fat molecules which means is very hard to lose weight. It can become serious and if you have a history of high cholesterol it can lead to this. 

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I do believe our diet should be full of raw vegetables and fruits, wholemeal grains, beans, raw nuts and our cravings for sweet will disappear. I really would like you to try. But honestly, I don’t believe in diets I don’t believe in restrictions, I believe in being mindful with your meals and always be cautious about what you are putting in your mouth and how will you feel afterwards.

If you feel like having a giant Ice cream… go for it but try the next day cut out in some carbohydrates and calories, or simply do more exercise. Is the law of compensation.

FOLLOWING ARE THE LIST OF THE HEALTHIEST SWEETENERS AVAILABLE FOR US.

  1. STEVIA:

PROS: Natural Substitute for this magic product is Sugar-Free and non-caloric, made from the leaves from the Stevia plant. It does not raise blood sugar and it’s natural and beneficial in reasonable amounts. It’s bio-active so it could have some anti-inflammatory compounds. CONS: A minor aftertaste that can take getting used to and overusing it could cause you to develop more of a taste for sweets.

2. HONEY:

Blend of Fructose and Glucose Honey it has antibacterial and antimicrobial properties which is why it can also be used as a cough suppressant or sore throat soother.Manuka and other high-grade honey often contain more beneficial properties, it is more food than sugar. CONS: It contains high doses of calories and carbs.

3. COCONUT SUGAR:

Sucrose with some nutrients. Its made from the sap from the coconut trees and is less processed because the sap is extracted and then placed in the heat to dry this is why the sugar is kind of brownish like raw sugar.It contains minerals like Magnesium, Potassium, Inulin and prebiotic fibre.CONS: It’s a high-calorie sweetener it breaks down in our collagen.

4. RAW CANE SUGAR

Sucrose, also called Turbinado Sugar come in the form of a juice which is often used to sweeten non-dairy milk like almond, hemp, and cashew and in many baking options, is less processed than table sugar you are consuming less sugar and calories per serving.

5. AGAVE

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More Fructose than Glucose (it can be 90% fructose)

It has a syrupy flavor.It mix well with tequila, making it a mainstay of artisanal margaritas. CONS: It seems that it has a low glycemic index but this can be misleading. That may be beneficial if someone has diabetes but not so much if you don’t.

6. BROWN SUGAR

Sucrose

PROS: Some of the molasses left over from the refining process is added back into the sugar after processing, which provide a darker colour and a minor amount of trace nutrients. CONS: Not enough nutrients is just sugar.

7. GRANULATED WHITE SUGAR

Sucrose

PROS: Made from Sugarcane or sugar beets, it offers the mildest flavour melts and blends easily into beverages, warm and cold and is ideal for baking CONS: Best known as table sugar and the most common it is almost the most chemically processed and refined.

8. SWEETENERS (Aspartame and Splenda)

Artificial Substitute

PROS: Sugar-free and non-caloric.

These sweeteners are chemical compounds and not real food.Splenda is Sucralose(sugar mixed with chlorine in a patented process, Maltodextrin which is a corn product and can be genetically modified is then added as a bulking agent. Aspartame is on the list of potential carcinogens.In the animal, a dosis is linked to Leukemia in very high doses.

After reading the differences between the Sugars, always make sure to buy hundred percent natural Stevia as nowadays in the supermarkets there are lots of brands with different mixes with Stevia and the amount of Stevia present is very small.Definitely, the best option to follow is STEVIA, is hundred percent natural sweetener which does not increase the sugar levels in your bloodstream, people who want to lose weight, people wight high amount of tryglicerides, people with Diabetes, should take and make recipes with Stevia as a Natural Sweetener. The rest of the sugars are just pure sugars coming from different sources but just Sugar.

Hope you found this article interesting. If you want to ask me something please do. looking forward to your comments and questions.

 

Love xxx

AndreaP

 

 

Mi ensalada

I have been vegetarian for three years, and I have to say that has been the best changes I have ever made. When I was living with my parents back in Bogota (Colombia) I used to be very unwell. I was always constipated or the opposite, I remember I used to be scared of eating just because my stomach and my digestion did not work well I could be constipated for a week. I used to have a very strict diet just vegetables, fruits and protein, rarely I eat breads or potato or rice but it did not seem to be working.

The only sin I was doing was eating lots of cheese.

I could not give up. I did not even accepted the idea of cutting of what I liked the most.

Why did I decide to be vegetarian?

It was not because of the cheese 🙂 of course it was because I wanted to make changes in my life style and my eating behaviour.

I was not a big meat eater and I loved my salads and I started to think about all the stressed the animals were induced because of us.

I don’t know but It did not make me feel right. I was doing lots of yoga , meditation, being surrounded by beautiful human beings so I decided to cut meats and eat earthy.

I am vegetarian, but the vegetarian that eat fish and eggs and cheese. Hahaha

A real vegan or paleo will laugh at me ..

I could not give up on cheese but I avoid protein from animal sources like (beef ,pork,chicken) but I eat fish.

In Colombia, people eat usually very healthy, we always have salads and vegetable soups and women and men look after themselves very much. Too much that sometimes they decide to go superficial and put silicone. Hahaha

Sadly lots of women do that!

Fortunate I do believe in natural beauty and healthy eating and exercise without being obsessed.

I love salads and I love to make them.You just need motivation, creativity, good fresh vegetables and fruits if you prefer especially in the Summertime and the dressings are a plus.

Love my salads very much! Every day all the time!

This salad recipe is called Mi Ensalada meaning “ My salad “

My Untie Martha is an amazing cook and I always remember when we were having a getting together with the family she was simply the best.

She mixes , she creates she is just amazing in the kitchen.

I spoke to her last week and I asked her to share one of her favourite salads so I Could share it with you all.

Thank you Martica (untie) for sharing your recipe with us and I hope you can share this salad with us.

Let me know If you make it and what do you think about it?

Love and health

AndreaP xxx

Portion: 4 people

Duration: 10 mins

Ingredients

2 cups of lettuce

1 bunch of Basil

1 bush of mint

1 cup of strawberries sliced

1 green apple sliced in Juliana’s

1/2 cup of Corn

Dressing

1/cup of sugar free, fat free yoghurt like kefir or Greek

1/2 cup of nuts cut them in littles pieces.

1 tbsp of maple syrup

Mix the ingredients together, make a dressing and put it in the salad.

Omg! The combination of fruits and vegetables are irresistible.

Then the sauce was exquisite with the nuts beside.

I want to know what you think.

Thank you, dear Martica.

The salad was absolutely delicious!

With Nutritious love!

andreaP

2 cups of lettuce, break it with your hands and add the basil and mint together.

Add the strawberries and slice them, then add the strawberries to the greens.

Then take the green apple and slice it, add it to the greens.

Add the corn to the mix of greens, strawberries, it can be bought from a can, or frozen or fresh corn, whatever you feel is good for you.

Hmm! You can see in the photos the mix of colours and good nutrition. I am so looking forward to finishing it so I can sit with the boys and enjoy during this hot day of spring here in Queenstown.

Now it comes s the good part the dressing.

Mix the greek yoghurt or sugar and fat-free yoghurt, add the chopped nuts and add the maple syrup.

Maple syrup is a good source of sugars, and perfect for Vegans.

perfect!

Now we have a delicious nutritious Ensalada Mia, the recipe was provided by my lovely and adorable untie Martica.

A disfrutar amigos Mi Ensalada.

Gracias a todos!

With nutritious love!

AndreaP

In the beginning of November…

I cannot believe we are already in November. Every year seems to go faster I dont know If it is because we are busier in our  life or because we are just getting older and taking live seriously.

Halloween just happened and I am surprise to see how New Zelanders are enjoying this American tradition.

I remember 5 years ago when I arrived to this small town Queenstown NZ, nobody worried about dressing up or making parties about Halloween. It was just another day. It was seen like a horror tradition. Look how interesting is that when this country is not Catholic at all.

In my Country Colombia, Halloween was a big celebration. All kids were so looking forward to dress up and put their best costume and it was not just horror or terrifying outfits.

When I was about 8 years old I remember going to the mall with my parents because it was the only place where I can show off my dress but instead, we were stuck in the traffic so my father after 3 hours , inside of the car, decided to go back home so the idea of picking up sweets and showing off my princess dress was just an ilussion

I am a mother of four, so I try to organise parties or playdates for my boys. After being separated, being a single mum, I have lost my interest I dont even have more energy to get together with people but of course I love to see kids all dressed up and going trick or treating on the streets, seeing my boys all happy and just enjoying  people around them. It takes  part of the best memories.

I know is a little too late to talk about Halloween and  healthy recipes but I want to share an easy recipe for the kids . It does not necessary need to be halloween to make it, you can use any other cookie cutter even for christmas , or just circles or triangules or any other shape you have in your mind.

The recipe is with the popular SWEET POTATOES.

Do you want to know what are the nutritional advantages of sweet potatoes?

In one medium spud ,there is over 400 percent of your daily Vitamin A requirement , plus loads of fiber Calcium and Vit B6. They have more grams of natural sugar than a regular potatoe but more overall nutrients with fewer calories.

Nutritional content of the sweet potatoe:

Per 100 grams

Calories:86

Total Fat:0,1g

Cholesterol:0 mg

Sodium 55 mg

Potassium 337 mg

Total carbohydrate 20 g

Dietary fiber: 3 g

Sugar 4,2

Protein 1,6

Vitamin A 283%

Calcium 3%

Vitamin B6 10%

This is what you have to do with the sweet potatoes. You can have this for dinners with protein like meat, chicken or pok or even by themselves.

What If … Exercise 20 minutes a day…

In my last post I wrote about exercising, why is so important to move our bodies. Our bodies are made for movement, a gentle movement a fast movement whatever way makes you feel good. It is important to create good habits with exercising otherwise it will become a tedious thing to do. Exercising does not mean go to the gym and lift heavy weights, and running on the treadmill for 40 mins until you feel exhausted, exercising is even more than this. It means waking along your neighbourhood, it means walking the dog along a river or the beach, is doing yoga at your place, is skipping rope, is doing a session of abdominals for 20 mins. Move, move and move, is free it can be done anywhere.

Be mindful when you exercise. Exercising does not mean going shopping and walking around a mall, exercise means , put your active wear on, put your headphones on If you like music and DISCONNECT and ENGAGE with your own being. Breath deeply and exhale, enjoy every inhalation and every exhalation, If you go outside, appreciate everything around you. The trees, the cars, the people,

stop and look at the birds. Smile to people who walk and be grateful for the moment you are taking for yourself.

If you are a little bit more active go for a RUN. Running has amazing benefits and is free. Advantages of RUNNING.

Is for free, you can go on your own or with your best friends, it will improve your energy levels, the level of your endorphins will increase, so no more mood changes, happiness any time, improve circulation, increase metabolism so you will burn fat easily. Improve self-esteem and you can do it anytime anywhere.

One of the good things about running is that create a good  ADDICTION. Once you start running you want to keep running more and more.

Give it a try and start running slow and see what happens, twenty minutes is good enough.

IS THERE ANY DIFFERENCE WITH HITT?

( High-Intensity Interval Training) is just for 20 minutes. Their group of exercises which combine different intervals of resistance, speed and make you change the rhythm of your heart, therefore, your metabolism will increase so you will be sweating very much burning fat, the bone mass will increase so you physically will be stronger. The more you do it the better you will become. This kind of exercise is amazing and combined with 20 mins of running is as complete as going to the gym for 2 hours. You can do it at home and at any time.

You can try to find tutorials of how to practice HIIT at home in YOUTUBE.

WHAT ABOUT THE OLD FASHIONED SKIPPING ROPE?

Of course skipping rope is one of the most practical and easy exercises we can do at home. With just 20 mins we can burn 200 calories which means the same as running for 40 minutes. It increases the metabolism, improve coordination, balance, tone and muscle strength.

You can skip rope in any way you prefer, by using 2 legs or combined one leg, the speed is up to you and you can even play with your kids. Is not important to jump as high as you can, it has to be the way you prefer. Different ways to exercise at home.

WANTING TO HYDRATE YOUR BODY?

Try this easy recipe, I love them and so healthy. You will feel new again.

OPTION 1

  • 4 celery sticks
  • 1 apple
  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • 2 cups of water
  • Put the ingredients in the blender and DRINK UP.

OPTION 2

  • 2 cups of coconut water
  • 1 Tbsp of chia
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • juice of 2 lemons
  • 1 tbs of honey
  • Put ingredients in the blender and DRINK UP.

What I want to create with this article is creating good habits of health, beauty and fitness. There are lots of ways to look after ourselves and this means loving ourselves and loving our little families.  , and the easy ways to move our bodies,  the idea of this article is creating

There is nothing more encouraging for children that seeing mum doing exercise, looking after ourselves is inspiring for them.

I remember a couple years ago I joined a women soccer team here in Queenstown and I had the opportunity to play against my eldest son who is thirteen now. So we were running around the field laughing out loud and having so much fun. We are creating wonderful memories not just for them, for us too and creating family habits in many ways.

So go with your kids and family for walks, for a run, to play basketball at the park, walk the dog or skipping rope or just put a HITT video tutorial on your TV or computer exercise together. Remember to have fun!

WHAT TO EAT BEFORE A WORKOUT?

You can choose from one of this options.

  • 1 banana
  • 1 apple
  • 1 cup of berries
  • I handful of dried fruits
  • 1 handful of nuts
  • 1 protein bar

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WHAT TO EAT AFTER A WORKOUT?

  • Protein Shake
  • Banana
  • Cottage cheese on top of a wholemeal cracker.
  • Greek yoghurt with a tsp of honey
  • Lean protein like a boiled egg, chicken, chicken ham or cheese
  • Have 2 cups of green tea as hot drinks keep you full and warm and wait until your next meal.
  • Water must be drunk without solids, as the ph of the water is different to the ph of our body so the digestion will be imbalanced.

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