- Oats: excellent source of fibre, which not only aids with digestive issues, but also helps to lower cholesterol by binding to it and depositing it out of the gut. Oats also contain good levels of B vitamins and have a low GI to keep blood sugars level. They are great for making porridge or in baking.
- Quinoa: great alternative to rice, pasta or potatoes. It’s very nutritious and a complete protein.
- Lentils: an excellent source of protein and fibre; they are great with vegetables or fish.
- Sweet potatoes: contain a much lower GI than their white counterpart; they can be used to make salads, or roasted, mashed, and baked.
- Coconut oil: best oil to use when cooking at high temperatures
- Olive oil and extra virgin olive oil: best consumed cold in dressings or used under a moderate heat. They contain oleic acid (an omega 3 fatty acid), which doesn’t affect your omega 3 or omega 6 balance, or influence your levels of inflammation in the body.
- Butter: always use 100% butter!
- Himalayan salt/ rock salt or sea salt: avoid using table salt as it is processed. Sea and rock salts are packed with lots of natural minerals, with Himalayan rock salt containing the highest concentration.
- Unsalted nuts, such as walnuts, brazil, hazelnut, cashews: these are high in protein and fats
- Seeds, such as linseed, pumpkin, sunflower, chia: excellent sources of protein and minerals
- Eggs: great source of protein and omega 3; they are also very versatile as can be eaten at breakfast, lunch or as a light supper.
- Onions: rich in anti-viral and anti-inflammatory properties; they nions contain a natural prebiotic called inulin, which help feed the good bacteria in our gut, aiding digestion and increasing our immunity.
- Garlic: as well as adding flavour to our food, garlic is a great antiviral and antifungal.
- Ginger: not only adds great flavour to food, but contains anti inflammatory and antibacterial properties. It is also excellent for indigestion.
- Sea vegetables such as kelp, wakame, kombu and arame: excellent source of minerals like iron, magnesium, iodine and potassium. Can be purchased from health food shops.
- Coconut palm sugar: a good alternative to their refined white counterpart; as a lower GI.
- Honey: excellent natural sweetener
- 100% Maple syrup: a great natural low GI sweetener that doesn’t raise blood sugar levels too much
- Nut butters such as almond or cashew: great source of plant protein and healthy fats; excellent snack or addition to smoothies
- Sage: its essential oils are believed to improve brain function and concentration; has antioxidant properties
- Cayenne pepper: stimulates your circulation; boosts metabolism; thought to relieve nasal congestion by shrinking blood vessels in the nose
- Raw cacao: good source of antioxidants; excellent for making chocolate based desserts; great source of magnesium
- Full fat coconut milk: although it’s high in calories, it’s fats are easily absorbed and utilised by the body, making them less likely to be stored at fat. Great for its immune boosting and antiviral properties; excellent addition to curries and smoothies; can be used as a milk substitute as it’s lactose free
- Coconut water: good addition to smoothies; full of electrolytes; beneficial for anyone suffering from diarrhea
- Gluten free flour such as coconut or almond flour: ideal for baking; good gluten free alternative
- Tinned chickpeas: great source of protein; excellent for making hummus, adding to casseroles, curries and stews
- Organic pear and apples spread: good alternative to jam; Biona make a delicious one, which is made purely with pears and apples, and contains no hidden additives or extra sugar
- Canned beans such as cannellini, kidney beans, black eyed beans: great source of fibre, protein, vitamins and minerals.
- Apple cider vinegar: can help with digestion; may help lower blood pressure; excellent salad dressing ingredient
- Tahini: made from sesame seeds; contains good healthy oils, vitamins and mineral; has a strong nutty taste, so use in moderation; great for adding to salad dressings and hummus
- Vanilla extract: the extract opposed to the essence (which has additives) is great for flavouring desserts
Herbs and spices are packed full of phytonutrients, which makes them powerful additions to our diet.
- Cinnamon: anti inflammatory; assists in balancing blood sugar levels
- Rosemary: has antioxidant properties; assists with liver detoxification; improves memory
- Turmeric: anti inflammatory; contains antioxidant and antiviral properties, which makes it great at fighting infections; assists with liver detoxification
- Coriander: excellent source of vitamin C and A; helps to reduce blood pressure; high in iron and calcium; aids with digestion by promoting good enzyme and digestive juices in the stomach
- Cumin: good for flatulence and helping to settle the stomach; a good source of magnesium and iron, which helps to reduce blood pressure by relaxing muscle walls. Studies have also shown that cumin helps to reduce blood sugar levels, so it could be useful for diabetics.
- Basil: contains anti-bacterial and anti inflammatory properties; its beta carotene content makes it a good anti-oxidant that protects the body from free radical damage.
- Parsley: great source of vitamins K,C and A, folate, calcium and iron; excellent anti-inflammatory; aids stomach issues such as cramps, bloating and indigestion; thought to act as a cleanser for the body and a natural diuretic, which could be useful for kidney stones and urinary infections
- Cloves: have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties; known to provide pain relief for toothache when chewed
- Thyme: is antimicrobial due to its thymol content; excellent at fighting colds and flu’s
- Herbs and spices are packed full of phytonutrients which make them powerful additions to our diet.
- Maca: excellent source of iron, B vitamins and minerals; great for energy; helps restore red blood cells
- Chlorella: great source of B vitamins; good for energy and immunity
- Spirulina: excellent source of plant protein; it’s a complete protein, which means it contains all the amino acids our body needs; rich in B vitamins; great for energy; wonderful addition to your smoothies
- Bee pollen: great source of protein, vitamins and minerals; add a few sprinkles into your smoothie or onto your porridge
- Goji berries: brilliant for immunity thanks to their antioxidant values; good addition to muesli or muesli bars
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