2 Banana Dessert Recipes - Banana ice cream and Barbecued Banana plus Health Benefit of Bananas

Lately, its been all the rage to make your own ice cream.  And people are coming up with great and healthy, inventive ways to make delicious ice cream.



I have developed my own take on all the healthy low fat ice cream recipes around, using fat free Greek style yoghurt, bananas, light cream cheese amongst a couple of other ingredients. 


Now, recent scientific studies have revealed bananas reduce symptoms and the advancement of the following diseases, (as well as prevention):

Asthma: A study by Imperial College of London found that children who ate just 1 banana a day had a 34% less chance of developing asthma.

Cancer: Consuming bananas in the first 2 years of life reduces the risk of developing childhood leukemia. As a good source of vitamin C, bananas help combat the formation of free radicals known to cause cancer.




Diabetes: Studies show that type 1 diabetics who consume fibre-rich diets have lower blood glucose levels & type 2 diabetics may have improved blood sugar, lipids & insulin levels.

Diarrhea: Bland foods such as bananas are recommended for the treatment of diarrhea. Electrolytes like potassium are lost in large quantities during bouts of diarrhea & may make those affected feel weak. Bananas encourage regularity & they replenish potassium stores.



Bananas contain the following vitamins & minerals:
  • Vitamin B6 - .5 mg
  • Manganese - .3 mg
  • Vitamin C - 9 mg
  • Potassium - 450 mg
  • Dietary Fiber - 3g
  • Protein - 1 g
  • Magnesium - 34 mg
  • Folate - 25.0 mcg
  • Riboflavin - .1 mg
  • Niacin - .8 mg
  • Vitamin A - 81 IU
  • Iron - .3 mg
This is why I shall demonstrate a couple of delicious ideas to include bananas into your pudding repetoire!

 Check out this low fat banana ice cream recipe:-


Ingredients:
225g of 0% fat free Greek style organic yoghurt, 90g (half pack) of lighter than light Philadelphia cream cheese, 2 small frozen bananas, 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract, optional mint leaves and chopped almonds to decorate/garnish.
Freeze for 24 hours and serve with fresh fruit.

My second excellent banana pudding recipe is delicious barbecued banana.  Check out the video here:-


This one is just so simple - all you do is wrap up however many bananas you want in 2 sheets of aluminium foil and place directly over the hot coals on your barbecue. This will need to be done once your barbecue and main meal is done and ready to eat, so that the bananas will be ready, soft and caramelised as soon as you've finished eating. Also, the barbecue will be even cooler at this time so you can place the bananas directly over the centre of the coals.  Leave them for around 20-30 minutes (depending on the temperature of your barbecue).  Remove them from the barbecue, and very carefully, with gloves unwrap the bananas. They are lovely and caramilised and sweet.   Mmmmmm...

Let me know what you think about this recipe idea, and please comment below. Feel free to subscribe to my youtube channel here and also please visit my Instagram page, my facebook page, my pinterest page and my twitter account.

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Genius Kitchen Life Hack to make Versatile No Fry Omelette in a Bag

I love writing about and researching healthy lifestyles, and especially healthy recipes.  Included in this, and in fact to date, my most popular blog article has been about kitchen hacks (tips and tricks for the kitchen).  Now, when I came across this little trick, I just had to do a whole separate blog article on it: No Fry Omelette Recipe!



And OMG it is DELICIOUS!!  Normally, we would make an omelette in a frying pan, wouldn't we?  Well check out this little life hack - instead of that, pop it in a freezer bag and boil it!  No oil and much less washing up with this little number.  This is fabulous for sleepovers, camping, taking it to work in a lunch box etc.



All you do, is pop all of the ingredients in a freezer bag, give it a good ol' shake up.  Next, you pop the bag in a saucepan with boiling water for 15 minutes.  I personally used yellow peppers, cucumbers, tomatoes, onion, cauliflower and mushroom, but you can use any ingredients you want. I use one egg and two egg whites to reduce the calories and fat content even further.  Once the 15 mins are up, carefully open the bag and gently roll its contents onto a plate.  Et voila!

 Check out my video of the whole process here:-


Ingredients
1 egg and two egg whites, Handful of chopped onions, tomatoes, mushrooms, grated cauliflower, yellow pepper, salt, pepper, Italian seasoning. Garnish with fresh cress and grated low fat mozzarella cheese.  Serve with some salad.

Method 
As stated above

Let me know what you think about this recipe idea, and please comment below. Feel free to subscribe to my youtube channel here and also please visit my Instagram page, my facebook page, my pinterest page and my twitter account.

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Coconut, Banana and Chocolate Muffins Gluten Free Recipe

I always to eat nice and clean and healthily. In addition to this, I love trying out new recipe ideas, testing the latest superfood ingredients, and inventing my own take on the latest fad ingredients in the fashionable health world. No matter how healthy you are, and how "good" you are, sometimes, perhaps on a Friday night at the end of a long and tiresome week, there is always that want to have a little something "naughty and nice". Perhaps a bit of chocolate, or some devilish M&Ms!

I really love working hard and then rewarding myself with a special treat (like a long bath or spa treatment), or maybe sometimes a delicious snack. And what I especially love is working hard at developing a recipe, filming it, and then receiving the reward of eating it - the fruits of my labour!  Bringing all these three factors together - eating the latest fashionable clean food, the desire for something sweet at the end of a hard week, and developing my own new and unique recipe, I have developed the five following recipes. Also, for fun, all of these recipes are gluten-free, and some are also dairy-free.

Coconut is a fantastic and gorgeous ingredient...not only does it taste delightful, but also its glycemic index (GI) is incredibly low.  What this means is that when you eat coconut, the release of glucose into your blood is very slow, therefore less insulin is needed by your body to utilise glucose and transport it to the cell where it's converted into energy.  This is great news for those with diabetes, and for those with a risk of developing the disease, because it lowers the impact on our blood sugar levels, decreasing stress on the pancreas.

Ingredients:
1 cup of coconut flour (128g)
Half cup of dessicated coconut (50g)
3 tbsps cacao
1 tbsp chia seeds
1 tea spoon of baking  powder
1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
2 tbsps of sweetner (stevia or Splenda are the best)
2 banana
3 tbsps of coconut oil
3 tbsps honey
1 egg
1 cup of Greek natural yoghurt (0% fat)
1 tea spoon of vanilla extract
1.5 cups of  coconut milk (  ml)


Method
Bake in a silicone baking tray at 175 degrees centigrade (350 degrees farenheit) for 25 minutes. Leave to cool off, then enjoy!

Let me know what you think about this recipe idea, and please comment below. Feel free to subscribe to my youtube channel here and also please visit my Instagram page, my facebook page, my pinterest page and my twitter account.

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Delicious and Clean Blueberry Cocktail Vodka Recipe

It's 5:30pm on a Friday, and I would say...

IT'S HAPPY HOUR!!



Who doesn't love a cocktail?!  Oh, and also, who doesn't love blueberries (apart from my husband)?! Blueberries are so juicy, fruity and delicious.  They are also a very fashionable superfood at the moment due to their high antioxidant and phytoflavinoid content, making them the no 1 choice of nutritionists and doctors.  The are highly anti-inflammatory; inflammation is the driver of all chronic diseases, so they they lower your risk of heart disease, cancer and many other illnesses. 


Add some blueberries to a cocktail!  And to give you some confidence in my idea, try out my blueberry cocktail recipe idea:-

Ingredients:
Handful of blueberries, any berry juice, vodka (try Crystal Head Vodka which is triple distilled for less hangover), sweetener and ice.

Method
Add the handful of blueberries to a glass.  Keep one aside to decorate the glass with later.  Mush up the blueberries with the end of a rolling pin, a fork or a pestle:-



Add the rest of the ingredients - the sweetener, 1 or 2 shots of vodka, ice and the berry juice.  I added some strawberries and a blueberry for decoration:-


Naturally, blueberries are low in fat and sodium, have just 80 calories per cup and contain a category of phytonutrients called polyphenols.  This group includes anthocyanins which are compounds giving blueberries their blue color.
Blueberries are also a good source of dietary fibre.  Dietary fibre may reduce the risk of heart disease and adds bulk to your diet, which may help you feel full faster.

So I hope you enjoy this Friday night, and don't forget to dose-up on the blueberries with your drinks!! Let me know what you think about this recipe idea, and please comment below. Feel free to subscribe to my youtube channel here and also please visit my Instagram page, my facebook page, my pinterest page and my twitter account.

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Using Courgettes with Baking as a Flour Replacement - 2 Brownie Recipes

I have recently discovered courgettes (in the US called zuchinnis) as a fantastic ingredient in baking brownies, muffins and cakes. They are so light that they give any sponge cake base a real fluffiness.  They are also fantastically low in fat and calories, making what could be an unhealthy option, healthy!


Courgettes/zuchinnis are not a power house of nutrients as they consist of mainly water. However, they do contain plenty of vitamin C - great to boost your immune system, as well as potassium. Potassium controls blood sugar levels and regulates our blood pressure to a safe level. Try not to peel courgettes as the dark skin is full of soluble fibre - great for your digestive system and those suffering from IBS.

So firstly, to include courgettes in baking, check out this delicious Courgette and Dark Chocolate Brownie Recipe video:-


Ingredients
1 grated courgette (zucchini), 100g of 85% dark chocolate (cacao), 1 jar of almond butter (170g), 2 tbsps of honey, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract, half a teaspoon of nutmeg or half a teaspoon of allspice.
Method
Whisk all of the ingredients together in a mixing bowl.
Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
Pour in the mixture, ensuring the mixture meets the corners of the tray.
Bake for 175 degrees centigrade (350 degrees farenheit) for 55 mins - 1 hour.  Cut into square shaped pieces - I managed 12 brownies:-



Secondly, my sweet potato and courgette brownies recipe is one of my favourites. Sweet potatoes are a fantastic ingredient to add to a cake or brownie recipe because they hold an unusually high content of fibre. Fibre is great as it helps us digest our food properly, lowering the chances of constipation and developing hemorrhoids. Eating fibre regularly signifies a lower chance of getting heart disease and certain types of cancer. 

Sweet potatoes are bursting full of anti-oxidants; 1 cup of sweet potatoes supplies 900-950 milligrams of potassium. Potassium keeps our hearts beating normally and helps our muscles work properly. 1 serving of sweet potatoes provides around 1,900 micrograms of vitamin A; the nutrient that keeps our skin, eyes, teeth and bones healthy. Sweet potatoes are also full of iron and vitamin C; 2 nutrients that we need for a strong immune system.

Check out my sweet potato and courgette brownie recipe here:-

Ingredients:
4 oven baked sweet potatoes (400g) - peeled and mashed, 2 courgettes grated, 1 egg, 50g of dark chocolate, 1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, 1 teaspoon of ground nutmeg, 1 teaspoon of allspice, 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract and 2 tablespoons of honey.

Method
Preheat the oven at 175 degrees centigrade (350 farenheit)
Bake 4 sweet potatoes in the oven (around 700g of sweet potatoes) in the oven.  Leave them to cool, and peel and mash the sweet potatoes.
Grate the two courgetts into the mixture.  Add all of the other ingredients to the mixture.  You can warm the chocolate gently on the hob, or you can just break up the dark chocolate and add it. I add the bicarbonate of soda lastly.
Pour the mixture onto a baking tray with baking paper.
Pop into the oven for one hour.
Leave the mixture to cool and cut into squares:-



And serve with a sprinkling of dessicated coconut!

So, let me know what you think about these two recipes.  Feel free to subscribe to my youtube channel here and also please visit my Instagram page, my facebook page, my pinterest page and my twitter account.  Enjoy the rest of the week!

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The Eye Health Benefit of Spinach plus Spinach Pizza and Dip Recipes

Eye health is so important. Everyday it is normal to take our eyesight for granted, because we just get on with our daily lives, however, sometimes I stop and think what it might like to be blind, and I curl at the thought of living in a dark world and being totally dependable on others. As we grow older, so do our eyes. Indeed, they deteriorate with age.  In fact, my father in law, who is 84 years old really struggles with his eyesight, to the point where he can no longer drive or read; even simple tasks such as hammering a nail to a wall and seeing the food on his plate is hard.  This is very sad and means he has  become more and more dependable on my mother in law.  He has been diagnosed with a disease called AMD - age-related macular degeneration- which is a debilitating eye disease.


AMD is when cells in the retina are damaged. Free radicals cause the damage to the cells which makes our vision more blurred preventing us from seeing detail. AMD can also distort the images the eyes see by causing debris to build up under the retina.  AMD doesn't cause blindness, but it disrupts vision enough to be declared legally blind, like my father in law.  



AMD affects 2.4% of the adult population in the UK - that's 513,000 people affected.  It is much more common in people over the age of 50.  It is the most common cause of sight loss in the developed world.

So what has all this doom and gloom got to do with spinach? Basically, scientific experiments have shown that spinach helps prevent AMD, and also it can improve the vision of someone already with AMD.  Spinach is packed full of antioxidants, dietary fibre, vitamins and minerals incl folic acid.  But it is the chemicals called lutein and zeaxanthin that spinach contains which are the elements that restore the macular pigment in our eyes.  Egg yolks contain these elements, as well as kale, but I wanted to focus on spinach for this blog article because spinach is more flexible and versatile; it can be used in so many types of recipes.


Lutein is absorbed by our bodies better when it is eaten with a little bit of fat, and when we eat spinach on its own, much less is absorbed, due to a chemical present in spinach called oxalic acid.  So this is the cue for my spinach recipes!!

Firstly, spinach is great on a pizza! One myth I want to destroy is that pizzas are always unhealthy.  Yes, they most likely are, however, I have come up with my own pizza recipe, where the whole pizza is under 600 calories.  This is because for the base, I use a wholemeal tortilla wrap, and the topping is a mixture of light, healthy ingredients, including using low fat pesto mixed with tomato puree for the paste (tomato puree is low calorie anyway), and half fat mozzarella cheese.
Take a look at the recipe here: for a video of my own healthy take on spinach pizza:-


Ingredients: Seeded tortilla wraps, 2-3 tbsps reduced fat pesto, 2-3 tbsps concentrated tomato puree, 2 x tomatoes, shredded chicken breast, spinach, low fat mozzarrella cheese.

Also try this delicious spinach creamy dip. I've used avocados as the healthy fat, so this helps us to absorb lutein, zeaxanthin and iron more efficiently.  It is great to accompany an appetizer, starter or dip at a party.  The trick here is that the avocado is used as the element to make it really creamy, and the garlic adds spiciness to it!  Mmmmm...

Ingredients:
150g spinach, 1 avocado, 1 spring onion, 2 small (or 1 large) cloves of garlic, handful of fresh coriander, 1 lime including zest, sea salt, pepper, cress as a garnish.


I hope you have found this blog article informative.  My aim is to help my husband to eat more spinach in creative ways, because I'm hoping that there will be an improvement in the thickness of the macular pigment in his retinas.  Thanks so much for reading this, I hope I've inspired you to help protect your eyes and the eyes' of someone you love. Feel free to subscribe to my youtube channel here and also please visit my Instagram page, my facebook page, my pinterest page and my twitter account.

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