The qualified nutritionist

Immunity

With the corona virus expected to affect around 80% of our population, instead of panicking and achieving nothing but a cupboard full of anti bac and loo roll; try and give your body a fighting chance by aiming for optimum nutrition.

By nourishing your body with the essential vitamins and minerals it needs, you are giving your natural immune system a hand in doing what it does best....protecting you against disease.

Below are some essential vitamins and minerals which help our immune system 👇🏼

🍉 VITAMIN A
Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA)
Men - 700ugs
Women - 600 ugs

Sources include oily fish, dairy, orange, red and yellow fruits and vegetables such as carrots, peppers , tomatoes, mango, peaches, apricots and leafy greens.

🍅 150g baked sweet potato - 1283ugs
100g spinach - 260ugs
2 eggs - 137ugs
90g broccoli - 90ugs
50g mango - 58ugs

🥭 VITAMIN C
RDA for men and women - 40mgs

Sources include fruit and vegetables. Two satsumas gives you your total RDA 👍🏼

🥦MAGNESIUM
RDA for men - 300mg
Women - 270mg

Sources include dark green leafy veg, nuts and chocolate!

🥬 100g raw spinach provides 80mg
50g dark chocolate - 101mg
3 Brazil nuts - 63mg

🍗 IRON
RDA for men - 8.7mg
Women - 14.8mg

Food sources include:
- Heme iron (more easily absorbed) - meat, liver and shellfish
- Non heme iron - vegetables and cereal products

💪🏼 150g lamb steak provides 3.3mg iron
2 medium eggs - 2.2mg iron
100g raw spinach - 1.9mg iron
50g dark chocolate - 4.6mg iron

🍳 ZINC
RDA for men - 9.5mg
Women - 7mg

Food sources include meat, dairy, eggs and cereals.

🍖 150g beef mince provides 6.6mg zinc
150g lamb steak provides 7.1mg zinc
Half a tin of chickpeas provides 1mg zinc
2 eggs - 1.5mg

Happy eating everyone 🎊

The Qualified Nutritionist

Simplifying the world of nutrition

Hola! 🌺

Welcome to my wonderful world of nutrition!

As I continue my degree in Human Nutrition, in this space I will break down the chunky complex facts into fun size, digestable pieces and share my evidence based knowledge with you.

As we all know, knowledge is power and together we can start a non judgemental, healthier journey on the way to our best lives!

The media is a world wind of contrasting information right now and it's exhausting trying to decide what to believe. As a student on my way to becoming a fully qualified nutritionist, I promise to share nutritional truth with you in a way that is understandable and relatable.

So here we go!

Much love 🙏🏼

The qualified nutritionist

The perfect bowl of porridge 🖤

Making porridge delicious is pretty much my favourite thing to do in the kitchen 🖤 so I have listed a recipe below for you to give it a try.
Make sure you tag #thequalifiednutritionist when you do!

Pretty much any of the ingredients below can be switched up to suit your tastes but I always make sure I have 2 of my 5 a day in there plus a selection of nuts and seeds for that fat/carb/protein balance 😉

🔅Ingredients are roughly measured
3 heaped tbsp oats
3/4 cup of almond milk
2 or 3 Medjool dates cut into pieces
Sprinkle ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp fresh nutmeg
1 heaped tbsp Chia seeds or ground flaxseeds
6 pecans
1 tbsp toasted pumpkin seeds
1 tbsp dark choc chips
1 heaped tsp smooth peanut butter
Handful of frozen raspberries (defrosted in microwave)

🔅Method
× Pop your oats, almond milk, dates, cinnamon and nutmeg in a small non stick saucepan

× Gently heat until it starts to simmer and thicken (I like my porridge really thick but it's up to you how thick you make it)

× Once thick enough, pour into a bowl and top with chia/flaxseeds

× Arrange your raspberries, peanut butter, choc chip, nuts and seeds
- Drizzle with a little maple syrup if feeling naughty 😜

× Stir together and enjoy! ❤️

The qualified nutritionist

Baked porridge bites

I am always flying out the door (usually running late) and I'm not a fan of eating as soon as I wake up, but as soon as I'm on the train, I start getting snacky 🙈

These are going to be great, I can bake them while I'm getting uni ready and they'll still be warm by the time I'm on the train 🖤

Ses the recipe below:

Chocolate, chia and banana baked porridge bites

Makes 8 little bites
Ingredients
1 medium, soft banana
1 cup oats
1 cup milk of choice (I used almond)
1 tbsp chia seeds
1 handful of dark chocolate chips (you could use cacao nibs for no refined sugar)
1 tsp vanilla extract
A sprinkle of ground cinnamon
A good grating of fresh nutmeg
Extra choc chips for sprinkling on top

Method

Step One
Grease a muffin tray and set oven to 200 celcius

Step Two
Mash your banana in a bowl and add all other ingredients

Step Three
Pour your mixture into muffin holds and top with extra choc chips

Step Four
Bake for 17 minutes and voila!

❤️

Nutritional info (per 2 bites) :
Calories - 192 kcal
Carbohydrates - 28g
Protein - 4g
Total fats - 7g
Of which:
Sat fat - 2.4g
Omega 3 - 0.5g
Omega 6 - 1.4g
Fibre - 3.4g
Salt - 0.7g

The qualified nutritionist

Could you be iron deficient?

'Gamechangers' and 'What the Health' have explained to us all the (valid) positive reasons for eating a purely plant based diet, but they failed to mention some pretty important stuff!

Iron deficiency is the most common deficiency in the UK (and the most common cause of anaemia), especially for us girls, and by cutting out meat and fish completely you could be putting yourself at increased risk.

Let me share some info on iron... 🤓

First of all, there are two types:
🔸Heme iron (easily absorbed) found only in meat and fish
🔸Non heme iron (not very easily absorbed) found in meat, fish, plant based foods, dairy and eggs

For the "regular" person, absorption of non heme iron is approximately 5-12% of the total iron. This is because our bodies have to alter it in order to absorb it.

With heme iron, 20-30% of total iron is absorbed.

But do not despair!
First things first, let me clarify that this doesn't mean there are "good foods" and "foods to avoid", just try and be mindful of what you are eating 🖤

🥑 Remember, BALANCE IS KEY 🥑

× If you have been feeling abnormally tired or short of breath, please go to your doctor and ask for a blood test.
It's a quick and easy way to determine your iron levels.

Should you have low iron levels, there are certain tricks that can aid your iron absorption.
🔹Vitamin C and iron like to work together - when eaten together, the vitamin C aids iron absorption!
🔹Evidence has shown that the same is true of Beta Carotene (found in red, orange and yellow fruits and vegetables).

The flip side of course is that there are also foods which inhibit the absorption of iron (useful if you are diagnosed with iron overload, not so useful if you are diagnosed as deficient!)
▪️When consumed with iron rich foods, high levels of calcium (over 300ml) and eggs can reduce your body's ability to absorb the iron.
▪️The same is true of polyphenols (found in tea and coffee) and oxylates (found naturally in plants such as spinach, beetroot and rhubarb).

If you are low on iron your GP may prescribe supplements to get you back to healthy levels.

I am in no way here to tell you how to eat when I have no idea of your individual circumstances, but I hope this raises a little awareness to stay in tune with how you're feeling and taking measures to keep yourselves healthy.

Much love x

The qualified nutritionist

How to get your 5 a day

Evidence shows that we are struggling to eat our 5 a day.

So, how can we up our intake without opting for drastic measures that are unsustainable?

Small and easy changes 👍🏼

No you don't have to become vegan, give up meat or stop eating sugar if you don't want to.
Just add more plants to your diet for a healthier balance 🍍

🔹Breakfast...
Try starting the day with two portions, You could try:
× adding 30g dried fruit to porridge and topping with fresh berries

× making a smoothie (you can fit at least 2 portions in this one!)

× adding half an avocado and a portion of tomatoes/spinach/mushrooms to your eggs on toast

× have a slice of toast but also have a banana and an apple

× overnight oats with berries, plus a banana

🔹Now let's talk snacks...
Try and make a couple of snacks a fruit and a veg.
Fruit makes a great snack, it's portable and you can easily fit a tub of strawberries/grapes/mango/a couple of satsumas in your bag.
If fresh fruit gets too expensive, use thawed frozen berries or mango with yoghurt 👍🏼
Veg sticks and dip is another obvious one
I also love roasted butternut squash marinated in Italian herbs and paprika eaten cold the next day 😃

🔹Lunch
Go for at least 1 portion for lunch.
Add roasted veggies to your salad box, think Asian inspired slaws, veggie pasta salads, roast veg and cous cous, even a tin of soup can contain one of your 5 a day! Adding a portion of beans or lentils to your lunch will count as a portion plus give you a protein and fibre boost!
Think outside the sandwich box and you'll be winning!

🔹Dinner
Aim for 2 veggies with your dinner, this should be easy peasy (get it?!) .
Sweet potato counts (white potatoes don't I'm afraid!) 80g of most veg counts as a portion, check the link at the end of my post for the NHS guidelines on portion sizes.

So, let's break this down:
🔸2 portions at breakfast
🔸2 as snacks
🔸1 for lunch
🔸2 for dinner...
You're on track to beat your 5 day!

This is a rough guide of how I plan my day and some days you'll find your hitting 7, 8 or 9+ portions without thinking too much about it!

Yes food preparation is key. If you're low on time do the best that you can! Buying pre-prepared veg, soups, hummus pots and carrot sticks is okay!

▪️All pulses (lentils, chickpeas, beans etc) only count as 1 portion, no matter how many you eat!

Replacing convenience snacks and starchy white carbs with fruit, veg and pulses takes a bit of mental adjustment but I promise you will end up feeling lighter and so much more energised for it 🖤

The Qualified Nutritionist

get two of your five a day in at breakfast time with a beautiful bowl of oats

The qualified nutritionist

All about protein 🏋🏼‍♀️

What do we know so far?
Recommended intake is 0.75g of protein per kg of our bodyweight.
For a 65kg person (around 10 stone) that equates to around 50g protein per day.

The overall consensus is that protein is most beneficial when consumed throughout the day rather than in one hit.

For my top tips on:
× How much protein is found in our food
× How much to eat when training
× Benefits of protein
See my recommendations below...

How much protein is in our food?

Whether you eat meat, you're veggie or vegan, I've got you covered 😉

Whilst high in protein, remember:
Red meat and dairy are MUCH higher in fats
Plant proteins (except quinoa, soy and tofu) aren't "complete" proteins (they don't contain all essential amino acids)
A wide variety is essential if following a vegan diet.

× 8oz rump steak - 46g protein
× 120g chicken breast - 38.4g protein
× 1 cod fillet - 25.8g protein
× 1 scoop of whey/soya protein powder (dependant on brand) contains approx 20-25g protein
× 1/4 block firm tofu - 18.3g protein
× Half a pack of king prawns - 13.8g protein
× 2 large free range eggs - 14.8g protein
× 40g Cheddar cheese - 10.2g protein 
× Half a tin of chickpeas - 9.2g protein
× Half a tin of black beans - 9g protein
× 1 cup of cooked quinoa - 8.7g protein
× Half a tin of green lentils - 7.3g protein

Protein GAINS

Protein intake when training...

Protein is essential for muscle repair we know that, so how much do you need?

Depending on duration and intensity, intake should be 1.2g - 1.7g protein per kg bodyweight per day.
In context, for the 65kg person that is 78g to 110g protein per day (instead of 50g for the average requirement) 👩🏼‍🎓

Protein isn't stored so if you're overloading and your body doesn't need it, it will only be expelled as waste.

MEAT LOVERS...
Too much protein can lead to:
Low calcium levels
Extra strain on your kidneys (you will need to up your fluid intake).
It is recommended not to exceed double the recommended intake 👍🏼

Benefits of protein

So what does protein do for us?

× As well as helping our bodies grow and repair, protein is essential in many other ways we don't see!

× Behind the scenes, adaquate protein levels are essential for our metabolism, immune system, our hormones and transporting minerals around the body.

The qualified nutritionist

Let's talk fibre!

There's no two ways about it, we should all be getting more fibre in our diets.
The recommended intake has recently increased from 18g to 30g per day, that's a huge jump!

Fibre is essential for healthy gut microbiome (linked with healthy weight and improved mental health) and to keep our digestive system running smoothly.

Variety is key here, Dr Megan Rossi (aka the Gut Health Doctor) recommends aiming for at least 30 different plant based foods a week for a diverse and flourishing microbiome!

Below I have some top tips on where to find your fibre and examples of how much fibre we can find in our food.

Here's to a happy gut 😘

1. Pulses, nuts and seeds

Store cupboard essentials you can buy in bulk to keep costs down.
These items are absolute powerhouses when it comes to fibre.
See below for some examples...

× Half a tin of black beans contains a massive 8.5g fibre

× Half a tin of green lentils provides 6.8g fibre

× Half a tin of baked beans has 7.7g fibre

× Half a tin of chickpeas contains 4.9g fibre

× Half a tin of red kidney beans has 7.4g fibre

× 1 tbsp chia seeds give us 3.9g fibre

× 1 tbsp ground flaxseeds provide 3.6g fibre

× 8 almonds contain 1.3g fibre

× A thick spread of peanut butter has 1.6g fibre

× 3 Brazil nuts provide 1.2g fibre

2. Fruits and vegetables

Fresh, frozen, dried or tinned, it's entirely up to you. It doesn't have to be expensive to hit your five a day or your fibre goal!

Remember that a minimum of five portions of different fruits and veg are recommended to keep your gut happy and also provide your body with a healthy level of vitamins and minerals to keep your body functioning properly behind the scenes!

See below for some ideas...

× 1 cup of strawberries contains 6g fibre

× Half a cup of raspberries contains 4.4g fibre

× 80g green beans has 3.3g fibre

× 80g steamed broccoli provides 3.2g fibre

× 1 portion of roasted parsnips gives us 3.2g fibre

× 3 dried Medjool dates provide 3g fibre

× Half a cup of mango has 2.4g fibre

× 80g roasted carrots have 2.2g fibre

× An apple contains 2g fibre

× 1 beetroot contains 1.6g fibre

× 2 slices of pineapple contains 1.5g fibre

× 80g cauliflower also contains 1.5g fibre

× 1 medium banana provides 1.5g fibre

3. Wholegrains

White carbohydrates have had all their nutrients stripped out, so for every reason, choose wholegrain where you can!
See below for some examples of how to get more fibre through wholegrains...

× I wholemeal bagel contains 6.7g fibre

× A medium serving of brown pasta has 6g fibre
(in comparison white pasta has just 1.5g)

× 2 slices of medium wholemeal bread gives you 5.2g of fibre

× Half a packet of microwavable wholegrain rice provides 2.4g of fibre

× 40g of oats provides 3.1g of fibre

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