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Holistic Nutrition​

Foods, Facts, and Recipes​

Breast Cancer Prevention: Diet & Supplements

Healthy with Hanifa

Jul. 3, 2023

Avoid processed foods: nitrates, sugar, white refined starches, deep-fried, trans fats, salty, chemical-laden foods. High in calories and lower in nutrients, processed foods are bad for weight management. Excess weight is linked to more fat stores, toxic buildup, and estrogen dominance, which is also linked to breast cancer.


Cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, rapini, and brussels sprouts are high in Indole-Carbinol-3, which support liver health and dismantling bad estrogens.


2:1 omega 3 to 6 ratio to reduce inflammation, which stresses the immune system.

For methylation: methionine, B2, B6, B12 and folate (lean greens, lean proteins, beans & legumes), so that your body’s chemical processes are supported.


Focus on gut health, which encourages better immunity and liver health. Take a quality probiotic and eat fermented foods such as sauerkraut, kimchi, and tempeh.


A plant-based diet with whole grains and moderate soy - full of phytochemicals, antioxidants, and phyto-estrogens - is a must for protecting cells from cancer and damage.


GBOMBS – Greens, Beans, Onions, Mushrooms, Berries, Seeds(+ nuts) strengthen the quality of blood.


Drink lots of green tea, which counteracts initiation and progression of cancer.

Immunity supplements – b-complex, vit. C, NAC, magnesium, zinc, EPA, sulfur/MSM, iodine, ALA, I-C-3, calcium-d-glucarate, curcumin, cysteine, methionine.

3-Ingrdient Snacks Plates

Healthy with Hanifa

Oct. 17, 2022

3-Ingredient Snack Plates

Very simply-- have a theme, take 3 healthy foods related to that theme, and then split your plate into thirds.

For example:

Italian: Biscotti (optional: gluten-free), 70 percent dark chocolate, and fresh strawberries

Tropical theme: pineapple slices, lean ham cubes, sliced avocado

After-school: cheddar cheese chunks, rice crackers, cherry tomatoes

Should You Go Gluten-Free?

Healthy with Hanifa

Nov. 19, 2020

What is the big deal about gluten?


Do you have to be Celiac to have symptoms to gluten? Actually, you don’t! If you have digestive issues, chances are you’re not tolerating hard-to-digest gluten proteins very well! Not digesting these proteins creates inflammation along your intestinal lining. Sometimes these proteins then crossover from a permeated gut into the bloodstream where it reacts, thus, causing inflammation and adverse symptoms.


Who should go gluten-free?


Well, let’s first discuss who should NOT go gluten-free. That would be anyone with a healthy, functioning digestive system. Someone who can eat wheat and still has decent mental clarity, a flat mid-section, and no other symptoms.


Now, if you're wondering, the best candidates for going gluten-free are those who suffer from:

-allergies

-depression

-joint pain

-hypothyroidism

-gut issues


See if Going Gluten-Free Makes a Difference


Try it for two weeks. No gluten or wheat derivatives in your breads, sauces, and grains. Have your symptoms alleviated? What happens when you add gluten back in? If your symptoms return, it’s best to go gluten-free more permanently and seek a gut-healing protocol to repair intestinal damage.    


Edible Eddoes

Healthy with Hanifa

Jan. 22, 2019

Benefits:  A great substitute if you're sensitive to potatoes or cutting down on grains, eddoes are satisfying, higher in starch, and absorb the taste of sauces well.  They are also a source of vitamin A, C, E, and B6 along with minerals such as magnesium, phosphorous, and manganese.  


How to cook them: Just like a potato!  You may boil them, covered for 15 minutes.


Tips: Wash all the hairy bits off too before skinning with a potato peeler.


They are good in stews and/or with coconut milk. 

  

Nutrition is Not a Laughing Matter!

Healthy with Hanifa

Dec. 18, 2019

 I say this because even when I give clients recipes to support a condition or issue--let's say a turmeric paste recipe for inflammation--it's often ignored and sloughed off.  We have been conditioned in our society to accept that food doesn't really work or affect our health that much.  Nothing could be further from the truth.


Here are examples about how food has a direct relation to your health:


- My dog is turning 15 and my vet can't believe it!  I have used nutritional knowledge to bump up the antioxidant content in her recipes. This has subsequently kept her cataracts at bay.  


-When I had sprained an ankle badly and I needed to teach the next morning, I embarked on an anti-inflammatory protocol and kept bombarding myself with foods such as flax oil, fish, and cherries.  By the next morning, the swelling had gone down and I was able to teach the class.


-I used to have a fall full of acne.  I was able to clear it up through the elimination of sugar and dairy.  Now people say that I have perfect skin. 


Food has a direct effect on your digestion and microbiome, which your immune system is dependent upon.  It is also the type of nourishment your cells understand the most.  It is the building block for skin, hair, and muscle, and it alters hormones.  Please don't dismiss nutritional advice in support of conditions -- they do work on not just the condition, but your entire body! 

They Haven't Discovered Your "Ideal" Diet Yet

Healthy with Hanifa

Nov. 19, 2019

If you read my book "Healthy with Hanifa: A Woman's Guide to Holistic Health & Fitness," you will realize that aside from there being no one-size fits all diet, I ask people to combine the best elements of various diets.


Thus, if you're someone who feels like she's tried everything, maybe you haven't tried everything yet after all.  It's possible they haven't discovered or popularized your "ideal" diet yet.  


Let me explain:


When I first started in the fitness world, it was all about calories in/calories out.  I thought that I could lose my belly if I just exercised a lot and ate next to nothing.  The whole concept of food sensitivities and even gluten-free foods wasn't trending yet.  It was not until gluten-free became a thing that I lost some weight in my mid-section. 


It was not until much later that I could purchase software or do tests to customize my diet even further.  It also wasn't until a year ago that I learned that I don't digest raw fruits and vegetables without my tongue or throat tingling.  


So currently, my plan is a hybrid, customized, gluten-free program with all  cooked fruits & veggies.  Up until that point, I had tried raw vegan, paleo, the food pyramid, and too many other diets to count.  


This is why if you're in nutrition programming limbo, I would suggest going back to what worked for you and tweaking it.  Keep doing the best version of what you know works.  With new trends and information coming out, there may be something that works even better for you in the future - just give it time (and stubbornness).        


3 More Healthy Gut Tips

Healthy with Hanifa

Sept. 27, 2019

Why is there so much emphasis on the gut in complimentary medicine these days?  Because it really is the center of health!  Your gut is where the body absorbs nutrients, which gets distributed via blood to all your cells and major organs.  Imagine if your gut has an overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria along with little holes that allow these toxins to escape into the bloodstream. 


If you want better skin, a flatter stomach, and prevention of both physical and mental illnesses, work on your gut health!  Here are 3 tips:


1. Go grain-free -- Grains are hard to digest for a compromised gut.  I had been dealing with chronic parasites, and I didn't come out ahead until I took out grains. 

    

2. Take L-Glutamine--This important supplement helps repair the lining of your gut wall and recover muscle.


3. Stress Less -- Stress affects digestions. If you want better digestion, eat slowly and consume whole foods that you enjoy.  You may even want to ensure your environment is stress-free, so maybe take your lunch out to the park.  

Be True to Yourself

Healthy with Hanifa

Jan. 24, 2019

Having taught fitness for so long, I know the importance of image and having a fit appearance.  You can also say that I am a professional dieter.  I have been on every diet imaginable--raw vegan to paleo, from food pyramids to counting calories, from The Zone diet to a conventional bodybuilder's diet.  Having experimented, I can honestly say I know what works best for my body.


However, here's the problem--


I have been derailed.  Whether it's the lure of a more beauty, a leaner body, or greater mental focus, I have been switched off what I knew worked for me in hopes of finding something better.


And you know what?


I always return to what works best for me.  


This is a lesson for all of us: in spite of the newest die, the latest workout,  or the trendiest detox, there will always be something newer, shinier, and replete with promises.   The key is to reach deep within you.  You know deep down what works and what doesn't.  Don't be swayed, stick to it, and be true to yourself!    

  

Should You Go Gluten-Free?

Healthy with Hanifa

Nov. 19, 2020

What is the big deal about gluten?


Do you have to be Celiac to have symptoms to gluten? Actually, you don’t! If you have digestive issues, chances are you’re not tolerating hard-to-digest gluten proteins very well! Not digesting these proteins creates inflammation along your intestinal lining. Sometimes these proteins then crossover from a permeated gut into the bloodstream where it reacts, thus, causing inflammation and adverse symptoms.


Who should go gluten-free?


Well, let’s first discuss who should NOT go gluten-free. That would be anyone with a healthy, functioning digestive system. Someone who can eat wheat and still has decent mental clarity, a flat mid-section, and no other symptoms.


Now, if you're wondering, the best candidates for going gluten-free are those who suffer from:

-allergies

-depression

-joint pain

-hypothyroidism

-gut issues


See if Going Gluten-Free Makes a Difference


Try it for two weeks. No gluten or wheat derivatives in your breads, sauces, and grains. Have your symptoms alleviated? What happens when you add gluten back in? If your symptoms return, it’s best to go gluten-free more permanently and seek a gut-healing protocol to repair intestinal damage.    


Should You Go Gluten-Free?

Healthy with Hanifa

Nov. 19, 2020

What is the big deal about gluten?


Do you have to be Celiac to have symptoms to gluten? Actually, you don’t! If you have digestive issues, chances are you’re not tolerating hard-to-digest gluten proteins very well! Not digesting these proteins creates inflammation along your intestinal lining. Sometimes these proteins then crossover from a permeated gut into the bloodstream where it reacts, thus, causing inflammation and adverse symptoms.


Who should go gluten-free?


Well, let’s first discuss who should NOT go gluten-free. That would be anyone with a healthy, functioning digestive system. Someone who can eat wheat and still has decent mental clarity, a flat mid-section, and no other symptoms.


Now, if you're wondering, the best candidates for going gluten-free are those who suffer from:

-allergies

-depression

-joint pain

-hypothyroidism

-gut issues


See if Going Gluten-Free Makes a Difference


Try it for two weeks. No gluten or wheat derivatives in your breads, sauces, and grains. Have your symptoms alleviated? What happens when you add gluten back in? If your symptoms return, it’s best to go gluten-free more permanently and seek a gut-healing protocol to repair intestinal damage.    


Edible Eddoes

Healthy with Hanifa

Jan. 22, 2019

Benefits:  A great substitute if you're sensitive to potatoes or cutting down on grains, eddoes are satisfying, higher in starch, and absorb the taste of sauces well.  They are also a source of vitamin A, C, E, and B6 along with minerals such as magnesium, phosphorous, and manganese.  


How to cook them: Just like a potato!  You may boil them, covered for 15 minutes.


Tips: Wash all the hairy bits off too before skinning with a potato peeler.


They are good in stews and/or with coconut milk. 

  

Nutrition is Not a Laughing Matter!

Healthy with Hanifa

Dec. 18, 2019

 I say this because even when I give clients recipes to support a condition or issue--let's say a turmeric paste recipe for inflammation--it's often ignored and sloughed off.  We have been conditioned in our society to accept that food doesn't really work or affect our health that much.  Nothing could be further from the truth.


Here are examples about how food has a direct relation to your health:


- My dog is turning 15 and my vet can't believe it!  I have used nutritional knowledge to bump up the antioxidant content in her recipes. This has subsequently kept her cataracts at bay.  


-When I had sprained an ankle badly and I needed to teach the next morning, I embarked on an anti-inflammatory protocol and kept bombarding myself with foods such as flax oil, fish, and cherries.  By the next morning, the swelling had gone down and I was able to teach the class.


-I used to have a fall full of acne.  I was able to clear it up through the elimination of sugar and dairy.  Now people say that I have perfect skin. 


Food has a direct effect on your digestion and microbiome, which your immune system is dependent upon.  It is also the type of nourishment your cells understand the most.  It is the building block for skin, hair, and muscle, and it alters hormones.  Please don't dismiss nutritional advice in support of conditions -- they do work on not just the condition, but your entire body! 

They Haven't Discovered Your "Ideal" Diet Yet

Healthy with Hanifa

Nov. 19, 2019

If you read my book "Healthy with Hanifa: A Woman's Guide to Holistic Health & Fitness," you will realize that aside from there being no one-size fits all diet, I ask people to combine the best elements of various diets.


Thus, if you're someone who feels like she's tried everything, maybe you haven't tried everything yet after all.  It's possible they haven't discovered or popularized your "ideal" diet yet.  


Let me explain:


When I first started in the fitness world, it was all about calories in/calories out.  I thought that I could lose my belly if I just exercised a lot and ate next to nothing.  The whole concept of food sensitivities and even gluten-free foods wasn't trending yet.  It was not until gluten-free became a thing that I lost some weight in my mid-section. 


It was not until much later that I could purchase software or do tests to customize my diet even further.  It also wasn't until a year ago that I learned that I don't digest raw fruits and vegetables without my tongue or throat tingling.  


So currently, my plan is a hybrid, customized, gluten-free program with all  cooked fruits & veggies.  Up until that point, I had tried raw vegan, paleo, the food pyramid, and too many other diets to count.  


This is why if you're in nutrition programming limbo, I would suggest going back to what worked for you and tweaking it.  Keep doing the best version of what you know works.  With new trends and information coming out, there may be something that works even better for you in the future - just give it time (and stubbornness).        


3 More Healthy Gut Tips

Healthy with Hanifa

Sept. 27, 2019

Why is there so much emphasis on the gut in complimentary medicine these days?  Because it really is the center of health!  Your gut is where the body absorbs nutrients, which gets distributed via blood to all your cells and major organs.  Imagine if your gut has an overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria along with little holes that allow these toxins to escape into the bloodstream. 


If you want better skin, a flatter stomach, and prevention of both physical and mental illnesses, work on your gut health!  Here are 3 tips:


1. Go grain-free -- Grains are hard to digest for a compromised gut.  I had been dealing with chronic parasites, and I didn't come out ahead until I took out grains. 

    

2. Take L-Glutamine--This important supplement helps repair the lining of your gut wall and recover muscle.


3. Stress Less -- Stress affects digestions. If you want better digestion, eat slowly and consume whole foods that you enjoy.  You may even want to ensure your environment is stress-free, so maybe take your lunch out to the park.  

Be True to Yourself

Healthy with Hanifa

Jan. 24, 2019

Having taught fitness for so long, I know the importance of image and having a fit appearance.  You can also say that I am a professional dieter.  I have been on every diet imaginable--raw vegan to paleo, from food pyramids to counting calories, from The Zone diet to a conventional bodybuilder's diet.  Having experimented, I can honestly say I know what works best for my body.


However, here's the problem--


I have been derailed.  Whether it's the lure of a more beauty, a leaner body, or greater mental focus, I have been switched off what I knew worked for me in hopes of finding something better.


And you know what?


I always return to what works best for me.  


This is a lesson for all of us: in spite of the newest die, the latest workout,  or the trendiest detox, there will always be something newer, shinier, and replete with promises.   The key is to reach deep within you.  You know deep down what works and what doesn't.  Don't be swayed, stick to it, and be true to yourself!    

  

Does Your Grocery Cart Reflect Your Goals?

Healthy with Hanifa

Sept. 17, 2020

My body loves fish--absolutely looooves it, but I don't.  I know that when I eat more fish, I have better mental clarity, less inflammation, and I'm generally happier.  It is also ancestrally appropriate for me.   If people ask me how would I identify my diet, I would say I'm mainly pescatarian.  That's a nice theory, but it's not my preference.  It's just what I thrive on.  BUT for a long time--


if you looked in my grocery cart, you would see a lot of other healthy stuff that was not fish.  So, I realize that in order for me to be a pescatarian, I should have more fish in my grocery cart!  


I wonder how many other people do this--claim they are healthy vegetarians, but their carts contain processed soy dogs and cheese?  Or people who say they're on a cleanse, but half of their cart is bacon and white pasta?


The point is that your shopping cart should reflect your goals.  If you want to fuel your exercise, then have lean protein and healthy starches in your cart.  If you want to eat more fruits and vegetables, put more fruits and vegetables into that basket!  It seems simple enough, but you'll be surprised how many people delude themselves into thinking that they're eating the type of diet they want.  If it's truth, your grocery cart should reflect this!


Edible Eddoes

Healthy with Hanifa

Jan. 22, 2019

Benefits:  A great substitute if you're sensitive to potatoes or cutting down on grains, eddoes are satisfying, higher in starch, and absorb the taste of sauces well.  They are also a source of vitamin A, C, E, and B6 along with minerals such as magnesium, phosphorous, and manganese.  


How to cook them: Just like a potato!  You may boil them, covered for 15 minutes.


Tips: Wash all the hairy bits off too before skinning with a potato peeler.


They are good in stews and/or with coconut milk. 

  

Nutrition is Not a Laughing Matter!

Healthy with Hanifa

Dec. 18, 2019

 I say this because even when I give clients recipes to support a condition or issue--let's say a turmeric paste recipe for inflammation--it's often ignored and sloughed off.  We have been conditioned in our society to accept that food doesn't really work or affect our health that much.  Nothing could be further from the truth.


Here are examples about how food has a direct relation to your health:


- My dog is turning 15 and my vet can't believe it!  I have used nutritional knowledge to bump up the antioxidant content in her recipes. This has subsequently kept her cataracts at bay.  


-When I had sprained an ankle badly and I needed to teach the next morning, I embarked on an anti-inflammatory protocol and kept bombarding myself with foods such as flax oil, fish, and cherries.  By the next morning, the swelling had gone down and I was able to teach the class.


-I used to have a fall full of acne.  I was able to clear it up through the elimination of sugar and dairy.  Now people say that I have perfect skin. 


Food has a direct effect on your digestion and microbiome, which your immune system is dependent upon.  It is also the type of nourishment your cells understand the most.  It is the building block for skin, hair, and muscle, and it alters hormones.  Please don't dismiss nutritional advice in support of conditions -- they do work on not just the condition, but your entire body! 

They Haven't Discovered Your "Ideal" Diet Yet

Healthy with Hanifa

Nov. 19, 2019

If you read my book "Healthy with Hanifa: A Woman's Guide to Holistic Health & Fitness," you will realize that aside from there being no one-size fits all diet, I ask people to combine the best elements of various diets.


Thus, if you're someone who feels like she's tried everything, maybe you haven't tried everything yet after all.  It's possible they haven't discovered or popularized your "ideal" diet yet.  


Let me explain:


When I first started in the fitness world, it was all about calories in/calories out.  I thought that I could lose my belly if I just exercised a lot and ate next to nothing.  The whole concept of food sensitivities and even gluten-free foods wasn't trending yet.  It was not until gluten-free became a thing that I lost some weight in my mid-section. 


It was not until much later that I could purchase software or do tests to customize my diet even further.  It also wasn't until a year ago that I learned that I don't digest raw fruits and vegetables without my tongue or throat tingling.  


So currently, my plan is a hybrid, customized, gluten-free program with all  cooked fruits & veggies.  Up until that point, I had tried raw vegan, paleo, the food pyramid, and too many other diets to count.  


This is why if you're in nutrition programming limbo, I would suggest going back to what worked for you and tweaking it.  Keep doing the best version of what you know works.  With new trends and information coming out, there may be something that works even better for you in the future - just give it time (and stubbornness).        


3 More Healthy Gut Tips

Healthy with Hanifa

Sept. 27, 2019

Why is there so much emphasis on the gut in complimentary medicine these days?  Because it really is the center of health!  Your gut is where the body absorbs nutrients, which gets distributed via blood to all your cells and major organs.  Imagine if your gut has an overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria along with little holes that allow these toxins to escape into the bloodstream. 


If you want better skin, a flatter stomach, and prevention of both physical and mental illnesses, work on your gut health!  Here are 3 tips:


1. Go grain-free -- Grains are hard to digest for a compromised gut.  I had been dealing with chronic parasites, and I didn't come out ahead until I took out grains. 

    

2. Take L-Glutamine--This important supplement helps repair the lining of your gut wall and recover muscle.


3. Stress Less -- Stress affects digestions. If you want better digestion, eat slowly and consume whole foods that you enjoy.  You may even want to ensure your environment is stress-free, so maybe take your lunch out to the park.  

Be True to Yourself

Healthy with Hanifa

Jan. 24, 2019

Having taught fitness for so long, I know the importance of image and having a fit appearance.  You can also say that I am a professional dieter.  I have been on every diet imaginable--raw vegan to paleo, from food pyramids to counting calories, from The Zone diet to a conventional bodybuilder's diet.  Having experimented, I can honestly say I know what works best for my body.


However, here's the problem--


I have been derailed.  Whether it's the lure of a more beauty, a leaner body, or greater mental focus, I have been switched off what I knew worked for me in hopes of finding something better.


And you know what?


I always return to what works best for me.  


This is a lesson for all of us: in spite of the newest die, the latest workout,  or the trendiest detox, there will always be something newer, shinier, and replete with promises.   The key is to reach deep within you.  You know deep down what works and what doesn't.  Don't be swayed, stick to it, and be true to yourself!    

  

Creamy Apple Pie Smoothie

Healthy with Hanifa

Jun. 10, 2020

I made this smoothie together a week ago, and it tasted like creamy apple pie in a cup. It’s simple, tasty, and healthy!


1 apple, de-seeded and chopped 

1 C. (or more depending on desired viscosity) of goat’s milk kefir, Greek yogurt, or vegan substitute such as coconut or almond yogurt 1 tbsp. pure all-natural honey One or two dashes of cinnamon

One dash of powdered ginger (add water if yogurt thickens mixture too much)


Blend all the above ingredients. Enjoy!

Edible Eddoes

Healthy with Hanifa

Jan. 22, 2019

Benefits:  A great substitute if you're sensitive to potatoes or cutting down on grains, eddoes are satisfying, higher in starch, and absorb the taste of sauces well.  They are also a source of vitamin A, C, E, and B6 along with minerals such as magnesium, phosphorous, and manganese.  


How to cook them: Just like a potato!  You may boil them, covered for 15 minutes.


Tips: Wash all the hairy bits off too before skinning with a potato peeler.


They are good in stews and/or with coconut milk. 

  

Nutrition is Not a Laughing Matter!

Healthy with Hanifa

Dec. 18, 2019

 I say this because even when I give clients recipes to support a condition or issue--let's say a turmeric paste recipe for inflammation--it's often ignored and sloughed off.  We have been conditioned in our society to accept that food doesn't really work or affect our health that much.  Nothing could be further from the truth.


Here are examples about how food has a direct relation to your health:


- My dog is turning 15 and my vet can't believe it!  I have used nutritional knowledge to bump up the antioxidant content in her recipes. This has subsequently kept her cataracts at bay.  


-When I had sprained an ankle badly and I needed to teach the next morning, I embarked on an anti-inflammatory protocol and kept bombarding myself with foods such as flax oil, fish, and cherries.  By the next morning, the swelling had gone down and I was able to teach the class.


-I used to have a fall full of acne.  I was able to clear it up through the elimination of sugar and dairy.  Now people say that I have perfect skin. 


Food has a direct effect on your digestion and microbiome, which your immune system is dependent upon.  It is also the type of nourishment your cells understand the most.  It is the building block for skin, hair, and muscle, and it alters hormones.  Please don't dismiss nutritional advice in support of conditions -- they do work on not just the condition, but your entire body! 

They Haven't Discovered Your "Ideal" Diet Yet

Healthy with Hanifa

Nov. 19, 2019

If you read my book "Healthy with Hanifa: A Woman's Guide to Holistic Health & Fitness," you will realize that aside from there being no one-size fits all diet, I ask people to combine the best elements of various diets.


Thus, if you're someone who feels like she's tried everything, maybe you haven't tried everything yet after all.  It's possible they haven't discovered or popularized your "ideal" diet yet.  


Let me explain:


When I first started in the fitness world, it was all about calories in/calories out.  I thought that I could lose my belly if I just exercised a lot and ate next to nothing.  The whole concept of food sensitivities and even gluten-free foods wasn't trending yet.  It was not until gluten-free became a thing that I lost some weight in my mid-section. 


It was not until much later that I could purchase software or do tests to customize my diet even further.  It also wasn't until a year ago that I learned that I don't digest raw fruits and vegetables without my tongue or throat tingling.  


So currently, my plan is a hybrid, customized, gluten-free program with all  cooked fruits & veggies.  Up until that point, I had tried raw vegan, paleo, the food pyramid, and too many other diets to count.  


This is why if you're in nutrition programming limbo, I would suggest going back to what worked for you and tweaking it.  Keep doing the best version of what you know works.  With new trends and information coming out, there may be something that works even better for you in the future - just give it time (and stubbornness).        


3 More Healthy Gut Tips

Healthy with Hanifa

Sept. 27, 2019

Why is there so much emphasis on the gut in complimentary medicine these days?  Because it really is the center of health!  Your gut is where the body absorbs nutrients, which gets distributed via blood to all your cells and major organs.  Imagine if your gut has an overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria along with little holes that allow these toxins to escape into the bloodstream. 


If you want better skin, a flatter stomach, and prevention of both physical and mental illnesses, work on your gut health!  Here are 3 tips:


1. Go grain-free -- Grains are hard to digest for a compromised gut.  I had been dealing with chronic parasites, and I didn't come out ahead until I took out grains. 

    

2. Take L-Glutamine--This important supplement helps repair the lining of your gut wall and recover muscle.


3. Stress Less -- Stress affects digestions. If you want better digestion, eat slowly and consume whole foods that you enjoy.  You may even want to ensure your environment is stress-free, so maybe take your lunch out to the park.  

Be True to Yourself

Healthy with Hanifa

Jan. 24, 2019

Having taught fitness for so long, I know the importance of image and having a fit appearance.  You can also say that I am a professional dieter.  I have been on every diet imaginable--raw vegan to paleo, from food pyramids to counting calories, from The Zone diet to a conventional bodybuilder's diet.  Having experimented, I can honestly say I know what works best for my body.


However, here's the problem--


I have been derailed.  Whether it's the lure of a more beauty, a leaner body, or greater mental focus, I have been switched off what I knew worked for me in hopes of finding something better.


And you know what?


I always return to what works best for me.  


This is a lesson for all of us: in spite of the newest die, the latest workout,  or the trendiest detox, there will always be something newer, shinier, and replete with promises.   The key is to reach deep within you.  You know deep down what works and what doesn't.  Don't be swayed, stick to it, and be true to yourself!    

  

Berry Good for You!

Healthy with Hanifa

Jun. 3, 2020

It’s June, and as we head into summer, I think about berries. Not only are they good for memory, high in fiber, anti-cancer, they also happen to be yummy and low in sugar. I recommend that you get some form of berries most days of the week. Switch up your berries – blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, elderberries, cherries, cranberries, strawberries - so that you’re getting a variety of colours and a slightly different nutritional emphasis of vitamin C and other nutrients. 


Here are some tasty, yet simple ways to incorporate berries into your routine:


-add berries to yogurt, which may be regular dairy or vegan

-try berry-infused water. Add some berries of choice into a glass and mash with fork. Add water and (optional) honey.

-berries in your smoothie are always a popular option.

-berry-centric baked goods like raspberry pies, strawberry tarts, and blueberry cheesecakes. Yum!

-have a handful of berries with some nuts as a snack. You can have these little fruits fresh or dried.


Edible Eddoes

Healthy with Hanifa

Jan. 22, 2019

Benefits:  A great substitute if you're sensitive to potatoes or cutting down on grains, eddoes are satisfying, higher in starch, and absorb the taste of sauces well.  They are also a source of vitamin A, C, E, and B6 along with minerals such as magnesium, phosphorous, and manganese.  


How to cook them: Just like a potato!  You may boil them, covered for 15 minutes.


Tips: Wash all the hairy bits off too before skinning with a potato peeler.


They are good in stews and/or with coconut milk. 

  

Nutrition is Not a Laughing Matter!

Healthy with Hanifa

Dec. 18, 2019

 I say this because even when I give clients recipes to support a condition or issue--let's say a turmeric paste recipe for inflammation--it's often ignored and sloughed off.  We have been conditioned in our society to accept that food doesn't really work or affect our health that much.  Nothing could be further from the truth.


Here are examples about how food has a direct relation to your health:


- My dog is turning 15 and my vet can't believe it!  I have used nutritional knowledge to bump up the antioxidant content in her recipes. This has subsequently kept her cataracts at bay.  


-When I had sprained an ankle badly and I needed to teach the next morning, I embarked on an anti-inflammatory protocol and kept bombarding myself with foods such as flax oil, fish, and cherries.  By the next morning, the swelling had gone down and I was able to teach the class.


-I used to have a fall full of acne.  I was able to clear it up through the elimination of sugar and dairy.  Now people say that I have perfect skin. 


Food has a direct effect on your digestion and microbiome, which your immune system is dependent upon.  It is also the type of nourishment your cells understand the most.  It is the building block for skin, hair, and muscle, and it alters hormones.  Please don't dismiss nutritional advice in support of conditions -- they do work on not just the condition, but your entire body! 

They Haven't Discovered Your "Ideal" Diet Yet

Healthy with Hanifa

Nov. 19, 2019

If you read my book "Healthy with Hanifa: A Woman's Guide to Holistic Health & Fitness," you will realize that aside from there being no one-size fits all diet, I ask people to combine the best elements of various diets.


Thus, if you're someone who feels like she's tried everything, maybe you haven't tried everything yet after all.  It's possible they haven't discovered or popularized your "ideal" diet yet.  


Let me explain:


When I first started in the fitness world, it was all about calories in/calories out.  I thought that I could lose my belly if I just exercised a lot and ate next to nothing.  The whole concept of food sensitivities and even gluten-free foods wasn't trending yet.  It was not until gluten-free became a thing that I lost some weight in my mid-section. 


It was not until much later that I could purchase software or do tests to customize my diet even further.  It also wasn't until a year ago that I learned that I don't digest raw fruits and vegetables without my tongue or throat tingling.  


So currently, my plan is a hybrid, customized, gluten-free program with all  cooked fruits & veggies.  Up until that point, I had tried raw vegan, paleo, the food pyramid, and too many other diets to count.  


This is why if you're in nutrition programming limbo, I would suggest going back to what worked for you and tweaking it.  Keep doing the best version of what you know works.  With new trends and information coming out, there may be something that works even better for you in the future - just give it time (and stubbornness).        


3 More Healthy Gut Tips

Healthy with Hanifa

Sept. 27, 2019

Why is there so much emphasis on the gut in complimentary medicine these days?  Because it really is the center of health!  Your gut is where the body absorbs nutrients, which gets distributed via blood to all your cells and major organs.  Imagine if your gut has an overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria along with little holes that allow these toxins to escape into the bloodstream. 


If you want better skin, a flatter stomach, and prevention of both physical and mental illnesses, work on your gut health!  Here are 3 tips:


1. Go grain-free -- Grains are hard to digest for a compromised gut.  I had been dealing with chronic parasites, and I didn't come out ahead until I took out grains. 

    

2. Take L-Glutamine--This important supplement helps repair the lining of your gut wall and recover muscle.


3. Stress Less -- Stress affects digestions. If you want better digestion, eat slowly and consume whole foods that you enjoy.  You may even want to ensure your environment is stress-free, so maybe take your lunch out to the park.  

Be True to Yourself

Healthy with Hanifa

Jan. 24, 2019

Having taught fitness for so long, I know the importance of image and having a fit appearance.  You can also say that I am a professional dieter.  I have been on every diet imaginable--raw vegan to paleo, from food pyramids to counting calories, from The Zone diet to a conventional bodybuilder's diet.  Having experimented, I can honestly say I know what works best for my body.


However, here's the problem--


I have been derailed.  Whether it's the lure of a more beauty, a leaner body, or greater mental focus, I have been switched off what I knew worked for me in hopes of finding something better.


And you know what?


I always return to what works best for me.  


This is a lesson for all of us: in spite of the newest die, the latest workout,  or the trendiest detox, there will always be something newer, shinier, and replete with promises.   The key is to reach deep within you.  You know deep down what works and what doesn't.  Don't be swayed, stick to it, and be true to yourself!    

  

Gut Health = Flatter Belly

Healthy with Hanifa

Feb. 2, 2020

Maybe you’re someone who’s dieted and done tons of exercise, but can’t seem to lose weight from your mid-section. I’ve said it in my book and I will say here too—at this point, you know it’s more than diet and exercise. You probably have gut issues.


Gut issues include leaky gut, candida, parasites, IBS, food allergies, fibroids, Celiac, and Colitis to name a few. You must resolve your gut issues in order to acquire a flatter stomach because no amount of planks or crunches will resolve your underlying issues. 


I have put together tips for balancing and maintaining your gut.  Here's the first tip:


1.Eat a Gut-Supportive Diet


Gaps, SCD, Fodmaps, and even the controversial Blood Type diet are some of the best diets for supporting gut health issues. 


Also keep in mind that some people digest carbs better than others, and some people digest protein better than others too. If you’re not sure where you fall, consider eating a high-protein plate of food and record how you feel two hours later. Eat a high starch meal and record how you feel afterwards. If you’re not good with digesting protein, you’ll feel heavy, tired, and gassy. Too many starches will leave you bloated and may also cause fog and additional hunger. Keep in mind too that some people are on a spectrum. E.g.’s You could be high-protein vegetarian type or a medium starch, medium-protein type.


Edible Eddoes

Healthy with Hanifa

Jan. 22, 2019

Benefits:  A great substitute if you're sensitive to potatoes or cutting down on grains, eddoes are satisfying, higher in starch, and absorb the taste of sauces well.  They are also a source of vitamin A, C, E, and B6 along with minerals such as magnesium, phosphorous, and manganese.  


How to cook them: Just like a potato!  You may boil them, covered for 15 minutes.


Tips: Wash all the hairy bits off too before skinning with a potato peeler.


They are good in stews and/or with coconut milk. 

  

Nutrition is Not a Laughing Matter!

Healthy with Hanifa

Dec. 18, 2019

 I say this because even when I give clients recipes to support a condition or issue--let's say a turmeric paste recipe for inflammation--it's often ignored and sloughed off.  We have been conditioned in our society to accept that food doesn't really work or affect our health that much.  Nothing could be further from the truth.


Here are examples about how food has a direct relation to your health:


- My dog is turning 15 and my vet can't believe it!  I have used nutritional knowledge to bump up the antioxidant content in her recipes. This has subsequently kept her cataracts at bay.  


-When I had sprained an ankle badly and I needed to teach the next morning, I embarked on an anti-inflammatory protocol and kept bombarding myself with foods such as flax oil, fish, and cherries.  By the next morning, the swelling had gone down and I was able to teach the class.


-I used to have a fall full of acne.  I was able to clear it up through the elimination of sugar and dairy.  Now people say that I have perfect skin. 


Food has a direct effect on your digestion and microbiome, which your immune system is dependent upon.  It is also the type of nourishment your cells understand the most.  It is the building block for skin, hair, and muscle, and it alters hormones.  Please don't dismiss nutritional advice in support of conditions -- they do work on not just the condition, but your entire body! 

They Haven't Discovered Your "Ideal" Diet Yet

Healthy with Hanifa

Nov. 19, 2019

If you read my book "Healthy with Hanifa: A Woman's Guide to Holistic Health & Fitness," you will realize that aside from there being no one-size fits all diet, I ask people to combine the best elements of various diets.


Thus, if you're someone who feels like she's tried everything, maybe you haven't tried everything yet after all.  It's possible they haven't discovered or popularized your "ideal" diet yet.  


Let me explain:


When I first started in the fitness world, it was all about calories in/calories out.  I thought that I could lose my belly if I just exercised a lot and ate next to nothing.  The whole concept of food sensitivities and even gluten-free foods wasn't trending yet.  It was not until gluten-free became a thing that I lost some weight in my mid-section. 


It was not until much later that I could purchase software or do tests to customize my diet even further.  It also wasn't until a year ago that I learned that I don't digest raw fruits and vegetables without my tongue or throat tingling.  


So currently, my plan is a hybrid, customized, gluten-free program with all  cooked fruits & veggies.  Up until that point, I had tried raw vegan, paleo, the food pyramid, and too many other diets to count.  


This is why if you're in nutrition programming limbo, I would suggest going back to what worked for you and tweaking it.  Keep doing the best version of what you know works.  With new trends and information coming out, there may be something that works even better for you in the future - just give it time (and stubbornness).        


3 More Healthy Gut Tips

Healthy with Hanifa

Sept. 27, 2019

Why is there so much emphasis on the gut in complimentary medicine these days?  Because it really is the center of health!  Your gut is where the body absorbs nutrients, which gets distributed via blood to all your cells and major organs.  Imagine if your gut has an overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria along with little holes that allow these toxins to escape into the bloodstream. 


If you want better skin, a flatter stomach, and prevention of both physical and mental illnesses, work on your gut health!  Here are 3 tips:


1. Go grain-free -- Grains are hard to digest for a compromised gut.  I had been dealing with chronic parasites, and I didn't come out ahead until I took out grains. 

    

2. Take L-Glutamine--This important supplement helps repair the lining of your gut wall and recover muscle.


3. Stress Less -- Stress affects digestions. If you want better digestion, eat slowly and consume whole foods that you enjoy.  You may even want to ensure your environment is stress-free, so maybe take your lunch out to the park.  

Be True to Yourself

Healthy with Hanifa

Jan. 24, 2019

Having taught fitness for so long, I know the importance of image and having a fit appearance.  You can also say that I am a professional dieter.  I have been on every diet imaginable--raw vegan to paleo, from food pyramids to counting calories, from The Zone diet to a conventional bodybuilder's diet.  Having experimented, I can honestly say I know what works best for my body.


However, here's the problem--


I have been derailed.  Whether it's the lure of a more beauty, a leaner body, or greater mental focus, I have been switched off what I knew worked for me in hopes of finding something better.


And you know what?


I always return to what works best for me.  


This is a lesson for all of us: in spite of the newest die, the latest workout,  or the trendiest detox, there will always be something newer, shinier, and replete with promises.   The key is to reach deep within you.  You know deep down what works and what doesn't.  Don't be swayed, stick to it, and be true to yourself!    

  

Too Much Protein

Healthy with Hanifa

Jan. 8, 2019

I believe that everyone's digestion and genetic makeup is different.  There are people who thrive on high protein diets while there are some others who are better off on small to moderate amounts.  In the fitness industry, there is a lot of emphasis on protein, which includes at least 3-4 oz. of meat protein at every meal.  Now, that may work for some of you, whereas others may struggle with feeling healthy.  


Is it possible that you can get too much protein?


Absolutely, because you can get too much of anything!  Here are the signs of excessive protein:


-brain fog

-dry skin, dehydration

-bad moods (anger, depression, irritability)

-constipation

-digestive issues, including IBS, parasites, candida, bloating. (This could be the same for too many carbs, but I will save that for another post.) 

-low energy

-weight gain (believe it or not, some people will actually put weight on with too much protein). 


We know that health is about balance, but these are all symptoms that you're out of balance. 


Keep checking in for my next posts on protein 'Too little protein' and then 'Just enough protein.'

  

Nutrition is Not a Laughing Matter!

Healthy with Hanifa

Dec. 18, 2019

 I say this because even when I give clients recipes to support a condition or issue--let's say a turmeric paste recipe for inflammation--it's often ignored and sloughed off.  We have been conditioned in our society to accept that food doesn't really work or affect our health that much.  Nothing could be further from the truth.


Here are examples about how food has a direct relation to your health:


- My dog is turning 15 and my vet can't believe it!  I have used nutritional knowledge to bump up the antioxidant content in her recipes. This has subsequently kept her cataracts at bay.  


-When I had sprained an ankle badly and I needed to teach the next morning, I embarked on an anti-inflammatory protocol and kept bombarding myself with foods such as flax oil, fish, and cherries.  By the next morning, the swelling had gone down and I was able to teach the class.


-I used to have a fall full of acne.  I was able to clear it up through the elimination of sugar and dairy.  Now people say that I have perfect skin. 


Food has a direct effect on your digestion and microbiome, which your immune system is dependent upon.  It is also the type of nourishment your cells understand the most.  It is the building block for skin, hair, and muscle, and it alters hormones.  Please don't dismiss nutritional advice in support of conditions -- they do work on not just the condition, but your entire body! 

They Haven't Discovered Your "Ideal" Diet Yet

Healthy with Hanifa

Nov. 19, 2019

If you read my book "Healthy with Hanifa: A Woman's Guide to Holistic Health & Fitness," you will realize that aside from there being no one-size fits all diet, I ask people to combine the best elements of various diets.


Thus, if you're someone who feels like she's tried everything, maybe you haven't tried everything yet after all.  It's possible they haven't discovered or popularized your "ideal" diet yet.  


Let me explain:


When I first started in the fitness world, it was all about calories in/calories out.  I thought that I could lose my belly if I just exercised a lot and ate next to nothing.  The whole concept of food sensitivities and even gluten-free foods wasn't trending yet.  It was not until gluten-free became a thing that I lost some weight in my mid-section. 


It was not until much later that I could purchase software or do tests to customize my diet even further.  It also wasn't until a year ago that I learned that I don't digest raw fruits and vegetables without my tongue or throat tingling.  


So currently, my plan is a hybrid, customized, gluten-free program with all  cooked fruits & veggies.  Up until that point, I had tried raw vegan, paleo, the food pyramid, and too many other diets to count.  


This is why if you're in nutrition programming limbo, I would suggest going back to what worked for you and tweaking it.  Keep doing the best version of what you know works.  With new trends and information coming out, there may be something that works even better for you in the future - just give it time (and stubbornness).        


3 More Healthy Gut Tips

Healthy with Hanifa

Sept. 27, 2019

Why is there so much emphasis on the gut in complimentary medicine these days?  Because it really is the center of health!  Your gut is where the body absorbs nutrients, which gets distributed via blood to all your cells and major organs.  Imagine if your gut has an overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria along with little holes that allow these toxins to escape into the bloodstream. 


If you want better skin, a flatter stomach, and prevention of both physical and mental illnesses, work on your gut health!  Here are 3 tips:


1. Go grain-free -- Grains are hard to digest for a compromised gut.  I had been dealing with chronic parasites, and I didn't come out ahead until I took out grains. 

    

2. Take L-Glutamine--This important supplement helps repair the lining of your gut wall and recover muscle.


3. Stress Less -- Stress affects digestions. If you want better digestion, eat slowly and consume whole foods that you enjoy.  You may even want to ensure your environment is stress-free, so maybe take your lunch out to the park.  

Be True to Yourself

Healthy with Hanifa

Jan. 24, 2019

Having taught fitness for so long, I know the importance of image and having a fit appearance.  You can also say that I am a professional dieter.  I have been on every diet imaginable--raw vegan to paleo, from food pyramids to counting calories, from The Zone diet to a conventional bodybuilder's diet.  Having experimented, I can honestly say I know what works best for my body.


However, here's the problem--


I have been derailed.  Whether it's the lure of a more beauty, a leaner body, or greater mental focus, I have been switched off what I knew worked for me in hopes of finding something better.


And you know what?


I always return to what works best for me.  


This is a lesson for all of us: in spite of the newest die, the latest workout,  or the trendiest detox, there will always be something newer, shinier, and replete with promises.   The key is to reach deep within you.  You know deep down what works and what doesn't.  Don't be swayed, stick to it, and be true to yourself!    

  

Hosting Dinner for Different Dietary Restrictions

Healthy with Hanifa

Nov. 12, 2019

Ok, so you've got a mix of people.  One is paleo, one is gluten-free, one's a vegan, and several are omnivores.  How on earth do you host a dinner if you've got so many restrictions?  I just finishing teaching a class entitled "Healthy Dinners on a Budget," so I know about this. Here are some tips for your next party or dinner:  


1. Make it all gluten-free - everyone go eat gluten-free, including your regular people, so why not make it all gluten-free.  Swap bread for rice, regular wraps for gluten-free wraps, and regular soy sauce for gluten-free soy sauce.  Gluten-free doesn't mean taste-free either; you can still use vinegars, oils, spices, and sweeteners to flavor your food.    


2. Communicate - who's bringing what.  Maybe one of your special diets people want to bring her own food instead.  Maybe your gluten-free person can't have sugar either.  How will you cover you bases?  What recipes do you need to look up?  


3. Offer variety and choice - one of my favourite go-to's is tacos.  You can go with gluten-free tortilla shells.  Your vegans can stick to shells, tacos, rice, and veggies.  Your paleo people can leave out the shells and simply do a taco salad with meat and all the fixings.  Your omnivores can eat everything.


Other ideas:

-make your own pizzas

-stuff your own pitas

-pasta with a choice of toppings

   

4. For meals that do not require assembly,  cook 1 meat dish, 1 vegetarian bean salad (no dairy), 1 regular veggie salad, and 1 potatoes/rice dish (make it all gluten-free) - There, you've covered all your bases.  Your paleo people stick to meat and veggies.  Your vegetarian people can have bean salad, veggie salad, and starch.  Your gluten-free and omnivore people can have everything.




    


3 More Healthy Gut Tips

Healthy with Hanifa

Sept. 27, 2019

Why is there so much emphasis on the gut in complimentary medicine these days?  Because it really is the center of health!  Your gut is where the body absorbs nutrients, which gets distributed via blood to all your cells and major organs.  Imagine if your gut has an overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria along with little holes that allow these toxins to escape into the bloodstream. 


If you want better skin, a flatter stomach, and prevention of both physical and mental illnesses, work on your gut health!  Here are 3 tips:


1. Go grain-free -- Grains are hard to digest for a compromised gut.  I had been dealing with chronic parasites, and I didn't come out ahead until I took out grains. 

    

2. Take L-Glutamine--This important supplement helps repair the lining of your gut wall and recover muscle.


3. Stress Less -- Stress affects digestions. If you want better digestion, eat slowly and consume whole foods that you enjoy.  You may even want to ensure your environment is stress-free, so maybe take your lunch out to the park.  

Be True to Yourself

Healthy with Hanifa

Jan. 24, 2019

Having taught fitness for so long, I know the importance of image and having a fit appearance.  You can also say that I am a professional dieter.  I have been on every diet imaginable--raw vegan to paleo, from food pyramids to counting calories, from The Zone diet to a conventional bodybuilder's diet.  Having experimented, I can honestly say I know what works best for my body.


However, here's the problem--


I have been derailed.  Whether it's the lure of a more beauty, a leaner body, or greater mental focus, I have been switched off what I knew worked for me in hopes of finding something better.


And you know what?


I always return to what works best for me.  


This is a lesson for all of us: in spite of the newest die, the latest workout,  or the trendiest detox, there will always be something newer, shinier, and replete with promises.   The key is to reach deep within you.  You know deep down what works and what doesn't.  Don't be swayed, stick to it, and be true to yourself!    

  

Allergic to Supplements

Oct. 8, 2019

Did you know that you can actually become allergic to supplements or an ingredient within supplements? I had taken something last week before bed only to break out in hives from toe to neck. Then when I took it again the next night I broke into hives a second time. Now taking this product hadn't been a problem for me for a number of years. This is why I suggest switching up your supplements. If you take a probiotic for example, switch to a different brand after a few months. Same goes for anything else!


Be Weary of Nutritionism

Oct. 6, 2019

Nutritionism is faulting a food for one component instead of looking at the merits of its whole.  A good example of this would be fish.  Fish tends to be higher in mercury, and thus, it's easy to label it a bad food and not eat again.  However, there's a lot of other good things in fish too--vitamin A, vitamin D, iodine, omega 3's, and calcium.  I am not saying to ignore the mercury in fish, what I am saying is that you should still have it in moderation as part of a varied diet.  If we practice nutritionism, we can find fault with anything.  Tomatoes are inflammatory, lettuce is too high in pesticides, bread makes you fat . . . you get what I'm saying.  The key is to evaluate food as a whole and find what foods work best for you.   


Getting a Flatter Stomach: Digging Deeper

Sept. 16, 2019

If you've been exercising regularly and eating healthy most of the time, but you're still not losing you're mid-section flab, consider removing gluten and dairy . . . However, even after the removal of gluten and dairy, mid-section flab remains.


This is often very frustrating! 


In this case, I suggest you dig deeper. Aside from removing main food culprits, this means healing the intestinal system.  Two protocols I recommend are


SCD/GAPS diet - this includes protein, nuts, most vegetables, most fruits, some dairy, and some legumes.  This grain-free diet allows you to remove foods that are not easily tolerated by a compromised gut and allows for healing to occur.  You should see a reduction in bloating and mid-section girth.


FODMAPS - allows for certain fruits, vegetables, grains, and most proteins.  It also eliminates foods that are likely to ferment in the gut and create abdominal distension and distress.


Both these plans are temporary, lasting anywhere from a few months to 2 years.  You will need to add in some foods, and have a life again.  However, I recommend these plans as they will help you get off the merry-go-round of a go-nowhere diet and fitness regimen.  


Too Many Supplements

Sept. 5, 2019

Even too many natural herbal supplements can stress your liver. To prevent this, support your body with as many natural foods as possible and only take what's necessary. For example, my multi-vitamin company tells me I should take a capsule 3 times a day. I really only take one pill, and the rest of the day I eat a balanced diet with a lot of variety.


In addition, consider taking a supplement for a short course. You may take an adrenal supplement for stress over 6 months, but don't become too dependent on it. Work on decreasing stress instead!


5 Foods that Cause Anger

Aug. 8, 2019

Foods can and do affect your mood.  If you're sensitive to the foods you consume, and if you eat something that doesn't quite sit right, it could very well lead to a temper.  Here are foods that may lead to anger from a holistic standpoint:   


Gluten - If you're not digesting it well erodes intestinal lining.  Serotonin, your happy hormone, is manufactured in the gut.


Too much meat - If you're eating too much meat, that may cause excessive acidity in the blood that your body must neutralize.  In addition, too much meat protein blocks the manufacturing of serotonin.


Sugar, processed white breads, etc.  - the roller coaster high from sugar and then subsequent dive affects blood sugar, causing you to be angry and irritable.  


Tomatoes (and eggplants) - according to Ayurvedic medicine, these foods give off heat to the body.  If you want your temper to cool, eat other vegetables--such as cucumber and zucchini--instead. 


Greasy foods - this especially taxes the liver.  Eastern medicine speaks about how the liver is the seat of anger.  

Keep the liver clean by avoiding greasy foods.


Stay tuned for '5 Foods that Give You a Happy Mood'  . . .


Diet, Starvation, and the Collagen Connection

May 6, 2019

 In my book Healthy with Hanifa: A Woman's Guide to Holistic Health & Fitness, I speak about the importance not only of observing your body, but observing your face.  One thing you may notice about people on diets - especially severely restrictive diets - is that they may look a little gaunt.  That's because when you're not getting enough food, your body starts robbing itself of collagen, which has a direct effect on facial structure.  


I recommend following dietary guidelines loosely e.g.'s eating whole foods, including protein, fat, and carb in each meal, but to also listen to your body's natural hunger signals.  If your body wants more protein, eat more tofu or fish.  If you feel like more fruit, have another slice of pineapple.  Chronic under-eating will impede you from building lean muscle, leave you lethargic, and rob you of natural beauty!   


Here's an interesting study on the effect of starvation on lizards and collagen



5 Amti-Candida Foods

Apr, 24, 2019

 5 Anti-Candida foods


Candida is a natural yeast within our gut that overgrows as a result of a compromised immune system. The overgrowth may result in acne, fog, ab girth/bloating, headaches, etc. Women who can't seem to lose their mid-section weight despite exercise and healthy food choices, I suggest they look at an anti-candida protocol!


Here are 5 foods that combat candida:


apple cider vinegar - have with salads or use as a marinades, apple cider vinegar kills candida yeast cells while helping you break down protein.


non-dairy yogurt - I emphasize "non-dairy" because dairy is hard to digest for many, but yogurt is a good source of beneficial bacteria.


kimchi or sauerkraut - these fermented foods are an amazing source of beneficial bacteria strains that help crowd out pathogenic gut bacteria. Look for gluten-free and vinegar-free versions of these foods because gluten is hard to digest whereas most vinegars (except apple cider) feed candida yeast.


garlic - garlic contains potent chemicals that destroy candida cells.


onions - part of the garlic and allium family, onions are anti-fungal, slowing the spread of candida yeast cells and killing off bad bacteria.


I suggest using these foods not only as part of an anti-candida diet, but permanently as part of a healthy lifestyle.

 


3-Ingredient Peanut Butter Squares

Apr, 18, 2019

Here's a healthy vegetarian and paleo-friendly recipe that takes no time. It is much less time-consuming than your average peanut butter cookie recipe, but just as satisfying.


1 C. natural peanut butter (optional: substitute with almond butter)

1/2 C. honey

1 egg


Mix all 3 ingredients really well in a bowl. Pour batter into a greased baking dish, and bake at 350F for 30 minutes. Let it cool and cut into squares.


 


First Pillar of Health: Nutrition

Feb. 19, 2019

First Pillar of Health: Nutrition

(I should clarify that while these are based on Paul Chek's 6 Pillars of Health, what I have to say is based on my own knowledge.)


There is much controversy in this subject, so I will stick to my training and philosophy on this one:


THERE IS NO ONE SIZE FITS-ALL PROGRAM


If you look at different cultures in the world and our evolution as a human species, you'll see that different people thrived on different diets. The Inuit thrived on fat and fish; the Incas on beans and corn; certain East Indians on a mainly vegetarian diet.

You need to find the diet-style that works best for you. How do you know which one? Hint: Of the plans that you've tried, which one gave you the most benefit and was the most sustainable? Go with that one, and then tweak it to suit your individual needs.


 


Swap White Potatoes for Sweet Potatoes

Mar. 23, 2019

Don't get me wrong, I like the occasional white potato, but sweet potatoes offer so much more. In spite of their sweet taste, they are low sugar, less inflammatory, and high in nutrients such as Vitamin A and beta carotene. They are good for your eyes and for preventing cancer! Oh yes, and they are a beauty food too, improving your skin colour and facial glow.


Some ways to swap white potatoes for sweet potatoes:


-as an occasional treat, pay a bit extra for sweet potato fries. Even better, bake sweet potato fries at home.


-have mashed sweet potatoes. Try this as a topping for sheperd's pie.


-okay, kind of weird but it works: juice sweet potatoes or have pureed sweet potatoes in your smoothies.


-again, as occasional treats, nibble sweet potato pie, breads, and cupcakes!


 


Simple Herb 'n Spice Combinations

Nov. 26, 2018

Here are some simple yet tasty spice combinations for protein, legumes, and vegetables (add salt as desired):


For an Asian Flare--Ginger, garlic, and soy sauce (gluten-free if you're gluten-free)

For a South-American Flare--cilantro, lime juice, and garlic

For Greek--lemon juice, olive oil, oregano

For general cooking--garlic, lemon, pepper

For sweetness--honey, nut butter


 


Gut Bacteria and a Flat Stomach

Nov. 2, 2018

This is something I've written about in my book, and have posted about time and time again. If you've got an overgrowth of bad bacteria over good, the number of planks, ab exercises, and cardio you do won't matter!


Get your gut bacteria balanced and your digestion under control, and you will notice your mid-section flatten without even exercise.


A few notes:

1. Take a good probiotic with at least a 50 billion count and with multiple strains.


2. Take a higher count of probiotics after surgery or after a course of anti-biotics. Anti-biotics kill good strains of bacteria, so you'll need to replenish.


3. If you've lived in another country different from your ethnic origin and you've been eating the other country's food, you may have lost good strains of bacteria that allow you to digest your heritage foods. At this point, you have to meet your gut where it's at, and focus on the foods that you can digest while repairing your intestinal lining.


Acceptance that it's Hard Work!

Nov. 1, 2018

I never had that metabolism that allowed me to eat anything I wanted. I would often sit at work and envy my peers who could go out and get any takeout they wanted. If I even ate half a sandwich, my mid-section would pop out. It turned out I had a gluten intolerance among a sensitivity to many other foods.

Now I follow not one, but two customized nutrition plans. It's a lot of work merging both plans and then sticking to it, but I've never been one where "easy" worked well for me.

I think this could be true for you too: you could be someone that doesn't achieve anything without hard work first.

What's harder though: accepting this fact!

But, let me tell you, the sooner you accept this, the more energy you can put into work rather than complaining why you have digestive issues or were cursed with the wrong parents.


Pumpkin

Oct. 29, 2018

Pumpkin season is here, and I'm a fan of this member of the squash family. It is a fantastic source of vitamin A, beta carotene, and more digestible than sweet potato. Even those who are on the most restrictive diets can handle a bit of pumpkin.

Some interesting trivia about pumpkins:

-in Australia, pumpkins refer to all winter squash, not only the plump, round vegetable we call a pumpkin.

-pumpkins can reach up to 75 lbs.

-pumpkins are 90 percent water

Here are some ways, you can incorporate this healthy squash in your diet:

Pumpkin pie - who doesn't love a nice slice of pumpkin pie? Yum!

Smoothie - you can throw pumpkin into a smoothie with your choice of sweetener along with powdered nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves.

Mashed pumpkin - one of my favorites! Boil peeled pumpkin chunks, mash them with a bit of salt, butter, and garlic.

Cubed pumpkin - just add into stews along with carrots and potatoes.

Pumpkin soup - use as squash; pumpkin soup is savory and delicious!

Pureed pumpkin - you can add pureed pumpkin into cookies, muffins, and breads!


A Health Investement