Trump is Not a Tragedy: Sign Your Own Paris Accord

This is such a positive response to the news that Donald Trump has pulled the US out of the Paris Climate Agreement, seen here as an opportunity to take personal responsibility for your carbon footprint and its effect on the environment. What can you do to help your planet? What goals can you set so that our children and grandchildren will have clean air to breathe, clean water to drink, clean food to eat and a vibrant environment in which to live?

We don’t use the car much, I think when we changed cars recently, there were only 6000 miles on the clock after 3 years. My husband cycles a lot and we are fortunate to have everything we need literally around the corner, including dentist, doctor and optician. The only flight was when my hb went to his niece’s wedding a couple of summers ago. Plastic is a big deal in our house. We used to use miles of cling film and tons of bottled water (years ago now), but no more. We recycle everything we can in whatever way we can. He is vegetarian and I vegan. We use energy-saving lightbulbs, switch off lights and appliances at the plug when not in use, cook one-pot meals and use triple layer steamers for vegetables. We grow some of our own fruit and veg. There is always room for improvement, but we do what we can manage and taking small baby-steps is better than none at all.

The Great Unwashed

The United States has backed out of the Paris Accord. Not surprising given their president’s world views. Rather than calling this event an environmental tragedy, take the situation for what it is- an opportunity. This is a chance to open up a discussion about climate change, the environment and consumption with your family, friends and children, because ultimately, nothing has changed.

The people still hold all the power. With every product you purchase, with every watt, kilojoule or BTU of energy you use, you are voting. In buying shampoo, you’re saying “Hell Yeah!” to Proctor and Gamble, each time you drive your car, it’s a message to Exxon “Keep up the good work” and by charging your phone, depending on where you live, it’s like slapping a small invisible bumper sticker to your tush that says “What’s that lovely smell? It’s natural gas”.

Each person votes hundreds of times a…

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In Case You Miss Me, I’m Recovering From All The Decluttering!

From today, I’m taking a break to have some osteopathy and rest my body after a hectic few weeks of Christmas, family visits and mass decluttering of cupboards and wardrobes, alongside all the normal family support and blog-writing.

I’ve done a 3 week juice plan and flooded my body with healthy nutrients to see me through the busy times, now I need to take some time to rest and give my back a chance to unknot and my mind some peace and tranquility.

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This is just one small cupboard that was still filled to the gunnels with my daughter’s school and university stuff – and the yellowing old French book on top? Mine from A Level French, a whole lifetime ago! It’s all gone now. The music books are having a new life with my daughter’s musical sons.

Dusty old classics and plays and poetry, from the 60s and 70s, all gone to the charity shop – and this scribble was inside the copy of Charlotte Bronte’s ‘Villette’, neither of my children are owning up!

It is quite daunting clearing out things you’ve loved or which belonged to people you love that have always just been there on shelves, in cupboards, on walls. But there comes a time when you just know it has to go!

I followed the advice in this post from Watching the Daisies, of placing a small bowl of salt in the rooms whch need decluttering –  it alters the chi or energy in the space, and, before you know it, things are magically winging their way out of your home to start another life elsewhere! It really worked!

I’ve scheduled some posts for while I’m away, but I won’t be able to respond to comments or questions until I return, so please forgive my silence.

Take good care of yourselves, be sure to replenish your energy stores once in a while.

A bientôt!

Copyright: Chris McGowan

Why Wait Until January To Think About Your Health? Perhaps Santa Might Bring You A Juicer This Christmas!

This is a busy and expensive time of year when many of us are planning family gifts and special meals for the Christmas holidays, but it’s also when some of us start thinking about all those extra pounds and that uncomfortable over-stuffed feeling when January arrives! We often turn to health plans and expensive exercise routines in the New Year in the hope of feeling and looking a younger, more energetic and slimline self.

Why not get a head start and think about adding a juicer to your Christmas list? They can be expensive purchases at any time of year, but especially now. However, with bold planning and not a little bribery and corruption, perhaps your family can be persuaded to club together to give you the one thing that you will all really benefit from and hopefully last years: a juicer. You could persuade them it will be an investment in everyone’s health rather than viewing it as an expensive gadget.

[Whilst looking for a juicer for a family member’s birthday recently, I discovered that Juicemaster.com were selling ex demo, used once only, juicers at a greatly discounted price in the UK. (I don’t know about overseas).The Retro Super Fast centrifugal juicer was  £105 off at £74.99 whle the Retro Cold Press Juicer is £100 off at £199.99.]

imageThe juicers come in several colours and with a warranty.

I have had my juicers, one of each, since they were launched and am very happy with them. They have 5* reviews.

At the time of writing, the juicers come with a cleaning brush, recipe booklet and one or two freebies, often a Jason Vale book and his new magazine, plus perhaps a couple of their new energy bars.

You can also read my posts Juicemaster Retro Super Fast Juicer: Review & Which Juicer? – Where to Begin?

Juicing is not about starving yourself or losing tons of weight fast, although that can be an effect if you have gained too much. It is about adding unsweetened unpasteurised freshly produced fruit and vegetable juices to your diet and reaping the many health benefits.

You don’t have to do a ‘cleanse’ or a ‘juice challenge’, just adding one fresh juice a day or whenever you have time will have a profound effect on your skin, your energy levels and any chronic inflammation in your body.

Regular fresh juices can help you ward off colds and viruses.

All of my family juice to varying degrees, even the toddlers! You’re never too old to begin, either: my mum’s 83 year old neighbour heard about my startling progress and weight loss and asked me to write out some juice recipes for her. She borrowed her son’s juicer and off she went!

So why not plan your post-Christmas health boost now and start the New Year in a positive frame of mind, you’ll be all set to go as soon as the festivities are over!

(Of course, you may want to start juicing now, pre-party season, and give yourself that juicy glow or the burst of energy needed to get you through all the shopping and cleaning and invasions family visits;-))

I’ve been juicing for 4 years and feel healthier than I’ve been in decades: I’ve had only one cold and no longer use an inhaler.

NB Vitamix and Nutribullet are not juicers, they are super blenders.

See also Juicing: How to Begin or Do As I Say, Not As I Did!  &  My Top 20 Tips for Juicing – updated to 25!

Copyright: Chris McGowan

Super Juicing: Day 7 – Bit of a Wobble

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For Goodness Shake

Yep, I admit it, I had a bit of a wobble yesterday.

I was hungry. I was cold. I was tired. I was fed-up with the grey, damp weather. Everything hurt. Then at night I couldn’t sleep. My tummy was gurgling. I was seriously concerned about being able to carry on another week.

I had decided to have a rest in the late afternoon. This caused me to break one of my own Tenets of Juicing: Remember to have your juice!

By the time I got up, I was so hungry I skipped the green juice and went straight to the more substantial evening shake, Tahini Cocoa Beany.* I had been looking forward to this all week, it was lovely.

But in doing so, I filled myself up and didn’t feel like having the skipped juice before I went to bed.

Big Mistake.

I just couldn’t fall asleep. I tried the slow breathing technique – breathe in to a count of 4, hold for 7, breathe out for 8 – which certainly made me feel more relaxed,  but I couldn’t drop off. My tummy growling and gurgling. I tried the audiobook. 3 cds later I could ignore it no longer.

Finally, I got up at 3 am, had the missed juice and 6 cashew nuts – magnesium helps you relax and can help with insomnia – and went back to bed. I fell asleep.

Today, I am back on track. All systems are go. I know I can do this. I no longer feel tired and am superalert again.

I think what also happened was that my body reacted to the tomatoes in a juice on Day 5. I haven’t had them since doing the Clear Skin Programme* and had always wondered if I was sensitive to them. My stomach felt bloated after the juice and I had slight indigestion. I felt uncomfortable that night, but not seriously. That’s the only other thing I can think of to explain yesterday’s pain and tiredness and consequent need to rest.

Further Tip:

I forgot to mention in an earlier post that, psychologically, it helps if you ‘eat’ the thicker blends and shakes with a spoon rather than straight from the glass. If you also chew, even better. It makes the juice last longer and you feel more satisfied.

A Juice Cleanse/Fast/Detox is Not a Diet:

I have so far lost 4 lbs. But as I indicated at the start, I am not doing this to lose weight.

When I was at the dentist’s last week, I got into a conversation with the receptionist about juicing. She asked me if I could recommend a plan.*

She also looked me up and down and said, ‘But why are you doing it?’ clearly linking juicing with dieting.

I told her I was doing it for the health benefits. That it helps with the aches and pains, that I hadn’t had to use an inhaler for 2 years, that I had cleared myself of a horrible rash,* that it eased my digestive problems, lowered my cholesterol and gives me more energy.

I am definitely carrying on.

*http://www.juicemaster.com

*A Rash Decision?

Copyright: Chris McGowan

Kiwi Protein Smoothie

This tangy protein smoothie is a nutritious green powerhouse. It is more of a thinny than my usual thick smoothies but feel free to adjust the amount of apple juice. As always, all measurements are approximate and can be adjusted according to taste and preference.

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Ingredients:

1 Banana

1 Kiwi, peeled

Juice of 2 or 3 Apples, depending on size and how thick or thin you want it

1 Rounded Tbsp Quinoa Flakes

1 Rounded Tbsp The Raw Chocolate Company Organic Raw Hemp Protein Powder*

1 Rounded Tbsp Pumpkin Seeds

1 Tsp Wheatgrass Powder

A few Romaine Leaves, washed and chopped

Blend and serve!

*http://www.therawchocolatecompany.com

Copyright: Chris McGowan