Hey, I hope you're going well! Apologies for the big gap between posts, life has gotten somewhat crazier and more adventure-filled for both Peta and I, resulting in us missing several weeks of WILW. Due to its popularity and the pleasure we get from writing it, we have made the decision that this segment will remain, but we have let go of the need to force it to be weekly. Simply, when we have a Wednesday upon which we have lots to share we shall write a WILW post. Aside from that, stay tuned for other exciting posts and, of course, more new recipes that will be coming your way very soon.
This week I am...
Listening to:MC Yogi
My all-time favourite, feel-good song is 'Give Love' by MC Yogi, which I fell in love with several years ago after watching this awesome Youtube clip of Yoga in San Francisco. Then, the other day I was perusing (read: procrastinating) Spotify when I came across his latest album, which is a complete collaboration with East Forest (another favourite of mine). I listened to the entire album and loved it. MC Yogi beats are the perfect accompaniment to study or any kind of yoga practice! Do yourself a favour and check it out.
Watching:FM Beauty, Skin & Gut Summit
Food Matters has been a seriously influential source of information for me since I began my health and wellness journey. They consistently produce and share some of the latest and greatest films, documentaries, interviews, recipes and blog posts relating to all facets of living a healthy, holistic, stress and toxin-free life.
Over the past 10 days their latest endeavour was hosting an online Beauty, Skin and Gut Summit featuring incredible doctors, authors and other health and wellness gurus sharing all the latest knowledge on the importance of cultivating great gut health! Sadly, as I was pretty swamped with uni work I didn't get to watch it all, but the few interviews I did watch were amazing, including one on gluten with Dr Tom O'Bryan in which I learnt that the latest gastroenterology research has shown that wheat is a mild to moderate toxin, and causes gastrointestinal permeability (aka leaky gut syndrome) in all humans. Pretty incredible stuff, right? If you are interested in learning more, the whole Summit is available for purchase. Alternately, I would highly recommend considering a FMTV subscription, which is the 'Netflix for health'.
I've always been a big Dr Seuss fan and this one is definitely one of my favourites. Just keep this in mind next time you catch yourself worrying about the opinions of others!
Eating: Raw Chocolate
I was inspired by a video featured in the Beauty, Skin & Gut Summit of Jon Gabriel making his own healthy, raw chocolate. As an out-and-proud chocoholic, but equally keen health nerd, I am well aware of the incredible antioxidant benefits, and vitamin and mineral content, of cacao - the plant from which chocolate is made. For this reason I love to make my own chocolate to ensure I get the maximum benefit of this truly super food. I modified Jon's original recipe and created my own version of raw chocolate, as follows:
Ingredients: 1/4 cup coconut oil, 2 Tbsp 100% maple syrup, 2 Tbsp raw cacao powder, chopped cashews, ginger and nutmeg powder.
Method: place a bowl over a small saucepan of water that is just simmering. In the bowl melt the coconut oil and add the maple syrup and raw cacao. Mix gently until combined. Add in the nuts and spices (or any other flavour combo that you like) and mix through. Pour into small chocolate moulds, or one small container (in which chocolate will be about 1cm thick) and place in the freezer until set. Once set, if you didn't use moulds break up into bite-sized chunks, and then place back in airtight container in the fridge to keep.
This pondering was the motivation for me writing this WILW today. As I was washing the dishes today (I know...) I started to think about how humans are constantly in pursuit of answers. We want to know the answers to everything. We want to know how the world works, how we work, what has happened in the past, what is going to happen in the future and why we are even on this Earth at all. Science, philosophy and other fields exist in the continual pursuit of these answers, and despite at least 2000 years of consistent effort we are arguably a long, long way from having all the answers we want. And that is without even considering all the personal questions we want answered, too.
But what if we are never meant to know all the answers? Or what if we aren't even physically capable of ever comprehending all the answers? How does that prospect make you feel? What if there is no one answer to any one question? What if there are in fact multiple "correct" answers to every question, each equally valid? What if our existence is in fact so that we can learn to live in a state of unknowing?
Thus, rather ironically I attempt to answer my own question about answers with a myriad of questions... Food for thought?
Detoxifying: fermented foods
Over the past year or so I have gradually integrated more fermented foods into my diet, due to the fact that I know they are incredibly powerful probiotics and amazing for gut health. My regular fermented foods include kombucha (fermented tea), kefir (fermented raw milk/coconut water) and sauerkraut (lacto-fermented cabbage). Usually, when I am back in Australia (in my fully equipped home kitchen) I make a lot of my own fermented foods, but since arriving in Canada I have been relying on the products available in health food stores here.
Fermented foods are great for detoxifying any "bad" bacterial overgrowth in the gut and promoting the flourishing of populations of "good" bacteria. Having good gut health is crucial not only for your gut, but also for your skin, mood, immune function, general digestive and nervous system health.
Grateful for: SNOW!
Two days ago the first snow fell on Montreal, and my goodness it was magical! We woke up to a powdery white veil covering the entire city, marking the beginning of the 'real' winter in Canada. Although for many Canadians snow is nothing but an annoying hinderance (an understandably so), for me it is just a constant reminder of this foreign and wondrous place that I am in. It also made me very excited for all the skiing I will be getting to do in the not-too-distant future!
How are you? Have you got something that you're loving that you want to share?
Love Erica x