Life's Journey

A blog about health, nutrition, fitness, personal development, spirituality, and other random things!

Friday, March 23, 2012


When you are feeling happy and then worrying that it's not going to last, is like eating and then worrying that you are going to do a shit! lol...

Saturday, March 17, 2012

On Marriage

I remember a few weeks ago, in my office, my colleague was talking about dating and marriage, and I said "I don't care about getting married", and "it means nothing to me, for me, as long as we are together, as long as there is love"...that's how I feel about it, for me...I'm fine with, and respect, other people wanting to get married, that means something to them, and is "right" for them...but I don't feel like I need it, and I don't...I'd love to meet someone, though, and have a close, loving, deep (etc) relationship with him...

If someone doesn't want to get married, it doesn't necessarily mean that they lack commitment and/or that they do not love their partner, and/or that they cannot be trusted...a couple can have a relationship where they stay together for many years, and/or for the rest of their lives, without being married (and I have known a few of these couples...).

Sometimes it is, actually, because one of the partners does not want to get married to their current partner, and/or who said that they did not believe in marriage, and then they break up, and he/she marries the next partner! And it was because they changed their mind when they met the "right one"'s not always to do with deceit...

It can present a large hurdle in a relationship, when one partner does not want to get married, and the other partner really wants to, and/or needs to...I am reminded of the film, "He Is Just Not That Into You", (which I really like and have seen a few times!), when Jennifer Anniston's character doubted the love of her partner because he did not believe in marriage...even though he loved her very much...

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Breaking up a relationship may not be a failure

I've just read a bit of an article ("accidental" find) on how J-Lo and Halle Berry "can't keep a man", and how they "failed" to do I know that people make "mistakes", but to me, I do not see the couples (married or not) breaking up their relationship, to be a "failure", as if one or both of them "failed" just by seperating...

Perhaps, sometimes, the main reason why people break up, is because it just wasn't "meant to be" anymore...because they had grown in different directions...because they became (or discovered that they were) incompatible, not complimenting one another...

Maybe, some people are not "meant to be together" forever...and it does not mean that they have "failed" if they break up...sure, it could sometimes, partly, be to do with some things that they need to grow and/or heal in themselves...but...we are forever growing and healing...

Maybe...some people are "meant" to have more than one or several different partners throughout their life, and that suits them as a person and their life path...and maybe someone is only meant to be with one person for the rest of their lives, for the same reasons, and maybe some people are "not meant" to be with anyone
throughout this life, for the same reasons...

I am reminded, of how some older married couples, stay together with their partner (who has cheated on them, and/or has abused them, or just that they are not enjoying the relationship anymore...) mainly because they feel like they would be a "failure" if they got a divorce...

To me, I do not see people getting a divorce, as "wrong" or as a failure...if it's not meant to be, it's not meant to be...

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Sunday, November 12, 2006

Detox diet day 3-6

Over the past week I have really enjoyed creating (and tasting) new recipes for my detox diet! My favourites so far are stuffed peppers, which were just delicious, rice with vegetables and lentils, butter bean salad, and the homemade muesli - yum! All week I have been having food cravings, especially for cheese, feta cheese, eggs and olives. I have done well to not give in to these cravings (it took lots of will power to not grab some cheese from the fridge). I slipped once this week when I was at Nandos meeting a friend for lunch. I chose the Mediterranean salad, which had feta cheese and olives, and spicy rice. And yes, I really enjoyed eating the feta cheese and olives!

This is what I have eaten in the last few days:

Day 3

Breakfast: 1 pear, 1 apple, 1 Clementine, 2 tablespoons of mixed nuts

Lunch: 2 slices of rye bread with tahini and sliced cucumber

Dinner: stuffed peppers: 3 red pepper tops, filled with: brown basmati rice, brown lentils, onion, lemon juice, mixed herbs.

Day 4

Breakfast: half a cup of oats, boiled, with 2 teaspoons of honey

Lunch: brown basmati rice with turmeric, and vegetables with lemon and herbs

Dinner: butter bean salad

Day 5

Breakfast: 1 pear, 1 apple, and a handful of mixed nuts

Lunch: Mediterranean salad (feta and olives) with spiced rice and glass of orange juice (Nandos)

Dinner: Rice noodles with mixed vegetables (tenderstem broccoli, mini sweet corns, mange tout, french beans, onions, mixed herbs, fresh coriander, lemon and black pepper)

Night time snack: 2 rice breads with tahini and cucumber and a bowl of raisins (I went a bit over the top here whilst watching the big movie on TV, oops!).

Day 6

Breakfast: bowl of homemade muesli with oats, mixed nuts, mixed seeds, raisins, honey and rice milk.

Snack: 2 Clementines

Snack: 1 tablespoon of raisins (willpower was required to stop myself from eating more!)

Lunch: Rice and corn pasta with boiled vegetables (courgette, red pepper, peas and corn, onion, mixed herbs, black pepper).

Dinner: (tonight!) vegetable soup (leeks, celery, onion, carrot, peas, broccoli, sweet potato, mixed herbs, pepper).


From the third day of being on this diet I have been a lot more motivated to exercise. Maybe it was to do with the fact that I lost a little weight early on? My energy levels seem to be more constant, which could be to do with the increased physical activity and the foods that I have been eating, not to mention the 6 + glasses of water I have been drinking daily. Being dehydrated makes you feel tired, so it makes sense that being hydrated gives you more energy! I have tried to vary my workouts so that I don’t get bored and have just done what I have felt like on the day, rather than forcing myself to do the toughest, longest workouts everyday that I feel will give me quicker results. If I don’t stick to it because I am being too ambitious, then I would not get any results! This has happened before! So, I think it is best to start of slowly and gradually build my way up.

Here is a rundown of the exercise I have done this week (minus walking)

Day 3

Step (in my room), 20 minutes

Day 4

Step and sculpt workout, 45 minutes (weight watchers video)

Day 5

Weight workout, 85 minutes (Karen Voight video)

Day 6

Aerobics, 45 minutes (weight watchers video).

Tomorrow I will do Pilates.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Detox diet day 1 and 2

In my previous entry, I mentioned that I started a detox diet yesterday. I have really enjoyed the food, though I have to take it easy on the nuts - they taste so good! I am taking a good multi vitamin and mineral supplement also, to make sure that my body gets all the nutrients it needs. I had a challenge today when I met my friend for (her) lunch at Pizza Hut. I have to admit, the pizza looked so good. I had to order a salad (without dressing) so that I did not feel so deprived! I also had mineral water, where often I would of had diet coke.

This is what I have eaten so far:

Day 1 (7 November, 2006)

  • Breakfast. fruit salad: 1 apple, 1 pear and 2 clementines
  • Afternoon snack: 100g natural unsalted cashew nuts (633 calories!)
  • Lunch: 1 slice of german rye bread with tahini and sliced cucumber
  • Dinner: large pot of vegetable soup with brocoli, carrot, onion, sweet potato, peas, celery, mixed herbs and a pinch of Greek saffron.
  • Drinks: 6 glasses of water, 2 herb teas

Day 2 (8 November, 2006)

  • Breakfast: 1 apple, 1 pear, 1 clementine, and 2 heaped tablespoons of mixed nuts (12 nuts)
  • lunch: 2 slices of German rye bread topped with tahini dip (tahini with lemon juice and water) and sliced cucumber
  • Afternoon snack: mixed salad
  • Evening snack: 5 mixed nuts (wanted more but stopped myself!).
  • Dinner (tonight!): brown rice with lightly boiled vegetables with herbs (red pepper, courgette, onion, carrot, peas and lentils)
  • Drinks: so far 5 glasses of water and 1 white tea, I will drink a few more glasses of water.

When I got up this morning, I weighed myself. I weiged 2 pounds less than I did the previous morning. I am wondering if this change may be due to the diuretic affect of some of the vegetables I had eaten!? it certainly is not fat, not at this stage. Also, your weight tends to fluctuate day to day, though not usually by that much!

I am feeling calmer in myself. This may also be to do with me making time for myself yesterday. I took time to sit down and read my detox diet books that I got from the library, with a Rose quartz lamp on and a lavender candle burning in the background; both are good for relaxation.

Rose quartz lamp. Source:

I had a nice relaxing bath with oats in it, which is supposed to be good for the skin - my skin felt so soft after!

I have got rid of quite a lot of things that I have kept for years in my bedroom, such as tapes and clothes that I will never wear again! So, my room has had a little detox as well!

Time to detoxify!

Detox diets are thought to result in:

· Clearer skin
· Reduction of acne
· Brighter eyes
· Increased energy levels
· Improved concentration levels
· Weight loss
· Reduced bloating
· Reduction of cellulite
· Improved mood
· Better sleep

In fact I have read several true life stories of people that have experienced these benefits after being on a detox diet. I really could do with ALL of the above results!

I started a detox diet yesterday (which I will write about in the next blog entry) as I was fed up of the way I was feeling and looking and decided it was time to detoxify! I have had low energy, lack of motivation to exercise, acne, dull, tired looking eyes, dull looking skin, food cravings (especially for sweet foods) and have been finding it hard to lose weight.

Principles of detox diets:

The main principles of detox diets are to eliminate foods that are known to cause food intolerance and foods that are quite toxic that make the digestive system work harder and to eat natural, unprocessed, highly nutritious foods that will also aid your digestion, so that the body will get rid of a lot of the built up toxins. The duration of detox diets usually varies from 2-28 days.

Non-organic fruits and vegetables contain pesticides, a build up of which can be toxic to the body, so it is best to buy mainly organic produce when going on a detox diet. However, if you cannot afford organic foods, you can wash the fruits and vegetables with water (no soap) each for at least 10 seconds which gets rid of some of the pesticide residues, or you can buy a fruit and vegetable washer from most health food stores. Even if you do not include any organic foods in your detox diet, you will still gain some of the benefits – and it is better than eating a diet full of processed foods! When going on a detox diet you must make sure that you are eating a variety of foods each day so that you consume all of the nutrients to meet your body’s needs. There are some good detox books that contain lots of highly nutritious, delicious looking recipes, which have been balanced for nutrient content. It is also important to drink plenty of water, at least 6 glasses per day.

When is it a good time to detoxify?

You can detoxify at any time you like! Of course some times will be better than others, for example it is probably best to not go on a detoxifying diet during a stressful time such as just before and during exams. A good time to detoxify will be just before or after a holiday period. Many people go on a detox in January, after the overeating and drinking that they do at Christmas! You should not go on a detox diet for longer than a month, without the advise of a nutrition therapist, nutritionist or dietician, as you need to ensure that you are getting all of the nutrients that your body needs

The things I really like about the detox diet

The things I really like about this kind of diet are that you don’t have to count calories (even though in my head I do anyway!), no weighing of foods is required, you get to eat a variety of delicious natural foods – which taste far better than processed foods, you can experiment with foods and create new dishes, and you don’t feel hungry!

Foods to eliminate on a detox diet include:

· Caffeine (coffee, tea, colas, chocolate)
· Sugar (table sugar, sweets, chocolate, cakes)
· Salt
· Artificial additives, preservatives and sweeteners
· Carbonated drinks
· Oils, hydrogenated
· Ready made meals
· Fried foods
· Wheat products (wheat bread, pasta, noodles, wheat crackers, cakes, biscuits)
· White rice
· Dairy products (eggs, milk, cheese, yogurts)
· Alcohol
· Meat
· Fish

Foods you can eat on a detox diet include:

· Fruits
· Dried fruits (without added sulphur is best)
· Vegetables
· Fresh herbs
· Nuts
· Seeds
· Pulses (better dried than canned)
· Bean sprouts
· Grains: brown rice, buckwheat, millet, rye, quinoa
· Non-wheat bread: rye, pumpernickel, oat cakes, rice cakes
· Dips and spreads: tahini, home made hummus
· Water (preferably mineral or filtered)
· Herbal teas
· Fruit and vegetable juices (pure, freshly squeezed)
· Home made smoothies
· Oils, cold pressed
· Plant based milks: almond, rice and sesame


Detox diet in wikipedia

The detox diet in About

Detox special in ivillage

Deepak Chopra

Friday, November 03, 2006

The Raw Food Diet

I am not sure if it is mainly the winter, or my diet, or lack of regular intense exercise, but lately I have had less energy than usual. All year round most days there are times where I feel so tired, I could just go and lay down on my bed in the middle of the day for a little cat nap!

When I feel like this I often lack motivation to exercise and so avoid it.

My skin could be better. It is OK, and I do get some spots. Not good enough! I am not happy with this and want healthy looking, vibrant skin! I want the best in health and unless I eat the best foods and have a high quality, active lifestyle my health will never be more than just OK.

But I don't want just OK I want REAL HEALTH! I don't want to eat enough nutrients just so that I don't become deficient; I want to eat for OPTIMUM HEALTH!

So, in the last few days I have been thinking of ways to improve my diet for optimum health. I would concider my current diet to be pretty healthy, apart from the odd diet coke, coffee (OK, I have a cup or 2 of decafe everyday....) and packet of crisps!

Here is a list of what I have eaten today, which is fairly typical:

  • Breakfast: 3 ryvitas with 2 large, free range, boiled eggs
  • Mid-morning snack: I clementine with a large handful of sultanas
  • Lunch: Bulger wheat with vegetables and a green salad
  • Dinner: Quorn spaghetti bolognaise (with wholemeal speghetti).
  • Drinks: 4 glasses of water, 2 glasses of ribena light (tut tut - the additives!) and 1 decafe coffee.

Most days I eat about 1-2 servings of fruits and 5-6 servings of vegetables, which is more than the UK's recomended 5 portions of fruits and vegetables each day. However, I feel I should be eating at least 10 servings of fruit and vegetables per day and drinking more water. I need to eat more nuts as well as they are very good sources of protein and other nutrients - must not eat too many though as they are high in fat!

I have been wondering, if my diet was so great wouldn't my energy levels be better? Wouldn't I have better skin? Maybe if I eat more fruits and vegetables and drink more water I will achieve better health? With this in mind I remembered the raw food diet that I read about a few years ago.

Earlier this year a close family friend was talking about her experience with the raw food diet. Since she has been on it she had more energy, lost weight, and felt more vibrant. At the time I thought it seemed like a very healthy diet, so long as you make sure you get all the protein and energy you need, but it seemed really restrictive. I thought to myself: I could never go on a total raw food diet - I could never eat bread, or cheese, or pizza, or curry, or pasta again :( :( :(

So, although I did admire my friend's will power, and knew it was a very healthy diet, I decided it was not for me, I liked my cooked foods too much and could not live without them!

I have changed my mind!

Yesterday I typed in raw food into google video. I sat back and watched lectures on the raw food diet by David Wolfe and Paul Nilson - experts on the raw food diet. I was truly inspired by their stories! They looked so healthy and vibrant and full of energy. I want to feel like that(constantly) too! According to Paul Nilson, you should only eat foods that have these 4 elements:

  • Raw,
  • Ripe,
  • Fresh,
  • Organic.

The basis of the raw food diet is simple: raw, ripe, fresh organic foods have the highest nutrient and enzyme levels with the least toxins and so consuming these foods instead of non-organic cooked foods, will result in better health. This really makes a lot of sense!

I also checked out some raw food websites, I felt even more inspired, especially when I saw the raw food chocolate - it looks so delicious! I bet those Cacao beans taste yummy! I really can't wait to try some of those tasty looking raw food dishes!

Raw chocolate (yummmmmmmmm!). Source:

So, that's it. I have decided I am going to gradualy increase my consumptions of raw foods until I have a 100% low GI, raw food vegan diet. Now that is what I call a strict diet!!!

I know it will take some time to get used as I will miss some of my fave cooked foods, but it will be worth it in the long run.

Have you ever tried the raw food diet?


The Raw food diet in wikipedia:

David wolfe:

The Best Day Ever:

Living and Raw Foods:

Raw Food UK:

The Raw Lifestyle Coach:


The Raw Food Seminar Part One - with David Wolfe:

David Wolfe - Raw Foods and Smoothies:

Raw for 30 Days - Trailer

Paul Nilson, Raw Life:

Friday, October 20, 2006

The search for a nutrition job!

Since I finished my degree in July, 2006, I have been looking for a job. As there are so few nutrition jobs I have applied for several different positions including retail, admin, specialist (nutritional) advisor, research assistant etc. So far, it seems that I am over qualified for most of the jobs that I have gone for. This has not made it easy to get a job as companies think that if you have a degree you will leave when a better job comes up! This could be true for some but is not always the case!

My ideal job is of course a nutrition related job; these are so hard to find! There are very few nutrition jobs in the UK, and there is lots of competition. Most nutrition jobs require at least a masters or a PhD or at least 3 years experience in the field. So, if you have just graduated with a BSc in nutrition you have little chance of actually finding a job in your field.

When you look at how popular the area of nutrition has become you would not think there would be so few jobs!!! A few months ago I sent an email to my teacher asking for her careers advice and she mentioned that 1 year after graduation, none of last years nutrition graduates had yet found work as a nutritionist!

I remember the careers day that was held at the end of my second year at university. Three nutritionists each gave a 15 minute talk about their career experiences. The overall advice was this: VOLUNTEER, PERSISTENCE and CONNECTIONS! I would think that you would need to have a lot of patience as well! If you know people who work in the nutrition field you will have a better chance of being considered for a job, so really you have to try to get in there and make yourself known! Maybe offer to write a few articles for a website or volunteer to work for a health charity. I would suspect that most nutrition graduates do not do this!

Another way to have a good career in nutrition is to take a PhD; which is something that I have considered, but do not feel is right for me! I would rather be out there working! Some nutrition graduates start out on their own working as an associate nutritionist. They work for different companies such as marks and spencers and magazines, with duties that include writing articles, giving advice, creating leaflets and working on health campaigns. It seems that most associate nutritionists start out volunteering their services.

I have sent my CV to lots of organisations that may have positions for nutritionists such as food and nutrition organisations, pharmaceutical and neutraceutical companies, charities, hospitals and supermarkets. I have applied for 2 jobs advertised on the nutrition society website, one of which I had a telephone interview today, fingers crossed!

When I do finally get a nutrition job I will celebrate it like I have just won the lottery!

Until then the search continues…..

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Belly dancing

One of the things that really makes me feel happy and so alive, is dancing. I love to dance in my room, when cleaning, and when out clubbing! I guess part of the reason why it feel so good is because dancing is a form of exercise, so some of the feel good chemicals (endorphins) are released when you dance!

I remember when I was a child watching the old 50s and 60s films of the ancient world, such as Alexandra the Great and Cleopatra. Not only did I love the great stories and adventures and bravery of the people, I really loved the belly dancing and the beautiful costumes as well (figure 1); it looked like so much fun! I used to dress up as a Greek princess using sheets, table clothes and scarves, and really wanted the extra long hair as well, so I used to tie a long cloth around my head pretending that I had long hair like the princesses in the films! I have really curly hair so I doubt it could ever get that long, unless I straitened it!

Figure 1. Belly dancing costume. Source:

The belly dance is "a solo dance performed by a woman and characterized by sinuous hip and abdominal movements" (

Constant themes of belly dancing are:

"The Dance that Celebrates Life, Birth and Creativity!
The Dance that Celebrates Women!
The Dance that Celebrates Beauty!
The Dance that Celebrates the Body!" (learn to belly

Belly dancing, first developed in the middle east, has become very popular all over the world and many countries have their own styles such as Greek, Turkish, Lebanese and Indian. Some popular artists, such as shakira, include belly dancing in their dance routines. There is the more traditional type of belly dancing, that is more sensual, and there is a type of modern belly dancing, as seen in hip hop videos, that is very sexual! There is also a type of gothic belly dancing.

Regular belly dancing also brings several health benefits which include: strengthening and toning of the whole body, especially the abdominals, preparing women for child birth, providing a good aerobic workout, and improving body image and self esteem. Belly dancing is suitable for all ages.

There are many belly dancing courses held throughout the UK; so if you fancy going on one you can find one here: I can't wait to get started!

Here are a few belly dancing videos that I like:

Athena Najat on Greek TV

Isis wings belly dance performance

Tamra Henna my music intro full version


Belly Dancing, Wikipedia

Belly dance,

Learn to belly

Yasmina's Joy of Belly Dancing

Belly dancing costumes: