Please note: After fielding several concerned phone calls from people thinking I’ve shut up shop, I want to let you know that I am still consulting. The ‘end’ refers to discussion around COVID! Feel free to book in and keep a naturopath in business
‘E’ is for The End!
Hello again and welcome to the final newsletter on the apocalypse series. Like most of you, I’m over ‘it’! Over talking about it, over writing about it and over the whole sorry business of ‘iso’. Sounding a little like a petulant child I know, but I just want to give my Mum a hug.
Although…I am enjoying the relaxed guidelines and in fact, went and had a dance in a friend’s shed on Saturday night. They had very thoughtfully marked out social distancing circles for us to dance in and gone to town on the ‘disco’ lights. It felt very ‘normal’ indeed.
Let’s get into some practical tips to help you through then, shall we?
‘E’ is for Vitamin E.
Vitamin E is not a single vitamin, but a group of fat soluble vitamins, which means instead of weeing it out readily (a la bright pee from vitamin B), it can be stored in the body for long periods of time, posing a greater risk for toxicity.
Its main job is as an antioxidant, which is a word that I reckon gets ‘bandied’ about A LOT, especially in advertising of many health food products.
What is an antioxidant?
Antioxidants are molecules that fight free radicals in your body. Which leads to the question… What then is a free radical?
When you take a simple breath of air into your lungs, you create free radicals, which are unstable atoms in your body that can damage cells, causing illness and accelerated ageing. This is called oxidative stress. I think of it a bit like rusting from the inside.
Prolonged oxidative stress can damage our DNA, which can then increase our risk for cancer and cardiovascular disease, neither of which sounds at all appealing!
BUT (and there’s always a but), we do need some free radicals. Our immune cells use them to fight infections.
We need a balance between antioxidants and free radicals to maintain the ‘status quo’ (dance break).
Causes of excess free radical production:
- High blood sugars
- Too much time in the sun – getting burned
- Taking too much iron, zinc, copper or magnesium
- Overexercising – think football players with their multitude of injuries
- Viral, bacterial or fungal infections
- Excessive intake of Vitamin C and E – back to finding the balance
The truth of the matter is, if you eat a diet filled with lots of colourful fruits and vegetables, you’re going to get antioxidants.
Another way we can up our antioxidant intake is with…COFFEE. ‘Hurrah’, I hear you say, for once she’s not doing a ‘Debbie Downer’ on us!
But wait. There’s more. DARK CHOCOLATE (now, I’m just spoiling you).
Back to Vitamin E
- Help with wound healing
- Moisturise the skin – it’s in most skin care products
- Prevent skin cancer – a study done in mice showed that those given supplementation were less likely to develop skin cancer (do not try this for yourself…)
- May help with hot flushes during menopause – a small study showed significant improvement over 4 weeks taking 400IU per day.
The most important thing I’m going to say in this newsletter
And it’s this. Vitamin E is derived from palm oil. If you choose to take Vitamin E, please, please, please ensure that it is ethically sourced. The palm oil industry is well documented not only for deforestation and destroying the habitats of orangutans, it’s also responsible for many human rights abuses. Please take the time to read this article.
Food sources of Vitamin E
- Egg yolk – is there nothing they can’t do?
- Wheat germ
‘E’ is for EGGS
My favourite ‘super food’. That’s all I have to say on the matter!
Classic Spanish Tortilla
Give me an egg and a potato and I’m yours for life! My Spanish friend Lydia taught me how to make this in Goa many, many years ago. Many recipes use onions, hers did not.
- 250mL light olive oil
- 1kg potatoes, halved lengthways and thinly sliced
- 8 eggs
- 2 tablespoons, extra virgin olive oil
- Salt to taste
- Heat the oil in heavy based fry pan. Add potatoes and cook, stirring occasionally until softened and lightly browned.
- Season with salt, remove from the pan and drain well. Wipe the pan out.
- Beat the eggs vigorously with a pinch of salt in a large bowl for one minute.
- Add the potato slices and stir gently with a fork.
- Heat the olive in the pan. Tip in the egg mixture and cook gently, shaking the pan occasionally until the underside is set and lightly browned.
- Invert the omelette on to the pan lid or a plate, then gently slide it back into the pan, cooked side up. (i have to be honest here and say, I’m a ‘wus’ and will put mine under the grill to finish).
- Cook gently, shaking the pan occasionally, until the underside is set and golden brown.
- Serve with a big green salad.
Last but not least…
‘E’ is for Excitement
I’m working on something that I hope to be able to bring to you soon. It does feel like I am birthing an elephant, but I know it’s going to be worth the wait. Just a wee heads up, it’s not going to be for everyone…Stay tuned.
Until next instalment, I’ll leave you with this.
“Without leaps of imagination or dreaming, we lose the excitement of possibilities. Dreaming, after all is a form of planning.” ― Gloria Steinem
To your good health,