Megahome Water Distiller Review

IMG-20170516-WA0012

After much research Oli and I decided that we wanted to invest in a water distiller. We were already filtering water (standard Brita filter jug, nothing fancy) and frequently buying bottled water. For us we felt that a water distiller would be a good investment and much cheaper and more environmentally friendly than buying bottled water. Not to mention better for our internal filtering system.

In our research in to whether water distillation was a good option or not we didn’t need much convincing and kind of felt we had no choice but to invest in one. We’ve actually been toying with the idea since Amelie was born, nearly three years ago. On a recent business trip to Europe Oli got to try some water from a water distiller and decided just to go for it. We had also done lots of reading on reverse osmosis systems (filtering out contaminants that are larger in size than water molecules, if the contaminants are smaller than water molecules they pass through and remain in your drinking water), for this reason we felt the water distiller was for us. With a water distiller the process just seemed more effective. When using a water distiller the water is first gently boiled. This kills off viruses and bacteria and leaves all the pollutants behind. The steam is then captured in a stainless steel coil where it cools to form pure water. This water then passes through an activated charcoal filter to finally remove any trace of impurities. Common water impurities removed from water distillation are: antibiotics, fertilizers, pesticides, chlorine, viruses etc. You can find a more comprehensive list here. There is an argument that using a distiller actually removes minerals that we humans do need and use, for example magnesium. However, for me I feel that I have a great diet and should be absorbing all the minerals I need from the foods I’m eating. I would much rather the filtering of harmful chemicals and pollutants happen outside my body than within.

So we decided to purchase the Megahome Water Distiller from Megahome Distillers for £139.95, this was the best price we could find for everything we wanted. For 4 litres of water it takes about 5-6 hours for the whole process to complete. You might want to get ahead of the game and store a completed batch of water whilst distilling the next 4 litres. I guess it depends on how many are in your household and how much water you drink/use. Once the water has gone through is distilling process it is very clear and definitely has less of a taste, if that makes sense. I live in a hard water area and feel that I can really taste the tap water and the taste is quite distinctive and not pleasant. Sometimes it does make my face squirm.

Although at first glance spending this much on a water distiller seems like quite a big expense, the more I think about it the more I feel quite content with the investment. I won’t be buying bottled water anymore and I won’t be buying Brita filters anymore (quite expensive), and I won’t be doing that weird face squirm anymore ; ) From an aesthetic perspective, it is quite big and takes up a lot of room on the kitchen side. I went for the cream/off white colour to blend in with my new kitchen (when we finally move) and also the glass jug as it looked a little more classy/expensive. The actual main trunk of the machine gets quite warm so will provide a little heat in the kitchen in the winter too. Not quite sure how much electricity it uses yet, but I’ll worry about that later.

This post isn’t to try to push the product in any way. Just my thoughts on it in case you were wondering whether to make the purchase too : )

Love

Lea xx

Happy New Year from me to you

So, we’ve come to the end of another year. Who’s been doing a lot of reflection of late? It’s been a bit of a crazy year my end. The beginning of 2017 started out fairly strong. I had lots of plans for the year ahead (particularly with Naturallea) then it all went a little crazy. Work life went stupidly busy, patient referrals hit an all time high and staffing at an all time low. Which has been leaving me feeling quite drained for some time. We moved house which has been and continues to be a huge renovation project/headache. I can’t believe how hard it’s been if I’m honest. I don’t do too well with mess, builders walking through my house, and what feels like disorganization. Oli had a car crash. He was fine, but then we were down to one car. Which for us, is a logistical nightmare. Then I decided now was a good time to embark on my yoga teacher training. Then just to throw more chaos in to the works Oli thought it was a good idea to get not one but TWO puppies. Definitely my biggest challenge so far. Most the time, my life is all a bit of a comedy sketch and I feel like I’m in the middle of it all, losing my mind slightly. BUT, I sort of see light at the end of tunnel now. I’m hoping that my life in 2018 will have a bit more calm with more direction and not just about surviving the day. So, although I don’t really do resolutions as such, I have given myself some goals. I think giving yourself some sort of focus or a goal is a positive thing. You’re sort of just gently giving yourself a sense of direction. So direction for me looks like this right now:

  1. Make more time for blogging (currently getting off to a flying start).
  2. More recipe creating (and then blogging about it).
  3. More yoga teaching. More yoga learning.
  4. Get outside and run more.
  5. Having the best time with Amelie before she starts school in September. I’m currently off Tuesday and Friday’s with her so I’m going to enjoy every minute before the routine changes again.
  6. Smiling more at all the good in my life and not fretting about some of the shit that happens. It happens, I need to learn not to dwindle on it.

There’s a few things there. But they are things I feel quite passionate about so I’m pretty sure my focus won’t steer too far from this list. I also just wanted to take this opportunity to wish you all a Happy New Year (to anyone that might happen to be reading this). You are a lovely lot. I hope 2018 is bright and prosperous for you all. Resolutions or no resolutions just enjoy this crazy thing called life. Lots of love Lea xx

5 Simple Ways to feel good and at your best this Autumn Winter

I work in the health industry and work out in the community, so I’m exposed to everyone’s coughs and colds. A few ways I try to stay on top of my health and wellbeing are outlined below. Of course I sometimes fall short (like now *coughs and sniffs*) but that’s why I like to come back to a short check list to make sure I’m doing all the right things to help combat the winter bugs and blues.

  • Start the day right. This means having a healthy balanced breakfast. If you follow me on Instagram you know I love my porridge topped with fruit, nuts and seeds. For me, this provides the nutrients and energy I need to kick start the day. I also recommend introducing some lemon and ginger in hot water for your first drink of the day. This is great for breaking up the caffeine in take throughout the day too. I find it definitely provides that soothing and healing quality to a drink particularly when you’re feeling fragile. If your feeling massively adventurous my Mum swears by a shot of organic apple cider vinegar first thing. Now, I don’t do this very often, but when I do it really does settle my stomach. I might give this a try this winter.

 

  • REST, REST, REST. Particularly as we come in to the festive season. It’s so easy to start burning the candle at both ends. You must learn to relax and let your body and mind rest. Schedule a night in with your pj’s on and a good book or an afternoon of films and sofa snuggles. With rest in mind, this also means, make sure you’re getting enough sleep. I always tell myself “when you’re sleeping your healing”. I would say I definitely sleep more in the winter. I think nature wants us to sleep more in the winter months.

 

  • Keep active. It’s so easy to lose sight of your fitness levels as we head in to the colder and darker evenings. Social engagements creep up and our appetite for exercise tends to dwindle as we wrap up in extra layers. My advice would be to sign up to a fitness event like a run, or book in a term of yoga sessions, if you’re a member of a gym schedule in a weekly class. Or, if mobility or funds are an issue for you, get out walking with some friends.
  • Up your fruit and veg. Keep your fruit and vegetables up throughout this winter, it’s so tempting to up the carbs as it gets cold but don’t let your fruit and veg slide. You’ll need extra vitamins and nutrients to fight off the cold and flu viruses.

  • Spend a little bit of time out in nature and the fresh air. I’m talking wintery woodland walks, blustery beach strolls, hilltop hiking. Wrap up warm and get out in the fresh air. This will do your physical and mental health the world of good.

I will do another post going in to a little more detail of particular benefits of certain foods and exercises that will help to keep winter bugs at bay. I think being a little bit more specific in this area is useful when trying to keep your health in tip top condition. I am a little snuffly today so I’ve put some spinach and watercress soup on the hob, only took a few minutes of preparation and I will have some of that a little later. And obviously hope it works miracles immediately ; )

 

These are just a few hints and tips that I’ve tried and tested. Please share with me all your hits and tips in the comments below or connect with me on Instagram where I post a lot of meal ideas and healthy lifestyle tips.

Lots of love

Lea xxx

Slow cooker potato and courgette curry with roasted butternut squash recipe

Now this is a one pot wonder. AND vegetarian. AND vegan. AND enjoyable even if you love meat in your curry. Bursting with goodness and flavour this is a winner dinner.

Ingredients 

5x small potatoes

3x sweet potatoes (1 was large, 1 medium and 1 small)

1x courgette

3x garlic

1x tablespoon of coconut oil

1x tinned chopped tomatoes

1x tin of hot water (I empty the chopped tomatoes and fill the tin with hot water)

2x teaspoon of ground cumin

1.5x teaspoon of ground coriander

1x teaspoon ground ginger

1.5 teaspoon mild curry powder (more or stronger powder if you want it spicier)

1x butternut squash

2x tablespoon of olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

Turn the slow cooker on to a medium heat and put in a tablespoon of coconut oil to melt. Peel and chop potatoes, chop courgette and peel garlic.

Once slow cooker is hot and coconut oil melted add all the spices and mix to a paste. Then add the chopped potatoes and courgette to the paste making sure all is covered by the paste. Next use a garlic crusher and add garlic to the mixture (if no garlic crusher simply mince). Put lid on and let mixture heat up/sweat for roughly 3 minutes. Then add tin of chopped tomatoes, fill empty tin with boiling water from kettle and add to mixture. Add a a generous dash of salt and pepper, give a good stir and put lid back on.

Now you can go off and enjoy your day whilst this cooks. I left mine to cook for about 6.5 hours. 45 minutes before serving I chopped the end off my butternut squash, and gave it a good wash. I then sliced length ways in to quarters, scraped the seeds out, placed in a roasting dish, drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with salt and pepper. I then roasted at 200 degrees for 40 minutes.

And voilà. All done. Technically a two pot wonder dish. But this is super tasty and I didn’t even bother sautéing the courgettes or garlic, just threw it all in the slow cooker. You could also add an onion if you wanted. This would serve 4.

Hope you enjoy xxxx

Megahome Water Distiller Review

IMG-20170516-WA0012
After much research Oli and I decided that we wanted to invest in a water distiller. We were already filtering water (standard Brita filter jug, nothing fancy) and frequently buying bottled water. For us we felt that a water distiller would be a good investment and much cheaper and more environmentally friendly than buying bottled water. Not to mention better for our internal filtering system.

In our research in to whether water distillation was a good option or not we didn’t need much convincing and kind of felt we had no choice but to invest in one. We’ve actually been toying with the idea since Amelie was born, nearly three years ago. On a recent business trip to Europe Oli got to try some water from a water distiller and decided just to go for it. We had also done lots of reading on reverse osmosis systems (filtering out contaminants that are larger in size than water molecules, if the contaminants are smaller than water molecules they pass through and remain in your drinking water), for this reason we felt the water distiller was for us.  With a water distiller the process just seemed more effective. When using a water distiller the water is first gently boiled. This kills off viruses and bacteria and leaves all the pollutants behind. The steam is then captured in a stainless steel coil where it cools to form pure water. This water then passes through an activated charcoal filter to finally remove any trace of impurities. Common water impurities removed from water distillation are: antibiotics, fertilizers, pesticides, chlorine, viruses etc. You can find a more comprehensive list here. There is an argument that using a distiller actually removes minerals that we humans do need and use, for example magnesium. However, for me I feel that I have a great diet and should be absorbing all the minerals I need from the foods I’m eating. I would much rather the filtering of harmful chemicals and pollutants happen outside my body than within.

So we decided to purchase the Megahome Water Distiller from JD Harris for £139.95, this was the best price we could find for everything we wanted. For 4 litres of water it takes about 5-6 hours for the whole process to complete.  You might want to get ahead of the game and store a completed batch of water whilst distilling the next 4 litres. I guess it depends on how many are in your household and how much water you drink/use. Once the water has gone through is distilling process it is very clear and definitely has less of a taste, if that makes sense. I live in a hard water area and feel that I can really taste the tap water and the taste is quite distinctive and not pleasant. Sometimes it does make my face squirm.

Although at first glance spending this much on a water distiller seems like quite a big expense, the more I think about it the more I feel quite content with the investment. I won’t be buying bottled water anymore and I won’t be buying Brita filters anymore (quite expensive), and I won’t be doing that weird face squirm anymore ; ) From an aesthetic perspective, it is quite big and takes up a lot of room on the kitchen side. I went for the cream/off white colour to blend in with my new kitchen (when we finally move) and also the glass jug as it looked a little more classy/expensive. The actual main trunk of the machine gets quite warm so will provide a little heat in the kitchen in the winter too. Not quite sure how much electricity it uses yet, but I’ll worry about that later.

This post isn’t to try to push the product in any way. Just my thoughts on it in case you were wondering whether to make the purchase too : )

Love

Lea xx

 

 

 

Struggling with FOMO?

 

Okay, so I think I’m totally out of my comfort zone with this post. Mainly because I used the acronym FOMO in the title, and two because I’m about to discuss this acronym FOMO. I literally have no idea who I am anymore. But here goes, bare with me.

So I heard on the radio that the digital world we now live in is causing high levels of anxiety in people, predominantly teenagers. Our increased use of social media means people constantly feel like they are missing out or are going to miss out on an exciting or interesting event. This means people are apparently getting less sleep as they are constantly checking their social media outlets for updates on people’s lives. Adding to this, people are comparing their lives to the perceived lives of others on social media. This anxiety is called FOMO, Fear Of Missing Out. So my first thought to this was – get a grip! Then my second thought to this was – is this really a new thing? Haven’t humans always felt a bit like this? Isn’t this just a modern version of ‘keeping up with the Jones’? Is this anxiety just highlighted as we have so much access to the lives of those who are seemingly more fortunate?

Growing up (80’s child) I always felt like I was missing out on something big. I have no idea why, I just did. I always wanted to be out, I was always doing things, I had a ridiculous amount of hobbies but it still wasn’t enough. Perhaps I read too many copies of Smash Hits, J-17 and Bliss and longed for a more glamorous lifestyle than my small seaside village provided. I’m from a generation where as a young teenager you would go out to Youth Club or to a friend’s house and give your Mum and Dad one ring on the home phone to let them know you arrived safely. The introduction of THE WORLD WIDE WEB struck fear in to everybody, no one wanted to catch the Millenium Bug! I had visions of the world being hit with some deadly virus, I think this was why my auntie stocked up her garage with bottles of water and tins of food as we approached The New Millenium. Dad used to have to dial up the internet modem, those loooong moments used to make me nervous/excited, would this virus everyone is talking about strike today? The internet of course was incredibly slow and rendered pointless at the time. Such an anti-climax. And then all of a sudden we’re here. Access to everything at our finger tips. I’m sometimes annoyed with myself at how impatient I am when things don’t happen instantly now. What sort life are our children entering in to? This thought does scare me, but I know I shouldn’t be scared, I just need to roll with it, and write a blog post discussing FOMO, haha.

So, this got me thinking. Do I feel like I have a fear of missing out on things? I don’t think I do. I think I used to, when I was younger. Now I feel pretty content with what I have, what I’m yet to have and who I am. So maybe it is just an age thing. Maybe it’s just an insecurity we have when we’re young? I think I may have had a touch of FOMO when I was a new Mum. I suddenly had to dedicate my life to someone other than myself. Since the age of 18  I pretty much dictated the comings and goings of my life. Kind of. Suddenly I had a beautiful little girl in my arms whose needs would forever come before mine. So, there have been times when I had to decline a few invites to things I really wanted to go to as I knew it would be too difficult managing the logistics of it with a baby. Or just too expensive. Everything is so expensive these days. But all that is just life. I may have had a touch of SIMO (Sad I Missed Out – I just made that up, as you can tell) not really FOMO. But I got over it pretty quickly because I’m concentrating pretty hard on my own family unit. And for the most part, these days I kind of like having an empty diary, because life is so busy I just don’t want to complicate it even more. Sounds so boring but it’s true. I’m a working Mummy and when my diary is overloaded it kind of gives me the dreads. I’m pretty sure a more simplified life results in a more content life. I think if we concentrate more on ourselves and those close few around us, they’re what really matter. No need to feel like you’re missing out if your focus and attention is on those you love. I feel lucky that I was young enough and old enough to experience life without technology and life with. I love technology and I love social media but I do think there’s a time and a place for it. Sometimes you’ve just got to put your phone down, push your anxieties aside and concentrate on your own life. I realise that if you are a teenager or young person then this idea is probably not really going to ring true. Teenagers/young people have quite a lot to cope with anyway. I just hope they are old enough and wise enough to realise that social media is a very brief, edited snapshot of life. I know I’m naive in saying this but I hope that if they don’t recognise or understand this then they’re probably too young to be using it. Although, I have heard of kids as young as 6 having their own social media platforms. But I  think I’ll park that whole new subject matter there!

 

Just some thoughts on the subject. Would love to know your thoughts on it? I really do believe in simplifying your life, this fast paced world needs to slow down ever so slightly. Or am I just showing signs of age?

 

Love always,

Lea x x

New Year with New Intentions

Following on from the theme of my last post I’ve been thinking a lot about entering in to a new year and what it means to people. Seeing and speaking to a lot of patients, clients, friends and family over the last few weeks I’ve sensed a real mixed bag of thoughts and feelings as we’ve transitioned in to 2017. There’s some who are incredibly motivated and positive, some have had lots to face already and feel very sad their year hasn’t got off to the best start possible and some just aren’t phased and continue as they always have done.

What does a new year mean to you? I kind of feel that a new year should signify a resurgence of energy. I sort of feel like it’s a great time to sit and gather your thoughts from the previous year, to think about what went well and what didn’t. To then think about the year ahead and visualise the best possible year for yourselves and your loved ones. What does that entail? How do you want 2017 to play out for you? How do you want to feel in 2017? I really do feel that it’s good for us to see ourselves and the world with fresh eyes and a more optimistic outlook. People often feel rejuvenated during a holiday away, being away from their normal surroundings. Of course being on a beautiful beach somewhere, watching the sunset and listening to the waves crash to the shore is incredibly empowering for the soul but not everybody gets to taste that as a reality. So I think it’s important to take any opportunity you can to revisit yourself, your life, your goals, your intentions and the new year is a great time to do this.

Okay, so let’s say you’ve already fallen down on all your new year resolutions. That’s fine. Perhaps they were meant to be broken. Perhaps they weren’t the right resolutions for you right now, perhaps your resolutions were too big or unrealistic. Perhaps you’re too hard on yourself? What about setting smaller goals?

FOR EXAMPLE:

Rather than “I am never eating chocolate again” what about giving yourself an allowance, something you can stick to but is significantly less than you already eat? How about setting yourself a goal that is broader and more of an intention?

For instance: “I am ging to be more mindful of the amount of money I spend on…. ” This could be clothes, or food shopping, eating out, takeaways or just generally. Now this is a tricky one but it is totally achievable if you approach it in the right way. Every time you step foot in a supermarket, a clothes shop, browsing online or thinking about ordering a takeaway – ask yourself some simple questions and answer them honestly. Do I need this? Will this really make me happy? Is this healthy for me? Do I have something in the fridge that needs using up before I start buying more food? Do I have something similar I could wear in my wardrobe that I’ve forgotten about? Do I really need a glass of wine or a slab of chocolate? Or, can I make a more nutritious and healthier meal curry, stirfry, pizza at home? Let’s be honest we know the answer to all of these questions so I guess the hard question to answer is why is it so hard to adhere to? I think the answer lies within the word ‘adhere’. If you set yourself an intention or goal it is important to keep positively reminding yourself of that goal or intention and the reasons why you set them in the first place. And if you do fall off the wagon the key is to get straight back on. All is not lost. Adherence, really sticking to something, and persevering is really the recipe for long term change.
And remember to congratulate yourself. Tell yourself how flipping amazing you are. Every Friday that you decline that takeaway Chinese give yourself a firm pat on the back. Rather than berating yourself for not going for a run or attending the gym because you didn’t feel like it that day what about giving yourself a high five for all the times you have gone recently. Tell yourself how well you’ve done and how well you’re doing. And don’t be afraid to tell people how well you’re doing “I’m so proud of myself as I went swimming after work today, I was really tired but I’m really pleased I did as now I feel like a superhero”. Don’t be afraid to rejoice in those triumphs no matter how small you think they are. Positivity breeds and attracts positivity and it will be the thing that spurs you on. Now it may seem like I’m taking the easy way out and encouraging some sort of okay-ness in slacking when it suits but I think I’m just coming from a more human perspective. Knowing yourself, knowing your capabilities and looking after your emotional self is so important.

So to finish up (because quite clearly I could go on all day) as Nelson Mandela once said “Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be?” be your own motivation and inspiration. Every time you fall down show your strength by getting straight back up again showing true fighting spirit. Work hard, surprise yourself, revisit yourself but never be disappointed in yourself. You’re in charge of you. You make the decisions that work for you and if it doesn’t work for you take a moment to check in with yourself and see how you can make it work for you.

2017 is the year for you.
Take care of yourselves
Lea x