Banana Ice Cream Pudding

The sun is shining, I only want the kids outside, this is the best quick summer pudding I know. Just before I went to collect them from school I prepped the bananas and this pudding was ready in 5 minutes by 6pm.

Peel 4 or 5 bananas and put them in a tub into the freezer – for as little as 2 hours (for a milk shake) or anywhere up to a couple of weeks.

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When you re ready to make your ice cream, take your frozen bananas out of the freezer and place them in a powerful blender with a dash of almond milk (or whatever milk you enjoy to drink at home) and a few nuts; here I have added pecans. The nuts add some protein, which helps dampen the glycemic impact of all that sweet banana.

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Blitz and serve in either bowls or a glass; I added a sprig of rosemary to make it look pretty, because it looked a little pale without, but I can tell you that banana and rosemary is rather nice! I didn’t blend the rosemary into the banana, it just sat daintily in the glass 🙂

You can see that my bananas weren’t too frozen, so this became more of a glorious milk shake than a true ice cream – but oh my, its seriously just as delicious!

 

Dietary Considerations for a Healthy Heart

I have just spent the last few weeks researching and planning a summative paper on the pathophysiology and nutritional interventions for Hyperlipidaemia; that’s high blood cholesterol to you and me.

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The biggest concern for people suffering from high cholesterol is the increased risk factor  for coronary heart disease; heart attack and stroke. Who amongst us can say that they haven’t been affected by someone they know suffering from a heart attack or stroke?

Elevated blood cholesterol often runs hand in hand with other determining risk factors for heart disease; obesity, diabetes, metabolic syndromes as well as disorders of hypothyroidism, elevated triglycerides and elevated homocysteine levels.

Whilst the conventional medical route is to offer statins or fibrates, the National Cholesterol Education Programme (NCEP) recommends that therapeutic lifestyle considerations including diet and exercise may reduce LDL cholesterol. Heart UK, an amalgamation between 6 British professional societies issued joint consensus recommendations for the prevention of cardiovascular disease; recommendations include the importance of stopping smoking, a reduction in saturated fats to < 10% of total fat intake, replacing saturated fats with polyunsaturated fats, consuming minimum of 5 portions of fruit and vegetables per day, regular intake of whole grains, nuts and seeds, oily fish twice per week, salt at <6g per day and alcohol < 14 units/week for women. Furthermore, processed meats and processed foods should be reduced or best avoided as well as refined carbohydrates, sugar sweetened beverages and snacks including cakes, crisps, sweets and sugar, high in sugar and salt (HEART, 2014). Diets such as the Mediterranean Diet and the DASH Diet for Weight Loss naturally incorporate these recommendations.

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The benefits of oily fish cannot be overstressed, Omega-3 EPA and DHA are antithrombotic and are known to retard the growth of arteriosclerotic plaque. Eating oily fish 2 – 3 times per week really can help reduce your risk factor for coronary heart disease.

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Similar cardio-protective benefits are to be found in Vitamin C & E, which work synergistically with one another, acting as antioxidants, interfering with the oxidation of LDL cholesterol.

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In our house we have adopted some ‘catchy’ (haha) little monikers to help us get more fish in our diets. We have “Mackerel Monday” and “Fish on Friday” – the kids now love it and look forward to it and I have a better understanding of the term Heart Health!!IMG_9483

References

National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEP) (2002). Detection, Evaluation and Treatment of High Blood Cholesterol in Adults (Adult Treatment Panel III – Final Report. Circulation. (106) p.3143-3421.

HEART (2014) Joint British Societies’ consensus recommendations for the prevention of cardiovascular disease (JBS3). HEART. (100), ii1-ii67.

 

Do you fish for your breakfast?

 

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If I wasn’t studying Nutritional Therapy I think my second choice subject would be Anthropology, and no… not just because I love the shop – although admittedly it is my favourite shop EVER.. I just love the transition of how things were, what people did then, I love old things, re-loved things and history things… I found a book at home the other day showing pictures of how streets would have looked at different times through the ages, it is so interesting, all the little details; its a bit like when you peek inside a dolls house! But food as well has changed so much as a reflection of the times. Today, with all the science and research at our fingertips, we as a collective global nation, eat worse than at any time in history. Well, probably not as a global nation, but as the Western world, with our reliance on convenient food, sliced, diced and packaged into products, far, far removed from the original ingredients and often without a natural ingredient in sight. But this isn’t a post about the toxic state of the nation, more a comment on the changing times. In response we also have a growing swell of of support for traditional values, an understanding that the diets of our ancestors did in fact make sense with the rhythms of our body, of nature, of the seasons, of the fragile ecosystem in which we all exist; paleo diets, nourishing traditions, plant based vegetarianism and veganism are all born of a passionate backlash against the rise in fake food. I love them all… (irony should never need to be explained, but as I’m new you might not have noticed it, and its an important point, so excuse me…), all these diets are mutually exclusive of one another because to exist as a “diet” they all have one USP. Vegans DONT EAT animals products, Vegetarians DONT EAT meat, Palaeolithic DONT EAT grains. I’m a bit scared by all these labels, you see, I know if I eat lots of grains, I get a but chubby, so I am a little bit paleo, but every now and then, a gorgeous pice of smoked salmon, or trout or avocado, on top of an artisan slice of toast is manna from heaven. I don’t eat very much red meat, but a monthly fillet steak with home made fries and a big green salad restores my energy levels in a way nothing else can. Too much milk in my diet leaves me feeling lethargic and I can break out in spots around the side of my face, but a small cafe latte at about 11am is a more than just a coffee, its the singular highlight of my morning, having done my chores, my school drop off, my gym, my study…  so I think I would like to use this space to set myself free from labelling my diet – I want to eat in harmony, focus on the raw ingredients that aid my body to do its best work, to restrict the elements that bring me down, whilst accepting that the short term gain, is sometimes worth the pang of regret – I want to keep reminding us all that exercise and relaxation are as important for our well being as a nutritious lunch. And I give myself permission to enjoy the very best recipes from all my tribal friends, be they paleo, veggie, vegan or patissière.

This simple plate is a real treat. A fillet of smoked trout, a squeeze of lemon and 2 slices of homemade (not by me) buckwheat toast. A Saturday morning brunch, post gym, a refuel and repair.

Warm Summer Salad

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This is inspired by one of my all time favourite spanish side dishes of spinach and garlic sautéed with pine nuts and golden raisins. I think it is because I have got quite a sweet tooth, that I love fruit in warm salads, and in fact in stews and casseroles too. This was an off the cuff version, based on the ingredients I had in the fridge and it makes for the tastiest summer salad.

I cup of quinoa, rinsed

1 bag of spinach leaves, washed and the tough stalks removed [ baby leaves are fine ]

1/4 cup of sultanas

1/2 cup of pistachio kernels

Smal handful of fresh parsley

Salt & Pepper to season

Put the quinoa in a medium sized pan, cover with cold water and bring to a simmer for about 12 minutes. The quinoa should start to absorb most, but not all of the water. After this time, tip in your washed spinach leaves, it doesn’t matter if there is still water on the leaves. Pop a lid on the pan and let the spinach wilt in the steam for no more than a couple of minutes. Take away the lid, leave gently simmering, while you tip in the sultanas. Less than a minute with the lid off and the rest of the liquid in the pan should evaporate away. (If you have a lot of water left, you will want to drain it at this stage, pressing the spinach gently against the colander to remove any excess water). Leave it to one side while you tip your pistachio kernels into a small dry saucepan, over a heat of about 5 or 6, let the pistachios toast for a minute or 2. (This pan should just need a quick wipe over with a clean tea towel and it is clean and back in the cupboard). Assemble your quinoa, spinach and raisins on a plate, season to taste, add in some chopped fresh parsley and sprinkle the toasted pistachio kernels on top.

Simple, Delicious, Enjoy x

For the love of food

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Not long after we moved from London but probably around the time the children were born, the grown up notion of dinner parties started to feature heavily in our lives. There is always a slightly middle class assumption about dinner parties, that might be true, but the reality was that all the friends we used to socialise with at the pub or in restaurants also had small babies and we certainly didn’t want to the socialising to end. So babysitters were drafted in, sometimes we would host, sometimes we would accept invitations and the familiar banter of eating and drinking with friends continued. It was quite daunting at first, wondering what to cook, always fancier than you would eat for yourselves, but also a way to try new things, learn a pudding, find your feet and eventually relax a little. 8 years on and I still love eating with friends, I love jhujjing the house to make it sparkle, laying the table, planning the menu and all the anticipation that goes with it. I also love being invited to friends, a chance to dress up, dust off my heels, the grown up moment of driving out with Garry, knowing the children are tucked up back at home; it feels like stealing a moment, moments that are rare and precious when you have 3 young kids at home. My favourite thing about dinner parties though is the little gift, I don’t know when it stopped being just a bottle of Lindeman’s Chardonnay  (do you remember the one, was it Bin 65?), God, I think that was all I drank for about 4 years in my 20s!!! I digress, anyway, what I love now is choosing a little pressie to take with, my favourites are little porcelain birds, just for decoration, or a pretty spoon and now that I am cooking so much, I love to take a homemade treat. These are my favourite: energy balls, the recipe started life as a Deliciously Ella recipe and I make them so frequently, like all things, they evolve. A note on raw cacao – this is different to unsweetened cocoa powder (the likes of Bourneville of Green & Blacks) – raw cacao has been cold pressed, while cocoa has been roasted, so the raw cacao remains a rich source of antioxidants and magnesium. Cocoa however still remains a high number of antioxidants even after processing; as long as you go for an unsweetened version, this is also fine to use here. (As a BTW, when I am very over-wired from studying, I love a drink of unsweetened cocoa with warm milk and a sprinkle of cinnamon on top to wind me down before bed). See blow for recipe;

 

Simplest Bliss Balls

1 Cup pitted Medjool Dates

1 Cup Almonds

1 Tbsp Chia Seeds (optional)

1 Tbs Desiccated Coconut (optional)

1 Tbsp coconut oil

1 Tbsp Raw Cacao Powder

If you want a fine texture, pulse the almonds first in the blender, to form a fine dust and then add all the other ingredients. For a crunchier texture add all at once and mix into a dough. Roll into small balls in the palm of your hand; if you like you can then roll them in more coconut or cocoa for a truffle. I find that all the early years of play-dough were in fact the perfect training ground for recruiting little helpers to do the rolling out, after all this is a very messy job! Find a lovely container and tie with a big pink ribbon et voila!

Flap Jack Granola

I’m including this because you have to have a few Whoops Moments right?? this lovely jar of crumb was meant to be a sugar free flap jack, made by substituting all the golden syrup and castor sugar with a dash of maple! And guess what? it didn’t work… however, despite the rather higher than normal butter content ( I am a friend of butter), this sugar free non-flapjack turned into rather a nice crumb to sprinkle over a bowl of natural yogurt and fresh raspberries for breakfast.

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The perfect omelette

The first thing I must do is learn to spell omelette! Every time I write it the screen comes up with umpteen variations and I have no idea which one is right! What is right is that this plate is just about my favourite plate on the planet. I make such great omelettes – I love saying that. My Dad only cooked 2 things ever when I was growing up; steak and omelettes. And Dad taught me to make an omelette, its all about moving the egg round the pan… so in memory of my beloved Dad, I make them with so mcc love in my heart and am proud to say they are therefore EPIC.

 

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Fresh Orange

Nothing quite beats a freshly squeezed orange juice when the sun comes out. Here I have blended 3 oranges with a tsp of Orange Blossom water and a couple of fresh picked mint leaves for a beautiful fresh pick-me-up. Serve over ice and garnish with mint.

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WELCOME + HELLO

Camilla Image        Camelms_logo[1]

 

Welcome to Camilla Elms Nutrition; I am Camilla, qualified Nutritional Therapist (BSc.), wife + mother to 3 young children (including twin boys). I run a Nutritional Therapy clinic from The Pump House, a modern industrial renovation set in 7 acres of ancient parkland in the Weald of Kent. I also run monthly Kitchen Workshops, inviting you to join me in the kitchen as I prepare a series of delicious healthy dishes. And if you want to delve deeper into the science of nutrition, then join me on my quarterly e-learning course, to discover the best ways of combining diet and lifestyle interventions for maximising health + wellbeing.

1-1 CONSULTATIONS

I run my Nutritional Therapy practice from The Pump House, a modern industrial renovation in the heart of the rural Kent countryside about an hour south of London.

In my clinic I see clients with myriad health concerns looking to reverse the symptoms of diverse health conditions and restore their health. I also see clients who are looking to improve their general health and well being with a focus on a nourishing diet. As a Nutritional Therapist I am trained to understand how nutrients and lifestyle influence many functions within the body, including healthy ageing and protection against disease. As a Mum of 3 children, after a complex and ultimately fruitful IVF journey, I am especially interested in female hormones and the symptoms of fertility, perimenopause and menopause.

1-1 Consultations are entirely focused to your  individual needs. Please click on the menu bar at the top of this page you can read more about how to get in touch and book an appointment.

In just 3 sessions Camilla was able to delve into the route of my eating patterns and help me take back control of how I look at food. I feel better than I have felt in years, I am sleeping better and my energy levels have soared. I wish I had started this process years ago…. (R.E. 2018)

KITCHEN WORKSHOP SERIES

Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for life.

I’ve always been a great believer in teaching others how to ignite their own passion for healthy eating. Three years ago I started my Kitchen Workshop Series from my home kitchen at The Pump House. These workshops run for 3 hours on a monthly basis (you can book just 1 or several, it’s up to you). Arriving at 10am, I love to welcome you to the calm and relaxing surroundings of The Pump House. Leave your worries at the door, pull up a stool at the breakfast bar and let me talk you through a grazing menu of delicious healthy recipes with a focus on various aspects of your health. All my recipes are easy to replicate at home, you can try out new ingredients, see how easy they are prepare and have a chance to try everything I prepare. Come along with a friend, or simply come along by yourself, the vibe is always relaxed, welcoming, informative and nurturing; here’s what one of my previous clients had to say:

Thank you so much for a fabulous morning. I came home and did a massive Ocado shop for next day delivery. I now need a small kitchen extension to house all the nuts and seeds. 
 
Pleased to report I have made ALL of your recipes. The chia pudding (with a healthy dollop of Greek yoghurt) this am with fig, blueberry, pomegranate and mixed nuts kept me full for ages. I even bought the julienne slicer on Amazon. 
 
It so brings it all to life seeing someone making the food and you realise it’s actually not that difficult. You just have to be organised and have all the right ingredients. 
 
I will definitely do another one . (M.S. 2018)


NUTRITON IN ACTION – E-LEARNING COURSE

And lastly, for those of you who are really passionate about a healthy lifestyle and ready to take your learning to a whole new level, I run in-depth E-Learning courses which will teach you the fundamentals of a nutritional life. I will equip you with the confidence and knowledge to make a lifetime of considered nutritional choices to take back into your own kitchen for life. Run at your own pace over a period of 30 days this programme will introduce you to a community of kindred spirits, it will inspire healthy, sustainable habits for the future and is underpinned by the most up-to-date published evidence.



I took part in Camilla’s e-learning course. I’m an all or nothing type but having officially hit middle aged I was beginning to realise that I needed to change my habits forever. It isn’t a diet (I’ve done diets so often in the past but gone straight back to old habits immediately after hitting goal weight) but instead this has totally revolutionised my life. She’s taught me how to meal plan, confidence to try different cook books and recipes and most importantly changed my old-belief that low fat = good!  Not only have I lost weight but it’s changed the way myself and my family eat. We all have so much more energy. It has truly changed my life (L,S.).