Dinner, Recipies

Edamame Pasta Dish

I’ve recently become so obsessed with using pasta alternatives such as edamame or black bean spaghetti! I prefer it to whole wheat spaghetti, as it actually offers nutritional benefits such as 22g of protein per 50g (amazing!) plus it’s also lower in carbohydrates, with only 16g per 100g.  Also, it is gluten-free, vegan, and a great source of fiber! Basically, I have come to love the stuff and so I really wanted to share a yummy recipe with you all so you could give it a go too!

This dish is one of my absolute favourites to make because it is quick, simple, and budget-friendly. You can find the pasta alternative in most supermarkets such as Aldi and Tesco, if not you can buy it online from Holland & Barrett.

IMG_3565[1]

Ingredients:

  • Edamame or black bean spaghetti
  • Tinned mackerel in tomato sauce
  • Sundried tomatoes
  • Fresh tomatoes
  • Red or white onions (diced)
  • Garlic
  • paprika
  • Salt
  • Black pepper
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Basil (fresh)
  • Olives
  • Spinach

IMG_3556[1]

Method:

  1. In a frying pan sauté the onions for a few minutes, then add the fresh tomatoes and fry for a further two minutes
  2. Meanwhile, bring a pan of water to the boil and add the spaghetti (this cooks very quickly, and so it should only take between 5-8 minutes
  3. Once the pasta is cooked, drain it and add it to to the frying pan
  4. turn the heat down to a lower setting, and add all other remaining ingredients and spices
  5. Serve and enjoy!

(I also added mushrooms and mangetout to my dish!)

Macros:

  • 319 calories (per serving, sharing the mackerel between two dishes)
  • 14.9g carbs
  • 10.2g Fat
  • 31.9g protein

 

You can also add any other veggies to this dish such as broccoli or top the dish with avocado, which also works really well. I hope you enjoy this healthy pasta dish,

Jazzy B ❤

Blog

My Weekly Food Shop

As Sunday is my get-sh*t-done day, I thought I would share with you what my weekly food shop looks like, so if you follow my Instagram (@jazzy_b_fit) you’ll realise just how simple it is to make the meals that I cook. As I’m a student, I try to keep the cost of things fairly low, and I’ll spend anywhere between £18-£25 per week which covers breakfast, lunch, dinner, and my snacks. Typically, I do my shop in places like Aldi or Asda as you get so much more for your money. My shop this week came to £25.65, which also included some extras that I don’t usually buy. I try to do a balanced and healthy food shop full of lots of fruit and veg, and a few yummy treats of course ;).

I always plan my meals from Sunday to Sunday, as I find meal planning reduces food waste and is cost effective. This is my meal plan for the coming week:

Dinners:
Monday – Corriander-lime grilled tuna steak with avo-cucumber salsa
Tuesday – Garlic mushroom chicken quinoa
Wednesday- Spicy chickpea and quinoa bowl
Thursday – Moroccan red lentil and tomato stew
Friday – Mackerel pasta
Saturday – Leftovers
Sunday – Cashew and Chicken Stir-fry

I’ve broken my shop down into protein, fruit & veg,  snacks, and carbs.

Protein:

You won’t find any meat in this pesci’s trolley…only fish and vegan sources of protein here! The most expensive thing here is the tuna steaks at £2.99, but in comparison to meat this is so cheap, plus it contains a lot of protein. The mixed nuts are mainly for snacking on, as they are high in good fats and of course, protein.

img_35351.jpg

Veggies:

As you can see, a majority of my food shop is fruit and veg! As well as using this for lunch and dinners I will tend to snack on things like avocado on toast with chili flakes, black pepper, and salt.

img_35341.jpg

Fruit:

I think fruit is also great to snack on and makes a great addition to porridge. The lemon and limes are for flavoring up some of my mid-week dishes. This is typical of the fruit that I will buy on a weekly basis, as its relatively cheap and versatile.

IMG_3532[1]

Carbs:

I will only buy grains and carbs when I need them, and this week I didn’t really need much. Although I’m looking forward to trying the edamame spaghetti which has 22g of protein per serving! I’ll use the bread as a post-workout snack with peanut butter and banana or topped with smashed avocado.

IMG_3533[1].JPG

 

Thank you for reading and happy Sunday-shopping,

Jazzy B ❤

Blog

Foodie Finds – April 2018

April saw sunny weather, my first cheerleading competition, and lots and lots of uni deadlines. But, I still managed to find lots of goodies for you this month…definitely, a chocolatey theme going on this month! ❤

1) Tesco Dark Chocolate and Peanut Bar 31369537_1922746384466278_7023050850775859200_n

This makes the perfect on-the-go snack and is also a great post-workout snack due to the high-ish protein content from the peanuts. Compared to other cereal bars, this one is good in terms of sugar, containing less than 7g per bar. The flavour is really nice if you like that peanut and dark chocolate combo (which I definitely do), but it is very chewy.

31354662_1922745437799706_5028719251150602240_n2) Tetley Mango and Passion Fruit Green Tea

I love finding new summery flavours of green tea. I’ve tried so many but thought this flavour duo was quite novel. In all honesty, this just tastes like fruity green tea, nothing too special. However, it still makes a nice alternative to ordinary green tea.

 

3) Siro Sugar-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies.31265279_1922746327799617_8837376084648394752_n

Amazing. I love that companies are coming out with more sugar-free alternatives, especially with things that you would least expect such as this! Considering they have no refined sugars in, I think they taste incredible. I love to crumble one on my porridge in the mornings as they are so good. I highly recommend these!

31381231_1922745734466343_4619370827316461568_n4) Rhythm 108 Praline Bar

I’m always on the lookout for healthier alternatives to chocolate, and this one certainly comes close. It contains 47% less sugar than your average chocolate, it’s also vegan, gluten-free, organic…basically everyone can eat this! I couldn’t taste the difference between this and a normal chocolate bar, seriously good!

5) Doisy & Dam Chocolate Snaps31434445_1922746417799608_7271810365808181248_n

Definitely saving the best for last. Wow. I know there has been a lot of hype about their chocolate, but I thought it was just another fancy dark chocolate brand filling the shelves. Most definitely not! I love their creative flavour combinations, this one was maple, pink salt, and toasted rice – honestly one of the best dark chocolates I’ve ever had. I will be getting another lot soon, as I ate this pretty quickly. Plus the packaging is so pretty too. Please give this a go!

Thank you for reading,

Jazzy B ❤

Blog

The Impact of Diet on Mental Health

Yes, food really does affect your mood.

When you think about what effects your mental health, the typical answers are stress, self-esteem, and relationship issues, to name but a few, however, we often underestimate the impact that food has on our mental health. When you consider the science behind it and the growing evidence that food has a greater effect on our mental health than we give credit for, I think we could all check what we are fuelling our bodies with.

There is no doubt that what we eat has an impact on our mental health, this link has been proven repeatedly. A review of studies looking into the issue of diet and mental health found that regular consumption of a Western diet (a diet consisting of highly processed and sugary foods) increased the risk of depression (O’Neil et al., 2014). Moreover, a poor diet is proven to impact biological mechanisms that are commonly associated with depression such as impacting the immune system and altering the levels of certain brain proteins potentially leading to depressive symptoms (O’Neil et al., 2014). This further strengthens the link between diet and mental health.

Moreover, some of the factors that contribute to poor mental health, such as stress, have been proven to influence food preferences. For example, a study by Kandiah, Yake, and Meyer (2006) found that when participants were not exposed to stress they made healthy dietary choices 80% of the time compared to when participants were exposed to stress, which they made healthy food choices only 33% of the time. This highlights an issue, the fact that something like stress can lead to poor mental health, yet when we experience stress we tend to eat unhealthier options, also negatively impacting our mental health. Therefore, healthier dietary choices could break this cycle as evidenced by Ansari, Adetunji, and Oskrochi (2014) who found that when fruit and vegetables weren’t consumed on a regular basis, there was a greater association with experiencing more depressive symptoms for both males and females.

Although there is little research on a diet that has been proven to reduce the likelihood of depressive symptoms and promote better mental health, there have been studies conducted on specific foods. For example, the following foods have all been linked to better mental health when in their raw form; carrots, bananas, apples, dark leafy greens like spinach, grapefruit, lettuce, citrus fruits, fresh berries, cucumber, and kiwifruit (Brookie, Best & Conner, 2018).

I hope you found this an interesting read,

Jazzy B ❤

References:

Kandiah, J., Yake, M., & Meyer, M. (2006). Stress influences appetite and comfort food preferences in college women.  Nutrition Research, 28(1), 118-123. doi: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nutres.2005.11.010 

Ansari, W.E, Adetunji, H., Oskrochi, R. (2014). Food and mental health: Relationship between food and perceived stress and depressive symptoms among university students in the United Kingdom. Central European Journal of Public Health, 22(2), 90-97.

O’Neil, A., Quirk, S.E., Houseden, S., Brennan, S.L., Williams, L.J., Pasco, J.A., Berk, M., & Jacka, F.N.(2014). Relationship between diet and mental health in children and adolescents: A Systematic Review. The American Journal of Public Health, 104(10).

Brookie, K.L., Best, G.I., Conner, T.S. (2018). Intake of raw fruits and vegetables is associated with better mental health than intake of processed fruits and vegetables. Frontiers in Psychology, 9(1). doi: https://doaj.org/article/956172bb66c747b1a3efbf9a4a4d9023

Blog

Foodie Finds – March 2018

Here are my foodie finds for the month of March. For me, March signifies the start of spring and better weather (not to mention the chocci easter eggs which I hope you’re all enjoying this weekend).

1) White chocolate whey ballsFullSizeRender

These are from Bulkpowders and are amazing! The best way to describe them would be like Maltesers, but with more crunch. I love how versatile they are, and they make the perfect sweet treat and taste great when added to porridge. They cost £10.99, but you do get 500g for this price, and they are so worth it!

download2) Fellow Sugar-free cola bottles

I always see these sweets flying around Instagram, and had to give them a try. Considering they are sugar-free, gelatine free, and gluten free they taste pretty good! The only difference I found is that they were chewier than standard cola bottles, which is good considering they are free-from just about everything! You can pick them up from Sainsbury’s and Holland & Barrett.

3) Belvita Soft BakesIMG_1914

Although definitely not the healthiest thing, I have always wanted to try these and I can’t deny that they taste amazing! It’s like a cross between a flapjack and a cake with a chocolate filling, and you certainly can’t go wrong with that.

 

IMG_3370[1]4) LoveCorn BBQ roasted corn

I picked this pack up from Sainsbury’s and was pleasantly surprised. The texture was a lot crunchier than what I thought it would be, and the BBQ flavour was so intense. Also, the company uses all-natural ingredients and the flavour comes from the spices that they use, so worth a try.

5) Halo Top Peanut Butter cup Ice creamIMG_3372[1]

SO worth the hype. I don’t know how they do it, but it tastes incredible! If you love your ice cream, I highly recommend this…plus at only 320 calories per tub, it’s guilt-free. I also saw they had other flavours like cookie dough, mint chocolate chip, and classic vanilla. You need to try this!

Thank you for reading and I hope you try some of these goodies,

Jazzy B ❤

 

 

 

Blog

Foodie Finds – February 2018

My foodie find for February, 2018! This month sees lots of goodies (mainly cookies and biscuits :’) ).  I hope you enjoy ❤

1) Weetabix ProteinIMG_1257

If you’re a fitness freak who loves their Weetabix, then this is the one for you! The taste is exactly the same, but with added wheat protein making achieving those macros a lot easier. This tastes great with blueberries, banana, and peanut butter. Also, unlike a lot of cereals, this one is very low in sugar.

IMG_12992) Alpen Jaffa Cake bars

Jaffa cakes have always been my weakness …apparently, I used to hide boxes of them under my bed as a child, like a dirty little Jaffa secret! :’D. But Jaffa cakes and fitness certainly don’t go hand-in-hand, so I was very pleased when I discovered these. They’re only 70 calories per bar and actually taste like Jaffa Cakes.

3) Aldi Brown Lentil SupermixIMG_1267

I actually only picked this up as an alternative to Quorn mince, but really enjoyed it! It contains brown lentils, peppers, red onion, and tomato. It’s such a versatile product and can be added to any dish to up the micronutrients and the protein. Also, I love the fact that its pre-flavoured, making meal times that bit easier. I used this to flavour up my Buddha bowl, but I think this would also taste amazing in a wrap, too!

IMG_15384) Siro Sugar-Free Biscuits

 

These are like guilt-free hobnobs, what is not to like? Don’t let the fact that they are sugar free put you off…they are so moreish and make a great sweet treat. Also, I noticed this brand has some other fab sugar free foods such as cookies and digestives…count me in!

 

 

5) Quest Lemon Cream Pie BarIMG_1385

Personally, I find Quest bars so hit-and-miss, and this one was definitely a miss! It tasted like lemon bathroom cleaner, and so I definitely do not recommend this flavour! I think its best to stick to chocolate flavours where Quest is concerned!

 

 

IMG_14706) Battle Oats Protein Cookie

Amazing. This has the texture and flavour of a regular cookie and contains 10g of protein too #winning ;). It tasted SO good, you need to treat yourself to this!

 

 

Thank you for reading,

Jazzy B ❤

Blog

Foodie Finds – December 2017

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas and new year! To me, every Christmas has a different feel to it, this year it most certainly was a busy one spent with lots of family and friends…So busy in fact, I’m a bit late on posting this blog. Nonetheless, it’s here and packed full of goodies that I hope you want to give a go…

1) PHD nutrition protein bar 26829505_1777633395644245_1948590545_o

I’ve always wanted to try these bars, and I’m very glad I did. I tried the cookies and cream flavour which was so good. The macros are very good with 20g of protein per bar, and also it is low in impact carbs. For me, nothing can beat Grenade, although these are still well worth a try.

26828075_1777112902362961_1908502013_o2) Off the Eaten Path, pea and pinto bean sticks

Probably the best ‘healthy’ crisps I’ve tried. I found these in my local Sainsbury’s, they also have a good range of flavours to choose from, this pack is caramelised onion and balsamic vinegar. I love that they’re made out of something different other than potato, and plus the packaging is so cute!

3) Hike mince pie protein bar26735389_1777111982363053_1243747164_o

Personally, I wouldn’t describe this as a protein bar, it’s more like a natural fruit bar as its made mostly out of dates. Each bar contains 10.5 g of protein, which is fairly low compared to some of the others. But… If you like mince pies, then you can’t fault the flavour of this bar!

 

26772527_1777527892321462_1234427835_o4) Bulk powders honeycomb malted chocolate

One of THE best flavour of protein powder that I have tried. Bulk powders definitely need to make this a permanent one in their collection, as it tastes amazing. Unlike others flavours, this one really did taste like what it says on the packaging, it’s just a shame that it’s limited edition, otherwise I would definitely be placing another order!

5) Sweet Freedom caramel choc shake26828247_1777670438973874_1000653239_o

You know you’ve made a good milkshake when you just can’t put it down, this new product from sweet freedom is a milkshake game-changer. I love that it’s so quick and simple to make, and literally only requires you to mix a tablespoon of the chocolate into some milk. Also, it tastes even better when you forth the milk! I’ve noticed they do a banana flavour, which I will be giving a go.

 

26782094_1777673552306896_1147944537_o6) Moser Roth Salted caramel dark chocolate

Becuase what would Christmas foodie finds be without a bit of chocci involved?! Seriously this stuff is amazing, the dark chocolate and salted caramel go so well together…I think I’m addicted!

 

 

7) Wholewheat noodles 26828352_1777663452307906_1527648070_o

I picked these up from Tesco recently, and they’re fab. They only take 6 minutes to cook (either stir-fry or boil) and when flavoured well, they make the perfect addition to a stir-fry. Noodles are so great to incorporate into your diet as they are high in protein, and vegan-friendly, what with ‘veganuary’ now in full swing!

Thank you for reading,

Jazzy B ❤

Blog

Foodie Finds – November 2017

Now that November is over, it’s officially Christmas as far as I’m concerned! Time to put the tree up, blast the carols and get that Christmas shopping done (not before you’ve had a little scroll through my foodie finds of course ;))

1) Tesco Finest Rye and Pumpkin Seed BreadIMG_9430

It’s safe to say the winter carb cravings are well and truly here 😉 I love a nice piece of bread with my soups or stews, and for me this one is perfect. I love that it’s made of rye flour, plus the pumpkin seeds add omega and protein to this yummy bread. Also, it has a lighter texture than most other rye bread, which tends to be very dense. I made my Mum try a slice, and now she won’t have anything else that’s how yummy it is!

IMG_94902) Hi-pro Smooth Peanut Butter

This one is like your classic American style peanut butter, therefore it doesn’t require any mixing, unlike the more natural varieties. After seeing this PB all over my social media it had me curious. As nice as it is, I do prefer peanut butter to be a tad runnier as it’s easier to mix in with porridge, but still I’m glad I tried this one!

3) Myprotein Mugcake MixIMG_8938

I don’t know if it was me making it wrong, but this was not what I expected. Admittedly it does have a cake-like texture, but it tastes very bland unless you flavour it up with yoghurt, honey or fruits. The first time I made it, it genuinely looked like something nasty in my cup :’) Even so, I love the concept, and the macros are great with each serving having 25g of protein. But the mission continues to find the perfect mug cake 😉

IMG_97924) Sweet freedom chocolate syrup

I was SO pleased when I tried this! If you’re following my Instagram, you would have seen it on every bowl of porridge that I ate :’)! After having tried other ‘healthy chocolate syrups’ from various protein companies I was quite disappointed as the chocolate taste was so artificial. This beauty, however, will change your porridge game. The flavour is so rich and chocolatey, so you only need a small amount. Also, it is all natural and only 14 calories per teaspoon, safe to say I love it!

5) Livias Kitchen Biccy Boms IMG_9630

These are like chocolate teacakes, minus the marshmallow! They are covered in cacao chocolate, with a sweet date filling whilst the biscuit contains lucuma powder to give it a slight caramel taste. Per ball, they are 174 which is quite high for how small they were! I really wanted to like these, but in my books, they just weren’t worth the calories.

IMG_94896) Ryvita Rye Cakes

Can you tell I was a bit obsessed with anything rye this month?! What I liked most about these is that they go great with both savoury and sweet. They make the perfect snack, especially as they are more filling than they look! Worth a try if you’re after some new snacks, a few combos that I tried were peanut butter and banana and marmite and cucumber.

IMG_99627) Cocoa+ High Protein Chocolate Advent calender

Although I’ve been good and haven’t opened this one early…I still think it should be mentioned before it’s all gone 😉 I love the idea of a high protein, high-quality advent calendar. Each chocolate gives you 5g of protein and far less sugar than normal advent calendars, which I think is great. I.m so excited to try this one, especially as I’m always hearing good things about the brand…bring on the 1st (I will never be too old for an advent calendar!). Let the countdown to Christmas begin,

Jazzy B ❤

Blog, Dinner

Buddha Bowl

Although very appetizing, Buddha bowls can be super expensive. So I’ve created this budget-friendly bowl so you can Buddha until your heart’s content 😉

IMG_3026
Turmeric Bulgar wheat with raw tomatoes and cucumber, stir-fried peppers, broccoli, courgette, onions, Quorn chicken, and a side of spinach, topped with avocado, feta, and chili flakes.

Buddha bowls are all about the combination of lots of wholesome ingredients, giving you a dish with texture, colour, and flavour – and that’s what I love most about them. The main ingredients that constitute a buddha bowl include some form of protein, grains, and vegetables, but my advice is to tailor it to what you like, as you’ll enjoy it far more! It’s actually impossible to get bored of a Buddha bowl with the limitless number of flavour combos. Below are a few of my favourite bowls.

When I make these bowls, it’s always a question of how much I can actually pack in the bowl! They are a fab way to get in most of your 5-a-day and much-needed micronutrients…in fact, the whole bowl literally represents the ‘Eatwell plate’…#winning 😉

IngredientsBuddha

Grains:

  • Soya mince, brown rice, bulgur wheat, quinoa, couscous, buckwheat or barley.
  • You could also make cauliflower/broccoli rice if you wanted a lower carb option.

Protein:

  • Lentils, egg, Quorn chicken, beans (kidney beans, black beans, butter beans etc), tofu, or seafood.

Vegetables:

  • Sweet potato, cucumber, tomatoes, spinach, courgette, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, red onion, mushrooms, beetroot, aubergine, and sprouts…if you’re feeling festive ;).
  • Usually, some of the vegetables will be left raw such as tomatoes, cucumber, and carrots, to add to the texture.
  • Also, you could make your own veg slaw.
  • To add some sweetness to your bowl, things such as blueberries, mango, apples, and strawberries are a great choice.

Extras:IMG_3902

  • Toppings: sesame seeds, cashew nuts, feta, pumpkin seeds, croutons, parmesan flakes, olives, avocado slices, chia seeds, chives, spring onions.
  • Spices/ herbs: chili flakes, black pepper, cayenne pepper, garlic, parsley.
  • Sauces: houmous, BBQ sauce, tahini, light mayonnaise, light salad cream, light soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, sweet chili, sriracha – and there are so much more. But it also tasted just as good without the addition of these, as you can taste the flavors more.

I hope that the Buddha bowl becomes one of your weekly faves,

Jazzy B ❤

Blog

Foodie Finds – September 2017

For me, September is all about new beggings. It’s the time when I welcome the new academic year along with all its challenges and successes, not to mention all the comforts that autumn has to offer. Normally I’m a summer person, but this year I’m going to make an effort to really enjoy autumn and all its beauty. But for now I’m clinging on to whatever may be left of summer, and sharing with you my summer foodie finds. I hope you enjoy.

1) Oomf Protein Porridge Pots

I packed this in my suitcase whilst going abroad so I had something to have in the morning…as it was an awful flight time! Normally pots like this leave me feeling hungry about an hour after I’ve eaten them, but this one left me satisfied! The flavours are also great, I tried the golden syrup and cinnamon flavours which were both so tasty. I also love that they allow enough room for you to top them with whatever you like. With a whopping 22g of protein and only 10g of sugar, and no washing up 😉 you can’t go wrong! These little pots also feature in my latest blog post, How to Stay Healthy on Holiday.

2) Dr. Zaks Salted Caramel CookieIMG_7732

The thing I like most about this is that it’s like a cookie that you get from a bakery. Normally the texture of protein ‘cookies’ are like rock hard biscuits, which is so disappointing! For me the texture is spot on, it’s so gooey and just melts in the mouth, and the flavour is delicious. Of course, the macros are also excellent with 15g of protein and 2.4g of sugar. They also have a chocolate chip and triple chocolate…deffo on my list to try ;).

3) Pulsin and Beyond Raw Chocolate Chip Brownie

I’ve had a lot of ‘raw’ brownies, but nothing quite compares to this one! The taste is so rich and chocolatey making this treat so moreish. Also, it’s raw (which seems to be the craze at the minute) as it involves all natural ingredients, which haven’t been cooked, therefore helping to retain the nutritional benefits, plus it’s vegan too. If I ever want a natural alternative when I’m fancying something sweet, I shall definitely be returning to this. I had my brownie on top of some porridge oats, which worked a treat making this bar so versatile, but, you could also top your pancakes with it or have it as an evening sweet treat.

4) Grenade Banana Armour 

Grenade has done it again! There isn’t actually a single bar that I don’t love, they’re all so good and this one certainly was no exception. I’ve heard a lot of people on social recommending to heat the bar up in the microwave, and that’s just what I did. It went from an amazing protein bar to an even better protein dessert. It’s also limited edition so I’d go and grab one now!

IMG_76275) Sparkling Ice Water

This is one of those random drinks that I picked up at the airport, I fancied something fizzy, flavoured and kinda healthy and this is what I bought. It was strawberry and Kiwi flavour, and oh my gosh I loved it. Definitely one of those drinks that you can’t stop sipping on…it didn’t even make it on the plane, I’d drunk it that quickly. The whole bottle had only 12 calories, and if that doesn’t convince you enough…it’s green, so novel!

 

Well, that’s my September foodie roundup complete, stay tuned for what other groovy things I can find in October,

Jazzy B ❤