Category Archives: Cooking

I won Product of the Year

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I’m delighted to have won an award at Maximise 2016 annual conference and awards organised by Women’s Business Club.

The day was held in the beautiful Pittville Pump rooms in Cheltenham and was packed with all kinds of businesses who had stands, alongside a variety of speakers, a fashion show and then the award ceremony at the end.

I had a stand to share my cookbooks and the Total Body Shape up Plan as Zest Bootcamp classes and 1-1 personal training is location dependant and people came to the event from all over the country.

Stand at Maximise

One of the talks I went to was about Mindfulness, something I know I need to practice more of so spent a lovely 10 mins calming my thoughts and learning some great tips.

On a practical level I took a big bottle of water with me to have at the stand so I knew I could stay hydrated as well as some healthy snacks as wasn’t sure what kind of food would be on offer – planning is key to eat healthily. (hopefully you spotted the water in the photo)

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The fashion show included some lovely hats and other designer accessories from Tricia Designs.

I caught up briefly with Sheryl Andrews who has just launched her book “Managing your Critic” as well as Carol of Pink and Green skincare products – infact I was having a nice cup of tea and chatting to Carol when I suddenly realised they were calling my name as I had won an award!

Total Body Shape Up Plan won best “Product of the Year” award and here I am with Angela De Souza, founder of Women’s Business Club , the Mayoress and singing coach Amy Box.

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It was great to see all the winners of other awards and lovely for Jennifer Hall, aka The Life Buddy to win an award for speaker of the Year – Jen previously hosted the Bath Women’s Business Club which I now host once a month. If you are reading this and based in or near Bath why not come next Wednesday to our special #shoplocal Christmas market event where you can either just shop between 11-12 noon and then go or you can book the networking business lunch and get a free table beforehand so you can showcase your goodies and make some festive sales. The meeting is held at beautiful Bailbrook house and you can book here 

It seems wearing my pink dress was a hit again as I had endless compliments about it and I kept  telling people that it is because I had my colours done by House of Colour so I knew that the colour suited me and therefore had the confidence to wear such a bright dress. If I had time alongside the health & fitness I would train as an image consultant and help others discover what colours suit them best as I am really passionate about it but in the meantime I can point you in the direction of Gilly who is a local Bath/Bristol stylist who I’m sure would love to help you.

Back to feeling healthy, if any of you would like to get a plan in place for the start of 2017 and focus on eating healthier and putting your health back on track I’d love to share the shape up plan with you as it is a simple way to eat good food to nourish your body.

There are shopping lists of what to buy each week and what to eat each day/week plus recipes and I guarantee you will love the food.

I’m going to offer you a special price of £57 for this 8 week plan if you buy it before 10 December (after that it will be going back to the £77 full price).

Sorry the discounted link has now expired, however you can still purchase the 8 week plan by clicking here 

You can read more details about the Shape Up Plan by clicking here  but really all your need to know is that once you receive your manual you follow it, along with being supported in the private Facebook group, and the result is that you will look and feel fantastic just like a few of these people before you.

”My energy levels are SO much better”

“It has reduced sweet cravings associated with sugar lows”

“I am sleeping better despite menopausal night sweats”

”I’m going out on my bike for longer and can manage it due to better eating”

”I’ve lost inches and feel good – even though I’ve not followed the plan exactly as I am a vegetarian – happily recommend it”

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 Invest in what matters most …. YOU


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Black Friday Fitness (and health offer)

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To me it’s normally fitness Friday (later followed by fizzy Friday) but there’s no getting away from the fact that today is Black Friday so I wanted to offer you something special as everyone else in the world seems to be!

A healthy body starts in the kitchen (well the supermarket really) so to help you plan and prepare some tasty meals that are also gluten and sugar free as well as not containing dairy products I have 2 great cookbooks you will love.

The first is my 30 day fat loss cookbook that has 90 recipes – breakfasts, lunches and dinners that the whole family will love – trust me, a lot of people have been enjoying this cookbooks over the last few years.

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If you like things a bit more spicy there is my Clean and Lean Curry Cookbook with almost 100 recipes, many of which are suitable for vegetarians, perfect for these cold winter days.

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Also there is my simple 7 day detox plan that tells you exactly what to eat over a 7 day period to help banish any bloating, feel healthier and also drop a few pounds (you could do this before Christmas to help you feel great at those parties). Don’t worry it’s not 7 days of celery and cottage cheese, far from it infact, just 3 tasty, healthy meals a day that won’t leave you feeling hungry.

LISA – working mother of 2 lost 6lbs on the detox plan

“Zita’s 7 day detox worked really well for me – It gave me the kick start that I needed and plenty of inspiration to continue with the good eating habits after the 7 days.  I have continued to have the smoothies for breakfast as they are perfect to take to work and the healthy habits really did make an impression on me and have stayed front of mind ever since.  During the 7 days I felt stronger, slept better and had so much more energy.  I also lost 6lb which was fantastic. I Highly recommend! – Give it a go.”

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Some of you may want these now so that you know come January when the festivities are over you have something to help you kickstart a healthy 2017.

With the 7 day detox you also get free access to our private Facebook group for extra support and ideas (priceless) – perfect for a January kickstart.

All of this would normally cost £24 but as it is Black Friday I am giving you a very special deal…

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You can have all of these PLUS my 10 minute core workout for just £12.99

Yes just £12.99 – what’s not to love about Black Friday!

Please note these are all digital download products and nothing physical will be sent – click the Paypal link below to get started.




The offer will expire on 30 November so grab your offer now to start using straight away or ready for January – either way this is an offer not to be missed!

All you have to do is click the Paypal link below and then I will send you your products to the email address provided. If you have any questions please email fitnesszita@gmail.com.




Healthy Pancake Day

Here is one of my favourite recipes that if you haven’t tried it you will wish you had known about it years ago!

It’s great for breakfast or snack you can take on the move or when you want something sweet but healthy.

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It’s gluten free (good if you have any auto immune diseases or inflammatory condition as often gluten makes these conditions worse)

It’s sugar free (good if you want to protect your teeth and also keep your blood sugar stable for better energy, fat loss and long term health)

It’s high in protein (good if you want to feel fuller for longer, reduce carb cravings, help muscle building and repair)

It’s dairy free (good for people unable to digest lactose or whose body is intolerant of dairy – many people notice that bloating, wind and bad skin are all improved once they stop dairy)

It’s quick and easy (good for everyone including children)

So all you need is a ripe banana and 2 eggs plus some coconut oil or grass fed butter.

Mash the banana, add the eggs and blend well

Heat the oil or butter and cook slowly then serve with a sprinkle of cinnamon.

You can also serve with a dollop of coconut milk yoghurt and some berries.

What’s not to like – enjoy!

Zita x

ps If you’d like to enjoy other gluten free and sugar free recipes check out my 90 recipe cookbook here and if you would like to have a very easy nutrition plan that each week tells you exactly what to do with shopping lists, meal plans and recipes then click here to find out more

Curry night

Often curry is a dirty word!

It shouldn’t be as there are loads of benefits of spices such as Tumeric which is great for inflammation in the body.

Clients often don’t want to let me know that they were out for a curry or had a take-away probably because there is the potential to go way off track with your healthy diet on curry night.

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So you start with the poppadoms and pickles

Then you have a few deep fried bhajis, followed by your lovely curry in a lot of sauce, so you mop it up with a nice naan bread and a huge portion of rice.

Meantime you are washing it all down with a few ice cold singha beers

Am I right?

Is this your version of curry night?

If it is, and it is once in blue moon, then fill your boots but if it happens quite frequently then I’m not sure you are going to get the weight loss results you might be looking for.

How to make it better:

1. Go easy on the sugar filled pickles

2. Do you need a naan bread and rice – choose just 1 and share a portion of rice as often they are way more than you need

3. Choose a tandoori or tikka dish that is cooked dry rather than swimming in oily ghee. It is still super tasty but the next day you will feel much better.

4. Drive so someone else can drink all the singha beers 🙂

Simple changes can make getting results easier and if you’d like to get some dairy and gluten free curry recipes then check out my Clean and Lean Curry ebook here

 

 

Healthy Chocolate Brownies

Did you know that today is Food Revolution Day?

The only reason I know is because in 2013 I volunteered to be an ambassador for this initiative started by Jamie Oliver that has spread worldwide in the endeavour to educate and inspire children and adults to learn where their food comes from and how to cook healthy food .

So it may seem strange that the word healthy and chocolate both feature next to each other! However this is the perfect way to get children involved in cooking something they will enjoy.

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Here’s how with these gluten free, dairy and sugar free chocolate brownies that everyone seems to love, especially those with with food allergies or intolerances who would like a sweet treat.

The secret ingredient in these is….sweet potato that is packed with nutrition and taste great.

SWEET POTATO BROWNIES

  • 2 medium/large sweet potatoes
  • 14 medjool dates- pitted
  • 80g ground almonds
  • 100g buckwheat or brown rice flour
  • 4 tbsp raw cacoa powder
  • pinch salt

Pre heat oven to 180C (fan 160)

1.Peel sweet potatoes, cut in chunks and steam for about 20 mins until really soft

2.Remove and allow to cool slightly

3.Add to food processor with dates, blend until smooth and creamy

4.Put all other ingredients in a bowl, then add date/potato mixture

5.Stir well – (This may be quite difficult and you may think its really dry but dont panic)

6. Place in baking dish/tray and cook for 20/30 mins until skewer comes out clean

7.Remove from oven and leave to cool in tray for 10 mins (REALLY IMPORTANT STEP)

After this time they can be turned out to finish cooling and cut into squares – enjoy!

So if you believe in helping spread the word about how easy and important healthy eating is for a future generation of happy, healthy children and adults then feel free to share this recipe.

If you’d like more ideas that the whole family will love then check out my cookbook with 90 recipes for breakfast, lunch and dinner ideas that are tasty, quick and of course good for your mind and body. There are smoothies, soups, hot meals and many ideas you may never had thought of but will be favourites for a long time. Click here to find out more 

Enjoy the brownies

Zita 🙂

ps If you eat too many brownies and want to work them off then join our next trial week at Zest Bootcamp in Bath – click here 

 

 

Delicious dates

I was at a networking meeting yesterday doing a presentation about my business to a group of ladies and as I’m sure you realise by now I love my food so thought I’d make them a little healthy treat to have with coffee after lunch.

Although I could have found a recipe I just thought I’d freestyle again so popped into the shops to get some dried fruit and nuts and see what I could whip with some of the staples I always have in the cupboard.

Given that one lady was gluten and dairy intolerant I wanted to make them as “clean” as I could.

Good news is that they went down very well with the business ladies and even the guys that I train who are in a band liked them so different type of people gave them the thumbs up 🙂

Why not get your children making them with you as they are a great natural alternative to all the sugar laden snacks that the supermarkets have available for children.

Dates are a great way to add natural sweetness to recipes but if you have any blood sugar issues or are trying to lose large amounts of body fat then go easy on them and make them an occasional treat. They are great source of iron and potassium and important dietary fibre.

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DATE & NUT BALLS

These healthy sweet treats are gluten free, dairy free as well as only containing natural sugars, good amounts of fibre, protein and healthy fats.

250g dried apricots

250g dates

250g walnuts (could use any nuts)

2-3 tablespoons of organic virgin coconut oil

2-3 teaspoons of cinnamon

2 tablespoons chia seeds

Splash of coconut water (could use water)

Few tablespoons of peanut powder*

Lot of sesame seeds to roll balls in at end

Put everything except sesame seed into a blender and mix well. Make into small balls in your hands then roll in lots of sesame seeds.

These made about 40 treats and they are best stored in the freezer or fridge. Also I think that maybe adding some more nuts, a few spoons of almond or peanut butter or even some raw cacao powder might taste nice and make it slightly less sweet. Why not experiment as that’s exactly how I came up with these 🙂

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* This gives you taste and protein without the fat so great for cooking. I found it in Tesco but you can buy online as you can any of the ingredients you cant find in health food shops. I often add it to smoothies for a lovely taste.

Enjoy!

Zita

ps If you would like 90 recipes that are gluten free, packed with good nutrition and easy to prepare then have a look at my recipe book HERE

Healthy Pancake Recipe

Whoop whoop it’s nearly Pancake Day!
I’m sure you know how I love to try and make a standard meal a bit healthier by taking out the sugar or ditching the gluten so pancake day is no different.
Many of  you already know about the banana pancake which so many people try and then keep as a regular part of  their diet once they are hooked.
Well I had a go at a variation and it seems to work out ok.
So here is a gluten free, high protein, high fibre, sugar free pancake that you can top with anything you fancy and if you fry in coconut oil it is also dairy free. I was happy to eat my as it comes:)
It made about 6 pancakes so enough for 2 or more people
4 eggs
1/4 cup coconut flour (eg Tiana available from health food shops)
2 small ripe bananas
1/2 cup almond milk (unsweetened ideally unless you have a sweet tooth)
2 tablespoons coconut oil (melted)
pinch of baking soda
cinnamon and vanilla powder to taste
These could be used as a breakfast alternative as they are or top with berries, a dollop of almond butter or even my favourite – Coyo coconut yoghurt.
Let me know what you think as I always welcome feedback when I’ve only done 1 experiment so far for a healthy pancake day recipe
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If you over indulge in too many pancakes or other treats during half term then why not join Zest Bootcamp for a week’s trial on 2nd March in Bath.
Remember: EXCUSES DON’T BURN CALORIES but a 45 minute session at Zest bootcamp every Monday, Wednesday and Friday does – classes are at 6.30am, 9.30am or 6.15pm so plenty of options to fit into your schedule.
Book your trial week now so those pancakes have nowhere to hide!

Easy to follow diet

So not long until Christmas and as I’ve said in previous posts you can either give up and eat all the high calorie treats that are everywhere at the moment or you can still keep on the healthy nutrition for 80% of the time and allow your self to enjoy some Christmas treats in the run up to the day Santa arrives.

During most of the week you can focus on eating vegetables, meat, fish, some nuts, some fruit and some starches such as sweet potato, rice, quinoa plus making sure you get plenty of water every day.

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This means that if you fancy a glass of mulled wine, mince pie or gingerbread latte occasionally you can enjoy it without putting on the average 5-10lbs that most people put on over the upcoming festive season.

Here is a quick tip I recorded to share with you to ensure you don’t have an excuse of being too busy to eat properly.

Also if you don’t yet have my 7 day detox diet plan which is packed with tasty, filling meals that are easy to prepare then grab a copy and follow it for an easy way to feel less bloated and sluggish.

If you add in some exercise then you will feel more energetic and vibrant.

Yesterday I had this lovely text from one of our Zest Bootcampers

“Zest Bootcamp has been life changing – really!”

So if you want to make 2015 the year you get your health and fitness sorted out we would love to help you. Why not sign up for a trial week at Zest bootcamp if you are in or near Bath – hundreds of people that we have helped over the last 6 years can’t be wrong 🙂

Grab your easy to follow 7 day healthy eating plan here so you can feel great in your festive clothes!

Pumpkin Workout

So it’s finally Halloween – a chance to dress up, eat sweets and try to avoid A&E carving a pumpkin.

Any trick or treaters knocking on my door will be getting a healthy nakd bar – lucky devils 🙂

On the flip side Halloween is a great chance to use a pumpkin like a medicine ball for a total body workout and then afterwards make a tasty, healthy soup 🙂

That is exactly what we are doing at Zest Bootcamp today so I thought I’d make a video of some of the great exercises you can do with a good old pumpkin!

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In this pumpkin workout can either do 30 seconds of work with 30 seconds of rest or for a tougher challenge work for 40 seconds followed by a shorter 20 second rest.
You can do 3-4 sets of the whole workout after a little warm up and don’t forget to stretch afterwards too.

Watch out – If you have a giant pumpkin you might want to stick to the 30 seconds!

The exercises are:

1. Plank Tap overs – optional extra set of mountain climbers too
2. Overhead Press
3. Alternating circles
4. Squat
5. Squat Press
6. Side Lunge
7. Reverse Lunge
8. Pullover
9. Ab curls
10.Hop overs

Once you have done your workout you deserve a healthy bowl of soup so here is a gluten free (if you use a gluten free stock cube), sugar free and dairy free recipe.

This will make a big batch so half can be frozen.

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PUMPKIN SOUP
Chopped flesh from 1 pumpkin or 2 butternut squash
2 sweet potatoes
2 – 3 onions
2 – 3 carrots
4 sticks celery
2 gloves of garlic
Stock cube or fresh chicken or vegetable stock
2 -3 cups of unsweetened almond milk or 1- 2 cups coconut milk
optional :
fresh ginger, tumeric, chill

Chop all vegetables – start by gently frying the onion in coconut oil or ghee then add garlic and fry for 1 minute. Add all remaining vegetables, stock and make sure just covered with liquid. Bring to boil then simmer for 20-30 minutes. Blend then add almond milk or coconut milk. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Delicious and nutritious!

Depending on how much garlic you put in I bet you could get your children to enjoy it too.

If you’d like more healthy, tasty recipes then check out our Healthy Mammas programme where we are offering you some quick, easy alternatives to breakfast – you can download your free copy here 

Happy Halloween!

Immunity boosting tips

I’m not sure about you but now the weather in the UK has changed (i.e..no more flips, the boots are out)…. I can guarantee I will be wearing socks in bed – yes, glamorous eh! I can’t sleep if my feet are cold – surely I’m not the only one?

It seems that several people have started to get colds so I thought I’d share my immunity boosting tips to help you get through the winter as best you can:

1. Get more sleep – I think we all know that lack of sleep reduces your immunity.

2. Eat less sugar – you may not realise that sugar can actually suppress your immune system.

3. Get your body moving – a moderate amount of regular exercise will improve immunity, overtraining actually won’t so you need your rest and recovery days.

4. Get outdoors – even when it is dark and cold you will be better to get some fresh air rather than being surrounded by people coughing and sneezing.

5. Eat a variety of colourful fruits and vegetables every day and as extra “health Insurance” I recommend a daily greens drink to boost your ability to fight the bugs (as well as other benefits)

6. Reduce stress – yes this can also depress your immune system

7. Vitamin D supplements can also boost our ability to fight flu and colds, and in the winter we severely lack this in the Northern Hemisphere.

So there you go, although I can’t promise you won’t catch a cold, you will be a lot less likely to get ill this winter if you can do all these.

Zita “love my bed socks” Alves

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ps If you’d like some ideas for recipes that contain loads of great nutrition and are easy to make including smoothies, soups, salads and loads more then grab your copy of my 90 recipe cookbook HERE