Welcome to the latest edition of my Friday Foodie series, where each week I feature my favourite health and wellness stars. Each week, they share their tips for healthy living and their favourite recipe.
This week I am featuring Sarah Potter from Be Healthy Happy You. I met Sarah through Rachel MacDonald's Bright-Eyed & Blog-Hearted Course. Sarah is a life and wellness coach and her website is gorgeous and very inspiring. Sarah has an amazing new series over on her website, "Create Your Life", where wellness experts share their day through photos. It is really awesome!
Tell us a little bit about yourself, your family, what you do and what inspired you to lead a healthier lifestyle?
I live in Dunedin, New Zealand with my partner of 6 years Callum and our crazy, hypo dog Taz. I am a primary school teacher during the day and a life and wellness coach during the evenings/weekends/holidays. When I'm not teaching 5 and 6 year olds how to read, write, count and know that they're special, I'm helping young woman create healthy, happy lives they love.
I have a very good friend of mine to thank for my healthy lifestyle. She started to make changes to her lifestyle due to an illness and bought me along for the ride! Next thing I knew we were no long vodka shoting, pizza guzzling girls. Instead we were creating green smoothie and trawling through farmers markets in the weekends.
What tips would you give to someone who has just commenced living a healthier lifestyle?
These would be my top 3 tips -
- A healthy lifestyle isn't just about the food you put in your mouth. It's about moving your body and having a healthy mind too. It's about balance - with your job, your social life, your family, your food, your exercise and your creativity.
- Don't try to do everything all at once. Making small changes to your diet and lifestyle over time is the best way to make the changes permanent. For example introduce eating veggies with your lunch and dinner one week and swapping white rice for brown rice the next week.
- Don't believe everything you read/watch/hear. There is so much conflicting information out there these days and the only way you can work out what is right for you is by a lot of research and trial and error. We are all different, so what works for your best mate might not work for you. She might thrive on a vegan diet and have lots of energy, strong nails and clear skin while you might be craving meat and feeling crazy tired every afternoon when you eat a vegan diet. That's ok. Listen to your body and give it what it needs.
Do you have any tips for eating well on a budget?
Buy fruit and veggies that are in season - much cheaper, juicier and more flavoursome! Make your lunch, don't buy it!
How do you deal with food struggles from your children and/or family?
I don't have children, but I do have a boyfriend who can sometimes feel like a child (haha, love ya Callum!). I find that when it comes to trying to persuade your partner to eat well you cant force them. Slowly introducing new things into meals is a good idea. Things like swapping potatoes for sweet potatoes or cooking half white rice and half brown rice to begin with, then gently phase out the white. It has taken me 4 years to improve Callum's diet to where it is today! At the beginning I would get annoyed that he just didn't really care about making healthy choices. But then I decided not to force it. It's his body and he's allowed to eat what he likes. In saying that he now hardly ever drinks soft drink, doesn't eat choc biscuits (he used to go through 2 packs a week!) and will eat brown rice and drink almond milk without a fuss.
Good tip - don't have it in the house. Callum hates going to the supermarket so if I don't buy it, he wont eat it. The other day he came into the kitchen, opened the pantry, huffed and puffed and sighed "we have nothing to snack on", then left the room. Next minute he comes back, opens the fridge and takes out a carrot to snack on - winning!
What is your favourite food?
Without a doubt - Thai. I love a good red thai curry, or pnang curry, or Vietnamese salad. Avocados, nectarines and blueberries would also be high on the list!
Who is your favourite foodie and why?
Hmmmm this is a hard one. There are so many talented and amazing foodies out there today. I would say at the moment it is Dr Libby. I have been loving her Sweet Food Story cookbook.
What is something that you enjoy doing when you have some ‘me’ time?
Reading. I love, love, love to read! I have also started going to the most amazing yoga class too which I would count as me time.
What is your favourite recipe to cook? Can you share the recipe with us?
My favourite recipe changes all the time, but at the moment I am loving my chocolate mousse smoothie. This smoothie has good fats from avocado and nuts to keep you fuller longer. Fibre, magnesium and Omega 3 fatty acids from the chia seeds. Antioxidants and fibre from cacao powder and cacao nibs AND is sweetened with pure maple sugar, making it refined sugar free. So go crazy!
- 1 small handful of almonds
- 1 small handful of cashew nuts
- 1.5 cups of almond milk
- 1/4 avocado
- 1 tbsp cacao powder
- Dash of pure maple syrup
- 1 tbsp chia seeds
- 1 tsp vanilla essence
- 1 tbsp cacao nibs (plus extra to sprinkle on top)
- Blend all ingredients in a high speed blender until smooth.
- Top with cacao nibs and chopped nuts. If you have time (and self control) leave it to sit for 5 minutes to let the chia seeds soften and the smoothie thicken.
- Don’t freak out about the avocado, it makes the smoothie nice and creamy – you wont taste it I promise! The cool thing about smoothies is that you can change up the recipe and it will still taste great! Don’t have any avo? Don’t use it. Don’t have chia seeds? Don’t add them. Want to try adding in half a banana? Go for it!
A little more about Sarah and where you can find her
Sarah is a health and wellness coach based in Dunedin, New Zealand. She is a writer, talker, happiness magnet and lover of sunshine and traveling. She believes that everyone deserves to live a life they love! Sarah’s mission is to inspire as many people as possible to create healthy happy lives.
Instagram - instagram.com/_sarah.potter_