Healthy Chocolate Chip Cookies!

When I hear the words ‘healthy’ and ‘cookies’ in the same sentence, I usually think “oh here we go again” – a so called ‘healthy’ recipe, which either isn’t that healthy when you look at the ingredients, or it is healthy but tastes prettimage-9y awful and nothing like a real cookie. However, this recipe is a complete game changer! For one, the ingredients are wholesome, nutritious and won’t put a dent in your waistline, but most importantly, they taste AMAZING!
I found this recipe online (I’m always on the look out for healthy bakes), and I just had to write about it. I usually try these recipes and they never turn out like the official photo, but these actually look pretty decent! (I made a few changes as I was limited to the ingredients in my cupboard, so feel free to personalise it too!) So, low and behold: refined sugar-free, good-for-you, chocolate chip cookies! (They look pretty good, don’t they?!)

Anyway, here’s the recipe!

Ingredients:

1 can chickpeas (drained and rinsed)
1/3 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup agave nectar
1tsp baking powder
1tsp vanilla essence
85% dark chocolate (broken into small pieces)

Method:

Set your oven at 180c and line a baking tray well. Then, simply blend the chickpeas, peanut butter, honey and baking powder until the mixture is a smooth paste. Stir in the dark chocolate pieces.
Now spoon the mixture onto the baking tray in even mounds (they can be however small or large depending on the size you want your cookies). Bake in the oven for about 15 minutes until golden brown. Make sure you check on them regularly, then remove, let cool and devour!

(Original recipe from zannavandijk.co.uk – there are some awesomely healthy and delicious recipes on there!)

Battling the blemishes: Tea Tree to the rescue!

I’ve been wanting to write this blog for a while as skin troubles have been the bane of my life recently. Over the past few months I have struggled with constant blemishes, spots, pimples – whatever you like to call them, and it has definitely been getting me down at times. Of course, make-up doimage-7es a great job at covering things up, but I’ve come to learn that a good skincare routine is important to keep your skin looking and feeling healthy under all those beauty products.

I’ve used several face wash products over the years but have never found one that I’ve found to make a noticeable difference. However, a few weeks ago I decided to give this Tea Tree Skin Cleansing Facial Wash from The Body Shop a go. I have used body butters, creams and make up from the Body Shop in the past and have loved them, therefore I felt positive that this product would be a good one. I wasn’t mistaken! This tea tree wash is so light on your face and I have really noticed a difference in the quality of my skin. I have significantly less blemishes and even better is that it smells lovely and leaves you feeling fresh and clean. Tea Tree oil is found to be a great skin treatment – it is known for its ‘healing powers’ and is a natural ingredient used in many different shampoos, skincare products and ointments. So it’s definitely a must in my book and this face wash is just lovely – a new staple in my skincare routine!

What skin care products do you swear by?

How to stay healthy at Christmas

Christmas is around the corner which means a lot of delicious and indulgent food to look forward to. Now don’t get me wrong, I absolutely LOVE this time of year and can’t wait to tuck in to my Mum’s roast dinners and all the chocolate and cake that is bound to be on offer. I think it’s completely healthy to indulge at Christmas and if you’re going to relax and enjoy yourself at some point in the year, then this is a really perfect opportunity!

The one thing I don’t want, however, is to eat so much food that I feel awful for the entire festive period. Over the past year or so I have become much more interested in my health and fitness, and I have learned how good my body can feel when fuelled with nutritious, healthy food. (This is something I plan to blog more about in the future).

Anyway, I am visiting my family this week and the ‘bad food’ temptations started as soon as I entered the door! Despite making a promise to myself that I will enjoy the festive period without worrying too much about food, I want to do some ‘damage limitation’ so to speak. Therefore I have come up with a few tips of how we can all enjoy Christmas but also keep on track and keep feeling good over the next couple of weeks:

  • Starting Christmas day with a good breakfast will set you up for a day of treats and make you feel better about eating what you want later on. Have some eggs with smoked salmon, or grilled bacon with spinach and tomatoes – still delicious, filling and full of good fats and protein.
  •  Try to eat relatively healthily during the days running up to Christmas and the ones after. Again this will make you feeling better about indulging on the day and keep you feeling good throughout.
  • Save the treats for when you really want them. Don’t eat 3 mince pies in a row just because you can. Eat one when you really fancy it – trust me, treats you wait for are the ones you tend to enjoy the most!
  • Keep up the exercise! 2 weeks away from your usual routine doesn’t have to mean 2 weeks of sitting on the sofa. Find a local gym which offer a pay-as-you-go option – this is what I plan to do whilst staying with my parents. If this isn’t possible or if the gym is closed, why not try some home workouts or go for a walk or a run to get your body moving.
  • Stay hydrated. Again, a few days or weeks outside of your normal routine can make you forget how important it is to drink enough water, so keep a bottle with you and try to keep up with your recommended intake.
  • Finally, take time for yourself and relax. After all, this is the time of year when we should take a break from the stresses of everyday life and enjoy some time with our friends and family. So do exactly that! Christmas day is one day of the year where worrying about what you eat is NOT allowed. It’s a day of roast potatoes, pigs in blankets and all the chocolate you can eat.

Have a Merry Christmas everybody!