Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall says let 100,000 British children eat fruit! @rivercottage #fruitshare #food #healthyeating

Screen Shot 2013-10-21 at 09.40.07The long running campaign to get children of Britain eating more healthy food has taken another step up the ladder. Over 100,000 school children will get the chance to eat more fruit after 600 schools signed up in the last few days to River Cottage and Crowdfunder UK’s Fruitshare campaign.

From its initial launch it took under two hours, for 550 schools across the country to successfully sign up to receive a free pack of four fruit trees after food campaigner Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall announced the scheme during his new River Cottage To The Core TV series which aired on Wednesday 16 October.

And now that the free packs of trees, donated by the Woodland Trust, have been allocated, schools across the UK are signing up to crowdfund more fruit trees themselves.Screen Shot 2013-10-21 at 09.39.37

Schools are signing up to Crowdfunder UK’s site, which is giving schools the opportunity to raise amounts of £270, £130 and £70 to receive packs of 20, 10 or five trees – funded by their communities, local business, parents and PTA associations. Over 50 schools have already signed up to crowdfund trees.

Crowdfunding relies on people pledging money in return for rewards.  Crowdfunder UK, in partnership with Plymouth University, has teamed up with Abel and Cole, the organic veg-box company, The Woodland Trust and River Cottage to provide great rewards to encourage people to back the school-led campaigns.

Using his celebrity chef status for a good cause, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall said: “I am on a mission to make the most of fruit, so what better place to start than with our kids. If we can get them to propagate a positive relationship with fruit, it could be a love affair that lasts a lifetime.

Gathering local communities and businesses to use Crowdfunder.co.uk to raise funds to get growing fruit trees is a brilliant way of demonstrating what can happen when a group of people get together to achieve something great.”

Schools can launch their individual Fruitshare campaigns by registering on www.crowdfunder.co.uk/fruitshare.

And you can follow the campaign on Twitter following the #fruitshare so get involved and help get our countries children eating better!

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Put on a Hunger Games Party in 3 steps and may the odds be ever in your favour! #hungergames

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Well if you weren’t already super excited about the next installment of The Hunger Games hitting cinema screens in November, you can get the reaping started with your very own Hunger Games themed party!

We attended a very special Hunger Games event day last week which gave us all the inspiration we needed to bring a little bit of Capitol into our lives for the end of the Summer. So forget the BBQ’s and go all out with stupendous style and the odds will ever be in your favour!

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Step 1: Bake the Book!

No not literally, but we absolutely LOVED the Hunger Games cup cakes at the event day, and felt that no Hunger Games party would be complete without them. So here’s a really helpful video from across the pond, which will inevitably get your mouth watering for what is an essential party piece… the Mockingjay cupcake!

 

Step 2: Get the Look! 

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Who would have thought the Capitol would have been so on trend in the real world. Well, as we found out there are two major fashion go-go’s coming out of The Hunger Games and one is Capitol party style and the other is Tribute tracksuits!

For the Capitol party style you can look no further than your local fashion retailer for some fantastic bits. It doesn’t have to cost your district to get Captiol fashion and there’s so much out there…

Screen Shot 2013-08-19 at 17.37.30We found this Rare Fringe Bandeau Dress at ASOS.com reduced from £45.00 down to £22.00 you too could be the girl on fire in this little number!Screen Shot 2013-08-19 at 18.14.17

And if you want to shuffle along like Effie Trinket, then how about these Chinese Laundry China Doll Heeled Shoes… you’ll need to splash out a little bit more, but once again they’re on sale at ASOS.com for £62.00 (RRP £120.00)

 But if you’re feeling more in tune with one of the Tributes, then you might want to spend your cash on the futuristic exercise range from Lucas Hugh London. Having never provided products for movies before, its Creative Director Anjhe Mule was sought out and hand picked by Catching Fire Costume Designer Trish Summerville to help provide some of the amazing outfits for the films key stars.

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Step 3: Top up Trinket Style

No party look would be complete without an Effie Trinket make over and the amazing make up artist who took care of Josh Hutcherson and Liam Hemsworth at the UK premiere told us that the key to Effie Trinket’s looks is clashing colours, blended together on the eyes and hyper real pale skin! Think Alexander McQueen with strong bold eyes and Geisha lips.Screen Shot 2013-08-19 at 18.29.30

She also mentioned that since The Hunger Games hit our cinema screens, people have really realized that make up can be much more fun, and that there really aren’t any rules, so maybe there’s a little bit of Capitol in this capital city after all!

So what are you waiting for, you have the food, the clothes and the make up to make a very Happy Hunger Games! Enjoy!!

@katscapades tells us to forget the Yo-Yo diet and embrace the #monacodiet #beauty #health

Once again, our health, fitness (and travel) guru Katrina Santos-Baron (www.katscapades.net) shows us how to live healthier…and maybe lose a few pounds in the process! So have a good old read, take the points on board, give it a whirl and let us know what you think!! 

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One fitness quote said, ‘it takes 4 weeks for you to notice, 8 weeks for your friends and 12 weeks for the rest of the world’.  I started a Weight Loss Challenge last March but had a major relapse when I had friends come to stay for two weeks! (oops!) I almost gained what I just lost, so I discovered the importance of juicing and decided to do an Alpha-reset (5-day juicing detox) to get back into shape. Juicing has been a habit since then. Along the way, I’ve learned a lot of things, and discovered my passion for running. So taaaaaaaaadaaaaaaaaaa, I’ve lost over 5.6 kilos and just above 10cm (3.9 inches) around my waist. Yaaaaaaaaaahooooooooooooooo!

I’m so loving a healthy lifestyle. For me, it’s not just a fad or an excuse to sometimes splurge in the organic section of the supermarket. It’s way beyond counting calorie intakes or trying to join the ‘green’ club. It’s giving utmost value to ourselves, like valuing something that you’d been meaning to have and finally got it (just like when I received my first Chanel bag – it was treated like a V.I.P.!). Taking care of our body is a must, it’s the only one we have!

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I was never really a fan of crash diets. I was too skinny before anyways. In fact, I used to eat a lot! Like 3 cups of rice and meat plus a lot of sweets on one sitting three to four times a day! However, as they say, our bodies start to change as we reach the age of 25. Though I believed I had a healthier lifestyle since I moved to London (except for the cake moments with my best friend – which occurred on most days of my London life, ooops), I kinda felt this body-changing-after-25 particularly when I got married two years later. The joys of cooking and discovering amazing eating places, plus the ‘dining bond’ with my hubby (with no exercise) during the first 8 months of our marriage resulted to unpleasant muffin tops! And there I was, tempted to try different crash diets but I thought best not to. Motivated to lose weight eventually paved the way for me to really get hooked into maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

I recently had some dietary advice from a Monaco-based nutritionist  that really helped me on my fitness journey. I admit that I’m not 100% following it (I’m still human by the way), but it’s good to have it at the back of my head which acts like a little voice whenever I’m about to cook, do my grocery shopping and as I put my trainers on. I shared it with some of my friends and they’re happy with the results. This may not be new to you – I’ve known some of the items he shared before I met him but it didn’t just remind me, it also made me more aware about the importance of what we eat and do to how it affects our body

  • THE GOLDEN RULES OF NUTRITION
  • Do not ever starve yourself. When you starve, your metabolism slows down. You might be losing weight but gaining more afterwards, also known as the yo-yo effect. Like what C. Helgoe said, ‘if weight loss is your only motivation, and you jump into the latest fast being used by Hollywood stars getting ready for Oscar gowns, your program is likely to backfire’. Remember, your diet should be eating more of the right foods at the right time.
  • Eliminate flour, gluten and junk in your meals. I know this is super hard, eh?!
  • NO to dairy products – milk and cheese, huhuhuhu…. Goat’s cheese is ok (it’s not from the cow :p)
  • Here’re the good news – carbs are ok! YES! But only until 2pm.
  • Eat fruits only in the morning as most fruits have high sugar content.
  • Salt = Cellulites. Yikes!
  • NO to GMO too – choose organic.
  • Drink protein shakes for breakfast (could be mixed with fruits) and drink another one in the evening (without the fruits)
  • Fats will only be burned after 40 mins of cardio since the first 40 mins are only for sugar-burning
  • Get at least 8 hours of sleep for cells to regenerate properly (natural anti-aging)
  • [Goes without saying] Drink loads of water
  • Don’t forget the veggies!

LET THE MONACO DIET BEGIN:

So here’s how my daily diet and activity looks like:

  • Between 6:30 to 7:00am: It’s cooking time! So meanwhile, I’m drinking Juice PLUS+® Complete Vanilla or Chocolate Shake. I like it how it is so I only add water. Maybe one day I’ll try making smoothies with it.
  • About 7ish: My hubby and I normally have eggs for breakfast. Eggs are packed with protein and healthy fats – good for muscle growth and burning body fats partnered with superfood – avocado and spinach served with green juice on the side.

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Once in every 2 weeks, I make tapsilog (a Filipino dish composed of beef, eggs and fried rice but I cook it a non-stick frying pan – so no oil or sometimes a tiny bit of organic olive oil). Oh, try frying tomatoes with olive oil and basil – they go well with the eggs too!

  • Between 8am to 11am: I have some fruits on my working desk.
  • Around 12ish: I’m happy with a salad especially during the heatwave in the Riviera. Have you seen my crispy lettuce with strawberry salad dressing? If not, please click here. Sometimes I eat rice or whole wheat pasta with protein and fiber (so that’s meat and veggies). I also try adding some twists to the traditional dishes such as including spinach to spag bol sauce for instance served over gluten-free pasta or zoodles (zucchini-made-like-noodles). Who says healthy food is boring and tasteless?! I disagree! 🙂

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  • When my hubby gets home at 5pm: We have an early supper mostly composed of protein and fiber (I also cook with carbs for his packed lunch the next day but I try not to eat carbs during this time, til 2pm, remember?!). Sometimes I make another glass of fresh juice.
  • Between 7pm to 8pm: Trainers on, off we go running. Since it’s been too hot lately to run by the beach, I’ve been running lately at the treadmill (3 – 4 times a week). If we get hungry after the run, we just boil 2-3 eggs each eating only the white. Bye, bye yolk!
  • 9pm: Juice PLUS+® Complete Vanilla or Chocolate Shake
  • 10ish to 11ish: Bed time!

Cheat day once a week is OK but if you sweat your ass off the gym and become aware of what’s good for the body and not, you’ll still resort to eating more of the right food and feel [a bit] guilty if not, therefore limiting unhealthy intake (if I used to eat up to 6 cupcakes at one sitting, now, 1 cupcake is enough during my cheat day).

When trying to lose weight, it is also important to think of these:

  • Why are you doing it. It’s an awesome feeling being able to fit into the clothes you want to wear, waking up with a flatter tummy, notice your skin looks younger and glowing everyday without putting on cosmetics, being able to run faster and be more mentally alert during working hours. As for me, I DON’T WANT TO BE SKINNY, I WANT TO BE FIT. I’d like to prepare my body as healthy as possible – who knows, we’ll have a baby soon? 🙂
  • Keep a diary of your progress. I did 🙂 It didn’t happen overnight, didn’t happen over a period of 10 days as well. It took me months and learned a lot along the way (and still learning!). Aside from my messy notebook, I also documented my progress @katscapades in Instagram and thru my previous blogs:
  • Do the alternatives. Take the stairs instead of the lift, walk to the grocery instead of taking the car or bus, go for a fresh morning walk instead of snooze-snooze-go-away bed mood. Just be active. Move a lot. Y’know what I mean 🙂
  • Read the labels. Geesh, I really do spend time reading labels (in French) at the supermarket!
  • Be fun and creative! Sooner or later, you’ll discover that healthy chef within you.
  • Nobody’s perfect. You may feel you’re behind your regime but don’t panic – slow progress is better than no progress at all.
  • Connect with like-minded people. Share and start inspiring others too – it’ll make you feel like a million-euro-monaco-baby!
  • Take the holistic route. Have a balanced diet, regular exercise, fill your life with laughter and love. La vie est belle!

Cheers to a healthier us! xoxo

P.S. I just called it the ‘Monaco diet’ since the nutritionist is based there. Results on individuals may vary, consult your doctor first. But overall, I recommend a healthy lifestyle 🙂

Milkshaken not stirred? @Prezzybox and @zokuHQ goes all Bond! #kitchen #gadget #food

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We might be preparing for yet another heatwave, but you can cool down in style as Prezzybox shows us how! So put away the Martini’s and get out the milk as we prepare for The Zoku Slushy and Milkshake Maker!!!

If Bond made a smoothie he would definitely use Zoku’s Slushy and Milkshake Maker. Sharp, smooth and always on the money, you are only seven minutes away from your perfect iced drink with this sleek, purple device. Freeze the core and then stir in your favourite tipple for the perfect crunch in a heat-wave.

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Features:

·       Durable, easily cleaned purple outer sleeve that insulates the frozen core and keeps the outer layer at a level temperature.

·       Long, trendy spoon designed for optimal manoeuvrability and grip

·       Huge 9 Ounce capacity

·        Recipe ideas and instructions included.

 Screen Shot 2013-07-31 at 08.29.53The Zoku Slushy and Milkshake Maker won’t shake your wallet either, selling for just £19.95 at www.prezzybox.com

Have more fun in your kitchen this Summer… go on, you deserve it!!!

 

Get fruity with some futuristic juice drinks from @juiceburst and @blippar #tech #fruitjuice #app #interactive

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My my, isn’t the world changing, first there was the iPod, then there were Google Glasses, and now, keep your eyes peeled, as this summer, JuiceBurst will re-launch as the world’s first digitally interactive soft drink.  Blippar technology will have fruit literally bursting off a shelf near you!!

With an impressive 14 flavours to choose from, there is a JuiceBurst to suit everyone – from tried and tested Apple & Orange to the exotic Mango and surprisingly tasty Apple and Rhubarb.  Each 500ml bottle offers a delicious shortcut to one of your five a day, and priced at no more than a bottle of fizzy drink, JuiceBurst is actually really good value for money.

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 LETS GET INTERACTIVE!

To have the full JuiceBurst experience, simply ‘blipp’ the bottle and you’ll be taken into an interactive world, where the fruit literally bursts off the label and out of your phone / ipad.  You’ll be invited to play the fruit machine game where you could be in with a chance of winning your own stash of JuiceBurst.

So what are you waiting for go and pick up your futuristic fruit drink now – and let us know how you get on!!

Who likes it hot? Then the Sultans of Sizzle may just be for you! @prezzybox #gift #fathersday #food

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We love how Prezzybox just keeps on coming up with some fun present ideas, now its Fathers Day coming up and if your dad likes to stand tall next to a BBQ then why not give him this perfect accompaniment. The Sultans of Sizzle Hot Sauce!!

How hot do you like it? The Sultans of Sizzle Hot Sauce Gift Set is the perfect condiment to those who like some fire in their hearts. This gift pack has 3 different spicy sauces that are guaranteed to turn up the heat on you food.

Ideal for chilli lovers the Garlic Style Hot Sauce is tasty. The Jamaican Style Hot sauce is guaranteed to ignite your mouth whilst the Louisiana Style Hot Sauce brings the heat from the Deep South, deep into you.

The Sultans of Sizzle Hot Sauce Gift Set costs £19.95 from www.prezzybox.com.

Go get yours now! You’ll be burning up before you know it!!

New York on a shoe string – Affordable dining at the Mandarin Oriental’s Asiate restaurant @MO_HOTELS #food #newyork #finedining

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You literally can live the high life in New York for under $50 if you know the right spots to visit; and thanks to a very kind recommendation, we managed to find a hidden gem in a well known luxury.

New York oozes style, money and culture, and for some the dream of visiting the big apple can often remain just that. However, we’ve found a few little gems which will get your mouths watering and keep your bank manager still smiling.

The Mandarin Oriental is the height of luxury, it stands on the corner of Central Park opposite Donald Trumps hotel and soars high into the sky. However, you may just chose to stay in more affordable accommodation elsewhere, which is perfectly fine, but make sure you book in lunch here!

Soaring well above the skyline on the 35th floor is the Asiate restaurant. A pan Asian experience which for us superscrimpers luckily has a Prix Fixe menu (3 courses) for just $35! If you’ve never experienced fine dining before, this is certainly a great place to start. It has excellent service, delicious food and views over central park to die for!

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The attire is smart casual, and that means that after a morning of walking around this amazing city, you can still look glam in your slinky sandals and smart flip flops. You’ll be surrounded by lots of corporate business people who have used this as a location to secure a deal or two, but really you, the tourist are getting the deal breaker. You’ll feel straight like a character out of Sex and the City, and really experiencing what it means to be a high-flying Manhattan native!

IMG_3073For us, the first course consisted of a Ceviche pallet cleanser with a little hint of wasabi and some cuts of oranges and sea food – it was delicious and really set the scene for the culinary delights to come. Following that, you get a choice of pea soup or tuna nicoise salad, which was elegant and not too filling.

The main course has a selection of three dishes, Scallops, which are so rich in flavor that it almost becomes difficult to finish, Black Seabass, which was totally moreish but delivered in the perfect amount, and for those who didn’t want to stray too far from British shores, a lamb cutlet with mashed potato.

Finally you had the choice of two deserts, either a dark devils delight chocolate fondant (which of course we chose!) or an Almond and Rhubarb fondant. The chocolate choice exuded decadence and luxury and was a melt in your mouth experience!IMG_3072

So in terms of a bargain, surprisingly the Mandarin Oriental provided something above and beyond our expectations. This was an experience perfect for a treat, a birthday or just something different to do whilst you’re touring the city. Our one word of caution is to watch out for the additional prices on drinks – a glass of wine, a bottle of water and a cup of tea or coffee to finish your meal, will start to rack up the price point, so if you are watching your wallet be careful of that!

Finally, to ensure that you get one of the breathtaking window seats, make sure you plan ahead – these tables can go months in advance, and sometimes can be given as priority seating to those who are staying at the hotel. So our recommendation is that you specifically request this when making your booking.

For more information on this unique dining experience, click here

Happy Dining!!