Health coach, author and Supercharged Food blogger Lee Holmes believes in real, wholesome and nourishing food. Here she shares her secrets to living well.
What inspired you to start Supercharged Food?
I was inspired to create my website around five years ago when I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. I was given a cocktail of drugs: immuno suppressants, anti-inflammatory drugs, anti-cancer drugs and a lot of steroids. The drugs weren’t working; in fact they were making me feel worse, so I slowly weaned myself off them and decided I would begin a quest to use food as my medicine.
I started my blog/business because I was researching different healing ingredients and travelled overseas to learn more and more. When I came back I began creating recipes using the ingredients I had learnt about, and they were so popular that I created a website where everyone could have access to them. People seemed to really love the healthy anti-inflammatory recipes full of nutrient rich ingredients and ones that were free of gluten, wheat, dairy, yeast and sugar and so it was then that superchargedfood.com was born.
How would you describe your ‘food philosophy’?
I believe in simplicity. I’m also crusader for real food as close to its natural state as possible and SOLE food: Sustainable, Ethical, Organic and Local. I believe in quality nutrients but not expensive, trendy and glamorous, hyped-up super foods like acai, macqui berries or smoothies that cost $18 to make. I know I could probably get sent 15 links on why they are so great, but to me they sound like a fad.
I eat a diet which includes fresh and unprocessed foods and steer clear of alcohol and sugar and processed foods and caffeine. I avoid gluten and wheat. My main diet is an anti-inflammatory diet which includes foods such as lots of vegetables and leafy greens, grass fed meat, good fats such as coconut oil, flaxseed oil extra virgin olive oil, which are high in Omega 3 fats and walnuts and cold oily fish.
What are your favourite foods or ingredients to use?
These little guys are my favourite go to meal and high in omega-3 fatty acids. The good news is they contain almost no mercury and are loaded with minerals such as calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium and zinc. They’re inexpensive and easy to bring to the table. Place sardines at the top of your successful aging shopping list. They’re good for the brain, hair, skin and nails. Protein also contributes to maintaining youthful skin, and sardines supply quality protein. I eat a can a day but if you’re not a sardine lover then try tuna, salmon or mackerel. Not a fish fan? Swap out your oil for flaxseed, chia, or extra virgin olive. Or try a sliced boiled egg on top of a spinach and kale salad, and top it with sardines and anchovies. Get happy with this recipe for Smashed Sardines with Avocado on Chis and Flaxseed Loaf.
Eating, blending, and juicing greens are all good ways to fill your body with the enzymes, vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients required for glowing, flawesome skin, hair and nails. Vegetables like my favourite spinach, receives its vibrant green colour from chlorophyll; a nutrient rich pigment that is highly detoxifying. Chlorophyll cleans the body of harmful toxins that would otherwise cause hormone imbalances and skin problems. It also oxygenates the blood, alkalises the body and improves circulation to increase nutrient supply to the skin cells. I love to make my own spinach bread using only a handful of ingredients. Watch the video here.
One of my other favourite ingredients is kale as it is loaded with lutein which keeps your eyes sparkling (and healthy) as well as vitamin C which is vital for skin health. For an antioxidant rich snack place kale chips in the oven and then sprinkle them with a touch of chili.
What are your go-to healthy meals for when you’re low on time?
1. Sweet pistachio chicken
I love this recipe from my latest book Eat Yourself Beautiful. It’s so quick and easy to make and not only that, it’s very healthy. Various antioxidants in pistachios make them beneficial for your skin. Vitamin-E helps in protecting the cell membranes and makes your skin smooth and supple. These antioxidants protects against harmful sun radiation. Essential oils in pistachios make it a really beneficial food source for removing skin dryness, skin aging and pigmentation of the skin so they are a good all-rounder.
2. Moroccan lamb soup
I love this delicious and easy-to-make recipe because it also contains ginger. This spicy root contains an antioxidant called gingerol, which fights skin-damaging free radicals and promotes a brighter, firmer, more youthful appearance. Ginger, in the form of ginger oil, has huge benefits for hair. It helps protect and condition hair – especially dry and damaged hair – leaving it soft and shiny. You’ll also find it incredibly beneficial if you suffer from dandruff as ginger oil (mixed with olive oil) helps treat and nourish your scalp.
3. Spinach loaf
I really love the spinach loaf recipe because it is delicious and healthy. Being able to eat bread that is good for you and nutrient rich but still tastes amazing is really satisfying. I combined two of my favourite recipes to make this one, so I used my spinach toast recipe and amalgamated it with my high top zucchini loaf. I love e both recipes but wanted to unite the health benefits of spinach toast into the texture and generous height of a traditional loaf. It’s the perfect loaf for mopping up soup and feeding an awaiting crowd. It’s in my book Eat Yourself Beautiful.
Tell us a bit about your new books…
I have two new books out at the moment. My new kids’ e-book, Supercharged Food for Kids, is a new take on cooking for kids for busy parents and care givers. You won’t find any Frankenfood in the book, but you will find every kid’s favourite recipes such as pizza, nuggets, pasta and desserts all made with healthy ingredients. Yes, nuggets! From breakfast choices like savoury breakfast muffins, chai coconut pikelets and French toast, to lunch options which are easy to make like zucchini slice, mini salmon frittatas and gluten-free pita pockets, and over to delicious dinner recipes like veggie-packed lamb meatballs, cauliflower mac and cheese, and Mr Tomato heads with tuna.
My second book which has just been released is Eat Yourself Beautiful. It’s about eating your way to a healthy body at a cellular level and noticing the amazing effects that a real food and clean diet will bring to your life. In the book you’ll find over 100 recipes for juices, snacks and meals using key nutrient-rich and anti-inflammatory ingredients and every day foods for longevity. I have created recipes that are free of many of the troublesome foods that people have problems with so all of the recipes are gluten, wheat, yeast and sugar free and many of them are dairy free too. I have used nutrient rich anti-inflammatory ingredients, but ones that you can find in the supermarket so affordable and accessible for everyone. The recipes are easy to make and you don’t have to be a cordon bleu chef to bring them to the table.
What are your top tips for healthy, balanced living?
Eat well 80% of the time and allow yourself 20% wiggle room, take time to meditate each day, count your blessings and cultivate an attitude of gratitude.
It’s also important that you don’t get hooked into marketing messages. I believe in the power of herbs and spices like turmeric and garlic and sardines and everyday real foods. There are plenty of everyday super foods full of antioxidants that are easily accessible and relatively cheap such as oats,beans, berries, nuts, avocados, oranges, and salmon, to name a few.