Moods and Foods

Moods and Foods

Our attitude towards food, health, healing and nutrition need to be changed by increasing our knowledge about food and food practices. Our minds must open to a new approach of thinking about food. Food is a culinary experience jam-packed with flavours, tastes, sights, sounds and feeling that bring joy for us.  Real healthy food can give us that experience.

However, we live in a fast pace quick fix society that takes health for granted and see the time and effort to prepare food as a waste of time. We forget that we are complete human beings – body, mind and spirit and that each area is influenced by what we eat.

Our thinking effects our choices of food. You mind controls you brain, and your brain controls your body. Negative thinking often leads to negative choices and vice versa and thinking will affect digestion. Eating and thinking are so interrelated and interdependent that every cell of your body (100 trillion) will be affected before, during and after eating.

We are biochemically uniquely different and food, diets and exercise that works for one person may not have the same effect in another person. It is therefore more important to understand the basics of eating and the relationship of our thoughts and the effect on the body than trying to follow fad diets.

Our food system needs drastic transformation – we are abusing the natural resources; the world population is on the increase. On the one end of the scale a billion people are hungry and starving of hunger and over 2 billion are overweight and obese with lifestyle related disease like blood pressure, diabetes, coronary heart disease that is going rampant and people are packing doctor’s rooms.

We are so advanced in technology and food systems however the population is sicker than ever. Why do we have all the knowledge but still make food choices that cause chronic illness?  It is time that we change our thinking about food and the role of food in our health.


Easter bunnies and Hot Cross buns …a blessing or a curse?

Easter bunnies and Hot Cross buns …a blessing or a curse?

Easter bunnies and Hot Cross buns …a blessing or a curse?

Easter…. associated with bunnies and lots of chocolate. However, what does that mean for your waist and brain in terms of the amount of sugar and fat consumed?

Easter has become a time of utter and complete over-indulgence on chocolate. With that I do not mean you are not allowed to have a piece of chocolate.  The problem is that all bunnies and chocolate associated with Easter is either white chocolate or normal milk chocolate and some even with gooey fillings that has lots of sugar in it.

The recommended daily amounts of energy are around 8 400kJ per day for an average 11-year-old boy and 6300kJ for a girl, but many could be eating up to 42 000 kJ over the Easter period!

Let’s look at a few statistics and compare the amounts to slices of bread.

The average Easter egg of 100g is the equivalent to 1700 – 2500 kJ which is the same as when you eat 5 ½ – 8 slices of bread. The kilojoules can increase up to 6300kJ depending on the size and the filling of the egg.

A typical child under 12 years will get at least one egg from his parents and 7 from other people. The total of 8 eggs can be as much as 59 slices of bread and 270 teaspoons of sugar (1.3 kg) which is equivalent to 4 loaves of bread.

According to Angus Kennedy, the editor of Kennedy’s Confectionery magazine in England, these sweet treats can increase up to 50 400kJ which is the amount of energy that is needed for 1 week’s food. A 90 km (Comrades marathon) run will burn this energy……not likely for most people/ children to do.

All these sales are excellent for business and economy, however with a population where 60 % is overweight and with so many children that have learning difficulties, we should reconsider.  In practice I find that people don’t think of sweets / chocolates as empty energy that will have to be burned or stored as fat.

To burn one 100g Easter egg the following exercise would have to be done:

Type of exercise – High intensity KJ burnt in 1 hour
Running constantly @ 11 km/hour 2500 kJ
Kickboxing alternated with skipping 3780kJ
Squash 3300 kJ
Tennis singles 2 hours 2100KJ
Swimming 2 hours back stroke 2100kJ
Spinning 3300kJ
Cycling competitive 3300kJ
High impact aerobics class 2500kJ

Another treat during Easter is hot cross buns that’s considered a refined carbohydrate which will be converted into fat quite easily and cause spiking blood sugar levels.

Do you or the children have to abstain completely? No, it is a special fun time of the year and children want to participate in bunny runs.  However, we need to make conscious decisions about the amount and frequency of the treats.  It is still a treat and needs to be considered in that way.

A tip for avoiding over-consumption of the Easter treats:

Have a full meal and eat a small amount of treats after the meal – not instead of the meal. In that way you will be able to control the quantities a lot better.

If we restrict ourselves and don’t have any of the candy, then we feel deprived and may end up overdoing it at some point. Enjoy it, be done with it and get back on track but keep the portions small.


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By Ina Nortjé – Wholistic Wellness Practitioner