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Healthy Lifestyle with Nutritional solutions

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Healthy Lifestyle with Nutritional Solutions

Healthy Lifestyle with Nutritional Solutions can be reached for sure. To keep a “regime” going whilst pregnant is quite a hassle, constant cravings or horrendous nausea can hinder your appetite quite a bit. Not to mention postnatal dieting is nonexistent for a couple of months. Grabbing literally anything to fill the gap in between changing nappies and feeding…This can be seriously difficult to get back to your prepregnancy weight. Luckily I did a personalized DNA testing to help me choose the right foods to keep extra kilos at bay, thanks to registered Dietitian Donna van Zyl. Located in the Freestate, Bloemfontein. Here is my experience from her expert advice and a nice recipe to try out at home.

Healthy Lifestyle with Nutritional solutions can be reached for sure. To keep a “regime” going whilst pregnant is quite a hassle, constant cravings or horrendous nausea can hinder your appetite quite a bit. Not to mention postnatal dieting is nonexistent for a couple of months. Grabbing literally anything to fill the gap in between changing nappies and feeding…This can be seriously difficult to get back to your prepregnancy weight. Luckily I did a personalized DNA testing to help me choose the right foods to keep extra kilos at bay, thanks to registered Dietitian Donna van Zyl. Located in the Freestate, Bloemfontein. Here is my experience from her expert advice and a nice recipe to try out at home.

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What’s DNA Testing all about?

Nutritional Solutions consists of several passionate Dietitians across the South Africa. Our goal is to optimise an individual’s health with scientific based dietary recommendations as per condition. We pride ourselves in helping others and believe in nourishing our body and mind with nutrients. However, there is no “one size fits all” approach when it comes to being the healthiest you. In some instances, we consider evaluating the individual’s genetics due to the DNA holding valuable information to modify the risk of disease and optimise health. Simple questions that can be answered include: do you metabolise fat or carbohydrate as well as you think you do and do these processes interfere with your weight loss or maintenance. Additional information regarding the efficacy of processes such as detoxification, methylation, inflammation and tolerances that take place to mention a few can be assessed and dietary recommendations are made to modify or combat the possible risks associated with a decreased efficacy. Therefore from an individual’s genetics, we find fascinating information, which can contribute to your overall health.”

By the time I was about eight weeks pregnant we went to see Donna van Zyl at Nutritional Solutions in Bloemfontein to find out more about the hype around DNA testing. Who does not want to know exactly what kind of foods they should eat for optimal health? There is really no one size fits all as Donna said above, but a healthy lifestyle that can be customized for every individual.

After she explained that there are different ways of metabolizing fat, carbohydrates, and digestion by every individual’s body.  We decided that these tests were certainly worth a try, especially since I wanted to stay as healthy as possible during my pregnancy. All we had to do was take a mouth swap and swap on the inside of our cheeks as soon as we woke up the following morning. Within no time we had our personalized tests and boy where the results interesting.

According to my DNA tests, she recommended a low-fat diet with exercise. Low on saturated fats and a total of 30% fat intake of my dietary needs p/d. If I want to lose a little weight I can reduce my fat intake to 20% p/d. Generally, the kinds of foods that I am allowed to consume are lean cuts of meat, avoiding refined carbohydrates, choose healthy fats instead of saturated animal fats, avoiding “fast foods” and I was advised to eat regularly throughout the day. Generally, my diet consists of these guidelines already, but I tend to overeat on healthy fats like nuts, seeds, and avocado.

There is also a factor of my estrogen levels that are linked to cancer and therefore detoxification is so necessary. I did the tests to see on how to magnify my detoxification levels and certain foods were “prescribed” to certify detoxification. Certain guidelines can be taken in place to for sure detoxification like adding adequate amounts of magnesium and Vit E, increasing intakes of cruciferous vegetables like kale, broccoli, and cauliflower, maintaining my body weight and exercising regularly.

Best kinds of carbohydrates for me to choose from is brown rice, real fruit instead of fruit juices, adding legumes and pulses to my diet, cruciferous vegetables, leafy greens, squash like butternut, zucchini etc and stevia/honey as a sweetener. Inflammatory preventing kinds of foods to choose from are salmon, grapes, green tea, onions, garlic, cruciferous vegetables and spices like turmeric and curcumin.

This is just a summary of what these DNA results entailed. With the tests, I receive a meal plan guideline, food replacement list and various recipes to choose from. During my pregnancy, I tried to do some form of exercise every day like going to the gym for circuit training, pilates or cardio. At the last stretch of my pregnancy, I just went walking for about 45 minutes to get the blood flowing. All in all, with my diet and fitness activity I gained around 13kg. You’ll hear from other moms that gained less and wonder is there something you’re doing wrong, but I have to say me doing everything “right” did not prevent me from gaining x amount of weight. Our baby weighed more than 4kg so the amount of weight that I gained is not quite accurate. There isn’t really anything you can do to control your pregnancy weight if you are living a healthy lifestyle.

41W 5days

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3 weeks Post birth

IMG_1348Post pregnancy is certainly interesting. I lost most of the weight,(guess its thanks to the strenuous birth, babies weight, and breastfeeding), but still hanging on those last 3kg. It’s not that dieting is on my agenda, but the recovery after the c-section certainly delayed my plans to get back into shape. I felt for a while that my body is so out of proportion. I have a little kangaroo pouch and it might take a while to disappear. My muscle tone is not existent at this stage and I am gaining quite a bit of arm stretch with carrying the baby around. The misconception of today’s mom post birth body is unrealistic, some tend to look exactly the same way they did before the pregnancy and some might take a while to get back to where they were. It’s all in the genes! My postnatal tree day selfie was a shocker. That’s why this DNA testing is so amazing because there is truly no one size fits all. I have put some pressure on myself but recently just realized that with the amazing gift and the battle scars to show it, I’m quite alright with the extra weight and flabby belly.

I’d like to share a recipe that Donna sends me that I have adjusted just a little. The exchange list gives me the freedom to make my diet a bit more relaxed and interchangeable. I tend to get very bored with eating the same thing every day. No more bland chicken breasts and broccoli for me. This is a Moroccan roasted chickpea, quinoa and carrot salad that I love with all the added bonus of pomegranate seeds and chopped almonds. Such a filling and a nutritional recipe to have for lunch of dinner.

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Moroccan Chickpea and Carrot salad

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cooked red quinoa
  • 1 cup chickpeas
  • 1-2 carrots
  • 1/3 up crumbed feta
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp flaked garlic flakes
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/3 cup pomegranate seeds
  • 1/3 cup chopped roasted almonds
  • 1/4 cup sesame oil
  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce

Method:

  1. Bake the cooked chickpeas by adding them in a ziplock bag, add the spices and shake it up, no oil is necessary. Bake for 10-15 minutes at 180 degrees celsius.
  2. Mix the cooked quinoa, carrot shavings (made with a peeler), feta, pomegranate seeds and chopped almonds together. Wait for the chickpeas to cool down before adding that to the salad.
  3. Mix together the sesame oil, honey, balsamic dressing and soy sauce together. Drizzle over the salad and mix well.
  4. Serve with some fresh salad leaves and sparkling lemon water.

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Hope that you’ll take it easy on yourself!

Bon weekend

M*

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