Hello and welcome!

Monday, 18 June 2018

(Photo Credit: Jane Beadnell Photography (http://janebeadnellphotography.co.uk/)

Welcome to a blog that is all about wellness for the over 40s. Here you will find blog posts to help you maintain (or restore) your natural state of health. You will also find a vegan recipe each Monday and you can learn about growing organic food from the blog posts on the 40plusandalliswell allotment. 
If you like yoga I also have a 'sister' blog, Flexiladiesyoga.

I hope you enjoy my posts and will visit the blogs often!

Thank you for your support- sending my love to you all.

Please see below for my latest post!







Meatless Monday : Vegan Carribean rice bowl


This recipe would make a great lunch - so colourful and tasty. If you are using it for a ‘pack up’ observe rice safety recommendations - rice can support the growth of bacteria.  Cool the rice by rinsing in a sieve under cold water and wait for the onion mixture to cool before adding the rice.  Transport in a cool bag and place in a fridge as soon as possible.  If you reheat, make sure you reheat to at least 75 degrees centigrade.  Do not reheat more than once.
Vegan Carribean rice bowl
Serves 2 You will need
150g brown rice, rinsed
4 tbsp each - frozen sweetcorn kernals, and frozen peas
1 small carrot, sliced
1 tbsp olive oil
1 brown onion, peeled and chopped
Clove garlic sliced
1 tsp mild curry powder
3 tbsp tamari or 2 tbsp and 1 tbsp pineapple juice
Pineapple pieces in juice To serve
Toasted cashews Avocado slices

Place the rice in a saucepan and cover with water.  Add the carrot, peas and sweetcorn.  Heat to boiling and boil for 25-30 minutes.  

Meanwhile heat the oil in a small fry pan and add the onion.  Cook for 3 minutes then add the garlic, pepper and curry powder.  Cook until the vegetables are tender then add the tamari/pineapple juice.  

Drain the rice and vegetables and add to the onion mixture.  Stir in some pineapple pieces.  Divide into 2 bowls and top with toasted cashews.  Serve with avocado slices.
If you are enjoying my blogs please consider making a small donation but please do not feel this is a condition of enjoying the blogs. Please see-https://40plusandalliswell.blogspot.com/p/blog-page.html


Thank you





This week on Flexiladiesyoga

Sunday, 17 June 2018




This week we look at how yoga and essential oils can boost confidence and self-esteem-https://flexiladies.blogspot.com/2018/06/yoga-and-essential-oils-let-your.html

If you are enjoying my videos and blog posts please would you consider a small donation? Please note however this is not a condition of enjoying my blogs. Please see-https://flexiladies.blogspot.com/p/support-this-blog_44.html

Thank you

The 40plusandalliswell guide to fats and oils


As a vegan you are already avoiding a great deal of saturated fat. Recently however the experts have decided that saturated fat is not the ‘baddie’ we once thought.  I can understand this.  My mother loved bacon fat poured over new potatoes and my grandfather ate dripping ‘butties’ and chips in lard (sorry vegans!!) - mum lived to be almost 90 and grandad lived to 94. I still think that on the whole saturated fat is best kept to a minimum.

Monosaturated fat on the other hand such as coconut oil is a different matter.  Coconut oil has been proven to lower cholesterol, helping prevent cardiovascular disease.  For more information on coconut oil please see…..

The real ‘villain’ is transfat. This is produced by processing vegetable oils and you will find it in manufactured biscuits, cakes, pies and fried foods.  It is linked to coronary heart disease and is best avoided altogether. Check labels and if you can make from scratch..

Vegetable oils on the other hand you would think would all be fine but even here you need to be a little savvy. It’s all to do with balancing your omegas, that is omega 3 and 6 because an imbalance can lead to chronic heart problems because an imbalance is pro-inflammatory. Omega 6 is found in corn oil, sunflower oil, safflower oil etc.  Vegan sources of omega 3 include walnuts and flaxseed oil.  A good diet would have around three times the amount of omega 6 to omega 3 but for the average diet omega 6s outweigh omega 3s by far more than this, leading to health issues.  A good reason to step up those omega 3s and reduce omega 6s!  For more on omega 3s please see 'Where do vegans get their Omega 3's from?'

Another consideration is the smoking point of oils if you are to cook with them.  At its smoking point an oil will produce free radicals which are damaging to health.  Low smoke point oils are fine for salad dressings etc but for high temperature cooking use a high smoke point oil such as olive oil, rapeseed oil or avocado oil.

GMO oils, that is genetically modified, are best avoided.  Most soybean oil for instance is from genetically modified crops unless they are organic. GMO crops have had genes for disease resistance 'built in' which may be a health concern. More research is needed.

Palm oil is widely used but also best avoided.  The palm oil industry is associated with deforestation and climate change.

Although oils are a very necessary part of our diet, it is worth remembering that they do have a lot of calories - around 125 calories per tablespoon.

If you are enjoying my blogs please consider making a small donation but please do not feel this is a condition of enjoying the blogs. Please see-https://40plusandalliswell.blogspot.com/p/blog-page.html


Thank you




Meatless Monday : Vegan Kofta Kebabs with pickled red onions

Monday, 11 June 2018



What lovely weather we are having at the moment - just right for eating outside.  Last weekend we enjoyed these vegan kebabs with some homemade pickled onions.  If you remember we grew some mixed winter onions on the allotment and we have just harvested them.  We used the red ones to make this pickle which is perfect with the kebabs. 

Vegan kofta kebabs with pickled red onions.

Serves 2

You will need

For the kebabs

120g soy mince
90g breadcrumbs - these were made from some soda bread that I had made and kept in the freezer to make breadcrumbs with
1 level tsp garlic powder 
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp chilli flakes
1 level tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp powdered ginger
Leaves from 4 sprigs mint + extra for garnish
olive oil spray

For the pickled onions
Red onions, peeled and sliced
Pickling vinegar or we used half apple cider vinegar/half malt vinegar
few black peppercons
2 tsp stevia

picked the red onions at the allotment

For the pickled red onions
Fill a jar with red onions then pour in vinegar to cover the onions.  Add the stevia and black peppercorns and leave at least until next day in the fridge. 

The picked red onions



For the kebabs
Place the soy mince in a bowl and just cover with boiling water.  Leave for 10 minutes then place in a high speed blender with the remaining ingredients.  You should be left with a stiff paste.  Turn out onto a clean chopping board and divide into 4.  Press each quarter around a metal scewer and place on a baking tray that has been sprayed with olive oil spray.  Bake for 15-20 minutes turning once (use oven gloves).  Serve with pitta breads. the pickled red onions and a side salad.  



If you are enjoying my blogs please consider making a small donation but please do not feel this is a condition of enjoying the blogs. Please see-http://40plusandalliswell.blogspot.co.uk/p/blog-page.html

Thank you




This week on Flexiladiesyoga

Sunday, 10 June 2018

On my 'sister' blog we look at how yoga and essential oils can lift our mood- https://flexiladies.blogspot.com/2018/06/yoga-and-essential-oils-lift-your-mood.html

If you are enjoying my videos and blog posts please would you consider a small donation? Please note however this is not a condition of enjoying my blogs. Please see-http://flexiladies.blogspot.co.uk/p/support-this-blog_44.html

Thank you

Your food, your mood


Through yoga I am well aware of the mind/body connection – that is what affects your body has an influence on your mind and vice versa.  It makes perfect sense to me therefore that the food you eat affects not only your body, but your mind.

For a stable mood, your blood sugar needs to be stable – low blood sugar can lead to feelings of irritability or even anger – we can all get ratty when we have gone a long time without food.  To ensure your blood sugar is on an even keel avoid refined carbs in particular sugar  – these lead to ‘spikes’ in blood sugar followed by dips with the accompanying feelings of irritability.  Caffeine and alcohol can have a similar effect. Of course, it is important to eat regularly.  Breakfast is especially important as you have already gone a long time without food overnight.

There is more to how your food influences your mind however than just blood sugar.  Serontin, the ‘feel good’ is produced in your brain but did you know that 90% of your serontin is produced in the gut.  For many reasons gut health cannot be over-emphasised.  A multi-strain probiotic is a must but also include probiotic foods such as sauerkraut in your diet.  Probiotics such as bananas, leeks etc will also help ensure your gut flora is healthy.  Include plenty of fibre in your diet, both soluble such as oats and insoluble from fruits and vegetables.  Avoid alcohol, processed and fast foods, and alcohol which negatively affect gut flora.  If you do have to take antibiotics, make sure you are also taking a probiotic but not at the same time – leave at least an hour between.

Serontin is not the only neurotransmitter to influence mood and protein in your diet provides the building blocks to make these neurotransmitters so make sure your diet has enough.  Vegan sources of protein are usually not complete proteins, the exception being soy protein.  In order to get all the amino acid building blocks of protein therefore eat a variety.  Serontin for instance is made from the amino acid tryptophan and B vitamins help the conversion to serontin.  Vegan sources of tryptophan include soy products, mushrooms etc and B vitamins are found in wholegrains, nutritional yeast etc. Another neurotransmitter gamma amino butyric acid, GABA for short is calming.  It is made from glutamine again with the help of B vitamins. 

Omega 3 regulates mood  - it assists communication between brain cells and reduces inflammation.  Please see 'Where do vegans get their Omega 3's from'.

For more ways to lift your mood see the yoga blog where I have posted a yoga sequence to boost mood along with some suggestions for essential oils to deepen the practice. Please see' Yoga and essential oils-lift your mood'.

If you are enjoying my blogs please consider making a small donation but please do not feel this is a condition of enjoying the blogs. Please see-http://40plusandalliswell.blogspot.co.uk/p/blog-page.html

Thank you