Raspberry, cinnamon & orange gut gummies

The Beauty Chef - Raspberry, cinnamon and orange gut gummies

MAKES 25

These delicious raspberry gummies hold a gut-loving secret! Containing grass-fed gelatin as well as GUT PRIMER™ Inner Beauty Support™, these gorgeous gummies are the most nourishing treat.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 1/3 cups (340mL) cold water
  • 2 tablespoons grass-fed powdered gelatin
  • 2 cups (240g) fresh or frozen raspberries
  • 1 cinnamon stick, broken
  • Peeled zest of 1 unwaxed orange
  • Stevia equivalent to 1 1/2 tablespoon sugar, or to taste
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons GUT PRIMER™ powder

METHOD:

  1. Pour 3/4 cup (180mL) of the water into a small bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over the surface in an even layer. Set aside for 10 minutes, to bloom.
  2. Combine the raspberries, remaining 2/3 cup (160mL) of water, cinnamon and orange zest in a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Decrease the heat and gently simmer for 5 minutes, or until reduced slightly and the cinnamon and orange flavour has infused.
  3. Add the gelatin mixture and stevia to the hot raspberry liquid and stir until dissolved. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a measuring jug, using a spoon to press the raspberry pump to ensure you get all of the juice out. Don’t scrape, as you don’t want to push too many of the seeds through. Top up the liquid with water to make 1 1/2 cups (375mL), if necessary. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
  4. Sprinkle the GUT PRIMER™ powder over the top of the cooled raspberry liquid and stir to combine.
  5. Place ice cube trays or silicon moulds onto trays. Fill with the raspberry liquid.
  6. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or until completely set.
  7. To unmould, briefly dip base of the ice cube trays or moulds into boiling water to loosen. You want them to warm and come close to beginning to melt so that they will have a glossy surface when unmoulded. Using your fingertips, gently pull the gummies away from the edge of the moulds to release the seal, then invert onto a plate or if using silicon moulds, push out.
  8. Store the gummies in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

For more gut-nourishing recipe ideas, check out The Beauty Chef Gut Guide, available now.

5 morning rituals that set you up for success

The Beauty Chef - 5 morning rituals to set you up for success

Start the day feeling calm and collected with these five super simple morning rituals. Because once you’ve mastered your morning, you’ve mastered your day…  

Reflect

Read enough inspiring quotes and you’ll quickly realise that ‘staying present’ is essential for anyone hoping to cultivate a happy and successful life. Less popular, but equally as valuable, is the idea of reflection. Every morning, take a moment to reflect on three things you’re grateful for from the previous day. It might have been the delicious coffee you had on your morning break, a wonderful chat with a friend, the train ride to work or the food you ate for dinner. All of these seemingly ‘everyday’ things – food, transport, friendship – are, in fact enormous privileges. Framing them as such will help you to carry gratitude and positivity into your day.

Repeat

Repeated rituals form healthy habits so start small by endeavouring to make your bed every morning. When your external environment is tidy and calm, you’re likely to feel calmer on the inside too. Making your bed also means that you’ve already achieved something just a few minutes into your day. And of course, when you return home, you’ll be pleased to see your space looking tidy and inviting. Tim Ferriss, bestselling author of ‘The 4-Hour Workweek’, is a proponent of daily bed-making, and this is certainly one morning ritual we can get behind.

Nourish

If there’s one daily habit we should all adopt, it’s a gut-loving ritual that primes, soothes and strengthens digestion – all before 9am. Given that 70 per cent of our immune system is located in the gut, starting the day with a gut-loving elixir is key to our overall wellbeing. Containing ingredients like bio-fermented papaya, aloe vera, peppermint, slippery elm, milk thistle, L-glutamine and turmeric, GUT PRIMER™ Inner Beauty Support™ nourishes your digestive system and helps to repair and restore the delicate lining of the gut. While GUT PRIMER™ can be taken at any time of the day, we find that mornings are a particularly powerful time to implement health-related rituals.

Simplify

Ever noticed that you’re at your most glow-y when you first wake up? This is because your skin’s protective barrier re-establishes itself at night. What’s more, all of those fabulous products you used before bed have had time to work their magic. Cleansing in the morning may remove your skin’s natural oils (the good stuff) and disrupt the skin’s delicate microbiome. So, rather than washing your face with a cleanser in the AM, just rinse it with tepid water and pat dry. Not only will your products last longer, but you’ll also streamline your morning routine.

Eat

Steer clear of breakfasts that are high in carbohydrates (like sugary cereals and granola) as they’ll spike your blood sugar and fail to sustain you for more than an hour or two. Instead, opt for an energy-sustaining protein like organic, pasture-raised eggs – they’re the perfect breakfast option for omnivorous folk and will give you the nourishment you need to tackle your to-do list. A study published in The Journal of Nutrition, actually suggests that eating a breakfast rich in healthy fats (think avocado and eggs) may help us to burn fat more efficiently throughout the day. Eggcellent!

A few last words: the seeds for a successful morning are actually sown the night before. So, be sure to get at least eight hours of quality sleep so you can wake up feeling refreshed and energised.

What does your morning routine look like? We’d love to know.


Get gutsy with Carla | Why food has the most profound impact on gut health

The Beauty Chef - Get gutsy with Carla: Why food has the most profound impact on gut health

I love the analogy that our gut is like a garden – for a garden to be beautiful and its shoots strong and lustrous, the soil needs the right bacterial and nutrient balance. And our gut is the same. We need to tend to it gently, nurturing it and nourishing it with nutrient-dense wholefoods.

When healthy, it is full of a diverse range of bacteria and when our gut is in balance or eubiosis, we thrive. When there is an imbalance or dysbiosis, however, we can experience a myriad of diverse symptoms – from headaches and bloating, to allergies, skin issues, autoimmune conditions and gut issues.

While there are countless factors that can impact and compromise our gut health, without a doubt, food has the most profound impact. Put simply, what we choose to eat can either help to heal our gut or harm it – so if you’re looking to improve your gut health, it’s essential you turn to your plate first and foremost.

FOODS TO AVOID

Certain foods can disrupt the microbiome, irritate the gut lining and therefore contribute to leaky gut and trigger an immune response and inflammation in the body.  So if you’re looking to heal your gut, it’s important to avoid refined sugars, additives and preservatives, refined flours and processed foods, alcohol, charred or burnt food as well as gluten and dairy – which are both common gut disruptors.

Gluten, in particular, can be particularly irritating to the gut lining, aggravating the immune system. Studies show that gliadin, a protein found in wheat, can actually increase the likelihood of leaky gut – whether you’re gluten-sensitive, coeliac or not. And for some, both soy and dairy can manifest in similar symptoms as gluten sensitivity.

FOODS TO ENJOY

For a balanced, healthy gut, it’s important to promote microbial diversity – by enjoying a varied diet of wholefoods, and an array of nutrients. Remember, different microbes feed on different nutrients so diversity is key!

  • Fermented foods: Rich in probiotic bacteria, fermented foods are a great way to feed the gut with beneficial microbes. Sauerkraut, kimchi, kefir, miso and tempeh are all delicious examples of fermented foods – as are The Beauty Chef products, of course! Fermented foods also aid digestion, help to combat inflammation and restore immune function.
  • Fibre: When it comes to promoting microbial diversity fibre, above all else, has the most profound impact. Found in fruits and vegetables, legumes, nuts and seeds, fibre helps to feed the beneficial microbes in the gut. Soluble fibre, for example, passes through the small intestine and begins to break down in the large intestine – fermenting with the help of the beneficial bacteria that live there. The by-product of this fermentation is the production of short-chain fatty acids (such as butyrate), anti-inflammatory compounds which are essential for our gut, immune, brain and metabolic health. Inulin (found in artichokes) and pectin (found in apples and pears) are good examples of fibre that help to encourage the production of SCFA’s.
  • Polyphenols: Found in brightly coloured fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds – including carrots, capsicum, sweet potato, spinach, rosemary, onions, berries, pomegranate and garlic – these antioxidant compounds help to protect and improve gut barrier function.
  • Healing foods: To heal your gut it’s essential to load up your plate with nourishing foods that are soothing and gentle on the gut. Slow-cooked stews, bone broth (rich in gut-healing amino acids), nourishing soups, and foods that contain digestive-boosting enzymes such as bitter greens (rocket and dandelion), and sour foods (like citrus and apple cider vinegar) are all gut-friendly options.

For a comprehensive guide on how to health, weed, seed and feed your belly, The Beauty Chef Gut Guide is out now and contains more than 90 delicious recipes and meal plans to follow.


What’s the difference between prebiotics and probiotics?

The Beauty Chef - What's the difference between prebiotics and probiotics?

When it comes to maintaining optimal gut health, both prebiotics and probiotics are essential. While they have different functions, they work synergistically to help support our microbiome – the incredible mini-ecosystem of bacteria that live within our digestive tract – and our overall health.

To truly understand the benefits of both prebiotics and probiotics however, it’s first important to understand the complexity and importance of our bacteria in general. For example, while traditionally probiotics have been described simply as ‘good’ bacteria, the latest research shows that this view is, perhaps, a little too simplistic. Rather than thinking of our bacteria as either ‘good’ or ‘bad’ – we must instead think of them in terms of those we want, those we don’t want (pathogenic bacteria) and those that are relatively neutral, depending on how they interact with their environment. And, most importantly, for good gut health – as well as glowing skin – we need a diversity of bacteria to thrive!

WHAT ARE PROBIOTICS?

Probiotics are the live, beneficial bacteria that we can consume – either through food or supplements – which help to support not only our gut health, but our immune function and overall wellbeing as well.

There is also a growing body of research linking certain species and strains of probiotics to a myriad of health and skin benefits. Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium and Saccharomyces, for example, are now widely supported to be beneficial in the treatment of skin conditions.

But, despite their benefits, there is also no perfect probiotic profile that’s suited to everyone which is why taking a probiotic pill or supplement (consisting of just one or two species or strains) is arguably not so great for your microbiome. Instead, the best thing you can do is eat a nutrient-dense, balanced diet including probiotic-rich fermented foods which are naturally rich in a variety of species and strains. Good examples include sauerkraut, kimchi, kefir, miso, natto, tempeh and yoghurt (and The Beauty Chef products!) – which all contain an abundance of gut-friendly probiotic bacteria.

WHAT ARE PREBIOTICS?

If you think of your gut as a garden, prebiotics are akin to fertiliser, helping to nourish and feed the beneficial bacteria in the gut, encouraging their proliferation while also helping to reduce levels of pathogenic bacteria.

Prebiotics are the non-digestible plant fibres that are resistant to digestion, passing through the stomach and small intestine to be metabolised by bacteria in the large intestine, or colon. As you can see, prebiotics are essential for digestive health as without adequate prebiotic intake, your beneficial microbes may not receive the nourishment they need to thrive.

Prebiotic soluble fibre is particularly good for gut health as when soluble fibre is metabolised by bacteria and fermented in the colon, the by-product of this fermentation is the production of short-chain fatty acids – such as butyrate, propionate and acetate. These anti-inflammatory compounds are essential for our immune health and brain health as well as our gut health – helping to improve intestinal barrier function. Fruits, vegetables and legumes are all good sources!

Interestingly, in the Western world, our fibre intake is much lower than that of people who live in un-industrialised regions, with some rural communities in Africa incorporating up to seven times more fibre into their diets. While a lower fibre intake is not only thought to be linked to less microbial diversity, as we explain in The Beauty Chef Gut Guide, “Pre-clinical research also shows that when microbes are starved of fibre, they may feed on the protein found in the mucosal lining of the gut, triggering inflammation and gut-related diseases”

As you can see, both prebiotics and probiotics play an integral role in our gut health and overall wellbeing – and it’s this synergistic relationship between the two that we embrace at The Beauty Chef. By harnessing the power of fermentation, our inner beauty powders are rich in both prebiotics and probiotics to holistically support your health, beauty and wellbeing from the inside, out.

To discover more about the importance of prebiotics and probiotics, check out The Beauty Chef Gut Guide – available now!