Travel

Best Healthy Hotspots In Byron Bay

April 22, 2017

Healthy Hotspots in Byron Bay

When you drive into Byron Bay there is a welcome sign, saying, “cheer up, slow down, chill out,”. That pretty much sums up my Byron experience.

From the day I moved to Sydney, going for a long weekend trip to Byron Bay was on top of my travel-list. I had heard endless stories about the region’s bountiful organic produce, health conscious culture, long beaches and laid-back vibes; I was convinced before I even got there. Plus the weather is picture-perfect almost all year round, what’s not to love? It’s also just a short 1 1/2 – hour flight away from Sydney, making it the perfect quick city escape.

Part of what makes Byron Bay so wholesome and grounding is the food. This beach town is home to some of the world’s most passionate and sustainable foodies, meaning you won’t be short of healthy cafés and restaurants to check out. In fact, in the five days that I was there, I barely got through all the places I wanted to dine at (unless I was up for having 2 breakfasts, 3 lunches, a post-lunch raw treat, an arvo smoothie, a pre-dinner snack, a 2-course dinner followed by another vegan dessert…). Whether you’re looking for organic food cafes, super foods, gluten free delights, raw food treats, gut healing concoctions or slow cooked creations, – Byron Bay has it all!

Below is a list of my favorite healthy hotspots as well as some recommendations on what to do while you are visiting. But without further ado, get your Instagram camera ready, because foodie shots have never looked this divine! 


We Are Combi

Combi was the first place we went to right after we arrived in Byron – we didn’t even go to our Airbnb but went straight there because we were starving. Good thing they have the most delicious acai bowl, avo on toast and also nourishing smoothies to fill you up. Plus good coffee, win. For something sweet, don’t forget to check out the incredibly insta-worthy raw bar filled to the brim with delicious treats like raw caramel slices, raw matcha cakes or an indulgent raw tiramisu. P.S. they have one in Melbourne too if you’re ever in that corner.

5b/21-25 Fletcher St, Byron Bay NSW 2481 / Website: www.wearecombi.com.au / Instagram: @wearecombi

Healthy Hotspots in Byron BayHealthy Hotspots in Byron BayHealthy Hotspots in Byron Bay

The Farm Byron Bay

When it comes to sustainable food, the team at ‘The Farm’ truly walk the talk. So what is it? The Farm is, well, just that, an 80-acre farm just a stone’s throw from Byron Bay with a paddock to plate’ philosophy – restaurant/café attached to it. The menu is based on the food sourced from The Farm’s own 100% spray and chemical free farm as well as well as some of the best producs in the region – with a focus on community and collaboration. The aim is to teach people about sustainability and to get them thinking about where their food comes from – something this world definitely needs more of! Imagine this: after devouring a mango chia parfait topped with fresh mint picked right in front of your eyes and sipping on coffee while you watch kids playing in the grass, you head to the produce section and pick up fresh food for your dinner tonight – eggs from the hens that you see running around and fresh veggies from the soil that you are surrounded by. Doesn’t that sound dreamy?

92 Woodford Ln, Ewingsdale NSW 2481 / Website: www.thefarmbyronbay.com.au / Instagram: @thefarmatbyronbay

Healthy Hotspots in Byron Bay

Naked Treaties Raw Food Bar

This. Is. Foodie. Heaven. As you walk through the door and turn to your right, you will discover the longest list of organic smoothies available to man kind. As you turn to your left, all your heart’s desires are fulfilled as you discover a fridge filled with mouthwatering raw vegan desserts + juices and smoothies. The focus at Naked Treaties is on raw foods, but they do sell a range of hot drinks (organic hot chocolates, matcha lattes etc.) Their lunch menu includes dishes like raw pizza, raw falafel wraps, raw zucchini spaghetti bolognese and green veggie bowls. I had the activated buckwheat savoury crepe with lots of veggies +  a hormone balancing elixir shot with a kombucha chaser. We do an epic sweet version of the crêpe too! Oh, and did I mention they are committed to being 100% organic?

2/3 Marvell St, Byron Bay NSW 2481/ Website: www.nakedtreaties.com.auInstagram: @nakedtreaties

Healthy Hotspots in Byron BayHealthy Hotspots in Byron BayHealthy Hotspots in Byron Bay

The Top Shop

From surfie to hippy to tourists with camera, this corner-café appeals to all of the distinct town’s walks of life. You’ll need to get out of the heart of the city’s centre to find this gem at the top of a hill. Originally a corner store and milkbar, this eatery is now best known for it’s good coffee, burgers made with free-range, grass-fed meat and organic eggs, as well as their bread and pastries that are all homemade. I didn’t get around to trying the burgers, but apparently the haloumi burger is pretty rad. My tip: pick a gorgeous day, come with your journal or podcast, grab a coffee and sit in the sun and relax a little.

65 Carlyle St, Byron Bay NSW 2481 / Facebook: www.facebook.com/TopShopByronBay / Instagram: www.instagram.com/explore/locations/218974717/top-shop-byron-bay/

Healthy Hotspots in Byron Bay

Bay Leaf

Bayleaf first attracted me because of how the café looked – warm and welcoming. The interior has solid timber tables, exposed brick andn an open view kitchen. There’s lots of sitting options both outside and inside, and as the café is north-facing it’s the perfect spot for a moring brunch. The menu at Bayleaf Café is the same across breakfast and lunch, something which I personally love. Perfect for a lazy weekend brunch! And yes, you guessed it, produce is locally sourced and organic whenever possible (see why I love Byron so much?). Try the Dukkah Poached Eggs – organic sourdough topped with heirloom tomatoes, marjoram and buffalo mozarella that’s dressed with chardonnay vinegar and lavender infused honey served with two poached eggs and a lots of dukkah. Coupled with house-roasted Marvel Street coffee or an iced matcha latte, this certainly will get you fueled for the day. I also had a taster of the Portuguese chicken and it was pretty epic.

87/8 Jonson St, Byron Bay NSW 2481 / Facebook: www.facebook.com/bayleafcoffee/ / Instagram: @bayleafcafe

Healthy Hotspots in Byron Bay

The Roadhouse

The Roadhouse is another local’s favorite – expect to see lots of people barefoot, catching up with friends over coffee or grabbing a quick bite before work. Their produce is sourced locally,  the special’s board is always changing and they opt for organic produce wherever possible. They also serve a bunch of different cold-pressed juices, healing elixirs and turmeric lattes etc. Even better – they’ll get your gut bacteria humming  with fermented foods and the promise of no refined sugar (desserts included). They also have you covered for all your gluten-free needs, .e. a slice of roast pumpkin instead of your usual piece of highly processed GF bread. They stock a variety of cold-pressed juices, digestive tonics, healing elixirs and the infamous golden milk. They also understand the importance of fermented foods (think sauerkraut and sprouted bread) and are adamant that none of their dishes use refined sugar (desserts included). Gluten Free? They have got you covered – a slice of roast pumpkin replaces any refined piece of GF bread. Not to mention that there is herb garden. What’s not to love?

6/142 Bangalow Rd, Byron Bay NSW 2481 / Website: http://roadhousebyronbay.com / Instagram: @roadhousebyronbay

Healthy Hotspots in Byron Bay

 

What else to do in Byron…

Surf, surf, surf – I have to admit, I had heard horror stories of sharks around Byron so at first I thought there was no way in hell that I was going surfing. But as soon as we arrived and saw how many locals, tourists and children were out in the water surfing, all that fear went away. We’d rent surf boards (no need for wet suits as the water is nice and warm here even in winter) from Soul Surf school, then walk along Main Beach to The Pass which is in the direction of the lightouse. They have this awesome large wooden structure there called the Fisherman’s Lookout, with a platform at the top from which you can admire the beautiful view and check out the crowd in the water. It’s honestly the perfect spot to observe other surfers’ and learn a thing or two from them.

 

 

Walking/running – For a walking/running route, go from Clarkes Beach to the lighthouse. At sunrise, of course! We didn’t have very great weather when we visited, so we just watched the sunrise at the Main Beach, but I heard it’s incredibly rewarding to trek up to the Lighthouse to see the sunrise there.

 

Minyon Falls – this is another thing that was highly recommend to me, but we couldn’t go because the weather wasn’t on our side. If you have more luck, head out along the bush track past Broken Head and walk down one of the tracks to an isolated beach. You can find maps and local information here.

Healthy Hotspots in Byron Bay


Healthy Hotspots in Byron BayHealthy Hotspots in Byron Bay

For  more travel posts, click here.
Recipes

Rosewater Berry NanaBowl Recipe + Get To Know The Founders of NanaBowls

March 28, 2017

NanaBowl

I first connected with Phil and Jess through social media two years ago when I was travelling through Phuket and discovered their Instagram accounts. I then had the pleasure of meeting Phil during my detox holidays at Phuket Cleanse – he was working there as director at the time. I only got to meet Jess some time later when I went to London – at the time she was working for Deliciously Ella and I was intrigued to join the team. Maaaan I just love social media – in this day and age, it’s so damn easy to connect with like-minded people and to find ‘your tribe’. Without Insta, I would have probably never met these two super inspirational people! Case in point: check out Phil’s Ted Talk that he did a couple of months ago on “how to get your mojo back”.

These two have now joined forces in a new venture – Nana Bowls. As you can guess from the picture above, it’s all about mouth-watering delicious smoothie bowls! Read the interview below on how they got started + some more insight, or scroll straight down if you want to recreate their Rosewater Berry NanaBowl for yourself. Enjoy!


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Real Talk

I Gained Weight, So What? – Here Is What I Am Learning Along The Way

March 21, 2017

I Gained Weight

So, I gained weight.

I know it. My partner knows it. My family knows it. My friends know it. Instagram knows it.

I’m sure I’m not the only one going through this. In fact, maybe you gained some weight recently as well?

There are many reasons why I gained weight; all of which are within my control. On the one hand, I have become less restrictive/obsessive and have truly given up the diet mentality for good. Yay! But on the other hand I have also been super stressed and anxious in recent months and as a result, my emotional eating track record has been through the roof. Nay! But regardless of why, none of these reasons need to be explained or apologized for. It is what it is.

As you can guess, this physical change has come with a large amount of mindfuckery. It’s  never a pleasant experience to gain weight (unless that is your goal, and sometimes even then), but even more so if you have struggled with an eating disorder in the past. How the heck are you supposed to deal with that shit?! After all, it’s taken me a long time to become comfortable with my body and accept it for what it is (no thigh gap and stuff). But now I need to re-learn how to love my body with all its new features, and somehow the meaning of unconditional self-love has taken on a whole new meaning.

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Travel

My Top 7 Healthy Cafes in Sydney

March 14, 2017

Can you believe that I’ve lived in Sydney for 10 months now and have not done one single healthy restaurant review?! What.the.hell.is.wrong.with.me. There’s a million of places to get your healthy food fix in Sydney, and I find it so incredibly easy to make good food choices around this city. With breakfast being the most important meal to Sydney-siders, I’ve done the leg-work for you and compiled my Top 7 Healthy Eats below. I actually had soooo many more to put on this list, but if you only had time for 7 meals in Sydney, you wouldn’t want to miss out on any of these.

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Recipes

Fresh Veggie Rice Paper Rolls With Tofu, Avocado And Mango

March 7, 2017

Rice Paper Rolls

Actions speak louder than words and in this case, my action was to make these two nights in a row for my dinner. That’s how good these vegan rice paper rolls are… They aren’t a revolutionary recipe creation by any means, however, this recipe is perfect if you’re looking for a cheap, quick, healthy and absolutely delicious lunch, dinner or even snack. Yes, yes, yes!

There is something so satisfying about rice paper rolls filled with fresh herbs, veggies, tofu, mango and creamy avocado paired with a flavorful dipping sauce. I could probably eat this every day of the year and not get sick of it. Maybe I should move to Thailand. Or Vietnam. Or Bali….

Verdict: This is definitely my new favorite way to eat vegetables. These crunchy rolls are:

  • high in nutrients
  • protein-packed due to the tofu
  • light but super satisfying
  • customizable depending on your preference
  • a great way to use up left over produce in your fridge
  • easy to make once you get the hang of rolling the rice paper rolls

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Loving Lately

Loving Lately – 21.02.17

February 21, 2017
Loving Lately - 21.02.17

GUYYYYS. What is there not to love lately? Sure, I have my ups and downs just like everyone else, but 2017 has been a pretty good year so far and I’ve been doing so many things that light my soul on ire.

It’s been a bit since I’ve done a loving lately post, so let’s just dive on in!


Natural perfumes

On Australia Day (my first ever, whipeee) I was walking through The Rocks Market amongst celebrating crowds, aimlessly wandering the various stalls together with my boyfriend. As we were walking, I was telling him how I really wanted to make the switch to natural perfumes.

BF: “Whaaaat, so no more of my beloved Chloé perfume?”

Me: “Nop, sorry. I’m breaking up with Chloé.”

And just as we were walking around talking about how bad conventional perfumes are (if you think this is BS, go do your research, we are literally spraying POISON on us by using normal perfumes!), we stumbled across a little perfume stall that was inviting people to come and try their testers. I’d never seen or heard of the brand Amacyn, but I was immediately intrigued by their beautiful packaging and tested my way through the various scents. The reason why I hadn’t yet made the switch to natural perfumes is because I couldn’t find one that was long-lasting, so I had a little chat with the lady and she gave me a mini lesson on essential oils and which combos will stay longer than others. In the end, I chose their “I am Kind” perfume (one of the most long-lasting, according to her), a sweet woody scent with a rich aroma of woody patchouli and the sweetness of vanilla, neroli, jasmine and iris. All of their products are 100% all natural plant extracts (no synthetic chemicals, no artificial and animal fragrances, colours, phthalates, parabens or synthetic ingredients), there is no animal testing and the packaging is environmentally friendly. Win!

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Wellbeing

My Journey From Self-Destruction To Self-Love

February 14, 2017

Do you sometimes do things that you know aren’t good for you and you will feel like crap afterward?

I’m sure you are all quietly nodding your heads right now. Regardless of whether your destructive behavior is downing a pint of Ben and Jerry’s each night, or getting embarrassingly intoxicated in front of the wrong people, I think we can all relate to the fact that sometimes we feel a bit out of control of our own behavior.

The picture you see above shows me in the summer of  2011 vs 2016.

On the left is an 18-year-old girl who just graduated high school, didn’t have much self-esteem, was fighting an eating disorder, valued partying and alcohol over her health, spent hours on the tread mill to be skinny, was using food as a coping mechanism and had no self-awareness whatsoever.

On the right is a 23-year-old girl who pumps more iron than alcohol, practices yoga, meditates every day, did a health coaching course in order to help others in their own self-love struggles while putting in the daily work to be the best possible version of herself. She prefers a calm night in with friends or herself over excessive clubbing, she’s confident with her imperfections and doesn’t try to be someone that she is not.

So, when you answered HELL YES to my first question, please know that you are not alone. Who among us doesn’t display some sort self-destructive behaviors from time to time, if not on a regular basis? But let me tell you that it’s possible to turn it around. And trust me, I’m no superwoman. I might seem disciplined from the view of an outsider, but from within I have always felt undisciplined with a lack of self-control. For the longest time, my struggle with binge eating has made me feel like I could never change, but I did.

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Travel

Wholesome Travel Guide To Singapore

February 7, 2017

Initially, Singapore didn’t really strike me as a very healthy place. There’s deep fried Asian food everywhere, when you are at the local markets it’s impossible to know what you are eating and I didn’t see a lot of people being very active. That is, if you don’t count the shopping marathons that are possible in Singapore (you can literally walk through the entire 4 million-people city via malls underground.

But after a couple of days exploring the city with my other half Vic, I was more and more impressed with the healthy cafés and studios that we discovered. They aren’t as easily visible at first sight like I am now used to in Australia, but if you do a bit of research, you will realise that there are actually plenty of great options. It’s a place where the health scene is really up and coming, so if you keep your eyes peeled, I’m sure you will discover some new and exciting places.

Below is a list of places that I’ve hit up and can wholeheartedly recommend. Enjoy!

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Food, Recipes

Vegan Peanut Butter And Vanilla Nana Ice Cream

January 31, 2017

Nana Ice Cream

It’s no secret that I go nanas for bananas. A good 20% of my recipes on this blog include bananas, like my favorite post-workout green smoothie, my peanut butter covered banana snack or these vegan banana blueberry pancakes.

With the scorching temperatures in Australia at the moment, it’s about time that I come up with my first nana ice cream recipe for this blog. I always have frozen bananas in the freezer for smoothies anyways, so whipping up this recipe is fairly simple.

I’m sure most of you already know the basic concept of blending frozen bananas in a blender/food processor until the results have the exact texture of soft serve ice cream.  The banana tastes surprisingly neutral, making it a great refined sugar free/dairy free base for other flavors. I’m not going to sit here and tell you that it tastes exactly like the real deal, but it certainly can satisfy your ice cream cravings! Whilst most other frozen fruits make for an icy texture, banana makes it creamy and rich thanks to its high pectin content.

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Lifestyle, Wellbeing

My Honest Review Of The Institute For Integrative Nutrition

January 24, 2017

It’s been about a year since I completed my health coaching course through the Institute of Integrative Nutrition and this post is long overdue. I’m often asked by others about my opinion of the course and if I think it’s a good program.

The answer is….maybe.

Personally, I was absolutely wowed by the course. It was exactly what I was looking for and I loved every minute of it. It changed my life and has allowed me to create this beautiful passion-fuelled life I now live. It has helped me heal myself, connected me with like-minded individuals all around the world and has enabled me to inspire people to live their life to their fullest.

But whether IIN is a good choice for you, depends on YOU and what you’re after. Let’s have a closer look:

What is IIN?

 IIN is a 1-year long online program designed for people who are passionate about health and wellness. It is broken down into weekly modules (which you can work through in your own time) in which you will learn about nutrition, healthy lifestyle choices, mind and body connections, coaching and business skills. The course aims to empower you to transform your personal life and in turn help others transform their lives too.

A common question I get is whether it provides you with enough education and tools to work in the field of health, and this is a bit tricky because it completely depends on how you want to use it. Personally, I wanted to a) deepen my knowledge on nutrition and wellbeing b) continue on the self-development journey that I was on c) gain coaching tools and techniques to help others who are struggling with food and body image issues. For the latter, I knew that I didn’t need a 4-year nutrition degree. Yes, I wanted to help people eat healthy and do the right things for their body, but I knew from the beginning that I wanted to work with people where food wasn’t REALLY the issue. IIN seemed to be the perfect fit. It would take one year, I could complete it while working 80% on the side, it had an incredibly holistic approach teaching you over 100 different dietary theories + mind/body connection, and the cost was reasonable.

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