This stuff is seriously addictive. I love it spread on toast, drizzled over pancakes or eaten straight out of the jar with a spoon.
It’s refined sugar-free, uses only natural ingredients and most importantly has received the Dafne (Dose Adjustment For Normal Eating) seal of approval. If my toddler will eat this, that means it’s a winner. Prep time: 20 minutes
Serves: Makes one medium jam jar of spread
1 cup hazelnuts Half cup cashew nuts Half cup almonds 8 medjool dates (pitted) Half tbsp cinnamon Half tbsp raw cacao 1 tbsp coconut oil
Blend the nuts in a food processor for about 5 minutes until almost completely broken down.
Add the remaining ingredients and blend for about 15 minutes until completely smooth. You will need to stop from time to time to scrape down the edges.
Store in an airtight container (jamjars are perfect) in a cool dark place.
This week I’m sharing one of my favourite workouts for core strength. Recipe wise, I’ve got a healthy chocolate spread and my favourite banana bread which is guaranteed to satisfy any sweet tooth.
I really believe having a strong core is so much more important than having visible abs. As a former professional athlete, I was always working on my core, it’s just as important now while I’m trying to stay strong and healthy as it was when I was trying to break records.
Don’t get me wrong — we all love a bit of abs and that’s perfectly okay but we need to focus more on a strong core over a flat stomach for long-term health and wellbeing.
I have a problem with my back and I find that having a good core routine really helps to manage this. I also drive a lot for work and feel that doing core work helps with this. A strong core improves balance, posture, stability and overall strength.
Med ball core circuit
Throughout this circuit aim to keep your ribs down, your belly button pulled in towards your spine and your chin tucked slightly. This helps to ensure your core is doing the work and not your lower back. Remember to keep it slow and controlled throughout.
Exercise 1 Russian twists
Sit on the floor with knees bent and feet flat. Hold the med ball in front of you and lean back slightly.
From here, twist your upper body and core to one side until your arms are parallel to the floor.
Return to the starting position and repeat on the other side.
To progress this exercise, lift your heels off the floor.
To simplify this exercise, don’t use any added weight.
Do 10 reps of this.
Exercise 2 - Sit ups
Lie on the floor with knees bent and feet flat. Hold the med ball overhead with your arms outstretched.
Engage your core and keep lower back in contact with the ground throughout.
Raise your upper back and shoulders off the floor (imagine sliding your ribs down towards your pelvis) and bring the medicine ball towards the knees, so that it’s hovering above them.
Lower back down to the starting position and repeat.
Do 10 reps of this.
Exercise 3 Mountain climber
Begin in a high plank position with your hands directly beneath your shoulders.
Bend one leg and bring it forward towards your elbow then lower to starting position.
Repeat with the other leg making sure to keep your core engaged and back straight.
Aim to repeat each of these exercises 10 reps. Repeat the circuit 3 times.
Take a minute recovery between each circuit.
Susan Jane is a self-confessed health geek on a mission to take the “hell out of healthy”. I love her new cookbook The Virtuous Tart and all the delicious healthier treats it contains. She was one of the first people I was inspired by when it came to healthy cooking. She has been creating super healthy dishes long before it became so trendy.