a healthy journey

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We have spent 4 days now in Phuket and surprisingly found a beautiful calm village with a long white beach, cheap accommodation and right next door to our hostel is a restaurant serving awesome Thai food for street food prices.

If there is any fellow backpackers reading this post the hostel we are staying at is called Pineapple guest house and you will find it on Karon beach.

Today’s hours are spent in the shade in front of my iPad, my nutrition studies officially started a few days ago and I’m so motivated to begin my new life as a health coach!

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In 2007, WWF-Australia inspired Sydney-siders to show their support for climate change action in the first ever Earth Hour event. It showed that everyone, from children to CEOs and politicians, has the power to change the world they live in. In Sydney, Australia, 2.2 million individuals and more than 2,000 businesses turned their lights out for one hour to take a stand against climate change.

In 2008, the plan was to take Earth Hour to the rest of Australia. But then the City of Toronto, Canada, signed up and it wasn’t long before 35 countries and almost 400 cities and towns were part of the event. It said something compelling to the world: that the climate challenges facing our planet are so significant that change needs to be global.

With the invitation to ‘switch off’ extended to everyone, Earth Hour quickly became an annual global event. It’s scheduled on the last Saturday of every March – closely coinciding with the equinox to ensure most cities are in darkness as it rolled out around the Earth.

In 2011, Earth Hour saw hundreds of millions of people across 135 countries switch off for an hour. But it also marked the start of something new – going Beyond the Hour to commit to lasting action on climate change.

Earth Hour 2012 will be held on Saturday March 31 at 8.30pm-9.30pm wherever you are in the world. You can find out more information here.

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The taste of this beautiful fruit is similar to kiwi fruit, pear and watermelon and the health benefits are many, from improving memory to boosting the body’s metabolism.
People suffering from diabetes benefits from eating this fruit because of its ability to lower blood glucose levels.
Its high protein content makes it beneficial for those needing to boost metabolism and the calcium in the fruit helps strengthen teeth and bones. Having a high fibre content, it is ideal for those suffering from constipation or irregular bowel movements. It possesses natural skin moisturizing properties.

Dragon fruit is also known to be a natural appetite stimulant, making it a good choice for anyone recovering from a loss of appetite after illness. It is able to lower cholesterol levels and high blood pressure and has also been shown to help those suffering from respiratory infections and asthma.

Besides calcium, this spiky fruit contains a host of other nutrients such as Vitamin C, Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), carotene, phosphorus, Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), iron, protein, Vitamin B3 (Niacin), carbohydrates, fibre and Vitamin C. It contains a small amount of ash and is approximately 83% moisture.
The Vitamin C in dragon fruit enables it to help build the immune system and heal bruises and cuts naturally. It also acts as a natural detoxing agent, because it is able to help the body neutralize substances like heavy metal.

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Tomorrow it’s time to get on the road again, we are taking the night train from Hua Hin to Surat Thani.
The last few days we have been relaxing here in Cha Am with lots of hanging around playing backgammon, eating beautiful Thai food and sleeping on the beach. But we have also been exploring the neighboring area; Hua Hin night markets where Chris bought me my new favorite bracelet, Puk Tian beach where we were surprised to be the only ones admiring the great statues and a magical cave in the town Tham Khao Luang. You can read more about these places on Chris’ blog since my patience in front of the computer is limited..

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If you are a tea drinker you have probably been told that it’s healthy, especially green, white and herbal teas. Today I found out why! Maybe you guys already are in the know but I’ll tell you anyway.. Just in case. The photo is taken outside our hostel in Bangkok which is highly recommended when you first arrive in the city, clean and friendly!

Black tea
Made with fermented tea leaves, black tea has the highest caffeine content and forms the basis for flavored teas like chai, along with some instant teas. Studies have shown that black tea may protect lungs from damage caused by exposure to cigarette smoke. It also may reduce the risk of stroke.

Green Tea
Known for its popularity in Japan and powerful antioxidant qualities. What sets green tea apart from black teas is the way it is processed. The leaves are steamed, rather than fermented, as they are for black teas and oolong teas. This steaming process is said to enhance its disease-fighting qualities. Green tea has about 30 mg of caffeine per 8-ounce cup.
Green tea’s antioxidants may interfere with the growth of bladder, breast, lung, stomach, pancreatic, and colorectal cancers; prevent clogging of the arteries, burn fat, counteract oxidative stress on the brain, reduce risk of neurological disorders like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, reduce risk of stroke, and improve cholesterol levels.

Oolong Tea
Oolong tea originated in the Fujian province of China. This tea is semi-oxidized, providing a milder flavor than black or green tea. Oolong is known for having digestive and detoxifying properties. The caffeine level is between the levels of black and green tea. One variety of oolong, Wuyi, is heavily marketed as a weight loss supplement, but science hasn’t backed the claims.

White Tea
White tea comes from the same plant as green, black and oolong, but the difference is in the leaves. They are picked earlier in the season when the leaves are young and the buds are covered with white hairs, giving this tea its name. White tea has gone through a minimal amount of processing and is not fermented. This tea has a light, sweet taste and has a small amount of caffeine, about 15 mg per serving. One study showed that white tea has the most potent anticancer properties compared to more processed teas.

Dandy Blend
This instant dandelion beverage is an herbal coffee substitute made from dandelion, chicory and sugar beet. Rich in minerals, this alternative provides extra energy without caffeine. Dandelion is known for its detoxifying properties.

Herbal teas
Made from herbs, fruits, seeds, or roots steeped in hot water, herbal teas have lower concentrations of antioxidants than green, white, black, and oolong teas. Their chemical compositions vary widely depending on the plant used.
Varieties include ginger, ginkgo biloba, ginseng, hibiscus, jasmine, rosehip, mint, rooibos (red tea), chamomile, and echinacea. Limited research has been done on the health benefits of herbal teas but here are some findings:

Chamomile tea: Its antioxidants may help prevent complications from diabetes, like loss of vision and nerve and kidney damage, and stunt the growth of cancer cells.
Echinacea: Often touted as a way to fight the common cold, the research on echinacea has been inconclusive.
Hibiscus: A small study found that drinking three cups of hibiscus tea daily lowered blood pressure in people with modestly elevated levels.
Rooibos (red tea): A South African herb that is fermented. Although it has flavonoids with cancer-fighting properties, medical studies have been limited.

Source: Joshua Rosenthal Integrative Nutrition – Feed you hunger with health and happiness and http://www.webmd.com