Health

Pumpkin and Halloumi Pasties

We love seeing the amazing creations that our Dietician Andrea whips up each week. This week she has opted for a savoury pasty filled with Pumpkin and Halloumi cheese.. you had me at cheese! *drools slightly*

Brisbane, Brisbane health, Christmas Recipes, Brisbane float centre

Ingredients

  • 500 g pumpkin

  • 2 tsp olive oil

  • Pinch of salt

  • Olive oil spray

  • 250 g halloumi

  • 1 red onion

  • 1/3 cup pumpkin seeds

  • 1/2 cup shredded parmesan

  • 3 sheets puff pastry

  • 1 egg

  • Sesame seeds for sprinkling

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 180ºC. On a baking tray lined with paper, place pumpkin cubes. Toss lightly with oil and salt and bake for 30 minutes, until soft and caramelised around the edges. Remove tray from the oven, but keep the oven on.

2. Meanwhile, heat a frying pan over a medium heat. Spray lightly with oil. Cook halloumi until soft and crispy. Remove from heat.

3. Using a little more spray oil, sauté red onion until caramelised. In a bowl, combine cooked pumpkin, halloumi, onion, pumpkin seeds and parmesan. Stir to combine.

4. Slice puff pastry squares into four smaller squares. Divide mixture into two squares, pull all four corners together and twist. Fold each side in so the filling is enclosed inside the pastry. Brush each pastie with egg, and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

5. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes or until crunchy and golden on the outside.

For more amazing recipe ideas that you can try at home, book in with Andrea and get yourself a personalised meal plan. 

Raspberry and Coconut Baked Doughnuts with a Lemon Glaze

Who doesn’t love a doughnut? They’re right on trend at the moment, with boutique doughnut shops popping up all over the place. So we were more than excited to see this incredible recipe from our in-house Dietician Andrea Love pop up and we had to share it with all of you!

"While I wouldn’t say no to the odd cinnamon sugar-coated fried pastry, it is not something you’d want to include in your diet too often. So I’ve created a happy medium – baked doughnuts. I’ve made plenty of varieties of baked doughnut before (see here and here), but none with bursts of fruit throughout. I love using berries in desserts as they provide a sweet and tart component to the dish. Berries are also lower in sugar than other fruits, which is a bit of a win win don’t you think!

For this recipe, I used sweetener in place of sugar, and cut down the fat by replacing a large amount of it with Greek yoghurt. For the glaze however, I used regular ol’ icing sugar – this is definitely optional if you’re watching your sugar intake! The lemon glaze just takes them to the next level though, in my opinion."

Prep Time 15 minutes

Cook Time 20 minutes

Total Time 35 minutes

Servings 20 doughnuts

Ingredients

Doughnuts

  • Spray oil
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 3/4 cup Natvia Natural Sweetener
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup natural Greek yoghurt
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups self-raising flour
  • Pinch salt
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 1 cup frozen raspberries

Glaze

  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup roasted coconut chips

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 200ºC. Lightly grease a doughnut baking tray with spray oil. In a bowl, add the coconut oil, sweetener and eggs and whisk to combine. Add yoghurt, milk and vanilla and continue to whisk.

  2. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, salt and shredded coconut. Fold dry ingredients into wet. Add frozen raspberries into batter and stir until just combined.

  3. Scoop batter into each doughnut mould and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until doughnuts are lightly golden on top. Place on a rack and allow to cool completely before glazing.

  4. For the glaze, place icing sugar into a bowl and whisk in lemon juice slowly, adding more or less depending on the consistency of the glaze you’d like. Dip doughnuts into the glaze and on to a wire rack with a tray underneath to catch the excess glaze. Double dip for a thicker icing on top. Sprinkle with roasted coconut chips while the glaze is still wet. Serve with a cup of tea!

Let Andrea see all of your food creations and delicious snaps by using the hashtag #eatnik on your photos!

Fight Disease, Live Longer and Feel GREAT with an Infrared Sauna!

Our Infrared Sauna is booming with popularity at both centres here in Brisbane and our clients are loving the feeling they get when they sweat out all the toxins in their body. But did you know there are long term benefits from sauna use that can make you live longer

Studies have found frequent Sauna use to be linked with longevity by staving off age-related diseases such as cardiovascular disease and cancer. 

Dr. Rhonda Patrick discusses a recent study that found using the sauna 2-3 times per week was associated with 24% lower all-cause mortality and 4-7 times per week decreased all-cause mortality by 40%. This is done by activating the production of heat shock proteins (hsps), which are activated by heat stress. Heat shock proteins prevent protein aggregation inside cells and this protects against:

  • Atherosclerosis 
  • Cardiomyopathy
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Huntington’s disease

Heat shock proteins (HSP) are a family of proteins that are produced by cells in response to exposure to stressful conditions and during wound healing or tissue remodeling. Many members of this group perform chaperone function by stabilizing new proteins to ensure correct folding or by helping to refold proteins that were damaged by the cell stress. HSP's are activated by the Heat Shock Factor (HSF) which is achieved through Sauna use. 

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Heat stress also activates the FOXO3 protein, which activates many other genes that protect against the stress of aging including:

  • DNA damage
  • Damage to proteins
  • Damage to lipids
  • Loss of stem cell function
  • Loss of immune function
  • Cellular senescence 

There are also the known benefits of sauna use such as relieving stress, aiding muscles aches and pains, flush toxins and rejuvenate skin, burns calories and fights illness. 

So not only does the sauna make you feel great, it can have huge long term benefits for your overall health and well being through activating your internal cells and proteins through heat! So no wonder our clients love the way the sauna makes them feel. Here are some testimonials from a couple of them. 

"With this ‘up and down’ weather of late, I quickly started to come down with the flu symptoms so I got straight on the phone and booked a session in the Infrared Sauna. I felt so calm and relaxed during my session, I could have stayed in there for hours! When I came out I felt so refreshed and rejuvenated! I absolutely love the facilities at City Cave. I’m now a regular floater and Sauna-er." - Rhian Elise
"The infrared sauna at City Cave has helped me so much to get back into my fitness. After taking a break from training for 3 months, my muscle soreness was getting the better of me.  But after utilising the infrared sauna through the week I've been able to train harder and more frequently than ever before! It also makes my skin so clear, and I feel so refreshed after a session!" - Maddie Daly

 

Even our Naturopath Jess Blair loves the Infrared Sauna!

"Infrared saunas use the parasympathetic healing effect which helps your body to handle stress.
Stress can cause a number of negative health problems, some including weight problems, hormone problems as well as sleep disturbances and high blood pressure.
The saunas cause heat and natural positive radiation effects in the human body.
Some of the incredible health benefits of infrared sauna includes it helps boost metabolism, helps
clear toxins, improve skin health, lowers chronic pain and overall improves your wellbeing."

Interested in finding out what it feels like for yourself? Book in a session in our Infrared Sauna at either James Street or Paddington this week.

The Power of Probiotics

On the back of our two Gut Health 101 workshops with our amazing Jess Blair (Naturopath) and Andrea Love (Dietician), we thought it would be a good chance to delve into some knowledge on Probiotics. Our very talented Health and Liaison Officer Emma (who also studied Dietetics), delves in a little deeper to help us get to know what Probiotics are, when to use them and why they are so good for your gut! 

The idea of consuming good bacteria for health is not new. It dates back to the early 20th century, when shortly after, the term “probiotic” was coined meaning “for life” or “for health”.  Probiotics are a type of friendly bacteria that, when introduced into our bowel, stabilise the intestine's resident microorganisms, restoring our natural balance of good ‘bugs’ in the digestive system. If we get the right balance of bacteria then the whole system works.

We have all seen drinks in the dairy cabinet at the supermarket claiming to “keep you healthy on the inside”.  And then there are the yoghurts with Lactobacillus acidophilus or ABC cultures, which advertise that they are good for your digestive health. Friendly bacteria or probiotics are one of the latest health trends. But do they work and how often do you need to take them?

HOW PROBIOTICS KEEP YOU HEALTHY:

Friendly bacteria can create the right environment in your digestive tract which helps to:

  • Replace normal bacteria that have been killed off by a course of antibiotics; 
  • Produce substances that make your internal environment unwelcoming for Salmonella, rotavirus and other harmful bugs;
  • Stop episodes of diarrhoea including travellers’ diarrhoea;
  • Create a barrier so the internal lining of your intestine is less likely to let allergens through; 
  • Stimulate the immune system; 
  • Regulate bowel movements and prevent constipation and flatulence; 
  • Ease irritable bowel syndrome and Crohn's disease;
  • Digest the lactose from milk; 
  • Deactivate harmful enzymes in the intestine.

To be classified as a probiotic the strain must be present in sufficient numbers in a product. Most importantly, the bacteria must be able to survive the gastric acid to arrive at the small intestine and then the large intestine where it grows and multiplies.  Most probiotic yoghurts contain booster substances called pre-biotics to aid delivery of active cultures to the digestive system. In other words the booster acts for the friendly bacteria so they can grow and multiply inside you and do their good work.  These boosters usually include inulin, fructooligosaccrides and polydextrose. 

WHEN DO YOU NEED PROBIOTICS:

You generally need a probiotic if something has disturbed your digestive system:

  • After a course of antibiotics; 
  • After a bout of Gastro or diarrhoea; 
  • Major diet change; 
  • Stress.

For general health and wellbeing, the use of a probiotic two or three times a week is fine. But if you are ill or need it to correct an imbalance, then twice a day doses are recommended.

It is important to note that probiotics that have passed their use by date or that are not kept cold simply won't have the number of viable bacteria present. So follow these tips:

  • Store it correctly - keep it chilled at all times especially during the trip home from the supermarket;
  • Buy from a large supermarket which has a fast turnover so the probiotic is fresh;
  • Consume the product within a couple of days.

Although I'm not a major proponent of taking many supplements (as I believe the majority of your nutrients need to come from food), probiotics are exceptions if you don't eat fermented foods on a regular basis. 

- Emma Williams

If you think taking a probiotic could be beneficial for you, book in to see Andrea or Jess and get a personalised treatment plan that will cater to your needs, diet and goals. 

 

Float Tanks Vs Float Rooms; What's the Go?

Floating is a new concept to most, so many don't know that we offer Float Therapy in two forms; Float Rooms and Float Tanks. In this blog, we break down the two types of floating experiences we offer so you can decide what works best for you. 

What Is A Float Tank?

A float tank is a pod designed around sensory deprivation. The human body rarely to never feels the relief of its own senses. At City Cave on James Street we designed it just for you. Sight, sound, taste, smell and feel are always effective in some way. Removing this constant allows the mind and body to reach deep relaxation. The content of the water is so rich of Epsom Salt (350kg-400kg) that you float effortlessly. The room and water temperature are resting at 34.5 degrees which is similar to your skin so you can't feel where the water starts or finishes allowing your body to take away its final constant, Gravity.

 

What is a Float Room?

At City Cave we designed Float Rooms so people that feel claustrophobic can have the opportunity to feel the benefits of sensory deprivation. The experience of floatation therapy is much the same in the float tank as it is in the float room, achieving deep relaxation and the journey through floating is just as easy, and you will find yourself feeling refreshed and energized at the end of your session. We have 2 Float Rooms at James Street, and 4 at Paddington that you can book in today.

Find out more about the benefits of floating and couples float services on our website linked here. 

If you have any questions or concerns about floating, give us a call on 07 3368 2207 and our staff will be more than happy to assist.