Happy New Year! We hope you’ve had a restful, joyful and love-filled time – or at the very least, given yourself a chance to take stock of 2015 and start setting new intentions for 2016.

Now’s a great time to go through your 2016 diary and block out space. We tend to use our diaries to fill our lives with activity – so let’s start this year by timetabling in the space first. Space to relax, rest, restore. Or to do whatever makes your heart sing.

Then you know that whatever else goes in, you won’t be overstretching or exhausting yourself, so that you will be able to give all those other activities your very best efforts and attention. Your body needs regular pauses: to recover from physical activity, to digest food, to regenerate new organs and tissue, to keep your nervous system calm and downgrade your stress responses.

If you want to learn more about all of this, and how to do this is a way that nourishes your body, mind, soul and tastebuds, then while you’ve got your diary to hand… book onto one of our 2016 holistic retreats, including cookery, nutrition, yoga, qi gong and mindfulness practices in beautiful and restful locations:

Fri 18th-Mon 21st March – Bloom Spring Equinox Retreat – West Sussex – with a special focus on The Cycles of Womanhood (puberty to menopause)

Sat 19th March – Bloom Spring Equinox One-Day Workshop – for those who can’t come to the whole weekend

Tues 7th-Sun 12th June – Bloom Summer Retreat – France – with a special focus on energy levels and the impacts of stress on the body

All of these currently have earlybird offers available, so now’s a great time to make it happen. Full details plus PayPal links on the pages above, or e-mail info@connectwithnutrition.co.uk for other payment methods.

In the meantime, here’s a tip I never get tired of:

Make time for a protein-rich breakfast when you get up, and it will be more likely to sustain you throughout the morning. So a plus for energy, focus, memory, mood – and for giving your digestive system some space through the morning rather than picking on snacks when your blood sugar dips. Here are a couple of tasty breakfast recipes we’ve shared before that are perfect for this:

Avocado smoothie:

This is delicious, filling and packed full of energy-boosting nutrients.
½ avocado
1 glass of home made or good quality almond or coconut milk (I like Rude Health, which is now widely available – or make your own by blending soaked almonds with water and straining)
1tsp Kean’s Supreme Greens
1tsp lecithin granules/powder
1tbsp pea protein powder or organic grass-fed whey protein powder

Blend and serve. You could also try adding mint, basil, lemon zest plus a little raw honey, cinnamon and nutmeg, or carob powder with a little raw honey.

Santi eggs
Named after the wonderful man who hosted and cooked for us on one of our retreats, and served this up most mornings with a jug of green juice!

Gently fry spinach/kale/chard/watercress, fennel/celery/onions, courgettes etc. – whatever you have to hand – in a little coconut oil with turmeric, black pepper, nutmeg and garlic, then season with tamari (wheat-free soya sauce); break a couple of eggs on top and allow to cook (or gently stir in till cooked).