Posts

Hot Chocolate

Naked Glow Hot Chocolate Recipe

Unlike traditional hot chocolate recipes – potentially sugar laden and low in nutrients, this Naked Glow Healthy Hot Chocolate recipe is packed with goodies to get your cheeks glowing! 

What more can you ask for… warmth in winter, flavanols galore and a delicious drink to bring it all together! There is no need to feel guilty with this hot chocolate and sit back, relax and indulge as it nourishes, calms and creates radiant beauty!

Gone are the days of commercial hot chocolates with loads of fortification, powered dairy substitutes, flavour and emulsifier additives. This new gourmet health conscious era heralds many types of milks, sweeteners, boosters, raw cocoa and organic chocolates which when blended or melted make a smooth, rich and divine hot chocolate.

To make it easy to DIY your own drink I have created this Hot Chocolate Formula Chalkboard.

lük beautifood hot chocolate chalkboard

BEAUTY BENEFITS

Here are a few of the delicious skin food ingredients on the board.

Dark Chocolate: Providing the perfect boost of flavonols to nourish your body, these antioxidants help to fight against free radicals, preserving a youthful, bright complexion. They work to protect your skin from the suns damaging UV rays  while helping maintain it’s elasticity.  The cacao in chocolate slows collagen breakdown by  naturally reducing the amount of stress hormones released.

Raw Cacao: The unheated/ minimally processed base from which dark chocolate is made. Raw cacao is full of flavonols to protect and tighten your skin.  Raw cacao provides a much higher amount of these antioxidants, therefore a greater benefit in your body! Magnesium helps to relax your body and mind while phenylethylamine is a natural mood enhancer, helping you to stay positive!

Mesquite Powder: This high protein powder is the perfect addition to maintain stable blood sugar levels. It is low in GI and contains a natural sweetness to tickle your taste buds. It is also filled with vitamins including calcium, magnesium, iron and zinc helping to boost the nutrient content of your healthy hot chocolate.

Maca Powder: A healing herb from Peru. Known for the power to energise and revitalise, some like to call maca there very own superfood! It is a complete source of essential amino acids as well as containing alkalising properties. This helps to restore and balance the body, reducing its acidic state while working to maintain correct body processes.

Chia Seeds: Although they may be small, chia seeds are packed with goodness and help thicken your chocolate drink. Their high in omega three fatty acid content is ideal for both your brain and body! They work to reduce inflammation and keep skin cells hydrated to create a gorgeous plump complexion. They also ward off wrinkles as well as help acne – perfect for maintaining a bright, youthful complexion. Chia seeds also have a high protein content which helps to build and rejuvenate cells, creating a fresh and glowing appearance.

Cinnamon: Works to help skin neutralise free radicals, preventing them from causing damage and triggering inflammation, cinnamon is full of protecting antioxidants. It helps to brighten your complexion, as well as tightening and smoothing your skin! 

NAKED GLOW HOT CHOCOLATE RECIPE

To make the perfect hot chocolate for glowing skin – simply refer to the chalkboard image and start experimenting with ingredients and quantities for this hot chocolate recipe.
Here, I give you a little more detail on the making!

In a Vitamix or high speed blender that heats as it blends thru friction and creates the most creamy smooth texture, combine ingredients and whiz on high until mixture has heated up and is well blended. You can use traditional chocolate pieces as they will melt as it heats. Fill the bowl 2/3rds max.

On the stove. Heat hot chocolate recipe mixture in a saucepan whisk until all ingredients are combined and or melted.

To Serve: Create a little ritual around the making of your hot chocolate recipe. Select an earthen wear bowl or mug, lay a little tray and find a special place to savour your drink.

luk

Beauty Benefits of Cashews beauty food cashews luk beautifood

beauty benefits of cashews

beauty food cashews

Cashews come from a fruit known as a cashew apple which is a tropical plant native to Brazil called a cashew tree.

FOOD ACTIVES:

Riboflavin, zeaxanthin, Vitamin E, copper, phosphorus, manganese, magnesium, selenium and zinc.

BEAUTY BENEFITS OF CASHEWS:

Cashews contain are powerful combination of selenium and vitamin E. Selenium works to boost hair growth and maintain a healthy scalp which in turn stops dandruff, whilst Vitamin E provides antioxidant protection for your hair and creating a natural shine. Cashews are also high in magnesium which helps to relax the body and mind. It is also vital for healthy bones and teeth.

COOK:

As a popular snacking food both raw, salted or roasted, cashews can also be ground to make pastes, help to thicken stews and used as a base for desserts. Add it to salads, stir fry’s or even make your own nut butter.

TIP:

Mix cashews in some oil, sprinkle on some spices such as cumin and salt and roast at around 150 degrees for half an hour. These are perfect for nibbles when entertaining.

dividers R1-beautifood middle yellow

PRINT TO KEEP HANDY

PRINT this gorgeous 10x15cm beautifood skin food card to keep beauty inspiration at finger tips reach in your kitchen

Step 1. Simply click on the  skin food image .

Step 2. Then right click and choose ‘Save image as’ where it will be a JPEG in whichever folder you choose.

Step 3. Open the saved image and print on a postcard size (6”x4”/10cmx15cm) photo paper.

Step 4. Send to printer for your gorgeous skin food card!

Step 5. Display on your fridge file in a A-Z card box in your kitchen.

be delicious.... inside and out

Beauty Benefits of Cashews beauty food cashews luk beautifood

Simple Ways to Stress Less

From dull skin, weight gain, compromised immune systems and anxiety, stress impacts almost every part of our body, reducing our quality of life and productivity.

In an age where stress is almost an epidemic, it’s time to start focusing on how to manage and reduce stress levels instead of just ‘grinning and baring it.’ Use these simple coping strategies to help you stress less, banish busy and adjust your mindset.

1.  What’s the worst that can happen?

When we feel panic, anxiety etc we are usually working ourselves up into a mess because we’re focusing on the worst-case scenario. Stop worrying about potential problems that haven’t happened yet, you can prepare for the worst and have a plan, but worrying is just  like walking around with an umbrella waiting for it to rain! Because right now, you are ok.

Stress only takes over when you overthink and fret about the future. Don’t worry about things you can’t control in the future. Be present, this moment is the only thing that matters. So let go of that thought, and come back to now. Meditation and yoga are great for training the mind to become more present.

2.  Jump in!

Go for a swim; take a bath or a hot shower. Research shows that the warmth and fluidity of the water help to release serotonin (the happy hormone).  This helps us  to chill out and therefore reduce the stress hormones: cortisol and adrenalin.

3. Laugh

Being social, spending time with friends, trying new things and laughter, not only release serotonin  but are also proven to reduce levels of the cortisol by nearly 40%!

4. Nourish yourself 

Cortisol causes food cravings, usually for comfort food or sugar that often leave us feeling worse (on the inside and out) . Not only can the right foods give you the sustained energy you need throughout stressful periods, but they can actually help you become more focused, even, and balanced.  Be sure to include foods rich in zinc like nuts, pumpkin seeds and green leaves as low zinc levels have been linked to depression and anxiety and magnesium rich foods like oatmeal, wheat bran and brazil nuts to reduce insomnia and relax muscles.

5. Exercise

Let the energies of anxiety, panic and fear move through and out your body.  Keeping them in your body causes adrenalin to start pumping in our veins and sitting still only makes it worse. As well as exercising regularly, try to do short stints of incidental exercise throughout your day like taking a short walk in your lunch break or taking the kids to the park after school, anything that just get’s your body moving to burn that nervous energy.

These are just a few simple solutions that can easily and immediately be implemented to help you stress less. Whilst in some cases there are more serious stressors that are so much more than a heavy workload or tight deadline, that just cannot be controlled,  you don’t need to make huge changes to your life to reduce their impact on your body, it can be a as simple as adjusting your mindset and keeping it simple!

Hot Chocolate

Naked Glow Hot Chocolate Recipe

Unlike traditional hot chocolate recipes – potentially sugar laden and low in nutrients, this Naked Glow Healthy Hot Chocolate recipe is packed with goodies to get your cheeks glowing! 

What more can you ask for… warmth in winter, flavanols galore and a delicious drink to bring it all together! There is no need to feel guilty with this hot chocolate and sit back, relax and indulge as it nourishes, calms and creates radiant beauty!

Gone are the days of commercial hot chocolates with loads of fortification, powered dairy substitutes, flavour and emulsifier additives. This new gourmet health conscious era heralds many types of milks, sweeteners, boosters, raw cocoa and organic chocolates which when blended or melted make a smooth, rich and divine hot chocolate.

To make it easy to DIY your own drink I have created this Hot Chocolate Formula Chalkboard.

lük beautifood hot chocolate chalkboard

BEAUTY BENEFITS

Here are a few of the delicious skin food ingredients on the board.

Dark Chocolate: Providing the perfect boost of flavonols to nourish your body, these antioxidants help to fight against free radicals, preserving a youthful, bright complexion. They work to protect your skin from the suns damaging UV rays  while helping maintain it’s elasticity.  The cacao in chocolate slows collagen breakdown by  naturally reducing the amount of stress hormones released.

Raw Cacao: The unheated/ minimally processed base from which dark chocolate is made. Raw cacao is full of flavonols to protect and tighten your skin.  Raw cacao provides a much higher amount of these antioxidants, therefore a greater benefit in your body! Magnesium helps to relax your body and mind while phenylethylamine is a natural mood enhancer, helping you to stay positive!

Mesquite Powder: This high protein powder is the perfect addition to maintain stable blood sugar levels. It is low in GI and contains a natural sweetness to tickle your taste buds. It is also filled with vitamins including calcium, magnesium, iron and zinc helping to boost the nutrient content of your healthy hot chocolate.

Maca Powder: A healing herb from Peru. Known for the power to energise and revitalise, some like to call maca there very own superfood! It is a complete source of essential amino acids as well as containing alkalising properties. This helps to restore and balance the body, reducing its acidic state while working to maintain correct body processes.

Chia Seeds: Although they may be small, chia seeds are packed with goodness and help thicken your chocolate drink. Their high in omega three fatty acid content is ideal for both your brain and body! They work to reduce inflammation and keep skin cells hydrated to create a gorgeous plump complexion. They also ward off wrinkles as well as help acne – perfect for maintaining a bright, youthful complexion. Chia seeds also have a high protein content which helps to build and rejuvenate cells, creating a fresh and glowing appearance.

Cinnamon: Works to help skin neutralise free radicals, preventing them from causing damage and triggering inflammation, cinnamon is full of protecting antioxidants. It helps to brighten your complexion, as well as tightening and smoothing your skin! 

NAKED GLOW HOT CHOCOLATE RECIPE

To make the perfect hot chocolate for glowing skin – simply refer to the chalkboard image and start experimenting with ingredients and quantities for this hot chocolate recipe.
Here, I give you a little more detail on the making!

In a Vitamix or high speed blender that heats as it blends thru friction and creates the most creamy smooth texture, combine ingredients and whiz on high until mixture has heated up and is well blended. You can use traditional chocolate pieces as they will melt as it heats. Fill the bowl 2/3rds max.

On the stove. Heat hot chocolate recipe mixture in a saucepan whisk until all ingredients are combined and or melted.

To Serve: Create a little ritual around the making of your hot chocolate recipe. Select an earthen wear bowl or mug, lay a little tray and find a special place to savour your drink.

luk

Beauty Benefits of Cashews beauty food cashews luk beautifood

beauty benefits of cashews

beauty food cashews

Cashews come from a fruit known as a cashew apple which is a tropical plant native to Brazil called a cashew tree.

FOOD ACTIVES:

Riboflavin, zeaxanthin, Vitamin E, copper, phosphorus, manganese, magnesium, selenium and zinc.

BEAUTY BENEFITS OF CASHEWS:

Cashews contain are powerful combination of selenium and vitamin E. Selenium works to boost hair growth and maintain a healthy scalp which in turn stops dandruff, whilst Vitamin E provides antioxidant protection for your hair and creating a natural shine. Cashews are also high in magnesium which helps to relax the body and mind. It is also vital for healthy bones and teeth.

COOK:

As a popular snacking food both raw, salted or roasted, cashews can also be ground to make pastes, help to thicken stews and used as a base for desserts. Add it to salads, stir fry’s or even make your own nut butter.

TIP:

Mix cashews in some oil, sprinkle on some spices such as cumin and salt and roast at around 150 degrees for half an hour. These are perfect for nibbles when entertaining.

dividers R1-beautifood middle yellow

PRINT TO KEEP HANDY

PRINT this gorgeous 10x15cm beautifood skin food card to keep beauty inspiration at finger tips reach in your kitchen

Step 1. Simply click on the  skin food image .

Step 2. Then right click and choose ‘Save image as’ where it will be a JPEG in whichever folder you choose.

Step 3. Open the saved image and print on a postcard size (6”x4”/10cmx15cm) photo paper.

Step 4. Send to printer for your gorgeous skin food card!

Step 5. Display on your fridge file in a A-Z card box in your kitchen.

be delicious.... inside and out

Beauty Benefits of Cashews beauty food cashews luk beautifood

Simple Ways to Stress Less

From dull skin, weight gain, compromised immune systems and anxiety, stress impacts almost every part of our body, reducing our quality of life and productivity.

In an age where stress is almost an epidemic, it’s time to start focusing on how to manage and reduce stress levels instead of just ‘grinning and baring it.’ Use these simple coping strategies to help you stress less, banish busy and adjust your mindset.

1.  What’s the worst that can happen?

When we feel panic, anxiety etc we are usually working ourselves up into a mess because we’re focusing on the worst-case scenario. Stop worrying about potential problems that haven’t happened yet, you can prepare for the worst and have a plan, but worrying is just  like walking around with an umbrella waiting for it to rain! Because right now, you are ok.

Stress only takes over when you overthink and fret about the future. Don’t worry about things you can’t control in the future. Be present, this moment is the only thing that matters. So let go of that thought, and come back to now. Meditation and yoga are great for training the mind to become more present.

2.  Jump in!

Go for a swim; take a bath or a hot shower. Research shows that the warmth and fluidity of the water help to release serotonin (the happy hormone).  This helps us  to chill out and therefore reduce the stress hormones: cortisol and adrenalin.

3. Laugh

Being social, spending time with friends, trying new things and laughter, not only release serotonin  but are also proven to reduce levels of the cortisol by nearly 40%!

4. Nourish yourself 

Cortisol causes food cravings, usually for comfort food or sugar that often leave us feeling worse (on the inside and out) . Not only can the right foods give you the sustained energy you need throughout stressful periods, but they can actually help you become more focused, even, and balanced.  Be sure to include foods rich in zinc like nuts, pumpkin seeds and green leaves as low zinc levels have been linked to depression and anxiety and magnesium rich foods like oatmeal, wheat bran and brazil nuts to reduce insomnia and relax muscles.

5. Exercise

Let the energies of anxiety, panic and fear move through and out your body.  Keeping them in your body causes adrenalin to start pumping in our veins and sitting still only makes it worse. As well as exercising regularly, try to do short stints of incidental exercise throughout your day like taking a short walk in your lunch break or taking the kids to the park after school, anything that just get’s your body moving to burn that nervous energy.

These are just a few simple solutions that can easily and immediately be implemented to help you stress less. Whilst in some cases there are more serious stressors that are so much more than a heavy workload or tight deadline, that just cannot be controlled,  you don’t need to make huge changes to your life to reduce their impact on your body, it can be a as simple as adjusting your mindset and keeping it simple!

Top yoga poses for stress

Top Yoga Poses For Stress

Yoga is one of the best ways to relax and recharge both physically and mentally to help us regain balance throughout our week, something we here at Luk are huge advocates of. 

So as we prepare to emerge from winter and blossom into spring, we’ve asked Sydney’s most loved yogi, Sasha Hawley (also founder of ‘Yoga By The Sea’) to share with us her top yoga poses for stress that can be done anytime, anywhere to release tension, ease the mind, stretch the muscles and rejuvenate skin. 

Recovery Pose

Also known as ‘chid’s pose’, this is a self-nurturing position which calms the central nervous system to help relieve stress and tension. It also gently stretches the lower back, hips, thighs, knees, and ankles and increases blood circulation to your head which help to easy headaches.

Yoga recovery pose

Recovery or ‘child’s’ pose

Forward Bend

Standing forward bend allows the blood to reach your head and circulate there to calm the mind and relieve stress whilst opening up the lower back to release tension. This pose will also stretch the hamstrings, calves, hips, thighs and knee and helps to reduces fatigue, anxiety and headaches.

Yoga pose forward fold

Standing Forward Bend

Pigeon

Whilst giving your glutes, groin and hamstrings a deep stretch, this pose releases pinched nerves in the hips and deep tensions in sacral and nerve belt around hips and stimulates the internal organs.

Yoga pose to reduce stress

Half Pigeon

Backbend

Backbends like bridge or wheel release the lower back and decompresses the spine to relax the entire body. This pose is extremely beneficial for those who sit long hours in front of the desk or computer and hunch over the desk all day as it relieves tension or stress and decreases ailments caused by it. 

Top yoga poses for stress

Backbend variation

And of course the ultimate stress buster is meditation.

Meditation in yoga is generally done in corpse pose where you lie flat on the ground, palms facing up, legs apart and the whole body is relaxed. Meditation in corpse pose relaxes the central nervous system, calms the mind and relieves stress all in one. It can also be used to improve sleep and reduce headaches and fatigue.

On a deeper level, yoga is a state of being in which all apparent opposites, distinctions and states are reconciled. From this state of union we live without  inner conflict and are able to embrace our whole being from the surface to the depths, encompassing both our transient limitations and our perennial limitlessness. We honour and live from, by, and within our true nature. This is the key to a life of peace and contentment.

Love Sasha xx

So next time you feel the tension rising,  take a deep breath and hit the mat. If you need a little help, Yoga By the Sea  runs at 5 different locations with over 20 classes running  each week.  For more information on their schedule, workshops and retreats, head to their website. 

lip nourish natural lipstick to nourish stressed lips

Stress and Your Skin

Stress and Your Skin

Ever looked in the mirror after a non-stop week and noticed your skin is lacking that certain glow? That’s because stress and your skin are intimately related.

From dryness, rosacea, sensitivity, acne, eczema, redness, dullness and wrinkles, there are few skin conditions that stress doesn’t exacerbate! In fact there’s even a name for it now – it’s called “psychodermatology” which is the study and treatment of someone’s emotions as they relate to the skin using psychological techniques.

As a scientist & nutritionist, Cindy Luken our founder constantly reminds us too many people today live with the fight or flight response turned on all the time. This response produces adrenalin, which is the main hormone that tells your body that it’s in danger and when you’re constantly living in that response, all the nutrients are diverted to ensure survival and are therefore unavailable to the ‘beauty bits’ like skin, hair and nails. This causes skin to become dehydrated, sensitive and more vulnerable to damage.

In fact, a study in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology found that when women experience stress, their skin becomes more easily dehydrated, which can even lead to eczema. And in the case of acne, when you’re tense or worried, the brain releases a stress hormone known as cortisol. Cortisol tells your oil glands to increase production, which can lead to breakouts.

Preventing and repairing skin damage from stress needs to be approached from both the inside and out. Leading experts suggests that bringing restorative and relaxing practises into your life can be “game changing” as it gets you out of the stress response.  An ideal beauty ritual is to do some restorative practises like restorative yoga, ti chi or a an early morning walk somewhere close to nature. Other practises include an Epsom salt bath, swimming, meditation or simply spending time with ones you love.

From the outside in, be sure to nourish your skin with gentle, all natural ingredients that will moisturise the skin and enrich it with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Try one of our DIY spa treatments, followed with a natural facial oil and our 100% Pure tinted moisturiser for a dewy glow and lip nourish for luscious, moisturised lips.

 

DIY Beauty Recipes for Glowing skin

Transform your skin in 3 ingredients or less.

Naturally nourish and feed your skin from the outside in with these simple, DIY beauty recipes for an effortless natural GLOWA glow that comes from radiant, clear skin combined the happiness that comes from a little relaxation and pampering, is just one of our ingredients in the luk recipe to being a natural beauty.

Your skin is your largest organ and absorbs 60% of what you put on it.  The amazing team at the Environmental Working Group have research supporting that the average woman uses 12 personal care products per day, containing about 168 ingredients…that’s a lot of potentially toxic stuff  being absorbed by your body. But there is a healthier (and less expensive!) alternative – nature offers complex and powerful ingredients whose benefits cannot be replicated in the laboratory and just like the food you eat, they need to be clean, whole and unprocessed to  work effectively.

Many of your everyday pantry basics pack serious glow power, mix a few together and you’ve made yourself a little DIY skin luxe – with no toxic chemicals, busy car parks, or massive price tags.

Here are 7 of our easiest, most effective DIY beauty recipes using the beauty foods we know you’ve always got on hand. Grab a cup of herbal tea and your bestie and make your bathroom into a mini spa getaway and nourish your body and soul.

dividers R1-rough thin grey1. GREEN TEA TONER – all skin types

Green tea is a great anti-inflammatory while aloe vera juice is incredibly soothing to irritated skin. If you are prone to breakouts and/or oily skin green tea and lemon also have antibacterial properties to help calm, soothe and reduce excess oil.

How to |
  1. Brew a fresh pot of [preferably organic, loose leaf] green tea or use matcha (green tea powder)
  2. Strain and pour into a cup and wait to cool
  3. Add a small squeeze of fresh lemon juice and 2 tablespoons of aloe vera juice and stir
  4. Place the mixture in the fridge to cool and transfer into a small spray bottle [doesn’t have to be fancy, a plastic one from the discount store will do!]
  5. Spray on face to face, being careful to avoid eyes and any broken skin.

matcha powder - powdered green tea

dividers R1-luk middle yellow

2. MILK AND HONEY CLEANSING MASK  – all skin types

Ground oats [or oatmeal] provide gentle exfoliation and are extremely cleansing, healing and softening to the skin. They are also full of Vitamin B to regenerate skin cells for a fresh faced complexion, while milk’s [as well as yoghurt and buttermilk] natural lactic acid helps remove dead skin cells and its inherent fat content (4%) soothes dry, irritated skin.

How to |
  1. Soak 1/2 a cup of oatmeal in milk overnight (use skim milk for oily skin and full fat for dry)
  2. Add a teaspoon of organic raw honey to the mix
  3. Stir well
  4. Gently massage the paste onto your skin using circular movements to gentle exfoliate then leave for 10-20minutes
  5. Wet a face towel with warm water and use to gently remove the cleanser
  6. Rinse your face with cool water to close the pores and pat dry
Tips:
  • You can add some essential oils such as lavender to make it more fragrant
  • You can also substitute milk for yoghurt

beauty food oats

dividers R1-luk left yellow

3. SKIN LIGHTENING TREATMENT
– for mature, sun damaged or acne prone skin

Apple cider vinegar helps to inhibit the production of melanin, the pigment in the skin that creates dark spots and helps them to appear lighter over time. It’s also a great natural option for those who suffer from breaks outs as it is a natural source of Alpha Hydroxy Acids [a mild acid used in many face creams] which helps to remove dead skin cells and balance the PH levels of the skin. Lemons are also a fantastic natural skin lightener as they are packed full of  antioxidants which are proven to reduce the amount of melanin that is produced when applied to your skin and used regularly. Apple cider vinegar can trigger irritation for those with sensitive skin so we recommend doing a patch test first.

How to |
  1. Combine 1 tablespoon of organic apple cider vinegar (with the mother) with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice
  2. Stir well
  3. Dab onto areas of pigmentation, age spots or acne scars before bed and rinse in the morning
Tips:
  • Patch test first to ensure you do not react with the apple cider vinegar
  • Obviously lemon can sting so avoid any areas of the skin that maybe broken, scabbed or raw

beauty food lemon

dividers R1-beautifood middle grey

4. ANTIOXIDANT REPAIR MASK
– for mature, dull or dry skin

Pomegranate is packed full of rich antioxidants which protect collagen thereby slowing down the appearance of fine lines caused by sun exposure. They also contain ellagic acid, which helps to prevent wrinkles. Pomegranate combined with yoghurt is also incredibly soothing for those with dry, irritated skin.

How to |
  1. Combine 2 tablespoons of organic unflavoured yoghurt with 1 teaspoon of runny honey
  2. Add 1 teaspoon of home made or store bought pomegranate juice and stir well
  3. TIP: for extra moisturising benefits add 2-3 drips of rosehip oil
  4. Stir well
  5. Apply to face and leave for 10-20 minutes
  6. Rinse face with warm water and pat dry.

skin food pomegranate

dividers R1-luk left grey

5. OIL CLEANSER  – all skin types

Sweet almond oil not only intensely nourishes the skin, but acts as an extremely gentle and effective makeup remover- even for stubborn eye make up! Combine with the moisturising properties of jojoba oil and honey this is the perfect, quick and easy cleanser

How to |
  1. Combine 3 drops of sweet almond oil with 3 drops of jojoba oil and add ½ teaspoon of runny honey
  2. Mix well
  3. Massage on to damp face
  4. Remove with a warm, wet cloth and pat dry

skin food almonds

dividers R1-luk middle yellow

6. CITRUS BODY SCRUB  – all skin types

Mandarins are rich vitamin C to keep skin smooth and plump plus they smell just fabulous when combined with antioxidants rich cinnamon. You can use oranges instead of Mandarins.

How to |
  1. Combine ½ a cup of panela or brown sugar with roughly 2 tablespoons of chosen oil (we used olive oil)
  2. Squeeze the juice of mandarin into mixture and stir
  3. Finely grate some zest off the mandarin – add as desired
  4. Stir in a pinch of cinnamon
  5. Check consistency: you want the sugar to be ‘wet’ but not too sloppy & check the aroma is zingy, sweet and uplifting. YUM
  6. Pour into a container** to keep in the shower
  7. Whilst showering, scrub all over your body and rinse with warm water.
Tips:
  • Panela sugar is evaporated organic cane sugar juice. It still retains its nutrients and its finer crystal are softer, more delicate on your skin.
  • ** We love glass for its purity and look but be careful with it in the shower.

mandarin skin food

dividers R1-beautifood left yellow

7. REPAIR AND CARE HAIR MASK  
– dry, damaged and colour treated hair

The intense moisturising properties of coconut oil and Argan oil combined with egg yolks for shine and lustre, is the easiest and most effective treatment for dry, damaged, colour treated and split ends.

How to |
  1. Combine 2 tablespoons of organic cold pressed coconut oil (you may need more depending on length of hair) with 3-4 drops of argan oil
  2. Whip an egg yolk (2 if you have long hair) and add to mixture
  3. Stir well
  4. Apply mask to ends of hair and leave for up to an hour
  5. Rinse with warm water and follow with regular shampoo and conditioner routine

And of course the number one beauty recipe is our gorgeous lip nourish made from delicious beauty foods to moisturise lips and give the perfect hint of colour for any look.

skin food coconut oil

 

dividers R1-rough thin grey be delicious.... inside and out

Fabulous Fig Jam Recipe clean food luk beautifood

Fabulous Fig Jam Recipe – a little sweet treat

This fabulous fig jam recipe is perfect when figs are flourishing! Yes jam is made from sugar but a spoonful of slow cooked lush fruit mixed with organic sweeteners and eaten on your favourite sourdough weekend toast is a treat. Eating well is about making choices. Where would you like your daily spoonfuls of sugar to come from…I know this is top of my list. 

Figs are delicate fruits and can be difficult to locate – even when in season which is end of summer, early autumn.  The reason for this is because figs can only be stored for a few days before over ripening,  they are easily squashed and bruised making them difficult to transport.  A good way to preserve fig if you see them going cheap or find yourself with a bowl full of over ripe ones is to make this fig jam recipe, it only takes an hour.

BEAUTY FOOD BENEFITS

Figs are rich in calcium and are one of the richest sources of this essential beauty mineral.  The combination of potassium and calcium is perfect for keeping bones and teeth strong and maintaining a gorgeous smile. Their high fibre content helps to increase the absorption of essential nutrients and assists in the removal of toxins to help create a clear complexion.

Lemons are powerful antioxidants which help to prevent free radicals from damaging our body.  Their high vitamin C content works well to protect collagen and elastin from damage, helping to maintain a smooth, tight appearance. Ginger also helps to tighten skin while reducing redness due to its anti-inflammatory properties.

FABULOUS FIG JAM RECIPE

1 to 1.5 hrs wo to go.  Makes 1 cup

YOU’LL NEED

450g fresh figs, washed, stems removed and cut into quarters

1/2 cup organic honey

1/2 cup rapadura sugar

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

1 1/2 tspn lemon zest

1 1/2 tspn ground ginger or a little freshly grated ginger or finely chopped glace ginger (optional)

HOW TO
  1. Place figs, honey, sugar and water in a large saucepan. Let sit, unheated for about 15 minutes.
  2. Over medium to high heat, with lid on bring the mixture to a boil and boil for 2 minutes. Turn down to a simmer, ensure all sugar on pan is dissolved.
  3. Cook slowly for 30 to 45 minutes, as the water evaporates, the sugar will start to caramelise so be careful and stir occasionally to stop sugars from burning.
  4. Add lemon juice, zest and ginger and stir, cooking for another 2 minutes. Turn off the heat and allow to cool.
  5. Spoon your fig jam into your (sterilised) jar, place on the lid and allow to cool completely before placing it into the fridge.
TIPS AND TRICKS
  • Enjoy this fig jam recipe spread over wholesome sour dough toast. You can also dollop on top of warm breakfast cereals. Eg oats or quinoa porridge.
  • For dessert a dollop of this fig jam recipe is fabulous with natural unsweetened yoghurt.
  • Try a smidgen with organic goats cheese and crackers. You could even make your own home made crackers!
  • Search around local stores or markets and see if you can find your honey made locally to use in you fig jam recipe.

 

 

Place figs, honey, sugar and water in a large saucepan. Let sit, unheated for about 15 minutes.

Place figs, honey, sugar and water in a large saucepan. Let sit, unheated for about 15 minutes to soften the fruit.

Over medium to high heat, bring the mixture to a boil and boil for 2 minutes, bringing down to a simmer.

Over medium to high heat, bring the mixture to a boil and boil for 2 minutes, bringing down to a simmer.

Cook for 45 minutes at a low simmer, stirring often to stop honey from burning.  Over time, the figs will begin to break down, you can mash them a few times to achieve a desired consistency.  But remember, there is no need to mash it all up as a few big chunks create a gorgeous texture.

Cook for 45 minutes at a low simmer, stirring often to stop honey from burning. Over time, the figs will begin to break down, you can mash them a few times to achieve a desired consistency…big chunks create a gorgeous texture too.

Add lemon juice, zest and ginger and stir, cooking for another 2 minutes. Turn off the heat and allow to cool.

Add lemon juice, zest and ginger and stir, cooking for another 2 minutes. Turn off the heat and allow to cool.

Spoon your fig jam into your jar, place on the lid and allow to cool completely before placing it into the fridge - or enjoy straight up!

Spoon your caramelised  fig jam into your jar, place on the lid and allow to cool completely before placing it into the fridge.

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beauty benefits of figs beauty food figs luk beautifood

beauty food figs

beauty food figs

Grown since ancient times, figs have a sweet taste and aroma and are native to western Asia. They range from a lush dark purple, to a mixture of pale green, pale purple and a pale brown colour. The entire fruit is edible (except the stem!) and provides your body with a rich nourishment of calcium and dietary fibre.

FOOD ACTIVES

Antioxidants, vitamin B6, vitamin K, calcium, iron, magnesium, copper, potassium, fibre and tryptopphan

BEAUTY BENEFITS

Rich in calcium, figs contain one of the highest amounts when compared to any other fruit. The combination of potassium and calcium is perfect for keeping bones and teeth strong and maintaining a gorgeous smile. Their high fibre content helps to increase the absorption of essential nutrients into the body. It also assists the removal of toxins working to cleanse the body and create a bright complexion. Tryptophan, an essential amino acid works within your body through serotonin – a chemical which encourages feelings of calm and relaxation. Delicious and sweet, figs are fabulous for your body and your complexion.

COOK

Figs can be eaten raw, cooked or dried. They can be sprinkled over a warm breakfast cereal, added with yoghurt or to baked treats, or made into a jam.

TIP

Figs can be eaten raw, cooked or dried. They can be sprinkled over a warm breakfast cereal, added with yoghurt or to baked treats, or made into a jam.

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PRINT TO KEEP HANDY

PRINT this gorgeous 10x15cm beautifood skin food card to keep beauty inspiration at finger tips reach in your kitchen

Step 1. Simply click on the  skin food image .

Step 2. Then right click and choose ‘Save image as’ where it will be a JPEG in whichever folder you choose.

Step 3. Open the saved image and print on a postcard size (6”x4”/10cmx15cm) photo paper.

Step 4. Send to printer for your gorgeous skin food card!

Step 5. Display on your fridge file in a A-Z card box in your kitchen.

be delicious.... inside and out

beauty benefits of dark chocolate beauty food dark chocolate luk beautifood

beauty food | dark chocolate

beauty food | dark chocolate

beauty benefits of dark chocolate beauty food dark chocolate luk beautifood

Highly regarded as the best quality, dark chocolate is traditionally made with Dutch-processed cocoa powder, cocoa butter, cream, refined sugar and additives. Its quality is measured by the % of cocoa solids (higher the better and with it increased bitterness).  Now we are seeing cleaner, organic, dairy free, additive free, less sugar or the use of unrefined sugars (eg coconut nectar), and even raw cocoa variations which have amazing flavour and retain the intrinsic nutrients of the cacao.

FOOD ACTIVES:

Flavonols, magnesium, iron, copper, phosphorus, manganese, zinc, selenium, phenylethylamine and theobromine

BEAUTY BENEFITS:

Keeps you looking and feeling great with a boost of flavonols. These are antioxidants help fight against free radicals, preserving a youthful, bright complexion. They also work to protect your skin from the suns damaging UV rays while helping maintain its elasticity.  Dark chocolate can help minimise collagen breakdown by naturally reducing the amount of stress hormones released.  The magnesium helps to relax your body and mind while phenylethylamine is a natural mood enhancer, helping you to stay positive!

COOK:

Eat as is!  Chopped, broken or melted it’s fabulous for baking, making mousse, custards and hot chocolates….or just nibble away!

TIP:

Look closely when buying chocolate – there are many. Find dark chocolate that contains 70% or more cacao (solids) and ideally organic. This will ensure you are getting the most antioxidants and nutrients possible without additives or too much sugar. Also look for chocolate with natural sweeteners such as stevia which will have a lower GI helping to control blood sugar levels. Or just have a few pieces only and savour the moment.

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PRINT TO KEEP HANDY

PRINT this gorgeous 10x15cm beautifood skin food card to keep beauty inspiration at finger tips reach in your kitchen

Step 1. Simply click on the  skin food image .

Step 2. Then right click and choose ‘Save image as’ where it will be a JPEG in whichever folder you choose.

Step 3. Open the saved image and print on a postcard size (6”x4”/10cmx15cm) photo paper.

Step 4. Send to printer for your gorgeous skin food card!

Step 5. Display on your fridge file in a A-Z card box in your kitchen.

be delicious.... inside and out

Turn your kitchen garden into an aromatherapy garden

[LIFE]

 

DIY aromatherapy herbs

 

Here at Luk Beautifood, we treasure our time out, our time to relax, unwind and do…well nothing. But with so much going on with business, family and life in general do you find it’s hard to get the most out of that time and really feel rejuvenated and ready for another day? So, we’ve discovered a way you can combine your ‘kitchen garden’ and bit of aromatherapy into a tranquil haven.

By choosing the right aromatic plants, you’ll be surprised at the impact their gorgeous scents will have on your mood. There have been countless studies done over the years showing the significant links between our sense of smell and our emotions. Whilst the scent of a natural plant may not be as potent as an essential oil there are some simple techniques you can use to reap the same benefits while expanding your ‘kitchen garden’.

 

Peppermint

The scent of peppermint is a natural stimulant that can increase your ability to concentrate and boost energy during times of fatigue or  stress. Studies have also shown that peppermint also has mood elevating properties making it the perfect herb to ease feelings of anxiety or sadness and enhance mental performance and promote happiness. Take a couple leaves off the plant, crush them between your fingers and gently rub on your temples (you can also obviously use peppermint oil) or run a hot bath and simply sprinkle some of the leaves into the hot water.

Tips for growing: Peppermint does best in rich soil, high in loam and placed in partial to full sunlight. It’s best to plant the seedlings indoors in late winter or early spring (so now is the perfect time!) and once plants reach about 10cm tall, they can be moved outside.

mint is easy to grow, in a bunch with other vegetables it looks and smells divine

Mint is easy to grow. In a bunch with other vegetables it looks and smells divine.

 

Rosemary

Rosemary is one of the most popular plants in aromatherapy for its array of health benefits. It has the ability to boost mental activity, relieve respiratory problems and reduce muscular pain. Aside from the relaxing nature of simply inhalation of rosemary [plant or oil], it has also been proven to decrease the level of cortisol, one of the body’s main stress hormones which can contribute to stress. Simply smell the leaves of your rosemary plant every few minutes, or gently rub the fresh herb on your temples.

Tips for growing: Rosemary plants love a warm, sunny spot with good soil drainage and can cope quite easily in the hot, dry Australian summer. They thrive in alkaline soils and love lime. If your rosemary isn’t looking too healthy and you know your soil is acid, apply some lime and see what happens!

 Rosemary

Rosemary is a hardy bush that grows all year (in Sydney). Love its heady aroma.

 

Lavender

Lavender is well known for it’s relaxing sedative properties and can aid in treating migraines, headaches,  and nervous tension. It is also ideal for those who have difficulty falling or staying asleep throughout the night as it improves the length and quality of sleep. In terms of it’s mood elevating properties, lavender is an excellent tonic for the nervous system and can relieve feelings of anxiety, nervousness and depression whilst promoting relaxation and a sense of calmness.

Tips for growing: Most varieties of lavender need dry heat to grow well and are extremely drought resistant but don’t be afraid to give them a handful of compost from the kitchen and keep them regularly watered while it is first growing. Lavender, like rosemary appreciate the addition of lime to the soil. Alkaline chalky soil will also enhance lavenders fragrance.

lavender from Pinterest

By planting in a bucket you can chase the sun if you don’t have much

Image source: Pinterest via Bersa Blog

Orange 

Almost every part of the orange tree can be used for aromatherapy; the leaves, the flowers and the fruit. The scent of orange is incredibly uplifting and is used commonly in aromatherapy as an antidepressant and to relieve anxiety disorders. Orange essential oil also has mild aphrodisiac properties. You can use the orange peel in a brew of tea or cut the leaves and flowers to make a small arrangement next to your bed or the bath. You can even create your own essential orange oil by infusing dried orange peel with a simple carrier oil and use it for a DIY aromatherapy massage.

Tips for growing: As orange trees mature quite quickly, they are best planted in the garden rather than in pots. Citrus will grow in most soils from sandy to adobe clay, provided it drains well but it must be watered and fertilised frequently. Even though the orange tree needs full sun exposure for proper growth, it can also suffer heat stroke during a summer planting so you may want to put up a temporary sun shade during those hot months.

 

Aromatic blossom, leaves, fruit of ornage

Aromatic blossom, leaves, fruit of  the orange…all can be used.

Image source of oranges: Pinterest

On another note…

We love giving ‘thank you’ bunches of herbs from our garden instead of flowers – the fragrance of lemon, kaffir, cardamon, rosemary and thyme leaves, (to name a few) create a stir, especially when they go to an air conditioned artificially lit office! You should try it too.

rosemary

to give. to eat

 

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