Eat your way to better health and wellbeing

Lyndsay Bettles

We’ve all heard the saying, ‘you are what you eat’ but how much does our diet really influence our wellbeing and what does this look life for a busy parent?  We asked Nutritional expert and Babyccinokids contributor Lyndsay Bettles to talk through her journey with nutrition and the simple changes that we can all make to embrace a better nutritional/life balance.

How did you get into nutrition?

As a chef one of my main passions has always been to inspire and help others to cook and eat beautifully simple, fresh and nutritious food whether they are just cooking for themselves or for a growing family. Since becoming a parent I wanted to go deeper and truly understand how diet and lifestyle can impact and heal us.

How has nutrition changed your life?

I’ve always been very aware of the importance and impact of nutrition and the use of whole, organic foods in optimising our health. I believe in a functional approach towards nutritional health and at the centre of that is ensuring that everyone has access to basic nutritional guidance as well as the tools to make nutritious food that works for them and their individual needs.

How can we change the way that we live to include better nutrition in our busy lives?

As parents we can often become preoccupied with what our children are eating (or not eating!) and loose sight of how important simply being their role model is. Demonstrating our own love of fresh, seasonal produce and embracing variety is one of the best things you can do for both your own wellbeing but also for your children’s long term nutritional health.

It’s so easy to fall into the trap of grabbing processed snacks whilst you are on the go or short of time but filling your fridge with easily accessible, fresh and colourful ingredients and real food snacks that need minimal preparation is the best way to ensure you’re not experiencing energy dips and, at the same time, optimising the nutrients and vitamins you are consuming.

What are your go to key ingredients?  Those that we might not have heard of?

I know a lot of people want a list of foods that you need to eat to achieve optimal ‘health’ but I prefer to look at nutrition in a holistic way meaning that it shouldn’t be a matter of having a tick-list of ingredients but rather looking to eat a broad spectrum of fresh and seasonal ingredients, and, as with any changes in lifestyle it is important to establish something that you are able to maintain easily so ingredients need to be those you enjoy and have easy access to.

There has been a huge movement towards plant based eating in the last few years and whilst it’s not for everyone eating a diet focused (although not necessarily exclusively) on plants will ensure that you are getting a hefty dose of antioxidants and anti inflammatories into your diet which can only be a positive thing -boosting both your mind and body.

How much of an impact does nutrition have on our lives and our mental/physical wellbeing? 

The food we consume has the power to nourish, energise and heal our bodies.

As individuals we can only function- both mentally and physically- when our bodies are able to fully absorb and utilise all the necessary nutrients they need to function efficiently. Stress, allergies, over exercise, chronic illnesses and toxins can all interfere with these vital processes causing our bodily systems to become imbalanced resulting in weight gain, poor gut health, sleep dysregulation, digestive issues and fluctuating hormones.

Nutrition isn’t about a quick fix. It’s about embracing whole and organic foods in our lives to nourish and cleanse our bodies and empowering ourselves to make the right nutritional choices to improve our health.

Do you have a go to recipe that you would recommend to someone starting out on their journey to better nutrition?

Whenever I feel like I need nourishment I always cook a bowlful of my simple Daal . It’s full of antioxidants and anti inflammatory ingredients- ginger, garlic, turmeric, chilli, tomatoes – as well as being both comforting and energising! It’s also great to cook ahead of time and reheat for a quick lunch or you can even freeze portions for when you are time poor but in need of something wholesome.

If you, like me are feeling inspired to get cooking, head over to our stories today for a few of Lyndsay’s top recipes.

To learn more about Lyndsay, follow her on Instagram @ieatmypeas.





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