Posted by kate on February 27, 2017
Why eating pancakes is good for your immune system!
If you haven’t guessed yet, this is not a scientific article outlining new research proving, that the unique chemical process of blending flour and milk into a batter with a binding agent has hitherto unknown chemical effects on the immune system.
That is not to say that I don’t believe pancakes can boost your immune system, it’s just that I don’t have a scientific process for this other than my instinct and the old adage, “A little of what you fancy does you good.”
So really this blog is about the fact that I love pancakes so much that something deep inside tells me they are doing me good.
I’ve always loved pancakes. Ever since I was old enough to hold the pan I’ve been making them as often as I can. There is something about the process, that lends itself to lazy weekend mornings .
They are a no-rush cooking event for me. The process of adding the liquid to the dry ingredients ever so slowly, little by little, and whisking, whisking whisking, until your arm is a little sore is like alchemy. Then the batter waits, rests and cools in the fridge until you are ready to stand, flipping and watching over the hot frying pan, as one after another small golden discs land on plates and vanish.
Two years the process changed when I became vegan. The eggs vanished and cornflour and baking powder were introduced. This means thicker pancakes that can absorb as much maple syrup as you can ladle on. Forget everything you have been taught to fear about sugar at this point. Pancakes deserve maple syrup and maple syrup deserves pancakes.
Pancakes are part of a ritual in my home. My son shares my love of them, and every time we have a slow morning there is an unspoken rule that the day starts with pancakes. I like to think that whatever else happens in our lives, he will always remember our pancake ritual.
So here is my pancake recipe. It is slightly adapted from Jack Monroe’s book pancake recipe. I have reduced the amount of sugar in the batter and I use a little more liquid.
150g plain flour
2 tbsp cornflour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp sugar
150ml soya or almond milk
enough water to make the batter runny
2 tbsp oil
Mix all the dry ingredients in a large bowl.
Add the oil and some of the milk, and start to whisk. Add the rest of the milk gradually. The batter will be very thick initially but try and get it smooth with no lumps. Gradually add water until the batter is runny enough to pour.
Rest in the fridge for half an hour.
Heat a pan with some oil, and begin frying the pancakse.
Drizzle with maple syrup to serve.
Posted by kate on December 8, 2016
Reflexology Gift Vouchers
As part of my series of Christmas offers, I want to tell you about my final offer on Reflexology gift vouchers.
Between now and Friday 23rd December I am giving £5 off every treatment voucher, which means that if you buy a Reflexology gift voucher you pay £35 instead of £40, and if you buy a Foot Health gift voucher you pay £25 instead of £30.
Additionally if you want to buy someone a truly indulgent gift, you can buy 4 Reflexology treatments for the price of 3.
I also have a variety of gift packages containing foot creams and other Foot health products.
So if you live in Bristol and are looking for a Reflexology gift this Christmas call me on 0117 950 6629 or 07811 619860.
Posted by kate on December 2, 2016
How to deal with corns: Part Two.
A Case Study
Several months ago I wrote a blog on dealing with corns, covering how they form, what causes them and how to deal with them.
I thought it would be helpful to use a case study to illustrate some of the information I provided in my earlier blog, along with a short video.
I first met Sally (name changed to protect anonymity) about 18 months ago when her family referred her to me. She told me she had a verruca on the bottom of her left foot which had been there for 8 years. She had been to see another chiropodist a few years before, but the treatment hadn't worked. She was in a great deal of pain, especially when walking.
When I had a look at her feet, it was immediately obvious that it was not a verruca at all, but it was in fact a large seed corn.
Seed corns occur on the base of the foot, and unfortunately tend to come back after being removed.
The corn on Sally’s foot was so large and impacted, that it was painful while I was removing it. It is essential to remove every bit of the corn, and you know you have done this successfully when the client can feel nothing there.
The aim of a Foot Health treatment is to ensure that the client’s feet are pain free for as long as possible. While seed corns do tend to grow back, a client should hope for at least four pain free weeks in my opinion.
If you live in Bristol and are having problems with painful feet call me on 07811 619860 or 0117 950 6629.
Posted by kate on October 31, 2016
As so many of you have asked which are the best foot care products to use to keep your feet in good condition, I have decided to stock some products that I use myself.
They are made by a small company called Holistix in Devon, and are completely free of chemicals, parabens and artificial scents and colours.
This anti-fungal peppermint and teatree cream makes the perfect Reflexology gift, and is my favourite all round foot cream. Because it contains teatree oil it acts as a gentle protection against things like athlete's foot.
This intensely moisturising foot balm is ideal for people who really struggle with hard skin on their feet. It is very thick and soothing, and feels wonderful when used at the end of a long day.
For people who want the ultimate in relaxation this Christmas, I have my Reflexology gift vouchers sold in any amount. They can be used to buy bundles of treatments, or just for a one off Reflexology or Foot Health treatment.
And finally for the most interesting Reflexology gift this Christmas my book "A Single Step" by Kate McEwan is still available at the great price of £6 on Amazon. It is packed full of money saving tips and useful information about how Reflexology and Foot healthcare can help you improve your overall health.
If you are interested in buying any of these products and you live in Bristol, they are available from my clinic at the top of Westbury-on-Trym. Call me on 0117 950 6629 or 07811 619860.
Posted by kate on September 30, 2016
So Many Reasons to Use Coconut Oil
I can't decide if I was early or late to the coconut oil party. 6 years ago when I was learning Indian Head Massage, coconut oil was my oil of choice (more of that later.)
However while others have been using it in cooking for the last year or two, I have been hanging back. Early or late, I don't know.
Whatever the answer, I am well and truly at the party now. In the kitchen with the cool kids, so to speak. I use it for everything now. Consequently I am writing this short summary of why it is so good for you, and how you can use it.
First lets have a look at what happens when you use coconut oil internally.
Coconut oil is one of the best oils to use when cooking. It is a saturated fat, BUT it is made up of medium chain triglycerides which go straight to the liver. There they are used as a quick source of energy or turned into ketone bodies. These are believed to have a therapeutic effect on brain disorders such as Alzheimers and epilepsy.
The medium chain triglycerides can increase energy expenditure compared to the same amount of calories from longer chain fats.This means consumption of coconut oil helps you burn energy more effectively than other fats, which can help with weight loss.
Some studies have shown that coconut oil can have a beneficial impact on cholesterol levels which could lead to a reduced risk of heart disease.
It is important to remember to use organic virgin oil when cooking with coconut oil.
There are also a few ways to use coconut oil externally.
When I gave Indian Head Massages, I used to use coconut oil all the time, as it left people's hair beautifully glossy and shiny. It is best to massage into the scalp and then spread through the hair, and is especially effective as a conditioner if left in over night.
Coconut oil is also good when used as a general moisturiser, as it is fairly light and easy to absorb. I also use it as the base of a home made body scrub, as it adds a very silky finish to the skin. The recipe for the coconut oil scrub is in another blog.
While you can buy coconut oil in liquid form as a massage carrier oil, it is more common to see it sold in jars in the supermarket. The oil within is solid which is fine for a lot of cooking purposes as you can scrape the amount you need out with a spoon. If you need it in liquid form, just stand the jarin a pot of hot water for a short while, and the oil will melt quickly.
If you need any advice on health issues and you live in the Bristol area, please call Kate on 0117 950 662 or 07811 619860.
Posted by kate on September 5, 2016
My Five Home Health Essentials
Everyone has things in their home that they wouldn't be without. cooking equipment and cleaning materials are usually a high priority. Most people will also have a first aid kit, and some other types of pain relief and cold medicines in case of need.
I have put together a list of 5 home health essentials which are natural, and I think every home should have in case they are needed. My home health essentials often have more than one use, so they are versatile, as well as being economical and natural.
1. Aloe vera plant. Not only is it a very attractive plant, but th gel contained within is one of life's small miracles. If you ever burn yourself or are stung by anything, the first thing you should do is break off a leaf and rub the gel on the injured area. I have also given the gel to people with severely blistered feet, and it has soothed the pain very effectively.
An alternate use which people don't often think of, is it's value in cleansing the air. It is believed to help clear chemical residues left behind from cleaners and paints.
2. Bicarbonate of soda. This gets a place in my home health essentials because of its versatility. Apart from its use in cooking, it's mildly abrasive character makes it a great natural cleaner.
It can also be used in combination with sea salt (half a cup of each bicarb and sea salt) to make a relaxing and restorative bath when every part of you is sore and aching.
It's deodorizing qualities make it great for removing the smell from shoes. Just shake bicarb inside them and leave. You can also make a great carpet deodorant by mixing a quantity of bicarbonate of soda with a few drops of tea tree oil. Shake the mixture liberally over carpets, leave for a few hours and then vacuum up.
3. Epsom salts. If you have ever come home from work tired and aching, then a tub of epsom salts has a place in your bathroom. It is also known as magnesium sulfate, and having a bath with epsom salts will boost your intake of magnesium. Adding 2 cups of epsom salts to a bath will do wonders to relieve aching muscles after a hard day.
I also use epsom salts in my foot scrub recipe which you can find in a previous blog. It's consistency is fine enough to exfoliate well, without being too abrasive. Many online retailers sell good quantities of epsom salts for very reasonable prices.
4. Tea Tree Oil. This versatile essential oil was guarenteed a place in my home health essentials, because it can be put to so many uses. It's powerful anti-fungal properties make it a fantasic addition to any foot product. I use it in my foot scrub recipe, and i sometimes add it to plain cream. It can be used neat to treat verrucae and fungal nail infections.
It also works well with bicarbonate of soda to deodorize carpets and shoes, as described above.
Teenagers can use it as a spot treatment, and parents of younger children can use it to repel head lice.
5. Coconut Oil. This oil has so many health giving properites, that I am going to devote another blog to it by itself in the next few weeks.
For now I will encourage you to invest in some organic virgin oil. You can use this in cooking, but also to condition hair, and to moisturize your body. It is the third ingredient in my foot scrub recipe.
If you need more information on looking after your health and you live in Bristol or the surrounding area, please call me on 0117 950 6629 or 07811 619860.