Tag Archives: food

Recipe #2 Lush Hypoallergenic Mega Easy Banana Ice Cream Recipe

Well the title says it all really. This is a super lush, hypoallergenic mega easy banana ice cream recipe. Unless you are allergic to bananas or frozen things, in which case – don’t eat this. 


You will need:

  • A bunch of bananas
  • A freezer
  • A freezer proof container or food bag
  • A sharp knife
  • A container
  • A food processor

Peel and slice bananas into 2 cm chunks. Put sliced bananas loosely into a freezerproof container and freeze. Don’t pack the bananas too tightly as the aim is that you can seperate out the slices once frozen.

Once frozen (takes about 24 hours) set up your food processor so you have it on the blades / liquidising setting. Fill the bowl up with the seperated chunks of frozen banana. If you more than half fill the bowl, divide the chunks into two batches.

Ok, steel your nerves, and switch the food processor on.

It will start by just chopping up the banana in a ‘this will never work’ way, but then miraculously, you will start to see a creamy ice cream form. Once all the banana chunk have turned into ice cream, turn it out into a feezer proof bowl and re-freeze. By all means sneak a little tester bowl at this stage!

Eat and enjoy!

This was absolutely gorgeous and we had a discussion about how we could pimp it up with toppings, here are some ideas:

  • maple syrup
  • fresh cherries
  • nuts (not for crohnies)
  • Honey
  • Rum!

I tried using a jug style liquidiser to puree the banana and it just didn’t work – the first cm was pulverised but nothing else would sink down onto the blades.  If you only have a jug style liquidiser, then puree the bananas first before freezing. If you don’t have a liquidiser, then use a potato masher, and if you don’t have one of those, mash the bananas with a fork – you won’t get the same creamy consistency though.

Vegetables that won’t destroy you if you have Crohn’s or Colitis (apparently)

Continuing the theme of food that won’t destroy you if you have Crohn’s or Colitis (Last week’s fruit post is here).

As before, my first port of call, and the inspiration for today’s post, was What to Eat with IBD: A Comprehensive Nutrition and Recipe Guide for Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis by Tracie Dalessandro, who is not only a registered dietician with a masters of Science in nutrition, but also a Ulcerative Colitis and subsequently Crohn’s Disease sufferer. I extracted her list of ‘Vegetables that heal’ from chapter 2 below and ran then through the nurtient tool over here.

Tonight, I have just researched the following:

  • Beta-carotene / Vitamin A – improves resistance to infection, supports growth and repair of tissue; maintain health skin and mucous membranes (Need 5000IU per day)
  • Vitamin D – Needed for proper formation of the skeleton and maintaining the mineral balance in bones (Need 60oIU per day)
  • Vitamin C – Anti-oxidant, wound healing, formation of collagen and appropriate immune responses (Need 60mg per day)
  • Folate – necessary for proper cell division – especially in IBD patients (400mcg per day)

Here is the list of vegetables that heal, based on 100mg, cooked without salt, unless otherwise stated. Brocolli, Collard Greens, Arugula, Asparagus, Butternut Squash, Carrots, Peppers and Sweet Potato stand out as the the superfood here, but almost all the vegetables on the list have a role in supplying a important vitamin:

  • Acorn squash Vitamin A: 817IU; Vitamin C: 11mg
  • Arugula (raw) Vitamin K: 109mcg; Vitamin C: 15mg; Folate: 97mcg
  • Asparagus Vitamin A: 1006IU; Vitamin K: 51mcg; Vitamin C: 8mg; Folate: 135mcg
  • Broccoli Vitamin A: 1548IU; Vitamin K: 141mcg; Vitamin C: 65mg; Folate: 108mcg
  • Butternut Squash Vitamin A: 11155IU; Vitamin C: 12mg; Folate: 16mcg
  • Carrots Vitamin A 17036IU;  Vitamin K: 14mcg; Vitamin C: 4mg; Folate: 14mcg
  • Cauliflower Vitamin K: 14mcg; Vitamin C: 44mg
  • Collard greens (very soft) Vitamin A: 8114IU; Vitamin K: 440mcg; Vitamin C: 18mg;Folate: 93mcg
  • Endive (raw) Vitamin A: 2167IU; Vitamin K: 231mcg; Vitamin C: 6mg; Folate: 142mcg
  • Kale (very soft) Vitamin A: 13623IU; Vitamin K: 817mcg; Vitamin C: 41mg;
  • Lettuce Vitamin A: 8711IU; Vitamin K: 103mcg; Vitamin C: 4mg; Folate: 38mcg
  • Parsnips Vitamin K: 1mcg; Vitamin C: 13mg; Folate: 58mcg
  • Peppers (red) Vitamin A: 3582IU;  Vitamin K: 5mcg; Vitamin C: 171mg; Folate: 10mcg
  • Potatoes Vitamin K: 2mcg; Vitamin C: 13mg (skin on baked, 7mg boiled, no skin); Folate: 28mcg
  • Pumpkin Vitamin A: 4992IU; Vitamin K: 1mcg; Vitamin C: 5mg; Folate: 9mcg
  • Spagetti squash Vitamin A: 5224IU; Vitamin C: 4mg; Folate: 12mcg
  • Spinach Vitamin A: 10481IU; Vitamin K: 494mcg; Vitamin C: 10mg; Folate: 146mcg
  • Sweet potato Vitamin A: 19217IU; Vitamin C: 9mg
  • Tomato (without skin) (Raw) Vitamin A: 833IU;  Vitamin K: 8mcg; Vitamin C: 13mg; Folate: 15mcg
  • Yam  Vitamin K: 2mcg; Folate: 16mcg

Plaintain and Broccoli are GOOD for people with Crohn’s Disease!

This paper from GUT, which is the British Medical Journal’s gastroenterology journal, caught my eye a few weeks ago. The title ‘Translocation of Crohn’s disease Escherichia coli across M-cells: contrasting effects of soluble plant fibres and emulsifiers’ sounds a bit dry, but if you read the paper you find out some VERY interesting information which I’ll summarise:

Learn to love broccoli

  • Plaintain and Broccoli are GOOD for people with Crohn’s Disease
  • Poly-sorbate 80 (E433) is BAD for people with Crohn’s Disease

The paper explains that Crohn’s disease is common in developed nations where the typical diet is low in fibre and high in processed food. They explain that remission can be acheived through enteric diets and they therefore propose that diet must play some part in the activity of the disease.

The researchers say “It is interesting that parts of the world such as Africa, India and Central America where plantains form an important part of the staple diet have low rates for inflammatory bowel disease and colon cancer. We have therefore now tested the ability of soluble plant fibres, such as those found in plantain, to block translocation of Crohn’s E coli across M-cells in vitro”.

E-coli is found in greater numbers in the intestinal tissue of Crohn’s patients. E-coli gets into the tissue through M-cells (Microfold cells), but this activity is inhibited in the presence of certain soluble plant fibres  but increased in the presence of low concentrations of an emulsifier that is commonly used in processed foods, poly-sorbate 80.

The researchers state that the “increase in the incidence of Crohn’s disease seen in recent years in Japan correlates with increased fat intake. Although the fat itself may be harmful, it is also possible that increased consumption of emulsifiers contained in processed fatty foods could be a factor”.

Emulsifiers are a permitted food additive which help keep foods together that could seperate e.g. oil and water. Although emulsifiers are probably largely broken down during the human digestive process,there has not been much investigation into their effects on intestinal permeability.

If you read this paper and decide that you would like to avoid the emulsifier mentioned in this paper here are the names it is known by:

  • Polysorbate 80
  • (Polyoxyethylene (20) sorbitan monooleate)
  •  (x)-sorbitan mono-9-octadecenoate poly(oxy-1,2-ethanediyl)
  • Alkest TW 80
  • Tween 80
  • POE (80)
  • sorbitan monooleate
  • E433

This paper does leave me with some questions:

  1. Where can I get plantains in Shrewsbury?
  2. Should I avoid E-coli pro-biotics?
  3. What other fruit and vegetables contain high amounts of soluble dietary fibre?

What am I going to do differently as a result of reading this research?

  1. Go through my kitchen cupboards and give away or throw out anything with Poly-sorbate 80 in it.
  2. Put everything with a non-distinct emulsifier ingredient in it in a pile and investigate the origin of the emulsifier
  3. Eat some plantains!
  4. Eat more broccoli!
  5. Investigate the e-coli pro biotic issue
  6. Re-double my efforts to not eat as much pre-prepared processed foods

Restaurant review: Casa Naranjo

Casa Naranjo, Barracks Passage, Wyle Cop, Shrewsbury, SY1 1XA (Tel: 01743 588 165)

Over at Yogaspirit I occasionally write something of interest to Worklifespirit readers. Casa Naranjo is our local tapas bar, which is a great restaurant to go to if you have people in your party who have food allergies or intolerances because there are so many choices: Here is the link to the review: http://catharinehinton.wordpress.com/2011/06/14/restaurant-review-casa-naranjo/

Are you IBD friendly? Three essential thoughts for cafes / restaurants

Susie commented that she would like some tips to pass on to the management team at her place of work about how they can make their place a little more  Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) friendly. Most of the following are common sense and generally good business sense, but it can helpful to review these issues every so often to make sure standards have not slipped:

  1. Toilets – A clean, well stocked toilet facility is all that is required. More than one stall in both male and female bathrooms is a must. People with (IBD), constipation and other health problems can be on the loo for quite some time. Most people hate it when there is no toilet paper, but because people with IBD often have diarrhea, they really hate the sinking feeling of realising that there is no TP after they’ve completed business…. Soap, towels or air dryers are essential as well for hand hygiene. If you have the luxury of designing a facility, toilets that can have an opening window light in them will enable any smells to dissipate quickly. Failing a window light, a good quality extraction system will help prevent any odour issues.
  2. Food – People with IBD love to eat out just as much as people without IBD. There are some high fibre / high residue foods which seem to be universally problematic for people with IBD. Please do note that this is not about fussy eating and perhaps a little bloating. These foods can cause severe pain as they are too fibrous to pass through the inflamed and narrow parts of the bowel, they literally scrape past sore parts and cause further damage. In some cases, such foods can actually cause a bowel blockage which inevitably means that the person has to go to hospital for emergency surgery. The biggest culprits are mushrooms, sweetcorn and nuts. People with IBD usually know what food they need to avoid during a flare up of symptoms and if you can be a little bit flexible with your dishes that can be really helpful. For example, swapping the mushrooms for aubergine or the sweetcorn for rice.
  3. The ‘Unexpected‘ – People with an IBD may unexpectedly and urgently leave their table and disappear for several minutes. They haven’t scampered without paying the bill, they have just gone to the toilet. They may leave some or almost all the food you prepared for them. This is because they may have an appetite for the food, but not be able to eat a large quantity. They may ask for a child’s or small portion. Sometimes they may return something containing very rare or uncooked meat / fish, blue cheese or the high fibre foods described above.

Festivals and food policies

Over the last few weeks I have become increasingly aware that UK festivals are starting to impose restrictions on what refreshments ticket holders are able to bring into the event.

Old news you might think, restrictions on alcohol and glass packaging have been around for some time….but no…these are 100% restrictions on ANY food OR drink (including bottles of water) being taken into the festival arenas, and restrictions on what can be taken into campsites.

Heaven only knows why small scale local “no food or drink can be taken into the festival arena” festivals feel the need to impose such draconian rules – do they think they are Coach “No food/Drink allowed into the concert area” ella or something?

How does this relate to ill health? For starters, refresh your memory of the Equality Act 2010

1. Will the security staff have the relevant skills, knowledge and training to enable them to identify, and make a judgement, on sight of the following:

  • A person suffering from diabetes who needs to carry certain types of food with them?
  • A person suffering dehydration who needs to keep their hydration levels up?
  • Someone who is lactose intolerant and needs to bring in some lactose free milk for their tea / coffee?
  • Someone who is coeliac and needs to bring in gluten free food?
  • Someone who has severe food allergies and needs to keep their food free from allergens such as nuts?
  • Someone with heart disease and who needs to be on a low fat diet?

2. If I am considered disabled, and I am refused entry to a festival arena because of, for example, the gluten free rolls I want to bring in to an arena for the burger I would like to buy, will the company be falling foul of the Equality Act?

Then consider health and safety…

3. I believe those festivals that confiscate water from patrons to have not carried out an effective risk assessment on this policy. The risks from dehydration, dirty hands (not all water is for drinking, it is also used to wash hands after using the appalling toilets) and dirty cuts from falls are greater than….. what? What is the realistic risk from a bottle of water? Well there isn’t a risk, it is cynical marketing ploy. If the company doesn’t let you bring your own refreshments into the arena, they can charge a premium to the vendors there…. I imagine it goes like this…”we’ve got a policy that people aren’t allowed to bring in anything to drink or eat and so you’ll make loads of money, that’s why we charge you more”

Then think about your customers needs – the customers that you are meant to serve…

4. I love festival food – hot fresh chips with plenty of salt and vinegar slathered with tomato sauce, warm doughnuts with creamy hot chocolate and cheese crepes – yum yum yum! But after approximately 2 hours of this type of food I get uncomfortable symptoms of Crohn’s as my body struggled to digest all this fat, cream, sugar and salt.

5. So I look for the ‘healthy’ alternative and I am delighted to find the all the traders selling Jamaican, Indian and Indonesian food, but no…..Hot spicy food, Crohn’s and chemical toilets – No thank you.

6. So I have a jacket potato, which means I won’t starve. But I don’t want to only eat jacket potatoes all weekend.

Why is this type of policy a bad idea?

A. The first thing to realise is that I have money to spend and I have choice. I will choose to visit festivals that meet MY needs and choices. In the context of health I call this my ‘Poorly pound’ (ooh I’ll copyright that one ©). I will prioritise the following:

  • Good quality, clean toilets, and plenty of them
  • A reputation for a variety of food including more healthy choices
  • Not having to explain myself to people who do not have any right to know about my medical history – this is how I will feel at a festival that has these restrictions

B. The second thing to realise is that it is unlikely to impact the bottom line in the way that you think. I want the freedom to bring my bottle of water and my snacks in, and I will purchase additional food and drink as well. By not giving me choice I will not buy your tickets and you are missing out on the poorly pound from me and the healthy pound from my family. You will save money on security staff who have better things to do than to look through people’s bags enforcing a silly policy. Oh, you don’t need my money? Did you sell out already? No we are in a recession and everyone is tightening belts. You do need my money.

C. It causes bad feeling. Your event should be remembered for the fantastic atmosphere, brilliant line up and helpful staff. It should not be remembered for the jobsworth security staff who took away the carton of juice from a toddler, the skips of perfectly good confiscated food greeting visitors at the entrance and every single patron grumbling that the only possible reason this ridiculous policy exists is because it is a cynical attempt by the event marketeers to extract more money from vendors. “It takes many good deeds to build a good reputation, and only one bad one to lose it (Franklin)”

D. It goes against festival spirit – customers have a well developed radar and growing distaste for festivals which are run heavily in favour of marketing and events companies – and with a limited budget they will seek out the more authentic experiences – i.e. not yours. This is linked to reputation above.

Fortunately there are some festivals that have a much more sensible approach, and will therefore benefit from my ‘poorly pound’ such as Latitude “Food for personal consumption is permitted onsite including in the arena”.

Lets look at some excuses:

  1. It is a health and saftey risk – I am the queen of health risk assessment – I live my life making decisions based on risk, whether it be to assume that dish does not contain mushrooms or weighing up the odds of surviving surgery. I write many risk assessments for my work. The risk associated with me not having fluid and food are greater than the risks of me having them on my person.
  2. It is standard practice – No it is not. Latitude, V and Leeds don’t feel the need to have this policy, for example.
  3. Vendors want us to have this policy – No vendors want you to create a good value event that meets the needs of customers.  They want high levels of footfall and generally happy punters. They are happy to pay for premium spaces, but not at the expense of customers who then dig their heels in and refuse to buy from anyone at all.

So what have I missed?

Restaurant review – Mirage Mezze, Shrewsbury

Over at my Yogaspirit blog I occasionally write something that would be useful for WorkLifeSpirit.  In this case it is a review of a local restaurant that serves deliciously tasty middle eastern food which is not OTT with the spices, and based in a thriving market hall with lifts and toilets. Enjoy!

Please go along to read the  rest of the review at Yogaspirit: http://catharinehinton.wordpress.com/2011/05/07/restaurant-review-mirage-mezze-shrewsbury/

Mirage Mezze, Units 27/28, Shrewsbury Market Hall, Shoplatch, Shrewsbury, SY1 1QG (Tel: 07760 537448)