Chronically Fabulous · Food · Food Reviews · Grain Free Recipes · Sugar Free Recipes

My Healthy Eating Hacks

I’ve been eating low carb for the last decade so making healthy food is routine for me but I know that for many people it’s very difficult. And believe me, I definitely understand! Some of the ingredients are weird and hard to find. The recipes can be incredibly complex and…. Not everything actually tastes good. In fact, many things are horrible. And a lot of recipes involve a spiralizer or dehydrator or specialist blender and no one has time for that!

Occasionally in my recipes you’ll find a few ingredients that are potentially new to you or seem like something you’d buy once, use for this recipe and then put to the back of the cupboard until it goes off and has to be thrown in the bin. Never fear, once you know the ‘healthy eating hacks’ everything seems a lot easier!

I’m using my recipe for coleslaw here as an example but I’ll try to always answer these same questions at the bottom of every recipe.

  1. What the hell are those ingredients?!

Some things you can use Sea Vegetable Condiment for instead: seasoning salads, roast vegetables, on top of eggs, crust on a boring white fish fillet, soups of all kinds, guacamole, hummus, even a tasty dip with some yogurt! It can also be used either in or sprinkled upon savoury baking such as breads, muffins, wraps, pizza, pasta, rice, noodles.

Generally anything that would benefit from a savoury, herby, salty flavour. But don’t try and eat it by itself because it’s dried and really sticks to the roof of your mouth. Also gets between your teeth. Not a ‘first date’ food.

Next: Linseeds! Also known as flaxseeds. “Whaaaaaaaaaat are those?” I hear you ask. Well, they’re a seed. With a lot of protein, iron and fiber. A LOT of fiber. ‘Be careful you don’t have too much’ levels of fiber. I use a mix of ground linseeds with whole linseeds and chia seeds (which absorb liquid and swell to thicken things). Other things you can use linseeds for: sprinkling on stuff.

That’s it.

If it can have sprinkles on top then you can put linseeds on it. Sweet or savoury. From yogurt to salads to poached fish. It adds a nice nutty flavour.

You can also use them to thicken things like smoothies. Or left in water overnight they create a porridge of types- but not too much water. Or mix them in to regular porridge for an added boost. They can even be used as a vegan egg substitute because they are glutinous when soaked. If you’re a baker then make some flaxseed bread or homemade granola bars or crackers! So. Many. Options.

  1. Where do I buy those?!

Well, funnily enough, I bought my linseeds at ASDA. I think. Or Ocado. Because I’m a woman of contradictions and layers. My point is: not only are they sold in health food shops, they’re also available in big supermarkets, highstreet health shops (Holland and Barrett) and, of course, online. I would advise buying in bulk from a health food shop and then grinding them down yourself in a processor because like hell I’m going to pay extra for someone else to do that. No.

The sea vegetable seasoning I’ve also seen in various health food shops but it’s pretty damn expensive so I would suggest going online. Plus, it’s very light so you don’t get charged extra for a heavy package. There’s an innuendo in there somewhere.

I personally like Goodness Direct because they let me buy everything in bulk for very reasonable prices and then don’t charge me delivery!

The vegetables you can buy from a shop that sells vegetables. Even mooli is becoming more common to see in supermarkets but…

  1. Uh… I can’t find it

If you can’t find Mooli you can always use parsnip instead, that’s a completely acceptable switch. If you can’t find vegetables then… I’m not clear why you think you can make a coleslaw. Crunchy raw stuff will do.

Instead of Linseeds I sometimes add nut butter for the nutty taste- but make sure it’s unsweetened because otherwise you’re making a weird hybrid food. Or you can just leave it out entirely.

Obviously you don’t have to use gluten-free soy sauce if you’ve got no problem with gluten. And that’s fine, just because we’re not on speaking terms doesn’t mean you have to pick sides.

Regular Hellmann’s mayo is fine. As are other mayos but come on now, what’s better than Hellmann’s?

If you really don’t love the idea of seaweed in your coleslaw then throw in a pinch of salt, some chopped basil and maybe a little fish sauce for kick.

Speaking of things you can throw in…

  1. How can I bulk this up?

This recipe is excellent for lunch boxes. It goes really well with fish- whether that’s a fillet of salmon or some tinned tuna you’ve mixed in- or ham or torn up chicken breast. Veggie options would include adding almonds and seeds or maybe even some chickpeas.

Basically, it’s yummy and there are a lot of options. Healthy eating doesn’t have to be scary or that time consuming or expensive or any of that rubbish. It also doesn’t have to be pretty. Don’t get disheartened because your food doesn’t look like an instagram page. Believe me most of the things I eat look horrific but are actually delicious.

This coleslaw is actually in the top 5 of ‘good looking things I eat… that are not cake’

Mmm… cake.

Food · Grain Free Recipes

Coleslaw Is My Guilty Pleasure: Recipe + Video

Is that weird? TV tells me that guilty pleasures are chocolates and cakes but, my God, how can anyone NOT like coleslaw?! It’s crunchy but creamy but tart but soothing but flavourful! Heaven.

As side dishes go, it doesn’t get much better than coleslaw. What would barbecue chicken be without coleslaw?! How can you have chips without coleslaw?! For the love of humanity!

It’s also vaguely healthy.

And yet, most supermarkets see fit to turn coleslaw into something horrific- how can coleslaw possibly not be gluten free? Why is it full of sugar? Is there a reason it contains ALL of the fat you can possibly eat in one day?

Supermarket coleslaw is the worst so here is a recipe that is not only delicious but also very healthy! If you’re put off by the word ‘healthy’ I really just mean: ‘tasty but doesn’t make you feel nauseas afterwards’. If some of these ingredients seem a little strange to you then check out the video below for some healthy eating hacks or read the blog post here.


100g celery

2 medium red onions

100g white cabbage

100g grated mooli

3 tbsp gluten free soy sauce

1 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp mayonnaise (homemade if you want to be fancy)

4 tbsp live natural yogurt

1 tbsp of ground linseeds

2 tbsp of sea vegetable seasoning (also known as ‘seaweed sprinkle’)

Finely chop the vegetables. Mix them up.

Mix the other ingredients together in a mug.

Then mix with the veg.

There’s a lot of mixing.


This recipe is Candida Diet friendly but not Low FODMAP since it has both celery and raw onion (basically the worst thing ever for IBS) but if you substitute some FODMAP-friendly crunchy veg like beansprouts, carrots or radishes.

If you like more of a kick in your coleslaw, add a teaspoon of mustard to the mix!

Classical Film Reviews · Film Reviews

It’s A Wonderful Life is my all time favourite Christmas film!

Although it isn’t strictly a Christmas film now, is it? The film begins and ends on Christmas Eve but mainly it is a straight dramatic retelling of the life of George Bailey. Poor George keeps trying to get out of his small town of Bedford Falls but is pulled back time and time again for various reasons… most of them having to do with Henry F Potter, the richest man in town.

The film chronicles George’s life from childhood, graduating from Bedford Falls High School, and his many battles with Potter, as he tries to take over George’s family-owned bank, the Bailey Building and Loan. James Stewart was nominated for the Best Actor in a Leading Role Oscar for playing George and he manages to bring both gravitas and light to a role that could have become too dark.

Although director Frank Capra and stars Stewart and Donna Reed have collective filmographies that consist of a couple of hundred films, they all cite It’s a Wonderful Life as their favourite. Capra even took this one step further in his autobiography, writing: “I thought it was the greatest film I ever made. Better yet, I thought it was the greatest film anybody ever made.”

… which, is a pretty big claim but it’s great he’s so self assured. Good for you, Frank!

However, in its initial run the film lost money- largely because Capra, who trained as an engineer before becoming a director, went over budget, even going so far as to engineer a new type of artificial snow for the film. At the time, painted cornflakes were the most common form of fake snow, but they posed an audio problem for Capra (due to crunching rather loudly under the actors’ feet!). Capra refused to dub the snow scenes and so opted to mix foamite (found in fire extinguishers) with sugar and water, to create a less noisy option.

The film also lost out for being, in many people’s eyes, a peculiarly downbeat way of celebrating the festive season, what with depression and suicide being a rather major plot-point!

It is perhaps for this reason that many publishers originally rejected The Greatest Gift, the short story the film is based upon. Its author Philip Van Doren Stern eventually decided to give the gift of words to his closest friends for Christmas. He printed 200 copies of the story and sent it out as a 21 page Christmas card. A producer at RKO Pictures ended up in possession of one and bought the movie rights for $10,000.

After many years of television screenings, particularly at Christmas, the film has slowly become a cinematic Holiday tradition and is now one of the most beloved films of all time. It’s certainly one of my favourites and is an outstanding film, underrated for its great narrative quality- which, yes, can be obscured by ‘the message’, the sentiment, and the schmaltz.

Possibly the film resonates with viewers thanks to its close narrative ties to another great Christmas classic that has long lived in the collective consciousness: Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. The relationship between the two stories is both close and yet not entirely straightforward…

It’s A Wonderful Life is not an American version, nor adaptation, nor sequel.

Yet, it echoes Dickens’ story in many ways: Both set on Christmas Eve, both about business men with finance playing a key role, both involve supernatural intervention which gives a man a chance to witness an alternate reality of his own life which then goes on to cause him to reevaluate his life and future behaviour. Both stories also establish a tension between on the one hand, Christmas and Christian charity, and on the other unchecked capitalism. They both drive home an essentially Christian message: how do our choices affect others and do we make a difference in the world?

However, the original story, The Greatest Gift, bears much less resemblance to A Christmas Carol so perhaps there was a little movie-making-magic (slash tinkering of an economically beneficial kind) going on behind the scenes here…

Whilst A Christmas Carol is about a man so wicked (read: clinically depressed) he actively allows life to pass him by, George is a good, ambitious man but so busy helping others he feels as if life has passed him by. Despondent (read: clinically depressed), he wishes he had never been born and sees how awful the world would be without him- a realization Ebenezer Scrooge has thrust upon him. These two men are not the same in any way. George is a positive and admirable figure no matter how much money he has.

So, a short rebuttal to some obstinate criticisms of the schmaltzy ending: it’s Christmas. No one needs a film with Christmas ending in suicide. George talks to an angel. Thus this is not the film for crushing realism.