Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Top 5 Paleo Christmas Gifts 2015

With Christmas fast approaching many of you are no doubt wondering what to get your loved ones for a gift. Sometimes people are predictable and easy to buy for, other times things can be a little more tricky. 

If your partner/spouse/friend or colleague are interested in Paleo or healthy living, maybe you have pondered whether to buy them something related to their lifestyle choices - I think this is a wonderful idea! Not only does it show that you have been listening to us as we rabbit on about the merits of Paleo living but it means you have actually considered getting us something we will really use and value! 
Also, someone you love may be considering taking on Paleo from 1st January and what better way to encourage them then to buy them a Paleo gift to begin their journey with? 

Here are a list of the top 5 Paleo gifts which are perfect for any Paleo devotee or Paleo wanna be! 

5. The Paleo Book 

There are a growing number of excellent books on the literary market dedicated to Paleo. A book can be a great way to learn about the subject of Paleo to educate before taking it on. Some of the most popular include Mark Sisson's "Primal Blueprint", Rob Wolfe's "The Paleo Solution", Sarah Fragoso's "Everyday Paleo" and my personal favourite Diane Sanfillipo's "Practical Paleo". Diane's book is excellent and one which I always recommend as a first port of call for anyone interested in learning about Paleo. Buy it here.  I also really recommend Chris Kresser's "The Personal Paleo Code" and "Mediterranean Paleo Cooking" which is new release and really good!

4. The Slow Cooker
 I love mine and use it really frequently. I really believe it is a kitchen must have for the busy mum or shift worker. The merits of the slow cooker are numerous! Stick some meat and herbs and veggies in before you go to work in the morning and leave it there. Come home after work to delicious tender meat - ready to eat as soon as you are! I also regularly make bone broth overnight, or cook soup all night and have it ready to simply decant into my thermos for lunch the next day. A slow cooker is an excellent gift for your Paleo friend (or yourself!)

Check out this great programmable on by Crockpot. Buy it here. 

3. The Paleo Plan 
Does your other half or friend struggle with taking on new lifestyle choices? Do they need extra support but are not sure of where to find it? Maybe they want to eat clean but don't know where to start? This January I will be launching my brand new protocol which helps you take on the fundamentals of clean living. It goes beyond diet to look at other aspects of health such as sleep, movement and removing stimulants. Why not pay for them to join as the ultimate Christmas gift. Email me for details on theirishpaleo@Gmail.com 

2. Nutribullet
 The Nutribullet has fast become the must have kitchen gadgets for the health conscious! It is super powerful so can really pulverise all those fruits and veggies in smoothies (there is nothing worse that blueberry skins stuck in your teeth while drinking a smoothie) It is also strong enough to make nut butters and even your own coconut milk. The best part?! It is so easy to clean! This is so important. My juicer doesn't get used much as I hate cleaning it! 

You can buy the Nutribullet in Argos.

NutriBullet - Grey.

1. Spiraliser 
I purchased one of these a few tears ago and LOVE it!  A spiraliser is a gadget which takes pride of place in every Paleo kitchen. It allows us to recreate "pasta" by producing perfect vegetable spirals every time.  I use this every week for my spaghetti and really never miss the pasta!

Check this one out, buy it here 

I hope this list helps those of you struggling to buy Paleo gifts! 


Tuesday, 3 November 2015


A couple of weeks ago I posted a blog post outlining my experience as a new breastfeeding mother (read here) One question which came up quite a bit was where to purchase a sling. I was very new to babywearing but had heard many people praising their usefulness as a tool in your mother artillery! I was very dubious about how useful it would be. After all, hadn't I just spent a fortune on a state of the art travel system!? Wouldn't the baby be in it every day as I  leisurely walked around the country roads working off my baby tummy?

Baby had other ideas and for a number of weeks she had ZERO intention of lying down in her pretty and colourful bassinet. Make that lying on ANY surface other than Mammy's tummy! As someone who has come to learn alot about attachment parenting in the past few months, I knew that this clinginess was normal behaviour for a newborn. Afterall they have been plucked from the lovely comfortable surroundings of your uterus where they were in constant contact with you, listening to your heart beat with constant temperature, a steady stream of nutrients and a feeling of safety and security.

All of a sudden they are plucked from you and brought into a world full of bright lights, incorrect temperatures, hunger, itchy nappies and clothing and so many unknown sensations. All of this can become too much for your baby and they look for reassurance and contact with the only thing they know and feel safe with - YOU.

For me, having researched this so called "Fourth Trimester" and the need to allow your baby to learn to trust you and its surroundings, I knew that this "clinginess" that everyone talks about is in fact perfectly normal. For me, allowing my baby to cry it out or feel unsafe was not an option, despite the advice from others. However it is not always possible to hold your baby all day (much as we would like to!) Other children, housework and other demands on our time dictate that we do sometimes have to use both our hands and holding a baby all day may not be feasible. The solution? Babywearing.

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Babywearing is the practice of carrying a baby around in a wrap or sling and has been practised by many cultures for centuries. It has seen a resurgence in recent years and has any important benefits to both mother and child:

  • Close contact with newborn promotes the release of oxytocin which is very important for promotion of bonding with baby as well as production of milk.
  • Important role in prevention of post natal depression and an important tool in paternal bonding.
  • Promotes calm baby as he/she can smell, hear and touch caregiver
  • Maternal heartbeat promotes calm in baby as they remember the pulse from being in the womb
  • Movement is soothing for the baby 
  • Position and movement can help sooth the colicky or windy baby and promote passing of wind. 
  • Close contact promotes social development and allows copying of facial expressions. 
  • Contrary to popular belief baby wearing actually promotes independence faster as baby learns to trust and feel reassurance earlier. 
  • Allows both hands to be free allowing caregiver to get household tasks done easily or eat meals while baby feels content and happy in the sling. 
Which Carrier/Wrap should I choose
There are many many types of wraps and slings on the market. It can be very difficult to know what type would be suitable for you to choose and it is therefore recommended that you visit a Sling Meet close to you to gain advice and try on various types to see what suits your needs. Some even have a sling library where you can literally borrow a sling/carrier and try it for a while to see if it is suitable. To find out where there is a local meet in your area check out Babywearing Ireland's Website 

I purchased a Moby Stretch Wrap as I wanted something soft and suitable from birth (many carriers need an additional purchase of an infant insert to allow you to hold your baby from birth) as well as wanting it to allow baby's neck and body to be adequately supported. The Moby wrap fitted my brief and I bought from Irish website www.earthmother.ie who I happened to meet at a baby fair and who I felt had excellent customer service and support. 

My Moby wrap has been and continues to be an important part of my day to day life. I use it more than my buggy and it is so useful for situations where a buggy is not practical (such as at large events with lots of people or on country walks or hiking) or when baby is feeling like he/she needs reassurance of extra cuddles (during development leaps, teething, sickness etc) 

As someone who never contemplated baby-wearing in the past, it has quickly become an invaluable part of our everyday lives and something we will continue to do into the future. 

To celebrate my blog reaching an amazing 19,000 likes and with special thanks to www.earthmother.ie I have a Moby Wrap available to giveaway to one lucky reader! 

To be in with a chance to win please like and comment below my Facebook post and let me know why you want to win this for you or someone close to you. 

Entrants must also visit and like Earth Mother on Facebook. Tell them I sent you!
Check out their website for details on their sale which has up to 50% off selected lines.