Nutrition therapist and natural chef Nicky Halliday’s first book ‘A Practical Guide to Cooking for Health’ is more than a book full of delicious recipes. Yes, the recipes are delicious. And easy too. But let me start by telling you a little about the author.
Nicky has explored different careers. But her interest in food and the connection between what we eat and our health set her on the path to a course in Nutritional Therapy. Then she travelled to California to continue her education in Bauman College Holistic Nutrition and Culinary Arts School.
On her return, she set up her own business. In between seeing clients, cooking for groups and designing and working on the menu for the fresh food deli in well-known health food store The Hopsack, Nicky never stopped learning and took many other courses. She also worked in a Natural Retreat Centre in Costa Rica, eating a plant-based diet and exploring how what we eat affects our health. Well, it does make sense.
Nicky is not a believer in the philosophy that one-size-fits-all in Nutrition and Health. We need to listen to our bodies, she states, and see what foods make us feel good and more importantly what makes us unwell. She is not a fan of fad diets. Balance in everything in life is key. Having cured her own health issues through food, plant medicine and meditation, Nicky sees that taking control of our own health through healthy eating is a good place to start.
SOME BASIC BUT IMPORTANT SECTIONS
There is a section on Kitchen Equipment which is particularly helpful to those who are new to cooking. Nicky looks at the different diets people follow, detoxing and the role of supplements also. She is very informative and balanced in her approach. There is nothing PREACHY about her advice. She just explains the science behind it and encourages healthy eating.
I loved the section on ‘Balancing Flavours’ because Nicky explains how to make the most bland food irresistible by adding maybe spices, acids, fats or something sweet such as maple syrup. But there is a method and a science behind it that she makes simple.
There are plenty of tips in the section on The Digestive System to help us deal with such problems and she looks at the connection between the brain and the gut. I have a keen interest in this and take a daily probiotic for a few years now. Nicky gives us foods and recipes.
This is divided into sections all of which explain the science behind the recipes. For example, under ‘Heart Health’, Nicky also lists the top anti-inflammatory foods and foods that are high in antioxidants. They feature highly in the recipes.
She also explains cholesterol and its function in the body. I will be updating you on my cholesterol journey in a few months.
In ‘Boosting Immunity’, for example we get a lesson Vitamin D. I have written about its importance on numerous occasions. We know a lot more about that since Covid, of course.
Blood Sugar Balancing, Gut Health, Food for The Brain, Grain and Gluten Free and Dairy Free also feature.
The recipes are beautifully illustrated with mouth-watering photos.
I have eaten Nicky’s food before and I know how absolutely delicious it is. Her mum Jenny is a former colleague. It is said we eat with our eyes. I am looking forward to cooking some of the recipes. But this is more than a recipe book. This is more than a book about healthy eating. This is a book to read once and then to refer back to when you need answers, or when you want a tasty, appetising recipe for feel-good food. Below you can see a photo from the book of the gorgeous ‘APHRODISIAC SALAD’! Definitely making that and it is easy.
I did make a salad (below) from the book for a family bbq yesterday which everyone loved.
These muffins look delicious too.
Nicky is right. We need to educate ourselves about the food we are eating. And food that is good for your health can be just as delicious. It is all about small changes.
I believe that this book would be an asset in every home. You can follow Nicky on FB and on instagram.
Find out more www.nickyhalliday.com