Eat, Dance, Shine

Ever since I studied Biology in High School I have been fascinated with the human body and how to stay healthy. This led me to my first degree in Physiology and Biochemistry, and then on to a M.Sc in Nutrition from the University of London. My fascination has also guided me into consecutive Nia trainings, and I am now a Black Belt teacher.

I have continued to research health, nutrition and longevity by leading Green Nutrition workshops, and through teaching several Nia classes each week for the last 10 years.

My goal has been to guide, inspire and empower women and men to create natural health and age gracefully.

My book came out of my decades long experience with three main elements: Nutrition, Exercise and Happiness, hence ‘Eat Dance Shine, How to come alive, gain energy and push back the years.’

(Listen to the Interview with Michele Kaye + Debbie Rosas!)

The main message that I love to use, almost as a mantra is:

  • It’s never too late to make changes
  • Small changes do make a difference
  • It’s what you do every day that counts, not what you do from time to time. 
     

The largest section of the book, ‘Eat', covers everything from why vegetable juice is the ultimate fast food, what are probiotics and how to make your own, what superfoods to include in your diet, and to the question of whether chocolate is good for you. While the book is not prescriptive, I guide the reader in Chapter 1 ‘Dietary Dogma versus Freedom’, to connect with their own body, as in Nia, and increase their awareness of what foods feel good. There are a couple of exercises to connect you with your ‘inner guru’.

Throughout the book, there are recipes, Energy Boosting Tips and Geeky Science Alerts. The ‘Dance’ section includes a chapter on Nia, as well as the importance of exercise for health, and how to find an exercise that you love to do daily. Finally ‘Shine’ addresses lasting happiness with 10 of my favourite practices, from walking in nature to EFT (tapping), gratitude, and to knitting!

I have often heard the phrase “Nia is like chocolate! You have to taste it to see what it's like!” As many of us hold chocolate dear to our hearts, I have chosen an excerpt from "Chapter 13, Chocolate revealed” to share with you all.

“Why is chocolate good for you? Some call it a superfood. I think chocolate warrants a chapter of its own, given how important a role it plays in some women’s health and happiness...as long as it is low in sugar. The Latin name for chocolate, Theobroma Cacao, means “Food of the Gods” for a reason. There are many documented health benefits. And I love the line: “chocolate grows on trees, it’s a plant, that makes it a vegetable, hence chocolate is good for me”.

Actually chocolate is a fruit, and whether it is good for you or not depends on how it is made. Cocoa beans contain minerals including potassium, zinc, magnesium, iron, also fibre, resveratrol (antioxidant) as well as theobromine, a stimulant that acts like caffeine in some people.

How much to eat?

Firstly if you don’t like chocolate and it does not appeal, or it makes you too jittery and stimulated, there is NO need to worry. Let’s admit, it is easy to get your antioxidants elsewhere, with an abundance of rainbow coloured vegetables and fruit. Enjoyment is the key! If however, like me, you do love chocolate, then dark chocolate is the one to go for, with a cocoa content of 70% or more. The darker it is, the greater the content of polyphenols. They make chocolate taste bitter. So some sugar is needed to balance the bitter taste. Finding the right balance is important.

It has been found that dark chocolate reduces blood pressure and helps protect the heart and arteries from damage. Researchers from Louisiana State University (2014) discovered it does this is by encouraging the growth of beneficial gut bacteria such as Bifidobacterium and lactic acid bacteria which feed on chocolate, fermenting the fibre, and producing anti-inflammatory compounds. Ref 1.

Try this recipe using raw cocoa powder and raw cocoa nibs for the benefits of this superfood, with no processed sugar.

Banana Avocado Cocoa Pudding

  • 2-3 ripe bananas
  • 1 ripe avocado, skinned and stoned
  • 1 tbs cocoa powder (ideally raw)
  • cocoa nibs
  • optional 1 Medjool date (chopped) or 1tsp natural sweetener e..g honey, agave syrup, maple syrup
  • optional vanilla bean or essence
  • optional ¼ tsp cinnamon powder
     

​Blend all the ingredients together, adding approximately ¼ cup of water to create desired consistency and pour into a bowl. Serve sprinkled with raw cocoa nibs.”

'Eat, Dance, Shine' including a foreword from Debbie Rosas is available in colour from michelekaye.com, printed and shipped locally around the world.

Listen to the Interview with Debbie Rosas + Michele Kaye!

Michele Kaye is a mother, a teacher, a passionate lover of nature. She has a degree in Physiology with Biochemistry, and a postgraduate Masters degree in Nutrition. She taught Biology over a 15 year period. During the last 27 years, since having three children, she has researched, practiced, coached and taught ways to live a healthy and joyous life, running regular Green Nutrition Workshops. Michele, also a Black Belt Nia Teacher, teaches mainly women who, like herself, appreciate the healing value of movement. She sees herself dancing and juicing well into her 90’s and intends to bring many students, clients, family and friends along with her!