Meet Lilian of Real Food Healthy Body

We’ve long admired the delicious recipes that the lovely Lilian from Real Food Healthy Body would share on her Instagram and blog so when we first sent her a bottle of our tanning treatment to try and she loved it we were beyond thrilled! Earlier this year, after falling in love with our tan, Lilian began working with us as an ivadore influencer which means our tanning treatment is responsible for making sure she is never without a sunkissed glow and we’re extremely proud to fill that role for someone who epitomises our own views about healthy living. We wanted to share a little bit more about this gorgeous woman who you’ll frequently see on our Instagram page so our founder, Tanya, sat down and had a chat to Lilian about life, food, fitness and what she loves the most about our tanning treatment. Just before we dive in though let us tell you a little bit about how Lilian and her blog Real Food Healthy Body came to be. Screen Shot 2016-08-10 at 10.03.22 PM Lilian is a Melbourne based lawyer turned blogger who, like many of us, has had an interesting health journey. Whilst she never ate too poorly Lilian struggled with a number of health issues including terrible digestion, acid reflux, anxiety and panic attacks and she felt she was always hungry. Eventually she was diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). That’s when she took her health into her own hands and began really examining what she was putting in her body and how different foods affect us. She decided to eat more good fats and limit processed foods and sugar (particularly fructose) and was amazed at the improvements in her health. Her digestion improved, her mood stabilised and her PCOS symptoms are now almost non-existent. It was these incredible changes that lead Lilian to start sharing what she was making and eating on her blog in the hopes of inspiring others who might be in a similar position to what she was. Whether you’re already immersed in the world of healthy eating, just starting to find your way or looking to get started on a better path she’s got loads of yummy, simple recipes to help you. Plus she shares beauty tips (like how much she loves our tanning treatment), lifestyle hacks and info about her fitness regime which brings us to our final ‘Lilian fact’ before we let her do the talking...She’s got a mean kick, seriously check out this video of her practicing her favourite fitness pastime Muay Thai. [embed][/embed]

Tanya: Describe yourself in three words?

Lilian: Passionate, creative, nerdy.

Tanya: You’ve had a pretty incredible journey health and food wise to get to where you are, what advice would you give to others who may not be feeling quite right and want to try a healthier path?

Lilian: I think it's important to focus on changing one small thing at a time so that you don't feel overwhelmed. Setting achievable goals will keep you feeling motivated. Maybe you decide to drink more water for one week and then introduce more vegetables into your diet the next week and so on.

Tanya: How did you get into the Thai martial art Muay Thai and what do you love so much about it?

Lilian: I initially started training at a fighters' gym just doing their fitness classes, but when I saw the fighters training and sparring I knew that it was something I wanted to do. So I started training more seriously. I love the technical and strategic aspects of Muay Thai. There's so much to learn and you continue to improve.

Tanya: All of your recipes on your blog look so delicious! What has been the most popular one to date?

Lilian: My Maca Caramel Slice! It's really easy and you can leave out the Maca if you don't have any on hand. (Scroll down to the bottom of the post for this delicious recipe.)

Tanya: What’s your favourite Winter recipe?

Lilian: I love to make my Roasted Vegetable Tray Bake in winter because it's super easy and comforting. You basically just throw everything into a baking dish and bake it in the oven! Snapseed-1

Tanya: What is your favourite thing about our tanning treatment and how have you found it different to other tanning treatments you’ve tried?

Lilian: I love that the tanning  treatment doesn't dry out my skin. I can put it on at night and wake up with moisturised, glowing skin. The colour is also a lot more natural than other tans. Screen Shot 2016-08-10 at 9.55.00 PM

Tanya: Why is using natural products important to you?

Lilian: I just try to do what's best for my body whenever possible. If I can find great products that have less chemicals it's a big bonus.

Tanya: What’s been your biggest life lesson to date?

Lilian: Stay true to your values. Forcing yourself to do things that just don't feel right or that are making you unhappy can lead you down a very negative path.

Tanya: When it’s just one of those mornings and you wake up not feeling so great what’s your number one tip for getting motivated?

Lilian: I find that having a 5 to 10 minute stretch while listening to your favourite music works well. Stretching freshens you up and the right music can get you going. Then I'd probably have a coffee!

Tanya: Can you walk us through an average day in your life?

Lilian: My days vary quite a bit because I split my time across a few different things, but they usually start with some form of exercise, then a big breakfast and a coffee. Then I'll typically spend some time answering emails and prioritising tasks for the day. Some days I work out of a co-working space and other days I'm in the kitchen at home. In the evenings, I like to have a chat to my partner over dinner and then do some stretching before jumping into bed. If I can't fall asleep straight away, I'll read a book (which is usually something about health and nutrition).

Tanya: If you could go back in time and tell yourself from 5 years ago one thing what would it be?

Lilian: Trust your instincts. Five years ago I was stuck in a job where I felt trapped. I knew deep down that I needed to move on but I resisted it for a while. When I push aside fear of the unknown and tune into my instincts, it seems to lead me in the right direction.

Lilian’s Amazing Raw Maca Slice!

Snapseed If you've been on Instagram, you've probably been exposed to an excessive amount of raw caramel slice recipes. Most require a heap of dates. But dates upset my digestion (due to their fructose content) so I developed this date-free version, boosted with nutrient-rich maca powder. Maca powder comes from the maca root, which is native to the Andes mountain ranges. It's packed with vitamins and minerals and is said to increase energy and mental clarity, enhance mood and immunity, and help restore hormone imbalances. It has quite a strong, earthy flavour so it's best to use it in small quantities. It can be an acquired taste, so if you don't like it, you can leave it out of the recipe. To achieve a caramel-like flavour, the recipe contains a little more sweetener than I would normally use. So I recommend keeping this one as a treat (i.e. try not to eat it every day). It's also quite rich, so I ended up cutting it into smaller pieces. i n g r e d i e n t s for the base: 2 x 20ml tablespoons cashew nuts or almonds 1 x 20ml tablespoon unsweetened desiccated coconut 2 teaspoons extra virgin coconut oil 2 teaspoons rice malt syrup for the maca caramel layer: 1/4 cup hulled tahini 1/4 cup rice malt syrup 2 x 20ml tablespoons extra virgin coconut oil, melted 1/2 teaspoon maca powder (I used Bare Blends Organic Raw Peruvian Maca Powder) 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract Pinch of sea salt for the chocolate topping: 1/4 cup extra virgin coconut oil, melted 2 x 20ml tablespoons raw cacao powder 3 teaspoons rice malt syrup 1 teaspoon hulled tahini Pinch of sea salt p r e p a r a t i o n Line an 8 x 12cm container with baking paper or cling film. Process the base ingredients in a food processor until the mixture comes together into a ball. Press the mixture into the prepared container and set aside in the freezer to chill. To make the maca caramel layer, place the tahini, rice malt syrup, melted coconut oil, maca powder, vanilla and sea salt in a small bowl. Gently stir everything together until just combined (if you over-stir the mixture it may go a bit grainy). Spread the maca caramel mixture over the base and return the container to the freezer to chill. To make the chocolate topping, place the melted coconut oil in a small bowl and stir in the cacao powder, rice malt syrup, tahini and sea salt until well combined. Pour the chocolate mixture over the maca caramel layer and leave the container in the fridge for a few hours to set. Once set, remove the slice from the container and cut into pieces. Store in the fridge or freezer. Makes 6 to 8 pieces. For more delicious recipes head over to Lilian’s blog or follow her on Instagram.

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