Salted Caramel and Banana Smoothie

As part of my recent weight loss journey, I’ve really been experimenting with making super tasty recipes for the least amount of calories, and the Salted Caramel and Banana Smoothie might be my favourite to date.

I tend to have this for breakfast because I have such a sweet tooth in the mornings, but most people would probably prefer this later in the day.

The Salted Caramel and Banana Smoothie has similar vibes to a McDonalds Chocolate Milkshake (without the sour undertone) and it’s just 303kcals!

You will need:

  • 1/2 Frozen Banana
  • 25g Salted Caramel Whey Protein
  • 20g Rolled Oats
  • 5g of Choc Shot (or low calorie chocolate syrup)
  • 5g Chia Seeds
  • 200ml Unsweetened Almond Milk
  • Handful of Ice Cubes

To make:

Chuck it all in a blender and mix until your desired thickness and enjoy!

Why We Need To Stop Thinking We Can Do It All


There is a lot of debate as to whether stress is good or bad for you, with some people arguing that stress makes me you more productive. Which I don’t dispute.

However, I maintain that too much stress (be it good or bad) still negatively impacts on the body… otherwise we’d be able to handle it and we wouldn’t become physically or mentally ill from it.

I have learnt a valuable lesson this week… that ‘good stress’ is just as bad as ‘bad stress’ – a predicament I’ve never experienced before.

As you may know, I started my new job about 5 months ago now (time flies when you’re having fun!) and I reckon I enjoy it as much as anyone can enjoy a job. It’s the right level of challenging yet rewarding.

Because I’ve been caught up in all the fun, I didn’t realise that the stress of the challenge has continued to impact on my body and as I’ve ended up taking on the role of 3 people’s job this past week, I’ve found myself once again being on the brink of being burnt out.

My memory is shot. I’m in bed by 8.30pm most nights. My epilepsy paranoia is out of of this world. I’ve had migraines. Last week, I had a couple of nights of being inconsolable for no valid reason. I’ve not even attempted to lose weight for the past 3 weeks. My stress management strategies are long forgotten and I’ve had random aches and pains. I accidentally ate yeast because I forgot to check the ingredients before I tucked in. But the most dangerous thing of all… I didn’t realise any of this had happened because I felt happy.

I assumed because I was mostly enjoying the challenge, it wasn’t stressing me out. However, once again I’m left wondering whether long term, working as a therapist is the right job for me.

For now, I’m off to chill out and try and regain control over my life. Starting off with car insurance. Because the joys of adulthood never stop.

Top 10 Ideas For Self-Care

Firstly, self care isn’t a new concept. It’s something we’ve been doing for years – it used to be called ‘me’ time.

‘Me’ time was considered to be for stressed out Mum’s that couldn’t wait to have some time away from the kids, but nowadays it’s much more acceptable for everyone to engage in some self care time.

The point is, we all need time on our own to regroup. Spending long hours in the office, looking after the kids, being unemployed, saving for a house or a wedding, or starting a new relationship (or keeping an existing relationship alive) all put strain on our emotional resilience.

It doesn’t even need to be something as dramatic as above. Hitting up your local supermarket on a Saturday afternoon can be just as taxing.

Having a time out from life can let your body relax, let your mind sort out its affairs and let you do something that is meaningful to you.

So on that note, here’s my 5 top go-tos for some self-care:

1) Bath – I light some candles, put YouTube on and watch some random videos of health and fitness youtubers. It inspires me to remain healthy, reminds me of how I really must exercise sometime soon and introduces me to new healthy recipes.

2) Cinema – this is dependent on what’s being shown, but if it’s worth watching I’m definitely making my way to the cinema with some popcorn or a Tango Ice-blast in tow. That’s a guaranteed 2 hours on average on focusing on something completely different, allowing my brain to have a rest.

3) Cooking – I really enjoy cooking up some new easy, tasty and (mostly) healthy recipes. I get a great deal of satisfaction creating some yummy food that is lacking in the random crap they put in processed food.

4) Yoga – normally I’m getting quite stressed out if I find myself yearning for a stretch and some meditation or mindfulness. Listening to nothing but my breathing is a great way for a mental break whilst working on your flexibility and muscle strength (I wrote ‘your breathing’ and realised I sounded super creepy 😂).

5) Shopping – retail therapy. Need I say more!

Self-care is anything you enjoy. I have focused on mostly solitary activities in this post because I spend my days interacting with about 40 people a day so I like to seek out peace and quiet when I can.

However, self care can also take form in spending time with your friends, going for a massage – literally anything goes. As long as it’s time spent on you.

Embrace You

“Two things you need to give up: 1) Processed food 2) Processed people”

I was recording a vlog earlier (before I got struck down properly with Tonsillitis) and what started off as a discussion about happiness and gratitude, ended up going into a full on rant about no one being happy because we are forcing each other to do things we don’t want to and be people we don’t want to be. I’ll probably have to re-record as to not offend 😂

In this instance I’m referring to the dieting, fitness and fashion industries. What started off as ‘this is how I get muscles’ or ‘this is how I lost fat’ has become a competition for trying to be brand ambassadors for active wear or protein powder and is no longer about encouraging each other to be healthier.

As I spend my days trying (and failing) not to be generic online, I have come to realise the pressure there is to be just like all the others that have made their social media fame.

The majority of these people landing the huge days with major fashion brands (fashion influencers too), come across as being straight out of the factory, and almost robotic in their opinions (and with great bodies).

Of course you stumble across the odd gem who has stuck to their guns and continued to show their personality (and they are my heroes), but you can easily understand why young people are feeling like massive failures because they aren’t conforming to social media’s expectations.

The reality is that to be robotic is a costly and time consuming process which most of us can’t possibly achieve whilst going to school/working full time. These influencers also tend to hire their own photographers to get the best photo, and sell the contents of their home for their ‘hauls’.

Sadly the algorithms favour these people making them an easy spot for big brands. However, rather than sacrificing our young people’s mental health to conform to a computer, why don’t we make the algorithm conform to young (and older) people expressing their own individuality.

The reason I set up my social media identity was ALWAYS to be (dare I say it) ‘the best version of myself’, but never did I say that that would be the best version of myself based on society’s expectations. I would be a massive hypocrite as an OT (which is a therapy based on what’s meaningful to the person), to try to conform and quite frankly, I don’t really want to.

I vow to maintain my identity online – do you care to join me?

What Even Is Health and Fitness?

The more time I spend in depths of health and fitness online, the more I wonder what it’s even about – everyone seems to have a slightly different definition which I think, leads to a hell of a lot of confusion.

According to the dictionary, health is defined as:

“the state of being free from illness or injury”


“a person’s mental or physical condition”

Of course being nourished and having an efficient and strong muscle mass can prevent physiological problems within the body and exercise has found to be very beneficial for mental health, but a lot of people who wish to embark on their ‘health and fitness’ journeys are actually signing up for (and focusing on) weight loss and gym memberships rather than fuelling the body with macro (carbohydrates, protein and fat) and micro nutrients (vitamins and minerals) and exercising sensibly to support and protect their joints from too much wear and tear.

As a health professional, I work closely with other health professionals and I am very much consumed within disability. To me, a healthy lifestyle is ensure your body runs like a well oiled machine so you can live a well and meaningful life – and this is by no means, an easy feat and it will certainly never be a perfect journey or have a perfect ending.

If I’m honest, the messages that I see online are worrying. No matter what ‘diet’ you’re following, it’s wrong. No matter what exercise you’re doing, it’s never enough. For so many people now, it’s about being perfect so that huge active wear companies and food delivery companies will send you free stuff. We are forgetting that behind many of these influencers are people who don’t know a lot about health in it’s true form. Obesity is a huge problem and we should be commending the people who are doing anything to try and reduce their body fat.

Whenever I see someone referring to having a ‘perfect’ day dieting or ‘onplanjan’ it does make me a little sad inside. Our desire to become perfect is increasing on a daily basis and I would put good money that 9/10 people who claim to have had a ‘perfect’ day have had an almost perfect day. If you are having perfect days you might be gaining the physical body you desire, but what will the impact be on your mental health?

It’s why I’m a huge believer in ‘flexible dieting’ although I hate the term beyond anything else. How about we call it ‘normal eating within a calorie deficit or maintenance calories’? (Granted, it’s not the most catchy title). Sometimes this may consist of a meal Deliciously Ella would be proud of, another meal that would make her quake in her boots, and of course it could just be a meal replacement bar because I cannot be bothered to prepare lunch.

Working within your calorie goal (whether to lose fat, maintain or gain) gives you the freedom to eat what you like and you can feed your body as many (or as little) micro nutrients as your heart desires. It means you can go out for dinner with your friends, or have a Dominos on a Friday night (and know that I’m jealous if you’re doing that) – as long as it falls within your calorie allowance.

I often sit on Instagram looking at the pretty pictures of fruit and vegetables thinking ‘WHY AM I NOT HEALTHIER?!’ but then I realised in the grand scheme of things I am pretty healthy. I don’t drink, I don’t smoke, I don’t do drugs. I barely eat any refined carbs (mostly because the majority of them contain yeast – trust me it’s not through choice), I’m not a huge fan of meat and only eat chicken 1-2 times a week. I have chorizo a couple of times a week too. I’m not a big fan of root vegetables and will only have potatoes a maximum of twice a week. I don’t like rice or pasta. I don’t eat huge amounts of dairy. My only vices are Diet Coke or Pepsi Max and chocolate (unless you’re considering this dairy?!) and Parma Violets (random, I know). We go out for dinner maybe once or twice a month (and I always have dessert). I cook using mostly Fry Light, but sometimes Extra Virgin Olive Oil or Coconut Oil. I have no more than 2 cups of coffee per day and about 1 hot chocolate per month. It’s about as balanced as I can get it.

I average 5000 steps a day on Fitbit and I’m trying to do 4 additional exercise sessions a week (either strength or a HIIT). This is new to my ‘routine’ though so results are TBC (did you know that 10,000 steps was a made up number – Google it and find out for yourself!)

If I’m honest, I’m pretty happy with my lifestyle. Granted the chocolate may have to go for me to lose the 21lbs I wish to lose, but this weight loss (or should I say fat loss) isn’t because everyone else is doing it. I have put on 14lbs since I’ve got married and when I did a comparison photo, boy could you tell and at the moment I don’t like what I see. When I was at my slimmest (which was still 10 stone), I had a figure that I was really growing to be proud of and something I had never experienced before having been a chubster from the age of 11. I’m not trying for #gains or attempting to #eatclean, I just want to be happy and look after myself.

I encourage you to stop thinking about the rippling abs, the bum a Kardashian would be jealous of or how much fruit and vegetables you can pack in your stomach in a day.

Start thinking about you’re actual health.

More muscle mass will increase your metabolic rate (meaning you can eat more!) Strong muscles will help maintain bone density and reduce arthritic pain. Strong muscles will prevent injury. Stronger muscles will help prevent wear and tear on your joints. A good core will help support a good sitting position which will aid digestion and allow your lungs to fill with more air. Your muscles will be used more efficiently and you are likely to feel less tired. Exercise will help your mental health.

A well balanced diet will provide your body with everything it needs to run smoothly and is also necessary to develop the muscle mass that you would like to now acquire after reading this blog post. I must admit that I had heard countless times about the importance of Vitamin B and Omega 6 and all the other zillion vitamins and minerals, but it’s only when I completed my course on nutrition that I actually realised how important they are. My bad.

To me, this is true purpose of health and fitness.



The Healthy OT

New Year, New Me.

Nah, not really. New Year Same Me.

HOWEVER, I have decided to change the name of my blog from Telle’s Nutritional Life to The Healthy OT.

When I first set up the blog, I didn’t know whether I would continue as an Occupational Therapist – I continued to believe in everything the role was about, but I had been left battered by various job situations and wasn’t sure if I wanted to proceed with it.

In October, I started a new job as an OT and I adore it! I’m able to be the therapist I want to be and work with clients who continue to inspire me every single day (as cliche as that sounds). Despite the job being successful, I don’t want to say goodbye to everything I have invested into this blog, my YouTube channel (second video is up now – so committed!), and my Instagram.

I found that Telle’s Nutrition was limiting me to nutrition, and although I have now received my Advanced Diploma in Nutrition and Weight Management, it is certainly not my specialism (to the extent OT is anyway).

I want to continue to encompass what OT is about, incorporate my knowledge and my passion and felt that ‘The Healthy OT’ achieves this. I want to continue to focus on healthy eating, healthy lifestyles and healthy habits.

My content won’t be changing (‘Booo’ I hear you cry) but I just wanted to let you know that this will be the final name change as I think I’ve finally found my groove.

Thank you so much for continuing to visit this site and read my posts and I look forward to boring you all in 2019. Jokes, I’m HIGHLY entertaining.

Start Your 2019 By Decluttering and Spring Cleaning Your House

Over the years I have become an avid declutterer – partly because I like to be able to see surfaces (I am officially turning into my mother) and secondly, if I did not declutter there would be no room in my house for me to live in it!

I try to apply the ‘have I used this in the past 12 months?’ to about 50% of things in my house. This includes clothing, books, DVDs, toiletries and food. I am slightly more generous with technology and items that are only meant to be used now and again.

I then collect all of these items and put them into what needs to be thrown, recycled, sent to charity or what could be sold.

The most challenging part is our very large collection of penguin memorabilia. Tim’s favourite animal is a penguin but for some reason EVERYONE buys him penguin related items every Christmas. This year alone we got 8 coasters, placemats, a jumper, shirt and ornament. We also have a duvet set, canvas, 5 other ornaments, 2 books, 2 more hoodies, a blanket, a cushion and mugs. I think you would agree with me that that rivals the gift shop in a zoo, but they are presents from close family, some of whom haven’t seen that sadly we do not have enough space to cater for all of these penguins. So for now, they live in a box and are on rotation to ensure they are used.

Yesterday I gutted our abode. It took me 4 hours to clean and I sorted through my preexisting selling pile and worked out what needed to go into recycling or the rubbish (at this point it’s been up for sale for approximately 3 years).

I always feel that when you have a good clear out and clean you can feel your home sigh with relief. We got rid of 2 bin bags of clothing to a textiles recycling bank and hoovered so much the Dyson needed emptying twice!

Research has indicated that a cluttered environment increases the cortisol (stress hormone) in women. It also overstimulates your senses and makes your brain think there’s still more work to do, making it much more challenging to relax after a stressful day at work.

As I have decided that 2019 is going to be the best possible year yet, I encourage you to put on your rubber gloves, get a couple of bags and get busy tidying away this weekend!

NB: I personally have made at least £500 over the years selling unwanted items on eBay. Don’t underestimate what people will pay for the stuff you don’t want anymore!

My Perception of the World Has Changed

I can only apologise for the lack of posts since starting my job. I’m so mentally pooped when I get home, it’s so hard to try and think of what to have for dinner not alone write a half decent blog post.

If you’ve kept up to date with my blog, you will see that during my time of unemployment I really worked hard on myself to shift my negative mindset into a more positive one. At the time I wondered if I would ever truly commit to my new thinking style… it worked in the moment but it didn’t feel real that I had changed my mindset forever.

Now I’m back in the real world and my new mindset is still very apparent. It’s also being challenged on a daily basis. I appreciate I was given a (somewhat stressful) opportunity to work on myself, and not many people get that chance and it’s so easy to see who is on the brink of needing a time out and who isn’t.

I work in a very emotive environment and it’s hard to resist getting sucked into that. But so far I’m able to identify the days that I might be slipping into old habits and work on changing to stay in my more positive mindset.

If only it was so easy for losing weight 😂

The reason I don’t want to go back to my old habits is that they are pretty darn stressful and can make life quite miserable. I’m enjoying being grateful and without meaning to oversimplify things, I wonder if that’s where most of us are going wrong. What we are not appreciating is that being positive is so much less stressful than being negative.

We aren’t grateful so we always want more.

We struggle to ‘get’ more because life gets in the way (inflation, breakdown of relationships, loss of jobs etc)

We then are hard on ourselves because we have failed to get more.

For example, Tim and I were discussing the cost of phone bills last night. When I took out my first phone contract back in 2006, I paid £30 a month for an all singing all dancing contract. Now a basic contract is around £36 and people will happily pay out £40-50 for the new iPhone. We personally could not justify spending that much to keep up with the latest trends and if we were 10 years younger this might really get to us.

Our question is….when did it become okay to pay these prices – and paying for something that is impacting on our social skills and mental health?

Don’t get me wrong, I spend hours on my phone, but it’s an interesting concept.

The one downside to this shift in mindset is that I find it harder to empathise with people’s problems that aren’t actual problems.

I appreciate that all problems are very ‘real’ in the moment to that person. But when you are able to stand back and say ‘how much of a problem is this in the grand scheme of things?’ then it’s altogether a very different story.

People still come to me for advice and their problems aren’t that significant but because they are so consumed in all the stuff they don’t have, they are forgetting to look at what they do have, and it can be quite frustrating to listen to.

I maintain that if you have a roof over your head, food on the table, people that love you – then you are winning. On top of that, if you have a job that pays the bills and gives you a little spending money – then that’s the real lottery.

For the next week I challenge you to write down three things a day that you are grateful for… they don’t have to be elaborate. It can be thing such as ‘having toothpaste to brush my teeth with’. Not everyone has that luxury.

Why We Should All Try Harder To Stop Moaning

The fact that I am writing this is absolutely HILARIOUS as I was known for my moaning.

And I still moan. Today alone I have moaned about traffic lights, slow cars, being tired, not knowing what I wanted for dinner and a sore arm.

But what I have noticed is that I moan a lot less than I used to 😳

I would argue that about 80% of messages I receive from friends and family contain some form of moaning… tiredness, workload, loved ones, the weather, traffic, colleagues. The list goes on.

During my period of unemployment every penny was accounted for; we couldn’t do anything recreational, we came close to selling my car, losing our flat and my wardrobe has considerably less belongings in it than it did. As a result it made me grateful for the smaller things in life.

I realised that if we downsized our flat/apartment, we would still be able to live in Scotland, which was our main goal. In the mean time, we could still go for walks and see the gorgeous scenery Scotland has to offer. If we had still been living in Surrey and this situation had occurred, then I’m not sure what we would have done! (Fortunately it didn’t come to moving flats but we were one month away from having to inform our landlord).

As you know, I’ve spent a lot of time on social media and one thing that I found really struck a chord with me…

‘If you keep food in the refrigerator, your clothes in a closet, if you have a bed to sleep in and a roof over your head… you are richer than 75% of the population’.

Now I don’t know how accurate the statistics are before anyone starts but they are arguably within the ballpark.

We have SO MUCH to be grateful for, but instead we focus on the negative. What I should have been saying this morning is ‘I may be tired but at least I had a good sleep’ and ‘at least I can afford a car and sit at traffic lights’.

I’ve also noticed that this approach to life has had a significant impact on my happiness levels. I am happy.

As a notorious control freak I’ve noticed I’m less anxious. I’m happy for life to go the way it wants to go. What will be will be. What’s the point in stressing?

I encourage you to try the following. Instead of moaning that your soup at lunch burnt your tongue, take a moment to be grateful that you had soup AND lunch.

If you’re anything like me, it won’t take long to notice the changes in your thought processes and at least be aware that you are moaning.

Gratitude is definitely underrated.

GPs Are Now Prescribing ‘Nature’ As Treatment

GPs in the Shetland Islands are now ‘prescribing’ nature (e.g. walks and bird watching) as a treatment for mental health, diabetes, heart disease, stress and other conditions.

Now before my time in the health care system I would have said ‘well what’s that going to achieve? – what a load of twaddle’ – but now, I can’t really deny that they make a good point.

Medication is all very well and good and is certainly needed to keep me afloat, but with the findings that walking can help Type 2 diabetes and that people who don’t exercise are more unhealthy than those on dialysis and people who smoke – I think it’s definitely worth a try.

Whilst I wasn’t working between May and October, we went for a lot of walks and obviously we had our little trip to the Highlands. I actually remember saying to Tim ‘it’s hard to remember why I’m so anxious and stressed when I’m faced with these views’- I felt like a bit of a loser for saying it, but it was totally true.

Aside from the benefits of walking itself, I think getting back to basics with nature helps us put our problems into perspective. We have created this world that quite frankly at the moment, is a bit of a s*** show! The more time I spend on social media the more I wonder what an epic mistake the invention of social media was; there are so many mixed messages on EVERYTHING that it’s easy to lose sight on how to even live. It was even brought to my attention that I breathe wrong whilst I was training as a therapist. True story. And people wonder why sometimes my confidence is low!

In reality, we are no different from the other animals gracing this planet. You don’t see a sheep getting out its iPhone and Snapchatting sheep in another part of the country. They spend their days munching on grass, having the odd run in with each other and just doing their thang.

I’m also a HUGE believer in early intervention and prevention. Our bodies aren’t designed to put up with the huge amounts of crap we consume – be it processed food, smoking, alcohol, drugs, excessive exercise – and whatever else goes on in the world that I don’t know about. Yes these things are fashionable, tasty or addictive, but our bodies are not designed to effectively digest them without causing implications. Why not make the changes before we find ourselves knocking on the GPs door begging for help.

So that’s why I’m quite happy about Doctors prescribing nature. It’s sad that it’s come to that and not recognised as a starting place before the trip to the local surgery – but I think taking it back to basics is exactly what the Doctor ordered!