Not just another nutritionist with another fad diet, Michele's recommendations are designed to complement today's modern and hectic lifestyles, no starvation required.
Author, Michele Chevalley Hedge reveals, "The sheer amount of nutritional advice out there is overwhelming, but contrary to what you may have heard, diets don't work and are often little more than white witchcraft. I urge you to ditch the vegan, paleo, fruitarian, keto, breathtarian or whatever the latest crazy diet is, for a more joyful life.
Science has spoken and eating a balanced diet of nourishing wholefoods - with the odd treat thrown in - is your ticket to ageing well, a lean healthy body, a sense of vitality, abundant energy and better brain function."
The book was written to provide symptomatic relief to the general Australian population which following years of practice, Michele found to fall in one of the below categories:
Pebble Poopers - no explanation necessary, a case of not enough fibre, dehydration and too much sugar.
The Slender Ruster - healthy looking on the outside, rusting on the inside. Leanish women, running on cortisol who eat fast processed food on the go. Eventually catching up, their poor diet is can cause polycystic ovaries, adrenal exhaustion, chronic fatigue and thyroid dysfunction.
Light lunchers and afternoon munchers - people suffering from sitting persons syndrome, working too hard and making regular visits to the vending machine.
Moobs - a sudden appearance of female breasts on males, caused by too many grab and go foods and not enough planning for real nourishment.
Cortisol Cravers - the addiction to cortisol from high sugar foods, excessive caffeine, or stress - real or perceived - causing belly fat.
Wired but Tired Humans - going to bed early because they know sleep is important but as they are full up on food, monkey chatter, and blue lights the quality of their sleep is impacted.
As an advocate for nourish not punish, Michele's guide, complete with a 28-day recipe plan is designed for people who want health, not hassle:
Banish the brain fog - 'why can't I remember that word?'
Learn how to combat anxiety, depression and a lack of concentration with food
End the 'Last Supper Syndrome' - (a common experience among dieters on Sunday nights, preparing for Monday famines)
Improve the quality of their sleep - insufficient sleep across a life span is one of the most significant contributors to Alzheimer's. Those surviving on 5-6 hours of sleep, can eat 200-300 extra calories a day, which equates to 10kgs of weight gain a year.*
Put a stop to the self-sabotage, the guilt you experience when you overindulge
Understand how to eat out without blowing out
Nail how to eat, drink and still shrink on holiday
The book also addresses common myths including:
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day
That all sugar should be avoided - including fructose in fruit
Consuming lots of eggs is bad for you
Eating red meat is unhealthy
Author Michele Chevalley Hedge says, "Good nourishment should be tasty, easy, inexpensive and satisfying, it should be what fuels your energy, vitality, skin, immunity, brain health, sex life and more. Micro changes to your diet, that become habits are what's important and sustainable long-term."
Michele Chevalley Hedge is a nutritionist, health writer and keynote speaker. Michele is the founder of A Healthy View for clients and corporate wellbeing strategies. She is a CureCancer ambassador, Heart Research Institute ambassador, Mental Health Award of Australia finalist and ATMS Practitioner of the Year. Michele has several degrees, an Adv.Dip Nutritional Medicine and is a member of the Australian Traditional Medicine Society.
Eat, Drink & Still Shrink
Imprint: Macmillan Australia
Author: Michele Chevalley Hedge
Question: Can you tell us about Eat Drink & Still Shrink?
Michele Chevalley: Eat drink and Still Shrink is a busy persons guide to a joyful lifestyle. I truly understand that the busy person wants health but not hassle or restriction. As a former marketing manager at Microsoft, three kids, and a busy home I understanding wanting to finish the day with a wine. This book includes evidence based research on how to nourish ourselves with tasty, easy, affordable recipes and ideas.
Question: What inspired you to write Eat Drink & Still Shrink?
Michele Chevalley: My brother Greg died a few years ago- the day before his 43rd birthday. I would like to tell everyone that if we drank a green smoothie every day, never had sugar, did yoga daily that we would live a long life… but this is not true. Sometimes life has different plans for us and sometimes they are completely out of our control. Greg was a fireman in September 11 and on the ground saving lives from the time the towers fell. Very sadly, many years later, these young, seemingly first responders are dying of cancers from the toxic exposure of Ground Zero. Life can be short, and we should not live in restriction, but be able to be healthy, vibrant, and still have some coffee and wine.
Question: What mistakes are Australians making when trying to shed extra weight?
Michele Chevalley: Restrictive fad diets are not educating people how to live joyously. You don't need to be a behavioural psychologist to see how many people restrict food, starve and lose three kilos, only to come off the unsustainable diet and gain five kilos.
Question: Can you tell us about the included 28-day recipe plan?
Michele Chevalley: I love the recipes in this book, they were a joy to create and eat. They include whole real foods, not packaged and processed foods that contain tran-fats and hidden sugars. They are easy, tasty, and affordable. When meals are easy, tasty and affordable then people like to repeat them. It is the joy of repeating something healthy that then becomes a healthy habit.
Question: Which of the recipes included holds the most memories, for you?
Michele Chevalley: Meatballs, of course, I have an Italian mum! Every Sunday at our home or our Nanna's home we had meatballs. This dish has all the tasty, mouthwatering delights of spaghetti and meatballs without the carb overload.
Question: How do you recipes help banish the brain fog?
Michele Chevalley: Brain fog is common complaint of active people in the work place or in a busy home. Two reasons why this is happening all too often:
1. Too much hidden sugar in healthy food, for example a 'healthy blueberry blast' smoothie can have up to 22 teaspoons of sugar!
2. If you even have slight insulin sensitivity, which most of us have, a dish loaded with carbs like pasta, breads, wheat, and flour, can really affect our brain function about 45 minutes after a meal. Chose smart carbs, not no carbs.
Question: Which of the myths busted in the book, is your favourite to educate on?
Michele Chevalley: All of them. They are things we hear daily from patients in our clinic or people on our social media. They are so many myths but my personal favourite is You Cannot Exercise Your Way Out of A Bad Diet. I use to abuse myself with exercise so I could eat more or vice versa. I would binge eat then exhaust myself with exercise. Figure out your food nourishment and then exercise in moderation and for fun.
Question: Why did you choose to have a percentage of the proceeds from the sale of each book go to Deakin University's Food Mood Centre?
Michele Chevalley: Research is essential to the area of wellbeing. With physical illness and mental illness on the rise, we need to be encouraging the world to use food as preventive medicine. As a nutritionist, we know this that is why we became nutritionist but we need more than clinical evidence, we need RCT studies from leading researchers. Deakin University is leading the world in these trials and I am thrilled to be able to support them even in a small way.
I love the comforting warmth of a slow-cooked ragu but if you are time poor (as I often am), it's fine to use a good-quality bought tomato sauce instead of making your own. This version is decidedly lighter than the hearty stews a discerning nonna would make, but it has all the flavour you'd expect and more. I love serving this for Sunday lunch with friends, or for a nourishing weeknight dinner.
Preparation Time: 25 Mins
Cooking Time: 35 Mins
1 kg tomatoes, halved
1¹⁄2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
1 brown onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 carrot, finely diced
1 celery stalk, finely diced
3 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon finely chopped thyme leaves
¹⁄2 cup vegetable stock
1 tablespoon finely chopped oregano leaves
¹⁄4 bunch basil, leaves picked
4 zucchini, spiralised
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
sea salt and freshly ground
400 g turkey mince
400 g chicken thigh mince (it's important you use thigh meat as it stops the meatballs from drying out)
2 tablespoons finely chopped oregano leaves
2 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves
2 tablespoons pitted green olives, chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
3 tablespoons grated parmesan
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons rice breadcrumbs
Preheat the oven to 220°C (200°C fan-forced) and line a large baking tray with baking paper.
Spread out the tomatoes on the prepared tray and drizzle lightly with olive oil. Roast for 30 minutes or until soft and collapsed. Allow to cool slightly, then purée until smooth.
Heat the remaining olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, carrot and celery and cook for a few minutes or until softened. Stir in the tomato paste and thyme.
Add the stock, oregano, most of the basil (leaving a few leaves to garnish) and the puréed tomato and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 1 hour.
Meanwhile, to make the meatballs, combine the turkey and chicken mince, oregano, parsley, olives, garlic and parmesan in a bowl. Add the egg and then the rice breadcrumbs, ensuring everything is evenly mixed. Preheat the oven to 200°C (180°C fan-forced) and line a baking tray with baking paper.
Roll the mince mixture into golf ball–sized balls and place on the prepared tray. Refrigerate for 15 minutes.
Place the meatballs in the oven and reduce the temperature to 180°C (160°C fan-forced). Bake for 10 minutes or until cooked through.
Meanwhile, briefly blanch the zoodles until tender. Remove the sauce from the heat and stir in the balsamic vinegar. Stir through the meatballs and season to taste.
Divide the zoodles among four bowls and serve with the meatballs and ragu on top
Change Up The Protein: Omit the turkey mince and use 800 g chicken mince, or try a mix of half pork and half beef mince. Lamb is good too. In fact, any mince will do!
For Carb-Loving Family Members: Serve with pasta.
Interview by Brooke Hunter