Healing Candida & IBS with Fruit?!

For the majority of my lifetime I have struggled with my digestion. Constipation, bloating, irregular bowel movements, gas, discomfort, diarrhea & pain were just a daily occurrence for me and I honestly didn’t know any different.

During my younger years, I pretty much ate everything and anything packaged and processed and didn’t look for fruit to snack on or veggies. The only time I really ate vegetables or fruit would be when my Mum made me lunch or dinner.

I saw a gastroenterologist and he basically told me that I had IBS and needed to eat more fibre, which I mean… eating more fibre would definitely be a factor as I was eating horribly.

I started incorporating fibre supplements (because that’s so much easier that actually eating it, right? Haha) and having “Vita Brits” which is a shredded wheat cereal.

Many years later, I started to care more about my health. I joined the gym and started cleaning up my diet. I started eating more fruits and veggies, cutting out dairy and meat and eventually (fours years later) I turned vegan! I originally went plant based for health and then I watched Earthlings and jumped on the vegan wagon for ethics as well.

During the time my digestion got worse. The bloating was really bad and I literally wasn’t digesting anything well, fruit would go straight through me! I tried everything in the books (and by books, I mean what I researched online!) I tried out a FODMAP diet which involves cutting out an extremely large amount of foods (see the list here) and slowly reintroducing them to find the “trigger” foods causing the upsets. I basically lived off oatmeal with one banana and then just sweet potato and that was basically it! I ate this way for quite a few months and hated the whole thing because I just felt constantly stressed about food, tummy upsets and what I could eat.

Further to me not being able to digest fruit, I got tested to see if I was fructose intollerant, and that came back negative.

Lost for answers, I was beyond desperate and decided to finally see a naturopath. My friends who also struggled with digestive issues had been telling me to see one for ages but because I know they can be a bit costly, I was avoiding it. I was recommended by some other friends to see Stuart Main, a vegan naturopath. Having a good, vegan naturopath was really important to me because I wanted someone who’s values aligned with mine and didn’t want to wast time with anyone who didn’t see eye-to-eye with me or would think veganism was the fault for my issues. I speak more about my appointment here.

In brief, he told me that I had a bad bacteria imbalance and candida and instructed me to eat more fruit to flush out the bad stuff as well as take probiotics and some other things to help heal my issues.

I’ve been eating a rawtill4 styled diet where I eat fruit until the mid-late afternoon.Yes, that’s right… fruit for a meal! Generally large smoothies or fruit mono-meals (where you eat a large quantity of fruit in one sitting) are my go-to’s!

Fruit is often frowned upon when someone has candida, but it’s 8 months on since eating a mostly fruit diet and I’m definitely seeing some results! I’m not 100% healed but I am digesting food so much better then I was and am able to eat a (very) much larger variety of food in general! No more cutting out garlic and onion, no more stressing about food and so much less bloating and more regular bowel movements!

This may not sound like your cup of tea and that it’s a boring way to eat, but honestly, your taste buds change and you learn to love the simplicity of foods straight from nature and in their whole form! Just pick fruits that you enjoy and eat them until you are full! People who say “fruit doesn’t fill me up” simply¬† just need to eat more. It can not satisfy you for long though, because you can fill up quickly with the higher water content so you may need to eat more frequently and have some snacks. You don’t have to do mono-meals either, but they certainly digest better.

If your symptoms are bad or have been happening as long as mine have been, then you’ll literally try anything! If you won’t try what sounds hard or scary, then you’re not feeling crap enough ūüėõ and that’s speaking from experience, haha.

 

I show what I eat on my Instagram and YouTube channel as well.

 

 

 

 

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Vegan Food in Bali – Reviews & Recommendations

I visited Bali in April 2016 with my friend Mel. We stayed in Ubud and Seminyak. Bali has seriously amazing food for vegans and I needed to share it with you guys!!

So here is a list the places we visited and my thoughts on them:

Earth Cafe, Seminyak & Ubud

Two words –¬† vegan heaven. The menu is HUGE! Breakfast, lunch & dinner, dessert, Earth Cafe has you sorted! They also have a health store on premises too!

We made multiple visits to both locations while in Ubud and Seminyak. We ordered all sorts from the menu.

On the first visit to the Ubud location, I ordered the “Buckwheat Pancakes” which came with a side of fruit and syrup and their “Unwind and Relax” smoothie without the honey & I swapped the cashew milk for soy milk. The pancakes were different to any that I had before, but they were delicious nonetheless! The smoothie was great of course, it was simple dates, bananas & soy milk so you cannot go wrong.

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The next trip I ordered¬†the “Tofu Basil Spring Rolls” which came with a peanut dipping sauce and “The Almost Perfect Burrito” which has brown rice, black beans, tofu avocado, greens, salsa and a walnut pesto. The spring rolls were the best spring rolls I’ve ever eaten in my life. So fresh, so full of flavour and the peanut dipping sauce was incredible. The burrito was very flavoursome and satisfying (it was a struggle to finish after having the cold rolls as well, haha).

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The following trip I ordered the “Nori Maki”with tempeh and veggies with brown rice and wrapped in nori and the “Veggie Burger” which came with sweet potato fries. Once again, the sushi was the best sushi I’ve ever had, it had so many little veggies crammed in which gave so much flavour! The burger was good too, but it was quite small.

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The last trip we made was in the Seminyak cafe, we were in search for something sweet after dinner so we decided to try the “Balinese Black Rice Pudding”. We expected it to be sweet, but it wasn’t really, so we asked for some maple syrup to add, which we did and it was good!

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I also made copious visits to buy kombucha!

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Basically, what you can expect from Earth Cafe is super flavoursome, good value food served to you by friendly staff! A must visit when in Bali!

I wish they had a around-the-world franchise and that they were open in Australia, because I don’t think I’d ever get sick of that place!

10/10!

View their website here.

Bali Buda, Ubud

Bali Buda is a health cafe, offering a few (mostly raw) vegan options.

I ordered the “Morning Glory” which was a combo of sweet potato, dates and banana with coconut milk poured over the top. EPIC combination!! I do recommend this one and even try making it at home. So simple, healthy & delicious!

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My friend ordered the raw tropical fruit pie which she enjoyed. We had imagined a slice of raw “pie” but it was more of a tropical fruit stack with a cashew cream sauce on top. It was good nonetheless!

My two critiques would be that the portions were quite small and we also both ordered a cacao smoothie but there wasn’t much flavour to it.

Visit their website here.

Black Beach, Ubud

We stumbled across Black Beach while walking the streets of Ubud. It is an Italian restaurant and we are a both a sucker for a good pizza, so we decided to flip through the menu they had out the front. To our surprise and delight they had a bunch of vegan options that were clearly labelled! Vegan pizzas, pastas, curries, desserts and other meals… JACKPOT!

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We returned later on for dinner and both ordered the pizza named “vegan” which was topped with fresh tomatoes, potatoes, zucchini, mushroom, roasted cherry tomatoes, and parsley. The restaurant itself was large, with two stories that you could dine on. We sat on the top floor which was nice and open and we had some nice street views from above. The staff were very friendly and we received our food quickly. The toppings were fresh & plentiful and the portion size was good.The pizza base was so light and crispy and unlike any I had experienced in Australia. I don’t think there was a sauce base either which was different but I really enjoyed, it gave the pizza a refreshing feel which went well with the fresh tomato and thin and light base.

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It was one of the best pizzas I’ve had for sure and love to return if I visit Ubud again.

Check out their website here.

Bamboo, Ubud

Another little gem we stumbled across while walking through the streets of Ubud. The street menu was open onto the “vegan” page which caught our eye and we were so excited to have found an unexpected place with some delicious sounding Asian cuisine so we decided to pop in for lunch.

It had some funky but relaxed decor and was pretty quiet.

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I ordered the Nasi Goreng with tempeh and I think my friend ordered the Special Tropical Tofu and we both really enjoyed our meals!  The prices were really good! The only issue would have been the oil factor as it was very oily and the portions were quite small, but for the price they were you could probably order two meals! Haha.

 

The Spicy Coconut, Seminyak

Let’s just start this off by saying I highly, highly, recommend a visit to The Spicy Coconut when you’re in Seminyak, Bali. It’s 100% vegan and provides amazing food!

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We came for breakfast and I ordered the Dragon Delight smoothie bowl and we both ordered the Pandate Pancake stack.

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All the food came out, beautifully decorated. It was like edible artwork! The smoothie bowl was a vibrant pink from the dragon fruit and the granola and toppings complimented it perfectly.

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The pancakes… oh my gosh, HEAVEN IN OUR MOUTHS. THE best pancakes EVER. They were literal cakes cooked in a pan. Thick, moist and sweet… I wish I could transport back there and re-live the moment.

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I loved the decor in the cafe too! It had white wooden furniture which had been made to look a little less “finished” and a bit more “rustic, with cute stools and coloured light shades, I really liked the style of the place.

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It was quite small when we visited, but we had a chat with the owner (who is lovely FYI) who was talking about extending the place which I think is a great call and I’m sure they’ll see great results from doing so.

We only spent two days¬†in Seminyak, Sunday and Monday and the cafe is closed Monday’s so we were only able to visit once, but I wish we could have gone again and maybe for lunch to try a burger too!

Open Tuesday – Sunday, 8AM till 4pm, make sure you head in there and prepare your taste buds for amazingness…

Ps. Get the pancakes! haha.

Check out their website here.

Cafe Organic, Seminyak

Cafe Organic is a classic health cafe, you just know there will be something for everyone! They have smoothies, juices, smoothie bowls, burgers etc.

 

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The atmosphere and decor is really modern with good music over the speakers. It’s quite busy though and quite noisy but the staff were very friendly!

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We both ordered the Veggie Whopper with roasted pumpkin, salad and onion jam and removed the cheese and aioli to make it vegan (we checked that it’d be vegan if we removed those items) it also came with a side of sweet potato fries. Both the burger and fries were packed full of flavour and we both thoroughly enjoyed it!

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I’d definitely like to come back and try something else from their menu one day as their smoothie bowls look beautifully decorated!

Visit their website here.

Divine Earth, Seminyak

A 100 % vegan and mostly raw restaurant. We came here for dinner on our first night in Seminyak. It was very quiet with only one other table occupied. My friend ordered the “Taco Temple” which was corn torillas, black beans and tofu cheese served with guacamole and salsa and I ordered the “Brown Rice Mushroom Passion” which was brown rice, exotic mushrooms, roasted vegetables and shiitake sauce.

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With my meal, I envisioned something similar to a risotto and I was quite disappointed when I saw that it came out more like a tasting platter but then I started eating it and all of my disappointments were quickly washed away because everything tasted amazing!! It was so unexpected and I felt very happy I tried it.

They also offer some desserts, juices and smoothies.

My only critique would be the small portion sizes.

View their website here.

Happy Chappy, Seminyak

My friend and I had a hankering for some dumplings because we had never tried them and we were hoping to find some! I stumbled across Happy Chappy and saw that they had some and it was right around the corner from where we were staying!

It was a beautiful Chinese-styled restaurant which was quite large and spacious and it looked super cool and we were excited to dine there!

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They give you these cute little hand wipes that come dehydrated and look like mints, and you pop them in the supplied water and they expand into hand wipes! They also give you some tea upon arrival as well.

We asked the staff if their bok choy & red bean steamed buns were vegan and with great success – they were! We also ordered fried rice & chow mien and checked that they were vegan also.

The two mains we ordered were quite oily but still very flavoursome and delicious! The steamed buns… oh, the steamed buns. I’m typing this months after visiting (I’ve been busy and haven’t gotten around to completing this post), but still.. to this day, after trying quite a few different types of steamed buns from different locations (the addiction is real guys) the ones from Happy Chappy are still the best ones I’ve ever had!! I miss them every day haha.

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We only stayed in Seminyak for three nights and ended up coming here two nights in a row it was that good!

The staff were very friendly and were excited to see us come in again the following night. The whole experience was a positive one and I wish they had a franchise here in Adelaide!

Visit their website here.

Nalu Bowls, Seminyak

I had been seeing Nalu Bowls all over Instagram and social media and  as soon as we had arrived in Seminyak we got dropped off there.

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Unfortunately the taxi driver we had didn’t know where it was as it’s awkwardly tucked down a side street and the address we had was at the end furthest from where they are actually located so it was quite a walk with our suitcases while we were hangry (angry-hungry) and very hot!

We ordered two bowls each. I ordered the Uluwatu which is dragon fruit based and the J Bay which was a banana & peanut butter combo and my friend also ordered the J Bay and the Pipeline which was a tropical combination of banana, pineapple & mango.

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They only have a tiny bar to sit at (which was occupied) but there is a cafe directly above them when you’re allowed to sit and they’ll deliver to you up there.

It was a bit of a wait before we got our bowls but when we did they were AMAZING. 10/10 taste. The granola they put on top had cornflakes or something similar in it which made it so incredible!

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We went to go back a 2nd time on our last day but they were having issues with their water so unfortunately we missed out! But the staff saw us standing there and didn’t acknowledge that we were there until we asked “are you closed”. So the service wasn’t the greatest, but the food was good!

Visit their website here.

Alchemy, Ubud

We¬†decided to walk to Alchemy… wouldn’t recommend doing so if you’re hangry! It’s quite a trek when you don’t know where you’re going and get lost!

The cafe itself is quite gorgeous and they have a “Make your Own” salad section and a “Make your Own” smoothie bowl section which is where we headed straight to!

You get to pick your smoothie bowl fillings and your smoothie. I picked dragon fruit, strawberries and two types of muesli/granola toppings and had a cashew milk smoothie.

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So, so yum!

I wish we had been able to go back to order something from their menu (and to get these bowls again!)

Another must visit on my list!

Check our their website here.

Sea Circus

We came here for lunch on our last day in Seminyak. The cafe had brightly coloured, quirky decor. Their menu wasn’t fully vegan but they were able to cater to our needs and had a few options, both savory & sweet.

We ordered an acai bowl each and I ordered the granola that came with a side of fruit and Mel ordered their veggie burger (I believe they had to make a change to the bread to make it vegan) . We also got a juice each, I ordered the strawberry & lychee and it was honestly the greatest juice ever! Such a delicious combo!

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You can view their website here.

 

The moral of the story is… go to Bali & eat their amazing food! I need to back ASAP to relive it all.

I also vlogged the journey on my YouTube channel so feel free to check out the playlist!

 

Caramel Slice – Vegan, Healthy, Refined Sugar Free & Gluten Free

A different, healthy take on the classic caramel slice that doesn’t take away any of deliciousness ¬†but only the animal products and adds a kick of health!

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Base Layer:

1 cup Oats (used GF oats for Gluten Free)
1 cup Dates (soaked prior)
1 cup almonds

Blend, adding splashes of water when necessary till the mixture holds well.

Press mixture well into a cling wrap lined baking tin and pop in the fridge while preparing your caramel layer.

Caramel Layer:

1 cup dates (soaked prior)
4-5 tbsp tahini
crack of salt

Blend well, add splashes of water when necessary to combine mixture.

Add to the baking tin and spread evenly onto the prepared slice base and pop it back into the fridge.

Chocolate Layer:

Melted chocolate. I used a chocolate making kit from Meraki & Co. but you could also melt down your favourite vegan chocolate and use that!

Pour on top of the caramel layer in the tin, making sure it covers well.

Store in the fridge until the top layer has hardened.

To serve, use a hot knife to cut the slices otherwise you’ll end up with a beautiful mess like I did… not that that’s a bad thing ūüėõ

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Recipe inspired by laurasmess.me

 

 

Royal Samaja Villas, Seminyak – Review

Mel¬†& I checked into the Royal Samaja Villas on the 9th of April 2016. It is located down a street from one of the main roads in Seminyak meaning it’s close to many shops, spas and restaurants¬†and you can easily acquire a taxi to venture out and go elsewhere if you wish.

We were greeted with a fresh juice uponn arrival and we met some of the lovely staff who were kind & welcoming. They showed us to our villa and assisted us with our bags.

Our room was a one bedroom villa and we had our own private pool and sun beds for us to relax at our leisure and in privacy which we utilized in the sunny moments of the days.

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Bottled water, fruit, coffee, tea & wifi was included with our stay and the rooms were serviced daily to ensure we had fresh towels and bottled water. In the evenings they would also set up our bed so we were able to hop right in and get some rest (eg. removing decorative pillows ect.)

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The décor is bright & new which gives off a refreshing tropical/summer vibe. I loved the colour schemes, especially of this couch:

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I also loved the bathroom.¬†It was¬†large & gave an outdoors feel and one of the walls was predominantly made from glass. It included a bath and the shower which¬†had a “rainfall” showerhead that made showering extra indulgent after a hot day out exploring what Seminyak had to offer.

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I loved the location of the Royal Samaja as it was in walking distance from many restaurants and shops which is handy and can save you some coin and also get you out and about. They also offered a shuttle bus which left the villas twice a day.

We didn’t get a chance to eat at the restaurant but I was very pleased to see a tempeh burger on the menu and wish we were in Seminyak a little longer to have the time to¬†try it out.

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The staff also called us the night before we checked out to remind us of our 12pm checkout time and they also held our bags for us on the day that we checked out as we had a very late flight that night which was very much appreciated.

They were very friendly and helpful and extremely polite. There wasn’t anything to fault about our experience at Royal Samaja, we definitely enjoyed our stay.

Check out their website here.

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Blue Karma Resort, Ubud – Review

My friend Mel & I arrived at 2.30am on the 6th of May to the Blue Karma Resort. We were greeted warmly but the staff member on reception. He carried our bags and showed us to our¬†villa. He was extremely friendly and helpful and went through all of the room amenities and what the resort has to offer. The room and resort itself¬†looked amazing, even in the dark!¬†We couldn’t wait to explore in the morning.

When we awoke later on that morning we couldn’t believe our eyes! It’s like we arrived in¬†tropical heaven. We stepped outside to see so many beautiful plants and flowers, it was quiet and some of the staff were tidying up the place for the day to begin.

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There were little sheltered huts with beds where you could lay and hang out and there were large cushioned beds by the infinity¬†pool that is overlooking the rice fields. The view was amazing and something I’ll never forget.

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Bikini: RH Swimwear

 

The staff were very friendly and accommodating, greeting us every time we caught their eye and always smiling!

 

Breakfast is included for guests. The resort offers a small buffet which includes toast/bread and a fresh fruit salad. They also serve some juices & a small menu to order some larger meals from. Mel and I ordered are both vegan and ordered the orange juice to have alongside our fruit salads on both days because it was the best orange juice we had ever tasted! A very refreshing way to start our mornings in paradise.

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The resort was always quiet and it often felt like we were the only people staying there which was definitely a new and pleasant experience for me and definitely made us feel like we had escaped to somewhere magical. The only sounds were straight from nature,  the birds and the breeze, also with the pool trickling in the background.

 

The rooms were gorgeous! They definitely make you feel like you are in a tropical location. Set up like large villa-style huts, they include a large kingsize bed, lots of windows to promote nIMG_3823.JPGatural lighting and plenty of space!

The rooms were serviced daily & they would also prepare the room¬†in the evening by pulling down the mosquito net and pulling back the sides of the cover – a small gesture, but it’s an example of the wonderful customer service that we received throughout our stay.

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The bathrooms are based outdoors with a separate toilet and an outdoor shower. I honestly loved this concept and made me feel like I was in a rainforest living in my own little treehouse of sorts.

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A free shuttle bus  leaves the resort a few times a day to which can drop you off at the Ubud Palace which is near a main street of Ubud, about 15 minutes away from the resort, which boasts an abundance of shops, the Ubud market, spas & restaurants. We found this service super convenient and they also offer a pick up service at the listed times.

 

Our Blue Karma experience was magical and something I’ll remember forever… the views, the room, the staff. I personally think that this resort is a wonderful location for a honeymoon or if you are desiring a quiet getaway away from the hustle and bustle and in need of some relaxation away from reality.

Click here to visit the Blue Karma website.

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Maya Resorts, Ubud – Review

On the 7th of April 2016, Mel & I checked into the Maya Resorts in Ubud, Bali. As soon as we drove through the gates we were breath taken… Everything was such a lush green. Perfectly manicured surrounds, it looked like something out of a movie.

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We were greeted by the very friendly and courteous staff who helped us with our bags before heading to reception where we received a mango & soursop juice (which was incredible!) On the journey to our room we were just gob smacked at the beauty of Maya and felt like it was too good to be true. Stepping out onto our personal balcony we were surprised and pleased to find out that there was a rainforest right to the left of us which we were able to go for a trail walk through if we desired.

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Our room was the superior suite with a kingsize bed. Tea, coffee, bottled water & wifi were complimentary with our stay.

The rooms were serviced daily and they give you the option to re-use your towels to be more environmentally conscious about using water wisely which I thought was a nice touch. A pillow menu is also available for you to choose which type of pillow you’d prefer to make sure your stay and sleep is as comfortable as possible.

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Superior Suite

 

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Maya Resort is quite large and they offer a lot of activities, some which are included with your booking. They offer yoga classes, access to the gym, the walking trail and a daily activity which changes every day which are all free to be involved in. They also have a tennis court where if you wish to request a partner to play with, you can hire one. They also have a few restaurants, a bar which has “happy hour” and a spa where you can treat yourself.

We went to the yoga class one morning and it was a great start to our day. Beginning at 7am, we began our yoga class which was focused on meditation, with a small group of others before heading off to breakfast. The yoga instructor was very helpful & Mel and I both learnt more about yoga and enjoyed ourselves.

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Gym & yoga facility

 

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Morning Yoga

 

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Spa

 

 

There are also two swimming pools on site, both offering stunning views.

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Breakfast was included in our booking which means we had full access to their large buffet breakfast. We helped ourselves to the refreshing tropical fruits they had available as well as some bread & fruit jam. This is where I got to try my first rambutan!

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Freshly cut papaya and watermelon, guava & rambutan.

 

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Fresh bread & strawberry jam.

 

We visited one of the restaurants one evening as they had some vegan not-so-indulgent desserts available, which we were quite excited about!  Mel ordered the vegan chocolate mousse that was made with avocado and I ordered the vegan apple & guava crumble with a healthy oat & quinoa crumble topping.

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Healthy Vegan Apple and Guava Crumble

 

A shuttle bus is also available to take you too the main street of Ubud as that is about a 5 – 10 minute drive.

The resort was nice and quiet in regards to other holiday go-ers which was nice and added to the relaxing and fresh atmosphere. Breakfast was usually when it was a bit more busy, but still not overly populated.

The staff were extremely welcoming and kind, always greeting us with smiles and offering to help where they can. It was definitely appreciated and taken note of.

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at Maya and really didn’t want to leave. I would never get sick of those beautiful views and I’m certainly going to miss them.¬†I think¬†it’s a¬†perfect location for a honey moon or romantic getaway or¬†even for older couples¬†where you have the option and ability to roam around the resort as there are many things to do and options for places to dine out as well as drink.

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You can check out Maya Resorts website here. Their facebook page here & follow them on Instagram at @mayaubud.

My holiday was a collaboration with The Asia Collective who organized my amazing accommodation for me and I couldn’t be more grateful to experience this amazing place!
Check out their website here.

 

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Stress Less..

In today‚Äôs society it is so easy to become stressed out… all this rush, rush with deadlines and/or long hours at work, homework from UNI or school, fitting in time for chores, socialising with friends, partners & family and the list goes on!


Where do you fit in? Where is the time where you get to do something for you & only you?

Stress is incredibly toxic to the body. Stressing about food, boyfriends, your weight, work, friends, whether or not people like you, ect. Is not doing you any good at all!
Stress can cause health issues from something as basic as a headache through to digestive issues and onto much worse, serious things.
If things are causing you stress and aren‚Äôt necessary to have in your life, eg. Toxic relationships ‚Äď Remove them! Sometimes you have to say goodbye to people who aren‚Äôt doing you any good. I have done this myself and trust me, it‚Äôs okay to do this! You should be surrounding yourself with people who make you feel good and bring you happiness.
If you are stressing about food and your weight ‚Äď STOP because not only can stress contribute to weight gain, life is so much more than that! You are more than your physical appearance and food is there to fuel us and to be enjoyed. It is necessary for survival!
If work or study is really bringing you down and causing a lot of stress and making you exhausted, be sure to prioritise relaxing! I am a very busy person who loves to be productive and hates ‚Äúwasting time‚ÄĚ and I am currently teaching myself that it‚Äôs okay to relax. It‚Äôs okay to not be productive for a bit and just watch your favourite TV box set for a few hours, it‚Äôs okay to say no to a social occasion for you to have some time to yourself to chill out and it‚Äôs okay to take a day off from exercise if you are tired or sore or just because you don‚Äôt feel like it. It‚Äôs all 100% okay!
Of course we are all going to come across a stressful time in our lives but just make sure to make some time for you. Make you & your health a priority. You have to live with your brain & your body forever so look after them! Take some time out and do the things I mentioned or read a book, have a bath, paint your nails ‚Äď pamper yourself! (And love yourself)