Healthy Chocolate Cupcakes!

Chocolate cupcakes

Makes 6 -8 cup cakes




1.5 cups almond meal

1/4 cup cacao

1 tsp baking powder

2 eggs (vegan option below)

1 tsp vanilla

1/4 cup coconut oil melted

1/4 cup  Oat/almond milk

2 tbsp agave/ honey

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Combine almond meal, cocoa powder and baking powder. Add the eggs, oil, milk and agave and mix well to form a smooth batter. Spoon into 12 small individual cupcake tins. Bake for 25 minutes until puffed and cooked through.

Chocolate frosting:

1 cup medjool dates

1/4 cup cacao

1/4 cup coconut oil, melted ( you can probably omit if you don’t have it)

1/2 cup water

Method: Blend all together and refrigerate until ready to spread.




VEGAN OPTION: Mash half a banana and add in place of the egg. Even if you are not a vegan – try it! We promise it tastes great!

Recipe: “In The Hip & Healthy Kitchen” our E-Recipe Book! Download it here!



5 Star Fitness – A Wellness Escape To Oitavos!

The Oitavos, Portugal is a luxurious 5* hotel offering extensive fitness activities, delicious healthy food and superior spa treatments all in one beautiful, idyllic setting.  Bex Fairbrother investigates.

The Lowdown
If you are looking for a Hip and Healthy getaway then the Oitavos is your go-to destination.  With a flight time of just over 2 hours from London airports to Lisbon and then a mere 30 minute drive to the relaxing oasis that is the stunning Cascais National Park where the Oitavos is nestled, this luxurious hotel is the perfect place for a relaxing mini-break, romantic getaway or a fitness-filled trip.

The Hotel
A magnificent, modern 5* hotel, the Oitavos opened its doors to the public in September 2010.  Owned and run by the Champalimaud family, the Oitavos has 142 spacious rooms, each with a view of the Atlantic Ocean.  There is a real warmth to this family-run hotel.  The staff are attentive without being overbearing, providing a level of service which is second to none.

Meanwhile the design of the hotel is open plan with floor to ceiling glass so every way you turn you are surrounded by the stunning views of the Atlantic and the rugged landscape.

Situated just a stone’s throw from Portugal’s Atlantic coastline, this beachside location makes it one of the most popular surfing destinations in the world whilst the Oitavos Dunes golf course, was ranked 65th in GOLF Magazine’s 2013 Top 100 Courses in the World.

The Food
The Oitavos boasts 3 restaurants which each serves delicious food made from fresh, locally sourced ingredients.  You can choose from fresh fish, seafood, pasta, salads and an array of tapas at the Ipsylon Restaurant located in the Hotel building – the crab and avocado cappuccino was created, nutritious and utterly delicious!

Alternatively, Verbasco which is located at the Clubhouse of the Oitavos Dunes Golf Course offers simple, authentic dishes made from locally sourced ingredients – I would highly recommend any of the fish dishes on the menu which are all fresh, satisfying and tasty.  The Japanese Bar is the third restaurant at the Oitavos offering exquisite sushi and sashimi in a relaxed and cosmopolitan setting – perfect if you want a light dinner.

The Activities
The Oitavos offer a number of sporting activities including yoga, golf, tennis, squash and biking.  Alternatively you could start your day with a dip in the exterior infinity pool with a view looking out onto the golf course and the perpetual view of the ocean.

The Oitavos also offer the ‘Surf Into Shape’ package which aims to help guests achieve the super-toned and ultra-lean body of a surfer, engaging both body and mind in challenging new ways.  Embraces the oceanic surroundings, the Oitavos’ ‘Surf Into Shape’ package combines surf lessons and tailored workouts with rejuvenating VOYA spa treatments and healthy eating.

Guests are then taken to a nearby beach on the Silver Coast which has become a haven for surf professionals due to the outstanding, year-round conditions, where the world record for the highest wave ever surfed at 100 feet was broken in January 2013.

Post surf, guests are taken back to the hotel where they can enjoy a well-earned swim by the pool and then spend some time at the VOYA spa.  Each spa treatment is designed to leave guests feeling refreshed and regenerated with a body fit for the beach.

The ‘Surf Into Shape’ package includes:

  • A two-night stay at The Oitavos in a Superior Room with private balcony and golf and partial ocean views
  • Automatic upgrade to Premium Room with private balcony  and ocean views
  • subject to availability
  • Complimentary healthy buffet breakfasts at Ipsylon Restaurant to start the day
  • 2 x 1h fitness classes at The Oitavos /person
  • Up to a  2h surf lesson plus wetsuit, surfboard and transportation to and from the hotel to the beach*/ person
  • A Hydrating Facial / person
  • One 50 minute Voya signature massage / person

Outside of the hotel there is a running and cycling path which runs along the coastline – perfect for those who like picturesque morning runs before breakfast, which I must say is a feat at the Oitavos. Choose from freshly sliced fruit, an assortment of breads, eggs, cheeses and hams, the Oitavos breakfast is the perfect way to set you up for a day of activities.

The Spa
If R and R is more your thing and you are in for some pampering, the Oitavos has a full service spa offering a number of indulgent, relaxing and results-driven treatments including full body massages, seaweed wraps and facials.  Their approach to wellbeing at the Oitavos is one that is completely natural, combining the healing benefits of seawater with a host of organic and ocean-inspired beauty and health treatments whilst the spa itself overlooks the dramatic, unspoilt Estoril Atlantic coastline.

The treatments take place in one of the 10 treatment rooms.  Each room is light, private, and spacious with a high ceiling and large, panoramic window which looks out onto the wild terrain outside of palm trees, natural sand dunes, and the ocean beyond.

I opted for a full body massage which left me feeling completely revitalised, relieving tension I had been carrying in my back.  As the room was so large and light this further relaxed me as I am not one for dark treatment rooms with no windows which I find claustrophobic and more stress-inducing than calming.

The spa also features a sauna, turkish bath, jacuzzi and sea-water swimming pool to ensure you feel completely relaxed and rejuvenated upon leaving.

The starting rate at The Oitavos is 163€ (approx £133) for a Superior room, with balcony and sea view. For reservations, please contact +351 21 486 0020 or visit

Flights are available from London Heathrow or Gatwick to Lisbon with TAP Airlines, from 116€ round trip.

A Raw Treat: Hip & Healthy reviews a raw-food and Pilates retreat at Bailiffscourt Hotel.

When invited to attend a raw-food and Pilates retreat in the depths of West Sussex, in an old boutique country hotel, it wasn’t a tough decision to say yes.

Upon arriving at Bailiffscourt Hotel and Spa, the mock-medieval exteriors of its buildings and extensive, lush green grounds had me locked under its country-living spell as my shoulders descended from my ears to their rightful place. It’s amazing what a single breath of fresh air and a bit of historical architecture can do to a girl.

I was immediately greeted by the hotel’s cheerful and charming manager, Chris Alger, and whisked off to one of the estate’s Superior bedrooms. Through winding corridors, beautiful courtyards and secret underground passageways I went, until I turned the key of my own arched wooden door to be greeted by a room of such medieval grandeur that my jaw fell off. A plush four-poster bed covered with squashy cushions, blankets and duvets, a huge, double height, vaulted ceiling with a massive church-style window letting in the light, and lots of smaller leader ones punctured three of the walls. Dark wood furniture and complimentary TeaPigs tea with homemade shortbread (admittedly not raw, but I’ll skim over this minor detail) and a gorgeous bathroom meant that I felt like royalty.

Shortly after my arrival was the raw-food and juice talk, which was anything but dull. The chef, Martin Hadden a Roux scholar and raw-food expert talked through the benefits of eating clean and raw, with help from Shirah Mustardé, the retreat’s incredibly knowledgeable and interesting nutritionist. That evening’s feast was prepared before my eyes and I left believing that I was as capable as this culinary mastermind, and would of course be able to impress friends by making raw scallops with nori at my inevitable upcoming raw-food dinner party…

Shirah had prepared some delicious cold-pressed fruit and vegetable juices and explained the benefits of this particular method of juicing. It retains the nutrients from the ingredients in their most natural form, whereas blending or heating juices massively reduces the nutritional gains, much the same as cooking strips food of natural minerals. Watermelon and strawberry, pineapple and ginger and a fantastic green juice tantalised my inner health-freak and my tongue.

Full of healthy nutritional knowledge and inspired to create my own juices and raw-food meals I headed off to my spa treatment. I chose the 25 minute ‘media’ massage (us media types have it incredibly rough, darling) in the hotel’s impressive barn-style spa building. It was wonderful, and just what I needed to loosen up before a quick swim in the outdoor pool and the evening’s inevitable feast.

Martin had pulled out all the stops to impress. Canapé’s of raw vegetables (not just carrots, but parsnips and beetroot as well) with delicious dips and prosecco, wine and/or spirits mixed with Shirah’s juices from earlier (an inspired idea!) lined my stomach for what was to come. I’ve already mentioned the delicious scallops with Japanese nori, which was served as a starter; what followed was an incredible carpaccio of beef with a homemade pesto and vegetable stack. Dessert was juicy strawberries with mascarpone cream by which point I was surprisingly full (I have a huge appetite) and yet didn’t have the heavy, groggy slump that usually washes over me after a large meal. Everything served was absolutely heavenly; I was in my element.

After supper I retreated to my chamber (I can hardly call it a bedroom) and sank into the four-poster with a satisfied stomach and a happy mind. Sleep took over instantly…

Morning time and along came a pre-Pilates raw snack of an açai bowl with granola, fresh blueberries and a banana and strawberry smoothie, delivered promptly to my room at 7 o’clock, an hour before the class was to start.

The Pilates class lasted for roughly 90 minutes, and focussed on gentle stretching and core-work. The instructor, Susie Mermaid (isn’t that a lovely name?), spoke of the benefits of Pilates, its origin and what the class would consist of. She was calm, sweet and informative, keen to help each participant improve alignment and technique. Candles dotted the edges of the studio and a sweet detail was a pebble inscribed with the names of each classmate placed on each mat. We used Pilates circles, bands and bodyweights and the class seemed to be aimed at people getting to know the practice. I would hope that throughout the three-day retreat the classes would progressively become more difficult. But then that’s just me.

Breakfast followed and the buffet that sprawled across the table in the Tapestry Restaurant was laden with salads, local cheeses, vegetables, fruit and juices. Eggs and toast were on offer for those who required something more substantial and I confess I succumbed to scrambled eggs alongside my varied and delicious salads, only because I had a big day back in the capital ahead of me. Despite my weakness for well-done eggs, the raw offerings were simply sublime, and I could have devoured a whole roll of the local Sussex blue cheese that was served with chicory.

The management boast that the beach is a seven-minute walk from the hotel’s front door, via the road or a path in through the grounds. Desperate to breathe some sea-air into my lungs before a two-hour train journey back to London Victoria I swiftly grabbed an umbrella (it was April, after all) and marched my way to the beautiful, blustery, briny coast. Bliss.

Pilates retreats at Bailiffscourt Hotel & Spa include two nights’ accommodation in a superior room on a dinner, bed and breakfast basis. Three 60-minute pilates classes, a raw food ‘cooking’ demonstration, a nutritional talk with a Q&A session and a 25-minute spa treatment of choice – massage, facial or mini-manicure, are also included. From £399 per person based on two sharing or from £528 based on single occupancy, subject to availability.(, 01903 723511

The next Pilates retreats at Bailiffscourt are Monday- Wednesday 23rd-25th June and 1st-3rd September 2014.

Bailiffscourt Hotel & Spa room rates start from £229 per room per night, based on two sharing a Classic Double Room, including breakfast, full use of spa facilities and VAT.

words by Lucy Marshall

Pregnant Ladies: It’s time to get your glow on…

We chat to Latham Thomas, author of Mama Glow and founder of the Mama Glow website and whole pregnancy concept who’s worked with a number of yummy mummies such as Alicia Keys, Doutzen Kroes and Christy Turlington. Here she shares her tips to a healthy and happy pregnancy…


Mama Glow is takes a unique spin on pregnancy. It’s about celebrating and becoming the best iteration of yourself. I breakdown the information into three sections – in the kitchen, on the mat, and in your life. It’s about fostering a powerful connection with your body and feeling radiant from within. I am about empowering women along this journey.


The most common complaint I hear about pregnancy is “How do I minimize excessive weight gain and stretch marks.” It’s quite simple, you need to gain weight to facilitate a healthy pregnancy – however you don’t need to “eat for two”. The body requires an extra 300 calories daily when you hit the later part of the second trimester – that’s a smoothie or piece of toast with some almond butter. I gained 14 pounds – the baby was 7 pounds 11 ounces, my diet was plant based and I believe that all of us could benefit from more plant foods in our diets – that’s why I promote it in the book. To protect against stretch marks we need to eat fats in addition to applying creams, oils, etc in the belly region. We have a great stretch mark oil recipe in the book and on the website too.


I started Mama Glow because as a single mama I work hard every day to provide for my child but also show him that his dreams can and will come true as long as he chases them. I’m also inspired by newborns. In the adult world I would say Arianna Huffington inspires me so much – she is really helping people examine their lives through self-care.


I witness miracles every day. I worked with a client who was in her early stages of menopause and with diet, lifestyle, acupuncture, meditation, energy work, and supplements getting her FSH levels (helps control the menstrual cycle and production of eggs) down from 31 to 5.6 within 100 days – using no drugs. This client is now in a position to get pregnant and sustain a healthy pregnancy. Even the doctors were astounded. But the body is powerful and we have to learn to trust and believe in our bodies.


Before your baby is born set up what I call a sister circle – you need support once the baby is born but you won’t have the time to set up your squad in between feedings so figure out who is in your corner that you can depend upon to help you along this journey. These are friends who help cook a meal, help with housework, teach you the ropes, etc. Also devote some time for you – glowtime – where you indulge in self care- spa, massage, acupuncture, get your hair blown out, etc. Just take time for you.


My top tips for inner and outer beauty during pregnancy are the following…

Speak Highly: An affirmation practice- speaking positively to yourself daily will increase your confidence.

Dress up: When you adorn yourself in garments, colors and silhouettes that make you feel good you stand upright- feel more powerful and capable.

5 minute Face: Even if you feel “huge” or “exhausted” when you put the effort into highlighting your features with just a little color, you will feel so much better. Dedicate at least 5 minutes to a natural beauty routine.


There is no such thing as balance. You must learn the art of juggling and prioritize your needs as a woman, a couple, so that you can effectively meet baby’s needs as well. One thing I do with my couples is: within 10 days of birth I have them schedule a date-night- whether that is going around the block for a movie and meal or checking out a concert, I have them go on a date alone. It’s important to recover the intimacy within the relationship and spend time together without the baby as well.


Just because you are eating animal protein doesn’t mean it’s absorbable and actually working for you. Sure we need protein for fetal development, but we don’t need tons of it. And you can get sufficient amounts of protein from plant foods – walnuts, pumpkin seeds, beans, legumes, even leafy greens have protein. What we need to be concerned about is getting enough high quality fat- which you can find in walnuts, avocado, etc and a range of phyto-nutrients that can only be found in plant foods.


I love yoga and other forms of dynamic movement for pregnant ladies – dance specifically African, and Modern dance techniques are amazing for the prenatal body. I love belly dance – it was actually developed to help facilitate labour. Swimming is great as well as hiking. In the book I talk about squats- they help to open the pelvis by 33%.


Mother yourself first. When you learn to take care of yourself, set healthy boundaries, honour the messages coming through your body, listen to the voice within you, fulfil your needs first- then you feel radiant. If you’re tired- sleep. We have a weird obsession with burn-out. Somehow we equate it to meaning pushing ourselves so hard leads to success.


Buy Mama Glow (Published by Hay House) from the website and follow @GlowMaven










SPFs that will Make Your Skin Glow!

words by Lucia Ferrari

The latest tinted moisturisers, BB creams, CC creams – call them what you will – are so clever that when used correctly, they really do mimic the dewy, flawless skin of someone on a magazine cover who’s probably had Botox and/ or air-brushing. Their sheer formulations are much more flattering than before giving you a fresh glow, which makes you look healthy, pretty and not as though you are wearing loads of make up. Brilliantly, they also come loaded with SPFs, which is a plus for those of us who don’t remember to diligently apply SPF 30 everyday underneath our moisturiser.

Here are my favourites:


Estee Lauder Double Wear All-Day Glow BB Moisture Make up SPF 30, £29: The joy about this product is its longevity. It gives you a pretty, sheer radiant base that genuinely lasts all day. One word: winner.

Bobbi Brown CC Cream SPF35, £29: A hard-working cream that nourishes, minimises pores, blurs fine lines and masks flushed complexions.

Teint Terrybly Soleil

By Terry Teint Terrybly Soleil SPF 15, £63: A translucent powder foundation which warms up an existing tan and leaves it peachy, matte and velvety. It also gives skin a luminous soft-focus effect which diminishes pores and lines. A really fabulous product if you already have a tan.

Cover FX CC Cream Neutral_Medium

Cover FX CC Cream Time release Tinted Cream, SPF30 £35: The most brilliant thing about this product is that there are over 25 shades so you should find the perfect match. This cream comes with a built in primer, so lasts well and is a good choice if you suffer from pigmentation too as it helps diminish dark spots and helps prevent future ones appearing.

Veil Mineral_NS_Final

Chanel Les beiges All-in-one Healthy Glow Fluid, SPF 15 £34: Frankly pulling anything with a double C logo out of your make up bag is so uplifting it’s worth it just for the boost. I’ve watched how this cream can transform dull tired skin into glowing radiance in Walt Disney style seconds.


Main Image: Zimmerman Swimwear available here:


Get Ready to Feel Fresh This Summer

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Introducing the ultimate summer product you need in your handbag!

If you’re anything like us, you’ll have hundreds of lotions and potions for your body and face. Okay, we admit it, we are self-confessed beauty product junkies! Which is why we like to find a product for every part of our body… including our intimate areas! Did you know that some soaps and shower gels could strip your intimate skin of it’s natural defenses, causing dryness and irritation? Introducing femfresh. The product that has been specifically designed to care for the unique pH of your intimate skin, because it is different to the rest of your body.. obvi! Well you wouldn’t use lip balm on your hands would you!? How about Shampoo on your face? Didn’t think so. Which is why we are so excited to discover femfresh – expert care for down there.

And we LOVE the new Intimate pocket wipes!
Not only do they come in a pretty package but they are the perfect antidote to this lovely warm weather we are experiencing! Because – let’s face it – we don’t just sweat under our armpits! These wipes are pH-balanced, the perfect handbag size, hypoallergenic, flushable, and suitable for everyday use. That’s the heat wave sorted then! You can buy them at Boots, Superdrug, and lots of different supermarkets and chemists. Plus they only cost £1.59!

LET US KNOW WHAT YOU THINK!! We would love to know your thoughts on femfresh products! Have you every used them? Do you think you will buy some this summer? Let us know on our Facebook page – see below for the link!

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femfresh blue logo_15.8.11

MAYR AND MUCH MORE… One writer travels to Austria for the detox of a lifetime

I’ve always been utterly intrigued to visit the Mayr clinic in Austria and attempt a week of what is renowned as one of the most hardcore detoxes on the market. When my eldest sister innocently mentioned she was thinking of going, I pounced on the opportunity, with the added bonus of having someone to cry on when the going got tough.

Luckily, this decision coincided with the F.X. Mayr re-opening following recent renovations. I have been unable to shift a cold for nearly six months and also hoped to combat a monotonous lack of energy. And I am not going to deny that the thought of shifting a few pounds for summer would also be nice.

DAY 1:

My sister had been following The Organic Pharmacy’s diet in the fortnight leading up to our trip, as recommended from the Mayr. I had not. She boarded the plane with a Pret salad and a bottle of water, I had my last indulgence of Skips and white wine. This resulted in somewhat valid declarations from her that my initial test results might not be so positive.

We flew from Stansted to Ljubljana in Slovenia, just over the border and about an hour’s drive from the stunning Lake Worthersee, which is the setting for the clinic. Outside the airport we met another couple on their way for a fortnight’s visit, return guests which is a common story for those who have been there.

Upon arrival we were given a tour and then shown to our beautifully re-decorated rooms, complete with the enormous and very comfortable dressing gowns that would form the main part of our wardrobe for the next week. Dinner is served from 6-7, and we were given a delicious carrot soup with the three sticks of spelt bread that is present at every meal. These sticks were probably the size of my ring finger, and I’m a girl with small hands. Before our food we were given an introduction to the dining room, including a lesson in chewing properly and the rule of silence. Eating meals in silence and concentrating on your food is one of the big tests of Dr. Domenig, the new medical director, and I did try but this was certainly the hardest part of mealtimes for a chatterbox like me.

One of the main parts of the renovations has been to the spa and swimming pool – 2 steam rooms and 3 saunas, which was a heavenly way to spend an hour or so in the evenings, and this became a nightly visit for my sister and I. But I went to bed hungry. So hungry that I ate the remains of a packet of Extra mints I located in my handbag. I have recently ‘come up’ with the word ‘hanger’ as an explanation for when people, mainly boys, get grizzly because they’re hungry. At about midnight I decided to create the word ‘insunger’ to explain my inability to sleep through hunger. At some point, I finally succumbed but far later in the night than usual.

DAY 2:

Today it really began. Breakfast was the 3 pieces of spelt, and a small goat’s milk yoghurt. I am very bad and normally don’t eat breakfast, a bad habit that runs in our family, but the sight of food couldn’t have been more welcome. My morning was filled with analysis, starting with a trip to see one of the sports therapists to assess my fitness and training. Luckily this is one area of my health I haven’t let slip too badly, and I passed with flying colours with only a couple of weak muscles identified. However, I was advised not to undertake my usual run for at least the first 3 days, as the cure advocates only gentle exercise and really letting the body de-stress – something high intensity exercise impedes. The depletion of my normal food intake meant I was feeling fairly weak already, so I took this on board.

Next was my appointment with my assigned doctor, Dr. Karim, whom I liked immediately. We went through my reasons for being there in detail, assessed my lifestyle and whether I had any pressing or relevant emotional baggage, as well as measuring my weight, blood pressure, and my digestive system through the physical appearance, size and feeling of my waist and stomach. Apparently the latter was all working like clockwork, which is one of the main problems addressed by the cure, and she warned me that she didn’t think I would change much in terms of lost inches or weight.

Apart from being incredibly thorough, knowledgeable and kind, similar to the experience I had with all the staff, the doctors really listen to your concerns. I consume most of my intake in the evenings, so was keen to break this cycle. Although I didn’t need to lose much weight, we decided that I would stick to having only broth in the evenings (with no spelt) for the first 3 days. I was given mineral pills to support any lack of nutrients given the low-calorie diet, as well as my assigned basepowder to be taken morning and night. I’d recently had a gum infection so also, slightly reluctantly, I agreed to undertake ‘oil pulling’ (where you literally swish cold pressed oil around your mouth before spitting it out) every morning. The appointment finished up with a blood test to assess my acid-alkaline ratio.

One other notable part of the day was being introduced to ‘kneipping’. This was to be done daily in the morning, and involves plunging your feet into hot water for 5 minutes, following by switching to cold for 10 seconds, and then repeating the process a second time. I don’t think I’d quite mentally prepared myself for this, as I yelped audibly the first switchover. This made the lovely Sabine (who must be mentioned as she is utterly charming, and runs the kneipping centre in the most organised fashion) chuckle, and she suggested I try the version of kneipping in a small body bath the next day. I was on my guard but willing to give it a go…


DAY 3:

This morning I managed to get myself up in good time to take all my necessary pills and powders and embark on the 7am hike. I say ‘hike’ with a certain amount of limitation, as due to the variation of the clientele it is paced to suit everybody. As a young and fairly active guest they certainly seemed to be more of a gentle walk to me…But given the emphasis on light exercise it felt good to get moving in the fresh air. They are directed by Julia, who is in charge of all the hiking year-round and clearly has a passion for the local outdoors. These sunrise hikes occur 3 times a week, and I made sure to do them all to savour the view of the mist floating on the lake as the sun rose and the absolutely breathtaking scenery of the woodlands.

This morning also came the first morning of taking either Epsom or mild salts, which is both a notorious and intrinsic part of the Mayr. It is easy to discern this given the number of bathrooms located throughout the hotel. I think the less said about this the better. Instead onto an equally uncomfortable experience – the kneipping in the waist bath. This was thoroughly odd. Following the stereotype of Austrian lack of embarrassment towards nudity, I was told to disrobe by Sabine and plonk myself in essentially a small adult paddling pool in which I sat almost doubled up, but with the water on covering up to just above my naval and halfway up my thighs. I quickly decided that I didn’t really like this and would be sticking to doing my feet for the rest of the week.

DAY 4:

The other guests had warned that day 3 is often the hardest for most people, but somehow I felt that I was really starting to enjoy the experience. Whilst yes, it was a difficult moment at around 2pm when I realised I wouldn’t eat anything solid for about 18 hours…I was finding I wasn’t actually unbearably hungry. As a result of taking time to eat my meals, I found I was full after the small amounts given. Another key aspect of mealtimes is that you are not allowed to drink any liquids – this follows the belief that it not only impedes the digestion of your food as chew less due to the moisture enabling easier swallowing, but also that it expands your stomach so that it is harder to feel full. It makes perfect sense, and whilst it still felt odd after only a few days (I kept forgetting to make sure I drank plenty about half an hour before mealtimes!), it was fulfilling it’s purpose.

On my timetable this morning was a hayflower detox wrap, of which 5 are included in the basic package. This is where you retire to your room and a hot compress in a bag is delivered and is pressed onto your liver area. You then wrap yourself up in your dressing gown and lie quietly for about 20 minutes. Liver wraps are a notable part of the detox process, and you are encouraged to also do them using a lukewarm hot water bottle in the evening before you go to bed as a way of furthering toxins out of the liver. Not for the first time, I was very glad that I had my laptop with me and a solid supply of boxsets to keep me entertained (this key to your stay!).

DAY 5:

Today I checked in with Dr. Karim on my progress – following her predictions I had only lost a pound despite 3 days of near starvation. This surprised me, and I will admit I felt a little deflated not to have lost more given such the depletion in my usual calorie intake. However, as I reported to her, I felt better. My energy levels were starting to pick up, and I had easily managed a short visit to the gym first thing in the morning with my sister for a run on the treadmill. She was pleased I was positive and being aware of my body’s response to the routine, and we decided that I would stick to the broth-only dinner option to help with getting my food intake more regular. What was most exciting was that she wanted me to start having a portion of protein at lunchtime! So today I chose and was given a quite sizeable portion of smoked char. I had really been starting to crave meat or fish and I could have wept with joy – it tasted heavenly.

mayr clinic spa

DAY 6:

Following her review with her doctor yesterday, I discovered my sister had been granted a portion of protein at breakfast. This was the gift of a boiled egg – pure jealously. However, it did make me ponder how much I anticipated going back to eating certain foods, and how much more succinct simple ingredients had become within my thoughts in terms of taste, size and nourishment. I used this to keep the green-eyed monster bay…

The main event of today, however, was my kinesiology test. So far little had been uncovered by the doctor’s to explain my enduring cold and tired, and having had a similar test a few years ago I was intrigued by how the results would compare. There was no repeat of an indication towards an intolerance to all sugars including glucose (to my surprise but also delight), however I have apparently developed a serious intolerance to lactose beyond the adult human normal. Given dairy is known to create mucus this was a relieving and simple explanation behind my cold. I appreciate that a lot of people are reluctant to believe in the powers of kinesiology, but they might be interested that I then asked for Dr. Karim (at some point during the next batch of foods tested, as you aren’t supposed to be aware in advance) to text me for mushrooms and truffles. These are foods I know I am allergic too given my inevitable reaction of being sick. And they came up as strongly negative too.

We went through all the various dairy options, and it was a relief to discover I could still have butter, hard cheese and dark chocolate – though of course in moderation. I had witnessed my old flatmate having a similar diagnosis and going through a year’s abstinence, before slowly re-introducing dairy into her diet. Not only did I recently join her in a large ice-cream indulgence, but during that year I saw first-hand the difference it made to her health and energy. I was given a very informative and helpful information sheet on lactose intolerance, and left feeling excited as I realised tomorrow’s breakfast would bring a boiled egg instead of yoghurt!

DAY 7:

Today the weather brought glorious sunshine, and despite being the first week of May it was warm enough to make use of the hotel’s delightful pontoon next to the lake. It was sheer bliss spending a few free afternoon hours sunbathing soaking up the rays, and I would certainly recommend coming to stay in the warmer months when this option is more readily available.

Whilst reflecting during my tanning time, I realised that I was fully immersed in the routine of the Mayr and the utterly restful environment they create during your stay. I try to take a ‘me’ holiday for a few days at least once a year, and despite the fact you’re not alone it held the same benefits for me and was providing a total break from my usual ‘headless chicken’ routine. I must admit I felt a small pang at the thought of going home tomorrow.

DAY 8:

My last treatment of my stay was a massage by Carmen – who I must confess is my top recommendation and should be requested (you receive 3 massages as part of the basic package). During the week I also had an osteopathy session with Wolfgang, who is renowned amongst the regulars and really does get booked out well in advance – a little tip. I also discovered today the results of my acid-alkaline ratio from my blood tests on the first day, which if too acidic would have pointed to a too-high level of alcohol; sadly for my sister’s predictions I was in the very healthy alkaline range, which was a lovely note to end on!

You are recommended on leaving to try and follow a similar diet and schedule for a further week, and my sister and I were kindly given a very generous portion of the spelt rolls to take home on top of our supplements. Whilst I did indulge in a much anticipated alcoholic tipple upon my return home that night, I am firmly back in the 3-meals-a-day camp. I managed to keep strictly to diet for a good 4 days, and whilst I only lost a kilo during my stay in Austria I somehow managed to shed another 2 during this extended period, which was an added bonus.

I have been raving to all and sundry about my visit, and whilst I appreciate that it is an expensive option, I firmly believe that you can’t put a price on health and this is a fantastic place to follow that principles. I have learnt invaluable lessons in terms of my diet and correcting how I nourish my body, and also met some wonderful people with regard to both the staff and fellow guests during my stay. All I can say to end is go if you possibly can, I feel I shall certainly be joining the numerous ranks of repeat visitors.

A seven-day stay is €1,359 per person. Visit 

Words by Alicia Meinertzhagen


To celebrate the launch of our new and improved website, the Hip & Healthy team is thrilled to announce that the coveted Australian sportswear brand, L’URV has landed in-store.

Fusing functional fabrics with beautiful designs, L’URV brings a fresh edge to Hip & Healthy this summer with sportswear that looks and feels sensational. The collection aims to reflect notions of vitality, creativity and positivity and has been inspired by nature with directional pieces in beautiful hues and organic patterns. Brilliant performance fabrics made from organic cotton, bamboo and natural fibres give the collection some serious ethical credentials, which is something we admire here at H&H HQ.

Sporty details like mesh racer-backs on the bras and panelling on leggings add fashionable touches that motivate the wearer to move. The collection’s name, Aquarius, inspires us to make positive changes in our lives (a common want of those born in the star sign) and with workout clothes as lovely as these we are certainly keen to show them off as we continually aspire for good health.

Each piece has been designed to update and lift any sportswear wardrobe but L’Urv emphasise that their garments can be worn outside of the gym and on the street. With so many women parading their fitness achievements in great gear whilst out, we aren’t surprised that sportswear companies are cottoning on to this idea and designing for the everyday wardrobe in mind.

L’URV’s clothes are perfect for yoga, dance and general fitness, so head over to the Hip & Healthy store to purchase and wear with pride.

Lurv Sunshine seduction floral top back and sea spray shorts front close up





If You Only Do One Thing This Week… Blast Cellulite The Hip & Healthy Way!

The dreaded “C” word. We’ve all heard of it… we’re all scared of it… and we all want to know how to get rid of it! Cellulite is unfortunately, quite common amongst us ladies and surprisingly, 80% of women over the age of 20 will develop a form of cellulite at some point in their lives. Great! This frustrating condition is caused by normal fat cells becoming enlarged. They are usually kept in place by our connective tissues, but when they become too big and the connective tissues can’t expand anymore, the fat cells have no where to go except up! They push against the dermis and epidermis and this is when we start to see those little bumps of terror starting to appear!

There is still no magical cure for cellulite (hurry up scientists!), but there are definitely ways to significantly reduce the appearance of it. Below are some tips and tricks that we like to incorporate into our lifestyle to help minimise the “orange peel” look!

Dry Body Brushing
A well-known beauty secret amongst celebrities and beauty gurus alike is body brushing. Crowned the queen of cellulite busters, this particular art of brushing helps firm, tighten and smooth cellulite-prone skin as well as softening hard fat deposits that sit under the skin. Toxins like additives, colourings and pesticides have also been linked to the development of cellulite, and because our bodies don’t know how to process toxins they never leave our body. Body brushing activates our lymphatic system, which is responsible for eliminating toxins from our body and prevents a build up of toxins. Try to incorporate body brushing into your daily routine before you get in the shower. Use long stokes in an upward motion towards the heart for best results. We love the Liz Earle Body Brush!

Body Scrubs
This luxurious practice has definitely got anti-cellulite benefits and it’s a bonus that it leaves us feeling pampered too! A good scrub will stimulate blood flow, which will help give the appearance of super soft, glowing legs. It can also help break up and distribute the concentration of fatty tissue deposits under the skin, making the tone of your skin smoother and less bumpy. Our all time favourite scrub has to be the Cowshed Spearmint Exfoliating Sea Salt Scrub!

Like body scrubs, indulging in the odd massage will really help stimulate blood flow and the lymphatic system, thus improving the tone and tautness of our skin. It will also help break down fatty deposits especially around the upper thighs and bottom, the worst offenders of all!

It’s so important to stay hydrated for many reasons, but keeping on top of your fluids will significantly improve signs of cellulite. Drinking more water will allow the body to release excess water that your body might have been storing, leaving your skin smooth with more definition. When we’re a little dehydrated our skin can have that “puffy” effect and this will only enhance cellulite even more!

Resistance Training
Exercise is definitely on our list of cellulite busters as this will help reduce the build up of fatty deposits under our skin. We recommend including some resistance training in to your workout programme, as increasing your muscle mass will give your body more definition in your muscles leaving you feeling and looking leaner and more toned. Our go-to cellulite busting exercises have to be squats and burpees!

Like we mentioned, toxins can play a huge role in the development of cellulite, so the first thing we would recommend doing is to remove any processed, sugary foods from your diet. Additives and colourings are just bad news for our bodies full stop! We then suggest incorporating some foods that are high in antioxidants to help combat the toxin build up that might be going on inside your body. Besides, who doesn’t love a good antioxidant boost? Our favourite ways to consume antioxidants are definitely thin skinned berries like blueberries and strawberries in a smoothie. Try our Berry SuperCharged Smoothie! 

words by Molly Jennings

image: Zimmerman

Raw, Vegan Blackberry Cheesecake Bars!


11/2 cups of walnuts

1 cup of pitted dates

1/4 tsp of sea salt, divided in half

1 cup of blackberries

1 cup of cashews soaked in water for at least two hours and drained

1/2 cup of melted coconut oil

1/3 cup of maple syrup


  1. 1. To make the bottom layer, place the walnuts, dates, and 1/8 teaspoon sea salt in a food processor and pulse to break the ingredients down, till they’re crumbled. Run the motor and process till the mixture is ground up and sticking together when you squeeze a little in your hand.
  2. 2. Press the bottom layer into a small casserole or baking pan that has been lightly greased with olive or coconut oil (I used 11″ by 7.5″). Set aside while you make the top layer, or chill overnight.
  3. 3. To make the top layer, blend the cashews, blackberries, oil, remaining 1/8 teaspoon sea salt, and syrup in a high speed blender or food processor till they’re as smooth as possible. Pour the top layer over the bottom layer in the pan. Use a spatula or inverted knife to smooth the top layer over very evenly.
  4. 4. Transfer the dish to your fridge and chill for at least three hours. Cut into bar shapes and serve.
  5. Yields 15-20 bars, depending on how big you’d like them.

Recipe by Gena Hamshaw from Choosing Raw

Fitness Fashion

A few years ago, being seen out in your gym clothes was a bit of a fashion faux-pas. But gone are the days of fitness and fashion being mutually exclusive. Fitness is now seriously fashionable. Colourful Free-Runs have replaced ballet pumps, yoga pants have replaced skinny jeans and fashionable fitties are setting big trends across the globe. It seems everywhere you turn there are people taking their “gym style” out onto the street. According to Anjhe Mules, founder of Lucas Hugh (as worn by Victoria Beckham and Gwyneth Paltrow), collections are now “designed to support a serious work-out, yet they are versatile and stylish enough to wear throughout the day and maybe even into the night.” And if you had any doubt about the new status of fitness in the fashion world, French Vogue recently published an editorial featuring supermodel Karlie Kloss in some super hot fitness gear.

The Hot Trends
The fitness fashion frontier has moved beyond the huge, global sports brands and the standard, not-so-flattering lycra black leggings and vests which cling in all the wrong places. And although many of these famous names have teamed up with designers and celebrities, it is the new kids on the block including Tully Lou, Lucas Hugh and HPE, who are setting the trends and taking the fitness fashion world by storm.

Bold and Bright
Back in the 1980s multi-coloured leotards and leggings were all the rage, but colourful active wear quickly disappeared from our radar and was replaced by a “rainbow” of black, grey and white. But colour is well and truly back and luminous block colours are definitely the new black. In fact, when it comes to fitness clothes, the brighter the better. Tully Lou, owner of Tully Lou active wear, told H & H that the bold, bright colours not only look great but they can also have an impact on our mood and change the way we feel – look good and feel good!

Nike and Asics have been leading the way with their brightly coloured trainers which are not only worn in the gym but donned as casual wear by everyone from yummy mummies to super models. This year at most of the major international fashion weeks, there was a noticeable presence of colourful running shoes and high-top trainers which seem to have taken over as the flat shoe du-jour. As well as trainers, over the last few years the popularity of colourful sports clothing has sky-rocketed thanks in part to global clothing chains such as Lulu Lemon and American Apparel.

But fear not bright colour-phobes, this year isn’t just about luminous pink and yellow (let’s face it, lumo colours just don’t suit everyone). As well as block colour, animal prints, tie-dye and other cool prints such as Lexie Sport’s Blonde Collection print, are currently trending in the fitness fashion world. One of H&H’s newest brands, Track & Field, has brought us some awesome, multi-coloured animal print leggings, tops and bras. At the moment we are loving Track and Field’s Snake Beach Leggings.

Thankfully for those who still love their black workout clothes, we will be seeing a lot more panels of print and colour down the sides of dark leggings and vests or around waistbands. This means you can gently wean yourself off the all-black by incorporating subtle colour and print while at the same time staying on trend. In the H & H store we stock both Track and Field and Lexie Sport dark coloured leggings with panels of their cool prints.

Another trend this year is layering. We love the look of a gorgeous, bright sports bra or tank top peeping through from under a different coloured vest. However layering isn’t just restricted to our top half. Layering with shorts and skirts over leggings is becoming a hot look for 2014 and the latest collection from Lucas Hugh includes mesh shorts to wear as a layer over your leggings.

Layering also allows you to transition smoothly from fitness to other daily activities without a full wardrobe change – simply throw a jacket, light jumper or baggy t-shirt over your gym vest and you are ready to lunge your way to lunch. The Pepper & Mayne Silver Logo Sweat is perfect for post-gym layering or for day-to-day wear.

The Cool New Brands
Many of the new, fashion forward labels are owned by health and fitness professionals. Tully Lou and Five Feathers, both stocked by Hip and Healthy, are owned by yoga teachers who use their experience of yoga and knowledge of movement to design their clothing. Tully Lou, told H & H that a lot of her inspiration comes from teaching yoga and from watching her students. The fact that both Tully and Sarah Thompson, owner of Five Feathers, continue to teach alongside their clothing lines means that they are connected to what their students are wearing and what they want to wear. The result of this is that these brands are making clothing which is flattering but more importantly functional allowing you to move freely and comfortably.

Thanks to their fitness-focused minds, several of these brands also have sports-specific ranges (yoga, running, tennis and more) as well as more general sportswear for all athletic (or even not-so athletic) endeavours. Lija, another of our favourites, started out by “pushing boundaries in golf apparel” – a welcome change for ladies looking for an attractive alternative to white polo-shirts and unflattering chino-like trousers. Lija now pushes boundaries in clothing for several other popular activities from tennis to yoga.

The ethics of these new fitness brands are different too – think fashion with some seriously good karma. Several of the brands stocked by H & H have a strong desire to give back and minimise their impact on the environment. One example of this is HPE, which believes that with success comes a “responsibility to positively influence” and the company has pledged to make a donation to climate change projects around the world for every garment sold. Another example is Five Feathers which gives a proportion of the profit from each item sold to the “Let Them Fly” foundation which supports education projects in extremely poor areas of Bangladesh.

With so many fantastic new brands paving the way for fashionable active wear, we have never been so spoilt for choice. All of these clothes are not only flattering, attractive and on trend, but thanks to the careful thought and design behind the scenes they are also functional, durable (hooray for leggings that don’t go see-through after one wash!) and made with a heart.

The Stylish New Stores
Good active-wear stores are not common place on the British high street. In fact finding a decent sports store selling clothes you actually want to wear can be a bit of a mission. The US and Canada, closely followed by Australia, have been quick to catch onto fitness fashion and getting your hands on gorgeous gym clothes isn’t difficult – in fact you are pretty spoilt for choice. However, over here on the other side of the pond, we have been a little slower to catch on.

Fortunately that gap in the UK market is filling meaning we no longer have to put up with old t-shirts and unflattering leggings for the gym. Here at Hip and Healthy we launched our popular online store in 2013 and we are rapidly expanding to bring you a wider range of our favourite fitness-fashion labels. We also regularly host pop-up events which combine an evening of browsing our store’s on-trend fitness gear with Hip and Healthy nibbles and green juices (sign up to our newsletter to receive an invitation to our next event).

As well as our online store and pop-ups, high-end fashion websites such as Net-a-Porter and Avenue 32 have jumped on the fitness band-wagon recently launching active wear stores (further evidence to support the seriously fashionable status of fitness wear).  Other than online boutiques, trend-setting gyms and health clubs such as Equinox in Kensington are starting to stock a range of boutique brands meaning you can exercise and shop in the same place.

With such gorgeous fitness clothing now available, we hope you will be inspired to join the health-revolution and get moving. There has never been a better time to put on your running shoes (colourful ones obviously), get fit and look hot doing it!

words by Kathleen Fleming


How does she do it? We talk to Super Model, Elle Macpherson, about looking and feeling young as her 50th (yes 50th!) birthday looms!

Nearly at 50, but not looking a day over 30 (really), Elle Macpherson talks to Hip & Healthy Editor, Sadie Macleod about how her brand new green powder that keeps her feeling young and looking and feeling amazing…

On The Super Elixir:
What I love about this alkalizing powder is that it is bio-available, meaning it goes directly into the cells and it nourishes them completely so the 45 ingredients that it includes are directly absorbed by the body and that support 11 systems of the body. Australians tend to really think out of the box and they are very wellness conscious and so having a three women Australian team [in my business, Welle] has been a great source of satisfaction and has enabled us to create a beautiful product that really works. Since I have taken the super elixir my hair has gotten so shiny, and I have honestly seen people get results like this within two weeks!

On eating alkaline:
I try to eat alkaline where possible, but if I can’t the powder helps to balance my body when I drink to much coffee for example or feel too much stress. But if you combine it with exercise the effects are more powerful and more obvious.

On growing up in health-conscious Sydney:
Wellness has always been important to me and that’s why I called the company Welle. I am much more into wellbeing maintenance than doing big body overhauls all the time – I think that is a very Australian way of seeing things.

On being successful in what you do:
Having vitality and being inspired and that feeling of “I can do” is incredibly important in life whether you are a man or a woman, whether you’re a teenager or you’re fifty and that’s something that we don’t talk about often. We talk about being fit or thin and about being beautiful but the real energy force comes from being motivated.

On taking supplements:
I have always taken supplements and the thing that I love about the Super Elixir is that it has simplified of all my self-diagnosis of all the vitamins and minerals that I needed from all the different doctors around the world. Finally it’s all in one product and really does the job for me and it’s very efficient and very simple.

We ask the product’s co-creator, Dr Simone Laubscher (a specialist in disease prevention and anti-aging nutrition and personal nutritional doctor to Elle), who formulated the product – what exactly is in it and why is it so brilliant?

Dr Simone highlights some of the key ingredients of The Super Elixir for us…

It uses an organic super-greens base

Shitake and Miyake Mushrooms: which have been used in Chinese medicine to support the immune system since the Ming dynasty. Cancer and disease hate them.

Pro- and Pre-biotics: to ensure that every part of the digestive process was fully supported

Horsetail: Great for hair, skin and nails

Flaxseeds: For their oils and their fibre

L-Glutomine powder: to heal the gut

Tumeric Powder: super anti-inflamatory

Available to buy here: