Yesterday I had the opportunity to be a part of a speakers showcase with 40 fellow local and international colleagues and over 600 people in attendance. Each speaker had 5 minutes before the Oscar-style music forced you off stage. So the pressure was on! Not only to be succinct and memorable, but also to get your message across in the allocated time. Not an easy feat I might tell you. Many of us arrived at sparrows at 6am. A whopping 8 hours before lunch would be served. And the only available fuel at the venue? An almost unlimited selection of croissants, pain au chocolats, muffins and many more Danish pastries. AKA the enemy of glucose control.
An average pastry or cupcake size muffin provides 15g fat (3 teaspoons butter) and 50g carbohydrates (Tim’s nightmare). That’s the equivalent of 3 slices of buttered bread. Yip. And that’s in just one pastry.
Combine a pastry or three with a few cups of coffee and you’re asking for erratic blood glucose levels. A disaster for anyone wanting to sustain their physical and mental energy. Fluctuating or low blood glucose levels accentuates the stress response and believe me it is stressful presenting in front of colleagues and potential ‘buyers’ . Low blood glucose ‘switches off’ executive function in the prefrontal cortex of the brain making it much more difficult to concentrate, to focus and to think creatively. Pretty sad when you’re wanting to impress such a significant audience as well as fellow colleagues.
I mean not to sound virtuous but there are some situations (like a showcase of these epic proportions) that warrant a little forethought or self control. After debating about whether to prance back to the car park where I have my usual smart snack stash and before walking across to the mall to look for something with a semblance of nutrient value to it, I decided to ask one of the venue assistants if they could give me something, anything that was not made from flour and sugar. 10 minutes later I was presented with a selection of fresh fruit kebabs. Granted, I would have preferred some nuts and perhaps a little cheese selection but was grateful none the less to keep the grumblings of my tummy at bay and to fuel my body and mind for optimal output! Did it pay off? It sure did! Here I am energizing the sleepy pastry-induced audience with seat squat activation!
My lessons learned …
Don’t compromise and give up your health for wealth.
Be willing to ASK for you may just RECEIVE what you want.
Focus is more valuable than IQ.
Aubergine & Coriander Dip
Drizzle the following with olive oil and roast till cooked (about 45 minutes at 220C):
1 large aubergine, cubed
1 medium sweet potato, cubed
1 clove garlic, peeled
1 onion, chopped
Allow to cool.
Toss into a food processor or blender with a hanful of fresh coriander and seasoning and blend till smooth.
Use as a dip for crudités or spread for wheat free crackers.