Profile of a Healthy Foodie and Blogger, Carolina Crespi

I met Carolina six years ago when we were both living in China and we became good friends.  Since then, I have visited her in Barcelona and she visited me in San Francisco.  When she came to visit, she told me about  some changes that she had made to how she eats after seeing a holistic nutritionist.  Her new diet had filled her with energy and had some very positive changes in her life.  She also runs a healthy food blog called Apples & Carrots.  I am very happy to share her story as well as her recipe for {almost} ceviche.

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Carolina
Name: Carolina Crespi
Occupation: Fashion Merchandiser and Part-time Blogger
Location: Barcelona
A couple of years ago you really changed the way that you eat.  What changes did you make and what drove you to make those changes?  What results did you experience after making these changes? 
Yes! I was feeling heavy and tired.  I started to think that I could have an intolerance to some type of food. I always care about eating healthy but it was when I visited a holistic nutritionist that I started a complete new diet and I realized that I wasn’t eating as healthy as I thought.  The biggest change I made was eating cleaner and less combinations.  Too many ingredients complicate the digestion.  It is harder for your body to get the best out of what your eating because the digestion is consuming too much energy.  The diet is based on veggies and whole foods mostly.  During the 3 first months I skipped completely all types of dairy products, alcohol, sugar and refined products. When I followed this I was full of energy, I slept better, my skin was glowing and I was happier!  Beside that, I lost weight immediately!
 
How would you describe the way you eat today?
I have some rules when I eat: 
– Some raw food in every meal
– Eat “clean”, not mixing carbs with protein (and trying to not mix in between them) 
– Eat as fresh as I can, if possible organic/season products
– Big breakfast (normally oats/rye bread) medium lunch and small dinner. 
– If I crave sugar or carbs, I always eat them before lunch, never dinner! 
– Snacks are mostly nuts, seeds, fruits or dried fruits.
 
Are there certain foods you gravitate towards and ones that you avoid?
After a while I started to introduce some of the ingredients I had cut out of my diet again in little portions so I could see the effects they had on me. I realized that all of them had a second effect: alcohol gives me heavy head aches, dairy products gives me arunny nose and bad digestion, all kind of pasta-white flour bakery makes me feel heavy, and sugar makes me anxious for more sugar.  But as a cheese, wine and cake lover, it is not easy to say no to all off them forever! So it’s a matter of balance.  Eating these types of foods once in a while make me happy.  I eat them as an exception but not everyday.  They are in the peak of my food triangle.
Ceviche 4
What are some of the challenges you face when eating healthy?
Eating healthy is a permanent challenge! You have to be really sure you want to eat healthy because it takes an extra effort. Going to a party, to a dinner, traveling… everything is a challenge depending your attitude.  Bad and processed food is so much easier to find in airports than just an apple!  So I normally carry some nuts with me when traveling and when I have the time I prepare a rye bread sandwich to take with me for the plane.  If I go to a dinner or a party I always prepare and bring something healthy with me to make sure I won’t end up eating pizza or french fries or starving.  The bigger challengue is going home (Argentina) where you can eat the most amazing ice cream I had ever try (sorry Italians!) so I end up skipping many of my rules when I am there!
 
Any vices?
Ice cream!
You recently started a blog called Apples & Carrots.  Can you tell me more about your blog? What made you decide to start this blog?
I wanted to do a blog for a long time and since I changed my way of eating I was visiting food blogs and trying new recipes but I realized that most of them are in english.  Also I was always emailing friends with recipes after dinners at home and I love taking pictures. So one day in the beggining of the summer while I was cooking with my friend Aitor, having lots of fun, we start talking about it.  What if we do a food blog together? and after the summer we had our first meeting to discuss names and content and thats how Apples (Aitor) and Carrots (Caro) began! We try to cook healthy recipes to inspire more people to eat good food and to care more about what they are putting into their mouths! Each of us posts 1 recipe per week.
How would you like to see the blog grow in the future?
We will start some new sections soon, with places to eat healthy, good shops to buy some ingredients in  Barcelona and cities that we travel to.  We just had our first collaboration with a friend that cooked dinner for me and I end up asking her to write for the blog.  There will be more posts like that coming soon.  The blog is a hobby for us and that’s how we think about it!  It’s cooking for pleasure and sharing! 
Ceviche 5
I’m am a big fan of peruvian food. It´s fresh and full of flavor!  Ceviche is one of my favorite dish in the world! And Im always trying different ways of doing it. Normally in ceviche the fish is cooked with lemon and this salad has cooked prawns, so even though it has lots of lemon it is not 100% ceviche. But you can follow all the steps with raw firm fish and it will be ceviche.
Tropical Prawn {Almost} Ceviche 
Ingredients:
1kg of prawns, cooked
1 mango (cut in big cubes)
200grs of coconut milk
2 lemon juice
1 lime juice
1 purple onion (cut in thin slices)
1/2 red pepper (cut in small cubes)
2 spoon of capers
1 spoon of grated ginger
2 spoons of fresh coriander or parsley 
2 spoons of chopped chives
4 spoons of olive oil 
Salt and pepper (or if you can finde AJIMOTO is even better)
3 sweet potatoes 
aluminum foil
 
Steps:
– Wash and dry the sweet potatos and covered them with the aluminum foil and place them in medium high oven (250º) for 1.5 hs or until they are cook.
-In a large bowl place the pepper, mango, onion, capers, grated ginger, chives and olive oil
-Clean the prawns and place them on a small bowl covered with the lemon and lime juice (30 minutes is perfect if you are doing it with raw fish.  It’s important to pick really fresh fish!) 
-A few minutes before eating, place the prawns with the juice in the large bowl together with the other ingredients.
-Add the coconut milk, salt and pepper, and mix. Sprinkle some coriander or parsley on top and serve with warm sweet potato. 
It’s a delicious dish! Easy and healthy! Give it a try! 

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