Gut Health Blog

March 31, 2024

Does Cortisol Cause Weight Gain?

You’ve probably heard of cortisol, the main stress hormone, but do you know how it affects your body? This powerful chemical messenger influences everything from digestion and mental health to sleep and immunity. But does cortisol cause weight gain? And how can you best manage this?

What Cortisol Does to Your Body

Cortisol is released from your adrenal glands whenever you are under stress. The stress we encounter nowadays is very different from what we experienced millions of years ago. Back then, it was woolly mammoths and saber-toothed tigers giving us stress! Now, we feel stressed out by busy traffic, credit card debt, and an overflowing inbox.

However, the effect of stress on the body is the same. Your adrenal glands release adrenaline and cortisol, and you move into the “fight, flight, or freeze” response, which is part of the sympathetic nervous system.

Cortisol has several main actions:

  • Raises blood sugar levels by breaking down sugar stores in the liver and muscles.
  • Breaks down fatty acids and proteins for energy.
  • Raises blood pressure.
  • Diverts blood away from the digestive system so that more blood and oxygen are available to large muscles in the limbs to help you fight or flee from the source of stress.


In the short term, these actions help you deal with an immediate danger. However, modern forms of stress are chronic and not easily dealt with. Instead, your body remains in a state of near-permanent fight or flight, with chronically elevated cortisol levels.


Does Cortisol Cause Weight Gain?

One of the key signs of dysregulated cortisol levels is weight gain around the belly area. This is because cortisol promotes the growth and differentiation of fat cells. Visceral fat cells that lie deep within your abdominal cavity are much more sensitive to cortisol than fat cells that lie just beneath the skin (Duclos et al, 2012). So, higher cortisol levels encourage the fat cells in your belly and abdomen to grow much larger.

Chronically elevated cortisol also interferes with the delicate balance of thyroid hormone activity. Thyroid hormones regulate your metabolism and play an important role in weight management. Thyroid dysregulation can lead to weight gain and difficulty losing weight.

Signs and Symptoms of High Cortisol

Some of the common signs of chronically elevated cortisol include:

Weight gain around the belly area.


Difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep.

Lowered immune response.

Gut problems like Irritable Bowel Syndrome, bloating, indigestion, wind, constipation, and diarrhea.

Headaches and migraine.

High blood pressure (hypertension).

Muscle tension.

Brain fog, poor memory, and poor concentration.


How To Get Rid of Cortisol Weight Gain

To get rid of cortisol-induced weight gain, you need to work on your diet and lifestyle. Just changing your diet alone will not be enough if you continue to feel stressed by work, family, finances, or other factors. You probably can’t make these problems disappear – most of us have to live with a certain degree of stress! – but you can change how you respond to them.

The Eat Burn Sleep program will help you build resilience to stress and achieve a healthy weight balance.

The meal plans, recipes, and food lists are designed to support blood sugar regulation and hormone health. These foods help you avoid blood sugar crashes (another form of stress!) and provide a balance of protein, fat, and the right kinds of carbohydrate to keep you energized between meals.

Our meditation guides for morning and night help you switch from the sympathetic nervous system into the parasympathetic response. This side of your nervous system promotes healing and repair and the release of calming mood chemicals.

Plus, our workout sessions help you stay strong and flexible without stressing your system and triggering more cortisol. It is important to keep active but exercising too intensely is another form of stress that must be avoided.


This is what EBS member Sharon has to say about our program:

I feel the best in years, with a flat tummy and much less with bloating. I try to follow the program as much as possible and when socializing, I enjoy a few treats, then get back on the green food list.

I’m slimmer around my middle and have a lot of energy. My joints feel so much better. I can tell I have less inflammation in my body.

The workouts are great, and because they are short, I can always fit them into my day.

I will be subscribing for another year in May, thanks Yalda for all your work, in helping yourself, you are now helping so many people.


Would you like to experience the same benefits as Sharon?

Now is the time to take control of stress, lose weight, and strengthen your resilience. Check out what’s on offer in our membership options here and begin your journey to optimum health.


You might also like to tune into these podcast episodes:

Using Sounds to Calm Your Mind



And dive into these articles:

Heart Health: Do You Have a Heart Healthy Lifestyle?

Depression, Anxiety, and Gut Health


Wishing you peace and calm,

Yalda x


Yalda Alaoui


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Continue Reading

Can Diet Help Relieve Hay Fever?

Habit Stacking – The Key to Making Your Health Habits Last

How Does Sleep Help With Inflammation?

March 24, 2024

Can Diet Help Relieve Hay Fever?

Spring is here which means seasonal allergies are too! Tree, grass, and weed pollen make life miserable for millions of hay fever sufferers every year, causing sneezing fits, sore throats, and stuffy noses. Antihistamine drugs may help but often have side effects like drowsiness. But what about food? Can diet help relieve hay fever?


What Is Hay Fever?

Hay fever, or seasonal allergic rhinitis as it is officially known, occurs when your immune system reacts to pollen from grasses, trees, flowers, and weeds.

The pollen irritates the lining of your nose, eyes, and throat, causing immune cells to release histamine and other inflammatory chemicals. This leads to itching, swelling, and irritation.

Typical hay fever symptoms include:

    • Sore throat.
    • Tickly cough.
    • Runny or blocked, stuffy nose.
    • Itchy, watery eyes.
    • Sneezing.
    • Headache.
    • Mucous in your throat.


When Is Hay Fever Season?

Hay fever season starts in late Winter / early Spring when the tree pollens appear. This is soon followed by grasses in late Spring and early Summer and weed pollen in Fall. Spring and Fall are often peak seasons for seasonal allergic rhinitis, although pollen levels vary according to your location and climate.


Who Is Prone to Hay Fever?

Anyone of any age can suffer from hay fever. Some people grow out of their childhood hay fever and no longer experience any symptoms as an adult. Others develop it for the first time in their twenties or thirties, or even later. Many women start with seasonal allergic rhinitis and other allergies during menopause when hormone changes affect immune and gut health.


How Long Does Hay Fever Last?

This varies from person to person. If you are only sensitive to one type of pollen, your symptoms will subside when that pollen level drops. If you are sensitive to several types of pollen your symptoms can potentially last from late Winter through to Fall.


Why Is My Hay Fever So Bad All of a Sudden?

There are several reasons why seasonal allergies can suddenly get worse.

Stress has a major impact on immune health. If you are under a lot of stress, your immune system may not work as effectively.

Illness and infection can affect the membranes lining your nose and throat and leave you more sensitive to pollen.

Location change. If you’ve moved to a different city or even a different part of the same city, the pollen levels may be higher than where you lived before.

Air pollution from traffic fumes can make hay fever worse for some sufferers.

Weather patterns affect pollen levels. A mild winter followed by a cool spring and a sudden burst of warmth in early summer can trigger a pollen burst that can worsen symptoms.


Can Diet Help Relieve Hay Fever?

Yes! Adopting an anti-inflammatory diet and lifestyle can be hugely beneficial for managing seasonal allergic rhinitis. The clue here is in the name of the condition. The word “rhinitis” translates as “inflammation of the nose,” meaning the membranes lining the nose are inflamed.

The Eat Burn Sleep anti-inflammatory diet and lifestyle program minimises inflammation by supporting gut and immune health. These two systems are intrinsically linked because so much of your immune system resides in the gut.

Alongside these immune cells, your gut microbiome is also hard at work supporting immunity. It helps to regulate immune responses and inflammation and communicates with other microbiomes in the body, such as the oral and nasal microbiomes.

Research shows that people with allergic rhinitis have an altered microbiome in the nasal passages which may be associated with inflammation (Chen et al, 2022). As we can’t micromanage individual bacteria within a microbiome, it’s important to create the right environment for beneficial species to thrive. Following an anti-inflammatory diet and lifestyle is the ideal way to do this. I suggest the 6-Week Reset as the place to start – it has all the meal plans, food lists, and guidance you need to begin your anti-inflammatory journey.


Here’s what EBS Member Eleonora has to say about the program:

I’m in the sixth week of the Six Week Reset and I cannot thank Yalda enough for the EBS lifestyle. During the last two years, I’ve struggled a lot with various issues like bloating, being overweight, psoriasis, thyroid malfunction, and acne, but now I’ve found the lifestyle that is the answer to all my problems.

I finally started losing weight, changing my body composition, feeling energetic all day long, less bloated, fewer cravings in my PMS phase, and still counting the benefits!

This lifestyle completely switched my body and my mind, and I cannot live without all the specialized advice I can find on the EBS platform anymore. Again, thanks Yalda for your great work!

Want to know more about Eat Burn Sleep? You can take a sneak peek around the platform here and check out our membership options here.


And you might also like to read:

The Anti-inflammatory Diet and Lifestyle

Does Sleep Help With Inflammation?

What is Gut Health?


Here’s to a happy and healthy hay fever season,

Yalda x

Yalda Alaoui


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March 17, 2024

Habit Stacking – The Key to Making Your Health Habits Last

Have you heard of habit stacking? It’s a way of making positive changes to your life by adding a new habit to one that is already established. But is there any evidence behind this technique? And how do you get started?


What Are the Benefits of Habit Stacking?

Habit stacking is a popular method for supporting sustainable behavior change. The author S.J. Scott is credited with coining the term for his 2014 book Habit Stacking: 97 Small Life Changes That Take Five Minutes or Less. It is now recommended by health professionals all over the world, including the American Heart Association and the American Institute for Cancer Research.

The habit stacking technique helps you embed new healthy habits into your daily routine in a manageable, sustainable way.

Making changes to your diet and lifestyle isn’t always easy! Many people give up because they try to change too many things at once. This can feel overwhelming, especially if you already have a lot of demands on your time. It’s far easier to add one new habit at a time and attach it to something that is already part of your routine.


How Do I Start?

First, make a list of all the changes you would like to make in your diet and lifestyle. Get everything down on paper – big ideas, small ideas –  then highlight the ones that are most realistic for you right now.

For example, you might want to run a marathon but realistically, you don’t have enough time for long training runs. However, you could fit in three shorter runs each week, so you could add that to your list.

Once you have your ideas organized, decide which one is your top priority. This is the first one to stack.

There are 3 ways to habit stack.

  1. Pairing is when you add a new habit to a fun activity you already do. For example, if you plan to meditate more often, you could listen to a guided meditation while enjoying your morning coffee.
  2. Make a chain: Link your new habit to something you repeatedly do. Want to drink more water every day? Keep a small glass by your kitchen sink and top yourself up every time you wash your hands during the day.
  3. Sequence: Add your new habit to an established sequence of events. Think about the small routines you have every day, such as having a shower, cleaning your teeth, and getting dressed. Or coming home from work, getting changed, and having a snack.


Add your new habit into one of these routines. For example, if you have a new vitamin pill, keep the bottle next to your toothbrush and take it when you clean your teeth. Need to add a stretch routine into your day? Keep your yoga mat by your after-work clothes and do the stretches before having a snack.

person pouring a glass of water for a new habit

What is the Evidence for Habit Stacking?

Scientists have known for decades about the benefits of habit formation for promoting health changes (Gardner et al, 2012). Making small, consistent changes that are linked to other external cues (i.e. other habits or behaviors) enables your brain to quickly form new connections in the areas associated with learning and behavior.

This plays out in the research too. One study compared a control group with participants who were given simple diet and activity suggestions for weight loss. The group with the new habit suggestions lost an average of 2kg over 8 weeks compared to 0.4kg in the control group (Lally et al, 2008).


Habit Stacking and the Eat Burn Sleep Lifestyle

The Eat Burn Sleep approach is perfect for habit stacking. Each part of the program comes with meal plans and food lists, plus recipes, guided meditations, movement videos, and health Masterclasses.

It is designed with busy people in mind as I know only too well what it’s like to juggle work, family, and health issues. Too often our health is the thing that suffers and I don’t want that to happen to you.

cup of herbal tea and a napkin that says build good habits

Here are some of the incredible, life-changing results our Eat Burn Sleep members enjoy…

“I have been following the EBS lifestyle and wanted to thank you for all your work in creating this program – it has been life-changing for me.

I have ulcerative colitis, and I have never gone this long without a flare-up. I also travelled to America at the end of last month and for the first time in 5 months managed to travel without any bleeding.

My other half has been following along with me and he has lost almost 2 stone in under 7 weeks.

I can’t believe the improvements in my energy, sleep, and skin.”



Start making your healthy habit ideas a reality today. Check out our membership options here and begin your journey to optimum health.


You might also like to tune into these podcast episodes:

Mindset Tips for Long-Term Health

Finding Self Love

And enjoy these articles:

Financial Wellness with The Dura Society

A Compilation of 5 Incredibly Nutritious Healthy Food items


Happy habit stacking!

Yalda x


Yalda Alaoui


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March 10, 2024

How Does Sleep Help With Inflammation?

Are you sleeping well? This is a question I ask my executive coaching clients, and the answer is frequently no! Modern life is full of things that disrupt sleep. Eating ultra-processed foods, scrolling social media, late-night Netflix, lack of exercise –  it’s little wonder that people are struggling to sleep. And yet sleep is critical to health especially if you are dealing with an inflammatory condition. So, how does sleep help with inflammation?


Sleep and Inflammation

Your body does a great deal of cellular repair work while you sleep. If you don’t get enough sleep, this healing work is compromised.

There are 4 stages of sleep in each sleep cycle, and we go through several cycles each night.

Stage 1 is the first stage of non-REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep. It is a light sleep that lasts a few minutes as the body and brain start to relax and wind down.

Stage 2 is the next phase of non-REM sleep during which our core temperature drops, muscles relax, and heart rate and breathing slow down.

Stage 3 is deep non-REM sleep. This is the deep, restorative sleep that allows the body and mind to heal, repair, restore energy, and consolidate memories. This is the most important stage of sleep for optimum health and managing inflammation.

Stage 4 is REM sleep. Brain activity picks up and we may experience vivid dreams. REM sleep is thought to be essential for healthy brain function and processing information.

Studies show that sleep loss and disrupted sleep lead to raised levels of inflammatory mediators (Dzierzewski et al, 2020) which are linked to the development of chronic conditions and metabolic disorders like Type II diabetes and cardiovascular disease (Mullington et al, 2010).

In turn, the pain and discomfort of chronic inflammatory disorders can interrupt healthy sleep patterns, leading to a negative spiral of poor sleep and further inflammation.

Chronic low-grade inflammation is an underlying factor in so many conditions. From obesity and weight gain to depression, fertility problems, and thyroid issues, tackling inflammation is the secret to optimum health and vitality.


Sleep and Gut Health

At Eat Burn Sleep we recognise just how important gut health is for overall health and wellbeing. Your gut microbiome influences almost every aspect of disease and constantly communicates with your brain and immune system.

Messenger molecules produced by gut microbes help to regulate your sleep-wake cycle, the internal 24-hour clock that determines when you are asleep or awake. If the balance of microbes in the gut is disturbed – we call this microbiome dysregulation – it can interfere with healthy sleep patterns and promote a state of inflammation.

These microbes also produce some of the neurotransmitters that help you sleep. For example, over 90% of serotonin is produced in the gut and it is serotonin that converts to melatonin, the sleep hormone.

GABA (gamma amino butyric acid) is another important hormone. It has a calming effect in the central nervous system helping you wind down and relax. If the microbiome is out of balance, it struggles to produce enough of these vital neurotransmitters.

Nutrition and Sleep: An Anti-Inflammatory Approach

The evidence is clear: an anti-inflammatory diet that supports a healthy and diverse gut microbiome is vital for managing sleep problems.

The EBS program is acclaimed by healthcare professionals worldwide. Each stage of the program includes recipes, meal plans, exercise and movement videos, guided meditations, and access to health Masterclasses. We are a supportive community, here to help you eat well, sleep well, move well, and be well!


This is what some of our members have to say:

“It is an amazing platform that I joined in 2020! Well substantiated with research, it links a lot of illnesses to inflammation and has helped thousands of people to educate themselves and change their lifestyle, lose weight, and heal from various conditions!

I always go back to her recipes, medication advice, and personalized advice.

Her food lists are a great way to keep healthy. I love Yalda and EBS!”



“The EBS platform has been like a mentor, coach, and friend.

Always by my side, whether it’s in my kitchen, on my exercise mat, during conversations with friends and family, or even during my walks. I smile every time I hear you say “Hello everyone” and know I’m in good hands.

I have more energy and motivation, I’m less bloated, and I notice my emotions are less affected by my hormones.

Your platform is easy to navigate and allows me to follow the lifestyle with relative ease.”



The EBS program is proven to relieve a huge range of health conditions and can help you enjoy the deep, restorative sleep you need.

Find out more about our membership options here. I recommend starting with the 6-Week Reset as the best way to begin your journey to better sleep, health, and vitality.


Enjoyed This Article? You Might Like:

Using Sounds to Calm Your Mind – on the Anti-Inflammatory Pioneer’s Podcast

Monday Motivation – Sleep Function and Tips video

Worst Foods for Gut Health


Sweet dreams,

Yalda x

Yalda Alaoui


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March 03, 2024

Endometriosis: Which Diet Is Best?

Are you one of the millions who suffer from the chronic inflammatory condition endometriosis? Do you struggle to know which diet is best?

The Office on Women’s Health estimates that 6.5 million American women aged 15-44 are affected by the condition. But with an average diagnosis period of 7 years, this figure is likely to be much higher.

There is currently no known cure for endometriosis and mainstream medical care focuses on hormonal contraceptives and surgical options. These methods fail to acknowledge the influence of food, movement, and lifestyle on hormone health. So, what is endometriosis, and which diet is best?


What is endometriosis?

Endometriosis is a chronic inflammatory condition where cells similar to the ones lining the womb (endometrial cells) grow elsewhere. They can grow anywhere in the body including the lungs, brain, bowel, bladder, and digestive tract.

Each month these cells follow the same pattern as regular cells lining the womb. They grow, break down, and bleed. But unlike normal endometrial cells that leave the body via menstruation, the blood from these cells has nowhere to go. This can lead to the formation of painful cysts, scar tissue, and adhesions (tissue that binds organs together).


What causes endometriosis?

Doctors still do not know exactly what causes endometriosis but there are several theories:

Immune dysregulation: Immune cells fail to recognize and deal with the cells growing outside the womb.

Genetic predisposition: Endometriosis can run in families and there may be a genetic heritability factor to the condition (Nouri et al, 2010).

Retrograde menstruation: Menstrual blood may flow into other parts of the body and deposit womb cells.

woman holding a model of a uterus

Symptoms of endometriosis

The main symptom of endometriosis is pain which can be felt in the pelvic area, the groin, the lower abdomen, and the lower back.

Other symptoms include:

Dysmenorrhea (menstrual cramps)

Heavy or irregular bleeding

Pain during sex

Gastrointestinal disturbances such as bloating, constipation, diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting

Pain when defecating

Frequent urination and/or pain during urination


The driving force behind these symptoms is chronic inflammation and excess amounts of estrogen, produced by the endometrial tissues (Bulan et al, 2019).
woman clutching her stomach


Dealing with “endo belly”

“Endo belly” is the tight, bloated abdomen endometriosis sufferers experience during their monthly cycle. It can be accompanied by pain, wind, or changes in bowel habits. The bloating may get worse just before a period when hormone levels peak.

The best way of dealing with endo belly and the many other symptoms of endometriosis is through food and lifestyle changes.

What you eat and how you live influences your hormone health every single day.  If you want to drive down excess estrogen and be free of inflammation you need to live more harmoniously with your hormones.


Which diet is best for endometriosis?

We believe the most effective approach for managing endometriosis is an anti-inflammatory diet that supports gut health and liver function.

This approach addresses the underlying causes of endometriosis:

Inflammation: Endometriosis is characterized by painful, inflammatory symptoms. A typical Western-style diet rich in ultra-processed foods and low in fiber and antioxidants will fuel this inflammation and make your symptoms worse.

Estrogen excess: Estrogen needs to be detoxified through the liver and excreted via the gut. The gut microbiota contains a special subset of bacteria called the estrobolome which is responsible for processing estrogen. If the estrobolome is disrupted it can recycle old estrogen back into circulation, adding to the overall hormone imbalance.

Jiang et al (2021) show that endometriosis is associated with gut microbiome disturbances which in turn lead to immune dysfunction and further inflammation. This two-way connection between endometriosis and the gut microbiome must be addressed with diet to help reduce inflammation and optimize microbial balance.


Why the EBS diet and lifestyle is best for endometriosis

At EBS we believe in a whole-body approach to managing endometriosis. Our programs encompass foods, movement, and meditation, to support health holistically.

The EBS platform is used and prescribed by healthcare professionals worldwide for endometriosis and other chronic inflammatory conditions. It treats inflammation at a systemic level, supports optimum hormone balance, and reduces pain where needed.


This is what some of our  EBS members with endometriosis have to say:

“Just finished Week One and I feel great already. The main reason I’m following the EBS lifestyle is suffering endometriosis. I lost 1kg on Week One and feel less bloated. Overall, I think mentally I feel better as well!!”



“I have some great news that I wanted to share with you. My endometrioma finally started to shred one year after the diagnosis, and after joining the EBS, it was stable, and I thought it was never going to shred.

In February 2022 it was down by 1.5cm, and now it is down by 2.5cm! I couldn’t believe my doctor! I thought that surgery was the only way to get rid of it!

I am so happy that I finally see the healing. The brain is incredible.

I believe reducing stress, body mobility, and whole foods are keys to sustainable health.”



Ready to be free from the pain and bloating of endometriosis? Join Eat Burn Sleep today and get started on your path to a pain-free life. Take a sneak peek around the platform here and check out our membership options here.


And you might also enjoy:

The Anti-inflammatory Diet and Lifestyle

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Wishing you well,

Yalda x

Yalda Alaoui


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Join the Eat Burn Sleep email newsletter and be the first to hear about new tips, and recipes!

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February 25, 2024

Heart Health: Do You Have a Heart-Healthy Lifestyle?

Heart disease is the number one cause of death worldwide. Nearly 18.6 million people died from cardiovascular disease in 2019, yet most cases are preventable. Along with Type 2 Diabetes, cancer, and obesity, heart disease is one of a growing number of non-communicable diseases that can be prevented through diet and lifestyle changes.

Here at Eat Burn Sleep we firmly believe in the power of an anti-inflammatory lifestyle and the benefits it has for heart health. But do you have a heart-healthy lifestyle?


What is heart disease?

Heart disease or cardiovascular disease as it is better known is the collective name for conditions that affect the heart and circulatory system. Some of these conditions are congenital and people are born with them, while others can be triggered by diet, stress, and lifestyle.

Heart disease includes:

  • High blood pressure (hypertension)
  • Coronary Artery Disease: This includes arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and atherosclerosis, where arteries are blocked by fatty deposits.
  • Cardiomyopathy – weakening of the heart muscle
  • Stroke
  • Irregular heartbeats (arrhythmias)
  • Angina
  • Heart failure


How do I know if I am at risk of heart disease?

Heart health research reveals 5 major risks for cardiovascular disease:

Chronic inflammation: We all need to have some level of inflammatory response to illness and injury as this is part of a normal and healthy immune reaction. However, chronic or systemic inflammation is harmful to health and linked with a wide range of conditions including heart disease.

Metabolic issues like obesity, insulin resistance, Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and poor cholesterol balance (too much LDL cholesterol and not enough HDL cholesterol).


Lack of physical activity.

Diets that are low in fiber, good fats, fruits, and vegetables, and high in Ultra Processed Foods, refined sugar,  and unhealthy fats.

Genetic predispositions – remember though that genes can be “switched on” by lifestyle factors and inflammation.


Menopause and heart health

The risk of heart disease increases greatly after menopause when estrogen levels are much lower. This is because estrogen supports heart health in several ways (Ryczkowska et al, 2022):

  • Keeps blood vessels supple and flexible so they can respond to changes in blood pressure.
  • Regulates cholesterol levels.
  • Decreases the risk of blood clots.
  • Provides antioxidant protection against inflammation.
  • Supports energy production in heart muscle cells.


The earlier menopause occurs, the greater the risk of developing heart disease.  This is important for women who go through menopause before the age of 40 and for Black and Hispanic women as research shows they may reach menopause earlier than white, Japanese, and Chinese women (Harlow et al, 2022).

But no matter what your age or ethnicity, there is so much you can do with an anti-inflammatory diet and lifestyle to mitigate this risk! To find out more see my Perimenopause and Menopause video where I explain in detail how the EBS approach can help manage the effects of menopause.


What is Heart-Healthy Living?

Heart-healthy living involves recognizing and understanding your risk of heart disease and taking positive steps to reduce this and improve your health and well-being.

The idea of heart-healthy living is built into everything we do at EBS. Tackling chronic inflammation with diet and lifestyle changes addresses several key risk factors for cardiovascular disease.


The EBS Food Lists and meal plans are built around colorful, tasty, anti-inflammatory foods. They support gut health and a healthy immune response and address the nutritional imbalances that are at the root of metabolic issues like Type 2 diabetes and insulin resistance – key risk factors for heart disease.

Specific fruits and vegetables are part of our Food Lists for two very important reasons. Firstly, they contain natural anti-inflammatory phytochemicals, and secondly, they are natural modulators of proinflammatory gene expression (Zhu et al, 2017). This means they can influence gene expression and literally “turn off” pro-inflammatory genes.

To help you incorporate these foods into your daily life we have meal plans and over 330+ recipes to choose from.


Physical activity

At EBS we believe movement is key to healthy longevity. We have a library of 180+ different anti-inflammatory movement videos designed to fit into even the most hectic of lifestyles. These videos help with healthy circulation, body composition, weight balance, physical strength, and mental resilience. Above all, they are the perfect antidote to a sedentary lifestyle!

And it’s not just food and movement. Mental well-being and stress management are crucial for managing inflammation and living a heart-healthy lifestyle. In EBS you will find guided meditations for mental health and a series of Masterclass sessions to inform and inspire.

Remember, conscious effort combined with science is powerfully effective in the fight against heart disease.

Want to know more about Eat Burn Sleep? Take a sneak peek around the platform and check out our membership options here.


And you might also like to read:

How Do You Reduce Your Cholesterol?

The Anti-inflammatory Diet and Lifestyle

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From my heart to yours,

Yalda x

Yalda Alaoui


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February 11, 2024

Recovering from Cancer

I am continually amazed by the incredible cancer testimonials we receive here at Eat Burn Sleep from members who are recovering from cancer. From breast cancer and squamous cell carcinoma to positive pap-smear tests and pre-cancerous cervical cells – our EBS members are seeing fantastic results.

One of my favorites is from Wilma, who used the EBS program while undergoing treatment for breast cancer.

This is Wilma’s story about recovering from cancer.

Recovering from Cancer – Wilma’s Story

Wilma had been an EBS member for four years, using the program to manage her Irritable Bowel Syndrome before she discovered a lump in her right breast. Medical investigations led to a triple-negative breast cancer diagnosis and an aggressive program of 16 chemotherapy sessions, surgery, immunotherapy, and radiation. This level of treatment puts a huge strain on the body and can be incredibly difficult to manage.

Fortunately, Wilma was already in a good place, having used the EBS plan for several years.  This meant her liver and gut health were in a really good place, and able to handle the strong treatments.

After her diagnosis, Wilma immediately began to follow the Week 1 Lifestyle recommendations and added in all the cancer-fighting protocols too. These are specific guidelines for anyone who wishes to work on cancer prevention or who is undergoing cancer treatment.

The EBS Cancer Prevention & Recovery Personalized Advice

This covers all aspects of diet and lifestyle including:

  • Cancer promoters
  • Pros and limitations of certain diets
  • Effects of dairy, artificial sweeteners, and processed meats
  • Importance of liver health
  • Specific foods that have anti-cancer properties
  • Foods to include in an anti-cancer diet
  • Example meal plans
  • Meditation and visualization support

Wilma also reached out to the team and hired me as her nutrition coach so we could work closely together on her plan.

As you can see, her results are incredible! Wilma says…

“Yalda and her amazing program helped me so much!

Chemotherapy, though not fun, was not so difficult for me. Having a healthy gut and a liver that does not have to focus on anything other than supporting the body through chemotherapy made a huge difference. All my lab work came out almost normal the entire treatment, and my doctors could not believe how positive I was and how well I felt, even after 6 months of chemotherapy. I was able to continue to work and to work out as much as my body would allow without pushing myself, and this helped me stay strong and healthy.

Yalda encouraged me to maintain positivity, continue to meditate, to add movement (when possible), to eat as clean and healthy as possible (following week 1 of the platform), and to visualize remission daily. She did additional research and was there for me every step of the way.

I am extremely grateful to Yalda and her amazing program and encourage anyone who is diagnosed to follow the Cancer section of the Eat Burn Sleep platform. Do not just follow the food portion, but implement Yalda’s mindfulness, movement, visualization, sleep, and an overall positive outlook.”

The wonderful news is that after all her hard work and treatment, Wilma is now in remission.

She continues to follow the EBS lifestyle to maintain her health and is increasing daily movement to improve her physical strength.

Why the EBS Plan works

The beauty of the EBS plan is that it is holistic, covering food, lifestyle, and mindset. Each one of these factors is a powerful intervention on its own but combined they are phenomenal. Non-communicable diseases like cancer, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, and diabetes require this holistic approach that medication alone cannot provide.

Cancer can develop in any one of us, at any time. According to statistics from Cancer Research UK, 38% of cancers are preventable – which means they are linked to diet and lifestyle factors.

Genetics are linked to cancer of course, but the expression of those genes (epigenetics) is connected to diet and lifestyle. Sustained chronic systemic inflammation can trigger any disease gene expression, including genes linked to cancer (Coussens & Werb, 2002).

For more on the links between inflammation and cancer, check out my article The Dangers of Chronic Inflammation. And you might also enjoy my podcast episodes:

How to Survive Breast Cancer

Heal Yourself With Mushrooms

The best source of treatment for any kind of illness is prevention. An anti-inflammatory lifestyle, such as The Eat Burn Sleep lifestyle, focuses on lowering inflammation, improving gut health, and supporting a healthy, balanced immune response, among many other benefits.

As Sofia, another cancer-care EBS member says in her testimonial:

“I remember my oncologist hematologist scrolling down my blood results and he was amazed & asked me what did I do.

I simply answered saying that I followed an anti-inflammatory lifestyle.”

Check out our membership options here.

Yours in good health,

Yalda x


Yalda Alaoui


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December 20, 2023

Festive Gut-Friendly Recipes

Gut-friendly recipes play a crucial role in promoting overall health, especially during the holidays when indulgent food is abundant. These recipes focus on incorporating ingredients that support gut health, such as fiber-rich vegetables and low-sugar options. For a delicious and healthy Christmas salad, one can mix fresh ingredients like pumpkin and coconut yogurt, creating a gut-friendly dish that is both tasty and nourishing. Additionally, incorporating gut-friendly ingredients, like low-sugar, grain-free and dairy-free options, can make holiday recipes more suitable for those with specific dietary needs. By being mindful of gut health during the holiday season, these recipes ensure that festive meals contribute positively to overall well-being.

Festive Gut Friendly Recipes- Nourish, Celebrate, Thrive!

In this article, I will share some delicious and nutritious recipes that will satisfy your taste buds and support a healthy gut.

During the holiday season, our digestive system often faces challenges due to the consumption of alcohol and rich foods, leading to frequent indigestion. This year, consider incorporating gut-friendly ingredients such as miso, sauerkraut, and coconut yogurt into your diet. These foods are rich in beneficial bacteria and probiotics, supporting the optimal functioning of your gut and digestive system.

Incorporating these recipes into your festive season menu will impress your guests and support your overall well-being.


So, go ahead and try them out! Enjoy the festive season with a happy and healthy gut.



Healthy Hot Chocolate

This simple and easy-to-make hot chocolate is a perfect alternative to shop-bought ones and is not only comforting and nourishing but anti-inflammatory, too. Indulge in the rich and creamy goodness of this delightful treat.

Moroccan Spiced Coffee

My Moroccan spiced coffee is fantastic as it contains cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and clove. These warming spices have incredible anti-inflammatory properties that help stabilize your blood sugar levels and offset some of the adverse effects of caffeine. See how easy it is and perfect for the season. I cannot wait for you to try it.


Deviled Eggs

Devilled eggs are a classic festive dish that never fails to impress. With their creamy, tangy filling and beautiful presentation, they are sure to be a hit at any festive gathering.

Pure Seeds Crackers

These little bites of goodness are a crowd-pleaser and a great way to kick off any meal or gathering. These crackers are perfectly gut-friendly healthy snacks with a wonderfully satisfying crunch.

Wild Salmon Spread

Enjoy this wild salmon spread on crackers topped with fresh parsley for a great-looking festive appetizer.


This would work perfectly with the salmon spread for festive, gut-friendly nibbles. You can also serve it on its own with crudites. This guacamole contains no raw onions, which can be hard to digest sometimes, so I hope you all enjoy it!


Roast Christmas Chicken

Christmas Chicken with bacon, a delectable twist on the traditional turkey! This mouthwatering dish will inspire you to create a memorable holiday feast. Succulent chicken, perfectly seasoned and roasted to perfection, wrapped in crispy, smoky bacon. The combination of flavors is simply irresistible.


Brussels Sprouts With Pancetta & Sage

This dish will make a great side and is easy and quick to prepare. I love to make it around this time of the year!

Roasted Carrots & Parsnips With Cumin Seeds

Carrots are incredibly nutritious and are a fantastic prebiotic for your microbiota, reducing inflammation and taking care of your immune system. They are excellent for skin, hair, nails, and eyes and are anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant. Paired with parsnips, this dish makes a warming side dish to your traditional roast dinner.  Especially with the fantastic rich, earthy, warm, and citrus of cumin, the anti-inflammatory spice!

Sweet Potato Mash

This is a wonderful way of preparing this superfood – that will support and protect your gut. This is all you need to do to enjoy sweet potato’s nutrition and taste. Make it in advance and reheat it on the day of serving.

Healthy Cranberry Sauce

You have to try this cranberry sauce recipe! It’s caramelized, tangy, woody, and slightly tart, with a deep berry flavor and a slight spice of heady cinnamon.


Ginger Cookies

If you are looking for a cookie recipe to make during the Christmas holidays and enjoy with the kids, this is for you! They are grain-free, dairy-free & gluten-free, and they taste delicious!  They are perfectly seasoned with a combination of spices. All spices used possess anti-inflammatory properties and offer excellent nutritional benefits!

Pumpkin Pie

This anti-inflammatory pie tastes like a delicious traditional dessert, but it is refined sugar-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, grain-free, and GUILT-free! It will leave you feeling satisfied without the symptoms of bloating or overindulgence.

Caramelized Apple & Cinnamon Crumble

I love this recipe with a side of coconut yogurt. It is delicious and uses simple ingredients. Apple and cinnamon are always a winning combo!

Cinnamon Oranges

What better way to celebrate the season than with the delightful aroma of cinnamon oranges filling the air? Cinnamon oranges are a classic holiday treat that brings a touch of magic to any gathering. The sweet citrus scent combined with the comforting spice of cinnamon creates a symphony of flavors that instantly transports us to a place of happiness and nostalgia.

Healthy Speculoos Biscuits

A spectacular speculoos biscuit recipe: the healthy version of the traditional recipe, which means that your gut microbiota will love them, too! The warming, sweet, aromatic, creamy, citrus, peppery, and spicy flavors make these biscuits incredible.

2-ingredient Dark Chocolate Mousse Pot

These little chocolate bombs are easy to make, delicious, and simple. You can use nice glasses for individual portions and garnish them with nuts, berries, or cacao nibs.

Christmas is a time of celebration and indulgence, but that doesn’t mean we have to compromise our health. All recipes on the Eat Burn Sleep platform are designed to satisfy your taste buds while keeping your gut happy.

Indulge in mouthwatering dishes that are not only festive but also beneficial for your gut health and overall wellness. Impress your friends, family, and loved ones while being gentle on your digestive system, ensuring you can enjoy your holiday feast without any discomfort.

Yalda x

Yalda Alaoui


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