Saigon Beetroot Carpaccio Salad

Healthy Eating - Beetroot Carpaccio Salad

Who doesn’t like a quick light salad for lunch or dinner?! This Pickled Beet Carpaccio is a bright, refreshing salad for the hot weather here is Saigon, Vietnam. With lightly pickled raw shaved beets, watercress, crushed pistachio and a stunning horseradish cashew cream it tastes amazing and packs a super strong nutrient punch!

Beetroot or beets are highly nutritious root vegetables and superfood. The unique set of pigment antioxidants in the `root` in addition to the top nutrient rich 'greens' make beets highly effective in the protection against many diseases. Read more about why beetroot is so healthy here: Our favourite superfoods in part one of a previous post on our site.

For our beetroot carpaccio salad you don’t even need a fancy dressing, just a drizzle of good olive oil and a squeeze of lemon. You better try it & let us know what you think. And don’t forget to share it ✌🏻


For the pickled beets:
  • 4 medium beets
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 3/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon whole peppercorns
For the cashew horseradish cream:
  • 1 cup cashews soaked in 3 cups of water for 1 hour up to 24 hours.
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1-2 teaspoons horseradish
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 bunch watercress
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • Olive oil for drizzling
  • 1 tablespoon pistachio nuts crushed
  • Flaky sea salt
  • Feta cheese 


  1. Using a mandolin, slice beets into paper thin rounds.
  2. Bring water and vinegar to a simmer in a small pot. Add maple syrup, salt, fennel seeds, mustard seeds and peppercorns and continue to simmer for another 5 minutes or so. Place beets into a bowl and pour the brine through a sieve over the beets. Cover bowl and let sit for about 30 minutes.
  3. While the beets are pickling, make the cashew horseradish cream. Strain the soaked cashews and add them to a high speed blender. Add lemon juice, horseradish, salt and water and blend on high until smooth and creamy in consistency. Add the mixture to a piping bag and snip off the tip if piping onto salad.
  4. Strain beets from brine and divide among plates, arranging in a single layer. Pipe dollops of horseradish cream on top of beets and top with a large pinch of watercress. Drizzle plates with lemon juice and olive oil and finish with crushed pistachios, feta cheese and a generous pinch of flaky sea salt.

We love food! Health and lean should taste amazing!! We hope you try our recipes... so you can experience just how good health, lean and energising tastes  :-)

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Saigon Foodie: Healthy Pizza Crust Recipe - Sweet Potato & Arugula Power

Healthy Sweet Potato & Arugula BBQ Chicken Pizza Recipe

We love pizza!! Life should be enjoyed!! Eating great food is apart of living an enjoyable life. You can be healthy and lean while enjoying all the food you love. By making simple ingredient choices – swopping out plain ingredients and replacing them with more nutritious options.We can’t imagine a life without pizza, so we’re going to share some of our healthy alternative pizza base recipes. Now you can enjoy pizza without feeling that heavy, boated or lethargic sensation afterwards. Our bases also pack an extra nutritious power punch...Give our SWEET POTATO-ARUGULA pizza recipe a try and let us know what you think.

Base Ingredients:

  • 2 cups sweet potato, boiled or steamed
  • 2 cups of Arugula salad (baby spinach or kale works too)
  • 100g mozzarella (grated or shredded)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp. Olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp. Pink Himalayan Salt
  • 1/4 tsp. Black Pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. Chili Powder
  • 1 tbsp. Chia seed powder
  • 1 tbsp. Flax Meal (optional)
  • 1 tbsp. Psyllium Husk Powder (optional)

Cooking Directions:

Preheat the oven to 200C.Just boil or steam the sweet potatoes (let them cool down). First add the arugula salad, eggs, olive oil & spices first into the food processor and mix thoroughly. Secondly, add the sweet potatoes, mozzarella cheese & chia seed powder. If you need more fibre in your diet (like me), then add some flex meal & psyllium husk powder, as your last ingredients into the food processor.Then form your dough into a ball. Wet your hands slightly, so dough doesn’t stick in your fingers when you’re forming it. Place the balled up sweet potato & arugula ‘dough’ onto baking paper and put another sheet of baking paper on top of it to roll it out. Keep rolling until you have flattened the dough ball evenly to the thickness you like… I like it super thin & crunchy.Once rolled remove the top sheet of baking paper and put your crust with the bottom sheet of baking paper on a baking tray and bake it for 30min.While the sweet potatoes crust bakes for 30min, prepare toppings

Topping Ingredients:

  • Shredded rotisserie chicken
  • Slice onion
  • Chopped green & red pepper in tiny little squares
  • BBQ Sauce
  • Tomato Sauce
  • Mozzarella cheese
Remove pizza crust from oven, spread a thin layer of barbecue sauce evenly over the warm crust. Then another layer of the tomato sauce. Top with mozzarella cheese. Add chicken, peppers, and onion on top of cheese. Drizzle a bit more barbecue sauce over the pizza and sprinkle with more mozzarella cheeseBake 7-10 more minutes, until cheese is melted and crust turns golden brown.Remove from oven and garnish with coriander if desired.Slice and enjoy!Coach Jules

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Ho Chi Minh Fitness: 5 unfamiliar benefits of lifting weights

Weighted Gains:

5 unfamiliar benefits of lifting weights

The potential benefits from performing resistance exercise, whether it is calisthenics or lifting weights are immense. These benefits are rather well known yet most still shy away from pushing themselves in the lifting area of the fitness arena.

Research shows that not only can resistance training improve your body composition and give you a toned appearance; it’s actually the best type of training to achieve these goals. Weight training is commonly thought of as workouts for men and women who simply want to body-build but there are a huge range of incredible benefits. Building lean tissue makes you stronger, decreases your risk of diabetes, fights osteoporosis, prevents back pain, makes your joints more stable, and even helps you fight depression. I want to talk about 5 less or unknown benefits of resistance training:

Be A Better Mover

Lifting weights should reinforce correct posture and movement patterns. It teachers you to control your body parts, movements and positions when under load. A great resistance programme balances strength ratios of muscles and counters poor posture. Resistance training also improves the strength of joint stabilisers protecting you from injury as well as improves dexterity, endurance and hand-eye coordination.

Lean Tissue Fights Fat

Resistance training develops type 2 muscles fibres. Research shows that type 2 muscle fibres improve whole-body metabolism and can reduce body fat without changes to diet! Want to eat that extra piece of cake without feeling guilty? Do some squats and push ups

Insulin Management

To achieve optimal health and body composition you must aim to be as insulin sensitive as possible. World leading strength and conditioning coach, Charles Poliquin, states “for every 10% increase in muscle mass you’ll get an 11% reduction in insulin resistance. Even when you’re not working out, muscle consumes the majority of glucose that is in the blood (70-90%)”. This means you’ll be less likely to store carbohydrates as fat when you have more muscle

Ladies; The Key Word Is Lean

Body tone means seeing the definition of muscles on the body. We must have enough muscle mass for that and in order to make them visible we must have lower percentage of body fat. The only thing “bulky” on a human body is fat. Therefore, don’t fear resistance training, as lifting weights is not going to turn you into a muscle-bound monster. Building huge muscles takes a huge amount of work. Resistance training will more likely build a fit and lean looking physique.

Strengthen the Mind & Will

Resistance training doesn’t just condition the body, it also strengthens the mind. Overcoming resistance is tough and therefore teaches you the skill of persistence and resilience, the ability to embrace discomfort and challenge yourself. Lifting weights requires focus and concentration in every move. The testing of your limits under load builds inner confidence that will crossover to help you deal with tough situations in our parts of your life.

The gains you can experience and develop from lifting weights are exceptional. Don’t shy away from lifting heavy things if you want optimum health and body composition.

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Saigon Cooking: Super Healthy Bread

Ketogenic, Gluten Free, low GI Bread

Bread made healthy! Want to have a delicious bread without the worry and that’s packed full of nutrients? This recipe will turn bread haters into lovers.

Bread Lovers Of Saigon

My German side is coming finally out. It’s Time for BROTZEIT.

I’m so beyond excited to share with you my absolute favourite recipe. Doesn’t matter if you are on a Keto Diet or Low Carb Diet, you can have it and enjoy it. It’s gluten free & flour free. My dad would say, as an old school German baker, “that doesn’t sound like a real bread”. But that’s why I love this recipe so much because you wouldn’t notice the difference from ‘real’ bread on a taste or texture basis. Another benefit is it’s high in fibre, because I’m creating the dough with psyllium husk powder & chia seed powder to keep everything together.

Just make sure when it comes fresh out of the oven you don’t eat the whole bread like me J


Dry ingredients:

  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1 cup arrowroot flour (or arrowroot powder)
  • 1/3 cup coconut flour
  • 1tsp sea salt
  • 2tsp active dry yeast
  • 1 1/2tbsp chia seed powder
  • 2 tbsppsyllium husk powder

Wet ingredients:

  • 1 1/4cup filtered water
  • 2tsp maple syrup
  • 1 egg


1 — In a large bowl, whisk together the almond flour, arrowroot flour, coconut flour and sea salt. ( feel free to add turmeric powder or cinnamon powder, if you wanna play with different flavours).

2 — Heat water to 105-110F. add 2 tsp of maple syrup and stir. Add the yeast and let stand for 10 minutes. The yeast should bubble or foam- if it doesnt start over.

3 — Stir the chia seed powder and psyllium powder into the yeast mixture. Let stand 1minute to thicken, then whisk.

4 — Pour thickened yeast-chia mixture into the dry ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon until thick and fully combined. The dough will be slightly sticky, but workable. Knead for 1 minute.

5 — Put kneaded dough back into the bowl, cover with a damp cloth and place in a warm spot to rise for an hour.

6 — Preheat the oven to 425F. Place a pizza stone or cooking sheet in oven to preheat.

7 — Place dough on a square of parchment paper or a cutting board. Dip your hands in water and shaped into a nice rounded shape. Brush with egg wash, if desired. Use a serrated knife to cut a tic-tac-toe pattern on the top.

8 — Slide the prepared dough onto the preheated stone or cooking sheet. Bake 35-40 minutes. PLEASE NOTE: baking time can vary.

9 — Let cool completely on a wire rack. When completely cool, slice and serve or store in an airtight container. To re-crisp crust, toast or reheat in a 375F oven for 5-10minutes.

Now I can have sandwich on the go for lunch or dinner. Or when I travel and I wanna stay on track. Especially when you travel to China 😉 otherwise try to eat healthier options when you are on the run.

Just create your own dream sandwich. Mine is a mix between cream cheese, avocado mash, smoked salmon (or cold meat slices), radish/cucumber & a lot of lettuce to make it even crunchier.

Feel free to share your favourite sandwich. I’m post some more super healthy bread recipes soon for all the bread lovers like me. Stay tuned.


Coach Jules


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Saigon Wellness - Part 2: Can Fasting Save Your Life?

Could Fasting Save Your Life?

I don’t want to be a slave to the gym or to my diet… I follow a lifestyle that enables me to not worry about food, about having a few beers or going out socialising.

I want to remain healthy and active for as long as possible. I want to feel young and energetic long into the later years of my life. Hence my research has lead me to partake in exercise, nutrition and lifestyle habits that achieve this goal without being an extreme “health nut” or “fitness freak”.

Now that I’m over 40 years old, optimum health and fighting the aging process are my main goals. “If you’re over 40 and don’t smoke, there’s about a 70% to 80% chance you’ll die from one of four diseases: heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, cancer or neurodegenerative disease” (Peter Attia, MD)

Through my research there seems to be one activity that provides protective benefits against all of these diseases… Fasting.

What Is Fasting?

A true fast is defined as abstinence from all food and liquid for a defined period. There are so many different types of fasting including water fasting or dry fasting. These are defined as true fasts because there are no calories being consumed. Other fasting protocols like, juice, intermittent, restrictive, keto and religious (Daniel fast, Tzomot, Ramadan, etc) fasts should be called “fast-mimicking-diets” as they are completed with the consumption of calories.

If you are over 40 years old and care about your health then performing a fast could just safe your life. Fasting done properly doesn’t need to make you feel miserable, weak, lose muscle mass or suffer from cravings.

Keto-Fast-Mimicking-Diet (KFMD) provides incredible health benefits, enables you to maintain muscle mass, improve your performance as well as restores your digestive strength and gut health.

Longevity Benefits of a KETO-FAST:

Potent Anti-Cancer Effects:

If you don’t have cancer and you do a KFMD 2 to 3 times per year, you could purge any precancerous cells that may be living in your body! Therefore, if you’re over the age of 40, a KFMD seems like a smart insurance.

Protect Your Brain:

There is wide spread research proving that ketone bodies, especially β-hydroxybutyrate, provide neuroprotection against diverse types of cellular injury. When the brain is using ketones for fuel it seems to be protected against Alzheimer’s, Dementia, Parkinson’s & ALS, while also helping with Autism and Epilepsy.


Prolonged fasting using a FMD protocol triggers a powerful anti-ageing process called autophagy. In autophagy, our bodies “recycle” old cells that no longer work. Then it replaces them with new cells that work much better. New cells mean new body… This helps us burn fat, look younger and feel better. Fasting done correctly will boost this autophagy process by 330% to maximise this natural “fountain or youth” process within us.

Digestive Strength & Gut Health:

The power of fasting in relationship to improving digestive strength, restoring gut mucosal layer and protecting good gut bacteria are some of the biggest breakthroughs to come out of health research in the past few years. One of the leading experts on fasting, Thomas Delauer, states that “whenever we eat something it takes about 65% of our bodies energy to break the food down”. You might think that’s cool because it’s burning calories and increasing your metabolism but Thomas discusses that is not the case. He explains that it is not correct, as your body instead “just borrows from other energy sources and you get 65% more run down”.

Our guts need a rest from constant digestion to provide it a chance to heal. Especially if your diet is full on chemicals, toxins and preservatives from eating packaged and processed food stuffs, which is a leading cause of Leaky Gut Syndrome (LGS – click here to learn more about LGS and how to prevent it) When your stomach doesn’t get a change to heal, your gut mucosal layer breaks down.

Fasting also helps protect your gut microbiome. A recent study by Salk, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, showed that “both fasting and gut bacteria can boost your immune system, protecting you from illness and helping you recover faster when you do get sick.” What this new research shows is that fasting flips a genetic switch that activates an anti-inflammatory response in your gut, protecting both you and your bacteria. After a fast your gut and digestive system are in a position to process and metabolise nutrients better… making you healthier, more energised and happier.

The above are all amazing reasons to consider completing a prolonged fast. Regular, correctly designed KFMD fasting throughout the year can be one of the most effective actions that might save your life or at least maintain the quality of your life experience into the later years.

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