An Estepona-based author is launching a new book on healthy eating at The Bookshop in San Pedro Alcántara today (Friday 9 July).
Polish-born Daria Sanetra wrote the book after being plagued by a number of health problems in her late 20s.
After spending years researching nutrition, Daria believes she has now found the key to happiness, self-esteem and weight loss.
Now she hopes to share her nutrition tips with other women who suffered from the same health problems.
In her book, which features over 100 recipes, she talks about a number of unconventional ideas, such as the importance of raw food and how emotions contribute to wait gain.
Daria, who describes herself as a raw/vegan chef, and moved to Spain five years ago, said: "At an early age, I had my fair share of health issues, some might say more than my fair share.
"As with a lot of women, weight gain was my struggle at an early age but this was compounded with a plethora of issues at various times in my late 20s and early 30s, such as hormonal imbalance, anaemia, skin problems, severe hair loss, gallstones, decreased pepsin secretion, decreased bone mineral density, malnutrition, severe deficiency in vitamins and minerals and even parasite infections. This all led to binge eating and finally, as if that wasn't enough, depression!"
Daria said that she decided to try and fix her health problems herself by studying nutrition - and the result was her book, Your Emotional Belly Cure, which took her two years to write.
In it, one of the ideas she promotes is the eating of raw food, which she says, helps to "purify" the body and mind.
Daria, explained: "Did you ever wonder why eating raw foods is viewed as a radical lifestyle by many people when there are roughly 1,800,000 species that eat raw food? Yet only one eats cooked food?
"Humans are the only species who are confused about what to eat. The confusion has been generated by the media, revenue-focused supermarket chains, tradition, cultural customs and the latest news about certain foods and their effect on the body.
"Once we are born, our parents feed us in the way that they were fed by their own parents, believing that this is the right way. Nowadays, we tend to forget that previous generations, in many cases, had just about enough to survive because of difficult circumstances like food rationing in wartime, crop failure, adverse weather conditions or simply poverty."
She added: "I simply love raw food because it's fun, colourful and delicious. A raw food diet is high in fresh, living, plant-based foods packed with nutrients: vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, antioxidants and phytonutrients. It also maximises the intake of enzymes.
"If enzymes didn't exist, there would be no life. The body's mechanism for enzyme production decreases with age. Once we reach thirty years of age, we hardly produce any enzymes, hence with age, digestion becomes more difficult. When eating raw, you feel and look more beautiful and you glow. Raw food builds strong immunity, helps with detoxification, increases energy levels, prevents and heals disease. Simply and amazingly, it optimises our health."
Daria will be signing copies of her book between 12pm and 4pm this Friday at The Bookshop in Centro Comercial La Colonia, Local 21, San Pedro.
Readers can pop in throughout the day to meet the author and ask questions, or book a free 15-minute consultation for personalised guidance on health and weight loss.