Homemade Seed Butter


This recipe, although I’m hesitant to call it a ‘recipe’ as there really are no rules or measurements here, lets just call in wingit butter.


For this butter I used:

Sesame seeds, they have a strong flavour so if you don’t like sesame seeds, omit.

Flaxseeds, quite grainy, and also go rancid very quickly when ground and left out of the fridge, so unless you are using the freshest and plan on eating the jar of butter quite quickly, then omit.

Pumpkin seeds

Sunflower seeds

Chia seeds

Olive oil

Use whatever measurements you like, and you can also add in nuts to make it a thicker nut butter, but for my version I was making a nut free butter.

Add all ingredients into the food processor and blast until resembling a butter consistency, around 15-20mins.

Store in a airtight jar or container in the fridge. Use in moderation, 1tsp to 1tblsp per serve.


My Review of Intermittent Fasting

Lunch time concept, Clock in plate, knife and fork

Now a few people reading this will be surprised to hear me blog about Intermittent Fasting (IF) as many a time I have ripped it to shreds in PT debates. But for the last week I have been IF’ing, so here we go.

I often do fasting with clients that are competing, and when resetting hormones with clients I guide them through a PM fast. But I am not a fan of my inexperienced or unhealthy clients doing it, which I still stand by. I decided to try it myself, and then if I still think it is unnecessary I can confidently say “I’ve tried it, and it is rubbish!” Never say never I suppose. I swallowed my pride and thought that if I am going to knock something then I better try and experience it for myself before I judge. I had steered clear of IF purely because I had heard a renowned strength coach say it was the worst thing to do, and me being an avid follower of this said coach I bagged it until the cows came home. So firstly, apologies for being so narrow minded. Secondly, I’ve learnt not to be such an ignorant follower, but instead to be a curious leader.


What is IF?

Intermittent fasting is making a conscious decision to skip certain meals. By planned fasting and then feasting, intermittent fasting means eating your calories during a specific window of the day, and choosing not to eat food during the rest.

How to do it

There are many ways to try IF but none are the best or worst. It really comes down to what suits you and your needs mentally and physically. These are the most common, but not limited to:

  • 16hr fast every day. This is the method I used and found it to suit me, my training and work schedule. Picking a block of feeding time, for example 8hrs(12noon-8pm) or 4hrs(9am-12noon)
  • Skip 1-2meals. This is a good way to test IM without feeling too overwhelmed with a long fast. If you are currently eating 6 meals a day, try eating meals 1&2 together then missing 3 and 4 and eating 5 and then 6 or 5&6 together. Or eating 1 to 4 and then skipping 5&6. This method can be manipulated anyway you like.
  • 24hr fast once a week. I chose not to use this one, as 24hrs without food even just once a week seemed too long for me. But I often use this with clients as it suits their lifestyles; a Sunday movie day at home on the couch suits a once a week fast.
  • Early and Late. This means consuming your first meal at the start of your day, then one last meal at early evening.
  • 1 week fast. This is a more intense way to fast but done less frequently, say once or twice a year as part of a cleanse or detox. The fast includes alternating between complete fast days and days of normal food intake or reduced intake for a week. I have done this in the past, its not for the fainted hearted.

For all options you are suggested to eat your entire days calories in the meals you choose (your feeding period) You still need to try and hit your macros, but don’t get me wrong, this is not a all you can eat binge, or a IIFYM diet, argh don’t even get me started on that!

Why I tried IF

I am an avid follower of “grazing” and for many years it was my understanding that eating several small meals a day – grazing to maintain even blood sugar and to avoid having your body go into starvation mode seemed logical to me. Didn’t it? I suppose for a lot of people it does. But if you’ve been grazing like me, for what seems like forever isn’t your body pretty stable? It may need a little kick up the behind to mix things up. I think that’s why IF receives such bad press sometimes because its going against what we have been told for so long, just like fats are bad, no wait are they good? Hang on, aren’t carbs better? See what I mean, what we didn’t think was the way is the way nowadays. So be open-minded people.

My first encounter with IF was by accident. I was on holiday in Cambodia and Vietnam at the start of the year, and by chance forgot to eat! We were travelling a lot; crossing borders by bus, island hoping on ferries, and numerous early morning flights. When in Asia I would rather not eat than eat chocolate bars or unquestionable exotic dishes from a roadside vendor, yuk. So for periods of 8, 16, or even 24hrs I fasted, not consciously but I simply had no other choice but bottled water, and maybe an odd handful of nuts to keep me going until the next hotel stay over, where I did indeed feast, the Asians sure know how to do a buffet spread well.

I know you just fell off your chair reading that, yes I have a HUGE appetite and I am born grazer, but that’s precisely why I was intrigued to try it, I was sick of eating! I have been eating the bodybuilding religion of 6-7meals a day for about 6-7yrs now, I was fed up of food prep, fed up of constantly feeling full. 

I also had to make peace with the mental struggle of going against everything I have believed for so long, not that this is wrong. If you want to eat 6 to 8 meals a day, so what, do whatever you feel happy doing. There is no right or wrong way to do anything. There is simply the best way for YOU.

Paleo & Primal Eating

Now you know I am a cavegirl through and through, yes ok if cavegirls ate paleo pancakes and wore nike frees. So lets adapt the caveman living to the modern era. I eat Paleo and I support this theory, but did a cavegirl hunt and kill an animal 6 times a day? No. Did she pop the remains of a road kill into equal portions and store in Tupperware until her next afternoon tea break? No. I had a revelation. IF seemed to fit my picture of early indigenous warriors roaming the plains of Australia gathering tubers, veggies, nuts, and berries and the occasional kangaroo leftover from a dingo feast, yes but not all day long, they I assume would hunt, kill, forage, gather, feast and then not eat until the next hunt and gather which could be many hours or even days away. True?

How I did it


I don’t count. Anything. Ever. Macros? Calories? One, I don’t have the time or patience. Two, I have being doing this long enough now to know how much is enough. Three, I think measuring your food pedantically is a sure fire way to develop eating disorders. You can read more of this approach in my Diet Freedom article I wrote for Oxygen Magazine here http://www.oxygenmag.com.au/Community/CovergirlSecrets/PennyLomas/tabid/4122/entryid/1077/Diet-Freedom.aspx

I eat what I know I need, give or take a slip of the hand when free pouring my favourite foods. The body really is a clever machine, it will tell you what it wants. What I did love about trying IF was that I tuned into “mindful eating” even more so than usually. Even though I had a set plan but sometimes I wasn’t hungry and had just 2 meals a day, other times I was super hungry and would have 3 huge ones.

I chose the 16/8hr fast/fed. My first meal was post workout at 1pm, so yes god forbid I trained in a fasted state! You have heard about doing cardio on an empty stomach first thing in the day for fat loss goals, well it’s the same principle. My first meal kicked off an 8hr feed window. And my last meal was before bed. 2 to 3meals in total. I will be honest, I love food, I am an utter clean foodie, but it was surprising how I didn’t even notice I hadn’t eaten. But after a few days I was just plain bored, I like having breakfast, it’s my favourite meal of the day.



I officially do not like IF. There I said it! Now I am glad I did it, as now I can have an educated and experienced opinion on it. Why don’t I like it? I got fat! I have never seen anything like it, within 6days I had a pot belly. I am clearly one of those people on Mark Sissons list of people that should never do IF. My cortisol is clearly a weakness and IF is the worst thing I can do for an already stressed body. So at 6:30am today whilst I hit post on this blog entry I merrily broke my experiment with IF, broke the fast and chowed down on a great big dirty steak lathered in organic butter for breakfast, yes breakfast, like normal people.

I wish I had taken some decent before and after photos to show you the results, but lets just say I was NOT impressed with the results. Quite disheartened in fact, I know it shouldn’t be superficial but hey it is! No girl wants to WATCH her self gain body fat around her midsection EVERYDAY whilst eating clean.

In my personal opinion I think IF is great for a lot of people, and also very bad for many (incl me) but like any diet the results vary from person to person and are an entirely personal choice. There any many benefits from eating 6 meals a day and many benefits from eating 1-3. I am sure males(see links below) respond differently to IF and that I and many people can incorporate some kind of short term and sporadic IF into their lifestyle with good results, but i have learnt(which i already knew!) that most females don’t handle long periods without food. But at least I have been your guineapig and reported back to you my version. I now know that I am a hardcore grazer, and proud.


What I have gained from trying IF

  • Letting go of a regimented structure around my eating and knowing that its ok to miss a meal here and there;
  • A pot belly;
  • Elevated cortisol; and
  • It gave me something to blog about.

That’s about it.

If you would like to research more on IF to suss out whether it is for you here are some fantastic article’s that address pros and cons:

The Poliquin Group


Mark Sisson


Nerd Fitness




Women do not respond as well to IF as men, and should take caution before you try it, here is why:




Yours in Health, Hormones and Pot Bellied not so Happiness,


26 Reasons Why You’re Not Losing Weight


Losing bodyfat is a simple calorie in calorie out equation right? Wrong! There are many factors that can stall your progress, most of all it comes down to keeping our hormones and metabolism happy to compliment the process but here is my list of hurdles you may be facing, and as usual, I am straight to the point and brutally honest.

1. You aren’t actually eating healthy
“Healthy” can be anything nowadays. Look through magazines and newspapers, online and peoples’ opinions healthy means something different to all. I actually saw a recipe in newspaper labeled healthy because it was a beef and potato pie made with lower GI white potato and wholemeal flour. Come on guys, healthy is absolutely squeaky clean in my book. If you are eating anything from a packet then you are eating empty dead food. Your diet should be primal: clean, natural, organic where possible, alive and unprocessed. It should of come straight from the animal or ground to your plate: not taken through a warehouse and mushed into a “low carb” “wholemeal” loaf or cured and processed into “chicken in a can”.

2. You haven’t even started to tweak your diet
This I come across a lot. People email me “Ive tried EVERYTHING! But cant lose bodyfat!” I then see their food diary and it’s a sham. By joining the gym and changing your breakfast to oats instead of keloggs Super K does not a sexy body make. If you have been eating the same for many years and make a slight change, yes, good on you, this is a start well done. But to achieve a physique you have never had before you must DO something you have never done before.

3.    You’re lacking enthusiasm
This I can completely relate to. I always train, I always eat clean, this I consider is a requirement of my lifestyle and career. But sometimes I fall off the enthusiasm wagon and feel very unmotivated. Sometimes I consider this to be healthy and I may need a break for a week. But other times I just need to keep going, remembering what I am aiming for or my goals. You may be lacking in motivation because you have no guidance (see point 21) or because you do not love what you are training and eating. I find I am unenthused if I am bored with my food and training – so reevaluate, get a new program and spend a creative day in the kitchen.

4.    You’re already at a healthy weight
This is a common problem I see, especially in this industry and esp in females. Let me get this straight: Female weren’t supposed to super lean, we should be sitting at a heavier bodyfat than men and we also find it harder to get leaner, why? Because we aren’t supposed to be! An average bodyfat range for females is between 18%-22%. My opinion is that a very active and healthy female can happily sit around 15%BF. Now BF figures aside, you may be trying to push a cart up a hill by trying to get lean when your body is sat at its happy homeostasis. Consider that you may already be at your bodies ideal weight.

5.    You’re cardio obsessed
You’re the chick on the treadmill aren’t you? Ever looked at the people in your gym on the cardio equipment? Well I guarantee you that this time next year they will all look the same. Of course low level movement can be beneficial for fat loss, but there is a fine line. Too much cardio can be detrimental to your strong and lean physique goals. So if you are doing 1-2 short HIIT sessions a week great, if you are doing more or god forbid doing endurance cardio forget about loosing body fat and maintaining muscle.

6.    You’re putting on muscle
Muscle weighs more than fat. Fact.

7.    You’re vegetarian or vegan
Now I know this is going to cause some backlash and controversy, and I cannot debate all the rights and wrongs in such a short article. But I believe you cannot achieve a strong, lean and healthy physique by not eating animal protein. If you are vegetarian because of animal cruelty then I completely understand, but there are ways we can be apart of the food chain in a humanly treated way; source your meat, fish and poultry from RSPCA approved farms, or from your local farmer that you know treat the animals with care. If you are Vego because you read somewhere that it is healthy, or your girlf Suzie is a Vego and she is skinny then think again, I suggest you do your research of the dangers of being vegetarian. A book a recommend to read is The Vegetarian Myth by Lierre Kieth.

8.    You’re stomach flora is rubbish
This is something close to home for me as I am currently rebuilding my gut flora. It is a long process but well worth the effort. Your gut is your center; it is your first line of defense for your immune system. If everything is in check and you still struggle to get lean, your gut flora is the issue. Many factors can disrupt the natural balance of your gut, these include antibiotics, stress, an acidic diet, alcohol, high inflammatory foods, sugar and/or high carb intake, toxic load(heavy metals/pesticides/hormones etc) steroids, and a diet high in fermented or moldy foods. I highly recommend working with a BioSignature Modulation Practitioner (Like Me!) a naturopath or a functional medicine practitioner to resolve any gut issues you may have.

9.    You’re kitchen cupboards are still full of junk
Now you are eating clean and primal! But you still haven’t cleaned out your cupboards of your favorite foods, whether they are your staples or just your fav cheat meals, get them out of the house to eliminate any temptations.

10. You still have bad habits
Having something sweet after dinner, just a protein bar at 3:30ish, its just a couple of glasses of wine on a Friday night, but nuts are healthy….just another handful. Take a look at your daily and weekly schedule and see where you are slipping up on a regular basis, be brutually honest with yourself, if it’s regular then it’s a habit. Explore ways you can swap these slipups for healthier options.

11. You’re eating too much
I am not a fan of the word “calorie”, and I would like to say it doesn’t matter, but unfortunately it does at times. There is a difference between eating enough and just eating too much. I don’t suggest weighing food as it cant create all sorts of problems, but I do suggest taking a look at your food intake and assess. Just because low carb is king, doesn’t mean that you can up you fats and protein and dose everything in coconut milk because it’s primal. Eat until you are 80%full.

12. You’re eating too little
Another one I can relate too! Last year I was competing at the beginning of the year, and after I competed I carried on eating next to very little wondering why I wasn’t getting leaner, I wasn’t even staying lean. In one week I nearly doubled my food and instantly got leaner and gained muscle. Now don’t run off and eat you way through the supermarket! But a good indication that you are not eating enough is how you feel during and after your workout, if you feel flat and the workout is a struggle, or you need a nap post workout the reassess your food intake.

13. You’re Lazy
This is fairly simple. If you are a lazy person you usually know it. Pull your finger out.

14. You’re not eating according to your metabolic type
Are you following a generic diet? one that your friend follows? or one that you got off the internet? Well I guarantee you that that diet only works for a fraction of the population. A diet is a finely tuned, individual and personalized program. We are not all the same. For example I am a carbo type, I metabolize carbs easily. Put me a high fat, high protein, low carb diet and I will gain body fat, feel weak and sluggish and be very, very grumpy! But isn’t high fat low carb what all the rage is about right now? Not for me and for many other people. If you are eating clean and not getting results then you are doing something wrong. Finding out what works for you can take time, or just a very experienced BioSig Practitioner! ;-)

15. You’re stressed
Stress is the cause of most people’s problems. Emotional stress, physical stress, financial stress, and relationship stress can all cause your body to produce cortisol, the fight or flight response that catabolizes muscle, worsens insulin resistance and promotes the storage of fat. Take a look at where you could be reducing or addressing your stress factors and see if they are holding you back.

16. Your eating for comfort not for fuel
We have an emotional connection with food, and that is fine, eating is primal enjoyment at its best. But instead of looking at your food as yummy, think of it as fuel. Fuel for the fire; fire that is your workout, your health, your sleep, your hormones, your gut. A couple of slices of fruit toast with jam may taste delicious, but does your body really NEED that? No, it needs clean protein, carbs and fats in balance to function at its optimal.

17. You’re not getting enough sleep
Sleep is a huge factor in body fat loss! If you are getting under 7hrs a night, walking up to an alarm, waking up before 7am AND loosing weight then you are very lucky! Chronic levels of sleep deprivation cause the release of cortisol and the biggest spike in HGH occurs in sleep so try to get to bed before 10pm and have 8hrs sleep a night.

18. You’re eating Neolithic foods
Now a lot of you know that I am a primal eater, paleo, hunter gather, caveman – call it what you like, its clean. And I encourage all of my clients to eat the same, but I understand that not everyone does or wants to and that’s cool with me. But I would like you to take a look at your diet and instead of being stuck and stubborn with what you believe, maybe try taking out some of your staples that may be holding you back. These pitfalls can be dairy, gluten, wheat & grains, processed foods, over consumption of fruit, table salt, and legumes. Some Paleo people eat diary because they can tolerate it and they still get results, but this isn’t the case for everyone. For a comprehensive collection of primal recipes and meal plans you can purchase my eBook cookbook “Pennys Primal Plate” from here:

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19. You’re not doing strength training……at all
You are active yes, you train yes, but I don’t consider a walk around the park and a bodyattack class serious training. To get better results I highly recommend regular weight training in the gym.

20. You’re constantly trying to loose weight
This can tie in with point #4 but it can also be that you are constantly on a weight loss or fat loss plan. You are always trying to burn fat. What’s the rush? Take a step back; sit at a maintenance phase for a few months then try again.

21. You have no guidance in your journey
I truly believe that everybody should have a personal trainer, even if you’re the best there is, I believe you should always be learning from someone better and more knowledgeable than you. I have a trainer and I have plenty of physicians I work with that contribute to my health and fitness. That way whatever I am going through I have a support network to ask questions or to take me to the next level. It is very important to invest in quality people to guide you and rely on strong life mentors. I honestly believe that I would be stuck without these people in my life to guide me (Thanks guys, you know who you are!) Finding a Practitioner that can support you through fitness, diet, health, lifestyle, mental, emotionally and spiritually is key.

22. You’re lacking something
Imagine a car. A car with a missing wheel, with no petrol, with the wrong driver or with a faulty engine. How on earth is it going to get you to where you need to be? Your body is a finely tuned machine that requires the finest care and nutrients which you may be missing. See above point to employ a person that can assess your health and areas you need to work on.

23. You haven’t changed your training program
Have you been following the same program for a while now? Well if you train the same, you stay the same! All of my clients and my own programs are periodised and change every 4-6weeks. This is crucial to get results. Without a program you really are aiming blind.

24. You’re training like a girl
Come on guys, if you can check you facebook newsfeed in between a set your not working hard enough. I want sweat, blood and lots of tears on the gym floor.

25. You have a hormone imbalance
This is a huge factor that I cant really delve into without this ending in  another blog. But lets just say that next to your gut flora, hormonal balance is everything!

26. You’re making excuses
They only person accountable for your progress is you. Not your coach, or trainer, or partner, or boss, or friend, or training partner, or the weather, or a rough week. Take responsibility for your actions.

Well there you have it, when i started writing this blog i had titled it the Top Ten pitfalls, but as you can see once i got going i couldn’t stop! If you have any extras that you feel are holding you back i would love to hear from you. Good luck with your journey.

Yours in health, hormones and happiness,



About the Author


Penny Lomas is an Australian Health and Fitness Writer based in Melbourne. With extensive years in the Fitness Industry Penny is a Fitness Model and Athlete, Personal Trainer and Registered BioSignature Modulation Practitioner. As a Health and Fitness Magazine Columnist, Penny is a positive role model to many empowered females. Penny is also a 3xOxygen Magazine Cover-girl and Ambassador. She is renowned for her never-ending smile, positive attitude and passion to help others achieve their best life.



Health, Hormones & Happiness Is Live!


Well it has finally arrived! Some of you have been wondering where i had disappeared to for the last month: I have been head down bum up working on my new website and my first book! So this urged me to talk today about why i have launched Health Hormones and Happiness, also branding, labels, identity, and new directions.

We all adapt to ever changing circumstances as we move through life: we grow, we learn, we establish who we are as a person, we become clearer of what our purpose is and what we believe, focused on what we are about, our beliefs and philosophies, and in business it is exactly the same, especially when your passion in life and business are so closely connected like mine.

I have been in the fitness industry for many, many years. The fitness industry is like any industry: you must show resilience and excellence to go far.

After my holiday at Xmas I came back to Melbourne refreshed after brainstorming “who penny lomas is”. I thought this was going to be hard but no way! I thought about WHOM I am personally, and what I LOVE in my industry. I am happy and healthy, I love learning about hormones and BioSignature, personally and professionally I love helping people achieve happiness, optimal health and hormonal balance. I also had to think about companies that I would like to be connected with and companies that I represent that support me and have the same beliefs and drive. I was finding my professional identity, again. And also letting go

It was also about this time that my coach Mark (shout out to Maximus Mark Ottobre!) had a much needed pep talk with me about labelling. So i let go of a few labels I and others had assigned myself and moved forward. I thought about me, my brand and what i want to be known for. Change is good, it is growth.

So then came “Penny Lomas. Health. Hormones. Happiness”

My new website, my new business, my new branding, and my new love.

Health, Hormones and Happiness are the three things in my life that I am passionate about. You can take a look through the article archive which will continue to grow and grow and sign up to updates so when I upload videos, photos, articles, recipes and top tips you get them straight to your email!

Along with my new website is my new eBook Cookbook. Penny’s Primal Plate.

This is very exciting and I can say it was super fun putting it together for you. Nom nom nom. It is a collection of my staples and favourite primal and Paleo recipes from my very own kitchen, complete with meal plans to get you in shape whilst still eating clean and creative. It’s dieting without dieting! Yum. You can purchase my new eBook in my website store.

I hope you enjoy the new direction I’m heading towards, and remember this website and what i do as a fitness (role) model is for you! So I would love your feedback, drop me an email!

Yours in Health, Hormones & Happiness




10 Ways To Naturally Increase Your Human Growth Hormone

hormones photo

HGH would have to be my favorite hormone, now I know I shouldn’t have favorites, but I do. And Mr GH is the man, mostly because he is underrated, an underdog I think. So lets find out why.

HGH, or human growth hormone, also known as somatropin or simply GH, is a peptide hormone produced by the pituitary gland in the brain. It is associated with the natural decline in dhea and testosterone from aging.

It is the hormone that we all want to have as our best friend – it helps us sleep better, it builds muscle, burns fat, helps you resist heart disease, regenerates tissues for growth and repair of many cells in the body, protects your bones and increases overall health, sounds great!

HGH also does this super cool process called Gluconeogenesis, that’s a mouth full so lets just call it a really cool process where the body can create carbs out of protein. That really cool process helps you loose fat faster while providing your brain and other tissues with the energy they need, without excess dietary carbs. Neat hey! Where can I buy some I hear you ask? Well there area synthetic GH therapy options out there, although a little controversial, and excess supplemental GH can cause all sorts of problems as it actually counters insulin’s ability to shuttle glucose to the cells, which can cause insulin resistance. So instead there are many ways to naturally increase the body’s production of HGH. Here are my top 10!

  1. Eat green leafy vegetables as your main carbohydrate source throughout the day and when you need starchy carbs(for pre and post workout for example) take in only low-glycemic or slow-digesting carbohydrates instead of simple sugars. The best ones in my opinion are pumpkin, sweet potatoes, brown/red/wild rice and quinoa. Simple sugars that are high-glycemic spike insulin levels. Not only does this lead to body-fat storage, but it severely blunts the release of growth hormone.
  2. Feel the burn! The burn you feel in your muscles when weight training is the build-up of lactic acid. Lactic acid then signals our bodies to produce more growth hormone. So when pumping iron try a range between 12 and 30 repetitions to reach the lactic threshold.
  3. Take the amino acids L-arginine and L-lysine together before exercise and sleep. The combination of these has shown to increase growth hormone production by up to 700 percent. As little as a gram will do, but take 3 to 5 grams for optimal results.
  4. Take 0.5 to 5 mg of melatonin before bed. A hormone that governs over sleep patterns, melatonin has been shown to increase growth hormone levels by up to 157 percent.
  5. Take 1.5 to 3 g of GABA immediately before bed. GABA, or gamma aminobutyric acid, has been shown to increase growth hormone production by 200 percent.
  6. Take 2 to 10 g of Glutamine after a workout or before bed.
  7. Take 2 to 10g of Glycine after a workout. This can also be added to every meal for short period.
  8. And this is the biggest one! Get adequate sleep to ensure high growth hormone levels. This is the most natural and of course inexpensive way to help boost your HG. Most of our GH is produced in the first few hours of sleep.
  9. Consume a high-protein, low-carbohydrate snack before going to bed. The amino acids will help to boost GH, this is a rule when it comes to pre bed meal with the exception being if you are a carbo type. While avoiding too many carbs will keep insulin at bay so that it cannot inhibit growth hormone production.
  10. Loose excess body fat, particularly abdominal fat.

Your is Health, Hormones & Happiness




Report on HGH – Life Extension Magazine – March 2009

Master my metabolism By Jillian Michaels