All posts by Ene Naturals

Natural skin care and hair care brand for African skin and hair, based in Lagos, Nigeria. Eco-friendly, environmentally sustainable business practices.

Father’s Day was a labor of love

The best gifts , I believe that anyone can give to me is the gift of time and a labor of their love. These to me, are more valuable than anything material. And so for this year’s Father’s Day celebration, I planned the weekend to cook my husband’s favorite meals.

A pre-father’s day dinner

Our Father’s Day celebration began on Saturday when I cooked Chinese stir fry rice with stir-fry shrimps and beef sauce. My husband loves Chinese cuisine so I took out time to visit the fresh market to buy fresh ingredients which I used in cooking the pre-father’s day dinner.

Father’s Day brunch and dinner

Father’s Day fell into a Sunday so as characteristic of my household, we had brunch at about noon after Sunday Mass. We love Sunday brunch because that’s the only day of the week when the entire family is complete at the dinner table. And for Father’s Day brunch, I made akara (bean cake) and pap ( corn porridge).

Akara (bean cakes and pap (corn porridge)

Akara can be laborious to make but since we are a family of bean cake lovers, it comes quite natural to me. Here’s an easy recipe for making delicious akara.

Homemade akara recipe

To make akara (bean cakes) for my family of five, I use the following ingredients:

Brown honey beans – 2 cups

Onion – quarter slice

Ginger – 1 teaspoon

Eggs – 2

Salt – a few pinches to taste

Vegetable oil (soybean oil, sunflower oil or any of your choice) to fry the bean cakes – 350ml


1. Clean the honey beans and wash it clean without removing the peels. I never remove the peels because the peels are fiber rich and nutritious.

2. Soak the beans in a bowl of water and place in a refrigerator over night.

3. By next morning, blend the now swollen beans in portions to allow for a smooth blend. Add the onion and ginger to the beans in the kitchen blender and blend at intervals until a smooth paste is achieved. You do not need a special blender because the beans which has been soaked over night is usually soft and easy to blend.

4. Pour the smoothly blended honey beans into a bowl and add the eggs. Mix with a large spoon and then add salt to taste. Mix again until all ingredients are well combined.

5. Pour the vegetable oil into a pan. I use soybean oil but you can use any vegetable oil of your choice. Heat it up and throw in some onions to add flavor to the bean cake. Once the oil starts to sizzle, you can add the bean cake paste in droppings into the hot oil. Fry until both sides are golden and then take off heat.

For dinner, I made my husband’s favorite soup – Banga. Banga soup is indigenous to people from the Niger Delta of Nigeria and because he is from the Urhobo tribe, I have had to learn to cook this soup for him. Traditionally, banga which is palm oil fruit soup, is extracted from palm kernels and can be quite laborious to do. In recent times, there has been a number of canned banga ( palm oil paste) however, these canned alternatives are nothing in comparison to native palm kernel paste extracted from native palm trees which are healthier as the oils contain far less cholesterol. The taste and texture is also very different as the canned alternative does not taste as authentic as native grown palm kernels.

A dear friend of mine who processes native palm kernel fruit paste sells authentic banga juice which saves you time and allows you to cook authentic banga soup with ease. She also sells authentic banga spices. You can find her on Instagram at this Plug

Banga and eba

And as part of our celebration, the kids wished their father well. It’s their own little way of showing their appreciation for all that he does for them. In the end, we had a memorable weekend and my labour of love paid off.

How did you spend Father’s Day? Did you buy a gift or did you make something special. Please do share in the comment section.



Cabbage soup recipe

In my previous POST I questioned the claim that fermented cabbage juice can treat acid reflux (GERD) and wrote about how I began my journey into trying this claim for myself as an acid reflux sufferer.

After making the fermented cabbage juice, I was left with the blended cabbage mash which I did not want to throw away so I chose rather to make cabbage soup with it.

Cabbage soup

This soup started with the blended cabbage mash

Cabbage mash is what you get after blending and passing through a mesh.

To make the soup, the ingredients in the recipe include:

1 cup of cabbage mash

1 cup of carrot and green peas

3 tablespoons of diced chicken

2 tablespoons of diced beef

Half teaspoon of onion

Quarter teaspoon of fresh ginger paste

1 tablespoon of olive oil

A pinch of salt

A pinch of chicken cube

1 cup of water


I started by heating up the olive oil in the sauce pan and I poured in the diced onion, chicken and beef. I stir-fried for a few seconds before adding the carrots and green peas. After stir frying, I added the ginger and then the cabbage mash. After a minute, I added the cup of water, a pinch of salt and chicken cube. I allowed to simmer for three minutes before taking it off heat.

The cabbage soup was quite filling and I didn’t feel bloated at all but I felt full. It’s a decent soup for someone trying a healthier diet.


Can cabbage juice treat acid reflux?

I have been battling acid reflux for more than a year now. And in those months, I have been put through different tests including an endoscopy after which results showed that my stomach was inflamed and the doctor made me to understand that the ibuprofen that I had taken soon after a major surgery to treat the pain I was experiencing was to blame for my condition. I was given proton inhibitors over time and while I had temporary relief, the acid reflux just won’t go away.

Acid reflux also know as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) occurs when acid back flows from the stomach into the esophagus. In my experience, I had very bad heartburn that felt as though my chest was inflamed and I would feel the pain from my chest to the back of my ribs. It was such an excruciating pain. Sometimes I was nauseous as well. It was quite discomforting because I was also bloated. Other symptoms of GERD that I experienced included dry throat, sore throat and sometimes dry cough caused by the dryness in my throat. My doctor had placed me on medication and would warn that staying away from triggers was better than depending on medication as the drugs also had adverse effects on the body. I noticed that my knees started to weaken as I took the drugs and sometimes, I would hear popping sounds in my knees so I had to start consuming foods rich in calcium and taking calcium supplements as well.

Acid reflux (GERD) triggers are many and I soon realized that they vary from person to person. I learnt from reading articles on that I was to avoid high fat foods, tomatoes and citrus fruits, chocolate, garlic, onion, spicy foods and mint. And I did sincerely try to avoid these foods but I struggled a lot to find a balance when it came to dieting even though I was very cautious. So I could go for weeks without acid reflux and then fall back to it again.

So I started a cautious effort to eat right and to try the famous cabbage juice that everyone was talking about.

There are claims that cabbage juice can help treat acid reflux and during my research, I found out that fermented cabbage juice worked best. I know that cabbage is rich in vitamins A and K, it is also antioxidant and anti inflammatory. It is also known to improve gut health, detoxification and even weight loss. The claims that cabbage juice helps gut health is being studied however one study has shown that fermented cabbage is high in lactic acid bacteria which is known for gut health. Hence the claim that fermented cabbage juice will relief stomach ulcer and acid reflux. So I gave it a try.

To make fermented cabbage juice, I washed some cabbage and had it soaked in water for 3 days. I made sure to cover the entire cabbage with water. After three days, the cabbage did not smell foul. And then I blended the cabbage and the water in which it had been soaked before passing it through a mesh.

Cabbage juice after blending and passing through mesh

I stored the fermented cabbage juice in a container and placed it in the refrigerator. I consume one glass twice daily.

As for the blended cabbage itself, I didn’t discard it; rather I made a soup with it.

I have only been drinking the fermented cabbage juice for two days now so it’s too early to draw conclusions. What I do know is that I started releasing gas more often after consuming the fermented juice. I also noticed that I don’t feel as bloated as I used to. Although it’s too early to say it has cured me of GERD. So I will definitely keep you posted on the results.

Beyond drinking this fermented cabbage juice, I have realized that adopting a healthy diet is also very important for recovery and you have to make it a lifestyle because you can’t keep drinking proton inhibitors. If you must lose weight, please do. It also helps to take probiotics especially Greek yogurt. But for the sake of this experiment, I am not taking probiotics or proton inhibitors as I need to know for certain if fermented cabbage juice does work.

Cabbage soup however is delicious and filling when cooked with the right ingredients. Here is the link to the Cabbage soup recipe

So tell me your experience with acid reflux (GERD). What are you doing to help yourself?



Happy Mother’s Day!

Three generations of women – I, my daughter and my mother

My mother taught me everything I know about motherhood and one thing that stands out for me is her unrelenting dedication to me as her child, teen and adult. Even though I am a mother, my mother’s devotion to me has not changed. So similarly, I am devoted to my children because my mother created that legacy for me and I believe that my children will be dedicated to their own children as well.

What has been your mother’s greatest teaching that has left a powerful mark on you today?


My L’Oréal Christmas tradition

Merry Christmas guys! I wish you joy and happiness this Yuletide!

My Christmas tradition the same each year – I spend it surrounded by family and of course, with my L’Oréal ultra matte lipstick “TASTY RUBY” 864 😀 Since I began using this lipstick since 2019, I have never spent a Christmas without it because it’s vibrant red excites me besides it being the perfect representation of Christmas red!

My Christmas always start right with the perfect lipstick 😀

What is your Christmas tradition? Merry Christmas guys!


Should we blame parents for bullying in schools?

Bullying is as old as man and I remember that I hated boarding school because I was a victim of bullying by older students. I must say this – I believe that girls are the meanest bullies I have ever encountered. If you went to an all-girls school, am sure you will understand. I hated school so much that I became reclusive. For some reasons, I have always been born with a resolute, self-motivated mind so to cope with the bullying, I kept to myself but turned into writing. Just last week, I went through all my hand-written short stories and asked myself why I am yet to publish a single book 😀

That was me then and that was more than twenty years ago. And now, my daughter has become a victim of bullying. And I tried to get to the root of the problem by going to her school to find out why she was being a target. I realized that the girls had very silly reasons for picking on her – they didn’t like her athletic build because she’s an athlete so they were body shaming her. They also hated her for her shoes – shoes! I was shocked! They hated the fact that she was liked. As a parent, I was too puzzled to understand why these girls hated my daughter for being herself and even when the school tried to invite the parents of the bullies to school, they never showed up. So that got me thinking and a lot! Are the girls being neglected by their parents and transferring their frustrations on my daughter and other kids? Could there be something wrong with the home? I found out later too that the parents were very busy executives who had little time for their kids as such didn’t find the time to show up in school when the school invited them. As a parent, you would expect that I would be angry with the girls but rather, I felt sorry for them because all I saw were misguided girls who knew no better.


Personally, I believe that if we as parents can dedicate enough time for our kids to teach them to show empathy towards other people and to teach them to be tolerant and accommodating of all regardless of our differences, I think we will have less bullying in school. For me, it is important that my kids respect and accommodate everyone regardless of race, religion or tribe. I am raising my kids to be global citizens, to be humans who are sensitive to other people around them. I teach them about the need to refrain from discriminating other people and I have taught them about the ills and harmful effects of body shaming or making mockery of other people. Perhaps if parents could spend time with their kids and not only teach them but show them how to be kind to people because words are not enough – perhaps this could help reduce bullying in schools. Our kids should learn from us and see how kind we are to others so they too can learn from us. In my house, my husband and I try to live exemplary for our kids because that’s the best way to teach kids.

I also taught my daughter not to hate her bullies but to pray for them. I don’t think we can completely root out bullying even with punitive measures set up by school administrators because the solution goes beyond punishment. I believe that we as parents have a role to play in teaching our kids to be kind to others and that schools need to dedicate time to teach kids about kindness as well and to build their curricula around character building as well.

What is your take on this? Has your child ever been bullied? What did you do? What do you think we can do to help the situation? Am happy to hear from you so please leave a comment.



Happy Father’s Day!

I join the world to celebrate dads because I have an amazing dad and an amazing husband. When we have dads who are ever present in the lives of our kids and likewise in our lives, we are always happy and grateful for them.

Growing up, my dad was and still remains a buddy of mine. I was raised by open-minded parents who showered me with so much love. I remember that when I was an anti-social teenager at the university, my dad and my mum would turn up at the hostel and take me out to dine and have fun till late into the night because they wanted me to experience the fun and beauty of night life and not to be inhibited.

The best gift a father can ever give to a child, especially a daughter, is his presence in her life because it allows us to choose the right men to love and not to look for love in all the wrong places.

And so today, just like every other day, I toast to my dad and all the awesome dads around the world.



New product alert: Bulgarian rose hyaluronic water cream

We recently launched our Bulgarian Rose hyaluronic acid cream to provide intense hydration and deep moisture to dry skin, sensitive skin or oily skin while repairing and rejuvenating the skin. This water cream is oil-free and contains nourishing plant extracts to treat damaged skin caused by harsh weather exposure like sun exposure as well as to treat common skin ailments like rash or acne and to rejuvenate the skin by plumping up the skin and fighting signs of aging.

Our key ingredients are Bulgarian rose which functions as a detoxifier, exfoliant, anti-inflammatory and moisturizing. Anti-oxidant rich, its healing power is immense that it clears acne, eczema, scars and dermatitis and gives youthful, clearer skin and hyaluronic acid which is known to fight signs of aging, heal the skin and to give the skin smoothness and suppleness.

Do you have oily skin or sensitive skin? Have your skin been damaged by sunburn? Then our Bulgarian Rose Hyaluronic water cream is just right for you. This oil-free moisturizer contains no oil and is formulated with hyaluronic acid, aloe Vera gel, cucumber extract, lavender extract, Bulgarian Rose extract, chamomile extract and contains collagen, vitamin E and glycolic acid. This water cream deeply hydrates and moisturizes the skin while repairing and rejuvenating the skin for a smoother, supple, youthful skin.

To buy this product, you can find it HERE in our online store.

Got any questions? Please leave a comment below.



Educating teens about digital footprints

My daughter is on Instagram as @motivational__lab but before I let her do this, I simply asked her, “what is your purpose?” Am not the kind of mum to say “No” outrightly because I like to explore my kids’ minds plus every moment is a teachable moment. I am also someone who believes in intentional living so am raising my kids to live with a purpose. So when I asked why she wanted to be on Instagram, she told me she was having a hard time adjusting to learning from home in the midst of the COVID-19 lockdown and knew that they were other teens like her who were struggling and some even depressed because of the impact of the pandemic and the challenges of online learning. I had seen my daughter go throw mood swings due to online learning and she had also felt choked up being stuck in the house. I really wanted her to have an outlet to release all that stress. So I sat her down and explained digital footprints to her. I think rather than say no outrightly to your kids, it’s best to educate them about their responsibilities. I told her that though social media gave us free speech, it isn’t actually free because whatever we express today sometimes resurfaces to hunt us in the future. So I explained that access to social media came with responsibilities which is to self. Free speech comes with a cost which is why “Cancel culture” has become a problem.

And now, I have to explain cancel culture to her as well. A lot of the time, we think our kids are too young to understand these real life challenges but the sooner you expose them to these realities, can they develop a voice and to fight for a just cause. So rather than ban your kids from social media, have a deep talk about their purpose and responsibilities with them first. From such conversation, even they will realize that they are not ready for the responsibilities.