Food, Glorious Food!

Recently I visited Food Matters Live, an exhibition about all things, you’ve guessed it, food.  As I was interested in emerging and maturing trends,  I honed in on a variety of niche products.

What struck me, and I don’t mean to sound critical, is the number of “me-too” products there were. For example gluten-free products and protein bars were everywhere. Hence my concern; is there room for them all in what seems like rapidly maturing markets as these products become more mainstream?

However there were some product highlights for me. And funnily enough all are protein based….

Fori bars – most protein bars tend to be sweet but sometimes after exercise you crave something savoury (bovril & peanut butter on rice cakes is my go-to snack on such occasions).  This is where the Fori bars come in. They are paleo and made from free-range meat, fruit and seeds.  A soft, sort of jerky in a bar if you will.  Fab for when you need re-fuelling on the go. I really hope they succeed as it’s a product unique from the other protein bars currently on the market.

Borough broth – I could have drunk a whole sachet in one go.  The most delicious organic bone broth I have ever tasted and I could feel it doing me good as I drank it.  (Maybe it was a placebo effect of the phrase “bone broth” but I don’t care!). All the bones are sourced from Soil Association Organic farms in the south west of England from grass-fed beef and organic chickens.  What a fantastic way to use what would otherwise be, a waste product.  I’m meeting with the founder, Roz in the New Year as I really want to find out more about the business.

Eat Grub – Don’t be squeamish but this brand is all about using insects and grubs as a protein source.  And I nibbled on some delicious crickets as a snack. More popular perhaps is grinding the insects and using them in products such as pasta and protein bars. I had long chats with the founder Shani Radia who mentioned that the UK was lagging behind other countries at accepting insects as a protein source (The Netherlands is leading the way).  There seems to be is a long way to go in educating the British consumer and our palate. Just think…

  • It takes 22,000 litres of water to produce 1kg of beef protein vs 1 litre of water for 1kg of cricket protein*
  • 45 square metres of cultivable land is required to produce 1 kg of chicken protein vs 15 square metres for 1 kg of cricket protein*

*Eat Grub stats

I really hope that all 3 brands gain traction. They deserve to.  They are all fantastic products developed and run by passionate people who truely believe in what they are doing.




Keeping fit, healthy & strong

This week I have asked my personal trainer James Chandler from Eat Well and Work Out to contribute to my blog.  Working full time my question to him is always how do I prioritise my fitness and health whilst being glued to my office chair during the week and spending time with family and friends at the weekend? I’m lucky that even if I haven’t done anything all week, a heavy weights session with James makes me mentally and physically stronger even if it does go pear-shaped on a Saturday night! I hope you find his tips helpful….

“Life has a certain amount of bandwidth. Our physical and mental energy levels dictate how much ‘space’ or effort we can put into all the things we have to do and we really can’t do it all.

Almost daily I have a discussion with one of my clients about how to prioritise health despite having responsibilities pulling us off in many different directions:

  • Work
  • Kids
  • Relationships
  • Family
  • Emergencies

There is no one easy answer on how to deal with it all, however, do we actually need an answer? Could worrying or stressing about the things that we REALLY can’t influence be actually taking bandwidth away from fitting in a bit more. Feeling guilty, disappointed or regretful is a waste of mental energy…could we simply channel this back into taking ACTION?

This is where you have to get smart with the priorities:

  • What can you sacrifice in return for good health habits?
  • When could you do A instead of B? E.g. walk in the woods instead of another episode of [insert box set]. (Pettit Post comment – Or do some exercise whilst watching Grey’s Anatomy in my case!)

Can you try and incorporate any of these habits into your daily life?

  1. Move well, and move often
  2. Lift heavy things
  3. Drink only water
  4. Eat real food (nothing that is more than two steps from its natural form, ensuring every calorie you consume is the most nutritionally beneficial you can find)
  5. Sleep well
  6. Reduce stress

The pyramid image you can see is one I created for my clients to illustrate the excellent hierarchy model created by Alwyn Cosgrove. This one is specifically for fat loss, however you can tweak it for any goal you may have. What is really important to remember is that you can only do what you have time and energy to do.

Hierarchy Of Fat Loss.

What I find really impactful is the use of the time available arrow down the side. If that new job, baby or relationship puts you in that 1 hour a week slot and you can only do 1 thing, then it is nutrition you need to focus on. Moving up the pyramid as we get a tad more time shows us exactly what we should apply focus too.

It is simple…fill the space where guilt, regret for yesterday’s ‘not so’ healthy choices or disappointment with acceptance that you are doing the BEST you can at this moment. Simple, yes. Easy, no. However, with practice and putting a bit of time into learning what works best for you can smooth out the journey considerably. Remember, view the long game and enjoy each twist and turn.”