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Nutrition Made Easy For Busy People

Food For Thought – Brilliant Brands

If you’re looking for tasty and healthy alternatives to popular products, such as low-sugar, free-from or just all-round healthier options, then look no further. These are six of my favourite brands which offer proof positive that it’s possible for healthy products to also be quick, easy and truly delicious. Read on for advice about cereal, cheese, juices and bread and discover a couple of brand new and exciting offerings.

Vegusto No-Moo Mild Aromatic Cheese (Dairy-Free)
What?
Many dairy-free cheeses can be quite inedible, especially for a serious cheese lover, but Vegusto have hit the jackpot with their award-winning No-Moo range which is really quite delicious. No-Moo cheeses are made with 100% natural ingredients and use cashew rather than soya as a base.  Both the texture and the flavour are similar to mild cheddar, although there are some spicy and herby alternatives if you’re looking for something stronger. The No-Moo range also features a ‘melty’ version which can be used in cooking.
Why?
Vegusto products are made in a vegan factory and are free-from dairy, soya and palm oil.  Their natural approach gives the product an advantage over the more processed versions of dairy-free cheese that are commonly available. Reducing or eliminating dairy products may help to resolve certain digestive issues and relieve skin conditions, such as eczema, in sensitive individuals.
Where?
Visit the Vegusto website for details of local stockists or to order directly: www.vegusto.co.uk.

Cho! Gazpacho: “The Salad in a Bottle”
What?
New kid on the block, Cho! Gazpacho is the ideal option for people who are trying to move away from sugary juices and smoothies but who find green juices a step too far. These tomato-based juices derive their inspiration from the Andalusian gazpacho and come in three flavours: tomato and peppers (my personal favourite), tomato and strawberry and tomato, beetroot and apple, each covering 2 of your 5-a-day. The juices are made by hand and contain a blend of vegetables, a small amount of fruit, locally produced extra virgin olive oil and spring water resulting in a highly flavoursome and nourishing drink.
Why?
Many commercial juices can be extremely high in sugar, making them a less than healthy choice. These vegetable juices go easy on the fruit and so are lower in sugar and higher in vitamins, minerals and protective antioxidants, making them an all-round better option than your average fruit juice. The natural sweetness of the tomato in the Cho! products helps to avoid the bitterness that can come with some green vegetable juices while avoiding the pitfalls of sugary fruit. What’s not to like?
Where?
Cho! products can be found in selected Londis, Budgens and health-food stores. For further details, visit www.chogazpacho.com.

Village Bakery: Rossisky Rye Bread
What?
This is a fresh, whole loaf made with 100% rye flour, water and sea salt. Containing no added wheat or yeast, it’s a great option for anyone who needs to avoid either of these. Rossisky Rye Bread avoids the cardboard texture that is so common amongst commercial rye breads and while it is naturally denser than wheat breads, it tastes and feels like real bread, avoiding the added sugar, treacle and starch found in some popular wheat-free brands. It also toasts extremely well, making it a really useful addition to the breakfast table.
Why?
High levels of wheat in the diet can put a strain on a sensitive gut, especially at times of stress, and this can lead to uncomfortable bloating and wind. Swapping from wheat to rye bread for your morning toast or lunchtime sandwich may help to ease these symptoms. The high fibre content of rye also helps to keep you fuller for longer, providing sustained energy and helping to avoid the dreaded mid-afternoon slump. NB: rye contains gluten and so this product will not be suitable for those following a gluten-free diet.
Where?
Rossisky Rye Bread is stocked in Waitrose, Ocado, ASDA and a number of health-food stores. For further details, visit www.village-bakery.com.

Righteous Salad Dressings
What?
If you think that life’s too short to be making your own salad dressing, then the Righteous Salad Dressings are for you. The range includes a number of original, delicious and healthy blends, such as Ginger & Toasted Sesame, Raspberry & Sweet Basil and Lemon & Mustard.  The Righteous range uses only natural, fresh ingredients and contains a number of wheat and dairy-free options, suitable for individuals with food sensitivities.
Why?
Using a flavoursome salad dressing can turn even the dullest bowl of leaves into a delicious meal and if you’re a reluctant vegetable eater, salad dressings are definitely the way forward. However, many of the standard ready-made offerings available contain surprisingly high levels of added sugar and starch, as well as chemically produced additives and preservatives. Opting for a Righteous dressing keeps things simple, natural and healthy.
Where?
Righteous Salad Dressings are stocked in Tesco, Sainsbury, Waitrose & Ocado, as well as a number of independent stores. For further details visit www.loverighteous.com.

Lizi’s Original Granola
What?
It’s not easy to find a reasonably priced cereal that isn’t full of sugar and refined carbohydrate or that doesn’t taste like cardboard, but Lizi’s Original Granola ticks all the boxes. Unlike many other granolas, it contains very little sugar and the blend of oats, nuts and seeds packs a powerful protein punch, as well as containing plenty of fibre. I regularly recommend this product to clients looking for a healthy and tasty breakfast option and the feedback is consistently positive.
Why?
Oats are an excellent source of soluble fibre which can help to regulate cholesterol levels and, together with the protein in this cereal, the fibre ensures a blood sugar balance is maintained which will keep you going until lunch time, promoting sustained energy levels and supporting weight management. Many popular commercial cereals contain the equivalent of up to 7 teaspoons of sugar per serving which definitely needs to be avoided. This is also an excellent breakfast option for people who are trying to limit their intake of wheat, due to a sensitive digestion.
Where?
Lizi’s Granola is stocked in Waitrose, Ocado, Tesco, Sainsbury and Co-op stores, as well as a range of independent outlets. For further details visit www.lizis.co.uk.

Bonapeti – Gourmet Meal Delivery
What?
There are a number of companies that offer healthy meal packages for home delivery but the recently launched Bonapeti really stands out due to the quality and originality of the offering. Bonapeti focuses on plant-based dishes developed by a team of highly experienced chefs with Michelin star training. Each dish comes with a clearly printed menu card, preparation instructions and a nutritional breakdown. Dishes include Salsify Tandoori Curry with Chick Pea Pilaf, Broad Bean & Parsley Fritters with Preserved Lemon Taboule and Chocolate Amaranth Pudding with Poached Bananas and Candied Orange Zest. Having had the privilege of testing Bonapeti’s food, I can personally confirm just how delicious it is.
Why?
This is the perfect solution for the busy executive who simply doesn’t have time to shop and cook and who wants to keep things healthy. Each dish is freshly made on a daily basis and is carefully crafted to contain an ideal balance of plant protein and fibre, maintaining a blood sugar balance and helping to avoid sugar and carb cravings. Including plant protein in your diet on a regular basis helps to limit excessive exposure to animal protein foods which are considered to have a pro-inflammatory effect on the body, and which may contribute to the development of chronic conditions such as cardiovascular disease and some cancers.
Where?
For further details and to place an order, visit www.bonapeti.com.