Is frozen yoghurt healthier than ice-cream?

Yoghurt is certainly a food item with an established ‘health halo’.

Much like granola and wholegrains, there is something about yoghurt that makes consumers immediately assume it is good. Maybe it’s the natural whiteness (oh so pure) or the low lactose quality (great for IBS and digestive ailments) that has everybody dying to consume more and more yoghurt.

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What’s the difference between cold-pressed and fresh juice?

Those of you looking to detox before summer comes around might want to know about this.

Many people seek a juice cleanse to keep themselves trim, without craving high calorie foods. Health gurus, celebrities and nutritionists all share a deep-seated love for green juice first thing in the morning; not only does it get the metabolism working, but it also packs in vital nutrients to get you up and out.

But did you know that all juices aren’t the same?

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Low Sugar, High Protein Breakfasts You Need to Try

Don’t have time for brekkie, or simply want a small breakfast that you know will keep you full? I hear you.

While it is easy to feel uninspired if you have a long commute ahead of you and a rumbling tum to match, don’t despair, there are options. Put away those awful breakfast biscuits and tuck into something that’s convenient, protein-rich and low in sugar! Try out my three favourites.

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Is Almond Milk Healthy? 5 Facts You Didn’t Know

If you suffer with IBS, digestive ailments or are looking to cut your dairy intake, you might be interested in seeing what alternative milks can offer you.

Some of the most popular milk alternatives you can purchase at the minute include soy milk, cashew milk, hemp milk, and of course almond milk.

See here for how alternative milks are made.

The benefits of almond milk are displayed all over the packaging: it’s made with nuts, includes natural ingredients, and plenty of protein. But how good is almond milk, when you compare it with cow’s milk?

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How To Make Alternative Milks (Almond, Cashew & Oat)

Making your own alternative milk is surprisingly simple and, best of all, it is much cheaper that store-bought alternatives.

When you do it yourself, you get to control how creamy your milk is going to be (reduce water for thicker milk), and what kind of flavours are added in; some nice additional options are vanilla extract, sea salt, and cinnamon.

Try these alternative milk recipes and see how much your digestion improves. Each recipes makes the equivalent of 2 per cent milk and around 5 cups per recipe. Keep in the fridge for extra freshness.

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Is Kellogg’s Coco Pops Granola good for you?

Just when you thought Coco Pops couldn’t get any better, Kellogg’s release a super duper healthy wholegrain version of your kids favourite cereal, and all your prayers are immediately answered. Right?

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Well, my apprehensions go up ten fold when I notice a typically unhealthy, but very popular, food item is suddenly ‘healthified’ over night. If it was going to be so much better for you than the original, the product would have gone through a significant rebrand, as the demographic would naturally be flipped on its head.

Granola, as you will know already, really isn’t good for you at all. Steeped in sugar, stuffed with additives, the list goes on… no, granola is very very naughty. So just hearing about a Coco Pops Granola physically gives me hives. Let’s dissect the evidence and you can feel super uneasy with me…

The look

So, the packaging pretty much looks exactly the same, but instead comes in a ‘resealable pouch’ that you see everywhere now. Maybe this is to dispel the sense that you’re eating cereal, with this being more of a snack than a meal. I don’t know; personally I think it’s a lame way to separate the ‘healthy’ new Coco Pops from the old ones. I’m not convinced.

The sell

The packet says its a “chocolate flavour granola with chocolate flavour wheat shapes” which all sounds good in theory, until you start to unpack the words on an individual level:

“Chocolate” – nothing was EVER healthy and chocolate (unless over 80% dark chocolate, but Kellogg’s would never go that high brow)

“Flavour” – so there are flavourings in this. Other additives too probably.

“Shapes” – nothing that is ‘natural’ is ever in a particular shape. Do you know how these big companies make these fantastic shapes? SUGAR. doh!

The ingredients

So this is the bit that REALLY matters. The ingredients:

Oats (30%), Wheat Flour (15%), Sunflower Oil, Sugar, Rice Flour (8%), Puffed Rice (6%), Rice Syrup, Maize Flour (4.5%), Fat Reduced Cocoa Powder, Cocoa Powder, Glucose Syrup, Flavourings, Barley Malt Flavouring, Salt, Antioxidant (Tocopherol Rich Extract), Cinnamon, Vitamins & Minerals: Niacin, Iron, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Vitamin B1 (Thiamin), Folic Acid, Vitamin D, Vitamin B12

For saying that the packaging really pushes the ‘wheat’ and ‘fibre’ content, it turns out there is only a measly 15% of wheat flour. You might get a tiny bit of fibre from the puffed rice, but only just enough to get the 3% total fibre (per 100g) that you need to be able to profess “A good source of fibre” on packaging (I know, 3% out of 100g really is NOT high fibre at all, but when in Rome…)

Oil, sugar, and ye olde favourite, glucose syrup make up most of this cereal/snack thing and lots of random B vitamins added in at the end allow Kelloggs to state how healthy and VITAMIN-RICH (WOOOOO VITAMINS) they are. This isn’t the way to do it – it’s like waiting until 3am to find your perfect match in a dingy bar. Avoid at all costs. Unless you really, really hate yourself.

 

My Favourite Gluten-Free Treats This Week | February

So I may not follow a strict gluten-free diet (I eat regular wholemeal bread and the like) but I do try and eat less gluten than I used to, mainly because of how it makes me feel.

Lowering my gluten intake is a life choice; I feel it makes me less bloated and doesn’t give me the same gut inflammation as regular foods. That’s why finding a gluten-free alternative wherever possible is so important for people in a similar position to me.

Whilst there are a heap of gluten-free food  companies around at the minute, it’s easy to go for the first alternative you see and stick with it for life. Well, there is a whole host of hidden beauties lurking on the web, and they offer some amazing alternatives to foods you will definitely never find in the supermarket.

Check out my top five gluten-free treats from around the web – give them a try and see how right I am 😉

Pistachio energy bombs (Oatopia)

Oatopia are a company that love sport, and they created their ‘fatjacks’ and energy bombs to give triathletes and the like the option of healthy, vegetarian, high-energy, gluten-free treats.

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Their range is amazing, from thick-cut flapjacks (seriously, like the size of your head), to delicious fruit & veg energy bombs. Their range of bombs is most magical – beetroot, banana and ginseng are just some in the range, but my personal favourite is the pistachio energy bomb.

Complete with oats, dates, almond butter and agave syrup, these treats are great for when you need that extra bit of energy before working out. You can find more on them here: http://www.oatopia.co.uk/shop/energy-bombs/pistachio-energy-bomb/570

Coconut Marshmallows (Ananda’s Marshmallow Confections)

Ananda Foods started when the founder realised there really were no vegetarian marshmallows available in the UK market (and only one US company). The reason for this is because marshmallows are largely composed of gelatine, the boiled bones of animals.

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Luckily, Ananda Foods came up with an alternative whereby they could add vegetable glycerine, can keep them gluten-free and, thanks to premium locally-sourced ingredients, keep them tasting incredible.

My personal favourite? The gluten-free coconut marshmallows. I dip them into peanut butter or warm them up on toast for a healthy snack! You can see more on them here: http://www.anandafoods.co.uk/store/p102/%2ANEW%2A_Ananda%27s_Gelatine_Free_Strawberry_Marshmallows_90g.html

Spicy Chorizo and Red Pepper Flavour Crisps (Darling Spuds)

Darling Spuds is a lovely company based in Buckinghamshire who make all-natural gluten-free crisps for snackers who want to eat more healthily. Although I’m not a hugeee crisp fan (give me sweet over savoury any day) I thought I’d give these a try.

My reason for disliking crisps is because they always leave an oily residue on your fingers, are rarely gluten-free, plus you never actually get enough in a bag to satisfy your cravings.

Darling Spuds are the complete opposite – they taste so clean, you get tonnes of crisps, and the flavours are to die for.

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My favourite is the spicy chorizo red pepper flavour – you can literally taste the meat and the spiciness is so good you simply have to relish each crisp. For more on them, see here: http://www.darlingspuds.co.uk/products.html?p=0

Tangy Tomato Jerky (Top Herd)

This quaint company was founded by Philippa and Simon, two foodies who looked to give the public what they so desperately needed: healthy, high protein savoury snacks. Whilst the market is awash with sweet protein bars, finding savoury protein goods is way too difficult to come by.

So that’s when Top Herd was born. Fresh beef, marinated and air-dried into delicious jerky, these snack packets are low salt, high protein, all-natural and use only grass-fed animals.

My winner is the gluten-free Tangy Tomato jerky, which is composed of beef, tomato, honey and mm-mm RED WINE. Definitely satisfies the urge for naughty snacks and keeps you full for ages.

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I eat a packet post-workout to up my protein. See more about Top Herd’s jerky here: http://www.topherd.co.uk/product/tangy-tomato-beef/

Healthier Butterkist Popcorn Recipe

I have a bit of a problem with popcorn. I’ll tell you why… it’s because it so doesn’t need to be unhealthy. All of these pre-popped bags of popcorn with layers of salt, sugar and butter on are unnecessarily unhealthy and annoy me a lot. And don’t get me started on the microwaveable stuff.

20170202_195921.jpgRaw kernels are so much cheaper than pre-made popcorn and, if you buy the bagged stuff because you think convenience is key then you may be surprised to know the raw kind only takes one saucepan and that’s it.

It’s not even a faff – you just put it on the hob and wait for a few minutes and it’s done. Fresh, delicious, healthier than bagged and tastes just like the kind you’d pay £6 for in a cinema. All from a bag of kernels that would have cost you around 50p. You can thank me later.

Try this wicked recipe which cuts out the butter, additives and colourings and keeps it simple with just kernels, sea salt, coconut oil instead of vegetable oil, peanut butter instead of butter and Fudge Kitchen’s AMAZING sea salted caramel fudge for that extra sweetness. An amazing healthy recipe if you’re a huge Butterkist fan 😉

Ingredients

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Method

  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan for about 30 seconds.
  2. Drop in 3 kernels and wait for them to pop.
  3. Once they’ve popped, take the pan off the heat for 30 seconds.
  4. Return the pan to the heat and add in the coconut oil and peanut butter.
  5. Add the kernels to the pan, pour in the fudge and place lid on pan to steam.
  6. Wait a few minutes for all the kernels to pop and take off the heat when kernels don’t pop for more than 10 seconds apart.
  7. Mix in the salt and serve up when cool.