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FEBRUARY 2015 £3.20

How to BEAT CRAVINGS Foolproof strategies







772045 822039

0 2

On1ly 25 kcal


Smart ways to SPEED UP weight loss in winter






Give yourself an IMMUNITY REBOOT

Low-fat hoisin chicken and noodles



PLUS Shopping advice

H PANCAKES for all: sweet, savoury and gluten free H It’s Jerusalem artichokes to the DIGESTIVE RESCUE H Healthy treats to SPOIL YOUR VALENTINE

Mustard steaks with vegetable bake, p40

Crab cakes with tarragon sauce, p55

Chocolate cup puddings, p68

Š 2015 Almond Board of California. All rights reserved.

Take your almonds along. Leave your hunger behind. Face your day armed with the extra confdence a well-placed stash of almonds brings. Exceptionally delicious and naturally nutritious, almonds are a source of protein and are rich in fbre, calcium and lots of other key nutrients you won’t want to leave home without. So they satisfy you best when you need it most. Learn more about almonds, the on-the-go essential, at


EYE TO EYE MEDIA LTD, Axe & Bottle Court, 70 Newcomen Street, London SE1 1YT SUBScrIPTIOn EnqUIrIES 01795 414778 EDITOrIAL EnqUIrIES 020 7803 4128 FAx 020 7803 4101 EmAIL WEB Editor melanie Leyshon Art director Tina Betts Assistant editor Liz Atkins Senior sub editor rebecca Almond Editorial assistant Laura Day Nutrition consultant Juliette kellow Recipe consultant Phil mundy


ADvERTISINg SALES Ad director Jason Elson 020 7150 5397 Account manager for sales nick Bantin 020 7150 5043 Head of print and partnerships nicola Shubrook 020 7150 5037 Regional business development manager nicola rearden 0161 209 3629 Managing director Seamus Geoghegan 020 7803 4123 Publisher Adrienne moyce 020 7803 4111 Consultant editorial director Jo Sandilands Circulation director Owen Arnot 020 7803 4121 Production manager Jake Hopkins 020 7803 4110 Promotions and marketing executive Hannah Sherwood 020 7803 4129 Finance director Gary Pickett Finance manager Adam Wright 01733 373135 Healthy Food Guide magazine is published by Eye to Eye media Ltd, Axe & Bottle court, 70 newcomen Street, London SE1 1YT, under licence from Healthy Food Guide International Limited and its content includes copyright material which is owned or controlled by, and is reproduced under licence from, Healthy Food Guide International Limited. The title Healthy Food Guide and the Healthy Food Guide logo are trade marks owned by, and used under licence from, Healthy Food Guide International Limited. The views and opinions expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of Healthy Food Guide International Limited, its subsidiaries, affliates or contributors. for licensing enquiries contact Wendy Miller, International Licensing Director,

ISSn 2045-8223. Printed in the Uk by Southernprint Ltd. colour origination by rhapsody. copyright Eye to Eye media Ltd. All rights reserved. reproduction in whole or part prohibited without permission. The publishers cannot accept responsibility for errors in advertisements, articles, photographs or illustrations. Eye to Eye media Ltd is a registered data user whose entries in the Data Protection register contain descriptions of sources and disclosures of personal data. This paper is manufactured using pulp taken from well-managed, certifed forests. All prices correct at time of going to press. Uk basic annual subscription rate for 12 issues, £37.20; Europe and Eire, £55; rest of the world, £60. Back issues cost £5. member of the Audit Bureau Of circulations.


SIT AT mY DESk and you’re never more than a few inches from food – snacks, nibbles, juices, and even main meals on recipe testing day. The HFG team tries new products daily (we’re not complaining!) and we feature the best in our shopping pages. Interesting ingredients are passed on to recipe consultant Phil mundy – this month he tested spelt in salads and baked with chia. However, there are choppy waters surrounding the good ship HFG. We share a test kitchen with our sister publication delicious. magazine, which tempts us daily with invitations to try a three-tier chocolate cake/creamy dauphinoise/fresh-from-the-oven treacle tart. You don’t need to work next to a test kitchen to experience weak moments: whether yours come when faced with the offce birthday cake, kitchen biscuit barrel or doughnut-loving group of friends. But what we all need to do is find our own strategies for dealing with them. Find out what the HFG experts advise on p14. Also, with mixed messages in the media about sugar/fat/ carbs/dairy, it’s easy to forget what a healthy balanced diet actually consists of. So resident dietitian Juliette kellow reminds us all of the nutrition basics on p24. If you do overindulge in comfort food, help is at hand. Fitness writer Peta Bee shares tips for embracing the cold weather for efficient weight loss (p34). It’s a win-win situation! Melanie leyshon, editor

PLUS If you’re looking for extra, low-cal recipes and more help getting into healthy habits, turn to our latest recipe collection, Make it Healthy: 100 Weight Loss Recipes. Available now from major newsagents – or download it at the App Store or newsstand. february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 3




february 2015

13 YOur

On the cOver


p14 p28 p34 p21

p65 p91 p89 p68

p68 p40 p55

news and views 3 eDITOr’S LeTTer 6 yOur Say 7 MeeT Our experTS 8 fOOD buLLeTIn


14 hOW TO avOID The hunger gaMeS Stop those emotion-driven food cravings for good 21 My jOurney back TO gOOD heaLTh The importance of food choices in building immunity 24 The begInner’S guIDe TO heaLThy eaTIng Are your meals balanced? Find out with our nutrition refresher 28 hOW TO Make yOur DIeT baby reaDy By fertility expert Zita West 32 Q&a 34 Why WInTer cOuLD be The SLIM SeaSOn Embrace the chill for greater weight-loss results 39 recipes


40 WeeknIghT DInnerS 45 DInner fOr One Quick tuna and sweet potato fshcakes 46 curry WIThOuT aLL The caLOrIeS DIY takeaways 52 TrIck yOur TaSTebuDS… …into believing it’s summer, with Sophie Michell’s creamy yogurt recipes 56 exTreMe MakeOver Classic French cassoulet with a twist

4 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

58 One ShOp, Seven DInnerS Use our recipes + shopping list for a whole week’s menu 65 cOver recIpe Hoisin chicken and noodles 66 MaSh Of The Day Delicious alternatives to spuds 68 pIng puDDIngS Valentine’s desserts in a cup! 70 TreaTS TO pLeaSe a SWeeT TOOTh With fruit, nuts and spice 74 hfg’S DIeT pLanner 83


84 are yOu bITIng Off MOre Than yOu can cheW? Energy boosting products under the spotlight 89 neW SerIeS: The MeDIcInaL chef cOOkS… Dale Pinnock helps you identify the nutrition stars of the kitchen, starting with an underrated knobbly veg 91 puT IT On The Menu Healthy Pancake Day 94 ThIS MOnTh We LOve

dOn’t Miss 50 In nexT MOnTh’S ISSue: On SaLe 3 March Give your body our MOT, fnd inspiration for healthy Easter goodies and discover the truth about gastric surgery 80 SubScrIbe TO heaLThy fOOD guIDe anD Save 28% 96 referenceS 97 nuTrITIOn LOWDOWn 98 10 facTS TO Take aWay


our recipes explained




l every SIngLe recIpe is tested by our expert recipe consultant Phil Mundy to make sure it works – and tastes great. l recIpeS are anaLySeD by our nutrition consultant Juliette Kellow. Nutrition information is calculated accurately using McCance and Widdowson’s The Composition of Foods, Sixth Edition – the UK’s standard nutrition database – but may vary slightly depending on the ingredients used. l DIabeTeS frIenDLy In line with information from Diabetes UK, we encourage people with diabetes to enjoy a variety of foods and aim for a diet that is low in fat, sugar and salt and includes plenty of fruit and veg. Our nutritional information helps people with diabetes to make informed choices and indulge in occasional treats, so none of our recipes is off limits. l We uSe STanDarD uk measurements, where 1tbsp is 15ml and 1tsp is 5ml. l Our vegeTarIan recIpeS often include cheese. Some of these may contain animal rennet, so check the label and use a vegetarian substitute if you prefer. l Where We uSe a ‘gluten free’ or ‘dairy free’ symbol, we recommend you check the ingredients list of any manufactured products you use – even if you use them regularly, as manufacturers may change recipes. l In aDDITIOn TO beIng cODeD with symbols, all recipes include nutrition information per serving for: l kcal l protein l fat l saturates l carbs l sugar l fbre l salt l calcium l iron freezIng SyMbOL This indicates when a recipe can be frozen. Unless otherwise stated, freeze for up to 3 months, thaw and reheat until piping hot.


450kcal or less for a main course; 300kcal or less for breakfast; and 150kcal or less for a starter, snack, drink or dessert LOW FAT

3g fat or less per 100g


1.5g saturates or less per 100g


5g sugar or less per 100g


0.3g salt or less per 100g


At least 6g fbre per 100g or 3g fbre per 100kcal HIGH FIBRE


At least 20% of the calories come from protein PROTEIN


At least 30% of the RDA per serving


At least 30% of the RDA per serving



Free from meat, poultry, fsh and ingredients derived from animals (for example, gelatine) vEG



Free from cereals containing gluten


Free from dairy products and ingredients that include dairy products


The number of portions of fruit and/or veg contained in a serving 5-A-DAY

february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 5


Your say

Got an opinion? Let us know what you think

LetteR of tHe montH: a future in nutrition i have just passed my course in diet, nutrition and Fitness with distinction, and i have you to thank for this. my decision to start the course in the frst instance was largely down to how much your articles fascinated me and the realisation that i needed to do something about my poor level of health. i have referenced Healthy Food Guide articles many times during the assignments and have become obsessed with the world of diet and nutrition! i am about to embark on the follow-up course, focusing on diet and diseases, and i know HFg will be invaluable yet again… Marie O’Nions

don’t be pUt off oRganic!

some ReassURance to take aWaY I found the article about healthier fast-food options (November issue) useful. My husband has diabetes but loves a takeaway, so it was good to read a balanced article covering well-known outlets and to realise you can still enjoy a healthy treat if you select the right items from their menus. This is a subject I haven’t seen in other magazines and it was refreshing to hear a fast-food meal can be incorporated into a healthy eating plan. Mary Thomas

As a food writer who has lost over 14kg over the last year and who champions healthy eating, I love your magazine. However, as someone who also works with Organic UK, creating thrifty recipes to encourage people to switch and buy just one or two organic items a week, I found your price comparison chart (December issue) misleading. For instance, I’ve never seen organic spinach sold at £7.50 per kg. Some British organic produce can be the same price and

sometimes cheaper than its non-organic counterparts! This won’t help people make informed choices when they consider switching to organic produce, and I think that’s a shame. Karen Burns-Booth Editor Melanie says: Our writer used the supermarket comparison site mysupermarket. com, on a given day, to compile our price chart. We agree it’s possible to fnd cheaper organic produce, but it was important that this feature used a consistent point of reference.

CONGRATUL ATIONS The writer of our letter of the month will receive a NUTRiBULLET Nutrition Extractor, worth £99.99. Its powerful motor breaks down the whole food, including the stems, seeds and skins of fruit and veg, allowing you to make healthy drinks and smoothies in seconds. For more information, go to

we’d love to hear froM you – eMail us at 6 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE FEBRuaRy 2015

find us

Meet our healthyfoodguideuk

Healthy Food Guide’s expert panel is on hand every month

on facebook experts We posted… Obesity is now classed as a disability under British employment law, following an EU court ruling. The judgement found that the cause of obesity is irrelevant. Do you agree with the ruling? YoU RepLied… l I fnd this appalling – and I speak as someone who has been obese most of my life! I am beginning to get my weight under control and it’s hard. But no matter what the reasons are, it is up to you. The results of obesity may be disabling but not the fact of being obese. Sheila Hamill l GPs need to help find the source of weight issues. Obesity can be caused by many different underlying issues and these need to be dealt with. Sharon Barker l Obesity is preventable and treatable… Unless they are ruling that the obese parking spaces are the furthest away to promote exercise, they are taking a huge step backwards. Emilee Horan l This judgement is absurd. Money spent on bariatric surgery would be better spent on education to learn how to plan, shop and cook healthily. too many excuses and ignorance, and not enough action. Christine Ashton l I am sickened that we live in such a fatphobic world, where people think it is OK to pass judgement on other people’s bodies. Leanne Turner

JuliEttE KEllow is our nutrition consultant. She’s a registered dietitian who has worked in the NHS, the food industry and within the media. She’s passionate about food and promoting the fact that eating healthily can also be delicious. pRoFEssoR david Haslam is a GP and hospital physician in obesity management. As chair of the National Obesity Forum (NOF), he’s dedicated to fnding solutions to this growing problem. pHil mundy is our creative recipe consultant, as well as an experienced food writer, who frmly believes cutting back on calories shouldn’t mean cutting back on favour. dR dawn HaRpER works as a GP and runs regular clinics on women’s health and weight management. She’s one of the doctors who appear in Channel 4’s Embarrassing Bodies. BRidgEt BEnElam is a senior nutrition scientist at the British Nutrition Foundation. She coordinates an expert group on physical activity and has also worked for the Food Standards Agency (FSA). amanda uRsEll is a nutritionist and award-winning writer with weekly columns in national newspapers. She also contributes to a range of women’s and health magazines. tRacy KElly is a registered dietitian and clinical adviser at Diabetes UK. She’s committed to helping people with diabetes enjoy great-tasting healthy food and encouraging prevention of type 2 diabetes through better lifestyle choices. HElEn Bond is a registered dietitian and spokesperson for the British Dietetic Association. She has more than 16 years’ experience, working in the NHS, PR and the food and pharmaceutical industries. She features regularly on BBC Radio. david stalKER has worked in the ftness sector across the UK and Europe for more than 20 years. As CEO of ukactive (, his mission is to get ‘more people more active more often’, to help improve the health of the nation. noRma mcgougH is a registered dietitian, specialising in coeliac disease and the management of a gluten-free diet. For the past 10 years she has worked at Coeliac UK, the leading charity supporting people with coeliac disease.

send us your tips, healthy ideas, recipes and feedback about this issue FEBRuaRy 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 7


Food bulletin 100% of your food news requirement

The average number of days slimmers lasted between weighing themselves without gaining weight, found US researchers. Contrary to the belief that weighing yourself too often is counterproductive, the study found the more often dieters jumped on the scales, the more weight they lost; not weighing themselves for more than a week saw them gain pounds.

8 . 5

make a healthy date

1–28 February national heart month

Wear red on 6 Feb in support of the British Heart Foundation’s month-long Wear It Beat It campaign to raise awareness of heart and circulatory diseases. Or could you host a fundraiser?

yOur spring reading list dig for nutrition victory Grow for Flavour by James Wong (Mitchell beazley, £20, out 5 March) Tomatoes with 50% more vitamin C, blueberries three times richer in antioxidants, chillies with double the spice… Time to fex those green fngers. five-a-day fancy Five by Rachel de thample (ebury, £14.99, out 5 feb) Offering seasonal and themed menu suggestions, with recipes such as Moroccan beetroot soup and wild spring spaghetti, your fve-a-day is in the bag... Given Rachel’s standing as resident recipe writer for veg box scheme Abel & Cole, we’d trust her with our veg quota every time.

falling shOrt Of the fOlic acid mark It’s good to know 85% of pregnant women are taking supplements of the B vitamin folic acid, according to a UK study. Less good is that only 25% started taking them before they conceived. The advice to take a folic acid supplement when planning a pregnancy and for the frst 12 weeks of pregnancy is to help reduce the risk of birth defects such as spina bifda. But the study found another link: taking a supplement before conception seems to protect against a low birth weight, which can cause problems for the baby when born and increase the risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure later on in their life. Turn to p28 for more about eating for a healthy pregnancy.

8 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

food bu l l e t i n l

hats Off! February sees the return of Innocent’s Big Knit campaign, which raises money to keep the elderly warm and well during the cold winter months. Buy a bottle that’s sporting a little hat and Innocent will make a donation to Age UK. Thebigknit.

perfect pOrtiOns fOr tOddlers Children aged one to three years have different dietary requirements from adults as they need the right balance of nutrients for growth. But how much is enough? While their appetites can vary from day to day, the following portion sizes, created by the British Nutrition Foundation, use the formula 5–5–3–2 as a guide: Offer 5 pOrtiOns Of starchy foods for energy, vitamins and minerals.

1 pOrtiOn ½–1 slice bread 1–2 rice cakes or oatcakes 1–3tbsp mashed potato 2–4 potato wedges 2–4tbsp cooked pasta or rice 3–5tbsp breakfast cereal 1–2 plain breadsticks Offer 5 pOrtiOns Of fruit and veg (fresh, frozen, tinned and dried all count).

1 pOrtiOn ¼–1 medium banana 3–8 grapes or berries ¼–½ apple, orange or pear 1–3 cherry tomatoes 2–6 vegetable sticks ½–2tbsp cooked broccoli, peas, cabbage or sweetcorn

The percentage of runners who don’t feel they have the knowledge to achieve their ftness goals. The study of over 1,000 runners found weight control is their main motivation, with 42% relying on friends who run for training advice. Search to fnd a local club and get expert advice from the pros.

Offer 2 pOrtiOns Of prOtein foods (3 if your child is vegetarian) and serve fsh at least twice a week (one portion should be oil rich).

1 pOrtiOn 2–4tbsp cooked mince meat ½–1 slice cooked chicken 1–2 fsh fngers ½–1 poached or boiled egg 2–3tbsp reduced sugar and salt baked beans 2–3tbsp chickpeas, beans or cooked lentils small fllet cod, haddock or salmon l For more information

visit healthyliving/toddlers.

Offer 3 pOrtiOns Of dairy foods for protein, calcium and B vitamins.

1 pOrtiOn 100ml beaker milk 2–3tbsp grated cheese 1 cheese triangle 1–3tbsp cheese sauce 125ml pot yogurt 2 x 60ml pots fromage frais january 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 9

l food bu l l e t i n

GadGet of the month

We’re giving tWo away on the HfG blog!

To enter, visit and follow the instructions by 28 February 2015.

Great British chefs alask a seafood This new iPad app provides 60 recipes using seafood such as salmon, halibut, king crab and black cod. Search by ingredient, course, complexity or chef, and fish night will be sorted! Free, iTunes. app of the month

chef’s secret k ATIE cALDEsI the co-owner of london cookery school Cucina Caldesi on fARRo In Italy, this nutty and nutritious wheat grain (which is a source of protein, fbre and iron) is a storecupboard staple – it’s used in soups, risottos and salads. serve this recipe alongside grilled meat, or have it with scrambled eggs for breakfast: cook the farro in stock as per the pack instructions (I like waitrose Love Life Quick cook Farro Dicocco), then mix with baby spinach and a cooked mix of chopped bacon, leeks, chestnuts and rosemary. season with ground black pepper.

WinninG trio As we always say at HFG, there’s no one food that will magic away the excess pounds or cure a condition, but there’s new strong evidence for giving these three nutrition heroes special notice: AvoCAdo One a day helps lower LDL (bad) cholesterol in obese or overweight adults, a study found. Participants followed three cholesterol-lowering diets, and while all saw a drop in LDL, the diet that included 136g avocado a day came out on top – probably because of the combo of phytosterols, fbre and hearthealthy fats. HFG sAys…

Add it to salads, spread it on bread in place of butter or use it to make guacamole.

10 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

BlueBerries One of the original

Almonds swapping carb-laden

‘superfoods’, recent fndings keep the fruit in favour; blood pressure dropped in post-menopausal women after eight weeks of taking blueberry powder equivalent to 100g fresh berries a day. HFG sAys… Eat as a snack, serve with porridge or cereal, or blend with fat-free natural yogurt and a banana to make a smoothie.

treats for almonds is better for your waistline, scientists report. Adults with high LDL cholesterol snacked on 42g almonds a day for six weeks, then over the next six weeks replaced them with a calorie-equivalent muffn a day. As well as a greater reduction in total and LDL cholesterol, the almond snack also resulted in a greater loss of belly fat than the muffn. HFG sAys… Toss them into stir-fries or salads, chop and add to cereal, or nibble on a small handful.


Family favourites such as creamy risotto and chips could become the healthy option (yes, really!) with the De’Longhi multifry Extra, a three-in-one cooker for low-oil air-frying, cooking and baking. Its stirring paddle means you can Competition leave a risotto alone instead of hovering by the hob, and just 14ml oil (around 1tbsp) is needed to turn 1kg potatoes into crispy, healthier chips. ExcITED at the prospect?

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Terms and conditions apply. Offers and packages valid on 12 month contracts only. Joining fee may apply. Offers end 28 February 2015. Personal Training, Nutrition MOT and Physio MOT to be completed before 30th April 2015. Nutrition advice delivered via telephone. Please ask in centre for full details. Fitness and Professional staff assigned by centre on availability basis. Facilities vary per centre. Not all packages available at all centres.

Your health how to curb cravings


immunity boosts


fertility foods

Cold-weatheR fRiends


Rain, chill winds, cool air – believe it or not, they can all help us get slim. Wrap up, then embrace the elements this winter, as research shows exercising at lower temperatures can help us lose weight p34

february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 13

l you R h e a Lt h

How to avoid

hunger games


Your cravings for comfort food could be less to do with a rumbling stomach than a war between your taste buds, brain, stomach and hormones. Here’s how to beat emotional eating

14 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

you R h e a Lt h l Next time you watch a tear-jerker at the cinema, look at your snack intake. People asked to view a sad flm as part of a study at New York’s Cornell University ate 36% more popcorn than those who watched a happy one. The Germans have a word for the weight gain often caused by such emotional eating – kummerspeck (literally, ‘grief bacon’). And the latest science confrms that ‘feelings-driven’ eating usually has little to do with hunger – or even the tantalising taste of food. To test this, researchers from Belgium’s University of Leuven took tastebuds out of the equation. They exposed volunteers to photos and music that triggered feelings of sadness, then gave them a high-saline solution or a highsaturated-fat solution via a feeding tube so it bypassed their mouths (and taste buds) and went straight into their stomachs. The results? Subjects who had the fat solution enjoyed a better mood than those who took the salt one, and their MRI scans confrmed it. The brain areas that process feelings of sadness lit up far less for those who received saturated fat than those who had salt. The researchers concluded that saturated fat appeared to work like an ‘anaesthetic nutrient’, dampening sad feelings. This suggests that the interaction between our stomach and brain may dictate which kind of comfort food we crave. Still, a strong urge for crisps or cake doesn’t mean you have to be a slave to your grey matter. Studies also show that certain activities and thinking styles can alter brain chemistry, so the best way to address emotional-eating triggers is to take an active mindfood approach. Here’s how…

you feeL stRessed

situatioN #1: You overdo it on biscuits, ice cream or fast food, telling yourself you deserve it for making it through a stressful day. MindfuL Methods

regaiN coNtrol Next time you’re stressed and hanker after a sausage roll, consciously stop, says Georgia Foster, clinical hypnotherapist and author of The Weight Less Mind ( ‘Give yourself the choice. Tell yourself: “I can eat this if I want to, and I can have it any time I want, but do I really want it?” Simply posing this question can act as an emotional circuit breaker, making people realise they are in control and can exercise that control to say no to comfort food,’ she explains.

WrIte It DOWn Keep a food and mood diary to help identify the triggers that lead you to eat when you’re not hungry

food fixes

eat balaNced meals To minimise comfort eating, enjoy meals that include adequate protein, such as lean meat, eggs and low-fat dairy products, and complex carbohydrates, such as wholegrain bread and brown rice,’ advises HFG nutrition consultant Juliette Kellow. ‘These foods release their energy slowly and stimulate appetite hormones that tell your brain your stomach is full.’ serve sNacks oN a plate Make this a rule even when you’re exhausted or stressed. ‘You’re less likely to eat a whole packet of biscuits if you see them on a plate,’ says Juliette. ‘This visual reality check will show you if the portion’s too big.’ eNJoy a relaxiNg ritual iN the eveNiNg At night, our circadian rhythm (or body clock) ramps up hunger, as well as cravings for sweet, starchy and salty foods, reveals US research from Oregon Health & Science University. Instead of snacks, try herbal tea. ‘Use lovely china cups and loose-leaf teas and play calming music to create a relaxing environment,’ suggests Juliette. ‘A warm drink helps you wind down before bed time.’ Try chamomile, which helps you de-stress. Or favoured tea, such as liquorice or fruit, which tastes sweet but contains no sugar.

❛Feelings-driven eating isn’t linked to taste❜

february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 15

l you R h e a Lt h

you’Re in need of nuRtuRe situation #2: You’re feeling lonely or upset and suddenly crave a jam doughnut (just like the ones your parents bought you as a child), or homemade chips drizzled with vinegar (like those you enjoyed with housemates in your student days). MindfuL Methods

enjoy non-food highs ‘Some food cravings are all about nostalgia and the desire to recreate the feelings we had when we were younger and life felt safer and simpler,’ says Georgia. ‘But there are plenty of non-food ways to create similar feelings.’ These may include hugging a partner or friend, listening to uplifting music, going for a power walk or having a good laugh while watching a comedy. ‘Studies show that such activities can help increase mood-lifting brain chemicals.’ become aware Recognise that food can’t solve all your emotional feelings and worries. ‘It’s helpful to be mindful of your thoughts and feelings, then consciously learn to view them with some distance,’ says Georgia. ‘This involves accepting that diffcult thoughts and feelings arise in life. That way, you can recognise and interrupt habitual thinking patterns and actions that can trigger emotional eating, such as the

16 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

thought: “This food will make me feel happier.”’ A better thought might be: “If I eat when I’m feeling down, experience tells me I’m likely to feel worse. But if I sit with my diffcult thoughts and feelings, instead of trying to avoid them by eating, I won’t create additional unpleasant experiences, such as shame and guilt, or consume extra calories. I’ll also have more energy for other activities, such as hobbies and socialising.” If this sounds like a huge leap to make, seek help from a counsellor (fnd one at

food fixes

Boost happy chemicals A hug, a good laugh or humming along to an upbeat tune can do the trick as well as food, say studies

identify happy, but healthier, food memories Think about all those memories involving food that made you feel happy, safe, comforted or nurtured, then write down those – and only those – that were linked with healthier foods. ‘Being given ice cream when you had a sore throat or having a cake each week at your grandma’s shouldn’t make the list,’ says Juliette. ‘Instead, write down memories such as going blackberry picking as a child, having a cup of homemade vegetable soup after playing outside in the cold, or collecting apples from the garden and eating them while still warm from the sun. Then make sure you have all the ingredients to hand so that you can enjoy one of these healthier and “happy” choices at times when only food will do.’

❛Recognise that food

can’t solve emotional feelings and worries❜

The chemisTry of cravings did you know your emotions can cause physical changes in your taste buds and brain chemistry? These can influence your desire for certain comfort foods, particularly those high in sugar and fat. Use this knowledge to help you push the manual override button…

SHORT On SwEET Scientists have recently discovered stress-hormone receptors on the taste buds that are responsible for our experience of favours such as sweet, bitter and umami (a type of savoury taste). When

comparing the taste buds of stressed animals with those of unstressed animals, US-based experts found the stressed had 77% more of these receptors on their taste buds. ‘This opens the door to the idea that when people are stressed, an increase in their cravings for sweet foods could be directly related to stress hormones, which actually change their taste buds’ ability to perceive and enjoy sugar,’ says Dr Eugeni Roura, an expert in the physiology of taste and digestion and senior research fellow at the Centre for Nutrition and Food Sciences

(CNAFS) at The University of Queensland, Australia.

cAn’T GET nO FAT-ISFAcTIOn? ‘Studies suggest stress may dull your ability to taste fat, making you desire fattier foods to satisfy that taste perception on your taste buds,’ says Eugeni. When US-based researchers gave study volunteers full-fat and skimmed milk, they found those who reported mild depression and anxiety in response to psychological questions before the study were less able to taste the diference between the milks. february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 17

the third friend did the same, not only when with the group, but also when alone. on the fip side, when two friends ate more biscuits, the third friend also tucked into more, and ate more when alone as well. time to hang out with a less greedy gang? emPloy friends As your food CoAChes tell your friends about your goal of making healthier food choices and ask them to help you out by not putting temptation in your way. that way, you won’t feel like the killjoy for saying no and they won’t feel as if you’re judging their choices. they’ll also be more likely to support you by making healthy food choices themselves in group situations.

you Want to do as others do

Mindful Methods

Choose your friends wisely! Us research shows that our perception of the ideal body weight is also shaped by those around us, and that we tend to mimic other people’s behaviour. think about how much easier it is to resist pudding when you’re out with slim, healthy friends and none of them orders one (but how much harder it is when you’re with someone larger who openly tucks in). the Us study Friends Don’t Let Friends Eat Cookies found that if two friends restricted their intake of biscuits,

18 healthy food gUide februAry 2015

food fixes tactical MoVes If you’re eating out, order a side salad as your starter – and suggest sharing a pud

Join in on your terms if you don’t want to be pressured by your friends, colleagues or mother-in-law to eat more than you want, have some simple tactics up your sleeve. ‘try ordering a side salad as your starter to fll you up without the calories,’ says Juliette. ‘you can say, “i had a huge work lunch, so i won’t be eating three courses.” when it comes to dessert, agree to share with someone, but have only a few spoonfuls. if you’re trying to avoid the offce birthday cakes or wine, say you’re heading out to dinner straight from work.’

words: stephanie osfield. photos: getty

situAtion #3: you’re catching up with friends over coffee and they all decide that the carrot cake looks too good to miss. you immediately want to ft in with them and have a slice, too.

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you’re bored With What you’re doing situAtion #4: you’re fed up of writing that report, doing the household fling or ploughing through the ironing mountain. you decide to make a cup of tea, but, as the water boils, you start to seek out a sweet or salty snack.

❛Focus on your

food, not your phone or TV ❜ food fixes

Mindful Methods

Assess your hunger everyone understands the temptation to reach for a biscuit or piece of cake when you’re bored. But before grabbing the nearest thing to hand, pause and assess whether you’re truly hungry. Unless you feel ‘empty’ or have a growling stomach you really don’t need to eat anything. the key is to fnd something different to do to occupy your mind so the boredom passes. it’s best to choose something that keeps your hands busy so you can’t dip into the biscuit tin – tidy the kitchen drawer you’ve been meaning to tackle for months, have a go at a sudoko puzzle or paint your nails. Prioritise sleeP lack of sleep is often the reason we have trouble staying on task and fall into the boredom trap. plus, a University of Chicago study found that after just two nights of four hours’ sleep, participants experienced an 18% drop in leptin, the hormone that signals stomach fullness, and a 28% increase in ghrelin, a hormone that increases hunger. the result was a 24% increase in hunger and a 23% increase in appetite, especially for calorie-rich foods with a high carb content.

distract yourself Get busy with your hands so they don’t wander to the biscuit tin

Chew sugAr-free gum ‘when we’re bored, eating is more about giving us something to do to break the monotony,’ explains Juliette. ‘Chewing gum means our mouth is already kept busy so we’re less likely to think about munching something else when boredom strikes.’ studies also confrm that chewing gum helps to reduce snacking. in one study from glasgow, adults consumed 36 fewer calories in a snack after chewing gum for 15 minutes than adults who were gum free. it may not sound much, but do that twice a day for a year and you could lose half a stone. keeP heAlthy oPtions to hAnd ‘if you know you have a tendency to nibble when you’re bored, have low-fat choices nearby,’ says Juliette. ‘grapes, blueberries and satsumas, celery sticks and carrots are good.’ she also recommends turning your sole attention to what you’re eating. ‘focus on your food, not your phone or the tV. having meals or snacks while preoccupied means you may not realise how much you’ve eaten – so you seek out more food.’





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MY jOUrnEY back to good health


Sometimes illness can force us to review our diet and lifestyle. This reader tells how his diet helped to strengthen his immunity after getting rheumatoid arthritis Name andrew Harries age 50 occupatioN media relations offcer


coNDitioN rheumatoid arthritis (an autoimmune disorder)

Andrew lives in Lancashire with his wife and two children. After being diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, the medication he was prescribed prevented the condition getting any worse – but it had an efect on his immune system, so he changed his diet to boost his health.

❛It’s up to me to

keep my immune system strong❜ AT THIS TIME OF YEAr doctors ailments. I wouldn’t change it, predict I’ll catch every bug going though. Taking the arthritis as a result of my weak immune medication means I can work system. When I get a cold I come and function normally. I’ve given down hard and it often leads to up footie, but I still manage to a chest infection, so run three times I always go for the a week and go winter fu jab. Warts, skiing twice a year. verrucas, cold sores I feel pretty lucky. and thrush are But I can only ongoing problems. live life to the full if And, when I fell I make a big effort over while to keep myself skiing and healthy. I have to hurt my watch my weight hand, the and make sure I eat swelling a healthy diet every seemed day. I can’t afford STOck UP On vEG to last for months. to have a ‘bad’ to help give your It turns out these week because body an essential are all side effects of that’s when a bug immunity boost rheumatoid arthritis. could knock me I’d been experiencing terrible for six, and so far I’ve resisted pain in my feet so I was back resorting to supplements. and forth from the physio. I had to get special insoles for my A nEW WAY OF shoes so I could walk more EATInG comfortably, but when the pain was at its worst I was unable to I pass a grocery stall on my way get out of the car. I was referred to work, so stock up on fresh fruit to a specialist fve years ago and to snack on during the day and a bone scan showed the joints loads of veg to eat in the evening. in my feet were under attack. I know that eating foods such as green leafy vegetables (kale’s my favourite), garlic, onions and MEDIcATIOn AT shallots, and making dishes such A PrIcE as vegetable broth (sometimes with chicken) gives my body the I was immediately prescribed immunity boost it needs. It can be high-dose treatments to ease the so tempting to give in and grab a pain, but in turn they affected my bag of chips when you’re tired immunity – hence all the new february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 21

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or busy, but I’m certain that the key to staying healthy and mobile is the way I eat.


immune disorders

wAkE-Up cALL At 50, you become more conscious of how much you put your body through (and how neglectful you may have been of your diet in your 20s, 30s and 40s). Living with arthritis and a weakened immune system has been a stark reminder that I can’t take anything for granted. The treatments have saved my mobility, but it’s down to me to keep my immune system strong so I can fght off other health challenges that come my way.

THE expert’s vIEw Gp dAWn HArper sAys…

IT brInGs A sMILE TO MY FAcE to hear the changes Andrew has made to what he eats. Filling up on fruit and vegetables is the best way to ensure he get all the minerals and vitamins he needs for a healthy immune system – and we should all aim to eat more of these foods, immunity issues or not. It’s also important that Andrew gets a good night’s sleep each night, takes regular exercise (running and skiing are great!) and manages his stress levels to help further strengthen his immune system.

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What are they? The body’s immune system

wE sHOULD ALL AIM to eat more fruit and veg to get the nutrients we need, immunity issues or not

protects us from disease and infection. But when someone sufers from an immune disorder and their defence system becomes dysfunctional, they’re less able to fght of germs and infection. Disorders like this can cause the immune system to be abnormally under or overactive. In cases of immune system overactivity (known as autoimmune disorder), the body attacks and damages its own tissues. Andrew sufers from rheumatoid arthritis (RA), one of the most common autoimmune disorders. Other conditions in this category include lupus (which afects connective tissues), type 1 diabetes (which afects the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas) and multiple sclerosis (which causes chronic infammation of the spinal cord and brain tissues).

What is rheumatoid arthritis? RA is characterised by chronic infammation of the joints. The immune system produces antibodies that attach to the linings of the joints, ready to fght viruses and germs. But when a person has RA, instead of fghting infections these antibodies attack the body’s own tissues, causing lasting infammation and pain. If untreated, RA can cause permanent damage to the joints. Treatments for autoimmune diseases generally focus on reducing immune system activity. These treatments can be highly efective, but they do leave suferers more exposed to illness. Who is affected? Research indicates that many

autoimmune disorders are inherited, but there are some secondary or acquired immune defciencies caused by medication or a virus. RA afects around 690,000 adults in the UK, two to three times more women than men. The problem usually afects hands, feet and wrists, causing swelling and sometimes damage to the cartilage and bone around the joints. Although it can afect people of any age, it’s usually diagnosed in people over 40. If diagnosed and treated early, people with RA can live a much better quality of life, and managing their diet and lifestyle can help to limit the impact on their immune system.

you R h e a Lt h l Vitamin C helps to boost our immune system by increasing the number of natural killer cells that can help to fght infections if they make it through the membranes. while vitamin c won’t stop us getting a cold, taking a 1,000mg supplement a day for a few days does seem to reduce the severity of symptoms and the time that colds hang around for. citrus fruits, berries (fresh or frozen), dark green leafy vegetables and peppers are all naturally rich in vitamin c.

THE nutritionist’s vIEw AmAndA ursell’s diet tips

OUr IMMUnE sYsTEM needs a wide variety of nutrients to work optimally. Even when the defciency of certain vitamins and minerals is relatively mild, our immune system responses can be altered. This was especially so for Andrew, whose immunity was already suppressed by his rA medication. poor nutrition can make us more prone to infections, which, once contracted, can be more severe and resilient than if we ate a healthy, balanced diet. The vitamins and minerals that have the biggest infuence on our immune system are zinc, selenium, iron, copper, vitamins A, c, D and E. some of these nutrients help our bodies to keep the membranes in our mouths, noses, airways, lungs and skin in good condition. This, in turn, can help physically stop the entry of viruses and bacteria. Vitamin a is especially important in keeping the linings of our airways healthy, which can cut the risk of catching the common cold. we get vitamin A directly from foods such as full-fat dairy. but for a lower-fat option, eat orange, yellow and green fruit and veg (eg carrots, mangoes, orange-feshed melon, sweet potatoes, kale and spinach) – they contain beta-carotene, which the body converts into this vital vitamin.

sELEnIUM pLAYs A kEY role in strong immunity, but statistics show we aren’t getting enough. Increase your intake by eating more nuts and wholegrains

Vitamin D seems to help stimulate potent antimicrobial proteins in the respiratory tract, which help to fght airborne infections such as fu. It’s very important Andrew seeks out vitamin-D rich foods, such as oil-rich fsh, eggs, fortifed breakfast cereals and yogurts, especially in winter when our summer stores of this nutrient are used up (vitamin D is made in the body when skin is exposed to sunlight). Vitamin e is another nutrient that’s essential for a healthy immune system, especially as we age and our immune system naturally starts to weaken. It’s found in vegetable oil, avocado, nuts, seeds and wholegrains. ZinC, like vitamin A, is crucial for the integrity of mucous membranes to help stop infections getting into the body. It also appears to have a direct antiviral effect and is the only nutrient shown in research to reduce the actual incidence of colds. Zinc is present in red meats such as lean beef and lamb, tinned crab and sardines, reduced-fat milk, wholegrain cereals and pumpkin seeds. SeLenium mops up free radicals caused by infection. The latest Uk national Diet and nutrition survey data reveals intakes of selenium are below the proposed amount, with many of us not even meeting the ‘lower recommended intake’ so compromising our immunity. brazil nuts are the best source of selenium – around three a day give us our daily need. Other good food sources include fsh, lean red meat, wholegrain cereals, walnuts and eggs. february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 23

the beginner’s guide to

healthy eating

Eat this, don’t touch that, avoid those at all costs… If you’re tired of mixed messages from self-styled ‘diet gurus’, use our quick nutrition refresher pIzzA, CHOCOLATE, CHIpS AnD WInE – none of these foods in itself prevents you staying slim, ft and healthy. Experts agree we can still have our favourite fatty, sugary and salty foods, as long as they’re enjoyed in moderation, as part of an overall healthy, balanced diet. Ah, but there’s that term ‘balanced diet’ again – what does it mean? In recent years, news stories about ‘superfoods’, the latest diet trend or ingredients to avoid like the plague have

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turned nutrition into a complicated (and lucrative) business. Added to this, an increasing number of A-list celebs, TV presenters and self-proclaimed ‘experts’ have been hailed as diet gurus, despite having no nutrition qualifcations. As a result, we’ve been misled into believing certain ways of eating or specifc ingredients are healthier than they really are. Time to go back to the facts – and, we assure you, your healthy eating plan will take care of itself.

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up to the In SpITE OF so much confusion, qualifed dietitians and nutritionists maintain the core principles of a healthy, balanced diet are actually quite straightforward. In general, we should eat more fruit, veg and fresh, starchy and fbre-rich foods, and fewer sugary, salty, fatty and processed foods. This is all neatly summed up by public Health England’s Eatwell plate, which illustrates fve food groups and the proportions that make up a balanced diet (see picture, left). To stay healthy, we should eat foods from the largest groups most often and limit those from the smallest group. The beauty of the Eatwell plate is it applies to most people, slim or overweight, vegetarian or meat eating, as well as women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. It’s also suitable for children aged fve and over – children under two have different nutritional needs to support growth, but between the ages of two and fve they should gradually start eating in accordance with the Eatwell plate.

your nutrition Fruit and vegetables

pick and Mix Whether fresh, frozen or tinned, you need a variety of fruit and veg to get all the different nutrients

SO WHAT mAkES Up THE EATWELL pLATE? Fruit and vegetables bread, rice, potatoes, pasta and other starchy Foods Milk and dairy Foods Meat, Fish, eggs, beans and other non-dairy sources oF protein Food and drinks high in Fat and/or sugar

This group covers all fruits and veg, including fresh, frozen, tinned and dried products, and unsweetened fruit juice. Eat fve servings (80g each) every day, ideally different ones. pulses, such as lentils and beans, can be counted as one of the portions, but as they contain a similar range of nutrients to meat, they’re included in the protein proportion of the Eatwell plate. potatoes don’t count as they’re a starchy food (see p26). With fruit juice, a 150ml glass counts as only one portion, regardless of how much you drink, as it doesn’t contain the fbre of the whole fruit.

typical serving sizes l

1 piece of fruit such as an apple, banana or pear 1 cereal bowl of salad l 3tbsp vegetables l

the myth To stay healthy, I need to eat weird and wonderful fruit and veg.

the truth There’s no need to hunt for expensive sprouted seeds or exotic leaves. Instead, aim to eat a variety of fruit and veg, and vary your choices each day, to ensure you get a wide range of minerals and vitamins. Nutrition tips Citrus fruits, fruit juices and berries provide vitamin C; green leafy veg provide vitamin C, iron and folate (a B vitamin); and carrots, apricots and tomatoes provide beta-carotene, which the body uses to make vitamin A.

the myth Only fresh produce will do. the truth All fruit and veg, including frozen, dried and tinned, are as good. In fact, frozen products may have more nutrients than ‘fresh’ items that have been stored for weeks before reaching the shelves. Nutrition tips Buy tinned veg in water, not brine, and fruit in juice, not syrup. Dried fruit are high in sugar, so eat them in moderation (a 30g portion counts as one of your fve-a-day). february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 25

The myth Carbs such as bread, potatoes and pasta are fattening.

The truth Continuously take in more calories than you need and you’ll gain weight, regardless of where those extra calories come from. In fact, gram for gram, carbs contain half the calories of fat. spreading bread with butter or frying potatoes in oil to make chips can double the calorie count while providing no other nutrients – and it has little impact on that feeling of fullness. Nutrition tips Keep carbs low in fat – use low-fat spread instead of butter on bread, bake or boil potatoes rather than frying, and serve pasta with tomato sauces rather than any made with cream.

Bread, rice, potatoes, pasta and other starchy foods Foods in this category include breakfast cereals, bread, rice, potatoes, pasta, noodles, yams, oats and grains such as millet, spelt, couscous, bulgur wheat and pearl barley. Include these foods with every meal.

Milk and dairy foods …That’s cheese, yogurt, fromage frais and quark. Eat two or three low-fat servings a day.

Typical serving sizes 2 slices of bread

l a tennis-ball-size

serving of pasta, rice, noodles or couscous l a cereal bowl of porridge l a handful of breakfast cereal

Typical serving sizes l

200ml milk (125–150g) pot of yogurt l a small matchbox-size piece of cheese (30g) l a small

The myth Cutting carbs

keeps you healthy and slim.

The truth Many carb-rich

foods contain vitamins, minerals and fbre, so avoiding these foods may leave you short on essential nutrients. some diet ‘gurus’ believe cutting carbs will turn your body into a more effcient fat-burning machine, but there’s insuffcient evidence to prove this. In reality, ditching carbs means you’re likely to feel hungry, tired and irritable, and suffer headaches and constipation. Not exactly a recipe for good health! Nutrition tips swap white for brown. Choose branfakes over cornfakes, wholewheat over white pasta and brown over white rice. Their higher fbre content will help to keep your blood sugar levels steady for longer, so you don’t end up craving biscuits and chocolate later.

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The myth You should avoid dairy products as they’re full of fat.

The truth There are plenty of low-fat dairy products to choose from, which are also lower in calories and saturates. Try skimmed or 1% fat milk, reduced-fat cheese and fat-free yogurts. Nutrition tips Low-fat dairy products contain all the nutrients of the full-fat alternatives. They’re packed with calcium, a good intake of which is important for keeping bones and teeth strong, and are a good source of protein and B vitamins. DEAr DAIrY A pot of low-fat yogurt or fromage frais counts as one portion

The myth Soya milk is healthier than cow’s milk. The truth while some research suggests soya products have several health benefts, such as helping to lower cholesterol and easing some of the symptoms linked with the menopause, this doesn’t mean you need to ditch dairy. Nutrition tips Have several servings of dairy products each day and aim to incorporate more soya products into your diet. Be sure to choose soya products fortifed with calcium if you’re planning to use them in place of dairy products.



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meals, and low in certain nutrients, especially iron. Nutrition tips If you’re vegetarian, watch your fat intake. Eat beans, lentils, nuts and seeds to ensure you get enough protein, iron and other nutrients typically found in this food group.

foods and drinks high in fat and/or sugar

Meat, fish, eggs, Beans and other non-dairy sources of protein Eat two servings a day of lean meat, poultry, fsh, eggs, beans, nuts or seeds. Plus you should have at least two portions of fsh each week, at least one of which should be oil rich.

Oils, spreading fats, mayonnaise, cream, oily salad dressings, cakes, biscuits, puddings, crisps, pastries, ice cream, savoury snacks, sugar, preserves, confectionery and sugary drinks are fne to include as part of a healthy, balanced diet – but eat them in small amounts.

Typical serving sizes

Typical serving sizes

l a piece

l a small

of red meat, chicken or fsh the size of a deck of cards l 1–2 eggs l 3 heaped tbsp beans or lentils l a small handful of nuts or seeds

The myth You should avoid red meat as it’s high in fat.

The truth red meat is leaner today than ever, thanks to new breeding programmes and better preparation techniques that remove more fat. Lean lamb contains 8% fat, lean beef has 5% fat and lean pork has 4%. remember, not all fat is bad (see below) – almost half the fat in red meat is the heart-healthy monounsaturated kind. Nutrition tips There’s no need to avoid red meat. It’s an excellent source of iron, needed to prevent anaemia. But watch portions – aim for no more than 500g cooked red meat a week (70g a day).

The myth Vegetarian diets are healthier.

The truth Veggie diets can still be high in fat if they contain a lot of cheese, pastry and ready

packet of sweets or bar of chocolate slice of cake l 2 small biscuits l 1tbsp mayo, salad dressing or olive oil l a small packet of crisps l a small

swEET TOOTH? There’s no need to cut sugar out of your diet completely, but keep it as an occasional treat

The myth Avoid sugar at all costs, especially sweets and chocolate.

The truth Confectionery isn’t the only high sugar culprit – a large amount of the sugar in our diet is hidden in foods such as ketchup and ready meals. Plus we consume large amounts of sugar in the form of fzzy drinks, fruit juices and alcohol. Nutrition tips Eat fewer sweet foods such as jam, honey, sweets, cakes, chocolates and biscuits, don’t add sugar to tea or coffee, and swap fzzy drinks for sugar-free options (water is best). scan the ingredients list on packaging for added sugars, too – anything ending in ‘ose’, such as glucose, sucrose, maltose or fructose, is a type of sugar. The myth All fat is bad. The truth saturated fats increase the risk of heart disease, but foods rich in monounsaturates may actually improve heart health. Omega-3 fats present in oil-rich fsh are also a key part of a healthy diet. Nutrition tips It’s important to cut down on the total amount of fat we eat – but it’s also vital to look at the types of fat and other nutrients in foods. swapping butter for olive oil and crisps for a few unsalted nuts will boost monounsaturates, vitamins and minerals. february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 27

How to make your diet

baby ready

When planning a pregnancy, rethinking your diet could help your chances. Fertility, pregnancy and birth expert Zita West explains the link between nutrition and conception 28 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

THE LATEST nATIOnAL DIET AnD nUTrITIOn SUrVEY in the UK reveals that many women of child-bearing age have insuffcient intakes of key nutrients, such as vitamin D, folate, iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium, zinc, selenium and iodine. At the same time, many of us fail to eat the recommended two portions of fsh a week, so we’re likely to be short on omega-3 fats, and we increasingly rely on processed convenience foods rather than fresh, whole foods. Stress and other unhealthy lifestyle habits further deplete nutrients in our bodies – all of which can have an effect on our fertility. But it isn’t hard to redress the balance. Here’s how to get your body baby ready.

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The key IT’S nOT OnLY YOUr mUScLES, hormones and the neurotransmitters in your brain that need protein – eggs and sperm need it, too. High-quality, protein-rich foods, such as lean meat and poultry as well as fsh, eggs and soya beans, contain all eight essential amino acids (building blocks for protein). Your body can’t manufacture these amino acids, so they must come from your diet. You should include one portion (about the size of your fst) of protein in every meal.


For better or worse

WOmEn nEED FAT for the healthy production of hormones. Healthy fats, such as those in oil-rich fsh and seeds, stimulate the action of benefcial prostaglandins within the body. These fat cells play a critical role in menstruation, conception, pregnancy and labour. Unhealthy fats, such as saturated fats and trans fats are, quite simply, villains that hamper fertility! It’s better to swap these for more monounsaturated fat (better for your heart, too).

Protein sources for non-meat eaters As protein is such a key element of the fertility diet, to make healthy eggs and sperm, it’s important for vegans and vegetarians to know where to fnd it. Vegetarians can easily get enough if they eat eggs and dairy foods. But if you follow a vegan diet you’ll need to eat a range of plant proteins to ensure you get all the essential amino acids you need. Beans, pulses, nuts and seeds are all good vegan sources, while vegetarians can add in eggs and dairy foods, too. You can also try protein powders, such as hemp, pea and sprouted-seedbased powders. Finally, be aware that vegetarians and vegans may be more prone to other nutritional defciencies that can affect fertility, including low levels of iodine, iron, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin B12 and vitamin D. A supplement with a multivitamin and mineral formula, especially designed for pregnancy, will make sure you keep all your vitamin and mineral levels up (vegans may also need to take a specifc vitamin B12 supplement).

Essential fatty acids (EFAs)

VITAmInS AnD mInErALS Most women will beneft from taking a supplement specially designed for pregnancy

EFAs are healthy fats your body can’t produce, so they must come from your diet. There are several kinds, but the most important for fertility and conception are omega-3 fats. not only are these crucial for hormone production, but they also help to modulate the immune system, reduce infammation and boost mood. Omega-3 fats help to balance compounds in the body known as eicosanoids, which may be linked to an increased risk of miscarriage. Studies of pregnant women who consume large amounts of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, such as EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), both found in fsh oil, tend to carry their babies for longer and have a lower rate of premature birth.

Saturated fats Typically found in animal and full-fat dairy products, saturates can interfere with cell membranes (including those involved in reproduction) if eaten to excess, and may also reduce the quantity and quality of sperm.

Trans fats Found in processed or fried foods, trans fats (also known as hydrogenated or partially february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 29

hydrogenated fats) prevent the body making good use of essential fats and are generally harmful for all aspects of health, including fertility.

in avocados and most nuts and seeds. Omega-3-rich foods include oil-rich fsh (such as mackerel, salmon and sardines), rapeseed oil, linseeds (faxseeds), chia, hemp and pumpkin seeds, and walnuts. Another type of essential fat, omega-6, occurs in raw seeds, especially chia, hemp, pumpkin, sesame and sunfower seeds, and their oils.

So how much fat do you need? Fats should comprise around 30% of the calories in your diet – this works out at a maximum intake of approximately 70g fat per day for women and 95g per day for men. This should come mainly from foods rich in EFAs and monounsaturated fats. no more than 10% of calories should come from saturates (that’s a maximum of around 20g a day for women and 30g a day for men). It’s best to avoid foods that contain trans fats altogether. As a guide to what this means in practice, a 140g serving of grilled salmon has 22g fat, 1 small avocado contains 20g fat and 1tbsp olive oil contains 11g fat. Monounsaturated fats include olive oil, rapeseed oil and rice bran oil, as well as the natural oils

Full-fat dairy: the exception to the rule Despite the fact that high intakes of saturates generally hinder fertility, when it comes to dairy products, there’s evidence to suggest that women who are struggling to get pregnant may be better off opting for full-fat rather than low-fat dairy. In one extensive study in the USA, women who ate two or more low-fat dairy products a day were twice as likely to have problems conceiving. Ovulation rates were far better among those who used full-fat dairy.

The HFG his ’n’ hers fertility plan


Get to a healthy weight

You both need to get in shape. Being overweight can cause hormonal imbalances that interfere with ovulation in women and can affect sperm count in men. The more overweight you are, the more likely you are to have dificulties. But make sure you’re not too slim, either! Being underweight causes the body to shut down the reproductive system, making it harder to conceive.


Limit booze and caffeine

Alcohol affects sperm DNA and can increase both the time it takes to conceive and the risk of miscarriage, so limit booze to one to two units*, no more than two to three times a week. If you drink a lot of caffeine, cut down on this, too. It can increase genetic damage in sperm, hinder women’s chances of conceiving, and increase the risk of miscarriage.

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enjoy fish

Health experts recommend we eat two portions of fsh a week, one of which should be oil rich. But when you’re trying for a baby or pregnant, there are rules to follow, such as limiting consumption of tinned tuna to four tins a week (it contains higher levels of mercury than other fish). Check the details at nhs. uk/livewell/ goodfood/pages/ fish-shellfish.aspx.


Fill up on fruit and veg

Get your five-a-day – fruit and veg are packed with antioxidants such as vitamins C and E and selenium, which help to mop up an excess of free radicals that can damage eggs and sperm and age them prematurely. (See Antioxidants, above.)

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getting sunburnt, can also cause free-radical damage (also known as oxidative stress). Male infertility, endometriosis and damage to egg cells and to sperm have all been linked with the action of free radicals – but antioxidants are there to fght back. There are two types: endogenous, which are made by the body; and exogenous, which you get from diet and supplements.

The energy bank YOUr bODY nEEDS carbohydrates for energy, but the quality of those carbs is critical. complex carbs, found in beans, pulses, vegetables, wholegrains and some fruits, such as berries and citrus fruits, are slowly broken down into glucose and are steadily released into the blood stream, helping to keep blood sugar levels stable. The simple carbohydrates found in sugary foods and drinks and processed fruit juices release sugar into the blood stream rapidly, which means the pancreas has to pump out large amounts of insulin to deal with all the excess sugar. If this happens frequently, it can result in insulin resistance, a precursor for type 2 diabetes and a condition that contributes to an increased risk of pregnancy complications. Insulin resistance is also linked closely with polycystic ovary syndrome (pcOS), which can affect fertility.

Turn to fruit and veg, which are full of powerful phytonutrients (plant nutrients) that are potent antioxidants. The darker or brighter the colour of the fruit or vegetable, the greater its antioxidant power. nuts and seeds, herbs, spices (particularly turmeric) and green tea are also good sources of antioxidants.

antioxidants pHOTOS: GETTY, THInkSTOck

Your protectors AS pArT OF THE bODY’S nOrMAL metabolic processes, we produce free radicals, unstable molecules that damage otherwise healthy cells. Toxins, pollution and a poor lifestyle, including smoking and


take a pregnancy supplement


*A SMALL (125ML) GLASS OF 12% AbV wInE IS 1.5 UnITS

ditch the junk

Processed foods often contain trans fats, refined sugars, saturates and high amounts of calories, which, over time, can make us overweight and therefore more likely to have difculty conceiving. These foods are usually very low in nutrients, too – and poor intakes of vitamins and minerals can affect fertility.

All women of conception age are advised to take a 400mcg supplement of folate each day up to and including the 12th week of pregnancy, to reduce the risk of neural tube defects in the baby. If you’re struggling to conceive, consider a specialist supplement, such as Vitabiotics Pregnacare His & Her Conception (£18.35 for a 30-day supply for you both),

GET rEADY You’re going to need energy… Find it in complex carbs

nobody’s peRFeCt

80:20 rule

SO… FrOM nOw On, YOUr DIET cOnSISTS OF nothing but good protein, good fats, good carbs, an abundance of antioxidants – and no more chocolate bars, fzzy drinks, crisps and cakes... well, yes, in a perfect world. but I don’t want you to be perfect; I want you to be realistic. For many of us, food, mood and hormones are interlinked, so you may crave different foods at certain times in your cycle. I recommend an 80:20 approach – stick to my recommendations 80% of the time and don’t worry if you occasionally slip up (that is, you have 20% leeway). l Adapted from Eat Yourself pregnant by Zita West (Nourish, £14.99). february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 31

Q & A expert advice

Bridget Benelam, Juliette Kellow and Phil Mundy discuss cooking veg with bicarb, a diet for IBS sufferers, omega-rich fsh and gourmet salts

The BicArB effecT


I don’t like steamed veg, so I boil them. Like my mum, I put bicarbonate of soda into the water with green veg such as broccoli to keep their colour and cook them more quickly. But I’ve now heard bicarb strips away the vitamins. Is this right?

helping you to eat Right

Pam Roberts, via email

hFg recipe consultant phil Mundy says: You’ve heard right! When bicarb is added to water it destroys water-soluble nutrients such as vitamin C and some B vitamins. Boiling veg has the

same effect – the vitamins leach into the cooking water and are sensitive to high temperatures. That’s why nutritionists suggest steaming rather than boiling – shorter cooking times and no direct contact with water mean veg usually retain more nutrients. And there’s less temptation to add salt. If you really can’t give up boiling your veg, use the minimum amount of water and cook for as short a time as possible. But avoid adding salt or bicarb to the water. Cook the veg until they’re just tender – green veg usually only lose colour when overcooked.

you R h e a lt h l

following The fodmAp dieT

where To find omegA-3 fATs



I know omega-3 fats are good for our hearts but I’m not keen on oil-rich varieties of fsh, such as kippers and sardines. What should I eat? Natalie King

I have IBS and have been put on a FODMAP diet. As part of this I’ve been told to avoid foods containing High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS). What is this and how do I know whether a food contains it?

Ros Parker

hFg expert Bridget Benelam says: The FODMAP diet that you’ve been put on has been shown to be effective for many IBS sufferers, but it can be hard to follow without expert help, and works best coupled with dietary advice from an NHS or private dietitian. HFCS is a syrup made from maize starch that usually contains 55% fructose and 45% glucose. It’s widely used in the US but less so in Europe (sucrose or standard table sugar is more commonly found in UK products). In the EU, HFCS is called Fructose-Glucose Syrup (where fructose makes up more than 50% of the syrup). If the syrup contains less than 50% fructose, it’s called GlucoseFructose Syrup (or sometimes isoglucose). The reason the FODMAP diet recommends avoiding HFCS is that fructose is one of the components linked to symptoms of IBS. When you’re suffering from IBS, it’s really important to fnd a healthy diet that provides all the essential nutrients needed. Do you have a For more questIon you’D information on the LIke to ask our FODMAP diet, visit experts? emaIL the King’s College Info@heaLthy London website (kcl.

❛isFructose linked

to symptoms of IBS ❜



hFg nutritionist Juliette Kellow says: Try fresh or tinned mackerel, trout and salmon, and fresh tuna. Also, shellfsh such as crab, mussels and prawns are rich in omega-3 fats. Even white fsh can contain signifcant amounts. A 170g serving of seabass (uncooked weight) provides almost all the recommended daily quota. Look at fshisthedish. for more information, including a 28-day plan to help you achieve your weekly needs. You can top up your intake with plant foods such as nuts, walnuts, faxseeds and rapeseed oil, although the omega-3s they contain are different from those in fsh. The body converts them to the type found in fsh, but the process isn’t very effcient.

is posh sAlT BeTTer?

I hear people raving about gourmet Q salts, such as pink salt and rock salt. Are these better for you than regular salt? Jade Morrison

Juliette says: It’s the sodium in salt that raises our blood pressure and damages health – that’s why health experts recommend we reduce our intake to no more than 6g a day. While many chefs use ‘posh’ varieties – and there are plenty, including coarse, fne, sea, rock, Cornish and Himalayan salt, as well as blends that contain exotic ingredients such as truffe and vanilla – the truth is they contain a similar amount of sodium to regular table or cooking salt, so they’re no better for us. The problem is many of the claims made on the packaging of gourmet salts would lead us to believe otherwise. A survey carried out by campaign group Consensus Action on Salt and Health (CASH) and Which? found that, thanks to on-pack claims that gourmet salts are ‘natural’, ‘contain minerals’ or offer a ‘tastier and healthier alternative’ to table salt, a massive 24% of adults think they’re healthier and 39% believe they’re more natural. Even more worrying is that we tend to use more of these salts because the crystal sizes are larger. The key to better health is to stop adding any type of salt to your meals, and to eat fewer salty foods. february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 33

l you R h e a lt h

Why Winter could be the slim season

If the cold weather has frozen your weight-loss plans, don’t give up! These chillier months could actually give you the slimming edge bY THIs sTAGE In THE wInTEr, mAnY OF Us have given in to hibernation. but that could mean we’re missing a trick. Up-to-the minute research has shown the season is good for us, helping to send our metabolism into overdrive, leading us to burn more calories than at any other time of

34 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

year. Key to winter’s slimming benefts is learning to embrace it, by exposing ourselves to cooler temperatures, says Peta bee, author of a new book, The Ice Diet. It’s all to do with a substance called brown fat, which is stored in the body and, when activated, has been found to burn calories.

you R h e a lt h l

Fire up your food

Igniting your taste buds by adding hot peppers to winter-warmer dishes is a proven way to boost your calorie burn. Peppers contain capsaicinoids, chemicals that have been shown to have powerful effects on our metabolism and the amount of food we eat. In one study, daily consumption of capsaicinoids before meals led to people selecting food containing 74 fewer calories.

TrIm – bY DEGrEEs

A simple rule of thumb is never to walk around the house in a T-shirt when the heating is on. If you can, it must be way too warm (winter is meant to be colder and you’re supposed to throw on a jumper to keep warm!). Scientifc studies show that turning down the heating by a couple of degrees can increase daily calorie burn by 6%. Inhabiting a moderately cool room (19–20°C) daily can lead to a metabolic boost of about 20%. That’s an extra 2,800 calories a week burned by men and 2,100 a week by women – the calorie-burning equivalent of running a marathon a week.

Have a ‘contrast’ shower Shower power Short bursts of cold water can help burn calories

we’re not asking you to take a freezing cold shower in February. but experts think exposing the body to short blasts of cooler water can boost the metabolism by kickstarting the caloriegobbling action of good brown fat. ray Cronise, a former nAsA scientist, who has done studies on cooling methods with scientists at Harvard University, suggests a ‘contrast’ shower in which you fnish with 10 alternating 10-second bursts of warm and cold water. Or try a shorter one of fve x 10-second bursts. Like exercise, it takes time to adjust to this (and it’s not advised for anyone with heart problems or on medication). You may prefer to try just one cool 1–2 min blast after a warm shower. february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 35

Watch the layers


Our genetic blueprint evolved to send our metabolism soaring when we’re exposed to cooler temperatures, helping to burn calories. We should protect our extremities in very cold weather, but it isn’t a good idea to layer up beyond our needs. Prioritise ear muffs or a hat, gloves and socks over woolly jumpers. When walking, remember that you’ll feel warmer than when you frst set out within a relatively short time.

The appeal of baked apple

One of the most satisfying comfort puds is a fne baked apple. And they make a healthy dessert for more than one reason – as long as you eat the peel. A natural substance found in apple peel, called ursolic acid, seems to fre up calorie burning. A study on mice that were given a supplement containing ursolic acid showed they ate more than their counterparts on a normal diet but lost weight and gained lean muscle tissue. Can’t be bad.

36 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

outside chance Embrace the cold Ð wear the right gear and go for a walk, or open the window for a sharp blast

However cold, there’s no better place to get brown fat doing what it’s good at – busting calories – than the great outdoors. Make a concerted effort to spend at least the equivalent of five to 10 minutes outside for every one of your waking hours. For most people that’s only around one to two hours a day. If it’s simply too cold, don’t give up: another efective means of cold exposure is through short, sharp blasts of cold air. You can do this by stepping outside for a few seconds on a frosty day or opening a window.

you r h e a Lt h l



Eat porridge, drink milk

Using thermal-imaging techniques, Professor michael Symonds of nottingham University’s medical school has shown that drinking milk leads to a boost in brown fat temperature and calorie burning shortly afterwards. Other research found porridge is a metabolic booster. Some thermal images taken before and after a subject ate a breakfast of warm porridge made with 25g oats, 70ml full-fat milk and brown sugar showed brown fat’s temperature rose fve minutes after eating.

the milky way Drinking milk may actually help to burn calories

Just as bad as walking around in a T-shirt is sleeping in an overheated room. Many of us crank our bedroom heating up to a positively toasty 27°C. But researchers at the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) found that four weeks of sleeping in a 19°C bedroom helped a group of men to double their concentrations of brown fat so they burned calories while sleeping. The men also used up extra calories throughout the day and there were positive changes in their insulin sensitivity, meaning their ability to control blood sugar improved.

Read more in The Ice Diet by Peta Bee, (Penguin, £7.99), out now. february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 37

Thinking about starting a family?

Specially formulated for when trying for a baby You’ve stopped smoking, given up alcohol and are eating healthily - but what else can be done to help prepare your body for conception? Vitabiotics Pregnacare®, the UK’s most trusted pregnancy supplement range, has developed Pregnacare® Conception to provide nutritional support when trying for a baby including vitamin B12, plus 400mcg folic acid as recommended by Health Departments for all women who are trying to conceive. Supplemental folic acid increases maternal folate status1. Low maternal folate status is a risk factor in the development of neural tube defects in the developing foetus. The carefully balanced formula of 21 micronutrients helps to safeguard your diet and also includes zinc which contributes to normal fertility and reproduction.

Visit for tips and advice when trying for a baby. FOR INNOVATION IN DEVELOPMENT & RESEARCH OF THE PREGNACARE® RANGE.



Voted Favourite Pregnancy Supplement by Boots Customers




From , Superdrug, Holland & Barrett, leading supermarkets, chemists, health stores & Stockists may vary. 1This product is designed for women of a child bearing age. The beneficial effect is obtained from a supplemental intake of 400µg for at least once month before and up to three months after conception. 2Based on a survey of 1000 midwives. For more information on this research, please visit *UK independent sales value data. IRI 52 w/e 6th Sept, 2014


His & Her


In convenient dual pack.

r ecipes

spicy suppers


twists on mash


sweet bakes

Sou P - E R E a S y

Find this warming bowlful with cheesy toast in our one shop for seven meals feature. We’ve compiled the shopping and storecupboard list so you can plan a week’s worth of healthy eating with no hassle p58

february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 39

l r ec i pe s


Family meals ted! sor

Every month, we bring you a batch of easy and healthy midweek suppers, with meat, chicken, fsh and veggie options, to please everyone

Mustard steaks with layered vegetable bake

40 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

r ec i pe s l

Mustard steaks with layered vegetable bake prep 15 min cook 1 hr 35 min + resting serves 4 Cooking oil spray 500g potatoes, scrubbed and cut into thin slices 500g butternut squash, peeled, seeded and thinly sliced 2 courgettes, trimmed and thinly sliced 4 tomatoes, thinly sliced 1½tbsp chopped fresh thyme leaves 4tbsp white wine or dry sherry 30g parmesan, fnely grated 1tbsp wholegrain mustard 1tbsp chopped fresh fatleaf parsley 4 x 125g lean fllet or rump steaks, trimmed 50g rocket, to serve 1 Heat the oven to 190°C/fan 170°C/gas 5. Spray a 1.75 litre ovenproof dish with a little oil. Layer the potato, squash, courgette and tomato slices in the prepared dish, sprinkling thyme between the layers and fnishing with a layer of potato. 2 Pour the wine or sherry over the vegetables, cover the dish with foil and cook in the oven for 1 hr 15 min. Remove the foil, sprinkle over the parmesan and cook, uncovered, for a further 15–20 min until the surface is golden and the vegetables are tender when pierced with a skewer. Remove the dish from the oven and leave to rest for 5 min. 3 Meanwhile, combine the mustard and parsley in a small bowl. Put a large non-stick frying pan over a high heat and spray with oil. Add the steaks and cook for 2–3 min. Turn the steaks and spread the mustard mixture on to the cooked sides. Cook for another 2–3 min, or until done to your liking. Remove from the pan,

Tofu and vegetable soba noodle salad

cover loosely with foil to keep warm and leave to rest for 3 min. 4 Serve the steaks with the vegetable bake, topped with a handful of rocket. LOW CAL













Per serving l 385kcal l 9.3g sugar l 36g protein l 7.3g fbre l 11.6g fat l 0.5g salt l 5.2g saturates l 203mg calcium l 33.7g carbs l 5.4mg iron

Tofu and vegetable soba noodle salad prep 10 min cook 10 min serves 4 250g mangetout, trimmed and thinly sliced 180g soba noodles Cooking oil spray 200g packet marinated or smoked tofu, thinly sliced 2 large carrots, peeled and cut into matchsticks 1 red pepper, seeded and thinly sliced 50g watercress

1½tbsp reduced-salt soy sauce 1½tbsp mirin 2tsp toasted sesame oil 1 Put the mangetout in a large heatproof bowl, cover with boiling water and blanch for 20 sec. Drain and refresh under cold running water, then drain again. 2 Cook the noodles according to the pack instructions until al dente. Drain and refresh under cold running water, then drain again. 3 Spray a frying pan with oil, add the tofu and cook for 2–3 min. 4 Put the mangetout and noodles in a salad bowl with the carrots, pepper, watercress and warm tofu. 5 Combine the soy sauce, mirin and sesame oil in a small bowl. Add to the noodle mixture, toss lightly to combine, then serve. LOW CAL HIGH












Per serving l 294kcal l 12g sugar l 16.9g protein l 7g fbre l 10.9g fat l 1.6g salt l 1.6g saturates l 251mg calcium l 34.4g carbs l 2.1mg iron february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 41

l r ec i pe s Grilled chicken, lentil and pea salad














Per serving l 301kcal l 39.6g protein l 6.5g fat l 2.9g saturates l 21.7g carbs

l 8.6g sugar l 11.6g fbre l 1.2g salt l 211mg calcium l 5.2mg iron

Quinoa stuffed vegetables prep 15 min cook 55 min serves 4

Grilled chicken, lentil and pea salad prep 15 min cook 10 min serves 4 400g skinless chicken breasts Cooking oil spray 250g frozen peas, thawed 250g sugar snap peas, trimmed 250g mangetout, trimmed 400g tin lentils in water, drained 75g reduced-fat feta, crumbled 100g baby spinach Juice 1 lemon 1tsp honey 1tsp dijon mustard 2tsp extra-virgin olive oil 1 Put the chicken breasts between 2 sheets of baking paper and fatten to about 1cm thickness with a meat mallet or rolling pin. 2 Spray a large non-stick griddle pan with oil and put over a medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook for 4 min on each side or until golden brown and cooked through. Transfer to a chopping board and leave to cool slightly. 3 Meanwhile, bring a medium pan of water to the boil. Add the peas, sugar snap peas and mangetout and cook for 1 min

42 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

until bright green and just tender. Drain, refresh under cold running water, then drain again. 4 Put the drained veg in a salad bowl with the lentils, feta and spinach and toss to combine. 5 Mix the lemon juice, honey, mustard and olive oil in a small bowl or jug, to make a dressing. 6 Divide the salad among four serving plates. Cut the chicken into strips, then divide among the plates. Season with ground black pepper and serve with the dressing on the side. Quinoa stuffed vegetables

125g quinoa, rinsed and drained 2tsp reduced-salt vegetable stock powder 4 large vine-ripened tomatoes 2 small (250g each) aubergines Cooking oil spray 1 red onion, fnely chopped 2 garlic cloves, crushed 2tsp sweet paprika ½tsp dried red chilli fakes 100g reduced-fat feta, crumbled 2tbsp fnely chopped coriander, plus extra leaves to garnish 2 large peppers, halved lengthways and deseeded

r ec i pe s l 1 Heat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C fan/gas 4. Line a large baking tray with non-stick baking paper. Put the quinoa into a small pan with 350ml boiling water and the stock powder and bring back to the boil. Reduce the heat to low, then cover and simmer for 12–15 min or until the water has been absorbed. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool slightly. 2 Meanwhile, cut the tops off each tomato. Scoop out the fesh and pulp, leaving a 1cm-thick shell, and roughly chop the fesh. Halve each aubergine lengthways, scoop out the fesh, leaving a 1cm shell, and fnely chop the fesh. 3 Put a large non-stick frying pan over a medium heat and spray with oil. Add the onion and aubergine fesh and cook, stirring occasionally, for 7–8 min until soft. Add the tomato fesh and pulp, the garlic, paprika and chilli fakes and cook for 2 min more. 4 Put the onion mixture into a large bowl with the cooled quinoa, the feta and coriander. Stir until the ingredients are well combined and season with black pepper. 5 Stuff the tomato, pepper and aubergine shells with the quinoa mixture. Put the stuffed peppers and aubergines into the prepared tray and cook in the oven for 15 min. Add the stuffed tomatoes to the tray and cook for a further 20–25 min until the veg are tender and the stuffng is golden. Serve garnished with coriander leaves. LOW CAL







4 5-A-DAY




Per serving l 251kcal l 14.1g sugar l 12.6g protein l 9.6g fbre l 6.7g fat l 1.8g salt l 3.3g saturates l 155mg calcium l 36.3g carbs l 4.2mg iron

Lemon and herb fish with wilted kale

Lemon and herb fish with wilted kale prep 15 min cook 15 min serves 4 Zest 1 lemon, plus lemon wedges to serve 1tbsp chopped fresh fatleaf parsley 1tbsp chopped fresh chives 4 x 170g frm white fsh fllets 160g couscous 2tsp avocado or olive oil 1 large red onion, thinly sliced Pinch chilli fakes 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced 300g asparagus, trimmed and halved 200g sugar snap peas, trimmed 350g baby plum tomatoes, halved 150g kale, central vein removed and leaves chopped 1 Combine the lemon zest, parsley and chives in a small bowl. Line a steamer with baking paper and set over a large saucepan of gently simmering water. Put the fsh fllets in the steamer and sprinkle evenly with the herbs. Cover the steamer and cook the fsh for 8 min or until cooked through, then

keep warm until ready to serve. 2 Meanwhile, cook the couscous according to the pack instructions. 3 Heat the avocado or olive oil in a large non-stick frying pan or wok set over a medium-high heat. Add the onion and chilli fakes and cook, stirring, for 3–4 min until soft. Add the garlic, asparagus and sugar snap peas and cook, stirring, for 2–3 min until the greens are almost tender. Add the tomatoes and cook, stirring, for 2 min until softened. Add the chopped kale and 2tbsp water and cook for 2 min or until wilted. 4 Serve the herby fsh on top of the vegetables with the couscous on the side and with lemon wedges to squeeze over. LOW CAL











Per serving l 385kcal l 10.6g sugar l 42.4g protein l 7.9g fbre l 5.1g fat l 0.3g salt l 0.7g saturates l 140mg calcium l 43.7g carbs l 3mg iron february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 43

O L I VA D O Extra Virgin Avocado Oil

Olivado produced the world’s first extra virgin avocado oil in New Zealand in 2000. In 2007 we set up an organic and fair trade programme in Kenya’s Central Highlands, training small farmers in organic, sustainable techniques, improving the standard of living of over 8000 people.

The smooth, mild taste of ripe avocado. A very high smoke point of 255°C makes it perfect for: • Panfrying and wok cooking • Roasting, baking, grilling • Or just add a little lemon juice or vinegar for a simple, healthy salad dressing

Avocado oil is one of the healthiest and most versatile cooking oils available. • High in vitamin E, lutein, Co Q10, plant sterols and glutathione • All natural, contains no trans fats, additives, preservatives or artificial ingredients

Available from Sainsburys and Waitrose stores, and selected small retailers

R ec i pe s l

dinner for one

Tuna and sweet potato fishcakes

rEcIpE: sprOUT cOOkErY scHOOL. pHOTO: mArk O’mEArA

This fresh-tasting dish delivers a hit of calcium, protein and iron and provides four of your fve-a-day prep 10 min cook 15 min serves 1 1 small sweet potato (about 140g) 2tbsp fresh dill leaves ¼ small red onion, fnely sliced ¼ cucumber, deseeded and sliced on the diagonal

½ x 400g tin chickpeas in water, drained 3 small pickled gherkins, halved lengthways 60g tin no-drain tuna about 2tbsp dried breadcrumbs Zest and juice ½ lemon, plus lemon wedges to serve

1 small egg, beaten 1tbsp sesame seeds Cooking oil spray 2tsp olive oil 1 prick the sweet potato all over with a fork, then microwave for 6–8 min until tender. Leave to cool slightly. 2 meanwhile, put half the dill leaves in a small salad bowl. Add the onion, cucumber, chickpeas and gherkins and set aside. 3 scoop the sweet potato fesh from its skin into a medium bowl and mash roughly with a fork. roughly chop the remaining dill, then add to the sweet potato, along with the tuna, 2tbsp breadcrumbs and lemon zest. mix everything together, then stir in the egg. 4 Wet your hands, then divide the mixture in half and shape into 2 patties, adding more breadcrumbs if the mixture is too moist. coat the patties evenly with the sesame seeds. 5 spray a large non-stick frying pan with oil and set over a medium heat. Add the patties and cook for 3–4 min on each side, fipping carefully, until golden. 6 Toss the lemon juice and olive oil through the salad, then serve with the patties, with lemon wedges to squeeze over. Next time, tryÉ swapping the dill leaves for parsley or basil. LOW SATS HIGH











Per serving l 631kcal l 11.6g sugar l 38.6g protein l 12.9g fbre l 25.9g fat l 1.4g salt l 4.9g saturates l 288mg calcium l 63.6g carbs l 7mg iron february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 45

l r ec i pe s

Give the takeaway a miss and treat yourself to a DIY spice dish that’s kinder on your waistline

curry without all the calories

Spinach and potato coconut curry

46 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

Spinach and potato coconut curry prep 10 min cook 25 min serves 4 2tsp ground coriander 20g fresh ginger, peeled and sliced 1 lemongrass stalk, white part only, chopped 2 garlic cloves Cooking oil spray 200ml light coconut milk 500g potatoes, peeled and diced 2tbsp tamari 1tsp sugar 1tbsp medium curry powder 250ml hot reduced-salt vegetable stock 200g basmati rice 4 shallots, quartered 200g mushrooms, sliced 150g baby spinach fresh coriander leaves and lemon wedges, to serve 1 Blend the coriander, ginger, lemongrass, garlic and 3tbsp water with a stick blender or in a food processor to make a paste. 2 Set a large, deep, non-stick frying pan over a high heat and spray with oil. Add the paste and coconut milk and stir for 3 min. 3 Add the potatoes, tamari, sugar and curry powder, stir well and bring to the boil. Add the stock along with 400ml hot water and return to the boil. Simmer for 15 min, or until the potatoes are tender. 4 While the curry is simmering, cook the rice according to the pack instructions, then drain, cover and keep warm. 5 At the same time, set a frying pan over a high heat and spray with oil. Add the shallots and mushrooms and fry for 8 min until golden, then transfer to the curry for the last 5 min of the cooking time. 6 Add the spinach to the curry

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for the last 3 min of the cooking time or until wilted. 7 Serve the curry with the rice, garnished with the coriander, with the lemon wedges on the side. LOW CAL











Per serving l 359kcal l 4.3g sugar l 10.3g protein l 4.8g fbre l 7.5g fat l 1.8g salt l 4.7g saturates l 122mg calcium l 64g carbs l 5.5mg iron

Warm chicken tikka salad with mint raita prep 15 min + marinating cook 20 min serves 4 1tbsp medium curry powder 5tbsp low-fat natural yogurt 1tbsp tomato purée 400g skinless chicken breast, sliced Cooking oil spray 1 red chilli, deseeded (optional) and chopped 100g button mushrooms, sliced 3 tomatoes, chopped 4 spring onions, sliced 1 large carrot, peeled into ribbons ½ cucumber, peeled into ribbons 100g baby spinach 400g tin lentils in water, drained 3tbsp fresh coriander leaves 4 wholemeal pitta breads, toasted and torn into pieces Lemon wedges, to serve For the raita 4tbsp low-fat natural yogurt 2tbsp fresh mint, chopped 1 garlic clove, crushed Juice 1 lemon

Warm chicken tikka salad with mint raita 1 Combine the curry powder, yogurt and tomato purée in a medium bowl. Add the sliced chicken and toss to coat. Cover, then transfer to the fridge to marinate for at least 5 min or up to a few hr. 2 Heat a non-stick frying pan over a medium heat and spray with oil. Add the chilli and cook, stirring, for 2–3 min until fragrant. Add the mushrooms and cook for 5 min, or until browned. Remove the pan from the heat and add the tomatoes and spring onions. 3 Transfer the mushroom mixture to a shallow salad bowl. Add the carrot, three-quarters of the cucumber ribbons, spinach, lentils, coriander and pitta pieces. Toss lightly and set aside. 4 To make the raita, chop the remaining cucumber ribbons and combine with the raita

ingredients, reserving a little mint. Spoon into a serving bowl and garnish with the reserved mint. 5 Heat a large frying pan and spray with oil. Add the chicken and stir-fry for 8 min until browned all over and cooked through. Add to the salad and serve with the raita and lemon wedges. LOW CAL HIGH












Per serving l 400kcal l 15.2g sugar l 40.9g protein l 11g fbre l 4.6g fat l 1.1g salt l 1.5g saturates l 264mg calcium l 49.6g carbs l 7.5mg iron february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 47

Massaman beef curry prep 10 min cook 1 hr 50 min serves 4 Cooking oil spray 400g lean rump steak, diced 1 large onion, sliced 25g piece fresh ginger, peeled and chopped or grated 2tbsp massaman curry paste 1tsp ground cinnamon 200ml light coconut milk 250ml reduced-salt beef stock 3 large carrots, cut into chunks 1tbsp fsh sauce 1tsp sugar

Juice 1 lime 600g potatoes, cut into chunks 100g baby spinach 30g unsalted peanuts, crushed fresh fatleaf parsley, to garnish 1 Spray a non-stick frying pan with oil over a medium heat. Add the steak and cook for 3–4 min until evenly browned. Add the onion and ginger and cook for 3–4 min. Add the curry paste and cinnamon and toss to coat the steak evenly. 2 Add the coconut milk, stock,

carrots, fsh sauce, sugar and lime juice to the pan with 500ml water. Bring to the boil, cover loosely with a lid and simmer for 1 hr. 3 Add the potatoes and cook for another 40 min or until the beef is tender and the potatoes are cooked. 4 Serve the curry on a bed of baby spinach, scattered with the crushed peanuts and garnished with the parsley. LOW CAL











Per serving l 425kcal l 14.4g sugar l 30.2g protein l 7.8g fbre l 15.8g fat l 1.8g salt l 7.1g saturates l 127mg calcium l 42.9g carbs l 6.8mg iron

Massaman beef curry

48 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

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Vegetable jalfrezi with fruity rice prep 15 min cook 50 min serves 6


Cooking oil spray 2 red onions, sliced 2tbsp hot curry paste 350g peeled butternut squash, diced into 2cm chunks ½ head caulifower, cut into forets 2tsp reduced-salt vegetable stock powder 25g bunch coriander, chopped, reserving a few sprigs to garnish 700g jar passata 1 green pepper, diced 50g sultanas 400g tin chickpeas in water, drained 150g low-fat natural yogurt, to serve For the fruity rice 150g basmati rice 1 small red pepper, chopped ½ small cucumber, chopped 30g dried apricots, chopped 2tbsp pumpkin seeds 1tbsp olive oil 4tbsp orange juice

3 Add the pepper, sultanas and chickpeas to the pan and cook for 15 min or until the vegetables are tender. 4 Meanwhile, to make the fruity rice, cook the rice according to the pack instructions. Drain, then mix with the remaining ingredients in a bowl. 5 Serve the jalfrezi with the fruity rice and the yogurt on the side, garnished with coriander.












Per serving l 359kcal l 13.4g protein l 8.5g fat l 1.3g saturates l 58.5g carbs

l 25.7g sugar l 8.8g fbre l 1.2g salt l 163mg calcium l 4.3mg iron

1 Put a large, deep, non-stick saucepan over a low heat and spray with oil. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5–6 min or until soft. Add the curry paste and mix well. 2 Add the squash, caulifower, stock powder, coriander and passata to the pan with 500ml water. Simmer for 20–25 min (add more water if the sauce becomes too thick). Vegetable jalfrezi with fruity rice

february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 49

IN march’s

Find that healthier YOU… HEalTH cHEcks Give yourself a body MOT ObEsiTy crisis Is gastric surgery the best solution? GrOup fiT fiX Fitness bloggers share their tips …aNd HEalTHy EasTEr TrEaTs H Chocolate recipes H Lean lamb roasts H Easy egg brunches H Plus lighter bakes for Mother’s Day

T NEXuE iss alE s ON m r 3 a

Passionfruit cheesecake

H SHOPPING H alternative pizza bases H in season: mussels H new best buys H

Trick your

TasTe buds

into believing it’s summer… Add a splash of colour and a burst of fresh favour to your winter table with Sophie Michell’s zingy dishes, which all use thick strained fat-free Greek yogurt for extra creaminess

Roasted root vegetable salad prep 15 min cook 1 hr + cooling serves 4 1 small celeriac, peeled and cut into 2cm chunks 2 carrots, peeled and cut into 2cm chunks 2 parsnips, peeled and cut into 2cm chunks 2tbsp olive oil 3 medium beetroots, cut into 1.5cm thick wedges 2tsp coriander seeds 1½tsp cumin seeds 1tsp fennel seeds 15g fresh fatleaf parsley, roughly chopped 100g radicchio leaves 25g shelled, unsalted pistachios, chopped For the dressing

100g fat-free Greek yogurt

52 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

1tsp runny honey 1 red chilli, deseeded and fnely chopped Juice ½ lemon 1 Heat the oven to 220°C/fan 200°C/gas 7. Line a large baking tray with baking paper. 2 Toss the celeriac, carrots and parsnips with 1½tbsp of the oil and scatter over two-thirds of the baking tray. Mix the beetroot wedges with the remaining oil and add to the remaining third of the tray, keeping them separate from the other vegetables (to prevent their colour staining them). Roast for 30 min. 3 Coarsely grind the spices in a pestle and mortar. Sprinkle over the vegetables, turning them gently, trying not to mix the beetroot in too much, and roast for a further 30 min until the

vegetables are tender. Cool for 15 min. 4 To make the dressing, mix together the yogurt, honey, chilli and lemon juice and season with black pepper. Put the parsley and radicchio leaves in a large serving bowl, then add the roasted vegetables and toss gently. Drizzle over the dressing and scatter with the pistachios to serve. LOW CAL












Per servinG l 195kcal l 14.9g sugar l 7.7g protein l 12.5g fbre l 10.8g fat l 0.4g salt l 1.4g saturates l 168mg calcium l 19.3g carbs l 3.6mg iron

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Roasted root vegetable salad

february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 53

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medium pan, then add the onion and cook for about 15 min until golden brown. Add the rice, stir to coat with the oil, then add the saffron and stock. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat, cover with a lid and simmer for 20 min or until all the liquid has evaporated. Leave the lid on for a further 10 min, then fuff the rice with a fork. 5 Meanwhile, heat the grill to high. Thread 4 pieces of duck on to each skewer and cook for about 5 min on each side – the centre of the meat should still be pink. To serve, divide the rice among 4 plates and put 2 kebabs on each. Serve with the raita on the side. LOW SATS

Duck kebabs with rose raita and pilau rice

Duck kebabs with rose raita and pilau rice prep 15 min + chilling cook 50 min serves 4 For the kebabs 1tsp ground cinnamon 2tsp cumin seeds 1tsp ground coriander 2tsp garam masala 1tbsp olive oil 4 duck breasts, trimmed of fat, skin removed and each cut into 8 equal-size pieces For the raita ½tsp cumin seeds ½tsp cardamom seeds 170g fat-free Greek yogurt small handful chopped fresh mint 2tsp rosewater 1tsp runny honey For the pilau rice 2tbsp olive oil 1 onion, fnely diced 250g basmati rice, rinsed

54 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

Pinch saffron threads 500ml hot reduced-salt vegetable stock 1 If you are using wooden skewers, soak them for 30 min in cold water before cooking to prevent them burning. 2 For the kebabs, combine the spices and oil in a large, lidded airtight container. Add the duck to the container, then stir well, seal with the lid and chill for about 2 hr. 3 For the raita, heat a small non-stick frying pan over a medium heat and gently dry-fry the cumin and cardamom seeds for about 5 min, being careful not to burn them. Remove the pan from the heat. Put the yogurt in a small dish and stir in the seeds, the mint, rosewater and honey, then season with black pepper and set aside. 4 For the rice, heat the oil in a







Per servinG l 510kcal l 5.6g sugar l 32.2g protein l 0.7g fbre l 16.9g fat l 1.1g salt l 3.6g saturates l 128mg calcium l 58.1g carbs l 6mg iron

Crab cakes with tarragon, chive and lemon sauce prep 15 min + chilling cook 20 min serves 4 400g white crab meat 150g brown crab meat 4 spring onions, fnely chopped 1tbsp fat-free Greek yogurt 1tbsp chopped fresh tarragon 1tbsp chopped fresh chives Zest 1 lemon 50g panko breadcrumbs 3tbsp olive oil Pinch cayenne pepper, to garnish Lemon wedges, to serve For the sauce 100g fat-free Greek yogurt 1tbsp capers in brine, rinsed, drained and chopped

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1tbsp chopped gherkins 1tbsp chopped fresh fatleaf parsley Juice 1 lemon 1 Line a baking tray with baking paper. 2 Put the crab meat in a large mixing bowl, checking thoroughly to make sure there are no pieces of shell. Add the spring onions, yogurt, herbs, lemon zest and breadcrumbs. Season with black

pepper and stir to combine thoroughly. Using your hands, shape the mixture into 12 even-size patties. Transfer the patties to the lined tray and chill for at least 30 min. 3 Put all the ingredients for the sauce in a small jug. Season with black pepper and stir well. 4 Heat the oven to 150°C/ fan 130°C/gas 2 and put another baking tray in the oven to warm. Pour a splash of the olive oil into

a large non-stick frying pan and heat. Fry the cakes, in batches, over a medium heat for about 5 min on each side until golden brown. Keep the cooked crab cakes hot by putting them on the preheated baking tray in the warm oven while the remainder are cooking. 5 Serve the crab cakes with the sauce, sprinkled with the cayenne pepper, with lemon wedges on the side to squeeze over. LOW CAL






Per servinG l 318kcal l 2.5g sugar l 32g protein l 1g fbre l 16g fat l 1.9g salt l 2.2g saturates l 72mg calcium l 11.2g carbs l 2.8mg iron

Crab cakes with tarragon, chive and lemon sauce

win a speCial hamper!

Fancy cooking more recipes using Greek yogurt? We’ve got three hampers, each containing Sophie’s cookbook, worth £19.99, plus a selection of Total yogurts, to give away. For your chance to win one, go to, and answer the easy question, by 28 February 2015.

l Recipes taken from Total Greek Yoghurt Cookbook by Sophie Michell (Kyle Books, £19.99). Photos: Emma Lee february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 55

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IP k’s T e COOprefer, us , ot If you of haric x a mi lotti and . bor beans r butte

extreme makeover


Full-fat sausages, duck and pork belly in a rich sauce – were we really able to tweak this French classic for the guilt-free menu? Read on…

56 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE january 2015

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Classic cassoulet

Use reduced-fat sausages

omit the pork belly

Swap duck for chicken

reduce the amount of breadcrumbs

add pumpkin seeds


HFG cassoulet

prep 10 min cook 1 hr 30 min serves 4


2tbsp olive oil 4 toulouse sausages 450g pork belly 2 skinless duck breasts 1 onion 1 carrot 1 celery stick 4 garlic cloves 1tbsp sun-dried tomato purée 5 tomatoes 150ml dry white wine 2 fresh thyme sprigs 500g dried haricot beans 50g fresh white breadcrumbs

2tbsp olive oil 4 reduced-fat pork sausages, skins removed, chopped into 3cm pieces 4 large skinless and boneless chicken thighs, sliced 1 large red onion, fnely sliced 1 carrot, chopped 1 celery stick, chopped 4 large garlic cloves, chopped 300ml hot reduced-salt chicken stock 400g tin chopped tomatoes fresh thyme sprigs, chopped 2 x 400g tins haricot beans in water, drained 2tbsp toasted breadcrumbs 2tbsp pumpkin seeds 1 Gently heat the oil in a large fameproof casserole (with a lid), then fry the sausages for 5–7 min until golden. Add the chicken and fry for 5 min or until lightly coloured, then transfer the meat to a plate and set aside. 2 Heat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/gas 6. If needed, add

another splash of oil to the casserole, then add the onion, carrot and celery. Cover with the lid and fry gently for 20 min, stirring occasionally, or until the veg begin to caramelise. 3 Return the chicken and sausages to the casserole with the garlic, stock, tomatoes and thyme. Cover, then transfer to the oven and cook for 20 min. 4 stir in the beans, then return the casserole to the oven, uncovered, for 40 min or until bubbling. scatter over the breadcrumbs and pumpkin seeds, then serve.

HFG cassoulet

classic cassoulet

Per serving Per serving l 493kcal l 1,084kcal l 35.2g protein l 76.2g protein l 19g fat l 48.6g fat l 4.5g saturates l 15.7g saturates l 41.7g carbs l 85g carbs l 10.3g sugar l 12.9g sugar l 14.2g fbre l 32g fbre l 2.3g salt l 2.4g salt l 197mg calcium l 396mg calcium l 6mg iron l 13mg iron

HOw wE mADE IT HEALTHIER We used less meat Traditional cassoulet is usually packed with meat, including pork, duck and sausages. While this provides a good amount of protein and iron, it considerably pushes up calories, fat and saturates. We left out the pork belly altogether as it contains 20% fat. We also swapped toulouse sausages for reduced-fat ones and swapped the duck for chicken. These simple changes alone saved around 375kcal per serving and accounted for most of the reduction in fat, including saturates. The lower protein intake is nothing to worry about as most of us already eat far more than the 50g we need each day – and our lighter cassoulet still provides 70% of this daily requirement.

We added nutrients We added pumpkin seeds to the topping to boost iron – our version provides 43% of our daily need for this nutrient. This meant we didn’t need to use as many breadcrumbs, which add few nutrients to the dish.

We saved £s and prep time Using less meat signifcantly reduced the cost of making this dish – the classic recipe costs £13.47 to make (£3.37 per serving), whereas our version tots up to just £4.57 (£1.14 per serving). We also made our cassoulet easier to prepare. Instead of using fresh tomatoes (you’d need to remove the skins and seeds), we used tinned tomatoes and stock. We also used tinned beans instead of dried, which need overnight soaking. february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 57

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oNe sHoP



Meatballs in tomato and aubergine sauce

Ever fnd yourself with a trolley full of food but no ideas for meals? Our canny shopping list and recipes will put a week’s worth of delicious dinners on the table. Better still, some of the dishes use up leftovers from a previous night, saving you time, money and effort 58 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

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r youeal 7-mist l KiTcHeN sTApLes: check you’ve got… n Basmati rice n chilli flakes n chinese five-spice powder n cooking oil spray n curry powder n Large garlic bulb n Olive oil n reduced-salt vegetable stock cubes n runny honey n skimmed milk n Tomato purée n 200g frozen peas

MeAT, pOULTrY AND FisH n 1kg 5% fat beef mince n 2 x 500g packs skinless chicken breasts n 680g fresh or frozen white fsh fllets BAKeD GOODs n 1 white loaf n 1 ciabatta loaf

n 2 large heads broccoli n 2 leeks n 200g mangetout n 1 red cabbage n 350g sweet potatoes n 1 large bunch fresh coriander n 1 large bunch fresh fatleaf parsley n Fresh ginger

GrOceries n Jar roasted red VeGeTABLes peppers n 1 aubergine n Korma curry paste (about 450g) n Mirin n 250g baby spinach n Tamari n 1.75kg butternut n small bag currants squash n small bag couscous n 300g button n small bag quinoa mushrooms TO BUY FrOM THe n small bag red lentils sUperMArKeT… n 1 cauliflower DAirY n 3 courgettes (1 large) n 500g jar low-fat tomato pasta sauce n Low-fat natural n 500g potatoes yogurt n small bag roasted n 640g green beans hazelnuts n ricotta n 1 head celery n pack fresh lasagne n small block reducedsheets fat mature cheddar n 1 large carrot n 3 large onions n 3 x 400g tins n small block n 1 large red onion chopped tomatoes parmesan

Meatballs in tomato and aubergine sauce prep 15 min cook 45 min serves 4 (plus 4 leftover servings of meatballs and tomato sauce) For the meatballs 60g fresh white breadcrumbs 4tbsp skimmed milk 1kg 5% fat beef mince 1 large courgette, grated and squeezed to remove moisture 4tbsp chopped fresh fatleaf parsley For the tomato sauce Cooking oil spray 1 large onion, fnely chopped 1 large aubergine (about 450g), cut into 1cm cubes

3 garlic cloves, crushed 2tbsp tomato purée 2 x 400g tins chopped tomatoes 150g couscous 320g each steamed green beans and broccoli, to serve 1 To make the meatballs, put the breadcrumbs into a medium bowl, add the milk and leave to soak for 3 min. 2 Add the mince, courgette and parsley to the breadcrumbs with a grind of black pepper and mix well. Wet your hands, then roll 1tbsp of the mince mixture into a ball. Repeat to make 48 meatballs. 3 To make the tomato sauce, spray a large saucepan with oil

and set over a medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring now and then, for 5 min or until soft. Add the aubergine and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 min or until golden. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 min. Add the tomato purée and cook for 1 min, then add the tinned tomatoes with 150ml water. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 10 min. Set half the tomato sauce aside to cool (to use for the chicken, aubergine and pepper bake on p62). Keep the rest warm over a low heat. 4 Set a large non-stick frying pan over a medium-high heat and spray with oil. Cook the meatballs in batches for 6–8 min, turning, until browned all over and cooked through. Set half aside to cool (for the spiced pilaf, p60). 5 Add the warm sauce to the pan with the meatballs and simmer for another 5 min to heat through. 6 Meanwhile, prepare the couscous according to the pack instructions, then divide among 4 plates or bowls. Top with the meatballs and sauce, then serve with the steamed green beans and broccoli and a grind of black pepper. Keep the leftovers l Put the cooled leftover sauce and meatballs in separate airtight containers, then chill or freeze. If freezing, thaw in the fridge overnight before using. LOW FAT










Per serving l 475kcal l 11.1g sugar l 40.8g protein l 10.4g fbre l 14.7g fat l 0.6g salt l 5.7g saturates l 153mg calcium l 47.7g carbs l 6.3mg iron february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 59

l r ec i pe s Roast squash soup with hazelnut and cheese toasts

high. Sprinkle the cheese over the bread, then grill until the toast is golden and the cheese melted. Scatter with the nuts. 6 Divide the soup among 4 bowls, add a dollop of yogurt and a grind of black pepper to each, then serve with the cheesy toasts alongside. LOW FAT HIGH









Per serving l 454kcal l 16.1g sugar l 19.6g protein l 9.8g fbre l 11.3g fat l 2.2g salt l 2.5g saturates l 389mg calcium l 73.1g carbs l 3.5mg iron

Spiced pilaf with meatballs and currants Roast squash soup with hazelnut and cheese toasts prep 15 min cook 40 min serves 4 (with leftover squash) 1.75kg butternut squash, peeled and seeds removed, roughly chopped Cooking oil spray 1 leek, white part only, sliced 2 celery sticks, chopped 2 garlic cloves, crushed 250g potatoes, peeled and diced 500ml hot reduced-salt vegetable stock 50g reduced-fat mature cheddar, grated 8 slices ciabatta bread 2tbsp roasted hazelnuts, chopped 4tbsp low-fat natural yogurt, to serve 1 Heat the oven to 220째C/fan 200째C/gas 7 and line a large baking tray with baking paper. Put

60 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

the butternut squash on the prepared tray and spray with oil. Roast for 30 min or until tender and golden. Set aside a third of the roasted squash to cool, then store in an airtight container in the fridge to use in the cannelloni recipe on p63. 2 Meanwhile, set a large pan over a medium heat and spray with oil. Add the leek and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 min or until soft. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 min more. Add the potatoes and stock, then cover and simmer for 15 min or until the potatoes are tender. 3 Add the remaining two-thirds of roasted squash to the pan and simmer for a further 5 min, then set aside to cool slightly. 4 Blend the soup with a stick blender until smooth, then warm over a medium heat. 5 While the soup is warming, make the toasts. Heat the grill to

prep 10 min cook 25 min + standing serves 4 2tsp olive oil 1 onion, fnely chopped 1 celery stick, diced 1 large carrot, diced 2 garlic cloves, crushed 2tsp curry powder 175g basmati rice 250ml hot reduced-salt vegetable stock 200g frozen peas, thawed Leftover cooked meatballs from meatballs in tomato and aubergine sauce (p59), thawed if frozen 100g baby spinach 2tbsp currants fresh fatleaf parsley sprigs, to garnish 1 Heat the oil in a large saucepan (one with a lid) over a medium heat. Add the onion, celery and carrot and cook, stirring, for 5 min or until the onion softens. Add the garlic and curry powder

r ec i pe s l Spiced pilaf with meatballs and currants

Chicken, lentil and sweet potato curry

and cook, stirring, for 1 min more. 2 Add the rice to the pan and stir to coat the grains in the oil. Add the stock with 200ml boiling water and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan with the lid and simmer, without stirring, for 12 min or until the rice absorbs most of the liquid. 3 Add the peas and meatballs to the pan, cover again and simmer for 5 min or until heated through. Remove the pan from the heat (keep the lid on) and set aside for 2–3 min until the rice absorbs all the liquid. 4 Fluff the rice with a fork, then stir through the spinach and currants and season with pepper. Serve garnished with the parsley. LOW SATS










Per serving l 516kcal l 12.4g sugar l 37.1g protein l 7.3g fbre l 15.2g fat l 1g salt l 5.7g saturates l 146mg calcium l 58.4g carbs l 5.5mg iron

Chicken, lentil and sweet potato curry prep 10 min cook 40 min serves 4 Cooking oil spray 500g skinless chicken breasts, diced 1 large red onion, fnely chopped 1 celery stick, diced 2tbsp korma curry paste 350g sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 2cm cubes 100g dried red lentils, rinsed 400g tin chopped tomatoes 150g quinoa 2 courgettes, sliced fresh coriander sprigs, to garnish 1 Spray a large saucepan (one with a lid) with oil and set over a medium heat. Add the chicken in 2 batches and cook for 2–3 min until golden. Transfer to a plate and set aside. 2 Spray the pan with oil again and return to a medium heat. Add the onion and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 min or until softened. Add the curry paste and cook, stirring, for 1–2 min more. 3 Add the sweet potatoes, lentils

and tomatoes to the pan with 400ml water and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, partially covered with the lid, for 18–20 min until the sweet potatoes are just tender. 4 While the curry is cooking, cook the quinoa according to the pack instructions. Drain and set aside until ready to serve. 5 Return the chicken to the pan along with the courgettes and simmer for 5 min or until heated through. Season with pepper, then serve in bowls with the quinoa, garnished with coriander. Keep the leftovers l This curry will keep in a sealed airtight container in the freezer for up to 2 months. LOW FAT













Per serving l 490kcal l 13.9g sugar l 46g protein l 10g fbre l 6.7g fat l 0.7g salt l 0.9g saturates l 133mg calcium l 63.9g carbs l 8.3mg iron february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 61

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Chicken, aubergine and pepper bake with caulifower mash

Fish, broccoli and ginger stir-fry

Fish, broccoli and ginger stir-fry prep 10 min cook 15 min serves 4 250g basmati rice 1½tbsp tamari 1½tbsp mirin 1tsp runny honey Cooking oil spray 680g white fsh fllets, thawed if frozen, cut into chunks 1 large onion, thinly sliced 1tsp Chinese fve-spice powder 20g piece fresh ginger, cut into thin matchsticks 1 large head broccoli, cut into forets 200g mangetout, trimmed 200g red cabbage, shredded fresh coriander leaves, to garnish 1 Cook the rice according to the pack instructions, then drain and keep warm. 2 Combine the tamari, mirin and honey in a small bowl. 3 Spray a large non-stick wok or frying pan with oil and set over a high heat. Add the fsh and stir-fry for 3 min or until golden and cooked through, then

62 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

transfer to a plate and set aside. 4 Spray the wok or frying pan with more oil, then add the onion, fve-spice and ginger and stir-fry for 2 min. Add the broccoli and mangetout and stir-fry for 2–3 min. Add the cabbage and stir-fry for 2 min. Add the tamari mixture and fsh and stir to heat through. 5 Serve the stir-fry with the rice, garnished with coriander leaves. LOW FAT












Per serving l 464kcal l 11.5g sugar l 43.1g protein l 7.1g fbre l 2.9g fat l 1.2g salt l 0.4g saturates l 148mg calcium l 66.2g carbs l 3.4mg iron

Chicken, aubergine and pepper bake with caulifower mash prep 15 min cook 25 min serves 4 500g skinless chicken breasts Cooking oil spray

Leftover tomato sauce from meatballs in tomato and aubergine sauce (p59) ¼tsp chilli fakes 100g roasted red peppers from a jar, drained and sliced 250g potatoes, peeled and chopped 1 medium head caulifower, cut into forets 2tbsp skimmed milk fresh fatleaf parsley leaves, to garnish 320g steamed green beans, to serve 1 Heat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/gas 4. Slice each chicken breast horizontally into 3 pieces to make thin fllets. Set a large non-stick frying pan over a high heat and spray with oil. Add the chicken to the pan and cook for 2 min on each side, then transfer to a large baking dish. 2 Combine the tomato sauce, chilli fakes and peppers in a bowl, then spoon the mixture evenly over the chicken. Bake in the oven for 15–20 min until the tomato mixture thickens and the chicken is cooked through.

r ec i pe s l 3 Meanwhile, put the potatoes in a large saucepan of water. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 8 min. Add the caulifower and cook for a further 7 min or until both are tender. Drain, then return to the pan, add the milk and mash until smooth. 4 Serve the chicken and tomato sauce, garnished with parsley, with the mash and green beans. LOW CAL











Roast squash, leek and mushroom cannelloni



Per serving l 301kcal l 13.8g sugar l 41.5g protein l 11g fbre l 4.3g fat l 0.5g salt l 0.9g saturates l 113mg calcium l 25.5g carbs l 3.9mg iron

Roast squash, leek and mushroom cannelloni


prep 15 min cook 40 min + cooling serves 4 Cooking oil spray 1 leek, white part only, thinly sliced 300g button mushrooms, sliced 2 garlic cloves, crushed 150g baby spinach Leftover roast squash from roast squash soup with hazelnut and cheese toasts (p60), or see cook’s tip, right 125g ricotta 500g jar low-fat tomato pasta sauce 4 fresh lasagne sheets 2tbsp fnely grated parmesan 1 Heat the oven to 190°C/fan 170°C/gas 5. Spray a medium non-stick frying pan with oil and set over a high heat. Add the leek and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3–4 min until soft. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring

now and then, for 5 min or until soft. Add the garlic and two-thirds of the spinach and cook, stirring, for a further 2 min. Leave to cool. 2 Put the cooled mixture in a medium bowl with the roasted squash and the ricotta and stir to combine. 3 If the pasta sauce has lumps in it, whiz with a stick blender until smooth. Spoon half over the base of a 2 litre baking dish. 4 Cut the lasagne sheets in half widthways. Spoon an eighth of the flling along the centre of each and roll to enclose the flling. Put the 8 cannelloni, seam-side down, in the baking dish. Cover with the remaining pasta sauce and sprinkle with the parmesan, then bake for 25 min or until cooked. 5 Serve 2 cannelloni per person,

with some sauce and the remaining spinach on the side. CookÕs tip l If you haven’t made the soup on p60 yet, peel and deseed 600g squash, then put the fesh into a roasting tin lined with baking paper. Spray with oil and roast at 220°C/fan 200°C/ gas 7 for 30 min or until tender. LOW CAL HIGH












Per serving l 233kcal l 12.2g sugar l 12.1g protein l 7.9g fbre l 6.3g fat l 1.4g salt l 3g saturates l 247mg calcium l 31.5g carbs l 4.5mg iron february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 63

Could you taste the difference? Koko Dairy Free Original tastes remarkably similar to semi-skimmed cow’s milk, yet it’s totally free of dairy, soya, and animal fats. Made from freshly pressed coconut milk its 2% fat content provides medium chain fatty acids (MCFAs) that are more easily digested than saturated animal fats. Fortified with calcium and vitamins, it not only looks like ordinary milk, but you can use it in just the same way. In tea, coffee, with cereals and in cooking. The light, fresh taste won’t dominate the foods you make, so you’ll find you can use it as a direct replacement.

Koko Dairy Free – a no sacrifice alternative to cow’s milk.


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LIGHT and SPICY To help you keep calories, fat and saturates down, this month’s star recipe reworks a sticky Chinese takeaway classic

Hoisin chicken and noodles prep 15 min + marinating cook 10 min serves 4 2tbsp hoisin sauce 2tbsp reduced-salt soy sauce 2tbsp Chinese rice wine or dry sherry 2tsp grated fresh root ginger 450g skinless chicken breasts, sliced horizontally to make thin fllets Cooking oil spray 200g dried egg noodles 2 carrots, cut into matchsticks 200g mangetout, trimmed and thinly sliced lengthways 75g baby spinach 4 spring onions (green parts only), thinly sliced diagonally

1 Mix together the hoisin and soy sauces, rice wine or sherry and ginger in a small bowl to make a marinade. Put the chicken in a shallow, non-metallic dish and coat with half the marinade, keeping the remaining marinade separate. Cover the chicken and set aside for 10–15 min. 2 Heat a chargrill pan to high and spray with oil. Add the chicken and cook for 3 min on each side or until cooked through. Remove

and cool slightly before cutting each fllet into large pieces. 3 While the chicken is cooking, prepare the noodles according to the pack instructions, adding the carrots and mangetout in the last 1 min of cooking. Drain, rinse with boiling water, then drain well. 4 Toss the noodles and veg with the spinach. Divide among bowls, top with the chicken, drizzle over the remaining marinade and serve garnished with the spring onions. LOW CAL










Per serving l 251kcal l 9.4g sugar l 32.4g protein l 4.7g fbre l 2.5g fat l 1.5g salt l 0.6g saturates l 80mg calcium l 23.7g carbs l 2mg iron




Hoisin chicken and noodles

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Spiced squash and sweet potato mash

Bean, garlic and rosemary mash

mash of the day Spiced squash and sweet potato mash prep 5 min cook 15 min serves 4

Great with grilled chicken, or pork chops sprinkled with jerk spice. LOW CAL













Per serving l 113kcal l 9.4g sugar l 2.5g protein l 4.7g fbre l 0.5g fat l 0.1g salt l 0.1g saturates l 78mg calcium l 26.7g carbs l 1.4mg iron

350g peeled butternut squash, cut into 2cm chunks 350g sweet potato, cut into 2cm chunks 1tsp smoked paprika Pinch chilli powder

Bean, garlic and rosemary mash

3tbsp skimmed milk

prep 5 min cook 10 min serves 4

1 put the vegetables in a steamer and steam for 15 min until tender. 2 Transfer to a bowl, then add the spices and milk and mash with a potato masher until smooth, adding more skimmed milk if necessary. season with ground black pepper and serve.

2 x 400g tins cannellini beans in water, drained 2 garlic cloves, crushed 2 small rosemary sprigs, leaves only, roughly chopped, plus extra to garnish 1tbsp chopped parsley, plus extra to garnish

66 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

4tbsp skimmed milk 1tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

1 put all the ingredients in a medium non-stick saucepan set over a medium heat. bring to a gentle simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, for 6–8 min. 2 remove the pan from the heat and mash with a potato masher until almost smooth. 3 season with ground black pepper and serve, garnished with the extra herbs.

Great with steak, grilled lamb or grilled chicken. LOW CAL















Per serving l 156kcal l 1.7g sugar l 9.1g protein l 7.7g fbre l 6.3g fat l 0g salt l 1g saturates l 105mg calcium l 15.8g carbs l 2.5mg iron

rEcIpEs: nIkI bEzzAnT. pHOTOs: DEvIn HArT

Give potato the red card and play away with veg using spices and herbs. These sides all score low in calories

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Pea, mint and spinach mash

Cauliflower mash

Pea, mint and spinach mash




prep 10 min cook 5 min serves 4







400g frozen peas 150g baby spinach leaves 3 mint sprigs, leaves only, plus extra leaves to garnish 1tbsp extra-virgin olive oil Zest and juice ½ lemon 1 put the peas and spinach in a large saucepan, cover with a lid and heat gently for about 5 min until the peas are tender and the spinach wilted. 2 In a food processor or using a stick blender, blend the peas and spinach, with the mint leaves, olive oil, lemon zest (reserving a little to garnish) and lemon juice, to make a rough-textured mash. Add a splash of hot water to thin the mash, if necessary. 3 season with ground black pepper and serve, garnished with the reserved lemon zest and extra mint leaves.

Great with roast or grilled lamb or baked or grilled fish.








Per serving l 100kcal l 3.2g sugar l 6.8g protein l 7.9g fbre l 3.9g fat l 0.1g salt l 0.6g saturates l 97mg calcium l 9.9g carbs l 2.3mg iron

Cauliflower mash prep 10 min cook 30 min serves 4 1 medium head caulifower, roughly chopped Cooking oil spray 1tsp ground coriander Pinch cayenne or chilli powder, plus extra to garnish 30g parmesan, grated 1 Heat the oven to 220°c/fan 200°c/gas 7. Line a baking tray with baking paper and spread the caulifower over it. spray with

oil, sprinkle with the spices and toss. cover very loosely with foil and roast for 25–30 min or until golden. 2 blend the caulifower in a food processor or with a stick blender until almost smooth. Add the parmesan, reserving 1tbsp, and blend well again. Add a splash of hot water to thin the mash if necessary. 3 season the mash with ground black pepper and serve, scattered with the reserved parmesan and garnished with extra cayenne or chilli powder.

Great with roast beef, steak, lamb chops or baked or grilled salmon. LOW CAL













Per serving l 93kcal l 4.4g sugar l 9.1g protein l 4.2g fbre l 4.2g fat l 0.2g salt l 1.8g saturates l 119mg calcium l 5.3g carbs l 1.3mg iron february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 67

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Ping puddings sf at o

Chocolate cup puddings

No time for fussy desserts? Finish your Valentine’s dinner with our microwaveable creations. No baking tins, parchment or preheating – and each pud-in-a-cup cooks in less than 2 min!

Chocolate cup puddings prep 5 min cook 3 min makes 2 5tbsp self-raising four 3tbsp cocoa powder, plus extra, to dust 2tbsp brown sugar 160g fresh or frozen raspberries 5tbsp skimmed milk 1 egg ½tsp vanilla extract 2tbsp low-fat natural yogurt, to serve 1 sift the four and cocoa powder into a mixing bowl, then stir through the sugar. Add 90g of the raspberries and stir to coat with the dry mixture. 2 In another bowl, beat the milk, egg and vanilla extract with a balloon whisk. pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir with a fork until just combined, but don’t overmix. 3 spoon the mixture into 2 x 200ml microwave-proof cups or mugs and cook, one at a time, in the microwave on high for 60–90 sec each until risen and just set on top (don’t overcook). 4 serve immediately, lightly dusted with cocoa and topped with yogurt, with the remaining raspberries on the side. LOW FAT








Per Pudding l 373kcal l 29.4g sugar l 14.5g protein l 6.4g fbre l 7g fat l 0.9g salt l 2.8g saturates l 348mg calcium l 67.8g carbs l 3.6mg iron

68 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

rEcIpEs: cHrIssY FrEEr. pHOTOs: mArk O’mEArA


t Ck r e

qu i

r ec i pe s l

Ginger, apple and date cup puddings

Ginger, apple and date cup puddings prep 5 min cook 2 min makes 2 6tbsp wholemeal self-raising four ½tsp ground cinnamon, plus extra to dust ½tsp ground ginger 5 pitted dates, chopped, plus 1 extra, chopped, to serve 1 small green apple, grated, plus thinly sliced apple to serve 1tbsp dark brown sugar 4tbsp skimmed milk 1 egg 1tsp icing sugar, to dust 1 sift the four and spices into a mixing bowl. stir in the chopped

dates, grated apple and sugar. 2 In a separate bowl, whisk the milk and egg together. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir with a fork until the mixture just combines, but don’t overmix. 3 spoon the mixture into 2 x 200ml microwave-proof cups or mugs and cook, one at a time, in the microwave on high for 70–90 sec until risen and just set on top (don’t overcook). 4 Dust the tops of the puddings with icing sugar and serve

immediately with the apple slices and remaining chopped dates, with a dusting of cinnamon. LOW FAT








Per Pudding l 430kcal l 50.9g sugar l 14.2g protein l 10.8g fbre l 4.9g fat l 0.2g salt l 1.2g saturates l 114mg calcium l 88.3g carbs l 4.4mg iron february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 69

TREATS TO PLEASE a sweet tooth Berries and bananas, almonds and coconut – all bring sweetness and crunch to these lovely low-cal teatime bakes

Carrot and pineapple cake prep 15 min cook 45 min + cooling cuts into 16 200g plain four 75g coconut four 2tsp baking powder ½tsp bicarbonate of soda 50g caster sugar 1½tsp ground cinnamon 100g pineapple pieces (fresh or tinned in juice and drained), chopped into small pieces 75g carrots, coarsely grated 3 small ripe bananas (225g), mashed 2 eggs, beaten 3tbsp sunfower oil 100g low-fat natural yogurt 2tbsp desiccated coconut 1 Heat the oven to 190°C/fan 170°C/gas 5. Line a 20cm round cake tin with baking paper.

2 Sift together the dry ingredients, then stir in the pineapple and carrots. 3 In a separate bowl, mix the bananas, eggs, oil and yogurt. Add to the four mixture and stir until the mixture is just combined. Spoon into the prepared tin, then sprinkle the coconut over the top. 4 Bake for 40–45 min or until a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean. Remove from the oven, cool in the tin for 10 min, then transfer to a rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container and eat within 2 days. LOW CAL



Per slice l 127kcal l 8.5g sugar l 3.6g protein l 3.4g fbre l 4.3g fat l 0.3g salt l 1.6g saturates l 45mg calcium l 18.5g carbs l 0.8mg iron

R Ec i PE S l

Carrot and pineapple cake

february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 71

l r ec i pe s

Banana, coconut and sultana loaf prep 10 min cook 30 min + cooling cuts into 12

Banana, coconut and sultana loaf

1 Heat the oven to 180째C/fan 160째C/gas 4. Line a 20cm long loaf tin with baking paper. 2 In a large bowl, combine the sultanas, four, ground almonds, coconut, walnuts and cinnamon. 3 In another bowl, mix the vanilla extract, bananas, eggs and peanut butter. Add to the dry ingredients and stir to combine. 4 Spoon the mixture into the prepared loaf tin. Bake for 30 min or until golden on top and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Cool in the tin before turning out. LOW SALT




Per slice l 222kcal l 10.4g sugar l 7.3g protein l 2.7g fbre l 11.2g fat l 0.2g salt l 2.8g saturates l 94mg calcium l 23.7g carbs l 1.4mg iron

72 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015


100g sultanas, chopped 200g self-raising four 50g ground almonds 30g desiccated coconut 40g walnuts, roughly chopped 1tsp ground cinnamon 2tsp vanilla extract 2 ripe bananas (200g), mashed 3 eggs, beaten 4tbsp no-added-sugar-or-salt peanut butter

r ec i pe s l

Berry nut chia muffins prep 10 min cook 30 min + cooling serves 12 150g wholemeal four 100g plain four 1½tsp baking powder ½tsp bicarbonate of soda 50g rolled oats, plus extra 2tsp for topping 2tbsp chia seeds (from supermarkets and health food stores, or order online) 2 eggs 2tbsp extra-virgin olive oil 4tbsp date syrup 125ml orange juice 1tsp vanilla extract 175g frozen berries 60g almonds, roughly chopped 1 Heat the oven to 190°C/fan 170°C/gas 5. Line a 12-hole

Berry nut chia mufins

muffn tray with paper cases. Sift the fours, baking powder and bicarb of soda into a large bowl. Add the oats and chia seeds. 2 In another bowl, whisk together the eggs, olive oil, date syrup, orange juice and vanilla extract until smooth. Add to the four mixture and mix until just combined. Stir in the berries and all but 1tbsp of the almonds. 3 Spoon the mixture into the prepared cases. Mix the extra oats and reserved almonds and spoon on top of each

muffn. Bake for 25–30 min until springy to the touch, then transfer the muffns to a wire rack to cool. Store in an airtight container and eat within 2 days, or freeze. LOW SATS




Per muffin l 182kcal l 5.4g sugar l 5.9g protein l 4.2g fbre l 7.3g fat l 0.3g salt l 1g saturates l 65mg calcium l 24.1g carbs l 1.6mg iron february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 73

ur From o nist io nutrit Nutrition consultant Juliette believes the key is to enjoy it

Our menu plan is designed to help you lose around 1lb a week (and more if you have a lot to lose). It includes at least fve portions of fruit and veg a day, and two portions of fsh each week, one of them oil rich. We also make sure you get enough vital nutrients, such as calcium. And, as we use many of the delicious recipes in this issue, there’s no deprivation involved. Over the page, you’ll fnd lots of suggestions for the following weeks…

HFG’s weekly Hoisin chicken and noodles

Berry nut chia muffins t Mea free

Monday tueSday

Breakfast 302kcal

1 berry nut chia mufin (p73), 1 apple and 1 skinny cappuccino snack 167kcal

1 slice wholegrain toast with 1tbsp peanut butter

Lunch 433kcal

1 large jacket potato topped with 1 boiled egg mashed with 2tsp light mayo and cress, served with salad and fat-free dressing. Plus a 125g pot fat-free fruit yogurt snack 110kcal

3tbsp reduced-fat hummus with 1 carrot cut into sticks

Dinner 434kcal

1 serving vegetable jalfrezi with fruity rice (p49). Plus 1 bowl fruit salad

aL totcal k

6 1,44

74 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

Lemon and herb fish

Breakfast 294kcal

3tbsp unsweetened muesli layered in a glass with a 170g pot fat-free Greek yogurt and 2 handfuls blueberries snack 105kcal

15 unsalted almonds

WedneSday Breakfast 347kcal 2 slices wholegrain toast with 1tbsp peanut butter and 1 banana snack 150kcal

1 skinny cappuccino and 1 digestive biscuit

2 slices wholegrain bread flled with 2tsp low-fat spread, ½ tin pink salmon and some watercress. Plus a handful grapes

Lunch 415kcal 1 wholemeal pitta with homemade guacamole made from 1 small avocado mixed with 1 diced tomato, garlic, lemon juice and chilli sauce. Plus 1 orange

snack 60kcal

snack 129kcal

Dinner 621kcal 1 serving hoisin chicken and noodles (p65). Plus 1 chocolate cup pudding (p68)

Dinner 380kcal 1 serving lemon and herb fish with wilted kale (p43)

Lunch 384kcal

3 celery sticks flled with 3tbsp low-fat soft cheese

tota kcal L


2 handfuls blueberries mixed with a 170g pot fat-free Greek yogurt

totaL kcal


R ec i pe s l

diet planner

Crab cakes with tarragon sauce

Mustard steaks with vegetable bake

HFG cassoulet





Breakfast 320kcal

Breakfast 366kcal

Breakfast 285kcal

Breakfast 249kcal

1 chopped apple and 1 chopped pear mixed with a 170g pot fat-free Greek yogurt and topped with 3tbsp toasted oats

Porridge made from 4tbsp oats and 270ml skimmed milk, topped with 1tbsp each faked almonds and sultanas

1 slice wholegrain bread topped with 1tsp low-fat spread and 1 boiled egg. Plus 1 small glass orange juice and 1 apple

2 lean bacon rashers with 1 scrambled egg, 1 grilled tomato and mushrooms

snack 127kcal

snack 216kcal

1 skinny cappuccino and 30g plain chocolate

snack 197kcal

1 skinny cappuccino and 1 satsuma

1 slice carrot and pineapple cake (p70)

Lunch 454kcal 1 serving roast squash soup with hazelnut and cheese toasts (p60) snack 174kcal

1 mini wholemeal pitta flled with 30g reducedfat cheese and cucumber


Roast squash, leek and mushroom cannelloni

Dinner 385kcal 1 serving mustard steaks with layered vegetable bake (p41)

totaL kcal


Lunch 450kcal

170g pot fat-free Greek yogurt mixed with 1 chopped banana

1 large jacket potato with ½ diced small avocado and 2tbsp each kidney beans (tinned in water), salsa and reduced-fat crème fraîche, with salad and fat-free dressing

Lunch 338kcal 1 serving crab cakes with tarragon, chive and lemon sauce (p54), served with salad and fat-free dressing

snack 115kcal

2 oatcakes with 30g reduced-fat cheese and cucumber

2 rye crispbreads topped with 2tbsp tzatziki and 1 sliced tomato

Dinner 333kcal

1 serving roast squash, leek and mushroom cannelloni (p63). Plus 1 small (125ml) glass red or dry white wine*

tot L kcaa l

1,48 0

snack 209kcal

Dinner 425kcal 1 serving massaman beef curry (p48)

totaL kcal


snack 95kcal

Lunch 513kcal 1 serving HFG cassoulet (p57) with steamed green beans snack 222kcal

1 slice banana, coconut and sultana loaf (p72) Dinner 407kcal 2 slices wholegrain toast topped with 2tsp low-fat spread and 1 small tin mackerel in tomato sauce. Plus 1 handful blueberries

aL tot kcal


february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 75

now keep going…

H All our recipes are tested by HFG expert and recipe consultant Phil Mundy, using state-of-the-art Electrolux appliances.

Breakfast on Weetabix

Fish, broccoli and ginger stir-fry

Tofu noodle salad



nd raisin bran arou al 6tbsp branfakes 300kcch ea with 2tbsp raisins and skimmed milk. Plus 1 satsuma

n Tuna and arou cal sweetcorn sub 400akc h e 1 granary roll flled with ½ tin tuna in water (drained) mixed with 3tbsp sweetcorn, 2 chopped spring onions, chopped fresh parsley and a squeeze lemon juice. Plus a 125g pot fat-free fruit yogurt

scrambled egg and tomato mufn 1 toasted english mufn topped with 1tsp low-fat spread and 1 egg scrambled with 1 chopped tomato and 1tbsp skimmed milk Fruit salad with Greek yogurt fruit salad made from 1 apple, 1 satsuma, 1 small pomegranate and a handful grapes, topped with a 170g pot fat-free Greek yogurt and a sprinkling of cinnamon Beans on toast 1 slice wholegrain toast topped with 1tsp low-fat spread and 1 small tub reduced sugar and salt baked beans. Plus 1 small glass orange juice Weetabix and milk 2 Weetabix with skimmed milk, plus 1 banana and 1 satsuma

76 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015


Hummus, pitta and crudités 5tbsp reducedfat hummus with 1 carrot cut into sticks, cherry tomatoes and 1 wholemeal pitta. Plus 1 pear cheese and bean jacket 1 large jacket potato topped with 1 small pot reduced sugar and salt baked beans and 1tbsp grated reduced-fat cheese, served with salad and fat-free dressing Tofu noodle salad 1 serving tofu and vegetable soba noodle salad (p41). Plus 1 banana



n chicken arou al casserole 50e0akcch Casserole made from 2 skinless and boneless chicken thighs, 1 small onion, 1 carrot, ½ leek, ½ large tin chopped tomatoes, 1tbsp tomato purée, ½ glass red wine and enough reduced-salt chicken stock to cover. Cook in a casserole dish in the oven for 1hr or until cooked through, then serve with 1 potato mashed with skimmed milk. Plus a 125g pot fat-free fruit yogurt

Fish stir-fry 1 serving fish, broccoli and ginger stir-fry (p62). Plus 1 kiwi Grilled tuna 1 grilled fresh tuna steak served with 1 large jacket potato, 2tbsp tzatziki and salad with fat-free dressing. Plus 1 bowl fruit salad sunday roast 3 thin slices lean roast lamb with 2 medium roast potatoes


AFTEr YOU’vE FOLLOwED our menu planner for a week, you may like to create your own using the suggestions on the right. Pick a breakfast, a lunch, a dinner and two snacks each day. In addition, you should have 300ml skimmed milk – use it to make skinny cappuccinos or lattes, or mix with some of the fruit in the menu to make a refreshing shake.

r ec i pe s l

Recipe index Spinach and potato coconut curry

Weeknight dinners

l roast

l Mustard

Enjoy 2 single measures of spirits

(cooked in vegetable oil), steamed veg, 1tsp mint sauce and low-fat gravy. Plus 1 satsuma pork and black bean noodles stir-fry made with 2tsp veg oil, 100g lean pork steak, 3 sliced spring onions, a handful each chestnut mushrooms and pak choi, 4tbsp black bean sauce, garlic and chilli and 1 layer cooked noodles. Plus a 125g pot fat-free fruit yogurt spinach and potato curry 1 serving spinach and potato coconut curry (p46). Plus 1 bowl fruit salad and 1 scoop low-fat ice cream creamy salmon, pea and spinach pasta 6tbsp cooked wholewheat pasta shells mixed with ½ small tin pink salmon, 3tbsp peas, wilted spinach and 3tbsp reduced-fat crème fraiche. season with black pepper, heat through and serve with salad and fat-free dressing




1 hard-boiled a 0kcal 0 egg with mixed 1 e a c h leaves and 1tsp reduced-fat mayo l ½ small tin tuna in water (drained) with mixed leaves and 1tbsp tzatziki l 1 slice wholegrain toast with 1tsp low-fat spread and Marmite l 1 toasted crumpet with 1tsp low-fat spread l 1 slice wholegrain toast with 1tbsp low-fat soft cheese and sliced cucumber l 15 unsalted almonds l ½ small avocado mashed with garlic, lemon juice and tabasco, served with 3 celery sticks l 125g pot fat-free fruit yogurt and 1 satsuma l 1 small (125ml) glass red or dry white wine or prosecco l 2 rye crispbreads with 2tbsp tzatziki and sliced cucumber l 2 single measures spirits, eg gin, vodka, rum or whisky, with calorie-free mixers l

steaks with layered vegetable bake 41 l tofu and vegetable soba noodle salad 41 l Grilled chicken, lentil and pea salad 42 l Quinoa stufed vegetables 42 l Lemon and herb fsh with wilted kale 43

dinner for one l tuna

and sweet potato fshcakes 45

Curry Without all the Calories

squash soup with hazelnut and cheese toasts 60 l spiced pilaf with meatballs and currants 60 l Chicken, lentil and sweet potato curry 61 l fish, broccoli and ginger stir-fry 62 l Chicken, aubergine and pepper bake with caulifower mash 62 l roast squash, leek and mushroom cannelloni 63

light and spiCy

l hoisin chicken and noodles 65 and potato coconut curry 46 l Warm chicken tikka mash of the day salad with mint raita 47 l spiced squash and sweet potato l Massaman beef curry 48 mash 66 l Vegetable jalfrezi with fruity rice 49 l Bean, garlic and rosemary mash 66 triCk your taste l Pea, mint and spinach mash 67 buds into believing l Caulifower mash 67 it’s summer l roasted root vegetable salad 52 ping puddings l Duck kebabs with rose l Chocolate cup raita and pilau rice 54 puddings 68 l Crab cakes with l Ginger, apple and date tarragon, chive and cup puddings 69 lemon sauce 54 l spinach

treats to please a sWeet tooth

extreme makeover l hfG

cassoulet 57

one shop, 7 dinners l Meatballs

l Carrot

in tomato and aubergine sauce 59

and pineapple cake 70 l Banana, coconut and sultana loaf 72 l Berry nut chia mufns 73

february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 77

...and shape up

H GET FIT FOR FREE! To try out some of the classes in our planner, frst fnd your nearest nufeld Health Fitness & Wellbeing Centre at nufeld search. download a free pass at nufeld (see far right, for details).




THErE ArE sO many

A sEDENTArY LIFEsTYLE can lead to


ways to hone and tone your body at Nuffield Health. As well as doing a workout on high-tech gym equipment, you can join one of the daily classes led by experienced, trained instructors. Kettlebells You only need one piece of equipment to blast fat fast in this class – a cast-iron, ball-shaped weight with a handle (aka a kettlebell). Choose a weight to match your strength, then swing, lift and squat to work several muscle groups and raise your heart rate. To perfect your technique, you could book a one-to-one with a gym instructor. Swimfit Varying speeds, strokes and distances make this full-body pool workout more of a challenge than classic lane swimming. Tone wobbly bits and build stamina with each stroke.

78 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

heart disease, but doing regular exercise that raises your heart rate will help to lower the risk. Other benefits include improved circulation, increased energy levels and lower blood pressure. Zumba® if pounding the treadmill is too dull even to consider, this festa-style workout is for you! A collection of easy-to-grasp latinstyle dance moves, the dynamic, high-energy routines will see you salsa, mambo and famenco away the calories – and lift your mood to new heights. BODYCOMBAT™ This energetic programme is inspired by martial arts, with moves from karate, taekwondo, tai chi and boxing. You’ll kick, punch and jab to driving music, raising your heart rate, building strength and releasing any stress.

should be about blasting calories. Including a yoga or pilates class in your weekly fitness plan will help to clear your mind, ease tension, improve posture and build strength – especially in your core. Yoga it’s not all about deep breathing and chanting… At nuffield Health, the emphasis is on yoga as a form of exercise, creating balance in your body while developing strength and flexibility. every part of the body is worked, building awareness of your physical and mental being. Rumour has it yoga can help you look and feel younger, too… Pilates A series of progressive and controlled exercises will improve flexibility and core stability, realigning and strengthening the body. A great posture corrector for those who sit at a desk all day.


ExErcIsE Is As ImpOrTANT as healthy eating when it comes to improving our general health and helping us reach weight loss goals. That’s where Nuffeld Health’s group exercise classes can help – they not only make exercise fun, but working out with others can help to keep you motivated. There’s a class to suit all abilities – just take your pick and have a go! We’ve put together a ftness planner to get you started…

Reach your goals

spONsOrED bY


ar al 10e0akcch

sTRengTH WHEN YOU bUILD mUscLE you’ll not

only look leaner and feel more toned, but your metabolism will increase, too. This means you’ll burn more calories even at rest. BODYPUMP™ This muscle-conditioning class will improve your stamina and body shape. All major muscle groups are challenged as you squat, press, lift and curl with a barbell (bar with weights). The focus is on low weight loads and high repetition moves, which are proven to burn fat and build strength fast. GRIT™ This high intensity class will certainly put your fitness to the test! A combination of strength, cardio or plyometric moves are performed in short bursts, interspersed with shorter recovery periods, to raise your heart rate, burn fat and hone your body shape.

posT-gYm snACks

3tbsp reduced-fat hummus with ½ green pepper cut into sticks l 2 rye crispbreads with 2tbsp tzatziki and cucumber l 1 slice wholegrain toast with 1 tomato l 1 banana l 1 large bowl fruit salad l 1 small low-sugar cereal bar (around 100kcal) l 1 slice wholegrain toast with 1tsp low-fat spread and marmite l 1 mini wholemeal pitta filled with salad and 1tbsp tzatziki l 1 oatcake topped with 1tbsp low-fat soft cheese and 10 grapes l 4 brazil nuts l 1tbsp unsalted almonds l 1tbsp unsalted sunflower seeds and a handful blueberries l 1 Weetabix or 3tbsp branflakes with skimmed milk l 1 mini wholemeal pitta with 1 slice turkey and lettuce l

Stay on the road to wellbeing at Nuffield Health, where there’s a gym package that’s right for you It can be hard to stick to New Year’s resolutions, but if yours was to be as healthy as possible, Nuffield Health can give you all the help you need. With fitness and wellbeing centres across the country and four affordable packages on offer, there’s something to suit everyone. If you want one-to-one training to help you get results, the Personal Training package is ideal. If you need diet advice, the Nutrition MOT package offers consultations with a nutritional therapist so you can review what you


eat and make changes with long-term health benefits. Injured or suffer with areas of weakness? The Physio MOT package could help. And for a bonus, there’s the One Month Free option. All new members will receive a Health MOT and have access to expert advice, a personalised fitness programme, multiple clubs and more. Why not use a free five-day pass at your local centre to help you decide? With the right package you can achieve fitness victory. Share yours with #SmallVictory.

SS EEvisPA -DAYToFR it m, ee red

offer is only ip costs vary per club. Free pass Ts&Cs Facilities and membershfacilities and is not applicable to current members. applicable to non-chargeableFood Guide offer will be needed to claim use of ID and a copy of the Healthyfive consecutive days only; it must be claimed and this gym pass. Pass valid for February 2015. Cannot be exchanged for a cash used before 11.59pm on 28 person. value. Only one gym pass per

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When you need an energy-boosting snack before or after exercising, a handful of nuts and your bottle of water will do the trick nicely. Our expert picks out other healthy options, and pinpoints the sports drinks and bars best left on the shelf p84

february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 83

Are you

y g r enoeostinTgS b DUC O R P

biting off


more than you can

chew? Reaching for an energy bar may seem the easiest option to replenish reserves when exercising. But you could be getting more than the boost you bargained for, says HFG nutritionist Amanda Ursell

84 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

YOU CAn’T FAIL to have noticed those ‘energy-boosting’ products online and on high street shelves. Once restricted to male-dominated gyms in the form of brightly coloured, carb-loaded drinks and functional-looking protein bars, they’ve morphed

s hoppi ng l

proteIn For atHletes

into sleek products designed to tempt with the promise of a perfect body. They’re now well marketed, but whether we actually need them before, during or after a 5km run, or just to support our hectic day-to-day schedule, is another matter.

However, athletes and anyone training hard may have higher needs when it comes to protein, which is needed to build and maintain healthy muscles. They should aim for between 1.3g and 1.8g protein per kg of body weight. So a 64kg female athlete would need around 95g protein a day.

bespoke or natural? In fact, most sports nutritionists agree that natural foods and drinks are just as good as bespoke – if not better. They also say unless we’re training for an event or are proper athletes, specially created energy products don’t really have a place in our diet. Registered nutritionist and writer Anita Bean, who has competed at a top level in competitive sports, says, ‘In many cases you don’t need to splash out on specialist energy and protein products.’ Research backs this up, too. ‘When scientists from the University of California looked at the impact of energy chews versus raisins when exercising, they showed the latter to be just as effective at replenishing carbohydrate stores,’ says Anita. ‘And, arguably, with iron and potassium as well as fbre, the raisins make a better choice nutritionally, too.’

ConsIDer MIlk…

PUmPInG up the PROTEIn WHILE, STRICTLY SPEAkInG, the energy-boosting market revolves around ways of replenishing carbohydrate, which is the main fuel burned by the body during exercise, there is also a demand for powders and bars that pack extra protein into your diet. But if you simply enjoy an hour in the gym, a brisk jog, a bike

ride or a 50-minute swim, you don’t need to up your protein. In the Uk, protein intakes already outstrip needs. Health guidelines recommend women have 45g protein a day, and men 55g daily. Figures from the national Diet and nutrition Survey reveal that women currently have around 65g a day and men around 85g daily.

there’s plenty of protein in an everyday diet such as this:

Cereal with milk

Mediumsize latte

Tuna salad sandwich




Spaghetti bolognese


17g = 54g

In other words, it’s really easy for most of us to consume more than we need each day simply by eating a balanced diet. For most of us, protein bars and shakes are not what the dietitian ordered!

A protein shake providing 20g protein could, in such conditions, be useful. But, that said, for women and men, milk has been shown to be just as effective as specialist products for helping muscles grow and repair after training. In fact, researchers from northumbria University found that when athletes drank 500ml semi-skimmed milk (which provides 17.5g protein) after training, they had less muscle soreness and muscles recovered more rapidly than if they’d had commercial protein-based sports drinks or even water.

naturally gooD If you do need extra protein but don’t want to buy specialist products, having slightly larger servings of protein-rich foods, such as reduced-fat milk, eggs, lean meat, fsh and chicken, can provide a tasty solution. You can also add foods naturally rich in protein. A 170g tub of Total 0% Greek Yoghurt provides almost 18g protein with just 97kcal, zero fat and 7g natural milk sugars. A 50g serving of unsalted cashews or almonds provides around 300kcal and 10g protein (cashews provide around 10g carbs; almonds just under 4g carbs). One slice of wholemeal bread with 1tbsp peanut butter provides 180kcal, 7g protein and 19g carbs. february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 85

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BEsT wOrkOUT FUELs Find out which are the right foods for your exercise routine OF cOUrsE, nOT EvErYOnE wants to travel to the gym, an outdoor boot camp in the local park or have a session in the pool with sandwiches and a bottle of water in tow. But whether you choose the kitchencupboard option or prefer the convenience of specialist products, it’s important to make healthy choices. Here are our recommendations… beFOre yOu wOrk Out An hour or so before, eat some fruit and a yogurt or two oatcakes spread with reduced-fat cream cheese, plus drink some water. This helps provide the energy you’ll need for your muscles to keep going and means you’ll start off well hydrated. whIle yOu’re exercIsIng water is really all you need to get the most from a 60-minute workout. If you’re exercising for a lot longer than that, topping up with carbohydrates is a good idea, to maintain your maximum effort level – but there’s no need to turn to expensive ‘energy-boosting’ products.

Kitchen cupboard ‘researchers from Appalachian state University revealed that eating bananas and drinking water was just as effective as having sports drinks for increasing performance during a 75km cycling time trial,’ says Anita.

we e L v

Off the shelf

Beet it organic Beetroot shot (£1.95/70ml) Per 70ml shot: l 70kcal l 0.1g fat l 14.7g carbs l 9.1g sugar l 2.8g protein

This supplies 0.3g nitrates, which occur naturally in beetroot and are converted into nitrites once consumed. nitrites help to lower blood pressure and improve endurance if you have them during a workout, helping you to keep going for longer.

9bar peanut Bar (£2/4 x 40g bars) Per 40g bar: l 230kcal l 17.2g fat l 10.2g carbs l 7.1g sugar l 8.1g protein

These bars aren’t marketed as energy or proteinboosting products, but they’re a tasty way to push up your levels. They have around the same amount of protein as you’d fnd in an egg, plus extra heart-healthy unsaturated fats from the nuts and seeds, with just a little sugar. A good snack to have an hour or so before you start exercising.

86 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

AFter yOur wOrkOut

Kitchen cupboard

sports nutritionists say that water with a small carb-based snack (such as a jam sandwich) works as well as an isotonic sports drink. Or try coconut water; it provides 15g carbohydrate and 54kcal per 300ml. scientists from the University of Memphis found it’s as effective as a sports drink for upping fuid levels when you’re mildly dehydrated after exercise.

Off the shelf novo BBQ Chipotle protein Bites (£1.50/40g)

Per bag: l 147kcal l 2.5g fat l 11g carbs l 1g sugar l 20g protein

These provide carbs that are low in sugar. Made with soya-based and milk proteins, each pack has as much protein as a grilled chicken breast. Have them with water to rehydrate and a banana to replace glycogen stores in the muscles.

Upbeat Mango & passion Fruit high protein Dairy Drink (£1.79/250ml) Per bottle: l 149kcal l 2g fat l 12.5g carbs l 11.8g sugar l 20g protein

A grab-and-go, thick drink that delivers a good hit of protein with half the amount of sugar you’d fnd in a fruit juice or smoothie.

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sTEEr cLEAr… …OF AnY spEcIALIsT spOrTs FOOD AnD DrInk prODUcTs that are high in sugar, fat and salt (see below). Always check the nutrition on pack. AVOID FOODs with more than 22.5g sugar per 100g or drinks with more than 11.3g sugar per 100ml. Also, look at the total amount of sugar in the serving and avoid foods with more than 27g or drinks with 13.5g per serving. Examples of those with a high sugar content include: Lucozade Energy (31g per 250ml serving) and Maxinutrition protein Milk Extreme strawberry (25g per 500ml). Better to stick with water.


AVOID FOODs with more than 17.5g fat (and 5g saturates) per 100g or drinks with more than 8.8g fat (2.5g saturates) per 100ml. Also give a wide berth to foods with more than 21g fat and 6g saturates per serving, as well as drinks with more than 10.5g fat and 3g saturates per serving. For example, swap phd Growth Factor 50 chocolate bar, which has 9.8g saturated fat per bar, for a handful of nuts and a glass of semi-skimmed milk. IF yOur wOrkOut Is hArDer thAn usuAl (more than 90 minutes, say), an ‘energy’ product might seem like a good idea. But a word of warning: a banana-favour powerBar performance Bar has 203kcal, almost half of which come from sugar (23g per bar). A glass of semi-skimmed milk with a piece of fruit is healthier. february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 87


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Jerusalem artichokes Why they’re good for

DIGEsTIVE HEALTH In the frst of our new series, Dale pinnock examines the health benefts of a seasonal veg whose knobbly looks often mean it’s left on the shelf

Why they’re so potent Jerusalem artichokes are high in two types of fbres – fructo-oligosaccharides (FOs) and inulin – both of which act as prebiotics (food for good bacteria).

the science bit By feeding the good bacteria in our gut, prebiotics help them multiply, so they can get to work, helping regular movement through the gut, repairing the gut wall and manufacturing certain nutrients. As the bacteria feed on FOs and inulin and ferment them, they produce a few by-products. One is a short-chain fatty acid known as butyric acid. This has a localised anti-infammatory effect, as well as infuencing local immune responses. In short, it can offer some natural everyday repair and housekeeping for the gut.

How they can Help you


Their infuence on gut bacteria makes Jerusalem artichokes (and prebiotic foods in general) good for digestive woes. All sorts of complaints, from bloating and constipation to more serious conditions such as infammatory bowel disease, seem to beneft from improving the balance of good bacteria in our gut.

you need to knoW If you’ve never tried Jerusalem artichokes before, be aware that their nickname is, ahem,

Per 80g serving 33kcal 4.9g fibre siMPLe sWAP Serve in place of potatoes – either boiled, roasted or stir-fried

‘fartichokes’. Why? High levels of FOs and inulin can cause an aggressive initial fermentation by the gut bacteria. For some people (depending on the health of their gut fora), this can feel like World War lll has erupted in the digestive tract! This is a necessary evil – look at it as a sign that these ingredients are doing their thing. But don’t worry, the effects will settle in time, and your gut will thank you.

Have a go my Jerusalem artichoke soup is a great way to discover the favour – and it’s easy to make. find the recipe at healthy

With a BSc in Nutritional Medicine from the University of Surrey, plus plenty of professional cooking experience, dAle pinnock focuses on using the science of nutrition in recipes for maximum beneft to our health. ReAd moRe about digestive health in Dale’s new book Digestion: Eat Your Way to Better Health (Quadrille, £14.99), out now.

Also good in febRuARy

l Apples l Beetroot l Brussels sprouts l Cabbage l Caulifower l Celeriac l Celery l Chicory l Citrus fruit l

Goose l Kale l Leeks l Mackerel l Parsnips l Pears l Potatoes l Scallops l Swede l Turnips l Venison

february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 89

fo Ne r2 w 01 5

SAV E 1 5 QU %* 1 O






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put it on the menu

pancakes Get ready for Pancake Day (17 Feb) with our guide to the products worth fipping, whatever your dietary requirements


our step-by-step DiY recipe. Pancakes can be easily adapted to special diets, too. if you’re dairy intolerant, most plant-based or lactosefree milks can be used in place of cow’s milk. and if you have coeliac disease, gluten-free four works as well as regular. turn the page for our top product picks, as well as three tried-and-tested one-shop recipes.

worDs: Nichola Palmer. Photos:thiNkstock. Prices correct at time oF GoiNG to Press

all it takes is a few simple tweaks and you can enjoy healthier pancakes in a fash. our suggestions over the page use toppings that are lower in fat and calories, and ready-made pancakes or mixes for a quick fx. when you have more time, whipping up your own batter is easy and gives you complete control over the type of four and milk you use. Just follow

our fromEST

february 2015 healthY FooD GUiDe 91

3 quick ways to flip Vegetable dosai 215kcal per serving (2 pancakes)

Gits Dosai Mix, 99p/200g, tesco

tesco vegetable stir-fry, £1/380g

fussels extra virgin rapeseed spray oil, £2.50/200ml, tesco

tesco ingredients roasted Garam Masala, £1.99/40g

Pear and blueberry stacks 226kcal per serving (2 pancakes)

waitrose Love Life free from… Gluten 6 scotch Pancakes, £2.57

2 ripe pears, 40p each, waitrose

essential waitrose blueberries, £2.67/175g

the Groovy food Company Light and Mild agave Nectar, £2.50/250ml, waitrose

Orange, ricotta and chocolate 271kcal per serving (1 pancake)

Genesis Crafty big Pancakes £1.40/4, sainsbury’s

sainsbury’s taste the Difference 72% swiss Dark Chocolate, £1.40/100g

92 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

2 oranges, 30p each, sainsbury’s

ricotta by sainsbury’s, £1.25/250g

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Gluten free?

Try these mixes prep 5 min cook 10 min serves 4 Make up the dosai mix according to the pack instructions l Heat a non-stick frying pan over a medium heat and spray with rapeseed oil l Cook the batter in batches to make 8 pancakes. Keep warm l Spray a wok or large non-stick frying pan with more oil. Heat, then cook the vegetable stir-fry for 5 min or until just tender l Sprinkle over 2tsp roasted garam masala l Divide the stir-fry among the pancakes, then roll up and serve.

prep 5 min cook 10 min serves 3 Core and slice the pears, then heat through in a frying pan with 1tsp agave nectar and 1tbsp water l When just starting to bubble, add 100g blueberries, then remove from the heat l Meanwhile, warm the scotch pancakes according to the pack instructions l Stack the pancakes on serving plates (2 per person), then spoon over the warm pears and blueberries with the juices from the pan.

prep 10 min cook 5 min serves 4 Finely grate the zest of 1 orange and mix with 100g ricotta l Remove the pith of the zested orange and the peel and pith of the other orange. Slice or segment the fruit l Warm the pancakes according to the pack instructions l Meanwhile, grate 40g dark chocolate l Spread the ricotta and orange zest mix over the warmed pancakes, then top with the chocolate. Fold the pancakes into quarters, then spoon the orange slices or segments on top to serve.

DIY bater

l To make 8 pancakes:


100g flour into a bowl (see tip, below). Make a well in the centre, then add 2 eggs l Slowly WhisK in 300ml milk or dairy-free alternative until smooth l hEAT a non-stick frying pan over a medium heat and spray with oil l Add a ladleful of batter, swirling the pan to get an even coating l CooK for 30 sec or until the base is golden. FLip, then cook for 15–20 sec l Transfer to a plate and keep warm while you cook 7 more pancakes. Tip Wholemeal flour absorbs more liquid, so you may need a little extra milk.

easy LiKe suNDay MorNiNG

Mrs Crimble’s home Bake pancake Mix, £2/200g, sainsbury’s Just add eggs and milk. Ideal with fresh fruit for an easy weekend breakfast treat

sweet or savoury?

Amisa organic gluten Free pancake Mix, £2.69/360g packs, ocado The nutty flavour of buckwheat and wholemeal rice flour works well in either sweet or savoury recipes

WE E L v doves Farm gluten Free plain White Flour Blend, £2.19/1kg, widely available The mild favour of this everyday alternative to wheat four is perfect for pancakes. Per 100g: 350kcal l 0.9g fat l 0.2g saturates l 0.4g sugar l 0g salt

sweet tooth fix

Maple grove Farms gluten Free pancake & Waffle Mix, £5/454g, Tesco Whether it’s pancakes or waffles you crave, this one ticks both boxes

egg free? If you’re vegan or have an egg allergy, you can make pancakes with an egg replacer, such as Orgran Gluten Free No Egg, about £3/200g (contains the equivalent of 33 eggs), Tesco, Holland & Barrett. february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 93

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Quick route to a spicy supper Here’s a midweek cheat to make us feel good: backed by Heart research UK, mum’s masala curry sauces (mild, medium or Hot, £2.29/350g, morrisons) are low in saturates. Per ¼ jar l 88kcal l 6.3g fat l 0.4g saturates l 4.1g sugar l 0.7g salt

Fill your freezer meat-free mondays are getting more interesting now we’ve stocked up on Goodlife frozen sausages in favours such as beetroot & Feta, French bean & spinach and caulifower & mature cheddar (£2.69/250g, Waitrose). Per grilled sausage (Beetroot & Feta) l 72kcal l 1.5g fat l 0.8g saturates l 1.1g sugar l 0.5g salt

This monTh, we L ve We’ve scoured the shelves for tasty, nutritious products

Happy Chinese New Year bring china Town home with new Amy’s Kitchen chinese noodles & Veggies meal for one (£3.49/270g, Tesco, Waitrose). Gluten and dairy-free, the creamy cashew sauce is a perfect nutty accompaniment. Per pack l 490kcal l 22g fat l 2.7g

saturates l 11g sugar l 2g salt

Start the day with selenium We’re boosting our breakfast with the UK’s frst selenium-enriched eggs, courtesy of boost the roost (from £1.50/6, Asda, Ocado). Each free-range egg provides 40% of an adult’s daily needs for selenium, vital for healthy immune function. Per egg (medium) l 78kcal l 5.8g fat l 1.7g saturates l 0g sugar l 0.2g salt

94 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

One-pot satisfaction When home-cooked freshness isn’t an option, a soulful Onepot (£3.49/350g, Ocado) comes close, with free-range british meat and fresh veg. We’ve put mexican bean & sweet potato With Quinoa on our lunchtime menu. Per pot (Mexican Bean) l 262kcal l 3.4g fat l 0.4g saturates l 8.4g sugar l 0.7g salt

Lower-fat granola Granola can be high in fat, but Jordans’ two new Lighter Granolas (£3.69/750g, Tesco) have put british barley into the mix and stripped out some of the oils. result: 30% less fat than some other brands, high fbre plus a good crunch factor. Per 45g portion (Raspberry & Apple), without milk l 179kcal l 3.4g fat l 0.6g saturates l 10g sugar l 0g salt

Sweet tooth soother OK, we all have the odd mars bar moment. but we’ve stashed away a few marks & spencer Apricot marzipan chocolate bars to prevent the dash to the sweet shop (£2.50/5 x 25g). Per bar l 118 kcal l 5.7g fat l 2.7g saturates l 14.7g sugar l 0.1g salt

Chilled out chocolate Healthy Valentines choose quality over quantity when it comes to chocolates, and these booja-booja truffes (£3.99/6 truffes, widely available), which are seductively packaged in jewel shades, come chilled for tip-top condition (and they’re free from dairy, soya and gluten). If you forced us to choose a favour, it would have to be Almond & sea salt caramel… Per truffe (Almond) l 65kcal l 4.8g fat l 2.2g saturates l 3.6g sugar l 0g salt


Antipasti pasta

World on a plate The new range of m&s balanced For You healthy meals (previously Fuller Longer) is taking our taste buds for a trot around the world, starting with superfood Indonesian cod chowder with broccoli and spinach (£4.25/385g). Per pack l 235kcal l 7.7g fat l 5.8g saturates l 6.2g sugar l 1.5g salt

If, like us, you keep a jar of pesto on standby, you’ll also welcome saclà’s new antipasti range. We’ve been stirring Artichokes In Lemon & rosemary Infused Oil (£2.99/285g, Tesco) into our pasta (they’re easier to chew than others we’ve tried). Per 100g (Artichokes, drained) l 140kcal l 8.1g fat l 1.1g saturates l 0.9g sugar l 2g salt

february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 95


Your guide to the research behind this month’s stories and features food bullEtIN (p8) l Helander, E E et al (2014) Are Breaks in Daily self-Weighing Associated with Weight Gain? pLos ONE 9 (11): e113164. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0113164 l Hodgetts, V A et al (2014) Effectiveness of folic acid supplementation in pregnancy on reducing the risk of small-for-gestational age neonates: a population study, systematic review and meta-analysis. BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology. published online 26 November 2014. DOI: 10.1111/1471-0528.13202 l crowded Brain (2015) Goal setters are not goal getters? published 7 January 2015. research carried out by TomTom Gps sports watches. http://www.crowdedbrain. l Wang, L et al (2015) Effect of a moderate Fat Diet With and Without Avocados on Lipoprotein particle Number, size and subclasses in Overweight and Obese Adults: A randomized, controlled Trial. Journal of the American Heart Association. published online 7 January 2015. DOI: 10.1161/JAHA.114.001355 l Johnson, s A et al (2015) Daily Blueberry consumption Improves Blood pressure and Arterial stiffness in postmenopausal Women with pre- and stage 1-Hypertension: A randomized, Double-Blind, placebo-controlled clinical Trial. Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. published online 7 January 2015. DOI: 10.1016/j.jand.2014.11.001 l Berryman, c E et al (2015) Effects of Daily Almond consumption on cardiometabolic risk and Abdominal Adiposity in Healthy Adults With Elevated LDL-cholesterol: A randomized controlled Trial. Journal of the American Heart Association. published online 7 January 2015. DOI: 10.1161/ JAHA.114.000993 How to aVoId tHE HuNGER GamES (p14) Garg, N et al (2007) The infuence of incidental affect on consumers’ food intake. Journal of marketing 71 (1), 194-206. DOI: 10.1509/jmkg.71.1.194 l Van Oudenhove, L et al (2011) Fatty acid-induced gut-brain signaling attenuates neural and behavioral effects of sad emotion in humans. The Journal of clinical Investigation 121 (8), 3094-3099. DOI: 10.1172/JcI46380 l Oregon Health & science University (2013) study explains what triggers those

96 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE february 2015

late-night snack cravings. published 29 April 2013. news_events/news/2013/04-29-studyexplains-what-trig.cfm l scheer, F A J L et al (2013) The internal circadian clock increases hunger and appetite in the evening independent of food intake and other behaviors. Obesity 21 (3), 421-423. DOI: 10.1002/oby.20351 l rockwell parker, m et al (2014) Expression and nuclear translocation of glucocorticoid receptors in type 2 taste receptor cells. Neuroscience Letters 571, 72-77 l platte, p et al (2013) Oral perceptions of Fat and Taste stimuli Are modulated by Affect and mood Induction. pLOs One. 5 June 2013. DOI: 10.1371/journal. pone.0065006 l Howland, m et al (2012) Friends don’t let friends eat cookies: effects of restrictive eating norms on consumption among friends. Appetite 59 (2), 505-509. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0065006: 10.1016/j. appet.2012.06.020 l Hetherington, H et al (2007) Effects of chewing gum on snack intake and appetite. DOI: Appetite 48, 397-401

polycystic ovary syndrome. Diabetic medicine 28 (12), 1445-1454. DOI: 10.1111/j.1464-5491.2011.03460.x Q&a (p32) l cAsH (2011) ‘posh’ salt health claims should be taken with a grain of salt! published online 17 November 2011. surveys/2011/gourmet%20salts/59309.html

my jouRNEy back to Good HEaltH (p21) l National rheumatoid Arthritis society. -is-ra--295

wINtER: tHE SlIm SEaSoN (p34) l Yoshioka, m et al (1999) Effects of red pepper on appetite and energy intake. British Journal of Nutrition 82 (2), 115-123 l Johnson. F et al (2011) could increased time spent in a thermal comfort zone contribute to population increases in obesity? Obesity reviews 12 (7), 543-551. DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-789X.2010.00851.x l kunkel, s D et al (2012) Ursolic Acid Increases skeletal muscle and Brown Fat and Decreases Diet-Induced Obesity, Glucose Intolerance and Fatty Liver Disease. pLOs One. 20 June 2012. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0039332 l symonds, m E (2013) Brown Adipose Tissue Growth and Development. scientifca. Article ID 305763. http://dx.doi. org/10.1155/2013/305763 l Lee, p et al (2014) Temperatureacclimated brown adipose tissue modulates insulin sensitivity in humans. Diabetes 63 (11), 3686-3698. DOI: 10.2337/db14-0513

How to makE youR dIEt baby REady (p28) l public Health England (2014) National Diet and Nutrition survey. results from Years 1–4 (combined) of the rolling programme (2008/2009 – 2011/12) l saldeen, p and saldeen, T (2004) Women and omega-3 fatty acids. Obstetrical and Gynecological survey 59 (1)0, 722-730 l Haggarty, p (2014) meeting the fetal requirement for polyunsaturated fatty acids in pregnancy. current Opinion in clinical Nutrition and metabolic care 17 (2), 151-155. DOI: 10.1097/ mcO.0000000000000036 l Attaman, J A et al (2012) Dietary fat and semen quality among men attending a fertility clinic. Human reproduction 27 (5), 1466-1474. DOI: 10.1093/humrep/des065 l chavarro, J E et al (2007) A prospective study of dairy foods intake and anovulatory fertility. Human reproduction 22 (5), 1340-1347. DOI: 10.1093/humrep/dem019 l pauli, J m et al (2011) current perspectives of insulin resistance and

ENERGy booStING PRoductS (p84) l Too, B W et al (2012). Natural versus commercial carbohydrate supplementation and endurance running performance. Journal of the International society of sports Nutrition 9 (27). DOI: 10.1186/1550-2783-9-27 l cockburn, E et al (2008) Acute milk-based protein-cHO supplementation attenuates exercise-induced muscle damage. Applied physiology Nutrition and metabolism 33 (4), 775-783. DOI: 10.1139/H08-057 l Appalachian state University (2012) Bananas are as benefcial as sports drinks, researchers fnd. published 28 may 2012. bananas-are-benefcial l Nieman, D c et al (2012) Bananas as an Energy source during Exercise: A metabolomics Approach. pLos ONE 7 (5): e37479. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0037479 l Ismail, I et al (2007) rehydration with sodium-enriched coconut water after exercise-induced dehydration. southeast Asian Journal of Tropical medicine and public Health 38 (4), 769-785

T H E fac Ts l

Nutrition lowdown

We cut through the science to help you work out how our recipes – and the foods you buy in the supermarket – ft into a balanced, healthy diet JUsT LIkE prE-pAckED FOODs, all our recipes provide detailed nutrition information for a typical serving. But how does that compare with your total daily needs for energy, protein, fat, carbs and certain vitamins and minerals? provided you stick to the serving size we recommend for each recipe, the easiest way is to compare the nutrition information for each recipe with the Reference Intake (rI). Over the coming months, you’ll gradually see this term being used on food labels in place of Guideline Daily Amounts (GDAs). The rIs are benchmarks for the amount of energy (kilocalories), fat, saturated fat, carbohydrate, sugar, protein and salt we should have each day. The rIs for fat, saturates, sugar and salt are the maximum amount you should have each day, while you should aim to meet the values for carbs and protein each day. There is no rI for fbre but health experts recommend we have 24g a day. Although everyone is different and has different needs for energy and nutrients, the rIs are designed for an average adult, so there’s only one set of values. see the table, right, for the fgures. We also analyse our recipes for calcium and iron – this is because these two nutrients are often low in people’s diets in the Uk. We can see how much a recipe contributes to our daily needs for calcium and iron by comparing

wHat If I waNt to loSE wEIGHt? The only way to shed the pounds is to take in fewer calories than you use up, so your body draws on its fat stores to supply it with enough energy. To lose 1lb (0.5kg) of fat you need to create a calorie defcit of 3,500kcal. This means cutting your calorie intake by just 500kcal a day should help you lose 1lb (0.5kg) a week – so, for example, women should lose this amount of weight each week on 1,500kcal and men on 2,000kcal. If you’re also more active, you can expect it to be a little more. However, nutrition experts agree that for good health in the long term, you shouldn’t lose more than 2lb (1kg) a week. REfERENcE INtakE

it with Nutrient Reference Values (NrVs), which are starting to appear on food labels in place of recommended Daily Allowances (rDAs) – again, there is just one set of values.

ENErGY (kcal)


prOTEIN (g)




sUGAr (g)


FAT (g)



sATUrATEs (g)


All our recipes come with nutrition information per serving, so as long as you stick to the serving sizes we recommend, the nutrition information we provide will be accurate.

sALT (g)



cALcIUm (mg)


IrON (mg)


l Individual needs vary considerably, so use this as a general guide only. Ask your GP or doctor to refer you to a registered dietitian if you feel you would beneft from personalised advice. Nutrition is calculated accurately, but may vary, depending on the ingredients used. Only listed ingredients are included in the calculations. february 2015 HEALTHY FOOD GUIDE 97

l t h e l a s t wor d



Artichokes are brilliant for digestion as they’re full of prebiotics, aka housekeepers for the gut (p89)

a natural substance found in apple peel seems to fre up calorie burning. Cold showers have the same efect, but we’ll probably go with the apples (p35)

10 facts


would-be parents: beware saturated fat. too much could hinder fertility (the exception is full-fat dairy, which seems to help conception) (p29)

to take away Our favourite healthy snippets and tips from this month’s issue


Chewing sugar-free gum could help you lose half a stone a year. Apparently, it makes us snack slightly less – 36kcal less, to be precise (p19)

avocados can help lower bad cholesterol. Join us in our new craze of spreading mashed avocado on bread in place of butter! (p10)

7 8

Adding bicarbonate of soda to your veg water to keep them green is an old trick. We now know it merely destroys valuable vitamins (p32)

Stress can dull our ability to taste fat – and it’s those unsatisfed taste buds that keep us reaching for more (p17)

hooked on sports drinks? Bananas plus water are shown to be just as efective at increasing performance. Just saying… (p86)



24% of adults believe gourmet salts are healthier than the ordinary sort, and 39% believe they’re more natural. But (you guessed it) they’re neither (p33)


If you’re tired of winter colds, cut the risk of catching one by keeping the linings of your airways healthy. Munching on orange, yellow and green fruit and veg will help (p23)

Compiled by liz atkins. photos: getty, thinkstoCk


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