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Showing posts from tagged with: fruit crisps

Our Favourite Autumnal Treats..

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09.11.16

HEALTHY AUTUMN TREATS - SO SIMPLE AND DELICIOUS!

So Bonfire Night has been and gone, and we made some AMAZING healthy treats to tuck into! They were so simple to make, and so incredibly healthy too with our Giving Tree strawberry crisps and plenty of toppings. Recipe 1: Banana Choco Kebabs Method:
  • Cut 3 large bananas in half, and place a wooden skewer through each half.
  • Melt your favourite Dark Chocolate brand (we like 70% cocoa solids) and stir continuously, we added a little Chi Coconut Milk to make it extra creamy too!
  • Dunk bananas into the chocolatey bowl and let drip over a cooling rack (pop a plate underneath to collect any drippings!)
  • Now add your crushed Giving Tree fruit and your favourite nuts, seeds, grains and anything else you can get your hands on!
  • Leave to set in fridge for 3-4 hours and enjoy!
  screenshot-2016-11-09-13-28-41 Recipe 2: Sticky Choccy Apples  Method:
  • Cut 2 large apples in half, and place a wooden skewer through each half.
  • Melt your favourite Dark Chocolate brand (we like 70% cocoa solids) and stir continuously, we added a little Chi Coconut Milk to make it extra creamy too!
  • Dunk apples or drizzle in a fun pattern, into the chocolatey bowl and let drip over a cooling rack (pop a plate underneath to collect any drippings!)
  • Now add your crushed Giving Tree fruit and your favourite nuts, seeds, grains and anything else you can get your hands on!
  • Leave to set in fridge for 3-4 hours and enjoy!
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Back to School: What’s in your lunch box?

Posted by admin in Food, Givingtreesnacks, Health | 0 comments

06.09.16

Whether you are going back to school or university after a blissful summer or starting your first day at your new job, making your packed lunch does not need to be tedious and boring!

Snacks

Admittedly snacks are necessary to keep your day going. However before you reach to the chocolate think about the many other healthy alternatives you could go for...

Dark Chocolate 

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Satisfy your sweet tooth with dark chocolate! Known for its high mineral and antioxidant content, it is highly nutritious and can reduce levels of "bad" cholestrol. We like Green and Blacks 85% or Lindt's dark chocolate with a touch of sea salt!

Research has found that chocolate is good for the heart, circulation and brain as well as potentially beneficial for tackling today's major health issues such as autism, obesity and diabetes.

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Almonds

All nuts are full of antioxidants and healthy unsaturated fatty acids known to reduce cholesterol levels. However, almonds are especially popular due to its delicate and sweet taste. Whole almonds (with skins) provide the most heart healthy benefits and can lower the risk of weight gain as well as also helping to lose weight.

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Almonds are a source of vitamin E, copper, magnesium and high quality protein. Full of unsaturated fatty acids along with high levels of bioactive molecules (such as fiber, phytosterols, vitamins, other minerals, and antioxidants) which can help prevent cardiovascular heart diseases. Take a handful of almonds for a snack on-the-go or to nibble on to keep hunger pangs at bay before lunch time.

Nut butter is another alternative in your nut intake. Our favourite is Pip and Nut, which comes in many nut flavours!

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Spread some on toast with pieces of banana and honey

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or as a crunchy snack with celery sticks!

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Giving Tree Crisps 

Snack on our very own freeze dry crisps which are a lunch box filler. They are available in vegetable and fruit flavours to suit all tastes!

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Equipment

The water bottle

S'well water bottle 

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An incredibly aesthetically pleasing range of 100% stainless steel water bottles that holds cold and warm drinks. Keeps drinks cold for 24 hours and keeps drinks hot for 12 hours!

Available in different sizes: 260ml, 500ml, 750ml

The lunch box

Sistema are infamous in the tupperware world for their quality, practical and sturdy lunch boxes. Their unique sistema clips prevent any leakage and are therefore perfect for bringing to school or to the office! They are available in a range of shapes and sizes and are freezer, microwave and dishwasher safe.

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This Purple Geisha Bento Box is perfect for Japanese food lovers

  • Screenshot 2016-09-05 16.36.48The top, ‘hat’ section is an inverted bowl - perfect for miso soup.
  • The second ‘face’ level has a hermetic seal for storing stews or dressed salads without leaking.
  • The bottom ‘body’ level is a perfect container for buns, sushi or rice.

 The Coffee Cup

Help the environment by buying a reusable to take with you when you buy your daily coffee. More than 2.5 billion coffee cups are thrown away every year in the UK! A favourite is BYO cup £9.95

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Vegan Healthy Treats

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31.05.16

We have found the most AMAZINGLY delicious and totally vegan recipes from one of our favourite bloggers Madeleine Shaw.. featuring freeze dried goodness!

Check this out..

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Directions

Preheat the oven to 180C and grease a doughnut pan with coconut oil.

Mash the banana, chia egg, maple syrup, spices and melted coconut oil together. In another bowl mix the flour and baking powder. Pour the wet mix into the dry and combine well with a spoon. Spoon in the batter and cook for 10 minutes until golden and cooked through.

Depending on the size of your doughnut pan, you might need to cook in two batches.

While this is cooking make the glaze by melting the coconut oil with the nut butter and maple syrup. Stir well until fully combined then leave to the side to cool a little.

You can also glaze your donuts with melted dark or raw chocolate if you are nut free, or just for some extra decadence! Or do a mix of both like I have. Brush the donuts with the glaze then top with the toppings. They won’t last long because they’re so moreish but if you’re going to savour them, they’ll last in the fridge in an airtight container for a couple of days.

Pancakes with Strawberries and Coconut Cream

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Directions

For the crepes: Whisk the eggs and milk in a large bowl, slowly shift in the flour and a pinch of salt.

Heat 1 tbsp of coconut oil in a pan on a medium heat, swirl the oil around to cover the pan.

Pour about 50ml of the batter onto the pan making sure the mixture is distributed evenly. When the edges are set and they start to curl up (after just under a minute) flip over and cook for 30 seconds, then fold in half.

Repeat this same procedure for the rest of the mixture.

To serve, open up each crepes, smear in the coconut yogurt, a drizzle of honey and the strawberries, fold in half then into quarters and serve.

Note – The wet mix will keep in the fridge a few days so you can enjoy them a few times more.

It’s all about the Yoghurt recipes!

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10.05.16

We are absolutely loving mixing up our breakfasts at the moment with lighter recipes now Winter is over it can be so lovely to have a breakfast that does't need to give you that warm feeling like porridge but instead yoghurt makes a great option too, and so versatile. If you are Dairy Free these are perfect for you and remember the non-dairy free yoghurt recipes, you can always substitute for the dairy free versions! 1. This recipe is DELICIOUS and especially good if you like fruit flavours. We used Blueberry yoghurt from The Coconut Collaborative, Giving Tree Strawberry Crisps and fresh banana sliced up. A sprinkling of chia seeds is also delicious and granola for an extra crunch. Coconut Collaborative is totally dairy free, gluten and soya free too!Screenshot 2016-05-10 12.28.25 2. Co Yo is so thick and creamy it feels like your being far too naughty to have this for breakfast, however with only coconut milk and dairy free again as well as no added sugars this is one of our favourites! We mixed the natural and raw chocolate yoghurts together to create a delicious breakfast with a drizzle of Pip & Nut Peanut Butter and our Giving Tree strawberry crips plus chia seeds!Screenshot 2016-05-10 12.30.22 3. Yorica - This creation is from the fantastic totally free from every allergen Ice-cream/Fro Yo store in Soho! This was violet and matcha green tea plus our Giving Tree crisps for toppings. We couldn't believe this was allergen free and so delicious!Screenshot 2016-05-10 12.30.32 4. A very simple yet super delicious recipe, simply use your favourite natural yoghurt add granola and crushed Giving Tree strawberry crisps or your favourite flavour! Screenshot 2016-05-10 12.30.42

Portion Control – Are your eyes bigger than your belly?

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26.04.16

It's a common problem for us lovers of food, that it can often be hard to say no to seconds, and when food is infront of you we tend to 'pick' and overindulge when in reality are stomachs are more than full. It takes self-control to put back that extra portion, or stop yourself from reaching for a naughty dessert but modern day society doesn't seem to help us either!

Back in a modern kitchen, you suddenly notice how large everything is – 28cm has become a normal diameter for a dinner plate, which in the 1950s would have been 25cm. Serving on these large plates doesn't mean that we have to serve ourselves bigger portions, but we generally tend to! Brian Wansink is a psychologist (author of Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think) who has done numerous experiments to prove what you would hope common sense might already tell us: that oversized tableware makes us consume bigger portions. Take for example, a large ice-cream scoop makes you take more ice-cream; a short glass makes you pour more juice. This is because it doesn't look as much, so we  feel we are consuming roughly the same amount.

What a recommended portion actually looks like

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It seems that the only people who are immune to big portions are tiny children. Up until the age of three or four, children have an enviable ability to stop eating when they are full. After that age, this self-regulation of hunger is lost, and sometimes never relearned. This is a cross-cultural phenomenon, from London to Beijing. One study from the US found that when three-year olds were served small, medium and larger portions of macaroni cheese, they always ate roughly the same amount. By contrast, five-year-olds ate a lot more when the portion of macaroni cheese was oversized.

In a world where food is ever-present, many of us have become like Alice in Wonderland, controlled by cakes that say Eat Me and bottles that say Drink Me. As the nutritionist Marion Nestle remarked 10 years ago in her book, What to Eat: “It is human nature to eat when presented with food, and to eat more when presented with more food.” The trouble is that we are pushed more food, more often, every day. In 2013, the British Heart Foundation published a report called Portion Distortion on how portion sizes in Britain have changed since 1993. Back then, the average American-style muffin weighed 85g, whereas 20 years later it was not uncommon to find muffins weighing 130g. Ready meals have also ballooned in size, with chicken pies expanding by 49% and the average shepherd’s pie nearly doubling in size since 1993 (from 210g to 400g).

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Our problem with portions and portion control, is partly this: no one likes the concept of “less”. We are conditioned from childhood onwards to yearn for the overflowing glass and the laden table. An easy way to address this at home is simply to use smaller tableware.

Often at the end of a meal, you may not really be hungry but yearn for something sweet. First of all, ensure you are keeping hydrated and drinking enough water throughout the day too as thirst can often be mistaken for hunger. Once you have finished a meal, enjoy your favourite herbal tea or fruit flavour infused water. If you still are craving that sweet treat, then opt for a healthy version of your favourite indulgent treat such as our Giving Tree snacks which are the same nutrition as fresh and SO tasty. If you fancy that chocolate bar, then allow yourself a few squares instead of the whole block!

Healthy gadgets for on the go snacking!

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21.04.16

Let’s be honest: most of the time, being healthy is not convenient. If you fancy a quick snack at work or need to grab breakfast on the go, you often have to settle for whatever’s on offer at your local shop and usually, it’s not exactly what you want.

The best way to avoid this situation is simple – BE PREPARED. But how? Healthy gadgets are here to help..

Fortunately, there are a number of wonderful items available to help make the whole process easier. Here are five things that will help you to become healthier on a day-to-day basis. They’re all affordable too – hooray!

1. Blender Bottle GoStak – starting from £9.00 So simple, and yet so clever. You can stock up on bags of nuts, seeds, dried fruit etc., and fill each of the little interlocking jars so that you have snacks for the day ahead. This way you have tasty treats to hand at all times, and you're also able to make sure you don’t overindulge. Take a look at our lovely strawberry Giving Tree snacks which perfectly into the handy GoStak!

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2. Water Infuser Bottle – starting from £6.99 If you find drinking or even enjoying water a struggle, why not try infusing it with good stuff? Lemon, strawberry, cucumber – whatever you want! It all tastes amazing in water-y form. Just chop up your chosen fruit or veg, pop it into the little cage, fill the bottle with water and leave it in the fridge overnight. In the morning, drink up and delight in your delicious refreshment.

3. Vacu Vin Banana Guard – £2.49 If you love bananas this is for you, especially when you don't want them bruising . This handy guard allows you to transport your banana in safety, free of any nasty black marks. There are a few varieties of guard available, but we like this as it accommodates any shape banana!

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4. A blender with a portable cup – starting from £19.99 When you're in rush in the mornings,  a good smoothie or shake for breakfast is perfect as it’s a quick way to get fruit inside your body. Now it’s even easier thanks to blenders that come with portable travel bottles or cups! Delicious and simple!

6. Food hugger and  avocado saver container - for when you have that half of an avocado ALWAYS left and it goes brown the next day, this is the perfect avocado saver! Say goodbye to brown fruit and veg

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Don’t forget food groups that ARE healthy!

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19.04.16

Nutritional guidelines and recommendations are constantly changing with new research. It can be difficult to keep up with which foods are healthy and which aren’t, there is also confusion with inaccurate sources telling us different things all the time!

Take a look at these foods that have gone through the cycle of being the 'baddies' of nutritional science, but are now okay to eat again.

Remember, everything in moderation, and cooking methods play a large factor in healthy eating too!

EGGS

For a long time, eggs were thought to be bad for your heart. A large egg contains 185mg of cholesterol. Dietary cholesterol was believed to contribute to high blood cholesterol levels. But for the last 20 years, nutrition and medical research has shown repeatedly that at normal intakes dietary cholesterol has very little influence on a person’s cholesterol levels.

Although it’s taken time, nutrition experts are now correcting the record for eggs by removing it as a nutrient of concern from dietary guidelines. Eggs are an excellent source of protein, healthy fats, and several vitamins and minerals.

It can often be the way you cook an egg that contributes to it being unhealthy. Frying an egg in lashings of butter, and making scrambled eggs with too much butter and full fat milk will increase your daily fat intake drastically.

Try poaching your eggs for a delicious breakfast.

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POTATOES

Potatoes are one of the few vegetables that are actually considered to be unhealthy. They have a high glycaemic index so often get put with foods made from refined carbohydrates as foods to avoid. But potatoes are a rich source of carbohydrates, vitamin C, some B vitamins and minerals.

How you prepare potatoes completely changes the aspects of those starches that get a bad name. Cooking and cooling potatoes increases the amount of resistant starch in the potatoes. This resistant starch then acts like dietary fibre which “resists” digestion in the gut, potentially having a positive impact on your gut bacteria.

DAIRY

Milk, butter, yogurt and cheese were once considered a staple in many people’s diet, but this seems to have changed which could be down to mixed health messages.

Positive aspects of dairy include the high protein and calcium content. Fat content and fat type are important when choosing dairy products as some contain high amounts of fat per serving and this fat tends to be high in saturated fat.

Although it’s best to avoid a diet high in saturated fat (a risk factor for CHD), regularly consuming dairy products doesn’t need to be a concern if your overall calorie intake and fat intake is healthy.

It can often be worse to consume dairy products such as cheeses and yogurts that are reduced fat or 'healthier', as added sugar, artificial flavourings and additives are often used to replace the fat content.

The recent updates to the UK Eat Well Plate still promotes dairy foods as part of a healthy diet, as long as the dairy choices are lower in fat.

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NUTS

Nuts also get a bad reputation for being high in fat and high in calories, leading some to suggest they should be avoided by anyone looking to lose weight. A recent study, published in the British Journal of Nutrition, showed that eating raw nuts reduces death from all causes, cardiovascular diseases, coronary heart disease and sudden cardiac death.

Raw nuts contain protein, healthy fats (low saturated fat and high monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fat), dietary fibre and micronutrients.

Nut butters, such as peanut butter, can also be part of a healthy diet. The fat in peanut butter has a healthy profile and peanut butter is also an excellent source of protein, fibre, vitamin B6 and magnesium. Some recent evidence has shown increased weight loss for people that replace less healthy proteins, such as processed meats, with peanut butter.

You should aim to avoid nut butters with added sugar, salt and palm oil though.

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Power Spring Salad Bowls featuring GT

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14.04.16

Forget salad plates and sushi platters: Foodies are all about the new Instagram-worthy 'power bowl'. The power bowl is a bowl filled with vegetables, whole grains and plenty of protein! It tastes as healthy as a salad, but feels heartier as a meal The recipe for the 'perfect power bowl' comes down to macrobiotics, and here we show you our favourite ones featuring Giving Tree crisps as healthy, crunchy toppings for these bowls!   Screenshot 2016-04-14 15.54.29

Quinoa tricolore - this lovely bowl features our Apple crisps with steamed kale, with raspberries, and pomegranate, spiralized carrot and a tahini-açai! YUM

The smoothie bowls are still in, but this latest food trend is totally savoury.

Introducing power bowls, or the latest way to eat your lunch like the chic, wellness-obsessed set. Basically a bowl filled with vegetables, whole grains and protein, the power bowl ticks all the right boxes. It’s as healthy as a salad, but tastes heartier, it’s highly photogenic and is low in carbohydrates while also being jam packed full of so-called ‘good fats’ (think avocado, chia seeds and brazil nuts) These recipes we feature are so simple to make and the more variety of veg the better - we like to say 'Eat a rainbow'. There’s a science to the ‘perfect power bowl’, which basically comes down to macrobiotics. The most powerful Power Bowl consists of 15 per cent lean protein, 25 per cent whole grains, 35 per cent vegetables, 10 per cent sauce and 30 per cent extras (including nuts, seeds and sprouts). Screenshot 2016-04-14 15.54.03

This wonderful bowl consists of Spiralized veggies, and a cucumber sesame salad, raw mushrooms, broccoli, mixed cooked beans, beetroot hummus with lots of tahini, mixed greens and @givingtreesnack apple crisps plus fresh pomegranate seeds. It adds a different dimension adding sweet and crunchy flavours to savoury too! 

Here are some great ingredients to add to your shopping list if you want to recreate your own at home include quinoa, beetroot, sweet potato, seeds, nuts, chicken, black beans and avocado (of course). When perfectly arranged so that you can see everything in it, the bowl provides a much more photogenic alternative to the traditional plate. Fans of the bowl say that it is like a ‘hug’ in a meal, and Instagram already has tens of thousands of posts with the hashtag #powerbowl accompanying their filtered snaps. For those who are sick of their regular plate of salad at lunchtime and who fancy something with a little bit more symmetry and harmony than a few pieces of wilting lettuce, try the power bowl in replacement.

De-stress your life – GT top tips

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13.04.16

Stress can creep up on us at the strangest times and for reasons we aren’t always sure of, however dealing with it and learning how you best recover from it is most important, or it can really overwhelm us! Far too often people build up their stress and carry it with them until they can’t any longer and it becomes something far worse than it was initially. Stress is something we can all relate to but because we all suffer from it from time to time, it’s vital that we understand how we best deal with this when we don’t have others to turn to in a single stressful moment. Here are a few foolproof simple ways to de-stress in moments like this..

HAVE SOME TIME OUT

It’s so important that we allow ourselves the time to simply get away from our daily schedules and routines. A lot of stress does stem from what we do in our every day lives as well as certain situations and experiences, which is why we need to nip it in the bud when it arises so that we don’t carry it with us. Taking some time out can be the best thing for you if you are feeling like everything is getting on top of you. It’s also good to be able to re-evaluate the factors within your life that are triggering this so that you can ultimately control or put an end to them. It’s also important to remember that by taking time out you are not being selfish, you are simply helping yourself to de-stress and be much more productive in the long run.

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INDULGE EVERY SO OFTEN

So often we see it as a bad thing to indulge in luxuries that we wouldn’t usually allow ourselves to enjoy, however when things become a bit too much to handle, luxuries are there to be used for just that: to enjoy a luxurious experience. Going along the lines of a spa day (or hour even), a meal with friends, a weekend trip away, or even enjoying your favourite box set with a meal of your choice - these things all allow you to simply indulge in something you love which you don’t do all the time and provide you with the opportunity to forget about things which were previously causing you stress and to simply enjoy the moment. This includes indulging in the most delicious and also healthy of treats too - we like CoFro with lots of toppings including our Giving Tree fruit crisps ..mmmmm

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CLEAR THE CLUTTER

It’s surprising just how much stress we sub-consciously create for ourselves despite not wanting to. In the form of clutter, we allow ourselves to accumulate so many unnecessary piles of clothes and build up things which need to “go on eBay” or washing that can be done later but never shifts. We all hold onto possessions we think we might one day need, as a comfort or security blanket but the reality is that the constant build up of these things is causing us unnecessary stress that we just don’t need. A clear space equals a clear mind, and seeing as your living space is the one place where you should be able to simply chill out, where better to start than there with regard to clearing out the clutter.

“DON’T HATE, MEDITATE”

Meditation, couldn’t be more fitting when it comes to de-stressing. Sometimes just being still in the moment can bring focus back into your life, and allow you to simply be. We allow ourselves to get so caught up in the hustle and bustle of life that we occasionally forget to appreciate the moment we are currently living in. Allowing time to just be present in a moment and forget about the stresses we were holding can be a brilliant way of almost trivialising some of the things that were previously worrying you and allowing you to see them in a more practical way, so therefore just dealing with them rather than procrastinating over them.

Stress can get in the way of so many things which is why it’s important to establish what makes your stress levels rise and the best ways for you to eliminate that stress as much as possible by using whichever de-stress technique that works for you. By using these foolproof ways to remove unnecessary stress from your agenda, you will be able live a much more stress-free life in the long run!

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Why summer bod blues need to be banished!

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08.04.16

We can all get extremely caught up in the pressure to conform to trying to sculpt what is perceived as the ‘perfect summer body.Generally the media portrays summer bodies as women that are generally beautifully toned, tanned and without the lumps and bumps we spend hours deliberating over, however it is not the way, even with regular exercise combined with a healthy diet, everybody’s bodies look on the same regime. Things are slowly changing, though not fast enough; generally people are becoming more personally accepting of their different body types which is brilliant, however what it’s doing as a result of this is taking away the importance of eating a healthful and nutrient - dense diet in the process. To eat healthily isn’t only to create the most glowing version of yourself, but to have the right foods on the inside to allow you to be the absolute best version of yourself is what counts the most as it will encourage you to flourish in every area of your life. Here are a few foolproof ways of letting your very own ‘summer body’ flourish the way it should do minus the pressure to succumb to the ideals we’re all too used to.. DON’T SWEAT IT You don’t have to be a personal trainer to know that exercise is extremely vital for your overall health and wellbeing, not only for your body but for your mind. However by not following the workout ‘of the year’ or subscribing to the latest set of work out videos doesn’t automatically mean you won’t feel amazing. The most important factor to consider when aiming to organise your work out regime is to only look into doing things you enjoy or you will result in giving up before you’ve even begun. If you dread running or can’t stand yoga, the answer is simple, don’t do it. There are a wealth of different options out there to explore when it comes to exercise, from boxing combined with pilates, a variety of HITT workouts, fluorescent spinning classes or local boot camps.. the only advice to really consider, is not to worry which path to exercising you take, but just to simply get moving in whichever way makes you happy.   londonpigeon BE INTUITIVE There are countless diet plans and ‘rules’ out there to follow but many disclaim that ultimately what you eat has to work for you. Some people may thrive off a diet filled with lots of good fats including avocado and nuts, and others’ bodies may completely disagree with it, equally a certain amount of carbohydrate in a person’s diet may need to be different depending on whether or not their body can take it and thrive off it. Ultimately, the best diet that works for you will be the one that allows you to want to wake up each morning and reach your fullest potential whilst enjoying the food that you’re eating. Food shouldn’t just be fuel, though at the same time it should provide your body (most of the time) with the potential to be the best version of yourself and ultimately feel amazing. DRESS TO FLATTER So much of the time, the latest fashion trend be it in swim wear, work out gear or day-to-day clothes is advertised as the only way to stay fashion-forward however it’s not always the best way for everyone. Going back to the idea that no diet or work out regime is best for everyone, neither is the same outfit. Half of trick to feeling great (other than exercise and diet) is ensuring that you dress to flatter your body shape. Yes we can all work towards achieving the optimum healthy weight and therefore size for our shape but fundamentally all of our body shapes are different, and what may flatter one persons’ body type might not quite look the same on someone else. It’s important to consider this when buying clothes/swim wear/work out attire, as ultimately what you see is, in the moment, almost as important in the way you feel as if you look you best you will feel you best, so embrace the opportunity each morning to wake up and dress in a way that will enhance the way you feel. Finally, don't forget that you can indulge in healthy snacks - chocolate whey hey ice cream (high protein, no added sugar) makes the perfect summer snack along with our Giving Tree crisps!   IMG_3621