Due to popular demand, our team of expert chefs and nutritionists have been secretly working behind the scenes to create 2 delicious new programs, which we are so excited to be launching this week.
As with our standard programs, the new ‘free from’ and ‘pescatarian’ plans are made using fresh, ethically sourced and free-range ingredients all served up into nutritionally balanced sized portions ready for you to eat.
The Pescatarian Program
Our pescatarian program is perfect for those who avoid eating meat but like to enjoy eating fish and for those who’d like to cut down on their meat consumption for a variety of reasons, and this box is a great starting point for people who want to do just that.
Lots of research supports the health benefits of eating more fish and less meat. Whilst we all know that red meat and processed meat have been linked to an increased risk of developing various diseases, fish and seafood boast a huge amount of vitamins and minerals, including the B-complex vitamins, vitamin A and vitamin D all of which are essential for a healthy nervous system, vision and bones. Fish also contains far less saturated fats compared to meat yet still contains similar levels of protein. Seafood is also the best source of omega – 3 fatty acids which are great for your heart, reducing inflammation in the body and improving brain function. Not only that but Omega 3 has also been linked to weight loss in recent studies, which is just another added bonus that we favour here at Balance Box.
Pescatarian based diets have been around for thousands of years and some of the healthiest cultures in the world such as the Japanese, Nordic and Mediterranean countries rely heavily on fish for their protein and nutrient intake. These cultures typically eat lots of whole grains, beans, fresh fruit and vegetables, eggs, oils and seafood while meat, sugary foods and alcohol take a back seat. We’ve modelled our pescatarian box on this healthy way of life and we’ve included recipes that contain an abundance of these wonderful healthy ingredients. Including a variety of beans and pulses in your diet is not only an excellent source of plant based protein but they’re also packed with healthy nutrients like iron, calcium, magnesium and fibre, which can help to keep you feeling fuller for longer.
The production of meat and the effect on the environment has become a very topical subject in the last few years, and although we only use sustainable and ethically sourced meat and fish in the Balance Box kitchen, reducing your meat consumption is an excellent way to reduce your carbon foot print. A study by the university of Oxford found that meat-rich diets resulted in an average of 7.2kg of carbon dioxide emissions in contrast to both vegetarian and pescatarian diets which caused an average of 3.8kg of CO2 per day.
The Free-From Program
Our free-from program is free from meat, fish, dairy and gluten and ideal for those with an allergy or intolerance to one or more of these ingredients, and also for those who want to cut down on these ingredients to give their digestion a bit of a rest.
We don’t use any refined carbs in our meal plans here at Balance Box and instead opt for unprocessed complex carbohydrates such as sweet potato, brown rice and rye which are high in nutrients and fibre and provide a steady energy release, essential for weight loss and keeping those pesky hunger pangs at bay. In our new free-from program we’ve gone a step further than this and we’ve removed any grains that contain gluten such as barley and rye and replaced them with some delicious gluten free grains such as millet and quinoa. Quinoa is higher in nutrients than most other grains, amazingly it also supplies all the essential amino acids needed by the human body and is therefore considered to be ‘complete’ protein source.
We’ve also removed any cows dairy from this plan and we’ve replaced it with sheep’s and goats products such as sheeps yoghurt, goats cheese, feta and halloumi cheese. Many of those who have an allergy to cows dairy are able to tolerate goats milk because it contains less lactose than cows milk. Goats and sheeps products are therefore easier for the body to digest and they are also higher in calcium and many other minerals and vitamins.
This plan is also free from meat and fish and contains a variety of beans and pulses, eggs, cheeses, tofu, grains, nuts and seeds and of course a vast array of wonderful fruit and vegetables. A vegetarian diet rich in these ingredients is low in saturated fat and cholesterol and high in fibre and as a result those who adopt this type of diet are likely to have lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure and a lower BMI, all of which are associated with longevity and a reduced risk of many chronic diseases.
The livestock industry is thought to be responsible for a huge 18% of all greenhouse gas emissions and cutting out meat or reducing your meat consumption is a great way to do your bit to help reduce this impact on the environment. Our ‘free from’ program is a great way to help you cut down on your meat consumption without missing out on any vital nutrients.