Good4U Blog

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Wednesday, 15 October 2014 By Good4U

Hi guys! So we have decided that it would be fun to have a ‘Superfood Spotlight’ every month! It’s a way for all of the Good4U Community to learn a little bit more about what we are eating.

The Superfood Spotlight will grace the blog during the 2nd week of every month! Make sure to let us know which Superfoods you would like to know more about by leaving us a comment on Twitter, Facebook, or on one of our pics on Instagram or Pinterest.

Superfoods are much talked about and there are snippets of information about each one posted on the internet on a regular basis. So we thought it would be nice for you guys to see all of the different benefits that each one has to offer! This week we are going to kick it off with quinoa!

For starters, I think we should get pronunciation out of the way! This is a word I battle with on a daily basis. So much so that one colleague has kindly placed a poster which reads “KEEN-WAH” on the wall opposite my desk. This is the correct pronunciation. Cringe. You would think that would help? But I seem to be stuck with “KIN-OH-WAH” for life. Please learn from my mistakes. Let’s say it together…keeeen-waaaaah.

Now we can move on to more important things.

Quinoa is a quick-cooking grain which makes it great for those evening when you get home and you need to eat fast! Some may think that quinoa isn’t the most exciting food on the earth but, let me tell you, it’s up there. Think of potatoes, it’s so versatile to use! A side on its own, part of a soup or stew, tossed through a salad…the list goes on! Quinoa grows in number of different colours, but the most commonly available are red, black and white quinoa. It’s known for having a nutty taste and delicate popping texture. The best bit is that not only is it versatile but it’s very nutritious.

Nutritional information

Our dietitian Shelly has filled us in on the nutritional benefits that quinoa boasts. As mentioned above, quinoa is a gluten free grain. It contains all the essential amino acids which means that it’s a really great option for Vegetarians and Vegans.

Quinoa contains small amounts of the heart healthy omega-3 fatty acids and, in comparison to common cereal grasses has a higher content of monounsaturated fat.

Quinoa is also high in anti-inflammatory phytonutrients, which make it potentially beneficial for human health in the prevention and treatment of disease.

Cooking instructions

If you have cooked a potato or rice in your life, you can cook quinoa… no problemo!

Pop 1 cup of quinoa in a pot with 2 cups of water (or stock) and bring to the boil on a high heat. (The grain expands to three time the size when cooked so bear in mind when measuring).

Reduce to a simmer and let it cook for 15-20 minutes until the grains are tender. Part of the hull that looks like a little string should be visible when cooked.

Fluff the quinoa in the pot with a fork before serving. White quinoa tends be a bit fluffier when cooked (a bit like couscous), while red and black quinoa have a more firm texture and the grains don’t stick together as much.

Done!

Good4U Quinoa Sprout Mix

Our Good4U Quinoa Sprout Mix is a tasty mix of sprouted quinoa, alfalfa, lentil, sango and radish seed. This sprout mix has a subtle peppery flavour and will add a powerful punch of nutrients to any meal you like.

It’s high in protein which contributes to growth and maintenance of muscle mass, making it perfect to include in a post workout lunch or dinner. Additionally, the high fibre content in Quinoa Sprout Mix supports a healthy digestion.

They are fresh and ready to eat, so they are a great no hassle way of adding extra nutrients to a meal.

Recipes

If you would like to check out some of the recipes incorporating quinoa that our dietitian Shelly has created for your taste buds here are a few recommendations. Look out for more fun quinoa filled recipes during the rest of this week!

Mixed fruit and quinoa

Roast chicken sandwich with quinoa

Moroccan Style quinoa with Scallops

Chicken wrap with quinoa sprouts

Quinoa and pomegranate salad

Tags: Good4U News Shelly's Space 
Tuesday, 07 October 2014 By Good4U

So the first week of October has flown by and we can definitely see a change in the weather! Some of us here at Good4U love Autumn and are happy to wrap up enjoy the fresh, sometimes misty, air. However, even though it’s a lovely time of year, it’s also a time when people get the snuffles and when it’s easy to turn to a little bit of comfort eating. Halloween is at the end of this month as well which brings with it lots of sweet temptations!

So we have decided that it would be a good idea to do a detox this week! It will run today (Tuesday) until Thursday and it will include one day of juicing. For the other two days we will be eating three extra healthy meals. There are plenty of recipes on the Good4U website that you can either follow or use to inspire your inner chef!

If you’re a little sceptical of juicing, just check out the benefits; Just one piece of fruit a day is enough to lower heart disease risk by 20%. 5 weekly servings of red fruit and vegetables - such as tomatoes and watermelon – has been shown to reduce lung cancer by up to 25%. This is because vegetables are low in fat and full of fibre, vitamins and minerals. They also contain compounds called phytochemicals which fight all kinds of illnesses. Juicing will help you get even more of these essential vitamins because the fruit and vegetables are eaten raw. Some vitamins are damaged by cooking so eating them raw really is the best way to get them.

To help you get through the 3 Day Detox, check out our e-book that our dietitian Michelle created. Everything you need from shopping lists to recipes is inside the e-book, your one stop book for the detox!

Share your creations with us from Juicy Tuesday and our 3 Day Detox using #Detox4U on all social media channels and see what we’ve been up to. We’ll also be running our detox on a monthly basis, so if you can’t join us this time round, we’ll be back again at the beginning of November with lots of new juicy recipes.

Happy detoxing!

Tags: Good4U News Juice4Life Weight loss Tips Sport & Health 
Friday, 26 September 2014 By Good4U

This weekend Good4U are excited to be taking part in the National Coaching Forum! It takes place in the Institute of technology Sligo and runs for two days (26th & 27th September). This event has been referred to as a “can’t be missed” event by the National Coaching Forum!

Coaching Ireland will be hosting the event which is in its 11th year running and the conference will attract both professionals and volunteers involved in Sport Coaching from many different backgrounds including physical education teachers, coaches and policy makers.

There will be a great mixture of keynote speakers and practical workshops throughout the day. The keynote speakers include Dr. Cian O’Neill who was part of the Kerry team that won the All Ireland Finals last week and this year there will be particular focus on best practice in coaching children.

The day runs from 6 to 10.30 on Friday and from 8.30 to 6 on Saturday.

We’re looking forward to meeting everyone attending so if you have any questions about sports nutrition our dietitian Shelly will be happy to fill you in!

Follow #fuel4sports to see what we’re getting up to!

Tags: Good4U News 
Monday, 22 September 2014 By Good4U

You know how everyone likes to be right all of the time? Ever hear people arguing amongst each other whether a certain food is healthy or not and neither wants to admit defeat. Our dietitian Michelle has debunked the truth behind the common myths so hopefully now these arguments and disagreements will come to an end.

1) Myth: Consuming large quantities of protein results in large biceps.

Truth: Unfortunately this is not the case.  To see noticeable changes in body composition it is crucial to be consistent with an effective strength training and nutrition plan. The recovery window is ideally within 15 minutes post workout and should consist of 0.5g protein and 1g carbohydrates per kg body weight. Too much protein is either used as energy, excreted from the body as waste or converted to fat. I have provided below a few examples of carb and protein portions.  

2) Myth: Supplements and pills help to improve performance.

Truth: Vitamins don’t provide energy, food does. It’s not advisable to rely on supplements to meet your requirements. A multi-vitamin might help your body to release the energy stored from certain food groups like carbs and protein, but it won’t give you a magic energy boost.

3) Myth: Cereal bars are a healthy option for a snack.

Truth: The majority of cereal bars have just as much sugar and fat as biscuits and chocolate so do not be fooled. You should aim for the 10:10:6 rule – a bar that contains <10g fat/100g, <10g sugar/100g and >6g fibre/100g.

4) Myth: Breakfast biscuits are a good option if on the move:

Truth: There’s a number of products on the market that claim to be a suitable part of your breakfast but in fact the carbohydrate content of these biscuits is 64g/100g of which 25g is sugar (compare that to porridge which has 1.1g/100g of sugar and Weetabix which has 4.4g/100g of sugar.

These biscuits have a similar sugar content of sugar to a cupcake or other biscuits - remember the ratio is 64:25/100g.You wouldn’t dream of eating biscuits for your breakfast… Would you??

5) Myth: Yogurts are not good 4 me as they are high in sugar:

Truth: Yoghurts can be good for you – they are a valuable source of protein, calcium and zinc, which are good for the bones and immune system. But unless you go for natural ones, they often contain things that are not so healthy, particularly added sugar. The majority of yoghurts will have more than 10g sugar/100g, but it’s important to remember that a large contribution of this sugar is natural coming from milk and fruit sugars. These natural or 'intrinsic' sugars usually amount to about 5-7g and don't have as strong an effect on blood sugar levels as added or 'extrinsic' sugars or (added sugars).The closer you can stick to the 10g/100g of sugar the better. But the natural sugar in fruit is more acceptable because fruits have many other benefits, such as being rich in vitamin C and fibre

6) Myth: Only professionals should drink sports drinks.

Truth: No matter what level - every athlete needs to remain hydrated. Water is ideal if your workout is less than an hour. Sports drinks provide carbohydrates and electrolytes which help muscles perform at their peak for endurance events or in hot climates. Water losses of as little as 1-2% have been shown to decrease performance by 10%.

 

7) Myth: Eating carbohydrates results in weight gain.

Truth: A carb rich diet will help to fuel the body and the brain before, during, and after workouts. They won’t make you fat, it’s the extra calories that will. Athletes should opt for wholegrain varieties of carbs to ensure adequate recovery and to supply muscles with readily available energy during a workout.

 

8) Myth: Coffee will dehydrate you!

Truth: In large doses, caffeine can have a diuretic effect but it will not dehydrate you. If you're a habitual user, it's likely that any effect on urine losses is minor. Research has shown that caffeine ingestion can be an effective ergogenic aid for endurance athletes when taken before and/or during exercise in moderate quantities (3-6 mg/kg body mass).

 

9) Myth: It’s fine to skip breakfast

Truth: Breakfast is as important as it’s made out to be. In fact when you skip breakfast, it may lead to an up-regulation of appetite (i.e. you feel hungrier) and this may lead to weight gain over time. It has been shown that those who skip breakfast tend to have a poorer quality diet. I have provided below a few options to kick start your day

  • Jumbo porridge oats made with water and milk and topped with 2 tbsp. of Good4U seeds and fresh or dried fruit.

*These seed mixes contain a mix of pumpkin, sunflower, chia and quinoa which are all high in essential nutrients for promoting health metabolism such as selenium and magnesium. They are also high in fibre and protein which help to keep you fuller for longer.

Tags: Shelly's Space Sport & Health 
Wednesday, 10 September 2014 By Good4U

In Tesco Ireland stores all Good4U Roasted Seed Pots including Multi Seed Mix, Pumpkin Seed Mix, Sunflower Seed Mix and Chilli Seed Mix are on a €1 Off offer until September 20th. Pop down to your local Tesco Ireland store to pick up your roasted seed pots and start adding a boost to your meals.

Elsewhere, in Sainsburys stores across the UK, Good4U Lentil Sprout Mix are on offer for just £1 until September 17th.

Tags: Good4U News Promotions 
Good4U Promotion, Roasted Seed Pot, Good4U Seeds, Sprouts, offers
Monday, 08 September 2014 By Good4U

The time has come and the 4 weeks have been completed meaning our Ricardo has finished the ‘Be Healthy, Be Happy Project’ and he is so excited to tell you all about it that this paragraph is going to stop right here.

Hi guys, how are you doing?

If you don’t know or just got here and this is the first post you are reading about the ‘Be Healthy, Be Happy Project’ - I have just finished a 4 week challenge of eating healthy! With the help of our dietitian, Shelly, I was given tips, advice, meal planners and shopping lists to help me get through this last month.

So far these 4 weeks have been great for me and for my body and at the end of the project I can tell that it is possible to eat healthy without losing the passion for food and flavour.

I have also noticed a lot of good changes in my lifestyle – I sleep better during the night, I wake up more alert every morning, I feel less tiredness during the day and I have way more energy which allows for a better out when I go to the gym.

And what do all those changes have in common? My diet! 

It takes just a little bit more work to be a healthy person – you just have to watch everything you buy and cook. It’s not that hard! I learned a lot during these 4 weeks too and I want to share with you some of my brand new acquired wisdom!

1. Always have a list – so far, the best tool I used during these 4 weeks was my shopping list. Shelly gave a big list of foods that I could buy and all I had to do was think a little bit and create meals from them.

2. Stick to your list – you may think that this one should be with the number 1, but no. You can have a list, but if you don’t stick to it, your list is pointless.

3. Plan your meals – you can do that before or after you go to the supermarket. I prefer to plan my meals after my shopping trip to base them on what I actually bought.

4. Be active – don’t hesitate to go for a walk with your friends or walk to work. If you are a member of a gym, try to go at least 4 times a week. Go for a cycle if you have a bike, and if not, walk to town instead of taking the car. All exercise counts.

5. Love protein – one of my first complaints to Shelly was that even having breakfast every day I felt very hungry during the morning. She advised me to include protein in my breakfast (I included 2 eggs – boiled or scrambled) and it worked. I go from breakfast to lunch with no problem and no rumbling tummy!

6. Don’t eat late – before the project I used to eat very late every night. My dinner used to be around 9/9:30pm and it wasn’t good for me. I confess, I am still eating dinner somewhere between 7 and 7.30pm, a vast improvement but still a little later than the common dinner time of 6 – 6.30pm in Ireland. By eating earlier, I can see the difference already – I don’t go to bed feeling heavy and bloated.

7. Drink plenty of water – I love water, so it wasn’t a problem for me, but even loving it my consumption per day wasn’t 2 litres as it is advised. What did I do to change it? I now go to Tesco every morning before work and buy a 2 litre bottle of water. I tell myself I have to drink it during the day and I do. At the beginning it was hard, but after 2 weeks my body got used to it and now, drinking less than 2 litres per day is not an option anymore.

8. Take time to cook – Before you start to cook, make sure you have the time. There is nothing worse than planning a meal and to be in a rush to cook it. If you don’t have the time, go for something simple and easy to prepare.

9. Eat in portions – who says you cannot have chocolate, sweets, soft drinks or even junk food? You can, but in controlled portions. If you always eat healthy, there is no harm to eat bad stuff (in small portions) sometimes. You don’t have to become a green-crazy-vegetable person (nothing wrong with them by the way) to be a healthy person. It’s all about the portion and proportion.

10. Buy Good4U products – Good4U products are healthy and full of goodness and they add an extra crunch to any meal you have. They are really good, and I’m not just saying that because I work here!

With Ricardo's 10 tips, we hope you take them on board and realise just how easy it can be for someone to change their lifestyle, even just a little. It's all about taking the small steps on the road to an improved lifestyle.

Tags: Good4U News Be Healthy, Be Happy 
Thursday, 04 September 2014 By Good4U

Last weekend, August 29th – 31st, the Good4U team took a trip to The Big Feastival, a foodie festival which takes place in Alex James’ back garden at his farm in the Cotswolds. Together, he and Jamie Oliver have created a fun filled weekend of food, music and entertainment for all the family to enjoy.

Good4U had the opportunity to meet many wonderful people, some who are already customers and some who are sure to be new customers. Speaking with each and every one of you was truly a wonderful experience.

Check out some of our highlights from the show:

 

For more photos of the Good4U team at The Big Feastival, head over here!

Tags: Good4U News 
Wednesday, 03 September 2014 By Good4U

Our ‘Be Healthy, Be Happy Project’ is still running and Ricardo has just finished his 3rd week. At the time you read this, he will be doing his 4th and last week of the project. Cool isn’t it?

Let’s see what he has to say?

Hi guys, how are you all doing?

Another week of the ‘Be Healthy, Be Happy Project’ has passed by and I couldn’t be happier with the results. At the end of the 3rd week I can say that eating healthy is definitely not easy as you may think, but it’s also not as hard as it seems to be. Going to the supermarket with a healthy shopping list on hands seems very normal to me now that go without it seems a little bit weird.

I believe I can say that I have incorporated some foods and superfoods that I have been eating for the past 3 weeks in my diet for good now. I can’t imagine my shopping list without avocado, feta cheese, sweet potato, beetroot, hummus, and of course, Good4U products. So far my favourite is the Quinoa Sprout Mix and Lemon & Pepper Seed Mix – they add crunch, flavour and goodness to any meal!

As you can see on my ‘meal planner’ I wasn’t the best of the class this week. One of my colleagues from Good4U HQ left us to go back to uni and we had a ‘special’ lunch to celebrate it: burgers! See, we are not all about healthy foods and superfoods, we eat junk food too (not too much, not always, but we surely do). After all, it’s all about a balanced lifestyle, with the keyword being balanced.

This last week I tried a few new recipes and so far my Chicken Stroganoff was the best one! It had spring onions, tomatoes and Good4U Lemon & Pepper. I forgot to buy ‘Good4U Lentil Sprout Mix’ (shame on me) but I’m sure it would go well with this recipe (I will try it again soon and this time with Lentil Sprout Mix).

As a healthy and easy option for lunch, I opted for smoked salmon sandwich. Shelly advised to swap the white bread for brown bread, because white bread has nothing good to offer when it comes to nutrition and vitamins.

Besides the brown bread, there is nothing new to my shopping list for the 4th week.

I’ll see you all next week to round up my journey!

RELATED: Be Healthy, Be Happy - Week 2Be Healthy, Be Happy - Week 1

Tags: Good4U News Be Healthy, Be Happy 
Monday, 25 August 2014 By Good4U

Week 2 has come to an end and now it’s time for Ricardo (or Ricky Martin as we kindly like to call him) share with us the challenges and joys he has faced this last week.

Hi guys, how are you keeping?

This last week I didn’t have The Fleadh and all the street food around my house to tempt me, so I did really well indeed. As I said on my previous post, my shopping list this week was very similar to my first one (including the feta cheese, which I bought this time and oh yes, it is really good!) but with some new items added on it: pesto, hummus, smoked salmon and turkey instead of chicken.

I must say, swapping my beloved chicken for turkey wasn’t easy, but in the end the turkey showed itself as a really good meat option.

I have cooked really nice and delicious meals this week, but I don’t want to annoy you talking about all of them, so you can see ‘em all here.

As with the previous week, I tried to have a different lunch to my dinner and I did well. I may have had similar meals, but they were never exactly the same, which was really good! I can feel now the difference in not having to have the same meals over and over again. It’s just so much more fun!

I promised you last week that I would cook some Good4U Recipes too and I did. I started my week cooking our Good4U Salmon & Pesto and oh man, it was so good! If you never tried it, please do, you won’t regret.

I also put myself in Shane & Shelly’s shoes and tried to make my very own recipes. I came up with this lovely Super Salad made of cucumber, beetroot, mango, feta cheese, smoked salmon and Good4U Quinoa Sprout Mix. I also cooked a delicious and very filling Spanish Frittata with sweet potato and Good4 Lemon & Pepper and to celebrate my Italian heritage I cooked my favourite, a Caprese Spaghetti! It was feta cheese, spring onion, tomatoes, smoked salmon, pesto and Good4U Super Sprouts.

Sorry I couldn't get Andrea to take the photo

 It was the first time I cooked a Caprese Spaghetti and it was so good that I will have it again.

Apart from the cooking, my new diet has also started to show its results. Now, I feel so much more alert in the mornings, I don’t feel that unbearable hungriness I was so used to feeling, I find it so much easier to fall asleep (and my quality of sleep has improved too) and even my working out has improved! I can face 1h of working out and 30m of swimming with no problem at all.

For next week, I will try few new recipes and cook another one or two Good4U’s.

Tags: Be Healthy, Be Happy 
Wednesday, 20 August 2014 By Good4U

That's right, we're going to be out and about and joining the festival goers of The Big Feastival hosted by Jamie Oliver and Alex James between August 29th and 31st.

We'll be serving up some awesome breakfast choices including a Super Meusli and a hot option of Super Porridge as well as a lunch choice of a Super Salad with great fresh ingredients. To wash all this down, we'll have powerful super shots of Wheatgrass, Apple and Lime.

If you're going to be at The Big Feastival, make sure to stop by and say 'Hi' and get some nutritious, tasty food!

Tags: Good4U News 

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