Although a slight oversimplification, there is some truth to the adage, “a six-pack is made in the kitchen.” As well as the idea that “you are what you eat”, which came to us, as per www.phrases.org.uk “via quite a tortuous route.” They go on to describe how “Anthelme Brillat-Savarin wrote, in Physiologie du Gout, ou Meditations de Gastronomie Transcendante, 1826: Dis-moi ce que tu manges, je te dirai ce que tu es. [Tell me what you eat and I will tell you what you are].” “And, in an essay titled Concerning Spiritualism and Materialism, 1863/4, Ludwig Andreas Feuerbach wrote: Der Mensch ist, was er ißt.”
I have always had a tentative relationship with food. I have often had bad eating habits including forgetting to eat at times. I enjoy food but have rarely watched what I have eaten. In my teens and twenties, I was extremely active and never really had to worry about the impact of what I consumed on my body and my health. There was a time when an acupuncturist put me on what I called “the not-nice diet” where I couldn’t eat all the things I generally enjoyed.
Eating right is something that I have procrastinated on for years – enter FitChef. A friend of mine did the 21 Day Challenge when they launched but I hadn’t really taken note until they reached out to me to give it a try. Their #EatClean solution is one that many of us need as our lives reach levels of frenzy never experienced in the history of species.
Let’s be honest. Eating right can be complicated. Keeping up with what is good (and isn’t) for the body, what it needs from a nutritional perspective, etc. can be hard work. I remember getting an eating plan from a nutritionist once and the plan would have raised grocery costs exponentially and would have taken an extra hour or two in the supermarket. The FitChef package comes with a suggested eating plan incorporating breakfast, lunch and supper as well as snacks in between, for those moments when you get peekish and is usually when, if you are like me, you end up eating snacks that are bad for you.
The meal ranges are divided into:
- ActiveDiet (PortionSmart) – “Very strict ingredients, very low carb & higher fibre. Strictly portion controlled. Best for night time meals.”
- LifestylePlus (LifeStyleSmart) – “Great for dieting but marginally higher in carbs.”
- NxtBest Range – “Carefully selected ingredients but higher in carbs and fats. Similar in name to many junk food meals but way better for health and maintenance diets. Larger portions.”
My Work Eating Habits
I work between my home office and Kaya FM offices in Rosebank which means that I am often just grabbing what I can. While it is recommended that you defrost what you are going to have for the following day in the fridge, the meals can also be ‘prepared’ from frozen state which helps a great deal. Being able to simply pack what I need for the day means that I have removed the need to jump into fast food joints for lunch or petrol stations for snacks. And the food tastes quite nice as well. I found that I was having lunch at lunch as opposed to when I can, and remember.
My favourite dishes include Grandma’s Mince Curry with Brown & Wild Rice, Spanish Chicken and Quinoa, Xtra-Lean Beef Cautage Pie and even Pesto Veg and Pasta (despite my love for meat). Other meals they have include Beef Goulash (ActiveDiet), French Peas, Carrot Mash & Sweet Potato (Vegetarian ActiveDiet), Ostrich Potjie with Mixed Veg (ActiveDiet), Farm Style Bobotie (LifestylePlus), Beef Con Carne with Polenta (LifestylePlus), Spanish Red Kidney Bean Brown Rice (Vegetarian Lifestyle Plus), Bacon & Mushroom Bunless Beef Burger (NxtBest) and Whole Wheat Penne Bolognese (NxtBest).
In terms of snacking, they carry everything from Chocolate Fudge Brownie and grass-fed Beef Biltong sticks to Trail Mix and Sweet Chilli Cashews. The Refresher juices and Fruity Green Spinach, Apple, Pear, Banana Smoothies are also perfect for in-between meals.
FitChef also hooked me up with B12 Booster Patches and Booster Shots, which I am going to keep on with. While they are primarily an online facility, they have been working to build their distribution base, which now includes Dischem Nicolway, Spar (Three Rivers, Bel-Air and Wapadrand) and several Sasol garages (for some of the meals and smoothies).
Truth be told, I like some of the meals a lot, others not so much but the one thing I like about FitChef is how they have structured the various packages, such as Lunch@Work, Sports Performance, 21 Day Challenge, Special/Limited Edition Kits, etc. And within these, there are a variety of packages catering to the diverse needs, as they continue to expand on the meal offering.
As I journey deeper into my 40s, I recognise the need to get better at looking after me. I also need to find spaces that ensure that it is easier for me to better look after me. FitChef has been a good start.