Research published in the Public Health Nutrition journal, offers the strongest evidence yet of a link between healthy eating and positive performance from students. Kaja discusses the types of food that fuels her day and how to stay healthy on a student budget!
One of the most important things I've learnt when it comes to eating healthy is to be prepared. I do a lot of meal planning and meal prep. At the beginning of the week I plan all my meals and purchase whatever I need for them. I prepare my breakfasts, snacks and lunches every evening so I don't have to rush making meals in the morning before I go to school. I also find it helpful to have bars and fruit available to grab whenever I'm in a hurry. I rarely go anywhere without a bar in my purse!
Healthy eating is renowned to be quite expensive. However, when you exclude meat, fish, dairy and other processed foods you'll have quite a lot of money left for veggies, fruit and other plant-based foods. So for me it's never been a problem to eat healthy on a budget. I do pay attention to discounts though and try to eat as seasonal as possible. Doing meal prep and bringing your own lunch and snacks is also a good way to avoid ending up purchasing lunch and other snacks at school/work etc.
I usually have matcha nice cream topped with oats, nuts, seeds and berries for breakfast. A cold-pressed juice and a bar as a mid-morning snack. Ezekiel toasts with coconut oil, spinach and avocado for lunch. A fruit as an afternoon snack. A mix of quinoa, sun-dried tomatoes, kale and avocado for dinner. And a raw chocolate for dessert - I always have dessert!
My spelt & banana pancakes! They're so easy to make and still tastes good after being brought in a box.
Follow Kaja on Instagram for more healthy eating inspo!
According to Sport England’s Active People survey, running has had the biggest increase of any sport in England, rising by 63,000 to 2.1 million in 2015! With this in mind and along with our own recent new found love for the sport, we jumped at the chance to interview 6 times marathon runner Charlie. Here are her top tips for beginner runners!
I think it's all depends on the person - but I'd suggest starting slow. Often people think they can't run because they set off too fast and then struggle to complete a mile, however if they slowed right down, they would be able to run further than a mile! I love the couch to 5K app for complete beginners - it's a really friendly way to start running.
Personally I like something simple like toast with peanut or almond butter and a banana pre long run, then something with a combination of protein and carbs post run. I actually love something like chocolate mylk or an iced latte as soon as I finish a long run!
I think the two most important bits of kit to invest in is your shoes and your bra. Spend money on these and then you can buy cheaper leggings, tops etc. However be aware of the fit and material - there's nothing more annoying than something falling down or chafing when you are running 26 miles!
Strava or RunKeeper - both free and great for analysing your stats.
I have running goals that I know I won't be satisfied until I achieve them! I want to qualify for the Boston marathon which means running a sub 3.35 marathon. I'm not a fast runner so it's going to take me a lot of work to get there, but I'm determined to reach it.
Check out Charlie's blog The Runner Beans for more inspiring blogs on running and fitness!
(Photography by Will Patrick)
What a year it's turning out to be for LoveRaw! We kicked off 2017 with the launch of our re-brand, introducing you all to our awesome new packaging and revamped logo.
Today we are super excited to announce a brand new product range to the LoveRaw collection. On-the-go almond drinks!
Available in three innovative flavours - Cold Brew Caffe Latte, Cacao & Cardamom and Turmeric Chia Latte - these handy 350ml drinks are packed full of flavour! Boasting a high % of almonds and nothing but natural ingredients, they taste utterly indulgent, but without any of the guilt!
Ever craved the taste of a fresh creamy drink, but wanted to avoid a dairy? We hear you! Whilst there are plenty of 1 litre plant based drinks on the market, the option of smaller “on-the-go” ranges, specifically almond based drinks, are extremely limited. We knew at this point we had to launch a drinks range to fill that gap in the market!
Have you ever noticed the actual percentage of almonds that go into other brands? About 1 - 2 %, and they are frequently 'filled out' with rice mylk. As a company we either go hard or go home, so our mylks have a whopping 5% of almonds, and the flavours...oh the flavours! We have taken the classics and given them each a unique twist. There's something to suit everyone's palette, so give them a go and let us know what you think!
We have some extremely exciting news to share with you - after many very late nights, long days and debates... our brand relaunch is here! To check out what we’ve done, head over to our shop.
When I first launched LoveRaw in 2013, I was literally a one-woman band. I would be designing packaging as well as making, marketing, and selling the bars. At that time, packaging was simply functional, and I didn't have budget for designers. Now, it’s time our packaging reflects who we are at LoveRaw.
So who are we? Definitely not a rustic health-food company. We are fierce, vibrant, youthful, edgy, and full of passion. The past 18 months have been eventful; I've moved my life and business between countries, had a baby, and built LoveRaw from the ground up again. LoveRaw has come a long way since the one-woman band, and now I have a talented, amazing team.
Relaunching is just the start - we have so many more exciting things coming up and we can't wait to share it with you all! 2017 is the year of LoveRaw!
Sound the panic alarm and grab hold of your loved ones, because we aren’t getting enough nutrients from our veg anymore. Thanks to modern farming techniques, much of the fruit and veg that we eat today has significantly less nutritional value than it would have had 50 years ago1 Research by Texas based biochemist Dr. Donald Davis tells us that some vitamins in our veg have dropped by up to a whopping 38% across the last 50 years, meaning that you now have to eat almost double the amount of them that you once did for the same benefit.
Luckily, some lovely people *cough cough* did something about this and came up with Food Booster Blends. They’re a way to rectify the missing vitamin content from your current veg by simply adding a spoon or two of the powders into your drink, snack, or meal. They’re made up entirely of natural and organic ingredients so, in short, we literally ground down the missing nutrients and are handing it to you on a plate - or in this case, in a tub! Many of our ingredients are imported and difficult to get hold of in one place, so our blends make it easier than sourcing all the raw foods and cooking them into your meals separately… they’re also cheaper than flying to New Zealand for your wheatgrass!
We’ve mixed these imported veggies, fruits, and plants into four deliciously different blends for you to choose to suit your lifestyle - or you can just have them all:
A great all-rounder for improved wellbeing as well as a general vitamin boost. Containing:
Perfect for those who want to look their best as well as feel it. Packed full of:
Skin Food contains Vitamin C which helps the skin, joints, and bones. It also has Copper which contributes to hair pigmentation, as well as immunity.
Goes great with a busy schedule as it keeps you feeling fresh and ready to take on the day (we use it for the office hangover-cure too). With:
Energise contains Magnesium which contributes to energy levels, Vitamin C which assists the joints and bone development, Iron to help maintain immunity, and Copper which has antioxidant properties.
Stops anything holding you back by helping you fight off any nasty bugs. Containing:
Immunity contains Iron which contributes to immunity and brain development. It has Copper which assists the joints, helps to maintain and improve energy levels, and is also bursting with antioxidant properties.
With all these to choose from, we like to think we’ve given you an organic and easy alternative to doubling the veggies in your diet. You’re welcome!
It’s freezing outside and you feel like s**t - what do you do? Do you curl up in bed and sulk? No, you get these four natural flu-busting concoctions into your system and you show that cold who’s boss!
This masterpiece is made up of a small slice of ginger, half a teaspoon of turmeric, the juice of ¼ lemon, and a small clove of garlic - mixed in with around 50ml of water. These ingredients are full of Iron, Vitamin C, and Calcium - what more could you want? The shot assists metabolism, skin and blood functions, the immune system, and also combats fatigue. If you’ve got more delicate tastebuds, we recommend watering this down or reducing each ingredient to taste, as it’s a very potent mixture. It might make you pretty unkissable for a while - although let’s face it, if you’ve got flu people are probably avoiding you anyway!
Many studies have been conducted into the effects of echinacea, and there has been a ‘consistently proven effect of echinacea in stimulating phagocytosis, that is encouraging white blood cells and lymphocytes to attack invading organisms.’  That’s one hell of an immune system boost! Simply pour around 15 drops of this into a large glass of water to keep yourself hydrated throughout the day. Because of the way in which it benefits the immune system, it can also be used as a preventative measure to keep the germs from getting you in the first place!
With spirulina, nettle, New Zealand wheatgrass, chlorella, moringa, and kelp all in one place, this blend makes it easy for you to literally sprinkle goodness into your diet. Add some of this into a smoothie or meal and let it’s ingredients do the rest - they’re full of Calcium, Iron, and Vitamin C so boast similar health qualities to the turmeric, ginger, garlic, and lemon super-shot. Definitely worth a try if you still fancy a smooch after your vitamin boost, and our Immunity blend is another obvious choice if you want to avoid those winter bugs!
Manuka honey is rich in a ‘compound called dihydroxyacetone, which is present in the nectar of manuka flowers. This chemical produces methylglyoxal, a compound thought to have antibacterial and cell-killing properties’  It’s been linked with acne prevention and has even been rumoured to have antibiotic properties. When we’re feeling rough we love to load up on hot drinks, so adding manuka honey to a cup of tea is a necessity.
When summer comes back around and brings hay fever with it, try swapping manuka honey for locally sourced honey. Taking in small amounts of local pollen present in the honey can act as a natural tolerance booster!
We’ve been trying these ingredients at LoveRaw HQ to fight the winter bugs and can’t wait to see everyone else’s results! Don’t forget to keep us posted on your cold and flu-boosting concoctions by tagging us @loveraw
In 2015, our top 10 resolutions included losing weight, staying fit and healthy, quitting smoking, and enjoying life to it’s fullest, and in 2016 ‘four in ten Brits vowed to lose weight.’ Sounds like our bodies should be feeling great, right?
Unfortunately, research from the University of Scranton found that only 8% of people continually succeed in their resolutions. With 47% of resolutions being centred on self-improvement and education, it looks like most of us just want to better ourselves, but are struggling to keep at it.
So, we’ve found some tried and tested methods for resolution success to help you get through 2017 as your best self!
Roy F. Baumeister, author of Willpower: Rediscovering our greatest strength tells us that ‘those who try to quit smoking whilst also restricting their eating or cutting back on alcohol tend to fail at all three.’ He conducted ‘The Radish Study’ with four groups of students; one given radishes to eat, one given cookies, one with no food at all, and one with both options - left to choose whether to remain healthy or not.
Credit to theatlantic.com
Then they were taken into a second experiment where they were told to complete a puzzle. This puzzle was incompletable, and they were actually being timed to see how long they lasted before quitting - apparently scientists are just really cruel! Students in control groups who had either been allowed the cookies, or given nothing at all, stuck with the task for around twenty minutes, but students who had just successfully avoided the cookies lasted just eight minutes. They had exhausted their willpower on avoiding the cookies and so had no patience left for the puzzles - and probably were just really hangry!
This is the same with New Year’s resolutions today. We often try to take on too many new behaviours or cut out too many things at once, leaving us with less willpower per task. If you want to really achieve at something, try your resolutions one at a time to make sure your willpower is reserved for the most important resolution.
Kelly McGonigal, author of The Willpower Instinct: How self control works, why it matters, and what you can do to get more out of it, tells us that ‘willpower is a mind-body response, not a virtue. It is a biological function that can be improved through mindfulness, exercise, nutrition, and sleep.’ So sticking to those healthier resolutions can actually improve the willpower needed to keep succeeding at them - it’s a sort-of happy paradox.
More importantly, she also tells us that ‘guilt and shame over your setbacks lead to giving in again, but self-forgiveness and self-compassion boost self-control.’ That means you need to give yourself a break if you slip up and miss a gym-sesh or eat a piece of chocolate. Learn to work with your mistakes and use them to motivate your future decisions by recognising what led to them. Living guilt free and staying positive about the good decisions you make can help you stick to your solutions and feel great about them too.
So you’ve narrowed down your goals and learned to enjoy the journey - all that’s really left is to keep track of the progress!
Keeping a diary is a great way to remind yourself how much you’re achieving. Diaries like the Five Minute Journal are especially useful because they focus on positivity as well as recording parts of your day. It’s also a quick task to complete each day, so won’t intrude too much on the rest of your lifestyle. That way, you should be able to keep your willpower strong when tracking your progress - you’ll also look really poetic and interesting, which is always a plus.
An even more convenient way to do this is by using apps designed to help you track specific changes in your life. Apps like Streaks, Momento, C25K, and Sleepfulness are brilliant at helping you set goals for yourself no matter what your resolution.
Whether you want to eat cleaner, exercise more, sleep easier, or just be better at being you, it’s about knowing what you want to achieve and making sure you take the time to grab it this year. Now you know how to kick 2017’s a**, don’t forget to keep us posted on your health journey by tagging us in your posts @loveraw. Happy 2017!
1, 3- "New Years Resolution Statistics", Statistic Brain, 11 Dec. 2016, http://www.statisticbrain.com/new-years-resolution-statistics/. Accessed 3 Jan. 2017
2- "Four in ten Britons vow to lose weight in 2016," You Gov, 8 Jan. 2016, https://yougov.co.uk/news/2016/01/08/four-ten-britons-vow-lose-weight-2016/. Accessed 3 Jan. 2017
4- Baumeister, Roy F., John Tierney, Willpower: Rediscovering our greatest strength, (Penguin, UK, 2012)
5- McGonigal, Kelly, The Willpower Instinct: How self control works, why it matters, and what you can do to get more out of it, (Avery, 2011)
We get it. You work hard. As much as you want to, your hectic work life means that eating healthily when you need a quick snack can be a bit tricky, especially when so many offices are filled with vending machines full of junk. BUT… If you get your head in check and start planning you can sort out your own snacks for your working day that are both tasty and nutritious. Here are some of our favourites:
Nothing spectacular here, but if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it! Grab yourself a bit of nature’s best and munch on it when you’re getting hunger prangs but can’t stray too far away from your desk.
One of our favourites here at LoveRaw, Edamame beans are soybeans that are harvested before they’ve reached maturity, and are a mainstay in Eastern and oriental meals. They’re a naturally low calorie snack, and are high in protein, calcium and iron. Get some down your neck!
Ok, a bit of shameless self promotion here, but if we didn’t believe that our bars were some of the tastiest, healthiest snacks you can come by, then we wouldn’t make them. So - check out our range of super tasty, all natural, raw, healthy, vegan, gluten free bars here.
Carrots on their own are great for you, and whilst they won’t actually allow you to see in the dark (thanks mum), they are full of:
And much more!
Add a bit of hummus to the mix and you’ve got a really tasty snack that’s tastier and a hell of a lot healthier than a bag of crisps. If you want to go even healthier, why not use a low fat hummus recipe?
Next time you’re scooping out a pumpkin on Halloween, save the seeds! Pumpkin seeds are a great snack, and heavily recommended by the World Health Organisation for their high zinc content. On top of this they’re full of antioxidants and minerals, and can help your immune system and prostate health - winner!
There are so many different ways you can eat an avocado that we thought we’d leave it up to you to find your favourite way to eat it - be it with a wrap, or even in a smoothie, the ever versatile avo can be fashioned into a whole host of snacks. Got a favourite that you’d like to share? Comment below and let us know!
Caught the Organic September bug but restricted by budget and accessibility? Don't beat yourself up! We appreciate that organic isn't always the most affordable option and that not everyone has access to variety; so don't feel the pressure to suddenly replace everything with organic alternatives!
It is believed that certain fruit and veg absorb more pesticides than others, so instead of replacing your entire fridge, look at replacing a selection of these top offenders!
To make your life super easy we have listed our top 15 foods to buy organic and a handy little infographic which you can print out and stick on the fridge as reminder!
We hate to break it to you, but these gorgeous, juicy, heart shaped berries topped this years (2016) most contaminated fruit list! The Environmental Working Group reported that a whopping 300 pounds of pesticides were applied to each acre of strawberries. Let's keep your Pimms clean and definitely opt for organic in this case!
These guys were also up there as one of the worst offends! The USDA reported that 91% of non organic apples were found to contain pesticides.
We love their soft skin, but this is exactly what makes the peach more susceptible to absorbing all those nasty chemicals - make sure you buy organic!
As a close relative to the peach it's really no surprise that the trusty nectarine is on the list too. On average they contain around 33 chemical pesticides!
Grapes have a nasty habit of ripening too quickly and attracting insects when they mold. This results in the growers spraying them with various chemicals. Best buy your grapes organic!
We know these juicy little gems are pricey at the best of times, but with up to 42 pesticide residues found by the USDA, we're going to play it safe and opt for organic!
These guys aren't far behind cherries with up to 40 pesticide residues, 11 of which are suspected hormone disruptors. Sorry Mr Pear, if you aren't organic we're not interested!
Celery contains a whopping 64 pesticide residues, 27 of which are suspected hormone disrupters! You're best option? You guessed it - buy organic!
You'd think fresh is always best right? Wrong! The USDA found up 54 chemical residues on fresh non organic spinach, but only 18 on non organic canned! Of course the ideal option is to buy fresh and organic!
From neurotoxins, to developmental or reproductive toxins and suspected hormone disruptors, tomatoes were found to be contaminated with 35 pesticides.
Big tomatoes, small tomatoes...don't trust them!! They may be little, but these guys contain almost double the amount of pesticides than the big boys.
What do you like in your fajitas? Guacamole, black beans, grilled peppers and 15 pesticides...thought not!
Cucumber - a classic addition to the trusty salad, however they were found to contain a shocking 86 pesticide residues!! Yes, I'm afraid we haven't made a mistake here.
The potato - a common staple veg in our kitchen, but the average potato had more pesticides by weight than any other produce!
Although this tough green leaf rarely suffers from disease or pests it is still sprayed with lots of chemicals. Luckily due to it's recent rise in fame, it's not difficult to find organic options at local farmers markets and organic supermarkets - yay!