Balance and consistency is the key to being able to enjoy good food without the guilt. Charlottee Lloyd shares her tips for becoming a worry free ‘Master Chef’.
Isolation has been a roller coaster for a lot of people. And we all know how hard it has been with those darn cravings staring at us from across the room or calling from inside your cupboards. We all wish we could stuff our faces silly with whatever we want but we also know it probably wouldn’t be the best thing to do in terms of our health, both on the inside and out.
Some people have made an effort to be healthier coming out of isolation, with the mantra ‘this is the time to get all those things done I’ve always wanted to’. While for others, well, it was the complete opposite, telling themselves, ‘don’t push yourself too hard, this is a pandemic, just do the best you can.’ Both of these ideas are valid, it is all dependent on how you’re feeling and no one will be the exact same. Some will be achieving and some will not. But this happens outside of iso, so it is nothing new?
Despite this, isolation has taught me self-love. We all want to give in to our cravings and believe me most of the time I do. But it is also about balance, listening to your body, and what you feel like on that day. Balance and consistency go hand in hand, so while balance is great, you have to be consistent in what you’re eating, and what you’re doing to remain healthy. Again, this differs completely from person to person.
Isolation has also given everybody more time. Time which would usually be spent socialising is time a lot of people, including myself, now spend on trying new recipes and trying to stay healthy while doing it (emphasis on trying). You should read ‘Iso Projects‘ for my idea about becoming a Master Chef in your own kitchen.
For a while, I have been following an Instagram account belonging to two of UON’s very own 4th year Nutrition and Dietetics students, Abbey and Lily. Their account @cleankweens features tips and tricks on cooking, constantly updating their feed with new sweet and savoury recipes which sound and taste delicious, and are actually pretty good for you.
They also have merch, e-books, and are constantly interacting with their followers, posting both fun and educational information about everything food-related. Having already reached 18.8k followers their Instagram feed provides the ultimate goal, with the aesthetic content which seems to go on and on as you scroll. If you haven’t heard of them, I suggest you jump onto their Instagram right now, or at least after you finish reading this article and give it a follow. Always promoting food brands, recipes, and products, you will be kept well informed while being on social media for hours on end.
It can be hard to know where to start when choosing meals to cook, healthy snacks and avoiding buying take out night after night (trust me, if I had the money I would too, but I’d rather save for a holiday). There is no special place or hidden trick to remain healthy or staying on track; and as I said before, it’s all bout consistency and balance.
@cleankweens is one of my fave places to go for budget-friendly and student meals Their recipes are built around minimal ingredients but taste amazing at the same time, and being students the Clean Kweens (Abbey and Lily) include and distribute recipes are student-friendly and are sensitive for the money situation. Some of my fave Clean Kweens recipes are: Gooey PB and Choc Chip Slice, Peanut Butter Easter Fudge (Easter exclusive), and their Spicy Vegan Vermicelli Curry, and if you took away anything from that list, I LOVE peanut butter.
For those looking for actual cook books, I accidentally came across K-mart’s $7 cookbooks. These are recipes for every occasion and as a new uni student, I thought ‘The Student Kitchen‘ would suit me well! This has anything from how to make simple classics like butter chicken, spaghetti bolognese, even spicy Asian meatballs. Another one of these cookbooks I scored at K-mart, was ‘The Low-Carb Kitchen.’ If you’re anything like me, this cookbook is a lifesaver when you want to make recipes which won’t leave you feeling like you’ve just gained 5kg. Some of my faves out of this book would have to be the spicy fishcakes, the prawn chop suey, and the spicy coconut chicken. These books do also have breakfast, as well as sweet bakes, but I’m more of a savoury girl myself, hence the savoury features.
Ultimately, we can we enjoy delicious food and not feel guilty about it, and, if you do happen to eat a whole packet of chips in one sitting or go to San Churro in the spirit of the moment (I have personally done it multiple times), just remember tomorrow is a new day. As I said earlier, life is about finding balance.
I read a post on the Clean Kweens Instagram which said ‘food is food.’ There is no good food or bad food, because food is food. While some are more nutritious than others, it can all be enjoyed in moderation. So head over to @cleankweens and give them a follow, go to Kmart and invest $7 or on some cheap but very worthwhile cookbooks, and become your own Master Chef because although being a student can be tough, we can do a lot better than two-minute noodles.
Feature Image by Daisy Peachman, YAK Media Designer