2 March 2015
February Eco Challenge WINNER
This month we challenged our Sustainababy community to step away from the pre-packaged and processed foods and set a new standard in nutrition, taste and sustainability for their families as part of our Be Real, Eat Real eco challenge.
Congratulations to Cath Lousberg who found that getting a nutritious meal on the table – and one that everyone will eat – was actually easier than she thought! Cath is already sinking her teeth (so to speak) into her prize - Naturopath Jessica Donovan’s new ecourse, Delicious Wellbeing. Over to you Cath …
“It has been a long held belief of mine that almost everything is fine in moderation. By teaching my children that healthy eating is the best way to go, I hope to set them up for life with habits including good nutrition, without thinking of ‘sometimes food’ as the enemy to lifelong success. This month’s Sustainababy Eco Challenge gave me the opportunity to try even harder to vary the family diet while further reducing processed foods and preservatives without resorting to the ‘meat and three veg’ every night that we know is nutritious, however risks being boring.
Meal planning is a normal part of our weekly routine, which suits our family with different work schedules and a choosing to reheat rather than cook when we both work, but always home cooked meals. While we regularly reap the benefits of increasing family time and saving money on impulse buying, February has been one of the most emotionally challenging months that our family has endured in a long time. It was wonderful to realise upon reflection that we always had meals ready at short notice without worry or resorting to packaged products or takeaway. I have no doubt that healthy eating was a great benefit to our bodies and minds during this time.
So what did we do differently this month? Well, in addition to the slow cookers, casseroles and meat and veg, we also:
- Prepared our own fabulously healthy ‘fast food’ - large plain salads, cut up melon, savoury slices and soups,
- Spent time poring over our beloved cookbooks for inspiration – who knew ratatouille had so few ingredients and was so easy!
- Made the extra effort to make our own Thai green curry paste and jam and Moroccan seasoning from scratch…all for different recipes of course…eliminating preservatives and adding flavour.
- Matched our menus to what we had in our garden where possible (rosemary, basil, parsley, tomatoes, zucchini and beetroot) and seasonal produce where we could
- I was so excited to make zucchini, carrot and parsnip pasta for various dishes for the first time. I didn’t realise that it was so easy to make tagliatelle with a peeler, but it was so enjoyable and healthy with no packaged pasta eaten this month.
- Experimented with salads of all types, adding nuts and seeds for something different and skipping any packaged dressings – which typically my husband enjoys.
As the February Eco Challenge comes to a close, we have really enjoyed the shake-up of our eating and look forward to continuing trying new things and teaching our children how enjoyable healthy eating can be.
Preparation is a winner in our house to make sure we don’t snack on junk. I kept a platter in the fridge for quick lunches, sides for dinners and snacks.
Zucchini slice for breakfast. When sleep seems more important, I know I will eat if it is as simple as taking something out of the fridge. It is more tasty, quicker and even healthier than cereal in the mornings.
The before shot of our ratatouille – tomato and zucchini from our garden and eggplant from my brother’s garden. I meant to take an after photo, but it was gone before I got a chance!"
Well done Cath! We hope you enjoy learning heaps more about real food in Jessica Donovan's Delicious Wellbeing course!
* Due to some exciting new developments at Sustainababy, we’ll be taking a break from eco-challenges for a few months and will let you know when they’re back up and running again. In the meantime, don’t forget you can keep sharing your eco successes (or flops!) at our Facebook and Instagram pages.