A New Year, a new diet. Sound familiar? Thought so. But no matter how hard I’ve tried in the past I always break at some point. The trouble is that there’s just too much temptation out there. With bacon sarnies on a morning, big fat pasties for lunch, slabs of cake for afternoon tea and a takeaway for dinner I could probably cram away a week’s worth of calories in a day without batting an eyelid.
This year things are gonna be different. This year I’m determined to get healthy and get back into those skinny jeans that taunt me from the back of the wardrobe. And one month down, things are going quite well and I have Nutribox to thanks for for helping me along the way.
Nutribox is a Sheffield based company sourcing independent producers of deliciously nutritious snacks to be delivered to their customers every month. Customers can sign up to a pay as you go package or set 3,6 or 12 month plans and will receive a selection of energy-boosting fruit and nut mixes, all-natural energy bars and balls (packed with super ingredients like sprouted almonds, hemp seeds, flax and maca) and other tatsy snacks like raw chocolate. I was lucky enough to get a box delivered for the blog and when my box landed on my desk at work I eagerly sliced through the sellotape and broke into the box to check out what goodies I had. The first point that I have to make is that I was genuinely surprised at the number of items in there; once I’d pulled each one out for individual inspection I had trouble cramming them all back into the box again!
Not knowing where to start I was glad to find a little guide which listed everything under one of three categories; Fruit and Nut Mixes, Snacks or Treats. There’s then a brief description of each product telling you what to expect. Now, with most reviews, I tend to get on with the eating part quite quickly, but I wanted to use Nutribox properly and see how it would work as part of my diet over a month or so.
So I allowed myself one item a day. A raw cookie with an afternoon cuppa, a pumpkin bar with fruit for breakfast and a Ombar chocolate bar as a post dinner treat; I found it easy to squeeze these snacks in without breaking the diet. Better still these snacks are healthy. With so many of them being made up of raw fruit (or veg) a lot of them contributed towards my five-a-day. And that’s gotta beat any packet of low calorie crisps and the like as they are often low in nutritional value too.
‘So what?’, you might think. After all we’re not all on some crazy health kick! Well, these snacks are also tasty; perfect for when you just don’t feel that a fresh piece of fruit will satisfy your deep, almost painful pangs of hunger. As these snacks are pretty much guilt free, they taste even better. And if you’re a health food sceptic, read on and find out what I thought to a few of the products.
My box came with a few snack bars including two Nakd bars; a Cocoa Orange and a Berry Delight. Both were surprisingly satisfying and filling. The berry bar was pretty sweet but the inclusion of cashew nuts in the mix helped to balance the flavours, and the cocoa orange bar was pretty amazing. It actually tasted like a very well known chocolate orange (I know – dates, cashews, raisins and cocoa wit a hint of natural orange & chocolate flavouring should not taste this good, but do try and believe me!). Things got even better with a Pulsin Raw Choc Brownie and even though Nutribox warns customers that we shouldn’t expect a ‘full-on chocolate brownie’, I don’t think this is a bad substitute at all.
Packets of Perry Court Farm air dried apple and pear crisps were especially good. With one sole ingredient, apple or pear, these have got to be the healthiest crisps around and although they take a little getting used to (the apple version have the texture of a potato crisp, but the sweet, sharp taste of a bramley apple) I quickly grew to like them and I’d quite happily chomp on them on a daily basis.
Ombar chocolate bars were an absolute treat. Said to be superfood chocolate, these organic raw chocolate bars with acai and blueberry or coconut were delicious and tasted like many other good brands of chocolate that I have tried in the past. Bitter dark chocolate is given the sweetest of lifts thanks to the inclusion of acai and blueberry in one, whilst the coconut added a little flavour without being overpowering in the other. Sadly the Raw Living Be the Change bar didn’t really do it for me; it’s far too bitter for my taste but I appreciate the need to try new things and was glad to be able to give this one a chance.
Then onto the fruit and nut mixes… Brazil Nut Mix, The Energiser and Apple Crumble are handy bags of fruits and nuts that are perfect for snacking at work or when out and about. They’re full of the usual stuff; brazil nuts, almonds, dried fruit and seeds. The Raw Living Magic Mix, however is a completely different kettle of fish. Packed with strips of yacon root and caterpillar like mulberries amongst goji berries, coconut and carob (a healthy ‘chocolate’) this mix is quite scary on first sight, but after taking the plunge and tucking in, I have to agree that it is a little bag of tricks! It all tastes great and if it does just half of the stuff it says it does on the back of the packet, I’m happy.
Well, I hope that I’ve managed to convince you to try Nutribox for yourself, but if you need something to tempt you further how about a 50% discount? That’s right, the generous guys at Nutribox have kindly said that 10 of my readers can have 50% off. Just use the code ‘FEAST&GLORY50′ when ordering.
And, as if that wasn’t exciting enough I have a little competition for you all! Nutribox are giving away a free Nutribox-Mini*. To enter all you need to do is answer the question below and I’ll pick my favourite reply to win. Simples!
It’s 11am. Time for a cuppa and a bit of peace and quiet. Which snack do you grab for, why and how do you best enjoy it? For example, do you eat alone, do you share, are you a dunker or do you create your own little piece of masterchef magic and make sure every bite counts? Tell me all in less than 150 words to firstname.lastname@example.org by 7 pm Monday 18 February 2013.
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*The items shown were in the Nutribox-Mini in January and therefore only a sample of what you might receive.