Shape-up in lock-down: Week three of a six-week nutrition challenge

By Jessica Ball

Teaming up with Izzy Gribben, owner of Simple and Whole Nutrition, this week The News brings you the third instalment of Shape-up in lock-down: A six week nutrition challenge.

After panic-buying plagued supermarkets in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, many people may have found their pantries well-stocked with packaged foods.

This week Izzy is challenging you to put those non-perishables to good use.

“I'm sure there are a lot of very full cupboards,” she said.

Izzy Gribben, owner of Simple and Whole Nutrition, snacking on the job.

As a qualified nutritionist, Izzy has completed undergraduate studies in food and nutrition science plus postgraduate studies in psychology, and also works for Primary Care Connect in health coaching and health promotion.

She said the aftermath of panic-buying was a good opportunity to learn some label literacy skills and to understand packed foods are not necessarily a money saver.

“Twenty-six per cent of Victorians are currently relying on cheap food due to home budget pressure,” she said.

“This often results in a lot more packaged products as people think this is cheaper but it's actually not.”

Week three challenge: read the packet

When you're in the supermarket aisle, looking at buying packaged food, Izzy said there were a few things to watch for.

“It is always a good idea to have a look at the label,” Izzy said.

While the best option is to purchase things not packaged, here are her top things to look out for when you do:

● Serving size;
● sugar, salt and fat content;
● nutrition claims (just because it says “reduced salt” on the packaging doesn’t mean it is low in salt);
● how the food is cooked.

Izzy's iso stew recipe

For those who have a pantry stocked with canned vegetables and tins, here is an easy recipe to try and use up some pantry staples.

There's also nothing stopping you from making this stew with all fresh ingredients too.

● 1 tbsp of minced garlic
● 1 tsp of ginger
● 1 large brown onion
● 1 medium sized sweet potato (potato or any frozen vegies you have are also fine; I also love cauliflower in this)
● 2 cups of spinach
● 2 tins of chickpeas
● 2 tins of coconut milk
● 1 cup of vegetable stock
● 1 tsp of turmeric
● ½ tsp of curry powder
● pinch of chili flakes
● salt and pepper to taste

1. Fry off onion, garlic and ginger in a generous amount of olive oil.
2. Add in diced up vegies of choice and season well with salt and pepper.
3. Add coconut milk, stock and all seasoning and let cook for around 15 minutes (you can add more stock dependent on how thick you like it).
4. Lastly add in tins of drained chickpeas and spinach.
5. Cook for another 5 minutes and serve with yoghurt, naan bread or top with coriander.

Tune in next Friday for the fourth instalment of Shape-up in lock-down: A six week nutrition challenge.

More Shape-up in lock-down

A six-week fitness and nutrition challenge: Introduction

A six-week nutrition challenge: Week one

A six-week nutrition challenge: Week two

A six-week fitness challenge: Week one

A six-week fitness challenge: Week two

A six-week fitness challenge: Week three