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This article first appeared in our Consumer Revolution issue of My Green Pod Magazine, distributed with The Guardian on 06 March 2020. Click here to subscribe to our digital edition and get each issue delivered straight to your inbox
Dieting fuels a billion-pound industry that’s built on quick fixes: fasting, apple cider vinegar, green tea – there’s no shortage of silver bullets if you believe everything you read.
Add the wealth of misleading information around healthy eating and it’s easy to see why people give up on their goals or pile on the pounds shortly after achieving their target weight.
Last year Martyn Odell and Olly Truelove decided to use their 10 years’ experience in fitness, nutrition and catering to provide low-budget, balanced dishes that let you lose weight while also helping the planet.
Weight loss 101
The bottom line for weight loss is that you can’t lose weight without burning more calories than you consume. Every body is different and we all have different goals, so if you want to keep the pounds off then you need to have a bespoke plan.
With LagomFit Martyn and Olly provide tailored menus designed around your personal goals. The trio of plans covers weight loss and muscle gain, plus a balance plan to inspire you to cook healthy meals while offering education about living a more sustainable lifestyle.
After completing an in-depth questionnaire you’ll receive your introductory PDF and two fully planned weeks of meals to start the plan – with bespoke recipes, bulk prep tips and a shopping list. The ingredients get used in clever ways to maximise flavour while minimising the number of ingredients needed.
Martyn and Olly are both experienced chefs so the meals aren’t short of flair; they’re fresh and flavoursome – think Yotam Ottolenghi – with minimal processes and simple ingredients.
Breakfasts on the LagomFit plans range from autumn overnight oats to more hearty Mediterranean baked eggs. Lunch and dinner are interchangeable and include pulled satay chicken with wild rice and seasonal greens to roasted honey and cumin carrots with brown rice and hummus.
‘Calories are calories’
Lagom is a Swedish word meaning just the right amount – and it’s key to Martyn and Olly’s approach to health. ‘Someone’s perfect calories for weight loss can change for a number of reasons’, Martyn explains. ‘Think of me and Olly as the Sherlock and Watson of the calorie deficit world! It’s not easy to find the optimum calorie amount for weight loss, but we will get it.’
Martyn and Olly check in with clients at regular intervals; additional questionnaires provide information about plan adherence, energy levels, enjoyment and activity levels. ‘This lets us build a unique profile for the client so we can continually tailor the calories on the plan’, Olly explains.
All the meals on the plan are free from refined sugar, processed carbs and preservatives, meaning they’re great for the whole family. ‘The stigma needs to be broken that when you are on a ‘diet’ you are eating obscure miracle foods’, Martyn tells us. ‘Food is food and calories are calories! LagomFit is a calorie-specific healthy eating programme; we don’t want to be classed as a diet as it has such negative connotations.’
Bulk cooking is key to the LagomFit plans; it helps people stick to their plan while also addressing issues close to Martyn and Olly’s hearts: food waste and cost.
Eating healthily doesn’t have to be expensive; cutting waste and planning correctly will keep costs down while also helping to protect the environment. ‘I would say that 90% of household food waste is generated through lack of planning’, Olly says. ‘Whether people eat healthily or unhealthily, if they don’t plan they will create food waste.’
Part of the LagomFit plan is about helping people to live a zero-waste lifestyle by creating a closed-loop food system in the home. This means that food bought gets used in a recipe and then gets eaten; what doesn’t get eaten is fed back into the system by composting, sharing or being used in another recipe.
‘Eating healthily is not complicated’, Martyn explains. ‘All our recipes use readily available and nutrient-dense ingredients to fuel your body correctly while keeping costs down. You won’t be buying any ‘superfoods’ to fill the healthy ingredient bucket!’