It’s becoming easier every day to make balanced choices that nourish our bodies and respect the planet. Whether it’s saving fruit and vegetables from the landfill, picking up a basket of juicy berries grown on a farm in Al Ain or making a hot cup of soothing tea, here are the latest healthy food options.
“ugly” fruit and veg
The UAE government recently announced aims to cut food waste by 50 percent by 2030, and you can do your part by rescuing fruit and veg that might otherwise be thrown out. The new venture EroeGo reclaims excess produce – what doesn’t make the cut for local grocery stores based on how it looks, or is too close to its sell-by date – and offers it to consumers at big discounts. Just choose the box that suits your needs and order, and the EroeGo will pack and deliver it. And for every box you order, EroeGo will provide meals for two people in need. There are up to 10 types of vegetables and five of fruit per delivery, everything from carrots to mangoes to butternut squash. Delivery is free; boxes range in price from Dh60 for a small up to Dh177 for large.
Vegan and non-vegan eaters alike can order healthy, sustainable and affordable plant-based meals from most delivery platforms through the new company yumi (pronounced yoo-me). Among the items on offer are Truffled Hazelnut Risotto, Zucchini Wrap, Lasagna, Just Better, and more. The dishes are nutrient-packed and macro-tracked, with all information available on their website.
Homegrown healthy food brand Saba Plant-Based launched a probiotic Cocogurt Drink earlier this year; the 100 percent organic and plant-based yogurt drink is packed with probiotics, antioxidants and vitamins essential for good gut health and immunity and available in three flavors, raspberry, vanilla and natural.
A popular plant-based healthy fresh soup brand from the UK hit Dubai has supermarket shelves. Re:Nourish, the first fresh soup in a microwaveable, carbon neutral, BPA-free, fully recyclable bottle. All varieties of soups are vegan, gluten and dairy free, low-fat, high in fibre, no artificial additives, preservatives or added sugar. Immunity contains kale, spinach and turmeric, while Fuel soup, filled is filled with toasted aromatic Indian spices, blended yellow peppers, fresh carrots, split peas and finished with coriander and mung daal. The soups are Dh28.50 and available at Choithrams.
Elite Agro has already been supplying us with locally grown blueberries from their Al Foah farm in Al Ain, but now they’ve expanded to include raspberries, blackberries, and strawberries for the first time at their Al Foah farm. That includes Diamond Jubilee raspberries, Midnight blackberries and three premium strawberry varieties. Look for the new range in stores under the Elite Berry brand, or order through Farm Box. By producing locally, customers can access produce that not only stays fresh longer, but has a far smaller environmental footprint. The berries are grown in temperature-controlled greenhouses, using drip irrigation, in a combination of coco peat, perlite and other substances.
BRW Society teas
Local company BRW Society is on a mission to dominate the local tea market, and if you haven’t checked out their flavors, have a look. In addition to all the favorites, there are pretty nifty additions, like Moscow Mule, dairy-free Milky Oolong and even an (alcohol-free!) Organic Sundowners. Order online or pick up at Spinneys and Waitrose.
Ann Marie McQueen
Ann Marie McQueen is the founding editor-in-chief of Livehealthy and host of The Livehealthy Podcast. She is a veteran Canadian digital journalist who has worked in North America and the Middle East. Her past roles include features editor for The National, trends writer and columnist for the Canadian newspaper chain Sun Media, and correspondent for CBC Radio.