Beth Heddle, running and fitness blogger loves to bake, cook and spend hours wandering up and down supermarket aisles looking for new and interesting foods to cook her next meal with. As a coeliac, she gets asked a lot of questions about the foods she eats, here's an insight into her diet.
Q1. Being a Coeliac, I know you can’t have bread, pasta, normal oats and flour – how do you manage to get carbs in?
There are soooo many forms of carbohydrate that don’t contain gluten. For main meals I tend to stick to rice, sweet potatoes, quinoa and brown rice noodles. I have to admit I’m not overly enamoured by gluten free bread (although I love french toast made with Newburn Bakehouse’s brown loaf!) but I do like the BFree gluten free wraps and Genius’ cheeky pancakes! A fair number of Coeliacs cannot tolerate gluten free oats but thankfully I’m okay with them, and they are a breakfast staple.
Q2. Let’s start with breakfast. What’s your go-to breakfast on run/training day?
I’ll point out that breakfast is my personal favourite meal of the day! If I’m running or training in the morning I tend to fuel on a big bowl of porridge covered in mountains of peanut butter, proats (protein-oats) or avo-and-eggs on toast. I’m a massive carb lover and find my workout benefits from a hearty carb load (accompanied by nut butter). My porridge will typically contain 60-80g gluten free oats (Deliciously Alchemy are a personal favourite), a mashed banana, milk and plenty of nuts, seeds, nut butter and dried fruit. If I’ve gone for proats, then I’ll make up the porridge recipe but swap the banana for half a scoop of whey protein.
If I’m not training until later in the day, I’ll still have my normal breakfast, but I’ll also have a large mug of Yorkshire Tea!
Q3. So you like your carbs…what’s your typical lunch?
Lunch varies from day to day. It might be a roasted sweet potato with tuna and baked beans, it might be a bowl of brown rice with mushrooms and chicken, it might be a large stack of power pancakes, it might be a quinoa and kale salad with mozzarella…basically whatever I can find in the fridge!
Q4. Do you snack? I know some people tend to stick to 3 meals a day, are you one of those people?
I LOVE to snack. I never go anywhere without about 8 snacks in my bag! I snack on wholesome foodsrather than ‘empty calories’ (basically foods that don’t do your body any good and contain very little beneficial nutrients). Typically I’ll have a Quest Bar, homemade flapjack, pot of granola, 60g roasted almonds, a sachet of almond butter on 3-4 Kallo dark chocolate rice cakes, some homemade date energy balls, and sometimes if I’ll be training soon after I’ll have Nutella on toast. In order to run at your best you need to fuel yourself well, and I find that snacking helps me achieve this.
Q5. Is your dinner quite similar to your lunch? How do you make sure you mix up your dinner rather than having the same thing every day?
Dinner is very similar to lunch I have to admit, but I’ll always make sure it’s never the same as lunch. I love eggs in the evening – eggs with avocado and noodles in a satay sauce is perfect, or a chicken casserole or curry with wild rice. Saving myself for dessert is also a must at dinner.
Q6. Dessert? You’ve got us excited! What do you like to have?
One of my absolute fave’s is N-ice cream (or banana ice cream). I basically add 2-3 frozen bananas with milk, frozen berries (or peanut butter) and a scoop of protein powder to my Nutribullet and wizz it up until it’s thick and creamy! Topped with chocolate, peanut butter, dried fruit, seeds…you name it, it all goes in! I also love cheesecakes, brownies, ben and jerry’s peanut butter cup ice cream (!) – I believe that you should eat a balanced diet, and therefore I don’t overly restrict myself when it comes to treats and fairly unhealthy puddings!
Q7. Finally, what’s your opinion on protein powder- you’ve mentioned it a few times? And any other superfoods?
I love protein powder, but not alone. I think it’s a fab way of getting a large amount of protein in without too much sugar. Pre-or post-running I ensure that I have something with a 3:1 carbohydrate: protein ratio - carbs are important, not just the protein. I’ll have it as a smoothie with bananas, fruit, protein powder, oats and milk.
I’m a fan of superfoods, some of my go-to superfoods include maca powder (tastes of caramel and leaves you with lots of energy!), pumpkin and sunflower seeds, almonds, chia seeds (they add sooooo much volume to smoothies and porridge!) and peanut butter (of course!).