Nutritional FAQs

Do you have many recipes available for vegetarians?

We have lots of vegetarian recipes available on our website. You can find them by typing "vegetarian" into the search box, or you can view them via the "vegetarian" link, under the recipe category list within the recipe section on the site. Most cheeses are made with animal rennet, so in recipes containing Parmesan marked as "vegetarian" you should substitute traditional Parmesan (which will always contain animal rennet) in favour of a hard cheese made with vegetarian rennet. Vegetarians should be careful to check all cheeses for the type of rennet used.

What kind of recipes should I follow if I suffer from diabetes?

Those with diabetes should try to limit their intake of refined sugar as much as possible, ideally to less than 50g per day. Their intake of saturated fat and cholesterol should also be kept to a minimum as a high fat intake has the potential to further increase insulin resistance. Carbohydrates should make up around 45-60% (around 230g for women and 300g for men) of our total daily energy intake.

However, it's extremely important for those who suffer from diabetes to carefully consider the types of carbohydrate they're consuming. The key to improving blood sugar levels is to choose low-GI carbohydrates and wholegrain cereals over refined cereals wherever possible. Switching to wholewheat pasta, brown rice, wholemeal bread, and flour and so on will slow the release of energy and carbohydrates into the blood stream, which will help to stabilise blood sugar levels. Bulking out meals with as many vegetables, beans and pulses as possible will slow down digestion, and in turn slow carbohydrate release into the blood stream. So, when choosing your recipes, look for these features and swap to wholegrain alternatives where possible.

Can you give me some delicious recipes for a gluten-free diet?

Our website now has a gluten-free lifestyle category, so it's easier for those with coeliac disease or a gluten intolerance to search for recipes. You can find them under the recipe category list marked "gluten free", within the recipe section on the site. If you find this too limiting, you can also make use of gluten-free ranges available in supermarkets by substituting things like pasta, flour and bread for their gluten-free equivalent in recipes. We have lots of delicious pasta recipes on the site, so if you can find a good wheat-free pasta, then please make use of it.

Quinoa is also a great replacement for couscous and other cracked wheat, so use it where you can.

For foodies with coeliac disease, be very careful with the products you buy and make sure you read labels carefully for any added ingredients that may contain wheat – keep your eye out for thickeners especially. Products to be extra cautious of are sausages, tinned meats, tinned soups, stock cubes, milkshakes, and some vinegars and soy sauces.

I am lactose intolerant. Do you have any tips or recipes for those following a dairy-free diet?

Avoiding dairy may seem difficult and boring, but this needn't be the case. Our website now has a dairy-free lifestyle category, so it's easier for those who are lactose intolerant to search for recipes. You can find them under the recipe category list marked "dairy free", within the recipe section on the site.

Nowadays you can get vegetable and soy spreads in most supermarkets that can be use in place of butter. Half a smashed avocado with a little olive oil also works well on toast, and is much healthier than butter. Reduced-fat coconut milk and soy milk are also good replacements for cow's milk and cream in pasta sauces and curries.

Do you have any recipes for people choosing to follow a vegan diet?

Our website now has a vegan lifestyle category, so it's easier to search for appropriate recipes. In some recipes, it may be possible to directly substitute butter for soya spreads, and soy milk with cow's milk – this may not be the case for every recipe, so a bit of trial and error may be required. The most common deficiencies among vegans tend to be vitamin B12, Vitamin D, calcium, iodine, iron, zinc and omega 3, so make sure you are taking the appropriate supplements and choosing fortified vegan products where possible.