The Clean Lean Bean is a health food blog with a difference. Not only does its editor Bryony provide some great healthy tips and recipes, but she also very kindly includes shopping lists and fantastic suggestions for substitutes and alternative recipes depending on your allergies or preferences. Bryony is a freelance marketeer, amateur triathlete and a self-confessed coffee addict. She’s passionate about the benefits of keeping fit and eating healthily, and she’s living proof that you can fit good, wholesome food into a busy lifestyle. We caught up with her this week to find out about the philosophy behind her blog…
What’s the story behind Clean Lean Bean?
I have always wanted to write a recipe book and I read that you needed to start a blog to do this. Having had health issues in the past, which I manage by eating healthily, and having trained for and completed some endurance events where nutrition has been extremely important, I am passionate about healthy lifestyles and keeping fit. I figured that if I could inspire just one person to make some healthy and positive changes to their lifestyle then all the hard work would be worth it.
How long have you been clean eating and living a healthy lifestyle?
I was bought up on a healthy diet as a child; our sugar was limited and we did not eat junk or convenience food. However, it was more ‘1970’s healthy’ than today’s take on healthy. As I came into my 20’s I developed IBS, Impaired Glucose Tolerance (now known as pre-diabetes) and Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, all of which I manage by a healthy lifestyle. I also discovered I had an intolerance to dairy products. When I started training for endurance events I realised that although I can tolerate gluten it did not have a great effect on my training, making me sluggish and lacking in energy, so I choose when I do and don’t want to eat gluten now. All in all, it took about 15 – 20 years to reach the lifestyle I enjoy now!
What’s the easiest way that readers can improve their diet/health today?
Read my blog! All the recipes are real life – they are actually what I eat and I know works. I work and train hard, so I don’t have a huge amount of time for shopping and cooking. The recipes are quick and simple, yet delicious and healthy.
I would also say that cutting out (or at least keeping to an absolute minimum) sugar would be the single most advantageous thing you can do for your health and one of my early articles on the blog is about how I did this.
Where do you get inspiration for your recipes?
My tummy mainly! It’s the food I like to eat. I also seem to have a bit of knack for creating something out of nothing, which is useful when I have not had time to do a food shop.
Where do you like to buy your ingredients?
I train twice a day as well as work and writing a blog, so for me a food shop has to be quick, convenient and affordable. Therefore I go for a one-stop-shop at the supermarket. In an ideal world I would be mooching around a farmers market with a wicker basket of organic vegetables, but that is not real life for me. I shop where the majority of other people do! I do however always make time to go to the Exeter Farmers Market early on a Thursday morning for the best coffee in town from Dave at Crankhouse Coffee and often treat myself to a homemade loaf of some sort whilst I am there!