Healthy alternatives Chantelle's story: eating healthier with FoodSwitch April 21 2016
Chantelle Ellem Chantelle Ellem Blogger

Chantelle from Fat Mum Slim talks to us about her life long battle with her weight and how she is helping make sure her girls don't have the same struggles.

I don't want to brag, but I truly love my life. I love where I live. I love that I'm married to my best and soul mate (don't roll your eyes, it's true!). I love my girls. I have the happiest, most enthusiastic dog in the world. I love the work that I do. I have an amazing family, beautiful friends and life is good.
That sounded like a brag, didn't it? I didn't mean it to. The honest truth though; if there's one thing that puts a dampener on all that good stuff, is my weight.
I started this blog to inspire myself to lose weight, hence the blog name. I thought it was going to be the magic trick. It was going to make me slim. 
The reality is, I've struggled with my weight my whole life. It's a big deal, I think about it every single day, and I'm always actively trying to be healthier and a better version of myself. I exercise regularly, I eat beautiful whole foods, and sometimes I have cake. I'm human. In the past few years I've managed to slowly drop 18kg, and I'm still going.
As a mum, all I want is for my girls to live the healthiest, happiest life they can possibly live. An important part of that is helping make sure they don't have the same struggles with their weight that I've had. It's helping them have a beautiful, healthy relationship with their bodies, and making sure they know how to nurture themselves nutritionally.
That's what we all want, isn't it? Happy, healthy kids. As a family we're always exploring, and keeping active. And when it comes to food, we're all about beautiful whole foods, with a treat now and then just to keep things balanced. 
I'm a busy mum, like most of us, and sometimes juggling everything can be a struggle. You know that fine balance of getting the kids to eat food that's good for them, but stuff they also WANT to eat. You know the juggle.
Chantelle's children at the kitchen table

Earlier this year, I discovered an App (you know I love my Apps!) that the girls and I have been playing with. It's called the FoodSwitch App. I don't know about you, but I consider myself to be switched on, but even the supermarket shelves can be overwhelming. Organic. Paleo. Low-fat. Low-salt. 75% less fat. Sugar – free. 

My mind is like, 'JUST TELL ME WHICH ONE IS BEST!' That's why we love FoodSwitch, because it does just that. You can scan the barcode of a product, and it will tell you (using a really easy to understand system) which product is healthier for your family because it contains low levels of fat, sugar or salt.

When we first downloaded the app, Lacey and I played a game by grabbing foods from the pantry, scanning away and then seeing how many green lights it got. I also figured out what alternatives I could choose next time we went shopping.

Now that we're eating mostly gluten-free, we've been exploring the GlutenSwitch, which gives you Gluten-free food options. Depending on what your focus is you can use SaltSwitch, FatSwitch, EnergySwitch, or SugarSwitch, so it works for everyone. The App is free and available for iOS (iPhones) and in GooglePlay too.

Somehow, and it all feels like such a whirlwind (where has this year gone!?), the girls and I ended smack-bang in the middle of the supermarket with a film crew. I worked with Bupa to talk about how we use the App in our lives, and how I use it as a tool to help make our shopping basket a little healthier.

If you've been reading my blog for a while, you probably know I don't like being in front of the camera, so this was a giant experience for me. A challenge. A leap. Oh my. I'm so nervous even writing about it all now.

You can watch the clip below. My favourite bit is Lacey stealing grapes in the back of the car. And Lulu's little face as she puts the bananas away. We'll cherish these clips forever. Such beautiful moments in time. I still can't believe we had a film crew at our house, and a catering truck out the front. It sure got the neighbours talking!
You can explore the FoodSwitch App here for yourself, and have a little fun at the supermarket. My hot tip is to try a few products in the pantry at home first (your five most used foods) and see if there are any other better alternatives out there for your family. It's fun.
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Chantelle Ellem Chantelle Ellem Blogger Chantelle Ellem is the brains and beauty behind popular blog, Fat Mum Slim She started the blog in 2008 as a hobby, and has grown it to its current size organically. Fat Mum Slim encompasses all the joys and mishaps of motherhood and does it in such a picturesque way!