From a nutritional perspective, sustainable farming practices are crucial in determining the mineral content of the foods that are grown in these ecosystems. Ultimately, soil health determines food quality – the availability and retention of nutrients in our soil contributes to the overall nutritional profile of the food that ends up on our plate.
A core ingredient for local producer Brookfarm is the macadamia nut that they use to make mueslis, granolas, oils, snacks, and muesli bars. For almost 20 years, they have used only whole ingredients grown on sustainable farms. ‘Our parents moved our family to the country because they were passionate about feeding us quality, healthy, real food,’ says new Brookfarm CEO Will Brook. ‘With a young family myself, I understand the motivation.’
The macadamia nut has several unique benefits. Native to Australia, and grown in the northern rivers (Brookfarm have their own farm here), macadamias are one of the few plant sources of palmitoleic acid (an Omega 7 fatty acid). Studies suggest that this monounsaturated fatty acid may possess anti-inflammatory benefits and exert potential positive effects on metabolic factors related to obesity, insulin resistance, and heart disease. Omega 7 is also important for the health of epithelial cells – not only the skin cells you see externally (hello plump glowing skin!) but those cells that line the digestive tract, blood vessels and organs as well as the mucus membranes of the eyes.
‘We include nuts and seeds in the Brookfarm range of breakfast cereals, not only to make muesli and granola taste good, but also to provide good quality fats and protein. Fat, protein, and fibre work together to slow glucose absorption and help you avoid those blood sugar peaks and troughs that can negatively impact on your energy and mood!’ says Will.
‘No matter what your dietary preference or needs are – whether it be gluten free, paleo, or vegan – consuming a variety of whole foods can be the key to a healthy life. We are all genetically unique with different requirements depending on various lifestyle and environmental factors but we can all make a great start by consuming foods that are minimally processed with maximum nutrition.’
Although Christmas is often a time to enjoy some treats, it’s also a time to appreciate the benefits that consistent healthy eating can bring. The crew at Brookfarm are serious about producing delicious real food with all the macronutrients you need (good fats, proteins and carbohydrates) to keep you feeling full and energised. It could be a bowl of granola paired with seasonal fruit and yoghurt, a salad sprinkled with oven-roasted nuts, a Sunday roast infused with lemon myrtle macadamia oil, or just a handful of trail mix – there’s something for everyone and you can rest assured it’s real food with real flavour.