My name is Emma Wildgoose and I am a trained nutritional adviser. More importantly, I am a mum and chief cook for a family of four.
A few years ago, I revolutionised my family’s eating habits. As is often the case, this momentous change grew out of a small observation. When my daughter Lily was very young, I noticed that she seemed to crave sugar. Too often she would sit by the kitchen cupboards crying for chocolate. To me, this did not seem right so I began to look into why she was so hooked on processed sugar. The creation of my business Eat Real Food was the culmination of that journey.
My passion for food began after completing a year of cooking as a chalet girl in Switzerland during my gap year. Having completed a Bachelor of Science at Edinburgh University, I forged a career in HR technology before leaving the workplace in 2007 to have a family.
During both of my pregnancies I piled on the pounds and struggled to balance my love of food, especially chocolate, with a healthy weight. After trying various diets, I slowly became aware of the problem – the focus on short-term weight loss through food deprivation rather than concentrating on the long-term goal of maintaining a healthy weight by eating well.
In 2014 I embarked on a Diploma in Nutrition and Weight Management, certified by the Association for Nutrition. I also developed my love of creative cooking with an Advanced Course at the Ashburton Cookery School.
Inspired by a strong desire to eat well, without having to sacrifice life’s little luxuries, I started out on a mission to create treats free from refined sugar, dairy and gluten. I experimented hundreds of times in my kitchen at home and eventually came up with a recipes that were loved by everyone who tasted it!
Life can take you on extraordinary journeys. With the support of some amazing friends and family who believed in me right from the start and my two chief tasters at home, Harry (aged twelve) and Lily (now aged nine), all my recipes and food are given the honest thumbs-up or down. Lily adores my homemade treats but is no longer addicted to sugar!
“We are what we eat” and I believe we should know all about the ingredients in our food."
Mad for Organic Raw Cacao.
Cacao is packed full of nutrients and antioxidants, which help to protect our bodies against disease and illness. Raw cacao products are not roasted or Dutch processed (alkalized) and therefore maintain their maximum nutritional content. This gives raw cacao powder much more antioxidant power than most dark chocolate.
I use cacao from Peru that is UTZ-certified, a programme similar to Fair Trade which specialises in securing a fair deal for cocoa, coffee and tea growers across the globe.
Crazy for Organic coconut oil.
The health benefits from coconut oil go well beyond consuming it! It’s great for your hair and skin too. Containing lauric acid, it has fabulous antifungal and antibacterial properties. It contains short and medium-chain fatty acids that are easier for the body to use as an energy source. Thus coconut oil has been linked to weight loss.
Nuts about nuts.
All of my products contain nuts. Nuts have it all! They are rich in protein, fibre, essential fats and are also packed with antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.
Keen to reduce sugar.
I do not use white, refined sugar as it is nutritionally poor. To add sweetness, I use pure maple syrup and dates. Both are high in sugars, however, and should still be consumed in moderation. Maple syrup is made from the sap of maple trees and contains small amounts of calcium, potassium, iron, zinc and manganese. Dates are rich in fibre, vitamin A, iron, potassium, calcium, manganese, copper, magnesium and antioxidants known as tannins that possess anti-inflammatory qualities.
Mum's the word
I left the workplace in 2007 to have my son and returned in 2014 when my youngest started school. For seven years, I surrounded myself with mothers and chatted to them primarily about children! When I set up Eat Real Food, I discovered that all of these mums had the most amazing ‘hidden’ talents. Little did I know that they could write novels, manage accounts, build websites and run PR companies… the list goes on. As well as supporting me when Eat Real Food was just a fledgling venture, many of them were simultaneously running their own successful businesses and juggling the demands of family life.