We’re feeling super lucky (not to mention happy!) right now, because we recently had a chance to chat with the amazing Luke Hines – Australia’s ‘Clean Living Cook’ and the new brand ambassador for Neoflam. He answered a few questions for us on why he loves the healthy lifestyle, cooking with Neoflam products, and cauliflower. Check it out!
Header image comes from Luke’s website, found here.
When did you decide to start eating and living healthily, and what inspired you?
As a teenager, I really struggled with my weight. I wasn’t particularly sporty and knew that I was eating foods that were less than ideal for optimum health and wellbeing. I really wanted to gain my self confidence so after high school I joined a gym and started experimenting with real food ingredients.
As you can see, I haven’t looked back. My passion for fitness resulted in me becoming a personal trainer, and then my love of food led me to a career of healthy cooking!
What is it about Neoflam that resonates with your healthy lifestyle and led you to become their brand ambassador?
It really was a no-brainer for me. Looking after ourselves has to be a balanced approach – we shouldn’t just focus on one aspect of health in particular. So, when focusing on healthy ingredients, we also need to be aware of where they are sourced from, how we cook them and, so importantly, what we cook, prepare and store them with.
Living the healthy life is about eliminating unnecessary toxins from our homes, in particular our kitchens. So when I was given the opportunity to share how to make healthy, delicious food using safe, non-toxic cookware and kitchenware, I jumped at the chance! I’m the Healthy Cook, so it makes sense I cook with The Healthy Pan.
Each Neoflam pan I cook with has the innovative Ecolon. It is a non-stick ceramic coating made of sand, stone, and silica. It is a healthy alternative to PTFE non-stick coatings. It’s friendly to the environment and the human body, as its main ingredients come from Mother Nature. So the fact that Neoflam products are absolutely free of any harmful chemicals, keeping family cooking healthy and safe, makes healthy cooking easier than ever before!
What’s the biggest mistake we make when trying to get healthy?
I think anytime we become too restrictive, or go too extreme, we can be setting ourselves up to fail. The key to living your best life is making small, incremental, positive steps, each and every day, that over time lead to long term, sustainable success.
Life is to be enjoyed, lived, and celebrated, so we should fall in love with food, enjoy it, and be grateful. It’s the simple act of making mindful decisions about what we cook and how we cook it that can make all the difference.
Do you have certain hero ingredients you absolutely love to cook with?
Oh I find it hard to answer this question because I love so many different ingredients but here are my top 3!
First off, eggs are one of my hero ingredients. Really versatile, a true superfood, they make the perfect breakfast, lunch or dinner, not to mention they can be transformed into an incredible dessert.
Cauliflower is my favourite vegetable. It’s a wonderful, low-carb, vitamin-rich option that can be used in so many wonderful ways.
And last, but not least, raw cacao powder! Added to a smoothie, or transformed into the most incredible healthy treat, chocolate is my weakness.
Are there specific foods you recommend when you’re craving a sweet treat but don’t want to break a diet?
Great question. I always recommend people celebrate with something satiating, meaning it will keep you fuller for longer. When we crave sweets, it is usually due to a sugar addiction, hormonal imbalance, or blood sugar regulation issues. All of these can be managed with good quality, healthy fats that are not only mood and heart-health boosting, but great for keeping cravings at bay. Think avocados, nuts, seeds, coconut oil, and oily fish!
What advice would you give to the person who works full-time, wants to improve their diet, but finds they don’t have the energy after work to cook a healthy meal and ends up just getting takeaway?
This is more common the busier our lives get, and I have two tips I recommend. First off, try to spend one day a week doing some good quality meal prep. Do a big shop, cook in bulk, and refrigerate and freeze meals ahead of time so you’ve always got something on hand.
The second tip is that whenever you do get a chance to cook, simply make double and take the leftovers to work the next day for lunch. This means you’ll never be left stranded with no other healthy options on hand.
Your website has an image of pizza – we thought that was off-limits for a healthy life!
Healthy pizza, of course! Using one of my favourite ingredients, the cauliflower, I make a delicious healthy pizza base. From there, the options are limitless, from chargrilled vegetables, poached salmon or even shredded roast chicken!
Do you have a favourite Neoflam product?It would be like having to choose a favourite child! I spend the majority of my days in the kitchen, meaning I am constantly using and rotating between the different products on offer. If I had to pick one today, it would be the My Pan range.
It really is a smart and innovative cookware range. It’s state of the art design with a simple-to-use detachable handle, and a strong and secure safety lock system. I can pan fry on the stove top, transfer to the oven for continued cooking, and remove the handle in a simple click!
What does your daily meal regimen look like?
I wake up pretty early for a morning gym sesh, so before I train I have something nourishing like some nuts and seeds, or some fresh fruit. The rest of the day’s meals can be a combination of recipes I am testing for upcoming books or cooking demonstrations, and usually involve lots of nutrient-rich green leaves, oven roasted vegetables, and grilled animal protein like fish, chicken or grass fed beef! And not to mention, little snacks throughout the day in the form of my healthy desserts!
What’s your ultimate quick and easy recipe?
One Pan butter chicken always wins! I think I’ve already had it twice this week. Aromatic and health-boosting spices, quickly sautéed in the pan on the hot plate, then transferred to the oven in the My Pan range to finish cooking until the sauce is thick and delicious! You can’t go wrong!
Luke Hines is the ‘Clean Living Cook’. Since appearing as a finalist on My Kitchen Rules, he’s gone on to find success as the best-selling author of six Clean Living cookbooks. He is an internationally-qualified personal trainer, food consultant, and a certified nutritional therapy practitioner. He’s appeared on television programs like Sunrise and The Morning Show, worked with the likes of Angelina Jolie, and also featured as a trainer on Australia’s Next Top Model.
His mission is to inspire people to be the best versions of themselves that they can be through healthy living.
His latest book Healthy Made Easy is out now.