Tamara Arbib is the founder of healthy snacking brand Rebel Kitchen. She launched Rebel Kitchen in January 2014 to make tasty, nourishing snacks available to all.
Rebel Kitchen specialises in healthy dairy-free coconut “mylk” drinks, made simply with coconut milk, Somerset spring water and organic date nectar– no refined sugar, additives or preservatives. Rebel Kitchen “mylk” drinks are available in Waitrose, Ocado, Whole Foods, Daylesford, Selfridges and other independent stores.
Here Tamara shares a typical work day and gives us her top types for cutting down on refined sugars…
First, it’s all about the kids and sorting them out. However, once they are in school, I like to sneak in twenty minutes of working out or walking with the dogs if time allows! I then jump on the train to the office.
I am super lucky that my husband is on the same nutritional journey as me and relishes creating delicious food, so we start with lemon, cayenne and pepper. This is followed by a green smoothie that has everything but the kitchen sink inside! This gets my body moving and nutrition pumped, ready for the day!
I pop the kettle on for a green tea (I’m a green tea addict) and set up my desk for the day.
We have a great team of rebels in our office – there is now 7 of us – but deciding on the kind of music we play can lead to some lengthy debates as our tastes vary so much. Playing some old school funk tends to work for everyone though.
We have our weekly team meeting on a Tuesday morning and then we order lunch for everyone on that day so that we can all sit down together – it’s a chance for us to enjoy some delicious food together and have a chat as a team.
I get involved in all aspects of the business from finance through production to marketing and have individual meetings with each team member. My working day tasks include:
When we do new product development I try the new recipes out myself. Our drinks also follow the same rules – we don’t use refined sugar or additives because we follow the principle that if you don’t recognise or understand the list of ingredients you shouldn’t eat them!
As we’re in our first year of business we do quite a few consumer and trade shows, such as the Natural & Organic Show and the Yoga Show. I always attend these myself and work with my sales team on the stand as it’s so valuable meeting people face to face and get their feedback on our products. We make sure we take feedback on board and regularly evaluate our ways of working as a team
I check in on social media throughout the day – we’re lucky to have a fantastic group of people, now more than 12,000 people, following our brand and sending us photos and comments on what they use our mylks for. People’s photos on Instagram always make me smile and inspire me to keep working as hard as I can to make Rebel Kitchen accessible to more people
I’m really lucky to have an incredible team and my best day, as crazy as it seems, is actually staying put in the office rather than rushing around the city and catching up with all the various pieces of the puzzle.
It’s such an exciting time to be in the office; so much start-up energy, so many different things going on in each area of the business. I relish my time in the office!
In the evening my favourite way of entertaining is at home with dear friends and kids playing in between our legs, or being altogether at the farm and surrounded by nature.
Here Tamara shares her top ten tips for cutting out sugar?
1. Swap out the refined stuff straight off the bat. There is no need for it when you can get sweetness in naturally occurring foods.
2. For satisfying your sweet tooth, use dates, maple syrup or coconut palm sugar in desserts, or have a Rebel Kitchen mylk!
3. The important thing is don’t deny yourself treats because that doesn’t lead to long term healthy habits. It’s about finding a healthy way to satisfy the sweet craving.
4. Another trick is to cut out all sweeteners in your teas and coffee. It is so easy to do and this discipline can flow into other areas.
5. Cut out fizzy drinks – they have no nutritional value. In fact, they’re counter-nutritional!
6. When you want a treat, make it yourself, because you’ll make it less often and there will be no hidden sugars. This brings me on to…
7. RTL! Read the label. This is incredibly important, as there are so many hidden sugars in processed food, often under different names. If you don’t understand an item on the ingredient list, don’t eat it.
8. Eat a good breakfast. It sets you up for the day and stops you chasing your hunger.
9. Eat when you are hungry, not according to society’s time. If that means an earlier lunch or dinner, go for it. Often when we hold on for later meals to what we want, we gorge on all the wrong things because we’re in a hunger zone.
10. If you can, snack on nuts. They are filling and curb sweet cravings.