Camilla Barnard is the co-founder of Rude Health, a London-based company which started out selling granolas and cereals in 2005 and now have a range of 60 food and drink products, sold in 55 countries. Rude Health is known for being quirky, and with the ‘You’re In Rude Health Week’ (5th – 11th June) fast approaching, we wanted to find out more about what makes Rude Health so popular.
The You’re In Rude Health Week is very different to other festivals in a good way – how did you decide what kinds of workshops and fitness sessions to host?
We wanted to bring the idea of being ‘in rude health’ to life, which isn’t just about being physically fit, but about celebrating a more holistic approach to health by covering mentally, spiritually, physically, creatively exciting activities. The festival isn’t just about doing, but about learning a new skill too, like wood carving or paddle boarding. We used these ideas as our parameters; we knew we wanted a craft event, a fitness event, a more holistic event, a food event, a beauty event, a yoga event, and that we wanted them to be targeted to boys and girls, in exciting and different locations. Some of the partners we’ve collaborated with in the past (Grain & Knot, Jamu Kitchen) so we were happy to be able to team up with them again, and also had fun finding new ones.
How do you keep in Rude Health?
Do what works for you – I am not a gym person, but cycling to work and dancing make me happy. The same goes for food – don’t deny yourself indulgences, just don’t have them every day, you may even enjoy them more if they really are a once a week treat.
Who’s your health or fitness inspiration?
All ballet dancers. They’re incredibly, strong and flexible, and make every move they make look beautifully effortless.
What’s the secret to running a business with your husband?
I’m not sure there is one. We are both demanding, impatient and highly opinionated, so if we can do it, perhaps anyone can!
You’re a mum, wife and business owner – how do you manage it all? What’s the secret to thriving with so many ‘roles’?
While the children and business were young, it was the most challenging thing I’ve ever done. The children are now older and more independent and we have a brilliant and dynamic team at Rude Health, so I find it much, much easier to thrive as well as just survive.
The Rude Health Family is getting big! You’ve got almond milks, granola, muesli and now cereal for kids. What’s next?
Don’t forget the book, and the café. More of pretty much everything coming soon….
What’s the one ‘healthy’ myth which makes you mad?
The low fat myth. If you are still choosing low fat foods, I urge you to read The Big Fat Surprise by Nina Teicholz.
You’ve got sprouted oats and flour in the Rude Health Family – is there really a difference between sprouted products and non-sprouted?
Sprouting reduces anti-nutrient enzyme inhibitors and phytic acid, a substance present in the bran of all grains that inhibits absorption of calcium, magnesium, iron, copper and zinc. As a result, the flour is richer in nutrients, making the full array of minerals inherent in the grains and oats available. Sprouting also initiates the process of breaking down gluten proteins. While this doesn’t make sprouted wheat safe for people with coeliac disease, it may make grains easier to digest for people who are sensitive to gluten. As we believe in the opposite of processed foods, we have been seeing this trend in the USA for years already. It is part of the movement back to the traditional food of our ancestors. Happily it is coming to Europe now as well and as we launched in the UK last year we see that our sprouted foods are flying from the shelf. The flours are very popular amongst the baking crowd and the gluten free consumers love to buy the sprouted porridge oats – the taste and texture and sustaining nourishment is simply amazing.
What’s the one RH product you can’t live without?
Right now, it’s the Banana Berry Oats, technically a children’s cereal, but my current favourite.
What’s your biggest health / fitness rant about?
We, as a health conscious brand, are concerned about the confused understanding of what makes food healthy. The ‘free-from’ shelves are swamped with ‘healthy’ plant-based alternatives loaded with carrageenan, flavourings, fructose, emulsifiers, gums – none of which are natural, none of which are ‘healthy’, all of which play havoc with your gut. In a perfect world, we would all make all our food ourselves all the time, but we have lives to live outside the kitchen and expect to be able to buy healthy food when we don’t have time to make it. We believe strongly in knowing where your ingredients come from, and keeping them recognisable and flavoursome too. Our dairy-free drinks are no exception, made using organic kitchen ingredients so you never have to compromise on quality – whatever choice you make.
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