The Slim Down

Kitchen Appliances No Slimmer Should Ever Be Without

Y! Lifestyle's nutrition expert Rachael Anne Hill identifies three kitchen appliances that will make your slimming efforts a whole lot easier

Air fryerAn Air Fryer

Using nothing but super hot air and a grill an airfryer allows you to 'fry' a variety of delicious food with just a fraction of the fat so you can safely tuck into truly authentic, lip smackingly good chips, rissoles, fish cakes and potato wedges without the fear of over doing it on the calories.  Oh, and they also make perfect, crunchy on the outside, fluffy on the inside, 'roast' potatoes in a matter of minutes.

Try the Philips Air Fryer available from Amazon, House of Fraser and other stockists. At approximately £200 it may seem a little pricey but once bought you'll use it more than your oven and can throw that deep fat fryer in the bin.

A slow cooker for sealing in flavourA Slow Cooker

A slow cooker may seem like something only your Granny would have but if you have a tendency to reach for a fat, sugar or salt laden ready meal after a hard day at the office it could just be one of the best investments you'll ever make.  Use it to cook healthy, veg, bean and pulse-packed casseroles, stews, soups or curries.  Just throw in all the ingredients in the morning (or the night before) and look forward to coming home to an instant hot meal and a house that smells of home cooking.

I particularly like the 'Crock·Pot' available from Lakeland (£64.99).   Big enough to feed the whole family and attractive enough to take to the table, it has 2 heat settings and a programmable timer from 30minutes to 20 hours.  And it's dishwasher safe too.

Blend up some tasty smoothiesA Blender

A blender is a must for any health conscious eater as without it you'll struggle to make smoothies and soups, two potentially very healthy meals. A smoothie for example, containing just one banana, an orange and a pear can provide up to a third of your daily fibre requirement and soups made from vegetables or pulses even more.

Try the KitchenAid Ultra Power Blender (£164.95) from John Lewis.  It has the power to crush ice so you can whip up an uber cool meal in a glass in minutes.  It has four stainless-steel cutter blades make light work of any fruit or vegetable matter you care to put in its 1.25-litre jug and it comes in red, cream, black and metallic pearl so it will always look great on your worktop.  For a cheaper option try the Cookworks Signature Stainless Steel Glass Blender, £19.59 available from Argos. With five speeds, 700W of power and a pulse function it's ideal for breaking up large chunks of fruit, is easy-to-clean, has a 1.5-litre glass jug and handy non-slip feet.

For more healthy eating top tips follow Rachael on Twitter @thegiguru