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As seen on Dragons’ Den: Some of our most popular health and fitness pitches

If you're pledging to make healthier choices this new year, Dragons' Den has got your back. Over the years we've had so many fantastic pitches for products that encourage healthy lifestyles. Incorporating a few of our top picks, here are some resolutions you can make to live healthier:

1) This year, I will eat out less

If you like to cook but hate meal planning, two past pitchers have brought meal delivery ideas to the table.

Vancouver-based Fuud came into the Den in Season 12, pitching their meal kit delivery service that specializes in chef-inspired weekly recipes featuring organic ingredients. The Fuud guys say their service will not only save you time and effort, it’s also good for local farmers and the planet.

Also in Season 12, Cook It pitched their take on the ever-popular subscription meal kit service. Started by a busy mompreneur, Cook It aims to simplify your life with personalized plans and foolproof recipes. The service is available across most of Quebec and Ontario.  

2) The food I use will be ethically sourced

It’s one thing to commit to making more meals at home. It’s another thing entirely to make them from ethically-sourced ingredients. Where do you start? How do you make sure your food is coming from a good place? Two of our past pitchers have the answers.

Want fresh, locally-raised and sustainably-farmed meat? What about that, but delivered to your home each month? TruLOCAL aims to provide just that to residents of B.C., Alberta and Ontario. These Season 12 pitchers say they’re an alternative to both schlepping to farmers markets and to massive bulk meat-ordering services that leave you with way more meat than you need. You just pick the plan size you need and the meats you’d like to eat for the next month, and your ethical meat comes straight to you.

Fresh City Farms is another Den alum (Season 10) with a similar offering. They wanted to take the fuss out of shopping for farm fresh, local, organic fare, and just ship it straight to customers. Fresh City Farms offers fresh produce bags, as well as selections of bread, meats and cheeses from small Ontario farms. For those who want to spend even less time in the kitchen, they also deliver meal kits and prepared meals. The company serves Ontario’s Greater Toronto Area.

3) And I will choose snacks that are better for my body

Vowing not to mindlessly munch on chips and candy this year? We’ve had several pitchers in recent years who are committed to healthy snacking ideas that everyone can get behind.

For the peanut butter lover, Season 13’s Fatso positions itself as a healthier alternative to the average PB. Its all-natural peanut butter is packed with flax and chia seeds, plant-based superfats and is finished off with a hint of coconut. Since it’s not loaded with salt and sugar, this is a snack option you don’t have to feel so bad about.

If you’ve got more of a sweet tooth, you might want to try Nomz energy bites, featured in Season 11. These little energy balls were born when their founder wanted to kick her refined sugar habit, which she said was worsened by eating sugary, processed snacks. Nomz are organic, vegan, paleo, gluten-free, peanut-free and non-GMO, and each of the four available varieties contains just five ingredients (nuts, dates, cocoa, coconut oil and sea salt.)

Looking for a cooler treat? Happy Pops are all-natural ice pops that are made with real fruit and sweetened with organic cane sugar. “We want to be the leader in clean-ingredient novelty treats nationwide,” the company’s young and ambitious founder said when she stood in front of the Dragons in Season 13. With 35 flavours available, you might not even miss the refined-sugar-filled ice pops of your youth.

4) I will shake up my workout routine

Boring workouts are better than no workouts, but they’re still boring. And when you’re doing something boring, it’s tough to stick with it. Why not try one (or all!) of these fitness fixes to help spice up your routine this year?

Club Row made its Dragons’ Den debut in Season 13. The fitness class, which is like a spin class but with rowing machines instead of stationary bikes, is one of the first of its kind — which its founder thought gave it an edge over the competition. The Dragons weren’t sold on the idea, but maybe you will be! If you’re in the Vancouver area, you can head over to the Club Row studio and try it out for yourself.

If you’re an avid runner or even just want to get started, you could try RunGo. A voice navigation app created by and for runners, it guides you through local running routes using turn-by-turn instructions with the goal of taking the guesswork out of new routes. You can also use the app to create and save your own routes for future use.

Fitness on the Go is another way to get fit — except it brings the workout to you. The company pitched its in-home personal training service in the Den in Season 4 and finally scored a deal with former Dragon Joe Mimran in Season 10. They’re passionate about hooking you up with a personal trainer who’ll come to you, so you can get a guided workout on your own schedule, without having to leave the house. They also serve nearly every province, with the exception of Newfoundland. Here’s to staying in more this year!

5) ...and look good doing it

If you’re going to be more active this year, you could do it in your sweat-stained high school gym shirt. Or, you could get some snazzy new athletic gear that makes you feel (and look) fabulous.
And if there’s one thing the Den has seen a lot of in recent years, it’s standout fitness apparel.

Season 12 gave us Strongbody Apparel, a company specializing in luxury men’s activewear (although they also have a small selection of women’s apparel.) They want to offer consumers a more style-conscious alternative to the run-of-the-mill men’s workout clothes you see. If you’re looking for sleek, minimalistic but stylish athletic wear, you can give them a shot.

On the flip side, if you’re dying to work out and stand out, Mandex might be just what you’re looking for. Mandex (also featured in Season 12) makes bright, loudly-patterned spandex athletic tights for men. The company’s founder says he wanted to combat the idea that men could (and should) only get plain black workout tights. So if tight ‘n’ bright is your style, these leggings could be just the ticket.

If you’re into rock climbing, Boulder Denim might be the pants you didn’t know you needed. The founders wanted to create a pair of jeans that was flexible enough for the dynamic movements of climbing, but tough enough to withstand scrapes on the rock. These Season 12 pitchers even brought a bouldering wall into the Den to show off their pants in action. Heck, maybe you’re not even a climber and you just want durable, stretchy pants — we won’t judge, but Boulder Denim has you covered.