Carmelina Manzo battled for many years with gut issues and found it difficult to find a healthy breakfast and snack alternative that her tummy could tolerate, and that tasted good!! ‘Carms’ was also sick of the ‘sog’ and wanted something that was crunchy and not full of puffed grains that went mushy as soon as you added milk or yoghurt. So what did she do? She created the most amazing Granola varieties you’ve ever tasted in ‘Nourished By Carms’ which is coincidentally now made with Tanna Farms coconut oil since our launch in Australia.

Read here how Carms fought and persisted to get a diagnosis for her tummy troubles and also how her fond memories of holidaying in Vanuatu and knowing she was supporting communities there, urged her to start using Tanna Farms coconut oil.

Carmelina says: I am continuously surprised by the number of people who suffer from “gut problems”. These can range from food intolerances, IBS, fructose malabsorption and so on. I get so many people asking me about gut health and how I worked through my own gut issues.

My gut issues started around 15 years ago. Looking back, I think western medicine has come a long way in recognising that gut health does exist. I say this because I remember having so many tests for all sorts of things before my GP referred me to a Physician. He gave me a print out of all the tests he had run (which was a decent amount of paper) with the referral letter and said to me “maybe this (referring to the number of tests) will make you realise that there is nothing wrong with you”. Needless to say, I never went back to see him again!

I was diagnosed with fructose malabsorption. The symptoms I remember clearly are having extreme muscle fatigue, gritty eyes, exhaustion and of course the bloating. This was diagnosed with a breath test. Symptoms still come and go. I think this is due to needing to keep on top of FODMAP friendly foods. Did you know BONSOY is high fructose? No? I didn’t until a couple of years ago either. It’s the soy milk pretty much all café’s use. I have also learned that it is also very important to keep on top of gut health.

Eating out is a nightmare for me, and for the restaurant/café I dine at. Garlic and onion are my worst nightmare and are in EVERYTHING. If I ever eat garlic or onion I feel so sick and nauseous. I know I cause the chef grief, but it really does make me feel very unwell and the next day I feel like I’m suffering a hangover.

After our first child, Macey was born, we went through a very difficult time with her as she had her own tummy issues. She couldn’t tolerate milk and was diagnosed with cow’s milk protein intolerance. Last year, at 7 years of age, she was diagnosed coeliac. As neither of us can tolerate dairy this is where coconut oil comes in! To be quite honest, I can’t remember when we started using it, but it is now a staple in our home. We use it for cooking (frying), baking (as a dairy
replacement), in a bulletproof coffee, and my hubby adds it to his morning bowl of oats or just has a teaspoon daily. I also make a variety of raw slices/protein balls a week, and coconut oil is a standard ingredient in all of them.

When I started to make my own granola, which needed to be gluten free, dairy free and FODMAP friendly, coconut oil was always going to be the main binding ingredient. When I came across the beautiful coconut oil from Tanna Farms, I loved it because it was so much creamier than other coconut oils I had used. It was also important to me that it comes from beautiful Vanuatu, and supports local communities. I have had two lovely holidays in Vanuatu and it is actually where I met my best friend. Although I haven’t been to Tanna Island, my bestie visited the Island and the Volcano, so I knew the history of where this product comes from and the local communities that I am supporting.

I started making my own granola because I love granola for breakfast, but struggled to find one that didn’t contain oats and was fructose friendly. Not long after the granola was launched, I met Kristy, the Australian based Tanna Farms team member, and grew to love the product and story so now use it for the Nourished by Carms granola range. It is also now the staple coconut oil that resides in our pantry.

Carmelina Manzo, creator of Nourished By Carms Granola.

More about Nourished By Carms

Jam-packed with nutrients, Nourished by Carms granola is made from real food. Low in sugar, unprocessed, unrefined, gluten and dairy free and full of plant power, Nourished by Carms granola is a healthy breakfast and snack alternative for the entire family. It comes in three delicious flavours: Original (which is FODMAP certified), Cranberry and Coconut, Grain Free

Carms has stockists and also delivers Australia wide when purchased via her website.



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