The FoodMaestro App – managing dietary intolerances

We were asked to review the FoodMaestro app. All images and opinions are our own.

Growing up I had no food allergies; though I remember being tested to try and get to the bottom of why my eczema would sometimes flare up. It’s not unheard of for people to grow out of some allergies, but I managed to grow into some.

I turned vegetarian when I was 13, before the days of Quorn and Linda McCartney products. After about ten years of vegetarianism I developed an intolerance to mushrooms. I get hideous cramps and other things I won’t go into. Suffice to say it’s not worth me eating mushrooms.

More recently I’ve developed an intolerance to rich dairy; so cream and ice cream are out, cheese is eaten in moderation. I try and have a few entirely dairy free days a week to reduce the unfortunate consequences of this.

The boys are thus far ok, able to eat anything and everything put in front of them. It’s just me, the mushroom and dairy intolerant vegetarian who makes meal planning more difficult at home.

I was introduced to the newly launched FoodMaestro app which allows you to create personalised dietary profiles for each family member; logging allergies, intolerances and lifestyle choices that affect their diet.

The app was built in partnership with Guys & St Thomas Hospital Trust and makes it easier to manage food-related conditions. It currently has a directory of more than 75,000 products and 25,000 ingredients, with more products being added all the time.

It’s easy to search for food products by name or category and find items that are suitable for your diet. The app checks the nutritional information on each product and tells you if it isn’t suitable for you or your family to eat. This allows you to easily build lists of ‘safe’ foods and identify potential problems.


Once you’ve downloaded the free FoodMaestro app you just put in the details of your family members and their dietary requirements; it’s a simple swipe to choose from a range of allergy and intolerances as well as filtering into vegan, meat free, gluten free options, to name just a few.

You can then set about creating a shopping list. I went about my kitchen scanning the bar-codes of the items we were starting to run low on; as each item scanned the app would tell me if it matched our dietary requirements. You don’t have to scan the bar-codes; you can write up your list and the app will check each item for you. Once you’ve finished you can share your list, I chose to email it to myself so I could view my list when I went shopping. I normally have my shopping list on my phone anyway.

As you can see, the app has flagged this item up as unsuitable as it contains traces of milk.

The FoodMaestro app currently lists products from most large brands as well as the supermarkets; Waitrose, Morrisons and Asda, and they are adding Tesco products to the app shortly.

I can see this app being very useful for me. Although I’m a keen reader of labels, sometimes I think a product is ok and it turns out not to be; then I’m poorly for a few days. This will also be great for when we have people round for tea who I know have food allergies and intolerances; helping me to double check that I’m not going to make them poorly. I think the FoodMaestro app is a big step forward.

You can find out more about the FoodMaestro app on their website and you can follow them on Twitter for news and updates.


= This is a collaborative post =

App Review: Heroes of the City App

I’d never heard of Heroes of the City before, but when I was approached to review their app and I had a quick Google, I knew it was probably something we needed to investigate further. As I’ve already mentioned in approximately 300 other blog posts, we love a vehicle in this house. Splodge is nothing short of obsessed and was nee-nawing at ambulances long before he uttered his first real words.

As soon as I saw what Heroes of the City looked like I knew he’d love it. For those not in the know, Heroes of the City is a cartoon about rescue vehicles in a small town where everyone can be a hero. You can follow the exciting adventures of Pauli Police Car, Fiona Fire Engine and Calamity Crow as they help the townspeople find thieves, put out fires, and solve some of the mysteries that happen in the otherwise quiet town. Heroes of the City is all about friendship, the stories are warm, lovely and focus on co-operation and helping each other out.

App Review: Heroes of the City App

The Heroes of the City app is currently free to download from the App Store or GooglePlay. Like any app it was quick and easy to download. I had a little explore myself before I handed my trusty iPad over to Splodge and I was quite pleased with the app. It features…

  • More than six hours of cartoons.
  • Nine, age appropriate, interesting and fun games.
  • The ability to collect trophies to open up new features.

The Heroes of the City app is aimed at 2-6 year olds. Splodge is three and I think that it’s about right for him, though it does work on different levels so there will be things he can grow into. He already plays with a few apps on my iPad and he can easily navigate his way around them. The apps we’ve already got he enjoys but they’re a bit limited, they have maybe one or two games. He likes them but he’s played with them for a year now.

I showed him the app but I’d maybe caught him at the wrong moment, he had a little tinker and then wandered off. A bit later that day I left the room, leaving my iPad on the sofa, I returned and he had opened the app and was watching one of the cartoons. So I sat with him for a little while and we watched it together, then opened up the games and we explored them.

The boy genuinely loves the games. He likes the one where you colour in Paulie the Police car; he likes the one where you set up a train track and the train chuffs around it; and he absolutely loves the one where you fire Calamity Crow out of a cannon. He giggles away to that. If I can hear him giggling I know exactly what he’s doing. He likes to watch the cartoons too, they’re just the right length and are lively and engaging.

We’ve had it about a week now and I cannot leave my iPad unattended without him leaping on it and opening it up. It’s something that we snuggle up and can play with together, it’s a colourful, well designed app. It’s glossy and expensive looking and is somehow free. This baffles me because it’s packed full of great content.

I’d be really happy to pay for the app as there’s so much in it. Not only that but if you go to their website they have a range of downloadable activity sheets and stories available for free. It’s well worth a look.

If you’ve got a child who like Splodge enjoys a vehicle then do check the heroes of the city app out. It’s fab, it’s fun and best of all it’s free!

Disclaimer: We were sent a link to the heroes of the city app to try for free; however it is freely available to anyone who wants to download it via the App Store or GooglePlay.