It's almost become a cliché, but eating healthy in Cairo is no easy task. But over the last few years, there's been an increased awareness of fitness and health across the country, thanks to an all-round better understanding of food and nutrition.
It's this understanding that is at the core of this year's Cairo 360 Editors' Choice Award winners in the Healthy Dining category – and understanding that healthy food can also be delicious and filling. This year's winners not only understand that, but prove it week in, week out.
The number one choice for many an office-bound Cairenes, Zamalek's Goodcals can rightly claim to have been one of the first healthy food specialist on an island that has had plenty of competition. Goodcal's salads range from the simple, to the more elaborate, but the one thing they all have in common is that they're darn good.
One of the newer salad bars in Cairo, Maadi's Green habits also doubles up as one of the best juice bars of its kind, serving up refreshing, light and delicious cold-pressed juices and creative smoothies, some of which use more exotic ingredients such as chia seeds . Green Habits' 'Power Bowls' have also been a hit, letting diners bring together oats or granola with everything from chocolate almond milk to all kinds of fruits.
While most healthy eateries are concentrated in the more affluent areas of Zamalek and Maadi, Kcal sticks out like the best of sore thumbs in Mohandiseen, while also having opened branches in Sheikh Zayed and New Cairo. Wherever the chain has landed, it's been a hit with locals thanks to its low-calorie burgers, sandwiches, wraps and desserts.
Another of the trailblazing salad specialists, Lettuceat's salads are as bold and as varied as it gets, and are more generous in portions than most. The Zamalek restaurant was one of the first on the island to offer a greener alternative to lunching and has enjoyed a consistent popularity and quality amongst health-conscious Cairenes.
No one likes counting calories, bit with Sattva Steps, keeping track of your calorie-intake is made easy. Not only are you told how many calories each dish is, but you're also told how many steps it will take to work it off. But what makes the Zamalek restaurant unique is its more holistic approach to healthy eating. For Sattva Steps, it's not all about greens and vegetables, as can be seen by their breakfasts options, soups, sandwiches and wraps.
For more on the 2016 Cairo 360 Editors' Choice Awards, click here, where you can also check out all of this year's winners.