Monday, February 27, 2012

"With A Little Help From You're Friends..."

Or " You need Friends..." never truer words said or should I say sang. To achieve yours goal whether it is weight loss or anything in life you need Motivation! If you are not motivated you can easily slip by the wayside. One way to help keep you motivated is ... you've got!  Friends!

Now Friends can come in all different shapes and sizes, but you are looking to find support from those who are on the same journey as yourself or who have been on the journey. Slimming Groups such as "Weight Watchers" or "Slimming world" are great for support. The classes will help you with nutritional and dietry advice but most important it is the support from the other members. You can share you're experiences and swap recipes or tips. Indeed as I understand that is how Weight Watchers was started. The founding member started with a group of her friends that regularly met for coffee mornings. They wished to lose weight and it started with them cutting out the biscuits they had with their coffees.....but they were there supporting each other along the way.  Although I reached my goal some 6 years ago now I still need support and help to stay motivated. One of the main reasons for my blog. If I can help others it will keep me motivated.

Personally I have been a member of different slimming groups over the years and I would say that I was successful with most of them. The ones where I was not successful .... I didn't have the motivation to be disciplined. That was in no way a reflection of the classes, but I was not very aware of my saboteurs. You know who they are those people in your life that despite wanting to support you can't help but sabotage your efforts. My Gran was one of my worst. She loved me heart and soul but SHE BAKED!!!! I saw her nearly every day in life while she was with us and every day I would be offered a scone or cake or biscuits or just Food in general. She would press and press " Go on just one wee one!" until I would cave, she always had this expression on her face when I said "No" that looked as if I had majorly offended her... so I would eat! No sooner was the scone or cake in my mouth then she would say " Ooh but you shouldn't really be eating that should you!" thus leading to feelings of guilt , in turn thoughts of okay well " I may as well be hung for a sheep as for a lamb" In short... viscous cycle!!!

So how did I break this? With support from a great class I joined. Indeed it was "Weight Watchers" that time and I learned how to be able to say "No" to my gran's baking but I asked her to prepare a healthy alternative for me and of course she was delighted to do so. She just really wanted to do something for me. She was never happier than when she was feeding people and caring for them.

As I have said I have been a member of different groups over the years and the reason for that is for another blog - But what the groups have in common is the support of the members. Now in today's austere times most of us cannot afford to pay out weekly for classes, but that is the beauty of Social Media it can bring like minded people together and people can have access to many different groups all there to lend a supporting hand.

So if you need a little help...... "Ill be there!...".

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Have You Cake and Eat It - Oh AND LOSE WEIGHT!!!

This is the breaking news for diets - Eat Chocolate Cake for Breakfast and Lose Weight! Is it too good to be true?  Well of Course it is not actually advocating that you just eat Cake (more's the pity) but saying that a small about of cake each day will assist in the weight loss. So how could that be? The following is an article that explains the principles of the "unusual" diet plan. Again the plan is about good food combinations. There is an element of the Atkins about it - as in lots of protein but have a read and see what you think yourself. As you all know I maintain that we are all individuals and what works for some will not work for others. But hey if it works don't knock it!!

The Big Breakfast Diet Reviewed

Judging by the name, this plan sounds like the kind of diet we would all like to try. But what is it and does it really work? Well, let's find out.
The Big Breakfast Diet is the creation of a clinical professor from Virginia Commonwealth University named Daniela Jakubowicz. The diet culminated in a book entitled "The Big Breakfast Diet: Eat Big Before 9 a.m. and Lose Big for Life".
In this book, Jakubowicz promises her readers that they can eat practically any foods they want and still lose weight. The catch is that the eating has to be done before 9 a.m.
This plan originated from a clinical study that did a comparison of a low carbohydrate diet against a diet based on eating a big breakfast with an average amount of carbohydrates. The results showed that although the big breakfast diet group ate almost 200 calories a day more than the other group, the big breakfast group lost 21% of their total body weight as compared to 4.5% of the low carbohydrate group.
The good doctor claims that eating a large breakfast will act as an appetite suppressant and boost metabolism which will lead to weight loss.
So how does it work?
Well, you will begin each day with a very big breakfast which needs to be high in carbohydrates and protein and should equate to around 600 calories. In addition, you are supposed to eat something sweet everyday such as chocolate.
Some of the foods you will be eating on this plan include meats such as steak, bacon, and turkey; carbs such as cakes and cookies, and fruits and vegetables.
So it sounds great right?
Well eating early with plenty of protein will without a doubt reduce your cravings throughout the day. Also this plan will sound like a dream to most dieters. Lastly, there is a 28 day meal plan with recipes included with the book.
However, as with any diet, there are concerns with the The Big Breakfast Diet. First, there needs to be more research done before any definitive claims can be made. Secondly, the low calorie diet will be hard for many people to stick with.

Article Source:

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Follow the Girl Guide Motto BE PREPARED!!!

I have just had a particularly busy week between work and the children and I have suffered for it by not being prepared. I have been feeling sluggish for the past couple of days and my energy levels are low and as for resistance lets just say that the Borg Hive has been in my head the last couple of days "Resistance is Futile!!".

We all fall off the wagon sometimes and this week I am one of the fallen. But I am back on track today. Last night I sat down and thought back over what triggers there had been during the week that had me eating a chunky caramel kit kat and half a box of turkish delight about an hour after my evening meal? Yes that's right all after my evening meal!! And the worst of it is that was just last night! I have done something similar the past three nights.

Quite simply - I have been unprepared! It sounds so cliched but it is true. I did not shop in advance this week and I did not prepare or plan what meals that myself and the children were having. As a result I have not had homemade soup ready to have at lunchtime or when I come home from work. I have also not filled up on fruit and veg. My first consideration is normally what veg I am having with my meals. I really struggled this week as I did not have a great selection. Even although you are on a diet or a weight loss plan your food should NEVER BE BORING! There is such a ripe selection of great fruit and veg out there that help make a really satisfying tasty meal. It goes without saying of course that herbs and spices are great cooking accessories and should be used as much as possible in your cooking. They have medicinal qualities as well as helping food taste better. Garlic for circulation, tumeric to help prevent the formation of fatty tissue, etc etc. But this is for another blog!

So what happened this week when my diet lacked its usual choice of fruit and veg? I found myself standing staring into the cupboards or the fridge looking for something TASTY....because I had been bored by my meals so I snacked with gusto!

But it is not all a disaster I have been able to recognise very quickly where I have strayed off my plan so tonight I have sat down and written a food diary in advance of the meals that I am going to make for the next week.

I have listed all the veg and the fruit that I will need to help bulk out my meals and for my snacks. And I will be making soup as soon as I come home tomorrow. I plan to make a quick carrot and butterbean soup that will only take half an hour and it will be ready.

Quick Carrott and Butterbean soup

No need to measure or weigh -
3 or 4 carrots chopped
1 onion chopped
2 cloves garlic (crushed)
1 tin of butterbeans in water (drained)
1 chicken stock cube

put the chopped carrots and onions and garlic in a pan with the seasoning add enough water to just cover the veg by about a cm. bring to boil cover reduce heat and simmer for 25mins. then add the butterbeans for five minutes. take off heat and leave to stand for a few minutes then blitz with blender and there you go!

And Remember BE PREPARED.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

So You're CRAVING.........

EVERYTHING!!! Okay we are coming to the end of the first month of 2012 and following the excesses of Xmas and  NewYear most of us commenced a weight loss regime the first week of January.
The first couple of weeks on your plan you will most likely not have craved anything, mainly because your'e body would be going through a serious detox. You will have started to feel less sluggish and hopefully you will have lost a couple of pounds. But you will be feeling better and have more energy.

But those xmas excesses seem very far away .... I mean come on that was last year after all!!! Whatever your craving is.. be it sweet or savoury will find yourself thinking "just a small taste will be ok". And do you know what? You are right! We must not deny ourselves those small treats. If you do you will be feeding the craving and a small amount will not satisfy you.
Most weight loss plans allow you to incorporate treats into your plan, the trick is to stick within your allowance.

This can be tricky! And yes it does take will power! When you have just started a weight loss regime this can go either of two ways... You can either be highly motivated and can resist the cravings becasue you are completley focused... or you can give into the craving because you need that little bit more motivation as you have yet to see the results that your hard work has achieved.

I went out for dinner with my partner Ken yesterday. This is the frst time we have eaten out since before xmas. Now Ken is also following a dietary plan but for health purposes and at present he is on Candida Diet and cannot eat anything with yeast or sugar in it. At the moment he cannot even eat fruit and although this will be gradually re-introduced into his diet he is not quite at that stage.

I must explain that Ken is the biggest chocholic that I have ever met!! He did literaly live off the stuff!He has never been overly large but has carried at least an extra stone but being tall he carries it off well!  He was previously always going to cut down but in fact if it wasnt for the fact that he was advised to follow this diet plan for medical purposes he would still be living on mars bars and his favoutite twix!! Anway back to yesterday. We decided to go to The Harvester a homley styled food chain that serves food that is not deep fried or pizza. They also do a wholemeal pasta dish. Which is suitable for Ken and also a good choice for myself.

He did puff a bit because he could only order water to drink, whilst I had a small glass of white wine , counted from my daily allowance on the plan I am following and all was going well until the waitress served the couple beside us with their dessert. One of them had ordered the chocolate fudge cake! Ken looked so desolate as he followed the cake from the waitress to the table. He even considered for a split second to order one, but he didn't. The reason was that although his diet is strict at the moment he is feeling fantatsic. Better than he has done in years! He was not willing to jeopardise how he feels for some chocolate cake. That is his motivation!

Okay so most of us are not on a strict regime like Ken and can eat what we crave and the only side effect will be that we will not lose the weight that we want to. For some that is enough to focus on but if you are like me you need some help to stay motivated. So what can we do to beat those cravings?

Firstly, - Stick to your plan for at least 21 days. It has been shown that if you carry out a task 21 times consequetively it becomes a habit. The same can be said for following a dietary plan. If you change your eating habits and persevere for the 21 days it becomes easier.

Secondly - Snack on Fruit! I know it is not rocket science but fruit contains natural sugar.!

Thridly - For those who prefer savoury snacks fill up on GI foods. Switch to wholemeal for your bread, pasta and rice.

Lastly - If you have a craving you are either bored or stressed so - Get Distracted!. Do something! Ideal time to get your coat on and go for a walk. if you are at work get up from your desk if you can and stretch out. If at home with the kids bundle them up go for a walk or to a museum!

Remember you should allow yourselves treats so that cravings dont overwhelm you but you can follow the above tips to help manage those cravings.

Oh and how much weight has Ken lost I hear you ask? Well actaully it is 24lbs in 8 weeks!! And yes I have incorporated some of the Candida Diet into my own and I have lost 9lbs in 6 weeks.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Getting Back On The Paleo Diet Track

Many of the requests we have received over Christmas have asked us how to get back on the diet track following a little too much indulgence over Christmas!
Food For Thought
The best advice we have is to clear out all those leftovers that are calling you to the fridge. Lose the chocolates, the cakes and leftover treats. Give them away and if that feels uncomfortable just throw them, they are not doing you any good and anyway on reflection, why would you want to inflict this junk on loved ones, friends and family?
Food For Diet
Next, get back to basics! A healthy diet must have the right balance of macronutrients to suit your lifestyle and activity level. For instance marathon and endurance athletes require and can tolerate high carbohydrate loadings, however for most of us and especially those wishing to lose weight this will be as follows; fat, protein and some carb (start with green leafy vegetables) at each meal. Use intermittent fasting. This is a neat way to trick your body into ketosis and let it rest after all that over indulgence. Practise listening to your body and finding when you are hungry. If you are not sure if you are are probably not!
Fastest Way To Lose Weight?
What is the fastest way to lose weight? You need to get your body into fat burning mode (ketosis). It can't do this if insulin levels are high. And what causes high insulin levels? High carb foods: that is junk food, for example white bread, pasta, liquid carbohydrates (pepsi, banana milkshake, soda, fruit smoothies ) consumption - all of these cause elevated blood sugar levels and prompt an insulin response from your body to push the blood sugar out as energy where required and to store the surplus energy as excess fat in your body (For further reading see related article below).
Beware The Three Wise Dieticians
Finally, do not panic and turn to conventional dietician wisdom! And by that we mean the idea that to lose weight we must eat less and exercise more. This thought process is the kind of knee jerk reaction that sends us scurrying back to weight watchers and slimming world or lighter life and continues the cycle of overeating and starvation that gets us into a mess in the first place! Yo-yo dieting anyone?
The Promised Land
You will find that if you have followed a paleo diet before Christmas, your body will want to go back there. It just takes a little planning and a little thought and we are here to show you how. Give us a call if you need some inspiration. We'd love to hear from you
Above all, keep it simple and keep it real.
Related articles

Monday, January 9, 2012

Top 10 New Diet Tips 2011-2012 To Guarantee Weight Loss

Follow these hot 10 tips and be impressed by how much weight you will lose!
Tip 1) Chocolate Not Cake
If you really crave chocolate then don't suffer. It's better to eat when you have cravings but in a controlled way. It's better to eat a chocolate bar as cakes have much more calories.
Tip 2) Sleep Plenty
Ensuring you get enough sleep has been proven to help you lose weight. Adults should be getting ideally 8 hours a night but at the very least 6 hours.
Tip 3) Drink 2 Litres a Day
This is a really good habit to get into. It is also essential if you are exercising. Drink 2 litres, or 8 glasses of water every day. But a 2 litre water bottle and fill it up each day so you can monitor how much you are drinking.
Tip 4) Weight Training
Cardio exercise is great for burning calories. However its better to start with weight training as muscle burns more calories in the body than anything else. So if you can increase in muscle then you will be burning 100s more calories when you exercise.
Tip 5) 6 Small Meals
It is good for your metabolism to eat regularly. So don't have 3 big meals a day. Instead have 6 small ones. Just make sure they are small!
Tip 6) Positive Thinking
Thinking positive will make you feel better and more motivated about dieting. Focus on your goal to make sure you suceed and reach it.
Tip 7) Eat After Exercise
Exercising on an empty diet is a great way to burn of stored fat in the body. exercising also decreases appetite (if you work hard enough) so you will end up eating less.
Tip 8) Chose a Diet Plan That Is Permanent
When you sign up to a professional diet program make sure it is one that is designed to be permanent. Crash are hard to keep up and you are also much more likely to put weight on again if you lose any. So make sure you search for 'PERMANENT diet plans'
Tip 9) Get Support
It has been proven that you are much more likely to succeed if you have support. If your diet plan has a forum then use it. Talk to others on the same diet and get the encouragement you need.
Tip 10) Professional Diet Plan
Chose the professional diet plan that is right for you and catches your eye. They really are the best way to lose weight. So don't wait around anymore. Get serious about losing weight and sign up to a program that is right for you.
If you're ready to lose weight then check out these Professional Diet Programs now. Get your free advice on the best diet for you and the most successful diets for 2011. Simply go to
Article Source:

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Eating the Right Foods made SUPER EASY!

Okay so after the excesses of the New Year we are all sitting feeling bloated and lacking in energy! And yes we will mostly all now be staring to try and shift the weight that we have put on over the festive period. We will be searching for a diet or an eating plan that is sensible and EASY!!! We all know that eating healthily is the best way to lose weight and feel good. We know that we should eat at least five portions of fruit and veg a day. Not only is fruit and veg low in calories they contain antioxidants that work their magic on our internal organs and cleanse our skin. A balanced diet not only helps you look good but you will have much more energy. Now imagine if there was an aid to ensure that you got the correct balance of food in each meal - No fussing -No Weighing - Well THERE IS. Check out the Diet Plate - The diet Plate counts the calories for you - you eat your five portions of fruit and veg a day and is suitable for all types of diet including vegetarian, Asian, Italian and Western. But best of all it is extremely cost effective.!!!!!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Death to the New Year's Resolution

Happy New Year! Another year has just begun, as has another list of our New Year's Resolutions. For the majority of us it's all the same, eat better, lose weight, exercise more, la-la-la. But then, come mid-February (and often earlier than that), our must-do, "this year I'm going to stick with it" plans, fall by the wayside and we fall right back into our old routine of "I'll workout tomorrow" and "I'm only going to eat this way today."
Why is this the way it always goes? Why can't we just stick to our goals already?! Because this is what Resolutions are! They are far-fetched "ideals" of things we wish could happen, but yet aren't worth putting the effort in for.
I say it's time to kill the New Year's Resolution - in particular the one regarding weight loss and being 'healthy'! Why set yourself up for failure and disappointment?
Instead, let's make this year about "lifestyle" change! Think about it as something you are not only doing for today or for instant gratification, but how this one decision is going to affect the rest of your life!
This is NOT a 2012 goal or aspiration, this is a better you for years and years to come!
But how, you ask, do you make such a huge change overnight? It's hard enough sticking to a plan for a couple weeks! Start with changing your mindset.
Here's how to do it in 7 steps:
  1. Think about the big picture and how you are going to feel 1 year from now. 10 years from now.
  2. Think about your children and then their children.
  3. Think about the role model you want to be, and the things that you want your children to accomplish. How do you want them to feel about themselves?
  4. Now, think of the past. Think of how you have mistreated your body with the food you put in it and the lack of exercise you gave it. How did this make you feel?
  5. Now, tell yourself that the past is the past, it is behind you and that is where it is going to stay!
  6. Look toward the future and ONLY think about the future. You can't go back and change the past, but you can make a difference for a better tomorrow!
  7. Finally, tell yourself that you deserve to feel good about yourself and you deserve to be happy! (Do #7 everyday.)
This list is not going to magically change you overnight, but it should get you thinking about you, the future, and how your role affects the future of those around you. By changing your mindset and the reasons why you want to get healthy, the "chore" of getting there will naturally disappear.
I agree that New Year's Resolutions are good in theory. It's great to have a goal or something to aspire to. But the problem is, they are not personal enough. It's time to think about YOU! Make yourself - and your health - the priority.
As a Nutritional Chef, I not only focus on healthy eating, but I take pride in creating food that taste just as good, and often a great deal better, than it's unhealthy counterparts. Health is a lifestyle and I believe that the road to getting there needs to be enjoyed!
Furthermore, I am a Certified Fitness Trainer and so I know how exercise, combined with healthy eating, can make a world of difference in how someone feels on both the inside and out.
With my Master's in Nutrition and my Culinary experience, my knowledge of health and nutrition, coupled with my passion for cooking, put me into a league all of my own.

Article Source:

HCG Food Plan for Rapid Weight Loss

Obesity is a life threatening condition that many are suffering from these days. Most of the people who realize that they need to reduce their weight would rush to the nearest fitness centers and dieticians. These are often not the best weight loss methods in existence.
Obesity is a life threatening condition that many are suffering from these days. Most of the people who realize that they need to reduce their weight would rush to the nearest fitness centers and dieticians. These are often not the bestweight loss methods in existence.Losing weight at a rapid rate is not an easy task if you are not following the best regimen.HCG food plan is one among the rapid weight loss techniques that have proved efficient. HCG, a pregnancy hormone produced in the female body, is now medically used to treat a variety of health conditions.
HCG food plan restricts your food intake to 800 calories a day. The most common doubt that would arise is whether you will feel hungry throughout the day. Constant hunger can be an unappreciable distraction that might soon lead to anxiety or depression. With the help of the diet regimen, you would learn to distinguish hunger from other cues that trigger eating so that you would know how to deal with it. The quality meals prescribed to you would be sufficient enough for you to remain healthy. The most appreciable breakfast is a lean protein meal and fruits. Never skip the breakfast because this would have an adverse effect on your metabolism. The first meal of the day provides you with energy to function normally. It would also help you stay full for few hours and avoid overeating the lunch. The professionals say that the best lunch and dinner that you can have should include 100 grams of lean proteins each, a handful of vegetables and few healthy fruits.
The HCG food plan suggests that you should be consuming apple, orange, strawberries or grapefruit in defined quantities to facilitate the weight loss. Zero fat drinks are another diet restriction that you need to follow. The only drinks that are allowed include tea, coffee, plain water and mineral water. Prior to the treatment, the patients are expected to eat to the capacity at least for a week. It is vital if you could take vitamin and mineral supplements that has no fat soluble ingredients or sugar. It is the unwanted accumulated fat in the body that is burned so that there would be no signs of unhealthiness while you are on the diet. You might have to stop using the cosmetics containing hormones which can interfere with the endocrine regulations.
Why is the HCG food plan unique? Usually, when you are on the diet, the body tends to store fat as these are sources of energy. This would lead to the slowing down of metabolism. With the HCG diet, there is no such issue of the lowered metabolic rates due to the consumption of lean proteins. Mild hunger would be experienced only for the first few days whereas from second week onwards you will find the servings satisfactory. If you are on a healthy diet with high proteins and low sugar levels, you would feel lesser cravings. The amount of weight that you can lose is dependent on age, gender, height and how lately you dieted. The professionals offering guidance can be contacted via websites.