It’s been a while since I wrote my first musings post; almost six months, in fact! I thought now was about the right time to get my thoughts down again. Since that last post, I haven’t found staying at target much easier. I still haven’t managed to get back to “bang on” target, so I obviously haven’t managed to get back to where I was before Christmas either. I would have felt like a fraud writing this before, as I’ve been out of target for the past month; but I finally got back into it this week.
If I’m being honest – and I always am on here – my head just hasn’t been 100% in the game. It’s not that I’ve completely lost my love of Slimming World; I think if I was following any other plan then I would be the same. We’ve been having problems with Jacob and it’s really been taking a toll on how I’ve been eating. Read more
We get through an awful lot of pasta in our house; partly due to the fact that it’s a free food on Slimming World (dried pasta, anyway), and also it’s one of the boys’ favourites! A pasta bake is always a great idea; you’re able to just throw everything in and have a family dining experience with it. Take the dish to the table, and let everybody tuck in!
Tinned tuna is really quick and easy to add to a pasta bake, and as strange as butternut squash sounds to accompany it, it’s really quite nice! I use sour cream in this tuna pasta bake to make it a bit creamier, but you could make it syn free by using Quark or the like instead.
Did you know that doctors and researchers now accept that exercise doesn’t help you lose weight? This is a significant change from the advice that everyone, from fitness gurus to the NHS, has been giving out for years. You were supposed to exercise more and eat less, and the two always went together.
Only we now know that the advice wasn’t based on evidence. The push to ensure that all medical information is evidence-based has overturned quite a few accepted truths, but none so entrenched as the “diet and exercise” mantra. Even NHS websites contradict each other, with the ones that have recently been updated giving the new message that only controlling your calorie intake will help you lose weight.
That doesn’t mean that exercise isn’t good for your health – it’s one of the key ways to ward off type 2 diabetes. But it does mean that if you want to lose pounds, going to the gym for an hour and then coming home and over-eating is not a sensible way to go about it.
The Weight Reduction And Regain Rollercoaster
There are several reasons why exercise won’t make us any slimmer in the long term.
One is that extreme and exhausting exercise regimes allow us to continue eating higher levels of calories, when in fact we need to be cutting down on portion sizes. Then when the weather means we don’t want to exercise, or we can’t afford to renew our gym membership, we haven’t changed any of the habits that made us overweight in the first place, and the pounds are soon piling back on.
We now know that it takes about a year after a significant weight loss, for the body to settle down and stop thinking it’s been hit by a major famine and needs to eat everything in sight.
What’s important, therefore, is increased exercise as part of a daily routine that you don’t even think about, like getting off the bus a stop earlier, or walking for short trips when you’d usually use the car. Things that you are likely to continue after the “diet” regime is over. Same with the changes to eating patterns – you need to make changes that you can live with forever. Otherwise, you’ll never get off the weight loss rollercoaster.
The Body Adapts To Extreme Exercise
Among the many studies that have shown no link between exercise and weight loss, some have also pointed out a possible negative role for excessive exercise. As we know, when the body feels threatened it tends to act to protect itself. And when extreme exercise is experienced, the body may make adjustments elsewhere, reducing how many calories it uses for other activities. So it’s possible your resting calorie consumption may fall, counteracting all that effort jogging around the park.
Exercise Is Still Vital For Our Health
Don’t give up exercise because of these findings. It is the most important activity we can do to maintain our health and cut the risk of stroke, heart attack, dementia and a myriad of other diseases. Just don’t expect it to take the weight off – you’ll need to restrict calories to do that.
Just one of the great things about Slimming World is the fact I can eat as much lean meat as I like, and not have to worry about counting syns on it. Some ready prepared meats with flavourings are synnable (yes, that is a word in SW vocabulary) so I try to buy it plain and add my own syn free flavourings. Whether it be a pre-prepared spice mix or I mix my own; but recently I was sent some rubs & spices to try from Bohns. They are all syn free too which is great news for Slimming World followers!
Thomas Bohn has been on a quest across the globe and back in a search for the perfect mix of spices and seasoning able to elevate taste to new heights.
He left a boy and came back a man, a slightly heavier man full of the tastes of the finest slow cooked BBQ’s from the land of stars and stripes. Here he discovered the secrets to rubbing butt’s and adding spice to his life and his cooking.
In his experiences, the tastiest and most succulent meat is produced from slow cooking methods with spices, sauces and marinades generously applied giving taste sensations we only seem to experience in restaurants.
Now armed with these recipes learnt on the road and honed in the kitchen, Thomas Bohn brings you a range of rubs and spices guaranteed to add new dimensions to your meats, sauces, vegetables and dips. Read more
I love a good curry, and my slow cooker chicken curry seems to be mighty popular amongst Slimming World followers! I’m guessing, because it’s quick and easy, and you can just put it on and forget about it. I do like to cook a curry on the stove sometimes though; the smells that fill my kitchen from the spices are just delightful.
This particular chicken & potato curry recipe involves grinding of spice seeds; you could just stick them in a mini hand blender, but doing it by hand with a pestle & mortar equals extra body magic! Kind of 😉 Also, this recipe is completely guilt free as it contains zero syns.
I have loved testing out some great products from the Panasonic Kitchen over the last few months; the latest one I have been trying out is the Panasonic Slow Juicer. A juicer is something I have always fancied trying out; I love the fact that it leaves you with a super smooth juice but still contains all the nutrition from fruit & vegetables. There are so many combinations to try too; pure fruit juice, pure vegetable juice, or a mix of fruit & veg. The juice world is your oyster!
For rich-tasting highly nutritious juices..
You get rich, smooth juice filled with nutrition. You can also use the Frozen Attachment to make healthy desserts.
It’s been a few months now since I reached target; just over three of them, in fact. It does actually feel like it’s been longer to be honest. I haven’t shared an update since becoming a target member so I thought it was about time I got my thoughts down on paper; well, virtual paper! I was going to say, I can’t remember the last time I went to weigh in dreading getting on the scales, but that wouldn’t be entirely true. The truth is, I’ve been really struggling for most of the year already, and it’s almost March! Read more
January; the most popular month of the year for people to decide they want to lose weight, or to get a bit fitter and healthier. I certainly know that was the case for me a couple of years ago when I decided to join Slimming World; but, my main focus at that time was just to lose weight.
During my weight loss journey I haven’t really exercised; with the exception of taking up running for a few weeks and then life got in the way, and I haven’t really done any since. This year though, I want to focus on getting fitter. I pretty much have the healthy eating down to a tee now; most of the time, anyway! We all want need to let go once in a while, right? Read more
I do love my slow cooker but admittedly, I don’t use it as often as I mean to. One of my favourite dishes that I always make in the slow cooker is a stew. I’ve been fancying something a bit different to a beef and vegetable stew, so I bought a gammon joint, and then just randomly chucked loads of ingredients in to make this smoky gammon stew; it turned out lovely! Perfect for a cold winter day. It’s also completely syn free on Slimming World!
Anjanette Fraser is a Director of The Natural Alternative Health & Wellbeing Ltd educating companies and their employees on the importance of nutrition in health – both corporate and personal. Since the company inception over 10 years ago its national coverage has been hugely beneficial working with large and small organisations over multiple locations. Anjanette is currently studying a MSc in Nutritional Medicine ensuring the information clients receive is scientific, current, and user friendly. For more information please visit www.natural-alternative.co.uk
Worryingly, children’s breakfasts contain at least half of their recommended daily sugar intake according to Public Health England; that’s before school has even started! Breakfast manufacturers use a combination of sugar and clever marketing to keep enticing children and parents back to their brands, and often under the illusion that their breakfast products are healthy. A survey found that 84% of parents thought they were giving their children a healthy start to the day.
Nearly 20% of children are obese by the time they leave primary school, and 25% of five year olds have tooth decay. A lot of this is due to sugar. A survey of 200 parents with children aged between four and 10 years old found kids were eating more than 11g sugar (3 sugar cubes) for breakfast. It’s not just cereals (some contain up to equivalent of two sugar cubes); chocolate spread (three sugar cubes) and fruit juices (five sugar cubes) are also culprits. Read more