Monday, November 13, 2017

Think you’re eating healthily? Read this and think again

TWO weeks ago we started the Drop A Size For Christmas challenge. So – how are you doing so far? Have you been practising your small habits every day? If you have been diligent about your baby steps then go to the top of the class. If life has got in the way and you haven’t quite managed it every day, then look at it as a learning experience rather than giving up.

Think about how you can learn from what’s not gone so well and rather than getting emotional about it and thinking you’re a failure – do it differently.

One of the things you can do over the next few weeks to really move yourself forward both in terms of health and your weight loss is to be aware of your sugar consumption – and I mean the added sugar and hidden sugar that’s in our everyday food.

I know I keep on about this but it’s really really important.  Last Friday at the Sugar Summit in London, it was revealed that people’s concern about the dangers of sugar is very high.

Here’s one of the slides with the statistics, photographed off the screen at the summit.

A lot of the reason we consume so much sugar is that hidden in everything!

Look at the different names sugar goes under in everyday food…

So my challenge to you for the next week is to be vigilant and if you think you eat healthy food, think again.  Look for the sugar content in what you’re buying then limit your consumption to the recommended healthy amount…

Which is 25g a day (6tsp) for a woman and 38g (9tsp) a day for a man. If you’re anything like me, you were conditioned to look for the fat content in food.

Years ago I used to swear by Rosemary Conley’s Hip and Thigh diet and followed it religiously – limiting my fat consumption to only a few grams a day.

But things have moved on and several years ago I discovered a lot of the fat I was excluding from my daily nutrition was in fact important to have IN my body for essential health reasons.

However, refined, added sugar is NOT needed by our bodies at all and we consume too much of it.  So even if you think you’re eating healthy food, please spend a week checking your labels.

I spoke to a lady recently who said she eats healthy food all the time and couldn’t understand why she wasn’t shifting fat. Yet on closer investigation I discovered most of her food is convenience food from a very well-known “healthy” brand and there was huge amounts of sugar in the savoury food.

This is because sugar acts as a preservative to make shelf life longer and helps the freezing process to be more effective, too.  So today I’m issuing you with a challenge within a challenge!

My new challenge for you is about making sure the food you’re eating is healthy and not riddled with sugar – because so much of it is.

If you’re listening to a Slimpod this should be easy peasy to do!

Let me know in the comments below if you’re up for that and I’ll check in with you next week to see how it’s going!

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Friday, November 10, 2017

Honey and Mustard Glazed Pork Chops

Hospital superchef Simon Smith has a really healthy recipe for you – it’s filling, nutritious and very tasty. Make sure you don’t overcook the vegetables so you keep as much of the goodness in them as possible. The chop is delicious with a baked potato. Please leave your comments below because Simon loves your feedback!

Honey and Mustard Glazed Pork Chops

SERVES 4

PREPARATION TIME: 10mins

COOKING TIME 15mins

Ingredients

4 x 200g – 225g Pork Chops

2 Sweet Peppers (de-seeded & sliced)

1 medium Onion (Sliced)

½ Red Onion (sliced)

100ml Sunflower Oil

30ml Olive Oil

20ml Sesame Oil

2clvs Garlic (pureed)

1½ tsp. Dijon Mustard

2tbsp Honey

½ Lemons

20g Fresh Chives (chopped)

10g Fresh Sage (chopped)

250ml Chicken Stock

Seasoning

Equipment required:

Griddle / sauté pan

Deep roasting tray

Large cooking spoons

Mixing bowls

Vegetable Knife

Chopping Board

Preparation

Pre heat the oven to gas mark 6 / 200C, with a deep tray in it pre heating also.

In a bowl combine the oils, garlic, Dijon mustard, honey, chives, sage and a squeeze of lemon juice. Stir or whisk until all ingredients are thoroughly combined.

Into the bowl add the pork chops, sliced onions and sliced peppers. Stir into the marinate until all the pork chops and the vegetables are coated. Cover the bowl and place in the fridge for 5 mins

Heat the griddle pan on medium for the last 2min of the chops’ time in the fridge. Remove the chops from the bowl and drain excess oil and place on a clean tray. Season the chops with salt and cracked pepper and then carefully lay the chops into the hot griddle pan.

Allow the chops to cook in the hot oil for approx 2min on each side to seal off the meat. When chops start to colour in the griddle pan, remove to the clean pre-heated deep oven tray. Add a tablespoon of the marinate mix over the chops and place in the hot oven. Allow to bake in the hot oven for approx. 10min occasionally turning the chops.

Drain the sliced onions and peppers from the remaining marinate. Reduce the heat on the griddle pan and add the vegetables to the pan, allow them to quick fry stirring frequently. When the veg starts to colour in the pan remove and place in a clean bowl.

Increase the pan to high and add the stock to the pan.  Deglaze all the flavours cooked into the pan and reduce the stock until half the liquid remains in the pan.

Remove the chops from the oven and pour any juices in the tray into the jus in the griddle pan. Check the core of the chops with a knife to confirm they are cooked; the chops should have a chargrilled look and should be served on a bed of the fried vegetables with the glaze poured over.

 

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Monday, November 6, 2017

Moira’s inspiring story of 70lbs lost and happiness gained

WE all love an inspiring story and if you’re anything like me, they give you motivation and make you feel really warm inside.  Every week I get stories from people whose lives are being transformed by their Slimpod programmes and Moira Mackenzie is one of them.  Moira was keen to inspire like-minded people to live a life without dieting and I’m  so grateful to her for agreeing to share her story with the media.

Here’s one of the quotes from Moira which appeared on the health pages of the Daily Express last week.

“My mindset around food has changed. I don’t have to restrict myself at all in what I eat, nothing is off limits. I just make healthy choices all the time. If I want chocolate I’ll have it, but only a couple of pieces. And I have smaller portions but I know they’ll fill me up.”

Moira went from a size 24 to a size 16 in her first year of listening to a Slimpod and is now down to a size 12, having lost an amazing 70lbs.

One quote from Moira struck a particular  chord with me, because as I’ve told you all before I was a fat teenager who was too embarrassed to go into dress shops. This is what Moira told the Express: “Before I could barely find anything to fit. Now I can go to any shop – and I do.  I always bought everything in navy blue or black so I didn’t draw attention to my size. But I love bright colours now. One of the greatest things is that my daughter, who’s a size 12 too, keeps borrowing my clothes – that is such a boost to me.”

The Daily Express headline

Something else Moira said brought a big smile to my face: “I’ve got so much more energy and I can keep up with my wonderful grandchildren. I’ve always been a happy person, seeing the good things in life. But I’m even happier now.”

Moira’s wonderful success proves that a Slimpod is not just about losing weight – it’s also about regaining long-lost confidence and becoming happy about life. Very happy!

You can read Moira’s interview with the Express here

Moira is an active member of our Slimpod community on Facebook and we all love her to bits!

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Sunday, October 29, 2017

Starts today! Join my Drop A Size For Christmas challenge

WOW! I can’t believe we’re on the run-up to Christmas – how did that happen? It’s always a great opportunity to have the last push of the year to release some of that excess weight.

So let me help you to drop a size for Christmas! Because it just couldn’t be easier!

In this new video which launches my 30-day challenge, I’m going to let you in on the secret of how to achieve your goal.

It’s the best early Christmas present you could give yourself – and please feel free to share this blog post with your family, friends and colleagues if you think it would help them.

 

 

If you’re a member of the Slimpod Club community on Facebook there’ll be various activities going on there over the next 30 days. If you’re not, then just join the challenge by commenting below.

I’d love to know what steps you’re going to be taking over the next few weeks to drop a size for Christmas – so let me know. Your comments will inspire so many others.

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Thursday, October 26, 2017

Chicken in Tarragon Sauce – another great healthy recipe

WHAT’S the recipe we’re all looking for? Something that’s quick, simple, delicious and healthy! This week as usual our superchef Simon Smith has got just the thing. His Chicken in Tarragon Sauce looks amazing – and I bet it tastes amazing, too.

Simon rates chicken very highly because it’s packed with protein that not only does you good but helps you feel full so you find it easier to go for smaller portion sizes.

Let him know how much you like his recipe by leaving a comment below.

Chicken in Tarragon Sauce

Preparation time: 15mins

Cooking time: 15mins

Serves 2

Ingredients:

2  130g Chicken breasts (skinless, boneless & butterflied)

3 Shallots Onions (fine diced)

60g Button Mushrooms (quartered)

15g Fresh Tarragon (chopped)

2clv Garlic (pureed)

10g Unsalted Butter (melted)

10g Olive Oil

80ml White Wine

100ml Chicken Stock

100ml Whipping Cream

Seasoning

Equipment Needed:

Skillet / griddle pan

4 Mixing Bowls

Small Vegetable Knife

Chopping board

Preparation:

Prepare the vegetables and set aside in separate bowls. Butterfly the chicken breast, place on to a plate and season.

Heat the skillet on a low heat. Add the olive oil, melted butter and the garlic. Sauté the garlic for a couple of seconds. Add the chicken breasts and cover the pan with a tight fitted lid. Allow to sauté on low for 4mins and turn over chicken fillets and replace the lid and cook for an additional 2mins.

Remove the lid and add the shallots and the button mushrooms. Allow to sauté the vegetables until they soften. Next add ½ the tarragon herb and allow to cook for an additional minute.

Add to the white wine and increase the heat to high, allow the wine to boil and reduce till only ½ the liquid is left in the pan. At this stage add the chicken stock and allow the stock to also reduce till only a light jus id left.

Pour in the whipping cream and add the last of the tarragon. Allow the cream to cook and reduce on a high heat until it has reached a consistence that coats the back of a spoon.

Give the sauce a final seasoning and serve….

 

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Monday, October 23, 2017

Be honest: Are the scales your friend or your foe?

ONE of the most common things people in our Slimpod Community on Facebook raise with me is their relationship with the weighing scales. One lady asked if I could help her to understand more about the effect the scales have on her emotions because she thinks they’re partly to blame for her self-sabotage. As this is one of my favourite subjects, I’m more than happy to oblige!

In this video I explain how that piece of metal in the bathroom can actually control your emotions, making you feel happy or sad, and I discuss how a lot of people are obsessed with weighing themselves.

So after you’ve watched the video, here’s your task for this week. Take some time out to think about your relationship with the scales.  Does it have a positive impact on your daily life? When you hop on and off does it always empower you to keep your weight in control?  If so, then that’s absolutely wonderful and continue to do what you’re doing!

However, if as a result of hopping on the scales you eat to make yourself feel better or give up your healthy eating because you think there’s no hope and you’re a failure, then this is no good and it needs to stop because your relationship with the scales is destructive emotionally and it’s helping you to self-sabotage.

Drop me a comment below and tell me about your relationship with the scales. Does it make you feel good or bad?

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Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Drop a size in time for the Christmas partying!!

YOU ask, we listen! Following a great discussion in our Facebook Slimpod Club community last week, we’ll be launching on October 30th a 30-day drive to Drop a Size In Time For The Christmas Partying!

In Slimpod Club between now and October 30th I’ll be suggesting several new healthy habits on which you can focus for just 30 days. Easy!

The 30-day challenge is for men and women and will be really simple. All you need to do is choose just two things to focus on and then commit to doing them every day during November. We will run special groups to enable you to hold each other accountable.

Here are some thoughts, but please add your suggestions to the comments below, too, because this is all about your journey and implementing small changes in your life.

With your Slimpod helping you, committing to a couple of the suggestions below will be very easy!

* Reduce the sugar and refined carbs in your daily diet.

Reduce alcohol.

* Do a certain number of steps every day.

* Do squats every day.

* If you suffer from stress, practise mindfulness or meditation every day.

* Do the Pioppi or Blood Sugar diet for 30 days (and before you scream at me – they’re not really diets, they’re recipes based on proper food with no sugar or refined carbs and re really, really good for you!)

* Drink more water each day.

Naturally we will also be asking you to listen to your pods every day. I’ll be pitching in with a video here and there giving you support and advice.

So let’s get this moving and be all set for October 30th! I’m thinking it would be a great idea for you to identify an outfit you’d like to feel comfortable in for Christmas and have that as a goal.  What do you think?!

Weight loss is not a one size fits all – we can all choose our individual path and then work together to achieve it!

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