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Monthly Archives: November 2011

Diet Pills

I heard a shocking story today from one reader who expressed concerns about the diet pills she was taking. She took them during work and her face went very red, she also started developing rashes along her arms. This sounds like she’s allergic to one of the ingredients so told her to stop immediately.

I don’t see how it’s physically possible to add something to your body and to lose weight.

Cocaine was once sold as a diet aid (possibly still is but not legally), Caffeine still is sold legally as a diet aid. Now one is legal, one isn’t, but they both work in more or less the same way; they increase movement. Cocaine and caffeine supposedly help you perk up and move more. So cut the drug abuse and just move more! Wake up a little earlier, walk if you usually drive, jog if you usually walk, run if you usually jog and so on. If you have a treadmill, use it. If you have a breeze block, do step ups. If you have stairs, do step-ups. Half hour on a treadmill at an easy, beginners pace can burn 100 calories in half hour! step-ups even more. If you kept your same diet, this helps to possibly create a deficit.

There is no miracle pill to losing weight. It can be hard work, generally it’s easy if done right.

There is one pill known to suppress hunger, but this in itself has side effects much worse. Follow the tips included in this blog for healthy, easy weight loss and you can avoid the need for drugs.

 
 

Starvation Mode – Fact or Fiction

Most if not all serious dieting sources mention ‘Starvation Mode’ as a state your body goes into if your food intake is too low hindering your weight loss. But for every place which says it exists, another says it’s a myth.

The fact is that there is a starvation response in all animals, it is well researched and documented and there is genuine science behind it.

Our bodies need energy to function, our hearts need to pump, our lungs need to draw air and our blood needs to be cleaned. This energy comes from food and fat. When we eat less energy than we use, our bodies burn our fat stores, this is how we lose weight. However if we try to lose weight too quickly, the starvation response will kick in and start to break down lean muscle. You will still lose weight but now you’re risking Cardiac Dysrhythmia which can cause instant death.

Most sources recommend an absolute minimum of 1200 calories per day. I know no different so will requote it.

I have of course oversimplified the starvation response process. Wikipedia has a great article on it at Starvation Response. Malnutrition is also an interesting read.

Losing weight slowly and steadily is by far the best way forward. It is easier, and proven to be longer lasting than a quick fast.

 
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Posted by on November 7, 2011 in Health and Weight Loss

 

Calorie Bargaining – Dieting Tips

I just enjoyed a takeaway pizza, and yes I’m still on my diet! If you’re careful you can bargain with yourself in your weight loss plan. I didn’t eat much during the day as I was working on the car and oily hands do a lot to prevent snacking! My wife hadn’t had many either so we discussed a takeaway.

Takeaway foods are shockingly high in calories so it’s rare a diet allows it, of course it’s that extra fat, extra calories and extra portions which make it so yummy 😉

Our old ways:

£15 for two large pizzas (between two) plus free garlic bread. We eat the equivalent of one pizza plus bread between us and have the rest of the pizza reheated (oven, no microwave for us thank you) for lunch over one or two days.

Today’s way:

Today we ordered just one pizza… no free bread… no extra pizza, toppings or dips… I have to admit it was a little painful looking at the £15 deal and spending £12 for just the one, but I have to think about my health. We had half a pizza each, racked up somewhere around 6-800 calories and enjoyed every bite, this time with happy conscience.

I still have my 1000 calorie deficit, although did have to go hungry during the day to do it. But it was worth it and nice. My diet allows me to each pizza and still lose weight! It’s the moderation which makes the difference.

I will soon post a recipe for home made pizza which is also healthy. Most home mades are naturally lighter than takeaways, but pre-diet my recent passion was bread making. Bread is terribly high in calories by weight so I found a few ways to make the pizza even better with less of the high calorie stuff and more goodness!

 

Alcohol and Weight Loss

Ever heard of the term ‘Beer Belly’? Alcohol is a very high calorie substance, a pint of beer is roughly 300 calories… that’s a chicken mayo sandwich right there. 2 pints at 600cal is the same as a decent sized pizza!

To lose weight, you’re best off not drinking at all, but if you do, stick to the plain spirits with a sugar-free mixer. 35ml of vodka is roughly 60 calories, a diet coke/pepsi is 1/2. Five drinks still works out to be 300 calories but it’s a lot better than 620 from 5 small glasses of californian rose!

I heard a rumour once that vodka and water was zero… this is rubbish, the alcohol itself is full of calories so make sure you’re true to yourself and count those too.

 
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Posted by on November 5, 2011 in Foods and Meal Tips

 

Low Carbs, Low Fat, Low Calorie, Atkins style

Before my own diet, I was always hearing that carbs are the killers. Others say it’s fat. The Atkins diet (proven to be unhealthy longer term) bases itself on the ‘fact’ that carbs are bad. One man ate nothing but potatoes for 60 days and lost 10kg! He ate them mashed, sautéed, boiled, even one potato ice cream! See the story here.

The truth is that Carbs and Fat are both high in Calories. Meat is too by volume. By separating carbs and meats, you have a better chance at cutting meal calories. For example, one grilled, skinless chicken breast is just under 200 calories, a bowl of rice is a little higher at 250. Mix them together and your dinner is already 500 calories!

If you fancy rice, have rice and cut the meat. Eat it with a vegetable curry or vegetable chilli. (some fish is very low calorie)

If you fancy meat, cut the rice, pasta etc. Eat instead with roast vegetables and salads… and of course there are the Shirataki noodles

Carbs don’t do it, fat doesn’t do it, steaks don’t do it. It’s purely down to quantity and careful mixing. This has been my biggest learning curve…

 
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Posted by on November 5, 2011 in Foods and Meal Tips

 

Acai Berries and Weight Loss

This product is marketed the world over as a weight loss product. No matter what any advert says, it has been tested and THERE IS NO PROOF THAT THEY HELP YOUR WEIGHT IN THE SLIGHTEST.

They have been mentioned in some media channels but not as a weight loss product and certainly not reviewed as one. You will see these everywhere, possibly even on this blog in the form of a random advert. Don’t fall for it.

I was sent a sample from someone who had fallen for the scam, the instructions for taking basically said to take the berries, then go on a diet and exercise plan… this is how those few people have lost weight not by the berries themselves.

That said, there are some reported health benefits from the berries and they do taste nice so don’t rule them out from that, but if they’re sold as a weight loss product, I’m afraid they’re being miss sold.

 
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Posted by on November 5, 2011 in Foods and Meal Tips

 

Egg Whites

Egg Whites are my new favourite food. A whole egg contains roughly 70 calories, most of which are in the yolk. Throw the yolk away (or give it to the dog) and just use the whites for some great filling food which keeps you feeling satisfied for longer. If you like the yolks too much, you can always keep one with 3 whites in an omlette.

Egg White Omlette:

Choose an appropriate sized pan or wok (non-stick helps), switch on the grill
Using a non-stick product like Fry Light, cook some chopped tomatoes and spinach.
Whisk the egg whites with some salt and pepper to taste and throw in the pan
When almost cooked underneath, transfer to the grill to cook the top.
Alone these are about 80 calories each so you can even add a slice of low cal bread or toast… but go easy on the butter!

Scrambled Eggs:

Whisk a little semi skimmed milk with the egg whites and add salt and pepper. Scramble with fry light.

Cookies:

Make a flat meringue with some sweetener for a low calorie crunchy cookie and bake for 90 mins.