We live in a world overflowing with health and diet advice, you can barely move for superfoods, detoxes and magical formulas that promise massive results with minimal effort or else demand huge dedication, self-control and of course, cash.
To my shame, I’ve tried a couple of them. I once attempted a seven-day juice diet that ended, after rather less than seven days, in an all you can eat Chinese buffet. Yeah I know, I’m claiming to be a scientist and write a “Mummy blog with a science bit” and I actually did (or at least tried) a juice diet. That’s the thing though, it’s easy to sneer at these diets but you don’t have to be a total idiot to to try them. They are carefully and expensively marketed, and so very appealing when the scales and the mirror are ganging up on you.
But, as I wrote last week, I want to start shifting the baby weight and I’ve decided to do that with Weight Watchers.
While juice diets, cabbage soup, atkins, paleo etc.etc. may gain and lose quicker than their adherents, weight watchers has been there for a long time and I know several people who have had success with it. It also doesn’t demand giving up entire food groups or shelling out on exotic and expensive ingredients. It’s not a magical quick fix either but I plan to be in this for the long haul. I know a reasonable amount about nutrition and healthy eating, the problem is I’ve fallen into the habit of ignoring it. If I’m hungry I reach for high carb high sugar snacks with little to offer but calories and given the choice I’ll eat a far bigger portion than I actually need.
I don’t want seven days of magic food then back to normal. I want to take the time to get into better habits, habits that will hopefully last beyond the weight loss.
For those who’ve never tried Weight Watchers, all foods get a points value and you can use the app or website to check the points and log them against a daily and weekly points allowance. The weekly points mean the odd treat or meal out with friends doesn’t derail the entire thing and leave you thinking &^’£ it, pass the spring rolls. This really appeals to me, I love food, I love eating a meal with friends and family and I don’t want to give up on that forever or beat myself up for doing it.
There are also 0 points foods and you can eat as much as you like of them. All the fruit and veg you would expect is in there but so are eggs, chicken breasts, and low-fat natural yogurt. These are now forming the backbone of most of what I eat with breakfasts based on eggs and lunches starting with chicken then adding whatever salad or veg I have in. I’ve even managed, mostly, to grab some fruit or yogurt when I need a snack. Rather than 5 chocolate digestives.
I’m only a bit over a week in right now so still very much in the honeymoon period but even if I don’t lose weight my diet has been much healthier, I’m going to have to pop to the greengrocers later as, for once, we’ve eaten all of our massive vege box in five days.
I even declined a piece of homemade cake at a kids party last weekend. Truly a rare event!
Now I just have to stick to it – here is my meal plan for the coming week:
Again, all these recipes are from the Weight Watchers UK website which is proving to be a great resource. Most of them should suit me, my husband and the kids with a bit of adaptation here and there but it can be tricky finding meals that will help me lose weight without leaving my husband and kids, none of whom need to lose weight, with a serious case of hanger. I’ll be sharing what I’ve learned about feeding a family on weight watchers next Monday.