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billion dollar industry

Weight Management – The ONLY Billion Dollar Industry That Doesn’t Work

According to Industry Today, in 2015 the weight loss & weight management industry was valued at, take a deep breath here, $158.2 billion.  Yes, billion, and it is the ONLY billion dollar industry that doesn’t work!

Can you imagine any other industry that fails its customer consistently and still keeps growing?

Yet, even though we can clearly see its failure all around us, week after week, month after month, year after year, we pour our hard earned cash into its greedy marketing machine, the one that doesn’t deliver on its promise of our dream body and the life that we feel must come with it.

There are the pound smashing wellness clubs/resorts/retreats.  There are beautifully photographed recipe and healthy lifestyle books, often bestsellers and, on the whole, excellent – although there is plenty of weird and unrealistic stuff out there too.

I have found that over 90% of the healthy eating plans are straightforward, sustainable, inexpensive and absolute time savers.  Having a body we are rightly proud of and love is easy then isn’t it?  Sadly, no, it clearly is not.

Then there is also the plethora of pound shedding products; low-calorie/low-fat/low-sugar ready ‘meals’, shakes, powders, pills and so the list goes.

As does the obesity crisis, a huge drain on the NHS and a source of immense pain to those who struggle helplessly with their body image.  A crisis that daily grows bigger and bigger too (excuse the pun).

Why? We are not idiots.  Most of us know roughly what to eat and how.  We may need a few tweaks and a bit of sensible food information, but it really is not rocket science.

Here’s my YOUtrition 100% sure-fire route to shifting those pesky pounds.

“Eat wholefoods when you are hungry, cut down on processed sugar, drink lots of water and move more”.

Lesson over, super body achieved. No book, no class, no handing over of more cash that could better be spent on, well, just living.

So, what’s the problem?   It is very simple. Not one of these super easy,  super healthy plans even touch the sides of the real issue.  It is not the food.  It is not the drink.  It never was.

It is the way we think and feel about the food, the  drink.  It is about what we feel it will relieve us of in tougher/sadder/tireder times.  What pain it will allow us to avoid or take away.  What comfort it will offer. It is all about our emotions.

I know I bang on about this, but from my own experience of alcohol addiction & recovery,  no book, no support group, no intervention, nothing made any difference to my drinking, until, after 27 years, I changed the way I thought and in doing so I instantly changed my emotional default settings around the ‘comfort’ of drink. And that was it, I was done.

If you are not sold on my message, ask yourself this,

  • “Why on a ‘good’ day can I stick with my healthy plan and on a ‘bad’ day I struggle and give in?
  • “Why does the crap I know will further ruin my day seem the ONLY way to make myself feel better?”

Then,

“How do I feel this wine/cake will make my ‘bad’ day better?”.

“What am I expecting the food / alcohol, I am pouring into my mouth to achieve, when the problem I am asking it to solve is not in my stomach?”

The answers to these questions can’t be found in any recipe book, clubs or in food (no matter how healthy).

The answers are in YOU.

They are lodged in your emotions and until you address those emotions.  Until you understand accept and resolve those emotions, you will continue to spend your money and repeat a cycle that you KNOW doesn’t work and feel worse and worse about yourself with every ‘failure’.  Let’s stop this now!

This takeaway is part of my Coaching strategy, give it a go.  It works!

Just before your next food/wine smash and grab, ask yourself.

  • What emotion am I feeling right now that makes me want to eat/drink this?

Maybe you will say, ‘fed up’, or ‘bored’ or ‘lonely’.  Maybe something else.

Drill down.  For every answer you give yourself, ask yourself,

  • “What does this mean to me?”  and again, and again, until you get to the bottom line.  There is always a bottom line.

Acknowledge the bottom line emotion, it needs to be heard and understood.  And as you work your way down to that emotion, your attention will be focused away from your desire and your craving will start to fade.

Merely by questioning what you are truly feeling over and over again, you will gain a new understanding of your actual needs are and be able to properly address them (if you choose too).  Your mood will shift and the craving will simply drift away.


Free 15 Minute Discovery Coaching Call

If you need compassionate support & understanding to change your emotional default settings around food and alcohol, check out my Breakthrough Mentoring & contact me to see how I can help

Love & respect xx

New Year, New You – How’s that going?

New Year, New You – so, it’s the first week of 2018 and I suspect most of us are bursting with new resolutions, hopes, dreams, determination for a NEW US, as well as holiday food and booze.

The fact that we have mostly stopped quaffing and scoffing the ‘finer’ things in life, sadly does not mean we are not still wearing them snugly around our waists/hips/busts – sod it, everywhere we can conceivably carry on our persons this excess of ‘fineness’.

Fear not though, we know the problem and we know the solution! We are determined on regular visits to the gym (full of machines we have no idea how to use). We have committed to a brisk daily walk.  A thrice weekly swim.  A dance class, maybe boxing.  Whatever, we have a plan and we are going to stick with it, aren’t we?  Just like last year, so um, maybe not.

Most of our wonderfully planned New Year, New Us, resolutions are over by 3rd January.  Mine, to stop eating mince pies, was over on the 2nd when I found all my favourite brand pies reduced to 10p in Sainsbury’s, yes, just 10p from £2.50 – heaven came knocking on my door again.

I bought 12 (as you do) for the freezer to enjoy every now and then throughout the year with a coffee in front of the TV.  Except that I had eaten them all 2 days later!  Of course I had.  Thank goodness the shop has now sold out otherwise I would eating out of date mince pies until, well, the store ran dry. Oh God!

From the above total failure to stick with my resolution, you might have concluded that I am weeping in a corner, having jumped from the size of a small terraced house to the size of say, Downton Abbey.  I am not.  And, whilst  I have possibly added a small ‘extension’ to my frame, I won’t be imposing rules and limitations on myself (aka, New Year’s Resolutions), to dismantle it.

I know that by making hard, inflexibly strict rules I am setting myself up for failure, for disappointment, for feelings of cravings and deprivation.  I would be preparing myself to be miserable. Heck no!  Instead, I acknowledge my weight gain, go back to my normal eating habits, move a little bit more and give thanks for the wonderfully, happy Christmas and New Year I have been allowed to enjoy with my loved ones.

I will move forward with my health & weight goals by being consistent in my helpful, healthy food and lifestyle choices, and by consigning the unhelpful, unhealthier ones to celebratory occasions such as birthday’s, weddings etc that crop up during the year.

By remaining calm about any weight changes that have occurred over the holidays, and by making good food and movement choices without being frantic and panicky, my weight and health will easily re-balance and I will look and feel exactly how I want to feel without punishing myself physically or emotionally.  I am not useless, or a failure and my world won’t come crashing down because my jeans are a little (actually, quite a lot), tighter for a few weeks.

To give you a boost, here are my top 10 tips to get you back on track. Let’s go smash this New Year thing. Here’s to 2018!! xx

  • Eat breakfast – include a protein to keep you fuller longer, egg/oats/chicken
  • Limit caffeine to 1 – 2 cups a day.  Switch to herbal teas, give your over worked body and brain a rest from stimulants.
  • Drink WATER throughout the day – the first sign of dehydration is hunger. Drink first, wait, then eat only if you are still hungry
  • Keep small snacks with you, palmful of nuts (healthy fats), small banana, apple, oatcakes
  • Eat lunch – make a huge salad filled with a wide variety of colours and textures and portion up each day. Add a tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil and squeeze of lemon.  Or make a big pot of homemade veggie soup to portion out.
  • Whole foods only. Packed with fibre and nutrients these will get you slim and glowing in no time.  If it comes packaged with a list of ingredients, its not a whole food.
  • Dinner – fill your plate with 2/3 with steamed veg, add a protein – baked salmon or chicken in foil is soooo easy.
  • Use smaller plates – invest in some cheap smaller dinner plates and put the bigger ones out of sight. You will not notice the reduction in food that way.
  • Avoid sugary sweets/snacks – these and alcohol are the ultimate diet saboteurs.
  • MOVE – walk a little more every day. Use a phone app and count your steps, aim for a minimum of 10,000.  Buddy up and have a competition to see who can complete the most in a day.  Loser buys the coffee!
  • Think positive. Your weight at any one time is just a snapshot.  It is not your ‘for ever’ weight unless you choose it to be!
sugar

A Simply Sugar Free Life – My recipe book & guide to the life you deserve.

I recently started to research sugar, and sugar addiction for my new A Simply Sugar Free Life (scheduled for October release) recipe book.   I want to write a straightforward, no-nonsense, easy to follow book that will really make a difference.  A game changer hopefully (well, that is my aim anyway). I want it to be a mix of the science behind how sugar affects the brain and keeps us coming back for more after the first bite, the potential consequences to our health and the definite consequences to our weight.

“Ok”, I thought, “Jump in Sonia, go sugar free yourself”.  So, I did.  I gave myself one last dinner out and, fairly unusually for me, had a creamy, yummy dessert which, whilst it tasted pretty darn good for all of five minutes, left me feeling somewhat low and uncomfortable afterwards.  Been there anyone???? Anyway, the next day  I went sugar free.

First things first.  Off to the shops, no sugar shopping for me.  I had researched all the sneaky sugars and knew what to avoid.  And then as I wandered around the shops, a slow realisation came over me.  I was buying exactly the same foods I bought every week!  There was literally no change.  It suddenly hit me that I do, at least 90% of the time, live a sugar free life!  What on earth……..

So, a sugar free life is ultimately a life without processed foods.  It is as simple as that.  I don’t buy shop made sauces, I don’t buy processed cereals, I eat very little bread, I don’t buy cakes or sweets – instead I always treat myself to once piece of fresh, juicy, sweet and often exotic fruit each day and I love full fat yogurt with a teaspoon of honey or a good sprinkle of cinnamon and maybe, if I am going crazy a chopped strawberry or inch of chopped banana.  All of which satisfy my sweet tooth and leave me feeling good and positive afterwards.

I have to say, this was quite a revelation and also a slight worry.  How on earth was I now going to write the definitive book on a sugar free life?  I now knew that with a little re-thinking, as well as some tasty alternative recipes to guide my readers into the speed, ease and inexpensive way of making homemade sauces, dips and meals bursting with  texture, colour and flavour sans the sugar and salt that drowns out the taste of any shop bought ones, that I was done. In fact, I have just written it in this blog.  Read this, take it on board and a sugar free life is yours!

But of course, the food information is not the complete answer to a sugar free life, in fact on the whole it is only about 10% of it.  There is the science of addiction as well, how the brain responds to the sweet poison.  There are the types of sugar that we need to avoid, think fructose as well as sweeteners.  Then there is the sugar that we do need in the form of glucose for energy and brain function.  This information offers probably another 10% at best towards a sugar free life.

So, we are left with a huge 80% to deal with, and that it is where my expertise really kicks in. My first book, This Isn’t Me, is currently being published and is due for release in September 2017.  It is my memoir and deals with my 27 year battle, first with heroin addiction and then alcohol addiction. I write about my total desperation to be sober, especially after my glorious son, Christopher, was born and my total failure to be so even when armed with all the information, researched by myself, as to the devastating consequences both physically to myself and emotionally to him.  And still I just couldn’t stop.  And then I did.  I understood my addiction and just like that, I stopped.

That understanding of my addiction was the 80% that was missing, and it is the same with all behaviours.  Please trust me on this.

It is not about what you know about what you do, it is about why you do it.  It is about what you feel, about what you do, be it drink, drugs or food.  It is about what you think it gives you. It is about how you think it makes you feel, even when all the evidence points you in another direction.  It is about understanding you, and finding alternative ways of thinking. It is about your mindset.

When you have that knowledge, that understanding, you have the elusive 80%.  Then with the science to back it up and the recipes to support you, you have your 100%, and as we are talking about sugar here, you have your simple sugar free life.

I would love to hear any questions you would like addressed in my A Simply Sugar Free Life book.  The more I have, the more I can help. I can write from my perspective, but I want to help you.  Have a think and email me through my website.

Believe me, my alcohol free life is easy, every day.  Your sugar free life can to too. x

 

 

frozen

FROZEN YOGURT – A healthier, Delicious & Versatile Alternative to Ice Cream

Frozen yogurt, along with my banana ice creams have taken the place of my favourite full fat, dairy summer time treats.  Now, I did not see that coming.  From when I was a little girl, I have always loved an ice cream.  I remember with such fondness the ice cream van coming to our street what seemed like every day of the year, but surely can only have been in the summer.  The blare of tinny, jangly music to announce its arrival and its gooey, sweet, synthetic offerings covered in either chocolate, or strawberry sauce, nuts and a flake if I had a few extra pennies.  Ah, delish!  But it was not ice cream and definitely had no real chocolate or strawberries in the sauce.  In fact, because of my knowledge now, I shudder to think what ingredients were in those garishly bright coloured sauces.  Anyway, I digress.

Now at 53, my tastes have evolved.  I do still like my sweet, icy desserts, but now I prefer the fresh taste of the fruit melting on my tongue and the quality of the ice cream sliding down my throat is of paramount enjoyment to me. Sadly though I can no longer scoff an ice cream every day without it hugging my waistline for the rest of the summer.

So, what to do? I am absolutely not prepared to give up frozen treats, so have experimented and the results are fabulous.  Frozen yogurt, like my banana ice creams are so easy to make, only three basic ingredients, delicious and refreshing to eat and so much lower in saturated fat (that’s the one we should be checking out on food labels).

For ice cream to be labelled ice cream, it must contain at least 10 percent milkfat and this is usually met through the addition of cream. Top quality, premium ice creams can contain as much as 16 percent milkfat. Frozen yogurt is not made with cream and does not have a fat requirement.  Without the added cream, frozen yogurt is much lower in fat. In one cup of ice cream the fat content is 15g fat, 9g saturated fat.  Frozen yogurt comes in at, per cup, 6g of fat, 4g of saturated fat.  A huge difference.

However, whilst frozen yogurt is much healthier, you do need to keep an eye on portion sizing, especially if you go for some of the higher fat additions.

So, how to make.  Frozen yogurt is so simple. For a basic, but still delicious one, grab, Greek yogurt (higher in protein), honey, and fruit (packed with fibre and nutrients). That’s it.  Literally, that’s it! You can serve in a bowl, cone or pop a lolly stick in before you freeze and you have gorgeous “ice lollies” for the kids.

  • 1 x cup plain Greek Yogurt.
  •  4 x cups frozen, fresh fruit or drained tinned fruit
  • 2 x 3 tbsp honey.

Blitz until the consistency you like, either creamy for approx. 5 mins, or if with “bits” in for 3 – this is entirely up to your taste.Freeze for a minimum of 2 hours, depending on how much you make.You can add to your frozen yogurt any fruit you like. Below are some other suggestions. Obviously, some are healthier than others, but you know that right!

  • Add cinnamon, allspice, peanut butter or Nutella in to the blitz
  • Caco powder & mint essence
  • Add crushed nuts as a topping
  • Add more fruit as a topping

So, make some today, keep in the fridge and be ready for a sunny afternoons delicious and nutritious treat.

looking

Looking and Feeling Amazing For Summer on YOUtrition’s 6 Week Group Program!

Looking & Feeling  Your Best  for Summer with YOUtrition – I make simple changes that work in your life easy and fun, REALLY!

Testimonials

*I have counted calories for over 16 years and nothing has worked for me before, but you do. Thank you!*

*Sonia, I love you and now I love me. I know I can stick with this, its me!*

With my YOUtrition program,  Looking & Feeling Your Best For Summer, I understand that the great, easy, tasty recipes you will get from me are not enough.   The tips on planning & prepping whilst vital, will get you to where you want to be, but maybe not keep you there.

I address both the “why” of our food choices and eating habits as well as the fabulous food.  My uniqueness lies in my 25 year drug & alcohol addictions.   For so many years I  was beyond desperate to be different and knew what I should be doing but just couldn’t stick with it.  Now at 53 years old, in the menopause (suffering no symptoms because of my way of eating) at 5ft 8, and weighing a steady 9st 7lbs, I do it easily.  This experience and my incredible strategies for long lasting change are what I do differently and what I share with you on my programs.

A one hour group session once a week for 6 weeks.  The group dynamic creates an excellent opportunity to work through what is and isn’t working for you and to find a way around an obstacles – believe me, as a group, we always find a way.

  • Professional, individual, qualified nutrition & weight loss support and information – this is no franchise diet club run by an unqualified rep!
  • A basic food plan – recipes and tips.
  • Every week a new breakfast, lunch and dinner recipe along with snack ideas –  based around the group’s needs, abilities and time constraints.
  • A shopping and meal planner
  • A food diary to keep with you and keep you motivated.
  • Professional exercise advice.
  • Strategies around food and your lifestyle that you build on over the 6 weeks, giving you confidence in yourself and your abilities and literally giving you the tools to set you and your food choices up for life.
  • Access to a private What’s App group message that I write on every day and that you can also contribute to.  This ensures you stay on track long after the program has finished.
  • A one-off  Maintenance session 4 weeks after the Program ends, to see how you are doing and to reinforce the program.

I create a powerful and non-judgmental environment where you are given the recipes, the motivation and the absolute support you need to create new habits.  New habits take six weeks to form, hence the length of my program.  Every week you will sit, in a small group, talking through what worked for you and what didn’t, receive at least one new recipe and in a truly supportive, encouraging space we work to find what’s right for YOU!  Not me, not the person sitting next to you, YOU!  We laugh, occasionally we cry and we clap a LOT.  We don’t just focus on the food we focus on the “why” of the food and find the way forward for you.


I preparing for my Summer programs for the areas local to Beaconsfield, High Wycombe and Slough, so please contact me for more information and to reserve your space!

The cost of the 6 Weeks to Looking Great & Feeling Great is £100.

YOUtrition has been featured in

pesto

Hey Pesto! Quick, easy, delicious & nutritious pesto sauces

I love a pesto sauce, so quick, versatile and tasty and healthy – bit of a winning formula, don’t you think? I am on a sugar free quest right now (it is the subject of my next book), so I am working on as many fabulous sugar free recipes as possible, and pesto sauces are perfect.

Homemade in about 5 minutes, pesto sauces have long been one of my favourite go to solutions for any time when I have unexpected guests or simply run out of my prepped meals (and that does happen even to this self-crowned Queen of Prep). They can be stored easily for up to three days in the fridge and used not just with pasta meals, but on pizzas, in sandwiches, as dips, on chicken or salmon and the list goes on…….. See what I mean by versatile?

With pesto sauces, you don’t even have to rely on fresh leaves/veg, well I don’t, which is perfect if you return home as silly o’clock, as I did last month from LA, with horrible jet lag and absolutely no inclination to go anywhere or see anyone other than my sofa and Netflix.  Whilst I do usually have a store of frozen homemade meals, I always have a store of frozen veg.  Cauliflower, chopped spinach and even herbs.  And at times when the fridge is bare, they really do come in to their own when I need something quick and after a trip away, a hefty dose of nutrients.

I don’t want you to think though that pesto sauces are just about the times when I am tired, they most definitely are not.  I often use them to jazz up dinner parties – many a dull looking meal has been transformed by a gloriously glossy, beautifully jewel coloured, delicious pesto.  And for my 19-year-old son and his friends they are one of their most popular choices when they visit.  A huge bowl of pasta, homemade pesto and pulled chicken or tinned tuna are among their favourite meals, so easy to cook and there is miraculously very little mess.  Hallelujah!

So, my pesto sauces are whizzed in little more than 5 mins, less  time than it takes to cook some wholemeal pasta, courgetti or sweet potato pasta, and I have a fabulous nutritious and delicious meal that I will really enjoy.

I have put together a few of my fav pesto sauce recipes for you to try, but I would also like you to be brave and chuck in some of your favourite leaves & nuts, give them a whizz and see what you can create, maybe add chilli, or jalapenos and if you love it, let me know.

Method for all pesto’s.

Place all ingredients in food processor and blitz!  It’s as easy as that for all the recipes.  As you can see, I have often written 1 – 2 of ingredients, because we all have different tastes, and as long as you have the basic ingredients, just add or take away the garlic, parmesan and nuts to suit you.   Add salt and pepper to taste and you’re good to go.

It is important to note that with the olive oil, start with a little and add as required – as it is high in fat, I add splashes of water at the end to get the consistency I require, and I only ever use up to 1 tbsp on my own portion of courgetti.

Classic Basil Pesto 

  • 100g basil
  • 1 – 2 garlic cloves
  • 60g pine nuts
  • 50g parmesan cheese
  • 2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Watercress & Brazil Nut Pesto

  • 100g watercress
  • Handful of basil
  • 40g brazil nuts, chopped
  • I squeezed lemon
  • 2 – 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 20g parmesan cheese

Spinach & Walnut Pesto

  • 100g spinach leaves
  • 1 – 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 squeezed lemon
  • 2 – 3 tbsp chopped walnuts
  • 30g parmesan cheese
  • 2 – 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Cauliflower Pesto

  • 1 medium cauliflower, chopped into florets
  • 2 tbsp chopped walnuts
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 3 – 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 30g parmesan cheese

Red Pepper Pesto

  • 1 x jar peppers, drained
  • 1 – 2 garlic cloves
  • 70g blanched almonds or cashews (not blanched)
  • 40g parmesan cheese
  • 2 – 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
plates

Want to Lose Weight? Change Your PLATES!

When I start working with a new client who wants to lose weight, there are two things I ask them to do immediately. One is to change their drinking habits, limit their caffeine, cut out alcohol and fizzy drinks and to replace all with water – pure, life giving, beautifying, simple and cheap water.

The second is to buy smaller plates.  Much smaller plates.  I ask them to put their standard size plates in the cupboard out of sight and only to use the new smaller ones.  Every single client who follows just these two tips lose weight even if they make no other immediate changes.  There is of course more to YOUtrition’ s method than water and smaller plates, but they are an excellent start.

The first tip, the water, all my clients understand.  Ultimately, whether you like water or not, and there is so much you can do to jazz it up, we all know that water is good for us and that it has no calories.  Most aren’t aware that it also takes the edge off hunger but they soon notice that and learn to love this elixir of life. The plates are a different story.

To demonstrate why I ask them to buy the smaller plates, I place on my table four plates dated from the 1970’s, 1980’s 2000 & 2009.  The difference in sizes is quite incredible and of course as our plates have grown in size, so have our portions.

In fact, we have gone from eating off 8.5” plates to 12” dinner plates in 40 years.  Can you imagine the extra calories as each plate grows?  Let me tell you that the 1970’s plate would have held approx. 800 calories, the 1980’s plate 1000 calories, the 2000’s plate 1600 calories and the 2009 plate a whopping 1900 calories. Now imagine a portion from the 1970’s of any meal on a modern day plate, it would look woefully small and yet is more than enough for all our bodies needs.

Then there is the quality of the foods on these plates. I am old enough to remember bread being sold in brown paper bags, which lasted only one day to today’s loaf that can last up 7 days. What is the difference?  There must be something “extra” in the bread. Now, in our instant gratification, fast everything, including food world, meals can be so easy to buy pre-prepared, beautifully coloured and wrapped in plastic ready for us to heat in our super quick microwaves and decant on to our huge plates.  These ready meals have plenty of ingredients, most of which aren’t food related, but not the ones we need.  They often lack both nutrients and the fibre required to keep us full, and so we can eat much larger portions.  I guess you can see where I am going with this………

Not only that, but along with the rapid advancement of technology, we now have remote controls for everything from the tv to the lighting at home.  I don’t think my 19 year old son has ever had to rouse himself from the comfort of his armchair to either turn the tv over or volume down.  We now have emails to whiz between departments so no longer have to move from our desks to confer with colleagues. Most of us have at least two cars per household (more if you have grown up children), so there is no need to walk anywhere. There are enormous supermarkets that cater for all our shopping needs from food to furniture,  and we can do our whole life shop in one place if we wish, rather than wander up and down the high street going to the bakers, butchers etc before lugging our heavy shopping home. Or better still, we can shop from our computers at home and get anything delivered.  Is some cases, it can even be put away by the lovely chap who drives it to our door.  So not only are we eating more, we are also moving less.

There is however, one element of our increased food consumption life that hasn’t overly changed, and that is the size of our stomachs.  They have remained pretty much the same regardless of our fast food world and humongous plates. Still, not to worry, as we continue to consume ever larger portions of unsatisfying “foods” that offer little taste and no nourishment, our stomachs are becoming increasingly stretched and distorted to accommodate the load.

So, take my professional advice, all of it works. Pop out to any supermarket, buy yourself a few smaller plates. Ignore the processed food products, fill half your plate with veggies, one quarter lean protein and healthy fats, and the last quarter grains or wholemeal carbs and take the first important step to successful weight loss.  I promise you, within a week, you won’t even notice the difference in portion sizes.  Then of course come back to me for some more tips.  Happy eating everyone!

YOUtrition

YOUtrition – No Fads, Lotions, Potions, Gells Or Spells!

What is YOUtrition and why am I different?  What do I know that other “diet clubs” don’t (well, I am not a diet club for a start). Am I another fad foodie offering an unsustainable diet plan with weird lotions/potions/gels or spells to guarantee a slim you forever?  No, I am not.  So, let me tell you what I am, who I am and why I am different.

At the age of 53 years (young), and after 27 years of seemingly hopeless addictions at times to both alcohol and drugs, I am now easily and happily sober. I tried all the interventions out there along with a fair few quacks, none of which had any impact.  At the time, I didn’t understand why but now I do and that knowledge is the difference  that I, as YOUtrition, bring to my clients.

Let me explain.  For the 15 years I was desperate to be clean after my son was born I searched high and low for an answer.  An external answer to an internal problem. A cheap sticking plaster if you like. One which didn’t fit properly, that didn’t allow the wounds underneath to heal and so I stayed drunk.  I made the fundamental mistake of relying on a book, class or person to have the secret to my alcohol free life.  To tell me what to do.  But I knew what to do, I needed to stop drinking, I just couldn’t.  So of course nothing worked for me. Plenty of people told me what I already knew, but not one had any impact. I thought I was destined to live and die an alcoholic. And then something, or rather someone, did work.  And that someone was me. I found that the only way forward for me was to think differently about what alcohol gave me (or rather took away) and by the simple change of thinking differently I was able to make different choices. Alcohol free ones.

Then there was all the interventions. Excellent in theory, except that they seemed to have a “one size fits all” policy (much like a diet plan), which was perfectly understandable as, again like a diet plan, they deal with large numbers of people, not the individual. However, even the individual therapists I saw had an accepted view of  treatment for addiction and recovery.  Sadly though, not many of us fit that one size.  Believe me I tried. Time and time again. But I struggled to fit myself into the constricting guidelines which didn’t resonate with me and so, also time and time again, I slipped and fell off a wagon that had no seat for me in the first place.

Does that sound to you like some of your food struggles?  Do you find that the weight loss recipes and diet rules just don’t work for you? That clubs telling you what to do, when frankly you already know, just don’t “click”? Do you then find because they didn’t click that the reliance on willpower and perceived deprivation and restriction becomes depressing and unsustainable?  If you experience any of those thoughts and feelings, you haven’t found the right fit for you. You haven’t found your click.

My passion is to find YOUR right fit (your click)!  What works for you and why.   I provide simple, tasty, health giving and stress free recipes that you and your family will love and work to put food back in its rightful place in your life.  A place of physical and emotional nourishment and a time of bonding for you and your family. But more importantly,  I focus on your thoughts as to the “why’s” of your eating habits and choices and it is understanding the why’s which is your food struggle game changer.  Change your why’s and everything becomes easy.  I  know this because I live this!

I want my life, after so many years of struggle to be simple and I keep your life simple too. If you find your favourite family meals are unhealthy,  I simply swap out ingredients for a healthier version. Planning and prepping a chaotic nightmare?  I soothe your bad dreams away and replace them with strategies that work. Struggling to fit healthy eating in around your work/life commitments? I always find a way that works.  A way that you tell me works because you can stick with it.

I challenge your often long held thoughts and belief’s around your food choices and eating habits.  I know that so many of these come from childhood, where often we were rewarded with foods,  or maybe chastised if we don’t eat everything on our plates or  suffered some emotional upheaval that we haven’t had the skills to cope with and overate instead. I put these firmly in the past.  Together we laugh at your food monsters, turn them on their heads, pack them up, drop them in a bucket and then chuck them down the drain.

YOUtrition’s method works! I know what worked for me and I know by helping you think differently about food and its place in your life, that I can make it work for you. You are my passion.  Everyone deserves the chance  that I so thankfully found for myself.

I put you, your weight and health first until you are able to. Until you have learned the habits and healthy food choices and skills that will stand you in good stead for life. Once you have those firmly in place, you pick up the baton and the wellness and dress size you desire really does become a long term reality and not just a summertime fling. A fling that once the the love affair with your new size and restrictive diet ends, finds you slinking back to the eating habits and food thoughts that bought you to me in the first place.

I work with small groups and 1-2-1’s, so contact me to see what I can do for you!

 

eat

Eat Well to Live Well – Top Tips For Your Busy Life

In  our modern super highway lives,  we can feel as though we are in constant motion, striving to produce our best in every area of our lives which can be quite a juggling act (sounding familiar yet?) so it is imperative that we eat well.

I know that most of us are juggling more than just one ball, in fact on the whole we are Olympic standard jugglers, with our work, child care, parent care, animal care and “you name it, I’ll do it” care balls, all constantly in the air as we deftly catch and relaunch them to keep life running smoothly.  There is one ball though that most of us leave, lying dusty on the floor as we feel it comes last.  It is our self-care ball.  The one that is all about us.

However, to be truly successful in any and every area of our lives, we must put ourselves first and the one of the easiest way to do this is by making food and drink choices that best support our mental and physical selves.

My son is working hard on his exams at the moment and he often tells me he hasn’t had time for lunch.  A friend who has reached a wonderfully old age  tells me he has been working hard in the garden and that he too hasn’t eaten during the day.  I am very upset when I hear both of my loved ones tell me this, especially as they sometimes say it it with, “I am working so hard, I don’t have time” pride. I get upset because I know that good nutrition is vital to their wellbeing, success and happiness in every area of their lives, and guess what, the same applies to you.

When we prepare for an important client meeting we make sure everything is 100%, our PowerPoint slides are perfect, the meeting venue is easy for everyone to reach, the timing works for everyone, someone is on hand with refreshments.

When you are planning do you ever think, I must make sure I eat properly before I go in?  I must make sure I am properly hydrated?  I know if I am not my concentration might be affected and my ability to give my best.

If you are properly fuelled you are giving yourself the best chance of being energized, full of vitality, and ready to face the day’s work and challenges. If you are not, you can feel exhausted and irritable, relying on jolts of caffeine and processed sugars to get you through the day?   Which scenario best applies to you?

When we are busy, eating can become a fight between what you crave and what you know is going to nourish you as sadly they are rarely the same foods, then making good choices can feel frustrating and an added stress.   The best way to avoid food stress is to plan your food in advance.

My food choices are rarely made on the day, they are made the night before or earlier – in the same way my work and home life is planned.  It is unusual for my planned day to change so dramatically that I have to all abandon my choices, but it does happen and even that I am prepared for, so here are YOUtrition’s top 7 practical tips to eat your way to success.

YOUtrition’s Top 7 Practical Tips to Eat your Way To Success.

Spend one hour at the weekend planning for your week’s meals, making a shopping list and stick to it! Make wholefoods priority, not food products. If the label has ingredients you don’t understand, they belong in a laboratory, not your body. If you feel you might be tempted with other “treats” shop online.

Spend another hour prepping simple, easy meals for the fridge/freezer. Follow the mantra, cook once, eat twice. Any time you spend now will be gained back when you need it most.  When you are tired and hungry at the end of a busy day and something nutritious is ready to be popped into the microwave or oven.

In the same way you plan your next day, plan your food. Are you at home or in the office? How much time do you expect to be travelling?  Are you staying overnight? Call ahead, ask if there is a fridge/microwave you can use.  Know your day and make your food plans.

Try to include protein and healthy fats at every meal. They keep fat burning, keep you feeling fuller longer than carbs and limit the mid-morning & mid-afternoon sugar slump.

Eat breakfast every day. Those who eat a healthy breakfast lose 30% more weight than those who don’t, and make better food choices throughout the day.

Never leave home without water and a wholefoods snack, a small banana, a boiled egg, handful of mixed nuts etc. – don’t be caught short and hungry or thirsty. Make sandwich bags for snack a must on your shopping list.

Stay hydrated. Limit caffeine.  The shot of caffeine we use in the morning to get us going can also cause anxiety in an already stressed day. The same with energy drinks. Two cups of coffee is fine, then switch to decaff or herbal teas.

Remember that in every situation there is a healthier choice, even in a motorway service station, you just have to choose it!

Finally, dear ladies, in the words of Virginal Woolf,

“One cannot think well, love well, sleep well if one has not dined well”

 

 

protein

Protein Powder – Why Choose Dust Over Food?

Protein powders are all the rage right now.  In every supermarket and health food shop, the choice seems to me to be overwhelming with all of them extolling their potentially miraculous results.  Some I acknowledge do sound healthier than others. The ones for instance that do not have sweeteners, synthetic fruit and chocolate added, but still, when did dust become a healthy food source?

I understand that in our high-speed, immediate gratification world, so wonderfully promoted through super clever marketing to re-enforce that we are time poor, such powders just might have some place occasionally in a balanced diet – but only the least processed and least added to (always remember to check out the ingredients list. The less ingredients, usually, the less processed), but still they are not a true alternative to any good whole food protein source that comes bound with fibre, vitamins and other health giving nutrients that our bodies not only need but know how to effectively utilise.

If we plan our food properly in advance there is very little need for protein powders and unless you are a super athlete, try to minimise their usage and fuel your body with real foods instead.

Remember that your body can’t store any excess protein anyway, so unless you need the extra boost  it is wasted.  Plus protein powders are so much more expensive and so much less tasty than whole foods – have you ever lusted over a plate of dust, the way you have over a gorgeous steak or salmon?

From the committed carnivore to the dedicated herbivore and for every group in between, there are options for fabulous, wholefoods proteins. To make it easy for you, I have included below a list of meat and vegetarian protein sources and their protein content so that you can make the best food not powder choices!

MEATS

Beef (6 oz.) – 54 grams

Turkey, breast (6 oz.) – 51.4 grams
Pork Chop (6 oz.) 49 grams
Turkey, dark meat (6 oz.) – 48.6 grams
Hamburger (6 oz.) – 48.6 grams
Chicken, dark meat (6 oz.) – 47.2 grams
Tuna (6 oz.) – 40.1 grams
Broiled Beefsteak (6 oz.) – 38.6 grams
Chicken, breast (6 oz.) – 37.8 grams
Ham (6 oz.) – 35.4 grams
Salmon (6 oz.) – 33.6 grams

DAIRY/EGGS

Cottage cheese (1 cup) – 28.1 grams
Yogurt, low fat (1 cup) – 10.7 grams
Skim milk (1 cup) – 8.3 grams
Whole milk (1 cup) – 8 grams
American cheese (1 oz.) – 7 grams
Soymilk (6 oz.) – 6.7 grams
Egg (1 large) – 6.3 grams

MEAT SUBSTITUTES, BEANS AND LEGUMES, NUTS

Veggie Burger (6 oz.) – 51.4 grams
Tofu (6 oz.) – 13.8 grams
Peanut Butter (2 Tbsp.) – 8.1 grams
Almond Butter (2 Tbsp.) – 7 grams
Lentils (1/2 cup) – 9 grams
Split Peas (1/2 cup) – 8.1 grams
Kidney Beans (1/2 cup) – 7.6 grams
Sesame Seeds (1 oz.) – 7.5 grams
Black Beans (1/2 cup) – 7.5 grams
Garbanzo Beans (1/2 cup) – 7.3 grams
Green Peas (1/2 cup) – 4.1 grams

FRUITS AND VEGETABLES

Orange (large) – 1.7 grams
Banana (medium) – 1.2 grams
Green Beans (1/2 cup) – 1 gram
Carrots (1/2 cup) – .8 gram
Apple (large) – 0 grams