There's nothing as refreshing as a few days away. So when my good friend who lives in Cyprus asked me if I'd like to stay with her for a week, how could I possibly say no?
What I didn't realise was that I could learn so much in a few days..and these small changes will be put into practice now I'm home.
Although I'm very well-versed on the subject of the WeightWatchers plan and my focus is on low-fat and low-salt recipes, I realise that I could still eat more nutritionally-balanced meals from time to time and perhaps snack a little less.
My friend Penny is very well read on the subject of food, nutrition and digestion. She loves to eat healthily and adores food-but doesn't have that obsession with it like I do. So it was really interesting for me to spend a few days with someone who knows when they are full up, doesn't crave food the whole time and naturally knows how to eat!
This may sound crazy to you but because my life has revolved around weight loss, maintenance and tracking everything I've eaten for the past 4 years, I found the whole experience pretty interesting. So, I decided to keep a photographic food journal of everything we cooked and ate during that week. I continued to track and Penny ate as she always does. At the end of the week, we both felt fantastic, had eaten like kings and each lost 3lbs!
(We had both intended to lose a couple of excess pounds).
We also had a few treats not shown here-chocolate, crisps or icecream most days!
So here's what we ate. The breakfasts look repetitive because I've used the same image-but we had a variety of fresh fruit/vegetable juices every morning on an empty stomach. This was followed by a Mediterranean style breakfast of hard boiled egg, tomatoes and cucumber, which I really enjoyed-but we could have varied it if we had chosen to.
The fresh juicing is the first change I've implemented since I got home. In the past, I resented having to use a couple of propoints for a fruit/vegetable juice, but the sense of well-being I felt after 2-3 days was immense and I realised how much good it was doing my digestive system.
I'm not someone who believes in gadgets for the sake of gadgets, but a juicer is well worth the investment.
I won't go through every dish but we ate hearty meals, large portions of fresh produce each day.
If we ate a large lunch, we'd have a delicious salad for dinner and vice-versa. We never felt hungry.
The fresh food costs were slightly cheaper in Cyprus than in the UK, but we were not extravagant and if we had sea bass or salmon one day, we'd have a chickpea stew the next to balance out the costs. We wasted nothing.
The next lesson I learnt was to up my intake of water. Penny noticed that I always went to make a cup of coffee or tea if I was thirsty and drank very little pure water.
This is another habit I've put into practice since I got home. I try to drink about 5-6 glasses a day. We all know we should be doing this but it's worth actually noting our habits.
The most life-changing one for me though, is this one!
Because fruit is 0pp on the propoints plan, I previously ate huge amounts of it especially as a dessert after meals and as a way to fill myself up in the evenings...
Penny's knowledge of digestion meant that she could advise me that eating fruit AFTER a meal is not a good idea as it digests faster than other foods-therefore sits on top of the meal you've just eaten causing flatulence! Enough said!!!
All I can say is that by eating fruit on an empty stomach mid-morning or afternoon and maybe in not such vast quantities, my body feels so much more comfortable. Not only my life but the lives of everyone in my family have been improved as my digestive system is calmer and happier!
I'll be bringing you some of the delicious recipes we cooked over the next few weeks.
Little changes can make a big difference!
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Slice of Slim kitchen!
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