5 top tips for weight loss

For more healthy eating advice please visit my website http://www.nutrition-coach.co.uk/

weight loss
I have previously published an article on the Nutritionist Resource website all about how to lose weight and keep it off.

Did you know that in England over 61% of adults are overweight or obese? If you’d like to get healthier and fitter why not try my simple tips to help with your weight-loss efforts.

Tip #1

Keep a food diary, many of us forget about the food we eat in the car, the latte we drink on the way to work or the children’s leftovers.  Why not download and print my example of a food diary so you can keep an accurate record and start to make some changes

Tip #2

tofu-eggAlways eat breakfast – even if it is just yoghurt (dairy or non dairy) with some blueberries or strawberries and a tablespoon of raw oats.  This provides you with protein and vitamins that will fuel you until lunchtime, as well as counting towards one of your 5 a-day

Or delicious scrambled eggs or tofu eggs for those who have more time for a relaxed breakfast.  Protein is a great for making you feel nice and full and both tofu and eggs are packed with protein and a range of 18 vitamins and minerals.

 

Tip #3

Mindful eating

 

Be mindful, research has shown that not paying attention to our food makes us more prone to snacking later. So put down that phone, tablet, laptop and enjoy what you are eating; How does it look, taste, smell?

 

 

Tip #4

IMG_2782Practice portion control.  Did you know crisps use to be sold in 25g bags, now it ranges from 30g to 150g (for the large sharing bags). In Briton we polish off six billion packets of crisps a year or almost 100 packets per person, so over our lifetime that’s lots of extra calories!

A recommended portion size of your favourite breakfast cereal is usually 30g.  Have you ever weighed out how much you eat.  Try this morning, you may be surprised just how much that is

Tip #5

IMG_3011If chocolate is your thing,  before you pop a piece in your mouth imagine what it smells like, think about the rich, deep chocolatey taste, how will it feel as it melts and coats your mouth.  Then pop that piece in.   Doing that simply exercise will make you eat less

 

Do you have a favourite weight loss tip that you could share?

Part time veggie

For more healthy eating advice please visit my website http://www.nutrition-coach.co.uk/

thai-tofu-curryOn Monday why not take part in ‘meat free Monday’ and become a part time veggie.   The idea is that one day a week you eat vegetarian or vegan meals. There are now an estimated two – three million vegetarians in the UK, who for a variety of wide-ranging reasons have given up meat and fish. You could become one of them

The number of vegans in the UK is also growing as the evidence that a plant based diet has health benefits increases

 

Why should you bite the bullet (or rather the carrot!)?

  • Weight – According to recent research by Cancer research UK vegetarians and vegans have a lower body weight.  Meat eaters who continue eating meat will carry on putting on more weight over a five year period, compared to those who switched over to vegetarianism.  The World Health Organisation believes being overweight can increase the risk of serious health consequences such as cardiovascular disease (mainly heart disease and stroke), type 2 diabetes, musculoskeletal disorders like osteoarthritis, and some cancers.  What is not widely known is that the risk of health problems starts when someone is only very slightly overweight, and that the likelihood of problems increases as someone becomes more and more overweight
  • imagesCholesterol – vegetarians  and vegans generally have lower cholesterol levels.  A recent study demonstrated that a vegetarian diet made up of specific plant foods can lower cholesterol as effectively as a drug treatment.
  • Longevity – many vegetarians and vegans will live longer due to their reduced risk of becoming obese, developing diabetes, cancer and cardiovascular diseases; in fact vegetarians have 32% less chance of having heart disease than their meat-eating friends.
  • Saturated fat – Red meat, especially processed meat, contains a lot of saturated fat (plus sodium, nitrites etc) that have been linked to increased risk of chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease and cancer.
  • beansCost – as food prices rise its good to know that you can still buy good quality inexpensive protein like beans and pulses and turn them into delicious meals such as  veggie chilli or cauliflower chickpea curry.  Buying seasonal vegetables and fruit will also make your meals less expensive and more nutritious. More delicious veggie and vegan recipes can be found on my blog

Quick tips

  • Add a tin of beans to your soups, curries, chills and pasta dishes.  You’ll be adding low fat, low cholesterol protein
  • Make a frittata bursting with veggies like peppers, onions, courgettes and mushrooms.
  • soupHomemade soups are a great way to introduce a vegetarian meal.  Add lentils for additional protein.
  • Spiralise vegetables and have them instead of pasta
  • Nuts can be ground to make your own nut butters – packed with protein and good fats
  • Chickpeas make great hummus. Add to jacket potatoes, enrich a cauliflower curry or smear on to a piece of toasted sourdough

However the veggie garden isn’t completely rosy.  There is a higher risk of developing a B12 deficiency, which can lead to anemia.  Eating plenty of milk, cheese and eggs or certain fortified breakfast cereals, non dairy milks, nutritional yeast if you’re a vegan, should provide enough of this essential vitamin

coucousIf you’d like to increase your vegetarian repertoire then why not come along to my vegan and vegetarian cookery classes in West Bridgford? They occur most days from 11am (Tuesdays start at 12.15), I also run a session on a Tuesday evening at 5.30pm

Contact me for more details or to book a place 07946 301338

 

More detailed information about healthy eating can be obtained from my previous healthy diet blog

 

“Must haves” for a healthy balanced diet

For more healthy eating advice please visit my website http://www.nutrition-coach.co.uk/

Do you think you eat a balanced diet? Read on and see if you still feel the same way at the end!

thai-tofu-curryEating a nutritious, balanced diet will help you improve your overall health. In particular, a balanced diet can help:

  • Reduce your risk of heart disease and high blood pressure
  • Reduce your chances of getting cancer
  • You have more energy
  • Keep you well
  • You to lose weight
  • Improve your bowel health
  • Your skin, nails and hair look healthier

 

The two key elements to a healthy balanced diet are:

  • Eat the right amount of food for how active you are, and
  • Eat a variety of foods – this is where the ‘balance’ comes in

The “Must haves” for a healthy balanced diet should include:

  • fruit-and-veg-225x300Plenty of fruit and vegetables – at least 5 portions a day. Think ‘A rainbow of colour’
  • Fruit like grapefruit or melon eaten before a meal can help fill you up so you are less likely to overeat on higher calorie foods
  • Small amounts of bread, rice, potatoes, pasta and other starchy foods (choosing wholegrain varieties when possible)
  • Some milk and dairy foods (or diary alternative like soya).  Aim for 3 servings a day.
  • Sufficient meat, fish, eggs, beans and other non-dairy sources of protein i.e. Quorn, tofu and quinoa.  Aim to eat low fat protein at every main meal.
  • Just a small amount of foods high in fat, sugar and salt
  • Keep within the safe alcohol limits (14 units a week for men and women).  Its also advised to have alcohol free days
  • activity exercise walkingDrink plenty of water, about 6-8 glasses (or other fluids) every day: more if you exercise or if the weather is hot
  • Green tea contains two compounds; caffeine and catechises, that may boost your metabolism for a couple of hours.
  • Stay active – aim for 150 minutes of activity a week.  this can include classes at a gym, running, weight training.  But equally housework, gardening, walking and dancing can all count too

 

Some people make the mistake of thinking that because they are eating healthy food they can eat more of it.  This can lead to weight gain in the same way that eating unhealthy foods can, because all foods have calories!

Follow this portion guide and you won’t go far wrong

  • A healthy 75g serving of protein (meat, poultry, fish, eggs, beans, tofu) is the same size as the palm of your hand
  • A medium potato is the same size as your computer mouse
  •   A serving of dairy is:
    • 200ml of milk – regardless of full-fat, semi-skimmed or skimmed.
    • 30g hard cheese including cheddar, brie or stilton (around the same size as a matchbox)
    • 150g of plain or fruit yoghurt.
  • A medium piece of fruit is the same size as your fist
  • pasta-portionA serving of rice is half a teacup or 75g (uncooked)
  • A serving of pasta is 75g uncooked which weighs 170g when cooked al dente
  • A serving of vegetables is about 80g or about 2 tablespoons
  • A teaspoon of butter or margarine is the size of the tip of your thumb.
  • A unit of alcohol is half a pint of standard strength (3 to 5% ABV) beer, lager or cider, or a single pub measure of spirit. A 175 ml glass of wine is about 2 units and alcopops are about 1.5 units. A bottle of white wine has up to 9 units and 650 calories

Quinoa salad

Quinoa salad

For more healthy eating advice please visit my website http://www.nutrition-coach.co.uk/

This recipe is the perfect dish for any vegetarian or vegan IMG_6235as the quinoa (pronounced keen-wah) is a complete protein; meaning it contains all the essential amino acids a person needs.  This is very important to vegans and vegetarians as they often have to combine foods to get that balance i.e. beans on toast!

It is also low in calories due to the large amount of high nutrient but low calorie vegetables that bulk out the dish to create a very filling meal.  Making it perfect for anyone on a calorie reducing regime like the 5 :2 fast diet

My recipe made an appearance in the ‘Complete Health Magazine’

My published article

My published article

 

This wonderful salad will be the first dish my guest will make when they attend todays vegetarian and vegan cookery class

susan poster

Please contact me if you’d like to attend any of my classes

Serves: 4,  200 calories per serving

  • IMG_3176450ml water or vegetable stock
  • 150g quinoa
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce or 1 tsp wholegrain mustard
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • pinch of dried chilli flakes
  • 4 tomatoes, diced
  • ½ – 1 cucumber, diced
  • 4 spring onions, diced
  • 2 carrots, grated
  • 15g each of fresh parsley and mint, chopped

 

Bring a saucepan with 450ml water or stock to the boil and add the quinoa. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Once cooked* allow to cool to room temperature; fluff with a fork.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine olive oil, soy sauce or mustard, lemon juice, chilli, tomatoes, cucumber, spring onions, carrots and parsley and mint. Stir in the cooled quinoa.

IMG_3309

uncooked and cooked quinoa

* the quinoa is cooked when a little curly sprout appears on the grain

 

 

 

 

To make the salad more substantial add one of the following

200g cooked quorn,

1 tin of drained and rinsed chickpeas,

3 hard boiled eggs, sliced,

2 ripe avocados, chopped

and for non-veggies: 200g diced cooked chicken or grilled salmon

 

 

 

Vita-Berry Blast

For more healthy eating advice please visit my website http://www.nutrition-coach.co.uk/

www.nutrition-coach.co.uk

smoothieThis Wednesday I will be at Maggie’s, Nottingham, The cancer support centre at the City Hospital, talking to teenagers and young adults about healthy eating.  So what better way to showcase good nutrition than by making a smoothie, I’m hoping to have lots of audience participation

Smoothies are a great way to get one or more of your 5-a-day.  The combinations of fruits, veg and protein can be endless.  But I will be using a recipe based on one from my Nutribullet recipe book (with a little upgrade!)

nutribullet smoothies

We are also coming to the end of National vegetarian Week so what better way to celebrate the goodness of fruits and veg that to make the Vita berry blast (plus!)  The fruits anIMG_5263d veg chosen for this recipe are rich in antioxidants and flavonoids; which are particularly good at protecting the body from damage by ‘free radicals’

1-2 handfuls of rinsed fresh spinach or 2 blocks of frozen spinach – I use these all the time in smoothies they make the drink nice and cold and thick

 

IMG_61631 cup of blueberries

1 ripe banana

1 handful of strawberries

Cold water

Plus 2 tablespoons of oats and 2 teaspoons of chis seeds – for extra protein

Now for the difficult bit!

 

nutribullet

 

Tip all the ingredients  (except the water) into the large nutribullet cup.  Fill up to the MAX line (or just below) with water.  Screw on the blade, place it in the nutribullet, push down and twist and whizz for 1-2 minutes.

Serve as is, or add a sprig of mint for that professional touch!

Get that vegetable vibe

Get that vegetable vibe – all hail the kale!!

UnknownNational Vegetarian Week 2016 runs from 16-24 May; it is a celebration of all things veggie.  We are all told that when it comes to vegetables 5 a-day doesn’t cut it any more and we should be eating 7 or more a-day.

So during this celebratory week ask yourself how is it possible to consume more veg and even if we could why should we?

logo160w

For an answer to those questions and a few more check out my new article on the Health Sciences Academy website http://thehealthsciencesacademy.org/news/susan-hart/

IMG_1368I go on to explain that vegetables (and fruit) should form a large part of a healthy diet in order to reduce the risk of suffering from some major illness like strokes, type 2 diabetes’s and some forms of cancer.  Its in part down to the wealth of antioxidants they contain.

 

veggies on the rise

 

Perhaps the message about the health benefits of being vegetarian is fining ground; The media, only this week announced that 25% of us will be veggie within the next 25 years.

So whether they are fresh, frozen, tinned, dried, cooked or raw vegetables and fruits will all add fibre, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants to your diet; without adding lots of calories, fat or cholesterol.  Whats not to love?!

One of the easiest ways to add more veg to your diet is to buy an inexpensive stick blender and blend lots of cooked imagesvegetables into a thick tomato sauce.  This can be used to make a healthy lasagna, vegetable and lentil soup, veggie pizzas, spaghetti Bolognese or shepherds pie.

Another tip is to turn your veggies and fruit into smoothies.  A green smoothie is a great way to mix the two.  IMG_2210Try adding kale, spinach, apple, mint and pineapple to a powerful blender like a nutribullet.  The resulting green mix will be packed with vitamins, minerals (including iron and calcium) and disease fighting antioxidants.  Add a couple of spoonfuls of oats and you will increase the fibre content, which will have you feeling fuller for longer

Try taking your time with your smoothie; think of it as a meal rather than a drink.  It takes about 20 minutes for messages to get from your stomach to your brain to say you are full.    Taking your time also allows all those hard working enzymes to extract maximum nutrients from your food.

If the thought of going veggie is too much then why not start with just one day a week.  There is a movement called ‘Meat free Monday’, and you’ve guessed it you have a meat free day on a Monday (and possibly Tuesday, Wednesday Thursday..!) I have created some great recipes that may inspire you to embrace this concept http://www.nutrition-coach.co.uk/blog/category/meat-free-monday-2/

If you don’t fancy cooking your own veggie food then why not check out my reviews of vegetarian food in local restaurants around Nottingham. Cafe Roya, in Beeston is a great example of how veggie food can be imaginatively prepared and served

http://www.nutrition-coach.co.uk/blog/category/restaurant-reviews/

IMG_6140Sometimes I even go further a field like Fellinis in Windermere, Lake District.  Their vegetarian food is well worth the trip

Today is also #foodrevolutionday, an idea devised by Jamie Oliver to encourage more children to become involved in fresh and healthy ingredients.  And you guessed it vegetables and fruits are high on the agenda

Why not share your tips for adding veg to your diet –   what worked best?

The truth about detox!

THE TRUTH ABOUT DETOX!

For more healthy eating advice please visit my website http://www.nutrition-coach.co.uk/

For many January is all about change and regrouping and trying to banish those Christmas excesses, so we join a gym, we make new years resolutions and we may try some form of detox.

imagesThis is a busy time for me because new clients want to make a fresh start and come to me hoping for a quick fix, a magic pill or a diet that will have then dropping the pounds in no time.  My friend and fellow therapist Misia Smith of Soothe Therapies also felt that at this time of year her clients wanted some unctuous lotions and potions that would rejuvenate, moisturise and rehydrate skin and cells that had been mistreated over the festive period

Detox February-March16

 

So we decided the best course of action was to help our clients and potential clients by dispelling some of the detox myths.  Our full article, which appeared in Nottingham Local News can be read at http://www.nottinghamlocalmagazine.com/the-truth-about-detox/

 

I believe there is no quick fix when it comes to permanent weight loss; we can all starve ourselves for a few days to fit in to that ever so slightly tight dress; we can also eat watermelon, grapefruit, cabbage, or whatever is the latest fad at every meal for about a week in order to drop half a stone.  But the weight will inevitably creep back on (and then some!)

imagesSo I always advocate small but permanent changes, starting with adding more veg and fruit to your diet.  Why, because we need to help the body to do what it does properly and antioxidants are the key

Your body (via the skin, gut, liver and kidney) constantly filters out, breaks down and excretes toxins and waste products like alcohol, medications, dead cells, chemicals from pollution and bacteria.

IMG_3011In a nutshell, If you want to maintain peak health then the best approach is a balanced diet, with at least five portions (80g) of vegetables and fruit a day; small portions of wholegrain carbs, regular amounts of protein like lean meat, fish, beans and pulses, eggs, tofu and dairy products. Drink plenty of water (2 litres) and moderate your consumption of alcohol and caffeine.  And have the occasional treat like dark chocolate

And importantly quit smoking

To help your body do what it does naturally try and incorporate the following into your meals

 

Wholgrains

Wholgrains

  • Fibre from vegetables and fruit and wholegrains, like pasta, rice and oats
  • A rainbow of colours’ – a wide variety of vegetables and fruit will provide your body with plenty of antioxidants (vitamin C, beta carotene and vitamin E), B vitamins, calcium, and trace minerals to protect your organs from damage and help them do their job effectively.

 

chopped veggies

chopped veggies

  • Orange and red vegetables and fruits are especially high in antioxidants i.e. berries, sweat potatoes, red peppers, tomatoes, oranges, butternut squash, chilli, carrots, apricots
  • Some green leafy vegetables such as spinach and kale are also rich in beta-carotene.
  • Almonds, safflower, corn and soybean oils, mangos and nuts are all high in vitamin E
  • Keep hydrated – it helps the kidneys to work effectively. Urine should be a pale straw colour
  • Limit the amount of processed foods you eat (these are often high in salt) to promote water loss. Cranberries, celery, asparagus and herbal teas can also help with water loss
  • Green tea is full of antioxidants and could help with a natural detox
  • If you are looking to lose weight then consider reducing portion sizes, and don’t forget to be active every day.

 

The one supplement that keeps cropping up when you mention detox is Milk-thistle or Salymarin. However if you regularly include the above foods into your meals and snacks it is generally unnecessary to take additional supplements

I’d love to hear your stories – Have you tried detoxing, if so what did you do and did it work?