SHOVE YOUR SPIRALIZER – I’M OLDER AND WISER

I’ve written previously about my own experience with diets over the years but when I read recently that leading members of The National Obesity Forum had resigned following a disagreement about their latest diet report I found it unnerving. I mean, if these guys, the ones with the findings of numerous scientific trials and years of medical research under their noses can’t agree on basic guidelines for healthy eating then who can we rely on?!

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As we know there are no shortage of diet options to consider, from the multinational, multi-billion pound big boys (Weight Watchers, Slim Fast et all) with their processed but convenient offerings to the current wave of self-confessed, (often unqualified) healthy eating ‘foodie’ experts. You know, the ones with the bone-broth recipes and the trust fund? Well I’m the first to hold my hands up and admit to entrusting my diet to all the above and more, certain that it would result in me rocking my bikini on the beach this time.

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Eventually I realised I was basically funding the industry that was preying on my own insecurities and reinforcing the idea that physically I wasn’t quite up to scratch. It was probably the combination of getting older and having kids that made me realise 1. life’s short, I should probably stop wasting time weighing chia seeds and 2. suddenly wobbly bits aren’t as big a deal when you’re busy keeping humans alive.

My children are 5 and 7 and both understand the basic effects of healthy or (too much) unhealthy food already. Personally I believe this is important but I am all too aware how it can quickly turn into an obsession later in life, especially with girls – not to mention the emotional issues to boot. The best I can do is stress the importance of a healthy balance and raise them to be confident, clued-up individuals (no pressure!)

I completely understand a quick ’emergency health kick’ a few weeks prior to the holidays or following a month of existing on mince pies and green triangles for example, but when half the weekly food shop requires a trip to Holland & Barrett, sorry I’m out.

good fat

So, older and wiser (?) I have finally realised that what has been made to appear difficult, almost impossible all these years, is actually very, very simple. It’s not sexy, it doesn’t involve ground Peruvian root vegetable powder and it won’t get you a book deal. It IS common sense, moderation, a bit of self-discipline, a bit of exercise and a lot of positivity.

Below are a few sources of inspiration I enjoy using these days that don’t promote any type of extreme diets or require any form of food w*nkery. They cover a range of aspects that I consider to be important to my overall health, I hope you enjoy them too and find them useful:

**FOOD**

Food & Nonsense A registered dietitian, Helen tells it like it is and debunks the myths surrounding foods and fads. A really great site for anyone with an interest in health, nutrition and exercise.

Nic’s Nutrition Also a registered dietitian,  I have followed Nic online for a few years and although she does incorporate foods that could fit into the ‘trendy’ category, the recipes on the site are generally very doable and usually offer alternative ingredient options. Not a fan of protein powder? No problem, use hot chocolate powder instead! There are also recipes for special dietary requirements and many articles on nutrition.

**FITNESS**

Fitness Blender Free workouts for any fitness level – so many home workouts to choose from. You can tailor your programme to suit your own needs, oh did I mention,  IT’S COMPLETELY FREE?!

Food For Fitness I first discovered Scott through his podcasts when I was looking for something fitness related to listen to while I was out walking. His guests come from a wide range of health and fitness industry professions and cover topics such as motivation, eating disorders, mindfulness, food quackery and much more. Bonus points for the healthy, high protein recipes made from – wait for it – normal food!

**HEALTHY MIND**

The Moderation Movement brilliant, interesting, no BS articles with a common sense approach to health, fitness and body image. I could spend my entire day on this site!

Honest Mum Vicki’s site is jam packed full of articles on food, fashion, blogging tips, lifestyle, family (her adorable boys!) and much more. Most importantly for me, Vicki is all about encouraging women to believe in themselves and helping you to achieve success (however you define it). Her positivity is contagious, building women up and leading by example! This article actually inspired me to ‘go public’ as a blogger which was a huge step in self-belief for me, as someone with no writing experience.

Headspace “Gym membership for the mind”. A great little meditation app for when things are getting a bit much and you just need to Ctrl-Alt-Delete your mind. I used the free trial and then took out an annual subscription which gives you lots of options to choose from based on what you need. Cheaper than therapy and more socially acceptable than gin before lunchtime.

Deliciously Stella Yes I did spell it correctly, no I don’t mean the other one. If laughter is the best medicine then there is nobody better to tickle your ribs when it comes to mocking the current wave of Insta-foodies. Follow her on twitter or Pinterest for ‘alternative’ options to green juice or avocado on toast. Oh and she does podcasts too!

So there you have it. Now I’d love to hear any recommendations you have for similar no-nonsense inspiration or body positive champions. If you enjoyed this please feel free to comment below and share the love. X

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76 Comments

  1. This is great, total sense. I hate anything diet related, it’s all boll&cks. The minute you stop you put weight on. You need a lifestyle change, body & mind. I’m definitely checking out some of these links tonight. #fartglitter

  2. Really enjoyed this, it’s funny what wisdom comes with age. I spent the majority of my adult life battling with anorexia, swept away with the need for the perfect body and focusing so much on diet and weight and calories. Now, finally, I realise that it’s all about moderation. It’s about fuelling our bodies to be strong and healthy, not starving ourselves or buying into the latest fad diet or gym craze. I am so much happier these days since I threw away the scales. If my clothes still fit then I know I’m doing okay, there are far more important things in life to worry about! #bigpinklink

    1. Oh thank you – I agree, there are few things I enjoy about getting older but a bit of common sense is one of them 😉
      It’s so frustrating looking back at the time and energy wasted needlessly. I’m sorry you had such an awful experience, it’s a horrible illness to have to live with. Thank goodness you were able to overcome it, I’m sure that takes a lot of strength. You’re right – far more important things to worry about, especially when you have kids!! Thanks for reading x

  3. So I may have browsed through the linkys titles and swept over one or two (Face Bovvered) to seek out ‘mess’…Don’t use any long titles or you will make my job harder 😉

    I start smiling before I even start reading!! Once I start reading, I start nodding, then I start looking for hidden cameras in my house, thinking ‘How does she know’?!!!

    Love it. I have felt the same about all of these fads and also feel so concerned that my kids get the right messages not only from the media but from me. I wouldn’t want them to have hangups or issues about eating later in life. I try not to talk about ‘good’ and ‘bad’ food but about balance and ‘food is fuel’. One of my girls is ‘food is fuel’ and the other is like me and my sister where its harder to have a neutral relationship with food. That’s where I’m happy that she loves exercise so its no big deal.

    These web resources are really useful. I didn’t know about many of these but I will bookmark and pop back.

    Plus, at BML live (sorry Cinderella) there was another inspirational lady I hadnt heard about…She is worth checking out…Julie over at toofattorun (I wont put proper link in incase I get banished to spam or put in the bin!)

    Thank you! #TwinklyTUesday

    1. Oh Jane, you have made my day, OK possibly month! When I started blogging I was pretty sure nobody would be interested in reading my nonsense so to have someone ACTUALLY LOOK FOR MY POST is the ultimate compliment!! 😊
      Ha ha point noted re the long titles- I know what you mean. Hee hee glad to hear you can relate, you obviously never found the secret camera! 😄
      Yes I remember you saying your two were like mine, one eats to live and the other lives to eat.
      Hope you enjoy the links and find them useful. Ooh I have heard of her actually must check her out later (school run fun time!) xx

      1. Oh, my brain! I did say that, didn’t I?!! I posted my comment and then thought, ‘Did I tell Charlie this before?’ but just like I realise too late that I’ve forgotten to add the appropriate ******* hashtag, I’d already posted it. I secretly hoped your brain would be as bad as mine and you’d think ‘That’s interesting’ rather than ‘Jane has early onset dementia. I hope she doesn’t tell me that again the next time she reads my posts, especially if I’m talking about something completely unrelated to food or diet.’

        Of course I look for your posts! I actually hovered over one for a big cake for a bit thinking I’d struck gold but that was someone else.

        1. Pah ha ha – I assumed you mentioned it for my benefit as I’ve mentioned before I struggle to remember who writes what blog and belongs to which linky etc!! 🙂
          I do that thing with the hashtags too!!

  4. I’m always searching for the best, healthiest ways to eat (with hopefully some weight loss thrown in!) But the advice is SO confusing. Thanks for sharing these links…I’m going to have a good read and make myself a plan! #bloggerclubuk

  5. A great post that goes well with what I’ve been thinking about for the past few days! I totally agree that it’s moderation, balance, a bit of the bad and a bit more of the good. Thank you for all your references – I shall check those out. It’s always good to have recommendations about people who are keeping it ‘real’. Alison x #BloggerClubUK

  6. My mum is currently spiralizing all the things so this one struck a cord with me this morning. I don’t have the money or motivation to jump into all the new trends and from what I see it isn’t doing her any long term favours anyway. Runjumpscrap.com is healthy and fit but not insane….well not completely insane perhaps. She offers good advice and is happy to shoot down nutty fad ideas.

    #fartglitter

    1. Hee hee – ooh you’re far better off steering clear of the trends, I dread to think how much money I’ve wasted! Ooh thanks for the tip, and thanks for hosting – will check it out now 🙂

  7. I seem to be surrounded by friends at the moment jumping on the latest faddy food bandwagon – the most popular being Joe Wicks the BodyCoach. I bought his book out of curiosity but to be honest it is just basic common sense. As long as we eat sensibly, treat ourselves every now and again and exercise we should all be fine, without making ourselves permanently miserable by aspiring to some idealised view of perfection. Life is too short. Will be checking out the Fitness Blender, was looking for something I could do in the comfort of my own home over the holidays. #BloggerClubUK

    1. Oh God I tried his 20min BEGINNER HIIT and no joke I thought I was going to be sick!! Think I’ll stick to long walks and less cake 😂 Totally agree, life IS too short . Thanks for stopping by, hope you find Fitness Blender useful x

  8. Love the picture of the avacados. Happy healthy lifestyle ! No pressure. A fine balance. Thanks for sharing the links, I got deliciously Ella out the library the other day, it’s going back v v soon! We made one recipe out of it because we had spinach to use up! We replaced all the “hippy” ingredients with what we had in the cupboard, it was bloody tasty! Nothing else inspired us because it meant spending a fortune on ”special’ ingredients! Thanks for linking up to #abrandnewday

    1. Yep, I was all about the ‘raw brownies’ while simultaneously draining my bank account on almond butter and mejool dates 🙈
      Balance is absolutely the key! Thanks for hosting x

  9. I don’t think I’ve ever been on a proper diet, I’m too lazy. But definitely used to be worried about my weight and would try and restrict my intake. Now I’m 37 with two kids and , like you said , I’ve really more to worry about Than the size of my bum or my wobbly bits ! I’m also in agreement that Honest Mum is an inspiration – she was so supportive of me when I first started. #brillblogposts

    1. I’m rubbish at sticking to any sort of diet once my initial enthusiasm wears off ( usually by day 2!) Snap! 37 and 2 kids too, that’s more than enough to deal with 😂
      She’s fab isn’t she, so supportive. Thanks for popping in x

  10. This is so entertaining to read. I too think we spend far too much time worrying about what we should and shouldn’t read but as you say – so much of it is common sense – eat less (crap) and move more – it’s not rocket science. Love the part about no protein powder? Then add hot chocolate powder! Moderation is key. I’m happy contemplating my diet over a glass of sauvignon blanc any day! #Coolmumclub

  11. Couldn’t agree more – there is so much rubbish out there that just brings us women down. It’s all about common sense and everything in moderation. Good on you for writing this love it xx #SharingtheBlogLove

  12. Ah I love this. Before I had children I was a complete fitness freak, but now like you say keeping these monkeys alive completely takes over! Don’t get me wrong I still exercise, but I stopped beating myself up about every little flaw a long time ago!

    #coolmumclub

  13. I’ll have to check these out. I’m actually happier now in my 30s then I’ve ever been. I have a draft post about it, mainly saying that it’s hard to stay angry with a body that CREATED two humans! Thanks for joining us at the #bigpinklink

    1. Snap! Definitely have a healthier perspective on the whole thing. Still have my hang ups obviously I just try to put things into perspective rather than allow it to get me down. Here’s to us and our brilliant bodies- wobbly bits and all! Thanks for hosting x

  14. Great attitude, so many people are more concerned with what they have and talking about the latest crazes than just eating healthy and living well, although I do have a spiraliser……sshhh, who said that?! #SharingtheBlogLove

  15. Here here lady! There is so much nonsense been shoved down our throats and if you actually manage to find the scientific reports and studies you find a lot of this stuff is utter BS. I don’t know how we all became so food phobic but it’s totally wrong! Food is just…um…food! Love this post and thanks for linking up to #coolmumclub lovely xx

  16. Totally agree with this and will have a look at those links (love Fitness Blender! They have some great programmes on there too for a small cost. I’ve done the pilates one and thought it was great.) Am also over faddy diets. Common sense is definitely the way forward. #coolmumclub

  17. I love this, I’ve come to this realisation too after years of dieting on and off…you’re right, it is all just common sense and I’ve wasted so much of my money on blenders, juicers, recipe books, those pre-made juice plans because I’m an idiot and of course the faithful spiraliser. These are fab recommendations – I particularly love the Headspace app too x #ablogginggoodtime

  18. Had to sneak into the even posts (I’m reading the odds tonight) for #coolmumclub seeing this title… I totally agree. I like to dip in to the latest fad, but unless you can spiralise a bacon sandwhich, it’s never going to be more than a novelty for me 🙂
    xx

  19. I was fine until I stopped having so much time to exercise, but didn’t change my eating habits accordingly… I’ve lost weight doing Slimming World, but I think I’ll have to keep going forever as without the accountability factor I just have NO self discipline and eat ALL of the cakes…
    #brillblogposts

    1. I hear ya, never met a cake I didn’t like 🙈 Yes SW etc are great as a starting point I think but like you say without the threat of the weekly weigh in it’s easy to slip if (like me) you have zero self restraint! Thanks for reading x

  20. Wonderful post 🙂 I can’t stand these fad, starvation diets – where you pay about £200 for a schedule of what to eat and when and a few sachets of shakes and supplements. Soooooo many girls I know do it and it’s just ridiculous to me, not a long term solution.

    I’ll confess though, I do love Slimming World. I know they are making a mint off of me just to weigh me each week BUT it’s the best programme I’ve ever found. You can still eat TONS and it encourages lots of cooking from scratch etc.

    I completely agree with you though. There are no need for special diets when really all we need to do is eat less and move more! If I just had a few wobbly bits I wouldn’t bother with SW but, sadly, I’m more than wobbly as quite a bit overweight and it’s not good for my health. So I’m going to go until I get to less dangerous weight but still with plenty of wobbly bits I’m sure lol!

    Thanks for a lovely post xx #coolmumclub

    1. Aww thanks! I know, we’re all being taken for a ride while someone somewhere is raking it in!! I understand the SW thing though, it’s pretty much sensible, healthy eating but you’re accountable for sticking to it with the incentive (fear!!) of weigh in. Glad you enjoyed the post, thanks for commenting x

  21. I’m sure I commented on this the other day? This is a great post. There are so many stupid fads out there and I’m not sure how much if it actually works. What makes me laugh more is people who think they’re being healthy. #effitfriday

    1. Aww thank you, I’m glad you enjoyed it. I know it’s so frustrating isn’t it, I guess moderation and regular exercise isn’t quite as sexy as acai bowls and yoga 😄 Thanks for reading x

  22. Hurrah to this!!! I love the gif and you’re so right I could kiss my phone as I’m reading it! (Erm. Sounds weird. Anyway. Moving on…) The diet market is constantly finding ways to capitalise the fact that dieting isn’t sexy or fun, in fact it’s more sweaty and hungry. We’re all just trying to seek the new wonder pill / bar / shake / cooking appliance that will “fix” us when as you say, we just need to wind our necks in from time to time, shove a bit less cake in our faces and move our backsides a bit more. Brilliantly written xx
    #coolmumclub

  23. Wonderful post! I’ve had a very up and down relationship with my body over the years. About 8 years ago, I did discover the only thing that has ever helped me to shift weight – exercise! Unfortunately I then got a bit obsessed and started counting calories alongside it, by which I mean plugging everything I ate into an online calculator which got beyond obsessive! I have a better relationship with food and my body these days – more relaxed about everything and much less pressure on myself. Thanks so much for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove

    1. Ahh thank you, glad you liked it! Yep, been there, I had diaries FULL of daily calorie intake for everything I had eaten, before the days of MFP where you had to look everything up in a book! It makes me really sad to think about how messed up that was. Thankfully we have both realised there’s more to life! Thank you for hosting x

  24. Brilliant post and wise words! I’ve never followed a diet, I just don’t have the commitment to it. I think we all know about balance and getting it right. I just go on are my clothes getting a bit tight? It’s time to step away from the cake and chocolate for a bit 🙂 Thank you for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove Laura X

    1. Thanks! Really? Wow I’m impressed, I have no idea how many diets I’ve tried over the years- too many! You have completely the right attitude, just common sense really! Thanks for hosting x

  25. Brilliant post with a great message. I have never really been one for diets or fads, or no carbs, or no this that an the other. Rather a sensible balanced diet with some exercise thrown in and you should be doing alright. I know it may work for some but I’m a everything in moderation kind of gal, that an I couldn’t cut out a bit of chocolate and glass of wine! Xx #ablogginggoodtime

    1. Thank you! Glad you enjoyed it. Good for you, you have totally the right approach. I wish I had been so sensible, so much time and money wasted I dread to think about it! Thanks for reading ( and hell yes to wine and chocolate!) in moderation obviously 😉 x

  26. Moderation really is the key, in my opinion – swing too far either way and any person will feel and see the ill effects of their lifestyle. I thought I was the only person in the world to use the Fitness Blender workouts though, fist bump to you! I love them and find them relatively hardcore if you add in some weights, while still being short and dynamic enough to squeeze in around other demands. I’ve also had Headspace on my phone for ages but haven’t got around to using it yet, naughty me. Thank you for linking to #effitfriday, and from your picture you look sodding gorgeous so you can’t have that much to worry about! x

  27. I think way too many people think in terms of wanting to be skinny or small, rather than wanting to be healthy. You can be skinny and really unhealthy sometimes, or you may be healthy, in the same way that someone larger could be unhealthy or healthy.

    Everything in moderation and exercise is the way to go I think and not to obsess 🙂

    Thanks for linking up to #PicknMix

    Stevie x

  28. Wow such a lot of information, I will enjoy looking through the links. I hate the whole diet industry however, s someone who has been overweight all of her life, healthy eating and moderate exercise isn’t effective for me and I need to go hard, hence doing Cambridge at the moment. Anyhoo thanks for linking up to #TheList x

  29. Yes to this, I try and eat healthily and my kids know what healthy food is but you only live once and if you want to eat a rare donut or bag of Doritos and dip and you eat healthy the rest of the time, then do it! Thanks for linking to #picknmix

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