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September Degustabox is here!

I am very pleased with this September edition of the Degustabox What a great selection! As a blogger I get the alcohol and non alcohol versions so I may have a couple more items in my box that you may not receive in yours but they are great value and a chance to try something new!

Degustabox is a monthly subscription box which you can cancel any time. You can try your first box for just £5.99 with my code 8c0x9 by signing up here

This months selection will help keep me on the right healthy eating track before my holiday!

The contents are:

Miso Tasty Original Ramen Noodle Kit

This is a great kit which includes 2 non fried ramen noodle nests, 2 white miso pastes and 2 seaweed garnishes and works put an incredible 1/2 syn pp on Slimming World after running it through the calculator! More info here

Rice Dream with Quinoa

Rice Dream Quinoa with Calcium, and vitamins D2 and B12 and no added sugars . Rice Dream is a plant based milk alternative. Sign up for the Dream Challenge at My Dairy Free Dream , print off £6 worth of vouchers and browse their online recipes. £1.60

Gluten free San Miguel

330mls of Gluten free San Miguel to tickle the tastebuds of over 18’s! 5.4% volume £2 each – more infohere

Virtue Sparkling energy waterVirtue sparkling energy water in Berries and Lemon and Lime flavours. A refreshing canned drink that is zero sugar, zero calories, no sweeteners and nothing artificial £1.35 each. Visit their website here

Wild Planet pole and line caught tuna

Wild Planet Pole and Line Caught Tuna Steaks are hand packed and cooked just once to retain the natural juices in the can. No need to drain – just mix the juices with the Tuna for added flavour and nutrition. £3.49 . More info here

Knorr Rich Beef concentrated stock

New Knorr Rich Beef Concentrated Liquid Stock is made from real beef extract, gluten free and free from artificial colours. No MSG – just add a few drops to your dishes to enhance the flavour! £2.20

For more info on Knorr products visit here

Santa Maria Latin American Kitchen Peruvian Garlic and Tomato Sauce and Arroz Amorillo yellow Rice

Santa Maria American Kitchen has just landed on some supermarkets – I have seen them in Morrisons and it’s a pretty impressive range too! A variety of sauces to tempt and inspire you along with the perfect rice accompaniment to transport your taste buds to Latin America The sauce – Peruvian Garlic and Tomato is 5.5 syns for the whole pouch and the rice – Arroz Amarillo Yellow rice is 4 syns a pouch

Rice pouches £1.85, Sauces £1.85

For more info visit their website here

Green and Blacks Velevet Edition 70% Dark Chocolate

The new Green and Black’s Velvet Edition 70% smooth dark chocolate has been blended to be smooth in flavour by using the finest Ghanaian cocoa balanced with sweet Madagascan vanilla and is in supermarkets now £1.99

View their range here

Mint Mentos- spearmint and mint

Mint and Spearmint Mentos. A chewy refreshing Sweet in a resealable pouch perfect for sharing £1.19 More info here

Nestle Oat Crisp Cheerios

Nestle Oat Crisp Cheerios have been developed to help lower cholesterol. They are high in fibre and low in saturated fat and contain beta-glucan from Oat fibre to help keep your heart healthy! £2.49 For more info visit here

Greens Egg Custard Filling

Green’s Creamy Egg Custard Filling is a perfect quick dessert fix. Just add milk, a pre cooked pastry case or alternative, follow the instructions and refrigerate. At apx 50cals for the pack you add 1pt of milk and make a delicious dessert – ready in just over an hour. £0.69 for more info visit the website and use coupon code Degusta15 by December 2017 to get 15% off your first order

Seriously Spreadable Creamy Squares

Also included in this months box is a

Voucher to try Seriously Spreadable Creamy Squares free! Available in Tesco, Morrisons and Asda. Great for lunchboxes, on crackers or that little cheese fix! £1.75

Conclusion – a great little box full of goodies and I can’t see any one of them not being enjoyed!

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Degustabox Back to School theme

A fantastic selection of goodies in this months ‘Back to School’ themed Degustabox ‘ Its that time when parents are looking for school uniforms, buying new shoes and lunch boxes – this months Degustabox is stashed full of goodies to send your children back to school with a smile on their faces! And yours too 😉

Our children are grown up now so we will just have to treat ourselves and pretend we are back at school! I do receive the alcohol and non alcohol selections though so will probably get the glasses out later!

Get your first box for just £5.99 here with my code 8c0x9 . In this months line up there are lots of tasty treats

Seabrook Crisps 6 pack of assorted – sea salt, sea salt and vinegar and cheese and onion – the original crinkle cut crisps for a proper crunch! My fav is the Cheese and Onion! £1.00Also included in the box is a 25p off voucher so we will be using this soon!

Hellmans Real Mayonnaise 250ml

Made with 100% free range eggs and is a perfect storecupboard staple – do you have your Hellmans? I do – I just have one more now! £1.69

McIlhenny & Co Tabasco green pepper mild sauce. Perfect for me as a lightweight around hot spices this is the mildest version made from green jalapeño peppers and can be added to pizzas, pastas, meat and seafood etc to give an extra kick! £1.89

Twisted Halo Coconut water and ginger muddled with premium vodka! At only 90 cals per bottle it’s a slimmers dream! It’s a gentle sparkling drink twisted with coconut, ginger and a hint of lime. Serve chilled £1.50 available in Morrisons and Wholefoods

Orangina and Orangina Light – soft sparkling orange drink in Original and lights options . Orangina is a household name going back decades and is delicious on its own or used as a mixer for mocktails and cocktails £1.20 each

Maggi Fusian noodles by Nestle

Fiery sweet chilli -Spicy Chilli and ginger with onion oil and veggies – a fiery noodle and Sticky hoisin duck – soy sauce, oriental spice and hints of roasted duck with veggies, spices and infused oil and ready in 4 mins £1.39 each

Refresher softies – Ken has snaffled these !

A great retro soft chewy sweet with a fizz! Available in Asda and Tesco £1.00

Cadburys toffee wholenut bar

I love this little bar – I love nuts and Cadburys so a great combination £0.65

Bahlsen Pick up Black and White biscuits. Two chocolate covered biscuits with a bar of white chocolate sandwiched in between – oh my days – I can’t resist a nibble later! £1.69 – a perfect individually wrapped lunchbox snack

Fruitypot Jelly squeeze – Orange and Apple and Blackcurrant. Jelly squeeze is a resealable jelly in a pouch. gluten and lactose free, vegan and vegetarian makes it perfect for a packed lunch or an on the go snack £0.69 each

Cadburys Curlywurly squirlies

Bitesize chewy curly wurly pieces covered in milk chocolate in a shareable bag £1.99

Lighter Life Fast Soya and Chickpea popped crisps

Pesto and sundried tomato

Sweet and smoky chipotle

Both are under 100cals, gluten free, full of fibre and protein, veggie friendly, free from artificial colours, preservatives and flavours and are low in saturated fat too. They are potato free, msg and gm free too! £0.99 each

I love receiving my Degustabox once a month – it’s a surprise hamper full of goodies for all the family! Get your first box at Degustabox and use code 8c0x9 to get it for just £5.99 !

degustaboxuk #seabrookscrisps #fruitypot #twistedhalo #refresherssofties #lighterlifefast #bahlsen #hellmans #tabasco #cadburys #orangina #maggifusian

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It’s Thyme to try the best protein smoothies!

Good morning! So whilst we are on the move on our boat I have been given the opportunity to try some protein smoothies from Thyme

Sometimes it’s hard fitting smoothies into the Slimming World plan as they come out quite high in syns in comparison to other options available

The reasons I decided to try this are two fold

1) I don’t like protein drinks normally so I would like to find one I truly like

2) I am not a smoothie lover either but their range sound amazing packed full of fresh frozen fruit, vegetables, protein and vitamins. They contain a Nutri Pellet with whey protein, chlorella (possibly one of the most powerful superfoods that can boost energy, support fat loss and detox, and spirulina which can help with candida, lower blood pressure, boost energy, reduce cholesterol and speed up weight loss.

There are two flavours in their protein smoothie range

Protein Punch that contains strawberry, hulled hemp seeds, blueberries and pomegranate. It is TRULY DELICIOUS! the packs arrive ready prepared and frozen. All you need to do is to mix 250mls of liquid with them. I decided to try something different and bought some M&S sparkling water – Blood Orange which is 3 cals per 100ml. I was a bit worried it might fizz up in my nutriblender but it didn’t – in fact it gives it a bit of ‘life’ ! The taste is incredible and kept me going from breakfast through to lunch!

The best thing apart from the taste is it’s not thick, it doesn’t leave a coating around your mouth like some do and the consistency is the same all the way throughout – I didn’t have to stir or shake it once it was made up. It was simply gorgeous!

The second flavour – Lean Green protein smoothie I was so keen to try after enjoying my breakfast so much. I thought

if it’s half as nice as the Protein Punch flavour I will be hooked!

I decided to make a fruit Kebab to enjoy with it and sat there looking at it longing for lunchtime to arrive so I could try it! Only one word A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!!

Lean Green Protein Smoothie! I love it! I used 250ml M&S Blood Orange Sparkling Water again with this one and it’s lovely! The Lean Green smoothie mix is made up of a Nutripellet containing Whey protein, chlorella and spirulina – both super foods, along with spinach, banana, pineapple and poppy seeds. They come individually wrapped and frozen. I could taste the whey protein slightly and the spinach but this wasn’t unpleasant, in fact it’s delicious! Of the two flavours the Protein Punch has the slight edge but they are both so tasty in their own right. I love them with flavoured water and you could use any flavour, coconut water or milk if you aren’t bothered about adding extra calories. The Lean Green Protein Smoothie is 174 cals per 100gms and the pack is 140gms.

I definitely want to continue enjoying these, they are so lovely and nutritious too! I am a bit fussy with things like this but they are so good!

No chopping, washing or peeling either and would be great for a delicious breakfast or lunch on the move or an after gym boost. When I tasted the Protein Punch flavour I thought i may not like this but I was so wrong!

Thyme have kindly set up a taster pack and if you use my free delivery code ‘methyme’ then they work out at an incredible £1.67 per smoothie!

Thyme are so much more than a smoothie maker though. If you look at their website they make some amazing meals for the family too which I have yet to delve into!

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Being a Brand Ambassador

Lots of you who read this will have probably seen a link on my social media. Some may understand the world of being a ‘blogger’ , ‘influencer’, or ‘brand ambassador ‘. Some of you may be intrigued – I get messages from people asking me how to become one. My response is always the same. Work hard, be prepared to spend up to and sometimes over 12 hours a day to build good relationships and be courteous, kind, respectful and patient.
My post though is not really about how to build your ‘visibility’ which makes it more attractive to engagers – it’s about what happens in the day of myself – a brand ambassador, I will call it ‘blogger’ as it’s quicker to type lol.

My life as a blogger started with my weightloss journey. My venture into Slimming World was the best thing I have done for myself in years . I have to thank Slimming World for giving me confidence, health and helping me regain self esteem. It began sharing ideas in group, sharing recipes and new products. People started to look to me in group for inspiration which was unbelievable to me and I became a very active member on their Facebook page sharing anything I could find and cook to inspire. I was voted Woman of the Year 2016 and it truly was one of my happiest days!

That’s where my life as a blogger started as I decided to be more active with my social media sharing to a larger audience.

My typical day starts as soon as I open my eyes! I reach for my phone, check to see if any of my followers or friends have sent me late messages – I always respond there and then. The only messages I ignore are the spoof accounts!
So once I have replied to any messages I quickly scroll through my feed to see what people have been up. Unfortunately with some platforms if you like too many it’s seen as spam so I am only able to ‘like’ a few. If you don’t get a like off me, it’s not because I don’t want to, it’s because we are restricted and I also follow over 4000 people so it’s impossible to like them all. I get inspiration from everyone though. Posts jump out, meals inspire me and your stories are so motivational. The most important aspect about my Instagram account are my followers – not the products I receive – I always respond to messages throughout the day as soon as I can and love getting them and being in touch with such kind genuine people. We are all wanting to be healthier, slimmer and fitter – That is the foundation of my life as a blogger.
Once I can part myself from my social media and have responded to all messages I get up and have my coffee. My phone is on charge ready to take breakfast pics. I photograph, eat and post my pics at the same time. Many a meal goes cold lol!
I tag in any suppliers on my pics and use lots of hashtags which I key in manually. I don’t use any automated system . When I post I am posting live.

Once breakfast is over I shower, get dressed and do my makeup and think of any stories I can do. I love talking to you all and the messages I get in return which need responding to I can’t ignore them!

For those who are not so familiar with my lifestyle we live on beautiful big boat. This needs taking and filling up with water, emptying out, filling with diesel etc – probably 3 times a week. We have to watch the weather – it gets difficult if it’s windy and in winter, but we get to enjoy the summer days ‘al fresco’ We fit this into our days which takes a couple of hours or so and keeps Ken busy and happy. I quite often in the midst of a blog have to quickly put my coat on and help Ken manoeuvre the boat. Especially if the weather is bad!
Around lunchtime I get the post.
If I am lucky enough to have received a delivery it gets opened and I plan my day around that.

I like to do my reviews as soon as possible but sometimes have to schedule them as I don’t like bombarding you with too much at once but have to balance that with the expectations from suppliers.
I always treat suppliers and their products with respect – If I am not keen on something I have contacted suppliers and explained to them why and I don’t post. I don’t really want something on my feed I don’t like anyway as I like to have a positive feed and don’t want to spread negativity. We all need more positivity in our lives but it’s got to be honest too!

So on the days I have received a delivery I read up about it. Take photos, experience it and review honestly. I then post.
Once this is done I check messages again, check feeds – I have Instagram, Twitter and Facebook and then plan lunch if I haven’t already squeezed it in between all of the above! I photograph again, post, check messages, check my feed.
It all settles down around mid afternoon and I get some quiet time before planning and cooking tea, taking photos, posting, watching tv with one eye and responding to messages and checking feeds.

It all sounds a bit laborious but I love it!
Ken my partner is very patient with me and acknowledges this has to be done lol!
We only watch a couple of hours tv so my social media gets priority again! And so it goes on until bedtime!
Don’t get me wrong I do have free time to spend with family and friends and I love to have a bit of pampering now and then. I am semi retired now but work 1-2 days a week as I am not at retirement age yet! – my days are full and happy! I wouldn’t change it. We are lucky enough to get to try new and exciting (and some not so exciting) products and my mission is to share these with you. I love new ideas for foods, recipes, gifts, gadgets, and the occasional luxury! My friends and family get first hand experience of these as I am a sharing type of person!

Some may see bloggers as ‘freeloaders’ but we actually work hard to do what we love to do, which in monetary value equates to way below the minimum wage! Although we are privileged enough to receive sample products from suppliers purely for review we never take this for granted. It is a job/ hobby/vocation. The products we receive from suppliers are either gifted or discounted and if we are passionate about something you will know about it!
I don’t always post about products I have been sent and quite often write about products I have purchased or things I have seen when out and about. It’s about sharing after all ! I sometimes receive products on a regular basis, build good relationships with suppliers and often do work for them behind the scenes.

They may ask for my help in creating recipes which I plan and write up for them to publish or are looking at development and ask for my input.

My foundation for all of the above is searching for a healthier,
more confident and a happier me. My Slimming World group enabled me to move on from the rut I was in and give me a focus for the future, inspired by encouragement from the same people and I will be forever grateful for that.

I love creating new recipes and sharing them and spend as much time making stuff as I can. I sometimes end up with too much because the cooking bug got a hold of me – I should open a cafe lol!

Life is importantly about balance, I now look towards a healthy lifestyle with a bit of indulgence and luxury but continue to share what I experience with you guys – my extended support group. Thankyou for being there and listening to my ramblings, for putting up with my posts if it’s not your ‘cup of tea’, for ‘liking’ my meals when it’s not something you would have and for watching my insta stories and sending me lovely messages which I am always telling Ken about. Keep in touch

Love Debsx

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The Lo-Dough Boost Challenge !

After suffering from two chest infections in two months, having no inclination to eat normal meals and survive mainly on unhealthy snacks , losing my cooking mojo and my motivation along with it and having gained a few pounds – I drew the line! I needed to shake things up a bit and speed up my weightloss in a healthy way.
So here is my account as I boosted my weightloss journey with renewed motivation and ideas.


Having seen people calorie counting, fasting and having great losses I wondered if I could do the same. The long term answer is no. I would be destined for the Pork Pie shop!

So I looked to what I enjoy, what satisfies me and what is healthy and diet friendly – I know what works for me and what doesn't. I don't want to feel restricted or denied of anything as that can so easily send you off the rails!
One thing that is extremely diet friendly, versatile, filling, healthy, and satisfying is Lo-Dough and only 39 calories a slice. My plan is to incorporate Lo-Dough into 14 meals over the next week to kick start my weightloss! I will still be following the main principles of a healthy diet in terms of lean meats, vegetables and fruits etc One large box of Lo-Dough costs £28 but using it in this way it will last the full week. Lo-Dough has great filling power and a real game changer. In fact the whole box if it was at all possible to eat in one go ( it's not possible lol) is only 546 calories! The box is huge and I plan to have used the whole box at the end of my Lo-Dough Boost Challenge Week. Incorporating Lo-Dough into 14 meals will ensure my overall calorie intake is greatly reduced. I won't include the syn values/
Smartpoints or Calories of what I have had as these can change but you will be able to calculate the values yourselves depending on what plan or diet you follow. It's about healthy eating and weightloss and what I eat over the next week can be accommodated into most plans.
My meals will include Lo-Dough Pizzas, wraps, etc. Using Lo-Dough as the main constituent of 14 meals over the week will reduce the amount of carbs consumed overall in the same way speed food does on Slimming World. It will also ensure I stay satisfied and full after a meal as

it's full of protein and fibre.
Lo-Dough is high in fibre and protein and will use it most days in place of carbs. I do not plan to cut or entirely replace carbs with Lo-Dough as that would be too restrictive and too 'faddy' so putting it simply – if I fancy a couple of slices of wholemeal bread, potatoes or cereal, porridge etc I will have them – although I have never had a craving for porridge or cereal!
3 meals a day over a week =21 meals. 14 of these meals will include Lo-Dough. The remaining 7 meals will be healthy meals but not carb heavy.


So I start Day 1 today – Monday with a pizza for brunch – it's late but I will still fit in my 3 meals today!

My pizza was made up of:

  • 1 Lo-Dough wrap
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 4 slices wafer thin honey roast ham torn into small piece
  • 2 slices low fat cheese – hexa
  • 1/2 small red onion sliced thinly
  • 2 cherry tomatoes sliced
  • 1/4 yellow pepper sliced
  • Basil – 1tsp
  • Frylight

Method

Place Wrap on baking tray and spread puree over base , space ham , onion and pepper over puree. Add tomatoes, sprinkle with Basil. Chop cheese slices into eight pieces each and spread over top of vegetables. Spray all over the pizza with frylight and bake in oven – gas 5 until cheese melted on top – apx 15 mins. Served with green salad leaves and raw onion.

After lunch snack – apple

I told you I would fit 3 meals in today! Actually I had just half of this and saved the other half to stave off the munchies later whilst I watch the final of Love Island – yes, sad but true!
This is one piece of Lo-Dough, 1 tbsp of lighter than light mayo, 5 slices of wafer thin honey roast ham and salad leaves

For my main meal tonight I have made a Lo-Dough bowl which will contain my 'No Fuss Hearty One Pot Stew' served with vegetables. To make the Lo-Dough Bowl spray one piece of Lo-Dough with Avocado frylight, massage in both sides.
Then spray with Garlic Frylight and sprinkle with fresh ground salt and pepper. Place into an ovenproof pudding bowl and bake in a medium oven until the bottom has hardened.

No Fuss One Pot Hearty Stew
Serves 4 generously
Prep time 15 mins
Level – easy

  • 500gms stewing steak
  • 4 large pork sausages browned
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 2 large carrots chopped
  • 1 handful fine green beans trimmed and halved
  • 1 each green and red pepper de seeded and cut into chunks
  • 1 medium sweet potato peeled and cubed
  • 1 large crushed garlic clove
  • 6 small tomatoes chopped
  • 1 tbsp Worcester sauce
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 3 beef oxos in 1/2 Ltr boiling water
  • 1 rounded tsp chilli powder
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp mixed herbs
  • 1 tsp mustard powder

Simply combine all ingredients in a casserole dish , place on high heat until bubbling then lower heat and cook for two hours.

Season to taste and remove bay leaf before serving

Alternatively this can be cooked in a slow cooker.

This meal was delicious and extremely filling – a proper plateful! Ken had seconds and there is enough leftover for his tea tomorrow!


Day 2 – Tuesday

Breakfast with a difference and a big hit!
I received delivery of my Degustabox last week and inside was a sachet of Merchant Gourmet Red and White Quinoa. Now to be honest I thought 'what on earth am I going to use that for' but looking on the back of the pack I saw an intriguing recipe where you use it instead of porridge- the good news is though – it's surprisingly
a good alternative if you aren't keen on porridge and has a nice nutty texture.
So I grabbed a few ingredients from the fridge and here is what I used.

I placed half a pack of the Quinoa into a small pan. Generously covered with almond milk ( I forgot to measure!) and reheated it gently. I added a small amount of sweetener- 1 tsp. Whilst that was heating through I placed fresh berries in a bowl
Once the Quinoa was heated through for apx 8 minutes I stirred in the Whitworths Choc Shot and then poured over the berries. Mixed well and thoroughly enjoyed! You could also add a spoonful of Greek yoghurt for a creamier texture. I found it deliciously sweet and nutty – I love nuts and this appealed to me very much!
Lunch was a bit of a 'throw it together and see how it works kinda meal
I used some leftover warmed up Spanish Tortilla and half a piece of Lo-Dough with salad leaves and a smear of ketchup for a tasty lunch which turned out far better than I hoped for. I used a small piece of tortilla – apx 2/3 of a portion Recipe here

The tortilla does contain carbs in the form of potatoes and cheese – as I said before I am reducing the amount of consumed, not cutting them out entirely. Cutting something out can create heightened cravings and I am trying to avoid this.
I finished my lunch with a cup of good coffee and shared an apple with Charlie!
Snacks – The remaining half of Lo-Dough I spread with 2 tsp peanut butter and sliced Williams pear which although sounds gross was so lovely! No photo as it was down in a flash !

Tea tonight was also delicious

  • 1 Lo-Dough wrap
  • 1 small Fillet steak
  • 1 Handful of mushrooms
  • Garlic salt
  • Dried minced garlic
  • 1 small Butternut squash peeled and chipped
  • 2 tbsp fat free Greek yoghurt
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/4 tsp onion salt
  • 1 tsp dried coriander
  • Sweetener to taste

It comprised of mushrooms fried in garlic salt , dried minced garlic and seasoning and a small flash fried Fillet steak – you could use any good quality lean tender steak.

I placed the cooked mushrooms on the Lo-Dough down the middle. Cut the steak in half and laid it on top of the mushrooms. I then folded each side over so they overlapped and secured with 4 cocktail sticks. I then wrapped it all in tin foil and baked in a preheated oven gas 5 for apx 25 mins. Served with Butternut squash chips and a dip made from Fat free Greek yoghurt, curry powder,

Coriander, onion salt, mixed well and then added a little sweetener to taste. On its own I wasn't sure about the flavour but it worked well with the BNS chips. It was difficult to get a good photo and definitely tasted better than it looks!

Well that's two days smashed and I do feel better already! It also made my day when Ben from Lo-Dough messaged me to inform me he is taking up the Lo-Dough Boost Challenge alongside me!!


Day 3 – Wednesday
I had an awful nights sleep. I generally find this after day 2 of knuckling down. Reducing carbs and sugar has an unsettling effect on me until my body adapts. I also find what I call the 'Water drop' starts to happen. I was up a couple of times during the night bursting for a wee – sorry if that's too much information but I want to be open and honest! This always happens to me at this stage so it's no surprise and I am destined for a few rough sleeps ahead!
On the plus side I have got up this morning and feel like Kate Moss ( no, not suffering the effect of a boozy night lol) I feel slimmer! The Lo-Dough effect!
It's really important all way through the challenge to keep your water intake good. I am not going to specify how much – you hear anything up to 3 litres. I probably have around 2 in total . I start with a cup of tea or coffee, I have a coffee mid morning and a couple of Diet Cokes before 6pm. I then switch to sugar free juices and drink about a litre of that that leading up to bed time. Being honest is important – this is my way and I am not saying it's the right way. Some would say cut down on caffeine but in all honesty I don't want to – this is my diet and I won't – and I won't make you force me lol!

So I start the day with a cup of tea with milk – as I said before, it's what I fancy so it's what I am having. I used semi skimmed milk and a Yorkshire tea bag – oh I am a happy bunny! I love Yorkshire Tea and picked up a little free box at the Yorkshire Dales Food and Drink Festival last weekend, although I have plenty in without having to open it yet!
Breakfast is the same as yesterday- yes, I enjoyed it. I am going to rummage through my drawers (ooo errr miss!) to see if I can find another Whitworths shot – if not I will improvise!
Two mins later – I found one! Toffee and Pecan will do nicely thankyou! I won't bore you and slow down the page with another pic that looks remarkably the same as yesterday so just scroll back if the urge takes you! 😊

Lunch today was a little later than normal due to my exciting delivery from Bearfaced Groceries which kept me busy for a while if you have seen my instagram stories today. Anyway in true Lo-Dough Boost Challenge style I had a very filling and tasty lunch. I used the last of my Tortilla and had it on 1/2 Lo-Dough wrap with a little ketchup. On the side – mindful I need vegetables I had two of the Cauliflower 'Fish' bites I made earlier Recipe here Hands up – it had me beat and Charlie had the last couple of mouthfuls!
In between meal snack – 1 pear to stop me reaching for the wrong things!
1 bottle of Thor Drinks Apple Spritz with Mint – 69 cals

For tea I made a chilli – the way us slimmers do – lots of onion, peppers, tomato and beans. I served it in a Lo-Dough Bowl and had a side salad – it was soooo good and filling! 

I have one final munch today – the other half of my Lo-Dough from lunchtime – so I smeared it with 2 tsp of peanut butter and down it went! 

Well that's day 3 completed and it's been remarkably easy. I have been hungry only a couple of time and I must learn to have a drink of water first so I am off to have one now!


Day 4 – Thursday

After another expected rubbish night sleep and getting up twice for the loo – the water drop continues and an unexpected coughing fit in the early hours left me with little sleep. So a good breakfast is called for!

What better than a Lo-Dough Bacon and Egg Butty! A splash of ketchup and a side of cherry tomatoes on the vine. My bacon was completely trimmed of all fat and grilled. I normally like Crispy bacon but this morning I fancied something a little juicer and it really hit the spot. Charlie had my last bite of Lo-Dough and a cherry tomato as I was completely stuffed!

Today again I feel slimmer. More comfortable in my body and less encumbered.

I have been thinking back to February when I embarked on a well known diet plan 'boost' I decided to do 12 strict days – and I mean strict – I didn't cheat once. After 12 days I lost just 4.5lbs. I was gutted! The last day was the day before my birthday. We went out for a lovely meal, I had lots of carbs and immediately without warning vomited! My stomach was off for weeks. I have IBS and the shock of reintroducing carbs etc back into my system was too much for it to cope with. I felt ok before the meal and it was only whilst eating carbs ( garlic pizza) this happened. I started sweating, felt dizzy and was sick within a few minutes! I think being so restrictive with what I had been eating had created a slight food intolerance – that's why this week carbs are still on the menu – limited but still there and so is sugar. I have used ketchup which contains sugar and plan to have a little of something sweet later even if it's one square of dark chocolate. The results of the 12 day challenge I completed in February taught me a valuable lesson! Don't cut, just limit !

Late morning snack – 2 Cauliflower 'fish' with Tartare sauce and a cup of coffee. I was feeling a little peckish – I shouldn't have given Charlie my last mouthful of Lo-Dough this morning! 😉

Lunch today was lovely. I cooked a Sea Trout Fillet in the microwave let it cool slightly and then served it on a piece of Lo-Dough with salad leaves and sweet chilli sauce. I love trying different things – the fish was a little dry but that's where the sweet chilli sauce came into its own!

I asked Ken to kindly find some dark chocolate for me and he came back with milk chocolate with nuts in! I took three pieces and let him have the rest! Danger! Moderation is the key though on my challenge and I tell you what… I didn't half make those three pieces last when in actual fact I could demolish the whole bar in seconds ! I could so easily eat more – a real trigger food and dangerous!

Well I have had my two pieces of Lo-Dough today so am having a lovely sirloin steak with asparagus for tea with a Diane sauce which is a Hairy Bikers recipe http://www.hairybikers.com/recipes/view/steak-diane#Jrxq50ckhfEYiLsT.97

It was served with purple sweet potato chips and mushrooms stuffed with garlic and cherry tomatoes each topped with 1/2tbsp primula light – it all looks a little over cooked – I was busy blogging lol but it tasted lovely!


Day 5 – Friday

Breakfast was a simple fayre. I don't normally have cereal but enjoyed two Weetabix with almond milk. My first attempt was a little soggy so I binned the soggy Weetabix and tried two more with less milk and it was nice and Crispy! I would definitely have this again!

I was so busy with my blogging after breakfast I forgot to drink. I realised when I started coughing with a dry throat! So I must make more of an effort!

Morning was gone in a flash and I planned to have pizza for lunch. Yes you can be on a healthy eating splurge and still have your pizza! I have posted the recipe here

It was amazing! So filling and indulgent

Just use your imagination and creativity to build a perfect pizza at a fraction of the calories. That's why Lo-Dough is quite simply described as a game changer'

For tea I had two cauliflower 'fish' some of Kens chips and mushy peas on a Lo-Dough wrap. Although there are 4 'fish' on my plate – 2 was plenty and I really felt like I had eaten fish and chips without being left with all the fatty taste it leaves behind – I left the other two. Another successful day !

The most challenging day is a work day. A long shift with irregular meal times tends to throw me, so I have spent time preparing some Doner Kebab meat to make a kebab –

It will keep me happy and satisfied so bring on Day 6!!

Oops snack alert 9pm and was peckish so had two slices of my Doner Kebab meat –

Bedtime!!


Day 6 – Saturday

Work day! I prepared lunch before I had my breakfast and made a Lo-Dough bowl for when I get home. I don't finish work until 8pm so it's late to start faffing!

I like to keep things simple on a workday so it's lunch of homemade Doner Kebab in Lo-Dough with mint raita and salad.

Breakfast was simple too. I learnt from my previous mistake of adding too much milk to Weetabix so this morning I had another two Coconut and Raisin Weetabix with Alpro original almond milk.

It's a rubbish picture but I wasn't messing about and having my breakfast go soggy!

I added a couple of hearts to liven it up but I didn't eat those!! 😉

So lunch is at 2pm – way too late for me but apart from changing my job I can't alter that!

Little late morning snack to keep me going until lunchtime – I always like to have a contingency plan!

Lunch – the wait was worth it – 2.5 syn Lo-Dough Doner Kebab and I am in heaven

There's lots of fakeaway Doner Kebab recipes out there but I would say play about with spices and create your own

Later – 6pm and still working – another break and just had to have a snack! Proud of myself though as I always struggle on a Saturday and chose fruit again – being honest not my snack of preference but my snack of choice today!

Tonight for tea it's Lo-Dough bowl Chilli

I am rocking the bowls as you can fill them with anything and boy have I got an idea for tomorrow!


Day 7 – Sunday

Motoring on to the end of my Lo-Dough Boost Challenge I decided to start the day in style with a good Sunday breakfast. I used 1/2 Lo-Dough wrap and fried it in a little frylight with a tbsp of water to stop it burning – it does work and I had this instead of potato cakes that Ken had on his!

I thorough enjoyed my relaxed Sunday breakfast reinforced by no mobile signal whilst my network provider decided to work on the mast for an hour or two so I couldn't blog whilst eating!

Whilst I was in purgatory with no signal I decided to make some cookies with a pack I picked up at last weeks Yorkshire Dales Food and Drink Festival. I managed to make 18 cookies. Ken has been complaining there's never any biscuits in so he can't complain now!

Anyway, late morning I had one cookie with a cup of coffee. Purely to keep my hand in the sugar department and to avoid any reactions to any foods once I finish my challenge. The cookies contain wheat and some vegetable fats. Oh and I did want to try one too!!

So lunch was a repeat of yesterday apart from two differences. I didn't forget my chilli sauce and I only had 1/2 a Lo-Dough wrap as I need to save my last full wrap for tonight's meal.

So, with just one more meal on my challenge I look back and review my week.

  • How did it go? Well, dismiss the fact I don't know at this stage how much weight I have lost I feel remarkably leaner. I have more energy, feel less bloated and happy that I have done it in a healthy way. I have boosted my weightloss with healthy 'real' foods in a way that I hope will have worked for me.
  • How much has it cost? Well, one box of Lo-Dough can be purchased here for £28 to follow my Lo-Dough Boost challenge, incorporating 14 pieces of Lo-Dough (2 per day) over a week into your normal healthy eating regime.
  • How do I feel? I feel slimmer, more energised and more comfortable in my skin!
  • Have I gone without anything? No! I don't feel like I have! I have eaten chocolate, cream, peanut butter, chips, potatoes, roast potato, sauces, Doner Kebab – oh and don't forget the biscuit!
  • How did I do? We will have to wait until tomorrow!
  • Has Lo-Dough endorsed this? No – although they were aware I had given myself this challenge and are interested to see the results – they didn't have any influence over the week apart from encouraging me to do well. I was just inspired by their creation!

My last meal on the challenge and my 14th piece of Lo-Dough this week and I had to finish in style with a Sunday dinner and using a Lo-Dough bowl in place of a Yorkshire Pudding!
It was delicious and worth waiting for. I can honestly and truly say I have enjoyed my Lo-Dough Boost Challenge and have lost 5.5lbs in total without being hungry or having any cravings. I hope that my blog post inspires you to find your own healthy way of giving yourself a boost. This way really fit into our lifestyle with no fuss and really was a pleasure!
Lo-Dough is sold here
So am I pleased? Hell yeah!! I suffered through 12 days of a worldwide well known diet's boost plan last year, was a complete angel and lost 4.5 lbs.
This time on the Lo-Dough Boost Challenge I have been happy, satisfied and had no cravings and in just 7 days I lost 5.5lbs – 1lb more

Food · Food hampers · Hampers · Health · Low Carb · Recipes · Snacks

Cauliflower ‘Fish’

I have adapted this recipe from one I found in a magazine – served with homemade Slimming World Chips and homemade Tartar Sauce it's a really diet friendly meal. I can't remember the name of the magazine so I am unable to give them credit – I tore the recipe pages out a few days ago and made a couple of slight tweaks to make it lower in fat and carbs. If you are on Slimming World it works out at 6.5 syns for the whole recipe at the time of posting and it's bursting with speed food! Please check syn values as they can vary.

Prep – apx 30 mins
Cooking time – apx 30-40 mins
Ingredients

  • Frylight
  • 1 onion peeled and chopped finely
  • 1 leek, trimmed and chopped finely
  • 2 fat garlic cloves peeled and chopped finely
  • 1 medium cauliflower made into cauli rice
  • 1 grated Courgette with liquid squeezed out
  • 3 large free range eggs beaten well
  • 40 gms coconut flour
  • 150 gms fat free cottage cheese
  • Zest of an unwaxed lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method
Line two baking trays with baking parchment. Pre heat oven to gas 7
Spray a non stick frying pan with frylight and add leek, onion and garlic. Fry on a low to medium heat until softened
Mix together with remaining ingredients together in a large bowl. Use a heaped tablespoon per 'fish' and shape in your hands into fish shapes and arrange on the trays.
Spray generously with frylight and bake in the oven until golden brown.

Serve with Tartare sauce. The original recipe gave instructions for making your own and although I did – tweaked slightly for convenience I wasn't keen when I tried it at first but when I tried it with the 'fish' it remarkably works, here is what I used
Makes 16 – apx 4 servings if used as a meal

Tartare Sauce
Prep time – 10 mins
Ingredients
2 tbsp capers drained
1 tablespoon dried parsley
300ml fat free greek yoghurt
Juice of 1 lemon
Fresh ground Salt and pepper

Method
Finely chop capers – I used a mini chopper. Add remaining ingredients into a bowl. Mix thoroughly and season with salt pepper

Beverages · Food · Food hampers · Gifts · Hampers · Health · Slimmingworld · Subscriptionbox · Weightwatchers

It’s Summer time at Degustabox!

Imagine my delight today at receiving a summer themed Degustabox on a perfect Summers day! The sun is blazing and my face is beaming! For anyone who hasn't experienced opening a Degustabox- you can try your first box for just £5.99 with my code 8c0x9. It's a monthly subscription box which you can cancel at any time. Go to https://degustabox.com where you can find more details on delivery, subscriptions and cancellations.
This months aptly 'Summer' themed box is so welcome! The perfect balance of healthy food with ample liquid refreshments!
We always start the day with breakfast so what better way to introduce this months contents than to start with:
Weetabix Additions – Coconut and Raisin. For those on Slimming World two of these are your hexb or 7.5 syns. It's a huge box of 24 and packed with fibre, vitamin D and 100% wholegrain. £2.99

A cheeky little fruit juice is another way to start a beautiful Summer morning and we are lucky enough to have just such a thing with this lovely carton of Cracker Drinks Co. Mango and Passionfruit fruit juice drink A uniquely crafted fruit blend, Cracker Drinks describe their juice as sweet, smooth and subtle. It contains only naturally occurring sugars and provides you with 1 of your 5 a day. At 60 cals per 200 ml serving or 3 syns that's definitely affordable! £1.80

Another thing that comes in handy at breakfast time – for frying or baking those eggs and hash browns or omelettes is Frylight. Something I cannot do without! This new flavour – Avocado is perfect for pan frying, woks, roasting or the BBQ. At just 1 cal per spray, just spray away, it's good exercise! £2.99

If you haven't got time for breakfast and have to eat on the train etc these Ryvita Thins are perfect.
Take them to work, accompanied by a little hummus or a dip they are a perfect snack or addiction to lunch. Topped with Cheddar, Regato and Emmental cheeses you can even enjoy them on their own for just 1.5 syns or 29 cals. £1.89

One thing we do like to do on a hot day is to enjoy light snacks. It's sometimes difficult to fit in a healthy nutritious snack when you don't fancy fruit.Oloves are perfect for that. Natural green pitted olives flavoured with chilli and oregano and just 53 cals per pack or 3 syns they make a perfect filling snack £0.99

All this is making me thirsty and what better for a lovely refreshing drink than an apple spritz. Thor Dry Apple Spritz has included two flavours in this months box – Ginger and Mint. At just 69 Calories per bottle or 3.5 syns you can enjoy a lovely refreshing dry crisp sparkling drink

Cooking on a hot day can be a bit of a bind and salads are quite often on the menu. We all need that extra bit of filling power and not all of us eats bread. Quinoa is a perfect alternative to rice or couscous and can be served with salads, stews or enjoyed on its own. Merchant Gourmet's Red and White Quinoa ( pronounced keenwah) can even be used for making a wholesome porridge. At just 3 syns per pack it's a very filling healthy wholefood £1.99

A staple in anyone's cupboard should be mustard. MaillesTraditional Dijon Mustard is a perfect accompaniment to many a meal and I often use it as an ingredient to flavour dishes – grilled lamb, in potato salad or simply with a steak. Just a tiny amount can transform a recipe. £1.99

So we have got through a hot day and we are well into the evening and we fancy a nibble! What better than to indulge on something random …..
Oh yes! It's Rowntrees Randoms. Not only are they packed with fruity flavour, they have 30% less sugar too! 9 sweets are 106 cals or 5.5 syns and so worth it for a lovely chewy fruity sweet! Perfect for the family if you can bear to share! £1.29

So if you couldn't bear to share them how about giving the rest of the family some beautiful nutritious yoghurt. Included in the box this month is a voucher to enjoy any flavour of The Collective Kids Yoghurt With no pips or bits and packed with fruit they make a delicious healthy snack or dessert. No added nasties and just whole milk and fruit this fruity yoghurt was created to cater for children's palates and preferences. £2.00

The Collective didn't stop there though! For those gym goers or those that just need a protein boost. The Collective have included two vouchers to try their Pro-Yo berries, coconut or strawberry protein yoghurt in a carton to enjoy on the go! Containing more protein than 2 eggs in each carton and less sugar than an apple they make a perfect snack!

Well after a long day what better way to wind down the day with a lovely refreshing alcoholic drink – feet up, in the garden with a glass of Blossom Hill Spritz
Blossom Hill Raspberry and Blackcurrant Spritz is a fruity twist on wine. Light bubbly with natural fruit flavours. Best served chilled. £4.99
A perfect way to reflect what an amazing Summer themed July's Degustabox was!