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#1 Mark Valentine

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Posted 24 June 2011 - 01:27 AM

Hi folks,I went to a local meeting tonight to see if it might be helpful to me, but it wan't very interactive and I'm more in need of help putting together simple healthy meals (I'm an ME sufferer with a fuzzy brain, too late in life to this cooking thing!) than having someone weigh me and do sums (I'm supposed to be a scientist, by golly!).As a recently diagnosed diabetic I've been seeing a dietician, but it's too little too seldom (every 3-4 months) to be useful at all. I had more luck on the NHS Counterweight course a couple of years ago (and have been doing a bit of followup with my practice nurse in recent weeks).I've been getting to grips with calories in recent months, keeping a daily tally, and eventually I managed to bring my intake down from 2500 kcal to less than 2000 (my target is supposed to be 1850, and I do beat that regularly, but I'm already losing a little weight: 2 kilos in a few weeks after a couple of years of being level).I'm not sure if this PEP stuff (fine as it sounds) is ideal for me, I actually find it easier just to tally the calories than figure out what may or may not be a "free check" or whatever, and my practice nurse tells me I seem to know what I need to do to achieve a healthy balance of food types.Since I often have trouble just putting together a meal, I've been putting some effort into choosing my ready meals better (and rescuing a completely bland "Tesco Light" dish with my herb & spice grinders and chilli sauce!), adding some microwave-steamed veg, not ignoring the "serves 2" labels, etc...But I do much prefer to make something rather more tasty from scratch when I can manage it! Still working on getting the portion sizes, erm, realistic, learning the basics of soup-making, and so on.Tried a risotto and salad from a Jamie Oliver "30 minute meal" recently. It was absolutely delish, but took me three hours to make and I scoffed 1100 kcals with most of a bottle of Pinot Grigio!More often, I'll spend ages scouring for an interesting recipe which I can actually pull together the ingredients for, by which time I'm too knackered to cook it!Too often, I just wander into the kitchen, open all the cupboards, stare and scratch my head for half an hour, and dig something non-ideal out of the freezer to nuke... If it's relatively healthy, half an hour later I'm probably still peckish and have just about enough energy to pull open a bag of crisps, argh!I'd really like to be able to prepare a bunch of healthy mini-meals on a good day which I can dig into in the coming days, but that seems unrealistic given my lack of planning ability (not inherent, but due to my chronic fatigue) and lack of culinary ability.So, I'm starting to solve some of my problems, but have loads more to overcome, and I'm sure many of you have been going through the same for similar or entirely different reasons! I'm keen to hear what approaches you've found useful to tackle them.Also, what aspects of this web site might help me make progress in this direction?Mark.

#2 Jean.c

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Posted 24 June 2011 - 07:00 AM

Hi Mark, I'm not much of a chef also my Husband is just a meat and 2 veg man! But there is a members recipe thread somewhere here that will give you some ideas. SS is really good and out of all the "diets" going it's the easiest one to work out! I've been here years and keep returning! As this is a very friendly site, good luck.

#3 kashmere

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Posted 24 June 2011 - 08:26 AM

SS is fairly straightforward all it does really is convert your daily calories into checks and gives you a dairy and fruit allowance on top plus as much free veg as you like. As most veg is fairly low-cal you only really have to count for things like potatoes, peas, etc.I like working in checks as its easier to carry the figures in your head and convert things in the supermarket i.e. 4 checks = 100 cals so easy to work out if you can afford that ready meal.I don't fuss too much about the PEP and no-check stuff. Just work out what I plan to eat and add the checks up and stay within the allowance. I do however like the discipline of having the check allowance.There are recipes available on the site, you can browse some of them without joining I think.Try a few out before deciding if you want to join. There are also lots of recipe books to buy on the shopping tab.The online membership would give you access to the various plans but you can buy the books as a package in the shop. I find the books easier and kept mine from last time I was here and use them rather than the PDFs. Cooking really is a matter of planning and if you are going to make a spag bol then make loads and separate into portions immediately ready to freeze. I sometimes spend the weekend working out what I need to buy for the stuff I plan to batch cook the following weekend so it is all there ready to get started.Good luck.

#4 tartansue

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Posted 25 June 2011 - 10:27 AM

I find the ss recipes really easy, if you look thru your pep book you can get many of the staples and they're only a paragraph so not much can go wrong. It's handy for portion control to follow them and you can easily re-convert to calories with one check being 25 cals. The 'working out what's no check' I find is a Godsend too because it's basically veg that is no check so if you can cobble together a meal with them you are going to save cals and get a loss. The Low Check, No Check recipe book is great for that. Also 'free' jellies can make you feel like you've eaten something while being virtually no cal. Being at class and following ss might make the difference for you from maintaining to losing, just having that extra little check once a week can stop a bad weekend turning into a bad month, I find. Good luck on your quest for slimness!

#5 Your Hostess

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Posted 29 June 2011 - 11:33 AM

Hi SueI have sent you a private message to tell you how the website can help you more.YH



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