Slimming World to Harcombe?

(836 Posts)
FourArms Mon 02-Dec-13 11:30:15

I've been doing SW since 29/8. Initially on EE and now mainly on red days.

However although I've lost 1lb short of 2
stone I haven't lost any weight this week and I've stuck to the plan with the exception of maybe not enough syns / HEB.

Have seen the Harcombe diet and this seems to be more like what I'm doing at the moment although I'll have to swap coffee and skimmed milk for herbal tea and stop my 10 a day satsuma habit ;)

Just wondered what people's losses had been in phase 1 switching from SW? My BMI is still in the low 30s so I've got plenty to lose!

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 02-Dec-13 12:04:10

Congratulations on your weight loss. I did the 5:2 earlier this year but have put 1/2 stone back on. I started Harcombe this morning (BMI 26). I would be happy to share the experience with you.

FourArms Mon 02-Dec-13 12:30:23

Sounds good! I'm planning on starting tomorrow so I'm finishing off all the fruit in the house today!

What will you be eating today? I think I'll skip the rice altogether as I've been avoiding rice / pasta and potatoes for a couple of weeks anyway and don't really miss them.

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 02-Dec-13 12:47:26

I did the same thing yesterday. Hoovered up all the fruit, falafels and chocolate left in the house so it couldnt derail me.

Breakfast this morning was bacon, scrambled egg and 4 tiny tomato's. Lunch will be Ham & Egg and supper baked veg with Turkey.

I need to find something different for lunches as I am not a great lover of eggs (hardly ever eat them).

I will eat rice occasionally, was thinking of making a Kedgeree later in the week, but probably not every day.

So far am feeling very headachy and a little dizzy. I am not surprised as I know I have blood sugar issues and suspect that I am probably pre-diabetic.

My sugar cravings have been horrendous since doing the 5:2 and I am trying the Harcombe as a way to address that issue. Diabetes is a family issue and one I am desperate to avoid.

FourArms Mon 02-Dec-13 14:27:57

Great minds!

Sounds a good menu! I don't know if the sugar cravings will hit me as I've cut out refined sugar with SW, although I'm still getting lots through fruit.

Think caffeine withdrawal might be my downfall.

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 02-Dec-13 20:42:30

Well day 1 almost over.

I cannot believe how much protien I have eaten or how bad the sugar cravings are. I am desperate for a piece of fruit but am now siitting eating puffed brown rice (no sugar or salt). It tastes just like cardboard but is strangely satisfying.

I am lucky that I won't struggle on the caffeine front as I changed to decaff several months ago. My memories of that were a very bad headache for a week or so, but then an amazingly clear head.

Right now still feeling a bit dizzy and headachy, but nowhere near as bad as I expected.

FourArms Mon 02-Dec-13 21:18:51

Well done!

I didn't get to the shops today, but I'll go tomorrow after my SW weigh in (I'm on a 12wk countdown but I always weigh & go). Managed to finish the satsumas today, will have to give away the melon & apples (DC don't eat any fruit sad )

So scrambled egg for breakfast (bit sad about no mushrooms - have had egg & mushroom loads lately)

Pork loin and salad for lunch and maybe dinner too.

Will buy some rice puff thingies. Might also try oats & yoghurt - I have that on SW plan sometimes. If you mix the night before the oats swell up. smile

FourArms Mon 02-Dec-13 21:20:26

How much have you drunk? I'll need to massively up my water intake which is currently 20% herbal tea and 80% coffee although my fruit intake must have boosted that too.

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 02-Dec-13 22:01:29

Probably not drunk enough, hence the headache. I am really bad at drinking (rarely feel thirst) and love milk in my coffee. Without the milk today my motivation to make a cup of coffee has diminished.

I normally have dry oatmeal stirred into Yoghurt for breakfast (I am a coeliac but can tolerate Oats). However, I dont like plain yoghurt so that won't work for me.

However, I do wish I had bought some Yoghurt when I did my shop (I live in an isolated location - 15 miles to the nearest supermarket). I could have used it for sauces and in the Kedgeree.

Now off too bed with a large glass of water

FourArms Tue 03-Dec-13 08:08:50

How's the headache?

Day 1 breakfast - includes a bit of a cheat - 3 scrambled eggs with mushrooms. Herbal tea. Can't let the mushrooms go to waste - they're lovely ones. smile

Says we should have 1.5 litres of fluid a day - I'll aim for that and let you know how I do.

Did I see somewhere you can have live Greek yoghurt on P1? Is that any good?

Have a good day smile

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 03-Dec-13 08:53:49

Strange night, restless and very bad dreams (assume that is part of the detox aspect).

Feel exhausted this morning, however my headache has died away and I feel very clear headed. I have also lost 1lb.

Can't face another plate of protein for breakfast so am planning water porridge this morning and a drive to my nearest town to stock up on veggies.

One of my dieting fallbacks is a soup which I make with roast root vegetables and masses of green veg. I will probably roast up some veg today (parsnips, swede, carrots and butternut squash) and keep the soup base in the fridge ready to add green veg for my lunches.

I will also pick up Yoghurt while I am there. This diet is supposed to be about changing bad habits and I think the oversweetened Rachels yoghurt needs to be one of those habits I knock on the head.

Will be thinking of you today. Remember when the cravings for fruit hit you,this is only for 5 days

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 03-Dec-13 09:38:47

Take back some of what I just said.

Water porridge is disgusting, so resorted to scrambled egg & bacon.

Headache now pounding !!

Did mean to say on earlier email, that I was not hungry when I woke up (normally starving)

FourArms Tue 03-Dec-13 12:17:05

Oh dear! I won't try that then.

Contrary to what I said yesterday I've just bought brown rice, kallo cereal and porridge which I think I will probably have for breakfast on the days I work (p/t teacher).

Swede chips in the actifry for lunch with pork loin steak and salad. Feels v.naughty cooking with oil but that is allowed isn't it?

2 herbal teas so far. Third just stewing now.

Hope your headache eases. I've bought some decaff coffee in case things get bad ;)

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 03-Dec-13 12:57:22

Ohhh Swede Chips in the actifry sounds good and yes you are allowed Oil.

Are those Actifry machines good? I have an Aga so no chance of ever getting Oil hot enough to fry chips.

Tried to get live Yoghurt this morning but very short codes so I shall go without.

Also on my 3rd Herbal Tea, coffee is actually tasting quite foul today.

Headache OK but have noticed I have very black rings under my eyes (detox?) and my breath smells bad (sorry if TMI)

FourArms Tue 03-Dec-13 13:31:54

I love my actifry. We've had it for a couple of years now. Great for 'roast' potatoes and chips. Also does lovely roast veg - parsnips, carrots and now swede!! They were absolutely gorgeous. I had half a swede. blush I'll definitely have them again. Actifrys are on offer everywhere at the moment so seems a good time to buy one.

I bought two pots of yoghurt - onken set yoghurt and yeo valley natural yoghurt. Both full fat. The yeo valley one is gorgeous, I could easily have eaten the whole tub.

Maybe the black rings are from the bad nights sleep? Can't tell what my breath is like because my handwash is so strong that's all I can smell if I put my hand up to my nose to breathe!

Have managed 4 mugs of herbal tea now. Will have to measure the cup size so I know when I've hit my 1.5 litres!

FourArms Tue 03-Dec-13 16:44:28

Have terrible headache. Had a cup of decaff and 2 paracetamol but that didn't help.

On the bright side, I have now had my 1.5 litres of fluid via 6 cups of herbal tea.

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 03-Dec-13 21:42:55

Have just finished work and similarly have a thundering headache. I also have a very flushed face, my eyes are quite red with big black rings under them and my hair has gone quite lank and greasy (I wash it every day so that is very strange)

However, I have checked online and think this is all quite normal and down to detoxing and sugar withdrawal. I couldn't believe how sweet my baked vegetables tasted tonight.

Overall, aside from the headache issues, I am finding this much easier to follow than the 5:2 and I am not really experiencing any real hunger. I am hoping that is a sign that my blood sugar is more settled.

Well done for getting through day 1. It will all get easier next week !!

FourArms Wed 04-Dec-13 08:12:49

Well done!

I have to admit I cheated last night and had a coffee (not decaff) with skimmed milk. But it does say in book that if you're a big coffee drinker it's OK to have a couple a day in the first week. Couldn't afford headache turning into a migraine. Ended up in bed at half 9 anyway!

Day 2.
1lb down on the scales. Pretty amazed since I didn't expect a water retention loss and I'd been stalled for over a week on SW. 5.8lbs until my Xmas 2.5 stone off target smile

Breakfast - coffee and porridge with NLY which is fine (I didn't leave it overnight)

Hope today is better for you. I've read that Day 3 is the worst, but maybe you've had it early? Fingers crossed.

Notsurehowthathappened Wed 04-Dec-13 09:47:10

Thanks for the day 3 warning.

I have had another bad night (took me hours to get to sleep) and have a horrendous headache this morning. On the basis of your warning I think I will try to get out for a walk today.

On the plus side I continue to feel no hunger, have no sugar cravings and have lost 3lb in two days.

I really admire you for coping with caffeine withdrawal alongside such a restrictive diet. I was very addicted to caffeine and was advised to come off it because it was implicated in a worsening migraine situation and heart palpitations. The withdrawal was uncomfortable but so, so worth it. I have far fewer migraines these days. What I did do when going through the withdrawal was to buy a caffetiere and switch to a really lovely decaff coffee (Taylors). It made each cup seem special.

Breakfast today - Bacon, tomatoes and coffee

Lunch / Dinner - Turkey stir fry.

Keep going today !! Is the stalling the reason you have switched from SW?

FourArms Wed 04-Dec-13 14:46:46

Yes - I'd had a few good weeks and then about 10 days where I bobbed around the same pound. I'd also stopped needing the healthy extra 'B' choice and syns (not sure if you're familiar with SW?) so it seemed silly to eat them for the sake of it.

Feel much better today. I wasn't hungry at breakfast, but i did have baby sweetcorn x 10, salad (just leaves, tomatoes and grated carrot) and 4 (but they needed using up!) pork loin medallions for dinner followed by 1/3 of a 500g pot of yoghurt. I was hungry for dinner though last night.

Didn't feel hungry today until about half 1 (I finish early so normally have a banana or something in the car and lunch at home), but I have drunk two 500ml bottles of water.

Now cooking lunch - 500g of ready cubes swede in actifry (will probably save some for dinner), salad (bought and eaten on way home as starving!) and possibly a fried egg or some chicken if I can be bothered!

Tried to buy some cold meat to eat on way home, none of it was just meat. The finest range had phosphates and salt - maybe they were OK, think it's just added sugar that's a worry?

Caffeine headache at bay for now. The coffee this morning seems to have warded it off. My migraines seem to be linked to caffeine too, but a coffee always helps them (or pre-SW coffee, coke and cake!!). It will be great if I can cut down. Bought some nice carte noir instant yesterday, sure it will be nicer when I can have more than a smidge of milk. Don't think you can have yoghurt in coffee?!

I slept v.badly last night too, but put it down to DS1 getting in bed with me! I did go really early so still feel awake today. Will be interesting to see if it's the same tonight. I did also take a pink ibuprofen tablet for my headache and they always knock me out!

Right, my swede awaits me! Hope your day went well. 3lb is amazing, hope I see another change tomorrow too smile

Notsurehowthathappened Wed 04-Dec-13 16:21:40

Day not going as bad as I feared. Terrible cravings for fruit and milky coffee all morning, but I held out and went for a walk.

Now my headache is starting to lift and I am feeling quite good.

I have had lunch / supper and am about to start work. I will probably work through until 10ish and just eat puffed brown rice if I get the nibblies.

My biggest need right now is a cup of coffee WITH milk. I dont take much milk in coffee but hate the way it tastes without.

I think your ham would have been OK. It would be pretty hard to find ham these days that isnt pumped full of phosphates. Just avoid Sugar glazes.

Have a good evening and a good nights sleep.

Notsurehowthathappened Wed 04-Dec-13 16:43:12

No wonder this diet is working. Have plugged today's food into Fitness Pal and it only comes to 800 calories & 60 carb units !!

FourArms Wed 04-Dec-13 18:03:14

LOL! My trousers (new a fortnight ago) are distinctly loose! smile

I've gotten through the day on the one coffee but I've promised myself another one when the kids are in bed.

Stuffed after dinner - sliced chicken breast coated in tikka spices (ready mix from Fiddes Payne in Tesco - nothing but spices), lemon juice and natural yoghurt fried in oil shock, rest of my 500g of swede (lovely!) and half a plate of salad. Don't even need the NLY so will save the rest of my tub for breakfast with oats again.

Made extra chicken for tomorrow's lunch with salad. smile

Hope you sleep better tonight too smile

FourArms Wed 04-Dec-13 18:17:20

990 calories & 25% carb (60g) here smile

wombat22 Wed 04-Dec-13 18:58:16

Hello. Can I join you? fsmile. I am day 2 of Harcombe diet

FourArms Wed 04-Dec-13 21:02:29

Absolutely smile How's it going? I'm day 2 as well but NSHTH is a day ahead.

SolidGold Wed 04-Dec-13 23:31:51

Can I join too? I've followed Harcombe before but have slipped back into bad habits again and my waistbands are starting to feel a bit tight.

My downfall is always chocolate. I cope well without bread, potatoes etc.

Have any of you tried celeriac chips? I cut it into fat chips, toss in olive oil and salt and roast them. Lovely.

I can't really have dairy, which makes things difficult, because I love cheese, but I try to limit my intake to just a little.

FourArms Thu 05-Dec-13 07:13:20

Welcome SGB smile

I've never had celeriac I don't think. Will buy some tonight. Am loving lots of chips at the moment (albeit made from swede!)

What phase are you going to be doing?

I'm luckily not missing chocolate - had virtually given it up with SW and was almost forcing myself to want some of my low syn treats, but I didn't need them.

Day 3 here. 1lb down on scales. Down 2lb since starting.
Same breakfast as yesterday - 50g oats and Onken NLY. It kept me going all morning yesterday, hope it does the same today! I'm also having a coffee with milk. I've decided I'm having two per day, then I'll be off plan while we're away Sat/Sun, then I'll try and drop to one a day for the next week.

Leftover chicken with salad for lunch.

Have a good day everyone smile

20 days until Christmas - want to lose 5lb by Christmas Day fsmile

FourArms Thu 05-Dec-13 08:37:06

Little bit of excitement for the day - could do the buttons up in a cap sleeve top - always worn with them undone previously smile smile smile And there's space to spare!

SolidGold Thu 05-Dec-13 09:19:56

Sorry, forgot to say, I'll be doing phase one and will then introduce a little cheese in phase two.

I'm making a big pot of soup this morning from the chicken carcass left over last night, so that's lunch for the next three days.

Well done on being able to button up your top smile

Notsurehowthathappened Thu 05-Dec-13 09:36:17

Morning, welcome Solidgold and well done on your second lb FA.

Day 4 for me today. Really excited this morning 4lb off now in 3 days and my fasting blood sugar down to 5.4, which takes me out of pre-diabetic range. I have also slept well, the headache has gone and I am feeling great.

I nearly slipped last night, I made coffee with milk but then when I tasted it I realised that it just didnt taste the same as pre diet. So I did a taste test, with and without milk. No real difference. Presumably my taste buds have been affected by the diet and coffee will just taste different now. Thats fab for me because I think I have a slight dairy issue (I have constant Sinus problems) so can cut the milk out of my diet.

My thoughts are now starting to turn to stage 2. Have you read the old MN threads about Harcombe. I am trying to decide whether to do Harcombe stage 2 /3 or switch at some stage to either the Insulin Resistance (my big worry) diet or low GI. How did you get on with the later stages on Harcombe SG.

I am struggling with Broadband today because of a horrendous storm, so if you don't hear from me later I will the thinking of you and will catch up as soon as I can log in.

P.S love the sound of those Celeriac chips.

Notsurehowthathappened Thu 05-Dec-13 10:22:26

Woops and welcome Wombat as well.

My broadband is dropping out every few minutes and in my speed to post a message I missed your message at the bottom of the page.

SolidGold Thu 05-Dec-13 12:37:11

So, day 1 of Phase 1 for me. I had a late breakfast of scrambled egg with some fried bacon and fried tomato and homemade mayonnaise. I drink black decaff anyway, but will try and drink more herbal tea and water.

I might not weigh myself, as I have a tendency to get obsessed with weight and lose the plot if my weight fluctuates, so I'll probably stick to measuring myself.

I can definitely recommend the celeriac chips, they are lovely smile

Beechview Thu 05-Dec-13 15:47:35

I'm doing day 2 of a slightly relaxed Harcombe diet. Can I join this thread please?

I've done this before and lost really well on stage 1 and then didn't lose anything on stage 2. This time, I'm going to carry on with stage 1 til I lose all the weight I need to. Of course, I'll have a few meals off here and there.

I didn't give up coffee last time and I haven't this time either. I only drink 1 cup a day.

The main things I've relaxed a bit is the coffee and having 1 portion of fruit a day. I got a bit constipated last time too and I don't want to be dealing with that again!

I'm having porridge every morning as my carb meal and then protein and veg for the rest of the day (plus 1 bit of fruit mid afternoon)

Beechview Thu 05-Dec-13 15:53:58

My main aim is to lose as much as I can by Christmas. Hopefully I'll have got used to eating this way and I can carry on afterwards too.

I have a meal out tomorrow but nothing else planned before Christmas.

SolidGold Thu 05-Dec-13 16:47:02

How do you make your porridge Beechview? With water? I'm not sure I'd like it without milk.

I'm cutting fruit out completely, I think I have big sugar dependency problems, so can't have anything sweet at all. I generally struggle with constipation too, but found last time that as long as I drink plenty of water and include enough fat in my diet, it's ok, better than normal. I do eat plenty of veg though.

Notsurehowthathappened Thu 05-Dec-13 16:50:46

Welcome Beechview.

Day 4 has constituted Bacon, Tomatoes and scrambled Egg for Breakfast and then Kedgeree (Smoked Haddock, brown Rice, Peas, fried Shallots, Boiled Egg and natural Yoghurt) for late Lunch / early Supper.

The latter was my reward for coping with the Breast Clinic today (worrying dimple & breast changes) but all OK thank goodness.

Bought the John Briffa book on Kindle this morning and started reading it at Hospital. It is really interesting and is really beginning to help me understand where some of my food cravings and blood sugar issues have come from.

Do you understand why phase 2 of Harcombe didnt work for you Beechview? I am reading lots of posts on MN and elsewhere, saying the same thing and want to decide whether to trust that phase 2 will work for me, or consider switching to something else.

SolidGold Thu 05-Dec-13 17:29:32

NotSure, I read the John Briffa book recently too, very interesting.

Also heard on the news recently that I think it was Sweden are changing their recommendations for dieting from low fat to low carb, hopefully the rest of the world will catch on too.

Beechview Thu 05-Dec-13 18:00:42

SolidGold I make my porridge mostly with water and some unsweetened almond milk. I'm not sure if its technically allowed or not but it works for me. Porridge with just water is a bit unappetising!

Notsurewhathappened I don't really know why it didn't work. I just maintained on it. Maybe it was because portion sizes aren't specified and I was eating too much? Who knows. I'll just carry on doing what I'm doing and hopefully that will work.

So today I had porridge for breakfast, home made lamb burgers with veg for lunch, 1 pear, salmon in a leek and tomato sauce for dinner. I've got some plain yoghurt and herbal tea for later.

FourArms Thu 05-Dec-13 18:41:02

Sounds like we've all had a good day. smile Glad the hospital appt was positive HSHTH smile smile

Good day here. Porridge & yoghurt for breakfast with the forbidden coffee & milk.

Had a rather extended lunch - knew I had a lunch mtg and our lunch is late anyway (1.30) so had some of my lunch at break time (11.30 - baby sweetcorn), some at the end of lunch (2.30 - chicken tikka) and the rest at the end of school (3.45 - salad). Very naughty grazing, but will probably be common on teaching days.

Dinner was mainly good - chicken, carrot & swede mash, sprouts, fried courgette and mushrooms (if it's meal!!). Chicken was done in a spices bag though - need to investigate the ingredients of that.

No headache. 1.5l of water & one coffee so far fluid wise smile

wombat22 Thu 05-Dec-13 20:03:33

Hello everyone. I tried Harcombe earlier this year and did well on phase1. Lost my way trying to move onto phase 2. Recently tried primal/paleo but didn't lose any weight (too many nuts and double cream). Had an excessive week and weekend and put on about albs, hence starting again. I think I have a problem with milk so cut that out for this week and following the diet rigidly. Eating plenty of Greek style yoghurt. Weighed this morning and lost 6lbs since Tues morning. Amazing. Good luck to every one and thanks for the welcome. grin

SolidGold Thu 05-Dec-13 20:03:40

I've a long day at work tomorrow (usually only work half days), not sure what to take in case I feel hungry. I've got home made thick veg and chicken soup for lunch. I thought about cold roasted veg, but don't have much in, what could I roast? I've got onions, carrot, peppers, frozen cauliflower!

Or I could make a frittata and take that with me cold? Actually that sounds easier, I'll probably do that.

wombat22 Thu 05-Dec-13 20:04:33

That should say put on about 6 lbs blush

SolidGold Thu 05-Dec-13 20:04:37

Well done Wombat!smile

wombat22 Thu 05-Dec-13 20:06:11

solidGold I love hard boiled eggs as a snack and they keep me full for ages

wombat22 Thu 05-Dec-13 20:09:33

Thank you SolidGold. It's really spurred me on. Most of it will have likely been fluid from the alcohol over the weekend grin

FourArms Thu 05-Dec-13 21:25:49

Well done Wombat smile

Frittata sounds good SGB. Wonder if you could make low carb scotch eggs? Mini ones would be lovely. Maybe egg & NLY mixed, coated in pork mince & fried?

Have come to bed without an evening coffee. Avoided biscuits and cake at school too. Had a sneaky few spoons of NLY though. Bought a few diff ones, Yeo Valley is my fave so far. Bought some Cornish organic dairy stuff tonight - Trervivien? Was a bit sour. Also bought lots of small tubs of Yeo Valley for work etc. 50p isn't bad for those.

Night all smile

SolidGold Thu 05-Dec-13 21:51:13

I decided on roast veg after all. I roasted some carrots, peppers, onion and cauliflower. Smells lovely!

Home made scotch eggs would be nice, I could roll the sausage meat in a little Parmesan or something?

Notsurehowthathappened Thu 05-Dec-13 22:00:25

Oooooh really fancying a roast veg Frittata now. I think I will put that on the menu for the weekend because we can add cheese by that stage.

I have cheated tonight and had a Nectarine. Having put it into Fitness Pal I dont understand why it is so bad though. The calories & carb units were the same as a 20g portion of puffed rice which we are allowed even on stage 1.

Does anyone have any idea of how many carb units we should be eating to continue weight loss? I know we are not supposed to count carbs or calories but I would rather count units than end up plateauing.

SolidGold Thu 05-Dec-13 22:44:37

Notsure, it's to do with sugar and how it causes your body to produce insulin and the effect it has on your body. It's also about breaking sugar cravings in phase 1. Do you have the book? This way of eating is not about counting calories, it's about food combining. smile

Notsurehowthathappened Thu 05-Dec-13 23:27:39

Solid, i do have the book and have been re-reading some of the theory tonight.

I have also realised that the brown rice in my Kedgeree today broke the no Protein with Carbs rule.

Not such a good day after all!! I shall have to be more xareful tomorrow.

FourArms Fri 06-Dec-13 07:21:48

I think for the first five days you were allowed to mix carb & protein for one meal? Just if you stayed on it longer you had to separate them?

Just realised I'm doing something wrong too:

Q2) Should I have natural yoghurt with a fat meal or a carb meal?
A2) If you have a fat meal you can have any kind of natural yoghurt – even full fat Greek yoghurt if you like it (or crème fraiche or fromage frais). With a carb meal you would need to have (very) low fat natural yoghurt /crème fraiche/fromage frais. This is why you can have skimmed milk with cereal, as the milk is so low fat it is OK to have with the carb. Not mixing fats and carbs takes a bit of effort, but it is so worth it, as this ‘rule’ really impacts weight loss.
If you want something with yoghurt for dessert, the one fruit that you can have after meals is berries – strawberries, raspberries, blackberries etc. Berries are so low in carbohydrate that they can be eaten with fat meals and they also don’t cause bloating after eating other foods.

I've been having full fat NLY with oats for breakfast. sad Will have to buy low fat for that in future.

No weight change today. OK with that since I'm down 3lb since Tue.

Found this for last nights dinner. This would be a no no wouldn't it?

Potato Starch, Tomato Powder (21%), Salt, Potato Flakes, Sugar, Spices (7.5%) (Paprika, Garlic, Cayenne Pepper, Black Pepper), Flavouring, Yeast Extract, Onion, Herbs (2.8%) (Basil, Oregano, Rosemary, Bay Leaf), Vegetable

Have a good day everyone!

Notsurehowthathappened Fri 06-Dec-13 09:06:32

Well done on your 3lb FA you mustt be really chuffes. I am down another 1/2lb, so 4 1/2lb in four days (but bear in mind that I have not been dieting for several months now)

Have any of you bought the Harcombe Recipe Book and is it worth having?
I wouldn't have any problem continuing this way of eating but could definitely see boredom creeping in without some recipe inspiration.

Just trying to decide what to shop for ready for next week I realise that I am still confused about what I can and can't combine. Does anyone know why we are not allowed Mushrooms? What about Pulses? i am a bit of a lentil fan.

Hope everyone has a great day today

Notsurehowthathappened Fri 06-Dec-13 09:07:10

Chuffed not chuffes

Beechview Fri 06-Dec-13 11:19:28

FourArms you're not really meant to have potatoes.

So its Friday. This is when I start weakening. I'm going for a meal out tonight. Its Indian so I should be able to stick to some tandoori chicken and veg curry.

I'm doing so well at the moment and am 3lbs down since Monday. I have to make sure I don't gain those 3lbs back over the weekend.
I do this every weekend.
I have to break out of that and stay strong.

Any tips will be greatly appreciate smile

Beechview Fri 06-Dec-13 11:19:47


Beechview Fri 06-Dec-13 11:24:27

Notsure I think you can't eat mushrooms as they feed candida which can cause cravings? or something like that.
Have a look at this menu and see if any of the meals appeal;

Beechview Fri 06-Dec-13 11:29:07

Notsure I got a bit confused too but its basically one carb meal a day - brown rice, oats or rice pasta with veg only
Other meals are protein and any veg but not potatoes.
Snack on natural low fat yoghurt and veg.

I find it easier to just have porridge for breakfast then no carbs for the rest of the day.

FourArms Fri 06-Dec-13 14:22:35

NSHTH - wow! That's brilliant! Is this your last day of P1 then? I haven't got the recipe book, but there seem to be lots of receipes available online. I suppose the books would be 'official' though. Amazon has them all for Kindles if you need it ASAP.

BV - I know sad My mum cooks for us some nights and isn't aware of what I can / can't eat on this plan, although she was responsible for my masses of random veg bless her because she knew I couldn't eat potatoes (from SW Red days). smile Was mega stuffed after tea.

Looked online and the values below are per 100g of the ingredients in the sachet. It's a 33g bag and was between 3 people, so I only had 10% roughly of the values below. Oh well, it's eaten now. Can't cry over spilt milk!

Typical values per 100g

Energy 1260kj
Energy 300kcal
Protein 10.3g
Carbohydrate 56.8g
of which sugars 27.5g
Fat 2.1g
of which saturates 0.8g
Fibre 5.9g
Sodium 6.16g

I think I agree with carbs for breakfast and then nothing else being easiest, although I may try no carbs at all for a couple of days and see how that changes things - I was white-carb free until this week anyway but I was eating masses of fruit before.

No headache today, skipped my bedtime coffee, so just the one yesterday and only one so far today with breakfast (probably the worst time to have it if the caffeine promotes insulin and I'm having a carb breakfast?!?).

School lunch is OK - pork and salad (hope pork is Harcombe-friendly), a pack of baby corn and a pot of full fat yoghurt.

Not sure how next few days will pan out. Away tomorrow from lunch and overnight. Will do my best with the meals and I may take some food with me to eat. I've got my period coming up which might slow things too, just detected some slight fluid retention in my breasts (really painful) this morning although I don't think it shows up much on the scales.

I can do this - Harcombe Phase 1 until Christmas for me! fgrin fgrin I will hit my 2.5 stone target!!!

SolidGold Fri 06-Dec-13 14:23:56

I have just got the book out to reread. I'd forgotten so much of what is allowed in phase 1.

My boss has brought egg custard tarts for us all this afternoon.! shock I don't want to be rude and decline, might try to get away with just one bite.

I think my biggest challenge will be not having wine tonight.

I have the recipe book and find it useful, I must admit but that's because I'm hopeless at thinking of what to cook!

Notsurehowthathappened Fri 06-Dec-13 19:04:38

Thank for all the advice and the link BW

I did buy the Cookery Book on Kindle this evening and am glad I did. There is much more info about what you can eat and how to combine.

This is my last P1 day FA but, having read the Cookery Book this afternoon, reckon I will easily be able to keep you company until Christmas. However, I am going to slightly change what I am doing in P1 for the next phase. I can't cope without some fruit and I am going to add cheese back in. This gives me much more versatility when out and about. I am also planning to eat lentils occassionally.

I have also bought Hugh Fernley Whittingstall's Veg Everyday book. There are some fab recipies in there.

Hope you managed to avoid the Custard Tart SG and that you all manage the weekend without two many slip ups.

Notsurehowthathappened Fri 06-Dec-13 19:26:26

too !!

SolidGold Fri 06-Dec-13 20:10:17

Couldn't avoid the egg custard tart unfortunately, as the boss made us coffee and sat with us whilst we ate them.

However, otherwise I've had a good day. Bacon, egg and tomato for breakfast, chicken and veg soup with roasted veg for lunch and pork curry with cauliflower for dinner. Just need to drink more water.

Hope you all have a good weekend.

FourArms Fri 06-Dec-13 21:36:56

One slip isn't the end of the world SGB - the important thing is staying on the plan!

I haven't drunk enough today either sad 500ml bottle of water, 3 mugs of herbal tea and one coffee. Will try and get another pint down before bed!

SolidGold Fri 06-Dec-13 21:38:17

Thanks FourArms, I'll try and stay on track.

FourArms Fri 06-Dec-13 21:38:20

Bought some low-fat yog as well today to have with oats at breakfast. smile

FourArms Sat 07-Dec-13 08:43:05

This would be day 5, but there will be some lapses today as I'm away so won't have the same choice.

Saving my carb portion for later and having bacon, eggs and NLY for breakfast. Can't remember what lunch starter I've ordered, but sure main was a roast so I'll skip potatoes and eat lots of veg.

Going to take porridge and LOW-FAT NLY with me for dinner (usually pizza and crisps) and breakfast. We're visiting close family so that won't seem offensive smile

DOWN 1.8lbs today smile I'm 0.8lb away from losing 15% of my starting weight and I've lost 3lb on Harcombe in 4 days. Bearing in mind that I've been on SW for a while doing red days, the only change I've made is to cut down coffee intake (1 a day now) and fruit intake. My yoghurt intake is through the roof now though!

Anyone else sleeping worse than normal with very vivid dreams?

Sorry missed your post last night SG - hope everyone has a good day today!

Notsurehowthathappened Sat 07-Dec-13 09:28:58

Fantastic FA you must be delighted. I am stunned that you can achieve that sort of loss when you have already been dieting for some time.

I have managed another 1lb today so 5 1/2 in 5 days.

Don't worry too much about this weekend. It's real life and your plan sounds good.

I have no idea how you are enjoying porridge with natural yoghurt. Have you got some way of sweetening it that I havent twigged. All the yogurts I have tried are sharp and for me porridge has to have some sweetness to be palatable.

Yes, my sleep is much worse than normal with very vivid dreams. I am putting that and the black rings under my eyes, down to detox. I wonder if it is worse for you because of caffeine withdrawal.

Have a fab weekend !!

Beechview Sat 07-Dec-13 09:54:21

Well done FourArms. Good loss.

Confession time - so I went out with friends last night for an Indian meal and I didn't stick to the plan sad
However, I don't think I did too badly. I had a chilli chicken curry (tomato based) and plain rice with sparkling water and a coffee with cream for afters with 1 little chocolate which came with the coffee.
I'm not going to feel too guilty about that.
Ds2 has chicken pox, dd is teething and I'm feeling a bit run down.
I've had porridge this morning, I'm having my coffee now and have planned quorn sausages and veg for lunch (not sure if that's allowed but I can't face more meat for lunch). Dinner will be a chicken curry (again! though I don't mind) with cauliflower.
I've got a lot of housework to do and am going to go for a walk later.

Hope you all have a good day. Stay strong!

Beechview Sat 07-Dec-13 09:56:28

Well done NotSure! That's a really good loss. Are you carrying on with phase 1?

Notsurehowthathappened Sat 07-Dec-13 10:54:23

You didn't stray too much Beechview but I am envious of the little chocolate. I am a real chocoholic and am feeling the absence!!

I feel for you with Chicken pox and teething to contend with. It is all much easier for me because I am alone. My DD is married with children of her own and I lost my Husband several years ago.

I am also planning housework, gardening and a walk today. Supper will be Salmon with Salad and Spinach. I am going to carry on with a modified P1 just adding cheese if I want it and one piece of fruit or some berries each day. I plan on making the fruit an evening treat and will write the Christmas Cards tonight just to ensure I am not tempted to pick.

I hope you also have a good day.

FourArms Sat 07-Dec-13 11:50:43

NSHTH - I know, I'm amazed how much the fruit has been holding back my weightloss!

Re the porridge - literally just 50g oats (currently Tesco finest, but from reading elsewhere apparently Flavanan's (sp?) are nicer so moving across soon) mixed with approx 250g of yoghurt. Admittedly up to now it's been full fat so might not be as nice with low fat. I definitely recommend trying a few yoghurts - yeo valley is my fave so far. Having said that, I never have milk with cereal and could eat dry weetabix and muesli!

Had my coffee with semi milk this morning (because it was a fat meal). Tasted like cream!

Amazing loss for P1 NSHTH and I think your P1/P2 plans sound good. Can you feel any difference in your clothes?

BV - sounds like you're going through a rough time sad Remember sock of porridge oats in bath eases itchy CP spots. DS2 just spent the week in the bath!

Sorry for typos in car on phone! Have a good day everyone smile

Notsurehowthathappened Sat 07-Dec-13 12:44:01

Might have solved my Porridge problem.

Was out gardening, with no energy when I realised that I was brewing a migraine. Made porridge half milk, half water and chopped 8 small strawberries into it. Yummy. The little bit of milk made it creamy enough for me and the strawberries added enough sweetness to make it palatable.

Am relieved at that solution. Not sure how many more bacon & egg breakfasts I could take. Will now be able to switch to Porridge breakfasts and save the protien for later in the day.

SolidGold Sat 07-Dec-13 19:29:04

Sounds good, NotSure.

I seem to have eaten lots today. I had egg, bacon and fried tomato for breakfast, scrambled egg and Mediterranean veg for lunch and burger with curried cauliflower and med veg for dinner. I'm so full!

Notsurehowthathappened Sat 07-Dec-13 19:45:45

Oh I'm glad I'm not alone SG

I feel like I have really pigged out today.

Scrambled Egg and Smoked Salmon (clearing out the freezer) for breakfast. Porridge and Strawberries for lunch. Salmon, Salad and Avocado for tea. Then a frenzied attack on the second piece of baked Salmon, a Nectarine and 6 squares of Chocolate.

I am now working on the basis that as I can't control myself not to eat, I need to find something to do. With the Laptop on my lap it's harder to keep getting up and find food.

The only consolation is that tomorrow is a whole new day and these are changes for life, not just today.

SolidGold Sat 07-Dec-13 20:13:50

I'm so full, I couldn't eat any more, but am struggling with cravings for something sweet. I'm drinking one cup after another of black decaff coffee!

Notsurehowthathappened Sat 07-Dec-13 21:24:58

Try a fruit tea SG

They have no sugar or carbs in them but can help to kill that craving. I bought some Berry Tea Pigs yesterday from Sainsbury's. Works a treat !!

SolidGold Sat 07-Dec-13 23:13:05

Good idea, thanks. I have some strawberry and raspberry tea somewhere.

Notsurehowthathappened Sun 08-Dec-13 08:46:41

Woops, but of a derailment here. I managed to put on 0.2Lb yesterday. Not much I know but still a move in the wrong direction.

However, I was a real pig yesterday and clearly got somethings wrong. The chocolate was a definite no,no (found when clearing out my cupboards) and I suspect that I shouldn't have eaten either the Avocado or the Nectarine.

I am out this morning but then need to read the P2 section again. breakfast today will be porridge with a few strawberries. lunch / supper (I normally try to combine the two) some kind of stir fry (with whatever is lurking in the deepest recesses of the freezer I am trying to empty). I will spend the evening writing Christmas Cards so there is no opportunity for my fingers to go looking for food.

SolidGold Sun 08-Dec-13 11:22:17

That could just be natural fluctuation.

Notsurehowthathappened Sun 08-Dec-13 17:23:17

I do hope so SG but am trying to be good today.

I was really interested to note today that I was really hungry 3 hours after my Porridge / 6 Strawberries breakfast, whereas I dont get any hungry grumbles after a Bacon / Tomato breakfast for 5-6 hours.

I wonder if I might be better off eating my carbs at the other end of the day.

Hope you have all had a good day today

wombat22 Sun 08-Dec-13 18:15:43

Hello everyone. Haven't had chance to post over the weekend. This morning was the end of 5 days of phase 1 and I have lost 9lbs. I'm thrilled but I haven't cheated at all. Might stick with it another couple of days then try introducing double cream so I can have a hot drink! good luck for the coming week fsmile

SolidGold Sun 08-Dec-13 18:20:05

Wombat that is fantastic! Well done. Are your clothes beginning to feel a bit loose?

Doing ok here, although I had 4 tiny squares of 85% dark chocolate to cope with my cravings hmm

wombat22 Sun 08-Dec-13 18:24:21

Thank you SG. Yes my clothes are def looser. It's encouraged me to stick with it. Ive got some 85% in the fridge and I love it but eating yoghurt at mo smile

FourArms Sun 08-Dec-13 18:59:00

Wow! Well done Wombat smile

Back from my w/e and lots of work to do before school so quick post!

NSHTH - book says if carb breakfast doesn't fill you for long you should have fats instead. Have fun Christmas card writing.

SG - did you find a nice herbal tea? I'm going through lots of Twinings red berries flavoured teas. I have a jar of mixed bags so it's a lucky dip!

Time away was was fine.

Prawn cocktail for starter - sloped my bread off to the DSs so only the cocktail sauce was a cheat.

Roast dinner - meat, cauliflower and brussel sprouts. Only cheat was gravy.

Skipped pud and drank 2 pints of water.

Avoided crisps, doughnuts, peanuts and pizza in the evening. Had my 50g of porridge and low-fat NLY. Did have two coffees though.


Bacon and tomatoes for breakfast. Carrots, mixed salad, 50g of porridge and low-fat NLY for lunch and then bacon and fried eggs for dinner. Might have a bit of NLY to finish off smile

Fingers crossed for morning weigh-in!

Beechview Sun 08-Dec-13 19:33:57

Wombat that's a fantastic loss! Well done smile
Well done everyone else managing to stick to it especially when away!

I'm afraid I was really rubbish today. I've been so lethargic and lacking in energy which is really hard to deal with when you have young kids anyway let alone when one is teething and one has chicken pox.
I'm working tomorrow so I've had a lot to do. I'm afraid I had some toast mid morning, then had a packet of crisps and a twix. Its such a rubbish diet and really helps no one. I've still got so much to do. My kitchen is a tip and I've got uniforms and clothes to sort out as well packed lunches. I ended up having rice for dinner as I had no energy to make something different. I'm just making excuses for myself really aren't I? I need to be stronger willed.

I managed to have a really short nap this afternoon which has perked me up a bit so hopefully I will be able to carry on with the Harcombe diet tomorrow.(I could've napped a bit longer but dd got annoyed that I wasn't paying her any attention so chucked her teapot at my head. Thanks dd!)

Sometimes I feel I'll never get 2.5 stones. Its so depressing. Don't mind me - I'm just having one of those days.

SolidGold Sun 08-Dec-13 19:48:23

Fourarms, I stuck with peppermint tea and water in the end, as I couldn't face a sour fruit tea. I just get these cravings for something sweet and I have to deal with it. Hopefully the cravings will lessen with time.

Beechview, don't fret about it, we all have off days, just start again tomorrow. I have a tendency to think, I've ruined everything now, no point trying, but that's rubbish!! hmm Tomorrow is another day and you will be fine.

I've struggled today, had terrible cravings, but I've managed apart from 4 tiny pieces of 85% chocolate. Sorry if I'm repeating myself, can't check as I'm on the phone, but have had bacon, scrambled egg and fried tomato and peppers for breakfast, egg mayo for lunch and roast pork with mashed swede and cauliflower for dinner.

I've roasted some veg to take to work tomorrow, and defrosted some home made chicken and veg soup. Too.

wombat22 Sun 08-Dec-13 19:59:05

Thank you all for the support. Don't get down hearted Beechview. You've obviously got a lot on at the moment. Don't put too much pressure on yourself. One day at a time. tee hee at the teapot. Sorry grin

Beechview Sun 08-Dec-13 20:46:32

grin good job dd is 13 months, can't throw very hard and very cute.

I've been having Twinings cherry and cinnamon tea in the evening. Its really nice.

SolidGold Sun 08-Dec-13 22:02:51

Sounds nice smile I've never seen that one, will have to look for it. I only have the raspberry and strawberry one, which is Sainsburys own, and peppermint tea. I drink quite a lot of decaff black earl grey, it's quite nice.

Does anyone here eat fish? I only rarely cook fish and then it's always salmon. I hate bones, so am a bit careful with fish. But also not sure how to make it tasty if its not in breadcrumbs or batter.

Notsurehowthathappened Sun 08-Dec-13 23:37:37

Wow Wombat, that is incredible. You must have been so good!!

I am also very impressed by your willpower FA. If that had been me I am sure I would have caved especiaaly around the crisps and peanuts. It is one thing not buying them, but totally different when they are plonked in front of you (hence the lifetime of excess sitting on my hips).

Don't get too disheartened Beechview. Chicken Pox and Teething are enough to floor anyone. Don't think of this as a race, just long term changes to eating patterns which will eventually reap rewards on the scales. It really won't matter if it takes a few days longer in the grand scheme of things.

Don't know where you shop SG but Sainsburys do the Twinings and Tea Pig range of teas. I love the Tea Pigs although they are a pricey treat. Twinings Apple & Cinnamon is lovely and there is also a Clipper Tea - Chamomile, Lemon Balm and Lavender which is lovely. I have always drunk coffee in the past but seem to have gone off it since starting this diet.

As to the fish I eat masses of it (prefer it to meat). I nearly always bake my fish sometimes on it's own and sometimes with the veg I am eating it with. Tonight I had baked Salmon with Herbs and a green salad. I also often bake Cod or Haddock on top of either roasted root veg (roast the veg first and then put the fish on top 10-15 minutes before the end) or on top of a veg mash (cauliflower mash or root veg mash). In the latter case I mash the veg and then put the raw fish on top and pop it in the oven for 10-15 mins. The veg absorbs the juices from the fish and is very tasty. Another alternative is stir fry but that can be very smellly.

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 09-Dec-13 09:47:54

A bit gutted this morning, no weight loss yesterday despite following the diet to the letter (P1 + 30g cheese and 6 Strawberries).

That is now two days = 0.2lb gain.

However am going to take my own advice from last nights email. This is about long term changes in my eating habits and for me particularly about warding of Diabetes, so I shall just keep going.

Perhaps it would be better to weigh weekly in phase 2 !!

SolidGold Mon 09-Dec-13 18:32:49

Sorry to hear that NotSure, but yes, I think weekly weigh ins is the way forward. I don't often weigh myself, because I get so discouraged if I even stay the same.

Been busy at work, so no time to think about food! I had scrambled egg with bacon and some fried up swede left over from yesterday. For lunch I had chicken and veg soup and some cold roast veg. For dinner we're having good quality sausages with the rest of the swede and braised leeks.

Beechview Mon 09-Dec-13 19:34:46

Keep going NotSure. The health aspect is definitely more important. The weight loss will come.

I had a good day today. No time for breakfast. Lunch was a sweetcorn soup with a small quinoa salad and dinner was a big portion of porridge.
I feel quite content. I'll have some tea in a bit.

SolidGold Mon 09-Dec-13 20:02:05

Beechview how did you make the quinoa salad and what was in it? smile

FourArms Mon 09-Dec-13 20:40:27

Stayed the same today - OK with that after the couple of Saturday cheats.

Rubbish days eating today sad Haven't eaten enough. Fail to plan... Plan to fail and all that! Parents evening at school so I had to talk for three hours solid!

Breakfast - porridge, low fat NLY & coffee

Lunch - chicken fillet in gravy although I scraped off as much as possible, peas and carrots. I know peas are allowed, but they worry me as they aren't on SW red days.

Snack - couple of slices of horribly salty beef from school salad bar & coffee

Dinner - 2 slices of bacon, 3 egg omelette and NLY.

Fingers crossed for a loss tomorrow. Keep up the good work everyone! Still keeping to P1, but not so worried about coffees now although my daily max since last Tue has been 2 (apart from Sat may have been 3).

Beechview Mon 09-Dec-13 21:11:22

SolidGold I had the soup and salad at work. They have a salad counter so I just picked the quinoa with some other salady bits.

SolidGold Mon 09-Dec-13 21:57:35

Never mind smile

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 09-Dec-13 22:44:15

I agree SG about being discouraged with no weight loss, but the support of this thread is really making a difference to me. My attitude this morning was that I wouldn't be defeated by a little blip.

It's an interesting comment about not eating enough FA. I use Fitness Pal to record what I am eating and am slightly concerned that it is always well under 1000 calories. I know we are not Calorie or Carb counting but I do wonder how long my body will cope with that. I have noticed that I am very pale today and quite light headed. I wonder if I should be eating more.

Breakfast Porridge with 6 strawberries / Lunch - 3 slices of ham snatched on the run and Supper - stir fry (Cauliflower, Brocolli, Asparagus, Mange Tout and 90g of peas with Prawns). Still hungry after Supper so 30g cheese and an Apple. I know I shouldnt be eating those together but had lost control at that moment.

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 09-Dec-13 22:47:40

Sounds as if you have had a really good day Beechview.

How are the Chicken Pox spots and Teeth ?

FourArms Tue 10-Dec-13 05:38:15

NSHTH - haven't logged on MFP for a few days, but yesterday's food just passed the 1000 calorie mark. That said I didn't feel at all hungry. Think I might boil some eggs this morning and have them in the fridge for bulking out meals. Will need to think of some other higher calorie snacks too. Any ideas? smile

FourArms Tue 10-Dec-13 07:30:12

Exactly the same weight again. No change since Saturday. 4 eggs boiling. Will have a big piece of steak for dinner tonight I think!

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 10-Dec-13 07:40:08

Also exactly the same again not disciplined enough to stay off the scales

Now need to try and decide whether 30g Cheese, 50g Milk, one apple and six Strawberries are what has brought this to a grinding halt or whether I am eating too little. My concern re the latter prospect is that I really can't face any more protein.

I like this diet because it seems to be controlling my Blood Sugar well, some of the mental fog I was feeling has gone and I can stick to it. However, I very pale again this morning and feeling very light headed. I bent over to picki up a towel this morning and almost passed out.

FourArms Tue 10-Dec-13 07:46:44

Plateaus & weight loss – a few thoughts
Written by Zoë - 36 Comments
Categories: General News
This is a new section in the latest edition of “Stop Counting Calories”. I hope it helps share some of the learnings that clients and I have had working together since the first edition was published:
1) The incredible weight loss, which many people achieve in Phase 1, is not sustainable. Much as I would love for you to lose several pounds every week, week in week out, it is extremely unlikely to happen. Candida and Food Intolerance cause significant water retention and, if you lose over half a stone in five days (as regularly happens), much of this will be water and this can only be lost once. As long as you keep these two particular conditions under control, there is no reason for this water to return, and this weight loss really does count – you can drop a clothes size, or even two, in a matter of days and look and feel so much better.
2) On the subject of water vs. fat loss, weight is weight. The human body is approximately 50% water, so you are always going to lose water as you lose weight. So long as you don’t lose water in an unnatural way, with diuretics, if you are normally hydrated and you weigh less than last week, you have lost weight and you will feel and look slimmer.
3) There is no formula on earth when it comes to weight loss. The “to lose 1lb of fat…” formula in Chapter 2 absolutely does not work (ask the next person who says this to you where it comes from and what the evidence for it is – they won’t be able to tell you). If you had found something that gave you sustained 2lb a week weight loss, you would have lost 104lbs in the past year (and the year before and the year before that) and you wouldn’t be reading this book. I’m really sorry if I am the one breaking this to you, but there is no formula.
Hence, sadly, I genuinely cannot predict what your weight loss will be on The Harcombe Diet. I can share with you numerous testimonials from people who have lost a great deal of weight and kept it off. Many come to say that the weight loss is almost a bonus – what they love even more is the freedom from food addiction and cravings and the incredible energy and wellbeing that they have.
I can share that people comment time and time again that a pound lost on this diet is gone for good – because you have not slowed your metabolism, there is no tendency for you to put on weight the minute you start eating ‘normally’, as happens on other diets. Your whole concept of normal eating will become a lifelong commitment to nourishing your body with real food and cheating when you want to and getting away with it.
Check out Facebook, Amazon and YouTube for comments about the diet. You will find lots of inspiring stories of people who have lost stones and are wearing their target size jeans for the first time in years. Posting such as “Bought the book, it’s a super read, I have lost 2 stone 2lbs in 5 weeks” (YouTube) make my day! Follow the rules and you will lose weight and you will keep it off. However, no one on earth can tell you how quickly you will reach your natural weight.
4) Phase 1 vs. Phase 2 is up to you. Phase 1 is the fastest weight loss plan I have come across, but Phase 2 delivers better on the practical and enjoyable characteristics of a diet. There is a trade off between faster weight loss with a more restricted plan and steadier weight loss and a more varied plan – the choice is yours and you can flex between the two from week to week, to suit your lifestyle. If you want to stay on Phase 1 for longer and find it OK for your lifestyle – do so.
5) If you did well on Phase 1 and then don’t lose any weight for more than a couple of weeks in Phase 2, this can pretty much only be due to something you have re-introduced in Phase 2. You need to be quite analytical and look at everything you have added back in and see if you have added in anything that could have started to ‘feed’ one of the conditions. Wheat would be my first suspect. I have yet to meet someone who does not feel better and lose weight faster staying off wheat until at least close to their goal weight. Things that ‘feed’ Candida and Hypoglycaemia are the next suspects – fruit, whole grains – any substantial increase in carbohydrates into your diet can have an impact if you are very carb sensitive. Re-read Chapter 7 on Phase 2 and follow the advice for the three conditions really carefully to make Phase 2 work for you.
6) Plateaus – because there is no formula that can predict weight loss, there is no way of knowing how much will be lost each week. Some people do find that they plateau – even for a few weeks (this is rare), but then they suddenly start losing steadily again and a month later almost another stone has gone. Plateaus are so frustrating and my heart really does go out to people who are sticking so well to the diet and who don’t get the reward that week – but the reward does come. We just can’t predict when – boy do I wish I could. I know I can take away cravings and I know that Phase 1 works for everyone who has tried it. I just can’t guarantee you will lose weight every single week, week in week out.
Consider this, though: the majority of my success stories have been doing calorie controlled diets for at least 10 years and they had reached the point where they had stopped losing a single pound, despite trying to survive on 1000-1200 calories a day. They try Phase 1, lose 5-10lbs in a week and never look back. You will get there and you will be eating really healthily in the meantime and will no longer be hungry and exhausted.
7) I have developed a theory, working with clients, that weight loss is as much about overcoming fat storage as it is about encouraging fat burning. I really believe that the bodies of long term calorie counters are trained to store fat and we need to re-train the body to stop storing fat. The best way I have found for doing this is to have clients eat three substantial and nourishing meals a day and to eat these as regularly as possible. The body then knows when the next fuel is coming and quickly learns that it doesn’t need to store fat any more. I am really pleasantly surprised how quickly the human body responds positively to healthy eating and how rapidly it starts to work with you.
To accompany this principle, I cannot recommend strongly enough (I do repeat this so often in the book) – limit snacking and avoid snacks altogether if at all possible. If you really are hungry between meals try to eat more at meals, so you are not hungry and/or stick to carb free snacks if possible. Whenever you eat a carbohydrate, the body goes into a glucose/insulin/fat storing environment and you want it to be in a fat burning environment, to use up your love handles. The less often you eat carbs, during the day, the better. Carbs and insulin really are the secret to weight loss.

FourArms Tue 10-Dec-13 07:52:14

Above is from Harcombe website.

I think it might be a case of more fat for you rather than more protein? That looks very low with the exception of the cheese. Prawns are v.low fat aren't they so you ate barely any fat yesterday.

I'm going to try harder today which might be tricky as I'm going on a short notice school trip and have nothing to take. Wonder if I could defrost and cook some pork steaks in 40 mins to go with my eggs?

SolidGold Tue 10-Dec-13 08:08:17

NotSure, sorry you've stayed the same, but I agree, up your fat intake, that will fill you up (lots of butter and olive oil on your food), cut out fruit and dairy, go back to phase 1 and then after five days with increased fat, try adding in just a little dairy.

I weighed myself this morning and I've lost 2 lbs in five days. However I had the egg custard tart incident in Friday and some pieces of chocolate at the weekend, so not surprised. I'm also suffering with water retention due to my period being due this week, so think that may be hampering weight loss a little. However, I feel much better than I did. Sticking with phase 1 for now, but we have friends round Wednesday, so I may have a small wine then, also we are out Friday night, so definitely an alcoholic drink then!

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 10-Dec-13 08:37:42

Thanks both, I really appreciate that advice. I suspect you are right re the amount of fat I am eating. Because I am a coeliac and don't eat bread, I have never really eaten butter etc and I always go for fish or white meat rather than red. Not deliberately, but because I dont really like big slabs of red meat.

I am going to cut the dairy out again and try and eat more roast veggies (with lots of Olive Oil). I am reluctant to lose the berries (which make my porridge palatable) but realise that the Apple yesterday was just plain stupid, especially as I mindlessly ate cheese 10 minutes later.

I hope you enjoy the school trip FA and all have a good day today !! I am off to make Fudge & Coconut Ice for the school Christmas Fayre. I love the latter but am determined not to lick the spoon.

SolidGold Tue 10-Dec-13 16:10:24

I must admit I love butter and sometimes have a sliver of butter with marmite shock I can eat red or white meat. I hope you manage to increase your fat intake smile

If cutting out dairy doesn't help, I would really look at cutting out the berries, as they could be sweet enough to trigger insulin production and stop you burning fat.

DD brought mince pies home from food technology class today and insisted we try them, so have had to have one. I've done ok otherwise, hope it won't have a huge effect. I've had scrambled eggs for breakfast, fried up the remaining sausage from yesterday for lunch and we're having cottage pie made with swede instead of potato for dinner with cauli and broccoli.

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 10-Dec-13 17:00:30

Well definitely ate more today. Bacon, scrambled egg, Tomatoes for breakfast, Porridge with Blueberries for lunch, Corned Beef (nice and fatty) snack, Salmon (more fat), roast veggies (lots of oil) for Supper. 1350 calories / 110 Carb units (I know this isn't relevant but helps me to monitor how much I am eating)

Will see what happens on the scales tomorrow, but might have wrecked it all because of the two squares of Chocolate covered Coconut Ice, DD insisted I try.

May drop the berries next week, once I see the results of the next few days. Just cant imagine coping long term without fruit !!

wombat22 Tue 10-Dec-13 18:33:13

Hi everyone. It's so interesting to see how everyone is coping. I have 4 Quality Street chocolates yesterday. I don't really know why and I didn't enjoy them blush I've introduced double cream and a bit of milk each morning. Haven't weighed since Sun morning but going to weigh tomorrow to see if dairy has had any impact. I am hoping to introduce berries in the next couple of days

wombat22 Tue 10-Dec-13 18:34:02

*had not have - oops

Beechview Tue 10-Dec-13 19:35:53

Hi. I was at work today so again couldn't stick to Harcombe but tried to stay low calorie; I had no breakfast again (always a mad rush in the mornings), lunch was veg curry and rice from canteen and dinner was some porridge.

I got my period today and I was so surprised because I've had absolutely no pmt and no pains at all. weird but yay!

FourArms Tue 10-Dec-13 19:57:31

BV - I've seen lots of similar reports about lack of PMT on things I've read. Mine's due on the 14th according to my app but I've had no pain yet - just the breast tenderness.

Managed lots more to eat today - porridge and low-fat NLY for breakfast, 3 pork loin steaks, 2 boiled eggs and a small pot of NLY for lunch and steak and prawns cooked in garlic butter for dinner. All extremely scrummy!

Good luck on the scales tomorrow Wombat smile

We'll see what the scales think in a couple of days.

SolidGold Tue 10-Dec-13 20:14:34

I'm hoping this will have the same effect for me, less period pain would be nice!

Notsurehowthathappened Wed 11-Dec-13 08:16:01

0.5lb on. Very frustrating !!!

Have decided just to keep my head down, keep going to Christmas and see what happens. Will think higher fat but not prepared to drop berries. If this diet can't be sustainable I won't stick to it and I have to find a way of eating that I can continue with long term.

FourArms Wed 11-Dec-13 09:51:53

0.4 on here too! sad

Notsurehowthathappened Wed 11-Dec-13 16:36:04

Oh FA i'm sorry to hear that.

All I think we can do is keep going. I have broken some bad habits (too many carbs, too much fruit, too much chocolate etc) and feel more in control.

I am just hoping that eventually the scales will register that. I have lost a stone this year, but still have 25lb I would like to lose. I am happy to work at it but just need to find the right diet.

wombat22 Wed 11-Dec-13 17:02:19

FA and NSHTH, sorry to hear your having such a bad time of it. If you are weighing every day, there can be minor fluctuations confused I feel a bit mean now but I weighed this morning and am another 2lb down since sun. Looks like I got away with the 4 chocolates smile

Notsurehowthathappened Wed 11-Dec-13 17:33:39

Fantastc Wombat it's good to know that the diet works. I am sure we will all have good days and bad days !!

SolidGold Wed 11-Dec-13 20:28:40

I've been ok today, but have friends coming round tonight, so there may be wine, but only a small glass.

For breakfast I had scrambled egg with fried mushrooms, tomato and smoked salmon. For lunch the rest of yesterday's swede cottage pie. For dinner chilli without beans with green beans and carrots.

Beechview Wed 11-Dec-13 20:35:35

I've done ok today too but I've lost no weight sad
I think I need to do some exercise probably. I know I think I've not got much time to fit exercise in but I think I'm just fooling myself.
I probably could find half an hour 4x a week which is enough to boost some weightloss.
I've signed up for a weekly buggyfit session but they restart in January. I'm really looking forward to that as it'll be outside in our local woods. I love being out and about and dd will be happy too (hopefully!)
I shall keep plodding on.....

wombat22 Wed 11-Dec-13 20:43:19

Good luck Beechview

SolidGold Thu 12-Dec-13 01:03:25

I haven't weighed myself today. I think I'll wait til Friday and then make Friday my weigh in day each week - IF I weigh myself, I'll see how I feel about it.

I didn't have wine tonight, just drank black decaff and water, but I did have a homemade mince pie our guests brought with them and about 6 Celebrations shock

Tomorrow I'll be good!

FourArms Thu 12-Dec-13 07:22:13

Well, 1lb down today so yesterday's gain gone and 0.6lb with it. I don't mind daily weighing - I've done it since 29/8 now and other than my weird plateau week before last it's been a STS or loss most days.

I think I've been eating too much NLY as I buy the big tubs. 3 spoonfuls only per meal now!

Need to dash - must get kids up for school! Have a good day everyone. Feel like Brucey when I say Keeeeepppp Harcombeing!! smile

Notsurehowthathappened Thu 12-Dec-13 07:50:10

Well done FA !!

0.6lb down today. Content with that and worth foregoing sweets at the Cinema last night and swapping a drink for coffee in the pub.

I think you might be right about the NLY. (I haven't succumbed to that habit as I cant find one that is smooth enough)

Also on the run this morning but hope everyone else had a successful day yesterday and has a good day today.

Beechview Thu 12-Dec-13 10:43:32

Well done FA! I'm hoping my lack of weight loss is down to totm too.
I'll weigh again on Saturday and see how I go. I think daily weighing is fine but I'm getting a bit disheartened so want to see a loss rather than a sts.
I've planned a bust day to keep me away from food!
Hope everyone has a good day.

Beechview Thu 12-Dec-13 10:43:57

busy not bust!

wombat22 Thu 12-Dec-13 19:52:45

Well done FA and NSHTH on your weight losses and your resolve. I've been nibbling on chocolate biscuits last night and had one today. I'm going to be on course again tomorrow. Good wishes to everyone

SolidGold Thu 12-Dec-13 20:08:24

Well done both of you smile

Not doing well today, first day of my period, I've had 7 more Celebrations and a mince pie! hmm Luckily now they're all gone, I'll be back on track tomorrow.

FourArms Fri 13-Dec-13 07:35:10

Well done NSHTH! My totm still hasn't arrived. Hope it pitches up soon or I'll have it over Christmas (although I am a mooncupper so the last few days are usually virtually unnoticeable now)

Another loss today - 0.8lb - which takes me to 15% less than my starting weight on 29/8 (mainly lost on SW) and into a new stone smile

envy of celebrations, biscuits etc. Was slightly tempted yesterday by fresh loaf spread with butter that my poorly youngest had as a snack.

Still on P1, although being careful now with NLY quantities and I've cut the 50g of porridge. Boiled egg & 4 spoons of NLY instead yesterday. Some left over cooked chicken and NLY today!

Really keen to lose 2.8lb by Christmas to hit my 2.5 stone target.

Notsurehowthathappened Fri 13-Dec-13 09:17:04

Well done FA, I am so impressed that you have lost nearly 2.5 Stone in that time and totally understand your determination to get there before Christmas. Will you carry on with Harcombe after Christmas? and if so how much more would you like to lose?

I STS yesterday, but have now been overtaken by a real curiosity as to how this diet is working. I was so frantically busy that the only food I could grab Porridge with Stawberries, smoked Trout, Turkey Casserole & root veg came to 800 calories and 65 Carbs. Normally enough to lose a little bit of weight. The day before I had eaten 1300 calories and 120 Carbs and lost . No issue though, I get the need for more fat and the food combining aspect and just need to refine my menu choices.

However, I have also decided to ditch the Porridge every day. I only need the berries to make the Porridge palatable so could easily go without both between now and Christmas. I am suspicious that this has been much harder since I started eating Porridge every day (didnt have any first few days of P1) and just want to see whether it is impacting my Insulin resistance.

Hope everyone has a good day !!

Beechview Fri 13-Dec-13 09:35:24

I've reduced my porridge amount to 35g of porridge so I'm going to see how I go with that. Its enough to fill me up. I really do need to fit some exercise in!

I started oil cleansing for my skin and I've now got a couple of spots. I hope that's it and my skin will start to become lovely and glowing.
I've been imagining myself slim with lovely skin. It's now my mission to get there smile

Notsurehowthathappened Fri 13-Dec-13 09:53:34

Agree on the exercise front BV. I am a member of a Walking Group and have an 8 miler coming up on Sunday. I am secretly hoping I might lose a lb on the walk. Just worrying about the pub afterwards!!

How much more do you want to lose?

Beechview Fri 13-Dec-13 12:52:28

Ideally I need to lose 3 stone but will be happy to lose 2.5. I can't even get 1/2 stone off at the moment!
I've cut out snacking, I've cut down on wheat to hardly anything and my portions aren't huge. The lack of weight loss is starting to annoy me.
I was thinking I might do the thread title the other way round and try slimming world!

SolidGold Fri 13-Dec-13 17:20:33

NotSure, I think I've read before on the Harcombe website that if you're not eating enough (and 800 calories doesn't sound enough!) your body will hang on to it because it thinks you're being starved. That would explain why you didn't lose. You need to up your fat and protein intake I think. smile

FourArms Fri 13-Dec-13 19:23:12

I've eaten fairly high fat meals for a couple of days - meat fried in butter/olive oil with hearty portions of veg. Prob not high fat overall since 50% veg, but they've been really lovely and filling.

Went out for dinner with kids and had a latte. My first since starting Harcombe. Didn't finish it shock just didn't really want it. smile

I will stay on some sort of diet post-Xmas. Realistically I've still got 2 stone more to lose. I like P1 Harcombe. Not missing anything so will probably stay with it, with maybe occasional lapse like lattes. No carbs with fat though.

Do need to start exercising for toning though - would like to do C25K. Went to GP about it in Aug before I started SW and she said I needed to just start with gentle walking!!

wombat22 Fri 13-Dec-13 20:34:17

Well I've eaten half a bar of Green and Blacks chocolate and a piece of christmas cake. Now looking round for something else to eat blush Don't know what happened confused

Notsurehowthathappened Fri 13-Dec-13 21:04:04

Sounds like several of us are looking to lose similar amounts. I want to lose another 25lb.

I understand your frustration BV but have been down the Slimming World route twice and never keep it off. My experience was that it didn't change my underlying sugar / fruit addiction or give me the tools I needed to stay slim the fact that I found the leader deeply patronising, also didn't help.

I do think Harcombe is helping me to change habits and I suspect that I am being silly standing on the scales every day. After the initial weeks at Slimming World I only ever lost 1lb a week, so I am not sure I can expect any more from this.

Having said all that I have had a disasterous day today. Bagging fudge for the School Fayre today resulted in three large lumps sneaking between my lips and I then ended up having an Indian with friends tonight.

The best toning exercise I have ever found FA is Pilates. Darcy Bussel does a fab introductory DVD. I now do it in the evening whilst watching TV. It gives me core stability and is great as a complimentary exercise for walking.

Notsurehowthathappened Sat 14-Dec-13 08:59:49

And 1lb on. Now exactly where I was last Saturday morning. Rats............ confused

FourArms Sat 14-Dec-13 09:24:01

sad NSHTH sad Are you drinking enough? I've read that if you are off plan you can have a big gain from the water the carbs hold onto which normally disappears just as quickly.

I'm starting to worry a bit about Christmas. What is everyone else planning to do? Might give myself the day off? Or skip carbs with meals but have dessert with lunch?? It would normally be a mega-eating fest for several days.

How did the rest of your day go Wombat? Fresh start today smile

I'm down again today, think by 1.4lb but I might have remembered that wrongly! smile Have a good day everyone smile

Notsurehowthathappened Sat 14-Dec-13 09:51:38

Fantastic FA well done !!!

Think I need to go back to first principles. I'm struggling to eat enough fat, so my calories are often too low and just dont know what to do when faced with meals that mix fat and carbs. Normally in the latter case I just go without, but that isn't always possible.

I am with you re Christmas. Don't really know what to do.^ My thoughts at present are that I will enjoy Christmas Eve and Christmas Day as normal and then deal with the carnage afterwards. I don't want to go without the chocolates, booze and roast dinner although I hope I won't pig out.

FourArms Sat 14-Dec-13 10:13:19

I reckon I can skip choc and booze, but I want Christmas cake, trifle & Christmas pud!!

I've taken to buying lots of bags of pre-prepared veg and salad. I love the cabbage and leek mix from Tesco - half a bag sweated for a few mins with butter = heaven! Also I took a bag of salad with me last night to add to the measley portion I got at dinner (the crunch salad mix with cabbage and carrot). It takes ages to eat so I munched right through their desserts!! (It was only a Morrisons cafe so I got away with it!)

SolidGold Sat 14-Dec-13 14:27:53

I think for Christmas I'll probably have some pudding, cake, chocolates, but not have potatoes etc. hopefully I won't feel too deprived then, but also not have huge amounts of carbs!

Beechview Sat 14-Dec-13 16:49:59

Thanks about the slimming world info NotSure. I shall carry on with this then.
I'm probably not drinking enough water. I'm going to up the veg and water this week.

As for Xmas day, I'll just stick to my no snacking rule. That means I can enjoy meals with everyone, including pudding but won't eat a tonne of sugar in the form of chocolates and extras. I don't drink anyway so that won't be an issue. I'd love to do a post dinner xmas walk but its pitch black by 4pm!

SolidGold Sun 15-Dec-13 00:03:29

Not done well yesterday or today. Hormones all over the place, horrendously painful period, I've lived off chocolate and crisps hmm

I don't know if I can ever do this. I hate myself today, feel so fat but can't seem to control myself and stop eating rubbish.

Also when I do manage to stay on track life gets in the way, my boss buys cake or friends bring cake round and I feel rude refusing to eat it. My boss won't take no for an answer and I know he means well so can't refuse to eat the cakes he buys.

I don't know how I can train myself so that I can have one cake but not then carry on eating sweet stuff?

I wish I knew how to make this way of eating possible whilst still having a normal life.

Notsurehowthathappened Sun 15-Dec-13 08:14:07

With you yesterday SG but I have no period to blame.

Took 3 children to see Frozen and ate my body weight in Chocolate. I have no idea why, it was almost as if the hand creeping into the bags belonged to someone else. Now I have the most horrendous headache imaginable.

Don't hate yourself. The food habits we have today have taken a lifetime to develop, often due to misinformation, media pressure etc. just take it one hour or day at a time. Every time you resist putting crap in your body you are one step closer to the habits we should have developed. Over time it will get easier and eventually the scales will respond.

I agree I also need to develop some coping methods for real life. I watched everyone in the Cinema yesterday. The minute we sat down we all started scoffing. What I should have done was take a tupperware of Berries. Wouldn't have been ideal, but would have been better than Chocolate.

FourArms Sun 15-Dec-13 11:26:59

0.2lb on... Maybe?! I could have misremembered yesterday's weight? Day 1 of period anyway so that can be responsible for anything! ;)

Re boss SG - could you tell him you're trying to eat healthily? Or that you want to get into a certain dress for a big event? I've had to tell people at work as otherwise they'd think it a little odd that I've gone from mainlining fruit to seemingly eating nothing!

I've been fine so far but if I had an event where eating takes place, I'd take Harcombe friendly snacks - olives? Veg sticks? A pot of yoghurt? So I didn't feel hard done by whilst others eat.

SolidGold Sun 15-Dec-13 14:08:13

I have tried telling him that, an egg custard tart is his idea of healthy, as opposed to doughnuts!!

SolidGold Sun 15-Dec-13 14:19:02

NotSure sorry to hear you're struggling too.

I used to like meat, but these days I'm not so keen and it's expensive too. I couldn't face bacon and eggs this morning hmm

FourArms Sun 15-Dec-13 20:27:34

Ah I see! Bless him for trying smile

I've tried turkey as a cheaper alternative to chicken, but it wasn't the same. Although it was quite 'meaty'. I've bought some frozen meat to try this week - quite like the peppered pork loin steaks from Farmfoods (cook from frozen). Have also bought frozen lamb steaks from Morrisons now.

I've also been buying lots of odd bits from reduced sections as I quite often cook a sep meal for me and then something for just kids.

New week tomorrow! 9 days until Christmas smile Plenty of time to make a difference smile

BV - re SW, I used to be a consultant. I think red days are v.similar to Harcombe & I think you could carry across lots of the ideas. You don't need to use all the 'fake' products - just use syns for the NLY etc. I'm still writing up my days as per SW, and I'm within the plan still. smile

Beechview Sun 15-Dec-13 20:30:02

SG tell him that you need to cut out sugar for health reasons.
I started to refuse cakes at work a while ago. We had them about 3 times a week. Now it just seems normal for me to not eat them.
I still struggle with it and am tempted very often but I feel I have no right to them as I stopped buying them too.

When it comes to dieting, you just have to be strong. I've noticed that the people who succeed are the ones who put themselves first and don't worry about offending others.
I've got two very slim friends and they have never eaten a cake or biscuit at my house. I did feel a bit put out the first time I had them over and I'd baked a cake or something but now I'm used to it and just wish I could be more like that too!

Notsurehowthathappened Sun 15-Dec-13 21:35:16

SG I totally get the 'couldn't face Bacon & Eggs this morning' and agree that this diet is expensive.

I have also been to Morrisons. Their meat is much better value than Sainsbury's !!

Am not sure how to overcome the breakfast issue. I have tried Porridge, but can't face it without Berries and have tried going without, but that led to a Migraine. So for the moment I am having to resort to Bacon & Tomatoes.

FA summarises where I am right now. It is only 9 days to Christmas and I want to drop another 2-3lb. After that I will be happy to P2 and accept a slower weight loss.

SolidGold Sun 15-Dec-13 22:52:35

Thanks for understanding smile. I've had a rubbish afternoon, spent combing headlice out of dd's hair. I only noticed her scratching yesterday. She's in year 8 and I thought those days were over, but she had loads! My skin is crawling.

Haven't eaten much today, but made pancakes for dd for breakfast and I had a small one. Roast chicken with carrots and cauliflower for dinner. No lunch, because we got up late. But dh made chocolate mousse this aft so had a small helping after dinner. (Really small!)

Will get back on track tomorrow. Would be nice to lose a couple of pounds!

Notsurehowthathappened Sun 15-Dec-13 23:23:06

FA, I thought what you said about SW was interesting coming from a Consultant point of view.

My group leader really didn't focus on the Green or Red plan but just on the newer plan (which I think they called Extra Easy).

Do you think that the long term success rate i.e not putting it all back on afterwards, depends on which plan you go for?

I am really hoping that Harcombe will sort out some of my bad habits but worry that I might do the same thing as I did with SW and put it all back on again in a few months.

FourArms Mon 16-Dec-13 07:22:47

I think EE would lead to a much greater reliance on syn free foods which are low fat and/or calorie but actually full of horrid ingredients. That was the bit of SW I struggled with this time - I didn't want any of that.

With red and green you have got a bit more flexibility so you can eat healthily and follow the plan. Basically in addition to Harcombe you could have milk, cheese (small amount of each) and two small portions of carbs, plus the 5-15 syns and unlimited fruit. The only things you'd lose from P1 would be NLY and cooking in oil / eating fat.

It cured me of many bad habits, but I simply swapped things - lots of semi milk for skimmed, sugar for sweetener, coke for diet coke, chocolate for low calorie cereal bars. And snacking is positively encouraged! This plan is helping with all that and I think I may find a half way house between the two eventually. smile

FourArms Mon 16-Dec-13 07:35:55

Slight gain on the scales today. I think it might be related to my weekend bacon consumption because I'm also incredibly thirsty. Lots of water for me today smile

Have a good day everyone smile

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 16-Dec-13 08:35:56

Very, very frustrated !!

A perfect day food wise yesterday (1000 Calories & 67 Carb units) and a four hour / 8 mile walk through thick mud, massive winds and driving rain and I ............... put on 0.4 lb.

That is just totally illogical.

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 16-Dec-13 08:43:03

Thanks for the SW insight FA.

I agree with you that the Syns (which I always used for chocolate) and unlimited fruit (I took the unlimited bit literally) were issues for me. I think the fruit habit I developed through SW has caused me rebound weight gain and the blood sugar issues which Harcombe is helping to overcome.

I like Harcombe, but need to get to a stage where my life isn't limited by P1. That is bearable when you are losing weight, but I haven't lost anything now for over a week (in fact I lost all my weight days 1-4) so need to find some way of moving forward and getting rid of my last 25lb's.

wombat22 Mon 16-Dec-13 19:59:51

Hello everyone. I've fallen off track in a spectacular way and have been eating everything in sight. That's always my downfall. Once I succumb to eating something I shouldn't, I continue for days. sad. I know I've gained weight as I can feel the bloat in my stomach but I'm not going to weigh myself. I know that will depress me further, so straight back on it tomorrow I think. We can do this fsmile

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 16-Dec-13 20:40:15

OK Wombat a bit of tough love here.

Whatever it is you are stuffing in your mouth, stop it now !!!

You've had a blip, if you stop now, it will just take a day or two to put it right. If you keep eating, it will become yet another failed diet, you will undo everything you have achieved so far and it will make you feel utterly miserable over Christmas.

We can do this fgrin and we all need you to stay the course. The support from this thread will be invaluable whenever one of us slips.

I managed to avoid all the Christmas goodies in Betty's (a York legend) and the gluten free muffins in my favourite coffee shop today. It wasn't easy but I need for this diet not to fail. I have lost and regained these 20lb so many times. This time has to be the last.

So holding your hand, while you zip your mouth !! Just think of how fantastic you will look this Summer if you do.

wombat22 Mon 16-Dec-13 21:44:48

Thank you Nshth. Just what I need. Let's do it

SolidGold Mon 16-Dec-13 22:02:34

Ooh NotSure I walked past Betty's today too! Didn't go in though (my eldest dd used to work there). Instead we went to Lendal Cellars and had full English breakfast smile gave dh my baked beans and hash browns in exchange for his tomato smile I did have a splash of milk in my tea though.

Thanks for your supportive words, I need a kick up the bum too. I received a box of really expensive chocolates as thanks for a piece of work I did a week ago and had two hmm

I think I'll be more on track after Christmas tbh, but will continue to do my best til then.

Today I had porridge made with water for breakfast, but it was awful, won't be doing that again. Back to eggs tomorrow!

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 16-Dec-13 22:59:40

What a coincidence SG. My favourite coffee shop is Filmore & Union, do you know it?

I was talking to a lady about 'low carbing' today in Sainsbury's (as we rifled through the cauliflowers looking for the best ones). After she had gone I thought to myself that could be one of the girls on Mumsnet for all I know.

Strange isn't it. We talk and share quite intimate information, but really know very little about each other !!

SolidGold Mon 16-Dec-13 23:16:27

No, I don't know where Filmore & Union is. Do you recommend going there next time? smile Dh and I were having a shopping trip together before dd breaks up on Wednesday.

FourArms Tue 17-Dec-13 08:07:05

NSHTH - wasn't me smile I bought my last cauli in Tesco smile But yes, agree its v.stange! DS1's best friend is a MNetter's DS! We went to a meet up and discovered we lives two houses away from each other smile smile That was 9 years ago!

0.2lb down today so no significant difference really. However, I'm down 2.2lb since last week and 5.2lb since starting a fortnight ago. Pleased with that!

I've got a long way to go - worked out all my new targets up to my final one. I need to lose 35lb to get to a healthy BMI, but I'm not sure that's a realistic weight for me. I'm a size 12 (or was 10 years ago!) at just under 11 stone, so I think my target will be about another 27lb.

Keep going ladies - be strong! One week until Christmas! fsmile

SolidGold Tue 17-Dec-13 08:46:55

Fourarms that's great.

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 17-Dec-13 08:50:41

Absolutely SG. I think it is one of the best lunch Venues in York and even better because the Tourists just don't realise it is there.

It is in Low Petergate next to Noa Noa. It has a tiny entrance. Downstairs there is a fab juice bar and Salad / Cake counter with a few tables so you can grab a coffee & cake Salad to eat on the run. Upstairs there is a restaurant where you can linger a little longer. The food is all really lovely.

They have been so successful that they have now opened one in Harrogate and one in Leeds, although I haven't been to either of those. You get a bit spoilt living in York. We have so much in the way of shopping and entertainment that there is no need to go elsewhere.

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 17-Dec-13 08:59:50

Fantastic FA, well done.

I lost the 0.4lb I had put on yesterday so have essentially STS this week. However I know that my eating habits have improved and that my Blood sugar is much more stable, so I am prepared to accept the static scales (for now).

I think that with the exception of the Chocolate on Saturday I haven't cheated, so should be seeing results. When I get the time I am going to read the P1 section of the book again just to check whether I am making a fundamental mistake.

Whether I have lost or not, I am determined to keep going. I have bought a fantastic pair of size 10 Black Skinny Jeans from Jigsaw and one day I am going to wear them!!

SolidGold Tue 17-Dec-13 09:06:22

I'll go there next time I'm in town. I live just outside York, so a trip in is a treat smile Any other insider tips? wink

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 17-Dec-13 10:34:12

I also live outside York SG, close to Castle Howard.

I moved up from the South 3 years ago, so am still busy finding special places. I understand (but haven't tried it yet) that there is a really good new Restaurant in Museum Gardens, and there is a lovely Thai on Walmgate.

Outside York, there is a wonderful bakery in Helmsley (Cinnamon Twist), a lovely old fashioned cinema in Malton (I also like City Screen in York) with big comfy seats, and quite a lot on at Helmsley Arts Centre.

Do you have any insider tips?

SolidGold Tue 17-Dec-13 11:34:37

I don't go out much hmm so don't know many places. There's a good Italian on Gillygate, can't remember the name tho. I love wandering round Treasurer's House, although it's not free entry. The scones and food in general is quite nice in the cafe there too. For coffee we sometimes go to Harlequin upstairs opposite the Chocolate museum, but on the top floor, not first floor. Also the bakers on the Shambles is very good, but sells out early. Have you been to Little Betty's on Stonegate? Very pretty old house, but you often queue all the way up the stairs.

SolidGold Tue 17-Dec-13 11:36:03

The Italian on Gillygate is called Mamma Mia. I also like the Lendal Cellars for cheap pub food.

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 17-Dec-13 21:52:06

Have to smile SG, practically all the insider tips we have shared relate to food. Shows where our priorities lie.

I love Little Betty's and know Treasurer's well. I used to work for the Trust and it was one of the properties I dealt with. I didn't know about Mamma Mia or Harlequin though. If I ever get to completethis diet I shall try both !!

SolidGold Tue 17-Dec-13 21:59:08

Lol grin I hadn't realised nearly everything I mentioned was food related!

Interesting that you used to work for the trust. I fancy a cultural day in York some time soon, where would you recommend apart from Treasurers House?

(Sorry we are so off topic ladies. Hope everyone's doing ok? I only slipped up once today with my chocolates, otherwise have been good, had bacon egg and sausage brunch and cottage pie made with mashed swede for dinner with braised leeks.

Notsurehowthathappened Wed 18-Dec-13 08:57:54

Apologies also, I think it was me that started the off-topic wander.

0.5 lb off, so now back to where I was last Friday. i am OK with that though. Porridge, mashed Cauliflower & Mince and cold meat yesterday but then a slight deviation around a bowl of salted Pistachios.

SG if I can work out how to to it I will PM you some cultural thoughts for the York area.

SolidGold Wed 18-Dec-13 11:23:10

That would be lovely NSHTH smile

I had some home made muesli for breakfast, a very small portion, but couldn't face eggs again. I just mixed some chopped nuts, raisins and oats with some rice milk. For lunch I'll have some HM chicken soup and for dinner baked salmon with celeriac chips and green beans probably.

wombat22 Wed 18-Dec-13 15:39:22

Hello all. Well done for remaining on track. I'm working my way back to it. I think it's a psychological thing really, have social occasions coming up and can't cure the mindset "i'll start again after christmas". Wrong I know. I received an email from Harcombe website the other day, to say they are organising another 30 day blitz starting in January. fsmile

SolidGold Wed 18-Dec-13 16:26:40

Hi wombat, I had the same email. Think I'll join in with that - it's free, isn't it?

I'm struggling with that mindset too, I love home made mince pies and don't want to miss out. I would like to be able to eat "normally", i.e just when I'm hungry and not put on weight. Not sure how to get there though.

FourArms Wed 18-Dec-13 17:37:56

I'm not in the least bothered by off topic chat smile Reminds me of lovely weekends I used to spend in York with a friend from uni. smile

Weird thing happened today- got on scales and had a 1lb loss. Tried again and it was a STS. Very weird - I must have been off balance the first time? I normally get off and on a few times and it's never happened before in 3.5 months??

Cheated a bit yesterday - had a latte. Was absolutely lovely!

Read something that made me think on the Harcombe FB group the other day - Harcombe only works if you stick to it. If you have a high fat diet but mix with carbs, then the carbs are used and the fat is stored. So if you know it will be a cheaty day it's best to stay away from high fat foods too.

Don't know why, but feeling a lot more confident every day. I'm in control of eating at the moment. It's a lovely place to be, I just hope I can carry on until Christmas Day smile

30 Day Blitz sounds good. Is it aimed at existing Harcombers?

Just do your best Wombat. Every day on plan is twice as good as a day off. Even at 50% on/off you might not gain even if you do STS.

Breakfast today: porridge and low fat NLY (haven't had porridge for a week, but needed to get from 7am b/fast to 2.30pm lunch so NLY alone wouldn't cut it!)

Lunch: ham and salad

Dinner: lamb steaks, sprouts & swede chips

Bought some mini dark choc bars from Aldi yesterday for desperate times over Christmas!

FourArms Wed 18-Dec-13 17:43:03
SolidGold Wed 18-Dec-13 19:14:48

I bought the small bars of dark chocolate from Aldi recently too, but found them far too sweet. If you have a Sainsburys nearby, they do a pack of 5 small bars of 85% dark chocolate which is VERY good. Green & Blacks dark chocolate is very lovely too smile

I love York smile I used to work in the centre and every day walking from the station to work I thought how lucky I was to work in such a beautiful city. I would love to live close to the centre one day, but don't think I could afford to.

I think the Harcombe blitz is suitable for anyone.

Notsurehowthathappened Thu 19-Dec-13 07:41:01

0.2lb loss yesterday. This is painfully sloooooooow!!

However I can definitely see a diiference when I look in the mirror and like you FA, feel strangely confident and in control. I am delighted to have kicked my sugar habit, love the lack of food cravings and the total absence of headaches from my life.

I didn't know there was a Harcombe Website or FB site so will look both out today. I thought the '12 Days' link was really interesting.

Thanks for the Sainsbury's 85% tip SG. I looked at that pack last week but then thought I might be tempted to wolf the whole lot. I have been a real chocoholic all my adult life (rarely going a day without) and find it difficult not to be tempted. However, I am really noticing how few headaches I m getting and having slipped up last Saturday and then having a horrendous headache Sunday, I am wondering if the two are linked.

Keep going Wombat. I just looked at my Fitness Pal for last Christmas. I put on 7lb over the space of that week. It took me until the middle of March to shift them. You might think you will start after Christmas but then along come the January / February blues to derail you. This diet lets you be in control of Christmas and even if you only STS that will give you a flying start in the new year smile

Mary2010xx Thu 19-Dec-13 11:04:03

Thanks for the link to the 12 days of Christmas newsletter. It's very helpful. This way of eating which is real food (paleo/primal) is the way to go for most people for health and weight really does work and so m any different do now seem to come to the same conclusion. Only Sweden however seems to be moving to official advice to eat higher fat, lower carb. It will take the NHS about 20 years to change its views, I expect.

FourArms Thu 19-Dec-13 20:53:25

My headaches are massively down too. I got one earlier in the week and couldn't understand why, then I remembered I'd had a decaff coffee for breakfast! I'm down to usually two coffees a day. I do like a cup of coffee though, so I may try after Christmas to have a normal coffee in the morning and a decaff in the evening.

Slightly down again here, equal to last Saturday again which was my lowest so far. TOTM nearly over now though. I've eaten lots of swede this week which is fairly starchy as veg goes I think, looking at my days with good losses, they tend to have followed less starchy veg days - lots of salad and cabbage. May try and stick to that for a few days.

Had a random breakfast today of NLY and two slices of ham. Was really filling - would definitely have that again. Found Yorkshire ham and sliced roast beef in Aldi which were suitable for the plan. Took a lot of searching though - I must have looked like a woman possessed examining all the ingredients!

Not been tempted by a single chocolate or mince pie yet and not struggling to say 'no thanks' either. Looking forward to having Christmas Day off plan, but not sure how it's going to affect my stomach. I had dinner at my parents' house tonight and got terrible diahorrea afterwards. It was just mince and onions with carrots and sprouts, so it must have been something in the mince gravy. I think it maybe had oxo and bisto in it. It tasted soooooo salty.

NSHTH - the Harcombe website is charged for I think if you want to post. The FB group is free though. I was a member of two originally, but have reverted to just one now though so I don't waste too much time!! It's called the Harcombe Diet Unofficial Group.

There was a good post yesterday which was the Christmas email from Zoe Harcombe. I'll post it in a thread below now.

Hope you've all had a good day. Last day at work before Christmas tomorrow. smile smile

FourArms Thu 19-Dec-13 20:54:49

Top Christmas Tips for minimising gain

The starting point is to make a conscious choice - now. Do you want to exercise some restraint/caution and avoid weight gain over Christmas or are you content to relax healthy eating for a while and deal with the consequences in January? Both options are perfectly valid - just make yours a conscious choice. If you're going to go for the gain/pain option, then at least enjoy the time when you throw caution to the wind. The worst scenario would be to eat the wrong things - not enjoy eating the wrong things - feel guilty for having done so - and then to have to do a strict Phase 1 correction in January. If you're planning to 'do the time', then at least 'enjoy the crime'!

If you make the choice that you're going to relax a bit, then still use some of The Harcombe Diet Phase 3 guidelines to minimise the damage. By damage - I mean to how you will feel - not just what the scales will say in January. You don't want to feel bloated, sluggish and dopey over the holidays - so remember these three top Phase 3 tips:

1) Don't waste your cheating.

Don't ever eat something just because it's there or because you've eaten other rubbish that day, so why not eat a bit more. Every cheat that you have should be worth it - something that you really fancy. You should never cheat to the extent that you'll feel stuffed and uncomfortable. Cheating should be a conscious choice and it should feel indulgent. If it is unconscious, mindless and/or it makes you feel guilty - it's not fun, so don't do it.

2) Don't settle for anything less than what you really want.

If you want Christmas pudding and brandy butter - have it. Don't have a dry mince pie thinking that this will satisfy you. You'll only want the Christmas pudding and brandy butter and will probably have this in addition to the mince pie. Feel the sense of freedom that being free from food addiction can give you; make a conscious choice to have what you want; eat it slowly; savour every mouthful and make it worthwhile.

3) Don't cheat too often or too early in each day.

The thing that you most need to avoid is re-awakening food cravings and full blown food addiction. This is the worst that can happen if you choose the more relaxed approach to food over the festive season. And it can happen frighteningly quickly, as my post from nearly four years ago shows.

To make sure that this doesn't happen to you - don't cheat every day and don't start cheating too early during the day. Given that cheating will involve carbs, and probably refined ones, you are likely to be set off on a blood glucose level roller coaster. You might have a croissant for breakfast and go out of the normal blood glucose range, release insulin, dip below the normal blood glucose range, crave something else sweet, have some chocolates and so the cycle continues. This will lead to you craving sweet things every couple of hours throughout the day and you'll end up falling into a carb-stupor-induced-sleep at bed time - really not feeling like you've had fun. You may well wake up with a carb 'hangover' and start the roller coaster again.

By not cheating every day - you also make sure that you don't get into a vicious cycle of having the same sugary/floury substances on a regular basis - increasing the risk of you becoming intolerant to them/addicted to them again, even in a short period of time.

"Top Christmas Tips for avoiding gain"

If you don't want to gain weight over the Christmas period, make the decision now and stick to it. Here are some tips for staying on track between now and 2014:

1) See Christmas as a few separate events - not a long festive period.

There is likely to be a work Christmas party - which will include drink and may or may not include food. Most workplaces have a Christmas lunch. There is Christmas day dinner - usually with family. Depending on one's job, many people will have just one work event - consultants and freelance people are likely to get invited to more than one party.

Treat each event as a separate occasion. Don't see the period from the first party until New Year as one long period when you can't watch what you eat. It's a mindset switch from "I've got a long period when I can't control my eating" to "I've got a long period when I can control my eating, with just a few events when I'm going to have to do the best I can." It's such an important distinction to make.

2) Be on high impulse alert.

I used to work for Mars Confectionery (I know - I was young!) There was an entire team of people working in "sales display". All confectionery companies (Mars, Cadbury and Rowntree were the three UK leaders at the time) knew that 7 out of 10 confectionery purchases were made on impulse. 7 out of 10! The builder going in to the newsagent and habitually buying a Mars bar and The Sun newspaper each day, was the minority shopper. The majority walked into a petrol station not planning to buy anything and came out with a bag of Maltesers. Ever done that?!

This is why junk is placed at the checkouts and the confectionery racks in the garage line up in parallel with the queue to pay. It is all designed to make you buy things that you didn't intend to buy. The sales display team at Mars could even tell you the odds of you buying each different confectionery bar depending on where it was on the brown plastic display rack. They knew where your eyes went first, second, third, what you would be drawn back to and what you would eventually buy. This isn't your choice you know!

This impulse manipulation goes on all year round. The extra challenge at Christmas is that it escalates to an omnipresent level. Did you spot how early the displays in the supermarkets were all for Christmas junk? Puddings, cakes, biscuits, mince pies, chocolates - all looking like such irresistible bargains that we don't feel we can leave them on the shelves. The pyramid of 'must have' greets you at the entrance to the store and then, every time you turn into a new aisle, the 'bargains' are on the end displays (the fake food manufacturers pay heavily to get those positions) or they are in bargain-bucket-type-baskets, which you almost fall over in the aisles.

We go to our local post office most days and sherry and mince pies have been out since the start of December. December also saw the arrival of a tin of Quality Street in the reception area of my physiotherapy clinic and the hair salon also had a festive glass bowl of 'help yourself' chocolates.

Be hyper aware of the added risk of impulse eating in December and don't fall for it. Anticipate it. Know that it will be there. Enter the garage resolute that you will not come out with junk. No matter how long you stand in the Post Office queue - don't touch the mince pies, which have been open to all sorts of germs since opening time. Be outraged that fake food companies have teams of people devoted to manipulating you and be chuffed that you scuppered their bad intentions.

3) No mindless eating at all.

I tweeted the other day that I munched my way through a 100g bar of 85% cocoa content dark chocolate while working at my PC. It is so easy to be working on something interesting or watching a programme on TV and to realise that you've obviously just finished something, but have no recollection of having eaten it. What a waste!

Make sure that you are never within reach of junk at any time during the festive period. Home parties usually end up being kitchen based and there are nuts, crisps, cheese cubes etc on the table. Make sure that any nibbles are well out of your reach. You would be shocked by how much you could mindlessly eat while chatting to other guests. At drinks parties, have one hand on your clutch bag and the other on your drink - no spare hands for the canapés. (Guys - stick the spare hand in your pocket.)

The other killer risk for mindless eating is TV time. Most households have Christmas stuff on the coffee table - more nuts/crisps/chocolates. Don't be within reach of these either. For an extra way to resist temptation, have a glass of water in your hand and you'll find that you mindlessly sip, rather than mindlessly munch, and you'll be wonderfully hydrated by the end of Downton Abbey.

I really hope that even one of these tips works for you and gives you a good idea for coping with the amount of junk that we're all about to encounter. Make the choice now to gain or maintain and feel good about whatever you decide to do.

Notsurehowthathappened Thu 19-Dec-13 23:04:26

Thankyou for posting those tips FA.

I have already decided that my Christmas deviations will be:

- A glass of Baileys - Christmas Eve and Christmas Day
- Chocolate - all three days (but not if it gives me a headache)
- Turkish Delight - all three days
- Dauphinois Potatoes - Christmas Day
- Charlotte Russe - Christmas day
- Bubble & Squeak - Boxing Day

Having read the tips I am going to:

- look forward to and savour each treat
- attempt to eat reasonable quantities rather than pig out
- carb as late in the day as possible

DD and I shopped today and I have made sure there will be plenty of protien and veggies. I have also ensured that the chocolates we have bought are not my favourites and that there are no gluten free cakes, biscuits or puddings. In addition I have declined the temptation of gluten free biscuits (instead of Blinis) for my Smoked Salmon and Gluten Free Croissants for Christmas Breakfast

Keeping my fingers crossed that I can actually stick to all that and that the post Christmas damage isn't too bad !!!

Notsurehowthathappened Fri 20-Dec-13 07:26:50

0.6lb off today. That has put a smile on my face and given me the strength to deal with my pre-christmas irritations. One heavily leaking cistern overflow (plumbers are like gold dust in rural Yorkshire) and a flat tyre.

Neither would normally be insurmountable except that I have my Brother staying Christmas and the only other loo in the house is already broken and waiting to be replaced and the Tyre is a new Winter Tyre only fitted three weeks ago. The Garage that fitted it can slot me in on the 30th !!!

FourArms Fri 20-Dec-13 07:43:27

sad sad

Down 1lb here too smile Was it the upset tummy or the lack of swede and porridge yesterday??

Was going to suggest isolating the toilet until I read on. Any chance it's covered by your home insurance as a house emergency? Our HSBC policy would.

And sad to flat tyre too. I once had three new tyres fitted at service, but MOT got postponed as a new part was needed and car would otherwise fail (some filter for emissions). By the MOT the following week one tyre had a massive nail in and needed replacing sad Wouldn't have minded, but they hasn't desp needed changing the week before, I just said yes as they were getting close and I struggle to get the car into the garage in term time so doing it again a month later would have been a pain! sad

Loving your Christmas choices smile

Think mine will be:

Prawn cocktail with Christmas Day lunch
Small piece of Christmas pud (but not sure yet if I really love it enough to have it??), Christmas cake (ditto) and definitely trifle!

Going to stay veg carb free. Will make sure I have bags of crunchy salad mix at picky buffet times - takes agggeess to eat so I feel I've had lots smile

Could make my own low sugar trifle maybe? But I'm going to go with a knowing cheat and savour it rather than feeling robbed by an inferior version.

FourArms Fri 20-Dec-13 07:44:11

0.2lb away from my Christmas 2.5 stone target smile smile smile

Notsurehowthathappened Fri 20-Dec-13 08:01:37

Ooooh FA am now on tenterhooks re your 2.5 stone achievement.

I am so impressed. Unfortunately I am still not back to the weight I was mid Summer (after two months of 5:2 ) but at least it is now going in the right direction and at a risk of repetition I feel I am changing some very bad habits.

I think your Prawn Cocktail will be fine and fancy th Trifle !!

Am planning to throw myself on the mercy of the only local plumber I know, but haven't got a clue how to deal with the Tyre. I live 15 miles from the nearest Tyre place and am supposed to be joining the children on a trip into York tonight to go on the Carousel and Christmas Market. Grrrrr.....

Beechview Fri 20-Dec-13 10:07:34

Thanks for those tips FA. I'm really impressed with your 2.5 loss too!
I want to be able to say that too sad

I'm not really losing still but have gone off track a bit.
I definitely don't want to gain over xmas either! There's no reason why I should really. I've only got Xmas lunch, Boxing day lunch and NY eve dinner as social events. That's just 3 meals. The rest of the time I'll be hopefully busy with family and going out a lot. I've planned lots of long walks!

I'm not sure whether I should carry on with Harcombe specifically as it doesn't seem to be working well for me. I'm sure I've been doing it properly. I've not been doing it properly for the last week and have been eating what I want and I've still sts.

I'm going to have lots of soup for the next few days as a last ditch attempt. There are some good recipes on the Harcombe website.

Notsurehowthathappened Fri 20-Dec-13 19:36:32

Woops, a little wobble today.

Dealt with cistern leak and flat tyre, so was able to make our Christmas treat trip into York. Unfortunately my willpower collapsed as we entered Betty's. 1/2 Bowl of chips and an Orange Cheesecake later I am feeling rather guilty and very light headed (sugar rush).

But I did follow the have exactly what you want and enjoy it rule.

Are you follwing Harcombe just for weight loss BV or also to change bad habits. If it is just weight loss you need I found the 5:2 relatively easy to follow. The problem for me was that it didn't fix my chocolate / fruit habit and I therefore found it easy to put weight back on.

FourArms Sat 21-Dec-13 08:28:50

NSHTH - sounds delicious smile Apparently masses of water is the way to go afterwards to flush your system.

BV - maybe look out for the bootcamp in the new year? I think I might have a go at following it.

Well, had some cheese yesterday for the first time in ages (work Xmas buffet - nothing else avail that was plan friendly). Was a bit worried about effects, but rest of day was on plan.

B - NLY & roast beef
L - cheese, teeny piece of ham & NLY
D- cod, mushy peas & masses of salad (with a latte)

I have also drunk lots for a couple of days.

Today I'm down 2.4lb since yesterday?!?! Although TOTM has pretty much finished now so maybe that's why. Not holding on to keeping that loss tomorrow, but I've definitely lost my 0.2lb to hit my Christmas target fsmile

I'm switching to lactose free milk from today to ease my conscience re coffees! Off out for breakfast to celebrate (bacon & eggs for me!). Have a good day smile

Notsurehowthathappened Sat 21-Dec-13 09:54:56

How fantastic FA you deserve to be very proud of yourself !!!

BV I am also thinking of Bootcamping so you won't be alone if you join us.

I was so excited this morning I actually managed to lose 1.2lb yesterday despite my major wobble. No rhyme or reason there !! That means I am now only 1.2lb away from where I was in the Summer and only 22lb left to lose to get back to my Weddind Day weight.

Gives me a fantastic incentive to remain good over Christmas.

Notsurehowthathappened Sat 21-Dec-13 09:58:19

Oh and forgot to mention. I looked down in the shower this morning and realised that some of the hideous Cellulite on my legs is beginning to dissapear.

I have always been plagued by Cellulite and knew that one theory linked it to Sugar consumption. I am assuming that it is now dissolving because of the absence of sugar in my diet. What a fantastic side effect.

FourArms Sat 21-Dec-13 13:08:16

That's great NSHTH smile Maybe we're both a bit low calorie wise and that gave our body a boost?

Will inspect my cellulite tomorrow!! Fingers crossed, I've had it since I was 18 and relatively thin (10/12) but I had an extremely high sugar diet then.

Went out for breakfast. Was on plan - NLY, 4 x bacon, two fried eggs and mushrooms. Went straight through me. V.odd. confused

Have a new teapot to aid increased herbal tea consumption smile

Beechview Sat 21-Dec-13 17:32:23

I was doing it mainly for weight loss.
I'm not sure about the boot camps. I've tried it and I can't handle proper low carb. I really hate it in fact. I'd rather eat a lentils than meat.
I think I might just go for calorie counting on myfitnesspal along with exercise.
The diet that suits me most in terms of how happy I am with it, is a low gi diet.

SolidGold Sat 21-Dec-13 19:02:41

Congratulations everyone on your losses grin

I've tried proper low carb too and couldn't cope, I prefer Harcombe and it works.

SolidGold Sun 22-Dec-13 22:11:32

I'm not losing but not gaining either which I will be happy with over Christmas. I'm not being as strict as I should be, but after Christmas will get back on track. I'm sticking to Harcombe most of the time, but enjoying the odd seasonal treat and glass of wine

Notsurehowthathappened Sun 22-Dec-13 23:20:22

Hope you are all coping better than me.

I have been to two parties and a family Supper over the last two days. Sheer torture. Yesterday I succumbed to Chocolate and and had to accept my punishment of 2lb on this morning.

Today I survived one party on a diet lemonade, ignoring all the Steak pies, Canapes & desserts on offer. However, I crumbled when I got to DD and picked at bits of the Indian they had bought.

Just trying to minimise damage really !!

FourArms Mon 23-Dec-13 10:04:10

It's really hard to stick to the plan when you're out and about. Those quick gains are mainly water so they can be off just as quickly smile

My weight went up 1.2lb yesterday which wasn't surprising after dropping 2.4lb in one day. Down again today 0.8lb so I'm 1.8lb under my Christmas target smile

I've got to lose just under a pound for my next target of losing 17.5% of my starting weight and 3.2lb to get into the overweight BMI category!

Have a good day everyone! I'll be braving the shops late tonight - wish me luck!!

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 24-Dec-13 08:34:19

Hmmm and another 1lb on yesterday. Back to where I was on the 10th December.

Have decided to stop weighing now until the 29 th when my guests go.

Wishing you all a fantastic Christmas !!

SolidGold Wed 25-Dec-13 22:36:46

Hope you've all had a good Christmas Day.

Had a lovely time here. The food was lovely, for Christmas dinner I ate mainly Harcombe food, but I did have a little Christmas pudding with custard. Also had a couple of crackers with cheese.

Not sure how I'm going to cope with all the edible gifts! Two huge boxes of chocolates and a tin of chocolate biscuits, plus my parents brought a huge trifle they insisted on leaving here. And dh baked a massive stollen last night shock The house is full of unhealthy stuff!

Mary1972 Thu 26-Dec-13 06:39:37

IN the past I have done the following - given the edible presents away and even put them in the bin. I put the free awful biscuits Tesco gave us with the regular order into the bin although the chlidren made me fish it out the next day (it was all sealed up) and they ate it within a day. Sugar pushed and peddled at every turn wherever you go. Not good.

SolidGold Thu 26-Dec-13 11:40:05

Good idea Mary - if dh will let me. I'll give ds the bottle of Bucks Fizz my boss gave me and a box of chocolates too. Dd and dh will eat the chocolate biscuits.

Mary1972 Thu 26-Dec-13 13:54:18

Sounds a good plan. I ordered the Harcombe book yesterday as it seems to be how I eat and what I believe works.

SolidGold Thu 26-Dec-13 14:22:00

How you enjoy the book. Yes I believe it works too, just so difficult shaking the sugar cravings.

Mary1972 Thu 26-Dec-13 15:50:41

Thanks. I ordered the latest book. There seem to be quite a few.

I cut sugar out for 2 years and have manged it again this year so I know I can do it. I have to be an all or nothing person. I had a tiny bit in September and that got me back on it for 2 months, just that one tiny taste. I am like a hardcore addict. I also like which suggests a gradual move away from sugar starting with moving to 2 meals a day with enough protein and a good breakfast.

SolidGold Thu 26-Dec-13 17:08:36

I'll have a look at that Mary. I'm a total sugar addict too hmm I can't just have a little bit without wanting more and more.

Notsurehowthathappened Thu 26-Dec-13 18:20:06

Total disaster here.

Have eaten so many naughty things I have lost count.

Not panicking though. Will ensure that all the naughties go home with the guests Sunday morning and then will just get back on the Wagon.

Am determined that one Christmas will not derail my determination to beat my sugar addiction !!!

FourArms Fri 27-Dec-13 19:08:47

Hope you've all had a lovely Christmas? The extra food is tricky isn't it although mine will gradually get hoovered up by the DSs and DH. I've not been tempted at all.

Mine has been largely P2 friendly (cream & cheese) with a couple of exceptions for a small portion of trifle, some cranberry sauce and the port in a port & Stilton sauce. Will weigh in tomorrow to assess the damage!

Chinese meal out tomorrow - any ideas?

SolidGold Sat 28-Dec-13 00:33:34

Obviously avoid the rice. They probably use something to thicken the sauces, which you can't avoid. Otherwise most dishes are meat and veg based I'd imagine. Have a good time smile

Notsurehowthathappened Sat 28-Dec-13 09:17:23

Hmmm 4lb on since last Saturday.

I did stick to the enjoy it rule, but obviously took that a little too seriously!!

I know what needs doing so now need to get down to it.

Thinking of all of you.

Mary1972 Sat 28-Dec-13 18:20:53

My copy of the book is due on 31st.
I bought smoked salmon (and some cheese) for today's journey back from France which was just as well the 3 hour journey to the air port took 7 hours! Two of the children (teenagers) ate nothing - they have such self control and stoicism. It was the worst traffic I've ever seen and now I'm hiding on my own in a business lounge at Geneva airport (my card doesn't get the children access but they are with older siblings so it's fine) and had to have some cheese here.

WHat I have found is that once I get going eating like this I am not tempted. So that's encouraging for other people. The first thing you see through security is a massive Swiss chocolate shop but I didn't actually want it as I am eating cleanly and it's all reasonably high fat. I am actually sitting here eating the remains of my raw swede.

Hope I can keep it up at home when I won't be out skiing all day. I also hope I've lost some weight. I feel I have but I just might be a bit more toned up.

Good luck to everyone else. We missed our first flight, then the next one the holiday company moved us too but should make at 8.30pm so could be worse.

wombat22 Sun 29-Dec-13 11:09:24

Hello everyone. I've been completely off track diet wise but have signed up for the Harcombe 30day blitz. It costs £29.90 + postage to wherever you are. I'm going to be starting on 2nd Jan and looking forward to it. I will update with my starting weight and post weekly on how it's going. Good luck smile

Mary1972 Sun 29-Dec-13 19:34:20

My book arrived today and I am a couple of pounds lighter because of the skiing holiday so things are obviously going okay although now I'm back and at a desk all day it might just all go back on.

SolidGold Sun 29-Dec-13 20:31:12

Glad things are going in the right direction Mary. Sorry to hear others are having problems. I've gone totally off track with chocs and booze hmm But now most of the naughty stuff has gone I'm going to get back on track. My IBS is playing up so I need to eat better.

I can't really justify paying out £30 for the Harcombe blitz with dh being out of work, but I'll join in smile

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 30-Dec-13 08:23:08

i am with you SG. I can't afford to officially blitz but I will certainly be doing P1 for the next couple of weeks.

I still have masses of chocolate etc in the house from Christmas and no-one else here will touch it. So I have locked it in the cupboard and will try to ignore it's call.

1lb off yesterday, but more guests due today !!

Mary1972 Mon 30-Dec-13 09:56:24

Some advantage to working today I suppose then, that there are no guests or nice meals.

FourArms Mon 30-Dec-13 12:18:55

Well, Christmas has been generally OK.

Weighed this morning and I'm 0.2lb heavier than Boxing Day, but 2.2lb lighter than the 19th which is OK as I've more or less maintained over Christmas.

I'm away for NYE and back on NYD and then I'm going to go back to a strict P1 again. I've signed up for the Bootcamp which looks very similar to a strict P1.

Good luck with keeping on plan for these last few days everyone smile

SolidGold Mon 30-Dec-13 13:03:14

Chocs and cake just about gone here. Just got to ignore the Baileys!

wombat22 Mon 30-Dec-13 17:59:13

Well done Fourarms. From looking at the blitz plan, I think it is basically an extended phase1! There are daily emails but think that's about it. I'll update if there's anything different.

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 30-Dec-13 19:53:48

Well done FA, I am so impressed by your willpower !!!

Mary1972 Mon 30-Dec-13 22:15:53

Very good.
I seem to have manage so far to change how I eat so I am less hungry because of the healthy meals.

Now I've finished my reading pile I will start the book tomorrow (but had to watch the Call the Midwife programme on iplayer tonight which made me cry!)

FourArms Tue 31-Dec-13 08:40:07

Good luck with the blitz wombat! I don't think I could justify the money because I seem to be doing OK still. I'm hoping the bootcamp thread will give me another boost smile

Mary - really with you on the not being hungry. It's great isn't it?! I've had a couple of days where I haven't made good choices / planned well and I have ended up hungry and they were horrible. One was a day out and I didn't take enough food - there was nothing (small theme park) which I could eat and the other was yesterday - I was lazy and my meals weren't big enough so I was hungry again a few hours afterwards. Made myself a bowl of cauliflower to get through it smile

Thanks NSHTH - I don't feel like I've used willpower - I just haven't wanted the extra bits. They've really lost their taste appeal. Tried two squares of 85% G&B yesterday night as a treat but gave half to DH as it was too rich.

FourArms Tue 31-Dec-13 08:40:51

SG - could you make Baileys ice cream and freeze it?

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 31-Dec-13 09:17:15

Nothing lost yesterday, but as I had guests for the day I am just pleased that I didn't gain.

Made a massive Lasagne for friends and a seperate one for me. In mine I substituted Spinach for the pasta. I know the cheese sauce is definately not P1 but it was really yummy and a recipie I will keep up my sleeve for P2/3.

SolidGold Tue 31-Dec-13 10:56:44

I eat loads of cauliflower! It's lovely with butter and a little grated cheese on top when we're not doing phase 1 anymore.

Yesterday for lunch I had a whole pack of prawns! (I had to
grab something in my way into work, as I had nothing suitable at home). I need to make some soup so I have something in.

I haven't weighed myself, but clothes don't feel too tight tbh. I daren't weigh myself, because I know how depressed I get and tend to go off the rails. I'll just go by how my clothes feel for now and maybe measure or weigh at a later date when I'm back on track.

Baileys ice cream is a good idea smile. My dh would be very happy with that grin

FourArms Tue 31-Dec-13 13:09:15

Spinach lasagne sounds lovely. A relative tried a butternut squash version and said that was nice. I've eaten lots of cream & cheese over Christmas... will have to stop that again soon.

Just had chicken salad for lunch (with olive oil & balsamic dressing which is a P1 cheat).

Bought some nuts & mayo in Aldi today - fairly low carb. Will have to check if they're P2 friendly.

Clothes tightness seems a good idea SG. At the end of the day that matters more than weight anyway. I really feel like I'm getting leaner now and I like it even if sometimes the scales stay the same!

SolidGold Tue 31-Dec-13 19:39:08

I've eaten really healthily today smile Fried mushrooms, fried leftover mashed swede and a fried egg for breakfast, a couple of gluten free crackers with a little Stilton for lunch (I know it's not Harcombe friendly, but I'm trying to stay at least gluten free at the moment) and fried salmon with buttered carrots and cauliflower for lunch.

We're not going out tonight, but I will probably have a glass or two of something alcoholic wink

FourArms Tue 31-Dec-13 22:41:23

Enjoy SG smile

We've had a lovely NYE meal, but the glass and a half of champagne have gone straight to my head!

Pea & Pesto velouté

Garlic prawns

Pot roast garlic & lemon chicken with Mediterranean vegetables and halloumi served with a side salad and olive oil dressing

Palate cleanser - champagne jelly (cheat but only 120ml between 4) with mixed berries

Chocolate mousse (double cream and 90% dark chocolate)


Decaffeinated espresso

Notsurehowthathappened Wed 01-Jan-14 11:15:57

Well done SG. Are you staying Gluten Free for any particular reason or just preference. I am a Coeliac, so share the need to be GF. This diet makes that very easy.

Your menu sounds amazing FA.

I wish I could report being good yesterday but it all went terribly wrong once I got to my New Years Eve party. I was so fed up not being able to drink that I hoovered up all the Cheese, Colesaw and Chocolate in site. 1lb on this morning is a justly deserved punishment.

That goodness the festivities are over. I now just have to crawl back on to the wagon and concentrate on eating clean.

Happy New Year to allof you !!

LittlePudding1 Wed 01-Jan-14 17:38:19

Hi, I've started the Harcombe today in an attempt to lose 1.5 stone before May and was hoping for some advice on my menu today as feel like I've eaten loads!

Didn't have time for breakfast unfortunately.

Lunch was a frittata made with 3 eggs, bacon, pepper, asparagus and cherry tomatoes.

Dinner, roast chicken, Brown rice and roasted veg, carrots, parsnip, pepper, onion, courgette and garlic.

Had a few green olives earlier too.

Have done loads of different diets before and am really hoping this will be the one I stick with :-)

Thanks for any help and advice you can give me.

FourArms Thu 02-Jan-14 10:58:08

NSHTH - how did yesterday go? I'm up a bit from Tuesday, but really looking forward to a strict P1 now smile

LittlePudding1 - welcome to the group! Good luck with your target. I'm by no means a Harcombe guru but will do my best smile

Didn't have time for breakfast unfortunately.
Try to eat breakfast - the plan really encourages 3 good meals a day with ideally no snacking.

Lunch was a frittata made with 3 eggs, bacon, pepper, asparagus and cherry tomatoes.
Sounds good, remember bacon is processed so shouldn't be a daily thing. It does seem to make me retain water, but doesn't for others. Would maybe have been more filling combined with a plate of salad too?

Dinner, roast chicken, Brown rice and roasted veg, carrots, parsnip, pepper, onion, courgette and garlic.
Parsnip is a high carb veg so best avoided - along with rice this is a high carb meal. Dark green veg - e.g cabbage are lowest carb in general - try to include more of those to lower carbs, although if you're going to eat more colourful veg it should be with a low fat meat so roast chicken minus skin would be great.

Had a few green olives earlier too.
Fine to snack if you must, but try to avoid it if poss and fill up at meals instead. I snack on crudités, but I think I read olives are fine too.

What have you been drinking?

HTH smile

FourArms Thu 02-Jan-14 11:15:23

The Low Carb Plate: Fruit and Vegetable Ratio

The largest food group in your low carb diet should be vegetables (excluding starchy ones like corn, potatoes and beets).

But how many vegetables and fruits should you eat? Ideally, at least half of your plate should be covered with vegetables.

At breakfast, add vegetables to an omelet or quiche.
For a well-balanced low carb lunch, try a large salad with protein and dressing.
For dinner, choose a cut of meat, poultry or seafood with a side of vegetables and a small garden salad.

Guess the Carbs Without a List

Most non-starchy vegetables are very low in carbs, less than 5 grams in half a cup. However, there are differences between them.

If you don’t have a list handy to check the carb counts, estimate the amounts based on what the fruit or vegetable looks like.

Here’s a quick, general rule:

Divide vegetables into four groups, depending on what part of the plant they come from.

1. Leaves (the least amount of carbs)

Trace carbs are wrapped in so much fiber that there is little, if any, impact on blood sugar. They are rich in phytonutrients, vitamins and minerals. Examples: lettuce, spinach, Swiss chard, herbs.

2. Stems and Flowers (very low carb)

Some stem and flower vegetables are asparagus, cauliflower, broccoli and mushrooms.

3. Fruits (moderate amounts of carbs)

The fruit is the part of the plant that contains seeds. Botanically, this is the fruit of the plant, although we tend to call it “fruit” only if it’s sweet.

Examples of “fruit” include peppers, squashes of all types, green beans, tomatoes, okra, and eggplant. Avocado is also a fruit, but is lower in carbs than the others.

4. Roots (very high in carbs)

Many roots, such as parsnips, water chestnuts, potatoes, sweet potatoes and yams are high in carbs. However, some are actually lower in carbs, such as jicama, radishes, celery root and carrots.

I found this list which might help, there are loads available if you google carb count of veg.


Bean sprouts
Swiss chard
Mustard Greens

Next lowest

Beans (string)
Brussel sprouts
Dandelion greens
Pepper (red)

SolidGold Thu 02-Jan-14 14:06:34

NotSure, I suffer with IBS and eating GF seems to help. As the IBS has been having quite an impact on my wellbeing, I'm concentrating on sorting that out for now. I haven't had tests - gp not very interested hmm

Not doing well from a Harcombe point of view, drinking too much alcohol and eating too much chocolate hmm I will get back on track, I promise. Tough times here at the moment and the stress is getting to me hmm

Notsurehowthathappened Thu 02-Jan-14 19:01:48

Oooh, you are much better at understanding this diet than I am FA. I know the advice was for LP1 but it is very useful for me as well.

Welcome LP1. If you listen to FA you have a very good chance of succeeding. My experience is that I have never experienced hunger on this diet, but FA and several of the others have lost more weight than I have managed.

I hope the GF diet helps you with your IBS SG. I have a close friend who suffers badly with IBS and she says her life has been transformed by ditching Gluten. I was diagnosed as a Coeliac very young but still know the pain that can be experienced if I eat Gluten by mistake. Some Coeliacs will only suffer silent symptoms, but others will be highly Gluten reactive experiencing real pain as well as the Gut damage that accompanies Coeliac disease. Other people I know have been told they are not Coeliac but still they experience pain and discomfort from Gluten intolerence.

I am frequently frustrated by the attitudes of the medical profession to IBS. I think it is a diagnosis that covers a multitude of very real issues, but the medical profession appear to be reluctant to explore those issues more deeply and determine what the underlying problems are. I assume that is because the funding is just not there for research into a condition that just causes misery, rather than actually killing you.

As a Coeliac, my advice would be - stick to fresh food where possible, understand the sort of products that may contain hidden Gluten (e.g. Soy Sauce,MSG etc), check packaging meticulously and each time you purchase (some companies change their recipies regularly) and never trust a Chef who tells you his dishes are Gluten Free without questioning some of the potential problem areas. (I have lost count of how many times I have been served so called Gluten Free dishes containing MSG).

Also be aware that you may have other food related sensitivities. I react very badly to Bananas, Mango and Oranges and have no idea why.

Notsurehowthathappened Thu 02-Jan-14 19:07:32

Yesterday wasn't good FA. I was a tired from New Year's Eve, missed breakfast and felt down all day. Hence I sort of followed the diet, but in a comfort eating kind of way.

Have been much better today, I have only eaten 55 Carbs and feel much more in control.

SolidGold Thu 02-Jan-14 19:28:16

I m having a rubbish day, got bad news this morning and had huge row with dh. Consequently sought solace in chocolate shockhmm. Otherwise bacon and egg for breakfast, swede and bolognese for dinner.

Notsurehowthathappened Thu 02-Jan-14 20:02:36

Well done for sticking to any of the diet SG.

I am aware of your other threads and really feel for you in relation to the decisions you are trying to make.

Don't stress about perfect dieting right now. Any non sugar choices you make will help in the long run and if you need chocolate right now, have it.

Remember, 'this too will pass' !!

SolidGold Thu 02-Jan-14 20:13:36

Thanks NotSure, life seems tough at present and I'm tired of it all!! hmm

LittlePudding1 Thu 02-Jan-14 22:45:02

Thanks for the advice Fourarms. I wasn't sure about the parsnips so will definitely cut those out.

I've been trying to cut out the caffeine and just drink water but the headache got too much so I unfortunately succumbed to a coffee. I'll try to go without tomorrow and drink more water instead.

I had bacon and tomatoes for breakfast today, will have eggs instead tomorrow so as not eating bacon everyday. Chicken salad for lunch and chicken stir fry with brown rice for dinner.

Had some fridge raiders between lunch and dinner as was starving but no other snacks. Will make some crudites for tomorrow just in case.

Do you find you become less hungry and feel less of a need to snack as time goes on?

FourArms Thu 02-Jan-14 22:50:59

Life must always come first I think, not seen your other threads SG but best wishes. Is 95% choc an option? I don't find it anywhere near as moreish as milk choc which I could easily eat 400g of!!

Well done for today NSHTH. It's hard getting back into the mentality isn't it? Had a big family dinner tonight, so although I feel in my head that I've done well, in reality there have been a number of cheats.

B - salad (thought I'd run out of NLY!)

L - salad with oil & mustard ( hmm ) dressing and two eggs scrambled with butter

D - roast lamb, mint sauce ( hmm ), carrot & swede, cabbage & leek, cauliflower and sprouts & pancetta. Dessert was NLY with a spoonful of double cream ( hmm ) to sweeten it (found some at back of fridge but it's not my fav brand)

Drinks: not enough. 3 caff coffees with milk and 3/4 pint of water. Trying to get another pint down before bed.

Will try harder to keep to P1 tomorrow. Amazing how you get complacent.

Next target - 12lb off by 13th Feb. 6 weeks so 2lb a week.
On the way I'll be passing through losing 17.5% of my starting weight, getting into overweight category, losing 3 stone, losing 20% of my starting weight and into the next stone below. Wish me luck! smile

FourArms Thu 02-Jan-14 23:00:33

Sorry, cross posted LP.

Definitely become less hungry as you go on - fat keeps you fuller for longer. Fridge raiders would be a no no on Harcombe - plain meat would be fine though.

I find a coffee first thing wards off the headache better than waiting. One a day is a good compromise.

I found my losses increased when I cut the rice / porridge option, but you'll probably still get a good loss with it. If you mix carbs & fat, try to keep to low- fat meat like chicken.

HTH smile

SolidGold Fri 03-Jan-14 08:24:04

Sorry for being negative yesterday. Onwards and upwards ...

I like 85% chocolate, not found 95% yet, but suspect it would be expensive!

Notsurehowthathappened Fri 03-Jan-14 08:46:27

Gosh FA that is some target, although I think you follow the diet much better than I do and have incredible willpower.

I have 25 lb left to lose and am aiming for a lb a week. I like P1, partially because there is less room to slip up, but need my Oats (I never bother with rice) and a few berries every day. I cant stand the yoghurt, so make my porridge with water and use the berries to sweeten it. I am totally caffeine free.

I agree on the 95% chocolate. I can only cope with one square whereas previously it would have been industrial quantities. I got mine in Sainsburys SG, same price as the other Lindt options. I have dscovered that eating any chocolate gives me horrendous headaches. As I have always been plagued with headaches, I now realise that these have probably always been chocolate related. I love the fact that I rarely have any headache since starting this diet.

1.8lb off today and now only 2lb away from my pre Christmas low, so once again the scales are responding smile

FourArms Fri 03-Jan-14 10:55:48

I think mine might be Lindt too... It was on a good offer in Sainsburys before Christmas so I stocked up. It will take me ages to get through though at 1 square a day!

Well done NSHTH. You must have had a great day yesterday! Glad to hear you've tracked down the source of your headaches - I've been plagued with one since before Christmas. I think it's probably sinus related, but it's driving me mad now. I've been trying to avoid taking ibuprofen as I've read that it halts weight loss on a LC diet but paracetamol doesn't cut it sad

I'm down 1.2lb today which takes me to 0.2lb above my 23rd Dec weight. I had a lower weigh in on the 21st but it was a big drop from the day before and I was 1lb up the day after so I'm going to ignore it as a fluke.

B - salad (lettuce, cabbage & carrot) with oil, NLY and a coffee with milk

Have a good day everyone smile

Fibreopticangel Fri 03-Jan-14 11:30:27

Hello - may I join? The Harcombe diet is fab, and the only thing that works for me as a busy 50-something with little time for exercise.

I was at goal weight before Christmas, so have turned back to it to get rid of a few lbs of Christmas indulgence. For some reason phase 2 doesn't work for me - I suspect that's because I am near my correct weight.

My top tips are :

Always have allowed food and snacks with you - olives are good.

Eat loads of good quality food with plenty of fat to begin with so you feel satisfied - your appetite will decrease as you go.

Keep something back from dinner the night before to have for lunch the next day - eg any leftover fish or meat in a salad.

Make homemade mayo to add more interest to salads:
Whizz 2 whole eggs in a processor, drizzle in light olive oil with motor running so it makes an emulsion, add lemon juice and seasoning to taste. I don't check the quantity of oil, but it's probably a cup full - just add slowly.

Make soup with allowed vegetables - more filling than salad.

I make my own yogurt too - lots of recipes online - I make it in a cast iron pan, wrap it in a towel and put it in airing cupboard overnight. I usually have this with rice cereal for breakfast.

I sometimes replace the cereal with rice cakes with sliced tomato, salt and pepper and olive oil.

FourArms Fri 03-Jan-14 12:29:35

Welcome FOA smile

Fab tips thankyou. I am going to try and make my own yoghurt and mayo this week. My airing cupboard isn't all that warm, would a hot water bottle help do you think?

How much have you got to lose?

Fibreopticangel Fri 03-Jan-14 12:43:24

Not sure about the hot water bottle - if you have a slow cooker, I know there are recipes online for that method. Otherwise, yes, try wrapping the hot water bottle next to a heat-retaining pan in a towel and put it in the warmest place you can for about 8 hours.

I haven't weighed since Christmas, so not sure what the damage is.

It's more to get rid of the 'wheat and wine belly' - so maybe 2 or 3 lbs which come off very quickly once I start Harcombe phase 1.

Good luck all!

FourArms Fri 03-Jan-14 12:47:36

I've got some Pyrex pyroflam dishes which might work well... Will do some research now!

FourArms Fri 03-Jan-14 21:33:59

Clean P1 today except for 3 or maybe 4 coffees with milk.

B - salad (lettuce, cabbage & carrot) with oil, NLY and a coffee with milk

L - veg from yesterday's dinner (cabbage & leek, sprouts & pancetta) warmed though with lots of oil and mixed with two eggs

D - Steak and prawns cooked in butter with salad (lettuce, cabbage & carrot) with an oil & lemon dressing

How's everyone else fared?

Fibreopticangel Fri 03-Jan-14 21:47:02

B - nly and rice cereal, decaf with skimmed milk (a cheat, but it seems to work for me)

L - home made coleslaw and home made mayo with green salad and salmon. Decaf capuccino

D - steak, grilled veg and more coleslaw and another decaf with skimmed milk which I'm drinking now

FourArms Fri 03-Jan-14 21:50:32

Sounds lovely. How did you make your coleslaw?

Notsurehowthathappened Fri 03-Jan-14 23:12:35

Not terribly strict P1 I am afraid. Ate cheese at lunchtime and an apple this evening.

In my defence I have had a horrendous Migraine today and have basically eaten what I could palate.

Fibreopticangel Sat 04-Jan-14 09:07:01

Coleslaw is shredded white cabbage, grated apple and shredded spring onions mixed with home made mayo.

It's quick and easy to do with a food processor.

I'm just contemplating what to have for breakfast - possibly scrambled eggs as it's Saturday and I have time.

Fibreopticangel Sat 04-Jan-14 09:08:31

Grated carrot I meant to say, not apple, which isn't allowed on phase 1.

FourArms Sat 04-Jan-14 09:40:29

NSHTH - hope you're feeling better today? That won't have done much harm I'm sure. Chocolate, coffee and lucozade are what I want when I've got a migraine so your choices look positively virtuous!!

Thanks for the recipe FOA smile I don't have a food processor but I've got a mandolin so will try that today along with the mayo. How long do you keep it for - can I make enough for two days? IIRC coleslaw goes a bit watery on day two?

Good loss on scales today (although I'll believe it if it's still the same tomorrow!!!) - down 2.4lbs so 3.6lbs in 2 days! I know it's mainly water but I feel slimmer smile That's my lowest so far and means I've lost over 17.5% of my starting weight smile When I've lost one more lb I'll be overweight rather than obese according to my BMI smile smile smile

B - same as yeaterday - salad (lettuce, cabbage & carrot) with lemon and oil dressing, NLY and a coffee with milk

Have a good day everyone!

Notsurehowthathappened Sat 04-Jan-14 10:54:23

Well done FA, you are really being good on this diet and I am delighted it is working so well for you.

I am afraid that yesterday I hit the chocolate late evening and have been punished with putting 1.2lb on. However, I am feeling so rough that I almost don't care. I am wondering if this is just a Migraine or some kind of virus.

All the leftover Christmas chocolate is now in the boot of my car and destined either for DD or the bin. Who was I kidding that I could keep it in the cupboard and not be tempted.

FourArms Sat 04-Jan-14 11:38:29

I feel almost migrainey with my sinuses NSHTH... Might be worth taking some decongestant tablets? Getting the chocolate out of the house will be a good move.

DH is back to work Sunday night so anything he doesn't take that the kids won't eat (xmas cake, mince pies etc) will go into the staff room on Monday morning.

LittlePudding1 Sat 04-Jan-14 13:39:38

Well done everyone and hope you are feeling better soon. I also feel quite sinusy today so have sent dh out to get me some hot lemon.

My menu for today is
B - bacon, scrambled eggs and tin tomatoes

L- chicken soup, made with chicken carcass, tomatoes, onion, carrots and butternut squash (wasn't sure about how low carb the squash was though?)

D- Spag bol, mince beef, onions,peppers, grated carrot with courgette pasta.

Am going to try my hardest not to snack today and have had a fruit tea instead of usual coffee,not the same though is it!!

Am on day 4 now so will weigh in tomorrow. I'm thinking of continuing with phase 1 for longer than the 5 days, what do you all do?

Thanks xx

FourArms Sat 04-Jan-14 16:21:29

Butternut squash is allowed but all of your veg in the soup are on the high carb side of the spectrum. This for me can stop a loss the following day, but it always catches up eventually. smile

I'd certainly carry on if you're happy to. I'm mainly P1 with my milk and coffee lapse and over Christmas I allowed myself some drinks with sweeteners, cheese and cream. I don't find P1 that restrictive. The book advises continuing with it anyway if you have any of the conditions the diet aims to help or have a significant amount of weight to lose. Have you weighed yet at all?

This link might be worth printing for those who don't have the book?

lizardqueenie Sat 04-Jan-14 22:51:52

Hi there all,

I stumbled across this thread on my day one of doing the harcombe (today) haven't never tried it it before. I really identified with a lot if the rubbish feelings in the book & severe over indulgence in sugar particularly over Christmas has left me feeling really tired & sluggish- like having a lay in but wanting to go back to bed in the afternoon too! I thought this has to stop!

I suffer with sinusy migraines too so really hoping this plan helps, that said I've spent most of day one feeling awful. Started the day with eggs & asparagus in butter, ham salad with olives & avocado for lunch then as I was feeling so awful all I could managed was some oats with live yoghurt. However I opted for the full fat version is that correct? I thought Low fat versions might be topped up with carbs/ sugar but I'm not sure. Will take a while to not have sugar/ low fat food for me. Was craving a weetabix of all things earlier but remember Zoe in the book saying those things you are really craving you need to keep away from for longer.

Good luck everyone! smile

SolidGold Sat 04-Jan-14 23:40:57

Hi lizardqueenie and welcome smile

If I remember correctly - and anyone, correct me if I'm wrong - oats are carbs, so should be eaten with low fat yog if at all. I think Zoe recommends making porridge with water, but I really struggle with that.

The way I remember it is don't eat carbs and fat together.

lizardqueenie Sat 04-Jan-14 23:55:48

Ah ok thanks for that SG! That makes sense- is that the rule for both Ph1 & Ph2? I'm confusing myself now! Ok shall probably get both in then, is the yoghurt ok to have on ph1? blush Ha ha, and I was thinking it was fairly simple! wink

lizardqueenie Sun 05-Jan-14 00:06:32

Oh shit, just seen I'm
Not meant to have avocado either!
Ah well! I stocked up on supplies after the headache lifted- I am possibly looking forward to bacon & some swede tomorrow!

Am also out for a pub style lunch- thinking what's best to have, they have a nice selection of steaks (but all come with chips & onion rings!) gammon with eggs & (pushing the pineapple & onion rings to the side) they also have a mixed grill which is quite tempting (pushing the black pudding to the side (yuck!) They do have a really nice looking starter- scallops on a chorizo frittata with rocket salad! Hmm!

Fibreopticangel Sun 05-Jan-14 00:27:55

Hi Lizard. Go for the steak or gammon, and tell them to bring a huge salad instead of chips and onion rings.

FA - the coleslaw keeps for at least 3-4 days.

Today: eggs poached on spinach and onion with homemade mayo on top

L: ham, carrot sticks and olives with another dollop of mayo
D: ready roasted chicken, skin and all, with coleslaw and green salad

Drinks: decaf coffee with milk and 1 green tea. Neither the milk nor the tea is supposed to be ok in p1, but I find I can get away with it and still lose.

I stepped on the scales and was pleasantly surprised that I'm only 2lb over my pre- Christmas weight...2 days of strict Harcombe has helped that.

SolidGold Sun 05-Jan-14 00:38:21

Lizard, I don't think it's as important in phase 1???

SolidGold Sun 05-Jan-14 00:39:15

You can have full fat yoghurt on its own though - quite nice with a little cinnamon stirred in.

SolidGold Sun 05-Jan-14 00:40:34

Have a nice big steak and ask for a huge salad without dressing instead of chips.

SolidGold Sun 05-Jan-14 00:41:10

Lol fibre, x-posted! wink

lizardqueenie Sun 05-Jan-14 00:49:53

Lovely! Thanks guys! Well done with getting back on track following Xmas!

FourArms Sun 05-Jan-14 09:07:09

Welcome LQ - don't worry about the mix-ups. I had full fat high carb NLY for the first few days too. I'm sure I still lost (and I'd already been doing SW so I'd had my water loss already). I'd go for steak with salad for lunch smile

Well done FOA - the rest should be gone by the end of next week smile

Yesterday ended up fine I think:

B - salad (lettuce, cabbage & carrot) with lemon and oil dressing, NLY and a coffee with milk

L - prawns & mushrooms fried in garlic butter (I know mushrooms aren't allowed on P1, but it was the only veg left in the house except for peas & sweetcorn!) with 2 scrambled eggs

D - salad & homemade mayo starter followed by roast pork loin with cabbage & leek

I ate far too much for dinner & ended up stuffed for hours. Weird because on SW I'd have had plain salad and no fat on the meat, but lots more meat. Definitely the fat making me feel full.

Scales today are plus 0.2 - unsurprising after the quantity I ate at dinner! Happy with that as I felt yesterday's reading was too good to be true!

LittlePudding1 Sun 05-Jan-14 09:10:37

Morning all, have just weighed and am 4.75 lbs down so really pleased with that. 3lbs to go to get back to pre Christmas weight (I really did enjoy Christmas blush . Then I'm hoping for another stone after that, fingers crossed.

I'm out today so the weight loss will hopefully spur me on to make some good meal choices.

FourArms Sun 05-Jan-14 09:18:02

Well done LP!! smile

Notsurehowthathappened Sun 05-Jan-14 09:35:02

Morning all, and welcome LQ, FOA & LP1.

I lost a lb yesterday on a less than perfect day,but suspect that most of that was illusory (I had put on yesterday because I cheated the day before).

All chocolate and sweet food left over from Christmas was delivered safely to DD's last night. Her DH will eat it!!

I am really beginning to struggle with P1 now because of the absence of milk, cheese and fruit from the menu. Given that I want these dietry changes to be permanant in my life , I really need more choice if I am going to stay the course. I have therefore decided to create my own 5:2 with the Harcombe Diet and alternate between P1 and P2 days during each week. I did the 5:2 diet last Summer and it worked for me. However that was an eat anything version and I really want my low carbing to continue because of all the health benefits (fewer migraines, more stable blood sugar) it has already delivered.

Yesterday was definitely P2 (61carbs). I ate Blueberries with my Porridge, had milk in my Coffee and Cheese on my Spinach Lasagne (spinach, meat sauce and cheese). Today is planned as a P1.

I am hoping that if I can get my Harcombe 5:2 to work it will provide some of the speedier weight losses of P1 and provide enough variety that I can stay the course long term.

Notsurehowthathappened Sun 05-Jan-14 10:07:09

Fab result LP1, I am impressed !!!

FourArms Sun 05-Jan-14 10:12:00

Sounds like a good plan NSHTH smile

lizardqueenie Sun 05-Jan-14 13:12:40

Hello all

Will let you know how I get on at the pub! I've just had a ham salad (lettuce, carrots, cabbage) olives and some mayo. I feel stuffed.

I had eggs, bacon and tomatoes for breakfast, really enjoyed it but I feel like am eating loads. We then went out for a long walk in the woods to wear DD out and it was nice not to feel hungry until it was actually lunchtime if you know what I mean.

I'm enjoying this so far- really hope I loose. Haven't weighed yet as I don't want to be put off! Bought some low fat natural yoghurt on the way home so can use that as i need to. Are many of you carrying on with Harcombe? Ive seen the bootcamp thread too & trying to figure out how it is different or if they are the same? DH can't figure out what I am eating!

Fibreopticangel Sun 05-Jan-14 23:18:20

Hello all.

Nshth - I think Harcombe is good to use as a foundation and then play around with it to find what works for you longer-term, so your idea sounds great.

I know, for instance that dairy will stall weightloss for me, so when I did the MN bootcamp I didn't lose anything.

I was another lb down this morning - it falls off once I start, and I find I don't crave chocolate, wine or bread as I would have done previously.

Once I have lost the few pounds to get back to goal, my rule is to stick to phase 1 during the week, but occasionally have bread and some dairy, then relax but not go mad at weekends, and never eat carbs after 7pm.

Today I have bent the rules a bit, but have been very active:

Brunch - sausages, black pudding, bacon, egg, tinned tomatoes and some HP sauce. Caffeinated coffee with milk, but no bread.

Snack - nly with cinnamon

Dinner - onion soup with a little Parmesan, then chicken, mayo and olives.

I have just made another batch of mayo, and my coleslaw from last week looks ok for another day's lunch tomorrow.

Good luck all.

FourArms Sun 05-Jan-14 23:29:43

I think bootcamp and Harcombe are fairly similar, Bootcamp just seems a little stricter on the veg you're allowed. I'm going to combine the two and see how it pans out smile

Hope pub went well? And if it didn't.... Tomorrow is another day!

I like your maintenance plan FOA. I was similar on SW 11 years ago - got to target only following the plan Monday to Friday lunch. Maintained for 6 months by which time I was 6 months pg!

Funny food day today:

B - NLY & pork rind from yesterday's joint
L - pork salad (extra lettuce) and HM mayo (has improved with refrigeration I think?)
D - McDs (shhhh!) latte and side salad followed by some chilli and coriander king prawns when home

Took some ibuprofen before bed due to headache and work tomorrow which is meant to halt fat loss on Harcombe, but I need a good nights sleep sad

Night all smile

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 06-Jan-14 09:06:37

Well done everyone on your post Christmas weight losses, it looks like we are all back on the wagon now.

2lb off today, so now only 0.4lb away from pre - Christmas low.

I think the reason I liked 5:2 so much in the Summer was the fact that I knew that even I couldn't have something on the 2 really low days, it was always available on the 5 higher calorie days.

For me the key to successful long term changes in eating patterns will be around changing the psychological belief that 'i am on a diet' to 'this is my new way of life'. I won't get there if I am denied foods like fruit and cheese both of which I love. Hopefully my Harcombe 4:3 (am going to do 3 days P1 and 4 days P2) will help me achieve that long term.

Yesterday P1 was water Porridge with a handful of berries and a bacon Omlette for Lunch / Supper. Lunch and Supper got combined because I took myself off for a walk early afternoon and when I got peckish at 9.00pm I did 1/2 hour of Pilates whilst watching Sherlock.

LittlePudding1 Mon 06-Jan-14 09:31:12

Well done on your weight loss everyone. I'm another pound down today.

I really like you're ideas of combining p1 and p2 and am going to follow you're advice as I'm enjoying p1 but can't give up the cappuccinos!!

Today's menu
B - bacon and tomatoes
L - chicken soup and a salad
D - steak and roasted veg

Back to work tomorrow so doubt I'll have time to cook breakfast. Any ideas for a non cooked breakfast? I was thinking berries and yoghurt. Is it ok to have the total greek yoghurt rather than natural yoghurt?

LittlePudding1 Mon 06-Jan-14 09:32:18

Sorry your not you're. Tablet likes to change things!!

lizardqueenie Mon 06-Jan-14 09:39:25

Morning all

Well done on weight losses! I did have a sneaky peak this morning & am down 4lbs (today is day 3) so v pleased with that, at least as it must mean I'm doing something right.

The pub went well thank you- I think it helped knowing what I was going to have before & was happy to order my steak with a big salad, and it was lovely. But felt quite full. A few others had puddings but I treated myself to a filter coffee!

It was nice to come away from a meal & feel suitability satisfied without feeling over stuffed & regretful of crap that I have eaten. I lve spent a long time feeling that way so it's nice to start the new year feeling better.

I've been sleeping fairly well but having odd dreams- I know someone else reported that in the early days up thread!

Little pudding I'm back at work tomorrow too & was going to ask exactly the same about breakfast. Does everyone feel that porridge fills them up as much as having eggs/ bacon etc for breakfast?

I woke up with a bit of a headache during the night & think I do need to drink more water.

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 06-Jan-14 09:55:19

I had terrible problems with bad dreams and sleeplessness during the first two weeks LQ. I believe that was probably due to the detox effects of P1 and it does pass.

I have microwaved Porridge (1.5 mins) each day for breakfast. At first I struggled to have unsweetened water porridge so started off 50% Milk / 50% Water. Now even the all water porridge tastes oK. I add a very small handful of berries (50g Blueberries or Strawberries) for sweetness. That keeps me going till mid afternoon.

I love Bacon and Eggs but not early in the day and am much happier with Porridge as my daily start !!

Fibreopticangel Mon 06-Jan-14 12:00:39

Well done all, especially lizard for negotiating the pub successfully.

If I have water porridge, I add cinnamon and cardomom (sp?) seeds, making it more palatable.

I am not a big fan of porridge though, so my quick breakfast is rice cereal and nly.

2 boiled eggs with carrot sticks to dip is fairly quick too.

SolidGold Mon 06-Jan-14 18:35:36

LittlePudding, as long as the yoghurt is live and full fat it's fine smile

I find too much yoghurt used to slow down my weight loss though hmm

Have you thought of hard boiling a couple of eggs the night before and making egg mayo with some chopped up Wiltshire ham (other sorts of ham may have sugar added, Wiltshire ham doesn't) mixed in? You could make your own mayo - very easy and posted above I think smile

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 06-Jan-14 18:50:47

Can someone help me to understand what the issue is with Mayo. I checked the back of the Hellman's bottle and it is very low carb.

I dont mind making my own Mayo but use very little, so would like to use Hellman's occasionally.

lizardqueenie Mon 06-Jan-14 19:12:58

Oh goodness sad it was all going so well but this afternoon ended up turning into a bit of a binge. Feel really crap about it. Not going to go through everything I ate but sugar & carbs. Feel bloated and cross with myself now. I felt i was doing so well.

Notsurehowthathappened Mon 06-Jan-14 19:23:13

Dont stress LQ, we have all been there !!

This diet is about long term changes to carb addiction etc. Don't let one little slip undo the progress you have made to date.

The trick is to stop right now. Don't let the binge continue and don't beat yourself up.

You can do this. Re-exert control and spend any spare time this evening planning a really good day tomorrow.

lizardqueenie Mon 06-Jan-14 19:29:32

Thanks NotSure

Yes I am determined not to continue tonight. I literally have tummy ache from what I ate, not because of the amount but literally within half an hour i felt bloated, just goes to show.

FourArms Mon 06-Jan-14 20:44:48

NSHTH - well done on the loss smile I'm really keen to make this a WOL instead of a diet too. Mayo - Hellman's is 1.5g to the Delois 0.6g but perhaps it's that Hellman's has added sugar?

LP - total Greek is fine I think. I find it VERY filling with oats. I had Tesco finest oats and was full until 2pm easily.

LQ - glad the meal went well. Headache could also be caffeine withdrawal if you've cut down? However, more water within reason, can't hurt. I also had the weird dreams at the start and they happened again for a few nights when I was detoxing after NYE. All gone now though.

Hope you're feeling better now? Lots of water and a peppermint tea?

kazzawazzawoo Mon 06-Jan-14 20:52:19

Hi, SolidGold here, I've namechanged as people are CONSTANTLY going on about my name being too similar to another MNetter angry

I think the problem is the added sugar in hellman's mayonnaise - Harcombe WOE means no sugar in order to break the addiction. Also in HM mayonnaise you know exactly what's in it.

lizardqueenie Mon 06-Jan-14 21:10:09

Thanks FourArms. Yes going to get an earlish night- back to work tomorrow (groan!)

Have had lots of water but will ask DH to bring me up a peppermint tea- good plan. Thanks for your support guys. I think of previous diets/ plans I've simply mucked up & thought I can't do it. But with this although you have to be strong, you feel so much Better when u are doing it I can't imagine going back to low fat diet/ SW/ WW. And thinking of all the stuff that's added to products to keep them low fat. Blah! Determined to keep going

FourArms Mon 06-Jan-14 23:30:09

Well done LQ smile

Welcome Kazzawazzawoo!

FourArms Tue 07-Jan-14 08:16:53

Down a smidge today - 0.6lb. I had a bad day yesterday - forgot my lunch so had a school lunch - so any loss is good smile

0.6lb away from overweight BMI smile
7.6lb to my Valentine's Day target smile

B - NLY, salad & HM mayo

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 07-Jan-14 09:04:41

Not weighing today. Have decided that the slight rollercoaster of daily weighing demotivates me, so going to start weighing Monday mornings.

Blood sugar checked today though. When I started my Fasting Blood Sugar was 5.6 (101) i.e pre diabetic. As my Mother and Grandmother both had Diabetes and my Mother lost her leg and eyesight to the disease and then died from Diabetic induced Kidney failure, I am desperate to avoid the big D. Fasting BloodSugar today = 4.9 (88.5).

I really want to get down to 4.5 so I am safely in the normal range but am jumping for joy that this WOE is doing what I set out to do.

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 07-Jan-14 09:06:19

Oooh and well done FA, so close now to that next target !!

FourArms Tue 07-Jan-14 09:24:08

That's great news NSHTH.

I was so going to end up with Type 2 diabetes eventually with my horrific diet, hopefully this is the new me now smile

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 07-Jan-14 09:34:31

I agree with you LQ. This diet is so logical and easy to follow I just wish someone had told me this secret 30 years ago.

When I look back I have been on a diet most of my life and have spent thousands of pounds on SW / WW etc. Each time I have lost the same three stone and then gradually put it all back on again.

The reason is simple, we were told in the 70-80s that high carb , low fat was the healthy option. In the process of trying to be 'healthy' I developed the most incredible sugar addiction. I believed that my lunch box crammed with fruit was a virtuous lunch, alongside a nice piece of cheese. Ditto my sugary breakfast Yoghurt. It was Yoghurt after all !! I didn't stuff myself, the weight crept on little by little, settling gently around my thighs and stomach and in the process destroyed my confidence as well as raising my Diabetic risk.

It makes me so cross that we continue to receive such mixed messages about what is healthy even though there is now masses of research available that sugar in all its various guises is what is driving the world's Obesity crisis and threatening to destroy our NHS.

I also feel immense frustration at the way in which the Slimming industry has highjacked people's desire to beat their weight problems, just to sell it's own highly dubious alternative products. I can honestly say that none of the weight plans I have followed have ever taught me what I was really doing wrong, until I stumbled over this thread.

When I reach my desired weight and FBS score I will owe you a massive bouquet FA for making me investigate Harcombe and helping me stick to it. Obviously I wont be sending chocolate !!!

Fibreopticangel Tue 07-Jan-14 11:17:55

Notsure - you are so right!

The problem is that successive governments won't upset the food industry, so 'healthy living' messages are still about calories counting - which just doesn't work long-term.

Zoe Harcombe herself rants about the wrongness of the 'eat well' poster which is in health centres everywhere and basically peddles sugary, processed crap.

kazzawazzawoo Tue 07-Jan-14 11:20:02

Well said NotSure smilesmile I totally agree with you. I am furious that we have been misled all this time about what is a healthy diet. If you watched the programmed last year called The Men Who Made Us Fat and similar, it seems to all be down to financial gain. People were making money out of selling us a lie. shock

Now we are all left with a sugar addiction that is difficult to break, both physically but more importantly psychologically. We have been rewarded with sugary treats all our lives that sugar is connected to feeling good in so many ways. We have been beating ourselves up that we can't lose weight when it is not our faults! That makes me really cross.

I'm struggling on and trying my best, mainly concentrating on eating gluten free still, but very close to Harcombe, most of the time. Not worried about the weight at the moment, more worried about coping with my IBS.

(Not a newbie, name changed from SolidGold)

kazzawazzawoo Tue 07-Jan-14 11:22:53

Word is slowly spreading that sugar is the problem, not fat, though. There have been a few tv shows and there was an interview on Chris Evans Breakfast show on Radio 2 yesterday. Also I think the Swedish government have changed their advice about a healthy diet, stating low carb is better than low day (or words to that effect).

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 07-Jan-14 12:34:00

kazz I am honestly beginning to question whether IBS isn't also down to Sugar.

I have been Gluten Free since I was very young but have still experienced stomach / gut issues diagnosed as IBS after a series of very invasive tests.

I am amazed by the fact that since starting Harcombe the only stomach / gut issues I have experienced were during Christmas week when I let a little bit of sugar back into my diet. Ditto with headaches / migraine.

I am so convinced about the health payback of Harcombe so far that I almost don't care if I lose weight. That will just be an added bonus !!

kazzawazzawoo Tue 07-Jan-14 12:40:35

Maybe it is down to sugar ... I still get cramps, but then I'm still having the odd glass of wine and some dark chocolate hmm

Fibreopticangel Tue 07-Jan-14 12:48:40

I'm no expert, but could it be a combination of everything which have led to the conditions Harcombe writes about - eg candida.

You may find if you follow the programme strictly and avoid the substances you cannot tolerate - eg wheat - you may be able to tolerate them again in the future.

As soon as I eat most bread now, my sinuses fill up, although when I'm on holiday abroad I seem to tolerate it better.

Eating fresh, unprocessed food seems so obvious, but we have all been conditioned to consume mass-produced rubbish masquerading as food.

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 07-Jan-14 13:20:57

kazz just one square of 90% Lindt gave me both stomach cramp and a Migraine last week. The Migraine link could be the other way round because I have always craved chocolate just prior to Migraine, but the stomach cramp was interesting.

You might be right FOA the stomach / gut problems might be Candida !!

The bread thing isn't that unexpected. I am Coeliac (diagnosed very young) and have always been interested in understanding more about Wheat intolerence. I understand that the rise in Gluten issues in the UK started post war when we began to import American wheat. This has a much higher Gluten level than our native wheat, which we embraced because the additional Gluten gave us soft springy white bread.

Other countries use less American wheat. They like their bread more solid.

kazzawazzawoo Tue 07-Jan-14 14:09:19

Yes, could be candida, especially with the amount of sugar I consumed over christmas. I do take probiotic capsules every day and have done for over a year now, because without them my IBS becomes intolerable.

Have you read Wheat Belly? And also White and Deadly (or similar?) Very interesting reading. I have them both on my kindle, I don't think I've finished Wheat Belly, so will go back to that when I've finished my current book. There's another book by John Briffa about dieting that is also very interesting and fits in with what Zoe Harcombe says about dieting and food.

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 07-Jan-14 14:24:07

Which probiotics do you take Kazz.

I have thought about taking a course and never know which ones to buy.

kazzawazzawoo Tue 07-Jan-14 16:17:50

I buy the capsules from Hollabd & Barrett, they're often on special offer of buy a second for a £1.

LittlePudding1 Tue 07-Jan-14 18:00:20

I totally agree with you all regarding the diet industry. I too have spent goodness knows how much over the past 15 years or so on sw,ww and whatever fad diet has been in favour at that time and have gone up and down by 4 stone putting on slightly more after each loss.

Interestingly enough I have never tried low carb as didn't think I could live my life without bread and pasta, but am finding that I can in fact live perfectly well without them. Who'd have thought it!!

Unfortunately I did have a bit of a slip earlier. Finished off the kids chomp bar earlier and before I knew it I'd had 3 of them! I think I've managed to stop now, on previous diets I probably would have just written off the day and had a massive binge.

I've also started the 30 day shred, on day 2 so aching a lot :-)

kazzawazzawoo Tue 07-Jan-14 18:06:22

I guess the thing to remember with Harcombe though is that it's not a diet, it's a way of eating. And if we go back to our old bad habits, we will put the weight back on too. Phase 3 is about finding a way of eating with the odd treat so that we don't put weight on. I need to get my head around that, to know I can't just go back to eating chocolate and crisps without putting weight on. hmmhmm

Fibreopticangel Tue 07-Jan-14 19:49:55

I can't ever go on to Phase 3 - once I start eating carbs in any quantity, I will put on weight.

I could probably do it if I could exercise an hour every day, but don't have time.

So, my way of eating for the foreseeable future (until i retire and can walk a fair distance most days) is phase 1 with dairy, and carbs only once a day. Plus wine at weekends and the odd dark chocolate.

It's much more difficult aged over 50!

FourArms Tue 07-Jan-14 20:26:52

Wow! Lots of posts today smile

Will catch up later when I'm on a computer not a phone, but just wanted to report that I fitted into a size 14 when shopping today smile And the 16s looked big!!

kazzawazzawoo Tue 07-Jan-14 20:42:12

Fibre, I'm 49 and can tell it is getting more difficult to lose the weight and inches too hmm

I too think I cannot eat any carbs or at least sweet things, as I then lose all self control and can't stop. I don't think that's going to ever change, so if I want to be healthy I will have to stay phase 2 for the rest of my life.

I'm craving sweet things today, but my dreaded period (nightmare!!!) is due tomorrow, which I think is playing a role. I've had one square of some 90% Lindt chocolate that I found in Sainsburys which was quite something. Now I'm going to have a bath smile

kazzawazzawoo Tue 07-Jan-14 20:42:46

Congratulations four arms smile

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 07-Jan-14 20:49:47

Well done FA what a boost !!

LittlePudding1 Tue 07-Jan-14 22:01:01

Great news FA, well done

lizardqueenie Tue 07-Jan-14 22:14:32

Evening everyone,

Coming in to give a quick wave before I head off to bed. Will catch up more tomorrow- it's been a long day.

Back on the wagon but just wanted to ask if anyone had noticed any differences in their skin? I am combination/ oily anyway but spots seem to have gone into overdrive. And I have them in places on my face I don't normally. Could this be a bit of a detox effect?

FourArms Tue 07-Jan-14 22:16:06

I think so LQ, but when it settles down you'll have skin as smooth as a baby's bottom smile

Notsurehowthathappened Tue 07-Jan-14 22:34:44

I also think its detox LQ. If anything my skin has become slightly drier !!

Notsurehowthathappened Wed 08-Jan-14 07:45:20

Sorry Kazz, just realised I didnt respond to your earlier question. I have read the Briffa book and the other two sound familiar.

I meandered off to see if I could find them in my bookcase and then got sidetracked. I dont think I have Wheat Belly but am certain at some time that I have read Pure, white & deadly. Another good book is Fat Chance, the bitter truth about sugar by Robert Lustig.

FourArms Wed 08-Jan-14 21:10:01

I want to read the Briffa book too. Is it good? I feel as a Science teacher I need to fully understand the science behind the diet!

0.2lb off today which makes me overweight (my spreadsheet had rounded the figure but actually I was only 0.1lb away yesterday!

Good day today.

B - scrambled eggs
L - tuna mayo salad (I used shop bought mayo. It was low carb - 1.6g per 100g, my level tbspn was 0.2g - less than my herbal tea! It did have some sugar in the ingredients, but must have been a teeny amount as it was listed 3 places after egg yolk of 7%. I wasn't keen on travelling to work with raw egg mayo!).
D - mince & gravy with onions (cooked by my DM with Bisto sad - served with a slotted spoon to drain and then I didn't eat any gravy on the plate ), cauli, green beans and a big bowl of salad with oil & lemon dressing.

Feel tempted tonight. Won't be drawn in though! Having a coffee instead smile Only 3rd of the day - much easier at work!

kazzawazzawoo Wed 08-Jan-14 22:11:20

FourArms the book explains a lot. I like to understand the science behind it too smile

Dreaded period started today, I got through my day at work though. I ate sensibly until tonight, but have given in to chocolate cravings hmm only a few squares of dark chocolate though.

Notsurehowthathappened Wed 08-Jan-14 22:12:28

The Briffa book is interesting FA but a slightly different take to Harcombe.

Are you limiting your coffee because it is caffinated ?

You may remember I told you I had to come off coffee some time ago (it was causing me health issues). If it is of any help I did it by starting with Taylors of Harrogate 'Take it Easy' Cafetiere coffee for a few weeks and then moved to fully decaffinated.

Notsurehowthathappened Wed 08-Jan-14 22:22:36

I have also been quite good today until I got to this evening.

B - Porridge (water) + 50g Blueberries
L - Stir fry veg + lamb mince
D - piece cheese + 3 squares of 90% Chocolate.

I have been really craving chocolate all day and know I should have eaten a proper meal instead of giving into my cravings. Now I am just feeling frustrated by my weakness !!

FourArms Thu 09-Jan-14 07:41:55

A few pieces of dark chocolate - to be applauded if it was instead of 200g of dairy milk! smile

But yes to bigger meals - or at least eating first so the choc is a treat and you don't feel hungry for more.

Downloaded the Briffa book - bargain £2.99 for Kindle. Was too tired to read much but I'm loving what I've read!

Stayed the same today - yesterday's cheats won't have helped. Few slow days now - only down 0.6lb since the 4th, but hopefully I'll have a big loss soon. I feel slimmer - my smallest pair of trousers now fit (bought a long time ago and never before worn! They've been my target trousers - need some more now!) Thu is my home weigh in day (I record each Thursday's weight) and I'm down 4.2lb. Only because of my 0.8lb gain the Thu before (2/1), but it makes me feel good anyway!

Have a good day everyone smile

Notsurehowthathappened Thu 09-Jan-14 08:18:56

Wow FA, down a band in BMI terms, 4.2lb off in a week and into your target trousers, that is some week !!!

I am down 2.6lb this week so happy, although I do realse that is just taking off the Christmas pounds.

Am still not sure why I reached for the chocolate although a flat tyre definitely triggered the stress that preceeded me reaching for the bar. An interesting habit, that I need to focus on stopping.

kazzawazzawoo Thu 09-Jan-14 08:28:26

If you've got a kindle, Zoe's books are free or cheap today.

Why do you overeat when all you want is to be slim?
20 diet myths busted
Olive oil can tsp dance


kazzawazzawoo Thu 09-Jan-14 10:32:46

Wow, impressed by all the losses! Well done. You are all doing well.

FourArms Thu 09-Jan-14 11:50:19

Thanks smile

New books downloaded!

Notsurehowthathappened Thu 09-Jan-14 21:34:34

Thanks Kazz

I have also downloaded the Olive Oil one (I have the others).

kazzawazzawoo Sat 11-Jan-14 16:01:26

It's gone quiet here confused

Hope you're all doing ok?

I've struggled this week due to horrendous period. Quite proud of myself though that I are mainly healthily, although more paleo than Harcombe. I had some dark chocolate and some gluten free oat crackers, otherwise mainly meat, veg, soup.

kazzawazzawoo Sat 11-Jan-14 20:39:32

Apparently the John Briffa book, Escape the diet trap is in the pound shop for just £1 (seen on another thread).

Notsurehowthathappened Sat 11-Jan-14 21:29:04

I was thinking it was something I had said !!

It has gone very quiet.

I am trying to be good and my trolley today was a paragon of Hartcombe virtue. So perhaps this coming week I will manage it.

What is the difference between Paleo & Harcombe Kazz ?

kazzawazzawoo Sat 11-Jan-14 23:04:42

Well, my own interpretation of paleo, which is that I don't worry as much about not combining fats and carbs, but still eat unprocessed food.

I believe it is also called the caveman diet, so eating food cavemen used to eat, ie nothing processed, just meat, veg, fruit, nuts, seeds. No sugar, no grains (except I have been taking some gluten free oatcakes to work for when I'm hungry between meals shock).

My diet is becoming more Harcombe again though. Unfortunately I get bored of meat quite quickly. I also try to avoid dairy most of the time, because I think it makes some of my issues worse, but am then very restricted in what I can eat. I can't for example have yoghurt for breakfast, it stops me losing weight and I have real sinus and allergy issues that could be linked to dairy. I am very fed up of eggs at the moment and don't really like porridge made with water hmm. That doesn't leave me much, except cold meat with a little cheese - also not ideal. hmm

Notsurehowthathappened Sun 12-Jan-14 08:38:32

Thanks for the info Kazz

Try persevering with the Porridge. I couldn't stand it at first but went through a number of stages to get there. I used to eat dry Porridge Oats mixed into Rachels thick creamy yoghurt (masses of sugar) so knew that any change would be tough.

I started out making 1/2 and 1/2 Milk and Water porridge in the Microwave and topping it with Strawberries. Then I moved to all water.

Now it tastes really sweet to me and I either eat it on its own or with a small number of Blueberries on top.

Notsurehowthathappened Sun 12-Jan-14 08:39:40

Where is everyone. We miss you confused!!

FourArms Sun 12-Jan-14 10:08:29

Sorry - marking got in the way of life!!

Had a funny couple of days weight wise -

5th down 0.2lb
6th stayed the same
7th down 0.6lb
8th down 0.2lb
9th STS
10th down 0.6lb
11th UP! 1lb
12th down 1.6lb

I had a really good day yesterday after the shock of gaining!

B - pork scratchings (really wanted them!)
L - belly pork salad with NLY dressing
D - (out) steak, prawns & chicken with salad and a grilled mushroom

I'm actually getting relatively close to my goal - I'd like to be 10s 13.5lb so I'm less than 1.5 stone away. I suppose that means things will slow down a little.

I'm going to follow the bootcamp rules for a fortnight to see if dropping my carbs lower makes much difference. I'm also going to print out the rules of the plan and stick to them up in the kitchen. I'm going to try & follow them even when my mum is cooking - have some cook from frozen lamb steaks I can have as a fall back on chicken Kiev nights smile

Today's meals

B - 3 x scrambled eggs
L - roast of some description
D - who knows?!? smile

Have a good day everyone!

FourArms Sun 12-Jan-14 10:09:13

I also didn't drink enough on Fri - but had loads of water yesterday which might have helped?

kazzawazzawoo Sun 12-Jan-14 17:07:04

I don't think I'm drinking enough either. I drink a lot of black decaff coffee and tea, but not much water.

Notsurehowthathappened Sun 12-Jan-14 17:22:39


Your weight losses pretty much mirror my own. I am also 22lb away from target (9st). However I have only just started, so really should be losing more.

I notice quite a few people reporting the same issue on the unofficial fb page.

Not sure what to do. I have signed up for bootcamp but just dont know what to do for breakfast when Porridge isn't on the menu.

Notsurehowthathappened Sun 12-Jan-14 17:24:20

Should add that I did a 6 mile walk today and struggled all the way. Not only has my weight loss stopped but my mojo has also given up and gone!!