Dieting … the Thai way

A few years ago hubby-to-be and I went to Thailand for 18 days. Although we stayed in a very delicious mansion and resort we wanted to experience as much of the Thai culture as possible.

The food was my biggest cultural challenge (hubby-to-be will eat almost anything so he was fine) not being a fish eater made my food choices limited, but what astounded me more was the type of meals Thai people eat during each day. A typical Thai breakfast consists of curry, potatoes and rice…..yes that is breakfast. For lunch you would either have meat and rice or meat and noodles. For dinner you could expect a different type of curry/thai dish. For the first four days of our trip I couldn’t stomach curry so early in the morning so I stuck to fruit. Hubby-to-be got stuck in however and ate whatever was placed in front of him whether fish eyes of raw egg soup.

On the fifth day of our trip I plucked up the courage and ate a Masaman curry – it was amazing and I managed to stomach it so early in the morning. From that day I never looked back. For the rest of our trip hubby-to-be and me just ate and ate; I was convinced I’d put on so much weight, but arriving home and weighing myself I found out otherwise…I’d lost pounds and a good few of them. Looking back over our trip I realised that, not once, had I come across a Thai man or woman who wasn’t stick thin. In doing some research it seems that the type of food (mainly containing spices) the Thai’s eat actually speeds up you metabolism. Combine that with the excessive heat and you are onto a winner.

So, as our English summer is due to arrive what better a time to start my new Thai diet. This morning’s breakfast consisted of rice, eggs, chicken, lemongrass, garlic, green peppers, onions and a little drizzle of lemon sauce. I only had a small bowl, as my sensitive stomach may well be in shock for 9.00am on a Saturday morning, but still I’ve done it….I can’t wait to see how many lbs I can lose this week. xOx

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Published in: on July 21, 2012 at 9:28 am  Leave a Comment  
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Rustic cooking with Han

I haven’t posted a recipe for a while now so thought I would share a quick favourite of mine.

1. Caramalise circles (or however you prefer your onions chopped, sliced, diced etc) of red onion in a pan of two blobs (about a tea-spoon) of butter. My trick for perfect caramalised onions is to slowly heat the onions up in the pan rather than pre-heating the pan. It is common for onions to be caramalised in sugar but for me the red onion and butter combination is sweet enough.

2. Once your onions are looking a lot softer and sticky, add two rashes of chopped bacon and fry.
(To keep the calories down here I chose not to add any more butter or oil. If your pan needs it then add a tiny little bit but the bacon fat and butter should be enough)

3. Once the bacon is looking how you like it add some pre-whisked egg and milk (one egg, splash of milk) This will create an omlete-type look in your pan. If you want to create an omlete keep your food in a circle/half-circle shape and cook as needed. For me I wanted a more rustic, scrambled-egg effect so with a fork I constantly mixed the food around in the pan.

4. Just before serving add a small amount of diced brie cheese. This gives a lot of flavour and, once melted, binds all the ingredients together for an even yummier taste.

5. Serve, eat and enjoy (leaving the pan to cool in the ‘soaking pile’)

I know this may not look great but believe me my rustic brie, bacon and caramalised onion egg is DEVINE!!

Why not post your favourite egg-dishes in the comment box below. I would be grateful as I’m taking on the ‘egg-celent breakfast challenge’ this week.

Bon Appetite xOx

Published in: on July 15, 2012 at 7:38 pm  Comments (1)  
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IBS – A pain in the ….. bowel!!

I laughed when the doctor diagnosed me with IBS at aged 19. I had very little symptoms and was still able to eat and drink whatever I liked (within reason) As far as I was concerned I had a random pain in my left side that occurred every now and again.

Fast forward 4 years and I pretty much have every symptom in the book (and believe me I have a book) Plus I now have the added factor that my symptoms can get so bad on some days they can affect how I am, and what I do. Although I have been only dealing with ‘cronic IBS’ for about 6 months, the changes I have had to make to my lifestyle have had to happen quickly and drastically. Here are my top tips for coping with IBS, aka what the doctor told me;

Symptoms:

It is really important to know what is IBS and what isn’t. It is also really important to know what foods and drinks affect your IBS. To find out I would suggest keeping a food diary for about two weeks. However, the most common symptoms include…

* Pain in the abdomen, lower back, higher back, under the belly button and in you left and right sides
* Feeling sick after eating certain foods, drinking certain drinks or eating/drinking at all
* A constant bloating after every meal
* Heavy feeling in your stomach
* Being sick
* Feeling tired/extreme fatigue
* Dizziness
* Constipation, diarrhoea, pain passing stools

It is vital to understand that anything from anxiety and stress to excitement can affect your IBS and make it a lot worse. Practice regular breathing exercises to help reduce the chances of making yourself worse.

Foods and drinks to avoid (my personal experience)

* Spices (anything from Indian/Thai spices to Mexican)
* Caffeine (tea and coffee put me in agony)
* Anything heavy in starch, carbs or sugar (biccies, cakes, bread etc)
* Cereals
* Nuts
* Too much fruit or veg

What the doctor told me (and I am very happy to say he was spot on)

* Swap regular Tea for Peppermint Tea (this is my saviour…..I cannot make it through a day without it)
* Increase your intake of oats (and yes you can eat porridge but no flapjacks)
* Don’t eat too much fruit of veg 
* Fish oils (I take cod liver oil in tablet form as I hate fish)
* Reduce you food portion (I now eat 3 smaller meals a day with small snacks. The doctor said that eating a little portion of food every 3 hours or so is good for you…this has helped me a lot)
* Do regular exercise (I hate exercising but I walk for at least 25 minutes every day and have found this helps. Exercise also helps me to sleep)
* Water, water, water…..it’s good for you and it’s free (ish) A little fact for you…if you drink water with ice cubes in it you will burn off more calories.

So there you have it…my blog dedicated to the pain in my bowel…nice.

IBS is one of those illnesses/diseases that people disregard…unless you have it you don’t understand how much it affects your life. But finding out what triggers or worsens your IBS will really help you to live with this…don’t suffer in silence.

xOx

Published in: on May 13, 2012 at 10:02 am  Comments (3)  
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Update….

I haven’t blogged a huge amount over the past few weeks so thought I would produce a combined blog of what I have been up to…

…….Of The Week

Rise of the planet of the apes.

At first I saw Apes/monkeys (whatever) as just animals that are sort of human-like. Then I began to feel sorry for apes, especially those that are confined in small spaces and are mistreated. I then decided that apes are actually more intelligent than we give them credit for and now I’m slightly terrified of them =(

Brilliant movie!

40 days and 40 nights

I’VE DONE IT!!!!!!!!

6 weeks of no food-related over-indulgence (aka sweets, biscuits and cake)

It has been a rollercoaster and I’m not saying this for the sake of an easy cliché, I truly mean it. There have been times when I wanted nothing more than a delicious piece of carrot cake. Then there have been times when I felt like I needed to eat some comfort food. But no matter the situation I managed to do it!

Easter Sunday arrived and I was filled with excitement at the thought of eating my long-lost comfort food. I had a tin of sweets, a packet of digestive biccies and a big bag of skittles at the ready. For breakfast I devoured a vanilla pastry and it was soooo good. I then moved onto consume 2 lollipops, one digestive biccie, some malteesers, and a handful of skittles. I was surprised by the little amount I had wanted to eat. As the evening drew to a close I sat with all my sweets and biscuits at my side but I felt like I had eaten enough – I didn’t want any more. Still, as I am writing this, these delectable goodies are staring me in the face and I have no desire to eat any of them.

I am really pleased with this outcome as I was worried I would fall back into an old habit of binge eating, especially after giving them up for 6 weeks. Now I know that I can control what and how much I eat I feel so much better about myself. Plus I have the added bonus of having lost 4lbs since I started lent and I have to say I feel a lot healthier and a lot less bloated.

The main lesson I have learnt through this experience is the lesson of self-discipline. Now I know I can give up and control the amount of crappy food I eat, I know that with the same determination I can cut out or even take on other things to benefit my life. So with this in mind I have set myself a new challenge….exercise for 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week, for 6 weeks.

For a person who hates exercise this is going to be tricky but I’m excited to embrace the challenge and am definitely looking forward to the outcome.

How was lent for you? 

Adventures in our wonderful country

It should be quite clear by now how much I love exploring our wonderful country so when hubby-to-be and I went on a random adventure to Bristol I was uber excited.

The hotel we stayed in was lovely. A 3* building with an exterior that not only portrayed what I view as an extreme case of ‘wow’ (when a building displays architecture that could tell a story or is breath-taking) but was also surrounded by the most outstanding views I have seen outside a hotel.

Sunday took our journey to Bristol zoo. I’ll admit I was NOT looking forward to this (massive dislike for animals) but it turned out to be so much fun. There are loads to do at Bristol zoo I was really surprised. Plus the zoo homes the most EEEEENORMUS Gorilla I have ever seen….ever!!!!

Our journey back to Dorset took us through the most breath-taking scenic route. With the best company, fabulous music, my sweetie tin and views that pummeled deep into my body I was definitely thrown into a moment of euphoria.

Oh. my. days.

Don’t believe me? See for yourself….

Running a house…becoming a wife.
Cooking with my lovely better-half.

A few weeks ago my gorgeous fiance baked a creamy chicken pie. It was a recipe my man had seen Gino D’Acampo make so I was looking forward to trying it even more.

I have to tell you – I wasn’t disappointed!

The pie was filling, delicious, creamy and lemony. It had so much flavour to it, that gravy or a sauce wasn’t needed. I was so impressed, not only with the recipe, but with hubby-to-be’s cookery skills, so much so that I desperately want him to make it again (hint hint) It was gorgeous!!

For the recipe go to http://www.itv.com/food/recipes/chicken-and-vegetable-pie-lemon-zest

xOx

Images from Google and Avon Gorg website with thanks.

Published in: on April 9, 2012 at 11:10 am  Comments (2)  
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