I want a perfect body, I want a perfect soul…

When it comes to food and diets there really isn’t much I’ve not tried. God loves a trier after all, but a healthy lifestyle is massively important to me but when I carry on like I have been lately it messes with my head. My moods, which can already sway wildly (ask Dave), are more intense if I’m not eating right. I become a horrible person. A winey, sad, mopey, drown on life. This is truely 100% to do with my eating and exercise habits. Frightening in some respects, that small things have such a major impact. It’s more frightening that, despite me knowing this, I still eat sugar like the cookie monster and put Peter Griffin to shame in the lazy stakes. . So when I started this 5:2 diet it was no surprise. My sister’s take is that I’m always depriving myself of something. I tried to have my 500 calories on a Monday and a Thursday. The first week went….ok. The second week? Not so good. Unfortunately, and maybe unhealthily, my moods are tied in to my eating habbits and by the second Monday, I was low. I mean serverely low. Borderline depressed. Tuesday wasn’t much better, even though I could eat, I was choosing the things that would give me quick high, things loaded with sugar so I was swinging between a hyperactive sugar high and a massive sugar crash.

On Thursday I nearly killed a beautician.

It became obvious that it was time to seriously think about this diet. I jumped on the scales to check if it was having any effect. It wasn’t. Also, my belly was swelling and I was getting crippling pains in my tummy and I was exhausted. This diet was not for me. Please, please do not be put off trying it yourself though, as Dave has found it to be both easy and beneficial. He’s lost weight, has more energy and hasn’t even really found the hunger an issue, as he knows the next day he can just have something delicious.

I have lately also become very aware of my changing shape. I spend enough time prodding, poking and pulling at myself in the mirror to be aware of my shape. So when I gain weight I know where it goes. My legs, thighs and, luckily, my boobs. But since January my boobs have stayed the same, my legs only becoming slightly wobbiler, rather than bigger. My stomach and waist, which normal stays relatively flat, has expanded. I’ve become thick, like a tree, and have devolped a belly like a hardened drinker, and since I am the weakest of drinkers, I knew this wasn’t right.

“What’s changed Jess?” I hear you all shouting at your computers (well my mum is anyway… she loves to be involved… it’s a nightmare taking her to the pictures!) My sugar intake has increased. Drasticly! I never had a sweet tooth before, but if you told anyone who I’ve met in the last three years this, they would laugh in your face. Not because anyone I’ve met is mean, but because they have watched me inhale whole packets of biscuits, and muliple family-sized bags of sweets. I now take sugar in my tea and need something sweet late at night. Now, if you live in a cave you may be unaware of the health issues around sugar. Basically it is the devil of the food world. Thought fat was bad? Nope. Thought carbs were your diet downfall? Nope. Although white carbs and carbs found in fruit do turn into sugar and cause your insulin levels to spike. Sugar is the untamable beast. Sugar has no redeeming qualities except, you know, being a dream to eat. Sugar settles around your middle, padding you out. Giving you the attactive love handles we all crave…

So cut it out. Easy.

Ha. No way. It is in EVERYTHING. The obvious things, sweets, cakes, biscuits, chocolate and soft drinks. If you go through your cupboards you will be astounded. A can of baked beans has 5 ½ teaspoons of sugar per half can! If you look at the back of packets in the shops, you’ll be shocked at how many things have sugar, or another name for sugar, within the first 3-5 ingredients. You’re looking out for the words sugar, syrup, sweetener, glucose and anything else ending in ‘ose’.

So, since I have to go for my first wedding dress fitting in April and since I tried it on, i’ve gained a non-pregnancy related, pregnacy tummy, I’m going to cut down on my sugar intake. Giving it up won’t be happening but reducing it is a must. My plan is to stick to three veg-heavy, heart-healthy meals a day and snack on things that don’t make me dizzy if I eat too many of them.

Which finally leads me to the point of this sugar rant. As I am typing this I have a big vat (slow cooker) blipping away of this.

2013-02-24 10.51.01 This is chicken and barley soup. It was so easy to make. Since I’m actually yet to eat it, I’ll just direct you to the website where I found it. This lovely lady is called Kristin and I think she’s my friend. She doesn’t know who I am. But I adore the way she writes, it helps that she’s American, but that helps with anything! She also has an amazing relationship with food and exercise. One I hope, in time, will come to me!

Chicken and Barley Slow Cook Soup

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