I put on a few pounds over winter and that never feels good. So I decided a bike was the best way of taking them off again. Pleased I did.
When my mother said to me one day visiting her, " When's it due?" I knew that it was time to stop being lazy, get on a diet, and stick with it. Like most people who love food, especially fast food, we've all tried a diet at some stage which basically means not eating for as long as you can and then after six hours eating everything in sight. So long, diet.
So I shopped around a little on the Internet and talked to a few friends who have what I regard boring, healthy lifestyles. I asked them about their food intake. If you've ever known people like this they become obsessive with what they eat, so I've always ignored that style of living as I can't think why I'd have a buckwheat pancake when I can have one made of "real" flour. And why would I put low-fat goat's milk cheese and spinach on a hotcake when I can spread butter and syrup?
Well, I tell you that what I came up with worked like a charm. Funny thing was that my wife went on exactly the same diet as me at the same time, and she didn't lose any weight. She's five feet two and only weighs 98 pounds, so she has very little fat to lose anyway. She has always adopted a much better diet than me, avoiding burgers, sugar, and too much dairy, whereas for me a piece of toast has to be smothered in butter otherwise there's no point in eating it.
How I Lost 20 Pounds in 30 Days
The first thing you've got to do if you want to lose weight is to make up your mind that you really want to do it. Maybe spend a few days contemplating this first until you've completely psyched yourself into it and ready to go. If you've ever given up a bad habit like smoking then you're going to find this diet easy to deal with.
To be honest, I wasn't that overweight to begin with. I weighed 170 pounds and I'm five feet ten. But back at school, I was 140 pounds and wasn't overweight at all. So, like my wife, I've probably reached the stage where your body just doesn't lose any more weight. But the truly great thing is about this diet that it isn't like any other.
Here's the Diet
So what this diet involves is:
NO: No grain, rice, pasta, potatoes, sugar, or dairy (cheese, cream, or milk). No soda, so I bought a Sodastream and just have carbonated water. Tastes fantastic and I take a spare bottle of it in the car with me too.
YES: It's just fruit, vegetables, nuts, meat, and fish (if you like meat and fish).
This diet is only limited by your imagination. If you cut out the bad stuff and let's all be honest, we all know what that is, and let in the good stuff not only well you see the pounds sliding off, your whole personality is going to change to. You'll look like a million dollars and feel like it to and have a total new energy level.
Fruit and Vegetables
Fruit and vegetables are just full of fabulous proteins and vitamins. Your body will just love the change and so will you. If you're used to having a burger or two for lunch will you're know that for the next hour or two you can feel really quite tired. The reason for that is that your body is struggling to digest a pile of processed bread that has absolutely zero goodness in it. But give your body some fresh vegetables and fruit and no matter how much of it you eat you'll feel no tiredness at all.
Do it now. You won't regret it! Try to buy organic whenever you can. It's a little bit more expensive but you just aren't consuming all those spray poisons they use.
Foods to Avoid
In a Nutshell, these are the foods you can't have:
- All grains - bread, buns, cereals, pizzas
- Anything with sugar in it. So goodbye donuts, chocolate, sweets, desserts, cakes etc.
- Potatoes - fries of course and any potato, even boiled.
- Dairy - no cream, milk of any kind or cheese
- Energy drinks
- Peanut butter
- Packaged fruit juice
- Canned baked beans
- Ice cream
- Candy bars
Foods to Eat on This Diet
That doesn't sound like much fun, but these are the foods you'll be eating:
- Fruit - Has to fresh, not canned. So, bananas, apples, pears, kiwifruit, pineapple, oranges, melon, mango, plums, cherry's, raspberry's, blackberry's, strawberry's, dates, figs, gooseberry's, persimmon's, lemon, mandarin, papaya, passionfruit, lime, guava, rhubarb, grapes, tamarillo, tangerine
- Vegetables - Has to be fresh, not canned. Carrots, cucumber, tomatoes, celery, zucchini, cauliflower, bok choy, beet, pumpkin, kale, spinich, cabbage, salads, beans, peas, asparagus, onion, leek, yam
- Sweet potatoes
- All meat - Chicken, pork, beef, lamb, venison, turkey, duck, steak.
- All to be cooked in either coconut oil or butter.
Calorie Count of The Good and the Bad
Here's a list of calories in the foods you should be eating for this diet. But first I'll list the calories in foods you shouldn't be eating:
- 6 slices of Pizza 1632
- 1 pint of Coke 239
- 1 ice cream 273
- 1 x KFC Chicken Breast 320
- 1 x Cheese Quesadilla 460
- 1 x Tablespoon of cream 60
Here's some examples of what you can have:
- 1 hard boiled egg 13
- 1 Sweet Potato Baked in skin 60
- 1 Banana 48
- 1 Kiwifruit 42
- 1 Carrot 25
- Sirloin steak 158
Fruit for Breakfast
Alright you've heard it all before but believe me this one works. But if you're like me I couldn't start the day off without bread. That's now long gone but that's a mile of substitutes to keep you going.
I now prefer to start the day with a banana followed by a plate of chopped fruit. That maybe a chopped apple, a chopped pear and a chopped kiwifruit. I allow myself a little artificial berry sauce on this, but I go lightly with it. So, you don't have to have something like berry sauce but I just found after a week that the taste of the chopped fruit was a little bland so if you do use it don't cake it over it, you'll just be back where you started, just use about one tablespoon maximum.
As I said for years during the day I've only really ever drunk carbonated water from a sodastream. I just don't like flavored sugary water like Coke or Dr Pepper anyway. If you do like these kind of drinks and you're serious about losing weight - they've got to go. But take a look at a Sodastream. Just plain carbonated water you might find fills the gap.
Strange thing I've noticed is that by consuming the fruit I don't drink nearly as much carbonated water each day. Could be all the fluid in the fruit or maybe the lack of salt?
If Hunger Pangs Should Appear
So, that will take you through for a few hours. Have an emergency stash of all nuts on hand as biscuits and cakes are right out.
I have a store of cashews, walnuts, almonds and pistachios but you can buy whatever you like. And I have a big bag of cashews in the car too for emergency eating if a hunger pang does arise. Remember with nuts though that they can put on weight too so if you've got a good diet balance going on then your nut intake should be at a minimum. I guess I'd eat about a handful or two of nuts a day. You can eat them anytime you like.
I've also got a store of wheat, sugar and dairy free small confectionary bars from my local organic store. Also I have some packets of vegetable crisps. Go see what they've got.
Now, also remember, that I started this diet when I weighed 170 pounds. If you're a lot more than that weight then you can probably make and eat an awful lot more than what I'm quoting here and still lose a substantial amount of weight. So, maybe you could make fritters using three eggs and maybe you could eat a cup of nuts a day and still lose a lot of weight, I really don't know.
But hopefully you're getting the picture that this diet isn't eating a depressing amount of lettuce. As long as you stay away from potatoes and all grains and cheese you can pretty much eat whatever you like. The funny thing is though that after a few days you'll only want the healthy options anyway as they suddenly taste so good.
For lunch you can have a leg of chicken or a steak, some salmon or tuna and you can have that as big as you feel comfortable with. With it you can have a salad, or, cook yourself some vegetables. Oddly you can have cooked yams and sweet potato and as long as they're eaten in moderation you won't put on any weight. Potato is a complex carbohydrate, whereas sweet potato and yams aren't.
In the afternoons I might have a little more fruit, say a banana and some more nuts before a light evening meal. I've got to say I've never been crazy on large evening meals anyway. There's nothing worse than a bloated feeling trying to go to sleep. So, I might just have another leg of chicken and call it a day.
But you could make yourself a curry with diced beef or pork and vegetables such as eggplant. If you've never tried eggplant, buy one, they're a very interesting vegetable, they actually have a very meaty taste. If you're frying them in coconut oil they absorb an awful lot of it. But that's good because you're eating them full of coconut oil and that's really good for you too. If it's a curry though, a half hour cooking in your pan in the curry sauce will cook them right through. Remember you could throw a pile of mushrooms and onions in that curry too.
Fritters for Breakfast
Alternatives for breakfast are fritters. You can have vegetable, say, sliced zucchini for example or, fruit based fritters like chopped apple or banana. The thing about these fritters is though that you can't put any flour in the mix. To make them mix up a couple of eggs and add as much chopped fruit or vegetables as you like and mix together well. You could also have diced chicken or other meats such as minced pork or beef, but just make sure they're made of nothing else but the egg mix only. And they've got to be fresh eggs. Don't trust powdered egg mix. And definitely no dairy, so, no cream into that mix. If you've got cream, butter or milk in your fridge, throw it out.
Now to fry your fritters put a little coconut oil into your frypan. Coconut oil is going to take over from butter to fry in if that's what you've been using. So go out and buy a jar.
You can make and eat as many as you like but I'd stick to two eggs at most plus the fruit/vegetables.
To Make Your Fritters:
- Beat up two fresh eggs.
- If you want fruit fritters, peel one banana and one or two apples and chop down to small chunks.
- If it's a vegetable like zucchini, peel your zucchini then grate it.
- Mix your fruit in with the eggs thoroughly with a spoon.
- Heat your frypan to medium heat and put two tablespoons of coconut oil in, or, pure butter if you prefer. Then spoon your fritters in so they are about four inches diameter. Fry them for about two to three minutes before flipping and then fry for the same time on the other side.
- Makes about 6 fritters
- Serve and enjoy
Super Healthy and Low-Calorie Spaghetti Bolognese
The trick to this Bolognese is that the spaghetti is actually Courgettes that have being put through a spiral slicer. They look pretty much the same.
Ingredients with Calorie Count next to them
- 4 x tablespoons coconut oil 131
- 2 x celery stalks 6
- 1 x medium size carrot 25
- 1 x onion 6
- 200 grams (7oz) of minced pork 130
- 3 x medium courgettes 40
- 3 x tomatoes 16
Heat a frypan up and put in your coconut oil. Chop the onion, carrot, celery finely and place in pan and stir until brown. Coconut oil burns at a high temperature, so that won't be long.
Next put the pork mince in (this doesn't have to be pork, it could be beef or lamb). Make sure that's well cooked by stirring frequently. Next chop your tomatoes up and stir those into the pan as well. You could also add a half a glass of red wine at this stage too. Also add pepper and salt, maybe a little cayenne too if you would like it a little hotter.
Put a lid on the pan, turn it down and simmer it for about an extra half hour.
Now get your spiral slicer (If you haven't come across one of these, check out the slicer below. They retail for $18 to $30 and do a fantastic job of putting a new presentation to vegetables. They work by placing the vegetable between the slicer and a handle. Once you turn the handle, the vegetable will start spiral slicing out the front. If you've got young kids who don't like vegetables much then this gives them a whole new novelty that I bet they'll be sold on).
Get your spiral slicer and spiral out the three courgettes. I prefer to skin mine first.
Get another frying pan, put two tablespoons of coconut oil in and once the oil's sizzling, put your spiral in. Stir them around and flip them over a few times until brown. They will shrink away but with three this will give you enough.
Once cooked, on a plate place your courgette spirals down first and then lay your bolognese over the top.
A Spiral Slicer in Action
How to Make Poached Eggs on Sweet Potato Toast
So for breakfast or lunch or maybe even for a light dinner instead of bread make yourself as a great no carb alternative, sweet potato toast.
First how to properly make perfect cafe style eggs.
- Get a pan of about 6 inches deep and put about four inches of water in. Put about four tablespoons of white vinegar in and boil the water then turn to lightly simmering.
- Break two eggs into two different cups.
- Turn the water with a spoon.
- While the water is swirling carefully but quickly place each egg in by releasing the eggs just above the water.
- Leave for about four to five minutes.
- Take a long sweet potato and cut lengthways so you have long slices of about a quarter of an inch thick.
- Place in your toaster and keep toasting (this may take three or four attempts) until toasted with slight burn marks like your bread would be.
- Take out and put your eggs on top.
These same sweet potato toasted slices can be great with any healthy topping. So, instead of eggs you could slice some avocado and tomato. Really delicious.
How to Make Mashed Cauliflower
This honestly tastes great. On a blind taste test I don't think you'd tell the difference between mashed potato and mashed cauliflower.
For two people cut half a cauliflower to pieces as you normally would and boil the pieces until cooked - usually about 20 to 30 minutes.
Drain the pot and put into blender while hot with one third cup of pure butter and blend.
The next step is optional but you could then mix onion strips in with it and mixed herbs.
Add a small shake of powdered cayenne if you wish and it's ready to serve with your favorite steak.
Tips to Make the Diet a Success
I recorded my weight every day in the morning at about the same time and wrote every day's result on a spreadsheet. Some days you'll find you're exactly the same weight as the day before. Not sure why this is but it may be the body just settling down to its new found weight. Don't be disappointed because this seems to last for just two days and the following day you're more than likely to be a pound lighter.
If you maintain this diet rigidly for seven days then have one meal as a treat that breaks all the barriers, such as a burger ( I could have a burger but couldn't face the fries) or, a pasta meal if that's what you normally like. I bet though after the first seven days if you sit down to the usual quantity of pasta that you'd serve that you won't be able to eat it all due to a stomach shrinkage in that short time.
A tip is to work out what you're going to eat the next day beforehand and go buy it so the food is on hand. Also, make sure you've got things like plenty of bananas and carrots for fill ins during the day. People for a long time have always believed that bananas are fattening because they have a high natural sugar count. That's not the case. But I'd still keep it to a maximum of three to four a day. Bananas are extremely good for you. Very high in potassium and magnesium and a good source of vitamins like A and C.
Once you've got your weight down to where you want it then you don't have to stick so rigidly to this diet, but unless you're sensible about what you're eating before you know it you've put it all back on again.
Other Benefits of this Diet Apart from Weight Loss
For the last couple of years I've suffered from a bit of anxiety. It's not something I've had any help for because I prefer to find my own cures and with something like this it's obviously a head problem that I don't think many specialists have ever had themselves, so I don't really think they're that qualified to cure someone who suffers from this.
The anxiety got pretty bad. It started actually in a supermarket. I was waiting in the car for my wife who had a dermatologist appointment. While waiting I thought I'd just walk down to the supermarket and get a newspaper. Everything was fine until I felt a little faint. It was just slightly black for a few seconds and then I was fine, but actually I wasn't. I was sure I was going to have a heart attack. Ridiculous of course as i had no chest pain or any heart attack symptoms but I was by myself and well that fantasy took over. So I sprinted out of the supermarket and back to the safety of my car.
So after that little unnerving episode every time I went into a supermarket this real feeling of uncontrollable anxiety would take hold. It was especially bad if I was held up in aisles or at the checkout especially. Twice i just abandoned the basket and ran for my life. If a security guard thought I was shoplifting he wouldn't have had a show of catching up to me. Funny thing was that I read a little online about this and it wasn't that rare. One woman who got it said that she was in an aisle and someone had temporarily abandoned their trolley while looking for something. She gave it a tap (or so she thought it was a tap) and the trolley went flying down the aisle. I guess at moments like this - fight or flee as it's known you're very jumpy and might harbor a kind of inner super strength.
Anyway, this thing got even worse. Driving into the city became a nightmare if there was a traffic jam and then even just with driving I'd get it. I never told my gorgeous wife what was going on which I probably should have but to me it was a sign of weakness that i didn't think she needed to see. But when I had these nerve attacks I'd be trying to control them and she'd be in the passenger seat chatting away to me, but I wouldn't be listening and kind of praying that she's just be quiet.
So I worked on this myself for two years and did manage to get a semblance of self control but at the same time it was so debilitating that I just wanted it gone for good as it was such a waste of time.
Your mind being apparently faster than any computer has huge control over you and is I guess doing its best to help you in every situation but when it was telling me that 'you're in a supermarket so you should be terribly afraid' the mind definitely had all that very wrong and I knew I had to reprogram it. When you think of the hallucinations that a drug addict has and an addict loves them so much that they'll rob someone just to have another, you can see how powerful your mind is.
Anyway, why I say all this about panic attacks and anxiety, while sorting through looking for a cure to it all, a site mentioned exactly this and said it would be gone if you followed this healthy diet. That was another huge motivator to me to get going with this diet.
I can tell you that along with the weight loss I also completely lost the anxiety. It's now just a silly thing that I had in the past. I've never suffered from depression or migraines but if you do there is a possibility that this diet will hopefully cure those two ghastly problems as well.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.
Questions & Answers
Question: I have an event in five weeks. Can I make curry from a tin? or make my own curry with herbs to lose weight?
Answer: I'd be making my own. Curry in a tin generally has quite a high sugar content.
Question: Do you also have to have to work out for like two or three hours for the diet described in this article to work?
Answer: No, not at all. Of course, that would be very beneficial but not necessary. A walk for an hour a day would be good though.
Jerry Fisher (author) from Wellington on August 08, 2018:
Yeah beans are a great idea in moderation.
Tish on August 08, 2018:
HI, Can I eat beans (kidney, butter beans, black beans) and chickpeas?
MissWonderland120 on September 21, 2017:
I literally started this diet change last Friday and I've already dropped 6lbs! I never have ANY hunger issues and this is way easier than I thought it would be ^.^ Awesome!
Jerry Fisher (author) from Wellington on September 13, 2017:
No problem with sourdough but just watch the quantity.
MissWonderland120 on September 13, 2017:
How about sourdough bread?
Jerry Fisher (author) from Wellington on March 27, 2017:
theresa on March 27, 2017:
are you able to eat pickles on this diet?
RetailWaa on November 29, 2016:
I think it would be beneficial to note that the calorie count for the hard boiled egg is only correct if only the egg white is eaten. A hard boiled egg, yolk and all is actually around 80 calories.
Jerry Fisher (author) from Wellington on November 15, 2016:
For sure. Quite a nice tasty healthy one is mixing a teaspoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice with a couple of tablespoons of fresh oil such as macadamia oil or sesame oil plus say a teaspoon of wholegrain mustard. Just place the lot in a small jar with a lid on and shake.
Sharon on November 14, 2016:
I am interested. Can one have some form of salad dressing. If so can it be homemade and can I get the recipe. Thanks.
Jerry Fisher (author) from Wellington on September 22, 2016:
Yes. Thanks for your comment.