I’ve started an Instagram account for the photos of what I’m eating. You can find me at LCHChef.



I’ve been flailing around for a few years now trying to lose baby weight. Like so many other people I’ve embraced new habits then gradually gone back to my old ways, lost a bit of weight (over half a stone) and put it back on. One day I’m determined to lose weight, the next I just can’t be bothered to put in the effort. End result? I’m back where I started and demoralised.

In my heart I want to eat an LCHF diet as I wholly believe in its health benefits. I do stray as I love a biscuit as much as the next person and I want to join in with family events, try my children’s cooking etc – I really want to avoid becoming the food grinch. I have my cycle to contend with too. I can’t explain the significance of the huge variety in my cycle from one month to the next (this is a development over the last two years, prior to that my system ran like clockwork) but it can plunge me quite low at times and then I really don’t give a damn.

What I’ve wanted more than anything else over the last few years – yes, even more than weight loss – is to understand what makes me tick when it comes to food and to dismantle any unhealthy associations, though I don’t consider myself to be someone who has a problematic relationship with food. I’ve discovered that I like alcohol more than I imagined and that when I get grumpy I really want treat foods. Not so unusual really.

Lately I’ve eaten various things that I shoudn’t. I can’t swear it’s connected but I’ve noticed also that my appetite has run away with me. I could eat all my meals three times over and eat shedloads of snacks in-between. I don’t do this, but I could. I’ve been contenting myself with a sneaky bowl of cereal between meals, one of the biscuits DH made…not really terrible overeating, but something I’ve been drawn to do and unable to resist. Again i can’t swear to a connection but my system is very ‘up’ – I have hives, generally increased itchiness (I have eczema, usually under control with the help of some quite heavy drugs) and my joints are swelling too: I struggled to take off my engagement ring this morning, and when I opened a tin of mackerel for lunch I couldn’t get my index finger through the ring pull.

I had a moment of inspiration last night – is my appetite running out of control because I’ve been snacking on carbs, particularly sugar? I know full well that carbs interfere with appetite controls, but I’ve never noticed it so starkly before. Really that’s all the incentive I need to cut out the carbs. I’m scared that if I keep eating like this 12 stone will become 13 before I know it, and that’s the last thing I want.

Is this going to be the final piece of the jigsaw that helps me stick to LCHF and get my eating under control? The irony is that my meals are brilliant – veg-heavy, good fats, some protein, they’re model LCHF meals. It’s what happens in-between that lets me down. If I have at last found the antidote to wanting to eat too much I’ll be very happy – and slimmer, if my perimenopausal middle-aged system will allow me to drop a few lbs.

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Cauliflower rice

I made this for the first time tonight. I always have cauliflower in the freezer, but cauliflower rice needs fresh cauliflower, which I happened to have to hand. I followed The Travelling Chopsticks‘ method, which comes down to trimming the cauliflower, breaking into florets, blitzing in a food mixer til the fragments are rice-sized, then cooking briefly in oil. I chose to cook longer and cooler, and added bouillon powder. It was absolutely delicious – DH was in raptures about it.

Today the cauliflower rice accompanied fish & aubergine curry for DD and me, and veggie sausage and aubergine curry for DH. My son spat it out and had apple and cheese instead. What can you do?

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Healthy eating vs weight loss

These two things are usually talked of as a natural combination, but in my case they’ve become two halves of a debate I’ve been having with myself, or the stick I’ve been using to beat myself with.

When I started the LCHF way of eating (something like three years ago) I hoped to lose weight. I want to treat my body well and eat properly, but weight loss was my primary motive. I’ve lost nothing through LCHF. I’ve gained nothing either, but the way I lost weight about 18m ago was by 5:2 fasting. Since I stopped that the weight has gone back on and stayed on. From this I learn that the only way I lose weight is by starving myself, and that’s not how I want to live.

I’m now in my mid-40s and like many women my age sorely noticing the loss of looks, figure and general joie de vivre. My husband will tell you I’m the sexiest woman alive and for that I will eternally be grateful (in my 20s when my eczema was life-changing I had a boyfriend who never stopped telling me I was beautiful, so feminist principles can take a running jump – these things make a hugely positive difference), but I don’t feel it. I feel fat, frumpy and 44, the most boring woman on earth, an ineffective businesswoman and a nagging mother.

Against this background I’m not going to make myself miserable with constant self-denial; there have to be some pleasures in life! My key is that I want to eat well, which for me means lots of veg, good fats and few carbs. I’m going to follow that guiding light and accept that I’m never going to be thin.


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The finished eggy, buttery article

The finished eggy, buttery article

I’ve been intrigued by bulletproof coffee for a while. Before I go on I should say that Bulletproof® coffee is a proper brand name and I’m not talking about that, I’m talking about coffee made in that style. It’s renowned for giving its drinkers energy and keeping them going well into the afternoon with no additional breakfast or lunch. Thanks to the Instagrammer who nudged me into giving this a try this morning – you know who you are.

The principles of BPC are fresh coffee mixed with oils, ideally very pure unsalted butter and coconut oil. I have the first two but coconut oil’s hard to find where I live. I’m going to be in the vicinity of an excellent wholefoods place next week though so I’m going to go a-hunting then.

My version of BPC went like this: I made fresh catetière coffee. While that brewed I nuked a good knob of unsalted butter for 40 seconds (I think 30 would have done), then cracked an egg into it and zizzed it with the stick blender. I plunged the coffee, poured it into the butter and egg jug and zizzed it all together.

The texture looked good and it held froth well on the top (a good half an hour later, the dregs in the cup still have a good head of froth on them!), even though I’d used nothing fancy designed for frothing milk, just a regular cheap underpowered Morrisons stick blender. We used to have one you could drive to work on but DD broke that and we didn’t fancy the £80 it cost to replace it.

You know what? It was delicious. Silky and creamy but without cream (usually I pile double cream into my coffee) and with a mild and not remotely eggy flavour. Next time I’ll make the coffee a bit stronger just so that it still tastes coffeeish enough for me. Some people add two eggs but atm one is enough for me.

I’ve been unusually hungry in the last couple of days so it’ll be interesting to see how long this keeps me going…


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Pounds down, at last

Yip yip! Maybe terrible PMT is accompanied by worse than usual water retention – I certainly had both in spades this month. It was very obvious to me that I felt leaner round the middle all of a sudden a few days ago and was even having to hitch my jeans up.

I weighed myself this morning even though it wasn’t in my usual control circumstances. I read a comment on an anti-scales Instagram post to the effect of ‘I need to keep jumping on the scales because I can put on half a stone without noticing’ and never a truer word spoken, IMO. So out of curiosity, and prepared to see numbers I didn’t like, I stepped on to the scales. I was 1.5lbs down on the last time I weighed myself- 12st 1.5lb down from 12st 3lb, result!