menopause diet blog

Time for a Change

Day 55: Discipline = Reward



Today I tried on some trousers that I bought online that were depressingly small 55 days ago and today they fit! I couldn’t believe it. It was actual proof that I really have shrunk! Numbers on the scales are certainly a measure of success but fitting into previously unwearable and unflattering clothes is one hell of a reward for all the hard work. I share this with you, not to gloat at my success, but to shout that this diet does work and those trousers could be yours!

Food Dairy Day 55:

If you have read the last three days diary then this one is pretty much the same! There is stuff in the fridge I need to eat, I like it, it’s healthy and there’s no point letting it go to waste…

Breakfast: menopause muesli – see breakfast recipe page

Lunch: Red Lentil and butternut squash dahl

Dinner: Salmon terrine, green salad, tomatoes, beetroot

Snacks & Drinks: herbal tea, 5 squares dark chocolate, slice of menopause cake (see snack recipe page), 2 mini pittas and hummus


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Day 54: Do you need to exercise to lose weight?

One of my diet rules is to exercise 5 days a week – for me this means either a run (about half an hour) or leg toning exercises. At one time exercise was considered an essential part of losing weight but I have been reading recently that current thinking reveals that exercising is not particularly necessary. In fact some studies showed that people who exercised actually lost less weight that those who did no exercise as the exercisers increase in appetite resulted in a tendency to overcompensate and/or self reward for their efforts.

However this theory is still quite controversial and a recent article in the press also reveals that people who exercise are much more likely not to put back on all the weight they have lost, not to mention the other health benefits of being physically active.

My experience bears out the theory that exercise is not necessary to lose weight, but I found that when I did exercise, the weight loss was easier and faster. Plus I feel better about myself when I exercise because of all those great feel-good endorphins that are released with physical activity and the leg toning exercises are definitely increasing my muscle tone and, as the adverts say, ‘reducing the appearance of cellulite’!!

I’d say, get out there, in moderation, and do what makes you feel good.

running motivation

Food Diary Day 54:

Breakfast: menopause muesli – see breakfast recipe page

menopause muesli

Lunch: 3 mini pittas, hummus, lentil & butternut squash dahl leftovers

Dinner: Salmon terrine, green salad, beetroot, tomato, sprouted peas and beans ready made salad

salmon terrine

Snacks & Drinks: herbal tea, 5 squares dark chocolate, 3 pringles

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Day 53: Weight loss update

I havent posted much about my weight loss but it has been steady… my target is to lose a stone (14 lbs) which would bring me to a weight that I have not been at for a very long time! I have lost 10 of those pounds over the last 53 days – an average of 1lb every 5.3 days, which I would say is very acceptable. So this diet does work!

Now I am down to the last 4 pounds and still have 47 days left (of which 14 are holiday and therefore I will count myself lucky if I stay at a stable weight over this time) my will power has slipped a little over the last few days, especially hosting the birthday party.

But I don’t want to slip. My worst fear is that I’ll put the weight back on once I stop officially being ‘on a diet’ so I am aiming to eat in a similar vein on an ongoing basis but reintroducing some carbs slowly…

diet motivation poster

Writing this every day has been a fantastic help keeping me focussed but when I stop, on or before day 100, I want to be at my target weight as I need to get on with other aspects of my life which have been a bit neglected of late!

My motivational poster, rules and ‘tick chart’ have been languishing out of sight in a folder and they need to be put back up where I can see them to keep me focussed. God forbid that the last 53 days will turn out to have been a waste of time!

As far as my menopause symptoms are concerned… the migraines are still being held at bay although my daytime hot flushes seem to have started to reoccur recently although not as severely or frequently as before.

Food Diary Day 53:

Breakfast: menopause muesli – see breakfast recipe page

Lunch: Cheese, apple, oatcakes and chutney

Dinner: Salmon terrine, tomatoes, green salad, fresh peas, avocado


Snacks and Drinks: herbal tea, 5 squares dark chocolate, 2 chocolate biscuits (annoying but true!)

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Days 51 and 52: The Party Hostess Diet

Readers of my Day 50 post will recall that I had a diet hiccup while preparing for a party that were due to host – namely scoffing large quantities of crisps, chocolate and biscuits that were part of the party offering. I had put this down to a ‘cheat day’ but was concerned that I was also going to be tempted on the party day itself by the huge array of carbs, cakes, pies and sweets laid out before me.

I needn’t have worried – as the hostess I barely had time to eat anything, plus sheer nervous energy, that everything was going ok and everyone was having a good time, kept me going. I did have a large slice of the amazing chocolate birthday cake for which I have no regrets as it would have been a crime to miss it – so moist and rich and quite the most delicious cake I have ever tasted!

I stepped on the scales this morning three quarters of a pound lighter, so I can recommend the slightly dubious ‘Hostess Diet’ in which you are too busy hosting the party to eat!!

Now I am back to normal and here is my food diary for Day 51

Breakfast: menopause meusli – see breakfast recipe page

Lunch: Cheese, crackers, chutney and apples (not ideal due to the crackers (carbs) and cheese (protein but not good fat)… but someones got to eat the party leftovers!

Dinner: Red Lentil, butternut squash, red pepper and ham ‘dahl’ – see dinner recipe page for recipe

lentil dahl

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Day 50: Diet cheat days

I dont like cheat days even though they are recommended by the likes of Gary Taubes.  For me they just throw me off balance and make me feel gross… perhaps thats what they are supposed to do! anyway today wasn’t supposed to be a cheat day – it was supposed to be tomorrow as tomorrow we are having a birthday party but what I hadn’t anticipated was the  temptations of setting up the party the day before… the bags of crisps, nachos and Pringles, the sweets (for the kids), biscuits and chocolate goodies.

It all started off well enough…

Breakfast: menopause muesli – see breakfast recipe page

Lunch: Peppered fish salad, avocado, edamame beans, cucumber, leaves, tomatoes, olives and serrano ham



It was after lunch that things started to go downhill… specifically

8 squares Dairy Milk Caramel

Half a tube of Thai Chilli Pringles

10 (?) Maoam Stripes (kids chewy sweets)

4 chocolate caramel biscuits

1 J2O juice drink

I estimate this is probably about 1000-1200 calories… it is amazing just how many calories are in this rubbish and how many can be consumed in so short a time…. now I feel full, bloated and a bit sick, very disappointed and annoyed with myself.

And now I have the difficult and party pooping task of trying to eat sensibly tomorrow… It is possible, in theory… there is salmon and green salad but of course there is also wine, more crisps, profiteroles & cheesecake. Oh well…. watch this space!

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Day 49: Help! My Stomach’s Shrinking

diet guilt cartoon

My weight loss has hit a bit of a plateau after a nice 4lbs loss in the last 2 weeks.

Today was interesting as I had a larger than usual lunch with 2 slices of fresh rye bread – my first bread in weeks, plus a salad of smoked fish, spouted peas, avocado & green salad. Certainly not a huge meal by any standards but I felt really full and bloated after it! So full in fact that by dinner time I still wasn’t hungry and just had a bowl of cherries!

Now before I started on this diet, that would not have been a big lunch and I would definitely have had dinner. I have read that your body adjusts to fewer calories and that is what mine seems to have done, so I’m wondering how I am going to maintain weight loss without eating like a bird!

Any tips greatly appreciated!

Food Diary Day 49

Breakfast: Menopause Smoothie – see breakfast recipe page

Lunch: 2 slices rye bread, smoked fish, spouted peas and beans, avocado, beetroot, green salad

Dinner: A bowl of cherries

Snacks & Drinks: herbal tea, 2 biscuits, 3 squares chocolate

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Day 48: Loving Leftovers

Never underestimate the usefulness of leftovers, especially when on a diet and it can be hard to figure out what to make everyday.

I fried up my leftover cabbage, broccoli and spicy chicken with sesame seeds, pepperdew peppers and pine nuts with a splash more of yesterdays sticky chilli and balsamic glaze – delicious

stir fried leftovers

Food Diary Day 48:

Breakfast: menopause smoothie – see breakfast recipe page

Lunch: Rice noodles in broth with chopped chicken… these are the first carbs I have had for ages and I shouldn’t really be having them but I was starving and desperate and figured it wouldn’t hurt this one time.

Dinner: Stir fried leftovers from last night – cabbage, broccoli & spicy chicken with pine nuts and sesame seeds and  a splash of sticky chilli and balsamic glaze

Snacks and Drinks: Herbal tea, 2 squares dark chocolate, apple and cheese

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Day 47: Sticky Chilli and Balsamic Glaze

Another wonderful ingredient that is perfect for marinating and cooking chicken, pork, fish, tofu and anything else you might fancy with it. Made by Jamie Oliver, this wonderful Sticky Chilli and Balsamic Glaze can be added to meat before during or after cooking according to your taste and drizzled over salads to give them an interesting sweet and mild kick.

jamie oliver sticky chilli balsamic glaze

I used it for tonight’s dinner to coat the chicken just at the end of cooking.

Food Diary Day 47:

Breakfast: menopause smoothie – see breakfast recipe page

Lunch: Felafel Salad… felafels, hummus, ready made 3 bean salad, grilled peppers, cucumber, hazlenuts & beetroot

felafel salad

Dinner: Piri Piri chicken strips with sticky chilli and balsamic glaze, steamed cabbage with nutmeg and paprika, broccoli with soy sauce and sesame seeds

Remember to have at least half your plate full of vegetables!

piri piri chicken strips

Snacks and Drinks: herbal tea, 6 squares dark chocolate, blueberries

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Day 46: Hot and tired!

Phew its so hot here! Shouldn’t complain of course, because our summers are usually a hit and miss affair! Luckily all I want to eat is salad!

Food diary Day 46

Breakfast: menopause meusli – see breakfast recipe page

Lunch: Prawn and barbecue chicken salad, with mixed beans, beetroot, pepperdew peppers and green salad


Dinner: Salmon and stir fried veg plus asparagus


Snacks and Drinks: herbal tea, cherries, raspberries, 4 squares dark chocolate


Day 45: Keeping Motivated

diet motivation poster

Food Diary Day 45

Breakfast: Menopause muesli – see breakfast recipe page

Lunch: Slice menopause cake and punnet of cherries

Dinner: Lentil Chilli

Snacks & Drinks: herbal tea, raspberries & Strawberries, 2 squares dark chocolate


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