So, I said yesterday I would explain some of the basics of Slimming World to anyone who was interested! I hope it will help concrete it in my mind too, so bear with me! I wont be going into explicit detail, as I'm sure that would breach some kind of copy right or trade mark or something, but if you have any questions feel free to ask!
When you go to a Slimming World meeting, you'll be introduced to three different plans. There are Original (or red) days, Green days and the more recent addition, Extra Easy days. At the moment, I will be following the Extra Easy plan the majority of the time simply because it does what it says on the tin and is really easy to follow! Not that Original and Green are hard to get to grips with, but I find the choice on Extra Easy is wider and I feel more satisfied.
Food is split into three groups; Free food, Healthy Extras and Syns. The majority of your food for the day should come from the free food group - but the range of free food is huge! And you can eat as much of it as you like - eat until you are full.
Free food is split into two groups - free and superfree. Superfree foods are fruit and vegetables which are free on all plans, no matter which you are following. These include (but are not limited to):
Fruit - fresh or frozen but not cooked or tinned
Vegetables - with a few exceptions such as peas, sweetcorn, parsnips, potato and sweet potato
On the Extra Easy plan, these things are also free:
Eggs - poached, scrambled, boiled, fried using low fat cooking spray - in fact any way you like as long as no fat is added
Fat free and very low fat dairy - including plain and some fruit yoghurt, very low fat cottage cheese, very low fat fromage frais, skimmed milk soft cheese such as quark
Meat replacement, such as quorn, textured vegetable protein (TVP and tofu)
Low calorie soft drinks, black tea and coffee
There also also things like stock cubes, dried herbs and other seasonings that are free. Also, fat free salad dressings that are less than 40 calories per 100ml can be used freely.
Meat and poultry - Bacon, beef, chicken, ham, pork, turkey ect. all skin and visible fat removed. Mince should contain less than 5% fat. Most things like sausages and burgers have a syn value.
Fish and seafood - Cod, haddock, prawns, tuna etc, free unless canned in oil
Pulses - beans (including baked beans), lentils, chickpeas, kidney beans etc
Rice, pasta and grains - Couscous, all types of dried pasta, quinoa, bulgar wheat etc, all types of rice
Starchy vegetables - potatoes, peas, sweetcorn, parsnips, sweet potatoes etc
So as you can see that is a huge list! All of it can be enjoyed freely, and will fill you up. No weighing, no counting. It is pretty easy to create whole meals from just the free foods.
Healthy extras are additional foods that our bodies need for health. On the Extra Easy plan you chose one 'a' choice and one 'b' choice per day.
'A' choices are dairy foods that are high in calcium, for example an 'a' choice could be:
- 350ml skimmed milk
- 28g cheddar
- 42g feta
- 42g mozzarella
- 42g reduced fat cheddar
- 3 mini babybel light cheeses
'B' choices are high in fibre, for instance:
- 35g porridge oats
- 2 weetabix
- 57g wholemeal bread
- 4 original ryvita
Syns stands for synergy, and every food that isn't on the free foods list has a syn value, and this is why you really need access to the slimming world literature, either through the online source or through meetings. Everyday, you can have up to 15 syns - use them for a treat (a 140ml glass of wine is 5 syns, or a 2 finger it kat is 5.5) or add some extra cheese (6 syns per ounce/28g), a bit of sauce (extra light mayo is 1 1/2 syns per 2 level tablespoons and 4 tablespoons of gravy, made with granules is 1 syn) or a slice of bread (3 syns).
I hope I haven't confused the hell out of you here! It can be a little overwhelming at first, but it soon all sins in. And it works! I know it sounds mad that you can eat all the pasta, meat, eggs etc that you like, but really, you can. Of course, you have to chose to eat these things instead of the high syns foods like chocolate and crisps, and that's the part that I'll struggle with. I'm going to weigh in in the morning, hopefully that will shock me enough to banish the cravings!
If you have any questions, please ask and I'll do my best to answer. But really and truly, if you want to follow this plan you need to have it explained by someone trained to explain it, and you need access to the literature. There is no class near me at the moment, so once I get my finances sorted I'll be joining the online resource. Until then, I'm going it alone! Wish me luck!
This is not a sponsored post and I was not offered any remuneration for writing. All opinions are my own. All diet plans should be followed with caution and I highly recommend seeing advice from a Slimming World consultant before embarking on the plan.