Blooming fat demo’s

Feb 16, 2017 | 11 comments


Blooming fat demo’s? Well not quite! I’ve got three separate things to report and I was just playing with the title


Long lasting poinsettia

In the middle of December, Mike and I were walking in Eastbourne. We had a little browse round the Christmas market there, along the front. On impulse, Mike asked if I would like a poinsettia. Ooh, yes please, I said. As they were being displayed outside, on the front, on a bright, but cold, day, I didn’t really expect it to make it to Christmas. But here we are, in the middle of February, and it’s still going strong. In fact, it barely looks any different to when we brought it home! That’s a good value plant!


Last night, instead of being tucked up with husband and enjoying something good that we’d cooked, I drove to Mayfield at 6:30. The WI there had asked me to give a cookery demo on living on £1 a day. Their speaker selection person asked me last autumn and I didn’t realise that the date that was wanted was Valentines. I was a bit peeved when I found out, but I had said I would do it, and do it I would.

I’ve also got to the stage when I’m not overly keen to go out at night. Not because of any health issues or anything, purely because I CBA! Nevertheless, I spent most of the day sorting out what I had to take and doing a bit of prep and went off up there. I am really glad I did too. They are a lovely bunch and I had a great time. I was speaking for about 45 minutes and whilst chatting and talking about the site, how it started, the media exposure etc etc, I cooked. I made a Bacon and Sweet Corn Pie. Did that first as it needed to cook in the oven. Then I made Chicken and Sun Dried Tomato Paste and sent that round to taste on pieces of crusty bread. After that, I fired up a double ringed camping stove and made Peanut Noodles and Goan Chicken Curry. And we finished off with Raisin Pancakes. Everything was well received and there were lots of questions at the end, always a good sign.

The Obesity Code

Struggle as I do in my efforts to lose weight, I read a lot of books and literature around the subject. Like most dieters, I have struggled and tried, lost a bit, gained a bit, eaten low fat or low carb or very low calorie,  counted squillions of calories. It’s all generally done my head in as I’ve tried and tried and got nowhere at all.

This week, I’m reading a book I bought a little while ago called The Obesity Code. It was written by Jason Fung who is an American doctor. He approaches things in a similar fashion to Michael Mosley in that everything he says is evidence based.

And my goodness, he is certainly making me think! His contention is that obesity is caused by our hormones rather than lack of self control. He says that overproduction of insulin in the body is the root cause of obesity and obesity-related illnesses, including type 2 diabetes, and offers robust scientific evidence that reversing insulin resistance is the only way to lose weight in the long term.

He says that the way to lose weight is

1. Minimise consumption of added sugar. Make breakfast optional (only to be taken if hungry) and three meals only, never snack.

2. Reduce consumption of refined grains

3. Moderate your protein consumption  (20-30% of total calories )

4. Increase your consumption of natural fats – olive oil, butter, coconut oil, beef tallow and leaf lard, oily fish, nuts and avocado.

5. Increase your consumption of protective factors – fibre and vinegar

and lastly, fast to help your body reset its body set weight point and keep insulin resistance low.

He describes the process of how dieting means you are constantly hungry. I have complained about this many times and how hard it is to stick to a calorie total when I’m never not hungry.

He describes how your body will adjust to however many calories you give it. Last year, I was working out at the gym and eating what they told me, starting at almost 3000 calories and working down to 1500. Nothing much happened.  I didn’t get fatter at the higher end and I didn’t lose much weight at the lower end either. It has been my lifelong experience that my system adjusts, within two or three weeks, to whatever my latest regimen is.

And there are other things that I have experienced too. I am trying hard not to have too much hope that here at last is the diet that will work for me. I have been here so many times before. Caloric restriction and exercise sounds logical and that it should work. Low fat and high fibre sounds logical and that it should work. Even the Atkins diet sounded logical and that it should work. And this theory sounds logical and that it should work. There are some powerful evidence based studies given as proof, but we all know what can be done with figures don’t we.

But I am, inevitably, hoping. I will be giving it a go. I had already decided that fasting as in 5:2 was something I wanted to do for the health benefits independently of any slimming benefits. This week, I have been semi fasting since Monday and am very hungry indeed. I had been toying with the idea of fasting during the week for some time. Semi fasting as I have been so hungry that I haven’t quite managed the 600 calories I am aiming at. I don’t know how long I’ll be able to do it, but we’ll see and I’ll let you know of any good effects.

Edit: I’ve found that Jason Fung has a blog, so I’ve signed up. The first couple of posts that I have just read made sense to me because I have been reading his book and he is talking about the same things as he has in the book. If you dive straight into the blog, you may find it a bit confusing at first, but it should fall into place after a while



  1. Lesley

    Anna / Alix – ah interesting, I wonder then, why Jason Fung mentioned leaf lard in particular and didn’t just say ‘lard’. Unless it’s as Alix says, that it has less flavour?

    Personally, I love the flavour of dripping and lard, although it wouldn’t go with everything

  2. Anna

    When people butchered their own animals the leaf lard was the lard around the kidneys. It was finer and flakier than the rendered lard and people saved it for piecrust and delicate things like that. At least that’s what my grandmother told me.

  3. Alix Stayton Hernandez

    Leaf lard is high quality fat from near the kidneys, I think. It’s only from a particular part of the animal, and I think has less flavor (more neutral). I read about it awhile ago when I was looking for tamale recipes… You’ll want to Google for more specific info 🙂

  4. Lesley

    Interesting, does that apply as I only have decaf? Actually, I was drinking coffee (decaf) so probably not that

  5. Gillian

    I think the headaches are caused by the sudden reduction in tanins? that’s why you get headaches if you suddenly cut down your coffee intake apparently. British Heart Foundation are promoting a no-chocolate month for March. Am thinking of trying that myself but i have always had a sweet tooth I’m afraid.

  6. Lesley

    I had to give up on Thursday as I’d developed a headache that was getting worse. But I’ll definitely do it again. It wasn’t too bad really

  7. Alexandra Lynn-Smith

    Wow, Lesley that sounds like you have quite the determination! I admire that, it sounds quite tough to fast like that. Best of luck with it all : )

  8. Lesley

    I fasted Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. But by Wednesday afternoon, I’d developed a headache, felt pretty ropey Thursday morning, so decided to eat that day. Apparently, headaches are quite common.

    Other than that it wasn’t too bad, and I was even cooking for Mike without any problem, amazingly!
    Dr Fung says to keep changing it up so your body doesn’t get a chance to adapt to anything. I’ll do some days next week, but I’m not sure which ones yet. Crossed fingers this is the one!

  9. Kevin

    The poinsettia is lovely, or tote gorge as Mr Mitchell would say.
    Fasting, semi or otherwise, for 5 of 7 days sounds mighty tough to stick to, especially with DP scoffing to his heart’s content.
    I struggled over CBA for a while, eventually worked it out, I believe I (and t’ mother) hold the rights to that syndrome!

  10. Lesley

    Katherine – I’m trying the principles for a month / 6 weeks before I start thinking about recommending it to the extent of a meal plan. It’s going extremely well so far this week, but we’ll have to wait and see. My system adjusts to whatever my current regimen is in a week or so, but Dr Fung explains that, hopefully it will work for me.
    Unfortunately, carbs are cheap, so I’m not sure if I could get a £1 a day to work. We shall see

    I’m not sure what leaf lard is, I suspect it is just lard. Vinegar may well help with insulin resistance although it is not well researched yet

  11. Katherine

    Hello Lesley
    I have started reading his blog from the beginning and feel a bit sleepy now. Are you working on a pound a day meal plan incorporating his principles? They sound fairly familiar apart from limiting protein, which doesn’t seem to be the fashion at the moment. What is leaf lard? What does vinegar do? Perhaps I’ll get to that bit eventually.


  1. Best of the Blogs - February 2017 - UK Money Bloggers - […] is sharing her post about Jason Fung’s book The Obesity Code as it is looking to be life changing…

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