Or rather lack of food adventures!

I am trying to loose weight to get medical treatment. There is something wrong with me (could be anything in the ME/Fybromyalgia/Hypermobility area, I'm also a classic symptom list for hypothyroidism) (and let's be realistic - probably hypochondria too) but the doctor can't/won't put me on the diagnosis track until I loose weight.

He won't actually tell me how much, but I guess every little helps right?

What I don't want is to end up damaging my immune system (further!), yo-yoing from weight to weight and ending up obsessed with diets. I also don't want to start hating myself - it's taken me a while but I'm finally starting to understand the 'body positive' message, and I'm mostly happy with me at the moment. I just want to know why I'm in pain all the time. (I've considered the fat being the source of the pain and exhaustion - I'm sure that it contributes, but I'm equally sure it's not the cause.)

So this might be a good way to remember that if I get half way through and start going a bit crazy!

Diet history.

-I tried the doctors recommended nutrition course. He was useless - he believed that putting oil on your skin contributed to your calorie intake. :S
-I tried SW twice. The first time the instructor and group were great. I lost about a stone and a half (iirc) and then something happened and I left the group. Put on a stone again. As you do!
I then rejoined about a year ago and didn't gel with the instructor or the group. Everyone was very amicable I just couldn't seem to find anyone who wasn't in an already established clique and willing to talk longer than a few minutes while queueing.
That alongside my absolute loathing of cooking meant that I'm just not going to bother with them again - they are impossible to follow if you're not cooking the majority of your meals from scratch.
-I tried the 5:2 diet WHICH I LOVED. Freedom from thinking about food all the time was amazing. So liberating to be hungry and not panicking about it. It was really really easy to do but nothing at all lost. I tried altering the fasting pattern for a while but still nothing.

I reached my heaviest about three months ago, a few months after giving up on the fasting. The Christmas period did not help!

-I then started basic calorie counting with the MyFitnessPal app. Again very easy. Averaged about 1400 dcalories a day (still on or less than that), always around the correct ratio of fats and carbs etc according to the app. Still nothing.
-After desperate trip to docs he put me on the Orlistat fat binders. I got on well with the diet - I was already eating the correct amount of fat so I didn't get any of the side effects, but after about 6 weeks I was a dried up husk, my skin was cracking and peeling and my brain so foggy I could barely function. I'd lost a grand total of half a pound.

His only other suggestion was CBT. Both for the weight and the pain/tiredness. He may as well have recommended an exorcist.

Current diet.

After a bit of Internet research I've plumped for meal replacement shakes. I tried the Yokebe shakes for a week.
I very much liked it. I like the freedom of not having to think about, go and get, prep, cook and clear up after food, I liked the simplicity of it and the shakes were not bad. As a total food replacement (with ability to snack) it suited me well and though I developed longing thoughts (particularly about savoury things) (and bizarrely, haggis!) I was able to stick too it - mainly because they were filling enough and I could tell myself I was just being silly.
(My full tuppenceworth on Yokebe - )

I've now ordered Shake that Weight products, enough to do two weeks TFRD.
I decided to go with them rather than stick with the Yokebe as there is more variety - they have soups and noodles as savoury options and bars for when shakes are impractical. They also taste really nice (we ordered cheeky samples - even my partner liked them!)

So they arrive tomorrow. I'll probably start then but weigh/count from Monday as we have a Chinese banquet scheduled for the majority of Sunday. I will not get away with hiding in the corner chewing away on the veggies in oyster sauce.

I've also just started taking Tyrosine, to support my thyroid if the problem is in that area and drinking Oolong tea again. I used to drink it all the time and really like it but MY GOD is it expensive now - what the hell happened?!?!? And anyone know a cheap source (or even a reasonable one!) Anybody? :)

The Numbers

My heaviest was 20st 6lbs. I currently weigh 19st 11lb. Target currently unknown, but aiming to get below BMI of 35/15st then go back to the GP.

If he doesn't put me through then look out for the news story about the GP grievously assaulted with his own scales.

Fingers crossed and Bon Voyage!
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Also, I found this...

What it seems to be saying (in quite a long winded way) is that we should be looking out for and almost welcoming 'plateaus' in weight loss, as it is our body adjusting to 'the new normal', and heading off issues of piling all the weight back on when the diet ends (Homeostasis).

Having been someone who gives up quite easily sometimes (when I think something or someone is not doing me any good I practically leave a dust cloud!) (I should probably see a pro about that shouldn't i?) :) I can see having this knowledge (that the plateau is actually beneficial in the long run) being quite a useful weapon on the arsenal.

What do you think? Does this theory reflect your experience? Have you had plateaus then started loosing again?
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So the Shake that weight stuff arrived. Great big box of it. I bought the water flavourings too (one of the noticeable things with the other shakes was a lack of movement around there, so that seemed wise.)

No idea what to start with! Maybe choice isn't good for me after all! Lol


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So meal out turned to be not too bad. However it ended up following on from a bbq and a Saturday full of toast and ice cream.

So starting tomorrow, actually looking forward to it!
Finickity, all those diagnoses have general and very vague symptoms. Maybe, as you say, weight loss will help those symptoms and maybe the weight is the cause of the symptoms. Your GP can't be too worried, though, if he's not even referring you for diagnostic testing yet, so that's a good sign.

I'm not in to all this talking stuff, but have heard good things about CBT; it is being used for more and more these days, and it wouldn't be available on the NHS if there wasn't a good body of evidence supporting it's use. That being said, I'm not sure how I would feel receiving CBT.

Other than chocolate, I have developed a liking for savoury food in the last few years, and would pretty much always chose a starter over a pudding. I'm not sure what haggis is (obviously other than some sort of traditional Scottish food), so I've definitely never had a craving for it!

I have never really dieted before, so have never experienced plateauing. It does make sense though that your body has to adapt to new needs.

You do have quite a choice there!

I'm also initially looking to get to a BMI of below 35, though I plan to lose more than that.

Anyway, good luck for tomorrow!
My GP not referring me is because of a limit on upper weight for the referral (hence this effort to loose!), not cause he's not worried. Even if he's not its not because circumstances aren't worrying.
Like I said I'm sure the weight is an aggravating factor - it's certainly involved in back pain etc, but wouldn't account for the pain on gripping anything, the pain in my head, the shaking, the itching, the frequent nausea and coldness etc etc etc.

I'd also have more faith in CBT if I didn't know they only offered it because it was cheaper and has a defined timeframe. I'm sure it works for some conditions but chills and the inability to hold a dishcloth long enough to wipe down a surface? I'm pretty sure I'm going to leave it for those people it can help. :)

I've never been particularly one way or the other tooth wise - I'm a 'life is short, start with pudding' type of person but I like savoury equally. I think these cravings were simply due to having nothing but sweet shakes - haggis is highly spiced and the ham I wanted was the smoked, salty variety - definitely a reaction to constant sweetness.

With a mix of shakes and soups etc I'm not anticipating it being too much of a problem, but I have found a good quality low fat ham just in case!
The choice is great - there's enough of it but not ridiculous amounts, and it's very cheap compared to the Cambridge, so I'm quite please I found it.

I think getting under 35 is a good starter - it's not not going to get me into shopping on the high street/not getting constant aggro from strangers territory but hopefully it will be the point at which I can get the referral (the doctor really will not tell me where the goal posts are!) and it might make it easier to exercise (or at least find work out clothes that aren't so badly designed they get caught on the gym machinery!!!

Thank you, so far (2 meals in) it ok, but I'm hoping to try and record everything - hoping it will keep me on track.

Good luck for you too - even when you've done it before all the conflicting advice is so bewildering!
So meal out turned to be not too bad. However it ended up following on from a bbq and a Saturday full of toast and ice cream.

So starting tomorrow, actually looking forward to it!
Just popped in to wish you good luck on your weight loss journey and to a new healthier you.
1st Day done.

I had the porridge - powdery but not unpalatable. It was sweet which I wasn't expecting so if you're a salted porridge person you may not get on with it. It had a nice, properly porridge texture, so I was happy.

I had a Vanilla shake next. Honestly not sure how other brands can't make them like this, they just taste like a shake, not weird after taste, not powderyness, it's just a shake. I'm pretty amazed. I tried the caramel before this and I'm not quite sure that that wasn't too nice.
One thing I wasn't sure of is when doing the TRFD they say to make one of the shakes with milk, and add enough for at least 80 extra calories. The almond milk I have is only 24 calories per 100ml, meaning if I only had one shake a day I'd need to make nearly a pint of it! Do you think it would be a bad thing to miss out those extra calls? Do I need to make sure I have two shakes a day?

I meant to take one of the bars (the honey nougat) out with me to have with a coffee (filter coffee while sat transcribing a knitting chart, going to need to find a new coffee house because s'bucks really is awful without the frothy milk) but left it at home. Returned feeling cranky with a rumbling stomach and had it then - it was sufficiently filling. I wasn't as impressed with it as I was with the chocolate bar but it did relieve the chocolate craving I'd built up sitting in front of the muffin counter.

The last pack was the vegetable soup. Next time I need to add a little more water and give the veggies in it a bit longer to soften. Nearly broke a tooth! But it was nice, a good hit of savoury.
I also had two slices of ham as I was still quite hungry a while later.

I also tried the water flavourings. They are both nice enough but they do take a lot of stirring! The black current one smells just like jelly when you open the pot! :)

I am already heartily tired of the 2 litres a day thing. The longest stretch I have done out of the bathroom was 30 minutes. I already want to jack that part of it in. God knows if I'm going to get any sleep in tonight.

All in all happy with the meal replacements and happy with my will power!
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I forgot to post starting particulars.

Weight -19st 12lb

Waist - 113cm
Bust - 119cm
Hips - 143cm
Arms - 43cm (I'm only recording arms because shops always seem to sell clothes with such skinny arms - I want to see how they shrink alongside the rest of me. Call it a social experiment :D )

And that's it.
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Day 2

I went with the Latte flavoured shake to start, made with almond milk, it had a nice coffee kick to it, but not compared to an actual coffee! It tasted more like coffee ice cream than anything else. The shakes become very thick and gloopy when made with milk. I think I prefer when they are made with water.

At lunchtime I had the lemon bar. The texture seems very similar to the other bars, kind of fudgy with biscuity bits in and a coating. This one had yoghurt - I'm not normally a fan of yoghurt coatings, but this was ok. Very lemony flavour, again very sweet.

3rd pack was a chocolate shake - very chocolaty, would make a lovely ice cream.

4th was mushroom soup which was a bit podery but much better than I expected with actual mushrooms in for texture. Yum.
I did also have a scrambled egg and some salmon though. I need to stop snacking outside of the shakes, at least at the start, but I can't seem to get over the desire to have 'real food' at some point.

It didn't take me over the calorie limit though and it was high protein as snacks go.
I can see your point then about CBT not helping you hold a dish cloth - I've never heard of it for that!

You seem to have had a good selection of the meals so far and I'm glad that you're enjoying them. Mushrooms are one of my favourite foods, so that soup sounds quite pleasant. Being back and to to the bathroom all day must be awful - I hope that settles soon!
Well this was a good start at keeping a daily diary wasn't it?

The last few days I've changed the plan I'm following to the VLCD - I just wanted to eat actual crunchy savoury food too much.

Day 3

I had the porridge, a shake and a bar (I tried the Maple and Almond in dark chocolate but did not enjoy it at all because of the dark chocolate - I'm never going to be able to fake liking that stuff) and for dinner I had a 'raid the fridge, stir fry it with the least amount of oil possible and throw some soy on it' meal. There was mange tout, spinach, mushrooms, garlic and other bits on there with some salmon. It was alright actually. I toted it up to about 360 calories.

Day 4

was the journey up to my grandmothers and it was made abundantly clear on the train up that the diet was about to get DIFFICULT. Text message halfway asking if I'm alright to go to Chesters (most amazing fish and chip restaurant I've ever encountered) as my mum was there and it's the only place she can have gluten free fish. So she loves it to bits. Ack.
I had a shake with water to begin the day (chocolate iirc) I deliberately left late so that I didn't have opportunity to stop and get my customary latte from the station kiosk, then steadfastly resisted the torture alley of amazing coffee, bread and cake shops that is St Pancras station. I had a bar on the train while the kid next to me ate a six pack of triple choc cookies, a BLT baguette, a cup of coffee and a packet of bbq beef hula hoops. F****** was skinny as a Disney princess. Life sucks.

Then on getting to the restaurant I had the Caesar salad with grilled chicken and no croutons and dressing on the side ('dipping' technique was the most useful thing I have ever learned at slimming SW). It was possibly the most unappetising salad I've ever eaten, not through and fault of the restaurant we estimated about 300 cals.
I refused dessert and coffee, but on the way back when we called into a Starbucks to get a coffee and let Grandma use the facilities I caved, and got a small, skinny cappuccino. I had soup instead of the planned shake with milk.

Day 5

Started with a trip to Meadowhall to get some clothes for gran (she's worn the same 5 tops practically to death, something had to be done!). Of course with my mother around it started with a request to stop at a coffee place - my uncle wanted a smoothies instead and for some reason he couldn't go get and bring it back to the coffee shop outside the food court. Somehow we ended up getting her a coffee and me the most disgusting tea I've had outside a motoway services whilst sat in front of a video of caramel sauce being drizzled over a chocolate brownie on loop.
Not happy.

After finding tops, then clothes for my uncle and conducting the most in depth googling ever to try and find out if Kiko cosmetics test on animals (they don't, WHOOT!) we were ready for lunch, but I managed to stear them into Giraffe where I had the 'naked' Harissa chicken burger - I.e the harissa chicken ( lean breast, spice rubbed on and griddled thankfully) with no bun and a salad instead of chips. It was really lovely! Though there was a vinegary dressing on the salad so it probably went a touch over the 400 calorie mark. But I'm so suggesting it when we go out to eat at home.
In the evening I had a bar (muesli, does taste of muesli, very nice but same texture as the others still) and a vegetable soup. I left it longer this time - pea bits still didn't soften much!

I did cheat though. I had a slice of bread and butter with the soup. I'd been making sandwiches for my grans tea and the bread was just so soft and squidgy and lush. I had one slice with a scrape of butter and I have never made a slice of bread last so long in my life before. It was the worst kind of food to cheat on - the ultimate carb monster. But considering I've been in a house filled to the rafters with massive chocolate bars, every type of cake, crisps, ice creams, trifles, toffees, tea cakes, scones and cheeses and I haven't touched any of them I figured one controlled lapse was not the end of the world.
God did I enjoy it.

Day 6

I was nervous about today as it was a cooking at home day and my uncles portion control is not... disciplined. There's a long standing tradition of fry ups on a Saturday at my grandparents, so when he started suggesting bacon and sausages etc I was a bit 'arrrgh!' But I ran to the shop and fortunately they had mushrooms etc. I had two slices of lean bacon medallions, a small bit of pork chop with the fat carefully extricated, a scrambled egg and a very small spoonful of beans, and the rest of the plate was filled with dry fried mushrooms and tomatoes.
I then had a bar late afternoon and have just had a caramel shake with milk. I bought the Alpro almond milk and that is only 13 calories per 100ml so no idea what to do about that. With the meal though I'm not in danger of having too few calories so I'm not going to worry while I'm on this plan.

All in all, and considering my uncle has just waved a bowl of dairy milk chocolate at me, I'm ready for my sainthood now.
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I can see your point then about CBT not helping you hold a dish cloth - I've never heard of it for that!

You seem to have had a good selection of the meals so far and I'm glad that you're enjoying them. Mushrooms are one of my favourite foods, so that soup sounds quite pleasant. Being back and to to the bathroom all day must be awful - I hope that settles soon!

Yes, me neither! I actually passed a stand though in our local shopping centre for our districts mental health services. They agreed that CBT probably wasn't going to do anything, but that if I filled in the form and went to the assessment there might be other services that could help, so I'm going to do that.

The meal selection has been good, and I've read reviews saying that the noodles are good too, so going to include some of them in next order. The mushroom soup is very nice, I might try one day adding some cooked mushrooms and bits to it and having it as more of a meal.
I know I really shouldn't laugh, but what a few days! You do deserve a sainthood - Saint Finickity!

My nan's just the same as your by the sound of it - rotates the same clothes constantly, I think every picture I have of her she's wearing the same two blouses! And her house is always filled with cakes, biscuits etc. The stir-fry sounds yummy - pretty much how I do mine each time, just use up what I have handy!

I make a really nice mushroom pie. I really fancied it the other night, but between the pastry and the cream in the filling, I hate to think how many calories are in it.
I know I really shouldn't laugh, but what a few days! You do deserve a sainthood - Saint Finickity!

My nan's just the same as your by the sound of it - rotates the same clothes constantly, I think every picture I have of her she's wearing the same two blouses! And her house is always filled with cakes, biscuits etc. The stir-fry sounds yummy - pretty much how I do mine each time, just use up what I have handy!

I make a really nice mushroom pie. I really fancied it the other night, but between the pastry and the cream in the filling, I hate to think how many calories are in it.

Yes! Why do they do that? Of those five tops four of them were the same top in different colours as well. We don't think her carers help much (she has Alzheimer's and has them come in the morning to help her wash) and they just grab the nearest one, they won't get different ones, the same ones just get washed and if my uncle doesn't purposefully hide them, they go back on. These ones seem to be a hit though. I'll just have to start weeding whenever I go up there.

I was quite pleased with my restraint. I patted myself on the back plenty! I weighed myself and 6lbs gone, so it was worth it at least!

As for mushroom pie (yum!!!) I can't help with the pastry, but I've always had good results replacing cream with fat free creme fraiche. Might be worth a try?
My nan does it through choice. Se doesn't even have the different colour options - she tends to go for different sleeve lengths, but wears it under a cardigan/coat-type things anyway so you can't see it, so it looks like she is literally wearing the same blouse in each photo.

6lb - fantastic!

Fat free crème fraiche might be worth a try. Along with rolling the pastry really thin, it should cut some calories. I don't make it very often but next time I do, I think I'll give that a go!
That's hilarious, but I guess if it's good enough for Steve Jobs...

It's probably a time saving thing. My grandmothers ironing board is older than my mother, because gran hasn't bought a single item of clothing that wasn't non-iron since the 70's. It's more of a museum piece.
It works for her.

Have you thought about using filo pastry? Different texture but I think it's lower in calories.

It is good, though I think it's only going to be a lb or so this week so that was probably mostly water. But yey still!
Filo pastry, that could be interesting, I always associated filo pastry with Chinese food. Hmm, when I get chance, I will make this completely new mushroom tart and let you know how it turns out!

Yeah, I don't think my nan knows how to iron! She'd probably burn the place down some how trying.

A pound is still a pound (that sounds so clichéd - sorry!), so yay!