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NEW Slimming World FAQ

lickthelid

Lives here....
S: 18st5lb C: 15st0lb G: 11st0lb BMI: 31.9 Loss: 3st5lb(18.29%)
So I'm not a consultant BUT I have done SW for several years through the most recent changes so hopefully this is current and up to date. There are several, nay MANY, common questions and misconceptions about the plan that hopefully can be explained here. If I miss anything or am incorrect please let me know and I'll amend the post. It's a work in progress initially as it may take several days to finish. Bear with me....

So, are you sitting comfortably? Then I'll begin.

1. SPEED (aka Superfree)
The plan rests heavily upon you filling your plate with 1/3 speed foods. Previously known as "Superfree". This includes most fruits and nearly all vegetables apart from starchy ones like potatoes, parsnips etc. Also those with a high sugar content like peas and sweet corn can't be counted. Yes you can eat them but no they don't count towards your 1/3. They are free rather than speed. There are some random fruits too that don't count. Like pineapple and, bizarrely, blueberries.

2. So does 1/3 of every meal HAVE to be speed?
In short no. It's a heavily promoted option if you want the best losses. We all know thin people all eat loads of veg, right? What? What's that you say?! They eat normally too? Well yes, this is true but you and I are here to lose weight. So shake off the childhood phobia about broccoli and get piling up the greenery. However there are always times it just doesn't work. I don't always want salad with my jacket and sometimes I just want my weetabix plain and unadulterated. That's ok too, just try and get as much in as often as is reasonably practicable.

3. Free foods
Slimming world say free food is unlimited. This infuriates me. No-one can eat 5 muller lights a day as snacks on top of meals and expect to lose weight. That's a top up of 500kcal. The small print should read. "Unlimited (disclaimer: according the the appetite of "normal people with a healthy relationship with food")"
Personally I'm quite a greedy person. The word unlimited to me is basically just a challenge. So just be sensible. No snacking on whole chickens just because you can. Or is that just me...??

4. Blending/mashing/pureeing and cooking.
When it comes to fruit this is a big no. Anyone who tells you it releases more sugar is failing to understand the basics of mastication so this isn't true but what it does do is reduce volume. Three bananas will make you feel full if eaten in their raw state. Three bananas blended into a smoothie won't and also won't last as long in your system as they are too easily digestible when blended so you will get hungrier sooner. The only fruit that it's ok to cook is tomatoes. Other fruits, if the state is altered, should be synned using the 20kcal to 1 syn rule. This doesn't apply to veg. Blend that to your hearts content. Soup anyone?

5. Healthy Extras
Hex A being your calcium choice and B the fibre choice. This used to include EVOO, not any more. One of each a day unless doing an EESP day (I'll come to THAT little gem in a bit). Yes you should have them. No cutting them out is not going to speed the weightloss up. Each hex is worth roughly 120kcal so approx 6 syns. And yes, it's true, if you don't have the whole hex you need to syn what you do have and then have something else. It is acceptable however to split your hex and have half portion of milk and half of cheese for example.

6. Syns
5-15 a day. End of. Now syns are an area of discussion so here are a few myths dispelled. Firstly not having any is a bad thing. You feel deprived or get bored and then you potentially lose control and binge on the forbidden. Ironic in that it's not forbidden, have it, within the syn allowance.

Secondly they can be used however you want. It's a formula that works to the basic fundamental science of kcal deficit. It won't make a difference whether you use them on chocolate or gravy. Find what works for you.

Thirdly (and this is contentious) SW advocates a use it or lose it approach but with some exceptions. The basic rule us that you shouldn't carry syns over. Notice I said shouldn't. The reason for this being that many people very successfully use their syns weekly and deduct from the total as they go. This is NOT flexi synning. That's something else I'll come to in a sec. Having a weekly total is useful for shift workers in particular or those that want to balance their week differently. However be careful because saving them up all week for a blowout too close to weigh in will not reflect well on t'scales. Again it's a suck it and see.

Finally exercise/pregnancy/being at target does not = more syns. Exercise is done for exercise sake. No bonus. PG and Target results in extra hex not extra syns.


7. Flexi synning
This is a concept SW use to help us maintain control. It simply means having a day where, for whatever reason, you have a greater number of syns that you predetermine. You set an upper limit and stick to that thus maintaining control. This isn't the same as weekly syns because you don't cut back the next day you just carry on with your 5-15 normal amount, totally in control.

8. Extra Easy SP
So this is the biggie. The one that generates the most confusion. I'm giving it to you how I understand it so any corrections welcome but I have seen conflicting advice on here, allegedly direct from the consultants mouths so I suspect that some of them don't know either.
Right. S stands for speed. P stands for protein. On an SP day you eat exclusively from those foods in your guide that have those two letters next to them. Anything else can only be a hex or must be synned. Also you get 2 HEX b on SP days.
So breakfast might be speed fruits but you would syn your yoghurt. Lunch might be scrambled eggs (using some hex a milk allowance )and salmon. Dinner could be a chicken breast with cauli rice and some veg and a hex b brown roll. Snacks should be speed in the first instance or hex/syns.

A special mention needs to be made for yoghurts. I have read and re-read my slimming world materials on this as it seems very split as to whether you can have them. I'm putting the confusion down to how individual consultants interpret the information. No where does it specifically exclude free yoghurts on an SP day. All foods need to be be S or P, or Hex or synned. As 0% fat yoghurt falls under neither S not P nor hex then there is no reason not to syn them. You can use the 1 syn to 20kcal rule. The problem seems to stem from consultants just imposing a blanket ban on the basis that they are a free food and have no syn value. Well this isn't true using that formula. Blueberries are not speed and I'd love the meet the consultant that put a blanket ban on them too on an SP day.
SW themselves state that if following SP for more than a couple of days at a time you should have an extra Hex A OR a pot of any free yoghurt to keep up your calcium and DOESNT mention synning in this circumstance. So go forth and have your muller. Syn it in or have it for no syns if you are following SP for any period of time.

Overall It's an awful lot like the old red days but even more restrictive. It's not for the faint hearted.

9. Body magic
It's exercise. Ain't no magic here peeps. Move more. It's good for us.

10. Water
Or fluids in general are really important. This is a great plan. But it's more fibre that many are used to, at least in the early stages. Fibre is good, it's the systems cleaning and sweeping tool. But it needs fluid. Make sure to drink plenty and it WILL help with the initial "problems" fibre can cause. Fluid doesn't have to be plain water. No added sugar squash is fine, tea and coffee all count and food also contains it.

11. Online or group?
Another hotly debated topic. It's down to a couple of things. Can you get to group? Do you need the support? If so then group is for you and will have a wide range of supportive approaches to help you. If you answered no to the above then Slimming world offer at home / online membership as well. There is a final group of those going it alone and for them (and everyone) there is minimins.

12. Knowing me, knowing you
Weight loss is so personal. There are many many MANY threads on here that deal with questions like "how much can I lose", "why have I maintained / gained?" and so on. The worst thing we can do is compare ourselves to others. What you lose each week is determined by many things. What you eat yes but also other things such as water retention, totm for the girls, toilet habits, clothing worn, recent exercise....the list is endless. If you maintain or gain look at your food first. If you are happy with what you ate all week then think about what else may be to blame. Maybe take your diary to your consultant or post one on here for comment.

If the maintain or gain is in your first week that can be disheartening but often comes down to how you were eating in the run up to starting SW and how much you have to lose overall. If you don't have much to lose, or ate relatively healthily prior to joining, your initial loss will naturally be smaller. Don't judge yourself against the person in front of you at image therapy who drops 8lb and a dress size in week one. It's likely that next week will be your week. Certainly don't give up. It can be helpful to view your weightloss fortnightly or even monthly so any maintain or even small gains disappear into the overall loss.


13. How do I add stickers and awards to my signature?
This is easy these days. Pierce very kindly placed them in with the emojis. Click on the emoticon and there is a tab with SW awards on it. You literally add to your signature like you would a message. If the one you want isn't there try this thread and copy and paste it in directly:

https://www.minimins.com/threads/stickers.353613/
 
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Mini

Administrator
Staff member
S: 18st2lb C: 16st10lb G: 10st5lb Loss: 1st6lb(7.87%)
Thank you for updating the FAQ lickthelid:)
 

lickthelid

Lives here....
S: 18st5lb C: 15st0lb G: 11st0lb BMI: 31.9 Loss: 3st5lb(18.29%)
This is brill @lickthelid the only thing I didn't realise was that you couldn't split healthy extras- I have often used mine for half cheese half milk or a small slice of bread and one Alpen light!
You can split them but you can't have half. What you are doing is fine but say you had half of your milk allowance and then didn't want any more. Technically you should syn what you did have and have a full hex a of something else. Basically cheese. Doing what you do is another accepted way around it :) so carry on!
 

Merlin79

Full Member
S: 18st4lb C: 15st2.0lb G: 12st12lb BMI: 33.2 Loss: 3st2lb(17.19%)
Even after doing slimming world on and off for the last 5 years this was sooooo useful to read.....kinda makes me realise i need to pull my socks up a bit!
Thank you :)
 

soshbfly

Silver Member
S: 14st11lb C: 12st12.2lb G: 11st5lb BMI: 29.1 Loss: 1st12.8lb(12.95%)
And yes, it's true, if you don't have the whole hex you need to syn what you do have and then have something else.
Thansks so much for starting this thread - love an FAQ. Totally confused tho and new to this one Sam. I have never used full hexa (drink unsweetened almond milk in coffee but that's it). Didn't know to syn that. And it would mean I'm not getting any hexa as I have nothing else in day (avoid cheese as I love it too much!)

Same usually for hexb as I tend to have one or two ryvita rye for breakfast and that's it (except when days I "snack" on special k).

Do u know the reasoning behind that?
 

lickthelid

Lives here....
S: 18st5lb C: 15st0lb G: 11st0lb BMI: 31.9 Loss: 3st5lb(18.29%)
Thansks so much for starting this thread - love an FAQ. Totally confused tho and new to this one Sam. I have never used full hexa (drink unsweetened almond milk in coffee but that's it). Didn't know to syn that. And it would mean I'm not getting any hexa as I have nothing else in day (avoid cheese as I love it too much!)

Same usually for hexb as I tend to have one or two ryvita rye for breakfast and that's it (except when days I "snack" on special k).

Do u know the reasoning behind that?
I believe the official reasoning to be to prevent exactly that. The hex are chosen to provide a certain amount of fibre/calcium and not having the whole one means not getting enough (potentially) and slimming world prides itself on being balanced. I'd say less of a problem with the b choice given the amount of fibre in fruits and veg but no responsible diet will promote less than the rda of calcium.
 

Sharrington

Full Member
S: 20st4.5lb C: 12st10.5lb G: 10st0lb BMI: 32.6 Loss: 7st8lb(37.26%)
This is great. There's a bit of an error in your Extra Easy SP section.

My consultant reminds us every week that yoghurt is not allowed at all on SP days, even if you syn it.

I'm on an SP day today and missing my yogs already and it's only 9.35am!
 

lickthelid

Lives here....
S: 18st5lb C: 15st0lb G: 11st0lb BMI: 31.9 Loss: 3st5lb(18.29%)
This is great. There's a bit of an error in your Extra Easy SP section.

My consultant reminds us every week that yoghurt is not allowed at all on SP days, even if you syn it.

I'm on an SP day today and missing my yogs already and it's only 9.35am!
This is one of those very things that we get conflicting information on. Some consultants say you can have them if they are synned and some don't. TBH it makes no sense to not have them if you syn them. They are 99kcal for a muller or roughly 5 syns. What's the difference between that and 5 syns worth of anything else? They don't have magical properties.

I'd be interested in if you could ask your consultant why this is apparently the case as there is no scientific reason for it :)

This is one that remains a consultant by consultant anomaly!! :) However I will make a note to this end above so thank you!!
 
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Sharrington

Full Member
S: 20st4.5lb C: 12st10.5lb G: 10st0lb BMI: 32.6 Loss: 7st8lb(37.26%)
This is one of those very things that we get conflicting information on. Some consultants say you can have them if they are synned and some don't. TBH it makes no sense to not have them if you syn them. They are 99kcal for a muller or roughly 5 syns. What's the difference between that and 5 syns worth of anything else? They don't have magical properties.

I'd be interested in if you could ask your consultant why this is apparently the case as there is no scientific reason for it :)

This is one that remains a consultant by consultant anomaly!! :)
She's off on holiday at the moment, but I will try to remember to ask when she's back!

X
 

lickthelid

Lives here....
S: 18st5lb C: 15st0lb G: 11st0lb BMI: 31.9 Loss: 3st5lb(18.29%)
That would be great. I'll make an amendment above. I know there is something about it in my booklet and am not at home right now so I'll have a look and see if I can make it clearer :)
 

lickthelid

Lives here....
S: 18st5lb C: 15st0lb G: 11st0lb BMI: 31.9 Loss: 3st5lb(18.29%)
@Sharrington I have done some research into this. Would like your opinion on the above amendment (and that of your consultant) but still maintain there is no more reason to make fat free yoghurt a forbidden food (ie not syn-able) then any other free food that isn't s or p like pineapple or peas.
 

soshbfly

Silver Member
S: 14st11lb C: 12st12.2lb G: 11st5lb BMI: 29.1 Loss: 1st12.8lb(12.95%)
Hi Sam. Have checked online with my slimming world app as the yogurt restriction on easy sp days didn't sound quite right. My consultant said to syn yoghurts and here are some clarifications from official SW line (the logic of why some consultants say no altogether.)

"In order to have non-sp Free Food (like jacket potatoes, yogurt etc), can I have similar Synned foods, eg McCain jacket potato, fresh pasta, Synned yogurt, Synned rice pots. Is that OK?
The short answer is… we wouldn’t recommend it. The whole purpose of Extra Easy sp is to eat from a ‘tighter’ list of super-slimming and super-filling Free Food, so that you eat less calories at each meal and you’re less likely to need to snack between meals (because you feel fuller for longer) and use Syns in the usual way. The longer answer goes back to what Extra Easy sp was designed to do – to help you to focus on s and p Free Foods as these are the best for weight loss. So it really is important that if you decide to follow Extra Easy sp know that you’re deciding to make a few more changes – to tighten up your Food Optimising – to choose your Free Foods from the s and p lists and continue to use your Syns for those foods (or drinks) that you love to add to your meals (like gravy, dressings, ketchup, spreads, wine, desserts etc) to make your personal plan a lifestyle plan. We don’t recommend using Synned equivalents of Extra Easy Free Foods – whether that’s Synned yogurts, fresh pasta, microwave rice, oven chips or McCain jackets – for several reasons:

  • These foods have Syns because they either have added sugar or oil, so they’re not as low in calories as Free Food. By eating them, you’re actually adding calories where you don’t need to.
  • If you do have potatoes, pasta or rice on your plate are you truly planning to have at a least half a plate of s and a really good proportion of p to fill you up and keep you full for longer? What’s likely to happen is that the potato, pasta or rice will replace some of the more filling p or more slimming s.
  • By using Syns on foods you could eat Freely on Extra Easy, you’re depriving yourselves of your regular Syn choices, like gravy, dressings, spreads, wine, chocolate or crisps – and we suspect you would find it impossible not to have those Syns as well! This would only serve to slow your weight loss down further! Remember, though, nothing is ever banned at Slimming World and you’re in control. If you’re really missing something when you’re on Extra Easy sp, whether that’s potatoes, yogurts or pasta, you have a few options:
  1. If you’re losing weight well, stick with Extra Easy.
  2. If you want to lose a bit more weight, choose more S and P foods every day and aim for at least half a plate of Speed Free Food with every meal.
  3. Follow Extra Easy sp as much as you can, and count the occasional potato or yogurt in the ‘other Free Foods’ column. That way, you’re still making more s and p choices than usual, and that will boost your weight loss."

"We recommend you follow Extra Easy sp for a week at first. If you love what you’re achieving (which we’re sure you will) you can:

  • either continue Extra Easy SP days, building in some standard Extra Easy days, to make sure you’re getting a beautifully balanced diet.
  • or add one more Healthy Extra ‘a’ choice, or have one regular-size pot of any Free yogurt (flavoured or natural) or the equivalent amount of fat free fromage frais each day to make sure you’re getting enough calcium."
Hope that helps a bit (or may just confuse more!)
 

soshbfly

Silver Member
S: 14st11lb C: 12st12.2lb G: 11st5lb BMI: 29.1 Loss: 1st12.8lb(12.95%)

lickthelid

Lives here....
S: 18st5lb C: 15st0lb G: 11st0lb BMI: 31.9 Loss: 3st5lb(18.29%)
Ahh but you see that's another question altogether. "Synned yoghurts" are not free yoghurts that have been synned, they are yoghurts with syns as not 0% fat. I saw that blog too and it stems from this confusion over yoghurts and how, if someone is told NO MULLERS by their consultant they may just choose a high fat one and syn that instead because it's not a free food so they "can". Which, as it says, they don't recommend. Fair enough because it's better to incorporate one 0% fat one than syn a high fat one. They stop short of saying it's ok to syn free yoghurt because they don't want to admit the formula for working it out is so damned simple (cynic).

TBH I think it's a moot point. Like I said before. A muller is 99kcal. Have it, syn it, don't syn it, suck it and see. 99kcal of yoghurt or 99kcal of synned chocolate. Makes no difference once you have munched it up. Although technically you don't munch yoghurt, more of a slurp swallow (no jokes here please).

It's just silly that some consultants say yay and some nay and really it has no scientific grounding whatsoEVER!

I would so take on a consultant over this...mwahaha
 

agee86

Full Member
S: 13st6lb C: 13st4lb G: 9st10lb BMI: 28.3 Loss: 0st2lb(1.06%)
I was always told that you can't syn a free food. I wasn't given the specific reasons behind it but told if on an sp day have a low syn yogurt instead of a free one.

I was told that the 'other foods' section on the sp food diary should only be used for fry light and things like that, and there shouldn't really be any foody things in there.

I know there's massive confusion and totally appreciate and get your point of calories are calories no matter where they're from, but that's the plan, as I've been told anyway. I assume that a yogurt may fill you for longer than a chocolate bar?!

I've had 3 different consultants at the same group (covering holidays etc) and they've all stuck to the 'you can't syn a free food' rule.

May be worth actually emailing or calling SW HO for clarification? And also the reasons behind it.

Great to read your simplified version of the diet though. A good reminder to those like me who slip from time to time
 

craftermary

Gold Member
S: 11st2lb C: 9st2lb BMI: 22.7 Loss: 2st0lb(17.95%)
A choc bar would keep you fuller for longer than a yogurt because it's more solid than a yogurt.So it takes your digestive system longer to digest and pass it through.
I could easily eat several yogurts before feeling full but can only eat one choc bar.
 




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