Eeeeeekkkkkk tweaks

With Halloween coming up it seems the perfect time to write this blog. Very if ten what you think is a great could be a trick!!

Tweaks rarely come up in my group, as I’m pretty hot on explaining them. However due to recent fb groups sharing incorrect information it has cropped up and it could upset a few. I thought it was best to dispel the myths and misconceptions, to protect my members and others too.

What is a tweak? It’s a creative way of using what would usually be a free food. For example a cake out of cous cous. So why aren’t these free?? They use free foods? It’s pretty simple really. It makes me sad when people who try and point out tweaks are called the tweak police lol. Whats the role of a policeman? To protect people and ensure they don’t get hurt right. So why is this a bad thing? If a policeman said don’t go down that alley way, there’s a mad man down there and you could get hurt, would you think, oh well I’ll risk it and happily skip on lol? No. Now if people choose to tweak, even knowing the facts, that’s entirely their choice. If you lose weight then I wouldn’t get too hung up on it. However if your losses have slowed down or stopped altogether, this could be why. Here’s Slimming Worlds official reply from the website:-


You might be disappointed to hear that they’re not. Because changing the use of a food can make it easier to over-eat, to protect your weight loss they become Synned.

When foods like pasta, rice and grains are used in their original form they’re low in energy density (calories), bulky, appetite-satisfying foods. Pasta, couscous and rice are usually the main ingredient in a meal packed with other Free Foods – giving it sufficient bulk to be satisfying as a meal in itself. However, when ground down, used as flour (like in couscous cake), seasoned crisps (like Doritos) or puréed (like smoothies) they’re often used as additions to a main meal… and on top of your day’s Syns. It is a very effective way of adding a lot of extra calories in a non-bulky way, and as such would then be counted as Syns.

Our advice, as always, is to use Free Foods and Healthy Extras to create satisfying, filling meals – reaching for speedy Superfree fruit and veg first in between meals. As a safety net, Free Food lifesavers are the best option to fill us up on those extra-hungry days.

If you sit and think about it, do naturally slim people make cakes from cous cous or crisps out of lasagne sheets ha ha. They’d think we were mad! Years and years ago I used to make both of these and to be honest if rather syn the real thing.

Common Tweaks
Couscous as a sweet dessert/porridge replacement
Couscous made up in this way with water, yogurt and sweetener would be considered a tweak. Couscous is included in our Free Food list so it can be enjoyed as part of a meal, to add even more filling power, Used in that way you’re unlikely to eat couscous in large quantities. However if we eat couscous as a sweet dessert we are not eating the ingredient as it was intended to be used and we should count the Syns to protect our weight loss.

Rice puddings made up with diet drinks
Using diet soda (or any other Free liquid – including water) to make up pudding rice is a tweak as it makes bulky Free rice – intended to be eaten as part of a satisfying, Free Food-packed meal – very easy to overeat between and after meals.

Lasagne sheets to make spring rolls
There have been some queries relating to using par-boiled (softened) lasagne sheets filled with Free Foods (bean sprouts/shredded carrots/Chinese five spice) then baked to make spring rolls. In principle this is no different to cannelloni. If eaten as part of a filling meal this is fine. If we are making trays of lasagne/spring rolls and eating them in addition to meals, it would be something to look at if their weight losses start to slow.

Adding rice when blending soup
Blended rice has a Syn value as it loses its filling power.

Blending Mullerlight yogurt with milk or water to make a drink
This is a tweak. Yogurts aren’t intended to be used this way and ‘diluting’ them reduces both the time it takes to eat them (ie they become east to overeat) and their satisfying power. If we do want to make shakes/drinks with yogurts, we need to syn them to count the equivalent Syn value of a branded yogurt drink to protect our weight loss.

Why is soup Free but vegetable juice isn’t?
When fruit is enjoyed in its original form it is a bulky, satiating food that’s low in energy density. However, when puréed, juiced or made into smoothies, it is a very effective way of adding a lot of extra calories in a non-bulky way. For example, consider the time it takes to eat six apples – and how full you’d feel afterwards (if you managed to eat them all!). Then the time it takes to drink the equivalent apple juice… it’s gone in a gulp! Furthermore, juice doesn’t sit in your stomach for very long, so does not fill you up. Also, much of the fiber that was in the apples tends not to end up in the juice.

Eating in this way simply allows us to revert to a similar style of eating to the one that helped us gain weight in the first place – a relatively large amount of calories in a non-filling form. The less you have to chew food, the easier it is to eat more of it, because you’re missing out one of the first stages of feeling full and satisfied – chewing.

The exception to the rule is vegetables when used to make soup – which maintains its bulky, filling qualities and is used as a meal.

Other tweaks include:
Smash and cottage cheese scones
Chickpea nuts
Lasagne crisps
Twiglets made from pasta

Tweak or not a tweak?

Pancakes made with couscous – tweak because it’s couscous as a flour substitute.

Doughnut using Healthy Extra ‘b’ choice wholemeal roll, low calorie jam and sprinkled with sweetener – not a tweak because it is a Healthy Extra ‘b’ choice.

Egg custard made with 3 eggs, 3 tbsp Splenda and one banana and custard Mullerlight – not a tweak because we use eggs in this way in several of our recipes.

Mushypea curry – not a tweak because it remains filling and satisfying. The same for potato cakes as long as these are made with fresh potatoes and not Smash.

Macaroni pudding – if made up with milk (as intended) from Healthy Extra allowance then this is fine. If made with any other free liquid (including water and sweetener) this needs to be counted as Syns because it’s easy to overeat.

Jelly sweets – not a tweak because tweaks can only be Free Food, not Synned food. The fact they there are Syns, limits the amount you can eat.

Mushy pea gravy – not a tweak because it would be very difficult to overeat gravy.

So there you have it folks. Happy Fopping xx





Tonight’s food x

Literally love this dinner!!!! How can something so gorgeous be syn free?!?! I do mine a bit different from the recipe on the website. Here’s mine

BBQ pulled pork
Syn free

Pork steaks, all fat removed
5 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp mustard powder
500g passata
3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
3 tbsp sweetener
A sprinkle of chilli flakes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

In a small bowl, mix passata, Worcestershire sauce, balsamic vinegar, mustard powder, garlic, chilli, sweetener and seasoning.

Meanwhile, trim and remove all visible fat from the pork and sear all sides in a hot frying pan. Transfer to a slow cooker with the sauce and cook on high or low depending how many hours you’ve got. I do mine on high then switch to low when I go out.

Then shred into bite-sized pieces using two forks.

I had mine with butternut squash wedges as on a red/success express day and loads of veg. OMG heaven.

Dessert. One syn chocolate mug cake. Now I always say manage your expectations, this will not taste as good as an actual chocolate cake! That would cost you way more syns too. It’s takes one minute and is only one syn. (Check the syn. Alue of your cocoa powder and it needs to be a level tbs)

Whisk an egg in a mug with a tbs of stevia or sweetener and a tbs of cocoa powder. Microwave for one minute. Done. Serve with fruit and yogurt. I added some peanut butter essence too.



Gorge weekend fakeaway

Hi there!! I just wanted to quickly share this amazing curry recipe with you. I was at a wedding yesterday, so I had to use flexible syns. I was in control though and didn’t go bad. I passed on dessert and ate lots of veg with my main. No bread and just one glass of wine. I then went on to gin and slim and vodka lime and soda.

Cooked breakfast, passed on the sausages just had the bacon with the fat removed, scrambled egg, mushroom and tomatoes. Did a big asda shop on the way home so I’m all sorted for the week 🙂

Have a fab evening, I’m so sad, I’m actually excited to watch X factor!! Rock and roll hey!!! Living the dream. Happy Fopping xx

Ruby meat curry.

2-3 tbsp tandoori masalla
1tbsp garam masalla
Pinch of salt
1tsp chilli flakes.

Put all ingredients into a large bowl add enough water to make a paste.
Add meat of choice and marinade for at least one hour or longer if you can. (I used chicken)

Deseed 2 green peppers chop and fry off with a whole clove of garlic. Then fry the chicken for 10 min gently spraying as you go.
Keep cooking until cooked through.

It’s lovely with this sauce too.

Mint sauce
In a bowl add 2tbsp mint sauce (1syn per tablespoon if not the no added sugar variety), salt to taste, 1tsp garam masalla, 1 finely sliced, onion, diced cucumber to fat free natural yogurt. Add chilli flakes if you wish to.

You can also do a matching rice, I had plain brown rice tonight.

Ruby rice
Spray sauce pan with fry light add rice and 1tbsp tandoori powder, fry for a min until powder taken by the rice. Pour boiling water over from kettle and cook until fluffy.
*Tip, turn gas off just before rice cooked cover and let the rice finish cooking without heat.





Your worth isn’t in your weight x

Have you ever heard the phrase, your worth is not in your weight?? Do you get obsessed with what the scales say? Are you a daily weigher, or worse still an hourly one? If you’ve had a bad week do you skip them altogether? If you’ve answered yes to any of these questions then grab a coffee and read on….

Years ago I thought that weighing myself daily meant I could stay on track, or if I’d had a really bad week I was tempted not to get on them at all!!

Most fitness instructors, doctors and slimming experts will recommend that people weigh themselves once a week, at the same time every week. Why? Firstly weighing yourself every day can have a very negative impact on you. If you’ve had a good day and you have lost say a lb since yesterday, you might think, oh right, excellent I can have that cake now. Or if you’ve gained you might either go in to diet mode and become too strict, or think, well what’s the point and have a total blow out!!

A lot of people are scared of scales, it maybe because of bad relationships with them in the past. I read some great advise from a famous personal trainer, she said to try not to think of the scales as anything other than a compass — something we use when losing weight to keep us going in the right direction. It tells us what’s going on with our bodies so we can effectively modify our actions to ensure continued weight loss. It’s just a tool — no more and no less.

Here’s the science. Your weight varies throughout the day. Not only does your weight change every day, it also changes at different times through a single day, so there is no point to weighing yourself every day — and definitely not multiple times a day. So not after every wee lol ;-). This is because of body fluid fluctuations – you might be retaining water, or you may not have gone to the bathroom yet, or you might of just eaten a big meal. All of these things affect your weight.

At Slimming World we get weighed once a week, ideally on the same day and time. Weighing yourself just once a week will give you a more accurate reading — you’ll allow time for the scale to actually show weight loss. The number on the scale however does not define you. If you’ve fallen in to the trap of trying to hide from the scales, take a big deep breath and go for it, what’s the worst that can happen? Ok it might say a gain. Turn that in to a positive, come back and fight it. If you don’t weigh in you’re not going to actually know your true result the following week. You could have an amazing food optimising week and it might only show a maintain as you didn’t check in last week. That could leave you feeling even more deflated.

We’re all human, we all have good and not so good weeks. It doesn’t make us bad people. The other important reason to face the scales weekly is that no one will ever ever judge you. At Slimming World we pride ourselves on a non judgemental approach, meaning zero humiliation. All you’d get is warmth, support and inspiration, so you leave feeling positive for the week ahead. We can give you tools, we can build you up again and we can empower you to go out and get a loss. You are never ever in your own.

Have you heard of non scale victories? Ok so you didn’t see the number you wanted. However did you lose inches? Did you change a groove you’ve had for years? Did you resist that cake at work? Did you say no thank you to a high syn take away? Did you do some body magic this week? Great, feel proud of that. Did you come to group, weigh and stay, even though you knew it wasn’t going to be a fab loss? Amazing, really well done!!!!!

Life is life, we can’t ignore it, we can’t press rewind or fast forward, we’ve only got the here and now. We can’t change what’s gone, but we can face it and leave it behind, allowing ourselves to move forward. If we never acknowledge difficult weeks we aren’t going to learn? Do you know what a set back is designed for?? A flipping amazing come back!!!! Failure isn’t falling down, it’s staying down.

Have an amazing day all xx




Fit, or fit to burst?

Do you ever eat huge portions just because you can? Do you get to that stage where you have to undo your jeans as you’re so full? Do you eat when bored as opposed to actually hungry? I’m yes to all of the above!!

I love love love slimming world for lots of reasons. The no.1 reason is you never ever need to go hungry! Free foods and superfree are unlimited, no going to bed when you’ve run out of options. We can just reach for more!!

However, we do say eat until you’re satisfied and everything in moderation. I push this to the limits sometimes. I could easily sit and eat 10 muller lights, yes really!! However will this help me get back to target? Probably not. Granted it’s better than eating tons of chocolate, but is wouldn’t do that as it syns. Because some thing is free or superfree, sometimes I go crazy!! I’ve always eaten large portions, it worked for me. I stayed full so didn’t reach for high syn things all the time. However now I’ve got less to lose I do feel this is something I need to look at.

The problem with me is if it’s there I will eat and eat and eat. I can’t stop once I’m full if there’s leftover food!! Maybe it’s how we were bought up? Not being allowed to leave the table until you’ve eaten all your dinner? Or not being allowed a dessert unless we’ve eaten that last pea ha ha. So even if we were fit to burst we’d clear the plate for some arctic roll. Funny how your sweet side was never full hey?!? My sister might kill me telling you this, but she’d even hide food in her pockets so she could go out! Or sling her sandwiches down the alley way on the way home from school ha ha. My mom wasn’t majorly strict, they just love us and want us to be healthy and not wasteful. After all there’s starving children in Africa you know!

All you can eats are my worst nightmare!! Would you take an alcoholic to a pub?? Exactly! Put me in front of a buffet such as Taybarns and within minutes I’ve got balanced on one plate, Chinese, Indian, pizza, a roast dinner and fish and chips lol!! When on earth would you ever combine all these delights on one plate?? They aren’t even delightful, they are usually cheap processed rubbish! Then once that’s gone, off we go again! Then if you’re feeling really brave and have a quick look round to check no ones watching you, you run up again!! You feel fit to burst yet hang on, we’ve not had a dessert yet!! You can’t possibly decide between the cheesecake, chocolate cake, ice cream, apple pie or rhubarb crumble, so you have a bit of everything just to taste it!! Then the token fruit goes on the side so it makes us feel a bit better. Top that with unlimited soft drinks and a self inflicted food coma occurs!!

If I make loads of dinner with the intention of saving some, do you think that happens?!? Leftovers, what are they????

So you see this is something I’m being mindful of this week. I’m trying to not cook too much food, I’m going to try and stop when I’m full, I’m going to drink more fluids and I’m going to not eat for the sake of it, either through boredom or because I can, it’s free you know!! I’ll never ever go hungry or slip in to diet mode as that doesn’t work, I just want to ensure I’m not self sabotaging. I’ll always keep fill my plate still though with lots of superfree. When you’ve got less to lose this can be something to look at. I’ve done other plans such as fast forward. I know I can be satisfied with less food and not go hungry. I can very quickly though get back in to negative grooves. So if my meals look a little smaller than normal, or they are on a smaller plate ie my heart plates, this is why. It’s just something I’m trying.

Remember though free is free, they are unlimited so please never ever deprive yourself. It’s just food for thought.

Happy Fopping xxx





Perfect Sunday

Well my weekend was far from perfect 😦 Apart from my vertigo I had/have, I’m never ill!!

I was meant to have a fun packed weekend at The Forest of Dean for my friends 30th, but instead I was violently ill at 5am Saturday and had to come home. Yesterday was horrendous, but luckily today I’m feeling better than I did!

So last night instead of downing spirits and diet mixers and dancing to old skool r n b and garage, I was in my pj’s all day eating dry toast and feeling very sorry for myself! What’s a girl to do?!? Sofa, check, X factor, check, iPad for Internet shopping?? Check check check!! Ordered a few things to cheer myself up!! Pics of recent purchases in the blog.

After watching X factor, (I’m obsessed with Andrea, he has to win!!! He’s so cute too! The guy from scunny and the hey now guy aren’t bad either ;-). I got an early night. So I ventured out today for an hour to ikea. I literally have to get in and out as fast as possible in these places! People stress me out in there! They walk at 1mph! For some reason today people wanted to touch me too!! A little boy I walked past grabbed my arm and shouted “hi ya!!!!!!!” At the top of his voice lol, too cute. Then a lady accidentally tried to hold my hand while walking down the stairs, er do I look like your grey haired husband?? No lol!! Awkward. We needed a dining room table and chairs and ikea is so flipping cheap, so I’ll put up with the slow, touch feeley strangers. My bf is currently putting it together now, soooooooo not a job for me! I’m sat watching strictly on catch up 🙂 How good is Max!!! Frankie and Caroline are good too, but I’m not a huge fan for some reason. Scott Mills?!? Lol OMG just awful!!! Plus I can no longer possibly fancy Mark Wright after this! Not great is he. Errrrrrrrrr and Donny Osband?? What’s he on?!?! Loving Tess’s dress though! So flattering.

So anyway, what makes today perfect then?? Food of course!! Now I’m feeling ok again I need food!! I’ve decided to do a slow cooked whole chicken. All you do is place some foil balls in the bottom of the slow cooker and balance an upside chicken on them. You don’t add water or anything, I just added some herbs. Cook on high for an hour, then 6 hours on low. It just falls off the bone. Amaze.

Then I’m doing loads of veg and these incredible roast potatoes!! Par boil the potatoes, drain and rough them up a little. Place in a roasting dish, then pour up to 1/2 way up the potatoes chicken stock made with boiling water and a chicken oxo, spray the tops with frylight and put in a hot oven for about 45 mins. The potatoes soak in the chicken stock, making the inside lovely and soft and the outside crispy from the frylight. Top chefs do this, however they would use goose fat instead of the liquid. Don’t turn the potatoes though, otherwise they won’t get crispy.

Literally can’t wait to demolish it!! I hope your weekend was better than mine!!!

Happy Fopping fopperholics xxx












What does this word mean to you?? To me it means making a promise and seeing it through. It means I’ve pledged to do something. I’m taking responsibility for applying myself 100%. It also makes me think of a marriage or a relationship…..

Have you ever heard the phrase, Weight loss is like a marriage, you cant keep cheating and expecting it to work? The fantastic thing about Slimming World is it’s not a diet, you’re not good or bad, you’re not breaking it or sticking to it, it’s not about cheating, it’s about food optimising the best you can. I don’t like the word cheat, break, bad etc as they are all negative words. It’s become the new fad to have a ‘cheat’ day. We don’t use this term in Slimming world as it can be dangerous to your weight loss and your motivation. One cheat day can equal a whole weeks worth of syns!! Or even one cheat meal. Let’s think about this, after group you might eat say a dominos pizza as a cheat meal. That could be 80 syns gone. Then you food optimise all week with your syns and only get a small loss or a maintain or even a gain. If you add on the syns from the magical treat night you might of gone way over. After group isn’t a black hole ha ha, trust me I wish it was!! As soon as we step off the scales, we step in to a brand new week. Instead think about what’s making you want to cheat???? Cheating in life is usually the result of feeling too restricted, just giving up and not wanting to try anymore, boredom or unhappiness. If you’re feeling restricted are you being too rigid? Are you making sure you are having lots of lovely free foods, healthy extras and syns? If so hopefully you won’t feel the need to cheat. If you’re bored, easy, go online, try new recipes, use the magazines, recipe books, social media etc…… If you really want to be successful but can’t live without a flexible syn day, then have a flexible syn day. Set a limit, count backwards and that way you’ll feel in control still and not guilty for blowing it. We can’t guarantee a loss but it’s a lot more likely to give you one than a full blown cheat day or meal. Ask your consultant for more info or see my blog on tools.

Losing weight does take a lot of commitment and choice power. First off it’s about committing to coming to group every week, rain or shine, on an amazing week or a tricky week. Of course if you’re on holiday or too poorly that’s perfectly understandable, we have absence weeks to allow for that. Then it’s about not just going to get weight, but committing to staying to image therapy too. You need to commit to food optimising and making new grooves. What does this mean?!?! It means rather than having a high syn takeaway for example, you make your own or choose a low syn option. It means if you want a bar of chocolate you have it within your syns as opposed to a massive bar of dairy milk (I used to have the yard ones they used to do at Xmas!). It means swopping the 2 bottles of wine for less wine, or switching to sprits. You get the idea.

If you’ve walked through the door of a slimming club you’ve done so because you really want to lose weight, you need support, motivation and to be inspired. This is what you’ll get in group. This is what as consultants we commit to give to you in massive doses. It’s very easy to give up or pay weigh and go, but if you really really want to reach your dream weight you’ll never give up. You’ll stay committed and not let anything get in your way. We know that members who attend their group every week lose weight more successfully than those who miss weeks – and they’re much more likely to keep going to reach their Personal Achievement Target weight. This is why we talk about commitment as we really do care.

So where are you at on a commitment scale of 1-10??? 10 being very committed and 0 being not at all committed? Then think about how badly you want this??? Now do those numbers match up? Just wanting something won’t make it happen, you need to make it happen.

“Sometimes all the resources and accountability in the world can’t make up for one of the most important keys to success – commitment to your weight loss and health goals. You can have the vision, a plan, resource tools, and support but without heart-felt commitment to ignite the passion to go the distance, success may be fleeting.”

Here is another scale to help you rate your commitment to reaching your weight loss goals.

Not Very Committed – You acknowledge the importance of eating right and exercising. You have joined fitness centers or purchased workout equipment but they never seem to get used. You have been known to purchase great looking workout clothes but many of them still contain the tags. You have the best intentions to make changes but something always seems to get in the way. You have tried many diets. Unfortunately, you quickly give them up in favor of your favorite foods or parties with friends.

Somewhat Committed – You have been told you need to make lifestyle changes to improve your health and you believe it is important. You want to make the changes but making time in your schedule with work, family, and friends proves difficult. You use your gym membership or home equipment and follow your “diet” every couple of weeks but quickly fall out of a routine.

Very Committed – You are learning to make changes and are determined to see this new lifestyle change through. Although there are a variety of things in your diet that still need attention, you are making progress with small, sustained changes. You are willing to continuously learn new habits and seek information and motivational help. You are learning what foods are best for your lifestyle and have found ways to get exercise that you enjoy. Frustration at the slow pace sets in from time to time and makes you want to give up but you quickly get back on track with the encouragement of others. Finding the balance with work, family, and personal time is always a battle but you are learning to make it all fit to reach your goals. While you have significantly reduced your visits to restaurants and use of convenience foods, you are still learning to embrace the social implications. You believe slow and steady will win the race and accept that you can’t be perfect but work to do the best you can each day.

Passionately Committed – You fully embrace the principles of your new lifestyle and have fully incorporated them into your day to day life. Visits to restaurants are easy as you know what to choose. You have very limited convenience foods. Nutrient rich meals and meaningful time with family and friends have taken their place. Exercise is enjoyable and you now miss it on days you take off. You have found a wonderful balance between work, family and community and your healthy lifestyle and outlook compliment every aspect of your life. You are setting new goals, love the new “you” that has been discovered and your positive changes have been noticed and inspirational to others.

Zealously Committed – Your standards for healthy living are very high. Strict rules and guidelines regulate what you eat or how you exercise. You are willing to sacrifice all aspects of your life to achieve your goals. You do not notice the impact your eating and exercise choices have on others around you. Those that do not jump on board with your level of commitment easily irritate and annoy you. When family or friends suggest you are too committed, you become defensive. You find wonderful comfort and control in your life from the food and exercise routines you embrace.

So which are you?? I’d say I used to be the zealously committed one lol but I’ve chilled out a bit now and I’m the very committed one. No one is perfect, life gets in the way sometimes. The key is to not beat yourself up and crack on.

How can you boost your commitment??? A Countdown course can really help!! It offers members a special opportunity to commit themselves much more strongly to their slimming journey– and to receive a financial benefit too, in the form of one free week (out of 6) when you commit to a 6-week Countdown course, and two free weeks (out of 12) when you buy a 12-week Countdown. Holidays need to be pre booked so you are essentially saying I’m going to be at group for the next 6 weeks or 12 weeks and I’m 100% committing to that.

You can also use planning and ensure you’re prepared. Diarying out time for group to stay, planning meals and preparing in advance. If you’re away or on a night out having a think about how you’ll cope with that before hand. Never be embarrassed of your level of commitment, never think you’re being rude if you are put in a situation that could jeopardise your commitment. It’s not that you can’t have something, it’s that you’re choosing not to or you’ve got a low syn alternative.

I lost my weight very quickly as I was 100% committed. I’m more relaxed now I’m a size 10, but I know if I want to get back to my target weight I need to strengthen my commitment at weekends. Food I’m perfect, alcohol not so much!! I am married to Slimming World. It’s changed my life and I’ll never ever go back to the way I used to eat. I’ve been there, done that and got the extra large t shirt. The commitment I’ve put in is soooooooooooooo worth it!!

You can do it!!!!

I’ve not shared all my recent meal photos on my blog for a while as I tend to,post the, on fb. But for my non fb followers I’ve attached some for you. Also some recent purchases!!

Happy Fopping all xxx