Health Diary Week 30: Food, Exercise and a Positive Mind

Did I Follow My Own Advice?

Image: ShonEjai, Pixabay.

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What’s New

I was feeling nervous about stepping onto the scales this week since last week’s expected weight loss was actually a gain. After that disappointment, I’d analysed my diary to pinpoint where my behaviour had slipped and concluded I needed to eat more fruit (instead of non-wholegrain toast) for breakfast, consume minimal raspberry jam (I was forming a jam habit!), reduce the cake snacks, alcohol and crisp/chip intake. Sounds like a lot right?! So, how did that go?…

Image: Clker-Free-Vector-Images, Pixabay.

Food and Nutrition

So, let’s have a look at what food was on my plate, the healthy and not so healthy choices and identify any tweaks I could make to improve my nutrition…

Breakfast:

…Well, I’m proud to report 5 of my breakfasts consisted of fruit (apple, nectarine, banana, satsuma, pineapple and mango). I didn’t have raspberry jam at all (go me!).

Lunch:

I ate my My Typical Salad lunches over 4 days; the others were Ugo Thrive pumpkin raviolini with added spinach, tomato, olives and red onion (it was a bigger lunch than necessary), scrambled tofu (I think this was my best version yet) with added mushrooms and grated carrots (needed using) and a tasty BLT (vegan-style) roll.

Lunches. Top left: Raviolini. Top right: Scrambled tofu. Bottom: BLT using Incredible Bakery onion & seed high fibre, low saturated fat roll & Quorn smoky vegan ham free slices.

Dinner:

Dinners were relatively low-processed meals containing a variety of vegetables – I really love veg! – here’s how we incorporated veg into our dinners in a satisfying way:

Tagliatelle with olives, spinach & tomato in a creamy silken tofu & pesto sauce, with griddled asparagus, pepper, aubergine, courgette & butternut squash. I had these leftovers twice (pic from Week 29).
Thai green curry with broccoli, spinach, carrot, sweetcorn, pepper & water chestnuts. Served with wholegrain jasmine rice, red rice & riceberry.
Shawarma kebab with added mushrooms: Served with Sainsbury’s be good to yourself oven chips (less than 3% fat & green traffic-lighted for fat, saturated fat, sugar & salt[2]) & salad of  iceberg lettuce, red onion, tomato, cucumber and avocado in a garlic mayo dressing.
Simple red lentil pasta with sundried tomato, pepper, black olives (from jars) & red onion.
Homemade soup using veg box leek, broccoli, & potato. I’m not a fan of leeks, so we adapted a recipe to make this tasty soup that didn’t taste overly ‘leekie’.

That’s nearly 20 different veg/salad in my dinners alone, not including the fruit for breakfast/snacks or lunchtime salads! My health-promoting gut microbes should be happy feasting on all that fibre-loaded goodness[3]!

Image: OpenClipart-Vectors, Pixabay.

Snacks:

Snack indulgences included a carrot cake muffin, berries coated in raw chocolate and a hot cacao drink. I ate some post-booze crisps but reduced quantity by ensuring some healthy snacks to hand:

Another success! I prepared for the alcohol-munchies with healthy snacks. Left: Carrot & baby cucumber sticks with hummus. Right: Mango & pineapple. Admittedly, I ate a small bowl of crisps/chips later, but nowhere near as many had I not had the healthier snacks beforehand.

Alcohol

And alcohol? –  Drinkaware[1] calculated I’d consumed 460 calories and nearly 6 units less compared to Week 29.

Week 29 versus Week 30 alcohol units & calories[1]. Note: Week 29 doesn’t include the 105 additional calories from the sodas!

My cunning ‘Houseparty’ alcohol-limitation plan worked! I measured 6 shots from my large vodka bottle to transfer into a smaller one. I paired the vodka with soda water & fresh lime, instead of cola/lemonade. I functioned hangover-free the following day.

Exercise

I increased my physical activity to 350 minutes, compared to 335 minutes last week. The majority was exercise biking (225 minutes), with 60 minutes on the trampette, a 40 minute walk and those Mr Motivator workouts on BBC HealthCheck UK.  

Image: 16061941, Pixabay

Weight, BMI and Fat Results

So, what did my actions mean for this week’s results? I’m relieved to report I lost 1 lb (0.45 kg) in weight – I was kind of expecting more, but I’ll take it. I hope that I continue to progress in this direction, or at the very least, not gain.

Week 30 results – moving in the right direction again – phew!

Positive Thinking: What Made Watson Smile

The positive results conveniently link to ‘What Made Watson Smile’ this week…

Bird Feeder Relocation:
Re-locating the birdfeeder to the pond area by the driveway, providing better birdwatching opportunities – I haven’t captured a decent picture of the birds yet:

Nutrition and the Immune System Webinar:
The informative part 1 Immunity Series lecture by Dr Childs (University of Southampton) via MyNutriWeb. This week’s lecture was Nutrition & the Immune System in Health & Disease. Of particular interest – the role of vitamin D & the omega 3 end-products, EPA & DHA, in a healthy immune response:

New Flowers:
Noticing the new flower additions to the garden:

Houseparty:
An excuse to dress-up! Seeing faces (Jo’s & Matt’s) I hadn’t seen in ages (apologies for the terrible screen photo – it’s the only one I managed to capture with the camera I’m currently using instead of my broken phone).

Future Learn Course Completed:
Completing the Future Learn course ‘Superfoods: Myths & Truths’. The truth? – I’m confident to continue NOT using the term ‘superfood’ & instead advocate for a wholefood plant-based diet for supporting health.

I hope you enjoyed this week’s ‘What’s on Watson’s Plate’. Please feel free to follow my bite-sized updates on Instagram or Facebook. See you next Wednesday for another catch up.

Week 31>>>
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References

1. Drinkaware, 2019. Unit & Calorie Calculator [online]. Available from: www.drinkaware.co.uk/understand-your-drinking/unit-calculator.
2. British Nutrition Foundation, 2018. Helping you eat well: Looking at labels. Available from: www.nutrition.org.uk/healthyliving/helpingyoueatwell/324-labels.html?start=3.
3. Angie Jefferson, 2020. Give your friendly gut bacteria a helping hand. British Dietetic Association [online]. Available from: www.bda.uk.com/resource/give-your-friendly-gut-bacteria-a-helping-hand.html.

More from What’s on Watson’s Plate:

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