I have a strong belief that if you are functioning well on the inside that you can function well on the outside, so starting from tomorrow Dave and I will be doing the first phase of the Harcombe diet. I found out about the Harcombe diet from Elaine from All Kids and after I finally got the diet book delivered and read most of it, we have decided to give it a go.
There is often a medical reason why most diets work and why most people put on weight. The diet that Dave & I have stuck to the most is that Atkins diet where you basically stick to a very low carbohydrate diet which then gets your body to use the stores of fat for extra energy and it gets into a cycle of burning fat. The only problem with this diet is that it can be quite hard to stick to especially if you are away from home or want to go out for a meal. If you think about most meals for lunch or dinner you normally have bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, in some form or another.
The Harcombe Diet allows you to have carbs and most importantly for me is that you can also have fruit … but one thing that the Harcombe diet is strict on is that you have to stick to REAL food and avoid anything procesed, as processed food tends to have hidden sugars in it. There is a theory with the Harcombe diet that we all have Candida (bad bacteria / yeast) growing in our digestive system which craves sugars, or a Food Intolerence that causes us to have cravings as well as bad reactions to certain food, or we are Hypoglycemic. We either have one or all of these conditions and the first 5 days of the Harcombe diet is more of a detox to combat these.
So for the next 5 days we have to stick to a diet of as much real meat and fish as we like, salad and vegetables (apart from mushrooms & potatoes), eggs, natural live yoghurt (which helps attack the candida) and up to 50grams of brown rice a day. This is easy, as on the Atkins diet you have to stick to protein (meat, fish & eggs) with certain low carb veg, with no carbs so you wouldn’t be allowed the rice. You have to steer clear of dairy (so no milk in tea/coffee or cheese). To drink its got to be no alcohol, decaff tea & coffee and lots of water (no pop or fruit juice). The drinking side may be the hardest side of things but with it being warm at the moment it makes it easier to drink lots of water, and we have been trying out decaff tea without milk today and its really not that bad. We have decided that instead of having a bottle of wine in the evening we’ll just opt for an early night instead.
You’re meant to lose a chunk of weight during the first 5 days and more importantly get the candida, food intolerences and cravings under control which allows you to move onto phase 2 which is where you start to introduce fruit and more carbs. The only wierd thing is during Phase 2 you can’t have fats and carbohydrates in the same meal. To work out what foods fall into the “fat” category you have to think if it has come from anything that has a face…. meat, fish, milk, cheese, butter and cream etc. Vegetables can be eaten with either the fat or carb food group so it encourages you to have plenty of salad and vegetables. The reason for splitting the food groups during a meal is something to do with how you digest things to make you more efficient.
People who know me will think that I don’t need to go on a diet, but there are still some hidden pounds that need to be shed so that I can fit into my wardrobe and be at a comfortable weight. Dave has always struggled with his weight and his love of food (or is it part of a craving) and it becomes more important to have a healthy diet so that we can hopefully live to a ripe old age instead of destroying the only body you get.
So who knows what the next 5 days will hold, I’m sure it will be fine and fairly easy since we have done the first phase of the Atkins diet a few times so we are used to having the strict meals that are free from the sugary snacks and high carbs that in this society we all seem to eat without thinking about it.
Photography by Scorpians and Centaurs