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Sunday, November 26, 2006

Leaping salmon

Three days on the salmon diet and only one pound lost! That's weight-wise: financially of course, many more pounds. Salmon as prescribed by Dr Perricone, twice a day, doesn't come cheap.

I suppose the curry on day two didn't help, but John was most insistent on a Friday night curry. I made concessions by not having a Bombay aloo, but I couldn't switch from a Bombay chicken to the dieter's alleged friend, the chicken tandoori.

I do the three-day Perricone salmon diet every now and then. I'm not a fan of faddy low-cal diets but this one seems to work: it's delicious, fairly filling, and usually gets good results. The diet isn't sold as a weight loss diet. I added up the calories and it comes in at around 1200. The diet is billed as the "three day facelift in the fridge." Perricone believes that skin ageing is caused by inflammation and the sun. And the diet really does seem to improve the skin. Kim Cattrall is a big fan apparently. For breakfast you have an omelette made with one whole egg and two egg whites, and porridge. For lunch, salmon fillet with lots of lettuce doused in lemon juice and olive oil (surprisingly delicious); for dinner, the same, plus a green vegetable; for snacks, almonds and slices of turkey breast, and an apple or pear.

I was driven to the diet after trying on a few party frocks and finding the size 12s a little clipped.

I lost two and a half stone in 2004 and have successfully kept it off, except for three pounds that have crept on and doggedly refuse to go. What isn't so good is that I don't go to the gym anywhere near enough. So I went for a run yesterday, in the rain and wind, and even spent some time in the gym today (and not just on the sun bed).

The forcing function is two Christmas parties on Dec 7 and 8. As the magazines gleefully tell us in December, it's all about showing gleaming skin, wearing sparkly eyeshadows and bling, and buying the drop dead frock.

I think I managed to get hold of the latter in a rare trip to Newbury. I lived in Newbury from 1994 to 1998 and have very fond memories of the town, pre-bypass, and its quaint little department store Camp Hopson. Well, what a change, in all respects. Now by-passed, Newbury has a more up-and-coming town centre, and Camp Hopson has been totally remodelled. No longer a fusty Grace Brothers, it's a bright shop to rival any House of Fraser. And in the Kaliko concession I found my perfect frock, midnight blue with sequins. I then had to buy some shoes, and I'm still looking for the midnight blue evening bag, but with two trips to London this week, I'm sure I'll succeed.

No more salmon for me, but I'll keep up the good work in Gillian McKeith style (my guru): porridge for breakfast with blueberries ands flax seeds; home made soup with seeds for lunch and fish or chicken with veg for dinner. There's no magic formula to losing weight than simply eating less and exercising. Lots of people eagerly asked me how I did it, back in 2004, but that really was the answer. I've also bought diet books which promise miracles - F Plan, Atkins, South Beach, New York - but I've realised that just eating less, and not being tyrannised into giving up your favourite foods, is what works. So while I happily cook my way through Gillian's recipes and have developed quite a taste for spinach and quinoa, I still have the occasional bag of crisps and the odd jacket potato and glass of chardonnay.

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