Nutrition Mum

Nutritionist and mindset coach, our Nutrition Editor Local Mum Angelika Cutuk-Short blogs for us on everything to do with nutrition and wellbeing

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July 9th

Wouldn’t it be great if we craved broccoli or spinach?

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If only..! If all of our sweet tooth or salty cravings were replaced by an overwhelming desire to eat green vegetables, we would all be walking around with thigh gaps.   

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I used to struggle with terrible cravings.  The kind of cravings that completely take over your mind.  I’d be doing so well all day and then the evening would come and it would be like I completely lost control…I was possessed!

And those cravings definitely weren’t for salad.  Oh no!  Give me a dessert with ten spoonfulls of sugar and half a pack of butter then drench that thing in chocolate.  

I really thought it was a biological impossibility to not end each meal with something sugary and sweet. 

I thought this was normal.  Just a part of being human.

So when I finally figured out the root cause of my weight gain was also the cause of the cravings, my mind was blown. Cravings - although extremely common - are not normal at all. They occur because our struggling metabolism wants the path of least resistance so it sends out hormone signals that create hunger and cravings. Our bodies know that it is so much quicker and easier to get energy from those high glucose foods (crap processed foods basically) than from the energy (fat) stored in our body.

Fat is very stubborn and difficult for our body to burn…hence that everlasting belly fat that just won’t go; this is a #fact. But when you balance the hormones and strengthen the metabolism the cravings actually STOP!  

I did a poll recently asking local mums what they think the number one challenge is preventing them from losing weight and by far CRAVINGS was number one.  

The good news is we can change that - we can stop or curb our craving significantly! 

In my next blog I will share my Five Simple Strategies for Women Over 40 To Crush Those Food Cravings. This guide will equip you to beat the cravings without giving up bread, wine or chocolate. 

This will help you to ditch those infernal cravings so you can stop having have a nightly fridge hostage negotiation with yourself and you can finally make losing weight so much easier. 

See you next time x

Making cooking more fun to aid weight loss

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If you don’t love cooking, maybe I can help to make it more fun for you?

I know that sometimes I don't find cooking to be that much fun. I can get into that same old same old routine, I’m sure you can relate..?

So that's why I've listed my best "fun" cooking tips that have helped me. 

My fun cooking tip number 1

Check out new recipes

Sometimes just seeing the beautiful food photos and reading the recipe can spark some inspiration and fun in your kitchen.

You can head to your local bookstore. Or look up your favourite nutritionists, chefs, bakers, and other online foodies. Maybe do a quick search on Google or Pinterest to see thousands of new ideas. 

Perhaps you have some ingredients in your fridge that are just waiting to be eaten.

Pro Tip: Searching through recipes can be so fun and inspiring, and can also end up taking waaaay longer than planned. I used to do this a lot. So, consider setting your timer when you start browsing. The last thing you want is to take too much time looking, that you don’t leave enough time for cooking.

My fun cooking tip number 2

Make grocery shopping fun and inspiring

When you’re at the grocery store, try something that you haven’t had in a while. Is there a seasonal fruit or vegetable you haven’t had for months? What about a childhood favourite? Did you come across something totally delicious at a restaurant or get-together lately? 

Or, browse around the store looking for something you haven't had before; something that is completely new to you. Be adventurous and fun. Then you can go to tip #1 to find new and inspiring recipes when you get home.

Pro Tip: Please-o-please never shop hungry! You know that one 

My fun cooking tip number 3

Keep it simple!

Sometimes when I see a great food picture, I immediately get inspired to make it. But if I look at the ingredients or instructions and they're too long, I stop. While there are times when I'm inspired and dive into a new great recipe; when I'm not all that inspired, I need to keep things simple.

A few ways to keep things simple are to:

Search for recipes with 10 or fewer ingredients, and five or fewer instructions;

Search for recipes that can be made in one pot or pan;

Buy ingredients that are ready to cook with (pre-washed salad greens, diced squashes, frozen vegetables, etc.)

Always have ‘BACKUP’ meal ingredients in the house. Backup meals are you classic family favourites (spag bol, bangers and mash, stir-fry etc.)

My fun cooking tip number 4

Put on some music and invite someone to join you. 

Do you have kids that need to learn the critical life skill of cooking? NO better time to do this then this summer!!! Perhaps your partner would love to join you? What about having a “cooking party” where everyone brings something and cooks together.

My fun cooking tip number 5

If none of the other tips work for you, invest in some kitchen swag! 

Having proper kitchen tools makes cooking so much easier and faster. When's the last time you sharpened your (our bought yourself a new) knife? Could dicing carrots with a dull knife be draining the fun from cooking? Or is blending a smoothie with a crummy blender, leaving it too chunky to enjoy, making you feel less excited to try new smoothie recipes? I know it does for me.

You know that cooking is the key to healthy eating. And, yes, it does get boring from time to time.

Try one (or all) of my fun cooking tips to inspire you to get over to your kitchen and cook yourself some great dishes.

You already know your health will thank you.

Click to check out my super easy and healthy Halloumi & Beans  delish family recipe. 

If you want help with healthy cooking and inspiration - give me a shout or check my Facebook page for inspiration:

May 23

Why can’t I lose my belly fat?

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"Angelika tell me why I cannot lose my belly fat? I am eating well, exercising every day but I cannot lose it!?’’ I get this a lot from Local Mums…especially in this current situation! 

To be honest there are so many reasons why we just can't lose weight, fat in particular, because there are many factors involved in the weight loss process.

So, what is going on? Why is it that some of us can't lose weight, especially after hitting the big 40?

Unfortunately, there’s no escaint the fact that things start going downhill from the age of 30 when we start losing muscle. Some doctors even say from our 20s onward…but that seems pessimistic to me.

But one reason that surprises a lot of Local Mums is not eating enough protein in their daily food. 

Proteins are great they build our muscles. Muscles are metabolically active – meaning MORE MUSCLES – FASTER METABOLISM – WE BURN MORE FAT – JEANS GET LOOSER. It really is that simple.

I’m sure you’ve seen those muscley guys in the gym or park that seem to eat enormous portions but they’re still fit? The reason is they have lots of muscles and muscles burn calories.

Also…important for us ladies…protein drastically reduces chicken wings and saggy bottoms and we don’t want those do we..?

My story
I have to say I did not figure this one out until quite recently.

For years and years, forbreakfast I was eating my muesli with banana and maple syrup, jam on granary toast with strawberries thinking, oh yeah, this is really healthy, I’m getting some fruit and some fibre…I’m sorted!

Oh yes, I forgot to mention the large latte with two sugars. Boy, did that taste good!

Lunch at work was hit and miss….more often than not a sandwich with a bag of crisps or a soup with three slices of bread.

Dinner, something like pasta bolognese. Yep, that was the norm…no protein (or very little) in sight.

And I was wondering why I was never losing the weight even though I was exercising five days a week in the gym for an hour a time. I really should have been fit, right? But I wasn’t...

Instead, I was getting fatter. I was frustrated, famished and fat (my three FFF’s). I was constantly tired and pissed off not knowing what to do, how to eat.  

I needed the answers.

So in my 30s I literally went back to school… 

I learned. I went through the endless night studying facts and figures of nutrition (night owl here), trial and erroring on my own body. And I figured it out. I was not eating the right amount of protein for my body and my age. Lightbulb flashed.

Now I can hear you saying…What? Protein for breakfast. I don’t want a chicken breast for breakfast! Hold your horses…let me explain.

I started slowly, I traded my jam on toast for eggs and avocados, I added nuts and seeds to my porridge and yoghurt and I made damn sure to include protein in every single meal and snack of the day!

I was paying attention to this protein business. And after a while… I was getting enough.

By the way, we should be having roughly 25 g of protein in each meal. Also, we should have roughly 1 gram of protein per kg of our body weight. To put it in perspective a person of 80kg (~180 pounds -12.5 stones) should have 80 g of protein daily. 

I started feeling fuller for longer (that’s what proteins do), Also, my cravings subsided. Don’t get me wrong cravings still crop up on those rare hard days... 

Finally, I lost weight.

Now after marriage, a child and a full-time business I look and feel better than ever at 43. 

To help you get that protein in check out my protein-rich breakfast, lunch and dinner recipes.

Enjoy x

Sweet tooth? What to eat instead of sweets?

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I know I’m preaching a bit here but it’s worth remembering that now is not the time to relax and get complacent on your food prep, blood sugar/hormone balancing meals and hydration. If anything the absolute opposite is true… 

I won’t get technical on you but keeping your blood sugar stable (keeping insulin low) and ensure that you are supporting your stress hormones (cortisol) is critical.   

If you’re not used to being at home all day, take note of how much you are eating, when and why. Make a note of it somewhere for a day or two to assess the reality of what comes in (see my food diary chart below). If you don’t actually write it down how will you know/remember? Right? Just being practical here.

Number ONE thing that I see with local mums is they don’t eat enough at mealtimes…I’ll have just a little of the lunch (in hope to lose some weight) only to snack on biscuits an hour later…sound familiar? If the meal times are not sorted properly you will be craving foods throughout most of the day, guaranteed. I witness this every day with mums! 

Quick fact for you: on average cravings last for 2-3 minutes…see if you can handle it next time?

So, make sure your meals are nourishing and filling enough (protein in every meal) that you don’t (physically) feel the need to snack... 

If you find yourself craving foods, then that’s a good indicator you need to support your hormones and/or support your mental wellbeing as cravings are usually a sign something is not working properly. Emotions and stress come into play here… but that’s for another blog post. 

The majority of us across the world are currently working from home and social distancing and so we could be more tempted to snack on the food we wouldn't normally eat because we are bored, stressed and experiencing five other emotions at the same time. 

Today, I’m going to share my quickest tips on what to eat instead when the sweet cravings strike:

Instead of chocolate: 

2-3 squares of dark chocolate (70%+ Cocoa) and 3 brazil or other nuts, it’s a treat… followed by a glass of water, of course…Food for thought: we mistake thirst for hunger 40% of the time!

A handful (30 g) of dried fruit (raisins, cranberries, prunes - fab if constipated)

2-3 dates are an amazing substitute (my favourite…work like a charm)

Piece of fruit…never fails; banana, apple, pear or other you fancy…

Instead of biscuits: 

Rice cake or cracker with peanut or almond butter

Sliced apple with peanut or almond butter

A handful of plain nuts (7-8 walnuts, almonds or other of your choice)

Instead of cake/ after meal desert: 

3 tablespoons of Greek yoghurt with a handful of blueberries mixed in with a tablespoon of milled almond or flaxseed + a teaspoon of honey if you wish…Gives you much need probiotics and fibre + tastes amazing…just try it.

Meal of the week: Halloumi and Beans Meal

Stay well and stay healthy.

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To drink or not to drink? That is the question now…

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Ideas on how to cut down on booze now when home 24/7

When I was walking to the park with our dog the other day, our bin day, I saw bin after bin overflowing with bottles.

Funnily enough on the same day I read about statistics in the UK that people are actually drinking 25 percent more, or one in four of us drink more than before Covid situation! Which is a lot!

Now I know, it’s a tricky topic to navigate….

Disclaimer: I am not an alcohol specialist, however as a health coach I know full well that excess drinking will add on weight and I want to share a few tricks of the trade with you on how to navigate this touchy topic.

Please note: If you think you might have some issues with drinking the wise thing is to seek professional help.

A few things about alcohol
Alcohol makes people feel good, we all want to loosen up, relax, release our inhibitions and have fun, which is absolutely fine…. While drinking alcohol in moderation is great thing for our mood and even has some health benefits (resveratrol ant-oxidants in red wine prevents cardio-vascular diseases), going overboard can have a severe negative effect on our physical and mental health. But you knew that right?

A few stats
Current UK alcohol recommendation: 14 units for man and women. That is 6 pints of bear, or (not and) 10 small glasses of wine or less per week. If you don’t drink - keep it that way!

Fact: Drinking 6 pints of lager per week adds up to 50 000 calories per year equivalent to eating 250 doughnuts or 14 pounds of belly fat per year!

Not trying to be a party pooper here, but it’s important to keep our drinking in check …especially now! Having a few drinks now and then throughout the week is fine and so needed at times (guilty as charged) but keeping a lid on it is the name of the game. A few of my suggestions below:

My simple suggestions on cutting down on alcohol when at home:

·       First things first - don’t buy more alcohol than you will drink in one night! Or better still do not buy it in the first place! If you don’t have it in the house – you won’t drink it!

·       White wine opened can stay corked in a fridge 3-5 days, same as red but store it in a cool dark place. So, no need to finish up the bottle.

·       Aim to have at least two alcohol-free days a week.

·       Plan activities and tasks at times you would usually drink (Friday/Saturday night in my case). Do something different to disturb the old habit (drinking is just a habit that you’ve learned while ago – if you can learn it you can UN-learn it – yep this is fact!) of drinking at the weekend. Some of the suggestions: as going to the cinema is out of question now…watch a movie you’ve been wanting to see in the last three years, play some card games with kids or take a bath might be idea insteadC.


Honestly answer these simple questions before you reach for THAT bottle:  

·       How is drinking affecting me?

·       What have I got to lose if this carries on?

·       What would happen if I stopped drinking every weekend / every other day?

·       What can I do differently next time?


My 15 non-alcoholic swaps to try - never a better time to try them than NOW:

1.     Alcohol-free white wine - Eisberg Chardonnay 125 ml 33 calories – or other brands online

2.     Alcohol-free sparkling wine (Eisberg)

3.     Alcohol-free red wine - Cabernet Sauvignon alcohol-free (Areil)

4.     Alcohol-free Gin (Fluere)

5.     Non- alcoholic spirit (Speedlip Grove 42)

6.     Club soda, soda water, sparkling water

7.     Pink grapefruit…Fentimans tonic water is amazing!

8.     Margaritas and Pina colada cocktails in general average 500 calories…proceed with caution, so have 1 instead of 3? Or try Mocktails: Virgin Mary without vodka, Cosmopolitan.100% cranberry juice + lime + soda water instead of vodka – or any other – google your favourite mocktail

9.     Ginger beer - Rochester ginger

10.  Non-alcoholic beers (Brew Dog Nanny State…hubby swears by it)

11.  Tonic water + fruit juice+ few mint leaves and ice instead J&T

12.  V8 vegetable – V8 Energy /fruit juices

13.  Lipton Tea/ ice tea, ice coffee

14.  Green tea and Black coffee, 1-2 a day fat burner

15.  Water- still simply the best to drink when thirsty. Little fact for you: majority of us confuse thirst for hunger 40 % of the time

Suggestion: Great apps to track the alcohol intake if you not sure how much you drink


Challenge for you: Write two things that you will do differently about alcohol when you get the urge this week?

For those who are not drinking but reading here is a great Tuna Niçoise recipe.

Stay Well, Stay Safe (+ be alcohol smart now)

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Stop eating your emotions:

Tips to help you eat less and curb cravings when working from home

Challenging and unprecedented times for all to say the least. The majority of us across the world are now working from home and social distancing and it’s so easy and so tempting to snack and eat food that we normally wouldn’t because we are bored, stressed and experiencing another five emotions at the same time… I do not have a solution to all of that, however below are my Non-edible and edible tips to help:

Non-edible tips

·       Catch yourself in the moment ‘I need a cookie right now’ and change your thoughts. You can actually do this without too much trouble. Self-discipline is a real thing.

·       Think long term… It would be unrealistic to expect to stop your cravings rationally, but take a step back and thinking about long term consequences obesity, diabetes, mood swings…What will happen if you don’t stop……………………………? (you fill the blanks)

·       Call your loved ones (mother, BFF)…talk is a form of therapy…woman use it a lot.

·       Listen to music, put your favourite song on and dance to change your mood.

·      Do some workouts - Check out our Local Mums Fitness Editor Maria’s Fit Mum workouts   or any type of exercise you enjoy doing…run up and down the stairs five times… Anything goes!

·       Enjoy and celebrate your little wins e.g. finish a big chunk of the project you are working on, had a great hour playing with the kids…everything counts.

·       Chunk it - break it down what you’re going to do (nutritionally and exercise-wise) tomorrow and then break it in half, then half it again…until is so easy and simple that you’ll definitely doing it tomorrow.

·       Learn to say NO! It’s a skill.

·       Play games (card or board games) with kids at home or friends over the internet.

·      Have a bath with Epsom salts (magnesium relaxes your muscles) and go to bed early – a perfect time to sort out your bed time routine.


Edible tips

·       Food swaps: fruit instead of sweets (a few dates instead of chocolate) or nuts instead of crisps…Greek yoghurt with a few blueberries and walnuts is a great dessert.

·       Drink water….we confuse thirst with hunger… a lot ~40 % of the time.

·       Cook your meals – a perfect time to start making good simple home-cooked meals.

·       Eat three good meals per day, but smaller than normal meals as we move less now.

·       Minimize snacking…or give it your best shot. Feeling peckish grab a piece of fruit. An apple a day keeps the doctor away.

·       Ask yourself a question before demolishing that bag of crisps – what can I do instead? And how long is it going to take to burn this off inside these 4 walls…

·    Eat protein with every meal such as piece: meat, fish, tofu, mushrooms, eggs, beans, chickpeas, cheese, yoghurts etc.

·       Eat from a smaller plate and chew each mouthful ~20 times.

·       Eat with family - never a better time to bond than now.

·       Don’t get too hungry – when super hungry you are much likely to choose bad!

Challenge: Pick two tips (at least) try them this week and let me know?

Stay well, stay healthy x

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April 2020
- Quick Corona Quiz: Which zone in the picture are you in?  

- So much to learn from these crazy times…

As a nutritionist and mindset coach, I just wanted to check in and say that it’s ok for mums out there to be selfish at times and find ‘Me Time’ this Easter. We are ALL allowed to do that.

If you are like me, you most likely want to make sure everyone else around you is ok – to do so protect yourself NOW. If you become ill, you won’t be able to support anyone else. It’s NOT selfish to make sure you stay as mentally and physically healthy as possible. It’s a necessity.  

I am a self-employed mum of a super active little girl who says at 9:30pm on a school night ‘I’m not tired’ so much so that we are not allowed to say: 'You are tired’ as she’ll go mad.  The kid is amazing but full of beans and energy...

My first responsibility is to be a mother and wife and to show up in a way that I am proud of every single day regardless of what’s going on in the world which is SOOOO much easier to do when they are in school…

Now that we are all stuck at home it is important for kids to navigate their own feelings which we must help them with. And yes kids will get bored. Absolutely FINE by me.  

Please let kids get bored. It’s good for their creativity. The trick is: when they get bored let them do and play anything they want in their room BUT not phones/iPads and TV. I know it’s hard but it’s doable.

My kid (probably yours too) will instantly respond when my energy shifts so I need to show love, compassion and joy throughout the day (fully aware this won’t happen all the time) otherwise the household is in tatters.

Mothering them now requires 10 times more energy than it did a few weeks ago.  

I am also highly sensitive, empathic person. I NEED alone time. I need quiet. I need to have full days where I can do my own things to fill my own cup. I don’t have that luxury right now. 

So a few things that are really helping my sanity right now:  

Separate the children on different floors of the house (we’re calling this in-house social   distancing…it’s brilliant)  

Noise-cancelling headphones for you and the kids (I wear mine when working, they wear theirs when listening to dumb annoying things I don’t want to hear like those stupid YouTube videos) 

Fake showers (this one has saved my sanity more times than I can count-- pretend you’re taking a shower, turn it on, let the water run (I know… water/environment, don’t get mad) and sit in silence in the bathroom, read a book, do whatever you want. Leave the bathroom with your robe on. They’ll never know. Try it. Thank me later

Go for a drive and sing out loud, real loud  

Solo walks (if possible, of course)  

Note on social media: Do not watch the news unless it’s critical to (do not listen to the commentary, there’s no point, it’s mainly opinion, not fact). Avoid going down the rabbit hole with friends and family. Notifications on WhatsApp can be switched off – just saying. 

Happy Easter Everyone… and watch out for some Easter recipes soon…

Stay Well, Stay Healthy and Stay Safe (keep social distancing)

- Angelika x

Check out Angelika’s vlog and her weight loss tips below

10 reasons why it’s important to plan your weekly meals


Why are we eating the same foods week in, week out? Food is so versatile! So why do we end up eating the same stuff on a regular basis? Not anymore - I hope. Writing down your weekly meal planner and a shopping list will help you to change your eating habits and encourage you to try new and exciting foods and recipes.

1.     Stop the majority of us getting caught up in eating the same things over and over without even realising it – same pasta, salads same curry etc…but it’s time to shake things up! Plus, spring is coming our way…

2.     Give you the opportunity to sit down for 15 minutes a week and think what you and your family want to eat this week. Keep in mind, the food we eat will have an effect on our mood, memory, physical performance and many other functions. It’s not just a fuel…diesel!

3.     Broaden your food horizons, you are creative – much more than you think- but we sometimes don’t dare ourselves enough to try new things! Challenge: Cook that meal you have been wanting to try for the last 6 months – you know which one?

4.     Help us get the different vitamins and minerals from different foods we need – eating the same foods can potentially cause certain vitamin deficiency (iron, Vit C, magnesium etc). I know people who are on the same repeat Ocado order for the last 3 years!

5.     Help you have a well-stocked fridge. Your weekly big shop (or two smaller) is so important because if you don’t have nothing much in your fridge – you cannot and will not make healthy decisions at 6.30 pm on Wednesday. How can you?! You will simply end up ordering takeaway, buy ready cooked meals, eat a sandwich - again, or you will reach for that packet of crisps/biscuits that you promised yourself you wouldn’t touch! I am sure you are not one of those people and now you never will be.

6.     Help you eat healthy. Cooking healthy meals requires 30 minutes or less of your time. Less time than to go to local Tesco and buy a ready meal!

7.     Help you to cook in batches, preparing meals the night before and over the weekends, preparing our own lunch boxes (back to school) does make sense. The majority of cooked foods can stay refrigerated for up to 2 days after cooking. Once food is cooked cool it down (leave it no more than 2 hours before) and put it to the fridge or freezer – if left longer than 2 hours bacteria might start developing.

8.     Encourage you try those low carb alternatives: cauliflower and broccoli rice, butternut squash or courgette noodles, Slim Pasta and Lo Dough pizza base- those are some of the easy carb substitutes that taste good.  Please note: try to manage your expectation when trying new foods with less calories. ‘Slim Pasta’ has 60 calories per 200g serving, this is 5 x times less calories than your regular spaghetti serving which is 300 calories per 200 g. This is 240 calories difference, so it’s not really fair to expect exactly the same texture, flavour and get the identical feeling in your mouth! However, if you have a nice healthy sauce and nice salad with it – I promise you - you will enjoy it.

9.     Help you spend less money. Statistics show that people who planned their weekly meals spend less money and consume less calories. Tesco local is more expensive 10-15% at times than the big store!

10.  Help you lose weight. From personal experience and experience with my clients – people who plan, shop and cook regularly (also keeping their food diaries) – are the ones who lose and maintain they weight successfully through life.

Download my 1-Week Meal Planner and Shopping list here. 

How Nutritional Coaching can help you change your life

Coaching is not something bizarre where someone messes with your brain, telling you what you need to say or do. Coaching is actually about helping you to get from where you are now to where you want to be, much quicker and more effectively than if you were working alone. Coaching works for any area of our lives, but it’s particularly effective when it comes to nutrition and weight loss.

Us nutritional coaches would all be rich if we gained a pound for every time a client came to us saying that they really want to lose weight, do more exercise or just eating healthier but something just stops them. What stops them is fear. Fear of not finding the time, financial pressure, conflicting family commitments or opinions, often what the people around you think will prevent you from doing it. And you just carry on as before.  Nothing majorly wrong with that, but are you happy? Just to put it out there, the word FEAR could stand for False Evidence Appearing Real! 

All of us humans are very resourceful creatures but we just don’t pay attention to ourselves enough these days. We are too busy! But coaching – talking to someone who will listen and guide you through the maze of potential is a brilliant way to get what you want – quicker.

I would like to give you the framework of the G.R.O.W model (G- Goal, R-Reality, O-Options, W-Will/Way Forward) so that you can try it yourself.  The G.R.O.W model is one of the greatest coaching tools to help you realise your own true goals and come up with options to get you there. Also, the G.R.O.W model will help you to take ownership and commit to your goals.

Try it for size and see how it fits you. It’s a great mental exercise to juggle and intrigue your mind. See what happens.


Think of one area of your life you would like to improve. This can be anything from weight loss, career development, more family time, spirituality, travel, better fitness and health etc. Put the thing you want to work on through the questions below to clarify and refine things for you. See what happens. This will take 10-15 minutes of your time and the benefits to you should far outweigh this small investment.  

1. Ask and answer the questions:

What do you I want? What do I really, really want?

How will I know when I have achieved it? How will I feel? Can you see yourself doing it? 

When do want to achieve it by? 

How will achieving it benefit me?

What have I done specifically to achieve my goal so far?

What challenges have I met and what options have I used to overcome this? 

What abilities or strengths do I already have which may help? Use these resources. You have more than you think you have. i.e. I want to lose weight. I know I can do it, as I lost a lot of weight in the past - so I can do it again, but slightly differently this time.

What can I do?

What else…? What else…?

What if… (e.g. you had the time you need?)

What is your fastest, easiest, preferred option forward? 

What might stop you and what might you do about it, if it happens? 

How will you commit?  To your reflection in the mirror, through a post on Facebook?

When will you take action? Now? Tonight?

2. Write all of it down on paper. Those who write their goals down have significantly greater results. Talking from personal experience here.


Well Done! You did it! How does it feel? Where is the problem? Is it still there? How much smaller or bigger does it look now? These simple questions can have a profound impact in so many areas of our life and not just nutrition. Use them! 

’Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you are right.’’ – Henry Ford … It really is your choice to do or change something and nobody else’s! However, there are people (nutritional coaches) around you that can help along the way with losing weight and eating healthier. 

Enjoy the journey!

To give you a helping hand this New Year, here is my special offer for Local Mums. Email me at   to use the voucher below:

Special Offer 2019


Help, I’m hungry! 21 tips on how to avoid food temptations this Christmas...

Over the past ten years I have gathered many tips on food temptations and how to avoid them. Here are 21 of my favourite tips that I would like to give to you to help you when hunger strikes! Have a go, you have nothing to lose…except a few pounds. Even if only some of them work for you, it will make a huge difference to your waist line! And please, drop me a line to tell me which ones worked for you, or not. I would love to hear about your successes and challenges. 

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1. Pandoras box.  Please, Please the first thing you really must do when starting out on any get fit goals or simple trying to trim up for that special occasion. CLEAR YOUR CUPBOARDS! of most of your temptation foods (you know what food I mean)!  By throwing out (giving it away) you are making a commitment to yourself to make a change.

2. Keep busy. I think the nail is smacked on the head when you find yourself too busy to think about food. Sometimes we confuse hunger with boredom, and we often eat mindlessly when bored - I know I did!  Go for a quick walk around the block, or if it’s too cold put on your favorite dance song (Eye of the Tiger works for me each time!).

3. My tummy rumbles.  Scientist have found that hunger pangs seem to come and go in waves. So, it won’t get worse and worse, but instead in a little while, you won’t actually feel quite as hungry as you did! Just ride the waves… nothing bad will happened to you! Oh yeah, have a glass of water and wait five minutes. 

4. Fasting fit.  Still talking about hunger; James Scott got lost while hiking in the Himalayas for 43 days. His only food at the time was a few caterpillars daily. He lived! I am not recommending eating caterpillars, but going without food for a while (intermittent fasting) can really help you in many ways. 

5. Sugar rush!?  Sugar cravings are a big issue when trying to be healthier. When craving hits - try taking chromium tablets.  Studies have shown that chromium can normalize blood sugar levels, improve blood sugar utilisation and decrease the bodies insulin requirements. Chromium can help people with a sweet tooth to.

6. Keep well hydrated. At least 2 liters of water per day. The big problem these days is dehydration. People often confuse thirst with hunger! People think they drink enough water! But the majority of us don’t! Drink up! Teas and coffees also count. Please download the water intake app (‘Drink Water’ or others) – only then you’ll track down your true water intake! 

7. Lemon aids.  Water with lemon helps with food digestion and aids weight loss. Warm water with lemon, fresh ginger and honey is the best thing to have first thing in the morning, ideally on empty stomach. This concoction is detoxifying and it will increase your metabolic rate.

8. Caffeine fix.   Drinking green tea and coffee (in moderation) will also increase your metabolic rate and burn some extra calories. Try to cut down on milky coffees or adding sugar, simply half them.   

9. Warm yourself up on a cold night, with soup. Soups (any of them) contain a large amount of water and will fill up your stomach, which sends the message to your brain that you are full! Soups are brilliant if your goal is to be healthier.

10. Get Minty! Brush your teeth when you start to feel hungry! Also rinsing your mouth with mouth wash will have a similar effect as well as nibbling on a few Tic-tac or minty sweets!  Minty things work for some people by removing cravings and curbing their appetite! Are you one of those?  Try it, you have nothing to lose and super fresh breath to gain. Put that toothbrush, tooth paste, mouth wash or Tic-Tac in your handbag - NOW! 

11. Fruit is better than chocolate. When you are getting the taste for that sweet treat of yours - have some fruit. Fresh or dry fruit is good for you and contains much healthier natural sugars and fiber.  Bananas contain potassium and magnesium and is shown to be a mood enhancer similar to chocolate.  The same goes for dates - packed with potassium, magnesium, niacin, B-6, iron but half of the calories of chocolate. 

12. Be a super hero.  Eat plenty of proteins; chicken, fish, eggs and cottage cheese. Your body doesn’t store proteins in the same way as carbs, therefore no excess calories will be stored in your body. Proteins also fill you up for longer and build up your muscles.

13. Go green.  Eat as many green leafy vegetables as you possible can! Go crazy with broccoli, kale, green beans, brussel sprouts… They are high in fiber, low in calories and will bulk up any of your meals. 

14. Give your food your full attention.  Focus on your food and eat slowly at meal times - chew every mouthful at least 20 times. The brain takes 15 minutes to get the message that your stomach is full. So, if you eat too quickly, your stomach will fill up before your brain knows you're full and you’ll end up eating too much. See what you can do at your next meal? Don’t eat while watching TV or on the phone, you have no idea what you are putting in your mouth.

15. Avoid temptation! Never go food shopping when you're hungry - you know this one right! Always write a list and stick to it. You are much stronger than you think! 

16. Cook big, make spare! Cooking in larger batches will save you time. Also, if we have healthy food in the fridge or freezer, we are much less likely to eat junk food. Cooked food can usually stay in the fridge for two or three days. Let the food cool to room temperature for two hours before refrigerating - if left longer bacteria might start to grow. If you don't think you'll eat leftovers within three days, freeze them immediately.

17. Prepare your work lunch box the night before. It’s the easiest and cheapest way to eat well. You are in control! Shop meal deals can be good also. But choose wisely, salad lunch with quinoa, chicken, salad and veg are fab. However, the sauce that usually comes with it has loads of calories! Advice: do not be afraid to cut that sauce in half, the lunch will still taste great and you’ll cut hundreds of calories off!

18. Have a healthy relationship with food. Don't try to deny yourself the foods you enjoy or feel bad if you occasionally succumb to temptation. For example, if you say to yourself ‘’I will never eat chocolate again!’’. Your brain will think ‘’Eat that chocolate now!’’. It’s same as saying a child ‘’Do not run!’’, what they actually hear is run. Unfortunately, our brain does not hear the word ‘’NOT’’ very well at all! So, have a bit of your favorite chocolate. Few squares will actually satisfy your needs and make you feel better. You’ll stay on your daily calorie target and most importantly you won’t feel guilty!

19. A picture tells a thousand words. Every time you eat or drink unhealthy take a photo and post it on your Facebook or other social media, or if you prefer every time you eat something healthy post it there. A printed picture on your fridge works similarly! This shows your accountability to the cause.

20. Eating is a social thing - so involve someone close to you (your bestie or member of your family) on the journey. It’s much more fun that way.

21. Change the way you think about food. If we do not change the way we do things (eating in this case), we will be getting the same results we always have! Food is your good friend. We would die without food. Fact! Again, moderation and healthy food choices are your best allies here!  Studies have shown that people who successfully lost weight and maintained their ideal weight are the same people who learnt how to change both their eating habits and their attitude towards food.  Your time is here and now. Enjoy your journey of change. If you get stuck - No worries, I am here to help you.

Keen to lose weight for the Christmas party season?
Here’s seven practical tips

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1. Listen to your gut
A well-known saying, right? But what does it mean? Our gut instinct is very powerful innate feeling that has been developing throughout thousands of years of evolution.  But for some reason we stop listening to it! What to do?

• feeling hungry – don’t just go and grab a crisp or chocolate especially if eaten one hour ago! Lot of us eat out of boredom or because of stress or just out of habit rather than from true hunger. Consider asking yourself the following questions before grabbing a snack: Am I hungry? Am I tired? Am I thirsty? Am I sad? Am I bored? Is eating the only answer?

• lot of us confuse thirst with hunger. Test for you. Feeling hungry? Have a pint of water, wait 3 min and see how you feel – if hungry afterwards eat.  

• had a big dinner at the party last night. You don’t feel that hungry in the morning. Skip the breakfast. It’s ok. This way you will balance out calorie excess and lunch will taste much better.

• we are so scared if our tummy rumbles these days – but actually scientists found out that when our tummy rumbles our body is switching from burning carbs (glucose) into burn fat!  Now, I am not necessarily encouraging tummy rumbling here, but just want to say it’s not bad thing and from time to time let it rumble.

2. Do not eat late!
I know this is a hard one to swallow, but after 8 pm our metabolic rate is slowing down rapidly as we are getting ready to chill and do very little – so really no point getting loaded with food that won’t be used up… I am talking after-dinner snacks (biscuits, chocolate, crisps you know which ones!).  Have to say, unless you are a physically active person, the majority of excess food consumed around that time of the night will be stored as a fat! So what can be done when after dinner hunger strikes:

• have a big mug of tea, any tea is good to fill up our tummy (obviously check your caffeine tolerance and sleep – but you know this already). Teas like peppermint (good for digestion), camomile (calming effect), fennel (reduces flatulence), red bush tea similar to English tea but no caffeine are all great

• simple popcorns lightly salted or plain, few handfuls

• kiwi fruit is known to aid sleep

• banana, contains magnesium which will calm the active mind

• glass of milk or Greek yogurt 

3. Eat proper dinner around 6.30 – 7.30pm 
I know this is not always possible but see what you can do to bring it close to those times? 

4. Eat three nutritious meals a day and eat it Big!
Too often I find with my clients, they are simply eating too little at actual meal times and end up snacking shortly after! It’s contra productive, in most of the cases. OK, bowl of Spag Bol should be around 400g serving (~550 calories) and adding a side salad will bulk it up (please click here to see my Spaghetti Bolognese recipe). What is not recommended is a second or third helping or smothering in Parmesan!

5. Physical activity 
Corny as it seems, it really is essential to help us lose and maintain our weight. I am not necessary talking a gym membership or expensive equipment, perfect if you got it, but:

• dumbbells, kettlebells, exercise ball, exercise bike. Most of us already have those somewhere in the house, under the bed possibly – use it! Start with only 5 min!

• any, and I mean any form of faster movement or good stretching first thing in the morning will make huge difference to your body and mind. Try this; put the radio on and dance to your favourite song while the kids are having porridge…it’s fun. Your kids might get a bit confused for the first time, but they will get used to it. Recently I started doing ‘Sun salutation’ set of yoga poses 3 minutes every morning – honestly such a huge difference in energy and it simply reshapes my day. And I do this straight after getting up and before leaving my bedroom…if I leave the bedroom there is a chance, I might not come back to do it!?

• walk!  Simple, cheap and easiest way. We tend to forget this one because it’s so simple. But simple ones are usually the best ones.

6. Set your goals and write them down: ‘’Where do you see yourself in 3 or 6 months?’’ ‘’How does it feel?’

7. Plan ahead:

• your weekly shopping (please download free shopping list)

• your weekly meals

• your meal next day

• clean your cupboards

• let your friends and family know that you are making some changes – they will respect you for that

Truth of the matter is, if we don’t change something, we will be getting the same results over and over again.  So yes, do get excited about your new changes which will lead to a happier and fitter you and have fun on your journey. 

For more on weight loss tips and solutions contact our Nutrition Editor Angelika at her private practice in Sutton or visit her at Westcroft Leisure Centre Carshalton on Wednesdays 2-8pm. Appointment booking essential. 

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Angelika Cutuk-Short
Nutrition Coach
mobile: 07899948682

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About Angelika
Angelika is a nutritional therapist and weight loss coach. She is a great believer in Intermittent Fasting (The 5:2 Diet) and Detoxing as a form of staying fitter and living a healthier life. She practices what she preaches as well as recommending it to her clients for over a decade.

She has a Masters in nutrition and is a qualified NLP practitioner. She combines nutritional science with motivational NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) coaching to change bad habits and introduce new good ones that will serve you better. She is passionate about food and posts her food recipes on social media regularly.  She also recognises the importance of behavioural changes which are paramount in successful weight loss.

Angelika has given radio interviews and written articles on intermittent fasting as a form of food reduction (the majority of us, simply eat too much!) and in 2016 worked with her local council on a healthy eating on a budget project. She has worked in the health industry since 2007 working as a nutritional adviser for Planet Organic and General Nutrition Centre (GNC) as well as running her own private practice.

She is a full member of the British Association for Nutrition and Lifestyle Medicine (BANT) and registered with the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC), she gives advice you can trust.


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