Healthy Weight Week

Healthy Weight Week was on the 10.2.2020-16.2.2020.

This week we focussed a lot on health and nutrition in general. Many people at the gym don’t always know how to eat healthy or the right way for their body type. It’s a shame that this week happens in America but not in Australia.

This year it’s all about Health at Every size. There is no one right size that fits all. People seem to think that there is but there is not. People want to lose weight the fast way without really finding the best way for them.

This week we enjoyed eating everything and what we wanted to eat, not what we have to. For instance, Wednesday and Thursday we enjoyed a vegetarian sausage roll and vegan pie at Daniel’s donuts. I really liked the taste of a vegan pie.

On Friday night at the after work drinks I enjoyed a bowl of chips. For lunch that day I had three Roll’d rice paper rolls and enjoyed all even though I know that it’s not good for you. But every now and then its ok.

This week I did my runs for pure enjoyment rather than I had to. This week I only did 138 mins of high intensity activity rather than the 200 mins and I was ok with that as I had done that previous weeks. I didn’t like being dragged into doing 200 mins every week. Meanwhile we enjoyed other activities and I enjoyed team teaching in my first rpm class, rather than thinking its a chore. Some people seem to think that exercise is a chore rather than enjoying it.

My weight has been on the healthy side and it will always stay there. I weigh 53kgs and my BMI is about 19. This is just a number on the scale and we don’t go by numbers, rather by how you feel.

MSG and no health benefits

Last night I had a meal which was full of MSG in there. And then I could not sleep, so I decided to find out why


MSG is the Monosodium Glutamate. With MSG there is an excitement factor in there. MSG is known as Chinese Restaurant Syndrome. Chinese restaurants and other fast food outlets use MSG to improve the flavor of the food. They use this to hide the quality of the ingredients.

A lot of the food court food and many Chinese restaurants use MSG. The use of MSG is unregulated meaning that restaurants and eateries can add as much as they want. Some sources claim that MSG is good for you, but in reality its not.

MSG has that excitement factor which sends a signal to the brain saying that I want more. I tend to go really hyper at this stage if I have too much MSG. MSG foods have a lot of calories in there making it easier for us to overeat (Healthline).

MSG contains high levels of sodium which is bad for our health. Glutamate is a naturally occurring amino acid found in foods such as cheese, seaweed, and some vegetables. MSG only has 78% Glutamate, 10% water and 12% sodium according to

The incidence of Type 2 diabetes has doubled according to Global Healing centre.

People that work in the food industry whether its a blogger or cafe/restauranteur is exposed to MSG and that can be a bad thing. Too much of it and you’ll put on weight in the long run. In the short run, you’ll get sweats, nausea, sore throat, dehydration, etc.

This is one of the reasons why people in the world are obese.

When I was a food blogger I was exposed constantly to these sorts of things. I was having to go to a lot of restaurants to review food. I went to a lot of Chinese ones and boy are they known for MSG. But now that I’m in health, I still have the odd craving for it but not as much. I still go out from time to time.

The message is don’t have too many meals outside. Instead, have them at home and bring the leftovers in. Its better for your health.

At the supermarket make sure that you read the labels carefully.

But if you have to eat outside enquire if the restaurant serves food with MSG in it. If so make sure that you drink plenty of water before and after your meal to get rid of MSG and don’t have it too late.

Eating like the Japanese

The Japanese love to be healthy and their life expectancy is 85 years. There are a lot of people that live until 100 years old and beyond. Here we share some food things that they love to eat to stay healthy. Oh, and they love their small portions too.

Inspired by the book Run the World, here are some things that the Japanese like. You can find these foods all over Melbourne and Australia

Fish and seafood

The Japanese enjoy their fish fresh from the ocean. In the Run the World book, the Tsukiji fish market is mentioned. The Japanese really love to go there. In Australia, we love our seafood too, but for the Japanese, they love their portion control. Fish is good for Omega 3 and the brain.

The Japanese love their sashimi and sushi and its a perfect meal. Switching to fish and seafood rather than meat is a great way to be healthy and keep the weight and the cholesterol down.


The Japanese enjoy their seaweed and eat a lot of it. Seaweed has a lot of iodine, a mineral which the Western diet lacks.


Edamame is a type of Japanese beans. Edamame is lovely on its own and you can suck the beans out of the pod. You can find these beans in Japanese food stores and also in restaurants


Soy is a staple in the Japanese diet. It comes in soymilk and other things. Soy is good for the bones. I love drinking miso and tofu.  Here soy can provide all the calcium that you need for bones and growth.

The Japanese love their low fat, no added sugar desserts. Unlike the western diet which is full of sugar

Soy sauce is another favorite of the Japanese


The Japanese enjoy their soft, silken tofu which is good for their bones and is low fat. They love it in everything from hotpot to dessert. They also love their inari.

Green tea

This is an antioxidant for great skin and it is also great for hydration. Here you can enjoy it with meals etc. Green tea relaxes you and helps to boost your immune system. So next time you want a coffee, go for tea instead.


The Japanese eat rice for breakfast instead of toast and eggs. This is good for keeping weight down. Rice does fill you up and is not a starchy carbohydrate unlike the Western diet of bread and cereal for breakfast.

You can do many things with rice including making sushi or chirashi (vinegared rice topped with fish and vegetables)

Unlike Western snacks, most of the Japanese snacks are low fat. The Japanese love their rice balls.


Noodles are another staple in the Japanese diet. Here they love their soba and udon noodles in both summer and winter. In summer they have the noodles cold and in salads and stuff.

In the winter they love it in soups and hotpots.

The celery juice diet

The diet is popular with everyone as it is just an easy drink. You can have this on the go.

green celery carrots and pepper flakes garlic

Photo by Pixabay on

I’m not a real fan of this. In fact I hate this diet. It doesn’t have any other foods other than celery and apple. But it does have water. You are supposed to drink 450 mls of it each day in the morning.

On Instagram and Facebook, it is the most debated subject as of now.  Medical Medium says that it’s good. But I don’t entirely believe them. Most of the bloggers and nutritionists slam the diet. You have to have some real food as well. You have to have your proteins for lean muscle mass.

If you were to juice it in a blender and the apple, you’d be missing out on the good fibers that the body needs. These fibers would be in the pulp.

The diet aims to improve gut health and fight stomach inflamation.

Some of the side effects are frequent urination, feeling hungry and kidney issues.

In short don’t bother with this diet. Its better to eat some real food and do some exercise to lose the weight in the long run.

A sample 1900 calorie day

Guys here is a sample 1900 calorie a day menu if you want to lose weight. This 1900 calorie diet a day incorporates all the five food groups in the pyramid. The five food groups are dairy, fruit and veg, grains, meat and seafood and your fats.


Breakfast- you would have oats and milk. And green tea. Green tea with just water is 0 calories.  That is 188 calories.

Lunch- two sushi rolls and salad- 500 calories. I love the cooked tuna and the salmon one. Fish has a lot of good fats in there. For salads, I could go for a leafy green one. Salads are really easy to bring to work and the supermarket near work has a Woolworths or Coles nearby. Or a sushi shop.

Dinner- it maybe some lean protein with veg and sweet potato. It should be homecooked most nights if you can. Keep this at around 400-500 calories. I love fish and chicken. But sometimes I’ll have beef and pork with rice.

Snacks- fruits and veg, popcorn, green tea, apricots, nuts you name it. I also love hard boiled eggs. I barely eat any processed chips or lollies. You should aim to have about 2-3 snacks per day.  Five dried apricot pieces are 100 calories each and two hard-boiled eggs are 140 calories.

Air popped popcorn is 90 calories each.

Keep in mind that beer and alcoholic drinks have extra calories in them and you might want more chips and junk food. A beer has about 140- 250 calories depending on the serving size. A glass of wine has 150 calories in there.

Of course, you should always remember to drink lots of water throughout the day and get plenty of sunshine! And exercise

Discover Good Nutrition plan

This plan was made by Dr Susan Bowerman who is a registered dietitian from the US. Here she works for Herbalife a nutrition company and I was determined to follow her simple plan. Her simple plan allows for a little bit of junk food but in moderation.


About 70% of Aussies are obese or have diabetes due to poor eating and moving habits. And if people don’t change their eating habits for the better this rate will increase. Dr Susan’s plan talks about loving natural food and exercise. She stresses on the 80% nutrition, 20% exercise and 100% mindset. It is hard to have a great mindset when all the junk food is around so I kept them out of the house and had some nuts and dried fruit as well as popcorn.

It is about loving soy, kale and other natural things. I have learned to love soy in my latte instead of normal milk. It is expensive but well worth it because in the end I have saved 20 calories. Kale was one of those things that was not natural to me and now it is.

I also have learned to love beans again. In my early uni days I used to not like beans and have a lot of junk food.


Some recommendations

  • At Uni there should be a health food cafeteria rather than the usual junk offerings. If YMCA can have such a health food place so can a university and YMCA has lots of visitors daily
  • Universities student unions should be more proactive in having teams at Melbourne Marathon and various other events.
  • There should be more education on healthy eating and exercise for students. In the coming months we plan to do this
  • Pancake parlour should have more healthy options for people that have just finished their workout

Want to lose weight the healthy way? Then do learn to love real food and come to Shape up to learn how! As for me I will be using the things that I have learnt throughout the entire program.

Detox diets and why they are bad for you

Its January and you’ve probably overstuffed yourself with all the fatty and very heavy Christmas foods and beers. You probably want to lose weight in the quickest, most simplest way right?

Well here’s where detox diets come in….


Image courtesy

What is a detox diet?

By no means you would have heard of this thing because they are always advertised on Facebook, email and Twitter to be the fastest way to lose weight. You would be paying somewhere between $300-$500 for that latest “liver” cleansing diet which promises results. Most of them encourage you to skip food and use their product to substitute real food.

Most if not all the diets have some sort of period in which you can expect to results such as 1-2 weeks.

But there are some kits in pharmacies where you do it at home for about $50-$100. Some detoxes are healthy but most are not.

Why is it bad for you

After you finish you’ll binge eat. And its bad for your liver as your liver will do more of that work for you. Most of the detoxes taste like crap.

Some of the detox diets cut out certain foods and you need those nutrients to survive such as a certain amount of body fat.

According to Choice many people felt sluggish and tired. Some even felt bloating



There is no simple and quick way to lose weight. The only way to lose weight is to eat healthily and exercise. If you really need it then our advice is to see your doctor first. See what they say.