Sugar

The I Quit Sugar Programme is no more

For those of you who have been reading this/ following me on Instagram for a while, you’ll know that I’ve been a member of the I Quit Sugar community for the past few years.  Since my first programme in February 2016 I’ve since completed three rounds of the structured 8 week course and undertake my own 8 week programme (using the recipes) whenever I feel like my sugar habit has been spinning out of control.

So it was a sad day when I heard that Sarah Wilson, the founder of the IQS movement, announced that she was closing down the programme and the site.  You can read the full announcement here, to focus on her mental health and food activism work instead.

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Sarah has since announced that although the site will close and the programmes will be no more, Sam Wood will be hosting the free recipes over on his site here and that the paid programme material can also be accessed there too (it’s currently being integrated into Sam’s programme and the money he receives from the paid IQS content is going to charity.  You can read all about it here.)

I couldn’t let the end of the site go without writing something about how I felt and signing posting you to the resources if you’ve ever been curious about the programme but didn’t want to pay the full fee (I’ve also written about this myself here).

It’s a bittersweet feeling for me knowing that there will never be another opportunity to just ‘do another round’ when I’m feeling a bit off centre – meaning I shall have to take responsibility for giving my diet a motivational kick up the arse myself (although for the sake of full transparency that’s going to be re-visiting the old programme menus I’ve saved) and I will forever be grateful for the amazing connections I’ve made through the programme.

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To that end, if you don’t already read Rani’s wonderful blog then you should check her out here, Sarah is an ex-UKer living in Aus now and has another great blog here; Angie is a fit mum who is really inspiring and has a no BS approach to food and life, you can find her here ,not to mention the many other lovely others (too many to mention) whose Instagram accounts are worth a nosey if you want your food healthy, low sugar (mostly) but definitely not boring: Mel is a gorgeous crafter and foodie, Rowena is a herbal medicine student who gives me lunchbox envy and Bonni is a UK based fellow foodie fan and all round great lady (she gave me my first SCOBY and has since been responsible for my kombucha obsession.)

They (amongst hundreds of others) have been super supportive throughout my own sugar quitting experiment and so to them and Sarah Wilson (I know she will not read this but I want to put it out there in the universe, just humour me please) I say a huge thank you. Thank you for tearing down the BS ideas I thought I knew about food, health and nutrition back in my ‘low fat’ days, and for being the reason I became so interested in food and health which has now led on to this amazing studying path and subsequent career change.  Sarah will never know how much it has meant to but you guys do and I’m grateful that you keep reading and wanting learn more with me.

So here’s to continuing on what IQS help me start.  See you Sunday.

Katie x

Career journey

Where have you been?!

Hi everyone,

As you may have gathered, it’s been a little quiet around these parts recently.  Well, there’s been a couple of good reasons for this.  In February I started my Diploma in Nutrition with the Institute for Optimum Nutrition (you may remember I blogged about having to do my Science Access Course last year, if not you can catch up here).  We’re now coming to the end of semester one and despite it being amazingly full on (who knew I could find a spare 25 hours a week to study?!) I’m absolutely loving it.  Every week my head is left spinning from all the biochemistry (seriously, our bodies are amazing) but not once have I doubted whether this career change is a good idea.  The more I learn, the more I love.

And as if that wasn’t enough, I also made a significant change in my working life.  I left behind my job in the legal world and started a new job working within the realms of childhood obesity and school food – fulfilling a New Year’s resolution to find employment which aligns more to my long term career aims.  It may sound like just a job change but for me it’s been a significant shift in how I identify myself (I’ve always been the ’lawyer interested in food’) whereas I’m now learning what ‘Student Nutritional Therapist who works in food’ looks and feels like.

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I’m becoming more comfortable with these new labels (although, perhaps the lesson here is I shouldn’t be identifying myself through just my work?) and the new areas I’m working in are so fantastically complex and challenging that there’s never a dull day.  So far I’ve met some amazing people who are incredibly passionate about how we tackle the obesity health crisis facing the nation (from large scale organisations and Government through to independent women in their local community organising activities for those in need). I really do pinch myself at the moment because some days I can’t believe how things have changed (for the better) in a number of months.

Over the next few weeks you’ll notice that I’ll be updating the look of the blog, creating regular content and even adding in extra useful tools that some of you have asked me about (meal planners and other printables).  I’m really excited to be changing things up after my mini-break and I’m looking forward to sharing it with you.

With that in mind, my parting thought is a positive one.  I’ve realised that if you’re passionate about something and want to make a change then don’t wait.  Don’t do what I did – don’t get in your own way and stop yourself because the time is now.  It sounds cheesy but you can do anything you want to and if something is really important to you, you’ll find a way to make it a success.  And if you’re stuck about how to get started then I refer you back to my favourite quote from Amelia Earhart which is: ‘’The most effective way to do it is to do it.’ Because sometimes you just gotta do it (take it from someone who spent years talking about doing something in food/ nutrition).

I’m going to sign off by saying thanks for sticking about during the radio silence since the new year.  I’ve finally got my study schedule down pat and the job appears to be settling down so I’ll be back doing my regular blogging thing from this week on. I will be sending those of you who subscribe to receiving updates (and if you don’t –  go do it now, that way I’ll send you regular content to your inbox.  No effort required) a GDPR email this week (sorry – you’ve probably had about a million land in your inbox at the moment, but needs must) so watch out for that.

Until Wednesday,

Katie x

Sugar

The IQS 8wp week 3 roundup

Hi friends,

How has your week been?  This week has been a busy one work-wise but I’m feeling pretty good as all my food has been taken care of so I’ve not needed to eat junk or rely on pre packaged food to get me through the week – and that feels pretty great (plus my bank balance is looking much healthier than usual towards the end of the month).

So, I’m into week three, there’s still no sugar (including fruit) but I have to confess there have been a couple of times when I’ve deviated off plan and so I think I’m setting myself up for some harder sugar withdrawals next week if I don’t nip it in the bud.  Full disclosure I had a slice of chocolate vegan cake that someone had baked at work and a chocolate eclair because someone was leaving at work and there may have been red wine almost every night this week…

Continue reading “The IQS 8wp week 3 roundup”

Sugar

I’m quitting sugar (again) – the 8 week programme

Hi everyone,

How’s your week going?  This week has flown past for me – how are we on the 17th January already?  If you read my post about new year’s intentions here you’ll know that I’m all about some general healthy commitments throughout the year.

Moving every day was one of them, and I’m happy to report I’m managing to stick to that (walking and yoga, it’s all been very sedate so far.)  If you want a great little yoga challenge to ease you into the new year I can highly recommend the True series by Adriene here.  I’m half way through and it’s been so wonderful to escape to my mat every day for 30 minutes of quiet time.  Even when I’ve been tired or not in the mood to workout I’ve never regretted it once – it’s true what they say, the only workout you regret is the one you didn’t do.

Continue reading “I’m quitting sugar (again) – the 8 week programme”

Self development

New year, new you?

Happy New Year everyone.  As I write this the first week of January is over and all around me everyone is starting to get back into the swing of the 9-5.  I’m easing back in gently (this week being my first full week at work) and I have spent a lot of time since Christmas reflecting on whether to make any new year resolutions (I usually have some goals or good habits I’d like to develop) and if so, what would these look like?

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Career journey

Study update – five months in

Hi everyone,

Well, we are five months in to the Science Access Course and any ideas I had about being able to provide you with a monthly study update sort of went out the window over the past few weeks.  Sorry about that, life sort of went a little crazy-busy and I wasn’t able to keep all the plates spinning.

So, we are well in to November and I’m on the final leg of the course.  Since my last study update here Biology has bitten the dust and I’m almost at the end of the Anatomy and Physiology module.  I’m just an essay, an exam and a few tests away from completing the course.  How the hell did that happen?  I’m simultaneously delighted and terrified that the course is coming to an end and that the next step will be the hardcore nutrition only studying.

With that in mind, here’s what the last few months have taught me…

Continue reading “Study update – five months in”

Favourites

(Very late) August favourites

Following on from my July Non Foodie Favourites post here I thought I’d start a series of regular monthly favourites post.  Those who know me IRL (in real life) know that when I find something I love I can’t help but talk about it.  So I wanted to extend that to this space and hopefully share with others who aren’t in my immediate friends and family but would be interested in maybe trying something new.

First up this month, you will not be surprised to learn, is a book.  I finished reading Brené Brown’s The Gifts Of Imperfection last month and started on ‘A Pukka Life’ by Sebastian Pole, the founder of Pukka Herbs.  For those who aren’t aware of the brand Sebastian and his business partner Tim Westwell founded the company in 2001 and they do a huge range of organic herbal teas and supplements.  Sebastian is a qualified herbalist and follows traditional ayurvadic practices with his clients.

Continue reading “(Very late) August favourites”

Career journey

Study update – two months in

Hi everyone,

Can you believe I’m already writing a two month study update? No, neither can I.  The time has really flown, although strangely at the same time I also don’t feel like I have done anything. Although my exam results tell a different story…

Since my last post here I’ve finished the Chemistry section of my course and have moved on to the Biology part, which I must admit is much more in my comfort zone.  I’ve always told myself ‘I’m not a ‘science’ person’ (whatever that means) and that I wasn’t good at Chemistry so imagine my surprise when the results came back in and low and behold, I scored an A*.  I know.

Continue reading “Study update – two months in”

Career journey

Study update – one month in

Today’s post was going to be all about ‘how to make your veg box stretch further’ but although I’d already drafted the post, there was something holding me back from putting it up this week.  I know it fits nicely in to the series I’ve been doing on meal prepping and planning recently but for some reason I couldn’t get the idea for this post out of my head.  So the veg box post will go up next week instead and today I’m going to share with you some reflections about how my first month of studying has gone – the things that went well, the things I need to improve upon and the surprising lessons I’ve learnt about myself in the process.

I’ll admit that I really didn’t think starting this course would be that big a deal because I’ve three years of studying ahead of me, so how much could possibly change in a month?  Well, I’m happy to say quite a lot.

Continue reading “Study update – one month in”

Food, Nutrition

Some thoughts on eating organic food

Off the back of a conversation I had with some family members recently (who are decidedly in the ‘non organic’ camp) I thought I’d write a post sharing my thoughts about organic food and why I eat it.  It’s a divisive topic and I’ve come to realise that it can also be seen as an elitist and inaccessible concept to some people – something I would like to change.  Often I hear people say to me ‘I don’t have the money to waste on organic food’ or ‘it’s for rich people only’ or even ‘it’s a big hoax and a marketing ploy; you’re being charged more money for the same product’.  Let me say now, it’s none of these things and hopefully this post can convince you otherwise.

Continue reading “Some thoughts on eating organic food”