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Spring clean YOUR

A recent study done in the UK found that thirty percent of women would trade at least one year in their life to achieve their ideal body weight and shape. Don’t let your goals take the backseat to your daily responsibilities this Spring, restart, refresh and gear up to achieve more than you thought was possible in your life, for your health and in your career. By Ronel Spencer.

Unpack your goals and set new boundaries...


emember the dream you had of wearing that itsy bitsy swimsuit in summer? Or finally signing up for that chef course in French cuisine or the creative writing course to unleash your inner author? Now is the time to setup the boundaries you need to allow you to make these dreams or goals become a reality. Boundaries imply that you have to say ‘no’ to some things in order to say ‘yes’ to other things that bring you joy (and no feeling guilty!). In other words – say ‘no’ to time wasting activities that don’t add value to your life. These could include end of the month shopping that could be done on line or acting on so many school committees that you can’t remember which fundraiser or bake sale is next. Start practicing with smaller activities like saying ‘no’ to playing moms taxi after school 42


and soon your ‘no’ will become easier, more direct and your goals will become clearer to you. In order to assess which activities you should say ‘no’ to ask yourself the following: ● Does this activity rob me of special time with my loved one’s or valuable ‘me time’ that should be spent actively following up on my own goals? ● Does this activity add value to your life and help you grow in a specific area whether it be your career, family life or personally? ● Is this activity becoming more and more time consuming and adding stress to your daily or weekly schedule? ● Is this activity emotionally taxing? If you have answered yes to more than three of these questions you should unpack your reason for choosing to do this activity in the first place and replace it with activities that will bring you closer to achieving your dream. Whether your dream is to achieve your Goal weight or learn how


to paint. When you take the time to reassess your goals, listen to your inner voice and revisit what you really wanted to achieve you will be one step closer to ticking one goal off the list.

Detach yourself from negativity and self-limiting beliefs...


ow that you have unpacked your goals and made the decision to set boundaries to achieve them you need to block out self-limiting thoughts and embrace all the positive energy that going for your goals brings about in your life. Self-limiting thoughts are negative reminders about why we cannot achieve our goals, why we are either not creative enough to start that photography course or not committed enough to follow through on our new eating plan. Past failures add to our collection of self-limiting beliefs, but part of Spring cleaning your goals means that you rid yourself of this negativity and instead, focus on the new you that you could become if you start reaching your goals. Repeat self-motivating thoughts like, “I am able to achieve my goals,” “I am able to say ‘no’ to activities that further remove me from my goals and what I set out to achieve,” “I am able to say ‘yes’ to all opportunities that bring me one step closer to my goal because my goals are important.”

Consistently work towards your goals...


hallenge yourself to move out of your comfort zone and consistently take small steps towards achieving your goals. On your weight loss journey this could mean going to your weekly Group meetings for positive encouragement despite of your schedule and weekly demands that may tempt to steer you off your path to Goal Weight. Start planning your time better, one day at a time, to ensure that you can stay committed to your goals. Keep up this time management until it becomes a habit. Declutter your home, your office space and even your car – the spaces where you spend most of your time are most likely to influence your mood positively or negatively. Repeat positive affirmations to build your self confidence and visualise yourself achieving your set goals as often as possible. Spring is the perfect season to Spring clean not only your home, but your goals and what you want to achieve for your health, your career and personally. Don’t let anyone or anything allow you to lose sight of what is important to you!

Reconnect with like-minded people who encourage you to follow your dreams...


onsciously build relationships with people who are committed and persevere to reach their dreams and celebrate victories on the way. Detach yourself from people who drain your energy and discourage you from achieving the objectives that you set out for yourself. Are you simply tolerating certain people in your life even if they are not adding value? Even though you need to take gentle steps to detach yourself from people that don’t enhance your life, these steps are necessary and over time you will build relationships with positive people who boost your positive beliefs, enhance your wellness and improve your confidence in your ability to achieve your goals.




In the Gym with... NASTASSIA JAFFA

After being introduced to the gym at a very early age by her father, a body builder and power lifter with national colours, it’s no wonder Nastassia has a passion for health and fitness. With some impressive fitness and figure titles under her belt, Nastassia wants to encourage people to live healthier lifestyles. She wants to be a role model for people who think that achieving a healthy, gorgeous body is impossible. We talk to Nastassia about her motivation, inspiration and life, and she even shares some great exercise and eating tips with us.

Dedication Nastassia has appeared on the covers of some of the most prestigious fitness magazines, showing off her perfectly toned body, but for her, it is more than just taking care of herself, it’s a sport. “(My father) introduced me to a healthy lifestyle and to the gym at a very early age. In the gym I used to copy him doing weight training and I would push myself to keep up with him. I guess the gym culture became my identity in a way, it became my way of life,” says Nastassia.

“... I guess the gym culture became my identity in a way, it became my way of life.”


Her passion for the sport is obvious, not only in her figure but also in her dedication to maintaining this lifestyle, “I am passionate and serious about health and fitness and I believe that I inspire other women through the results that I have achieved and through my example of consistency and dedication to the fitness lifestyle. I believe that promoting health and fitness would further inspire other women and athletes to reach their fitness goals.”

Hindsight Nastassia is not only an inspiration when it comes to health and fitness but also in her personal triumphs and philosophies, “over recent years, and with much personal growth, I have realised that the biggest risk in life is not taking enough risks at all. Some of my greatest triumphs have come during a time when I felt that I was WEIGH-LESS AUGUST/SEPTEMBER



taking enormous strain daily just to get through all that I had on my plate and there was a lot on the line at the same time. I have always been open minded with a consistently positive attitude, and I have said ‘yes’ to the opportunities in life that have been presented to me far more than I have turned away from them, even when a challenge called for extraordinary strength from within me.” Most people look back on their lives and have some regrets, but not Nastassia, “I am happy to say that I have no regrets in my life since I am good at thoroughly thinking through all of my decisions and planning well in advance…I consider myself a master planner and organiser which is a very useful skill to have!”

“I am happy to say that I have no regrets in my life since I am good at thoroughly thinking through all of my decisions and planning well in advance…I consider myself a master planner and organiser which is a very useful skill to have!” Nastassia is not only focused on her career in the competitive fitness world, “my greatest achievements are achieving my science degree and also becoming a well-known South African fitness model and competitor. I am very proud to have achieved both when each career is so incredibly demanding of my time and energy. I really enjoy being a strong-minded and determined woman, making a success in this man’s world.”

Nastassia doesn’t believe in a restrictive diet and she doesn’t avoid having a treat every now and then, “I believe that my diet should be sustainable – ‘A diet for life!’ I try to eat healthily rather than sticking to a diet. If I feel like eating more or having a large portion, seconds or desert then I try to think of a way I can do it healthily like having extra veggies to fill me up and a berry sorbet for desert.” When it comes to her favourite food, Nastassia always enjoys it without guilt, “I really love Italian food! I’m always in the mood for delicious, authentic Italian tomato pasta or a vegetarian pizza made with light mozzarella or Danish feta. Buffalo mozzarella is my all time favourite cheese. Like most women, I am a keen chocoholic and proud of it. I love organic dark chocolate with orange bits and I love chili chocolate.” 86



A healthy lifestyle


A life devoted to health and fitness doesn’t leave much time for anything else, but Nastassia fills her well deserved down time with as much relaxing as she can, “when I have down time on the weekends I enjoy relaxing and watching a good movie with some yummy popcorn. I also spend quality time with my boyfriend – we always cook healthy and exciting meals together in the kitchen. Cooking can be quite a therapeutic and relaxing activity for people since being creative is a way of unwinding after a busy week.”

Nastassia’s healthy eating TIPS: ● I prefer to have a teaspoon of honey in my tea or coffee instead of sugar, it makes a surprising difference to how I feel throughout the day. ● I firmly believe that people don’t eat enough raw fruit and vegetables. They would rather have a high-salt, high-fat microwavable supper or takeaway, or simply fill up on junk food. It takes effort to care for your body and preserve your health, so I encourage people to stop searching for the ‘quick fix’ as it doesn’t exist, and rather take pleasure in putting in the effort to take care of yourself. ● There are no shortcuts to achieving the body of an athlete. You need a lot of patience, discipline and consistency.

The fitness industry is dominated by men with out of proportion muscle sizes; this has intimidated women from getting into strength training. Nastassia tells us how to create a healthy lifestyle without being restricted or getting too ‘bulky’. ● The combination of a healthy diet and exercise is what is required to achieve a fit, shapely body. ● Try not to think of your daily diet as ‘a diet’. Rather view it as your ‘lifestyle for a lifetime’. This mental shift may help you feel less restricted and more motivated to create a permanent healthy lifestyle for yourself. ● Don’t be afraid of resistance training. Women do not become ‘bulky’ from training with weights. The opposite is actually true, lean muscle is firmer and more compact than fat. Resistance training is what women should do to shape their bodies, becoming smaller, firmer and sexier. ● You are never too old or young to take pride in your body or to take your health seriously.



1. Choose dumbbells of a weight that will enable you to complete the exercise sets. Start off with a light dumbbell if you are unsure. 2. Stand up straight, feet shoulder width apart with a dumbbell in each hand (or hold a weight with both hands). 3. Take a big step forward (with either leg or lunge sideways) while bending at the knee until the front thigh is approaching parallel to the ground, and the rear leg is bent at the knee and balanced on the toes. Don’t let the knee go past the tip of the toes. This can aggravate the knee joint if done too much. 4. Step back to your starting position and repeat the motion with the other leg, alternating legs until the exercise program set is complete.


The lunge is basically a giant step. The exercise can also be done without weights. Lunges work the upper leg muscles and the muscles of the buttocks.

Visit our website for more toning exercises. ■




Making that


Small weight losses can be the difference between being average, and looking stunning! With the help of MEGAN and FAY COLEMAN from IMAGE INSURED, we found three woman their perfect look. BY SAMANTHA DAWE. CARLA DREYER, 39, is a mother and wife from Kempton Park. After losing 18kg she couldn’t wait to replace her wardrobe with new, figure-hugging items! “During my first year out of school, I got a job as a receptionist at a hotel and all our meals were free. Needless to say I gained 15kg in one year! That was the start of my rollercoaster ride with my weight. When I married my husband, Rudi, I weighed only 54kg, but after only one year we had gained 10kg each. When I fell pregnant two years later, I was 12kg overweight, and went on to gain another 16kg during the pregnancy. I went for a full medical check up in December 2004 and I was diagnosed with high cholesterol at 7.47. My doctor prescribed chronic medication but I was only 32 so I was horrified! I kept the prescription in my bag, but was loathed to get the medicine. In March 2005 I decided to join WeighLess, and after a month I went back to my doctor, and my cholesterol had dropped to 4.5! When I told him that I had never filled out the prescription he was dumbstruck! In the end I had lost a total of 18kg. I can wear whatever clothes I want now and I have regained my confidence completely.” FAY AND MEGAN’S ADVICE FOR CARLA: “Carla has an A-shaped body, which means her hips are wider than her shoulders and has a very long waist with shorter legs. We noticed straight away that her hair wasn’t the right colour for her skintone, which leaned more towards being a bit yellow and so her hair needed to have cool tones to balance this out. We asked the hairdresser, Richard at Richard Charles, to give her an ash brown base. For her clothes we went for cool winter tones to suit her skin; and to compliment her shape, we opted to dress her in a structured, natural classic style. Choosing structured clothes would help to broaden her shoulders and minimise her hips, thus balancing her shape.” 100


TOP: Carla before she lost 18kgs. BELOW: Carla before her makeover.


MIRANDA is a 42 year old Health Manager living in Johannesburg. She has followed Weigh-Less for 19 years, and has never been more than 6kg above her Goal Weight during that time. “I was always thin as a teenager, because my mother believed in serving us very healthy and balanced meals, but as soon as I got to University in 1987, my diet changed completely. I was on my own now, and high-calorie options were everywhere! In a typical day, we were given a full breakfast of egg, sausages, bacon, cheese and buttered toast, and then at lunch there was a choice between beef or fried chicken, and the serving ladies would give us very generous portions. It’s no surprise that I picked up 18kg in my first year! For a young girl who was used to feeling thin and healthy, this was traumatizing for me! None of my clothes fitted me anymore, and I started opting for big baggy t-shirts and pretending that I didn’t care about fashion when my friends questioned me. Being at university, there were a lot of “quick fix” diets going round, so I tried everything from cabbage soup, to slimming tablets that gave me heart palpitations. Luckily after this my medical sense kicked in and I decided to try lose the weight in a healthy way. I saw a Weigh-Less poster on the side of a hospital in 1991, and it appealed to me. That was the start of my weight loss journey. Over the years I have rejoined Weigh-Less four times. Each time has brought me back on the right track, and I love knowing that there is a simple and healthy solution available. I am strict with myself and go back to WeighLess as soon as I realise I am slipping because it is better to slip than to slide, and I know that Weigh-Less is always there to help back me up! Now I have helped set up a corporate Group at my work to try help my colleagues find the Weigh-Less way as well.” FAY AND MEGAN’S ADVICE FOR MIRANDA: “Miranda’s skin tone has a yellow tinge to it, and so she needs to wear cool toned colours to compliment her skin. The cool winter tones suit her best, and the bright colours really make her look great. Miranda also has an A-shaped body, but unlike Carla, Miranda’s waist is very high and she has very long legs and arms. A tip to people with long arms is to roll up all jacket arms to three quarter length, it looks great and then the sleeves are never just too short. We decided to dress Miranda in a classic dramatic style to suit her personality, which means simple lines and bold colours.”

TOP: Miranda before she lost 13kgs. BELOW: Miranda before her makeover.




CHARMAINE, 38, is a devoted mother to two young girls as well as being a loving wife. She has lost 10kg on Weigh-Less and now has a great figure! “I love cooking and baking and was constantly nibbling on all the wrong foods while I prepared meals for my family. Over ten years I gradually gained weight, but I never felt that I was fat, until I stepped onto the scale one day and was 10kg overweight! This was a complete shock to me as I had gained the weight so gradually that I thought I was only a couple of kgs overweight. The next morning I phoned my local Group Leader and that was the start of a whole new life. I had always thought that Weigh-Less was for people who had a lot of weight to lose, and people kept on asking me why I wanted to lose weight, but luckily my Group Leader and her assistant said that no problem was too small for them. I’m so glad that they took me under their wings and didn’t just leave me to lose the weight on my own. I love clothes, and being overweight made me feel very frustrated as nothing that I tried on would fit me nicely and I would always end up just buying a pair of shoes. Now that I’m on Goal I enjoy shopping again, which is great because all my clothes got too big for me so I had to go shopping for new clothes!” FAY AND MEGAN’S ADVICE FOR CHARMAINE: “We noticed straight away that Charmaine’s hair was the wrong shade of blonde for her skin tone. Her skin has a pinky undertone and her hair was too light and cool, emphasising the pink in her face. We asked the hairdresser, Richard, to add some warm tones into her hair and to make it more golden blonde. Charmaine needs to wear spring colours, to add some warmth to offset her skin tone, and we decided to choose her clothes to follow a natural classic style to suit her personality. Charmaine also has an A-shaped body, so we chose clothes to broaden her shoulders and balance out her hips. We also gave her gold jewellery which just added the finishing touches to her look.”

TOP: Charmaine before she lost 10kgs. BELOW: Charmaine before her makeover.

Thank you to Hawk’s Rest in Hillcrest (031 767 4013) for the lovely accommodation for the three ladies, and thank you to Richard Charles Hairdressing (031 765 4898) for transforming the ladies’ hair for us. Go to the Weigh-Less website for more of Fay and Megan’s handy make-up and clothes tips. ■ 102



99 top


Meal Times 1. If you tend to overeat at certain meals (like dinner), try drinking a medium to large glass of water 15 minutes before you sit down to that meal. 2. If you often find yourself reaching for chocolate in between meals, try eating a handful of mixed, unsalted nuts instead. 3. As well as buying the leanest meat and poultry you can, you can also trim off any excess fat from your cuts of meat and remove any skin from your poultry. 4. Avoid processed food, or at least food where you can’t pronounce the ingredients. Keep it natural. 5. Water. It kick-starts your metabolism so stop drinking soda or diet carbonated drinks and drink water instead. 6. Aleeka Deonarain, Woman of the Year Finalist 2010 – “As a vegetarian, always try new spices and flavours with your veggies to add some variation to your meals, this way you never get bored.” 7. Everything in moderation. If you really want hot chips and a hamburger, or a cookie it’s OK to indulge a little occasionally. The key word is occasionally. Better to indulge a little now, than to binge later.

8. Audrey Busby, Group Leader, Kraaifontein – “I always find my members who eat more fish, cut out sugar, and eat less salty foods always do well.”

9. Have the habit of eating together as a family because when you eat in front of the TV, you may not concentrate on the portions that you take. 10. Crystal Burger, Group Leader, Ottery – “One bad meal doesn’t make a bad day and one bad day doesn’t make a bad week.” 11. Before you shop for food for the next week, you should plan what you are going to eat. Spend some time researching healthier options. 52



your health


Need some extra motivation and some simple to follow hints and tips to help you lose those extra kilos effectively? Cheat sheets in school may have been a bad thing, but when it comes to weight loss, we’re sharing all our study notes with you! 12. Joan Maclou, Group Leader, Durban – “I’m not a fruit lover so I often save half my milk serve and half my yogurt serve and blend it together with two of my fruits to make a ‘legal’ milkshake. I have it after dinner and sprinkle a little cinnamon on top. It’s delicious.”

Socialise and stay healthy 13. Offer to be the “designated driver”. In addition to drinking fewer kilojoules, you’ll probably eat less as well because alcohol often makes us eat when we are no longer hungry. 14. When you go out for dinner, share a starter or dessert with a friend. 15. Pack your favourite healthy foods in a picnic basket and head to the park or Botanical Gardens. Being outside, getting fresh air and eating healthy foods will make you feel great. 16. Lee-Anne Gelderbloem, Woman of the Year Runner Up 2010 – “I think it is important to ‘choose’ when and where you are going to cheat. If I have 3 functions to go to in a week, I cannot have cake at all 3 functions, as I do not want to risk falling into the trap of gaining weight.”

Exercise and Lose 17. In addition to helping you avoid boredom, adding variety to your exercise programme actually helps you lose more weight. 18. Go dancing. Dancing is a great form of exercise


because it’s fun and doesn’t feel like exercise. 19. Cardiovascular training in the morning before you eat breakfast forces your body to utilise stored body fat for energy rather than carbohydrates. 20. Challenge a friend to a game. Whether its basketball, tennis or soccer, you’ll have fun burning calories while participating in a little friendly competition. 21. Take a walk in your garden at night before you go to bed to get some fresh air before you go to sleep. 22. Louise Olivier, Group Leader, Westville – “Water, exercise and Weigh-Less go very well together but you also have to have a vision and a goal.”

Stay Motivated 23. Keep A Food Diary. Be sure to write down as much information as possible and use the knowledge you gain to plan ahead and change your daily eating habits. 24. Charles Young, Man of the Year Winner 2010 – “You can make a change in your life. Don’t go on a diet; change your lifestyle with Weigh-Less instead.”

25. Lesley Ann Pete, Group Leader, Westville – “We are only human. We all make mistakes but the important thing is to pick yourself up, dust yourself off and continue on your journey.” 26. Keep Going... Plateaus Happen! Your body doesn’t like dramatic change. Weight fluctuation is quite normal and sometimes your body just needs to get used to the idea of being at a new weight. 27. Bridgette Macheke, Woman of the Year Winner 2010 – “The most important thing on a journey like this is to believe in yourself and have the right mindset.” 28. Keep believing in yourself. You are in control and

have the power to make changes in your life. 29. Make one change at a time. Don’t cut everything out at once. For example, cut out fried foods. When you’re used to that, cut out soda, and continue until you only make the best choices for your health. 30. Sindy Naidu, Group Leader, Durban North – “Fall in love with healthy food and think of Junk food as the Exboyfriend!” 31. Denise Thelma Phillips, Group Leader, Pietermaritzburg – “Remember you are doing this for yourself, not for anyone else.”

Lifestyle 32. Brush your teeth early in the evening rather than just before bed. It keeps you from snacking. 33. Not every weight loss tip is safe for your health so make sure your information comes from a reliable source. 34. Gail Carroll, Group Leader, – “Make each day better than the day before.” 35. Surround yourself with a strong support network, or a group of people who will be there for you and participate in a healthy lifestyle. 36. Clean out the cupboards in your kitchen and throw out everything that you shouldn’t eat. Create a new healthy kitchen for yourself. 37. Bring a bottle of water with you everywhere you go whether it’s shopping, driving in your car or just going to work. 38. Put little notes of motivational thoughts and other supporting words in your home in places where you will walk by them constantly. 39. You should sleep 6 to 8 hours per day. Lack of sleep makes you feel tired and can affect your eating habits. 40. Louise Gilbert, Woman of the Year Finalist 2010 – “Make sure that you always have enough fruit around, when you feel the need to cheat, just reach for an apple instead.” 41. Dawie De Jongh, Man of the Year Finalist 2010 – “There is no quick fix or wonder pill to losing weight and melting the fat away. My formula for WEIGH-LESS AUGUST/SEPTEMBER



success is a combination of the right mindset, proper nutrition, exercise and supplementation.” 42. Have a positive outlook. People who are positive tend to have better health and success in life then those who are negative. 43. Reduce your intake of alcohol. It is best if you could avoid it, but if you cannot, make sure that you only consume alcohol in moderation. 44. Lyn Heffernan, Group Leader, Cape Town – “Once a month I go back to Re-Balance 1 to keep me on the straight and narrow.”

plates to help with portion control. 54. Place some delicious rinsed and cut vegetables on an easy to reach shelf in the fridge so if the children are hungry they can grab a healthy snack. 55. Tarryn Richardson, Woman of the Year Finalist 2010 – “If you are trying to lose weight together then you have to make it exciting. When you share the experience and do things together it makes it easier to make things exciting.” 56. Educate yourself and your family. Learn how to cook healthy meals for your children.

Family Friendly

Pregnancy Pointers

45. Playing games together in your local park will give you all an aerobic workout and will help you keep slim or lose weight. Ball games will also help the kids’ coordination skills. 46. A brisk walk gets your heart going which makes it stronger. You can also lose weight if you’re walking most days. It also gets the family out in the fresh air and away from the TV.

57. After a couple of months of delivery you can start your exercise. Consult your doctor for the right workout plan for you. 58. Don’t over-exercise in a bid to lose weight faster. You won’t. On the contrary, you will harm your body.

47. Cycling tones your legs and tummy, is great for weight loss and the whole family can enjoy it. 48. During dinner, talk about fruits and vegetables and find out what is the family favorite. 49. Jazz up the taste of vegetables with low-fat dressings and dips. 50. Show your children how to make healthy choices while on the run. 51. Doing work in the garden, walking the dog and helping with the household chores are good ways to keep the children active while also teaching them some valuable life lessons. 52. Think of snack times as mini meals to avoid them being associated with junk food. 53. For young children, try to use smaller bowls and

59. Don’t take any step that makes you and your baby vulnerable to risk. A widened waistline is better than an energy-starved mom who is unable to nurse her baby just to lose some weight. 60. Foods that have high mercury levels like some types of fish and foods with high caffeine content should be avoided to ensure the health of your baby.

Stay Healthy On The Go 61. If you haven’t got time for anything else in the morning, make time to drink a big glass of water. We lose a lot of oxygen through the night and to rejuvenate our cells, we need to supply them with water and oxygen. 62. Wherever you’re going – whether it’s a walk or drive to the supermarket or on your way to a meeting – take some fruit with you and snack on it throughout the day. 63. If your work colleagues are going for lunch and you want to go along, go ahead but don’t order the burger or french fries. Go for a nice salad instead. For the rest of our great weight loss tips go to:, and click on the magazine cover. ■





your meltdown Most of us spend so much time holding back and holding in our emotions, because we’ve been taught since an early age that being emotional and causing a scene is bad. How much energy do you think you spend a day, just on controlling your emotions and ensuring that you appear cool, calm and collected in the workplace or at home? Mean while that energy could be spent much more productively, as well as those emotions showing you the direction that you should be moving for your own personal development. By Samantha Dawe

Pointing you in the Right Direction

Let it out

Emotions should be dealt with as they happen, as more often than not, feelings you are having are a reaction to a specific event, and they are there to push you into acting. If you ignore them, then they just build up and your eventual reaction will be much bigger and can actually be detrimental to you, instead of helping you. Also, if you learn to accept and acknowledge your emotions, instead of ignoring them, then you can use them to your advantage in a positive way. “Developing your self-awareness will enable you to improve upon your thoughts and interpretations and ultimately pave the road to a healthier, more successful and pro-active you!” says Life coach Bruno Logreco. A very important and useful skill in any workplace.

The point of feeling, and allowing yourself to express your emotions, is so that you can better understand yourself. Emotions have a very important purpose, and so should not be suppressed. Not only is this detrimental to your state of mind, but it can also affect your health. “Storing all that emotional baggage in one’s body really doesn’t feel great, takes a lot of energy, and leads to physical pain,” says Mind-Body Coach, Abigail Steidley.

“When you afford yourself some quiet time to be ‘still’ in your thoughts and emotions,” adds Bruno, “you will have a stronger and clearer connectivity in recognizing your personality and behavioural pattern.” If you are in touch with your emotions, behaviours and thought patterns, then you will know how certain situations tend to make you feel, and how you tend to subsequently react. If at work there are certain situations that always make you stressed, worried or aggressive, then by learning to recognise this, you can have the presence of mind to feel the emotions, but not let them control you. 116


Some common physical reactions to bottled up emotions: • Muscle tension • Nausea • Gastrointestinal discomfort • Cold and clammy hands • Difficulty swallowing • Jumpiness • Difficulty sleeping Most of the time, we keep our emotions to ourselves in the workplace because we regard them as a sign of weakness, thus making us look vulnerable and incapable of handling our jobs. But rather, our emotions can make us more human and accessible to others. Work might be a professional place, but people work better with others who they feel a connection with, instead of feeling intimidated

by. This is especially true if you are in a leadership position at work, as your employees will appreciate seeing your human side – as long as you don’t let your emotions take control of you, rather use them positively. The more often you allow yourself to feel your emotions, the more you will see the benefits in how you interact with people, as your emotions won’t have the opportunity to build up to boiling point – which is when miscommunications happen. “When we are aware of our emotions, understand and interpret them properly, and learn how to manage them to improve employee performance, the result will be a more successful and productive business,” explains Michael Minutillo, Founder of the Litkos Blog. “To be an effective business leader, book smarts are very important, however, a leader must understand that emotional intelligence also plays an important role in the decisions and actions that he or she makes.”

4 Steps to work through your emotions: 1. Recognise, acknowledge, name it As soon as you feel a change in your emotional state, recognise and acknowledge it. Name it for yourself.

2. Process it Analyse what affected the change in your feeling state. What was the trigger? Did you gain or lose energy? Take note. If the catalyst for a negative emotional response was external to you, address it – speak up immediately. You may feel transgressed or intellectually put down, emotionally not respected. Let the other person know how they have affected you. 3. Consider your options Embrace the feeling – go into it. Consider your goal (do you wish to gain or lose energy? What is the appropriate response, if any? Choose your next thought and watch the impact on your feeling state). What emotion did you experience? What emotional state resulted? 4. Respond Prepare and deliver your response with outcomes in mind. Monitor your barometer. Pay attention to what feels right for you and respect and honour yourself. You can invite a challenge when you’re ready, on your terms. Be mindful of your affect on others and how their response impacts you. ■ | | |




R48 billion


Coconut water can be used in emergency situations as a blood plasma substitute? This is because it is sterile and has the ideal pH level. Coconut water is used in cooking and is often an ingredient in tropical fruit cocktails.

821kg The size of the world’s largest pumpkin, grown in New Richmond, Wisconsin last year.

TASTING WITH YOUR NOSE. Apples, potatoes and onion all have the same taste, the flavour comes from the aroma! Try pinching your nose closed next time you eat one of them and try it out.

What about the veg? Rice, meat and pasta are

the world’s top three favourite foods.

Food budget blues... Eating habits around the world are changing because the cost of food. A survey carried out by Oxfam over 17 countries found that almost 40% the participants have modified their eating habits in the past few years because of rising food prices. 69% of South African who participated in the survey said that the cost of food had affected their eating habits while only 31% of Americans were affected by escalating food costs. Jeremy Hobbs, executive director of Oxfam, said “Our diets are changing fast and for too many people it is a change for the worst. Huge numbers of people, especially in the world’s poorest countries, are cutting back on the quantity or quality of the food they eat because of rising food prices.”

STRAWBERRY SEASON These juicy little fruits will soon be making their way into your local grocery store. Select strawberries that are bright red in colour and are not overly firm to the touch, they should have a fresh aroma and no obvious bruises. Strawberries should be stored in the fridge and served at room temperature. Strawberries are packed with vitamin C and one cup will give you 140% of your recommended daily allowance.

DID YOU KNOW? Strawberries are the only fruit whose seeds are on the outside. ■

Sources: | | | |

Biltong is considered as South African as pap and chakalaka! It arrived on our sunny shores along with the Dutch settlers in the 17th century. Meat was difficult to hunt and then preserve in our hot climate and so drying became convenient. The process of making biltong involved rubbing the meat with a mixture of spices and then leaving to dry in the sun. This dried meat then travelled with the Voortrekkers as they migrated for the Cape. Very little has changed in the preparation method of this South African favourite and is still enjoyed today.

Bananas are not actually grown on trees but on giant herbs!

Food history in time for Rugby World Cup

is spent on chocolate purchases worldwide every year!



for the SKY We all have dreams and aspirations and we are all capable of great things. It’s our belief in ourselves that determines whether we fulfill our potential or not. BY NATASHA LIVIERO


veryone needs a sense of purpose and accomplishment, often fused with a desire for success. Although success is usually measured by income and the subsequent lifestyle it buys, its authentic meaning is far deeper than material worth.

You can better understand your beliefs by asking the following questions: 1. What are my strengths and weaknesses? 2. What am I capable of achieving and not achieving? 3. What should I or should I not be doing?

Success has no definitive definition because it’s about being the best that you can be – and only you know what that is. For some, success is about career and being the CEO of a multi-million Rand company. For others, it’s having a simple nine-to-five job that pays the bills with minimum stress and maximum family time. “It is vitally important to know that ‘success’ is a feeling, a mindset, the precursor of which is a thought generated by what you believe to be true to you,” says Brad Napier, Certified NLP (Neuro Linguistic Prgramming) Practitioner and personal/life coach.

“A dream can only turn into reality if one gathers enough courage and determination to overcome all obstacles and challenges. It will never be smooth sailing” - Godfrey Madanhire, owner of Dreamworld Promotions.

HOW SELF-WORTH DETERMINES SUCCESS Success cannot be divorced from self worth. “If we want to realise our dreams we need to have good self esteem, because it is our belief about ourselves that really impacts on what we achieve in life,” says psychologist, Claire Newton. “Self esteem is not necessarily based on truth or fact. It is self-perpetuating – we only see or believe what we expect to see or believe about ourselves”. Claire suggests reviewing your beliefs and re-setting them according to your current reality. 116


Godfrey Madanhire, owner of Dreamworld Promotions, exemplifies the importance of self-belief. Originally from Zimbabwe, Godfrey came to South Africa in 2000 with absolutely nothing. After managing to land a sales position at a marketing company, Godfrey worked hard to move up the ranks and ultimately start his own company, Dreamworld Promotions, a corporate training and motivation company, in 2006. He faced many challenges along his journey, including not being able to obtain financial assistance from the financial institutions, but sheer determination and self-belief helped him overcome these challenges and to succeed. Today, his company employs over 300 people! “My success is a result of a firm belief in


myself, an understanding of my purpose in life and the persistence to fight for my dream. One has to appreciate the need to keep on fighting and pushing because success is a journey,” explains Godfrey. CLARITY & GOALS So, how do you begin to fulfill your dreams? Firstly, gain some clarity on what it is you want. If, like many, you are unsure, it may help to consider what you don’t want. Alternatively, seek professional guidance. Brad explains the benefits of working with a coach: “In order to create more success one must ascertain where they are now in their life, how it’s not working for them, and from there it is easier to discern more effectively and clearly what it is they do want in order to attain and feel more success. This is best done by what we call ‘Well Formed Outcomes’ or more traditionally, ‘goals’. The difference is that in setting ‘Well Formed Outcomes’ in a coaching environment, the clients self-esteem, confidence and belief in the achievement of the goal is instilled before setting the goal and is maintained by the client with techniques via the facilitation coach. This helps to dissolve doubts about ones capability to achieve the goal/s”. To clarify your dreams, Claire suggests writing down the following: 1. Your values - to give you direction and help make decisions. 2. Your purpose - the long term reason for doing something and your motivation. 3. Your vision - you need a vision to know where you are going and what you ultimately want to achieve with your life. Sources: Brad Napier, Claire Newton, Godfrey Madanhire

From these, you can develop a plan for your dreams and goals. You can set a simple plan into action as follows: 1. List the steps you need to take to achieve the goal. Remember to be specific. This includes defining your goal and researching it, via the internet, for example, to give you a clear understanding of what you will need to accomplish it. 2. Goals give you something to focus on and to work towards. When setting goals, ensure that they are attainable and measurable. 3. Instill a time line to ensure progress ensues. This may require setting mini-goals that lead to one ultimate goal.

4. Get advice from successful people and emulate their winning ways. 5. Make contingency plans to facilitate unexpected changes that may develop. 6. Keep motivated and passionate about your endeavours. Celebrate milestones and remember to enjoy the journey. “All individual life journeys start with some sort of goal or goals. Without goals we would not have journeys, and without journeys we would not grow as individuals, and without growth we become stagnant and that’s where fear sets in,” concludes Brad. REVIEW & GO WITH THE FLOW Be sure to review your goals and plans regularly. “Remember that life is dynamic, not static. You cannot commit to something forever because life is not the same forever. Review your plans to keep up to date with changes happening in your life. Be creative, be flexible and allow for change,” says Claire. Finally, successful people are positive minded individuals who view failures with a different perspective. Trial and error, without giving up, is the name of the game. Be tenacious, soldier through challenges and most importantly, believe in yourself – and – your dreams. As Buzz Lightyear, from The Toy Story fame, so eloquently put it… “to infinity and beyond…” ■


Monique Rissen-Harrisberg’s book, Make yourself Heard: How to Talk, Act and Dress yourself to Success offers women advice for finding the appropriate voice to speak confidently and improve self-image. As founder and CEO of The Voice Clinic, Monique says: “We all have what it takes to be remarkable human beings but sometimes need a little help to harness our best traits and present them to the world to see”. We have 5 books on offer! Send your name, address and daytime telephone number to Weigh-Less magazine/ Make yourself Heard giveaway, Private Bag X1022, Hillcrest, 3650 by 30 November 2011.




Party like a



illy season is fast approaching and with it year-end office parties. Too often employees see the annual

Christmas party as an opportunity to drink and eat as much as they can on their employers tab. However, the reality is that this will not only be detrimental to your career and your reputation, but sadly, your waistline too. Overindulgence can be toxic, here is why… BY SAMANTHA WATT

THE DANGERS OF OVERINDULGENCE: Drinking too much It is no secret - office parties are synonymous with copious amounts of alcohol. As a result even the most career-driven professional can end up behaving like a varsity student on summer break; dancing on tables, throwing back shooters, pole dancing and even brawling. This of course is followed by the ultimate walk of shame the following day. In fact, Cindy Norcott, Owner of Studentemps and Pro-Appointments says, “I have been amazed at how often people have limited their careers by bad or reckless behaviour at an office party. I have heard of numerous situations where staff members have drunk too much and have embarrassed themselves and their bosses. At one Christmas party a junior staff member (who was on a temporary contract) drank too much and grabbed the Director’s wife and insisted on dancing with her, much to the disapproval of the Director. This staff member’s contract was not renewed.” In addition to career suicide, Heidi Lobel, a leading Cape Town Dietician and resident Weigh-Less expert says, “Binge drinking effects your skin, beauty sleep and, most importantly, your waistline. On average, every drink will cost you in the region of 400 - 800 empty kilojoules. And that doesn’t include the soda, 114


juice or other flavourings in your drink. After a heavy night (5-6 drinks) you can be clocking in more than your daily formula.” Kilojoules aside, you are likely to get a deadly hangover too. According to an article by the Independent Newspaper in the UK, “One 250ml glass of wine (or other alcohol) causes the body to expel 800 to 1,000ml of water. This is four times as much liquid lost as gained.”

Eating too much Another unthought-of consequence of drinking too much is that your resolve to stick to your healthy eating plan automatically goes out the window. That coupled with free and often delicious food is a recipe for disaster. But is overeating at one meal really going to make a difference?


According to an article published in the New York Times, “The average meal takes 1 to 3 hours to leave the stomach. But a large meal can take 8 to 12 hours, depending on the quantity and fat content.” Furthermore, “Big meals can raise the risk for heart attack, gallbladder pain and dangerous drowsiness on the drive home.” This of course is on top of indigestion and other embarrassing spin-offs such as flatulence and buttons popping open!

two, pre-plan your trip home. Arrange a lift with a colleague or a taxi service.

Alcohol Consumption:

Heidi explains that loosening your belt doesn’t lighten the guilt associated with a food binge (particularly once you have sobered up) either. “In fact”, she says, “The psychological impact of a splurge is more dangerous than the food itself. It is not uncommon for the dieter to allow a bad night to become a bad week and even a bad month.”

Heidi provides the following tips on how to reduce your alcohol intake without looking like a party pooper: • Never drink on an empty stomach. Always eat something before arriving at the party. • Add extra water, ice and diet sodas to alcoholic beverages to increase mileage. • Always ask for single tots. Avoid doubles. • Have a glass of water on hand and alternate between water and the alcoholic beverage. • Avoid shooters and cocktails as you are less inclined to realise how much alcohol you are actually consuming.


Food Choices:

How to Party like a Pro

Additional Sources:;

To avoid general office party blunders, it is important that you view an office party as a business event. Don’t be fooled, your conduct will be in the spotlight. Leaving the party with your reputation intact also makes a statement about your professionalism and social skills. Furthermore, if you are on a weight management programme (and everybody knows it) your ability to be disciplined in your food choices will be testament to your willpower and determination – two key traits that all employers love! Finally, by watching what you consume at your office party, you are more than likely going to enjoy your next weigh-in a whole lot more!

Career Boosters: Lawrence Wordon, MD of Kelly, one of South Africa’s largest recruitment organisations gives the following tips on how to use office parties to your career advantage: • Be informed of the latest news both in South Africa and globally so that you can hold a conversation with unfamiliar colleagues.

• Identify

important members of the organisation to ensure that you don’t end up asking the CEO which department he works in. • Have a collection of clean jokes that you can pull out in any group situation. If you are unsure of whether a joke may offend someone, rather keep it to yourself. • If you are planning to have an alcoholic drink or

To navigate the office party landmines with your healthy diet intact, Heidi also gives the following tips: • At cocktail parties and buffets, socialise away from the food table. Dish up a plate of food and move away. • Have a glass of water on hand. This will help prevent picking on snacks as well as decrease alcohol intake. • Don’t hang around the bowls of nuts, chips and dips. Not only do these mindless snacks pile on the kilojoules, they also create a thirst increasing risk of overindulging in alcohol. • Sit with colleagues that are also weight conscious. Not only will they inhibit your splurging, you can also share the dessert between three or four of you. • Be a food snob – if it is not fantastic, don’t eat it. It is not worth the extra kilojoules. ■


Instead of:

Chicken skewers, beef skewers, cold meats

Sausages, bacon wraps, salami

Biltong, olives, popcorn

Chips, nuts, dips


Fried fish

Smoked salmon


Crackers and toppings

Samoosas, spring rolls, mini pies, quiches

Fresh vegetables




Wardrobe woes: How to dress on your way to Goal Weight...


here comes a time in almost every Weigh-Less member’s life when you find yourself standing in front of your wardrobe wondering what to wear. The more weight you lose the bigger, baggier and less flattering your clothes become. On top of this, you have not reached your Goal Weight, so you don’t want to indulge in a new wardrobe just yet. Now, whilst not fitting into your larger clothing is an awesome predicament to have, it remains a predicament nonetheless. So, how do you, as a soon-to-be Goal Weight member, dress when you’re in-between sizes? BY SAMANTHA WATT

CLOSET CLEAN-OUT: According to Image Consultants, Megan and Fay Coleman from Image Insured, the answer is simple; it involves a closet clean-out, going back to basics and accessorising. “If your wardrobe stays the same while your body changes it can have a negative effect on the psychological aspect of losing weight. Regular closet clean-outs and buying new clothing can help you see how far you’ve come in transforming your body and encourage you towards achieving your Goal Weight” says Megan and Fay. However we all know that investing in an entire new wardrobe can be pricey, particularly if you are still on 98


your journey to Goal Weight. So, how can you make the best of what you have (with a few added extras) on a smaller budget? Megan and Fay guide us on how to develop an ‘in-between’ wardrobe:

1. Get rid of unused, baggy items: Getting rid of unused items is as good for your mind as the Weigh-Less Re-Balance Menu Plan is for your body, as it paves the way for a healthier wardrobe that will be well-used. Remember, if you didn’t wear it when you were bigger, you are certainly not going to wear it now! So, start by putting all the items that are too big, baggy and you don’t wear to one side. Bag them and donate them to someone else in need.


(preferably in fabric with some sort of stretch to allow for longer use). • Two neutral jackets: One smart and one casual in black, brown, beige or grey. • Two light weight open cardigans: In black, brown, beige or grey. These should last you all through your weight loss to your Goal Weight.

2. Keep the smaller sized garments: Seeing smaller sized garments in your wardrobe can act as additional motivation to reach your Goal Weight. So, if you have clothing in smaller sizes keep one or two favourites and move the rest into another storage area until you’ve reached your Goal Weight.

3. Hang onto to easily resizable clothing: You will be surprised to find a number of items in your cupboard that are easily resizable. These include things like over-blouses, cardigans, maxi dresses in stretch fabric, stretch denims and even tights. “Let’s think of our “soon-to-be-slim” wardrobes as if they were a work of art. Start with a blank canvas (the basics in neutral colours) and slowly but surely add splashes of colour here and there (accessories). Your basics should always be in classic styles, neutral colours and quality fabric,” Megan and Fay explain. After your ‘closet Re-Balance’, your remaining wardrobe should hopefully still contain a few of the following basics. If not, purchase these items before buying other things that won’t be useful.

Every in-between wardrobe should have: • Two pairs of great fitting stretch jeans: Preferably dark, as they are more slimming. Also, stretch jeans are much more economical as they allow for weight loss or gain of up to 2 sizes. • Two pairs of smarter slacks/trousers: Black, brown or charcoal (especially if you need to be smart for work). • One pair of casual slacks: It might not be a bad idea to shop in the maternity section for these, as they have stretchy waistbands, whilst still looking good under a long top. • Three white shirts: One collared button down, one casual long sleeve, and one casual short sleeve or sleeveless (to wear under jackets, jerseys etc.) • A few different tops: Enough to last at least 7 days

ACCESSORIES: The splashes of colour (accessories) should complement your existing wardrobe, be relatively inexpensive and should (in most cases) not be dependent on your size. This is one area in your wardrobe that you have full permission to splurge on. Accessories are great for your transition wardrobe for many reasons: • They are usually cheaper than classic wardrobe staples. • Their use is not dependant on your weight loss or gain. • And they can dramatically change your “blank canvas” into a masterpiece • You can recycle the same outfit 2 or 3 times adding different accessories each time.

Tips: • Belts are wonderful “transition tools”, but until you are at your Goal Weight, stick to “skinny” belts – as bulky belts and buckles will make you appear heavier. • Be shopper savvy and shop at discounted retailers and factory shops when looking for your in-between wardrobe! • Scarves, in particular are an inexpensive way of adding colour to an outfit without changing the whole look. In winter stick to thicker cottons and wool, and in summer go for silky, light weight fabrics. • Find a reliable tailor who can adjust key clothing items according to your weight loss. • To create an illusion of a slimmer figure, go for supportive style panties (those that pull in your tummy) and wear more black or dark colours. • Avoid wearing stripes that go horizontally across a top or a pair of pants, ‘balloon’ skirts, ‘baby doll’ dresses and your husband’s old tracksuit top! ■ WEIGH-LESS OCTOBER/NOVEMBER





Put your best face forward Every woman wants smooth, wrinkle-free skin but, not necessarily with injections to achieve it. Enter wrinkle-fillers, with anti-ageing technology, to reduce the appearance of lines by restoring volume and effectively plumping the skin and smoothing out wrinkles. 1.

4. 1. Estee Lauder Perfectionist Targeted Deep Wrinkle Filler R450.00


4. Eucerin Hyaluron-Filler Day Cream R269.99


2. Olay Regenerist 30 Second Wrinkle Filler R249.99

7. Skin Doctors Antarctilyne Plump Triple Action Skin Plumper R665

6. 6. Neutrogena Ageless Intensives Deep Wrinkle Serum R164.95


5. Yardley Line Minimizer Primer R89.95

3. 3. Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch R340

*Prices are approximate 94



Inside Bobbi Brown’s make-up bag Get the fashionably first look this season with Bobbi Brown as she shares her expert advice for a summer-inspired rosy glow. Think just-got-out-of-bed fresh with flushed cheeks and ripe lips! Begin with a flawless complexion by applying concealer, foundation and powder. Then proceed as follows:

Moves for the makeup novice: Enhance eyes with a shimmering neutral shadow (bone if you’re fair, beige if you have medium skin, and taupe if you have dark skin) and black mascara. Add colour to cheeks and lips with sheer tones of pink to rose – the darker you are, the deeper the shade should be. For example, baby pink for fair complexions, bright pink for medium complexions and rose for dark complexions. Use your fingers to blot on a coloured lip balm or try a gloss for fuller-looking lips. Powder blush for cheeks is easiest to work.

Add a hint of glimmer by dusting a shimmering pink highlighter just on the cheekbones. Outline and fill in lips with pink liner and layer pink shimmery lipgloss on top.

Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick Beige R515 “Swept over cheeks or dabbed on lids, nothing lights up your face like shimmer” – Bobbi Brown

Bobbi Brown Blush Single Pale Pink R340

Moves for the makeup maven:


Experiment with layering different textures. On eyes, start with a light pink powder shadow dusted from the lashline to browbone, followed with dark brown, black or navy gel liner on the upper lashline. Use a makeup sponge or clean foundation brush to blend cream blush (chose a shade following the tips above) on cheeks.

The inside scoop… Superstar, Christina Aguilera, shares her makeup and beauty philosophy (and childhood escapades with Britney Spears!)

Sources: Bobbi Brown; Celebritext

“I have always been a fan of makeup. For hair, I’ll hire the hair person because I have no patience for it, but makeup was always something that I loved experimenting with. It is like makeup is kind of the creative outlet for me, and I think it’s apparent in my videos and what I do on stage. It’s fun for me to explore. But, when I did TV, that was sort of my first makeup lesson - and the show, The Mickey Mouse Club. I would watch how they put it on my face, and I’d go home and put a pound more of it on. I remember me and Britney (Spears) actually used to sit at home and put makeup on each other’s faces. We would just be so over the top and then we’d go out by the pool area and

everyone thought we were crazy. But it was something that was fun as a young girl - to CHRISTINA AGUILERA experiment and explore. At that point, we were like eleven and twelve. Today, I couldn’t live without my red lips. I love my red lips, I’m a big fan, probably dating back to whenever I started getting into the record, Back to Basics, and exploring old Hollywood. There were a lot of painted red lips, and you had your Marilyn’s (Monroe) and Marlene Dietrich’s and beauty icons that I really paid attention to. It was very much about the lips and the soft eyes.” ■ WEIGH-LESS OCTOBER/NOVEMBER



7 Worst Restaurant Meals of the

How many times have you said this to yourself: “So what? I’m out, I’m going to indulge!” Let’s face it restaurant food is enjoyable, convenient, filling, and most of it just tastes so good. The problem is wining and dining may give you more than you bargained for. BY HEIDI LOBEL


ow many of us would willingly gulp down 20+ teaspoons of oil, 2 teaspoons of salt and 2 days formula at a single sitting? The truth is so many of us are unwittingly doing it – regularly! South Africans are eating out more and more and it is no longer a novelty but has become a weekly occurrence. With the growing rates of obesity, heart disease and diabetes, it is deeply disturbing that most establishments are still serving up single dishes that can be partly blamed for the national weight and health crisis. Unfortunately there is very little that can be done to prevent this so it is up to the individual to educate themselves enough to steer clear of these nutritional disasters. Here are some meals that made it onto our Top 7 Worst Restaurant Meals List. We urge you to avoid these meals at all costs! But, this doesn’t mean that you need to evade eating out altogether. Instead practice making better choices. Let’s start the countdown...

# 7. Pad Thai (Asian Dish)

Although traditional Asian cultures tend to eat very healthily, Westernised versions of these ethnic foods tend to be much higher in sodium, fat and kilojoules. Although choices such as spring rolls and crispy duck are obviously laden with fat, there are some less obvious dietary disasters. Surprisingly – at number 7 – is one of the most kilojoule packed of all Asian dishes namely Pad Thai. An average sized portion of these stir fried noodles can set you back a whopping 4500kJ, 46g of fat and 98g of carbs. That equates to 6 slices white of bread with 9 teaspoons of butter – oh – and just less than 1 teaspoon of salt. 78


Pad Thai


# 6. Alfredo (Italian Dish)


Take a normal portion of pasta, add some butter, cream, bacon and cheese – what do you get? One of the most fattening restaurant meals. A main portion of a rich creamy Alfredo pasta will cost you just under 5000kJ, 75g fat, ½ teaspoon of salt and 90g of carbs (6 slices of white bread). And that is before you scoop up the remaining sauce with fresh Italian bread on the table!

# 5. Bacon and Blue-Cheese Burger

Bacon and Blue-Cheese Burger

We all know that dieters should stay away from their favourite burger joint – and now you will understand why. There are some burgers out there that can make a quarter-pounder look like children’s food. A bluecheese and bacon burger with chips and onion rings can easily set you back a full day’s formula. At more than 6000kJ a plate, ¾ teaspoon of salt and about 20 teaspoons of fat, a decadent burger with all the trimmings deserve the bad rap.

# 4. Quesadilla (Mexican Dish)



Mexican cuisine has never been renowned for its health enhancing properties. Logically, we all know that anything crammed with cheese, loaded with mince and smothered in sour cream is bad. Still, it is eye opening to see just how bad. At number 4 is a traditional quesadilla (tortilla stuffed with mince, cheese, cream and guacamole) which will cost you a whopping 7500kJ (1½ days food) and 130g of fat of which 50% is artery clogging saturated fat – STAY AWAY!

# 3. Nachos (Mexican Dish)

At number 3, another infamous Mexican meal to make the list of the worst restaurant meals is nachos. All nachos are bad – but the worst are those smothered in cheese, sour cream and guacamole. The shocking reality about this food is it is usually eaten as a starter – something to pick on before the main meal arrives. A small plate of this entrée can set you back over 2000kJ and 30g fat. If this is translated to a large main portion you can be looking at a total cost of over 8000kJ, 120g fat and more than 1 teaspoon of salt. WEIGH-LESS OCTOBER/NOVEMBER



# 2. Ribs and Chips

If you were wondering just how bad a large portion of ribs and chips is – here’s the low-down. A 600g portion of ribs with chips will set you back a massive 8500kJ, 150g of fat and 100g of protein. To put that in perspective that is more than 1½ days food allowance, 30 teaspoons of fat and 8 portions of protein – enough to put serious pressure not only

Ribs and Chips

on your stomach, but also on your heart, liver and kidneys.

# 1. Double Decker Meat Pizza

And at number ONE - often selected as the ‘cheat’ meal of choice - pizza is on the worst restaurant meal list. But not just any pizza (in fact most classic pizzas don’t even make it onto this list). The worst of the worst is the double-decker-meat filled–cheese-packed variety that can only appeal to someone with a death wish. One of these meat-lovers pizzas can cost you in the region of 10 000kJ (More than 2 days food), 26 teaspoons of fat, 12 slices of white bread, and more than 2½ teaspoons of salt – certainly not for the faint hearted! Even just one slice of this 8-piece nightmare will take up all your fat serves for the day.

Double Decker Meat Pizza


making healthier choices at restaurants...

• Don’t read the menu. If you know you will be tempted easily by the tasty meals on the menu. Simply order a grilled steak, salad and a baked potato without the butter and sour cream.

• “Undress” your food. Ask for any sauce separate, dry grilled, no mayo, no dressing and no toppings. Ask for some mustard or tomato sauce to add a dash of flavour if necessary.

• Pay attention to the descriptions on the menu. Skim past any dish labelled deep-fried, pan-fried, basted, batter-dipped, breaded, creamy, crispy, scalloped, Alfredo, au gratin or ‘in cream sauce’.

• Eat mindfully. Pay attention to what you eat and savour each bite. Most restaurant meals are oversized so being mindful also means stopping before you are full.

• Sharing is caring. Most restaurant servings provide enough food for two (even three) people. If you care about your next weigh-in, share your main course, take half home for tomorrow or give half to the ‘car-guard’. Order a side salad to add bulk and fullness if you wish.

• Beware of buffets. Buffets can be a disaster. For one you are likely to overeat to get your money’s worth. Resist the temptation to go for seconds by waiting 20 minutes after eating to feel fullness. ■






Mary’s Favourites... No heat required. Tasty Meals without the heat!

Baby marrow ribbons with walnuts and cherry tomatoes Serves 2 | Prep 10 min 1 Serve = 2 Veg + 2 Fat Suitable for members on all Steps 200g cherry tomatoes ½ clove garlic 20g walnuts 15 basil leaves 10ml Weigh-Less Extra Virgin Olive Oil 200g baby marrows Salt and pepper Finley slice the garlic and combine in a bowl with the halved tomatoes, chopped nuts, shredded basil and olive oil, season and set aside. Using a vegetable peeler, slice the baby marrow into long thin strips. Slice the strips into long thin pieces (they should resemble spaghetti). Mix with the remaining ingredients and serve.

Tasty Tip: You don’t have to cook your veg to enjoy them! A lot of veggies can be eaten raw, give one of these tasty veggie raw next time you make a salad: • Grated beetroot • Carrots • Spinach • Peas • Baby corn • Broccoli • Cabbage • Green beans • Snap peas 72


Baby marrow ribbons with walnuts and cherry tomatoes

MY FOOD Gazpãcho with crumbled feta

Peanut butter ice-cream loaf Serves 10 | Prep 20 min | Chill overnight 1 Serve = 1 Milk + 1 Fat Suitable for members on Step 5 and above 1kg low-fat ice-cream 50ml peanut butter 50g peanuts

Gazpãcho with crumbled feta Serves 6 | Prep 15 min 1 Serve = ½ CC + 3 Veg + ½ Protein + ½ Fat Suitable for members on all Steps 1kg tomatoes 1 clove garlic 100g red onion 200g red pepper 400g cucumber 50ml lemon juice (fresh) 15ml Weigh-Less Extra Virgin Olive Oil 300g mielies 1 small handful fresh coriander 90g reduced fat feta cheese Salt and pepper

Line a loaf tin with clingwrap and set aside. Divide the ice-cream into two equal portions, leave the first in the freezer and spoon the second half into the bottom of the mould. Knock the mould lightly against a counter top to remove air bubbles and place in freezer until firm. Once the ice-cream has hardened remove from the freezer along with the second half of the ice-cream. Spoon the peanut butter down the moulded ice-cream and top with the second half of ice-cream, knock on counter again, cover with cling wrap and place in freezer. To serve, turn onto serving tray, remove cling wrap and scatter with peanuts, slice into 10 even sized pieces with a hot knife and serve. ■ Peanut butter ice-cream loaf

Working in small batches place the tomatoes, garlic, onion, peppers and cucumber in a food processor and blend until smooth. Place in a large mixing bowl and stir in the seasoning and lemon juice. Serve topped with the crumbled feta, drizzle of olive oil, mielies and roughly chopped coriander. Food Lingo: Gazpãcho is a cold Spanish soup that is often served during summer. Its consistency can vary from chunky to smooth depending on the preparation method.




A little low on...


Being overweight puts you at higher risk for a number of diseases including Type 2 diabetes and heart disease. But, what role does carrying a little extra ‘junk in your trunk’ play on your desire to have sex? And, if your sex drive has stalled, what can you do to rev it up again? BY SAMANTHA WATT


he media’s portrayal of certain women as ‘sex symbols’ often leaves the female population feeling rather inadequate. Martin Binks, a clinical psychologist and director of behavioural health at Duke University’s Diet and Fitness Center in Durham, USA says, “Unfortunately, people are internalising society’s definition of what it takes to be involved in sex, particularly the body shape - there are clearly societal biases out there that are influencing us on an individual level and not in a good way.” Simply put, our perception of physical perfection in addition to how we feel about ourselves, and in particular, our body, is literally waving a fan on the flame of our desire to be intimate. But, the psychological effect is not the only thing putting the brakes on our sex drive according to Leandie Buys, one of South Africa’s six Clinical Sexologists: “Studies demonstrate that fat cells have been shown to inhibit the release of hormones that promote libido sensitivity. In addition there is also a link between increased body 58


mass index and lower testosterone levels in both men and women, which in turn also affects libido.” Martin says that losing a little weight, even 10 pounds (4.5kg) will stimulate sex hormones. But the truth is that the ability to reignite the flame that once saw you behaving like a hormonal 20-something goes beyond weight loss and involves a slight ego adjustment too.

“Studies demonstrate that fat cells have been shown to inhibit the release of hormones that promote libido sensitivity...“

“For a great self-esteem and libido boost, find out what areas of your body your partner enjoys the most. Research has shown that women often rate their bodies


very differently (and much lower) than their partners/ lovers. Some even find that the physical features they are least happy with are the ones that their partners find most attractive” Leandie explains. She suggests that you should make a list of these responses, and keep them in mind next time you are feeling down about your body. “Also, make sure that you allow your partner full access to his favourite parts next time you are making love” she adds.

Libido Lifting Foods:

• CELERY: Considered an excellent food to ramp up

“Also, make sure that you allow your partner full access to his favourite parts next time you are making love...”

Exercise is known to play a major role in the weight loss process but what you may not know is that it can be a passion pioneer too. Prof. Elna McIntosh President of the South African Society of Sexual Health Advisors, Educators, Researchers & Therapists says, “Regular aerobic exercise can increase stamina, improve body image and elevate mood.”

Sources:;; Prof. Elna McIntosh; Martin Binks; Leandie Buys;

Other libido inhibitors: Leandie says that a woman’s libido is influenced by many things – psychological, physical and emotional elements. “If a woman is unhappy in her relationship or struggling with stress, her libido will be lowered”. Moreover there are likely to be other sources of a low libido, so ask your doctor about your symptoms. Here are a few possible causes of a lowered sex drive: • Anxiety • Depression • Menopause • Pregnancy or recently given birth • Flu and other illness • Sleep deprivation • Certain medications (and in particular, certain blood pressure medication)

sexual stimulation. (Free veg, Best Choice) SEEDS: Pumpkin seeds contain zinc, which is important in testosterone production for men and also helps to sustain sexual desire in women. (Fat, Best Choice) ALMONDS: Almonds provide the basis for the healthy production of male hormones that are important in regulating sex-drive. The smell of almonds is also found to arouse passion in females. (Fat, Best Choice) AVOCADO: Avocado helps to increase both male and female libido. (Fat, Best Choice) ASPARAGUS: It is not only the ever-so suggestive shape of asparagus that acts as a libido booster – asparagus also happens to be very high in vitamin E, which has long been thought of as ‘the sex vitamin’. (Vegetable, Best Choice) BASIL: Apparently basil increases circulation, stimulates the sex drive and boosts fertility. (Miscellaneous, Best Choice) CHILLIES: Capsaicin, the substance that gives kick to peppers, curries and other spicy foods apparently triggers the release of endorphins as well. In addition, it stimulates nerve endings and raises your heart rate. (Miscellaneous, Best Choice)


10 Health Benefits of an Orgasm: Did you know that an orgasm produces benefits that go beyond just pleasure? According to Elna, “Researchers and physicians are wising up to the fact that sex and orgasms are good for your body, mind and soul”. She says that orgasms: 1. Relieve stress 2. Help you sleep better 3. Boost your immune system 4. Reduce depression and improve mood 5. Help women get pregnant and have a healthy pregnancy 6. Strengthen your body 7. Alleviate pain 8. Reduce your risk of heart disease 9. Help you lose weight 10. Decrease your risk of cancer ■ WEIGH-LESS OCTOBER/NOVEMBER



The truth behind

plastic packaging

FACT OR FICTION? The big ‘C’ word is enough to jolt most of us into action and rightly so, however is the hype around plastic valid or have sensationalist falsehoods crowded the truth? BY SAMANTHA WATT


f you have access to internet, chances are you have received an email warning you about the dangers of reusing plastic

water bottles, wrapping food in cling wrap or microwaving your food in plastic packaging or containers. Each of these is backed up by credible sources (i.e. the US National Toxicology Programme) and is generally followed by a shock tactic statement: “ can/may cause cancer!” So, what is fact and what is fiction? We investigate...


ater bottles According to Anton Hanekom, Executive Director of Plastics SA the email hoax regarding the dangers of reusing water bottles originated from a single source: a University of Idaho student’s masters thesis. Simply put, the study suggested that the blue Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) water bottles, if reused or left in the sun would expel dangerous chemicals (Diethyl hydroxylamine or DEHA) from the plastic into the water which in turn could cause a number of health problems. Even though

the findings were published by mainstream media around the world, Anton says that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) did not review the thesis. He explains, “The FDA regulates bottled water as a packaged food product and, for bottled water and all other foods and their packaging, FDA has determined that PET meets standards for food contact materials. It does not even contain diethylhydroxylamine.” In addition he adds, “DEHA plasticiser (also called DOA which is for di-2-ethyl-hexyl-adipate) is not used in PET bottles and people are worrying unnecessarily. People who reuse a PET bottle to carry drinking water are in no danger from chemicals leaching from the plastic into the water.” Prof. Ronald Sanderson of the Institute for Polymer Science at the University of Stellenbosch agrees and says that in South Africa, consumers have nothing to worry about. They can use their mineralwater bottles over and over again. Anton does however caution those who reuse water bottles saying, “The concern is that people, and particularly children, can too easily spread and ingest bacteria from their hands and mouths by sharing and reusing bottles without properly washing them or allowing them sufficient time to dry.” WEIGH-LESS OCTOBER/NOVEMBER




ling wrap Cling wrap, a thin plastic film that sticks to itself on application, is known to be one of the handiest kitchen must-haves. You can use it to seal the top of a casserole dish or you can wrap your kiddie’s sandwich in it. It has even been sold as a major contributor to food safety; protecting meat and dairy products from the micro-organisms that breed quickly when food is left uncovered.

On the other hand, CANSA says that they “support cling films that do not contain plasticisers or very low levels compared to other products.” There are a number of DEHA-free cling films on the market, just check the outside packaging information.


ake-away plastic containers Whether it’s a burger loaded with saturated fats or a nutritious salad from your local health shop, the chemicals (hidden in the plastic container) that come with these meals have been said to be potentially dangerous. In addition we have been warned that heat in particular, can cause the plastic compounds to leach onto our food. So should we be microwaving our food in the take-away plastic container? Anton cautions the heating of the containers saying, “Polystyrene (PS) containers were never meant to be cooking utensils. If heated for too long at too high temperatures (>95 deg C), the packaging will melt, possibly causing styrene (which, according to the Polystyrene Packaging Council is found naturally in strawberries, coffee and beer and is eliminated from the body) to be released. However, it is important to note that in order to reach your Tolerable Daily Intake (TDI), you need to physically eat the PS containers flat out for 24 hours and all of these should be badly processed containers.” 56


If you can smell or taste the plastic in a bottle, toss it in the bin and get yourself a new one.

Dr. Rolf Halden from the Johns Hopkins Department of Environmental Health Sciences adds, “In general, whenever you heat something you increase the likelihood of pulling chemicals out. Chemicals can be released from plastic packaging materials like the kinds used in some microwave meals.” He suggests, “If you are cooking with plastics or using plastic utensils, the best thing to do is to follow the directions and only use plastics that are specifically meant for cooking. Inert containers are best, for example heat-resistant glass, ceramics and good old stainless steel.”


aby’s bottles In 2008, the U.S. National Toxicology Program determined that Bisphenol A (BPA) – a chemical found in sippy cups and baby bottles (to name just a few) may pose health risks from early life exposure, they raised concerns that BPA may contribute to early puberty, prostate problems, breast cancer and behavioural impacts. BPA is found in polycarbonate plastic containers which are rigid and transparent.

Did you know: It only takes 35 recycled water bottles to produce a polar fleece jacket.

Sources: Plastics|SA (previously known as the Plastics Federation of South Africa),, CANSA, the Polystyrene Packaging Council (, Philips AVENT South Africa,,,

However, cling wrap is made from Polyvinyl chloride (PVC). The potential transfer of plasticisers from PVC into food is a big concern and according to a statement from the Cancer Association of South Africa (CANSA), “Plasticisers readily migrate from the plastic into the food and are absorbed by the human body. The longterm health consequences and possible damage to the human body remains to be ascertained, which means the health risk exists, without full knowledge of the future outcome of its activity.”

The Sniff Test:


Furthermore, scientists suspect that these substances can cause harm, particularly when bottles are heated to extreme temperatures. What is good to know is that in response to growing consumer concerns about BPA, many reputable baby care companies such as, Philips AVENT have relooked at their product ranges. Philips AVENT launched its BPA-free range of feeding solutions in 2008. To further set your minds at ease it is also important to note that while the concern around BPA is valid, no definitive studies exist on the effects of BPA on humans, and the evidence available is based primarily on the study of laboratory animals. Anton says, “The TDI for BPA is 0.05 mg per kilogram of body weight per day. The TDI is an estimate of the amount of a substance in food that can be ingested daily over a lifetime without appreciable health risk.” He provides an example saying, “A 5kg baby would need to consume more than 80 large (240 ml) polycarbonate plastic baby bottles full of infant formula a day. This is around fifteen to twenty times more than a baby would eat to reach the TDI. By the next day, the BPA is gone.”

In summary... • Water bottles:

All our experts concur that it is safe to reuse a water bottle, just remember to rinse with soapy water. • Cling wrap: The verdict is still out, so our suggestion is to buy DEHA-free cling wrap – just in case! • Take-away containers: The general consensus was that one should not heat food in plastic containers. Rather empty the food into a ceramic or glass dish. • Baby Bottles: Again there seems to be a mixture of opinions. However, the move by some baby bottle manufacturers to supply BPA-free bottles means that you at least have a BPA-free option. Knowing the truth about plastic packaging is empowering and we encourage you to always do further research on statements read and emails received, particularly those where the consequences are potentially be life threatening. ■ WEIGH-LESS OCTOBER/NOVEMBER



Stop Worrying Start Living


There is impressive scientific evidence of the negative impact that worrying has on our health. Diseases like asthma, arthritis, ulcers and heart problems have all been linked with the habits of worrying, pessimism and cynicism. BY JACKIE PSANNIS


orrying really is a bad habit. It is overly repetitive and is unproductive. When we are worrying, we often don’t resolve the situation or arrive at a solution to the apparent problem. Our focus is on all the worst possible outcomes. Worrying is something that we tend to do when we are not engaged in very much physical activity, so we are doing nothing to release the mounting mental tension we are creating. Further scientific studies have revealed that less than 10% of the things we worry about ever come to fruition. Over 90% of our worries (which was valuable time spent thinking) are a complete waste of life. We need to stop worrying and start living. Worrying, untamed, can literally suck the life out of you! Life is meant to be lived, not worried about, so begin today by:

Being conscious of your thoughts



Knowledge certainly is power. The more you read, the more you grow. The more knowledge you acquire the more facts you have to work with. Having facts available to you blows away the fictional fog that hangs in a worried mind! Choose to fill your head with positive, life changing information or even just NEW information. Seek out the facts that will stop you from thinking about the ‘worst case scenario’. Read, listen to audio CD’s, do research - anything positive and filled with personal growth.

Worrying with a pen and paper in your hand I found that the act of writing down my worries encouraged me to let go of the circular worry process. Try it. The next time you start worrying about something, start writing down everything that is going on in your head. Having your worries on paper will discourage you from starting at the very beginning and worrying your way into a vicious non-solution orientated circle. Writing also helps clear that fog I mentioned and allows you to step back from the emotions attached to the worries. Look at your writings and honestly answer the question “Can I change this in any way?” If you can’t then stop wasting brain time on this. If you can – then ACT on what needs to be done to eliminate this worry. Action is often the antidote to worry. Start to lose the mental weight of worrying right now and start to live on the lighter side of life! ■


You are solely responsible for what goes on in your head. No blame can be laid at anyone else’s door for your thoughts, which is very empowering because this means that you are in complete control. The suggestion that you need to start thinking about your thoughts may sound a little strange – but it is possible. Start labelling your thoughts negative and positive as you have them. This labelling process will make you aware of the types of thoughts you have. We think, then we feel and then we behave – so by being conscious of your every thought you are ultimately shaping your life.

Acquire knowledge and seek out the facts




of Positive Parenting


n a world where materialism is rife, it is easy to become distracted by our eagerness to satisfy our children’s physical wants and neglect their emotional needs. Taking care to build your child’s self-esteem is just one of those things that often falls by the way side. It is not tangible, but it affects how your child behaves and feels. You can’t see it, but it is there when your child looks in the mirror every morning. So what is self- esteem, how is it related to body image and how can you boost your child’s selfesteem? BY SAMANTHA WATT 28



What is self-esteem? Self-esteem should not be confused with arrogance, pride or self-importance. It is not bragging about who you are or what you have done. It is not about thinking you are perfect – because no one is. According to Joanna Kleovoulou, Clinical Psychologist and Owner of a Family Therapy Centre in Bedfordview, Johannesburg, “Self-esteem is the collection of beliefs or feelings that we have about ourselves or our ‘selfperceptions.’ It is the value we place on ourselves and the feeling we have about all the things we see ourselves to be.”

Why is it important for your child to have a healthy self-esteem? Self-esteem cannot be compared to a material possession. It is not the latest X-Box that your child would love to have, but doesn’t need. “It is your child’s armour against the challenges of the world” says Joanna. “Children who are confident have an easier time handling conflicts and resisting negative pressures. They tend to smile more readily and enjoy life. For children who have low self-esteem, any kind of challenge can become sources of major anxiety and frustration and find it very difficult to cope and adapt.”

What is body image and how does it relate to self-esteem? Our children are bombarded by unrealistic images portrayed in the media on a daily basis. They see it on the television, in magazines and even on the cover of CD labels. In fact, physical appearance is becoming more and more important as various forms of gate-keepers are held in higher esteem. According to Joanna, “Body image is closely associated with self-esteem, based on perceptions and beliefs formed through environmental exchange. Body image and being body conscious becomes heightened just before puberty, which is a normal part of development. It is reflective of the messages your child receives from the outside world about their outer appearance, which they then internalise. This is also a time when wanting to fit in with their peer group is paramount, and comparing self to others becomes the norm.” However, despite the positive feedback received, a child may hold onto a single perceived negative remark which in turn may shape their reality or perception of themselves. In cases like this, Joanna suggests that professional intervention is required. She adds, “Studies show

that some children require 12 positive comments or affirmations to counteract every one negative comment received.”

How do you know if your child has a positive or negative self-esteem? From being bullied at school, unsatisfactory grades, being overweight and no friends to lack of positive affirmations from the parent, yelling and abuse – all of these influence how your child feels about themselves. But what are the tell-tale signs that you child has a selfesteem problem? According to Joanna, a child who has low selfesteem will: • not want to try new things; • frequently speak negatively about his/herself, saying such things as, “I’m stupid,” “I’ll never learn how to do this,” or “Nobody cares about me anyway;” • exhibit a low tolerance for frustration, giving up easily or waiting for somebody else to take over; • have a tendency to be overly-critical of and easily disappointed in themselves; • be predominantly pessimistic. A child who has a positive self-esteem will: • be comfortable in social settings and enjoy group activities as well as independent pursuits; • be able to work towards finding solutions in challenging situations; • voice discontentment without belittling his/herself or others. For example, rather than saying, “I’m an idiot,” a child with healthy self-esteem says, “I don’t understand this.”



• know his/her strengths and weaknesses, and accept them; • be predominantly positive.

How can you, as the parent, build your child’s selfesteem? Joanna provides a few tips to help you build your child’s self-esteem: • Watch what you say: Children are very sensitive to parents’ words. Remember to praise your child not only for a job well done, but also for effort. But be truthful. Reward effort and completion instead of outcome. • Be a positive role model: If you are excessively harsh on yourself, pessimistic, or unrealistic about your own abilities, body and limitations, your child may eventually mirror you. Nurture your own selfesteem, and your child will have a great role-model. • Identify and redirect your child’s inaccurate beliefs: It’s important for parents to identify kids’ irrational beliefs about themselves (particularly with


regards to body image). Helping your child set more accurate standards that are realistic will help him/her have a healthier body image and self-esteem. • Be spontaneous and affectionate with your child: Your love will go a long way to boost your child’s selfesteem. Give your child tons of hugs. Leave a note in his/her lunch box that reads, “I think you’re terrific!” • Give positive, accurate feedback: Acknowledge your child’s feelings and reward the right choices. This will encourage him/her to make the most effective choice again. Every parent wants their child to develop and grow to their full potential and by actively participating in their emotional well-being you can. “A deep loving connection with a significant parental figure is the foundation and building block in developing a child’s healthy esteem of themselves. As a parent, you have the greatest influence in shaping your children’s sense of self-worth; you are their first and most important teacher” concludes Joanna. ■



“Next time work harder and make it.”

“Well, you didn’t make the team, but I’m really proud of the effort you put into it.”

“How many times must I tell you, you don’t listen!”

“I believe in you, I know you can.”

“Let me do this for you.”

“Try even if you are not sure.”

“No, don’t be angry/mad/sad; you have so much to be thankful for.”

“You can be so proud of yourself.”

“Why don’t you do what your brother does, he is so well-behaved.”

“I really like what you did/what you said/how you behaved.”

“You are so clumsy/stupid/fat.” (avoid ‘you are’ statements)

“I love you, just because.”

“You are not trying hard enough.”

“You are beautiful and we appreciate you.”






Living for

Longevity The key to longevity is staying healthy by making good lifestyle choices. After all, it’s poor habits that generally decrease life expectancy by raising the risk of chronic conditions such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and even cancer. BY NATASHA LIVIERO


study from the Harvard School of Public Health in 2010 estimated that exposure to four (largely preventable) risk factors, namely smoking, high blood pressure, elevated blood glucose and obesity reduce life expectancy in the Unites States by 4.9 years in men and 4.1 years in women! Binge drinking, common in young adults, is another preventable past time with dangerous consequences, including an elevated risk of accidents and risky sexual encounters. While chronic drinking leads to serious conditions such as liver, pancreatic and stomach disorders. NUTRITIONALLY SPEAKING ollowing a balanced, nutritionally sound diet is a vital component of longevity. Many conditions associated with ageing can be delayed and even minimised through diet. “The first rule is to double your vegetable intake. Fresh fruits and vegetables contain a host a health enhancing and disease fighting nutrients,” says Dietitian, Heidi Lobel. “The antioxidant compounds found in fresh vegetables are largely responsible for holding back the march of time. Aiming for five fruit and vegetables a day helps to ensure adequate antioxidant intake. What’s more, ensuring that at least two different colour fruits and vegetables are eaten with each meal (lunch and dinner) will further cover the antioxidant and protective nutrient spectrum.”




outh Africa’s very own Rooibos tea is top of the beverage bevy! Studies reveal that Rooibos helps promote a youthful appearance thanks to the free radical fighting antioxidants that protect against premature ageing. “Rooibos has also been shown to support the liver in the natural cleansing and detoxification process of the body, further assisting against the damaging effects of (poor) diet and environment on our health. Recent research further shows how Rooibos tea can support cardiovascular health, a key component of longevity since more than 40% of adult deaths, globally, are attributed to cardiovascular problems,” explains Vital Health Experts Dietitian, Andrea Du Plessis. So, how much Rooibos should you drink to enjoy the benefits? Andrea suggests three cups of strongly brewed Rooibos tea for a potent antioxidant punch!


atty fish, rich in Omega-3 fatty acids such as salmon and sardines, are highly revered for their anti-ageing properties. (Omega-3 deficiencies are associated with conditions such as memory loss, arthritis and health disease). “Eating fatty fish 3-5 times a week, in place of red meat, can go a long way to enhancing health,” says Heidi. “Diets rich in Omega-3 fatty acids may also help promote a healthy emotional balance and positive mood in later years, possibly because DHA is a main component in the brains synapses,” concludes Heidi.


Did you know? You can effortlessly boost longevity by simply getting a good night’s sleep! That’s because deep, restful sleep is necessary for the body to effectively repair and rejuvenate itself. THE EXERCISE EFFECT Doctors agree that regular physical activity helps to maintain healthy weight ratios, keeps the body fit and strong, protects against chronic disease and supports healthy ageing and longevity. What’s more, studies suggest mortality rates are higher amongst sedentary individuals.

Sources:;; Heidi Lobel; Andrea Du Plessis; Joanna Kleovoulou; Bob Proctor

STAYING EMOTIONALLY HEALTHY Our thoughts and state of mind potentially manifest physical conditions, making good mental health essential for total body wellbeing. “Mental wellbeing and physical health work interdependently,” explains Clinical Psychologist, Joanna Kleovoulou. “For example, people with a physical condition such as heart disease are more likely to present with depression and a sense of hopelessness; and people with a psychiatric condition are more susceptible to physical illness. The physical conditions of your endocrine, nervous and immune systems can influence mental wellbeing – in the same manner the state of your mental wellbeing can directly affect your physical wellbeing.” Joanna goes on to explain about the study of the interaction between psychological processes and the nervous and immune systems of the human body – the school of PENI (psychoendoneuroimmunology). “There is scientific indication of the interaction between the nervous and immune systems, and the relationship between mental processes and health. In one study, for example, all-cause mortality increased in the month following a severe stressor such as the death of a partner. Stressful life events trigger cognitive and emotional responses, which then induce sympathetic nervous system and endocrine changes, and these ultimately impair immune function and the ability to ward off disease. Health risks vary, but include higher rates of infectious disease, cancer incidence and progression, as well as HIV progression. UP IN SMOKE Smoking reduces life expectancy through several life threatening conditions, including lung cancer. The




World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that tobacco caused 100 million deaths over the course of the 20th Century alone! THE HAPPY FACTOR Studies repeatedly reveal that people who are happy and have a positive disposition tend to live longer. Similarly, people with a sense of purpose also benefit from increased longevity versus those with limited to no purpose at all. Bob Proctor, advisor for the international best-seller, The Secret, teacher of mind potential and highly acclaimed life and business coach, believes there are several things we can do to add years to our lives: “First, find out what it is you love to do and dedicate your life to it. Each of us has been gifted with talents and abilities beyond our wildest imagination and we have been put here on earth to develop that talent and ability. Find yours. Secondly, have an attitude of being outwardly focused. We’ve been conditioned to be good little ‘go getters’. There is nothing wrong with that, but how about being a good little ‘go giver’. Don’t concern yourself with what you’ll get out of something just consider how you can give. And lastly, live in the present and look to the future with great expectation. Get involved in creating a big idea for yourself and make sure it includes being of service to others. This advice has served me very well over the years. I know it will work for you too.” Bob Proctor will be sharing his insights during a visit to South Africa during October and November this year. Visit for more details. DRIVE CAREFULLY The risk of serious bodily harm and or dying on the road increases with fast, reckless driving. In fact, according to the World Health Organisation, about 1.2 million people die prematurely each year on the world’s roads. The solution? Always be alert and responsible whether you are a driver or a pedestrian. So, while the world is yet to find the elusive formula for the fountain of youth, you can still ensure a long, happy and healthy life by making smart lifestyle choices. From healthy eating to regular exercise and mental and physical wellbeing, the reward of healthy ageing and longevity is largely in your own hands. ■



Shedding the light on sunscreens We asked Nivea to share the lowdown on important sun care questions for a sun-smart summer.

Q: What does SPF or Sun Protection Factor actually mean?

A: “It refers to the extra protection offered by applying a specific sunscreen lotion to the skin. If your skin usually starts to change colour within five minutes, a sunscreen with a SPF of 20 protects your skin for 20 times as long, i.e. 5 multiplied by 20, which equals 100 minutes.” Q: How do I know if I’m using the correct product to protect my skin?

A: “The main natural protective factors are the degree of pigmentation and the thickness of the outer layer of skin. Thus, very dark-skinned individuals sunburn rarely, while the freckled redhead person, with milky skin, gets into trouble early.”

Here’s the skin-type/SPF guide: Skin Type


Maximum time one can be exposed to UV rays before the first reddening of the skin

Product to use first few days

Products to use following days

Children’s skin

Thinner than adult skin and thickness of the horny layer is not well developed, thus more UVA rays can penetrate the deeper lying layers. The skin’s most important UV-protection (the ability to tan) is slower and not intensively formed.

+/- 5 min

SPF 50+ Lotion/Spray

SPF 50+ Lotion/Spray

Very Sensitive skin

Exposure to the sun will result in an over-sensitive skin reaction. Skin prone to allergies that manifest in the form of rash and blisters, accompanied by itching.

+/- 5 min

SPF 50/50+ Lotion/Spray

SPF 50/50+ Lotion/Spray

Very Fair Skin

Sensitive, very pale skin; blonde or fair; blue or grey eyes and freckles. The skin does not tan brown, just goes red. Redness disappears with no tan remaining.

+/- 10 min

SPF 50/50+ Lotion/Spray

SPF 50/50+ Lotion/Spray

Fair Skin

Pale skin; blonde or dark-blonde hair; blue, green or grey eyes and tend to have freckles. The skin burns easily with little tanning.

+/- 15 min

SPF 50/50+ Lotion/Spray

SPF 30 Lotion/ Spray

Normal Skin

Lightly tanned skin; brown eyes; blonde to brunette coloured hair and no freckles. Skin burns rarely, becomes brown quickly.

+/- 20 min

SPF 30 Lotion/ Spray

SPF 20 Lotion /Spray

Dark Skin and Ethnic Skin

Brown, black or olive coloured skin and dark eyes. Skin becomes brown quickly and hardly ever gets sunburnt.

+/- 30 min

SPF 30 Lotion/ Spray

SPF 15




Beauty news Great buys for summertime

Summertime SOS Skin cancer is one of the most common cancers in South Africa with approximately 20 000 reported cases every year. With suncare clearly more essential than ever, these affordable picks offer great protection without breaking the bank.

1. Nivea Sun Invisible Protection Transparent Spray SPF 50 is a lightweight moisturising formula that is 100% transparent on the skin. R129.99.

2. IQ Suncare SPF 50 Lotion with UltraCare moisturisers and IQ’s unique anti-oxidant, IPF™ (Immuno Protection Factor), features polyphenol White Tea powered free radical scavengers. R125.

4. Tropitone Splash Lotion SPF 40 is enriched with Monoi Tahitian Coconut Oil to enhance tanning while keeping skin moist and supple. R95.99.

5. Pure & Protect Aqueous Sunscreen Lotion SPF50 is a low fragrance, aqueous formula that delivers rich moisture without irritating the skin. R79.99.



6. SP20 Original Gel with SPF 20 works with the natural melanin in your skin for a longer-lasting tan without the burn. R62.99.

*Prices are approximate

3. Everysun Aquasport Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50 with Teavigo Green Tea extract, known for its moisturising properties, helps to prevent premature ageing by eliminating excess free radicals on the skin. R124.99.


Helping hands Protect your hands from the sun, especially if you spend long periods driving in the car. Neutrogena Antiageing Hand Cream with SPF 25 (R79.95) protects the delicate skin on your hands from sunburn and premature ageing, while added soy helps to reduce the appearance of age marks and brown spots.

Q: If I use double SPF 10 will I get the same protection as SPF 20?


“No! You can’t add SPF numbers. If an SPF 10 gives you an hour in the sun, re-application won’t give you another hour. Your time’s up! If you want longer exposure, next time use a higher SPF sunscreen.”

Q: What is the difference between SPF 50 and SPF 50+? A: “SPF 50+ is actually SPF 60 or above. There is a capping at SPF 50+ as the difference between, for example, SPF 80 and 60 is so incredibly small, it is misleading to consumers.” Q: Why do I sometimes get sunburt even after applying a high SPF sunscreen?

*Source: Nivea

A: “In most cases people only apply a quarter of the sunscreen that is required and often forget to cover certain areas of the body.” Use the following guideline for application - one teaspoon to each of these areas:


• Face and neck (don’t forget earlobes, bridge of nose, lips and scalp if you have a bald area) • Torso front • Torso back • Arms back • Arms front • Shoulders back • Shoulders front • Legs and top of feet (front) • Legs and top of feet (back)


Safety First Despite recent claims about sunscreen safety, consumers should rest assured that sunscreen products, and specifically the ingredients oxybenzone and retinyl palmitate, are safe and effective when used as directed. Sunscreens should be considered a vital part of a comprehensive sun protection regimen that includes seeking shade, covering up with clothing including a widebrimmed hat and UVblocking sunglasses and avoiding midday tanning and UV tanning booths. Sun protection is essential for skin cancer prevention – about 90 percent of non-melanoma skin cancers and 65 percent of melanomas are associated with exposure to UV radiation from the sun. ■


Beauty basket Fresh face and body finds!

SALON RESULTS @ HOME! Sally Hansen, the USA’s #1 nail expert, brings us salon-inspired products for luxurious, salon-calibre hydration and protection, without breaking the bank! The Manicure Essential Collection includes Nails & Cuticles Hand Crème (R79) and a Firming Hand Crème (R109) that is packed with firming peptides, conditioning shea butter and Sally Hansen moisture complex, delivering a blast of skin-quenching nourishment. The Sally Hansen team claims your hands will look 10 years younger in 4 weeks… why not put them to the test?


International pop sensation, Katy Perry, has debuted her first fragrance, Purr (R395 for 30ml EDP), to glowing reviews and an award for the Best New Celebrity Fragrance in the prestigious FiFi Awards held in London! Katy’s love of cats inspired the name and design of the bottle of her Eau de Parfum, which opens with a fresh citrus accord, giving way to a delicate floral heart and base notes of vanilla orchid, white amber, sandalwood and musk.

“There is a wonderful world of fragrances out there, but like my music, I believe there is room for me and my own unique twist on it” ~ Katy Perry

Lash-luscious L’Oreal’s new Volume Million Lashes Extra Black mascara (R145.95) delivers a host of eye-catching benefits: • An ultra-flexible brush applicator. • In-built, anti-clump wiper removes excess mascara for no clumps. • Individual lash-by-lash separation for ‘millionizedlooking’ lashes. • Coats every lash with carbon black pigments for blacker than black lashes.

Affordable beauty

If you’re going away for the holidays, instead of packing separate cleansing and moisturizing products for each family member, stock up on Sebamed, a classic range for the entire family. Developed by a doctor, together with dermatologists and pharmacists, Sebamed’s pH value of 5.5 stabilizes the skins natural protective acid mantle and supports barrier function, making it suitable for treating healthy, sensitive, dry and eczema-prone skins. Products prices from R49.99

*Prices are approximate 92



INSIDE SCOOP! Sienna Miller, British Actress and face of the Hugo Boss fragrance, Boss Orange Woman, which deliciously fuses uplifting notes of apple and orange blossom with warm base notes of vanilla and sandalwood, shares her memorable Christmas moments! Question: What smell most reminds you of Christmas? Sienna: “It has to be Frankincense” Question: What is your earliest memory of Christmas? Sienna: “My earliest memory of Christmas was hearing my sister scream because there was a stuffed E.T. toy sticking out of her stocking!” Question: Top three gift recommendations for this year? Sienna: “1. Boss Orange Woman; 2. EE Cummings Complete Collection; 3. Luxurious silk pyjamas.”

Did you know?

Get a sunkissed glow... with RIMMEL’S new 3-in-1 Shimmering Bronzer (R59.95)

Studies suggest that dairy products may have an affect on acne. According to a review at The George Washington University Medical Centre, cows milk can aggravate or even initiate breakouts in people with acne prone skin. If you suffer with acne and suspect a food trigger, start keeping a food journal. Monitor your food/acne patterns by noting what you ate up to three days prior to each breakout.


Shoneez Warrington, owner of Spoilt Hair & Beauty in Cape Town, recently returned from the prestigious Vidal Sassoon Salon Creatives course in London, and shares two of the top spring/ summer trends presented at the course:

Sources: Spoilt Hair and Beauty (021) 434 7112

THE BOB: “The Bob has made a comeback, illustrating its style resilience with charm. Many versions have been created to suit all women and maintenance has been made easy with cuts that suit everyone”. PONYTAILS: “The drab, regular ponytail has fast been replaced by modern, more glamorous styles. The side-swept ponytail with wispy pieces to frame the face goes perfectly for a casual day look, while a high ponytail with height accentuates the facial features beautifully”. WEIGH-LESS DECEMBER/JANUARY



December/January 2012 Vol 101 SOUTH AFRICAN EDITION R22.95 Other countries R20.13 (Excl VAT)




BUSTING ISSUE • Freezable dishes that won’t break the bank • Meals for R10 a serve • Get fit for free • Ways to stretch your pay cheque • Budget fashion




ONLY GOT 5KG TO LOSE? Two amazing success stories to inspire you





brate Cele er m Sum lan uP Men

man vs meal



IN THIS SECTION In the gym with Sarah Baum n Get fit for free n







lagued by being overweight and being called ‘Sdudla’ (Zulu for “fat”) by the kids at her school, a 13 year old Belinda sought to prove to her friends and peers that she could be just as pretty and slim as them. She began her journey on a high-protein diet but was hungry all the time. When her sister joined WeighLess, Belinda couldn’t believe how much food she was allowed to eat by comparison. It was then that she made the decision to join Weigh-Less and now, 7 years later and 50kg lighter, Belinda has never looked back.

Belinda’s facts & figures Belinda Schwark is still studying and lives in Glenvista, Gauteng. Age: Height: Weight Then: Weight Now: Goal Weight: Weight Lost: Time at Goal:

20 1.67m 105kg 55kg 57kg 50kg 1 year WEIGH-LESS DECEMBER/JANUARY



Where it all began I am hyperactive; I love being the centre of attention and have an incurable desire to speak all the time. I am not sure if being overweight defined my personality, but I do know that I have been a happy-go-lucky person for as long as I can remember. Looking back, I think I can pinpoint exactly where my weight issues began. When I was 2 years old, I contracted Rotavirus. I was 78% dehydrated and the diarrhoea caused by the Rotavirus almost killed me. As can be expected, both my father and mother went through a very trying time and from that moment on sought to ensure that I never got dehydrated again…ever! My dad was particularly stringent on making sure that I always had a full tummy. Their hearts were most definitely in the right place but, what it ultimately taught me was that I needed to eat a lot in order to stay alive. To make matters worse, I was also diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Studies show that there is potentially a link between childhood obesity and ADHD, so I am not sure how much of a role this diagnosis played in me getting to the size I eventually found myself at, but either way, by the time I was 13 years old I weighed 105kg. Even though my zest for life never faltered, I was grossly overweight and uncomfortable in my own skin.

Puberty and perseverance At 13, you suddenly become aware of boys. And they, if you are pretty and thin enough, become aware of you. I knew I wasn’t ugly, but I most certainly wasn’t receiving the same attention that my friends were getting. On top of this, fashionable clothing was becoming more appealing; however the trips to the local mall were a nightmare. I didn’t fit into anything remotely ‘nice’.

“The years of name-calling finally caught up with me and this coupled with my desire to be more like my friends, finally forced me into action.” I made a decision to go on a diet. I was determined. For my first week I tried a high protein diet, but found myself hungry all the time. I lost weight in that first week (2.5kg), which in itself was a blessing as it motivated me 82




to keep going. However, it wasn’t until I saw how much my sister, Mandy, was allowed to eat on Weigh-Less that I decided to switch from the diet I was on to Weigh-Less.

The first day of the rest of my life My first day at Group was daunting. I was so scared and hid myself in the corner. I didn’t talk to anyone bar my Group Leader, Mercia. The fear of the unknown has always frightened me a little, and this day was no different. However, the Group Meetings that followed were amazing! Mercia was truly wonderful, she never failed to prepare a motivational talk and everyone was given the opportunity to share how much weight they had lost. In addition, my brother, Blake also joined Weigh-Less – which meant three out of the four Schwark siblings were all on the same journey to weight loss and wellness. We are all competitive and this was the perfect opportunity to show one another up. My mother was equally great and cooked only Weigh-Less approved meals for all of us! The person, who really motivated me the most, however, was my sister, Tracy (she is petite and was the only sibling not on Weigh-Less). Before she left for the UK, she said her good-byes, and with tears in her eyes told me that when she returned she wanted to see a thinner me. Tracy was my role model. My journey was no longer just about me, it was about making her proud of me too. With renewed enthusiasm, I tackled the weight, kilo by kilo, until her return. Meanwhile, the bond between Mercia and I grew. She often said that I was the daughter that she never had. If I cheated or had a bad day, she would tell me to drink an extra 500ml of water and move on – which I did, and still do to this day.

My first road block My first wobbly hit when my brother and sister stopped going to Group after reaching their Goal Weights. I felt like the additional support that I had previously enjoyed had come to a grinding halt and with it, my resolve to carry on. However, Mercia never gave up on me and that combined with the compliments from friends, and teachers kept me going. In fact, I was even made a prefect in my Grade 9 year, partly I believe, due to the strength of character I displayed on my weight loss journey. My teachers never failed to tell me how proud they were of me and this encouraged me to succeed.








What we say:

What we mean:

Don’t worry, I’ll do it!

It would be nice if you did it for me.

How do I look?

Why haven’t you complimented me yet?

We need to talk…

You need to listen!

A chocolate would be nice…

Pretty please would you go out and buy me one – NOW!

Who is she?

If she ever comes near you again, I will slap her silly!

I’ll think about it…

There is no way it is going to happen.

Dinner is at 6pm

If you are late, you will be sleeping on the couch!

It’s a beautiful day for the beach

Forget the Man United game – its beach time baby!

I’m working late

You need to make your own supper

You working late again?

Who is she? ■


Kim Kardashian


Hilary Swank

Gisele B端ndchen

Jessica Biel




Diane Kruger

Toni Braxton

Cheryl Cole

Taylor Swift



Jennifer Love Hewitt




Period after Use by opening

Skin Care:

Cleansers & Toners

24 months

Eye Products:



Lip Products:





Colour Face Products:

7 9

10 11

36 months

Creams & Lotions

24 months

36 months

Sun Products

24 months

36 months

Powder Eye Shadows


36 months

Liquid Eye Shadows

12 months

24 months


6 months

24 months

Pencil Eyeliner


36 months

Liquid Eyeliner

12 months

36 months

Eyebrow Pencil

12 months

24 months

Lip Liners


36 months

Lip Gloss

18 months

36 months


18 months

36 months

Liquid & Cream make-up

24 months

36 months

Face Powder


36 months

Blush Powder


36 months

Concealer Stick


36 months

Concealer Vial

18 months

36 months



















Pg15_18 Barbara WOTY SS.indd 1

02/12/2011 09:15:46 AM

Pg15_18 Barbara WOTY SS.indd 2-3

02/12/2011 09:15:48 AM

Pg15_18 Barbara WOTY SS.indd 4

02/12/2011 09:15:50 AM


Running across the finishing line My Personal Goal Weight and Formula was constantly readjusted as I grew and two years later, at the age of 15, I finally achieved my Personal Goal Weight of 70kg! There was no sweeter moment. I went from a size 44 to a size 12 – clothes looked good on me and guys were finally beginning to notice. Tracy was so proud (as were all my family members) and on her return from overseas she said that I looked like her (the greatest compliment in the world!).

In addition to following the Weigh-Less eating plan, I also started exercising at home. I tried, where possible, to exercise every day. I did not join a gym, but instead used the facilities available to me. I downloaded a ‘smart phone’ application called ‘Total Fitness’ and jumped on the trampoline. And, after three short months I achieved my Goal Weight of 57kg.


Here and now

Maintaining the weight wasn’t as difficult as I thought it would be as Weigh-Less had really become a way of life for me and I continued to use the principles taught by Weigh-Less. My mom continued to cook healthy meals and packed my lunches, and so it was seemingly easy to stay on my Personal Goal Weight (which fluctuated between 68kg70kg) - a weight I maintained for five years.

I have been at Goal Weight for a year now and I have also joined Weigh-Less as a Group Leader. I am determined to never go back and so, have endeavoured to employ the Weigh-Less lifestyle, for life! If I have a bad day, I exercise a little more than usual and drink additional water (just as Mercia taught me). I have taken up part-time modelling, which in itself is a miracle – seven years ago, I would never have even dreamed of posing in bikini’s for the camera!

Back to basics A new speed bump arose when I left home after school to go overseas. My mom was no longer there to make my food and keep me on the ‘straight and narrow’. I caught the ‘Britain Bug’ and put on, much to my dismay, 10kg! I was horrified when I returned home and stepped onto the scale to see myself weighing over 80kg again.

“I am determined to never go back and so, have endeavoured to employ the Weigh-Less lifestyle, for life!”

I withdrew completely and refused to see any of my South African friends until I had lost all the weight that I had put on. I became a recluse for a few months, but that didn’t bother me. All that mattered was shedding those unwanted kilos.

My life has changed dramatically since the age of 13. Compliments from friends, men and my family, in addition to being completely happy with my body, is what has kept me motivated! I am so grateful to Weigh-Less and the late Mercia Webster – my life has changed because of you!

Whilst I was overseas I had also got word that Mercia had lost her battle with breast cancer. As a result, I could not bring myself to join another Group as I felt I would be ‘betraying’ my one and only Group Leader. But instead, in memory of Mercia and all she taught me, I restarted my journey and was more motivated than ever. I went back to basics, so to speak, and once again made a complete lifestyle change. I had to revive the principles taught to me by Weigh-Less and Mercia and I started to watch everything I ate. I went back to measuring my food and re-introduced snacks as per the eating plan.

20 kilo’s in 3 months As a result I lost the 10kg that I had put on in the UK and to my surprise the weight continued to fall off. I am not sure if it was because I ate so badly in the UK that my body was in 84

shock or if I was just so determined that I hardly ever cheated – either way I was thoroughly enjoying the new, slimmer me!


Belinda’s Fitness Tips: Belinda says she has never been a ‘gym bunny’ but prefers alternative forms of exercise such as; • Jumping on the trampoline for 20 minutes a day. • Weight training with mini dumb-bells in front of the TV. • Following an exercise regime from an application on her Blackberry. ■

To see Belinda come to life on our website go to successstories/belindaschwark and watch her video interview.


Mary’s Favourites... Festive Food

Time to celebrate the healthy way!

Mince pies Serves 8 | Prep 10 min | Cook 20 min 1 Serve = 1 CC + ½ Fruit + ½ Fat Suitable for members on all Steps 180g cake flour 20g margarine 75ml low-fat plain yoghurt 20g sultanas 20g raisins 1 tsp lemon juice ½ tsp almond essence 30ml Weigh-Less Spoon for Spoon Sugar Replacement 20g currants 100g apple ¼ tsp allspice ¼ tsp rum essence Rub the flour into the margarine until the mixture resembles bread crumbs. Add the yoghurt and mix to form a firm dough. Roll the dough into a long sausage and divide into 8 equal portions. Press each portion into a muffin tin or mini pie dishes, reserving about ¼ of each for the pie top. Peel and grate the apple and mix with all the remaining ingredients and spoon into pastry cases. Roll out remaining dough and cut into rounds or festive shapes to decorate the top of the pies. Bake at 180°C for 20 minutes or until golden. Mince Pies



MY FOOD Leg of lamb

Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Pecan Nuts Serves 6 | Prep 10 min \ Cook 10 min 1 Serve = ½ Veg + ½ Protein + ½ Fat Suitable for members on Step 5 and above 300g Brussels sprouts 300g Eskort Weigh-Less Smoked Bacon 30g almonds Quickly boil Brussels sprouts in boiling water. Meanwhile, chop bacon into small pieces and fry in a hot pan. Add drained Brussels sprouts, mix well. Serve sprinkled with almonds. ■

Brussels sprouts with bacon and pecan nuts

Leg of lamb Serves 8 | Prep 10 min | Cook 1 ½ hours 1 Serve = 2 Protein + ½ Fat Suitable for members on all Steps 1kg leg of lamb 8 garlic cloves 20ml Weigh-Less Extra Virgin Olive Oil 1 sprigs rosemary salt and pepper Trim all visible fat from the lamb. Using a sharp knife, make slits in the lamb and stuff with sliced garlic cloves and rosemary sprigs. Rub in olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place in large roasting pan and roast in a 200°C oven. Cook for 1½ hours, until juices run clear. Check every 15 minutes to see if the meat is burning. If it begins to burn at base, turn and add 50ml of beef stock.




Impressive food facts and bite size snippets

THE BUZZ on honey

Believe it or not... Honey is the only food that does not spoil. Archaeologists found honey in the tombs of Egyptian pharaohs, tested it, and found it to be edible.

Festive Food Fact The early mince pie was called a ‘mince pie’ because it was traditionally made from mincemeat, which ironically is not mince or meat, but instead a preserve containing apple, dried fruits (such as raisins and sultanas) spices, and either suet or vegetable shortening. Eating mince pies at Christmas dates back to 16th century Britain, where it is still believed that to eat a mince pie on each of the Twelve Days of Christmas will bring 12 happy months in the year to follow.


Watermelon consists of 92% water and 8% sugar! Watermelon is also ideal health food because it doesn’t contain any fat or cholesterol, is high in fibre and Vitamins A & C and is a good source of potassium.

Did you know?

Food Lingo Mzansi Style If you are South African, chances are you have come across these traditional South African foods. However, do you know what the food actually is, or better yet – have you tried it? Goolgoola (gool-goo-la) Also known as ‘Ngunia’ (Zulu), is an Indian savoury dish that is made with vaadas, which is an Indian treat, made with lentils and spices. Goolgoola is cheap and freely available on the streets of Durban. Usu (oo-soo) Also know as ‘afval’ (Afrikaans). Usu is boiled tripe, an African delicacy. It consists of those parts of an animal that are left over from cutting up a carcass. Potjiekos (poi-chee-kors) Traditional Afrikaner food, generally a rich stew, cooked in a three-legged castiron pot over a fire. Bunny chow is curry (chicken, mutton, beef or vegetable) served in a hollowed-out half-loaf of bread. Indian playwright, Ronnie Govender suggests that resturants in Grey and Victoria streets in Durban served a distinctive Gujarati vegetarian dish called a ‘bhunia’ since 1940 and this gave rise to ‘bunny.’ And chow, of course, means food. Frikkadel (frik-kuh-dell) A traditional meatball made with mince meat. Also known as a ‘kabab’, made with Indian spices and chilli’s. Vetkoek (fet-cook) Also known as Amagwinya (Zulu), vetkoek is a doughnut-sized bread roll made from deepfried yeast dough. Mainly served with a savoury mince filling. Morogo (More-rog-o) Morogo is a combination of more than one of 150 different types of green edible leaves, including bean and beetroot leaves. Usually boiled and served with “mieliepap” (maize meal porridge), in combination with braised onions and tomato.

Bunny Chow

In South Africa, termites and ants are often roasted and eaten by the handful, like popcorn. ■



Sources: | | | http://www. | |



be bolder in bed deb ni redlob eb W

e all lack confidence in some or another area of our life, and, for many of us the bedroom is one of those places. Have you ever fantasised about having relentless, bravely adventurous, uninhibited sex with your partner, but not had the ‘balls’ to follow through with it? If a flabby tummy, cellulite infested thighs or a simple lack of confidence has you cowering under the covers, fear not! These tips will help you unleash your inner vixen. BY SAMANTHA WATT

Naked Confidence

Sources: Dr. Levinson; Prof. Elna McIntosh;;

Dr. Bernard Levinson, Psychiatrist and Sexologist in Johannesburg, Gauteng who has been practising for more than 50 years says, “I’m amazed at how rapidly, in our culture, we reach the point of feeling we look better dressed than undressed.” This of course is a lie that has developed from post-modernism and is something that we all need to ditch – instantly! By embracing your nakedness, your newfound boldness will send your man’s hormones into overdrive!

Love Lessons

Dr. Levinson adds that if you look good and feel good you are more inclined to be naturally brave, curious, adventurous and inventive. However key to this, is to feel loved. He says, “Being in love is a great stimulus for sex and knowing you are loved goes with it!” Simply put, love and attraction go hand-in-hand, chances are your partner thinks you look amazing, despite your socalled flaws!

Change your Focus

Instead of fretting unnecessarily about whether the lights are turned on or off, or if your breasts are saggier than usual, try diverting your attention. “Turn your focus away from yourself” says Dr. Levinson. “Focus on your partner. Be in touch with their mood, with their feelings, with their responses. That kind of positive feedback will boost your confidence. Be in the moment, in the loving.”

Be Prepared

Preparation is key to a night of breathtaking, aweinspiring, magical love-making that will see you behaving like a saucy ‘femme fatale’, with the confidence of FHM’s sexiest model. Prof. Elna McIntosh President of the South African Society of Sexual Health Advisors, Educators, Researchers & Therapists says you should: • Lock the door • Indulge in special underwear & sleepwear • Bring your favourite sex toys along • Have romantic music playing in the background • Have massage oil on hand If being bolder in the bedroom means that you need to adopt a new persona, dress in sexy lingerie or even catch him off guard – do it! You have nothing to lose, but your insecurities and self doubt!

Poor Body Image: How to get over it!

Here are some exercises from “Love Skills” by Linda de Villers (2002) which women can use to help boost their self esteem: • Collect pictures of people you find sexy who represent your particular body and skin type. • Place these pictures in a conspicuous place in your bedroom, on your wardrobe door, or in your bathroom. • Look at them each day to help remind you of the similarities between them and yourself. • Continue to appreciate every part of your body – don’t allow yourself to be fooled by ‘photoshopped’ media images of celebrities. If you make comparisons, make sure you always compare the ‘real you’ and your body shape with other ‘real people’. ■ WEIGH-LESS DECEMBER/JANUARY



Ask our


Founder of Weigh-Less


Consultant Dietician


Medical Doctor






Personal Trainer





Hi Heidi, I am insulin-resistant. Is my formula supposed to change? I’m concerned because I am losing weight very slowly, and worried that I might be doing something wrong. Is there anything I can do to speed up my weight loss? And, is there anything I should keep in mind while on the Weigh-Less eating plan? Regards, Karin Weeks


Dear Karin The Weigh-Less eating plan is particularly suitable for members with insulin resistance, so your formula does not need to change. There are however, some important rules within your formula that need to be followed. Your Group Leader will be able to advise you as to the specific rules that you need to keep in mind. You can go to your Group Leader with any requests or concerns you have regarding your eating plan, or if you ever need motivation and other tips on how to speed up your weight loss. The main rules that you need to keep in mind are:

• Focus on eating low GI foods • Split your formula into 6-8 smaller meals • Always have a protein / dairy with all meals and snacks

• Exercise regularly CINDY NORCOTT

Business Coach



Always remember that slow weight loss is also effective, as long as it is maintained over time. Regards, Heidi


Hi Mary I travel around the country for business on a weekly basis and, it is during the days that I am away from home (and my routine), that I struggle to stick to my eating plan. The problem is that I am easily tempted by luring hotel, airplane and take-away food. As the Chairman of Weigh-Less, I assume you also travel every now and again, what do you to keep yourself on the ‘straight and narrow’ (so to speak)? Sincerely, Heather


Dear Heather From early on in my personal journey I learnt to make best food choices, even when stressed and travelling. Over the last 41 years at Goal Weight, I have had to learn to re-adapt and re-focus to my circumstances. I remain actively involved in Weigh-Less and also travel a minimum of once a week around the country to keep an eye on my 1600+ Groups and staff. My schedule is always packed; however, I manage it without compromising my eating plan. Keep the following in mind when you are travelling:


• Know your boundaries and work within them • Apply the principles taught to you by Weigh-Less,

The keys to regular bowel movements are as follows:

everyday where possible, to always make best food choices Don’t be afraid to be the best you can be Exercise regularly Always have a purpose and a plan Accept that things go ‘up and down’, but always maintain control

1) Focus on high fibre foods (these are marked in the food choice booklet). 2) Drink 6-8 glasses of water a day. Water helps to dissolve fats and soluble fibre, allowing these substances to pass more effectively through the intestines. Water also keeps you hydrated and washes out toxins. 3) Exercise regularly - your bowel is a muscle. Therefore exercise will also help in bowel movement. 4) Go to the toilet the minute you get the urge. Do not try hold it in as this causes constipation. 5) Decrease your caffeine intake: Caffeine prevents the bowels from following their own natural rhythm. Herbal teas are recommended. Regards, Heidi ■

• Try, • • • •

I had to accept that no one stays the same forever. It is also becoming easier to maintain Goal Weight because I don’t become too paranoid when my weight goes up – I know what I have to do to get it down. As long as you know what to do and do it sooner rather than later, you stay in control. When I eat, I do so with intelligence and Weigh-Less teaches you that. These principles can be applied to your life no matter where in the world you are, but takes perseverance and dedication. Regards, Mary



Hi Ladies I am really struggling lately, what can I do to keep me regular? If my tummy is not loose, then it’s not regular! Please help! Regards, Sharon Nhlanhla Mlaza


Hi Sharon, Your digestive system is one of the most important aspects of your health, and if you don’t take care of it, you could end up with uncomfortable and embarrassing digestive problems. There are the common digestive problems like nausea, bloating, gas, heartburn, diarrhea and constipation, which are temporary, but there are also other, more long-term digestive problems such as irritable bowel syndrome, which could prove debilitating. The good news is that most digestive disorders are caused by an unhealthy lifestyle and thus can be prevented or alleviated.




Health bites Handy health tips for wholesome living


Fibre-rich diets are known to protect against different types of cancer. A new meta-analysis study has examined the impact of fibre on breast cancer risk. Chinese researchers reviewed and collated the results from 10 large international prospective cohort studies, which included a total of 715,195 participants. The results showed that the risk of developing breast cancer was lowest in women with the highest fibre intakes. Indeed, for every 10g increase in dietary fibre, the risk of developing breast cancer is reduced by 7%.


Myths about Eye-care Sources: ; Priya Seetal, Registered Dietician;

When it comes to eye-care, are you short-sighted on what is fact versus what is fiction? Graham Anderson, the principal officer of Profmed debunks popular beliefs...


Glasses are the solution for blurred vision; they do not cause a deterioration of eyesight. Of course, once you start wearing glasses and get used to seeing clearly, you will find that you want to wear your glasses more often. This isn’t dependency, it is simply enjoying good, clear vision.


Most eye discomfort you feel after working at a computer is as a result of the fact that you blink less and your eyes are dry. If you can’t take a regular break from looking at the screen, use moistening eyedrops – not antihistamine ones! Anti-glare screens for your monitor can also help reduce discomfort, but result in a slightly blurred image, which itself can cause eye strain.


Unless you own a General Electric television from the 60s, your eyes are at no risk from radiation being emitted by a television screen. Children in particular have a shorter focal distance than adults, so they won’t strain their eyes by sitting too close.

READING IN DIM LIGHT IS BAD FOR YOU: Although reading in dim light can cause eye fatigue, it doesn’t permanently damage your vision. If you do experience eye fatigue, simply stop doing whatever it was that caused it and it will go away.

Give your kids the gift of good health Launched in October, Centrum® Kids is a scientifically balanced formula of vitamins and minerals in great tasting chewable tablets that are specifically designed to help support children’s health and well-being so they can live their little lives at 100%. Centrum® Kid’s tablets contain xylitol, a natural sweetener, which supports oral health and reduces the risk of cavities. The tablets are colourant free,GMO free and are suitable for diabetics and lactose intolerant. Centrum Kids is available in stores, countrywide, and retails from R89.95 for 30 tablets.

Did you know? South Africans weigh in as the third fattest nation on earth! According to a survey by Glaxo SmithKline in 2010, 61% of the South African population are overweight or morbidly obese. ■ WEIGH-LESS DECEMBER/JANUARY



Life Therapy

OUT with the old ...

IN with the NEW

We can compare breaking bad habits to a rocket ship heading to the moon. In order to overcome the force of gravity, 90% of the fuel expenditure is used in going the first few kilometres. Very little is used in the rest of the long journey. It’s all about committing to breaking the habit and putting in a huge effort from the outset and then gently nurturing and maintaining it. BY JACKIE PSANNIS Our habits, good or bad, make us who we are. The key is controlling them as opposed to them controlling us! I so often say that we do the same things in our life over and over again, we even think the same thoughts over and over…yet we still expect to find ourselves in a different place at the end of each year. By learning how to change your habits, you will be amazed at how, even a small effort can create big changes in your life. In your move away from your old habits and towards new ones, consider the following 5 steps:


. Acknowledge your patterns as habits: Habits are created by repetition. The more something is repeated the stronger the habit is. Even emotional reactions are often created by repeated actions. Acknowledgement is the first step to breaking and creating habits.



. Find the triggers that start the behaviour and interrupt the behaviour: Start noticing when you begin doing the very thing that you want to change, think about the what, where, when, who and how of the habit and see how it compares to other times you have reacted in the same way. Notice the trigger and then stop the cycle as soon as you can.


. Replace the bad habit with a good on: Erasing a bad habit often leaves an unfulfilled need in your life, so fill this void with a replacement need and then DO IT. It’s no good if you decide on changing a bad habit into a good one – it all comes down to DOING it!


. Discover the ‘Why’: Develop solid reasons to change and keep these reasons visible by means of a dream board, reminder cards on the fridge, in your car or your wallet. Unveiling the ‘why’ is therapeutic in itself.


. Repeat, revise and keep on repeating: Habits are created by repetition and broken by repetition. By repeating the replacement habit every time you feel the old habit sneaking up on you, you are getting stronger. Revise this replacement habit if necessary and then repeat it until you get the ‘right-fit’ for the old one.

2011’s OUTS:

2012’s INS:

• Coffee as the first liquid of the day

• A tall glass of water first thing

• Signing a gym contract

• Walk outside, exercise at home

• Yo-yo dieting

• Lifestyle changes in eating

• Impulse purchasing

• Shopping with a list and sticking to it

• Reading sensational newspapers and mags

• Reading inspirational, growing material

• Comparing yourself to airbrushed models

• Respecting your health and loving yourself

• Procrastination

• Start DOING and stop making excuses ■






It’s that time of year again, when we crack the whip and commit to a host of resolutions! Sadly, research suggests that no matter how solid our intentions may be, by mid-year most of us will have given up, with only about 10% ultimately reaching their goals! BY NATASHA LIVIERO New Year’s resolutions are about the desire to make changes for the better. More often than not, the focus is fitness and food, and while these are indeed important issues, our desire to change and improve should be far more reaching, embracing all aspects of our being. We’ve asked four life coaches to share some practical advice for getting it right in 2012 – once and for all.

aspire to achieving a sense of balance. “All aspects of self are linked and for this reason it’s essential to pay attention to mind, heart and soul as much as body. We feel fulfilled when we find meaning. Meaning is not necessarily found in grand ventures but often in the little things such as embarking on a creative project, reading books that interest you and spending time in nature or with loved ones,” explains Lisa.

Change needs planning and routine

When making changes, planning and routine go a long way to ensuring lasting success. It also benefits the entire family by delivering a sense of order and stability. Lisa suggests the following simple steps:

Instigating change is easier said than done. The key is identifying aspects that work for you, without trying to be perfect, and committing to these lifestyle changes. Holistic Wellness Coach, Lisa Steingold, says we often make the mistake of wasting time and energy trying to do the right thing. “If you don’t enjoy gym then don’t force yourself – rather take up dancing or hiking; something that you can connect with.” Similarly, don’t try to change everything at once; that’s a sure-fire way to fail. Instead, choose a handful of improvements and focus on them alone. Lisa also points out the importance of remembering that we are as much emotional, mental and spiritual beings as we are physical. This suggests our changes should 38


1. Sit down as a family (age dependent) and ask each family member what they need. If you have small children, sit down as a couple and work out a routine that works for you. 2. Make a commitment chart of the things you’re going to do and how they benefit you and the family (this is not a pass or fail list, but rather a reminder of ones commitment). 3. Make it easier. If you’ve decided to start an exercise


programme, ask a friend to join you. If you’ve decided to drink more water, have a jug on your desk! It takes 21 days to form a new behavioural pattern, so make it easier for you to commit! 4. Avoid the trap of trying to change your whole life as it isn’t sustainable. Pick three to five small changes that you can manage. 5. You don’t have to manage alone. Call a coach, counsellor, facilitator, trainer, space organiser etc… there’s no shame in having a support structure. In fact, it’s essential.

Goal getters Justin Cohen, international speaker, author, life coach and regular contributor to 3 Talk, says we need to take the time to be clear on what we want and put together a plan to make it happen. “Whenever I ask my workshop delegates, ‘who has goals?’ most people raise their hands. Then I ask, ‘who has written, reviewed and broken down their goals into sub-goals with time frames?’ usually less than 5% of the group raise their hands to that. Research suggests that this (less than) 5% of the population tend to be wealthier and perform significantly better in fields as diverse as sport and business. It makes sense: if you don’t know where you’re going, you’re going to land up somewhere else,” explains Justin. There are many reasons people fail to reach their goals. Justin shares his opinion on the primary reasons goals amount to nothing (take special note of these faults to ensure they don’t happen to you): 1. Not having specific goals. If it’s not specific, measurable and timeframed, it’s a dream, not a goal. 2. Giving up on a goal you failed to achieve. Success usually only happens after a string of setbacks. It’s important to keep trying. 3. Setting a goal that deep down you don’t believe you can achieve. It’s all about action and you’ll only take action when you believe you’ve got a chance! 4. Setting a goal that you don’t really want or want enough. Without passion, chances are you won’t put in the hard work necessary to achieve any great goal.

5. Putting your faith into the goal setting plan rather than yourself. While goal setting is a powerful tool, the real power is you. When you set your goals, you set the sail, but you’ve still got to do the sailing.

The reason people don’t achieve really big goals is because they have really small thoughts! The size of your accomplishment is directly proportional to the size of your thought. The thing is, big thoughts and small thoughts take up the same brain space, so why not go big? ~ Justin Cohen, international speaker and author

Shifting emotional gear Part of preparing yourself to live a richer, more fulfilling life is recognising emotional baggage that is bringing you down. Think about the issues you have carried this year and how you can go about clearing them from your 2012 journey. Deeply ingrained emotions greatly affect the way in which you react to situations and although you may be reluctant to tackle negative issues, you need to work through them to achieve a lighter, more positive existence. While serious emotional baggage usually requires the support of a therapist, fortunately, there are self-help guidelines that you may follow. Kate Emmerson, the Quick Shift Deva, is a life coach and clutter consultant passionate about shifting people into a better living gear! Kate shares her opinion on clearing emotional clutter for a healthier, more harmonious life: “It truly starts with an honest (self) stock-take to get a grip on your situation. I suggest writing a list of all aspects that are draining your life. You may have one or twenty items (or people) on the list! Next, be ruthless as to what you can take constructive/tangible action upon, and which ones you simply need to accept. This is called dealing with things you are tolerating. It will lighten your emotional load immediately. Take it one step further by putting deadlines next to the items to ensure you commit to doing something about them.” Toxic relationships are another emotional issue to wave goodbye to in the New Year. People that bring you down, make you feel bad about yourself or who WEIGH-LESS DECEMBER/JANUARY



simply don’t add value to your life should be distanced. “It’s all about the feeling. When we do not feel good around people, it is time to shift the relationship. Either heal it or move on, but don’t be stuck in limbo. Yes, it is scary, but the results are worth it. If someone is taking your power away and making you feel down, it is because you are giving them your power and it is your responsibility to take it back. You may be stuck in old patterns of how you habitually interact with them, so you will need to find new ways of interacting in order to move forward,” explains Kate. The same principle may be applied to other aspects of your home or work life that you are not comfortable with. Perhaps it’s time to change the way you address the ‘problem’ by approaching it from a different angle?

A helping hand

Time matters The stress of not having enough time has steadily crept upon modern day living. However, without realising it, we are often very busy accomplishing very little! Procrastination, poorly defined goals and a lack of clear direction all contribute towards unnecessary stress and precious time absorption. One change everyone should implement in 2012 is better time management. “Today’s technology supports reactive actions. We’ve been lured into a ‘do it right now’ mentality without giving ourselves time to stop, breathe and smell the proverbial roses. It feels good to be busy. We feel needed, wanted, worthwhile and important. All pretty useless, in my opinion, if there is no time or energy to enjoy it!” says Tracey Foulkes, owner of Get Organized, a professional organiser and productivity company. So, how do we go about maximising our time in a more productive manner? Tracey suggests the following: 1. Set goals in all areas of your life (mental, physical, emotional, spiritual). Do something, anything, every single day towards reaching these goals – the continual awareness will help keep you on track. 40


3. Prioritise according to revenue. Constantly question which task on your list brings you closer to either reaching your goals or generating revenue? This is where your time should be focused – everything else should be categorised as less important and therefore not the best way to utilise your time. 4. Routine takes away the guesswork and wasted hours of asking, ‘what should I be doing now?’ Create a simple spreadsheet of what type of task you should be doing when on any given day. This will ensure you are making time to achieve all your goals, which supports a work/life balance. 5. Rest. Taking a break actually increases productivity because a rested mind and body can get more done in less time.

Don’t check emails first thing in the morning. Statistics show that most people are more productive in the morning, yet use this time for low value, low energy tasks like email. Reserving the first hour of every day for high priority tasks means you get to accomplish the most important things first. ~ Tracey Foulkes, international speaker and productivity specialist

A helping hand Check out this link for the free e-book, Mental Clutter – it’s crazy! by Get Organized, including great strategies for uncluttering your mind! mental-clutter-free-e-book-download-landing-page/

MEN T AL CLUT T ER, it’s crazy!

The key to any change is starting small. Going in guns blazing almost always ends in a plume of smoke! Use this guide as a means to review your life and clarify your thinking to enter the New Year with a renewed sense of zest and purpose. As Mahatma Gandhi said… ‘You must be the change you wish to see in the world!’ ■

Sources: Sources:; Lisa Steingold; Justin Cohen; Tracey Foulkes; Kate Emmerson


If you normally feel overwhelmed and continually feel stuck... Visit Kate’s website, for a complimentary e-course on How to Quick Shift One Thing Now!

2. Use lists to keep your mind uncluttered. Once you’ve written a task down, you free up space in your brain to move forward and take action.


A time to

reflect Many of our calendar years begin with New Year’s resolutions. How about starting a healthy tradition of ‘End of Year Reflection’? Dedicating some time to reflecting on the previous 12 months will be a very valuable exercise, as you will be working with actual events that have happened in your life. I’m not discrediting the potential power of New Year’s resolutions, but these are yet to be actioned in your life. Your reflection time will afford you the opportunity to revisit incidents that you have already successfully come through and ‘survived’. Often you have moved through these times without having looked at the hidden lessons that they have had for you. BY JACKIE PSANNIS 36



Our busy lives and the stress that often comes with daily responsibilities cloud the life lessons that are always there. When we are in the midst of what feels like chaos or some crisis, we certainly do not pop our heads above the dark cloud looking for the lesson. We are simply trying to get through it – it becomes a kind of short-sighted damage control approach to life. This is, of course, completely natural.

Another powerful thing that comes out of reflecting on your journal is that you will be able to pick up on trends or cycles in your life. You will be able to see that you eat, spend money or possibly fight with others when you have had a particular emotional encounter. You will be able to learn the lesson that will break these cycles by simply recognising them yourself. We do so much without actually thinking and this results in us doing the same things over and over again and naively expecting different outcomes.

The fact that you are sitting here reading this magazine means you are a survivor. One only needs to glimpse at a newspaper to realise how many people have not made it to the end of 2011, but you have. This means you have the gift of life and the opportunity to look back and learn how to go forward, wiser.

Dedicating the time to reflection

Grab the reigns of your life and take back the control... I love the expression ‘The University of Life’; it sounds so proactive as opposed to ‘The School of Hard Knocks’, which sounds like our own lives are out of our control. Grab the reigns of your life and take back the control. Sign up for the many lessons that come from your university of life and choose to learn through actually looking back and consciously engaging your mind in thought. Let’s get that grey matter working, let’s exercise our mind like a muscle that hasn’t been used in a while and learn the lessons that have been sent to us in the last year. Consider:

The power of journaling If you haven’t already started a journal I strongly suggest you do. As children many of us keep diaries (mine was a lockable one with a St Bernard on it, which I managed to lose the key for and had to cut the strap off to break into – lesson learnt – keep the key in the same place every time!). Seriously, by keeping a journal you are engaging your brain in a thinking process and you will already be relooking at the events of your day. Even if you are not analysing them at this point you are recording them which will give you the opportunity of reflecting on them at a later stage.

Carve a specific time out to do this exercise. It won’t happen on its own and it really will be life changing. If you have ever sat down with a pen and paper to write down your New Year’s resolutions, you owe it to yourself to dedicate the time to reflection.

Finding the lessons Actually think hard about the lessons that have come out in the last year. Let your look backwards springboard you forwards. Give these lessons more power by writing them down. Once you have uncovered the lessons, see if these could have been used in another incident later on in the year that you are looking at. Imagine that you had the power of this lesson going into a particular incident in your life and imagine how different your journal would have looked, had you acquired the lesson earlier.

We do so much without actually thinking and this results in us doing the same things over and over again and naively expecting different outcomes... At the end of your reflection exercise consider writing down all the lessons that you have learnt and keep them visible for the upcoming year. Seeing your own lessons as you journey forward into 2012 will ensure that you handle similar situations in a better way. There are no better lessons to learn than the most personal of lessons. Your life is your autobiography – see each upcoming year as an opportunity to better the previous one. ■ WEIGH-LESS DECEMBER/JANUARY



Life lessons

Helpful tools to move you through your daily life with purpose.

Off the bookshelf

Did you know?

For countless people around the world, the enlightening words of Louise Hay have served as a beacon, leading them out of darkness and into the light of a better life. In ‘You Can Create An Exceptional Life’ (R135.95) Louise combines her wisdom with best-selling author Cheryl Richardson for a heart-warming read. As they travel through North America and Europe together, Louise and Cheryl cover a range of spiritual principles, including the importance of loving ourselves and our bodies, aging consciously, bringing true prosperity and abundance to the world and how to manifest positive relationships. Available from leading book stores nationwide.

Twitter may tell us more about global mood trends than mere celebrity activities! Researchers, analysing millions of tweets from over 80 countries during a two-year period, noted distinct mood patterns. For example, people are more positive over the weekends than during weekdays. Similarly, our mood is more upbeat first thing in the morning and gradually takes a negative turn as the day progresses! Follow us @weighlessmag for your daily dose of health, inspiration and motivation.

“Nothing lifts me out of a bad mood better than a hard workout on my treadmill. It never fails. To us, exercise is nothing short of a miracle” ~ Cher


As the New Year approaches, chances are you will commit to an exercise plan of sorts. Before you get into action, be sure to invest in a new pair of training shoes that support, protect and cushion your feet and joints. Many people are guilty of rarely replacing their trainers and increasing the risk of injury. As a general rule, moderately active people should replace trainers every twelve months.

2 Minutes to a better day! Feeling overwhelmed? Take two minutes out of your busy day and try one (or more) of our simple ‘pick-me-up’ tools: 1. Be thankful: Think of at least one positive thing in your life and concentrate on the pleasure it brings. Similarly keep a gratuity journal, wherein you diarise positive musings every day. 2. Put on your favourite CD or playlist: Uplifting music is proven to help lower stress levels while energising your mood. 3. Take a step outside: Close your eyes and take ten deep breaths, slowly exhaling between each breath.


4. Smell a lemon: Researchers in Japan suggest a substance found in lemons helps to lower stress levels. 5. Make a “to-do list” and prioritise dreaded tasks first: It is best to get these tasks out the way to reduce the stress and anxiety of knowing you will need to deal with them later. 6. Step away from what you are doing: It’s extremely beneficial to walk away from what you are doing for a couple of minutes to refresh your mind.

Food and your Mood

Research suggests that people who consume a lot of olive oil run a lower risk of depression! Omega-3 rich foods, including salmon, sardines, flaxseeds and walnuts, boast positive mood-boosting benefits. ■




BACK TO SCHOOL The 6 things teachers want parents to know... As teachers around the country gear up for another school year, with it comes the stress of not only managing a new class of eager, overexcited learners but also, a few not-so eager, extremely demanding parents. Sadly, teachers no longer enjoy the authority in the classroom of years past and this, combined with a increase in behavioural and attention problems, is making their job more and more difficult. As such, the onus is now on parents to accept equal responsibility for their child’s education, alongside teachers. So, what can we as parents do to better navigate the parent/teacher relationship? We have asked some of South Africa’s finest teachers what they would like all parents to know in the new school year. BY SAMANTHA WATT 28


1. Communication is key The parent/teacher relationship is an essential component in a child’s schooling success and yet, many of us fail miserably when it comes to knowing how to effectively communicate with our children’s teachers (particularly when it comes to addressing problems with our children). It is like our inner lioness is just waiting to pounce on the first person to prey on our innocent, little cubs. As such, all reason goes out the window and with it, our ability to see clearly. And, whilst there is nothing wrong with being protective, one must always be mindful that sometimes (well… most times!) the teacher does have your child’s best interest at heart.


A teachers from Highbury Preparatory School, a private all-boy’s primary school in KwaZulu-Natal, says, “Parents and children need to trust their teachers as professional men and women, who are looking out for the child’s interest academically, culturally and on the sportsfield.” Marina le Roux, Deputy Head Principle at Colin Mann Primary School in Gauteng adds, “Parents who have children with issues should listen to advice from the school. There are many cases where parents simply refuse to acknowledge that their child has a problem be it academic, emotional or behavioural.”

2. It’s a partnership “Teachers wish for the kind of parent involvement that supports learning. Teaching and learning is best achieved when parents and teachers work together,” says a teacher at Highbury. One high-school teacher from a co-ed school on the West Rand describes the parent/teacher relationship this way; “In business, a supplier will join together with the client to form a partnership in order to fully immerse themselves in the culture and practices of the client’s organisation. This is so that they have a better understanding of the client’s business strategy so that together they can operate side-by-side in order to attain success. In the same way, teachers and parents should work together; with the teacher being the ‘client’ and the parent the ‘supplier’.”

“Teaching and learning is best achieved when parents and teachers work together.” Now this may sound a little odd, after all you are the one paying the school so you should be the ‘client’ however, it is not the label ‘client’ that is of importance, but rather the principle taught in the above-mentioned analogy. “You need to fully immerse yourself in your child’s schooling, and work alongside your child’s teacher in order for your child to attain academic, sporting and interpersonal success,” he says. “Although it is our job to educate the children, it must be done as a partnership with the parent/s. Work schedules do infringe on parent’s time, but no one can replace the parent’s responsibility”, Marina adds.

3. Discipline is essential We have all read and heard stories of children verbally abusing teachers and even children being bullied, beaten and stabbed. And no wonder, in the post-modern world things like manners, high moral values and the need for discipline have fallen by the wayside and with it a general respect for not only teachers, but peers too. “Before, teachers could assist parents with discipline, however with the termination of corporal punishment, the teacher is left defenseless and many children particularly teenagers - know that there is absolutely nothing that teachers can do when they step out of line. As such the responsibility has fallen solely on the parent,” says a teacher from Cape Town.

“Parents need to discipline their children from an early age.” Marina agrees and says, “Parents need to discipline their children from an early age. Children need to be taught to sit still; how to behave in a restaurant and at the movies; bathroom etiquette and of course, respect for adults and, this should all be taught in the home.” She adds that school rules aid in keeping order and parents like children, need to respect school rules. “Often parents complain about the feeble rules and regulations. However, what they don’t understand is that if the smaller systems are not in place e.g. rules pertaining to hair, nails, school uniform etc., the bigger issues of discipline will become an issue later.”

4. Don’t believe everything you hear As parents, it is natural to automatically want to believe everything your child tells you. At the same time however, one should be able to quietly discern when your child is lying and when they are telling the truth. If your child has a serious problem with his/her teacher, address it through the appropriate channels (see Parent/Teacher etiquette). “As parents, try to find out the whole story before overreacting. Be mindful that whatever you are told by your child is his perception and only one side of a story,” says one of the members of the teaching staff at Highbury.




Marina concurs, “We always tell our parents at our Gr. 1 Orientation Day: If you don’t believe all the stories that your child brings home, we won’t believe all the stories that your child tells at school!”

5. Teachers are only human Teachers undertake tasks on a daily basis that requires superhuman strength, agility and patience. For example, at the beginning of the school year, a Grade 1 teacher gets an influx of 30+ six-year olds that don’t know the first thing about reading, writing, adding or subtracting, however a mere 11 months later, they can do all that, plus more! I, myself, have three kids and sometimes struggle to maintain some sort of order in my home however, a teacher performs this task with ten times as many children, with grace and ease. It is because of these capabilities, that one often expects nothing less than perfection from our children’s educators however, it is important to remember that they sometimes do make mistakes.

“If you don’t believe all the stories that your child brings home, we won’t believe all the stories that your child tells at school!” Our high-school teacher from the West Rand says, “Expectations of teachers are high, and rightly so, you are entrusting your precious children with us. But, try remember – we are only human! ” “We can only manage a limited numbers of tasks every day and educating your child is our priority. If we don’t return phone calls immediately, it is not because we don’t care; we are teaching your child” Marina adds.

6. Parent/teacher etiquette - there is such a thing! Our teachers give parents a guide to classroom decorum… • Make an appointment: Teaching is a profession. In the same way as you would make an appointment to see your doctor, parents need to make appointments to see teachers. Taking a teacher away from the classroom to speak to a parent, means that 30 – 40 little souls are not getting the education they deserve.



• Keep the teacher informed: Keep the school and especially the teacher informed about problems at home. Teachers do not want to know the details, but should there be issues that have upset your child, it will have an impact on his/her ability to concentrate. If the teacher is informed, then he/she will understand why your child is having an ‘off day’ and will be able to reassure your child. • Follow the correct channels: Always speak to the class teacher first. Going directly to the teacher sorts out problems quickly and efficiently and often it’s just a misunderstanding as children are not always capable of explaining the facts as they happened. When parents have an issue they wish to highlight/ discuss, they should approach the relevant teacher, not other teachers or parents. Teachers know and understand that you love your children, but what parents often fail to understand is that they [teachers] love your children too. “We play a large role in shaping the lives of your children. We are professionals and, our reward comes from seeing past pupils grow into successful and happy children, knowing that some of this success can be attributed to what was taught in the classroom,” a Highbury teacher concludes. ■


Tips for Tots & Tweens Helpful hints for your children & family


Sources: | | | Badger Sunscreen |Clover | Philips Avent

According to research, dairy is the most important food group in the first few years of a child’s life and should be encouraged throughout their adolescent years. Parents are often faced with the question of how much fat in milk is allowed in their child’s diet as well as which variant. Dr. Chris Lerm, Executive for Brands and Industrial for diary giant, Clover, recommends that you give full cream milk to children between one and four years of age as whole milk has less than 3.30% fat. “Children over four years of age do not need full cream milk, and can have low fat milk which contains 1% and/or 2% fat”, he says.

Did you know? Children between the ages of one and five get 70% of their calcium from cow’s milk.

Tips for Travelling with Tots... • Pack in CD/s with all the family sing-along favourites. packets with a few small surprises before the trip. Keep them hidden until the kids start getting restless, and then distract them with your ‘surprises’.

• Prepare

• Pre-pack a lunchbox of healthy treats

that the kids can munch on throughout the journey. • Stop every two hours. It is not only best for the driver, but for the kids too. Most service stations en route to holiday destinations around South Africa have playgrounds or play areas.


of children in South Africa travel in cars without being strapped in. Don’t be irresponsible this festive season.


Q: What’s the difference between sunblock, sunscreen and sun screens? A: Sunblock is an ‘old fashioned’ term for skin products that block the sun’s rays. The FDA no longer allows the use of the term ‘sunblock’. Sunscreens are skin products that either reflect or absorb UVB and/or UVA rays. Sun screens are some sort of physical object like a screen, an umbrella or clothing.

Make Mealtimes Fun! Refusing to eat new foods is a normal developmental phase for young children. According to a statement by Philips Avent this is called a ‘neophobic’ response to food (‘neophobia’ = fear of new). Here are a few tips on how help your child get over this small hurdle and get back to enjoying their food: • Use interesting eating utensils and activities to keep your child distracted whilst they enjoy their food. • Eat more meals with your child, so that they can learn by copying you. • Offer two courses at meals: one savoury course followed by a yogurt or fruit. This gives two opportunities for your child to take in the calories and nutrients needed, and offers a wider variety of foods. • Offer finger foods (like chopped up raw vegetables and fruit) as often as possible. Children and toddlers in particular, enjoy having the control of feeding themselves with finger foods. ■ WEIGH-LESS DECEMBER/JANUARY

17 A world of wellness @ your fingertips




We are thrilled to announce the launch of our exciting new website. It is dynamic, fun and visually appealing, but most of all, it is an effective communication and support tool that will allow us to better serve you, our members.

Highlights of the new website... Here are just a few of the exciting sections on the new website... ● Meet the Group Leaders: Weigh-Less Group Leaders play a vital role in your weight loss journey. Take a moment to get to know your Group Leader better by reading her story online. You can also find out if your Group Leader has Groups at other times as well as source a different venue that may be more convenient for you. ● Success Stories: Need a little something to give you that extra boost to finally achieve your Goal Weight? Why not take some time to browse through our success stories and their online video clips. Not only will you be left inspired, but also motivated to persevere in your wellness journey. Remember, if they can do it, so can you!

The Official Weigh-Less Facebook Fan Page Facebook has proven to be an excellent platform not only to communicate with our members, but also for members to interact with one another. ‘Friends’ have turned into friendships and Weigh-Less members have ‘poked’, ‘shared’ and celebrated their weekly weight losses with fellow members around the country. So, it is with this in mind that Weigh-Less is proud to present our brand new, customised Weigh-Less Fan Page. Launched in September, this page seeks to continue to provide online support to all our wonderful Weigh-Less members. Join this growing online community at:!/pages/ Weigh-Less/126489747451042

● Goal Weight Calculator: If you would like to get a ‘sneak preview’ of what your Goal Weight range is, we have a quick online test that you can take at your leisure. Remember that this is merely a guide and cannot, and should not replace the accurate personal assessment that your Group Leader will ultimately do. ● Recipes: Feeling creative? Spice up your daily meals with some of our latest recipes. We are constantly coming up with new, thrilling, healthy recipes that are not only good for you, but delectable too! Be daring, try a recipe today! 12


Follow us on Twitter Join this growing online community at:!/Weigh_Less ■

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