ELLE's Month of Dieting: The Results

Georgia Collins and The Wine Diet:

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Emma Smith and The Dukan Diet:
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Of all the diets I've tried: juicing, Atkins, hay diet, cabbage soup, you name it, I've tried it - the Dukan beats them hands down.
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I don't know if it was the prospect of a teeny weeny bikini to get myself into in a month in Cape Town on holiday with the OH and his brothers but the 5 days of lean protein were a doddle. And as I slowly reintroduced vegetables, I found myself completely sated, not fantasising about food the way I have in the past.

So the results? 10lbs in total, and I'm sticking to it in principle. The weights fallen from my waist too which is exactly what I was looking for. And now I don't feel like hiding under a kaftan for the entirety of my Christmas in the sun.
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Georgia Collins and The Wine Diet:

So the month is nearly up and to be honest I’ve done well on my diet, except well, it didn’t really feel like a diet. I’ve been eating my oily fish, cutting back on sugary food and drinking the compulsory glasses of wine, but it’s not made much of a difference. Okay so my jeans might be a little looser but there’s been no drastic change and I put that down to the fact that the food I’ve been eating isn’t drastically different to what I normally eat, and isn’t that sort of the point of a diet? While it may not have been the solution for me I do think this would be suited to someone trying to kick their bad eating habits but without cutting out treats completely.

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Amy Lawrenson and The Water Secret:

The Water Secret isn't just about shifting the pounds, it focuses on improving skin and general well-being (although I did lose 4Ibs in the first week). I'd recommend it for anyone who suffers from skin problems or is feeling sluggish and lacking energy. Here's my confession, I didn't last the whole month - I lost motivation and found it a little too confusing. So, instead I have switched allegiances to Dr Dukan and his diet that took France, and Emma, by storm. Since telling people I'm on it, I've heard some amazing success stories (one friend’s mother lost three stone!) I’m keeping my fingers crossed and my meals protein only.

Suzanne Scott and the James Duigan Clean and Lean Diet:

This wasn’t a quick fix, you won’t lose 8lb’s in a week or have instantly defined muscles, but then again it doesn’t claim to be. It’s healthy eating from the get-go. Whilst it leans heavily towards protein, unlike monotonous protein only diets, a variety of greens are on the ‘ok’ list. If like me coffee is your daily staple then be warned, only one cup of organic coffee is allowed per day. Likewise sugar and refined carbs are out. Combined with the meal plan is a really simple exercise regime that you can easily slot in to your day. My favourite is Tube Walking – a slow walk interspersed with squats all the while with a taught exercise band around your ankles. After a few of these you’ll discover muscles you didn’t know you had. Whilst I wasn’t able to stick to the plan as religiously as I would have hoped (socialising and chocolate cravings got the best of me) there are things I have adopted from the book such as eating a protein based breakfast which according to James ‘shifts the body to fat burning mode and keeps you fuller for longer.’

Sophie Gridley and The 'I' Diet:

The I diet – not one of my biggest successes. It’s prescriptive and repetitive: not necessarily drawbacks as these are the techniques the “I” diet employs to get you on the straight and narrow. For two weeks you repeat a three-day rotation of menus, limiting variety, and thus minimising temptation and calorie consumption. It’s not a crazy starvation menu and it all makes sense. But these menus (which you are told not to stray from and not to alter) are probably a walk in the park for the average American – but a lot of the foods are rarefied and I couldn’t find them. They don’t even have fat-free peanut butter and low carbohydrate bread in Selfridges food hall.

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So I improvise – and this is where it all goes wrong. Subbing herbs, spices and veg is probably not a problem, but reluctant to bore my palate by limiting my normally varied diet I stray wildly from the “I” diet’s prescribed path. Making it even more difficult are the gastronomic perks of my job – cupcakes arrive in their droves and the temptation is just too much. I don’t want to eat carrot sticks as much as I want to eat butter icing. And so I see no results.

But this is a diet programme that makes heaps of sense (and these are difficult to come by). I have gleaned lots of tips to incorporate into my own eating when I feel I need to reign it in (erm, always) – like high-fibre foods keeps you full and well, and black coffee is a dieting godsend for the caffeine dependent. Plus, I’ve returned to the great recipes in the book since I finished. Just plan ahead, shop somewhere specialist, and don’t expect much if you’re inclined to rebel.
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