Reviews & Foreword


Faith Toogood of ITV’s Daybreak and The Biggest Loser, Bariatric Specialist Dietitian, Southmead Hospital says:

You have picked up this book which probably means that a part of you, however small, is thinking about becoming healthier. What a great place to start and this book will provide you with safe, sensible and sound nutrition and lifestyle advice.

Managing body weight can seem like a battle. New ‘weapons’ in the war against excess weight are being churned out on a daily basis and we fight a relentless battle in our head, trying to work out what is ‘good’ and what is ‘bad’. We are tempted with the latest fad diet, promising to dissolve inches and drop pounds in days and when we fail at these impossible and unsustainable regimes we feel like a failure. As a society we want a quick fix; we avoid taking any responsibility for our eating, hoping that the latest fad diet or slimming pill will ‘sort us out’ and do it for us. It won’t.

We need to take back control of our relationship with food. We need to empower ourselves around food and realise that every time we put something in our mouth, we make a choice. This book is about supporting you to make the right choices.

Eating well is about balance; balancing expectations, balancing nutrients and balancing the position of food within our lives. It is not about being perfect and it is not about deprivation and hunger.

This book will guide you through the basics of eating well, not only showing you how to achieve this within the context of a busy life but and also how to enjoy the journey! It is packed full of delicious recipes and genuinely useful tips that will ease you into your new healthier lifestyle.

This is a hugely valuable book. A no-nonsense approach that shows quite brilliantly that it is indeed possible to eat, drink and be slim!

Wishing you well along your healthier path and hoping that you have plenty of fun getting there.

Faith Toogood.


What’s Good To Do

Reviewed by Debbie Douglas

I recently received East, Drink & be Slim by Polly Hale for review and I very nearly gave up on this book whilst reading the introduction.

The author is slim, has always been slim and will probably always be slim. I decided her opinions would be valueless to someone like me who has struggled with her weight all her life. However I kept reading and I am glad I did. I think, like a lot of overweight people, I kid myself I am not fat, that I don’t eat too much and everything is fine. Then I get to a certain size decide everything is not ok, binge diet, get fed up and start again. Eat, Drink & be Slim is a refreshing honest insight into why I am overweight and I am overweight not cuddly or big boned just plain old fashioned overweight. There is no fancy magic formula just practical down to earth advice which I am finding easy to incorporate into my everyday family life.

I love the advice that you shouldn’t deny yourself anything. Everything is allowed in moderation. I still have a long way to go to get to my weight loss goal but I am hopeful with the advice contained in Eat, Drink & be Slim I have made the first step on my journey with some sound, safe advice beside me.

Rating: 4/5


Fit As A Fruitcake!

Angelique at Fit as a Fruitcake enthusiastically requested to review ‘Eat Drink and Be Slim’ when we met at the Mumpreneur UK Awards in November.

Here’s what Angelique had to say…

Polly Hale was kind enough to write a guest post for my blog a while ago on her business The Fit Mum Formula. Her aim, since having children, has always been to help mums, who find little time to focus on their own fitness, to stay fit and eat well.

She wrote her first book, Eat Drink and be Slim, as a mum with very young children and kindly sent me a copy to review. At the time it was written, she clearly wasn’t quite the same fitness fan in terms of exercising that she is now. She is now a qualified Personal Trainer and nutritionist. But nutrition has always been important to her. She wanted to write a no nonsense guide on how to eat properly, to avoid unhealthy weight gain, to lose unwanted extra weight, and all this without having to turn to fad diets. Polly’s approach is to change the way you eat and make that a lifestyle choice. If you are already fit and eating well but want ideas on eating to sustain advanced fitness levels, full on gym workouts or training for an event for example, this is not necessarily the book for you.

It is, however, certainly a good book for anyone looking to lose weight. Perhaps if you have tried certain diets but they haven’t worked for you. Or you want to still be able to enjoy those meals you crave, then this is definitely worth a read. It is also a good read for anyone just needing to remind themselves not to slip into bad eating habits, and to help make you think about certain food choices when feeding your family.

Obesity is an increasing problem in the UK and if everyone followed some of the tips in this book, we’d be off to a good start in helping address the problem, which is fast becoming a crisis. Also, as a Mum, I know being aware of what you eat and what you feed your family is important because your children learn from you and are likely to follow your lead in that respect.

I did consider, albeit briefly, trying a sugar free month in my home for the whole family after reading an article by Louise Carpenter (read it here) but decided that was going to be impossible with my kids! I have however made some little changes, such as only buying natural yoghurt for the children to eat with fruit and granola if they are still hungry after a meal, rather than sugar filled flavoured yoghurts, swapping biscuits as a snack after school for rice cakes or nuts, and allowing a lot less fruit juice consumption (I was already fairly strict about that but have got more so). My eldest son is very interested in nutrition and fitness, which certainly helps, and he’s been asking to help cook more frequently, so hopefully I’m setting him up on the right path for later life.

Anyway, back to Polly’s book. It focuses very strongly on the calorific content of foods and she offers sensible advice such as watching your portion size. She gives lots of clear examples such as this one:

A 400g baked potato with 300g of baked beans contains 459 calories, compared to a 200g potato with 200g beans and an undressed side salad which contains 326 calories. It’s easy to think you are eating relatively healthily but sometimes we still eat more than our body needs.

Or another example of a tuna mayonnaise and cucumber sandwich which contains 498 calories and 26g of fat. Whilst a tuna and cucumber sandwich, without the mayo, contains 285 calories and only 4.7g of fat. Which is a scary difference! By cutting out little things like the mayo in a sandwich, you can have a huge impact on your health and weight.

Her book contains recipes, calorie charts, loads of useful tips and common sense advice that we just need reminding of sometimes. It’s the type of book you can dip in an out of when you need some inspiration for a healthy but still delicious meal for the family or just to motivate yourself to not go hunting for snacks out of boredom or tiredness. An interesting point Polly makes is about a study which has shown that people who have enough sleep have more of the hormone leptin in their system. Leptin lets you know you are full. Sleep deprived people have more of the hormone ghrelin which stimulates appetite. Which explains why it’s even more important to get a good night’s sleep!

To buy a copy yourself and learn the simple ways to lose weight described in the book click here to go to Amazon.

What Readers Have Said

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