Tom Kerridge presents Lose Weight for Good
Tom Kerridge Presents Lose Weight for Good

Photo courtesy of BBC

Tom Kerridge: Lose Weight For Good on BBC2

The next episode, 8pm 24th January 2018 on BBC2, looks at takeaway food with recipes for curry, kebab and burgers!

A Michelin-starred chef and a lower calorie diet plan wouldn't normally go hand in hand, right?

Tom begs to differ. He's out to prove the 'd' word doesn't have to mean 'flavourless, bland and unexciting food' in a new series starting from 3rd Jan 2018.

"I’m hoping this will help more people to lose weight and still love what they eat. They’ve all got strong reasons why they want or need to lose weight. So they’ve agreed to cut down their calorie intake, and in return I’m providing them with recipes they can make and enjoy at home.” Says Tom

We like him already!

(If you'd like to know what your calorie allowance should be to lose weight, you can take a free trial of the wlr tools.)

The lowdown

Following 13 people over 6 episodes, Tom Kerridge's Lose Weight for Good goes out on Wednesdays on BBC 2 at 8pm.

The dieters all come from Tom's local area and are a pretty diverse bunch. Amongst the group there's a vicar who loves horse riding but is too big for the smaller animals, a man who works in a gym but doesn't use it, a mum of four who has issues with comfort eating.

How does Lose Weight for Good Work?

Tom shed 12 stone himself over the last 4 years and is using his culinary skills and expertise to inspire and help his diet gang to lose weight.

Tom used a low-carb plan for himself but says,

'That alienates a lot of people because they find cutting out bread, pasta and rice can be too restrictive.'

He admits that if you take something out of someone's diet that they love, they're going to hate it and they won't stick to it.

He has devised a diet plan that follows NHS guidelines and is based on the principle that if you eat fewer calories and get moving, you will lose weight.

Yay! Just like the principles behind WLR!

There are some surprising additions to his menu - baked doughnuts instead of fried and kebabs that aren't all greasy and full of fat.

Sounds good so far! We will be watching. Will you? Watch this space as we review each episode.

Review of Episode 3 - Special Treats

(First aired Wednesday 18th January 2018)

This episode looked at special treats and we met the three members of the diet gang that regularly go to restaurants and enjoy dinner parties. The recipes included an indulgent chocolate pot and Tom showed one of the diet gang how to cook a low calorie three course meal for friends.

The diet gang

Jenny is a Church of England vicar with a real passion for food and dinner parties. She weighs in at 15 stone 4lbs and her new calorie limit is 1500 per day. She said,

‘It’s in the bible actually, about feasting and fasting but I think I’ve lost track of the fasting bit of life!’

Jenny’s reason for committing to a diet is because she loves horse riding and would like to be able to ride the smaller horses, but she is limited because of her weight. She ultimately wants to lose 5 stone. Her and Tom talked about the 12 weeks that they would be following his recipes and then continuing it beyond that as a way of life.

Sandra is an event manager. Her job means that she is often wined and dined and she attends food tasting events regularly. She goes out to dinner parties a lot and her life seems to revolve around food.

She weighed in at 14 stone 3lbs and her new daily calorie allowance is 1500. She said,

‘Eating food and drinking, they’re one of the pleasures of life.’

She’s been looking for a dietary plan that fits with her lifestyle for a while. She said,

‘I’ve tried lots of them. You know, you have to kiss a lot of frogs before you find your prince, so therefore I’m trying several diets before I find the right one.’

She wants to look good in her graduation pictures when she finished her master’s degree.

Ki is a photographer. He quite often gets home really late and is starving. So on the way home, even knowing that he is going out for dinner, he will stop and get something to eat. His weight was 17 stone 12lbs. At 6’2” (and being a man) his new daily calorie allowance is 2100.

Ki loves food but he doesn’t cook – his fiancé normally cooks everything. Tom popped in to help him prepare an 800 calorie, three course meal for a dinner party.

Ki’s weight gain actually came from two sensible choices he made a few years ago – he gave up drinking and then quit smoking. He said,

‘I just thought anything I was doing without drinking was a bonus at that time. But nobody said to me, you know, you’re eating 10 pieces of toast! With thick butter and marmalade on. So I noticed my weight shoot up after I stopped drinking and smoking.’

Ki is getting married soon and wants to look good for the big day.

The whole diet gang decided to meet for a family BBQ, all set up by Ozi. Everyone brought a low cal food to either go on the BBQ or as a side and, even though the weather wasn’t great, they all had a fab time – just another example of how changing your eating habits doesn’t mean you can’t have a social life and that surrounding yourself with people on the same mission can really help you reach your goal!

The diet gang are about half way through the 12 weeks now. And because they have all lost weight, their calorie count needs to come down a little. Tom explained that to them and said the new count would be from now. For most of them the change would be quite small.

Jenny has lost 8 ½lbs so far, Sandra has lost 11lbs but Ki has lost a stone and a half! The group's overall loss is slowing down a little, as you would expect, but they are ticking along nicely.

The recipes

Beef stroganoff was first. This creamy dish looked amazing and by tenderising the rump steak and flattening it, Tom made a small amount of steak go a long way! Instead of using stock, he used beef consommé which is lower in calories. This came in at 795 calories per serving. Quite a lot of calories but for a special occasion it’s a delicious dish.

Italian style sea food pot. Loads of veg and taste in this dish with a bit of orzo pasta and loads of protein with the fish. This pasta recipe comes in at 400 calories a portion.

Tomato, ricotta & basil salad was the next recipe. Tom’s new take on a Tricolore Salad. He swapped mozzarella for ricotta and made a low calorie, no oil dressing for the salad meaning the calorie count for the dish was just 150.  He also took a blow torch to the tomatoes to give the whole dish a lovely charred taste. A great starter or a lunch.

Tom made the Coffee & chocolate custard pots for Jenny and Sandra to taste. He added an unconventional aromatic flavour to give the desert a kick – ground cardamom! These were really simple to make with low fat ready-made custard as the base and just 155 cals each. The girls said their ideal desert would involve chocolate and cream – these were just perfect!

Another recipe that Tom had sent to the group was Soy-glazed salmon salad. With ginger, garlic, light soy sauce, mushroom ketchup and hot chilli sauce as a marinade. 320 calories!

Next time, Tom is looking at kebabs, burgers and curry for those that are really missing their takeaways!

Review of Episode 2 - Quick and Easy

We all have busy lives which is easy to use as an excuse to reach for convenience foods rather than spend time in the kitchen cooking something healthy.

This episode introduced 3 of the diet gang that lead really busy lives and have struggled to follow diets in the past because they don’t have a lot of time to spend prepping food or they have very little confidence in the kitchen.

In fact, one of them hasn’t cooked since he was in the Scouts!

The diet gang

David is 45 and a commercial director for an airline. He weighed in at 23 stone 1lb. He never cooks! His new calorie limit 2400 cals per day. He said,

‘Because I don’t have too much time, doing things that are quick and easy would be massively helpful to me.’

David is really worried about his health – heart attack, stroke etc.

Next up was Kayleigh. She is 31 and weighs 20 stone. She has a busy lifestyle taking care of her autistic son.

His sleep is an issue so they don’t get a huge amount of sleep at night. Her new calorie allowance is 1900 cals per day. She said,

‘I used to get like a sandwich and a steak slice, instead of just having a sandwich or a steak slice on its own. I’d have both.’

Kayleigh was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes and wants to lose weight to improve her health. Type 2 diabetes can be resolved with weight loss.

Wound care specialist nurse Sam is 38 and weighs 15 stone. Her job means that she eats erratically. And is quite often tempted by biscuits and sweets from patients on the wards.

‘I tend to eat on the go so it’s often quick, sugary foods or something very carby. Sandwiches, stuff you can pull in at a garage and quickly ram down your throat.’

Sam is getting married at the end of the year and doesn’t want to start trying on dresses until she has lost some weight.

Getting married is quite often a motivation for weight loss that we come across at wlr – it’s good to have a goal in mind.

Since the first meeting, the diet gang had created a messaging group and were staying in touch with each other, giving support and chatting about how things were going. Tom said,

‘This is great news because it’s been shown that you are more likely to lose weight when you diet with others.’

That’s why wlr has the forums for members to encourage, support and share with each other! J

As mentioned earlier, David never cooks. So Tom popped round to help him out with a chicken casserole.  Once cooked, David, his wife and two kids sat down to sample his ‘Dad Dinner’. It looked gorgeous and seemed to be a hit with the family. David said,

‘I can see with the cooking that actually gives you control over what you are eating. You can’t help but love what you’ve created for yourself to eat in the evening because I’m actually involved in the process.’

I’m sure his wife will be very happy to see David in the kitchen a bit more often!

The recipes

Pasta is not that high in calories – the issue normally lies with the sauce. Tom’s first recipe was for Pea & ham pasta. This dish is cooked in just 10 minutes but isn’t stingy with taste.

Tom used ‘snail’ pasta but said penne or fusilli would work just as well. He also used anchovies for flavour – he said don’t view them as fish, see it as a salty flavour kick to anything you add it to.

For the creaminess that you would normally get with a carbonara style dish but without all the calories, he used half fat crème fraiche. This dish was 585 calories per portion.

His next recipe was for courgette fritters that he got Sam to make for lunch. She got her cooks tool kit that all the diet gang got at the first meeting, out of the top cupboard and the items inside still had the label on! Tom said,

‘So the label’s still on it, the tool kit was in the cupboard, highest up!’

The courgette fritters take around 20 minutes to prep and cook and were served with a fresh salad for a great lunch. At 218 cals for four, a quick and easy lunch that doesn’t break the calorie bank.

The next recipe was Scrambled Cajun Eggs. Eggs are a brilliant start to the day and will help combat mid morning snacking because they will keep you fuller for longer.

Light single cream, 4 eggs, red onion, green pepper, kale, baby spinach, Cajun spice all combined to make a really tasty looking brekkie that comes in at just 310 cals and sets you up for the day.

Tom says that denying ourselves our favourite foods is setting us up to fail. So his next recipe was for French apple tarts with 0 fat Greek yoghurt and maple syrup topping with chia seeds.

Using low fat puff pastry, some crisp, sharp, green eating apples, a little dollop of apricot jam, this recipe looked delicious and would make a great, lower calorie pudding. Each tart was 325 cals.

The next recipe was an easy pizza made from flour tortilla, chopped tomatoes, puree, half fat grated mozzarella, dried parmesan, garlic, oregano, anchovies, olives, sun blush tomatoes, capers, salami, courgette, mushrooms and Parma ham – loads of topping on these beauties! 440 cals per pizza.

Tom invited David, Kayleigh and Sam over for a fish supper. He made Fish-in-a-bag Chinese style. Well, I say he made, he showed the diet gang how to make their own. I could almost smell the deliciousness through the TV!

A really straight forward dish but impressive enough for a dinner party. Served with a portion of jasmine rice, the fish dish was 550 cals per serving.

The diet gang have lost 63lbs in the last two weeks. Even Ozi, who actually gained in the first two weeks, is now seeing a downward trend on the scales. Sam has lost 9lbs and Kayleigh has lost 11lb. David has managed to lose an impressive 1 and a half stone in the last four weeks!

A steady weight loss of 1-2lbs a week is recommended, however, starting from a higher weight, David is experiencing a higher weight loss, even though he is eating the same recipes as the others.

This is pretty normal for someone of David’s size but the boost he must be feeling will keep him going!

Another great programme overall with some fab recipes – I am loving this show!

Review of Episode 1 - Comfort Food

The first episode focussed on comfort eating – a really good place to start in my opinion.

Tom met the diet gang at his pub over a lower calories breakfast, which included doughnuts!

They were supplied with a diet pack that included 15 recipes to be used over the following two weeks.

Tom cooked some of these recipes for us on the show and they looked absolutely gorgeous!

The food

The Apple and Raisin Muffins at 190 cals each were very popular at the initial breakfast meeting. To cut back on fat and sugar, Tom used bananas instead of butter and sugar.

The One-Layer Lasagne made my mouth water! Tom roasted the lean beef mice before adding it to the sauce. He also replaced the pasta sheets with courgette – a bit like an Italian Hotpot.

To cut calories without losing flavour, the creamy topping is made from ricotta, grated mozzarella and a tablespoon of dried parmesan. It came out of the oven with a beautifully browned, crispy top. Gorgeous and only 495 cals per portion!

For takeaway lovers the Southern-Style Chicken is a must. To make is 385 cals per portion (3 pieces), it’s baked instead of fried but still has a crispy coating. A real, guilt-free treat.

The diet gang

This episode introduced Louise, Ozi and Leigh. All three have comfort eating issues. (Like a lot of us eh?)

Louise, 27 and 14 stone 9lbs, said that she ate to make herself feel okay.

‘Whenever I’m happy or feeling really sad or stressed, that’s when I will binge.’

She works in a pub and finds there is temptation everywhere, especially the crisps and nuts and drinks after the shift. Tom said,

‘Your social life doesn’t have to change but your outlook to social situations does change.’

Leigh’s problem seems to be making time for herself. She is 39 and 20 stone 1lb and a very busy mum of four. Her time is spent focussed on the kids and she quite often gets to 2pm without eating anything and is starving!

‘I might not eat til about 2 o’clock because I haven’t thought about myself and then it’s binge, binge, binge, binge, binge, binge!’

For Ozi, loneliness seems to be the issue. He is a full time stay at home dad who moved to the UK two years ago, leaving his support network and friends behind. He is 36 and 20 stone 2lb. He says that the biscuit barrel is now his best friend.

All three seemed to be enjoying the new foods Tom had them cooking and eating. Louise said,

‘It’s flavours that I’ve never thought to put in something before. I’m learning something new each time I cook.’

The program seems to be coming from a sensible place with regards to weight loss – no fads, no products, just simple calorie counting – we love it so far!

The gang lost 73lbs accumulatively over the first two weeks, so off to a good start.

Episode 3 promises recipes for treats. We're looking forward to that one in the wlr office - hopefully Joanne will be motivated to put her chef's hat on!

In the meantime Channel 4 have a new series of How to Lose Weight Well, where different diets are put through their paces.


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