Worried whether your weight’s okay? Hopping on the scales will give youan idea, but it’s not always perfect,especially if you have more musclethan most women – and many of ushave a love/hate relationship with thescales, anyway. If you prefer to make yourbathroom a weigh-free zone, I recommendanother, more accurate way of checking ifyour weight is healthy – and it’s as simpleas getting the tape measure out! Validatedin a recent issue of the journal PLoS One,the method simply involves measuring yourheight and your waist (the most ‘inny’ part,or, if you don’t go in much, the midwaypoint between the bottom of your ribs andyour hip bones).

Once you have the twomeasurements, simply divide the figure foryour waist with the figure for your heightand if that ratio is below 0.54 you’re fine.If, however, the figure is 0.59 or above, itindicates you probably have too much fatlaid down around the middle and could dowith shedding a few pounds. If you wantan even easier way, simply measure out alength of string the same length as yourheight, then cut it in half and keep thishandy. Every now and again put it aroundyour waist and if it fits comfortably aroundwithout you needing to breathe in lots,you’re fine! This method is especially goodas it focuses on abdominal obesity, whichis more strongly related to diabetes andheart disease than other types.



Is the low-Fodmap diet as good as I’ve heard for helping IBS?

Studies suggest the low-Foodmap diet improves symptoms in 75 per cent of IBS sufferers by lowering consumption of fermentable carbohydrates Fodmap stands for fermentable, oligo-, di-, mono-saccharides and polyolsand these short-chain carbohydrates can cause havoc by being fermentedby bowel bacteria (and producing gas), and by attracting water into thelarge bowel, which can cause urgency and diarrhoea. There are no self-help books or apps to help you create a low-Fodmap diet as it’s prettycomplicated. So much so that I’ve created a Fodmap version of my GutPlan Diet, but only online as it needs extra coaching and personalisation.For more information, visit



If you’re looking for healthier bread thatalso tastes amazing, I recommend anyof The Heart of Nature loaves. Packedwith wholegrains and seeds, all the loavesfrom this brand are high in fibre andnaturally have a lower glycaemic index(GI), which means they won’t causesurges in blood glucose or insulin(therefore helping keep your diabetesrisk in check).A good source of essential fatsand fibre, the loaves supply plenty ofmagnesium and iron, which are importantfor good energy levels. Created from atraditional Polish recipe, The Heart ofNature comes in several varieties – I findthe original and prune versions tasty andversatile, and these two are available fromWaitrose for £2.99 for 500g (for the fullerrange, go to slice of any variety tastes great simplytoasted, or try topped with smashedavocado and poached egg or soft cheeseand some sliced strawberries.

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