Monthly Archives: March 2011

NSW state elections

Election posters at the Nicholson Street booth in Balmain 26 March 2011

The signs are out for a massive swing against the Labor Government: these signs lead voters to the Nicholson Street booth in East Balmain

It looks like it will be a blood bath for Labor in this election. In Balmain, Verity Firth is running her campaign under the banner, Keep Verity. I ask myself why would we? For any of the big issues affecting the people of Balmain which forms a significant part of her electorate, she was noticeable only by her lack of action. Jamie Parker, the Green candidate, looked more like the compassionate, caring Labor person.

On the Barangaroo redevelopment that is opposed by many local councils, the National Trust of Australia, numerous respected members of the community and locals in surrounding districts including Balmain, Verity (a member of cabinet) did absolutely nothing and said virtually nothing.

On Baileys Marine Refueling Depot dumped on the Balmain foreshore (where there should be recreational space as it is one of the best vantage points on the inner harbour), Verity did nothing.

When Sting was going to perform on New Year’s Eve on the old vehicle terminal at White Bay, Verity violently opposed the concert because of the noise: it’s New Year’s Eve. Give me a break, Verity.

As for the rest of the Labor Government, the Premier and the the lot of them, don’t tell people like me that you want a fair go for the people of New South Wales. Barangaroo – you supported big business over the people’s wishes, Baileys Marine Refueling – same. And if I lived in the Hunter region which is being destroyed with mining, I’d be furious.

I’m not saying the Liberals would be any different. I don’t trust them either. The Friends of Barangaroo have been calling for a full enquiry into the process for granting Lend Lease the right to develop (overdevelop) the area. The O’Farrell team remain pretty much mute on the subject.

From my perspective, it’s time all politicians embraced renewable energy options, stopped damaging the environment with coal and gas mines, and started thinking about how, as a state, we can provide an exemplary vision for the future that doesn’t bow to the pressures of large development corporations such as Lend Lease and the like.

If the Keneally Government had been in power when the Opera House was on the drawing board, I’d hate to think what monstrosity would be sitting there today.

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My Stuff By Susie Health Blog

I decided to set up a special website to follow my progress on my modified Dukan Diet that takes into consideration my lifestyle, that is, going out, drinking alcohol and generally maintaining a fun lifestyle.

No one I know wants to or is prepared to stop all socialising for any length of time. Most people can’t do it so give up. That’s why I want to see if it is possible to have a glass of alcohol or two a night, eat out in restaurants, and generally socialise on a regular basis and still achieve weight loss and then permanent weight control on a modified Dukan Diet.

Read all about it how to go from fat to fab and still have a social life on my Stuff By Susie’s Health Blog.

Results after three days on the Attack diet

What’s the Attack stage of the Dukan Diet?

The Attack stage is the protein only stage which is supposed to give the body a jolt into losing weight. It can go from three to ten days. I decided on four days. Now after three on my modified version, I’ve lost just on two kilo which is not too bad.

What’s the modified version? Everything that the book, The Dukan Diet, says to do during the Attack stage but with a Skinny Bitch or two at night. Yes, this is the hedonist’s version of the Dukan Diet.

Tomorrow it’s into the Cruise stage which is one day of protein followed by one day of protein and vegetables.

This is when it gets interesting for the modified version because on Sunday, my husband and I are hosting a soiree with Champagne, wine, beer, and delicious goodies to eat – not recommended at this stage of the Dukan Diet as decreed by the good doctor. However, I want to see if  I can lose my fat tummy and still include the occasional soiree, dinner with friends and the like. How will it affect my progress towards my goal of 60 kilos? That’s what I want to find out.

Recipe for Skinny Bitches

Do you have ‘recipes’ for alcoholic beverages? This is the recipe for making a Skinny Bitch.

Ingredients

Ice
1 measure of Vodka (two fingers)
Soda water
Lime juice
Slice of lime as garnish

To make

Put the ice in a tumbler first. Pour the Vodka over the ice.
Add the soda water and lime juice to taste and the garnish of lime.

Shaken or stirred, just enjoy!

Footnote: Vodka (according to the website I referred to) has no fat, no carbs and no nourishment (pity about the nourishment). Because of the no fat, no carbs content, I figure it is the drink of choice for those who don’t want to give up all the pleasures of alcoholic beverages while on the Dukan Diet.

Check out my dedicated website about health, hedonsim and maintaining your goal weight on the Dukan Diet.

Susie’s oat bran galettes

According to the book, The Dukan Diet, one and a half tablespoons of oat bran is a daily must-have food. Galettes in French equals pikelets in Australian, pancakes in Canada or USA.

Ingredients

6 tablespoons oat bran (course is best)
6 tablespoons of non-fat dairy (cottage cheese, ricotta cheese, quark, low-fat yoghurt or combinations of any)
3 eggs (2 whites only and one with yolk)
salt, pepper, herbs such as chives, thyme, parsley

To make

Put all the ingredients into a bowl and whisk until thoroughly combined. If the mixture looks too thick, thin with some skim milk. But you don’t want it to be too runny (after a couple of times making these, you’ll get a feel for the consistency).

Spoon the mixture into a non-stick pan. When small bubbles appear on the surface, turn over. Remove.

Serving suggestions

I serve these galettes with short cut bacon (low fat) and poached or scrambled eggs. On protein and vegetable days, I add mushrooms, spinich or tomatoes. Two galettes per person: the rest go into the fridge for the following two days.

Fitting the Dukan Diet into a hedonist lifestyle

Can the Dukan Diet work for someone who leads a hedonist lifestyle?

Apres skiing drinks at Long John's Pub at Silver Star Ski Mountain, British Columbia

Did I say that I am a hedonist? Perhaps. Rigidity is not my thing. Life has to be fun and there has to be room for flexibility. With a five-week tour of North America now behind me – with all the eating out, parties and visiting friends for dinner – following the Dukan Diet religiously wasn’t going to work.

However, I wanted to see how a more flexible regimen would work and if it were possible to still lose some weight while on a working holiday in the land of the full pair of trousers (that’s the good ol’ USA) where fat and sugar are staples.

And I have to say, it’s doable. I did five days of the Attack stage the week prior to leaving and lost about three kilos. Then on the trip, I was conscious of trying to eat protein and cooked and raw vegetables most of the time. The Dukan galettes replaced bread every day. I added two celebration meals each week where deserts and other treats were included.

Because I was writing skiing news articles for the website, Ski The World, I was getting plenty of exercise while testing skis and ski gear.

During the five weeks, I lost another two to three kilos. This, despite the fact that I did partake in alcoholic drinks each night. All in all, I proved The Dukan Diet can have some flexibility built in to suit a more relaxed lifestyle.

Even now, back home, there will be parties, dinners out with friends. I intend to indulge in the odd glass of champagne or red wine, a glass or two of Vodka (Skinny Bitches are my favourite) so really, this is the Susie Stevens’ modified version of the Dukan Diet.Will it still work? That’s what I want to find out.

Hello Dukan Diet, goodbye fat

This is the before image of my body shape: before The Dukan Diet

Oh My God! This spare tyre of fat has to go!

I loved the movie, The Goodbye Girl, and I’m hoping that I can say goodbye to a large portion of me over the coming months: 10 kilograms in fact.

Hey, I didn’t think I was that fat until:

  • I realised that I couldn’t see my toes when I looked down
  • I saw this photo of myself and thought, ‘No, that can’t be slim me’
  • My doctor gently but firmly suggested a shed the excess fat sitting around my waist (is there any other kind of fat?)

Unlike anorexics who always see a fat person in the mirror, I usually see myself as slimmer than I really am. This is OK until reality hits. So I joined a gym and, for three years, I have tried to loose that surplus-to-requirements fat around my middle. It hasn’t budged. I eat sensibly, wholesome foods made at home (no preservatives or pre-packaged foods full of fat and sugar). Still, that spare tyre won’t move.

Then I read about The Dukan Diet, which is not so much a diet as a program to melt fat off the body. Now, this I am interested in. The book by Dr Pierre Dukan, promises a permanent solution to being overweight – if you follow the four-step plan.

Let me tell you, I do not diet. I don’t like diets and I think diets are evil. They don’t make people slim, they make people fat. The weight comes off, then goes straight back on (and often a bit more too).

However, I read the book front to back and decided to give this fat-reduction program a go. I figure I need to drop 10 kilos or 22 lbs: that’s nearly two stone in the old system. Stay tuned for the results.

I now have a dedicated website about the Dukan Diet (modified for those who have a social life).