Difficulties of frugal weight loss

We are not even one week into our weight loss programme and already I’m concerned about the cost. Once upon a time, when salad was seasonal, it was cheap at this time of year. Well, it isn’t anymore. After reading Hardup Hester’s blog I went to Tesco and bought three packs of meat for £10, which I divided up into: three portions of pork steak, two portions of chicken and three portions of mince. We are used to filling up on things like homemade quiche, or homemade cake that I make for pennies. Until we get used to less calories, we stave off hunger with masses of fruit and veg and they are not cheap. If only Tesco would sell a ‘fruit and veg’ bundle for £10, like they do the meat.

We did OK with last night’s dinner and ate: roasted veggies/butternut squash/roasted carrots, roasted parsnip and roasted new potato (only one small one each) and roasted beetroot – we’ve bought some spray on oil, which seems to stop them from drying out and not burning. We had one chicken breast each and then a pile of steamed frozen green beans (which were really OK) Although we’re not spending money on Weight Watchers, I have all of their literature and advice and we’re following their points plan. I did this previously and lost three stone; kept the weight off for two years and then put it all back on again. I’m still managing to keep our food budget at under £2 a person a day. DB is missing sweet things and he loves the occasional biscuit or piece of cake so we mooched around Morrisons for something low fat yet nice. We came away with WW chocolate biscuits and some low fat yogurts. What concerns me is the list of chemical inside them. Heck knows what those will do to us.

Weigh day is Tuesday……….just picture this! DB wandering down the corridor in his pants!!! ready to be weighed! I’m his weight loss advisor and he is mine! Our target is to lose 10% of our body weight initially and then keep it off!


20 thoughts on “Difficulties of frugal weight loss

  1. Hi FQ
    I rarely eat fruit in the winter as it is so expensive & even now it's not that cheap. At the moment I'm buying grapes when they are £3 for 2 punnets & they just about last me a week, not much good for losing weight though as they are packed full of sugar.
    Have you thought of making something like flapjacks with less sugar, or weetabix cake with apple in, I've made this & completely for gotten to add the sugar, do you have the recipe? If not I'll let you have a copy.


  2. I was doing Slimming world and lost 1 1/2 stone in twelve weeks, but had to come off it due to the cost. It's outrageous the cost of eating healthily. Good Luck anyway, you are so resourceful I'm sure you will do really well.xx


  3. if you google rosemary conley kims cake it is a really lovely fat free tea bread which you can make using “value” dried fruit. lovely with a cup of tea at the end of a dieting day!!


  4. WW and slimming world and the like are expensive, but a lot of people find them motivating. I agree with you about the price of salad, I did the weekly shop yesterday and could of spent a tenner just on salad, its ridiculous. I must make sure we grow more salad stuff next year x


  5. Are there any 'Pick your own' farms near you? Often you can get good deals there – beans and the like will soon be in season i you can pick and freeze (I know its not salad but it will be a cheap bulk up,low fat veg). And how about some sorbet's (sweet) or home made yogert with fresh fruit – picked and stored in the freezer. I know the 'sweet' craving is awful!

    Vicky x


  6. I started a weight loss programme a motnh or so back ( hence my lack of posts on here as I am always off doign somethign or other) I shop for yellow label fruit and veg, makes things cheaper, also I refuse to buy anything low fat, so I still bake but I am playginaround with ingredients so cakes are still yummy btu less calories etc. I still eat a lot of what we ate before but use portion control, and have started substituting foods for healthier things, it will be a little more expensive, but i am still managig to use my savvy ways to keep costs down

    also check out sparkpeople.com lots of tools resources recipes exercise log food tracker and all free


  7. Even if the business of losing weight is tough, take some compensation from the comedy value of “man in pants”.
    After all, Brian Rix built a career on this image.


  8. I feel your pain. I lost some weight (about 10 lb) last year and have slowly regained it this year. I did it by counting calories (1200 on weekdays and around 1500 weekends). I did it by mostly eating honey nut cheerios, turkey sandwiches, low-fat low-cal supper of whatever I could think of and tons of apples in between. I got so tired of apples!! The problem is after a while you just want something sweet or different and then it's downhill (at least for me). Good luck to you and DB!


  9. Tell you what we're eating tons of?? salad leaves. Buy some seeds pop them in a couple of flower buckets near the kitchen door and within 4 weeks you'll have loads. We go and snip what we want every evening and they grow back. Much cheaper than bagged salad. I also buy frozen raspberies and summer fruits so you can just get out a small amount at a time and save waste.
    Twiggy x


  10. Do you have an Aldi near you? they have suoer 6 fruit and veg on each week and i think its 69p (or 49p) each so you can get lots of that for not a lot of money. I am a weighwatchers gold member but i slipped a bit so i have half a stone to lose and if you are a follower of my blog keep an eye over the next week or two as i will be doing some low point desserts and i'll post the receipes x x


  11. I like growing peashoots like Alys Fowler did in the BB2 programme “The Edible Garden”. I put them in with bought salad to stretch it – and besides, we like them. A small bag of peashoots in Sainsburys was something like £1.69. Even my fussy husband likes a few of them in a salad. A 250g box of dried marrowfat peas (Batchelors Bigga Peas) in Tesco currently costs 24p and at the rate of planting a tablespoonful in a pot in my kitchen every week, looks like it will keep us going pretty well all summer. You harvest above the lowest leaf on the stem when they are about 4 inches tall. They will grow a smaller shoot and then give up when you cut that off. Two harvests for the price of one! You are going to get an awful lots of peashoots for your 24p 🙂


  12. I have lost a lot of weight over time but not with an official diet. I increased my water intake and almost completely cut out any other drinks like juice, coffee and sodas; made sure to eat a simple breakfast of oatmeal, cream of wheat or grape nuts cereal, then for dinner I traditionally make a stir fry with a little meat and a lot of veggies served over rice. I vary the meals but I've lost over 50 pounds doing this, though I no longer own a scale using this method. Good luck!


  13. urgh…loosing weight really can cost a fortune!
    During the summer Rhubarb off the lotty is great, at slimming world they used to boil it with sugar free lemonade to sweeten it (very inventive!)

    Have you tried making your own yoghurts?



  14. Tinned fruit in juice (mandarins and pineapple/pear quarters – always reasonable and fabulous chilled from the fridge – also fruit jellies instead of cake!
    Grow your own salad leaves (or our coop does a living salad which is like herb pots – snip as you go for around a quid) – bulk out fancy salad leaves with iceberg (or look for value salad leaves – sainsbury do a 99p value bag.
    Celery is also great for bulking things out – also drained tinned chickpeas with a little dressing (or not). Our local green grocer will sell you 4 tomatoes, 2 carrots or whatever quantity you need – much better than big supermarket packs.
    Baked veggies are lovely served cold – I'm thinking a bag of value peppers grilled – sell by cherry toms baked /grilled until they're almost like sundried. Or try couscous or make your own rice salad.


  15. I have lost 2 and half stone on slimming world. I do not find it expensive. Its not really a diet more food optimisation you can eat sensibly
    on it and although there are syns you have lots of free foods as well I understand that its different from WW and that that may be expensive.


  16. I'm not sure there are Morrisons in the south. If there are they do a 'shop seconds' fruit and veg stand. Its hit and miss but they put the ugly fruit and veg that didn't make the grade on it and cheap. We got 3 bags of lemons the other day for 75p each and m'Lady made a lot of fresh homemade lemonade.

    Bad example but they often have other things as well.


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