Quickstart Guide to THM

Quickstart Guide to THM

I love Trim Healthy Mama (THM) because it is an excellent educational tool for any person, but especially easy for mama’s and busy women to understand and implement. First there was the large, original book which was not the easiest read. Then, THM condensed the information into the THM Plan book and that is much easier and quicker for people to read and start implementing the principles.

THM is, in essence, a set of guiding principles. It is not a diet. No two people’s eating plan will look the same and that’s the way it should be. We are all very different. We have come from different background, had different life experiences, have different budgets, cultural needs, family needs, health concerns, allergies and personal preferences.

Below is a short Getting Started guide. This is to help those people who find it hard to read through the whole book and get started. It is NOT a replacement for the book. Not one little bit. The book is essential. You need to understand the principles of WHY we do certain things in order to see the food freedom of the plan. Use this guide as a training resource along with the book. When you *get it*, the plan will become real to you and you will be able to tweak it to suit your lifestyle, needs, budget and circumstances.

Trim Healthy Mama is a simple, effective practical lifestyle program that helps anyone of all ages and stages of life slim down or gain weight (depending upon your needs) and gain greater health. The THM plan can be customised to fit your individual needs, preferences, challenges and circumstances. This is NOT a low carb diet. It is not keto with some carbs. It is a flexible, low glycemic plan that includes good, healthy fats and slow burning carbs, fruits, vegetables, grains and dairy.

To lose weight AND to build health we need to:

  • Stabilise our blood sugar levels
  • Eat one fuel at a time
  • Allow our body to use the fuel we have just eaten
  • Nourish and hydrate our body

Getting Started

Start slowly. Accept that this is not a ‘fast weight loss’ plan. Some people like to jump in boots and all! Others need to wade in slowly – one meal at a time. There’s no one right way but it depends upon who you are. I want to help you succeed.

Try making a few S or E breakfasts for a week. After that you’ll be confident enough to add in some lunches and dinners. Soon you’ll find yourself making all your meals the THM way, go you! Even if it takes you a full month or two to switch over, that is completely fine. No rush. You can do this!

Protein anchors every meal. Use lean protein only for E or FP meals. S meals can have fatty protein or lean protein.

There is no set order for eating S or E meals. You can change them up however you wish. We call this freestyling.

To Do

1. Do a kitchen clean-up! Get rid of sugar or ‘white’ products. No potatoes (for now), flour, noodles, pasta, no chips, bread, sugar, pastries, etc.

2. Sub out a few ingredients: throw out any PUFA oils like canola, sunflower, etc. Go buy some quality olive oil, organic coconut oil, real butter.

3. Go buy some unsweetened almond milk or coconut milk or a blend of the two.

4. Purchase a sweetener. The quickest and easiest one is to buy a tub of Natvia or Raw Earth. (Also see below for an image and a printable of easily store bought sweeteners) Going cold turkey off sugar will be difficult but do-able. The first few days can be hard with flu like symptoms, headaches, cravings, irritability, etc. But it is worth it! It’s one thing to wean the children very slowly but as an adult, it’s quicker and easier for long term success to go cold turkey.

5. Plan a few days ahead – not too many – things might change. Have some protein sources prepped and ready. Tins of tuna in springwater or olive oil, canned chicken, poached chicken, turkey slices, seasoned, cooked mince meat, boiled eggs, etc. Grab lots of non starchy veggies. Wash them. Cut them up and store them in the fridge so you always have good food handy.

6. Plan for breakfast – what do you usually eat? Are you an eggs and bacon kinda gal or more a porridge/cereal person? An S (fat fuelled) breakfast would be 2 eggs, bacon and some sautéed in coconut oil with veggies like mushroom and zucchini. Or you could try Sweatpants Oatmeal for an E brekky. Wait 3 hour until your next meal/snack.

7. Next meal/snack – what is your protein? Your protein source may dictate your fuel. If you have a fatty piece of chicken then your snack will natural be an S so pair it with some strawberries, cucumber or a slice of cheese.

8. Hydrate! If you don’t drink a lot of water this is the first 101. Work your way up slowly to at least 2 litres of water a day. Do this slowly: add an extra 500ml per day for a whole week. Then the following week, add in another 500ml per day for a week. This will help your body and bladder adjust easily. Experiment with some All Day Sippers if you like but it’s not necessary. Drinking all the water will help you when going cold turkey from refined sugars. Sippers: Good Girl Moonshine, Singing Canary, Apple Pie Sip, Boost Juice, Hello Health Sipper, and Cranberry Wassail.

Fuels

Let’s get into a little more detail about the fuels. There are two primary fuel sources. Fats and Glucose (blood sugar derived from carbohydrates). And our bodies need both in order to keep functioning. With the weight loss part of the THM plan we want our body to burn one fuel source at a time so that most or all of that food source is used and not stored in the body as fat. Protein forms the base of every meal and snack. We can combine our protein source with either fats or carbs but NOT both in the same meal.

Fat meals – Satisfying or S Meals
S meals are protein-centred meals that are always low-carb (5 grams), but liberal with fats. Fat is the primary fuel. S Meals are very satisfying and deter cravings while remaining slimming.

Carb meals – Energising or E Meals
E meals are protein-centred meals that are controlled, low glycemic carbs (45 grams), but have less fat.  E meals use carbs or glucose the primary fuel. E Meals will give you energy while maintaining a healthy blood sugar level.

Fuel Pulls
Some foods are low fat and low carb so they match both S and E. These are called Fuel Pulls. These foods are your best friend! They don’t give you sufficient fat or carbs but they fill the tummy and have marvellous health benefits. We can’t just live on meat, cheese, cream, butter and nuts. We need our non starchy veggies – they are your best friend!

Meal Frequency

Ideally, during the day, you will fuel your body with a snack or a meal every three to four hours. Try and start with tbreakfast as early as you can. Not everyone can eat first thing upon rising so just do the best you can. And then fuel your body about 3-4 hours later. No need to get rigid about it . Sometimes life gets in the way and one day you might find yourself going five hours. Okay, it’s not ideal but you’ll be fine. It’s best not to go over the four hours without getting some protein into your body. The 3-4 hour range is great for weight loss as it gives the body a chance to use the fuel from your last meal before you give it more. Grazing or picking on something every hour or so never lets your body fully burn its last fuel. We want the body to use the food fuel so then it can turn to using our excess weight (fat) as fuel. if weight loss is your goal, breaking the habit of eating every 2 hours will help immensely.

Hunger will not hurt you. You are not starving, you are not deprived. You get to eat large portions if you like. So remember that a little hunger is very natural and is a good sign.

If you are having a FP snack and/or are pregnant or breastfeeding, you can snack at the 2.5 hour mark.

Changing Between Fuels

If you are changing from an S to an E snack or meal, be sure to leave two and a half to three hours between them.

Freestyle according to your taste buds, your needs or what’s in the pantry. If you are tired or breastfeeding, try an E meal. If you want comfort food, go for S.

Handy Tips

  • Buy the book and read it!
  • Know you will mess up and get it wrong or even have off plan meals. Get over it and know you will reset and start again in 3 hours time.
  • Remember . . . don’t eat fats and carbs in the same meal if you want to lose weight!
  • Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Drink a minimum of 2 litres of water (and/or sippers) each day.
  • Eat veggies every day. Aim for green leaves with every meal!
  • Do not go longer than 3-4-5 hours without eating.
  • Avoid food ruts! You must keep your metabolism guessing by alternating between S & E meals.
  • Do not count calories.
  • Do not focus on numbers. Ingredients trump numbers every time.
  • Do be mindful of what goes in your mouth. Be aware of your fuels.
  • Buy a sweetener – Natvia or Raw Earth.
  • If you are struggling, start with one meal per day, like breakfast. Get breakfast meals under your belt before progressing.
  • Consider FP snacks. They can be filling yet prevent you from accidentally ‘crossing over’.
  • Plan ahead for two days at a time if you find that helpful.

Freebie

Meal Planning Your Way Guide

One Small Step Towards Better Health

One Small Step Towards Better Health

mindset change image

 

One Small Step Towards Better Health

Our words are powerful. Our words help to frame our sense of empowerment and control. Did you know that the words we use, the phrases we speak (our inner talk) create a feedback loop in the brain that impacts our future actions?

Every time we say, “I can’t have that” we are creating a feedback loop that reminds us of our limitations. It’s a negative thought pattern that implies that we are forcing ourselves to do something that we really don’t want to do. “Saying “I can’t” is a restriction being imposed upon you.

Contrast that with… “I don’t”.

“I don’t” as in “I don’t eat crisps”. This simple phrase is empowering as it implies that we have control over the situation. This sets up a more positive feedback loop in the brain that helps us to change our habits. Saying “I don’t” implies it is our choice.

Be empowered ladies! Take back control.

A small yet simple change in language leads to a change in mindset. It’s true! Try it this week!

Tip: Read the book!

Tip: Read the book!

Read the book.

You will not take it all in at one go, but it will explain the ALL things THM. Don’t even attempt to plan much till you are through the first 4 chapters (it’s only 50 pages!) of the original book. That would be like going for your licence when you’ve only ever been a passenger in a car!

The Plan Book is excellent – all the information in a condensed format.

Trim Healthy Table is a cookbook but it also contains 3 whole chapters devoted to teaching the THM Plan in a concise, practical way. This book although it has the basics of the plan, it doesn’t go into the why’s and wherefore’s (the science) of the plan. Just the basics, ma’am.

Confused about which book to buy or read first?

This blog post has you covered. I outline the best features of each book and show you the best prices.

THM Books
Which Book Is Best?

Which Book Is Best?

Which book should you use?

THM Books
The Original THM book, The Trim Healthy Mama Plan, the Trim Healthy Cookbook or Trim Healthy Table – which one is right for you?  Where does one start? I get it. You’re time challenged, budget conscious, dislike reading or whatever else. Not everyone wants or needs to know the science behind the plan nor do they want to read all the chatty-Cathy banter. This post will help you decide which book is the best fit for you.

Updated 14/09/20: This post has been updated to include the Trim Healthy Starter.

The Original Trim Healthy Mama Book

This is the first book, the original. The one I devoured and continue to read even though I own all the others. I call it my THM Encyclopaedia. However, not everyone feels the same. some say it is too chatty, too wordy, too ugly, a hard read, convoluted and more. I can see why some would say that with a whopping 642 pages to get through. But that’s just who the authors are – this first, self published book was simply a reflection of who they are and what they do. They didn’t set out to change the world. They were simply sharing what they’d learned.

This is a large, chatty book that contains both the science of the plan and basic recipes for the plan. The 250 recipes are not laid out correctly (I won’t lie, it’s hard to cook from) and there are no photos. I still make some of the original recipes – they were quick and easy.

The sisters chat. A lot. Back and forth banter, rabbit trails (which the sisters are famous for), words, words and more words, which I love but not everyone does. If you don’t have time for all that then this is not the book for you.

If you are a person who loves to read, or you have read the Plan Book and want more or if you enjoy the rabbit trails of the podcast then this might be the book for you.

Trim Healthy Mama Plan

I also love this book and refer back to it often. After the first book was written, released and read people wanted more. Many readers asked for a more concise explanation of the plan without all the chit-chat, more in-depth, more straight to the point. They also asked for more recipes presented in more professional way. The authors heard them and did exactly that with the Plan Book and the Cookbook!

The “Trim Healthy Mama Plan – the easy-does-it approach to vibrant health & a slim waistline” is THE 300 page book to read and study. It is the same plan as the original book but written in a more clear, concise way and the layout, print, fonts, etc. are much easier to read and refer to. It is jam packed with information though, including time saving tips, family meals, eating out, plan basics, higher learning, speciality foods, superfoods, some updates and much more! This book does NOT contain any recipes – instead purchase one of the cookbooks.

If you are new to THM or want to understand the science behind it without loads of chit-chat then go for this book. It is informative and will give you both the nuts n bolts of the plan as well as loads of other helpful information.

Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook

This book is one of my favourites. My copy is dog-eared and has notes scribbled all through it where I have modified a recipe to suit our family, changed quantities, etc. This cookbook has gorgeous, professional photos to accompany many of the 350+ recipes that are well written and easy to follow.

There are not many special ingredients used; most can be found in your local supermarket or health food store. Another feature of this cookbook is that there are categories for single serve meals and family meals. At the end of the book there is a brief recap of meals THM style.

Categories are; One Pot meals, , Mains and Sides, Breakfast meals, Sweet Treats, Beverages, Crackers, chips, dips, condiments and extras.

Some of our favourite family meals are from this cookbook. I don’t use many ‘special ingredients’ so this cookbook is great if you just want to prepare and eat real food. However, you will need to know and understand the plan in order to use this book so best not to purchase this book alone. Use it in conjunction with the original book or the THM Plan book.

Trim Healthy Table

This is the 560 page book that has both the nuts and bolts version of the plan along with over 300 family friendly recipes. Not only does it have some beautiful recipes with stunning photos, but a feature of the recipes that I love are in the meal suggestions for the rest of the family;  i.e. There are notes at the end of the recipe that give suggestions for the meal when it weight loss mode along with suggestions for how to turn this meal into a Crossover for family. I love, love, love this feature!

There are special ingredients used but they always mention that one doesn’t need them and suggest everyday items to be bought from the grocery store to be used as substitutes.

This book contains 3 whole chapters devoted to teaching the THM Plan in a concise, practical way. This book although it has the basics of the plan, it doesn’t go into the why’s and wherefore’s (the science) of the plan. Just the basics, ma’am.

If you are new to THM, dislike reading copious amounts, or are limited with time then this is the best book for you.

Trim Healthy Starter Book

This is a full colour book of 208 pages which condenses the plan into its most basic levels so that anyone can begin the THM journey.  There are 50 of the most popular THM recipes included. Most of the ingredients can be purchased at your local supermarket.

Part 1 has 7 chapters where they go through the basics of the plan, offer helpful tips for weight loss but also for feeding the family.

Part 2 is where the recipes are. Then there is another section that they call the ‘cheat sheets’ which is the basics of how to build a meal and all the ingredients for each S, E and FP list.

This is a great condensation of the plan. It is a fairly quick read so might be a good option for those who dislike reading.

Trim Healthy Starter Book

In a nutshell…

If you’re an experienced THM, love to read, and love the informality of The Poddy, you’ll love the original, self-published, Trim Healthy Mama whopper!

If you’re well on your way and want to understand the depth of the science behind the plan, you’ll enjoy the Trim Healthy Mama Plan. And if you want recipes to go with it then the THM Cookbook is a go-to.

If you’re brand new to Trim Healthy Mama and want to understand and implement the plan and have yummy recipes that the whole family will enjoy then Trim Healthy Table is the best book to start with.

If you are new to the plan and want to get started quickly you may like the Trim Healthy Starter. However, I would imagine that very quickly you’d be ordering one of the cookbooks to make more yummy recipes. Shipping to countries outside of the USA may make this option not as feasible as Trim Healthy Table.

If you want to expand your recipe collection, both the Trim Healthy Table and the Trim Healthy Cookbook will not disappoint!

If you are in Australia, I have listed the best places to purchase below. You can purchase them from other places but these stores have been found to be the most reliable and some, like Book Depository and Fishpond, offer free shipping!

Trim Healthy Starter Book

Your Aussie THM Certified Coach

I can’t wait to get started in helping you with your own THM journey. I can assist you with meal reviewing, meal planning, grocery shopping, figuring out how to eat THM with a family, helping you to balance your blood sugar levels or any other way you might need a little extra help as you strive towards finding your trim and your healthy.

THM Health Tip using Bone Broth

THM Health Tip using Bone Broth

Health Tip

Every time you eat a meal with meat, also add a tablespoon of collagen peptides or gelatin to the meal.  Or add a tablespoon of collagen to your cup of bone broth.

Why? The amino acid profile of the collagen (or bone broth) rounds out the meal and makes the meat meal far more balanced.

Tip Two

Have a cup of bone broth with added collagen 20-30min before bed. The protein often helps promote sleep and repairs and build your body while you’re snoozing.

It’s simple. Just have a cup of bone broth before your meal or add a tablespoon of collagen to your meaty casserole, pies or stews every time you make a meal with meat in it.

To learn more about the benefits of gelatin or collagen and why and how we use it, please head over to the Trim Healthy Mama main website and read the article, Collagen 101: The Merits and the Myths.

In case you were wondering, both collagen peptides/hydrolysed collagen and the firm setting gelatin can be purchased through Aussie Mamas, Great Lakes brand at iHerb or from Gelatin Australia.

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