Thursday, 13 March 2014

When hunger strikes

A few years ago I watched the documentary Black Gold and went off Starbucks big time. The film tells the story of coffee production – and many of Starbucks’ coffee growers were receiving such small sums for their produce that they had to queue up at food camps because they couldn’t afford to feed themselves on their meagre earnings.
Now food banks are rife across Britain – something I couldn’t have envisaged a few years ago, albeit they may have existed on a smaller scale.
Our government is proud of its efforts to dig the country out of its economic slump – but at what price?
Read the Hunger Hurts blog that went viral for Jack Monroe who now writes about cheap ways to eat well, and sign her petition for an End UK Hunger budget this year and every year. 

Monday, 3 March 2014

What are you doing for Lent?

It’s been a stodgy winter. I’ve fallen right off the 5:2 wagon, and our food cupboard is littered with unused sachets of Miso – a staple of our fast day. So, even though I’m not religious, I'm planning to make a couple of changes for Lent.
The first will be giving up alcohol (although I may write in an exception for the weekend I will be in Rome with my mother-in-law). My mother, who is very religious, always finds giving up her sherry and wine for Lent a great way to lose a few winter pounds.
The second plan is to take our dog for an extra walk each day. Through winter, I’m ashamed to confess, he’s had only one walk most days. This is the early morning one that boosts my energy for the day and gives Joe an excuse to lie on the sofa with his legs in the air for hours on end. But around 4.0pm he generally comes to my desk, nudges me with his nose and jumps up and down barking and looking towards the front door. You can’t get much clearer than that – but, much as I love him, I have looked out at the generally foul weather, and said, “You must be joking!” He may be ready for a walk but I’m usually thinking about a cup of tea and a piece of chocolate.
He will love the extra walk, and I’m sure I’ll benefit from it too.
So, some time tonight or tomorrow, I will measure my waist, thighs and upper arms. I will NOT be stepping on the scales. I am going to focus on inches instead of pounds.
If – note if – I keep to my Lenten promises I will report back at Easter.