23 Dec 2014

It’s competition time – win £500!

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Win a £500 shopping spree to celebrate your weight loss success! 

Whilst the festive holiday season is all about indulgence, January is all about getting back on track with the healthy living! To help keep you motivated and engaged as you continue your weight loss journey (or maintain your new, slimmer figure) at the start of 2015, we're launching a competition for our current customers, called 'My Success Story'!

What's it all about?

We want to get you talking about your weight loss success and sharing your stories, to acknowledge your achievements and help inspire others. So, in January we will be asking you to share your inspirational photos and stories on our social media pages, and at the end of the month we'll select a winner out of all the entries, who will receive a £500 John Lewis voucher!

How do you take part?

Every week in January, we will ask you to share a photo and a caption (or brief outline) that you feel reflect your weight loss journey, including the hash tag #MySuccessStory, on one or more of our social media pages.

The photo can be of anything that motivated you to lose weight, or that reminds you of your success story...like your children, or an inspirational relative; your dream holiday destination; your favourite before / after pic; a photo of your old, now-too-big jeans; you, running a 10K; or a pic of your newly purchased little black dress.

You can share your story and a photo once, or every week in January if you want!

Who can take part? 

All Diet Chef customers who have lost weight on our meal plan and are prepared to share their success story to help inspire others.

Where do you post your entry?

You can post your competition responses on any of our social media pages:

On Facebook
Just post your photo and success story summary, including the #MySuccessStory tag, on our wall or in the comments section under one of our weekly ‘My Success Story’ calls to action.

On Twitter
Tweet your inspirational photo, including our handle (@dietchef) and using the #MySuccessStory tag. If you are a blogger and you are struggling to fit your success story caption / summary  into the tweet, you could publish your story as a blog post instead, and then tweet us the photo and blog link, with the #MySuccessStory tag.

On Pinterest
You can use Pinterest to share your inspirational photo and success story, if you prefer it to Facebook / Twitter. Make sure you use the #MySuccessStory tag, so that we can find your entry.

On Instagram
You can use Instagram to share your inspirational photo and success story, if you prefer it to Facebook / Twitter. Make sure you use the #MySuccessStory tag and include our Instagram handle (@thedietchef), so that we can find your entry.

On Google Plus
You can post your photo and success story on Google Plus as well. Again, make sure you include the #MySuccessStory tag in your entry, so we can find it.

On your blog
If you are a blogger, feel free to publish your weight loss story and photo on your blog instead, and then share the link / photo with us on our Facebook page, Twitter or one of our other social media pages. Just remember to include the #MySuccessStory tag, and our page / profile handle if applicable.

Why should you take part?

Well, aside from the chance to win a fantastic prize – it's fun! If we can get lots of people to take part, you will be able to share tips and support each other on your January weight loss or maintenance  drive...who knows, maybe you'll even make some new friends to add to your social network?!

The prize  

The prize is a £500 John Lewis voucher. After the closing date, one overall winner will be selected at random, from a pool of all the entrants.

Terms and conditions

The giveaway will start on Friday 2nd of January 2015, and the closing date will be Sunday 1st of February 2015. The winner will be selected and notified in February 2015. Diet Chef has the final say on the winner. The prize is non-transferable and there is no cash alternative.

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17 Dec 2014

Susan's inspirational weight loss story...

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"I was the heaviest I had ever been at 17 stone 9 pounds; my confidence was at an all-time low and I felt really unhealthy and unattractive. I even experienced verbal abuse from strangers on nights out about my size. It was horrible and I wouldn't wish it on anyone!

I used to get comments such as "you're too big to be wearing that" and "shouldn't you be at home trying to hide." I felt ugly and ashamed of my body, and despite having my loving husband by my side, I soon started to fear being bullied by strangers.

I saw a TV advert for Diet Chef and pleaded with my husband to buy me a bespoke hamper for my Christmas present. Knowing it would make me happy, he purchased the hamper and I started the plan in January.

I didn't look back for five months. It taught me so much about portion control and healthy eating. Everything tasted great too, so following it was really easy.

I have managed to lose five stone, which I am thrilled about. I have also been using the lessons Diet Chef taught me to keep the weight off. I have gone from a size 22 and unable to shop in nice, high street fashion retailers, to a size 14. It’s great as I can now wear things that make me feel on top of the world, rather than things that hide me.

I can run around and play with my grandchildren, which was a challenge when I was bigger. I have also started cycling and increasing my general activity levels. I now prefer to walk to places rather than drive. I have also entered Race for Life, something I would never have thought I would do or could achieve. Diet Chef has turned my life around."

Feeling inspired by Susan's story? 

If you're ready to turn your life around and start your journey to a slimmer, healthier you, find out more about Diet Chef on our website.

You can also check out lots of other motivational customer stories on our website.
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16 Dec 2014

Christmas dinner "smart swaps"...

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Sensible choices for the Christmas table!

Christmas is a difficult time to watch your waistline, with an excess of food temptations at every turn. If you do decide to take a break from the diet over the festive holidays, we've got some Christmas table food tips and smart swaps, to help you keep on track, weight-wise!
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11 Dec 2014

Get £100 for a two-minute phone call!

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Calling all QVC Diet Chef customers!

We're looking for people who are currently (or have recently been) enjoying a QVC Diet Chef hamper, to call in during one or both of our live shows on QVC on Thursday 1st of January 2015, and have a chat on the phone with the presenters.

We will pay volunteers £100 for their trouble! 

What does it involve? 

The purpose of the call would be for you to have a brief live phone chat with the presenters about your Diet Chef experience, and share your thoughts on the product. The calls usually only last for a couple of minutes.

You would have to be available for the phone call(s) between 1pm & 2pm and / or between 7pm & 8pm, Thursday the 1st of January 2015.

How do I take part?

If you would like to be a caller on the show – or alternatively, provide us with a written testimonial to be displayed on-screen during the show – please get in touch!

Send an email with the subject line 'QVC call / testimonial', including your name, address & contact details, to:

marketing@dietchef.co.uk 

Hope to hear from you soon! :) 
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9 Dec 2014

Got questions? Get in touch!

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If you have questions about the meal plan or want to discuss anything with us, we are always very happy to help!

Our friendly Customer Services Team is available Monday-Friday, 8am to 6pm, and there are several ways that you can contact us.

You can chat with us online, call, email, post a letter, or seek us out on Facebook and Twitter - we will always do our very best to get back to you promptly, and resolve any issues or complaints you may have to your satisfaction!

Chat with us live online... 

To chat with us live online, use the LiveHelp link in the top right-hand corner of our website. LiveHelp is available Mon-Fri, 8am-6pm.

Call us... 

Prefer to speak with someone on the phone? Call on us on: 0333 103 6000

We're around to answer your call Monday-Friday, 8am-6pm.

Email us... 

You can also send us an email, if that's more convenient.

info@dietchef.co.uk 

We will get back to you within one working day.

Write to us... 

Or, if good old fashioned "snail mail" is your chosen method of communication, here's where to post your letter to:

Diet Chef Ltd
Rosewell House
2 Harvest Drive
Newbridge
EH28 8QJ

Get on social media... 

In addition to the above, you can tweet us, or use our Facebook page to post a comment, question, review or direct message.

We monitor these pages seven days per week, and strive to respond within 24 hours. Most often, we will get back to you within a couple of hours. (Please note that we are not always able to check and respond to social media enquiries during the weekends.)

We look forward to hearing from you! 


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2 Dec 2014

Christmas party season has arrived...

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Here's how to stay good on the festive circuit! 

The festive party season is upon us, and it can be hard to keep the excess pounds at bay in the run up to Christmas, with office parties, nights out and family get-togethers stacking up!

So how do you watch your weight when temptations are everywhere?! We asked our Nutritionist, Fiona Williamson, for her top tips...and here's what she had to say.

Party buffets

Most of us have been guilty of "eating with our eyes" at one time or another, stacking our plates with a mountain of food, or picking at the buffet long after we're full. If willpower isn't one of your strengths, try the below:

  • Go for a smaller plate to create the illusion you are getting a really full plate of food!
  • Be mindful of how your plate is portioned - where possible, try to aim for the eatwell plate, adding lots of vegetables, and cutting down on sugar, fat and salt when you can.  
  • Drink water beforehand and during the meal, and eat slowly so you feel when you are full. 
  • Try having some healthy snacks beforehand – that way, you won't be starving and can enjoy the buffet / meal without overdoing it. 
  • Use cutlery – finger foods generally make you eat more and faster!

Alcohol and mixers

Alcohol is full of sugar, and contains lots of chemical compounds (dark alcohol is generally worse), that can disrupt the body's ability to reabsorb vitamins. Alcohol is also a nutrient absorbing inhibitor, and can make you dehydrated. 

If you are on a diet, or trying to watch your weight, it's always better to avoid alcohol altogether...however, if that's not an option, make sure you bear the following in mind.

  • Stick to spirits and low sugar mixers, as much as possible. 
  • Tonic and soda water are lower in calories than sugary, fizzy drinks. 
  • Spirits and a diet or low sugar mixer have fewer calories than wine, ciders, beers and lagers. 
  • Choose red wine over white wine, as red wine contains antioxidants and is generally a bit better for you.
  • Stick to spritzers if you're having white wine - and ask for sparkling water in your spritzer, rather than lemonade!
  • Drink lots of water - try mixing in a few low calorie, non-alcoholic drinks during the party, and drink water in-between as well!  

Hangovers

Of course, you really should try not to overindulge in alcohol, but we do appreciate that this can be easier said than done on a night out. If you do wake up the next day with a raging hangover, here are some things to consider. 

  • Rehydrate - we've said it before and we'll say it again; make sure you drink lots of water!
  • Stock up on milk thistle – nature's own detox, which is both anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. 
  • Get your potassium levels back up – eat avocados, bananas and orange juice, or make a nice morning after smoothie.
  • Have eggs for breakfast (or lunch) - eggs contain cysteine, which will help your poor liver cope! 
  • Eat nutrient dense foods (food that's low in calories but high in nutrients), like fruits, vegetables, fish and eggs.
  • Avoid junk food - contrary to popular belief, "stodge" doesn't help if you are hungover, so don’t abuse your body further by pigging out on cheap, nasty foods! 

Last but not least - have fun! 

We hope you've found this blog post helpful - if you liked it, you may also want to...

View our plans...
Check out our menu...
Read some customer success stories...
Find out more about our food... 
Read More...

27 Nov 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Looking for some last-minute inspiration? 

Just a quick note to say Happy Thanksgiving to all our pals over in the USA (and our American friends in the UK too, of course)! Hope you have lots of things to be thankful for, and that you have a great time today!

If any of you are looking for a bit of last-minute Thanksgiving inspiration, we've set up a Thanksgiving Board on Pinterest with some healthy(ish) food, decoration and craft pins attached.

We also have lots of other inspirational Boards on our Pinterest page, so have a look around and feel free to re-pin anything you like!

Visit us on Pinterest now

You may also want to... 

Visit our Facebook page... 
Visit us on Twitter... 


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24 Nov 2014

Q&A with parenting & lifestyle blogger Aby Moore

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At Diet Chef, we work regularly with journalists and bloggers who want to try our meal plan and share their thoughts on it.

In this blog, we introduce you to one of our current blogging partners, Aby, who has been on Diet Chef for over five weeks now and is doing very well!

About Aby 

Name: Aby Moore

Age: 37

Occupation: Freelance writer, blogger & social media manager

Location: Hampshire / Berkshire border

Favourite food: Chinese or ice cream (You see my problem?!)

What is the most important thing in your life: My family.  Family trumps everything else, doesn't it?!

Weight Loss

What inspires you to lose weight?
My daughter. I don’t want her to grow up with a fat mum. Nor do I want her to have the same body issues that I have. I also want to lose weight for myself, to feel like 'me' again. I am desperate to get my confidence back, and I feel my weight is hindering this.

How have you found the diet?
I really love it. I thought I would have to endure the food, rather than enjoy it, but I'm a big fan! I haven’t tried anything I don’t like yet on the plan, which is a surprise.

Have you had much success on Diet Chef so far? 
I have just finished week five, and so far I have lost 23 lbs and 33.5" (across 10 measurements). I'm very happy with that!

Is there a particular reason why you like Diet Chef?
I think the top two reasons why I love Diet Chef are 1) that it is so quick and easy to prepare, and 2) the convenience. I don’t like cooking so it is perfect for me. A couple of minutes in the microwave and dinner is ready! I think it's ideal for busy parents, who are often pushed for time. I also love that the food is delivered to my door, and I do not need to calorie count.

What is your favourite Diet Chef meal?
I love the Chicken and Sweetcorn Chowder. I also love the cheese and onion / paprika bakes. I would gladly buy and eat these, even if I wasn't on Diet Chef!

How has losing the weight has made you feel?
I still have a lot of weight to lose, but I am off to a great start. I feel much more positive, and I'm confident I will achieve my goal. I can’t wait to get there!

Follow Aby's journey...

We think you are doing amazingly, Aby - thank you for sharing your experience so far with us, and good luck going forward! We're sure you'll hit your target weight in no time!

To follow Aby’s journey with Diet Chef, visit her blog, You Baby, Me Mummy.

Would you like review Diet Chef? 

If you are a frequent blogger with a great readership, and you would like to review Diet Chef on your blog, feel free to get in touch!

Send us an email with a bit of information about yourself, your blog, why you want to lose weight, and how much you are looking to lose. Also makes sure you include a link to your blog and your unique, monthly visits, plus any other useful stats - like social media followers.

Send your email to: marketing@dietchef.co.uk

We look forward to hearing from you!
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20 Nov 2014

What if you don't like some of our food...?

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No problem, just exchange the meals you don't like!

While we are very confident in the taste and quality of all our food, we do recognise that not everyone is going to like everything on the menu.

That's why we have an exchange policy in place.

How does it work? 

If you don't like a meal that you have ordered several of (or if you change your mind about an item and would prefer something else in its place), you can send the food in question back to us within 21 days of receiving your hamper, and we will post your chosen replacement meals to you.

If you have quite a few items to exchange, you may need to cover the cost of posting the food back to us, but we'll send you your replacements free of charge.

What do I need to do? 

Just contact our Customer Services Team, who will tell you if you need to send anything back to us, and arrange for your replacement meals to be sent out.

How to contact Customer Services...

Our colleagues in Customer Services are always happy to answer any questions you might have, and will do their best to resolve any issues that crop up. 

The team is available throughout the week:

Monday – Thursday: 8am – 8pm
Friday: 8am – 6pm
Saturday – Sunday: 10am – 2pm

Chat with us online

You can chat with the team live online Monday – Friday, using LiveHelp.

Call us

Alternatively, you can call the team during our open hours:

UK: 0333 103 6000
Republic of Ireland: 1890 905 900

Email us

If you are already a customer, please include your postal address in any emails, so we can check your account details before getting back to you:

info@dietchef.co.uk

By post

If you’d like to write to us, drop us a line at the following address:

Diet Chef Ltd
Rosewell House
2 Harvest Drive
Newbridge
EH28 8QJ
Returns

If you are returning products then they should be sent to:

Diet Chef Ltd
Unit 6,
Cliftonhall Yards
Newbridge One
Newbridge
EH28 8QN


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17 Nov 2014

Inspire others AND get £250 shopping spree!

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Fancy celebrating your new figure with a well-deserved shopping spree? And how about becoming the next Diet Chef media star?!

If you are keen to help motivate others to slim down, so they too can look & feel their best, we'd love to hear from you!

We are always on the hunt for customer success stories to appear in national media and inspire fellow dieters, who are trying to get to their goal weight.

To celebrate your Diet Chef success, we will treat you to a John Lewis shopping spree worth £250, if your story is published!

If you want to put yourself forward, simply email us a few lines about your weight loss journey, along with your name, contact details and before / after weight. Send your email to: 


If you have any good quality before / after photos, please include these with your email as well. 

We look forward to hearing from you! :)
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12 Nov 2014

Have you got a Diet Bear yet?

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Our family of bears provides a fun way to keep motivated with Diet Chef, as you work your way towards your goal.

Many of you already have a bear or two, and we love it when customers share their bear photos with us on social media!

You get most bears automatically now!

We've just changed how we send you the bears - so from this week, the 7lbs, 1 stone and 2 stone bears all arrive automatically with your first three hampers, to motivate you to work towards these milestones...or to celebrate you getting there!

Then, once you reach your target weight, you can claim your Goal bear.

We are also currently looking into potential, alternative ways to encourage you to stick with the plan in the new year, so watch this space!

If you have reached your goal weight and want to claim a Goal Bear, click here.

You might also want to... 

Find out more about our food...
Discover why our menus change sometimes... 

Read about adding 'extra foods' to the diet...  
Download our Diet Guide...


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11 Nov 2014

Our new TV advert is on air - whoop!

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We're very excited to about the fact that our new TV advert is now on air! We think it looks great, and our advert stars did so well! 

Obviously, all our customers are stars in our eyes, but we thought the guys in the advert did a great job of putting across exactly why Diet Chef works so well for lots and lots of people.   

Have you seen the advert yet? What do you think? 

If you've not seen it on TV, you can check out all three cuts (20 seconds, 30 seconds and 60 seconds) on the Diet Chef YouTube page

Here's the 60 second cut of the advert, in case you can't wait! ;) 

video
 
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7 Nov 2014

So why do our menus change?

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As many of you know, our menus change from time to time as we introduce new food and occasionally remove meals.

We do get a lot feedback on our food, including questions around why food items are sometimes taken off the menu, and requests for specific types of meals.

This blog post explains how our product development process works in a bit more detail, and why our menu is updated every so often.

Why do some meals go?

We want to ensure our customers have a great variety of products from which to choose.

We review our range regularly, taking into account customer demand and feedback, as well as any new products that are made available to us by our team of high quality manufacturer partners.

Sometimes, if an item proves to be less popular with the majority of customers, it may be removed from the menu – but where possible, we endeavour to replace it with a new, exciting food option.

We do appreciate that it can be disappointing when a meal you like is discontinued, but as the largest delivered diet company in the UK we think we offer a great variety of wholesome, delicious and nutritious food products on our menu, so hopefully you can easily find some new favourites!

What about adding food to the menu?

Our Product Development Team works really hard to provide an excellent range of meals to suit all tastes, and they are always looking at new food options.

Nothing is added to the menu before we ensure that the best suppliers, ingredients and recipes are used – and we only develop food items that meet our nutritional guidelines, to help ensure successful weight loss. As such, adding new products to our offering is not an overnight process, and can take a bit of time.

In our view, producing a good product that works well as part of our meal plan is better in the long run, than hastily adding an ill thought-out item in order to “fill a gap”.

Got feedback for us?

We always welcome constructive feedback and thoughts on our food from customers. If you have any views or ideas you would like to share with us, feel free to leave a comment below, contact our Customer Services Team, or get in touch on Facebook / Twitter.

You may also want to…

Read more about our food…
Check out our menu section…
View our plans…

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23 Oct 2014

Why Diet Chef really works...

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If you are wondering how Diet Chef works, and why our meal plan is so effective, this blog post is for you.

We know from our customers' inspiring success stories, the feedback we get on social media, and our weekly, independent Trustpilot reviews that Diet Chef works a treat. We even have science on our our side, as our customers are clinically proven to lose 50% more weight than people on a self-directed diet.*

Around 120,000 people in the UK have tried our meal plan, and our dieters have a great track record - both for losing lots of weight and keeping it off long term! So what's the key to our success then? Well, there are several, actually.

Calorie & portion control

Diet Chef is designed to help you lose weight by providing a tasty and filling meal plan, where the calories are counted for you, and the portion sizes pre-determined. You get three meals and a snack from us each day, and add your own fruit, vegetables and a bit of dairy. This approach helps you establish and stick to new, healthier eating patterns, as well as encouraging you to add lots of fresh greens to your diet.

Everything in moderation

Being on a diet doesn't have to mean denying yourself comfort foods. Our meals, combined with your added daily fruit, vegetables, dairy and potential extras, provide a healthy, balanced and delicious diet. It's about eating everything in moderation, and including foods from all major food groups.

Delicious, real food

Unlike some other diets, we don't ask you to deprive yourself or survive on meal replacement products; you get to eat real, tasty food in appropriate portion sizes every day. We believe one of the keys to our success is the variety on our menu, and the fact that you are allowed "treaty" meals and snacks - like pasta, curries, cookies and pretzels - as part of the plan. Our meals are made up of natural ingredients, and real store cupboard ingredients. You wouldn't add anything artificial at home, such as flavourings, sweeteners or colourings – and neither do we. To find out more about our food, have a look at this recent blog post.

Convenience is king

One of our main selling points is how easy and convenient our plan is. We deliver your meals in monthly hampers, right to your door - all calorie counted, portion controlled and ready in just a few minutes. The snacks, lunchtime protein bars and some of the breakfasts are ready to eat - and all you have to do with the rest of the breakfasts, lunches and dinners is add some hot water / milk, or heat up in the microwave. Complement with your favourite fruit and vegetables plus a bit of dairy each day, and watch as the lbs start falling off! Perfect for busy people on the go, or those who need a little bit of extra structure and support. We also have a Calorie Guide, a Diet Guide and a Portion Guide, to help you get started.

In addition, customers can link their Diet Chef online account with a MyFitnessPal account, allowing them to track their progress effectively in one place – including total calories consumed daily and any physical activity and exercise undertaken.

Healthy weight loss

The Diet Chef meal plan is designed to help you lose a healthy, sustainable 1-2 lbs per week, in line with UK Government recommendation for safe weight loss. Of course, everyone is different, and some customers lose a lot more than that (especially when they first start the diet), whilst some people's progress is slower. If you are on the plan and your weight loss has slowed down or is grinding to a halt, have a look at this blog post.

Diet Chef really works

As we mentioned above, Diet Chef's effectiveness is clinically proven - but you don't need science to understand why the diet works. The meal plan is based on a calorie controlled diet, where you eat sensible portions regularly, adding lots of fresh vegetables and fruit. The snacks that you get (including a range of popcorn and oat biscuits) help stave off cravings, and the fact that the food is delivered to your door means that the time you have to spend in the supermarket, with all its tempting "naughty aisles", is reduced!

Customer success stories

Almost every day we hear from awesome customers, who have lost of weight on Diet Chef and want to share their story. We have lots of inspirational, real life tales of success on our website, and get a huge amount of encouraging feedback on our Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media pages as well! All customers are invited to publish completely independent reviews of Diet Chef on Trustpilot, and we are always open to constructive feedback and suggestions.

So...what now? 

We hope you found this blog post helpful...if you enjoyed the read and would like to find out more about Diet Chef, you may want to...

View our plans...
Check out our answers to FAQ's...
Have a look at our customer success stories... 
Visit our Facebook page... 


*The HONEI Research Institute

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21 Oct 2014

Adding extra food to your Diet Chef meals...

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One question that often crops up among customers and people who are interested in our meal plan, is how much extra food you need to add to Diet Chef. So in this blog post, we take a closer look at all "the extras".

The Diet Chef food...

On Diet Chef you receive a daily breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack - this on its own usually comes to around 800-900 calories, depending a bit on your meal / snack selections.

To this, you add five portions of vegetables and fruit (less fruit and more veg is better), and two potions of dairy each day.

1200 calories...or more...

Your Diet Chef food, along with the fruit, veg and dairy, would normally come to roughly 1200 calories, and for many customers this is their daily recommended limit.

If you are allowed more than 1200 calories a day, you can have some additional foods (see the 'Extra foods' section below). The 'Free Profile and BMI Calculator' on our website homepage will tell you how many calories you are recommended to have each day, for safe and sustainable weight loss.

How much to add... 

So how much exactly is a portion of dairy, or one of your five-a-day fruit and vegetables?

Dairy... 

A typical portion size of dairy would be:

  • 250 ml of semi-skimmed or skimmed milk (around half a pint)
  • 30 grams of cheese (matchbox size), or half-fat cheese
  • 125 grams (small pot) of low-fat yoghurt

Fruit and vegetables...

Fruit and vegetables vary significantly, in terms of calories, so it's best to have a think about what you want to add to your daily meals, then check the calories, to make sure you are sticking to your 'daily allowance'.

Fruit is generally higher in sugar and calories than vegetables, so be careful about adding too much fruit.

Pulses (such as kidney beans, chickpeas, butter beans, lentils) also count as one of your five-a-day. They are a great and inexpensive addition to your Diet Chef meals; low in fat and a good source of protein and fibre.

Extra foods...

Customers who are allowed more than 1200 daily calories can add some extra foods to their daily diet, in addition to the fruit, vegetables and dairy.

This could be anything from more fruit and dairy or a slice of wholemeal toast with breakfast, to some oatcakes with humus as a snack or  a bit of rice / pasta / potato with a dinner meal.

The main thing to remember with regards to extra foods is to try to make healthy, sensible choices as much as possible, and make sure you are sticking to your daily calorie allowance.

Our Calorie and Portion Guides... 

To help you figure out how much fruit, vegetables, dairy and extra food you can add each day, we have created some useful guides that you can download.

The Calorie Guide 

This guide contains lots of useful information about adding fruit, dairy and vegetables to your Diet Chef meals - as well as the calorie content of lots of extra foods.

Download the Calorie Guide here.

The Portion Guide

This is actually more of a handy infographic, providing a range of visual cues as to what represents a portion size in lots of different foods, along with the calorie counts for many common 'extras'.

Download the Portion Guide here.

The Diet Guide

Last but not least, we have our Diet Guide...this is sent out to customers in their hampers, and contains useful 'getting started' information - it's less detailed than the Calorie Guide, in terms of adding food, but includes some great tips and a week's sample menu.

Download the Diet Guide here.

We hope you found this helpful!

You might also want to... 

Check out our menu... 
Read our answers to FAQ's...
View our plans... 
Contact customer services with any questions you have...


Read More...

16 Oct 2014

The Diet Chef food…all you need to know!

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One of the things that sets Diet Chef apart from many other weight loss solutions is the fact that our plan is based around real food and proper meals, rather than meal replacement products. 

We do of course have a few protein bars and shakes on our menu, to provide extra convenient lunches for people on the go – but the vast majority of our menu options are made up of delicious, filling and easy-to-prepare meals.
This blog gives you all the information you need about our food – like what’s in it, why it has a long shelf life, and why it doesn't need to be stored in a fridge or freezer. (Spoiler alert: it’s not due to preservatives!)

So what's in our food…?

Diet Chef meals are made up of natural ingredients, and real store cupboard ingredients. You wouldn't add anything artificial at home, such as flavourings, sweeteners or colourings – and neither do we. 

Some of the meal replacement items may contain ingredients you haven't heard of – these are generally vitamins and minerals, or thickeners to improve the texture. Our breakfasts, soups and dinners are as wholesome as if you had made them yourself at home.

What about preservatives…?

Our soups and dinners don't need any preservatives, because of the way they are cooked and packaged (see under 'But how can this be…?' below). 

There may be some sulphur dioxide in the dried fruits we use in our breakfasts; this is a commonly used ingredient, added in very low levels in for example apricots to stop them from going brown. You can buy both options in the supermarket, but we prefer the orange colour to brown.
  

How do you store the food…?

All Diet Chef meals can be stored in a dry, room temperature space, like a kitchen cupboard. You do not have to keep any of our meals in a fridge or freezer.

But how can this be…?

People occasionally feel concerned about the fact that our food has a long shelf life and doesn't need to be refrigerated or frozen. 

This is down to the process by which our meals are cooked and packaged. The French call it 'sous vide' – meaning 'under vacuum' – whereby food is vacuum sealed and cooked in water over a long period of time. It is becoming increasingly common (and quite popular in restaurants) in the UK, but we have been using a very similar process for years.
Our meals are heat sealed within their packaging then pressure cooked, which means that the food retains its natural juices and nutritional goodness, without the need for preservatives. Healthy and practical!

Is our meal plan good for you…?

Yes! Our food, combined with your added daily fruit, vegetables, dairy and extras, provide a healthy, balanced diet. It's about eating everything in moderation, and including foods from all major food groups, as different foods provide different nutrients. 

Unlike some diets, we don't ask you to deprive yourself of entire food groups; you just eat real and delicious food in appropriate portion sizes every day.

How much extra do you add…?

We recommend adding five portions a day of fresh vegetables and fruit, as well as two portions of dairy each day. This, combined with your Diet Chef food, should come to around 1200 calories. 

If you are allowed more than 1200 calories, you can add in some extra foods, like a slice of wholemeal toast with breakfast, some rice with a curry, or some extra fruit / dairy. Our Diet and Calorie Guides contain lots of useful information and suggestions on portion sizes and extra foods.


How long does it take to prepare the food…?  

All the porridges, soups and dinners can be microwaved in around 3 minutes. Our lunch pasta and couscous pots just need the addition of boiling water from a kettle, and take 5-10 minutes. 

If you prefer, our soups can be made on the hob, and our dinners can be placed in an ovenproof dish and cooked in a regular oven.

What if you start feeling ill…? 

There is absolutely no reason why our food per se would make you feel ill. However, any time you change your eating habits, or reduce your calorie intake, you may experience temporary physical symptoms while your body adjusts to your new diet / eating patterns – like headaches and hunger pangs. This normally subsides within a few days. 

If symptoms persist, or if you feel very ill, we would always recommend that you contact your doctor, as there could be any number of reasons why you are unwell.

What about health conditions, allergies & breastfeeding?

If you have a health or medical condition that might be affected by dieting, check with a doctor or a health professional before starting any diet. All our food is listed in the menu section of our website, including ingredients, allergens and nutritional value, but if you are at all unsure as to whether Diet Chef will be suitable, check with your GP before ordering.

We do not recommend that women who are breastfeeding, or who have given birth less than six weeks ago, start Diet Chef – this is due to the potential increased energy requirements at this time. 

We have created this fact sheet for health professionals, which you could direct your doctor to for more information about Diet Chef.

Any other questions…? 

Just contact our Customer Services Team – they will be happy to talk you through anything you are unsure of.  

We hope you found this helpful... 

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13 Oct 2014

Love curries? Love Diet Chef!

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It's National Curry Week 13th-19th October 2014, and if you're anything like us, you'll be very keen to celebrate! ;) 

Being on a diet doesn't mean missing out – not if you're on Diet Chef, at least! 

We are firm believers in the "everything in moderation" approach – no food groups or types of meals are forbidden. Our meal plan is based on a healthy, balanced and calories controlled diet, allowing you to lose 1-2 lbs per week, in line with UK Government recommendations for safe, sustainable weight loss. 

We have no less than 9 different curries on our dinner menu, so on Diet Chef, you can indulge in National Curry Week and still lose weight. It's truly a win, win! 

Meet the Diet Chef curries… 

Our infamous chicken dish, which some of you might remember from our TV advert…? "Mmmm…Chicken Curry!" Go on, you know you want to! 

A delicious dinner, made from authentically prepared chicken breast pieces in a lightly spiced tomato sauce. Yummy!

Why not try this cracking, tomato-based curry, with tender pieces of beef and split red lentils for body and depth.

Another favourite curry with our customers, this is a very mild dish – but still packed with flavour.

This delicious blend of chana dahl lentils, chick peas, red lentils and vegetables – cooked in a creamy coconut sauce – is a favourite among our vegetarian customers!

Our Balti style Vegetable Curry is another hit with vegetarian customers – and anyone who likes the occasional meat-free option! 

This dish, flavoured with a spicy Thai red curry paste, is very popular and constantly in high demand! 

Packed full of chunky soya pieces, with creamy coconut and delicate korma spices, this is a fantastic, balanced meal.

Another awesome chicken dish, based on tender strips of chicken and chick peas, in a spiced tomato sauce and lightened with yoghurt. Omnomnom! 

Go on...order now! 

If you are already a Diet Chef customer, why not mark National Curry Week by feasting on some delicious Diet Chef curries, without compromising your weight loss progress? 

Or take part in the celebration by selecting some of our taste-tastic curries for your next Diet Chef hamper!  

If you are not a Diet Chef customer, perhaps some of the mouth-watering dishes above will tempt you to try our plan? Who said dieting had to be dull! 


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10 Oct 2014

Diet Chef by numbers - infographic

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What's new, you ask? We'll tell you what's new...we've only gone and created another awesome infographic! Well, we think it's awesome anyway - so big thanks to David at Macfarlane Creative, for helping us pull this thing of beauty together.  

It's called 'Diet Chef by numbers', and it highlights lots of numbers and figures that we associate with our meal plan and food. We thought this would be a fun way to flag up some "key facts" about our diet, making it all very easy to access and share.

If you have any questions about any of these numbers, or anything else - please don't hesitate to leave a comment, or contact us!



If you liked this, you may also want to... 

View our plans... 
Check out our answers to FAQ's...
 Read some customer success stories...
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9 Oct 2014

On the set of the new Diet Chef TV ad...

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On Wednesday the 8th of October, we filmed our new TV advert in a beautiful rooftop flat, in Edinburgh's Leith.

As we're sure you can imagine, creating and filming a TV advert is a big project, and not something we get to do very often, so it was a super-exciting day for us indeed!

We had our fantastic production company, Greenroom Films, going full throttle to get the job done! 

We also had an awesome Director, Robert Cavanah, taking the lead on the day to drive the filming forward, and 11 awesome 'Diet Chef stars' who all did a great job in front of the camera!  

Our Development Chef, Alan Mathieson, was also on hand on the day, to prepare all our delicious food and make it look even more lovely than normal for the filming. 

A big thanks to everyone who took part and helped out on the day!

We have included a selection of photos below, to give you a behind the scenes glimpse! 

If you are on Facebook, you can also check out the album we have set up, with all the photos from the day. Most of the photos can also be viewed on our Instagram page, if you prefer that to Facebook.  

 Robert and the crew, getting ready start filming! 

One of our stars, Annette, in action!

Robert did a great job of relaxing our stars and making them laugh!

Chris, doing his thing! 

Toby, getting some last minute touch ups before his first take.

Linda - getting into the swing of things!

Lunch is served, guys!

Diet Chef goodness, prepared by Chef Alan. Mmmm!



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7 Oct 2014

Kelli's inspirational story...

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"The compliments just keep flowing for my new figure!"

"I've always been a yo-yo dieter and in denial about my size and health, but I never really saw it as a problem, until I realised I was hiding what I was eating from my family. I knew something needed to change and quick.

I confided in my best friend, who suggested that Diet Chef may be a good way forward. I went online almost immediately and placed my order.

After three months on the plan I managed to lose just under 3 stone and am so happy with the results.

I have the energy to play for hours with my children, where before I was always too tired! I feel amazing and the compliments just keep flowing.

As a family, we now eat much healthier and a lot more fresh fruit and vegetables. I recommend Diet Chef to everyone who asks how the incredible change has happened!"

Would you like to be a Diet Chef media case study?

If you have lost lots of weight on Diet Chef and would like to share your story to help inspire others, we'd love to hear from you!

Usually, media are looking for people who have lost 3-4 stone or more, to interview for features and articles - and even then we can't guarantee that your story will be picked up. However, if your story is published, we will pay you £250 as a thank you!

Interested? 

Simply email us a brief outline of your Diet Chef story, along with your contact details and your before / after weight. If you have before / after photos, please include these too. Someone from our PR agency (Fuel PR) will then contact you for an initial, friendly, no strings chat - to tell you more about how it works.

Send your information and any photos to:

marketing@dietchef.co.uk

We look forward to hearing from you! :)
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1 Oct 2014

Final Team Diet Chef shedtember update!

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Well, the first ever shedtember is now officially over, and it's time to check in with Stacey and Catriona for the last time.

So, how did our "shedtember champions" get on in their final week, and how did they find the overall experience? Let's find out!

Catriona Liddle 

So, shedtember has come to an end...how has your fourth week been?   
I did a bit better in the last week than the week before, which feels good! I'm glad to have ended the month on a high.

How was your shedtember experience, overall?  
I have found it overall great. It has taught me loads about portion control and made me aware and mindful of snacking - something I used to do constantly before shedtember.

Biggest shedtember challenge / slip up?  
Visiting a friend's dinner party, knowing she was a "feeder"!

Best diet moment during the month?
I mentioned earlier that I rediscovered cauliflower rice a couple of weeks ago...and that's still my diet highlight - I love the stuff!  

Are you feeling determined to continue your weight loss journey?
Yes, absolutely. This has been a great start for me and I will definitely continue with the diet whilst bumping up the exercise, which I honestly didn't do much of at all, before.

What, if anything, would you do differently if you were starting over?  
I would get friends to nag me about exercising more.

What's your top shedtember tip?
Try Diet Chef, it really works! I lost 10 lbs in one month, which is awesome and way more than I had hoped - especially given that I slipped up on more than a few occasions.

Weight loss in the last week?
2lbs

Total weight loss in September?
10lbs

Anything you would like to add?  
There are loads of things to choose from on the Diet Chef plan, so you never get bored - and you can have a few days off in a month, if you need to, but still do well. The important thing is to remember to stick to the plan most of the time and try to be sensible / moderate with any 'treats'.

Stacey Cheung 

So, shedtember has come to an end...how has your fourth week been?   
It's been good! I've only lost a little bit of weight again in the last week, but I'm pleased with slow, steady progress.

How was your shedtember experience, overall?  
It's kept me focussed throughout the month, which has been great!

Biggest shedtember challenge / slip up?  
The biggest challenge for me has been finding time to exercise. It's been really hard to fit as many work outs in as I would have liked, between my full-time job and other commitments - but exercising really does make a difference.

Best diet moment during the month? 
Learning how to cope with the weekends without overindulging! As mentioned before, weekends are often my downfall, but shedtember has spurred me on to keep on top of things and try to eat better at all times.

Are you feeling determined to continue your weight loss journey? 
Yes, I think I'll stick to all the small changes I've made in September, which when added up make a real difference.

What, if anything, would you do differently if you were starting over?  
I would try harder to make time for, and stick to, my exercise goals.

What's your top shedtember tip? 
Don't let small slip ups put you off. It's easy to give up, but nothing worth having is ever easy!

Weight loss in the last week?
1lb

Total weight loss in September?
4lbs


Well done, ladies - we think you both did an awesome job! 

So what is shedtember? 

September 2014 sees the launch of shedtember – a fundraiser that we at Diet Chef have partnered with, which will take place every September to encourage people to lose weight, while raising money for charity, including Diabetes UK.

shedtember has been created to highlight the health issues related to weight gain, the benefits of weight management, as well as to raise awareness of access to psychological and psychiatry services for people with diabetes and their close ones.

For more information, and details on how to take part, go to: www.shedtember.org.uk 

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30 Sep 2014

Diet Chef partners with MyFitnessPal!

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We’re delighted to announce our new partnership with MyFitnessPal (MFP), launched this month. The partnership is the first of this kind for MFP, and the first official integration with a food database.

What does this mean for our customers?

  1. All Diet Chef foods are now officially integrated into the MFP food database, offering Diet Chef customers an easier, faster way to track their foods and gain insights that help them stay on track to achieve their health goals.
  2. Customers can now link their Diet Chef accounts with their MFP accounts and track all their progress effectively in one place – from total calories consumed daily to any physical activity and exercise undertaken that day.  This provides a convenient, holistic method of tracking and monitoring progress towards achieving weight loss goals, which can help boost motivation! 
  3. As our customers lose weight they tell us it inspires them to become more physically active. MFP has over 40 partners across a range of health & fitness tracking apps, which means all accounts can be linked to help customers keep on track:
  • Nearly 80% of wearables integrate with MFP, including Fitbit, Jawbone, Withings, Pulse, Samsung Galaxy Gear and Bodymedia.
  • 4 out of the top 5 GPS activity tracking apps have integrations with MFP, including Runkeeper and MapMyFitness.
  • The top Wi-Fi scales integrate with MFP, including Fitbit Aria and Withings.

What’s in it for Diet Chef? 

This is hugely exciting partnership for Diet Chef as we are now able to offer new and existing customers a convenient, time saving solution for tracking calorie intake, fitness and activity levels, using MFP.

It also ensures an ongoing connection with our customers. Ideally, getting fitter and achieving / maintaining a healthy weight should become a way of life – and we want to stay with our customers throughout their journey.

Once weight loss goals have been achieved with Diet Chef, by having all their accounts linked, we can stay in touch with our customers as they progress with their healthier lifestyles.

Our aim is to increase connectivity to other health and fitness partners and help contribute to the promotion of healthier living in general.


About MyFitnessPal 

MyFitnessPal is a health and fitness app that helps people set and achieve personalised health goals through tracking nutrition and physical activity.

By using MyFitnessPal, users get off autopilot and gain insights that help them make smarter choices, changing their behaviour and creating healthier habits.

  • MyFitnessPal is now ranked as one of the top 10 health & fitness apps within 65 countries around the world, with their aim being to create a world where healthy living is the new norm.
  • The MyFitnessPal (MFP) community is huge – more than 65 million people strong.
  • Their members have collectively lost over 150 million pounds!
  • More than 50 billion calories have been burned and logged since launch.
  • There are over 4 million foods in their database.

For more information, go to: www.myfitnesspal.com 

If the above sounds good, you might want to… 

Log into your Diet Chef account and check out the new MFP integration.
View our plans and sign up, if you are not a Diet Chef customer.  
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26 Sep 2014

Love food AND lose weight!

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Did you know that the British Food Fortnight kicked off on the 20th of September? Across the UK, lots of people and businesses are taking part, celebrating homegrown, British produce. 


We love food!

Here at Diet Chef, we are passionate about food - food is really what we are all about! 

Our position is that you can eat proper meals, without excluding any food groups, and still lose weight on a healthy, balanced diet. 

Everything in moderation! 

We believe in the 'everything in moderation' approach to dieting, and our meal plan is designed to help people learn about portion control, which is key to sensible eating in our opinion. 

On Diet Chef you get to eat things like curries, pasta, Chinese food and even a bit of chocolate - and you can expect to lose a healthy, sustainable 1-2 lbs per week*, in line with NHS recommendations for safe weight loss.

Get £100 off Diet Chef! 

To mark British Food Fortnight and celebrate our own, delicious food, we are currently running a month-end offer giving new customers £100 off the first month of any Diet Chef plan! 

This offer, which we will keep live up until and including Tuesday the 30th of September, means that you can get a daily breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack from as little as £85 in your first month of Diet Chef! That's just £3.04 a day, in month one! 

For more details on this offer (including terms and conditions), go to the View our plans page on our website

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*Weight loss results may vary and are different for each individual.


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23 Sep 2014

Team Diet Chef shedtember update - week 3

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Time to check in on our colleagues Catriona and Stacey again, to see how they did in week 3 of their shedtember challenge...not long to go now, ladies!

Stacey Cheung

How did you find the third week of shedtember? I found it a bit easier than the previous week, as by now, I'm starting to form better eating habits and snacking less.

Biggest challenge / slip up in the last week? 
Not keeping to my exercise goals. I'm determined to stick to a work out regime in the last part of the month, to see if I can push myself that little bit closer to my goal weight loss.

Best diet moment in the last week? 
I had a great weekend, diet wise, which is really good for me, as weekend indulgence is my biggest weakness!

Are you likely to keep going after September? 
Definitely! My weight loss over the month so far has been slow but steady, so I hope to keep that going, then keep those pounds off when I get to my goal weight.

Weight loss in the last week? 
1 lb

Total weight loss to date? 
3 lbs

Catriona Liddle

How did you find the third week of shedtember?  
Not so easy this last week. The weekdays were challenging due to lots of temptations in the evenings, so I had to be very good at the weekend to ensure I didn't put weight back on!

Biggest challenge / slip up in the last week?
I went out for dinner at a friend's house and just had to accept that it was a lost day!

Best diet moment in the last week?
I rediscovered cauliflower rice. Just add raw cauliflower to a blender and pulse. Steam and treat like rice for a fraction of the calories. Goes great with our curries!

Are you likely to keep going after September
Yes, definitely. I am going to try the plan until around Christmas I think.

Weight loss in the last week?  
Even. No weight gain or loss. During the week I had gained a couple of pounds, so I had to balance that out by getting them back off again by the end of the week.

Total weight loss to date?
8lbs

Anything you would like to add?
I lost my way a little last week, but everyone has "blips" and I'm definitely determined to get back on track now. Tip of the week: avoid friends who love to cook dessert!

So what is shedtember? 

September 2014 sees the launch of shedtember – a fundraiser that we at Diet Chef have partnered with, which will take place every September to encourage people to lose weight, while raising money for charity, including Diabetes UK.

shedtember has been created to highlight the health issues related to weight gain, the benefits of weight management, as well as to raise awareness of access to psychological and psychiatry services for people with diabetes and their close ones.

For more information, and details on how to take part, go to: www.shedtember.org.uk 
Read More...