I lost two stone at 63 – and it wasn’t even that hard

All you have to do is weigh the food and tap it in, then up pop the values, added into your daily total, making it a breeze to see where you are at any point, to stay within 800 calories, no more than 50g of carbohydrate and at least 50g of protein.

I still can’t get over how easy it is to do and it enabled me, even during the first strict phase, to eat the same meals as the rest of the family. There was none of that tiresome double-dinner thing I’ve experienced on previous weight-loss excursions, just a bit of portion-control weighing.

I would, for example, make my regular spag bol sauce (366 calories and 6.7 carbs for a medium serve, according to the app), then serve it with pasta to my husband and daughter, and on a bed of shredded, boiled and buttered Savoy cabbage for me.

I could even factor in my lazy-Friday guilty pleasure of M&S Southern-fried chicken, without busting the diet, and I enjoyed the process of working out how to get the greatest possible satisfaction out of my daily calorie and carb allowances.

What I didn’t waste mental energy on was what I wasn’t eating.

It is a bald fact that, on this regime (as most diets …) you have to give up pasta, bread, potatoes, rice, pastry, cereals and absolutely anything containing sugar – a prospect that causes many people to protest: “What’s the point of living like that?”

The revelation for me was that after just a few days I really didn’t find it a trial. Protein is so much more satiating than carbohydrate you don’t get those niggling little hungers that used to draw me repeatedly to the bread bin, or the chocolate buttons.

But the thing that really made it easy for to me live without baked potatoes and porridge – two high-carb things I particularly adore – was the speed the weight fell off. It was really quite astonishing.

In the first couple of weeks, I lost nearly half a stone. Suddenly I had cool-girl skinny shoulders again, my cheekbones had come back – and my belt was two holes looser.

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