I have tremendously sad news: giving up cheese, booze, bread, pasta and sugar really does make you feel incredible. I have just completed a three-week metabolic-reset programme and I’ve lost fat, I’m less anxious, I sleep better and I have the energy levels of a 17-year-old walking through the door of his first house party.
Designed by a naturopath, nutritionist and retired professional athlete, the 21-day programme is a combination of recipes, food recommendations, exercise and relaxation techniques — all under the catchy name “Metabolic Reset”.
Our metabolism is the way we convert food into energy and Rhian Stephenson, the programme’s creator, says many common health issues such as stress, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), chronic fatigue and weight gain are hard to improve while blood sugar remains erratic.
“The effects of excess sugar have systemic implications. Sugar depresses immunity, impacts mood and promotes inflammation,” she says.
We all know how excess makes us feel but few of us have thrown ourselves into healthy living with the same vigour.
The promises made on behalf of this programme (available as an ebook, The Metabolic Reset, £30) are both appealing and ambitious and there are aspects of my wellbeing I long to fix. As I’m about to turn 60, I wake in the early hours worrying — worrying about worrying and hating myself for being such a worrier. Also, there’s the naps, the brain fuzz, the sudden lethargies.
Phil Hilton tries hill climbs. Aim to run, walk or cycle three times a week (Phil wears trousers and T-shirt from a selection at vuoriclothing.co.uk)
MICHAEL LECKIE FOR THE TIMES
Stephenson, 40, a former competitive swimmer, created a regime that’s rather like, I imagine, a break in a posh health farm would have been in the Eighties. You give up everything that spikes your blood sugar and which influences your brain chemistry.
I met her on a sunny winter’s day to receive my programme and I instantly knew she was one of those driven, powerful people I couldn’t argue with.
Nevertheless, I did attempt a little haggling. “What if I just fell off the wagon one night and drank some wine?” I ask. Stephenson, a super-healthy…