Recently I’ve been working in an office environment, so it’s swarming with women who are all on some diet or another, but one seems to be more popular than any of the others & it’s SLIMMING WORLD.
Slimming World is the land of syns, some foods are “free” – this means you can eat as MUCH as you want, others have syns – these are the ones that you should only eat a certain amount of in order to keep losing weight. Sound ideal? Where’s the issue?
So, what’s in a syn?
You have a total daily allowance of syns, 15 to be exact. That 15 syns equates to 300 calories per day. Um, come again? How many? I eat more than that for breakfast! No, no! I hear you cry from you syn thrones – there are syn free foods too! Mate, I don’t care. This working things out in fake points is insane! (it’s like Reddit, but for food in the real world!)
So, I give you the flaws in this insane system*
I’ve googled free foods/syns in foods to create a daily plan & will be adding actual macros/calories as well. All the food listed below is from the SW website & SW Survival website.
Baked oats or a full English
35g oats, 3tsp sweetener, 1 egg, 1 pot of yoghurt & some fruit. Bake it. Job done. ONE WHOLE SYN. (343 cal, 22g carb, 6g fat, 11g protein)
2 sausages, 2 rashers of bacon (fat removed), mushrooms, 1 whole onion, 1 whole tomato, 1 boiled potato, 1/2 tin of beans, 2 eggs. ZERO SYNS! (ok….this is free food, so why stop at two sausages, why not have eight? They’re no syns!!) (942 cal, 59g carb, 48g fat, 59g protein) This bad boy also benefits from 1,852mg of sodium!!! FTR, 8 sausage is 1600 calories.
125g Cheese, Leek & Ham pasta. 100g Chicken breast, & a 500g tub of fat free yoghurt – SYNFREEAGAIN (936 cal, 84g carb, 9g fat, 63g protein)
Lamb shank with mint sauce, 100g oven chips, side of veggies & a Curly Wurly brownie, fuck it….I’m on one syn, so let’s have 4 brownies. 4 SYNS (857 cal, 50g carb, 43g fat, 67g protein)
Total Syn count: FOUR or FIVE depending on breakfast
Some fruits are free too, so we’ll have 2 mandarins, 100g peas & 100g carrots as snacks for the day. (163 cal, 38 carb, 6g protein)
Because we have around 9 syns left, we’ll have a 14% glass of red wine with dinner. (175ml) (175 cal, 3g carb)
Don’t worry about being peckish…..carbs are FREE – go eat that bowl of pasta & sauce, or super noodles. (pasta is 522 cal, noodles are 264 cal)
So, that gives you a total (excluding MOAR pasta snacks) of:
2474 cal for the day if you have the oats
3586 if you have the full English.
Remind me, this diet is supposed to help you LOSE weight, right?
Macro-wise, it’s a little more promising;
196g carb, 58g fat, 147g protein OR 233g carb, 100g fat, 195g protein sort of, I suppose. It depends on a multitude of things: height, weight, age, gender & activity levels.
I can burn through over 3000 calories a day, however that is only IF I cycle a good 10 miles, as well as go & lift weights for an hour.
Look at it this way, most women in the UK on average, are 5 foot 5 (169cm) & weigh anywhere from 7st 12 to 10st 10 (50-64kg) If we take the middle of that weight range, around 58kg & work out that they’re a 40 year old office worker that drives everywhere & walks the dog a mile a day.
That gives you a TDEE of 1477 NOT 3586. Broken into macros, as per MFP:
1477 cal, 50% carb – 185g, 20% fat – 33g & 30% protein – 111g which is WAY off the food i selected at random from the lists of free foods that I could.
I’m aware my examples are probably extreme & SW will hopefully teach people portion control & so on, I also know that many people have lost weight using SW – that doesn’t make it right! Eating at a calorie deficit will help you lose weight, you don’t need points, coloured days, or whatever else some diet guru is trying to tout you with.
Plus, without knowing what a macro is, you’d never be able to work out your daily needs. That & there’s no paid support group for macro counters…….
Diagnosis of Slimming World: NO.