Michael van Straten
Michael van Straten

The Celebrity Shopping Trolley - Nicky Hambleton-Jones

Could This Diet Make You Look Ten Years Younger?

Michael delves into the shopping trolley of Nicky Hambleton-Jones

This ex, but not lamented presenter of Look 10 years Younger, has never been my favourite TV person. Along with Gillian McKeith, she ranks right up there with my top bullying, aggressive and unsympathetic TV people.

After 45 years treating patients with all the ills you can think of, including weight problems and lack of self esteem, I know that care and understanding work best.

McKeith with her strange qualifications and overpriced products is no surprise, but Nicky is a properly registered dietician!

That said, I guess we can blame the TV company for making her into the on-screen wicked witch of the make over shows. Happily her own diet really is a joy to read and don't think it is always the same with nutritionists.

One of the worst I have ever seen came from an expert at the Food Standards Agency.

Breakfast like a King says the proverb and Nicky does:-

Fruit and Fibre cereal: homemade muesli; mixed nuts and dried fruit; low fat milk and yogurt; blueberries, half a nectarine or half a banana or half an apple and fresh fruit juice – please can I get an invite?

Lunch varies from home to work and could be home made soup with bread and cheese in winter or a salad Nicoise in summer.

Poached egg, whole meal toast and baked beans (a really great source of iron, protein and fibre), or a healthy sandwich of cheese, chutney, gherkins, and avocado. Freshly made or, if bought, with tuna or avocado fillings. This is so important as these are two of the healthiest things any woman can eat.

By dinner time she's ready for a sustaining pasta meal with her own veggie sauce - onions, garlic, tomatoes, baby marrow, red and yellow peppers), with a sprinkle of parmesan. Nicky rings the changes with chicken casserole, poached salmon and new potatoes or a Vietnamese chicken salad with brown rice or lentils. I love these choices, especially with the great carbs from spuds, lentils, rice or pasta – no Atkins here thank goodness.

Nicky's home made South African rusks sound terrific and I can't wait to try them if I can get her recipe. They are certainly a good snack for fast and slow release energy.

With very little caffeine, lots of water and 4 to 5 glasses of wine a week, the fluid intake is just right. It is so good to see a young woman without real, or the sadly imagined problems of food allergy or intolerance that are so common. This all adds up to a balanced, healthy diet with no obsessive habits or hang-ups and a great shopping basket.

My only sadness is that someone so knowledgeable should perpetuate the myth that cheese is a vice, but she eats it just the same. It is ludicrous to suggest that it gives you fat thighs and there is no evidence for this. What cheese does do is give you strong bones and help prevent the crippling and agonizing results of osteoporosis in later life. All women need to eat a matchbox sized portion each day.


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