LOSE IT LIKE TOM KERRDIGE

Three years ago, BBC chef Tom Ker­ridge weighed 30 stone. But thanks to a carb-free diet (and no booze) he has lost more than 11 stone. Here, Tom shares some of the se­crets of his suc­cess

Easy Cook - - EASY COOK GOOD FOOD -

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The TV chef shares two ex­clu­sive recipes

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When I started to ex­am­ine my new high-protein, low- carb diet, I wasn’t as in­ter­ested in how it worked nu­tri­tion­ally as I was in why I en­joyed it so much.

To me, this is ab­so­lutely the key to its suc­cess. Ev­ery­body else I’ve ever met moans that di­ets are a pain and a strug­gle, but I hon­estly en­joy mine. I couldn't have kept go­ing for so long if I didn’t. And it's im­por­tant to keep go­ing – I may have lost a lot of weight, but I’d still like to lose some more.

At the very heart of what I have been do­ing in the past 3 years is the ethos of eat­ing as many foods that help to stim­u­late the pro­duc­tion of dopamine as I can. So, what is dopamine? It’s a key chem­i­cal as­sist­ing with neu­ral sig­nalling in the brain’s re­ward hub. To put it sim­ply, when you ex­pe­ri­ence a plea­sur­able sen­sa­tion – whether it’s from food, laugh­ter, sex, al­co­hol or gam­bling – dopamine is re­leased in your brain. There’s ev­i­dence to sug­gest that low dopamine lev­els can lead to de­creased mo­ti­va­tion and make us feel lethar­gic and ap­a­thetic, even de­pressed – ab­so­lutely not the state you need to be in to lose weight.

Dopamine doesn’t just ap­pear mag­i­cally in our brains. Our bod­ies cre­ate it by break­ing down an amino acid called ty­ro­sine, which can be ob­tained from lots of dif­fer­ent – and, for­tu­nately, de­li­cious – foods.

In my book, there is a load of recipes that are fairly low in car­bo­hy­drates and high in ty­ro­sine, so they will help to boost dopamine lev­els in the brain. This means that you will en­joy eat­ing them – it re­ally is that easy.

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