Simply Too Good to be True, Cookbook author, Annette Sym, promotes healthy eating.
Simply Too Good to be True, Cookbook author, Annette Sym, promotes healthy eating. Kari Bourne

You don't always have to eat everything on your plate

AS A young girl my mum would always say "eat what's on your plate" and I happily obliged her and it stayed with me for most of my life.

Sometimes I can leave some food but I do feel uncomfortable doing this.

Have you heard these words or used them yourself "clear your plate, don't let it go to waste, think of all the starving children in the world"?

It is time to change these words and thought processes, instead we should be saying these words "Stop eating when you've had enough".


Here are some tips that might help:

1. If you can't leave food on your plate then when serving up your meal make sure you serve moderate amounts and in realistic portions.

2. Don't go back for seconds.

3. If you are visiting and the host serves a dessert you know isn't healthy and you don't want to eat it, can I suggest that instead of compromising yourself take charge and say no thank you. If you find this hard do what I do and say "no thank you I'm full", it works every time.

4. When dining out never use the excuse that you've paid for it so you have to eat it. Instead think about what it will cost you on the scales if you overeat.

5. If you don't want to offend someone by not eating the food they offer once again say that you are either full, not hungry, feeling a little under the weather, whatever works best without upsetting them. Instead ask if you can take it home to enjoy later, then either give it to someone else or throw it away.

6. No one is deliberately saying you have to waste food but you may have to address quantities both when shopping for food and when cooking.

7. We all have the choice whether to finish what's on our plate or not. No one force feeds you so make the right decisions and your health could be the winner.

8. You should never feel overfull after a meal, this means you have eaten more than you can handle. Don't make this a habit. If it's a common thing then this habit needs to go.

9. They say that we are better to graze through our day if we want to improve our metabolic rate and burn fat easier, so try having six small meals opposed to 3 large ones.

10. Don't eat like there is no tomorrow. This is not the last meal you will ever have so don't eat like it is. Honestly you won't starve to death.

Annette's cookbooks SYMPLY TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE 1-7 are sold in all good newsagencies or visit for more tips and recipes.



Baked Cheesecake
Baked Cheesecake
  • 15 arrowroot biscuits
  • 3 tablespoons skim milk
  • cooking spray


  • 1 x 500g tub low-fat cottage cheese
  • 1 x 125g packet Light Philadelphia® reduced-fat cream cheese
  • 1 tablespoon lemon rind
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 whole egg
  • 3 tablespoons plain flour


  • 1 x 425g can mixed berries
  • 1 tablespoon cornflour

Preheat oven to 160ºC fan forced.

To make base: In a food processor crumble biscuits, add milk and blend together. Coat a 22cm spring-based cake tin with cooking spray and press biscuit mix onto base using the palm of your hand. Refrigerate whilst making the filling.

To make filling: Clean food processor bowl and add cottage cheese, blend until very smooth, add cream cheese and blend. Put in rind, lemon juice and essence blending ingredients. Slowly add in sugar until dissolved. Add egg whites and egg and combine with mixture, add flour. Once combined pour mixture over biscuit base. Bake for 1 hour. Gently release edge of tin to loosen cake away from edge, this may help stop cracking as it cools.

To make sauce: Place both ingredients into a small saucepan and bring to boil, stirring continuously. Leave to cool. Pour sauce over each slice of cheesecake.


DIETITIAN'S TIP: This one's a winner, everyone will love this low-fat cheesecake.



PER SERVE               C/CAKE with sauce        C/CAKE plain

FAT          TOTAL                      4.4g                          4.3g

                 SATURATED            0.5g                          0.5g

FIBRE                                       0.4g                          0.4g

PROTEIN                                 10.9g                         10.4g

CARBS                                     29.8g                        22.1g

SUGAR                                    16.1g                                   14.7g

SODIUM                                  137mg                               134mg

KILOJOULES                        842 (cal 200)               701 (cal 167)

GI RATING                             Medium                     Medium