The 3 Day Military Diet - my experience with Lipoedema

The new healthy eating regime that I have been following has definitely improved my health.

I am now Gluten Free, Dairy Free, avoiding chemicals & preservatives and only eating fish or very occasionally free range organic chicken, turkey or beef and only the white or lean parts of the animal, and  I now only use Extra Virgin Olive Oil or Extra Virgin Coconut Oil for cooking. I eat lots of vegetables and a little fruit daily, at least 5 a day, more if I can.

    7NTM1-nut-mix-close-2My treats are dark chocolate 70%+ and nuts which I love! 

Unfortunately I tend to have more of these treats than I should, and I definitely overindulged over the festive season.

I have found that trying to loose weight when I have Lipoedema is extremely difficult. The foods that I now consume are full of nutrients but are also rich in fats and high in calories, I try to keep the portion size down but it is so easy to grab a handful of nuts when passing the jar.

I decided after Christmas that I was going to have to get myself back on track, and cut back on the extra nuts & chocolate I had been consuming. In order to detox my system and get back on track I decided to follow the 3 Day Military Diet, but adapted it to suit my eating restrictions.


The original 3 Day Diet consists of the following:

Day 1:

Military-diet-day-one-breakfast1  Military-diet-day-one-lunch






Day 2:

Military-diet-day-two-breakfast  Fullsizeoutput_2701      Military-diet-day-two-dinner






Day 3:

Military-diet-day-three-breakfast  Military-diet-day-three-lunch  Military-diet-day-three-dinner






Vegetarian Military Diet for Quick Weight Loss

After doing proper research, I’ve come up with the vegetarian alternatives for the non-vegetarian military diet foods like Eggs, Hot dogs and Meat.

This vegetarian version of the Military Diet is almost similar to the original version except that I’ve suggested the vegetarian substitutes for meat, tuna and eggs in the diet. Also, find the calorie value beside each substitution to make more accurately calculated choices.

Water is the best thing you can drink on the Military Diet. So drink as much as you can.
You can also drink herbal teas. Artificial sweeteners aren’t good for you, so try to avoid them or use Stevia as a sweetener.

Day 1 Menu
▪ Grapefruit: ½
▪ G/F Whole Wheat Bread: 1 slice of toast
▪ Peanut butter: 2 tbsp
▪ Coffee or Tea: 1 cup
▪ Tofu: 150 g (1/2 can tuna)
▪ G/F Whole Wheat Bread: 1 slice of toast
▪ Coffee or Tea: 1 cup
▪ 100g Cooked Beans (Chickpeas/Kidney Beans/Lentils)
or 150g Tofu/Quorn (200 cal) (3 ounces of any type of meat)
▪ Green Beans: 1 cup
▪ Apple: 1 (small size)
▪ Vanilla Ice Cream: 1 cup

Day 2 Menu
▪ Soy milk: 1 cup (200 ml) (1 egg)
▪ G/F Whole Wheat Bread: 1 slice of toast
▪ Banana: ½
▪ D/F Cheddar Cheese: 1oz
▪ Cooked Beans: 100 g (1 egg)
▪ 3 Rice Cakes 75cal (Saltine Crackers x5 65cal)
▪ Soy or Tofu Dogs (without Buns) (2 hot dogs)
▪ Broccoli: 1 cup
▪ Carrots: ½ cup
▪ Banana: ½
▪ Vanilla Ice Cream: ½ cup
Day 3 Menu
▪ Cheddar Cheese: 1 slice
▪ 3 Rice Cakes 75cal (Saltine Crackers x5 65cal)
▪ Apple: 1 (small size)
▪ Cooked Beans: 100 g (1 egg)
▪ G/F Whole Wheat Bread: 1 slice of toast
▪ Tofu: 150g (1 cup of tuna)
▪ Banana: ½
▪ Vanilla Ice Cream: ½ cup

Once you’ve completed the three day military diet vegetarian version, you’ll need to follow the 1500 or 1200 calorie menu for the next 4 days.
This helps you avoid the lost weight from coming back. It is like a maintenance phase, where you’ll be able to maintain your lost weight.

Tips to Complete Military Diet Successfully
▪ Drink at least 8 to 10 glasses of water every day. This helps in flushing out the harmful impurities from your body, helping you lose weight faster.
▪ No alcohol should be consumed while on the diet.
▪ No soft drinks or even the diet sodas. They contain zero nutritional value.
▪ Pack your refrigerator with the Military diet foods prior to starting the diet, so that it will be easy for you to stick with it.

I lost 6.5lbs in my first week, and felt great, I wasn't hungry and actually did enjoy what I was eating.

I repeated the diet the following week and lost a further 3.5lbs so 10lbs in total :-)

I also managed to rid myself of the cravings for chocolate, the detox must have worked. I would not recommend this diet long term, but it is perfect to give your metabolism a boost and kick start your body into eating a healthier eating plan. I found with having Lipoedema that the fast style diet seems to work for me and will continue to follow it every couple of months.


My weight problem with Lipoedema/Lipedema

One of the first things that hit me when I found out that I had Lipoedema was the changes that had to be made to my eating habits. 


I have had a problem with my weight since my early twenties and I am no stranger to diets, I have tried and failed at so many over the years. I would lose weight initially then stop losing and would still have my pear figure (where I desperately wanted to shift the weight) heavy thighs, bottom and stomach below my belly button. This would then depress me that I couldn't shift it so the weight would pile back on as well as a few extra pounds, and so my weight crept upwards and my diabetes steadily got worse.

January 2015 I decided that I was going to have to sort myself out, my diabetes was seriously out of control and my weight had reached an all time high of over 17 stone.

My husband Alan decided he was going to help me on this journey by joining me, he had the added encouragement from needing to loose weight himself.


We joined Slimming World and together made a pact to stick to it and shed the weight we had piled on. Slimming World's food optimising plan was really easy to follow, and consisted mainly of healthy food with unlimited amounts of free foods which suited us. We both lost consistently week after week till Alan reached his target of losing 5 stone in September that year, I was so proud of him! 11334273_10153203253298283_4633921362524458787_o 

Alan won Biggest Loser & Man of the Year during this time. 

My weight steadily came off and in September I had lost 4 stone, and I won Woman of the Year which was lovely and it really boosted my confidence.

Gillian our Tillicoultry  Slimming World Consultant often asked me what my target weight was, but I didn't have one, what I really wanted was to be able to fit in to the size 12 jeans I bought, but try as I did, I could not shift the weight from my hips and thighs so those jeans were just not within my reach.


This depressed me, and it wasn't until May the following year that I found out why, no amount of diet would be able to shift the fat on my hips and thighs as this was Lipoedema fat.

Lipoedema also explained the pain I had suffered with for years in my legs, especially my knees and hips, I thought this pain would have eased with the weight loss, but it made very little difference.

When Lynora was advising me she gave me information leaflets and one of the websites lead me to the healthy eating regime I was about to start. It was quite confusing figuring out what to eat and what to avoid as there were so many conflicting reports, but I waded through all the information and figured out what would suit me and started from there. The RAD Diet was what MR Munnoch had mentioned to me at my consultation so I started there, especially as Dr Karen Herbst PhD, MD recommended it, a leading Lipedema consultant in USA.


I stopped eating all dairy products and swapped to Almond Milk, it took me a few days to get used to it but now I really like it.

I struggled more with cheese, but I found that Sainsbury's did a really nice range of cheese in their "Free From" range.

I also decided to cut Gluten out altogether, I love bread and biscuits etc so this was really difficult but perseverance worked and I have not had any Gluten since being diagnosed in May. I will admit I do feel much better since I have made these dietary changes.

I stopped eating all meat products for 6 months, I did have fish on a regular basis, and meat free products. After the initial 6 months I have had one piece of Organic Free Range chicken breast, which if I am honest I didn't really miss, but I did have Organic Free Range Turkey Crown at Christmas and I loved it!

I did every night have a square of 70% Dark Chocolate which I really enjoyed.

Where possible I chose Organic, Anti-Inflammatory foods and I did notice that my health improved over the following months, and the pain in my legs has certainly improved (also due to the compression garments that I was measured for, and wear daily).


I will in the next episode let you know about how I managed to lose some weight quite quickly and safely, but more importantly I managed to detox myself after the overindulgence of Christmas.

I had kept to the right foods, but was eating excess amounts of them.


Lipoedema Operation - Private Insurance & NHS Experience

I had my first Manual Lymphatic Drainage massage in June, from Lynora Kennedy,  JTH Therapies which has helped ease the pain in my legs. I have continued having regular treatments and I also receive lots of helpful information each time I see her.

I contacted my health insurance Aviva, and advised them of my situation explaining that my doctor had referred me to see Mr Munnoch for a consultation about Lipoedema. They advised me that I was covered for the consultation fee with Mr Munnoch, and would be covered for 10 MLD sessions and up to 5 operations, depending on the outcome of the consultation. I was to call them after it to decide a treatment plan if necessary.

My appointment with Mr Munnoch at BMI Fernbrae was both enlightening and depressing!
It started with gathering all the relevant health information, about my diabetes and health in general, a chat about how I felt about my body, my diet and exercise (which I had altered a few months before to a Lipoedema friendly one when Lynora pointed me in the right direction)  and what I knew about Lipoedema.

I explained to Mr Munnoch my story of how I had been on holiday, whilst there attended a Spa for massage where they advised me to keep having these massages and seek medical attention for the “blockages” I had on returning to the UK.

I told him about going to my GP and being directed to find a recognised MLD therapist which led me to Lynora Kennedy, and the possible diagnosis of Lipoedema where she advised me to go back to my doctor and ask for an appointment to see him.


He then examined me and diagnosed me with Lipoedema and advised me that I would require three operations: each thigh to below knee and buttocks as I have a “shelf”.
As you can imagine I was delighted with having been diagnosed but at the same time I was anxious to what this entailed.

Mr Munnoch clearly went over the procedures with me, explaining that it would be one at a time and a three month healing time between each procedure. Then he hit me with the depressing part … he does not treat Lipoedema privately, only through NHS at Ninewells, Dundee … AAhh!

Alan had taken me to the appointment and had listened intently to what was being said, he then asked Mr Munnoch, if he was unable to do the operations privately who would he recommend for us to contact. We were then advised that it is not a normal liposuction operation it has to be very carefully done and he is the only surgeon in Scotland carrying out this procedure. He advised me that they only other surgeon he would recommend for this procedure privately would be Anne Dancey in Birmingham. I thought about what he had said the operation entailed and then the distance and thought Birmingham is not a good option for me.

Here I was with an insurance company that would cover me to have these operations and my surgeon does not do them privately. Mr Munnoch advised me that he would write back to my doctor and advise them that he had diagnosed me with Lipoedema and that I needed these operations, and to refer me to himself at Ninewells, Dundee. He did let me know that NHS funding could be a problem.

I had to hope that my doctor would refer me to Mr Munnoch at Ninewells.

I arranged an appointment with my doctor to go over what Mr Munnoch had said. We discussed my condition and what the operations would do for me. My doctor said just to play devil's advocate why did I wanted the operations, as they would not be without risk by having a general anaesthetic, when all I had was fat thighs?


I was stunned by this remark, but then thought (hopefully) that they were just making sure that I was aware of the risks involved and not meaning to upset me.

I explained that I had done everything they had asked me, lost weight, controlled my diabetes and upped my exercise yet nothing was helping me loose the fat on these areas, not to mention the pain that came with it.

By having these operations I was giving myself a chance for a pain free normal life, with the diseased fat cells removed and by sticking to my new eating and exercise plan (I will do a page on that in the future) I would have that chance.

My doctor told me that I was going to be referred to Mr Munnoch at Ninewells and that I was to think carefully if I wanted to have the operations during the waiting period.

A couple of weeks later I received a call from my doctor's practise advising me that they were not authorised to grant the funding for my operations and that I would need to go see another consultant who would examine me and see if I was eligible for the funding. 

As you can imagine I was very upset thinking here we go again ... but a month later when I did attend this appointment he came to the same decision as Mr Munnoch that I did require the operations and approved my referral.

I went back to see Mr Munoch at Ninewells and I am now on the waiting list (about 5-6 months) for the operations. I will take before and after photos and document my experience, as I know some of you will want to know how it goes and how I cope ;-)



Diagnosing Lipoedema ... My First Step

I first met Lynora Kennedy, MLD therapist in June 2016 for a consultation.

During the consultation Lynora asked me lots of questions, then on her examination and before beginning the treatment, advised me that I had a lot of the symptoms of a condition called Lipoedema she asked if I had heard of it (which I hadn’t). Lynora went on to explain what Lipoedema was and why she thought it was important I make an appointment to see my doctor to get officially diagnosed.


Lynora advised me that a lot of doctors are unaware of this condition, she gave me a NHS card to give to my doctor (if they didn’t know about it) which explains Lipoedema and a website that they can go on to find out all the relevant NHS information Summary of Lipoedema - An Adipose Tissue Disorder, she also gave me pamphlets and various websites to visit for further information and advice.


When I visited one of the sites Lynora highly recommended to give me the information I needed about this condition I found this:

Lipoedema UK Diagnosis

Many people with lipoedema find it difficult and embarrassing to discuss their symptoms with their doctor, but getting diagnosed as early as possible is important so that the doctor and patient can work together to prevent the symptoms getting any worse.

Lack of knowledge about lipoedema throughout the medical profession means that the symptoms are often mistaken for lymphoedema or obesity and if left undiagnosed it is possible that lipoedema can develop into lipo-lymphoedema.

A number of factors are taken into consideration when making a formal diagnosis of Lipoedema:

  • Disproportionately larger/fatter legs and hips compared to the upper body
  • Swelling is symmetrical (both sides of the body are affected equally)
  • Hands and feet are not affected
  • Loose, floppy connective tissues around the knee joints
  • Fat that looks like cellulite and feels soft
  • Tenderness/pain and easy or spontaneous bruising to affected areas
  • Skin of affected areas may be pale and cold
  • Upper arms may also be disproportionately fatter
  • Patients may report increased swelling in hot weather

Lynora advised me to ask my doctor to make an appointment to see Mr Munnoch at Ninewells in Dundee as he is the person to see in Scotland for diagnosing this condition.

I took the relevant information to my doctor, and I asked him about Lipoedema he did not know what it was, asking me what I wanted him to do about it … I replied “to help me”

I was upset and in tears by his response but I took a deep breath and explained my situation. I reminded him that I had lost 4 stone in weight, had managed to get my diabetes under control, yet my thighs, buttocks and stomach had hardly reduced at all. I had done everything I possibly could on my own and needed help, the pain in my knees, thighs & hips were getting worse. I was becoming depressed due to the fact that I had stuck religiously to the eating plan and exercise yet could not move the fat from those areas.

I gave him the NHS card, explained what my MLD therapist had said, and that all the relevant information was on the site.  Once I told him I had private medical insurance he advised me he would look in to it and would get back to me.


He called me later that day and advised me that he had requested an appointment for me to see Mr Munnoch privately at BMI Fernbrae Hospital not Ninewells.

He also advised me that he had agreed to my request for an appointment to see the Lymphedema clinic about compression garments / Compression Hosiery that help with the swelling and pain in my legs.

I felt like I was getting somewhere ...



Living with Lipoedema (Lipedema)

I was diagnosed with Lipoedema last year and have been coming to terms with that news ever since.

Let’s start at the beginning …


I was not a chubby child, but I did enjoy my food and I was fairly active. My mother encouraged me to enjoy the physical activities, I attended ballet classes, gymnastics, horse ridding and skating, at school I enjoyed PE especially basketball.

I got married when I was 19, and at 21 I gave birth to my daughter Karina. It was not long after this that I noticed a change in my body, I put it down to pregnancy but my life of yo-yo dieting had now begun. I had my son Christopher 17 months later, Karina turned 3 in March and my youngest Katie was born in June, I had 3 children aged 3 and under!

The weight had been creeping steadily upwards during these years, and although I would try and shift it inbetween the pregnancies it never seemed to shift from my thighs, buttocks and stomach. I tried every diet going, some with a little success but never budging from those areas, even exercise didn’t help. I would ask my doctor about my weight but they would just advise me to follow a stricter diet plan and exercise more!

In 1999 my marriage collapsed and I was left feeling a failure, I turned to food for comfort and over the following few years my weight started to soar. In 2001 I was diagnosed with Diabetes and advised to follow a healthier lifestyle and eating plan. I was under a lot of stress due to the collapse of my marriage and looking after 3 children on my own, my son had ADHD which was demanding and with everything starting to pile up on top of me I had a partial breakdown. I was advised to take a step back from college and work to give myself a chance to recover from all the stress that I had been under.

During this period my diabetes had been getting steadily worse and I was warned that insulin would have to be the next step. I knew that once you were on insulin there was little chance of getting back of it and it made me take notice of what was happening to me. I made an effort to get my life back on track and in 2005 it started to look promising, I was turning a corner.


In January 2006 I met Alan who swept me of my feet. We had an amazing year and in November that year he proposed to me. I always swore that I would never get married again, once you have been badly hurt you don’t forget, but Alan changed that for me, he had never been married and told me that his plans were he never would, he just hadn't met the right person yet!

Alan had a son Josh who unfortunately died in July 2007 he was only 18. It was devastating for Alan, and he said the only way he coped was having me there to lean on, I believe in fate, he was meant to find me so that I could help him through this extremely difficult time. We were married April 2008, a lovely luncheon with close family and friends to celebrate, the day was perfect and Josh was in our thoughts.


My life was back on track, but unfortunately my weight was gaining as we were so content. We enjoyed going on holiday and out for meals which was not so good for the waistline or my diabetes. We had some amazing holidays to Florida, Egypt, New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, San Fransisco to name a few.



In July 2010 I opened my craft shop in Alloa, "Craft-ed Creations" website .

I had been working in the industry for years and with Alan working offshore for weeks at a time, felt it was the right time to give it a go and see if I could make it work. I loved being my own boss and the shop was steady to begin with, but as people started to look online for their purchases the shop grew quiet.



I found my Bespoke Wedding Stationery was doing really well, and I built that part of my business up as the shop sales slowed down.

In January 2015 Alan and I joined Slimming World. I had been warned again by the doctor that my health was seriously in danger and I had to do something about it, they had given me a 3 month deadline to show improvements or I had to go on insulin. We were both determined to get the weight off that had been piling on since we got married and for me to turn my diabetes around. I was also suffering from pain in my legs, I assumed due to the extra weight I was carrying, or possibly arthritis, which worried me as I need the mobility in my finger joints for my work. Over the year we both did extremely well, Alan lost 5 stone won Biggest Loser & Man of the Year, he reached his target in November that year.

I was so proud of him and I lost 4 stone won woman of the year and we won Couple of the Year. When I lost all the weight it didn't really come off my thighs, buttocks or stomach, I never set a weight target at Slimming World as my target was to get into my size 12 jeans! I managed to impress my doctor and diabetic nurse by controlling my diabetes, they reduced my tablets right down to 2 a day which was amazing.

In April 2016 we went on holiday to Turkey, at our hotel we booked in for a spa treatment and it is here that I found out I had a health problem. The therapist at the spa had given me a massage for lymph drainage and advised me that I should seek medical advice when I got home (they called it a blockage, language was a bit of a problem).

On returning to the UK I went to my GP and explained that I had been receiving these massages and felt a real benefit from them, how they helped with my IBS and pain in my legs and hips. We discussed the massages and she said that it sounded like lymphatic drainage massage I had been receiving and guided me to where I would find an appropriate therapist to continue the treatments, as these were not provided on the NHS. I went online and found Lynora Kennedy a specialist in MLD therapy, and I booked a consultation with her for the next week and that is where my journey with lipoedema begins …