Pizza Pangs – By Catherine Lawler

Children’s leftover food is pretty gross when you think about it. So why is it this is one of the main saboteurs I have in my battle to lose weight?

It seems I’m not the only one and I share this vice with many other parents. Whether it is half a sandwich or a chicken goujon, it inevitably finds its way into my mouth and I’m something of a slave when it comes to toast and jam.

However, booking a holiday has given me fresh momentum and I now have a genuine deadline to stop this unappealing habit once and for all.

Some of the mums I’ve spoken to though, have vastly different views.

“Ugh! I’m not tempted at all by children’s food” says my naturally very slim friend.

Another squirts washing up liquid on any leftovers to avoid eating the lot. Another bins everything quickly. I’ll admit – wasting food bothers me, even if it’s not exactly Michelin star and has usually been dipped in tomato sauce too (I draw the line if it’s been on the floor).

One parent though, may have come up with the solution – and it’s not rocket science. She has struggled with the temptation of children’s leftovers for years and now simply eats four meals a day instead of three.

So, spurred on by recent membership of a slimming club, I decided to adopt this approach. The routine in our house is probably similar to that of many families – the children eat tea soon after 5pm and the worn out parents eat dinner later, perhaps with a bottle of wine, once the kids are in bed and peace reigns throughout. There’s nothing wrong with this, but sitting down at the table and eating with the children as well is a good thing if you can, even if you’re all eating different things.

So whether it’s a boiled egg, some vegetable soup, corn on the cob or a small jacket potato, I now sit down to eat with the children almost every evening and I no longer pounce on their remains – unless it’s a healthy leftover! It also tides me over nicely until dinner later and helps me stick to my new healthy eating plan.

When it comes to leftover pizza though, my resolve collapses. Willpower only goes so far …