We’re all quite happy to talk about what diet we’re on if the question arises: the Paleolithic Diet, the Atkins Diet, the 5:2 Diet, the Whole Foods Diet…but we never talk about the secret diet.

This is the one we all wind up on when time is pressed, there’s no chance of getting to the supermarket and we’re working so hard we don’t have time to cook.

This is the Real Person’s Diet- the one we never tell our friends about in case they think we’re some sort of animal.

bad diet

If I was asked to do one of those fancy “What I Ate This Week” columns in a magazine, no-one would publish it.

Why? Because I’d be honest.

I don’t diet and I don’t always look after myself. I eat like a normal person most of the time and like a freak the rest of it. No-one would publish that, because these days we live in such an uptight, prissy world that the tut-tutting about my appalling refusal to be obsessed with my health would be classed as a crime.

So, for the curious, this is how I truly ate last week.


Breakfast: Oooh, look at that. Leftover Indian takeaway from three days ago. Extra hot rogan josh and pea pulao? Why the hell not? And don’t give me that crap about takeaway not being a breakfast food-your stomach doesn’t know what time it is.

Mid-morning snack: It’s a busy day and there’s no time to take a break. The thought of preparing a snack to take with me before I left the house didn’t occurred to me because I was, well, getting ready to leave the house, not trying to be Martha Stewart.

So I rummaged around in my handbag and found some almonds down the bottom-not wrapped in anything, mind you, but there they were. Score! A quick dust off and down the gullet they went. And yes, of course they had germs on them.

I am fairly sure this is what people mean when they talk about activated almonds.

Lunch: Four dim sims. Yes, the shop I bought them from also sold salad. Yes, I had enough time to order something hot and tasty like a stir fry with vegies. But I didn’t. You know why?

Because I really wanted four dim sims. With soy sauce. Which I spilled on my trousers.

burger ringsDinner: A packet of Burger Rings. I was working and didn’t have time to eat. They were damn fine Burger Rings.

Late night snack: Belted down some frozen corn and peas before heading to bed. I even heated them up in the microwave. I am that fancy.



Late lunch: Woke up early, started work, didn’t eat until 3pm. Even I realised that I needed something substantial by that point. I cooked a big lunch: pasta, a tin of tuna, some grated cheese, frozen peas and pepper. That covers all the five food groups, I think you’ll find.

Dinner: Livened things up and ordered takeaway. Thai vegie curry and rice.


Breakfast: There was leftover Thai in the fridge. Need you ask?

Lunch: Dim sims again. I really, really like dim sims.

Afternoon snack: Half a packet of lolly snakes. I don’t give a flying crap about your fancy biology degree, red is a vitamin. As is purple. lolly snakes

Dinner: I could make something up here and say I ordered take away, or grabbed a soulvaki, or went out for dinner, but the truth is, I ate Burger Rings again. I followed that up with two glasses of wine and the rest of the lolly snakes. I dare you to tell me that isn’t a three course meal.


Breakfast: A pretty exciting morning. Fossicking through the freezer I discovered a loaf of banana bread I’d made a month ago. Four pieces of that with butter and I was ready to face the day.

Lunch: Miso-poached salmon, brown rice with nori flakes and a seaweed salad. Ha ha ha! No. I had four dim sims again. Unknown-1

Dinner: Was still working, so ate something that vaguely resembled a curry from a food van on the way to a gig. It stayed down, so I’m assuming it was food.


Breakfast: Banana bread! I am pretty frickin’ pleased with myself for finding that.

Lunch: had to fly interstate for work, so ate on the plane. Not exactly sure what I put in my mouth. Bread? With something brown in it?

Dinner: Some dips and biscuits backstage before the gig. OK, a lot of biscuits and dip before the gig which then repeated on me while I was performing.


Various iterations of banana bread, pasta with tuna, clean almonds I found in the pantry and cups of tea. Oh! And some home grown peaches my next door neighbour gave me, which were, beyond a doubt, the healthiest thing I put in my body all week.

Of course I don’t eat like this all the time. I’d have scurvy if I did.

But we all have those weeks when we’re either too busy, too lazy or just too damned over the whole thing to eat well. I don’t feel guilty when I eat like this and I’ll be buggered if anyone is going to shame or frighten me into not doing it.

I know all the lectures: I will die of cancer, or a heart attack, or cancer, or liver disease, or cancer, or diabetes, or cancer. Or piles.

You gotta die of something. At least in my case, it won’t be boredom.

What do you eat, honestly, during a busy day or week?



When Tribes Go to War

Bugger off, Outrage Police

Mum’s the Dirty Word


*Corinne Grant is a stand-up comedian, MC, presenter, writer and broadcaster and has performed both nationally and internationally. In addition to her years on Rove Live and The Glasshouse, she has appeared on everything from Spicks and Specks to Dancing With The Stars to Good News Week. She has co-hosted successful national radio shows, performed countless solo live shows and appeared everywhere from the Sydney Opera House to the Kalgoorlie Arts Centre. Corinne’s first book, Lessons In Letting Go: Confessions of a Hoarder (Allen and Unwin) was released in September 2010 and went into reprint just months after its release.


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  • Reply March 12, 2013

    The Huntress

    Hahahaha! My diet does not look that dissimilar these days. Since returning to shift work my diet has gone down the drain and I feel shite for it. And it doesn’t help that Mr. Huntress buys a box of 4 Cornetto’s every time he goes to the shops (which is often now, due to my irregular hours). There are 3 of us in the house. Guess who gets the leftover Cornetto for breakfast 😀

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    Very Liz Lemon. Beautiful. Breakfast: 2 slices of leftover pizza and coffee. Lunch: 2 slices of leftover pizza with lashings of water. Dinner: Toasted buttered coconut bread and coffee. Every food group covered to excess. Tres healthy!

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    I have giggled my way through this hilariously funny post shamelessly recognising myself…Not every day, not very often, just when life takes over. Brilliant post 🙂

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    Hi Corinne – thanks for dishing up a cup of honesty, perfect for my morning tea!

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    Seriously Corinne, I would marry you. This is exactly the laugh I needed this morning as I ate a chocolate crackle for breakfast with my coffee and cigarette! I also had Thai last night for dinner with my 10 year old birthday girl washed down with a few glasses of red wine and a berocca before bed – because I can’t drink water plain. Makes me feel sick unless there is something in it. Sometimes that something is freshly squeezed lemon – usually it isn’t.

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    Love it! Being pregnant, I’m ripe for criticism of my diet, seeing as it mostly consists of white carbohydrates… And I love dim sims too 😀

  • Reply March 12, 2013

    Linda Head

    Sounds like a balanced diet to me. Replace Burger Rings and lolly snakes with Cheezels and strawberries & cream lollies and I’m right there with you.

  • Reply March 12, 2013

    Mrs Woog

    Diet coke and twisties!

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    Ok well fried eggs and tomatoes on walnut bread toasted, bought beetroot juice cos I had time and ingredients this morning. Otherwise a takeaway coffee and maybe the dinner leftovers from last night in my lap as I drive to work ( I use a fork not chopsticks while I drive)…no activated almonds here. Big afternoon so I will carry some vegemite vita weats and an apple and then probs get another takeaway coffee and there may be a lemon slice or sushi or both involved for the school run (for me not kids)

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    Well I’d never eat so much crap – I’m worth more than that.

  • Reply March 12, 2013

    Helen g

    Wonderful wonderful stuff! Well done you for giving us a bit of honesty…..I have eaten biscuit crumbs caught in my bra! And in the end, our bottoms don’t drop off, and the whirl does not stop spinning. Thanks for the laugh and the comfort of knowing I am not alone.


  • Reply March 12, 2013


    This reads akin to a naive17 year old boasting about how much alcohol and beers and bundy and OH AREN’T I SO COOL DRINKING SO MUCH.

    So, congratulations if it is that to which you aspire.

    • Reply March 12, 2013


      May the gods let me spend my time with somebody who occasionally eats lollies for dinner over somebody who has had their funny bone surgically removed. Amen.

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    why did you guys delete that comment from Kyla about all the crap food being eaten? Hilarious.

    • Reply March 12, 2013

      Wendy Harmer

      I just checked and no comments have been deleted from this discussion. Mystery.

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    It’s not just me! Thank-you Corinne!

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    I’m with Mrs Woog – I had twisties and a diet coke for lunch yesterday!

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    Corinne, I adore you. You made this old duck laugh so loudly that the old bloke came in from the garden to see what I was on about. He roared with laughter.
    Sending it to my daughter and granddaughter who will crack up too. I suspect the g/daughter’s diet is not dissimilar some weeks.
    I’d give anything to have lolly snakes for lunch …. why not, off to the shops to get some!

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    I am an awesome dietress most of the time, low carb, high protein, no sugar, no processed foods, lots of leafy greens, blah blah blah. This week I am hormonal and since Sunday I have eaten tim tams, hot chips, potato chips (because it’s good to have a variety of chips in my life), smarties, hot cross buns and some more potato chips. Today I am faced with the choice of my quinoa, roast pumpkin and coriander salad brought from home, or a chocolate muffin from the cafe. Hard life I have.

  • Reply March 12, 2013

    Narelle Matheson

    Thought this article might winkle out a few purists! Thanks for the honesty Corinne. This past week has been a total nightmare in food for me. Due to a nasty 4mm kidney stone I spent my week in hospital. I was lovingly and caringly treated, plied with remarkable technologically advanced treatments and drugs ( thank you god) and then fed hospital food, which reduced the experience to a week of gastrointestinal misery!
    Breakfast – tea, raisin bread, butter and a small sickly sweet low fat yoghurt. Lunch – ok, meat overlooked to the consistency of soggy cardboard, salty gravy to give the cardboard flavour, Deb instant mashed potato, and a grandly name “melange of vegetables” – meaning 3 minute slivers of something green, red and yellow, tasteless and rubbery. Dinner – repeat lunch with possible substitutions of pasta cooked to DEATH, white sauce (don’t ask) and an amazing grey mass named “pasta bake”.
    Corinne, how I longed for 4 dim sims with soy sauce! And I would have killed for a packet of Burger Rings.

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    I’ve done cheese and crackers for dinner and I’ve also done Twisties for dinner. Left over pizza is the most awesome breakfast food around. Snacking on fruit, drinking water and tea are my saving grace. I must admit, my habits had to change when I got pregnant and am now addicted to bacon and egg rolls and fresh juice for breakfast, but I still cheat every now and then, I’m training the baby to avoid allergies and be tolerant of choc chip cookies. Main cravings have been hot chips and gravy, vegemite and cheese on toast, squirms, anything citrus, tea and beer…yes beer, haven’t had a whole one, but just a taste is heaven right now!

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    I ate Burger Rings and Paddle Pop for dinner last. Best dinner I’ve had in a very long time! Perfect balance of sweet and savoury.

  • Reply March 12, 2013

    Helen g

    Oh Lou….it’s ok to have a laugh…. Good for us in fact. Don’t take it all so seriously.!!A good laugh is low calorie ( in fact probably burns a few) cholesterol free, gluten free et al ad nauseum.

    And forgive me for asking, but what is that to which you aspire?

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    I had a giggle. 🙂

    As an aside – this is why I think it’s important not to judge people’s health on size alone. A close relative is quite large (size 18) and probably eats too much – but eats lots of vegies, fruit, lean protein and low-fat dairy, and no sugar and limited grains. I dare say she’s a lot healthier than slimmer people who live off of caffeine and lollies …

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    I too have done crumbs out of my bra!

    • Reply March 12, 2013


      very very funny, whole article funny

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    I love this.

    I had pizza for dinner three times over the long weekend, each time was after 11pm…. I also had wine for lunch two of those days and a Bloody Mary for breakfast on one of them…. weekends tend to be my downfall.

    Weekdays are much healthier though. Although I do tend to have coffee for breakfast 3-4 times a week.

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    Chill out Lou. It’s ok to admit to not always being perfect and to laugh at yourself once in a while.

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    Chill out Lou. It’s ok to admit to not always being perfect and to laugh at yourself once in a while.

  • Reply March 12, 2013

    kim at allconsuming

    I’ve set myself a goal of only eating hot cross buns once a week. Yesterday was the day, so I ate four. In a row. With a LOT of butter.

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    mmmmmm dim sims mmmmmmmm
    (done in a falsetto Homer Simpson voice)

    Dim Sims are healthy – they have meat and veg and a carb wrapping – covers most of the food groups. Add soy sauce and you have a gormet dinner 🙂

    Honesty is great – we all eat healthy some of the time, eat not so healthy most of the time, and eat really unhealthy some of the time.

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    I always think a glass of wine is what makes it dinner. I have been known to have a glass of wine and half a jar of strawberry jam for dinner. No, I don’t think I have any issues with sugar. I could murder a dim sim right now.

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    Corinne ! Corinne ! Corinne!

    Your honesty is commendable .
    Your writing is great.
    Your stand up is hilarious.
    Your beautiful

    For Gods sake Girl……Start looking after
    yourself .!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    I try really hard to eat really well most of the time but there is always something to sabotage me. Currently it is the Easter egg the size of a toddler that we had to break up and put on several trays in our fridge. I eat 3 meals a day that are actually pretty good only at the moment each meal is followed by a slab of chocolate the size of a family block!

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    I’m only shocked that you haven’t included last night’s left over cold curry and rice with a Coke (full strength) for breakfast. It’s one of life’s great restoratives.

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    A box of cheezels and half a bottle of white wine was probably my best. I only set out to snack but became full. Why mess with that.

  • Reply March 12, 2013

    helen b

    Amazing Corinne! And you’re still alive and kicking! A survival course in leftovers, takeaways and eating what you want, when you want it!!!
    What a novel idea! A new diet sensation called ‘enjoying what you eat’. Sounds like a book in there! 🙂

    Just keep us laughing and keep us human Corinne!

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    I have DEFINITELY had days and weeks like this and I think any woman who says they haven’t is lying! Let’s be honest, sometimes cold leftovers are the best breakfast there is 🙂 Today however I have managed to eat fruit, veges, fish and rice. Which I’m about to wash down with my third (but by no means final) cup of a coffee and a slab of chocolate and raspberry cake. Oh yeah.

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    Love it, Corinne – you should submit your ‘meal plan’ for assessment by the holier-than-thou diet person in the Sunday Telegraph magazine ‘my day on a plate’ or whatever it’s called. Every week she assesses some celebrity’s daily food list, which is always amazingly healthy, and yet she always manages to find something to berate them for, like 2 squares of dark chocolate in the mid afternoon – ‘would be much better if you swapped the chocolate for a handful of almonds’ – no doubt activated if not actually sprouting…! Your refreshingly honest assessment of what you ate would no doubt shock her so much that she might, for example, become overpowered with illness to such an extent that she would go far, far away, taking her quinoa and vitamin water and seven serves of vegetables away with her!

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    We all eat crap at times – this morning I had a corned beef samdwich for breakfast followed by a chocolate bar. Most likely will have the same for dinner minus the chocolate bar because I don’t have one. Nt much else to choose from at the moment as I have not shopped for a few days and too damn hot to walk to the shops

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    Yes I confess to the “working woman’s diet” now and again- especially for dinner after a long day- which is wine and cheese. Maybe the odd biscuit and definitely more wine than cheese.
    And as for lollies, snakes are much better for you than raspberries because you get a mix of colours!

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    4 dim sims! Dim sims have to come in 4s for me too + the soy sauce or sweet chilli sauce or both. The frozen ones out the packet bunged in the microwave, or steamed ones if bought out. Leftovers are a big favourite because when younger couldn’t afford to throw them out and only I would eat them. Now they’re a favourite because i still can’t throw them out from baby boomer frugal/poor upbringing guilt, and again,they can be bunged in the microwave. Chocolate, definitely chocolate. Never cook dinner when I’m the only one home, so cup o soup laksa or red curry, with a mini tin of tomatoey tuna in it.

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    Have been known to have vodka and cranberry juice and a handful of almonds for dinner. Sure all the food groups are represented in there. ( 2 vodkas and I really have it covered)

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    Ha ha and ha ha HA!! Brilliant, funny, wry. Fab to be reminded that you can eat crap for a week and live. My ‘low-point’ in the week is a tuna pie and iced coffee from the bakery. I sit at the outside table amongst men in fluro vests scoffing take-aways and imagine myself as a tradie hangin’ with the boys. The rest of the week, I eat muesli with organic fruit, mountain bread full of freshly-picked salad from my garden and steamed veg for tea. Mind you, I feel pretty damn fine thanks to a (mostly) great diet.

  • Reply March 12, 2013

    Hail To The Nihilist

    Thank for your honesty, Corinne. You’ve inspired me to share my eats with the world.


    BREAKFAST: Two cups of instant coffee, 2 sugars and a splash of soy milk.
    LUNCH: Two toasted vegan cheese, tomato and faux chicken sandwiches with soy mayo. Another coffee like before.
    AFTERNOON SNACK: 10 or so seaweed crackers with hommus. A cheeky beer with the neighbours.
    DINNER: Mexican–Lentil and kidney bean chili with sweet potato mash, lettuce, corn, salsa, hommus and corn chips. 3 glasses of red wine.
    DESSERT: Strawberry pudding.


    BREAKFAST: Two coffees and two pieces of wholewheat toast with Tofutti cream cheese.
    MORNING TEA: Two cups of black tea.
    LUNCH: White roll with hash browns, lettuce, tomato, beetroot and capsicum and sweet chili sauce.
    AFTERNOON TEA: Two slices of wholewheat bread with Tofutti.
    DINNER: Haven’t had it yet, but probably the same as last night…

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    There is a comment from Kyla about crap food three posts above where Lou asks why it got deleted, maybe Lou missed it.

  • Reply March 12, 2013


    Very funny – recognise myself – I am currently on a diet that means I have to eat 5 times a day – to get the metabolism going or whatever – I am finding it very difficult to eat more regularly let alone nutritiously that often!

  • Reply March 13, 2013


    Of course I eat out of my bra – the chocolate bits would be wasted otherwise!

  • Reply March 13, 2013

    Renee Hills

    I live with someone who would be in a coma if she ate that diet for a week! Count your blessings Corrine and throw some salt over your shoulder for good luck as well!!

  • Reply March 13, 2013


    Breakfast is only ever coffee as I run out the door – if I’m really lucky I will find a a museli bar in the bottom of the handbag, from the last time I took my youngest shopping with me.

    Lunch – I try to have a salad for lunch. but not always possible, so then it’s whatever leftovers are left after Mr 19 gets through with them. If not, then a vegemite or devon sandwich – usually on stale bread.

    Dinner – I will usually do something healthy with lots of veggies. But last night it was sausage sandwhiches! And the left over snags will be dinner tonight.

  • Reply March 13, 2013


    Oh Corinne, you are so funny!
    But I couldn’t help thinking, that if you – young successful ambitious, working, studying – were a man, there would be a wife to stock the fridge, make meals, and so on.

  • Reply March 13, 2013


    I can’t help but notice the lack of Mi Goreng…?

  • Reply March 13, 2013

    Popcorn Is a food group

    Just got home from work trip interstate. Working hard, facilitating national workshop, no breakfast, muffin at 11, falafel at the airport, brandy and dry and popcorn for tea. Yum!
    I was feeling bad about it until I read your post.

  • Reply March 13, 2013

    Hail To The Nihilist

    And today is a new day:

    BREAKFAST: Two pieces of toast with hommus and a coffee with two sugars and a dash of soy.

    MORNING & AFTERNOON TEA: A couple of black teas and a cup of black coffee.

    LUNCH: A handful of almonds, 6 seaweed crackers and hommus. White bread roll with beetroot, capsicum, tomato, lettuce and mustard and sweet chilli sauce.

    DINNER: A bowl of freshly made pumpkin soup with lots of pepper and a slice of toast with Nuttelex.

  • Reply March 14, 2013


    Ever had a twistie sandwich really nice. Id also love to eat more healthy but i live with my sister who’s a chef She cooks 4 days a week. All meals cooked in oil. And cooks extra meals for me on the other days. So I’m eating fried food & days a week.

  • Reply March 18, 2013


    I am one of those hideous purists who eats clean most of the time and doesn’t let their kids eat sugar. But I found this hilarious and came in to comment just to show that us purists aren’t all humourless ogres. 🙂

    We’ve all had times when we don’t look after ourselves as well as we should and Corrine is a grown woman who is capable of knowing the difference. I thought it was very brave to share knowing you would cop a shellacking from the PC brigade.

    My only complaint is that you can eat like that and still be trimmer than me. No fair. 🙁

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