Hairy Bikers: Si King on their latest series 'Go North'
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The Hairy Bikers Go North returns tonight for a sixth episode. After spending the previous two episodes in Yorkshire, Dave and Si head to Northumberland. Si, who holidayed in Northumberland several times as a child, introduces Dave to the producers and chefs he has come across over the years.
They will feast on seafood straight from the North Sea, cook a scrumptious roast lamb, and sample Bamburgh’s finest fish and chips.
Dave, never to be outshone by Si’s expertise, spices up their time in Northumberland with a rather surprising choice of accommodation.
Dave and Si first met in 1995 on the set of TV drama ‘The Gambling Man’. Little did they know what the future held for them both.
They have embarked on a culinary journey quite like no other, presenting a host of TV cookery series for the BBC, travelling the world along the way.
However, the pair radically changed their lifestyles nearly a decade ago, after an alarming visit to the doctors.
They found out they were morbidly obese, and released recipe book ‘The Hairy Dieters: How To Love Food and Lose Weight’ alongside a spin-off BBC show.
The pair were given a full body scan when filming The Hairy Dieters, and that’s when the cold reality of their weight hit home.
Dave told iNews: “They couldn’t see our internal organs.
“We sat there in the pub afterwards, drinking a glass of water, thinking: ‘Sugar!’”
Si added they were scared, because “there’s no escaping it”.
Dave told the Irish Times of the experience in 2018: “We were morbidly obese.
“I’d hit 18 ½ stone (117 kg).” Si added: “And I was nearly 20 (127 kg).”
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Dave continued: “We were starting to get old before our time. I’m 10 years older than Kingy, but we’d both begun to shuffle, the knees were sore.”
They shed more than seven stone (44 kg) between them, and have kept the weight off.
For Dave and Si, it’s all about making it as easy as physically possible for people to eat healthily. The affable pair said people are less likely to stick to strict regimes, and scoff at the idea of fad diets.
Si said: “You’ll lose weight really quickly but you’ll put it on really quickly as well because it’s simply not sustainable.
“You cannae eat cabbage soup for the rest of your life.”
Dave echoed this, having tried the Atkins diet many years ago. The body burns more calories than on other diets because ketosis occurs.
By minimising the carbohydrates, and maintaining high fat and protein levels, the body switches to using its fat stores for energy because glucose levels, usually provided by carbohydrates, are low.
Dave recalled: “Apart from the bad breath, after about two weeks I was crawling up the walls. I was in a motorway services and I broke and had a cheese sandwich. It felt fabulous.”
Si credits the weight loss with saving his life. In early 2014, he suffered a brain aneurysm and underwent emergency surgery.
Dave said to his friend in the interview with the Irish Times: “It’s a good job you did the diet, otherwise you’d be dead by now.”
Si wholeheartedly agreed: “I definitely would, without a shadow of a doubt.”
Fortunately, Si made a full recovery. He told The Mirror that he had considered going back to bed after a series of bad headaches. He called a taxi to take him to hospital, and a doctor told him that the decision ultimately saved his life.
The Hairy Bikers Go North airs on BBC Two tonight at 8pm. It will also be available on BBC iPlayer.
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