Emma Bartley’s ongoing struggle to fit into her jeans. This week: is a protein-reinforced porridge the key to blood-sugar regulation?

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There are a lot of things to love about Oomf Bench-Pressed Oats. First, a protein and fibre-rich breakfast that keeps you fuller for longer is an easy sell. Second, the box looks a lot cooler than your average packet of cornflakes. And the name is great, too: “oomf” being a satisfying word and “bench-pressed” implying it was prepared by muscle-bound men.

In fact, former Marine Robert Sweeney and his brother Andrew are not making the protein-reinforced porridge themselves. They’ve been too busy doing their research: “We were inspired by recent findings from the University of Toronto that eating certain ingredients like oats can help to lower cholesterol levels, which could, if effectively implemented with whey protein, make a difference to people’s physiques,” says Robert.

As dietary changes go, substituting Oomf for my usual porridge isn’t a difficult one, so it’s on with the milk and into the microwave it goes (I do this for a couple of minutes on a medium setting, give it a stir and add a bit of water, then give it a minute on high. I have no idea what the box advises because I’ve already finished it and put it outside in my recycling box for the neighbours to admire).

Tempted by the pale yellow packaging and promise of dried fruit, I try banana Oomf – there’s also chocolate or apple, sultana and cinnamon – and am a tiny bit disappointed by the taste and smell. Though no artificial sweeteners or preservatives are used, the taste is rather saccharine – maybe it’s the very sweet chopped dates, which are the second ingredient after oats. But that could just be me; I don’t personally like a lot of sugar at breakfast time and usually eat my porridge simply with frozen raspberries.

In any case it’s far from inedible, and afterwards I do make it all the way through to lunch without even thinking about snacking – hence the box’s early appearance in the recycling.

Now that it’s finished, I’m glad to return to plain porridge, but if I was training for a long-distance event I would definitely get some more for extra oomf. And because, like all beauty fans, I’m all about the box really.

Oomf Bench-Pressed Oats are available from Planet Organic, £4.45 for 500g (around ten servings);  planetorganic.com