DJ BBQ's Iowa steak, sweet potatoes and beans

When you're choosing tongs, you want them to be an extension of your hand

– DJ BBQ

Whether it’s Bill Gates' party or Jamie Oliver’s food channel, DJ BBQ Christian can turn his hand to just about anything. And today he’s showing us how to make the perfect sizzling steak - but before we get to the cooking he’s talking us through all we need to know about selecting and preparing the perfect cut.

My gastric band nearly killed me

[Doctors] said any later, and it could have killed you, because it was strangling my organs

– Emrah Mevsimler

Emrah Mevsimler became the youngest person in the UK to have a gastric band fitted in 2007 when he was just 13. Despite dramatic initial weight loss, Emrah was left with daily stomach cramps and his weight continued to yo-yo.

Regretting the surgery, Emrah had been saving up to pay to have the gastric band removed privately, but just two weeks ago, he was rushed to hospital as the band was strangling his internal organs and he was moments away from losing his life.

So after his experience, how would Emrah advise others in a similar situation? "Definitely try and manage it in another way first - I wouldn't want anyone going through what I went through. Speak to somebody first."

Surgery for obesity helplines

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Too old to fight ISIS

Last summer, I first thought, "if I really have principals and want to stick to them, I've got to go out and do something practical".

– Alan Brooke

Alan Brooke of Honley recently travelled to Kurdistan hoping to help Kurdish forces hold back Islamic extremists. Alan was so desperate to help that he risked his life and his freedom. But when he arrived, he was denied the chance to fight. Instead he was told he was too old for combat.

Alan told us "I was obviously disappointed, but they found me an alternative project"

Alan's wife Pam described her initial reaction to Alan's plan: "I said I'm 100% against you going, you're too old, and you can do more good here".

Alan's here to share the incredible insight he gained into one of the deadliest terrorist organisations in the world.

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A year to grieve for my dog

A letter written by TV presenter Sue Perkins to her dog, who passed away last year, has gone viral. In it she writes of the agony of having to put her beloved beagle down.

It’s a story that has struck a chord with so many people up and down the country, including journalist Julia Stephenson, who says the death of her 15-year-old Shetland sheepdog was the most painful of all the tragic events in her own life, and it took her over a year to come to terms with her loss. Julia joins us now.

Talking about her late sheepdog Nutkin, Julia told us, "I don't think you ever really get over grief, do you."

"It's probably unfair to say, but I've had many dogs in my life, and he was a particularly special dog."

"He just loved me so much. It's very hard to find that love from anyone."

Julia has channelled her grief into setting up a dog sanctuary to rehabilitate and rehome abused Romanian dogs.

Pet bereavement helplines

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This Morning: Live From Your Living Room!

Fancy hosting the TM team in your home?

How would you like Phillip, Holly and our family of specialists to broadcast OUR show from YOUR home this autumn? We'll be hitting the road with our crew in tow and need you and your home to host us. Interested? Read on...

THE DETAILS
Thanks for taking an interest in TM live from your home, before offering to put us up for the day we just need you to consider a few things before contacting us:

If you think you can put up with the cast and crew descending on your abode, all you need to do is to take a 30-second video giving us a quick tour of your home (and revealing where you think our presenters would fit best!) and say why you think we should come pay YOU a visit! Do make sure we get a good idea of the size of your rooms by ensuring some wide shots, so we can take that into account.

(When submitting the video it's important to make sure there's no music, no branding and nothing that gives away the precise location of your home - just in case we use your entry for broadcast purposes)

If you are not the owner of the home we would need consent of whoever is before being considered which you will be asked to provide should we contact you.

CAN WE PARK NEXT TO YOUR HOME?
We'll be broadcasting from television trucks and it's important we can transmit a signal from your location, in order to do so we'd need access to your street or ideally a parking place no more than 25 metres from where you live.

To take part simply send us a video introduction to your home, complete with your name and contact telephone number to thismorning@itv.com with the headline TM Live From My Home.

You must be 18 years or older to enter. Terms and condition apply.

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Dreading waving goodbye to your little ones?

Dreading the first day of school?

For so many mums, waving goodbye to your little ones on their first day of school can be heartbreaking, both for you and them.

As we gear up for a new school year, we want to hear from parents who'd be happy for us to join them live in the school yard on that first day. We'll be there to hold your hand and help with tears or tantrums!

If you'd like to take part in the show then get in touch by Thursday 2 September. Email us on thismorning@itv.com using First day at school in the subject. Please include your name, a contact number, your location and some details about you and your family.

You must be over 18 and participation terms apply.

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