Saturday, September 15, 2012
I can eat healthy food all the way to the grave, and have the muscles to get me there, but if I'm 100 pounds overweight, it will be an EARLY GRAVE.
Finally, I've found what works for me. I came to terms with the fact that my body just doesn't lose weight easily. I've dieted lots of times...and for more than a year had been really striving to eat nutritious foods. But the weight just wouldn't come off.
After lots of introspection...a trip to my doc...and a complete revamping of my cupboards to make sure they were rid of artificial this and thats, and full of only healthful whole grains, fats, veggies, fruits, and lean proteins, I finally realized that healthy food, alone, was not making me lose weight.
In fact, my weight had begun to edge upward.
More research, to determine exactly what triggers the body to burn stored fat, brought me to the decision to drastically cut carbohydrate intake. I started out not sure how many carbs to shoot for, and set my daily goal at 30. I was losing weight fast. Then I read information that made me think maybe I should be consuming a bit more carbs each day. There is SO MUCH INFORMATION OUT THERE. I increased the carbs to 50-80 per day. AND I QUIT LOSING. Just like that...no further weight loss. I was only consuming a total daily caloric intake of 650-800 calories, but I quit losing.
So, I did more reading, and came across some reassuring new information from a study done by a Dr. Ludwig. (link below) And further information about a recent finding that low carb/high protein diets DO NOT HARM healthy kidneys. (link below) So I cut my carb consumption to 20 or less daily. And I'm once again losing weight.
I hesitate to even publish this in my blog. I know the course I'm following is not supported by Spark, or even considered mainstream.
The thing is, I've found what is working for me. Years and years...decades...of sugar/carb abuse had left my body unwilling to use stored fat for energy. I ate "healthy" and worked out like crazy, but wasn't losing. And as long as my weight approaches 100lbs too much, my number one health risk is my weight. I can eat healthy food all the way to the grave, and have the muscles to get me there, but if I'm 100 pounds overweight, it will be an EARLY GRAVE.
The Atkins approach, as it turns out, is working for me. I eat lots of protein (80+ grams daily) and a healthy amount of fat (30 or so grams daily). And I eat loads of veggies. I feel great. And most importantly, I'm losing the fat that threatens my very existence.
Current stats: fasting glucose 74, blood pressure: 115/73, 13 pounds down.
Wednesday, September 05, 2012
by donna falco
Enticing bit of carby sweet
On grocery shelf we often meet.
I know you better than before;
I’d gobble you and want for more.
I’ve come to realize the fact
that longing in my soul comes back.
Eating one bite never fixes
What that hunger surely misses.
Thursday, August 30, 2012
And then finally:
I finally realized that all the healthy, nutritious, delicious food I was eating was not only keeping me at an unhealthy weight, but it was making me fatter!
Eat enough you will gain weight, no matter how healthful that food is!
After completely overhauling my grocery shopping practices, cleaning the pantry of undesirables, and learning to make an amazing loaf of whole wheat bread…after going to the doc to be sure I am healthy, I had hoped that my switch to whole foods and vitamin supplements would cause me to slowly achieve my ideal weight.
But when the nearly stationery scales began to move upward, I had to have a long talk with myself.
The goal was to become healthier. And the biggest risk factor I have is my weight.
I’ve tried slow and easy diets. For me, the problem with such diets has been that it’s a little too slow (not much lost) and a little too easy (easy to gain that weight right back).
Clearly, my body has been programmed to store sugar in the form of fat. I did a lot of reading and, and decided the best plan for me is to get my body accustomed to burning stored fat for energy.
So I am on a reduced calorie diet that is high in protein. Think Atkins, only not really. I monitor everything going into my mouth. I’ve researched everything I eat. I watch my carb intake carefully, as to avoid beginning to burn carbs for fuel, rather than fat. I make sure protein intake is adequate, to safeguard that my body doesn’t make use of muscle protein for fuel.
Will this work? I don’t know.
I’m on day 9. I’ve lost 8 pounds. The first few days, I lost a pound every day. Everyone said, “Ah, that’s just “water weight.” Whatever…I don’t know. I know I’m drinking a gallon…whole gallon…of water every day, tracking every ounce (to help dilute toxins from the fat I supposedly will be burning).
Dinner last night:
I made a family favorite for dinner last night: Spaghetti. My husband’s family is Italian. Homemade pasta sauce is a way of life. I was SHOCKED at the carb content of that homemade delight…that is, until I read the nutritional information for spaghetti noodles themselves. Wow…now I know…It wasn’t dessert that made me fat. It was spaghetti with homemade sauce! (And no, that isn’t what I ate for dinner ;)
Tuesday, August 28, 2012
Second thing: Went to the doctor for a complete physical. I wanted to know exactly what I'm starting with on this new journey to a healthier me.
The unexpected death of my father (heart attack, February 2012) jarred me out of my absent-minded pursuit of the same fate. I began to make immediate changes to my diet, and began to pursue better health.
By the time I got to appointment day, I'd been on a whole foods diet for two months, which consisted of lots of whole grains, fresh produce, and lean meats. My pantry, one product at a time, had transitioned: BEFORE: loads of prepackaged foods full of high fructose corn syrup, fats of several descriptions, artificial flavors, and preservatives. NOW: very basic whole ingredients: Whole wheat flour, brown rice, a variety of legumes. My refrigerator was now stocked with lots of fresh produce and lean meats. I had made a goal of preparing meat-free meals at least three times a week.
But the scales were largely unimpressed. I still needed to lose a lot of weight. My cholesterol levels, on the other hand, were pretty good: HDL: 42 (low by some ideas LDL: 63 TRIGLYCERIDES: 113
I couldn’t remember what my last cholesterol numbers were, but I did remember the doctor, at that time (2003 maybe) fussing at me about my high triglycerides. (Which I knew nothing about, did absolutely nothing about, and certainly had no idea it was due to consuming sugar.) So I immediately gave myself a private little pat on the back, assuming it was my new way of eating that had worked that little miracle.
My blood pressure was a tiny bit high: 132/89
Fasting glucose: 101
Lots of other numbers…basically my thyroid was borderline (had been back in 2003, too). My hormones were all low (hysterectomy, 2005).
All the other tests came out great…I was even told I have the bones of 98% of the 18-20 somethings. I’ve bragged about that one repeatedly.
But there was one big surprise for me: I was actually vitamin deficient in two categories tested: Vitamins D and B12.
I was eating as healthfully as I knew how, but was actually vitamin deficient? When the doc was discussing this matter, I stammered, “But I’m out in the sun all the time. How can I be deficient in D?” To which she replied, “Don’t do that.” with a look on her face that made me feel a little foolish. But hey, I garden…can’t do that in the dark.
Nevertheless…vitamin deficiencies were the only real negative in all the tests. Now I knew what I was working with. I knew I was a fairly healthy, 100 lbs overweight, vitamin deficient woman about to turn 50.
“For how long?” was my next thought.
I began vitamin therapy, modified our diet even further, and waited to see if that would be the magic bullet that would melt the pounds away.
My story, in bite sized portions
So, the first thing I did www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
Monday, August 27, 2012
Back in February, 2012, following the death of my father, I realized that I had to make drastic changes in my eating habits and general health, or, I figured, follow in his footsteps, and those of my grandmothers. The eating heritage of our family had caused many premature deaths. Why would I be different? And I'm not ready to count down my last 20 years on this earth, enjoying my family and life in general. I want more time, and more health to enjoy life with.
So the first thing I did was quit eating a bunch of things. My first thought was to not eat anything that I had heard could clog my arteries. When I looked at hot dogs, I could see them wedging themselves in a ventricle. And they lost their appeal. When I looked at butter, I imagined it globbing onto my artery walls.
Hailing back to my Butter Buster days, I was sure that oils and fats of any kind were lurking everywhere, enticing me, planning my demise. And I just quit eating them. I read about healthy oils, and started using olive oil and canola oil.
Now...there is so much information out there. I'm learning. And I've learned a great deal since those first couple of weeks in February.
But the point is, that losing my father had proved to be a strong catalyst for change. I read more, studied more, worked hard to begin putting healthy foods in front of my family, and myself. And it's still an ongoing process.
Definitely, though, the first thing I did was the first thing I could do: I started making healthier choices in WHAT I was eating. I started exactly where I was. I didn't wait to know everything. I didn't wait to even get to the store and buy new groceries. I just immediately started trying to eat foods that seemed more healthful.
We can all do that.
My story, in bite-sized portions
So, the first thing I did www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
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