Tuesday, January 31, 2012

What are you doing for your diet?

At some point, we all recognize that our current lifestyle and body image may not be what we wanted or like at all.  In that moment, people want to change and most often, it can be done by doing a completely new and different holistic lifestyle.  By holistic, I mean using whole foods and items instead of diet pills or magic drinks and concoctions.

Anyway, I got this idea of the diet by reading my Christmas present which was the third book from Alton Brown: http://www.dashrecipes.com/slideshows/dr/4-alton-brown-good-eats-3-preview.html

So, in the book there was a chapter where Alton Brown, himself, was watching a past episode of his show that had him walking around in craw fish farm in 2009.  "The day after I viewed this hideous image I stepped on a scale for the first time in several years and was shocked to find the number 213.5 staring back at me." 

He wanted to shed 50 pounds and over the course of 9 months, he did so. While not being a dietitian or a physician, he doesn't recommend this diet for everyone.  It is just what he did and decided on for himself.  This diet, or at least an off-shoot of this diet, is what my wife and I are following:

1.  Foods I must consume daily:
      Fruits                                           Nuts
      Whole Grains                               Carrots
      Dark Leafy Greens                       Green Tea

2. Foods I must consume at least 3 times a week:
     Oily Fish                                        Sweet Potato
     Yogurt                                           Avocado

3. Foods I can consume only one time a week:
     Red Meat                                      Dessert
     White Starch                                  Alcohol

(This list can be found on page 285,Good Eats 3, from Alton Brown)
Now, he also has suggested that he will stay away from any Fast Foods, Canned Soups, Soda, Processed Meats and anything that is "Diet" like diet drinks.  Of course also keep in mind that no diet plan will work without exercise. 

Now, while I was doing this I thought of a friend of mine who has been on a diet and healthy lifestyle kick. My friend Mary has lost 55 pounds over the course of about a year.  Losing it slowly is the healthy way. She was 210 lbs and now is 155lbs.  How did she do it?  She says that first she started running 6 miles a day, for the first few months but then just moved it to an hour of cardio exercise. She limited her red meat, ate dairy still and worked out with weights.  She also stayed away from fast foods and stopped eating starches.  She was really smart as she created her own low GL diet which meant that her body could deal with any sugars entering her body before making fat.  She would then burn any fat she had, thus losing weight. This means that both my friend and Alton Brown, think alike and have had some similar ideas.  Red Meat is higher in fat content, the white starches are full of sugars and carbohydrates which your body doesn't need if you are not running a marathon every day and then turns into fat, and fast food was stopped as well.

I know that now, sometimes the term "Fast Food" has become synonymous with all food at non-sit down restaurants and the term has been stretched too far.  Subway, is not a fast food joint. Neither is Quiznos.  The fact that you can get the food fast or quickly is only a true sight that you can see that it is made from fresh ingredients and nothing really changes.  For instance, I can stand in line and watch them make my sandwich at Subway.  I know exactly what goes on it and they have fully disclosed everything online on their website.  So, it just so happens that they can finish my sandwich before a fast food join can pull a soy/hamburger out of a microwave and slap it onto a high fructose corn syrup bun with a slathering of 1,000 calories of mayonnaise.


Mary also said that she didn't change that much of her lifestyle, she still went out to bars and drank and even skipped a day every once in a  while.  What made the difference was the exercise and the diet change.  You could exercise all day, but if you are taking in more calories than you burn, you will gain weight.  Awesome job Mary.


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