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Taste Testing

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Fresh Veggies, originally uploaded by lo Phat.

Sugar = Satan, that’s all there is too it.

Last summer, I felt like I was pretty addicited to sugar, so I gave it up for June. I cut out all sugar, and even things that had fake sugar, so I could see what it would be like to go without anything sweet. I think I lost 5 pounds, without otherwise changing my diet. The next month, I gave up alcohol, and lost another couple of pounds, even though I was eating sugar again. When I left Boston, I certainly wasn’t in perfect shape, but I was in the best shape I had been in the whole 3 years I lived in Massachusetts.

My nutrition has slipped since living in Las Vegas. Really slipped. Out of the 10 pounds or so I lost last year due to spinning at the gym and the no sugar/no alcohol + generally eating pretty healthy, I have since gained that back, plus like 10 more. Ugh. It’s depressing. I found that about 10% of my entire daily thought revolves around how I’d like to feel a bit better about the state of my body. I mean, I’m generally healthy otherwise; I don’t have any addictions (except sugar) and I have really become aware of my portions, so that helps. Plus I’ve been hiking once or twice a week and trying to spend time at the gym.

Part of the problem is that I currently don’t buy my food and don’t cook any of the meals, so I tend to generally eat whatever is made for me, cause I don’t want to be picky. Usually carbs are provided, and I end up eating large quantities of those because, well, they’re delicious. When I cook for myself, I tend to leave those out of my meals altogether because usually the temptation to gobble huge amounts is overwhelming.

I know that once I move out on my own, my eating will normalize again and I probabaly won’t have too much trouble getting the extra weight off, but the problem is, the longer I stay with the Clarks, the more weight I’m slowly gaining, and the harder it will be to get off once I move out.

Of course I could just eat healthier around the house with what food I have, but that is really a lot harder, and I mean, damn near impossible, than it sounds. I’m surrounded by so much delicious crap food that it’s unbearable, especially when I come home from work starving. I don’t eat huge quantities of it, or anything, but I do nibble between meals and that is my ultimate downfall.

Before I have to start buying new clothes for myself to accomodate my expanding body, something has to be done. Suzanne and I debate this eating issue rather constantly, and I hate talking about it and fixating on it (it’s so catty), but at least she does it as much as me so we can commiserate. Just last night, after 5 year old Max refused to take any more than two bites out of his bacon cheesburger, she turned to me, and said “Wouldn’t it be great if you never wanted to eat more than two bites?” We’ve talked about kid’s desire to eat only what they have to, so many times, so much that I’ve began pondering the root of it. Namely, when did food become such a prize? When did something that you had to eat to survive became something that you did for enjoyment/comfort/entertainment?

It bothers me to think of how much I consider food a treat, whether it be healthy or not. I’m sure it’s Hedonism, plus the occasional depression, but I quite often use food to make me feel better, or simply just eat the sugar because it’s there and it’s gratifying.

Of course this is the rant and rave of like 70% of America, I don’t deny that I’m pretty common in my qualms with nutrition, but I have to do something before I become unhealthy to the point where I completely loathe myself. Because, after all, whether or not a large majority of our country is coming to terms with it’s horrible eating habits, change all boils down to the individual.

Sure, magazines and Oprah have a million ways for you to lose weight + feel great, but damnit, most of those health tips are for quick fixes, especially the speed pills and the metabolism supplements, all such a lie.

But changing your eating habits is truly a daunting task, especially when you’re really hungry and someone in your house has just cooked beer bratwurst. Diets aren’t for me, well, they truly aren’t for anyone. Like the supplements or speed, they’re just a quick fix for the time being. Everyone knows that losing weight really comes down to simply eliminating/controlling your most heinous eating habits so that you don’t ever risk being unhealthy again.

Of course, I do believe that my three biggest problems are 1) Sugar 2) Alcohol (and the cravings that come with an intoxicated body) 3) Salty foods like chips. Since last summer’s fast from sugar and alcohol was so successful, I think that I am going to try it again this year in order to regain a sense of general health and well being.

When giving up a habit, the first few days are the worst, but then it gets better and is tolerable after a while. I always feel it’s good to challenge/shake your patterns before they completly settle and become impossible-to-break habits. But like quitting smoking, you need to avoid places and actions that usually lead you back into your bad habit, because if you’re lonely or stressed or angry or drunk, those habits can suck you back in so fast and then all of a sudden you’re back at square one.

Giving up something for a month rather that forever is much easier, because you give your body a chance to detoxify, but yet the looming scariness of “never again will I eat that” is not over your head. A month is something you can do, and it’s a pretty good goal to set. That being said, I think I’ll try a few different months worth of eating experiments. The idea is that after a few weeks without beer or sugar or tortilla chips, my cravings for them will dissapate, and my desire for them will wane, to the point where I don’t need them anymore to feel good, and my life eating habits will improve. Below is a list (up for some modification) of what items I plan to cut from my diet in the coming months:

May:
No alcohol. I dont’ think this will be too hard, but it will be beneficial.
June: No sugar, or sugary-tasting substitues. This will force me to drink more water. This will also be really, really difficult for me.
July: No bread, no pasta, no chips. Wish me luck.
August: No salty snacks, ie: roasted nuts, chips, pretzels, that sort of thing.
September: Only drink water (again, no alcohol, but also cuts out a lot of potentially sugary drinks.)
October: No meat. (oh, why not. I’ll try being veggie for once).

Well, six months is as far as I want to plan ahead. Let’s see where I am after that.

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Thinking of challenging an eating habit??? Click on this for a motivational story…

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Written by pocheco

April 20, 2007 at 4:58 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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