We all see on these guys on TV telling us how to lose weight. They’re young. They’re fit. They’re GUYS. They’ve never had an ounce of extra fat. Yet they’re the gurus telling WOMEN how to lose weight? (Sorry Oprah, I just don’t believe it.)
They say, Don’t eat anything after 8:00 pm. What?
They say, Cut out carbs, fat, meat, egg yokes, sugar, salt, skin from anything.
Might as well chuck eating all together. It’s supposed to be fun.
They say: You can’t gain a pound eating a donut. Wait. Hold everything! I can.
They’re trying to torture us! And not only that, they make us feel inadequate. It’s all our fault we’re fat. We have no will power. We should confine ourselves to celery and water and feel bad about ourselves on top of the diet torture. We’re failures, and stupid failures at that, because they have all the answers we never figured out.
One of my favorite things when I was young was glazed sourdough doughnuts. I remember buying a whole box of them, feeling guilty as hell, and I ate three. I didn’t eat anything else all day. The next day when I got on the scale I had gained three pounds. One for each. Pure punishment, right? Well, at the time I was in college, and dating a doctor at Stanford. I was so impressed with him. And in Love! I told him that I ate three donuts and gained three pounds. His implacable reply: That’s physically impossible.
Okay, now I’m a liar on top of being a fatty. This doctor blabbed on and droned about the number of calories in a donut and the number of calories it takes to add a pound of weight. Donuts equals 255 calories. One pound equals 3,500 calories.
But many women and men know calories-in doesn’t match calories-out on the scale. We can do the exercise huff and puff till we fall to the ground. Meaning burned calories. They don’t match up. It would be a nice formula, if it worked.
So the one thing I learned from the donuts is true. The old sayings: What you eat matters. You are what you eat.
You’re waiting to see what I did to get the 20% luckiness? I got very sick. I heartily do not recommend this. But, I was willing to do anything to get well. So I went to doctors. I hadn’t seen a doctor for anything in almost twenty years, having been extremely healthy. The doctors, and there were many, listened to my symptoms, nodding wisdom gravely, and proclaimed that not only was I not sick, I was crazy. (I deduced this when several of them recommended a psychiatrist.) I had never faced such humiliation! Now it seems I was making up symptoms for Attention. I wanted to scream – AT YOUR PRICES? You’re the one who are crazy. Now I was dubbed a chubby fat lying hypochondriac in need of attention.
Lesson here: Don’t depend on anyone to help you. You’ve got to do it yourself. And thank God for the internet regarding that illness. I found people with symptoms like mine. We all tried to help each other. Finally, after four years, some were getting a diagnosis. I had my blood drawn and set it to a lab myself. Positive for Lyme and Babiosis. I had been living with a bacterial and protozoan infection in my blood for four years. Hey, I knew I was sick.
But the pertinent thing here is that during those four years I did lots of studying to try to get healthy.
I wasn’t trying to get thin. But I did.
My conclusion was that we eat lots of things our body doesn’t recognize as food. Genetically engineered foods. Processed foods with no nutrients. Tons of chemicals. People are getting overweight at an unprecedented rate.
We all know how healthy Jack LaLanne was into his nineties. His motto was: If it’s man made, don’t eat it. I cut out all processed foods. Anything that came in a box, except for vegetables. Anything with words I couldn’t pronounce. I threw out the sugar and got natural stevia.
I found things I loved to eat, and still do. Things to replace potato chips, when you need to crunch on something? Popcorn and nuts.
Can’t give up Coke or Pepsi – try this. Fill a glass 3/4 full with Welches grape juice. Add 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon vitamin C crystals and the same amount of baking soda. Stir with a straw and wait a few seconds. A chemical reaction is taking place when you mix an acid and an alkali. What do you get? Lovely yummy, tingle-the-tongue, refreshing bubbles. One or two grams of vitamin C and antioxidants. What you don’t get is extra caffeine and 16 teaspoons of sugar, or even worse, high fructose corn syrup. Finish by adding very cold water or ice to the top of the glass. If it’s too sweet add a squeeze of lemon or lime. Not sweet enough – add more grape juice. (If you’re diabetic you know if you can have fruit juice. Ask your doctor if you have to restrict salt, because the baking soda has some.)
You get the idea. Find the things you love to eat. Have fun. Make sure they’re healthy foods. The pounds will come off.
What do I eat? Eggs, not just the slimy whites but the whole package. Recent studies say the yokes are healthy. Meat. Chicken with the skin. Fish. Nuts. Fruits. Vegetables. Cheese. And I eat when I’m hungry. Sometimes five or six times a day. Before I go to bed? Sure, why go to bed hungry with a miserable growling stomach?
What I don’t eat: Diet foods. To try to replace calories the manufacturers add lots of chemicals and carbs. It’s mostly synthetic gunk. There was a recent study that people who eat diet food actually Gain weight. I don’t eat anything with monosodium glutamate, synthetic sweeteners, high fructose corn syrup, or soy. I don’t eat many grains. They’re supposed to be healthy, and I used to choke down oatmeal, which I hated, but I suspect that they’re just cheap to manufacture, so they’re touted as healthy by food manufacturers.
I guess I have to give my bonafides. You can’t see me. I absolutely hate doing this. Oh, you say I have to? I’ll get the hard part over first. I once weighed close to 150 pounds. If you think that isn’t too bad, here’s the rest. I’m small at 5’3″, so I can’t eat as much as the taller people, and every pound shows. Especially since I’m a writer and spend hours sitting on my tuche. For the last few years my weight now fluctuates between 104 and 107 pounds.
Oh, one more thing. Have a good time when you go out. I guess friends think I’m lucky because I eat anything I want when I’m with them. Don’t deprive yourself on special occasions. It only makes you cranky. Which makes you feel deprived. And that sets you up to feel so sorry for yourself you might indulge in a private pity-party binge. I know, I’ve done it.
Love to everyone in the fat wars.