Saturday, January 18, 2014

Healthy Diet (way of life)

I know that I said that I generally wait three days to claim a weight, but I'm making an exception today because this is the first time in a very long time (more than twenty years) that the scale showed a number less than 220 pounds (99.8 kg).

A few people have asked about what I am doing to lose the weight and I'm not sure how to really explain it. If you go back to the origin of the word diet, you will find that it comes from the Greek and basically means way of life. So rather than saying "I'm on a diet," I prefer to think of it as having changed my way of living. Fast food is pretty much a thing of the past (although I plan on a couple of White Castles as I make my way through St. Louis next weekend), along with sodas (even diet ones) and most sweets.

I've been eating more fruits and vegetables, less processed carbs (like breads and pasta) and less red meat. I've managed a "meatless Monday" most weeks and have often included a 20-24 hour fast in my weekly routine. Water, tea and coffee have been my beverages of choice and I have cut back on the coffee part.

Whether you subscribe to the Atkin's plan, The Zone, South Beach Diet, Fit for Life or any of the other plans that regulate insulin production, the main thing seems to be to regulate insulin production. There is some pretty good science behind all of that and it gets packaged and promoted in different ways that can really be confusing. What I find working for me is that when I eat better (better foods), I feel satisfied. When I'm satisfied, I'm not hungry. When I'm not hungry, I don't eat whatever crap is close at hand. It's becoming a way of life.

I don't worry about saturated fats. In fact, I believe that they are better than the crap fats that we've been taught are good for us. I try to get my sweet fix from fruits that are naturally sweet and will occasionally use a little honey. I still love chocolate, but try to be more reasonable in how much I enjoy.

While I am a firm believer in diet for weight management and exercise for good health, there is no denying that there is a connection.

I have also been getting some regular exercise. It's mostly been walking and bike riding, but I'm starting to add some strength training, too. I feel pretty good.
It's been close to two years since my last thorough physical and I have one coming up at the end of this month. I'm kind of looking forward to it.

One book I read suggested that our ideal body weight is what it was in our early twenties. Even though our body structure will be different as we age, the ideal weight should be around what it was when we reached the point where we achieved our full height and physical maturity. I'm getting there.

I'm not always one that subscribes to wholesale changes, but I did change a lot of things this past year. If what you are doing isn't working, maybe a change is in order for you, too. Whether you change a little at a time or go for the big change all at once; do something.

I've still got plenty of weight to lose, but I'm pretty much letting it come off and settle in at where ever this way of life dictates. I have a feeling it will be somewhere around the 200-205 pound (91-93 kg) mark.

John <><


eViL pOp TaRt said...

It sounds like great progress John! And it's a good reminder: a diet is a way of life, not a short-term thing.

Big Sky Heidi said...

John, you have made amazing progress!

John Hill said...

Thank you, ladies!