More Fiber in Foods

By Laura Moncur @ 6:00 pm — Filed under:

This entry comments on the increasing trend of fiber being added to all sorts of foods, from yogurt to candy bars.

I think this trend in the food industry was originally spawned by the Atkin’s Net Carb thing. There was the idea that if carbohydrates were countered with fiber that they caused less of an insulin spike. Because of this idea, lots of products showed up on the market with added fiber, including candy bars and yogurt.

I think there is also an incentive to increase the fiber levels of typically fiber-lacking foods in order to lower the Weight Watcher Points values of food. The Weight Watcher Points system is a calculation based on the fat, fiber and calorie content of foods. Increased fiber, lowers the Points value. In order to play upon the popularity of Weight Watchers, food manufacturers are adding fiber to food. Weight Watchers is not the innocent victim in this game either, though. If you look at their food products, they are unusually high in fiber content as well.

In cases like these, it is always better to eat homemade food. A dinner made by you with fresh ingredients will always be more healthy than a frozen dinner. When you are choosing convenience, make sure you look at the label and try to find the products with the least amount of ingredients and the healthiest mix of carbohydrates and fat. Don’t be fooled by added fiber. It doesn’t necessarily make the food more healthy for you, even if the Net Carbs or WW Points are less.

How To Remove Foods from Your Life without Feeling Deprived

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

The first question that needs to be answered when tackling this is, “Why?” Why do you want to cut a certain food out of your life? What’s the point? The best way to prevent the feeling of deprivation is not depriving yourself.

Weight loss isn’t enough. If you want to lose weight, I promise you that you can do it without removing that food from your life. It is possible to eat healthy with rare treats in order to stave off deprivation. If you think you have to cut foods out of your life in order to lose weight or prevent binges, you need to read this entry on Vulnerability Foods.

Getting fit is not enough. Unless you are an Olympic athlete, a rare treat of your favorite foods is not going to influence your performance. No matter how many personal trainers say, “Food is fuel,” it doesn’t make it the whole truth. If food were solely fuel, there would be no creme brulee. Food is about pleasure just as much as it’s about providing nutrition.

Something Positive 04-22-05What if the food doesn’t give you pleasure, however? What if when I asked you, “Why do you want to cut a certain food out of your life?” you answered, “Because thirty minutes after eating, I always find myself in the bathroom defecating what feels like a diamond encrusted howler monkey.” Then that sounds like a valid reason to stop eating it. If you answered, “Whenever I eat that food, I get a mind-splitting headache,” that’s another good reason. It could even be something as simple as, “I just feel kinda yucky after I eat it.” If your reason has a clear manifestation, then this section is for you.



Low Carb Backlash

By Laura Moncur @ 6:00 pm — Filed under:

After the last few years of Low Carb Everything, the pendulum has swung the other way. I tried the Atkins diet and it left me listless and grumpy. I was promised weight loss without hunger. I got low energy and nominal weight loss. I lost five pounds and then the scale stuck at 230. After that, I was pretty bitter. Low Carb hit the market like a tsunami and I was the first to ridicule it.

This entry from Diet Blog gives an unbiased view of the Low Carb phenomenon and tells us what good came out of all that hype:

In the end, we learned that “Fat is not evil. We eat too many refined carbs. Whole food is best.” I wouldn’t say that the Low Carb phenomena taught me these things. It took me years of experimenting with various foods and checking my hunger levels against what I ate to learn this. The funny thing is that I came to the same conclusion independently.

It feels like we are in a lull right now. The Low Carb fad is over and the new head of the beast hasn’t grown back yet. I’m wondering if the next fad will be “Whole Foods.” I wonder how the food industry will spin their products to fall into that category.

What You Need To Know About Weight Watchers

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

Everything online about Weight Watchers sounds like a commercial. Let me tell you the truth about it without all that sugar coating.

Why I Stay With Weight Watchers Even Though I Have The Points Program Memorized By Heart:

It’s not about the Points. If I could follow the program by myself, then calorie counting would have worked for me. Points is actually more complicated than keeping track of calories, yet it’s the first program where I was able to keep the weight off.

It’s not about the Core Food List. There is no magic food list that would have worked for me. I tried limiting my intake of food before. I did lose weight, but I gained it right back when I “fell off the wagon.”

It’s not even about the Tools For Living. They are very powerful and helpful parts of the system, but the first time I read them, they were useless to me. It wasn’t until I sat through several classes describing their use that I was able to use them.

The meetings and the accountability are the one thing that have kept me on track week after week. I suggest finding a leader that you love. Go to the same class every week. Get to know the people at the class. Be honest when you say how you’re doing. Participate in the class. You can’t replace the accountability that you will receive when you attend the same class at the same time with the same leader EVERY week.



Anorexia: The New Diet Plan?

By Laura Moncur @ 6:00 pm — Filed under:

This is a very informative blog entry about the media’s constant attention on famous people and calling them anorexic. It makes one wonder if anorexia is the new diet fad.

Skipping meals itself is not enough to be considered anorexic. It is, however, very detrimental to any dieting efforts you may be working on. This entry explains it perfectly.

Diet and Nutrition Week

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

This week, we are concentrating on diet and nutrition. It isn’t the only factor in weight loss. Any program that tells you that you can lose weight without eating healthy AND exercising is probably lying to you. This week, however, we are going to focus of tightening up our eating program. Here is a sampling of what we have in store for you this week:

  • Low Carb Backlash – What did we learn from the last few years of fad eating?

  • More Fiber in Foods – Why is there fiber in your yogurt?

  • More or Less? – “A new dieter wants to put more food into their diet, but a seasoned healthy eater wants to take more food out.”

  • How To Remove Foods from Your Life without Feeling Deprived

  • How To Work Former Binge Foods Back Into Your Life

Stay tuned for these entries and more this week!


Dry Heaving Episode

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

I find it fascinating that any blog that starts with the phrase:

“I ran in the rain today and it was g-l-o-r-i-o-u-s!”

Could end with the phrase:

“I must thank God no one was there at the end to witness my 30 second dry-heaving episode.”

Running has never felt like that for me. There are times after a race that I have felt like I was going to faint because of poor planning on the part of the race directors, but I have never run so fast that I want to barf afterward. I wonder if that means that I’m reasonable or that I’m not pushing myself hard enough.

Running is a joyful thing to me. Pushing myself so hard that I get dry heaves just doesn’t sound appealing. It actually seems like a punishment. It seems like abuse. I know Mark was doing a time test to see if his times have improved since his recovery, but I don’t know if I could ever get to the point where I can say, “The run was glorious,” and “I almost threw up,” in one breath.

I guess we’ll see.


The Girl At The Bus Stop

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

Would you flail me alive if I told you that I notice the 300 pound young woman who waits for the bus every morning? I pass her with my car. I pass her on my bike. She waits for the bus with her headphones blaring. Anyone who rides the bus regularly soon learns to arm themselves with headphones. Otherwise the mentally unstable riders who see you everyday assume that you’re their friend. Her headphones announce, “Stay away. I’m not your friend.” I noticed her look at me when I passed her in my Beetle once. I smiled at her, hoping to coax a smile out of her, but she turned away.

I’m only guessing at her weight. She towers over me in height, clocking in at almost six feet tall. If I was as fat as she is, I would weigh about 300 pounds, but I’m only 5’2″, so she must weigh more. My eye is drawn to her every day. She waits for the Westbound 30 and I whiz past her on my bike, trying to avoid her gaze despite being drawn to look at her.

Most of the time, I feel like I was only a few pounds away from her fate when I joined Weight Watchers. I feel a kinship to her. I feel the desire to print up my before pictures and show them to her. I want to pull her aside and secretly tell her that I have found the path to a healthier life. If she wants to follow it, I’ll show her the way. I want to give her my bike and tell her to ride it every day, even though it’s far too small for her long legs.

I know that’s the worst thing I could possibly do. I still sting from the casual mention from the grocery store clerk looking at my selection of food. She said, “Have you see that Body For Life book?” She pointed at the book at the checkout. “I can’t believe those before and after pictures. Those people lost all that weight in just 12 weeks.” She might have just been making small talk, but it still stung.

The best thing for me to do is just leave that girl alone. All she is doing is waiting for her bus every day. Her headphones make it perfectly clear what she thinks of me, “Stay away. I’m not your friend.”


End Goals vs. Means Goals

By Laura Moncur @ 6:00 pm — Filed under:

Steve Pavlina has written a great entry about the difference between End Goals and Means Goals. It’s a great read and really applicable to weight loss.

If you feel like you’ve failed, take another look. What did you fail at? Did you stop exercising every day? Did you overeat at the buffet? Did you lose your battle with bingeing? Did you buy another weight loss product at a high price only to find out that it’s useless? Whatever you think you’ve failed at isn’t the End Goal. All of those things are just a means to get to your End Goal.

The End Goal is to be at a healthy weight and fitness level. If you stopped exercising, that is just information for you. Whatever you were doing wasn’t your thing. You need to find something else that you truly love that will bring activity into your life. If you binged at the buffet last night, you didn’t blow it. You just overate one day. Today is a new day and a new chance to live healthy. Next time, you’ll know that going for more than one trip up to the buffet is not a good idea.

All those things that make you feel like a failure are nothing. Cull what information you can from them but keep your eye on the End Goal, not on those Mean Goals. There are a myriad of ways to get to a healthy weight and fitness level.

You Don’t Have To Be Skinny To Be Pretty

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

I subscribe to Seventeen magazine. The first time I noticed that they were using models who looked normal, I called Mike over to me.

“Look at this!”

“What is it?”

“It’s Seventeen magazine.”

He looked at the pages and handed the magazine back to me.

“Do you want those jeans?”

“No, look at the models. They look like normal human beings.”

He took the magazine back and looked at it again.

“They look like models to me.”

Sure, they were models, but they were normal sized models with real bodies instead of living, breathing coat hangers.

“This is why I love Seventeen Magazine.”

This article, while noticing that magazines have a much better view of the female form, is still insulting to me because of this quote:

“Mixed among the pages of dazzling celebrities and rail-thin models that dominate fashion and teen magazines is a surprising sight: young women with thick thighs and flabby abs.”

Instead of describing them like they really are using words like “voluptuous” or “realistic”, they said “thick thighs and flabby abs.” Magazines like Seventeen have come a long way, but there’s a reason that Associated Press keeps their reporters anonymous. They don’t want me hunting them down and giving them a sock in the jaw.

The most important quote from this article is the following:

“I think maybe seeing someone like me in a magazine makes you realize that you don’t have to be skinny to be pretty,” she said. “People see skinny girls in magazines and they think that’s what normal is when it’s not the case.”

Remember this and hold it close to you. That is the thought that will help you make healthier choices in your life. You are beautiful and you are worth the effort it takes to get and stay healthy.

Via: About.com – Real Women Have Curves – by Paige Waehner

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