Eating Healthily

One thing I’ve learned in my years of travail and toil, is that diets don’t work.

By “diet” I mean the faddy diets sold in books and promoted by barkers and quacks in women’s and men’s magazines. The fact is that the only way to control weight is to control the balance of the equation of energy in <= energy used. It is simply that the total number of kilojoules (or Calories if you prefer) that you burn each day should equal or exceed the number eaten in food and drink. This comes down to understanding the amount of energy in a food and how much you need to stay alive and healthy. Also, how much is burned in daily activities. I have an app to help me monitor that, and it is proving very useful.

You do need to change your eating habits, but alone that is not a diet. If you like ice cream, no reason to give it up. Make room for it in your calorific budget once or twice a week. It is all about the energy equation. But it is also about keeping up your mental health too. Dieting and weight problems are known associates of depression.

With the help of medical advice and a dietician, I have determined that I should eat about 7,000 kJ (1673 kilocalories, or Calories) per day in order to lose weight at about 1kg per ten days. this is a higher rate than is usually recommended, but I have medical reasons for getting on with it stat.

I try to keep up a regimen of activity suitable to my age and generally decrepit condition by swimming, walking, and just lately pedalling, though I need to take it slowly with the latter two. I’m swimming at least four and up to six days a week for one to two hours a day.

My last post links to some good sensible advice on eating food that keeps you on track, while not leaving you feeling hungry. I have learned to budget at least once a week for something I really like, that I used to call comfort food, roast meat, baked potatoes, pasta and pizza, for example. That way I don’t feel deprived or anxious that I’ll never have such food again. I want to get into a routine I can maintain, and enjoy when I finally reach my target weight, which at my current rate of progress is still going to be at least about two years. I got that fat.

That is far too long to go without the foods one loves. But there is no need to. Treat your calorific budget as you would your financial budget. Spend it wisely, save up for the odd luxury and treat, but balance the chequebook every week.

There. The advice of a fat man on how not to be fat. It’s working for me.

Here is a link to my cook blog, which I am now turning to healthy, nutritionally balanced and above all enjoyable nosh. You can also find some really good special but hi-cal treats there, like turkey sausage rolls and beef spare ribs. Indulge.

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Author: Uisce úr

Though I am old with wandering Through hollow lands and hilly lands, I will find out where she has gone, And kiss her lips and take her hands; And walk among long dappled grass, And pluck till time and times are done, The silver apples of the moon, The golden apples of the sun.

2 thoughts on “Eating Healthily”

    1. Two useful tools Bob; kitchen scales for weighing ingredients, and The MyFitnessPal app, which has a huge database of foods and activities so you can work out your energy equation. It reads barcodes too and looks up the food, but if it doesn’t know one I just read the nutrition information label and look for something similar already in the database. It’s really useful. Especially if you want to know if you can afford to have a meal out or a hi cal treat.

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