Wednesday, November 15, 2006

"Lose Wieght Now, Ask Me How" the Series

Well, people really seemed to like my “lose weight” post and have asked me for some more “detailed” information, which makes sense since the original post was so short. So, I’ll be posting a series of articles on how I lost the weight. You are free to follow along, but just remember that everyone is different, and what worked for me may not be best with you. You should check with a doctor when in doubt.

This is going to be a series of articles. I’m going to start with food. I’m going to cover exercise as well, but not today. I’m probably going to switch back and forth.

Forget what you think you know

When people want to lose weight, instinctively the first thing they try to do is eat less. They cut out in between meal snacks. They even sometimes try to cut out whole meals (like breakfast). That isn’t going to work. As I said in the previous post, your body uses food for energy and to replace dead cells and keep the body healthy. If you limit the amount of food you eat, or how often you eat it in a drastic manner, the body believes it’s starving and will fight back. You will have less energy and your body will start to cannibalize itself to survive, usually starting with the muscles. Which means you’ll lose weight, but not fat. You’ll also be sick and kind of gross looking.

What to Eat

Everything you eat is one of three things, all of which you need;

  • Protein – Meats, eggs, nuts, dairy, etc.

  • Fat – Just what it sounds like

  • Carbohydrates – Everything else.


You need protein because it’s what your body is made of. Without it you will shrivel up and turn to dust! OK, maybe not. But, you will have heath issues since proteins are actually amino acids, which you need too do things you enjoy, like being alive.

You need fats because they are what you body uses to make hormones. They are also used to make healthy skin and hair. So without fat in your diet you will be a cranky person with dry cracked skin and bad hair. But that wont matter because you’ll also be dead. Turns out that there are fat soluble vitamins that you need that can only be absorbed in the presence of fat (more on vitamins later). There are good fats and bad fats. Again, I’ll expand on this later, but for now use canola for high-heat applications, olive oil for cold/no heat applications. Use butter (sparingly) instead of margarine and for now, no deep frying.

Carbohydrates are plant matter, and either come in the form of sugar (the plants energy source) or fiber (the plants structure). Fiber helps you not cry when you go to the bathroom. Nuff said, just eat it. Sugar is used to provide energy. Refined sugar, literally plant sugar that has been refined down to being super-concentrated, make things like table sugar, corn syrup and pretty much anything on an ingredient label that ends with “-ulose.” Refined sugar is bad because it promotes a heavy insulin response (more on why this is bad in a latter post). Natural sugars are found in things like fruit and fruit juices. Starch is sugar, but food generally considered “starchy” like potatoes and corn don’t have as much fiber that fruit does. “Starchier” sugars are also more concentrated than sugars from other plants, so moderation is key.

You do need both types of carbohydrates. The why is a little more complicated than why you need protein and fat, so I’ll save if for when I talk about how metabolism work. For now, try to eat at least two pieces of fruit a day and try to limit the amount of starchy foods. Try to limit foods high in sugar or starch to earlier in the day (I try not to have any after 3:00PM) Try to eat at least four servings of vegetables a day.

OK, I realize I didn’t give too much advice about what specifically to eat. So, without further explanation, here is a sample menu for me for one day:

  • 7:15ish AM (post workout) 2 eggs + 2 egg whites scrambled

  • 10:00 AM – One serving of fruit

  • 12:00 AM - Lunch. Today it was chicken fajitas minus the sour cream, pico de whatever or tortillas. Basically, just the “hot part.” Yes, some people think this is weird. No, I don’t care.

  • 2:00 PM – One serving of low-fat yogurt (plain)

  • 4:00 PM – One protein bar

  • 6:30ish PM – One large salad with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. One (lean) pork chop. One serving steamed broccoli.

  • 9:00is PM (bed time) – One protein shake

During the day, I drink about one gallon of water

By the way, “water” does not mean “diet soda.” It means water.

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