Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Diet

Starting the first of this year, I put myself on a new diet. It is not so much a plan to eat less as it is a plan to eat better, a plan to eat healthier foods, and to eliminate certain foods that are bad for me.

Right off the top, I've decided to drastically reduce my gluten intake, if not remove it all together from my diet. For those who don't know, gluten is the part of wheat that is not so good for your digestive tract and is known to cause potbellyness. Except for a couple of bumps due to birthday celebrating, I have been gluten free. By the way, it really doesn't help New Year's Resolutions having a birthday in early January. Just as soon as you get started, you find an easy excuse to break your resolutions. Anyway, now that the birthday bash is over, I'm back on the diet.

I've also decided to completely remove high fructose corn syrup from my diet, and again, except for the birthdayness, I haven't had any. I actually don't crave sweets like I thought I would.

The other main item I've removed from my diet is soda, and that I've actually kept up with. I've been drinking more tea, and on my birthday, I had a big fat glass of Dos XX beer. But the soda, that's something I am really craving. I think about it all the time. I don't have any in the house so all I have to do is stay away from the store and I'll be ok. hmmm.

I have also make it a point to no longer eat at fast food restaurants. Let me tell you about fast food places like McDonalds. When a person is homeless, McDonalds becomes a welcome shelter from the weather, a source of extremely inexpensive food and drink, and over time it becomes a place of familiarity, a place to belong when you don't really belong anywhere. Also, for myself, McDonalds had become a dependable source of internet access. luckily I can get wifi from the businesses near my home, so I can just stay home and avoid McDonalds all together. Still, I miss no going there. Many of the employees at both McDonalds I frequented knew me well enough to predict my order before I said a word. They all knew that I didn't want pickles on my McDoubles. They also knew that when I showed up, more than likely I wasn't going to leave until they made me leave, which was often past closing time.

I'm not eating any less than I was before, I'm just getting full on other things, although it's kinda hard to create that full feeling without bread and pasta and such. Now, instead of grabbing some M&Ms, I dig into an avocado, instead of drinking a 2 liter (or more) of Dr Pepper every day, I drink water and occasionally some tea. A friend and reader of this blog recently sent me a case of canned Salmon. It's already gone, but wow, that's some tasty food, and healthy too.

Although a gluten free diet means no more spaghetti noodles, that doesn't mean you can't have the rest of your normal spaghetti ingredients. Several times I have browned up some ground beef, poured some Ragu on top if it along with a tad bit of salsa for flavor, and then mixed in a whole can of green beans to replace the noodles. Keep cooking till the green beans are tender, and wow, that stuff is filling and good tasting.

With the extremely cold weather, I haven't been getting out much so to exercise, but that will be next. Exercise will keep me distracted longer so that I won't think about food so much, and will help to increase my metabolism. Then we will hopefully be seeing more drastic weight loss.

By the way, I did not weigh myself when I started this diet, but I did take some lovely "before" pictures. If I am able to drop several clothes sizes, I will post side by side before and after shots of myself.

Mentally, I'm feeling more alert, and thinking more clearly than before the diet, that in itself is a good thing. And I'm not so depressed as I usually am, although with the cold weather cabin fever is a concern.

I will make a special page here for my diet posting, as it really doesn't have anything to do with homelessness. Still it is important to keep track of, hopefully I can do so in blog posts.

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