Friday, February 29, 2008

Diet or lifestyle?

My fat loss efforts have been going well – not exactly a cracking pace, but that’s fine with me. I’m enjoying my food and having plenty of variety – except when I get lazy, and then I tend to repeat the same meals quite a bit. In the past I’ve followed restrictive diets, where even fruits and veggies were limited to only 3 or 4 choices, carbs after lunch were definitely O.U.T. and the stupidly small amounts of food left me constantly hungry. And did I mention crabby? Sure that works for a while…as long as you can stick to it…. but I’d rather enjoy my food and know that I can have a treat when I want it, and settle for slower but steady fat loss.

‘Treats’ are a funny thing. Over the years, I’ve developed an aversion to a lot of the stuff I used to love. I really dislike donuts, mud cake, hot dogs (and almost any kind of sausage), and the list goes on. Every now and then I'm tempted to try one - and BLAH! I still love chocolate and wine – and I have those in small doses. Mainly though, I try to have something most days that is nutritionally sound, and really sends my taste buds into a frenzy – that way I don’t feel the need for treats of the junky kind.

Over the years, I’ve refined a few old recipes and discovered some new ones that fit this criteria well. Some of my favourites (by the way, these are nearly all sweet foods – surprise, surprise!):

- Pancakes – with blueberries, strawberries, banana….sometimes I make them with buckwheat flour, sometimes they’re extremely simple with just oats and egg whites and a little vanilla whey.
- French toast – I love this made with raisin bread, especially the gourmet variety.
- A simple mix of yoghurt, quark, berries and maybe a few nuts. Unfortunately, I just can’t get quark any more – the one I used to buy got taken off the market. I suspect that was because I was the only one buying it. *sigh*
- Raisin toast with ricotta and strawberries
- High protein banana bread – haven’t made this in ages, but I feel a baking urge coming on…..
- Muffins (or as Sara calls them, ‘pruffins’) of various kinds. Sticky date, blueberry, apple and cinnamon – all full of fibre, fruit and plenty of proteiny goodness. Again with the baking urge…
- I also have my favourite curry and pasta dishes, which have barely been amended from the original recipes. Maybe a little less oil, a lot more veggies, and definitely less pasta.

My point is, you don’t have to eat ‘diet food’ to get great results. And that’s another issue altogether – so many people have an attitude about healthy food. They glare resentfully at their tuna salad or cottage cheese and fruit and think “I’ll eat it because it’s good for me, but I won’t enjoy it”. And of course, with that mindset, they don’t. They also never last long on their ‘diet’ because they feel constantly deprived. Two things are required – first, they need to get a bit creative with their food. And then they need to change their attitude. You have to see your food as something that can be healthy AND enjoyable.

You can’t stay on a diet forever, but you CAN adopt a healthy approach to eating for your entire lifetime. And when you try something new and you don’t like it? Persevere with it – you can get used to anything if you give it a chance. I could make a long list of foods I didn’t like only a couple of years ago and now they’re staples in my meals. Not just because they’re good for me, but because I actually like them.


Oh yeah, the fat loss thing? I'm down approximately 9-point-something kilos since I started acting like a sane person back in September. And I'm feeling pretty comfortable with my body again, so YAY!

Still plenty of work to do on the muscle-gaining front, but there's definitely progress, AND a plan in place....


Raechelle said...

Very true-too many people view certain good food as the enemy that must be conquered; when in fact it should be your friend.

Debstar said...

9kgs awesome work, skinny Kek.

Cinders said...

So so true - great post and great loss :)

AlleyCat Runs said...

Hi Kek, I so hear you! I can't stand hot dogs or a lot of that junky kind of food anymore either! I'd rather wait until i get home & cook up a home made burger (I make em so i know what's in em) than have a sausage at bunnings (or similar). I was craving something sweet last night & went straight for some stewed pears & apples I had in the freezer with a little plain yoghurt. Didn't even consider a big bowl of icecream with chocolate topping as have done previously. Not that there is anything WRONG with chocolate topping & icecream, just demonstrating how your taste can change :0)

Well done on the loss!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Great post and so true, its a lifestyle not a change for a few weeks.

Well done on the 9kgs, that is wonderful


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