Trouble in Paradise – Update and Threat Assessment 12.08.22

 This past Holiday season was the roughest in recent memory. I ate everything in sight. I binged on bagels every day for nearly a week. The cookies, cakes, and pies found their way into my mouth. The sheer quantity of food was my downfall. I put on the pounds and topped the scale at 202 pounds. Time to get back to my normal routine. I’m getting back to my usual habit of eating only when hungry. Avoid sweets. Shrink portions.

Journal entry 10 Years Ago

I was searching my journal on a different topic and found something I wrote 10 years ago. Back then despite eating healthy foods I continued to struggle with my weight. It was the Holiday season. I binged. Then I binged some more. Thankfully I’ve learned a lot since then like how diets really work. Source: Dr. Anthony Pearson.

In my last post Trouble in Paradise (it’s Weight Gain Season) I posted this picture of our dessert board on Turkey Day. It’s how I gained three pounds in three days. The cheese and crackers didn’t help. Nor did #10 twice.

Update and Threat Assessment

  • The three pounds gained were lost but it took two weeks.
  • I removed the beer from the house which was purchased for entertaining company.
  • Yes, I drank the beer.
  • M&M’s spelled correctly is TROUBLE.
  • Two pieces of pumpkin pie are in the freezer. This is OK because pumpkin is a vegetable (botanically a fruit so still OK).
  • Ice cream, normally not in the house but it is and calls my name every night.
  • COOKIES.

The Boss came back from a cookie exchange with the neighbors with several dozen dangerous tiny bites.

Threat Level 4 Red.

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Trouble in Paradise (it’s Weight Gain Season)

“Competition puts hurdles in front of you that you have to clear.” 

OKC Thunder coach Mark Daigneault

Life puts hurdles in front of you that you have to clear. Like Thanksgiving. TGTIO (Thank God Thanksgiving is Over). We were out of town for only three days. I gained three pounds. I’m not good at math but I think this equates to one pound per day. YIKES. There’s 35 days until the first day of the New Year. At this pace I’ll weigh 208 pounds…

But I am not alone. This chart is attributed to the New England Journal of Medicine but I could never find the original source article.

As the years pass I get better at understanding why I put the pounds on. This was our dessert board on Turkey Day.

I can’t get Tex-Mex in Oklahoma. So when in Texas I need Tex-Mex. At one of my favorite Tex-Mex stops I discovered a new favorite, the #10.

The numbers above are calories, fat calories, and fat in grams. 2950 mg of sodium too (the original chart has more nutrition information).

We ate Tex-Mex Wednesday and Friday, the perfect bookends to Thanksgiving.

I had #10 twice.

Take Home Lesson

Salt, sugar, fat and excess calories. Taking and/or keeping the weight off is simple when you reduce intake of these four items.

Restaurant meals will kill you. Literally.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with every now and then so long as it’s every now and then.

My skinny jeans fit fine. I’ll get back to my usual routine and diet and the three pounds should come off and I’m good until the next hurdle. Until then I’ll wear my black t-shirts because dark colors make you look thinner.

Braum’s Is the Best American Fast-Food Chain You’ve Never Heard Of

In fact, the milk — and the company-owned creamery where it is produced — is the cornerstone of the Braum’s business model. The chain makes and produces all of its dairy products and bakes its own burger buns, and as such, Braum’s only opens locations within a 330-mile radius of its production facility in Tuttle. From there, refrigerated trucks are dispatched every other day to make deliveries to its more than 300 stores scattered across Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Missouri.

Braum’s Is the Best American Fast-Food Chain You’ve Never Heard Of — https://www.eater.com/23165864/braums-best-chain-milk-ice-cream-burgers

The closest grocery store from my house is just a mile away. But anytime I need milk, eggs, or cheese I shop at Braum’s. Their private label bread is better and cheaper than the grocery store. Butter at the grocery store is between $4.00 and $6.00 a pound depending upon the brand. Braums’ butter is $3.50 a pound (but you have to buy two to get this price).

Control of production and lower transpiration costs obviously affect the retail prices. And in a good way.

Did I mention The Bag? https://www.braums.com/menus/bag-of-burgers-junior/

These burgers are Tiny Taste Tester Approved.

Stanford Center on Longevity – Diet Research Update

There are a growing number of diet choices that promote healthier eating. Common among several of the most-well known diets (e.g., paleo, Mediterranean, vegan), is an emphasis on the consumption of plant-based foods (sometimes alongside animal protein, sometimes without), and the avoidance of added sugar, refined grains, and ultra-processed foods. There is increasing evidence that consuming more plant-based foods is beneficial to our overall health, especially our immune system health. There are also data indicating that consuming more plant protein than animal protein is healthy for both ourselves and the environment.

Diet — https://longevity.stanford.edu/research-update-on-diet/

Reality check below –

We have a lot of work to do.

Do your part by reading the entire research update and sharing the love.

Junior’s Quick Stop — a short story

By Ran Walker – My wife doesn’t trust gas station fried chicken, but, dammit, I do. In fact, I rank it among the best food in town, including those fancy chains, where they keep laying off the spices and seasonings every year. I tell her that they lovingly marinate those breasts, before gently battering them and […]

Junior’s Quick Stop —

Follow the link to read the entire short story. It’s a short read.

Chicken Thighs with Spinach

For all the complainers who complain about my lack of food photos.

I tend to waste a lot of time watching other people cook on YouTube. But every now and then I actually make a dish I’ve watched someone else make and say to myself, this is a keeper.

“I make simpler things in a simpler way, now—as you get older your metabolism changes and you want something simpler, without embellishment.”

Jacques Pépin

Chef Jacques Pépin got through the pandemic with kitchen utensils, a video camera, and a great wardrobe — https://thecounter.org/rewrites-covid-19-chef-jacques-pepin-facebook-recipe-cookbook/

Salt, pepper, garlic, chicken thighs, and fresh spinach. That’s it. No added fats. Some rice or potatoes on the side and you have dinner on the table in 45 minutes or less. Check out the video.

I learned a lot by watching Jacques Pépin make chicken thigh. Incredible technique.

I’m a Big Dipper

Previous studies looking at blood sugar after eating have focused on the way that levels rise and fall in the first two hours after a meal, known as a blood sugar peak. However, after analyzing the data, the PREDICT team noticed that some people experienced significant ‘sugar dips’ 2-4 hours after this initial peak, where their blood sugar levels fell rapidly below baseline before coming back up.

Big dippers had a 9% increase in hunger, and waited around half an hour less, on average, before their next meal than little dippers, even though they ate exactly the same meals.

Big dippers also ate 75 more calories in the 3-4 hours after breakfast and around 312 calories more over the whole day than little dippers. This kind of pattern could potentially turn into 20 pounds of weight gain over a year.

King’s College London. “Why some of us are hungry all the time.” ScienceDaily. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/04/210412114802.htm (accessed April 24, 2021).

Now I know there is a scientific biological basis for why I feel hungry more often than others. Over time I’ve figured out solutions for my unique metabolism and biology.

Whole grain bars. A small handful of nuts. A cup of yogurt. If you’re constantly hungry you might be a “big dipper” like me. Carry on.