Our Diets are Making us Sicker

 

The good news: fewer hungry people around the world. The bad news: Increased consumption of processed foods is pushing up global rates of overweight and obesity.

Source: Across The Globe, Our Diets Are Making Us Sicker, Report Finds : The Salt : NPR

So fast food and sugary soda makes you fat?  Seriously?

At my personal peak of adiposity I tipped the scale at 370 pounds.  Over the years I’ve done the classic weight loss and gain yo-yo from a low of 163 after my initial weight loss to a current  weight of 195.  I taught myself how to lose weight and the diet strategies to keep the weight off.

I should write a book.

Water for Weight Loss

“Using the responses of more than 18,000 adults in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2005–2012, the scientists found that people who increased their plain water consumption by 1 percent reduced their total daily calorie intake. Specifically, people who drank one to three cups of plain water—either spring or tap water, water from a drinking fountain or a water cooler, or bottled water—tended to reduce their “empty-calorie” intake from sweetened foods and beverages. They also consumed less total fat, saturated fat, sugar, sodium and cholesterol. The average person in the study drank slightly over four cups of water a day. Each cup of water, up to three cups, correlated to about 68 fewer calories consumed.”

Source: Water: a Key Ingredient in Recipe for Weight Loss: Health After 50

 

Swapping Rice for Burgers

Source: China obesity ‘explosion’ blamed on swapping rice for burgers

Over 40 years ago I lost 200 pounds.  With age I found 35 of those lost pounds but remain extremely pleased the other 165 stayed off.  I loved this article about obesity in China.  This article could have been written about my childhood.  I swapped burgers for rice and got fat.

Real fat.

I’ve been part of a weight loss study for decades.  I answer a couple of questionnaires every year.  Most people don’t believe I used to be fat.  I need to find some old childhood pictures and post them as proof.

Beans May Help With Weight Loss

 ‘Pulses’ like these may help dieters feel fuller and reduce food cravings, new analysis shows

Source: Beans, Chickpeas May Help With Weight Loss

I have two bean stories.  I’ll start with my second favorite memory of beans.

I moved from NJ to Texas at the age of 25.  Talk about culture shock.  It was a big brand new world to explore.  And if you enjoy ethnic cuisine you try to eat whatever the locals ate.  I wasn’t quite sure what Texas cuisine was besides smoked brisket.  On one day of exploration I passed a rather cheap and gaudy looking fast food joint that probably no longer exists.

“I wonder what this is?”

So I stopped, went in, stared at the menu and had absolutely no idea what anything was.  So I ordered a bean burrito.  It was your typical fast food burrito, thick brown paste, a little cheese, a little chili sauce, all wrapped up in a flour tortilla.  This happened so long ago the only remaining memory was that I liked it.  A lot.

So ends my second favorite bean story.

 

 

 

Eat More Nuts

http://www.medpagetoday.com/Blogs/LifestyleMedicine/55500

 

I have to admit as a child I rarely ate nuts.  The closest I got to a nut was peanut butter…on pancakes.  I added more tree nuts to my diet when I drank beer in bars.  The good bars always had good nuts.  That’s where I discovered my love for cashews.  I would pick all of the cashews out of a bowl of mixed nuts.  Still do.

This Medpage article offers up a short summary of the clinical evidence for higher nut consumption.  I eat a small handful of nuts daily.

Cashews and peanuts.

Dean Ornish: Can Healthy Eating Reverse Some Cancers? : NPR

Dean Ornish: Can Healthy Eating Reverse Some Cancers? : NPR.

Over 30 years have passed since I was a vegetarian.  My coworkers thought I was crazy.  Dinner invitations were met with hesitation.  Some friends made excuses like “My hamster is sick and I can’t come over for supper”.  My life as a vegetarian lasted 18 months.

At the grocery store the other day I was asked if I was a vegetarian.  I said no.  When I thought about the correct answer, I really had no answer.  There’s not really a good word to describe my eating habits.  Most weeks two thirds of my meals are meatless.  I avoid processed foods and fast food restaurants.  I guess I try to eat less bad food and more good health enhancing foods like whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, less animal products, and more craft beer.

I stumbled upon this old TED talk this morning.  If you are not familiar with the work of Dr. Dean Ornish, this short video is a great place to start.

From Paleo To Plant-Based, New Report Ranks Top Diets Of 2015 : The Salt : NPR

For the fifth year in a row, the government-researched DASH diet (an acronym for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) ranked No. 1 overall diet. It’s similar to the Mediterranean diet: heavy on fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy, whole grains, poultry, fish and nuts.

via From Paleo To Plant-Based, New Report Ranks Top Diets Of 2015 : The Salt : NPR.

Rather than just another recipe for my first post of 2015 I have posted a link to a story on the best diet for optimal health.  Eat well.  Live well. Stay healthy.

 

What 200 Calories of Every Food Looks Like – The Atlantic

I know that Chipotle burritos are extremely caloric, but I’ve managed to convince myself that the burrito bowl—all the cheese, guac, and juicy beef, but without the tortilla wrapping—is practically a health food.

No need to work out today, I walked up the Metro escalator! And sure, eight drinks a week is technically “heavy drinking” for women, but I’m Russian.

via What 200 Calories of Every Food Looks Like – The Atlantic.

Go to the article for some sample pictures.  If you dare.