January 26, 2012

A holiday triumph

Since the holiday season began on Thanksgiving to now... I'm down a pound! With nine pounds to go, this is thrilling news for me. Because I did kinda indulge over the holidays. But this is the first time I did it this way:

Whole foods. I am continually amazed that I can eat more carbs using Paleo principles. At least in my body, all carbs are not created equal! In past holiday seasons, I would have a cookie here and there (the homemade kind from known masters) and some pumpkin pie on Christmas Day, and I would hold steady.

But ditching wheat has changed my whole outlook. There just isn't that much left to cheat with. And I have zero cravings in that direction, now that I've resisted for a whole year. When I would track a comparison day from last year, it was the same number of carbs. But they all came from unprocessed sources this time.

Fussy choices. Now, fruit is my "indulgence" and I eat it with Greek yogurt or heavy cream. I did a lot of pork rind French toast, with some Splenda syrup stretched with mashed berries. But that's about it. My tastebuds have become so sensitive to sweetness I didn't even bake LC goodies this year.

The closest thing to cheating was some sweet potatoes; a lower carb, higher nutrition version of white potatoes that I seem to get along with. Occasionally.

And yes, I had some holiday drinks, too. But I was strict; no sugary mixers, at all. Rum is my spirit of choice, and there's always a diet soda option to pair it with. What works even better is supplying my own mixer. The bar doesn't mind bringing me a shot in a tall glass with ice. So I tip an extra buck for their trouble; it is worth it for both of us.

Low stress. I got a big ham and we just picked on it for a week at a time. Instead of cooking for our annual holiday party, I picked up a deli platter and a box of mini-cheesecakes at the grocery store. Our guests brought more of their own favorites, and everyone was happy!

When something holiday-related would come up that I didn't want to do, I didn't do it.

Like a Boss. That's right. I did it My Way.

There's so much about the holiday season that we feel we have to do... when we don't have to. If there is something Other People make us feel compelled to do, from baking with sugar and flour to eating with sugar and flour... the ethical thing to do is resistance!

Other People aren't going to get the bloating and gas and heartburn. Other People aren't going to find half the clothes in their closet becoming too small. Other People aren't risking diabetes and arthritis and heart trouble. Or maybe, you know, they are. But it's an individual choice. We're individuals, too.

Other People aren't going to derail the way they eat for us. Why should we?

January 16, 2012

No, I'm not deprived.

People find out the way I eat. First, they are stunned. I can see the gears turning as they try to imagine it.

If they are successful at imagining it (and some cannot do this very well) they are then amazed. 95% of the time, they say, word for word, "Oh, I can't live without bread!"

I know they probably won't listen from this point on; changing their diet has just, so to speak, left the table.

But either way, they always ask me, "Don't you feel deprived?"

I'm so deprived!
That's a fair question. I answer it with a question.

I ask them, "When's the last time you had bacon? Salad with real dressing? A steak with garlic aioli? Coffee with heavy cream? Vegetables with butter?"

Their eyes start glazing over and they get this faraway look. Because they rarely eat those things.

Those are "treats." They are indulgences that happen on rare occasions. Daily life is different.

Every day, they eat bread, with fake butter. They drink coffee, with powdered creamer. They eat naked broccoli and skinless chicken breasts and fat-free yogurt.

Either they eat things that have been rendered "health-safe" by taking foods that are supposed to be rich and creamy and luscious and making them cardboardy and watery and tasteless. Or they eat things that are already considered  "health-safe" like whole grains and starchy vegetables and sugary fruits that drive up their blood sugar and lead to metabolic syndrome.

I gave up certain stuff, and it improved my health, and now I don't miss those things.

They gave up different stuff, what they eat now is making them feel sick, and they still miss the stuff they gave up.

They are "deprived" far more than me.