Day 5, Week 1, New Year, New Weight Loss Goals

Here we are on day 5 of week 1 of the New Year with our new weight loss goals instead of resolutions. How’s it going for you?

I’m not doing too bad. My goal was to add one healthy fruit or vegetable to my diet this week and I have been doing so every single day. My thing was to ad a salad at lunch. I almost always have a vegetable with dinner, but then that’s usually about it. The benefits to this are:

1) Salad is a natural appetite suppressant. I have a very good appetite so any help I can get in that department without taking some over the counter appetite suppressant works for me.

2) Obviously the one vegetable I eat at night is not going to replace the 5 servings a day I should be getting, even when I eat enough to count as 2 servings at dinner.

I’ve also been walking from the far end of the parking lot to entrances of the places I go. It’s funny. I got a handicapped placard for my mother, for when I have to take her to the doctors or take her anywhere, as she has a walker and cannot walk too far without needing to sit down. The police in the Bay area are starting to crack down on people using handicapped placards and stickers that aren’t handicapped when the handicapped people these things are meant for aren’t with them. I told my mother of all the times in my life that may have been me getting caught pulling that, they don’t have to worry about me anymore. When I took her to the doctors yesterday, it’s the first time we’ve gotten to use it, and there wasn’t a handicapped parking space open anywhere. I still ended up dropping her off at the bench out front while I went and found a parking place! LOL.

Let me know how you’re coming with the goals you set for yourself this year when it comes to weight and fitness. I’m always open to new, better, easier, ideas. LOL.

Is There Really Any Weight Loss New “News”?

Is there really any new news about weight loss? When your as old as I am (fairly old) and you’ve been dieting your whole life on almost any diet that comes along, you still end up looking for that one new weight loss secret. While I realize weight loss is a super lucrative business to be in, I get tired of reading the same old tips, the same old advice (even if it does work. LOL). “Diet and exercise, diet and exercise.” Blah, blah, blah. LOL.

So when I see new things in the news about weight loss, I feel the need to share it since I don’t think a lot of it gets it’s share of media attention, unless of course you’re taking the weight loss miracle drug like Meridia.  If you haven’t heard the latest, I think it’s funnier than heck that they did studies to show Meridia improved risks to the heart, and it actually proved the opposite. Now the FDA is looking into it. I have one question. Why weren’t these studies done before they started giving it to everyone who could pay for it?

On a “I’m so confused” note, they are doing gastric surgery on morbidly obese teens now. I’ve always thought gastric surgery was like a “last resort” type thing and that it was actually pretty dangerous. Now they’re doing it to our teens instead of the parents doing they’re jobs and teaching kids about proper nutrition. On the other hand, studies show that it has improved their health substantially. So, what are you gonna do? Supposedly the improved health by the substantial weight loss outweighs the risks. Since morbid obesity is so dangerous to health and I would hate to see any child die as a result of it, I suppose if it was one of my children I’d probably look into it. I want to know why no one seems to have linked the fact that we no longer require PE in most of high school and teen obesity is on the rise. Oh yeah. Nobody makes money if every one exercises and learned proper nutrition in health class. LOL.

We all get it that no one diet works for everyone. No matter how good WeightWatchers has been to me, or how much I loved the Whipped Cream and Martini diet, it may not work with you. According to ScienceDaily, researchers have been studying the different diets vs. different genes and may soon be able to tell us from a simple blood test which diet would be most effective for us based on our gene make-up. I think that would be pretty cool. No more frustration going through 20 different diets trying to find one that actually works. Just take a blood test, get on the right type of diet, and zip…weight loss. Of course you still have to stick to the diet, but I still think it’s pretty cool news.

And now on the side of “medicine that contradicts itself once again”. Another new diet has hit the scene and teaches just the opposite of what we always thought about weight loss. Everybody says “if you starve yourself or cut way back on certain fats, your body will actually hoard fatstores and you gain weight“. That’s why “those in the know” are now touting eating more and losing weight, but this is totally different.

From the LemonDrop.com in the UK, the idea behind the Alternative-Day Diet is, as it sounds. There’s no calorie counting or meal plans. Dieters must simply eat a small amount one day (up to 50 per cent of your normal intake) and the next eat whatever you like.

As unlikely as it sounds, apparently a “skinny” gene is triggered by the feast to famine scenario and encourages the body to burn fat. It was Dr Mark Mattson, an America neuroscientist, who first made the breakthrough in 2003, when he discovered that rats on a low calorie diet experienced no ill effects when eating normally every other day. Now Krista Varady, an assistant professor of kinesiology and nutrition at the University of Illinois, has published the results of a ten-week trial involving 16 patients, all weighing over 14 stones (however much that is in pounds. Evidently quite a bit).

By eating 20 per cent of their normal intake one day and a regular healthy diet the next, they each lost between 10lb and 30lb. Dr James Johnson, author of The Alternate-Day Diet, has been using the method for five years. He told the Daily Mail: “I’ve always been a bit overweight. When I first started, I lost 35lb in 11 weeks.

This would back up the theory I had read years ago that if you get stuck on a plateau while on WeightWatchers, take a day or two  off and eat what ever you want. Then when you went back on the diet your metabolism would get a new kickstart.

That’s about all I have for you today.  Hope everyone’s getting plenty of exercise running store to store. You are parking far away aren’t you?

Getting Back on the Weight Loss Track

It’s true. The poorer you are the less you can afford to eat healthy and take care of yourself. Here in Silicon Valley for the last week channel 5 here has been doing a special about living on $4.00 a day for food. The consumer advocate put herself on a budget of $4.00 a day because our unemployment is up over 12% and many, many people are on food stamps. That is their allotment.

One of the first things she noticed was she had to switch from fresh fruit to frozen. The other thing she did was fill up on more starchy food for fullness versus healthier food. I’m not sure I would have agreed with how she shopped. I think I would lay out a menu and buy more bulk foods cheaper when I first got my money than shop day by day as she did. She had a bulk pak of chicken breasts that were a great buy, but because of the way she was shopping she had to put a large portion of it back. She also went to bed hungry one nite because she spent $1.59 one day on a coffee. I guess between shopping in bulk, buying pretty much only the stuff on sale, and clipping a few coupons feeding a family of 5 on $6.00 a day wasn’t too bad. LOL.

Since we’ve been living in a hotel I have been eating full-fat cream cheese on my bagel and whole milk on my cereal because that’s what they serve for breakfast. The other choices are sweet rolls, muffins, crescents, toast, and that sweet, instant oatmeal. I could not eat the bagel but then I’m hungry mid-morning and start looking around for something else to eat. For dinner we either do fast food or something microwavable because there is no stove. TV dinners are neither cheap or non-fat no matter what anyone says, although at least there is Lean Cuisine, Healthy Choice and Smart Ones to choose from. I will be so happy to be back in a full-fledged kitchen where I can buy things on sale and store them, buy fresh fruit and vegetables and have a way to cook them. And oh yeah, I’ll have my scale back. That will really tell the tale. LOL.

I’m starting to wonder if the obesity problem in this country is really poor eating habits etc., as much as it is that more than half of American families live below the poverty level and eat what they can afford.

When All Was Said And Done…

Not eating the bagel yesterday may have been a good thing. With the bagel and cream cheese calorie count came in at over 500. Yesterday just having cereal, even with having a small blueberry muffin as a snack later in the morning, the calorie count came in at just a little over 300. Not bad.

Where I really saved in the calories and fat was having a WeightWatchers Smart Ones for dinner last night. Like I said, I’ll have to get used to the smaller portions, but even with 2 chicken drumsticks (no skin of course) it still came in low on the calorie and fat chart compared to what I’ve been eating.

I just might be able to pull this off. LOL. Now if I could just get my fat butt to start walking again, I’d have it made!

Depression & Visceral Fat

Results of a new study came out April 29th of this year announcing their was a correlation between visceral fat and depression. I know my visceral fat depresses me. I wonder how much these idiots got paid for this study. LOL.

To me this is kind of like the “What came first? The chicken or the egg?” question. They studied 409 obese women, half white and half black. Like stress causes cortisol, which causes visceral fat (the bad fat the leads to heart disease, etc) they say that depression does the same thing, except they don’t know how.

Helloooo? Isn’t it possible that these women were fat first, which caused their depression? Or if they were stressed, couldn’t that cause depression and then leading to the visceral fat? For such an “earth shattering” announcement, you would think they could be a lot more informative.

Haven’t we all known depression can lead to emotional eating, which leads to FAT? Isn’t the bottom line pretty much the same? It’s unhealthy which ever kind of fat it is.

In the meantime I’ve reduced my daily calorie count by switching from wine back to vodka. I’ll just have to get my anti-oxidants some other way. LOL.

Get It And Get Going!

At least that’s what they tell me. Anyone who has read much of this blog knows I am not big on exercise. Yes I’m still paying for the gym,but got so frustrated from too many people, I might as well be flushing $20 down the toilet every month. I don’t quit because I am going to give it another chance. I have a friend that’s pretty fanatical about hitting the gym every day and I’m hoping it is rubbing off on me. He has gotten me to eat only half of whatever I have to eat when we’re out and take the rest home, so who knows? I’ve known that diet tip for a long time but wasn’t very good at practice, but I am actually doing it even when I’m not dining with him, so it’s working.

I don’t know where I’ve been when it comes to all the new gadgets for fitness buffs, but evidently not on the cutting edge. While looking on some of my favorite message boards this morning I learned about all kinds of new exercise gadgets that measure everything from your sleep patterns to how intense you exercise, (or not), to how many calories you burn during and after. All from a wrist band. Pretty exciting.

Go Wear FitFirst up is Go Wear Fit- According to their website

Simply wear the GoWear fit armband during the course of your day, then log onto your personalized GoWear fit online activity manager. You’ll get accurate, easy-to-digest information about the calories you’ve burned, plus a calorie consumption calculator and tips for how to best reach your fitness and lifestyle goals.

GoWear fit also measures sleep duration and efficiency – so that you can begin to understand the influence your bedtime has on your overall health.

They say it is not- a heart monitor or a pedometer. It’s not cheap either. For the armband, display, and a 12 month subscription it’s $249.90 You save $116 by buying the package.

Polar F-55

Polar F-55

This is a very popular heart rate monitor. According to their website

Polar has launched a new line of training computers for the general fitness and cross-training market aimed at encouraging people to listen to their bodies to get the most from their workouts. Monitoring the heart rate is the best way to tell how effective training is on a person’s health and fitness. This new line of fitness products provides feedback and guidance for more effective training in fewer hours.

They too are working on being able to upload to a site to graph your progress, etc. They range in price from $59.95 for measuring walking intensity and pace, to $399.95 for athletes and coaches. They even have heart monitors for people measuring activity after heart surgery or heart attacks.

Garmin Forerunner

Garmin Forerunner

The Garmin Forerunner also has a chest strap for more accurate readings (it says). I’m not sure how I would feel about wearing a chest strap while I ran altho they did say they’ve made it “more comfortable”. According to their website

The Forerunner 305 includes a high sensitivity GPS receiver, new courses feature and robust wireless heart rate monitor for optimal performance. Garmin’s web-based application that provides in-depth analysis of your workouts, online mapping and route sharing that will take your training to the next level.

If training indoors it says you need an extra assessorie that attaches to your shoe. As far as price goes, I saw one gadget for $99.00, but when looking at their current promotions one deal was up to $4000.00 rebate if you bought one of the packages. Anything offering this kind of money back has to cost a fortune to start with.

I found it really interesting as to what all these things could do and how much fun and beneficial it could be to use the information they provide. For me personally I think I will wait until I’m actually taking more of an interest in my own exercise, like doing some, before I’m going to invest. $20 a month to do nothing is more than enough. LOL

Getting Older,Gaining Weight, Syndrome W

Like we don’t have enough to worry about with our butts and boobs sagging, now some genius doctor has discovered Syndrome W which affects older women. This isn’t my problem as I’m the way I am from lack of exercise, etc. but it is a problem.

I originally read about this over at Between Us Girls  and decided to do a little more research. Evidently the symptoms are:

  1. Gaining weight for no apparent reason while you are still physically active
  2. Gaining weight around your waist instead of gaining all over as would be the normal way people gain
  3. Blood Pressure creeping up
  4. Bad cholesterol creeping up
  5. fatigue (which I just figures comes with weight gain)
  6. Elevated insulin levels even tho blood glucose levels were normal

The study Dr. Harriet Mogul coined as Syndrome W which stands for “waist gain” showed that many women suffer from insulin resistance despite being fit, non-smoking, and basically thin for most their lives.

According to Health Discovery.com when glucose is  locked out of resistant cells, it has nowhere to go and starts building up in the bloodstream. The pancreas releases yet more insulin to try to compensate, and for a while, that works to force glucose through the cell doors.

An insulin resistant person can maintain normal blood glucose levels, although doing so may require insulin levels as much as 40 percent above normal. And as Stanford’s Dr. Reaven has publicized, excess insulin alone can cause significant cardiovascular damage.

What’s more, in at least a portion of the estimated 60 million to 80 million Americans who are currently insulin resistant, the pancreas will eventually lose its battle and glucose levels will begin creeping upward.

Untreated, 10 percent of those who started out as simply insulin resistant are likely to progress to full-blown diabetes, according to Dr. Reaven. But only then will most people realize they have a problem. Insulin resistance has been called a “silent killer,” because it is symptomless, or so it was thought.

One of the most obvious symptoms of this disease is the “apple shape” some of us women take on. Dr. Mogul’s plan is a low-carbohydrate, low glycemic diet and a drug called metformin that counteracts insulin resistance. Evidently they’ve had great success in staving off full blown diabetes in the patients that follow the plan.

For more information,(I’ve sort of simplified it here) visit Dr. Mogul’s website. She has some great info, a food pyramid, and a FAQ. She’s also written a book you may find helpful.

Girl Scout Cookies vs. WeightWatchers Points

If you have been out of the house at all, you realize this weekend the Girl Scouts of America have broke loose with the Girl Scout cookies. Starting yesterday they are outside of grocery stores and banks across America. Today (Saturday)the BF says they’re everywhere. I’m pretty basically sure he only noticed because I brought home 60 boxes myself last nite.

I had all the good intentions one on a diet can have. I went to a grocery store last nite that has two entrances, one at each end of the store. I was quick to notice the Girl Scouts at one door as I was looking for parking. I was so good. I parked at the other end of the store where there were none (are the Girl Scout groups getting smaller? Why weren’t they covering both doors?). From this store I actually had a really good coupon for Oreo’s. I like those and Chips Ahoy because I can buy the low fat versions. I have to ask myself how do you buy Oreo’s after seeing the Girl Scouts and they only give you one chance once a year?

I did my shopping, comparing prices, checking food labels, all the good stuff. Then I go to check out. Who has the shortest line? The guy by the Girl Scout cookies of course. So I had to go that way, you know.

In this economy even the Girl Scouts of America are in trouble. They had to discontinue (one of my favorites)some flavors, change others, and take 2 cookies out of every box. Pretty sad, aye? So this is how I chose to help stimulate the economy. I bought my cookies plus some for all those people that (are smart enough) don’t buy cookies for whatever their reasons. I knew what I was doing when I did it, and what’s worse is I will probably replenish which ever cookies go first before the Girl Scouts quit selling them.

So how am I going to deal with this dastardly dead? As soon as I brought the box in the kitchen, not the box of cookies like “a box of cookies” the box that held all the boxes of cookies I bought, I pulled out my trusty pointsfinder, a red Sharpie, and put how many cookies I could have for how many points on the top of each box.

Girl Scout Cookies

Girl Scout Cookies

I have learned:

  1. I can only have two of my favorite peanut butter for 3 points (but it’s actually like 4 cookies if you break them apart).
  2. If I eat the “Thin Mints” I can have 1 cookie per point.
  3. Shortbread give the biggest quantity for the least points (5/4)
  4. They screwed me up when they changed the lemon cookie. It is no longer “lower fat”. (3/4)
  5. The “sugar free” chocolate chip is not “a low calorie” food. (3/4)
  6. The new “de leuche” cookie is really bad and I can have 3 cookies for 5 points.

Who am I to gripe? At least with WeightWatchers these aren’t off the list completely because we can eat whatever we want. LOL

Good Food

I received this in my email from my “almost” sister-in-law this morning and thought it was interesting enough to share. Some of you may have seen this already. I couldn’t help but notice that sugar, bread, and white potatoes didn’t make the list.

God’s Pharmacy
 
  This is absolutely amazing – and makes perfect sense!!
         
    
   
 
It’s been said that God first separated the salt water from the fresh, made dry land, planted a garden, and made animals and fish… all before making a human. He made and provided what we’d need before we were born. These are best & more powerful when eaten raw.  (I don’t know about eating fish and meat raw. I don’t know where that came from. A lot of them eaten raw make you sick.) We’re such slow learners…God left us a great clue as to what foods help what  part of our body!carrot

A sliced Carrot looks like the human eye.  The pupil, iris and radiating lines look just like the human eye… and YES, science now shows carrots greatly enhance blood flow to and function of the eyes.

 
tomatoTomato has four chambers and is red. The heart has four chambers and is red. All of the research shows tomatoes are loaded with lycopine and are indeed pure heart and blood food.


grapesGrapes   hang  in a cluster that has the shape of the heart.  Each grape looks like a blood cell and all of the research today shows grapes are also profound heart and blood vitalizing food.


nutsWalnut looks like a little brain, a left and right hemisphere, upper cerebrums and lower cerebellums.  Even the wrinkles or folds on the nut are just like the neo-cortex. We now know walnuts help develop more than three (3) dozen neuron-transmitters for brain function.


kidneyKidney  Beans  actually heal and help maintain kidney function  and yes, they look exactly like the human  kidneys.


celeryCelery,  Bok Choy, Rhubarb  and many more look just like bones. These foods specifically target bone strength. Bones are 23% sodium and these foods are 23% sodium. If you don’t have enough sodium in your diet, the body  pulls it from the bones, thus making them weak.  These foods replenish the skeletal needs of the body.

 

avacadoAvocadoes,  Eggplant and Pears  target the health and function of the womb and  cervix of the female – they look just like these  organs. Today’s research shows that when a woman eats one avocado a week, it balances hormones, sheds unwanted birth weight, and prevents cervical cancers. And how profound is this?   It takes exactly nine (9) months to grow an avocado from blossom to ripened fruit. There are over 14,000 photolytic chemical constituents of nutrition in each one of these foods (modern science has only studied and named about 141 of them).  


figFigs are full of seeds and hang in twos when they grow. Figs increase the mobility of male sperm and increase the numbers of Sperm as well to overcome male sterility.  
  spotato
  
  Sweet  Potatoes  look  like the pancreas and actually balance the  glycemic index of  diabetics.
 
olives
  

  Olives   assist  the health and function of the ovaries  
 
orange
  

  Oranges,  Grapefruits ,  and other Citrus fruits look just like  the mammary glands of the female and actually  assist the health of the breasts and the  movement of lymph in and out of the  breasts.
 
onions
  

  Onions look like the body’s cells. Today’s research shows onions help clear waste materials from all of the body cells. They even produce tears which wash the epithelial layers of the eyes. A working companion, Garlic, also helps eliminate waste materials and dangerous free radicals from the body.

If I could stick to this list, weight would never be a problem! LOL

Pork Loin and Acorn Squash by WW

Sticking to my plan of cooking more WeightWatchers recipes last night I cooked a pork loin with acorn squash. Pork loin was on sale super cheap if you bought a big one, so I bought one that made about 3  three or four pound roasts. I usually don’t have a special fondness for pork loin because it always seems to come out so dry. This was really nice and there was glaze left in the bottom of the pan to spoon over the pork after it was cooked.

I need to get used to acorn squash again. With this glaze it had just a nice, slight orange and sweet flavor without overpowering it. The BF said it was really good and he knows not to say that if he doesn’t want to eat it again. LOL.

Usually when I do a roast I just sprinkle some tried and true combo of spices out of a jar, but this calls for a little salt, pepper, sage and garlic cloves. Here’s what I did.

  • 3 lb. pork loin roast
  • 1/2 TBLS. salt
  • 1/2 TBLS. fresh ground pepper
  • 4 TBLS. sage
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup orange juice
  • 6 TBLS. real maple syrup
  • 2 acorn squash, halved and seeded

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line a roasting pan with foil. Spray foil with Pam or whatever you use. Rub roast with about 3/4 of your spice mix and garlic. Cook for about 20 min. Take the balance of the mix and rub around the edges of the acorn squash.

Take the pork out of the oven and put the squash, cut side down around the pork in the roasting pan, and shove back in the oven for about 30 min.

Mix the orange juice and maple syrup. Pull the pork and squash out of the oven and turn the squash cut side up. Baste everything with the orange juice and maple mix. Cook 15-20 more minutes or until internal temp of pork reaches about 160 degrees and the squash is done. Baste 2 or 3 more times while finishing the cooking. I finally on the last 5 minutes just poured what I had left all over everything.

Enjoy. If you’re counting points, this is approx. 7 points per serving. I’m open to suggestions if you want to put any in the comments below.