Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The Whisky Diet

I have reached that point in life (a few years back, actually) where some changes to my diet are called for. My sawbones hasn't made an issue of it -- she's gaining faster than I am, actually -- but my denials to the scale and mirror ring increasingly hollow. So, during my last bookstore visit, I wandered over to the nutrition shelf. A couple of thoughts:

1) So many choices! Or ... ? Five meals a day? Three meals, plus two snacks? Rice and fish? Just rice? Just fish? Pay attention to the glyceymic index, or ignore it and just eat yer meat? How can you have any pudding if you don't eat yer meat?

There are all sorts of "revolutionary" diets, of course, but this approach strike me as counter-intuitive. First of all, my temperament is revolution-averse. Secondly, most of my food is already prepared by my own hand, so I know what's going into me, and what I ought to cut back on. I like my wheat (bread, pasta) a little too much, and I'm at the age where "alcohol in moderation" (not always my strong suit, as you might have guessed) could stand to be moderated even further. Brown rice, fresh produce, legumes are already present and accounted for (my background is Diet For A Small Planet, or, more accurately, More With Less). A little more water, a little more meat and I'd probably be doing what I should. So no radical, unsustainable changes, in other words.

2) What's with all the books?! Is there any diet in the world that can't be summed up in a page or two? As for recipes, I can personally vouch that I am unlikely to adopt any more than two or three in a given book. That's right: two or three. Fifty pages of kamut and peanut-butter recipes are worse than useless: they're a waste of the writer's and my time.

So place your bets now and ask me in six months if I've shed so much as an ounce. I promise I'll tell the truth.


paul bowman said...

Paying attention. Hope you'll work the theme in further.

Not that I've got identical concerns. I've never been able to gain weight no matter what I eat. (This sounds like heaven to a lot of people — but of course it ain't. I just suffer a bit less for ignoring what most everybody else in my little world ignores too.)

Whisky Prajer said...

A friend with a similar metabolism got flagged as "potentially anorexic" at her boarding school, and sent to a nutritionist. She was promptly put on a diet that was grueling in an entirely unexpected way: she had to consume enormous quantities of Cream Of Wheat between meals. After three weeks of this, she gained eight pounds. She begged the nutritionist to let her stop. He knew well enough she was in no danger of anorexia, and let her go. Her ordinary, happy nature was thus restored.

yahmdallah said...

I wish ya luck and that you chime in in the affirmative in 6.

yahmdallah said...

Oh, and my experience is that all the fad diets, even Atkins, got me to lose 5 to 7 pounds, then I plateaued.

The only thing that appears to work for me are smaller portions, moving my ass more (taking the steps, etc.), and cutting back on libations.

Whisky Prajer said...

Libations are probably the key for me, not only for their nasty empty calories but also for the way they mess with sleep, which apparently adds to one's metabolism woes. We shall see what we shall see.

DarkoV said...

For whatever it's worth.
The wife and I took to a diet plan in the last year that seems to have worked out well for both of us. We confined ourselves to the directions of one diet book, adapted some exercise regimen (mainly involving walking the dog for longer distances), and stayed quite faithful to the book. Recipes were good; main issue was, DUUUUHHHHH, portion control. Never thought a person could survive on the SMALL amounts we were allowed to eat.
Anyway, we both lost weight. Significant weight. I lost over 40 lbs. and, most importantly, haev maintained the weight AND the small portion eating. BMI is at a healthy 22.7, which is right in the middle of the normal weight range.
What sucked, in a major way?
I love cake, so NO CAKE (wewll, 2 slices amonth)
I love wine, so only 2-3 glasses a week are o.k.
I absolutely adore fresh-baked bread, so no white bread and only a few slices of whole grain a day.
I drank fruit juices like water, so NO fruit juice at all.
I love coffee and, here at least, I was allowed to drink as much as my nerves could handle. Black, of course, which is fine w/me.

I won't mention the excellent cookbook unless pressed. Each to his own tome...
Good luck with your endeavours, WP! All for a good cause...so your daughters will have you around longer to cause you heart pains.