It's been about three weeks since I started my regimen of trying to drop some of those unwanted pounds. Despite the less than stellar weather and general gloominess of early 2015, the scale has shown movement in a positive direction.
Lately, however, the positive gains have stopped. I'm not adding weight, but neither am I losing it.
The exercise regimen is working well, so I suspect it's time to look at diet. And, I'll be honest, my diet is...less than stellar.
Like many men, I consider myself a confirmed carnivore. I do like meat, and I like it more than once a day. In fact, my diet looks less like a food pyramid than a food trapezoid. Yes, I know fruits and vegetables are good for me, but I've never been the biggest fan of, well, most of them.
You might say, wow, the paleo diet sounds perfect for you. And, yes, it might, if I didn't like dairy products, especially cheeses, quite so much, and high carbohydrate foods like breads and pastas. And the beer, let's not forget the beer. A world without pizza is not one I want to live in.
So I basically like everything that is bad for me. In short, I'm a guy.
Nonetheless, to keep up the good progress, I will be making some dietary alterations. I still want meat in my diet, and there's no reason to think I have to completely cut it out. So, while I will be cutting back, I'm also going for leaner, healthier cuts of meat; boneless skinless chicken breasts will be on the menu more often, and if I'm going to eat beef or pork, I'm going to try to find local organic sources. Maybe it's a bit more expensive, but it's probably worth it.
If its the savoriness of meat I want, there are some good vegetarian options that can bring the umami. Mushrooms, for example, are not only high on the umami scale, but have a texture and mouthfeel not unlike many meats. Firm tofu works great with the same marinades I'd use for skirt steaks or kabobs as it soaks it up just as well and can be grilled or pan-fried just the same. A splash of low-sodium soy sauce can give an umami zing to many vegetables as well.
The pizza? Definitely gets cut way back.
I need more fruits in my diet, and I do snack during the day, so some dried fruit seems like the perfect solution; pineapple, apples, goji berries, all make for good, healthy snacks that will hit my sweet tooth as well.
One big change I'll be making is when I eat. I've noticed that I tend to skimp on breakfast but gorge myself at dinner, and since I'm not doing anything after dinner, guess where all those calories are going? There's an old saying that you should “have breakfast like a king, lunch like a pauper, and dinner like a beggar,” in essence, make breakfast the big meal of the day and have smaller lunches and dinners. I'm going to give this a try and see if it makes a difference.
Another trick I picked up is to trade a fork for a pair of chopsticks when eating. Men, it can be justifiably generalized, use a fork more like a bulldozer to shovel as much food into our mouths at one time. Using chopsticks forces you to slow down, take longer to eat (thus making you feel full sooner and avoiding overeating). And, also a plus, you'll get enough practice that you'll look really suave at a Chinese restaurant.
It's a game plan. We'll see how it works in the upcoming weeks, and if I can stick to it.
By Dave Meddish, Live Superfoods