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Thursday Outside Thoughts: May 10, 2012: Relationship with food

In Thursday: Outside Thoughts on May 10, 2012 at 4:24 pm

What I have been trying to create with The Program is a happy, balanced, fun, enjoyable, sane, healthy relationship with food.  For 33 years I’ve had a power struggle with food and, as I’ve mentioned in this blog before, I KNOW that food is not the enemy and that it is meant to nourish and to enjoy.

Over the past month and a half I think I have begun to find a balance between sustenance and indulgence although of late I have been discouraged because a healthy weight loss rate – a pound a week – feels soooooooo drawn out when I still have about 50 more pounds to lose (I am down about 47lbs).

Thursdays are when I share another article or blog that I found interesting.  Check out this *awesome* blog http://100poundsin1year.wordpress.com/2012/05/10/frenemies/.  She recommends a book I am going to check out as well.  I get a little nervous when God and weight loss are tied together but it sounds like this book is a sound one.  Have you read it?  If so let me know what you think!

Thursday Outside Thoughts: April 19, 2012: Health vs Weightloss Goals

In Thursday: Outside Thoughts on April 19, 2012 at 4:40 pm

This is such a great post on the importance of overall health versus just weight loss. Although I am still in it to lose the weight as well, I am REALLY in it to be healthier overall.

Dances With Fat

A new study shows that “healthy lifestyle habits are associated with a significant decrease in mortality regardless of baseline body mass index”.  Look, over there…it’s a great big flaming sack of “no kidding.”

Which is not to say that the study shouldn’t have been conducted, but is rather my attempt to point out the utter ridiculousness  of clinging to the idea that getting our bodies to a specific height weight ratio is our best chance for being healthy, knowing the health is not guaranteed, not entirely within our control, not an obligation, and not a barometer of worthiness, in the face of overwhelming evidence that:

1.  It’s not possible for most people who aren’t in the weight range to get into it

2.  There are plenty of people who fit that height weight ratio who are not healthy

The study looked at the association between 4 healthy lifestyle habits and…

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Thursday Outside Thoughts: April 11, 2012: Putting Life on Hold Until the Weight is Lost…

In Thursday: Outside Thoughts on April 12, 2012 at 3:12 am

I met a friend for lunch on Saturday and we started to talk about our long histories of dieting and body image issues.  It was interesting to see how ashamed we both are that we have lived so much of our lives under the weight (haha) of feeling less-than because we weren’t super slim.  We agreed to talk more openly together about our various issues because by the end of the conversation, although it was horrifying to realize how much mental space has been occupied by thoughts of weight loss, we both felt some relief about getting our “crazy” out into the open.

Today I texted this friend and suggested we write out lists of all the things we would have done or feel like we could have been if we hadn’t felt we couldn’t even try because we were overweight.  Again, super embarrassing to admit to this negative thinking, but super healthy to get all that negative, internalized thinking, OUT!

I found this blog post that articulates how I felt for most of my life (I did lose 100 lbs previously but only maintained the weight loss for nine months because I became pregnant and started gaining again.)  The article is very inspiring!  Check it out! http://www.leftoverstogo.com/2012/03/08/americans-have-a-wait-problem/

Thursday Thoughts: April 4, 2012: Arsenic in Rice

In Thursday: Outside Thoughts on April 5, 2012 at 6:48 am

When I lost over a hundred pounds two years ago I followed a very strict diet in which I weighed and measured all of my food and had a basic formula for lunch and dinner: 6oz cooked veggies, 4oz protein, 1 cup RICE.

I consumed a lot of rice!  Most of the time it was brown rice.

In our local newspaper there is an article that not just the organic brown rice syrup contains too much arsenic (I had read about that before), but so does the regular brown rice.

As I have been creating My Program here on the blog and in my daily life, brown rice has been central again.  In the article in our local newspaper, it said to only eat brown rice a few times a month….  UH OH!

I can’t find that particular article online but I did find the following articles you may be interested in reading:

Arsenic in Organic Brown Rice Syrup and Rice. How to Eat Rice Safely | Green Talk®.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2012/02/23/147294466/in-rice-how-much-arsenic-is-too-much

http://www.doctoroz.com/blog/wenonah-hauter/organic-good-arsenic-contamination-still-threat

Well, what am I going to do?  Here’s the thing: I HATE experimental cooking.  One of the reason I gained so much weight during the preganancy is because I hate to cook in general and when I was pregnant I was just too sick to cook so we ate a lot of pre-packaged foods or take-out.  Cooking is just not fun for me, it never has been.  But I know how important it is to weight loss so I am committed to doing it.  I just don’t like to have to “think” about it too much.

I don’t like trying new recipes.  I don’t like experimenting with new ingredients.  I like to cook the same dishes over and over again and enjoy new foods when other people cook them (I do LOVE new foods, I just don’t like trying to cook them myself.)

The article in the local paper recommended trying all sorts of new grains – buckwheath, amarinth, quinoa and wild rice.  I am going to begrudgingly have to do that I guess.  More time in the grocery store and in the kitchen that I dread but I don’t want the baby to get a lot of arsenic through my breast milk.  I’m just not happy about it.  From these articles it sounds like unsafe arsenic levels in foods have been a known issue for some time.  It makes me very nervous when I think about what little knowlege and minimal control I have over my own food supply.  I have to buy organic and locally grown as much as possible and hope for the best….

Have you heard or read anything about the dangers of eating brown rice?  If you have let me know what you think about it and what you are planning to do about it!

Thursday Thoughts: March 29, 2012: How Many Calories When Nursing?

In Thursday: Outside Thoughts on March 29, 2012 at 7:50 pm

I really have no idea if I am eating too much or too little.  I want to make sure I lose weight but I also want to make sure I consume enough calories so my body feels like it isn’t in starvation mode and can produce enough milk for my sweet baby girl.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics a nursing Mom should consume 300-500 calories more a day.

HealthyChildren.org – Eating for Two: Your Diet And Breastfeeding.

I found this great tool online to find out how many calories I should be consuming per day (if I weren’t breast-feeding).

http://nutrition.about.com/od/changeyourdiet/a/calguide.htm

It has a calculator on there that asks you for your gender, your height, your current weight, and your desired weight.  It then gives you results detailing how many calories you need to eat to maintain your current weight, to lose a pound a week with exercise, to lose a pound a week without exercise, to gain a pound a week, etc, etc.  What a great tool!

I am focusing on this result: “If you reduce your current caloric intake to 1668.6 calories per day you will lose one pound per week without exercise.”

So, if I add the calories I should be eating to lose one pound a week to the additional calories I should be eating for breasting (I’ll use an average of 400 additional calories) then ballpark, I should be consuming approximately 2000 calories per day.

Am I?  I really have no idea.  So I decided to find out how much today’s menu’s caloric intake is:

Breakfast:

Yogurt 130 with blueberries 84; oatmeal 102 with cinnamon

Lunch:

Sausage 240, bun 190, spinach 77, apple 95

Teatime (optional):

Oatmeal  300 with raisins 100 and milk 43

Dinner:

Meatballs 200, broccoli 60, rice 216, salad 34

Total for today: 1871

So, my menu is definitely within the weight loss range but also I am getting enough caloric intake for breast-feeding! Yay!

I also checked out a few other articles for safety on weight loss after pregnancy.  They are written by lactation consultants but it is hard to tell if they are based on science or are mostly anecdotal:

http://kellymom.com/nutrition/mothers-diet/mom-weightloss/

http://www.babycenter.com/404_is-it-safe-to-try-to-lose-weight-while-breastfeeding_2602.bc

http://www.llli.org/faq/diet.html

After reading these articles, it is super helpful to know that my current caloric intake is enough for my milk supply and that women in famine conditions can produce perfectly nutritious milk so I have not jeopardized my sweet baby.  BUT, I sure wish I had read these articles before.  It would have saved me a whole lot of fretting, especially since they say to wait until after the second month to diet in order to establish good milk supply… I had a lot of weird body issues and shame over how much weight I had gained.  I was really caught up in what people would think of me, especially at work!  What a waste of time and mental energy (not to mention negative energy) when I have a new babe at home.  I hope some other woman will read this one day and it will save her some of the agony I put myself through!!

Thanks for reading this and I wish you much luck on your own healthy journey!

Thursday Thoughts: The Truth About Exercise

In Thursday: Outside Thoughts on March 22, 2012 at 6:37 am

The Truth About Exercise.

via The Truth About Exercise.

I think this a very interesting article.  In my experience exercise really is for overall health and mental well-being which contributes to weight loss for sure, but it is not a primary tool for weightloss.  I ran the NYC marathon at a weight still considered morbidly obese.  I played competitive tennis and was in amazing shape, but still had a whole lot of fat on top of all those muscles.

Beyond the science or quasi-science around whether or not to focus on exercising more to lose weight, I know that my main issue is my relationship with food.  Simply put, when I don’t feel good I want to comfort myself with too much food and often, with food that barely contains any nutrients.  My weight problem is a relationship-to-food issue, not an issue of getting off the couch to exercise.

In fact, the first (and only) time I lost 100lbs and kept it off until I got pregnant, it was with little to no exercise.  I truly believe my body was working so hard to release all that weight and that I needed to deal with the fact that I was over-eating first and foremost before I could incorporate a healthy amount of exercise into my life.  I wasn’t inactive, quite the opposite: I walked a lot and often did yoga.  I just didn’t have intense work-out sessions aimed at driving the numbers on the scale down.

That is why I am starting off slowly with exercise now.  I went through a very rough, high-risk pregnancy and a prolonged, scary birth with my daughter just eight weeks ago.  20 minutes of moderate exercise is a reasonable Tenet of my Program allowing me to strive for overall health and be in the healthy headspace to continue My Program.

Thursday Outside Thoughts

In Thursday: Outside Thoughts on March 22, 2012 at 5:32 am

What great advice this is! I remember the first time I lost 100lbs my husband and I would sit down at the dining room table, look out at the sunset and listen to music. Now with the baby we eat on the couch, usually with me breast-feeding at the same time LOL! But, this is inspiring to try for a dinner at the dinnertable with some great background music in the very near future…

health coach meg

Yup, you heard me right.

Eating with our ears. Hear me out on this one.

The scenario:

We’ve all been there.

You get home from work after an hour in traffic and you’re starving. Straight to the fridge you march and POOF!, two cheese sticks, a turkey leg, AND half a pint of ice cream magically disappear into the abyss of your grumbling stomach. All before you’ve even had a chance to sit down!

We all need to train ourselves to eat more mindfully and let ourselves completely enjoy what we’re putting into our bodies (and mouths!).  Actually tasting your food, taking small bites, drinking water in between, and giving your brain the time to process the “I’M FULL” signals are ways to do so.

However, a lot of eating mindfully and with enjoyment is all about setting up our environment for success! Did you know that you can use music…

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