Saturday, January 29, 2011

Getting Started

THE STATS: 6’6” (72 inches), 279.6 lbs (Goal: 240 lbs), BMI 32.3, Current month’s weight loss (January 2011): 10.2 lbs.

Introductory note: Whenever I use the word “diet” it is meant to be understood in the “food that you intake” sense, not to be confused with crash dieting or deprivation methods; my concept is one of balance, not elimination of any essential food elements.

The first step in “fixing” your diet, that is, eliminating any food that is not helpful to your body’s nutritional agenda, is a very simple one: get rid of everything you won’t be eating.  When we got home from our Christmas vacation a few weeks ago, we loaded up trash bags with food items we wouldn’t be using, simply because of the added sugars and hydrogenated (manufactured) oils.  We threw out mayonnaise, virtually every sauce we had around, coffee creamer, anything which had non-whole ingredients, that is, any product that didn’t come straight from a whole food product. 

Next, stock up on foods that will fill you up, and at the same time provide you with proper nutritional elements.  For us, the new food, as I mentioned last post, was beans.  If you buy dried beans, soak them overnight and cook them up.  Beans are incredibly high in fiber, which makes in a great detox food, it cleans out your system naturally, while providing the carbohydrates your body actually needs, as opposed to empty carbs you’ll find in white bread, potatoes and sugar.  You can also experiment with other whole grains, like quinoa, a new favorite of ours, which cooks similar to rice.  Frozen vegetables are quick and cheap, and we have a freezer-full. 

Some fresh vegetables which are cheap to buy in bulk and have around to add to just about anything: tomatoes (we buy Roma, they’re usually one of the cheaper varieties, and have a great fresh flavor), green pepper, cilantro, onions.  Frozen vegetables: broccoli, spinach, green beans, peas, carrots and corn.

I can’t sufficiently emphasize how helpful this next bit is: cook meal elements up ahead of time.  We’ve been doing this for a few weeks now and it’s pretty incredible, in terms of how easy it is to put together a healthy meal in minutes.  Storing containers of cooked beans, cooked and seasoned ground turkey and cooked brown rice in our refrigerator gives us lean protein and healthy carbs all set to go as a base for most of the meals we eat.  Throw a little of each in a bowl with some cooked vegetables and seasonings of your choice, or a few tablespoons of salsa, and you have a healthy, whole meal at your disposal with just a few minutes in the microwave.


This would suffice for a 5-day week’s worth of meals:

1 bag (uncooked) Garbanzo Beans
1 bag Black-Eyed Peas
5 cups Brown Rice
3 lbs. 93% lean Ground Turkey

The full amounts can be cooked at the same time and stored.
So, this week’s poll must have been way too easy, because you all seem to have a consensus!  I won’t go so easy on you all next week…be warned!

Next post: Some basic principles which make too much of the food our culture throws at us so dangerous.

Thanks for reading!  As always, please feel free to post questions in the comments section, I WILL answer them!


1 comment:

  1. To this I would add the importance of keeping lots of fresh fruit around for snacks. Pairing an apple or banana with 1/4 cup of almonds is something I do almost every day to keep from getting hungry in between meals. We also try to keep berries in the house...they're more expensive but have so many antioxidants that it's worth it. And LOTS of water!!!