Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Losing It

To follow up on my earlier post, my new diet plan seems to be working. I feel good and have more energy. I'm eating a wider variety of foods, and finding that produce isn't as boring as I'd thought. I've lost a little more than 2 pounds in a week without counting calories or feeling hungry or deprived. If I keep losing weight, I'll know I have a winner.

I realize that all I'm doing is following the good old Food Pyramid more closely: all I'm doing is filling at least half of my plate with fruits and vegetables (going light on dressings and sauces) whenever I eat. This is the same old, boring wisdom we've heard a million times: make sure that most of your food is fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and nuts. In its more hip, Michael Pollan phrasing: "Eat food. Mostly plants. Not too much."

For breakfast, I've started eating Post Raisin Bran (rich in iron and fiber) with skim milk, a banana, and a small glass of orange juice, which helps the body absorb the iron. Lunch is often a turkey wrap with quacamole or a bowl of my homemade, roasted tomato soup with crackers and cheese. And some fruit.

To me, avocados are luxurious — almost decadent — but they count as healthy food. I made a great soup from an avocado, a cucumber and fat-free buttermilk the other day. I eat grapes and peaches for snacks. Dinner almost always includes a big salad, and often we roast asparagus. Dessert is mixed berries with sugar, milk, a squirt of light whipped cream, and ginger snaps.

When we go out for Anna's burritos, I order mine with roasted vegetables now. As long as they leave out their powerful onions, it tastes great. Besides losing weight, my goal in trying this eating plan was to find a new way to eat more sensibly yet happily for life. And I think I may have done it! Plus, I have IBS, and so far, things are very good. Eating less dairy, red meat, and fatty food always makes me feel better.

I'm trying to exercise more, too. Before it got so hot and humid, I was going out for a jog and/or some hill-walking twice a week for an hour or so. I hope I can keep that up in this soupy weather, but I'll probably need to set out earlier in the morning. I take two very challenging weight-training classes every week, which are cardio-intensive. And I take very long walks at least twice a week. For example, we walk from Back Bay to the Haymarket, stock up on cheap produce, and lug the heavy bags back home. We often walk nearly a mile to get our burritos, too.

I hope that's enough activity for me to lose more pounds, but if it isn't, I'll start taking cardio classes at the gym. And I'll see about cutting back on dessert. I'll keep you posted again next week.

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