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The Elephant In The Room
Big boy in the room

The elephant in the room

The elephant.  Ever been in a room full of people and everyone there knows they have a “big” something to talk about but no one wants to be “that guy” who first mentions “the Elephant in the Room”?

I have come to the point where I am both “that guy” and I am also “the Elephant in the Room”, quite literally.

Recent Past

I have been posting this blog for over 3 years.  My posts have been health and quality of life related for the most part.  I have tried not to be preachy, choosing to take the high road and “suggest” that we as a group or generation, or even society, are slowly killing ourselves with our food choices and dietary habits.  I’ve tried to locate alternative choices and explore diets ranging from vegan to the South Beach diet.  I have never asked you to do anything that I haven’t tried first.  I have dug deeply into any possible side effects or physical changes that might result from maintaining any type of diet.  I have shed light on food additives such as HFCS, flavor enhancers and color additives.  I told you that if you avoid these things you could not only live a healthier life but enjoy your remaining time on earth more.   Now it is time for me to pay the piper.

hospital photo

Condition

I am not going to labor on my various physical factors that may or may not have gotten me to the point of being the Elephant.  Doesn’t matter.  I am the result of what I have eaten and have not burned off over a period of years.  Yes I, as most people in the world, have challenges that make my path to a leaner me more difficult, but that only makes my choices more interesting.

human with head in sand ostrich with head in sand

Ostrich Inflicted People Stop Here

If you have the ostrich syndrome and have your head buried in the sand or even live on the Egyptian river De-Nile, Stop reading now.  BUT before you do, take off your clothes and stand in front of a mirror and ask your self  “self, is this the way I want to look for the rest of my life?

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Note To Friends and Family

If you are still reading then there might be hope for us yet.

I have to say that as I have been getting larger not a single person has given me grief about my weight.  Honestly, I don’t remember a single negative remark, which tells me three things.

  1.  Either I am such a mean SOB that people are afraid to make suggestions to me of that nature
  2. My friends and family don’t care about me.  (I know for a fact this one is not true, in fact I feel that they love me very much)
  3. My friends and family see a broken, fat, old, once at the top of his game, man and feel sorry for him.

Personally I’m pretty sure it is a combination of #1 and 3.

Not a single person in the world (correct me if I am wrong) looks in the mirror and can see the real image being projected.  I’m not sure why that is, but we all tend to see ourselves as we would like us to be, with a little fudge factor thrown in.

Please don’t read into this that I am blaming my friends and family for not telling me I was getting fat.  I don’t.  In fact I totally believe in taking full responsibility for, not only our own actions, but the results of our inaction.

The Piper To Pay

My piper weighed 308 lbs as of December 11, 2013.  Yep, that is one hell of a piper and he now has his hand out and wants to be paid!

elephand eating

Method

As a result of my 3 years of blogging about diets ranging from no meat, no carbs, no protein, no soda, no starches to all soup, all protein, all carbs, all water, and many variations in between, I have become completely convinced  that the diet that will work best for all of us is a balanced diet, mostly vegetables, avoiding additives, processed food and drinking lots of water.  Ever heard that before?  One thing I feel is very important to our digestive tract is to vary our diet.  This is important because our system can adjust to almost anything and in order to flush the toxins we take in we need to surprise our system with different food on a regular basis, lol.

poop

Keeping Track

So, all of that said, I will be eating any food I would like but in balanced amounts.  I will regulate and lose weight by limiting my intake to between 1890 and 2240 calories per day.  Of those calories, 50-60 percent will be carbohydrates, mostly complex carbs.  12-20 percent will be protein and 30 percent will be fat, mostly unsaturated fats.

I will use a free on line program to track my food, water and exercises called www.sparkpeople.com

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Goal – Stage 1

Sparkpeople has calculated, that for me to lose down to 250 lbs, my stage 1 goal by July 1, 2014, I need an in-take of between 1890 and 2240 calories per day.  That shouldn’t be hard.  If I crave things, I will eat them, but only under my limits.

Elephant-with ball

Join Me – or Not

This is for me.  Join me, I’d love it.  Tell me your problems, challenges, successes.  Or Not.  You can blow this off as another lame jughandle blog.  (then why are you reading this)

If you see me, make fun of me, congratulate me or ignore me.  Your choice.  A ride is always more fun with a companion.

I will post pictures and stories about things I discover.  It will be another adventure!

herd of elephants

Day 1 Results

Calories – 1097

Carbs – 146 g

Fat – 38 g

Protein – 41 g

8 oz glasses of water – 5

Weight gain or loss – Lost 3 #

Current weight of Piper – 305#

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Calories

Are 500 calories of veggies equal to 500 calories of ice cream?

What are Calories?

Calories are a measure of food energy.  In fact there are many different definitions and measurements of calories, but the accepted definition we are looking for is – “the amount of heat it takes to raise 1 measured weight of water 1 degree Celsius.  1 gram of water would be a small calorie and 1 kilogram would be a large Calorie.

To determine how many calories are in a certain food, scientists used to set the food on fire and see how much it warmed a measured container of water.  Now the calorie count is estimated from its carbohydrate, protein and fat content, with each gram of carbohydrate and protein being 7 calories and each gram of fat being 9 calories.  The Calorie we see on our food labels is a large Calorie or the amount of heat it takes to raise one kilogram of water 1 degree Celsius.

Since none of us have a burner in our belly, our bodies have to convert energy by chemical reactions, mostly oxidation of the carbs, protein and fat we eat.

Calories in = Calories out?

Not so much.  Take carbohydrates.  For every 100 calories of carbs you eat, the body uses 5-10 calories just to digest them.  The difference being 5 and 10 is the difference between complex and simple carbohydrates (remember the Glycemic Index?)  It takes us less calories to break down fat in our body.  But look at protein.  The body needs 20 to 30 calories to process each 100 grams of the protein we eat.

How to Loss Weight?

It would appear that if we ate more protein and less carbs and fat that the body would do our work for us.  Not as much as we’d like.  Just because we put food in our mouths doesn’t mean our body digests it all.  According to Men’s Health Mag ” It passes through your stomach and then reaches your small intestine, which slurps up all the nutrients it can through its spongy walls. But 5 to 10 percent of calories slide through unabsorbed. Fat digestion is relatively efficient—fat easily enters your intestinal walls. As for protein, animal sources are more digestible than plant sources, so a top sirloin’s protein will be better absorbed than tofu’s.”

“Different carbs are processed at different rates, too: Glucose and starch are rapidly absorbed, while fiber dawdles in the digestive tract. In fact, the insoluble fiber in some complex carbs, such as that in vegetables and whole grains, tends to block the absorption of other calories. “With a very high-fiber diet, say 60 grams a day, you might lose as much as 20 percent of the calories you consume,” says Wanda Howell, Ph.D., a professor of nutritional sciences at the University of Arizona.”

Exercise Burns Calories Right?

Sure, exercise is a great calorie burner, but you need calories to burn more calories.  Exercise will burn no more than 30 percent of the calories you consume.  Again your body is going to help you burn calories.  60 to 70 percent of the calories we burn are to fuel normal body function like breathing, tissue replacement, blood movement, etc.  Then walking, turning your head, lifting your leg, etc, help tremendously.  Take the stairs, not the elevator.  You get the idea.

Don’t Eat Diet Foods

Diet foods are way more dangerous to our bodies than normal, healthy food.  In diet foods, sugars are often replaced by chemicals like sucralose, aspartame or HFCS.  Men’s Health says that a study at the University of Texas found that consuming as few as three diet sodas a week increases the chance of obesity by more than 40 percent.  At Purdue in 2008 a study showed that rats that ate artificially sweetened yogurt eat more calories at subsequent meals.  Eat the real deal and read the label.

To Answer My Original Question

Are 500 calories of veggies equal to 500 calories of ice cream?  You should now be able to answer that question yourself.