I’ve been telling the story of my birthday this year and my decision that day to try eating again the way I did before having an angioplasty done in 2012 and being placed on a low-salt, low-fat, low-sugar diet as a result.
My food that day included potato chips, chocolate chip cookies, chocolate layer cake, and Chinese food to include pork fried rice, Mongolian beef, egg rolls and crab Rangoon.
Let’s look at the numbers for all that first. I entered it all into my LoseIt! app, using Chinese restaurant items LoseIt! has for my dinner choices. I approximated sizes, so I likely under-estimated my day’s total, but the numbers are still stunning. My total calorie intake that day –2,925 (my ‘normal day is 2,000 and I often eat less since I can’t find enough items I can eat now to reach that total most days). My total sodium intake for the day — 7,905 mgs! Compare that to my new daily goal, 1,200 to 1,500 mgs, and you can see eating all that Chinese food with its high sodium content gave me roughly five to seven days worth of sodium in one day!
My fat intake, thanks to the chips, cookies and cake, was 209 grams; my recommended intake these days is 40 grams. My saturated fat intake was 59.1 grams, compared to the maximum of 10 grams a day I’m allowed now. Sugar intake was 238.4 grams, compared to about 80 grams I get now, mostly from fruit instead of the baked goods I had that day.
All of that produced stomach pains for the next two days. I also gained three pounds in one day and then, on Thursday when I barely ate anything, I gained another two pounds because of water retention brought on by all the sodium I’d consumed.
I really didn’t feel completely better until Saturday, by which time I’d lost two pounds but still remained three pounds heavier than I’d been on Tuesday, the day before my birthday.
It’s difficult for me to believe I was eating like that regularly before. I probably had more of everything than I would have in the past, but the mix was not unusual for a pre-angioplasty day.
Will I do another pig-out day next birthday? I’m not sure. I did love everything I ate that day, unlike some diet authors who claim when you stop eating cake or sugary items you lose your taste for them. That was definitely not the case for me and never will be. And it shows why I can’t cheat on my diet from day-to-day. I am an all or nothing kind of guy.
And these days that means all low-sugar, low-fat, low-salt. The opposite just won’t work for me anymore.