Consequences of my birthday pig-out day

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.

My mini-birthday cake. I ate a slice and saved one for Sunday.
My mini-birthday cake. I ate a slice and saved one for Sunday.

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! Continue reading “Consequences of my birthday pig-out day”

Birthday pig-out, part II: Oh what a night

I wrote last week about how after two years of starving myself for health’s sake, I decided this birthday would be a pig-out day for me, a day when I would leave my angioplasty mandated restricted diet behind and eat the way I did when I was young.

So the day started with my favorite potato chips and a giant chocolate chip cookie that I ate more than a third of. And my day went on to a dinner of what had once been a favorite ethnic food choice for me — Chinese food.

My Chinese birthday dinner, egg rolls, crab rangoon, Mongolian beef. Not shown was the fried rice.
My Chinese birthday dinner, egg rolls, crab rangoon, Mongolian beef. Not shown was the fried rice.

Chinese food is high in sodium and can be high in fat as well depending on the dish. I have not eaten it for almost two years and miss it a great deal since I once had it weekly. So I was determined to drive to a neighboring suburb, to what had been my favorite Chinese take-out place, to get all my old favorites — pork fried rice, Mongolian beef, egg rolls and crap Rangoon. Continue reading “Birthday pig-out, part II: Oh what a night”

Exercising does make you hungry; new study confirms my theory

I tend to scoff at any so-called science about eating, nutrition and health because what is accepted changes almost daily. But I was gratified to see a story recently about a new study noting that, for some people, exercising doesn’t help with weight loss and overall body condition, it just makes you hungrier. I’ve said that for years in my own case. I can always eat more calories after I exercise than I’ve burned off.

“For some time, scientists have been puzzled — and exercisers frustrated — by the general ineffectiveness of exercise as a weight-loss strategy. According to multiple studies and anecdotes, most people who start exercising do not lose as much weight as would be expected, given their increased energy expenditure. Some people add pounds despite burning hundreds of calories during workouts,” the New York Times reported.

Bowling always makes me hungry.
Bowling always makes me hungry.

“Past studies of this phenomenon have found that exercise can increase the body’s production of appetite hormones, making some people feel ravenous after even a light workout and prone to consume more calories than they expended. But that finding, while intriguing, doesn’t fully explain the wide variability in people’s post-exercise eating habits,” the times said. Continue reading “Exercising does make you hungry; new study confirms my theory”

A birthday with no salt and no fat? Forget it

Today is my birthday and, after nearly two years of basically starving myself on my angioplasty-induced low-fat, low-salt diet, I’m splurging today on some of my old, unhealthy favorites.

Pictured here is how I started my birthday, which I had taken a day off from work for. Wise potato chips are the chips of my youth in New York and still the best in the country, in my estimation. They remain thin, crispy and with just the right hint of oily lusciousness. It is difficult for me to resist buying them now that they’re sold in the Chicago area where I now live too. So today, I gave in and grabbed a bag.

My birthday splurge, part one.
My birthday splurge, part one.

Of the seven ounces in the bag, I likely ate five in one sitting. That’s 750 calories and 50 grams of fat, plus 800 mgs of sodium! I easily could have finished the bag but resisted. Continue reading “A birthday with no salt and no fat? Forget it”

Chicken is the new beef, but not really healthy either

Adweek recently ran a story crowning chicken the new beef when it came to fast food and fast casual restaurant fare.

“What’s Slaying the All-American Burger? After 5 years of steady growth, chicken comes home to roost,” was the rather long headline.

This is what a Costco food court Caesar salad looks like when you unwrap it, a giant cup of fat-filled Caesar dressing and a mound of high-salt, high-fat grated cheese
Stick to salad when eating on the run, and take out the high-fat dressing and cheese. Always carry your own oil and vinegar packets to use instead.

While chicken is leaner than beef, white meat chicken anyway, and so carries a healthier image, the type of breaded chicken you’ll find at most restaurants is probably worse than your average burger in terms of fat. Continue reading “Chicken is the new beef, but not really healthy either”

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