Posts Tagged ‘diet’

South Beach Diet

June 18, 2008

I have great success on the scale when I do the South Beach Diet (SBD) or other low-carb diet but I can’t keep them up so well. Over a three month period last year I went from 230 pounds down to 197. Monday I was at 216.2 and just starting my new program with renewed enthusiasm. It involves weight training and cardio workouts.

I don’t have my diet set yet. I will see how it goes the first couple weeks and then get a plan together. I only do phase 1 for the alloted two weeks, but then phase 2 I tend to get a little frisky with the rules and gain my cravings back. I know that in the past if I start up a new fitness plan I tend to be hungry so limiting myself won’t work well right now. I will try my workouts for a bit and see what happens. This morning I weighed in at 215.2 so I am going in the right direction.

I do have a few dos and don’t for my diet that seem to work for me:

  • eating a snack at 10:30 am and 3:30 pm before lunch and dinner

This tends to “slow me down” when I get to the real meal. If I am eating out then it also helps with the eyes are bigger than your stomach thing and I tend to order less as my mouth isn’t just a full out drool. Speaking of drool, there is this annual thing in Spokane, WA downtown riverfront park called pig out at the park, where every restaurant and food vendor brings a cart and you can eat anything you like. My brother-in-law and I, some years ago, were about to get these sausages that were grilled with a bunch of veggies (tomatoes, carrots, onions, peppers) some italian food of some sort that looked best. The problem is that we didn’t have our “before meal snack” and we had been wandering around all the carts (there had to be a hundred of them) looking for the best food. We were “starving” as the saying goes. We place the order and finally got our food. They hand it all to me and I pass him his sausage dog and his mouth was hanging open. The food coming his way pushed the pool of saliva over the edge and sloshed down on my arm. Very disgusting I must say. Needless to say he was very embarrased and fetched me a napkin.

  • eat a healthy low-carb breakfast,

This is the one part of the SBD I can stay on, I love eggs for breakfast. I don’t remember the term but it has to do with the glycemic index and blood sugar levels. So there are two modes the body can be in fat burning and fat storing. I will have to read the book again to explain it well with the proper terms, but the idea is if you are eating low glycemic index foods you will be in fat storing mode much less.

So my theory is that I will go into burn mode a few hours after dinner and will not come out of it because of breakfast so I will spend half my time in the proper mode. This isn’t exactly how the book explains it but if nothing else it is how I am trying to convince myself that the next item on the list is important.

  • eat nothing after dinner of substance, just drink something if I have to go to the kitchen

So I got this bad habit of wanting to eat late. Usually after everyone else goes to bed. I guess that is the guilt part, I cant let anyone see me. So from the Anthony Robbins CDs I listened to before I remember one thing about breaking habits. That is you need to replace them with some other act. For example to stop smoking you chew gum or take coffee breaks when you would have smoked. Here is a video if you don’t know Tony Robbins http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=etArvM1WUE4

So my idea is that if I get the urge to go to the kitchen and eat then go get something to drink instead. Worst case I will take in 100 or so calories which is a fraction of what I tend to eat. One thing that helps me is to make something involved, not just pour a glass of milk or water. Make chai tea from scratch for example. The process takes about 10 minutes and the drink is more satisfying with all the effort it took. It took me some tim to figure out the recipe but I wanted to make my own and use equal instead of sugar so my only option was to figure it out. If you like chai tea you will love this recipe. Because of the spices I usually make 6 mugs worth at a time and store it without the milk until use.

  • Brianthinagain’s Chai Tea Recipe
  • 1 qt   water
  • 1/2 tsp of each ground spice: white pepper, cardamom, ginger, cloves
  • 1 tsp ground cinamon
  • 4 bigelow darjeeling tea bags
  • 1 qt milk add some half-and-half if desired
  • 12 packets equal
  • makes 5-6 large mugs

If you are going to store the tea just put it in the fridge without the milk. Then mix it half tea, half milk and heat it. I do it this way cause the equal can’t handle the microwave, and the tea lasts for weeks in the fridge. If you have an espresso machine you might steam the milk instead then you can get the foam too. If you have the time heating it on the stove to the point where it almost starts to boil, (is it called scalding the milk or something like that?) then it slightly changes the flavor and makes for a better chai, I think the same thing happens when you steam it and foam it up using the espresso machine. Well, now I am thirsty for some chai. 

put in a pan and boil the water with the spices, turn off heat just as a violent boil is reached or it may foam over a tad and make a mess add tea bags and steep for 7 minutes. I like to squeeze the tea out so I feel like I got my money’s worth but I imagine in the tea-world this is a no-no. Heat milk or milk/half-and-half combo to 150-160 degrees, pour in tea and sweeten with 3 packets of equal.

Substitutions or experimenting is strongly encouraged. The spices are not set in stone add more or less of each, I just like this combo. You can also try adding all spice or nutmeg, and there is no reason to use white pepper instead of black, it is usually ground more finely so the “heat” gets into the tea with less. If the tea is too spicy hot then reduce the pepper, but it isn’t chai if you take it out completely. The other spice you must not remove is cardamom, the most important spice that gives it the chai flavor. It is expensive but the bottle lasts a long time and it is definitely worth the price to try out this drink.

If you use real sugar try the natural cane or even brown sugar, chai tea is supposed to be sweet and if it doesn’t quite taste right the first thing to think about is that you probably didn’t get it sweet enough. The spices need to be counteracted for balance and making a reduced sweetness unbalances it. I don’t like stuff too sweet myself but this drink requires it to taste right.

If you want to try another tea go for it. I also used twinnings darjeeling tea and it was so weak I have to add a bag or two of some random black tea just to get it strong. I also toss in a bag of green tea as well sometimes. The key is to remember you are diluting it half way with milk so be certain to make it twice as strong as you like so it is just right after the mix.