So You Want To Lose Weight?
- POSTED ON: Mar 06, 2011

                           
                            

The following video, "So You Want To Lose Weight?"is an amusing depiction of a conversation between a Dietitian and an Client seeking weight-loss advice.

It contains the obvious message, which is intendedwhich is that people don't want to do the work of changing the way the eat and exercise, and expect weight-loss Results without making an Effort to change that Behavior


together with a totally unintended additional message.

This video contains an excellent example of how the Health Care Industry continues to distribute erroneous information about low-carbohydrate eating which is based on "bad Science", and which has now been refuted. 

Which part of the conventional wisdom provided by the Dietitian is incorrect? The statement that the Atkins diet (low-carb eating) causes kidney damage in healthy people has definitely been proven to be wrong. 

How about the rest?  What is true? and What is untrue? I don't really know for sure. 
You'll need to judge that for yourself.

For more information on the low-carb issue, review the discussionof "Why We Get Fat" by Gary Taubes located at
BOOKTALK, and if you feel like making some comments in that discussion, please do so.

 


Tracking Weight
- POSTED ON: Mar 05, 2011

                                  

Weight tracking is a helpful tool to use when involved in the task of losing weight or maintaining a weight-loss.  The scale is a measurement tool.  It weighs everything within one’s body.

Ultimately, however, scale weight will…over time…accurately reflect the RESULTS of one’s eating BEHAVIOR. I add the caution…over time…because there are many variables that affect a person’s daily scale weight. You can read more about that in "What About the Scales?" and "The Scale and the Big Picture".

I have found that Graphing or charting weight over time can help bring perspective and patience to my weight-loss or maintenance process.
As an example of how this works, I’ll share with you some current graphs showing my own weight progress.

1. Here is a WeightChart graphing my DAILY weight for the last 20 months.
 

 2. Here is a WeightChart graphing my WEEKLY weight for the last 20 months

 


3. Here is a WeightChart graphing my MONTHLY weight for the last 20 months

 These graphs are all from a charting program called WeightChart, and all of them use exactly same weights over the same 20 month time period. The Results are actually all the same. However my Efforts are reflected far more accurately in the daily graph than in the monthly graph, or even in the weekly graph.

Here is similar information using the graphing function of DietPower. Except that here the time period is for the past 12 months, a one year period.

1. Here is a DietPower graph of my DAILY Weight for the past 12 months.


2. Here is a DietPower graph of my WEEKLY Weight for the past 12 months.

 
3. Here is a DietPower graph of my MONTHLY Weight for the past 12 months.

 

 Below are 3 graphs from three separate Graphing programs
showing my DAILY weights for the last 90 day period.

This First daily graph is from DietPower for the past 90 days.

 This Second daily graph is from Weight Commander for the past 90 days.

 This Third daily graph is from Weight Physics for the past 90 days.

What all these 90 day charts show is:

  • My weight loss efforts before Christmas,
  • My Christmas Holiday overeating.
  • My weight-loss efforts in the New Year.
  • My February vacation overeating.
  • My weight-loss efforts – post vacation.

This is a typical example of the way my personal maintenance works.
My Focus must be on my BEHAVIOR, not on my RESULTS
because it is Behavior that CAUSES Results
.

I am Responsible for my Efforts,
which are my Behaviors, my food-intake and exercise.

I am not Responsible for my Results,
which is my Outcome, the timing of the numbers on the scale.

 While my scale results should not be my FOCUS, it is important to know those numbers. When I look at my scale weight graphed over time, I can accurately judge whether or not my eating Behavior is bringing me my intended Results. An accurate picture of my Results keeps me out of Denial, and gives me the option of modifying my eating behavior in order to achieve different and more positive results. While I cannot control my Results, I do have the ability to choose to control my Behavior.

Tracking weight by graph is an excellent way to obtain knowledge about our Results, without losing perspective when we have those inevitable weight-bounces. When the scale number is up, many of us feel sad or angry and tend to comfort ourselves with food. When the scale number is down, many of us feel elated and tend to reward ourselves with food. The habit of graphing scale weights can help prevent us from emotional eating responses at the sight of individual scale numbers.

Every chart I have included here accurately reflects the same information….although for different time periods. However, I find that, when carefully studied, each separate chart gives me a slightly different perspective on my Scale Results. …and indirectly, on my eating behaviors.

What I personally like about running several charts at a time, (which is part of my own Dieting Hobby) is I can almost always find something encouraging about my results in at least one of them. I don’t find the process difficult or time-consuming. It takes me only a few minutes each day. The secret to success here is exactly the same as the secret to successful weight-loss … Persistence, Consistency and Patience .

 I have never found weight-loss and maintenance of that weight-loss to be easy.
For me, it has always been a challenge, but I’ve learned ways to enjoy myself while following through with the effort it takes.
Like the saying on my Chart at the top of the page ABOUT ME ,

Being fat is hard,
Losing weight is hard,
Maintaining weight loss is hard.
Choose your hard

BTW, there are many links on the ABOUT ME page which provide pictures and charts of my weight-loss history. By accessing them, you can probably learn more about me than you would ever care to know.

Here is a picture of a friend’s DietPower chart which shows how tracking one’s daily weight,
(Results) and tracking one’s daily calories (Efforts) relate to each other.

Weight History equals Results.
Calorie History equals Efforts.

Tracking one’s weight is a good thing, and it helps bring perspective. But I never forget that my Behavior -- my Effort -- is the key to my weight-loss and maintenance success, therefore DietPower’s Food Tracking function is far more important to me than the weight tracking function of DietPower or any other tracking or graphing program,


Dedicated, not Obsessed
- POSTED ON: Mar 04, 2011



                             

Here's my Opinion.
Lighten up.
Having a "Food Obsession" is okay.

Personally, I have no desire to reduce my own "food obsession".
I'm the kind of person who really gets into anything I do, any interest I have.
So what if I'm not "normal" around food.
So what if food, and issues around food, are important to me.
So what if I spend a lot of my time thinking about food and/or weight.
I'm not going to waste my life shaming myself because of it.
Food is just as important or interesting as anything else...
....in fact it is the one thing that is vital for life to exist.

Just because a "saying" is old, doesn't make it right.. 
  I think "Eat to Live, not Live to Eat" is just a B.S. Value Judgment.
It really is just another way for people who don't share my values to negate them.
Am I REALLY going to let that part of Society legislate my morality?
No.

Acceptance of oneself and one's personal interests apply generally,
in that much of modern Society now has a "live and let live" morality,
or "do what you want, as long as you don't' hurt others" ...
....but it makes a BIG EXCEPTION
about allowing a fat person to feel okay about food and their fat,
and it generally agrees that it's okay to tell a fat person
how they are SUPPOSED to feel and behave,
and to try to shame them into feeling guilty for what is natural to them.

Just watch one episode of the TV show, The Biggest Loser,
and see Society's current value judgments about the obese contestants.
Notice how the obese contestants buy into those negative Beliefs about themselves,
and how they state their belief that unless they are thin, they have no life.
Notice how they feel they deserve the ill treatment they get on that show,
including severe verbal abuse...and even (what I would call) physical abuse.

Then, when they lose weight, notice how they are encouraged to become
missionaries to the world and work to convert other fat people to their new beliefs.

"Obsessed is what the weak and lazy call the Dedicated"

Society in general, finds it acceptable for people to be obsessed with
exercise, sports, television shows, video games, hobbies, work, money,
shopping, relationships, family, sex, parenting, vacations, etc. etc. etc.
But, God Forbid, that anyone should feel okay about being obsessed with food.....

ESPECIALLY, if that person is overweight, obese, or very thin...
Only a "normal" sized female can acceptably demonstrate a strong interest in food...
and even that Acceptance is very limited.
Actually, this Quote is not exclusively related to food issues.
Dedicated, not Obsessed, could be an extreme interest and focus on Anything at all.

Terming someone as "Obsessed" is generally a negative value judgment
concerning the extreme interest and focus of another,
while terming such behavior as "Dedicated" is generally a positive value judgment.

The above quote is an amusing,  rather clever "return put-down" to negative people
who label those with an excessive interest and focus in any subject as "Obsessed".
The point of the quoted statement is that terming anyone "Obsessed" is totally unacceptable.

In this saying, the negative label: "lazy and weak" only applies to those people
who GIVE the negative label "Obsessed" instead of a positive label like "Dedicated".
i.e. IF YOU THINK I'm "obsessed", THEN I THINK you're "weak and lazy".

Someone who feels that it is acceptable to refer to someone as obsessed,
might be offended by seeing the original insult: "obsessed",
returned by another insult: "weak and lazy, even when this is done in an amusing way.
To anyone who is offended by this quote: 
I didn't create it, I merely quoted it. It is, however, one of my favorites.
I think it's amusing, and I like it.  Probably because I've had personal
dealings with negative people who term anyone with a strong focus as "obsessed".

It could be that some people need to actually have experiences similar to mine
before they can fully appreciate the "black" humor within the statement.
The saying is essentially an amusing twist of semantics,
and like any kind of humor...
if one just doesn't "get" a particular joke, an explanation of that joke
still doesn't make it funny to the one needing the explanation.


The Essence of Diets - Part Two
- POSTED ON: Mar 03, 2011

 

                               

As I stated in a previous Blog, The Essence Of Diets – Part One
I’ve been thinking a great deal about the essence of Diets.

The term “diet” is defined as Habitual Nourishment.

It seems clear to me that there are essentially 3 issues involved in all Diets,
One main food issue, AMOUNT,.
and two sub-issues, KIND and FREQUENCY
.

AMOUNT -- of food eaten.
KIND – fundamental nature (micronutrients) of food eaten.
FREQUENCY of eating food.

 RESTRICTIONS:
All Diets involving weight-loss or maintenance of weight-loss place restrictions on one or more of those 3 food issues.

My careful study of many different diets has revealed some things to me.. things that might be obvious to others, but which took me some time to figure out. I’m still not certain about all of them, but here are a few “insights”.

The majority of diet book authors claim to have used that diet him/herself, and had excellent weight-loss results from it. I tend to believe this is true. What this proves to me is that there are a great many different ways to lose weight, but that what all of them have in common is EATING LESS.

EATING LESS, of course, means…not just eating less than one ate in the past while gaining weight, but also eating less than the amount of one’s normal (maintenance) energy burn. This, of course, is where it gets sticky.. ... because all of the rules one finds in the Expert’s charts and graphs are simply Generalizations.

People are different.
Male and Female, Tall and Short, Large and Small,
Young and Old, Sedentary and Active.

Each of these categories changes a person’s basic energy use. In addition, Genetics vary between people, and even being a “reduced obese” person changes energy use.

Diet Books show that there are many different ways to accomplish EATING LESS.
All of these ways involve somehow reducing the “calorie” amount of a person’s food intake.
This can be done Directly, or Indirectly.

In my previous post, The Essence Of Diets - Part One,
I discussed many of the details of that issue.

Most diet book authors who have created Diets,  appear to have structured his/her version of Eating Less on his/her personal preferences regarding the three fundamental restrictions which are listed above.

Those Diets appear to be based on that diet book author’s eating preferences; his/her viewpoint and morality, including values about food; and the general way he/she tends to live his/her life.

These personal lifestyle choices usually involve that Diet in additional matters which are sometimes rather unrelated to the basic food-substance-as-nourishment issue.

These differences between people’s preferences are reflected as different eating style choices inside each of the diets they have created. At some future time, I will provide some specific examples of this phenomenon.

For now, my simple point is that all diets have much in common.They appear to be all based on the same principles, and every diet seems to work for someone.


The Essence of Diets - Part One
- POSTED ON: Mar 02, 2011

 

                                

I’ve been thinking a great deal about the essence of Diets.
The term “diet” is defined as Habitual Nourishment.

The term “calorie” is the term used to measure the energy value inside food, i.e. the unit equivalent to the energy-producing amount of food when oxidized in the body.

In order for the human body to become a smaller size by losing bodyfat, that body must take in less energy than it uses.

 I have read hundreds of diet books, and been on many, many weight-loss diets.
Each of them appears to be some variation of a way to “EAT LESS and MOVE MORE”.

One of the things I find fascinating about Gary Taubes’ books, one of which is now featured here in the section BOOKTALK. is that in one way his concept seems to break that mold……and yet in another way…the concept seems to fit into it.

I’m going to share some thoughts about this here. Then at some future time, I plan to share some further personal insights on this matter.

It seems clear to me that there are essentially 3 issues involved in all Diets,
One main food issue, AMOUNT,
and two sub-issues, KIND and FREQUENCY.

AMOUNT -- of food eaten –

KIND – fundamental nature (micronutrients) of food eaten .

FREQUENCY of eating food.

RESTRICTIONS:
All Diets involving weight-loss or maintenance of weight-loss place restrictions on one or more of those 3 food issues.

AMOUNT
This can involve either DIRECT or INDIRECT restriction.

DIRECT restriction involving AMOUNT, some Examples include:

  • Counting food calories with the goal of staying near a certain number.

  • Counting food points.

  • Portion control – eating a specific size of a food substance

  • Counting bites

  • 1 plate, no seconds  -as in The No S Diet.

  • Meal size restrictions – i.e. large Lunch, other meals smaller, etc.

  • Variation of Amounts on alternating days - QOD, JUDDD, Calorie Cycling, Fast-5 
    .............are actually Blends of the Amount and Frequency categories.

INDIRECT restriction involving AMOUNT
This involves restricting the KIND of food eaten, and/or the FREQUENCY of eating food.

KIND
This involves a DIRECT restriction of KIND, resulting in an INDIRECT restriction on the total AMOUNT of food calories. DIRECT restriction of KIND usually involves a shift in the balance of the intake of various  food micronutrients. Reduction of KIND frequently involves a flavor/taste reduction or satiation factor that results in less overall food intake.

Some Examples of restriction involving KIND include:

  • Sweets Restriction – reduction of the intake of sugar, resulting in an additional
    reduction in fat and other carbs such as flour etc

  • Fried Foods Restriction – restriction of cooking method resulting in a reduction
    of the intake of fat miconutrients.

  • Low-fat –overall reduction of the intake of fat miconutrients.

  • Low-carb – overall reduction of the intake of carbohydrate miconutrients.

  • High-Protein – increase in protein along with reduction in carbohydrates.

  • Food Exchanges – Divisions of foods restricting intake of specific food
    containing specific miconutrients, resulting in a reduction in total intake.
    One example: Dividing food portions on one’s plate such as:
    ¼ protein, ¼ starch, ½ complex veggies and fruit.

  • Food Combinations – Divisions of food intake involving specific combinations
    of micronutrients at specific times (includes a frequency factor) resulting
    in a reduction of overall amount.

  • High-fiber – reduction of the intake of miconutrients with low-fiber.

  • Vegetarian – restricting animal proteins

  • Liquid – restricting solid foods.

  • Organic or No Processed Foods – restricting foods containing various chemicals

  • Raw – restricting cooked and processed foods

  • Low-sodium – reduction of foods containing salt, less flavor resulting in less overall intake.  

FREQUENCY
This involves a DIRECT Restriction on eating FREQUENCY,
resulting in an INDIRECT restriction on the total AMOUNT of total food calories.

Some Examples of restriction involving FREQUENCY include:

  • 3 meals each day, with no snacks (The No S Diet)

  • 3 meals and 2 or 3 snacks per day.

  • 6 small meals per day ( or 4 small meals per day)

  • All snacks, no meals

  • Zero food – i.e. water fasting

  • No eating after dinner.

  • Eat only before sunrise, and after sunset

  • All eating to be within a certain time period a 5 hr daily window (Fast -5)

  • 24 hr fast – No food after 5 p.m. until 5 p.m. following day (EatStopEat)

  • Alternate day eating – (QOD, JUDDD)

  • Intuitive Eating - Eat when hungry stop when satisfied/before full.

I'll be writing more about this concept in the future.


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