Sunday, March 7, 2010

Dieting and my Relationship with Food

I know I haven't posted in a while, but I was in the middle of a BIG change. Some of you might know already, but I was on Weight Watchers since December 2008, and my weight loss efforts we not doing THAT great.

So I had to think and find WHY it was so bad, WHY I wasn't able to do it. I mean, points are easier to count than calories, no ? What made it so difficult ?

And then I realised, even if WW is about changing your lifestyle, it is still about counting your food and writing down what you eat all the time. By using these methods, it IS still a diet, even though they are saying the opposite. There has to be more to eating than writing everything down ? Eating normally and having a healthy relationship with food is not writing it down, or calculating every single portion to make sure you don't have 251g instead of 250g ! A healthy relationship with food is knowing what's good for you, eating WHEN you are hungry, and make sensible choices.

Now, now, I am not bashing Weight Watchers. It just wasn't for me, I guess. But there are things I learned from the program that I have fully integrated in my lifestyle. I must say that WW was more of a learning curve for me. Learning to drink more water, to eat more fiber, to choose multigrain/wholemeal options over refined flour/sugar options, etc. But it didn't help me have a healthier relationship with food. I was becomming obsessed. Writing everything down, thinking about how many points I had left, depriving myself during the week, because every single week-end restaurant meal was going to burst my points budget for the week, and even binging out of frustration. I had enough of all that.

I took the decision to cancel my Weight Watchers subscription and get in contact with a registered dietician. That's what my father did a couple years ago when he had to lose 30-35 lbs in order to keep his cholesterol and blood sugar levels under the critical marks, and I must say, he is maintaining his weight and has had a lot of success without counting and becomming obsessed with food labels. (Good job dad !)

So there I was, March 2nd, waiting at a dietician's clinic, not knowing what to expect. Well, I was quite surprised ! My goal used to be 125 lbs, she made sure that I understood that the right weight for me would rather be between 135 and 140lbs instead ! She also explained that my goal was not only to reduce my weight but to reduce my waistline to 31 inches or LESS. It is not only a matter of weight, it is also a matter of measurements !

So finally, I got out of there with a couple guidelines :

I am prohibited to count any food, except my breads and substitutes (It's the food group that is causing problem in my case) and then again, I can only count them for the first two weeks, just to be more aware of what I put in my mouth. After that, I will be prohibited to count EVERYTHING.

Why ? Because I will be 24 years old next week, and at my age, I shouldn't be counting food. I should be working on listening to my hunger signals.

I can eat as many portions of (lean) protein as I wish. But I have to listen to myself and STOP when I am no longer hungry.

Why ? Proteins will keep me full for a longer time. I was scared, at first, because I am guilty of the gluttony sin... But I must admit, protein fills you up a lot more than anything else and I realised that it was easy to tell when I was full or not.

I have to STOP drinking as much juice.

Why ? Juice contains a lot less fiber than a whole fruit or vegetable. Therefore, it is digested very quickly by your body and you end up being hungry very fast as well.

I have been feeling much better this week. I have stopped worrying about my food intake, and I have started listening to MY BODY. I eat when I am hungry, and I do not eat when I'm not. End of the story.

Oh, and I saw a loss on the scale, because I peeked before Weight In day. (I weight in every other week, now.)

I will finish this post with a recipe I got from a co-worker, it's vegan and full of protein goodness. Plus, it's chocolate-flavoured.


Ingredients :
1 package of semi-firm silken tofu, drained,
2 ripe bananas,
1/3 cup cocoa,
1/3 cup your choice of sweetener.

Instructions :
Dump in blender, blend, refrigerate for about and hour, then enjoy!

This recipe is husband-approved, mostly with sliced strawberries and bananas on top.

1 comment:

  1. I also really like chocolate mousse with the silken tofu:
    process tofu
    melt chocolate chips (1-1.5C or so) in a double boiler.
    Mix the two and refridgerate. Serve with whipped cream (or cool whip).

    WW isn't for everyone. I know that sometimes I feel like I'm obsessed with numbers too, but for me its always been a problem of portion control. I don't know when is enough, so measuring works well for me.

    Good luck on your new food journey!