Day 26-The Facts on Food Myths

Today’s weight: 169

Starting weight: 184

Total weight lost: 15 pounds

The plain and simple truth is this, yesterday was a tough day. Everything was going fine for the most part. I ate breakfast, had a good lunch then BAM! I smelled hot wings and french fries. That set my senses to crazy mode. I was like a wild hog sniffing and rooting around the newsroom looking for that oh so spicy, familiar, comforting, smell.  (I didn’t have to look far, it was at the desk next to me ha!) I sat there for the longest time just taking in the sweet aroma. My stomach started growling and the old feeling of “chicken wings will fix whatever is bothering me” hit like a speeding train. The devil on my left shoulder kept whispering “after work stop by and order a steaming hot basket. Who will know, right?” The angel on my right shoulder (which is my mother’s voice-not so angelic at that point) said “Lizzie don’t blow what you’ve worked so hard to lose.” I wrestled with what to do. Should I give in -just this once- to my devilish side and eat those hot wings or should I take the straight and narrow path that leads to weight loss, happiness and feeling confident about one’s self. All I could think about was diving into a high calorie, fattening plate of wings and eat my way back out with sauce and ranch all over my face. Alas, I didn’t do it. It was an 11th hour decision but I ate a baked pork chop and salad. To be honest, after I ate dinner I was ok. The urge to eat those hot wings passed. I felt full, content and especially proud of myself for resisting. Isn’t it amazing how powerful the sense of smell can be? It’s like the moment you smell something that you really love to eat all motivation and willpower goes flying out the window. That is how we get off track in our weight loss. Our sense of smell takes over the part of our brain that tells us we are full and don’t want or need anything else to eat. If I had given in and eaten those chicken wings I would have let my “I need something that loves me as much as I love it” side win. I don’t want that to happen. I don’t want to go backwards. I want to go forward and watch the weight come off the scale one pound at a time. We can’t help the foods that our co-workers bring in. Not everyone is on a diet. So when that happens, someone brings in a food that you flip out over, calm yourself down and think it through. It may be a last minute decision to resist but it will be the right decision if you brush it off and stay on track.

Today I am working what we in the news business call nightside shift (1:30p-10:30p). I’m filling in for the talented Kim Essex tonight. Going in later gave me a chance to get in some exercise. I spent 15 good minutes on the elliptical. I worked up a pretty good sweat and I burned some calories. I will build up to the 30 minute point as I go along (remember…the pyramids weren’t built in a day you know.) If you can find 30 minutes in your day to walk, do a few pushups, light weights do it! You’ll feel great 🙂 Remember exercise is just as important as dieting too. You will build muscle for a leaner body. Important tip that was passed to me by a fitness guru: Take time to stretch each body part. It lengthens your muscles and will help with lactic acid-which is the reason for soreness.

I’m sharing an article a friend sent me that has some great information in it. www.muscleandfitnesshers.com. Also, at the end of the article is a Weight Watcher dessert recipe. Enjoy!

-Elizabeth

Food myths busted

Avoiding saturated fat? Shunning carbs? We separate fact from fiction on common nutritional tall tales

January 28, 2009
Matthew G. Kadey, MS, RD

There’s no shortage of fabrications and old wives’ tales when it comes to food. (Just think of how many kids fear that apples will grow in their stomachs if they eat the seeds!) After you’ve heard them enough times, it’s a challenge to differentiate between dietary fact and fiction. But don’t fret: At some point everyone falls prey to misinformation aboutnutrition – much of which centers on calories, fat and weight management. To help, we expose five oft-repeated fallacies right here.

Myth # 1: It’s better to drizzle fat-free dressing on your salads. Truth: This assumption is fundamentally flawed in three big ways. First, active women need fat for many different bodily functions, including proper hormone development, energy production and brain function, says Heidi Skolnik, MS, CN, a nutritionist with the Women’s Sports Medicine Center in New York City. Opt for bland dressing sans this macronutrient and you’re already behind the eight ball. Next, Skolnik points out that many fat-free dressings are pumped full of sugar to boost taste.

Last, and perhaps most important, fat in dressing helps absorb fat-soluble nutrientsfound in vegetables, such as vitamin K, lycopene, beta-carotene and lutein. “Fat-free is counterproductive to getting these nutrients that we need,” Skolnik explains. Yet this doesn’t mean you should drown your greens in full-fat ranch, as calories can add up faster than Lindsay Lohan press clippings. Choose an oil-based dressing such as balsamic vinaigrette that has a lot of taste in a small amount.

Myth #2: White poultry meat is better than dark. Truth: The notion that you should be chicken about eating dark meat is without merit. What gives the dark meat of chicken or turkey its overcast appearance are high amounts of myoglobin, which provides oxygen to working muscles. Chickens and turkeys don’t fly, meaning they walk a lot, so their leg (thigh) meat is saturated with myoglobin while their breast and wing meats are paler due to low levels of this compound.

Compared to white meat, dark meat has only a few more calories and a measly extra 2 grams of fat per 3 ounces – hardly worth losing sleep over. What it does have, though, are some B vitamins, just as much first-rate muscle-building protein, plus more zinc and iron than white meat. Not to mention those juicy drumsticks are finger-licking good. So enjoy dark and white meat regularly as part of a well-balanced diet. One caveat, though: Leave the skin behind.

 

Myth #3: Saturated fat has negative effects on your health – as well as your physique. Truth: Porterhouse and Gorgonzola lovers rejoice! Some saturated fat is harmless and may actually be good for you. Harvard University (Cambridge, Massachusetts) researchers found that women who had the highest saturated fat intake had the least amount of plaque buildup in their arteries and a better balance of good and bad cholesterol levels.

Previous studies blaming this much-maligned fat for heart disease, obesity and diabetes have been fraught with shortcomings. It seems a key element in heart health and the battle of the bulge is using any additional saturated fat in the diet to replace refined carbohydrates such as white pasta and bleached-out bread as well as the ultimate health pariah, man-made trans fats. These are the two culprits that have increased in American diets in the past few decades – along with obesity and heart disease rates. Saturated fat intake has actually decreased.

Ditch the processed carbs, trans-fat-laden baked goods and fast-food fare, and aim to get about 10% of your daily calories from saturated fats found in beef, poultry, dairy, coconut and dark chocolate. Beyond that, 20%-30% of calories should come from unsaturated fat sources like nuts, olive oil, fatty fish and flaxseed.

Myth #4: If you want to put on muscle and burn fat, you should shun all carbs. Truth: Never mind the late Dr. Atkins – you need carbs to build a lean, muscular physique. Much of that, according to Skolnik, is because carbohydrates are the primary fuel for muscle cells during high-intensity workouts. A revved-up gym session burns a ton of calories and stimulates muscle growth, both of which translate into a leaner, meaner you. Take away all the pasta, rice and potatoes and your muscles may be forced to convert protein into energy – a definite contradiction to muscle growth.

Carbs are also a must after training because they, along with protein, stimulate muscle repair and hypertrophy. “Carbohydrates consumed postworkout will boost insulin levels that help drive protein into muscle cells,” Skolnik says. So don’t hold back too much on carbs – just keep your choices healthy. After all, research now shows that women don’t burn as many carbs as their male counterparts do during exercise, so you don’t need as much as sports nutritionists once thought.

Hers recommends that women involved in serious strength training aim for a daily carbohydrate intake of 1-1.5 grams per pound of bodyweight. Timing is important when your goal is to build muscle and burn fat. Breakfast, pre- and postworkout are the best times to consume carbs.

In your post-exercise meal, take in 20-30 grams of fast-digesting carbs, such as white breads and sugars, to boost insulin levels and drive muscle recovery. Otherwise, make sure most of your carbohydrates are in the form of whole grains, vegetables, fruits and dairy, all of which provide more nutritional benefit.

Weight Watchers Cherry Cobbler

No baking required! Here’s a delicious dessert recipe that is not baked in the oven, but is actually made in a crock pot. I never even knew that dessert crock pot recipes existed! But I made this cherry cobbler the other night and it was a huge hit! Easy to make, incredibly tasty and adding up to just 6 Weight Watchers Points — this cherry cobbler recipe is definitely worth trying. Simple and sweet, this fresh cobbler will bring in rave reviews. You can even try experimenting with this recipe by making it with different types of berries! Strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, raspberries — this crock pot recipe will work well with any of them.

 

Crock Pot Cherry Cobbler Recipe

Ingredients:
1 can (21 oz.) cherry pie filling
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup margarine or butter, melted
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. almond extract
1/4 tsp. salt

Directions:
Spray inside of 2 -3 1/2 qt. Slow cooker with cooking spray. Pour pie filling into cooker. Beat remaining ingredients with spoon until smooth. Spread batter over pie filling. Cover and cook on HIGH 1 1/2 to 2 hrs. or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Makes 6 servings.
Each serving = 6 Weight Watchers Points

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3 Responses to Day 26-The Facts on Food Myths

  1. Brittany says:

    For 2 years I have dealt with co-working bringing in “bad” food. Especially if you are hungry it is awful!!! A glass of fat free milk can help the hunger and you need calcium anyways. Sugar free popsicles or jello is nice snack to have on hand too. Arm yourself with “good” treats for those “evil” co-workers (mark thornhill) that may lead you astray. I am glad you stayed strong, I too have heard the voice of “who is gonna know”. You can modify the wings and do a healthy recipe, though the taste is not the same……

  2. Kristie says:

    I can totally help you with your hot wing fix! We LOVE Texas Petes Hot Wing Sauce. I will often bake a boneless skinless chicken breast in it and then have a salad to go with it. You don’t end up eating a ton of the sauce with it and it’s very low in calories anyway and it gives me that spicy tangy fix. I LOVE it!

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