Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Carb shortage

After a discussion with a friend at GDC (and you know who you are), I've decided to have a go at the low-carb thing to lose a few pounds.

This is problematic because it cuts a couple food groups from my diet entirely. Of course, by food groups, I don't mean the ones you learned about in school, but those by which I've divided my own spectrum of sustenance. In order of priority, these are:

  1. Caffeine.
  2. Pork products.
  3. Foods containing complex carbohydrates, processed sugar, and fat. Ideally, fried. (This delicious Venn diagram intersection includes things like doughnuts. Mmm... doughnuts... and cake. Mmm... cake). I know it's covered by 4,5,6, but I think it deserves it's own group.
  4. Carbohydrates. Yes, dammit. It's a food group.
  5. Sugar.
  6. Fat. The more the better.
  7. Other meat products
  8. Chocolate. (And not poor quality chocolate, which is not edible. period)
  9. Fried grains/breads/tubers
  10. grains/breads/tubers
  11. Stuff lemurs eat (fruit, insects)
  12. Stuff rabbits eat (lettuce, carrots, other insects)

So, 3, 4, 5, 7, 9 and 10, are all off the menu. I'm doing a little bit of 11/12 (minus insects) but mainly to cleanse the palette between varieties of pork products.

Wish me luck!

[I'd have drawn this into a nifty diagram but I'm a little woozy right now as my DDI (doughnut digestive index) is low so I'm not up to it.]


lightspeedchick said...

If I can offer some advice: I did the low-carb thing last year and lost a prodigious amount of weight (something like 8 pounds in two weeks - that's a lot on me). That was incredibly encouraging, but I found I could hardly think during that period, and I realized I couldn't function enough on a low-carb diet to sustain it long-term or even medium-term. I had to stop.

Then earlier this year, I got a trainer to help me train for a half-marathon. He immediately put me on a program: figure out how many cals you need to survive, eat only that (eat whatever you want, but try to keep fat intake around 25% of total), and exercise a little bit every day, even if it's just walking. I lost 6 pounds the first two weeks, feeling energized like a superhero, not deprived and tired.

Anyway, just my two cents. Cutting carbs is a good idea, but not to be overdone. Best of luck!

Dan said...

What's worked (and is still working) for me is not exactly low-carb, though there is plenty of protein involved. Basically, you just cut out...

1) sugar,
2) refined carbs (white flour),
3) starch (potatoes, corn).

What's left is...

1) protein,
2) low-carb vegetables,
3) fruit,
4) whole grain carbs (brown rice, whole grain flour).

With this combo of foods, I feel better than I ever have.

At the store, the percentage of packaged goods I buy has dropped precipitously (although Triscuits are whole grain - yay!).

The biggest hurdle was internalizing the idea that it isn't a finite diet, but a permanent lifestyle change. A nice fringe benefit is that it has removed the concept of guilt.

Bonne Chance!