When is a Calorie not a Calorie? When you use the Atwater general factor system to determine how many calories are in a food product. This is the most common method of determining calories. Scientists at the USDA theorized that this method of measurement might not be representative for certain food groups such as nuts. So how is Atwater factor flawed? Well it ignores the fact that some of the calories in a food may pass through a human as waste. DOH!!
Food is my kryptonite. My relationship with food is complex and dysfunctional. It has been that way most of my life. I have messed around with food for so many years that I have no sense of hunger nor do I recall ever having that feeling. Now that I have a hernia my stomach will let me know it has been too long since I have eaten by giving me heartburn. I do get very persistent cravings which can last for many hours regardless of what I eat or do not eat. I am often almost paralyzed in my inability to select food that will satisfy my needs. This is because simple nutrition is not the only need that food meets.
Uhhhhhh! Woof, Woof, Woof! Breath! OK. Today I’m going to talk about the thing that scares me. But first I’ll talk around the edges of the topic. Then I’ll hint at the topic and run away to some other slightly related story. Then maybe I’ll pull off the scab and say it. People say I am brave for actually putting my real weight on this web site and putting up a picture of myself in a swimsuit. That is nothing! Here it is my personal kryptonite. I am a binge eater! Wow! I am shaky! I usually avoid talking about food because I have so much anxiety about it. I’m sure anybody that has had a weight problem can relate to this.
On Mondays I will be providing links to any interesting articles I have read (many of the links came from my in-house researcher Havva) Read about Super Hero Yoga Here It looks like a lot of fun! Which Diet Works? – NY Times Click Here High Intensity is Key for Both Cardio and Weight Benefits – Dr. Mercola Click Here Newly-discovered “beige fat” cells provide a new target in the fight against obesity – Gizmag Click Here Obesity related to when in the day food is consumed Click Here
For many years there was one rule that could not be broken. Nobody is seeing me in a bathing suit ever! Well when I joined the gym 5 years ago at 446 Lbs there was not a lot of exercises or machines I could work out on. There was certainly no getting down on the floor for some crunches because there was no guarantee I would be able to get back up. It only made sense that the pool was the place I belonged. My first few months I wore a regular one piece bathing suit with bike shorts underneath and a bra. The bike shorts and even the bathing suit didn’t hold up too well to swimming and soaking in the spa every day. I probably looked more conspicuos with my extra layers than if I had just dressed in a regular swimsuit.
That fountain of knowledge Havva has done it again. She sent me an excellent article (Link to Article) which is a review of a study of 50,994 adults over 6 years. The conclusion of the study was that it is much more unhealthy to be underweight than to be over-weight or even severely obese. The article also says that BMI (Body Mass Index) is a poor measurement of obesity as it does not account for the fact that people are three dimensional. “During the study period, the “underweight” subjects showed a risk of death no less than twice as high as the “normal” participants.” “It was considerably safer to be “severely obese”: the people in this category were just 1.26 times as likely to die as “normals”.” “People who were merely “obese” or “overweight” didn’t suffer from diabetes or hypertension any more than “normal” people, and ran no increased risks.”
So I’m reading a very interesting article from the New York Times Magazine (Link to article) about obesity and weight loss. I was particularly interested in the quote “The research shows that the changes that occur after weight loss translate to a huge caloric disadvantage of about 250 to 400 calories. For instance, one woman who entered the Columbia studies at 230 pounds was eating about 3,000 calories to maintain that weight. Once she dropped to 190 pounds, losing 17 percent of her body weight, metabolic studies determined that she needed about 2,300 daily calories to maintain the new lower weight. That may sound like plenty, but the typical 30-year-old 190-pound woman can consume about 2,600 calories to maintain her weight — 300 more calories than the woman who dieted to get there.”
My good friend Havva (she says her name is Eve in Hebrew) was kind enough to send me an article about Holley Mangold (Link to article). She will be lifting weights in the Olympics this summer and weighs in at 350 lbs which is not unusually big for this competition. The story is partially sensationalism over her size but it also shows the level of sacrifice she is willing to endure in order to compete. It particularly struck a cord with me because she has no expectation of winning, she only wants to experience the joy of doing her best. That is very refreshing when it often seems like we live in a world were first place and perfect is the only measure that counts. Unfortunately I then read a few of the comments on the story. I should know better! The comments section of any article is often filled with ugly refuse that is clogging up peoples’ minds. I like to think that they are cleaning out bits of whatever it is that is rotting in their brains every time I read a critical comment. As comments go the ones attached to this article were very tame. My complaint is … Continue reading