Conflicting Rules
- POSTED ON: Mar 31, 2011


The diet industry has dozens of ‘rules‘ of fitness
and ways to live a ‘healthy’ lifestyle.

Most of them revolve around some sort of dietary intervention
like changing the timing of a meal, or the composition of that meal.
After that we’re given extensive lists of good and bad foods,
and supplements we should be taking.

These recommendations fail to consider how impractical they are.
They are presented as the Absolute Truth.

However, conflicts exist between many of the recommendations.
It is easy to feel guilty because it is impossible to follow them all,
and we don’t know which are the best to follow.

The stress and guilt from failing to follow these ‘rules’
can easily erase any benefits we get from doing the things we CAN do.

It is important to always remember that every little bit counts,
and whatever we can do...
...whatever fits in with our current lifestyle is just fine.

Instead of following everyone else’s rules,
My choice is to make up a few rules that fit my own life.
Rules that work fine just for me.

My latest recipe video is Peanut Butter Toast .
This is located
in the Mealtime section of RECIPES.
Here's a photo of that food.

Everything and Nothing
- POSTED ON: Mar 30, 2011



I've been asked many times what specific diet or food plan I use
now that I'm in Maintenance.

It would be difficult to list all the many, many different eating plans
that I've experimented with
since I reached my weight goal over 5 years ago,
but I will be writing about many of them here at DietHobby.

Everything worked.
Because I'm still in my weight goal area.

Nothing worked,
Because I'm still looking for a better way to live comfortably
while maintaining my current weight.

Dieting is my Hobby,
and I'm always learning new and interesting things about that subject.
As I learn things I'll share them here,
and as I ponder the things I've already learned, I'll share them here too.

Weight-loss and maintenance of that weight-loss takes FOCUS.
I've learned that when that FOCUS stops, weight returns.

Whether or not to maintain FOCUS is a "Lifestyle" choice,
but it is my opinion that a "reduced obese" person NEVER becomes "Naturally Thin".
My observation of myself and of others leads me to believe
that maintaining FOCUS it is what a "reduced obese" person
must do to keep off lost weight.

Making Dieting my Hobby is one of the ways that I maintain FOCUS
on the issues and behaviors that make and keep my body a normal size.

I've posted another new recipe video,  Egg, Bacon, Veggie Scramble
in the Mealtime section of RECIPES.  Here's a photo of that food.


Meal Frequency - How Often Should I Eat?
- POSTED ON: Mar 29, 2011

The Frequency of Eating is one of the main issues in dieting, and many people disagree on that subject.

One viewpoint commonly held is that frequent small meals are better for weight-loss and for one's body in general than less frequent larger meals. 

The basic rationale for this is that smaller meals tend to raise metabolism because of the continual digestion process, and one is less likely to overeat
because hunger will never become intense.

Call me cynical, but I suspect that the recent popularity of this viewpoint may have something to do with food marketing.

Another commonly held viewpoint is that three medium sized meals are betterfor weight-loss and for one's body in general.

There are several common rationales given for this viewpoint.  

One of them is that it has been the Traditional "American" way for the past hundred years or so.

Another is that avoiding all snacks between three meals instills Habits of Moderation, and after the mind and the body adjusts to this plan, weight-loss and maintenance of weight-loss becomes easier due to the automatic no snacking habit.

Proponents of the Leptin Diet say that limiting eating to three meals a day, spaced 5 or 6 hours apart, helps the body's hormone Leptin to function better and therefore assists in weight-loss and maintenance of weight-loss.

Intermittent Fasting proponents, such as in Eat Stop Eat, and the Fast-5 Diet recommend eating less often than three times a day. They recommend long breaks between eating...i.e. frequent periodic fasts,  Their rationale is that this process helps the body's Insulin and growth hormones to function better and therefore assists in weight-loss and maintenance of weight-loss.

Other "Experts", including proponets of Intuitive Eating, say that people should eat whenever they feel hungry and stop as soon as they feel full.

Some advocate eating only two meals daily.  Some say skip breakfast. Others say skip lunch.  Still others say skip dinner.  There are also those who support eating only snacks with no actual meals.

The issue of eating frequency is actually an indirect way to restict the AMOUNT that one eats.

If one eats three "normal" meals and also adds in high calorie snacks...they will ingest more calories than their body uses as energy and will therefore gain weight.

A person can also eat three large daily meals without snacking and still ingest more calories than their body uses as energy and will therefore gain weight.

It one eats one very large meal every day, with nothing in between, that person can also ingest more calories than their body uses as energy and will therefore gain weight.

If a person alternates occasional days of fasting with frequent days of overeating, that person will ingest more calories than their body uses as energy and will therefore gain weight.

Feelings of hunger and fullness are subjective.
A person's body (physical) and/or a person's emotions (mental) can inaccurately report those feelings. This can occur whether one has a single meal each day or whether one eats small amounts of food all day long. In most cases outside an anexoric condition, inaccurate signals of hunger and fullness will cause a person to ingest more calories than their body uses as energy and therefore gain weight.

All of these positions have merit, and they all have flaws.  SO...what is my personal position?    My own viewpoint is that all of the various suggestions are acceptable.

I think people should individually choose to eat as frequently as is desirable or comfortable for them as long as they can get that plan to work for them.  Any food plan works if it causes a person to ingest the same or less calories than their body uses as energy, and therefore causes an obese person to lose or maintain weight-loss.

I find Gary Taubes' writings about insulin's effects on the body to be interesting and valuable. However, at this current time, based on my own experience, and my observations of others, my opinion is that, even if his Theories are true, there is MORE to the issue of weight-loss and maintenance of that weight-loss than merely controlling the carbohydrate substances that one eats.

A low-carbohydrate diet might greatly help with the issues of obesity, and one MIGHT be able to eat more calories, or better regulate their body's hormonal functions by following such a plan. H
owever,  I believe that physical issues are only one part of the obesity equation. 

Even if Taubes is correct, the basic position of calories in/calories out is still valid if one wishes to reach and maintain a body size which is smaller than one's body was genetically designed to be.

Consideration of calories in/calories out is also useful when considering eating issues that go beyond a person's physical requirements.
By this, I mean eating issues which involve personal appetites, personal habits and personal character.

The picture of the apple and cheese at the heading of this article
was taken as part of my latest recipe video Six Cheese and Sides, which is located in Tidbits, under RECIPES. 



Science Can't Prove What is True.
- POSTED ON: Mar 28, 2011


 I think one of the biggest and most common mistakes people make regarding food plans, diets, weight-loss or weight-gain etc, is the general tendency to think we are all the same... i.e.  "if that specific behavior works for her/him, it should work for me."

All of the "scientific rules" written by Experts are merely Averages. We are not only two different sexes, we are also different heights, different weights, different ages, and different activity levels.

On top of that, each of us has a different and unique Genetic imprint. Strong Evidence exists indicating that some people "handle" or "process" various foods differently than other people.

At times it seems like the body defies the "rules of science" with regard to weight-loss.
However, there are still many unknowns and variations between individual bodies, and many hormones and other inner workings of the body have still not yet been discovered.

 Science can't prove what is True,
it can only prove that a specific isolated fact
in a specific isolated situation is Untrue.

The current "rules" are based on conclusions from past Research studies, and are not the "ULTIMATE TRUTH" because:

"The purpose of Science is not to reveal the Truth but to eliminate error.
We can only approximate truth by getting rid of as many wrong conclusions as we can."

For those of you who are interested in my current Low-Carb Experiment-of-One which I last wrote about on March 21. I am several days into a planned pause of low-carb in order to assess my stabilized weight at 'normal'-carb in comparison with my stabilized weight at low-carb, so that I can make a personal evaluation of the process thus far.

At this point I have about a 3 lb UpBounce which is probably a result of natural increase in gylcogen (salt/water/waste) due to past six days of "normal" higher-carb intake. Right now, it appears that my stabilized weight with "normal" carb intake continues to run about 3 lbs heavier than my stabilized weight with low-carb intake. 

 Both stabilized weights are extremely resistant to any further weight-loss due to fat-loss. It is possible that this is because my body is currently at its optimal normal weight, however, whatever the reason,...based on my current data....
at the present time it appears that my body's inability to accomplish further fat-loss is consistent,
whether I'm eating low-carb or normal-carb.

I am also evaluating other issues, along with my weight. However, these issues are subjective, involving how my body feels, which includes the issues of levels of hunger and/or cravings, After another week of 'normal'-carb,....assuming I successfully follow through with low-calorie eating...., I expect to have better information on the subject,both objective and subjective.

Anyway, this is ALL part of my Dieting Hobby. I wanted to be certain to share this information here, because today I plan to shoot some more recipe videos, and you will see me tasting some higher-carb food.

I have also added a new recipe category entitled "Tidbits".I choose to do this because I feel that some people might find that many of my low-calorie "snack-type" very-easy-recipes don't really fit into their concept of a "mini-meal" category, and yet I want to avoid labeling them as a "snack".

Portion Control is gospel to me, and you will see totally consistency in that area.
However, all of my recipes will not fit into every single type of diet. Some of my recipes will be lower-carb than others, and some of them will be lower-calorie than others.  I will providing calorie counts, carb counts, and protein counts of my serving portions in every recipe.

My ongoing Personal Criteria for every Diet I choose for myself involves ALWAYS tracking all my food, while making my own personal food choices, based on my individual preferences.
That behavior is always a requirement for me, no matter
 what "Diet, Food-Plan, or Way-of-Eating" that I might choose to use, or to experiment with, during any specific time-period.

Diet Books and Reviews
- POSTED ON: Mar 27, 2011

I like reading, and I especially enjoy reading Diet Books. Reading them is part of my DietHobby.

Diet Books are written by medical doctors, and psychologists, and trainers, and nutritionists, and journalists, and lawyers, and housewives, and people from many other walks of life.

Most diet book authors say that they have personally lost weight while following their recommended diet, and/or have seen their clients, their patients, their fellow members, or their friends lose weight while participating in the diet presented.

This is also true of authors who espouse diets that aren’t officially labeled “Diet”, such as diets which based on intuitive eating principles like: “Eat only when hungry; Eat what you like: Stop when you’re full.”

Books are work products that are normally intended to benefit their authors financially, and/or bring them into the public eye…i.e. provide them with fame and fortune. Honest and dishonest people both exist in this world. Some people lie.

Authors can exaggerate or actually fabricate examples of successful dieters in order to boost the credibility of their diets. Their motives vary.  Some of these do this for financial gain, and others do it to benefit humanity. For some, it is a mixture of both.  Except for that fact, initially, I have no reason to doubt an author’s claims.

While reading a diet book, I charge myself with the personal responsibility of doing my best to keep an open mind to the author’s concepts, and while I cannot keep myself from factoring in my own common sense, my prior knowledge, my own life experience, and my personal values, I work to temporarily suspend my personal judgments about the concepts presented.

After a lifetime of reading hundreds of diet books, my belief is that just about every diet works for someone.

Every diet book I’ve ever read has benefited me in some way. Even the worst of them usually contains some useful kernel of Truth, and most of them contain recipes that I find personally interesting.

Each diet book has provided me with information, and sometimes… the information I gained was not what the author intended.

Over time, it is my intention to write here about a variety of diets, and about some of the diet books I have read. I’ll be doing this as the mood strikes, and in no particular order. My reviews of new diet books and old diet books will be provided at random. Which, I believe is appropriate…since that’s how I read them.

Occasionally, there will be a “diet” book that I judge to be particularly unusual, interesting, or outstanding. such as Gary Taubes’ new book, Why We Get Fat and What to Do about It (2011), and such a book will be featured here in BOOKTALK for a long-term Discussion.

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2000+ Blogs and 500+ Videos in DietHobby reflect my personal experience in weight-loss and maintenance. One-size-doesn't-fit-all, and I address many ways-of-eating whenever they become interesting or applicable to me.

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