Now That I’m Trying to Lose Weight, I Expect—Nay Demand!—More from My Food

September 25, 2013 | By | Comments (6)

In addition to loving chocolate, I am a survival show junky. I especially like it when the survivors get to the point of calculating whether the energy exerted to get food, maybe swimming for an hour, is worth the energy they will get from two or three sea urchins.  If more than one survivor is crunching the numbers, it usually leads to a disagreement not only over calories but flavor, texture, familiarity, spirituality, and humaneness.

It was during just such a show, the one with blurred bottoms, while I was snacking on some Baked Tostito Scoops and spicy hummus, that I realized yet another thing this Social Diet has taught me about myself (and it applies to a lot of other Americans): In this urban jungle of unhealthy foods, of easily accessible excess, new math is required if we’re going to lose weight and get healthier. Like those butt-naked survivors, we on the Social Diet have to calculate which food is actually worth our effort, and we have to demand a lot more from the food we do choose.

This is my environment: I can expend 20 steps, turn a key, drive a little, open my wallet, and buy 1,200 calories—in about 10 minutes. That’s probably a net calorie surplus of 1,190 over energy expended.

So, instead of calculating the most efficient way (drive-thru) to gather the most calories (chicken wings and fries)—food I used to eat more often—this diet has forced me to divine how to expend the most effort (running 5 miles) to harvest the least calories (a grilled chicken salad) from food that I actually enjoy.  This remains strange math for me, especially since this new way of eating—getting less food for more effort—seems to also cost more money. But, now that I log everything I eat each day on MyFitnessPal, and compare my activity and progress with the other Social-Lights (I am trademarking that term), I insist, most of the time, that my food has real flavor and good nutrition and limited calories—and it must satisfy. Chicken wings and fries just don’t survive that math.

Have your expectations of food changed since starting a diet? Share with us. Comment here, email letters@CookingLight.com and tweet @Cooking_Light using #SocialDiet.

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  2. I Made My 20-Week Weight-Loss Goal: Now What? | Wonderful Tips

    […] aspect. We on the team simply bore everyone else around us by yakking about 10K step goals, “expecting more from our food,” motivation versus willpower, and other topics that have been explored in various blog […]

    January 10, 2014 at 8:28 am
  3. I Made My 20-Week Weight-Loss Goal: Now What? | Cooking Light

    […] aspect. We on the team simply bore everyone else around us by yakking about 10K step goals, “expecting more from our food,” motivation versus willpower, and other topics that have been explored in various blog […]

    October 15, 2013 at 3:43 pm
  4. Peter

    Nice read, I remember seeing one of those survival shows where a guy spent about 15 minutes furiously hacking down a large plant to get a few drops of juice…

    September 30, 2013 at 1:08 pm
  5. Singly

    The real key to this program is that you will finally be able to eat all the foods you want and not have to spend your life in a gym, and you will be able to get down to a healthier size with a much quicker metabolic rate.

    September 30, 2013 at 6:43 am
  6. Now That I’m Trying to Lose Weight, I Expect—Nay Demand!—More from My Food | Womens Health Trend Watch

    […] Simmer and Boil […]

    September 26, 2013 at 1:13 pm

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