Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Battle of the Bulge: A Calorie Is Not a Calorie

Considering the dirty looks I get in real life for chirping about healthful nosh, I'm starting to think that there must be a myriad of eye-rolls whenever I post about the topic. 

But I have accepted my role as the bad cop with equanimity, and shall continue to preach to the masses about "rabbit food." 

As Dr. Robert Lustig (author of Fat Chance) explains, the various sub-categories of energy (carbs, protein, fat, sugar) get processed by the body differently based on quality, as opposed to, well, crap.
I had read of Lustig's findings first in the Reader's Digest. He is still under grumbling attack, but look at any nutritional label and a good chunk of the time "high fructose corn syrup" is the second ingredient (ingredient lists run by most first downward; it's like pouring straight processed sugar down one's throat). 
I got a sweet tooth from my Zeidy, and while he did live well into his 80s, keep in mind the food available not so long ago didn't have such high levels of sugar as they do now, nor did he consume large quantities of anything.

When I began to really watch what goes into my bodily temple, I was flabbergasted by the information on nutritional labels. The only yogurt I consume now is Chobani Plain 2% Greek Yogurt (4 grams of sugar); the standard Yoplait has nearly 30 grams of sugar as well as chemical dyes for pretty color. 

Over time, the less sugar I consumed, the less I needed to be satisfied (the same concept works with salt and white flour). A fruit provides all the sweet I need, and I can make it to Shabbos (when I enjoy a slice or two of homemade, whole-wheat, apple sauce, evaporated cane juice cake) without feeling deprived at all. 
Honeycrisps: They may look innocent, but they are a joy to consume.
The calorie count is not always where the danger lies; a low-sugar yogurt (like plain Greek yogurt) will have the same calories as other standard yogurts, but it is better for the body. 

My boss is literally falling apart way to young because he didn't take care of himself, and I can see it is from sixty years of bad foods; his heart is shot, he's diabetic, he's on twenty different pills, but still chugs diet soda by the gallon and subsists on fast food. 

He's a daily limping, wheezing, gray-hued reminder. 


FrumGeek said...

Whats wrong with diet soda?

And I must admit I was a little surprised to see you type the c-word, as you usually keep your blog cleaner than that.

nachliele said...

You don't even have to look at the gray guys to see how this awful eating is affecting us. I live in Jerusalem and come to NY about twice a year. Every time I return I am shocked to see how another one of my little relatives have become terribly obese. It creeps up on you slowly, I guess, so the parents are not noticing until it's too late- but for me, to see a tiny, skinny little kid one day and find him way overweight six months later seems to be a bit retarded... For the past 3-4 years, every time I've gone back, there's been another one in another family each time. And we're talking kids that are genetically predisposed to be small and thin! I mean, do yourselves a favor, guys! Watch what you give your kids, if you don't care about yourselves...

As a parent myself, I do understand that you don't want your kids to feel left out- and I do give my kids pretzels and cookies for snack- but I try and make sure that the cookies/ cake are homemade, at least. If you don't feel like cutting out all sugar, and white flour, at least don't give them that processed junk! And every single kind of colored soda pop, cool-aid lollies, food colored piece of cr*p!!!


*Climbs off soapbox sheepishly*

Sorry, guys. Subject's kind of close to my heart...

Princess Lea said...

"What's wrong with diet soda?"?

The artificial sweeteners in there is worse than sugar, since at least your body knows what sugar is. That stuff cooked up in a lab wreaks havoc on your metabolism.

My blog, my rules.

nachliele said...

PS. My mother used to give us a mix of chocolate chips and light green raisins for snack- it was delicious and felt 'snacky' and although it's a little high in sugar- it's definitely better for you than anything processed. All the girls thought it was weird till they tasted it- then they all started coming to school with bags of choco chips and raisins... With a little creativity you can cut the bad out of your diet, and not feel like you are missing anything.

nachliele said...


Where'd my other comment go???

Princess Lea said...

blogger-bad, it put your comment into spam. Mischief managed!

I get very worked up on the subject too. I'm like a TSA agent whenever the kiddies visit; I strip them of whatever soda and Cheetos they have on them, and they happily accept a sliced apple or grapes instead. It's not like they even really like the junk.

My mother used to give me a slice of homemade cake to go with my snack, and now it has evolved into whole wheat, evaporated cane juice, oil partially replaced with applesauce, and the kids absolutely SOB for it. No one's feeling deprived!

We shall oooooovercome . . .