I had meals at two different restaurants today
Today is Super Tuesday, when a bunch of states conduct their primary elections / caucuses to decide who will be the nation's presidential nomination from each political party. I stayed focused on work for much of the day, leading up until the results started coming in from the participating states, at which time I became distracted. I ate relatively-good food all day until the evening. I notice that if can give my mind a distraction from eating and almond milk -- not the best breakfast in the world, but ok in moderation. But as I went to eat, I pulled up the news and placed the cereal box next to me on the table. I got lost in reading different news articles and did not attend to how I felt about what I was eating or, especially, how much I was eating.
Once again, I didn't eat very well today. Less in terms of choices of food and more in terms of timing and quantity. I had a breakfast shake when I woke up (which ended up being around lunch time because I woke up just in time for a 9am meeting and didn't have time to make anything before the meeting). Then I didn't eat anything until dinner because I was too tied up in meetings and work. So I was pretty hungry while heading into dinner and only had taken in a few hundred calories so far. While making dinner, I felt more of a tendency to eat from what I was cooking, without fully paying attention to what it was I was eating. So, I think I ate more things that I wouldn't have normally eaten, mostly because I wasn't paying enough attention to it.
And then once dinner was ready, I didn't eat anything but an orange. So, I found myself hungry again around 9:30pm and thought I ought to just get to bed. But instead, I came out to the kitchen and did what I have a bad habit of doing--grabbing food and sitting down to watch or read something so that I tune out as to what I am eating. I ate things that were OK to eat -- sprouted grain bread, jam sweetened only with fruit juice, and hummus. But I ate too much while I was zoned out -- I ate 3 pieces of bread and like half the jar of jam. I know that fruit juice can be just as harmful as regular added sugar, so I try to limit my intake of things like fruit-sweetened jam. But not when I am mindlessly eating. In the end, I ate way too much food, and part of that was because I hadn't properly eaten during the day itself. When I do this, I am more foggy-brained than normal and have low energy levels.
Last night, we went to Mad Greens with a couple in the Ward. Stuck with the lowest calorie/fat offering they had and added a superfoods quinoa salad to go with it. Mad Greens just opened on the 14th, so it was cool to be able to go there.
Interestingly, I've somehow managed to drop a pound a day the last 5 or 6 days after being leveled off or going slightly up or down for the week or two prior. I'm not sure I'm doing anything too drastically different. Maybe a little less salt and haven't been eating much of a lunch (which isn't a good thing). But surprisingly, I've had fairly large dinners the last few nights, making up for some lost ground from the missed lunches, to be sure I get enough vegetables, grains, etc. in my food for the day. You'd think that eating more at night would cause you to weigh more in the morning. Go figure! In any case, I'll take it and am really looking forward to being in the 250s again. It's been a while.
It is fascinating to me how I can hover for months in the 270 - 278 range, only dipping occasionally into the high 268s, and then move to eating cleanly for a 2 or 2 1/2 week period consecutively and be on the edge of cutting into the 250s now. Just 2 weeks of consistency makes that much difference, which is just amazing to me. When eating poorly, I feel like I can't even go a day or half a day without something bad for me...whether sugary, full of saturated fat, high in sodium or some other thing that is not nutritious. It is as if the fat cells in my body, which are multiplying at the time, are calling out for more to join them as they slowly take over my organs and my body. But, eat clean for a few weeks, and those cravings for junk are nearly vanquished, and I relish the fruits, vegetables and grains I get to eat.
When people talk about the Standard American Diet (SAD), it really is amazing how poor in nutrition it is. I can go days without eating a single vegetable or fruit, other than some overly-processed version of them.
started by taking my blood pressure this morning and it was the best reading I have had in decades. It is interesting that it has been able to go so low so quickly. There are only two things I can think of that are different:
- Clean eating
- Taking a new medication at night that helps with sleep
I am sure that eating clean has been a significant contributor, since nothing in the past has worked, not even two prescriptions plus an over-the-counter medicine for blood pressure. The interesting thing, though, is I have not lost a ton of weight so far...it has mostly be in the range of 5 lbs so far. But my blood pressure has responded really well. I will need to likely go down to 25 mg for one or both doses rather than continuing at 50 mg (of Atenolol, which affects my blood pressure as well as pulse)
Tough time with cravings after a mostly-yellow eating day.
We talked about going to a movie, and I felt a powerful draw to it because it has junk food and is in isolation. Didn't end up going, but it was a little scary feeling those cravings. I also felt some strong feelings of loss and pain thinking of the upcoming cruise we are doing and the unlimited ice cream I'd be passing up (ice cream, though I'm allergic to dairy) is one of the most enjoyable desserts for me, and on a cruise they have soft-serve machines that are available nearly anytime. Plus there are all the savory foods, the local foods in European countries we'll be visiting, and the endless desserts. I am going to need to develop a strong plan to maintain my focus and motivation throughout the cruise.
For dinner on our date tonight, Kathy and I ate at Cafe Rio, a Utah-based franchise that just opened up here in Castle Rock. I ate the salad, which is served in a flour tortilla bowl. It had good stuff in it, but, like many restaurants, the sodium content is through the roof, especially in the sauces. Here is my analysis of what I ate:
- Water for drink (I may have normally had soda or hochata)
- Salad for entree (I normally would have ordered a burrito, tacos, or nachos)
- Black beans rather than pinto beans
- Salad dressing on the side (although I did get the yellow, nearly-red, house dressing with ranch and green tomatillos)
- Lots of lettuce
- No cheese, sour cream or fried corn tortilla strips
- Fresh hot salsa (very salty but fresh ingredients)
- Vegetarian rather than my normally-chosen sweet pork
Probably the biggest impacts were the volume I ate (lots of food, though I didn't feel too heavily stuffed), the high levels of sodium, and the parts of the flour tortilla and house dressing I ate. Didn't eat the whole tortilla, but nearly half. And didn't eat all the dressing, but nearly half of the side-serving portion.
In any case, if I could re-do the event, I would get no dressing, no tortilla, and would not get the added fresh hot salsa (sticking with pick instead). That would put the whole of the meal more in line with solid green light food). Oh, I did have rice as well and wasn't sure if it was white or brow, but it was seasoned (with salt most likely) and they gave me a lot of it...I probably ate half of it.
I'm positive, due to the volume, relatively-late hour at which we ate, and high sodium content, that I will at least artificially show a few pounds gained in the morning. And I'll feel a bit puffy from water retention--a feeling I don't enjoy. Lesson learned.
Sunday on our family reunion trip. We decided not to travel on Sunday, so we stayed in AZ. Slept in until 1pm and missed the chance to attend church at one of our prior wards. It was a strange eating day because of the late wakeup, but I was able to get in all of the food from the daily dozen tracking.
We had dinner at my parent's house tonight. Avoided most of the food other than beans, salad, fruit juice, and a half of a baked potato (white) ...
More family reunion activities today. Slept in late again, so I was in a bit of a rush getting out to get food for the lunch. Wanted to eat a smoothie for breakfast but instead had Fiber 1 wheat cereal, date sugar, soy milk, and pomegranate arils.
We bought Autumn Moon, an extended-family favorite, for the potluck lunch. Nothing good to eat there other than broccoli and rice, although not a good kind of rice. I ended up eating broccoli salad (yellow light), cooked broccoli from autumn moon (yellow) and some homemade chili someone brought (green light...no meat), and a little bit of rice (red/yellow food). Didn't get very full but didn't give in to much temptation at the lunch...(continued)
Happy New Year. That means parties. And that, at least in my extended family, means food. And not usually healthy food. Took some pre-planning to have food at the family reunion event that is healthy. Jacob, Trevan and I went to Bashas on the way to the reunion lunch and picked out a combination of healthy and not-that-healthy foods. In the healthy camp, we bought a veggie tray, low-sodium v-8 juice, and hummus...
Woke up feeling much better today as far as energy and congestion. And, surpringly, my blood pressure was a respectable 120/86....best it has been in a long time. I am taking two blood pressure medicines, true, but even with the two of them I have struggled lately to get my readings out of the red zone (above 140/90) So, good progress so far after a few days of clean eating.
Heading out to AZ today and going with Spencer and his girlfriend, Stef, to Red Lobster tonight. So, a day of choices ahead for airports, airplanes, travel and restaurants. I think it will take some good planning to avoid the traps that await.
Felt great after a morning breakfast of Shakeology mixed with walnuts, berries, spinach, kale, dates, and water, topped with flax seed and toasted oats. Went to Costco after that and wasn't tempted by the junk there. Started feeling sick (been getting a cold) while at Costco and came home and crashed a bit. Bought some good produce.
I had a salad tonight from Kneaders, with greens, avocado, kidney beans, hummus (all green), and a little bit of boiled shredded chicken (yellow). For dressing, I used apple cider vinegar (green) and some olive oil (yellow). Had some bean soup from the restaurant as well (high sodium, so only a small amount).
A day of beginnings. Kathy and I went to Rioja for dinner tonight, and I made pretty good choices of food for such a food-rich restaurant:
- Pomegranate juice spritzer w/ ginger and sparkling water (yellow)
- Whole wheat rolls (2) with ginger and berries (yellow); no butter
- Picnic, no meat. Had bread crisps, olives, greens, etc. (yellow)
- Salad (green) w/ broccoli, hazelnuts, cauliflower, and Brussel's sprouts
- 4 Part Vegetarian Dish w/ all softs of vegetables cooked fancy ways. Very salty (yellow)
- Dessert: Seeds/nuts, caramel torte, with assorted pumpkin items (red...ate half)
Not bad for an anniversary celebration dinner and at Rioja's. After defining things throughout the day today, I feel like it is a good launch into tomorrow.