Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Confessions of a Mindless Grazer

One of my BIG problems with food is that I am a mindless grazer. Bad habit. I tend just get a handful of something because handfuls don't really count. Or not enough to matter. This is particularly true when I am working and the words are not coming.  Of course handfuls count. And eating standing up doesn't burn more calories either.
Jillian Michaels makes the point in her book (and it is not rocket science) a calorie is a calorie is a calorie. It is simply a unit of measure. And even if something does not seem to have many calories per serving size, eat enough of them and your daily calorie count gets blown sky high.
She gives the example of a client of hers who used the spray I Can't Believe It's Not Butter. The client was going through a can a day. When she was challenged, the client exclaimed but the serving portion info says no calories. A can has 900 calories. A serving size was a quick spray. She was using a lot more!
It would be far better for me to schedule my snacks and to sit down to eat them.
She also is an advocate of metabolic typing for determining the type of diet you should follow. It turns out that I am a fast oxidizer or that I am insulin responsive. It means if I take niacin on an empty stomach, I get a bright red flush. (Been there, done it) Fast oxidizers from my reading around the subject are more likely to get type 2 diabetes. Glucose enters the blood stream more readily as it were. This is why going over to a diet which limits carbs to low GI carbs and makes sure I have protein at every meal works for me. It also means I should have scheduled snacks instead of mindless grazing. And make sure that I don't skip meals and that I eat every 4 hours.
The theory of oxidation also explains why not all diets work for every one. Know your oxidation rate in general terms and you can plan your diet better so you are less likely to fail. Slow oxidisers should have carbs at every meal and go for lighter proteins. Balanced oxidisers should go for -- a balance.
Everything kept within calorie limits.
And I am one of the UNLUCKY people who gain weight all over rather than putting it on my top half or my bottom. When you gain weight all over, it means even your feet can become fat! (Yes my shoes now fit better) In theory I am an hourglass shape. Knowing what shape you are helps. It means you can look at pictures of the appropriate stars. For example, Marilyn Monroe was pear shaped. People who are apple shaped can end up looking like Barbie or a Gibson Girl.
Hourglass I think is Betty Grable. at the ideal. People can look good no matter their basic shape is. But knowing your shape can help.
Two days of not mindlessly grazing and the weight is starting to drop off. Which is good. Not getting discouraged is important.

In other news:
My editor phoned yesterday. I should be doing a couple of library talks in March for International Women's Day. More details when I have them.


Caroline said...

My DH is awful for grazing - it really annoys me when I'm cooking a meal and he then goes off and finds something to eat while he waits for me to dish up. I have been known to shout, "Oi! No more meals between snacks now, dinners nearly ready." Duh! Mind you it made *him* laugh. Caroline x

Rula Sinara said...

I'm also a firm believer in a calorie is a calorie. The only way I've ever lost weight is when I've counted what goes in. If I don't keep track, I fall victim to grazing. I am such a grazer and, like you said, even with the healthy stuff it adds up. It's even harder when you have kids and a lot of kid snacks or leftovers(albeit healthy) around!