Val isn't playing life coach by sharing some useful ideas gathered over 7 decades of life experience and hundreds of books on human nature.
My doctor told me to stop having intimate dinners for four. Unless there are other three people.
-- Orson Welles
Not to Fix Health, but to Feel Lighter
People quit, or minimize something in their diets for different reasons. Some do it for health, other for looks, yet some of us just do it to feel lighter. When it's about twenty excess pounds, like in my case, it was even this little motivation of wanting to be able to trim my toenails without losing breath and feeling silly for it.
So how did I manage to put on that excess -- especially considering my otherwise well defined self-evolving routine with a pretty complex practices and a well functioning willpower to maintain it.
I could do what most of the folks probably would -- blame it all on this pandemic which meant a reduced mobility, with a deflated spirit contributing to it. But I won't do that. I won't even use the word "blame", since my reasons for minimizing flour and sugar were not emotionally charged with any burning health need for doing it.
Nothing to blame there, I even hardly paid much attention to my gaining weight, since it didn't hurt, and even less did it trigger any concerns about my middle section not looking too athletic.
Well, at this age of 77, it's almost in fashion for a dude to look overweight, and while I will forever stay a dirty old man eyeballing those good looking chicks, I have no ambition that they would also bother much eyeballing me, and by doing so noticing my somewhat extended belly.
Nevertheless, truth be told, I always preferred my athletic look -- but much more the way it felt, even while not doing any workout other than walking.
I have this stationary bicycle in bedroom that's just being there looking rather "interesting", but not being used.
I was blessed with this athletic shape without anything being done for it. My daughter says I am doing it with my mind and not knowing it.
Well, mind or not, I must have been doing a little more "with my mind" by indulging in bread and ice cream. I used to joke about my love for bread, saying how I could easily have a sandwich with two slices of whole wheat bread and one white in the middle.
As for ice cream, I only had sherbet, not a regular one with milk in it, so it's something like a sweetened frozen fruit juice. Nevertheless -- sugary.
Now, talking about minimizing both, flour and sugar, I can't say that I was exactly addicted to either. I had under my belt victorious ability to quit something cold turkey, ever since I quit my two packs of cigarettes a day, my beer, and coffee which gained me a nick name like "coffee monster".
I quit them all at different times, so I got that "willpower reference" still in the archives of my guts.
There are things in my life which stay as if chiseled into my nature -- and those that my peripatetic, gypsy nature, which loves change, will never allow to take a fanatical significance.
Like, my three mentioned dietary vices are gone forever. And I will forever continue my intermittent fasting. But with flour and sugar I won't go fanatic, so I will still have them, but quite reduced.
In general, mankind, since the improvement of cookery, eats twice as much as nature requires.
-- Benjamin Franklin
Bread seemed to be the biggest culprit in my gaining weight.
That old dude in the bakery section of the food supermarket already knew me and every time he saw me coming, he would just make questioning gestures with fingers asking "how many" of those delicious, aromatic, fresh, divinely soft baguettes to pack.
With no particular affinity for cakes, croissants, crackers, and other crap, it was just bread that I enjoyed, and enjoyed too much.
As among any other floury stuff that I still have occasionally, is pizza and noodles in our home made soup. I instructed my wife to prepare the dough for pizza a day before and let it sit in the fridge, so that those fermenting bacteria have enough time to feed on that crap in the flour which makes me gain weight.
That I learned from a book which mentioned how Italians always prepare the dough a couple of days prior to making pizza with it -- for that reason. You learn something new every day.
Even though I don't think I was addicted to bread -- since I am not craving it -- unlike pizza, it stays off my list of foods to eat, simply because for my particular body bread seems to be the main culprit in gaining weight.
Yesterday I was passing by the bakery section of that same store, and that same old dude signaled me with a questioning gesture, as if asking: What's a matter? Where have you been?"
I approached to the counter and almost whispered, not to look weird to those few customers standing around: "I quit it". He made one of those painful grimaces like someone sitting on toilet and constipating -- then asked: "But why!?"
I smiled and walked away, with a raised hand signaling a good-bye. I had to pass beside the pastry section, and gave a quick look at that poppyseed cake that I also quit; and then came the turn for those yogurts to get the same ignoring treatment.
So many of those advertised health-promoting products are left there in my past, ever since I realized how it's not nearly as important what we add to our eating as what we subtract from it.
That philosophy was the one that prompted me to start intermittent fasting some years ago.
Interestingly enough, even with fasting for some nineteen to twenty hours each day, I was still gaining weight, just by munching on so much bread.
Man needs third of what he is eating -- with other two thirds he is feeding his doctor.
-- Ancient Egyptian maxim
Feeling Any Different?
So, how does it feel now, being 20 pounds lighter?
Since I didn't do it for any health reasons, as to remove some bothering symptoms, to me it's almost the same thing as before, except that I like myself better now; beside the point that moving around feels a little different, especially bending down, should I say.
Maybe my body is welcoming the change in some ways that I don't feel, since sugar and flour are known to raise insulin and do some other crap. Sugar has even been called "white death", and flour is allegedly turning into blood sugar even faster than white sugar itself.
But all that science was never a reason for me to do this reduction in their intake.
I did all this quite a while ago, but never thought to make an article out of it, just mentioned it in some of my previous posts.
So it occurred to me this morning that a hub like this might -- beside possibly inspire a little -- even correct something in my image presented on this website. Namely, with all those descriptions of my "specially designed self-advancing regimen", I might have made some wrong impressions of advertising some advantages, and bragging too much.
Well, all I ever do is merely sharing, not advertising, and this article is to show how with all that regimen I am just another common dude having my own weak moments, or even months, like it was the case with this allowing myself to gain unwanted weight during many months, without stopping it.
I am happy to be back at my normal weight. I don't think I will neglect it again.
© 2022 Val Karas