Chad K. Park's Blog

29, January 2012

Quick look back at my dieting

Filed under: Nutrition, Uncategorized — chadkpark @ 11:55 pm

Just a quick post to vent some feelings about dieting things that have worked for me in the past. I’ll write more on these in the future and please note that I’ve come up with none of this, save to apply the name ‘hierarchies’ to one of the tricks. They’re vaguely listed in order of importance.

1.) Keep a food journal.
Write down everything that goes down your gullet. Water, pills, beers, shots of coconut oil, whatever crazy things your maw masticates.  It also helps to write down your weight, workouts and feelings.  You may even find a correlation between things which would lead you to…..

2.) Test everything.
Not everyone operates exactly the same.  You may not be able to tolerate milk, or wheat or eggs.  Test by deleting something from your diet for a week and then adding it back for a meal and recording how you feel for the next couple of days.  Your health journal will help with this.  Actually, the best way to test is to eat super healthy for a week and then add in the proposed item but that can be impractical and the other method works pretty good.

3.) Cut carbs.
I know everyone says this, but it’s true. You don’t have to eliminate them; they have their place.  It’s just that they tend to spike your insulin and if you’re inactive then your body decides that’s a good time to store fat.  If nothing else, try not to eat them with a ton of fat.

4.) Eat the healthy stuff first.
This is sort of redundant, but it helps me when I’m deciding what to eat.  If I really want to eat some junk, I usually have something healthier that I force myself to eat first. There’re a lot of advantages – better nutrition at first, and less room for the junk.

5.) Drink a gallon of water a day.
Well, I don’t usually get that far; it’s usually 2-3 liters.  But the effort counts.  It fills your stomach, keeps you hydrated, makes life easier for your kidneys and other organs.

6.) Use LeChatelier’s principle.
Don’t worry if you don’t know what it means, just try to push bad food out of your life and stock up on the good food.  The more you clear your cabinet of junk and the more you stock your fridge with broccoli, almonds, asparagus, spinach, etc. the better you will be.

7.) Try evolution, not revolution.
The former is a gradual change.  The latter is trying to do everything at once.  It’s easier to phase out bad and phase in good.  Revolutionaries tend to ‘fall off the wagon’ and be found stuffing their face. That’s OK; as long as they get back on and keep at it.   Persist and you will eventually succeed. Lurching to victory is still a victory. (Of course, I was staring down a revolutionary atherosclerotic canon so my lifestyle change was rather abrupt in the beginning, but the evolutionary method has helped me more over the long run ;).

8.) Establish hierarchies.
Strawberries trump apples.  They’re better for you when you want sweets.  Same goes for 70% dark chocolate trumping ice cream. Sweet potatoes trump potatoes.  Beans and lentils trump rice, wheat and soy.  These are some of the ones I use.

Like I said, I’ll flesh some of these out in the future. I already have notes on some of them. In hindsight, I’ve found these are some pretty damn good foundational principles.

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