May 22, 2010

This Diet Will Save you Money!

I'll be the first to admit that the title of this post sounds like one of those late-night infomercials - the kind that tries to lure you to 'just pick up the phone, it's that easy. And wait..there's more!' Really, though, if I had the initiative (which I don't) to market my new eating plan, I think I could make a lot of money. Because quite simply, it works.

I grew up in the mountains without a car for most of my childhood, so weight gain was never an issue for me. I lived like a mountain goat, 'hill training' and 'taking the stairs' just a regular part of life. In fact, my friend Marilee and her husband recently went for a ski trip to my old stomping grounds and remarked about the super-healthy kids they saw everywhere and the eighty year olds skiing with no sign of slowing down anytime soon. When I moved to the Island I was in my late twenties, was slender and became very fit living the outdoor education lodge lifestyle - hiking, canoeing, swimming, etc. When I moved here, to the flat Fraser Valley, and after I'd weaned my fourth child, I noticed that I was beginning to gain weight, slowly, but oh so steadily, and before I knew it, I was fifteen pounds heavier than when we first moved here, with no sign of decrease. I knew my weight gain was in part due to aging and a slowing metabolism, but heck! I am a runner and I do yoga, too, so I found my middle-age spread pretty frustrating. I had also read an article about belly fat contributing to disease later in life, and I wanted none of that if I could help it. I wanted to grow old healthily like those eighty year old skiers!

When I expressed my concerns to a friend, she said, just eat your big meal in the middle of the day. That will help. In addition to eating a good, healthy breakfast every morning, I began to make myself main meal-sized lunches full of protein, vegetables, carbohydrates, and fruit. No weight loss occurred. I had been 'slightly' addicted to pretzels and would eat them before bedtime. When the salt from the pretzels began to bother my tongue, and the carbs were causing bloating in my stomach, I decided to cut those out - and then I decided to cut out all after supper snacking for the most part. Only slight weight loss occurred. A few months ago I appealed to the same knowledgable friend and she suggested not only eating a main meal lunch, but also eating a tiny dinner. Oh! I thought. So that's what my problem was. I was eating a main meal lunch, followed by a main meal supper, and that was simply more calories than I, and my forty year old body needed to consume. I finally got it.

Before Easter this year I began to taper my eating from after lunch until bedtime. I would have a good snack, and maybe even some chocolate or some home baking mid-afternoon with my tea, and then I would drink glass after glass of water followed by a tiny supper with little or no carbohydrates, and no nightime snack. In the beginning I felt a bit hungry, but my friend told me to fill my stomach with water. I lost two pounds the first week. There were, and are exceptions: If I had an evening yoga class, I would eat a little protein afterwards because that one and a half hour workout makes me very hungry! I also decided this was a weekday diet only. Weekend dinner parties with wine and such were allowed, but I did notice that over the weeks, even my dinner party portion sizes decreased naturally with my shrinking stomach.

I have since lost around six pounds and a couple of inches off my waist and hips and I don't ever feel deprived. If I make potatoes for supper, I can heat my portion up for the next day's lunch. My metabolism slows in the afternoon, so if I don't feed it too much, it can do it's job properly. If I make a supper that I particularly like, I help myself to my small portion and eat it slowly, savouring every bite the French way. I am not sure how much weight I will lose in all. I am quite happy with how my clothes are fitting now, and I also appreciate how my digestive system has reacted to my new tapered diet. I heard a report announced on the radio recently: 'We would all be a lot healthier if we ate a lot less,' said a doctor, and he went on to talk about overwhelmed interior 'plumbing'. I believe that to be true now. I have proof! But wait...there's more! Less food means less groceries consumed. This diet really will save you money!
I just liked the above vintage ad...and thought you would too.


  1. Ha, you women put on a little junk in the trunk and if anything you get hotter. While we poor men lay on fat round the belly with the dedication of a bricklayer and there is not a woman in the world that believes that hoop hot, ever.

  2. ok so I just wrote a long and considered response to your post and then I lost it all when I tried to post the comment.

    I have to go and clear the kitchen now before bed so I can't possibly re-write it!!

    Consider this a comment although it says nothing.

  3. Vince: Did you just say 'junk in the trunk'??? That's hilarious. Actually, at a friend's 20th high school reunion he remarked on exactly the same phenomenon - the difference between the men (many balding and round)and the women (gorgeous!).

    Kate: Too bad you lost your comment. I wonder what happened. I just re-read this post and wonder if it makes me sound a little too obsessive. Don't get me wrong, though. I'm no bone rack. I just wanted to lose some weight so I could feel healthier and not have to keep investing in bigger clothes, and I was so thrilled to be able to do it without going on some expensive weight loss routine.

  4. Hi, What a great comment. I think we all want "quick fixes" with weight loss where honestly slow and steady wins this race. I'm doing WW's and while I get frustrated because my friends are doing HCG and other 5 pound a week things, I feel like I am going to be the healthier one in the long run!

  5. Happy because they eat lard. That's funny. And probably true. Have you ever had a tortilla made with lard. Or pie crust made with what is called lief fat (a form of lard from pig liver(?)) Very tasty.

    I have a vintage ad for something called, Fatten-U-Foods. It is from 1890 or so and there is even a before and after drawing. The before is a thin woman, and after, a little heftier. But back then, like was so physical that I think a little extra padding meant you would last the winter.

    At the point I have enough padding to last twenty winters. The last time I was at the doctor, I got on the scale and as the nurse was writing down my weight she asked, "How tall are you?" "Eight foot seven," was my reply. Considering my height, I am at my ideal weight.

    Even with a lot of extra weight to lose, I like your idea of small changes. I am too busy to diet. And I have been doing it for thirty years with no success. I shall never do it again. I am starting by paying attention and chewing. It is only a start, but I already have less stomach trouble.

    Thanks for the food for thought. haha

  6. Funny you should write this, as my husband and I have also recently switched to eating most of our daily food by 4 pm. Since I work away from home, I often do eat just a very small plate or a salad after I get home and run, but overall we have cut back our portions and late night eating. I have lost a modest amount (5 lbs) but he has lost 24 pounds. Neither of us really needs to lose more, but we like this new arrangement and are feeling lighter and healthier. It's true, we don't need to eat as much! But it does seem better to just eat smaller portions and shift the timing than to always feel like you're on a diet.

  7. I'll have ya know I'm cross-cultural. For heavens sake I lived in the very real part of Notting Hill. Baptised there also for that matter, just to ruin the earlier bit.

  8. Jenny: Welcome to my blog! I see that you post every day, and I have trouble keeping up with blogs these days - my plate is terribly full, but I promise to visit as often as I can, for I enjoy your sense of humour :)

    Tracey: I was searching for a vintage diet ad when I came across a blog with a whole bunch of them. They are really funny in the context of the present day.

    Dreamfarm Girl: That is really interesting that you have taken the same approach. The friend I mention is into Ayurvedic medicine and that's where this eating approach came from in my case. Men always lose faster and more than women, don't they!

    Vince: Okay, okay, calm down. I was just imagining 'junk in the trunk' said in an Irish accent, that's all :) So what kind of baptism was this and what did it ruin, exactly?

  9. I really must answer your award at some point (sigh) and give a bit of history.
    Baptism, the normal type. Water, Sun, rejection of fun stuff -by proxy- by people that were generally speaking in their 'active' years.
    A contract that must be 'wrong' legally speaking.

  10. Wow, that was a great post! Currently, I am living on a mountain and I don't have a car either, so I've been getting by by walking- to basically most places I wanted to get to.

    Now, though, the weather's reached like 40 degrees Celsius, I'm pretty sure that's like 100 Farenheit, so that is not working out for me, lol

    The funny thing though is that I actually do eat my main meal in the middle of the day, like 2ish and then late at night, say 7ish, something small...but then again, I snack on junk a lot during the day when we have it, LOL.

    Anyways, I really liked how you took the time to share that with us :D

  11. Forgot to say--- CONGRATuLATIOnS! Way to go!!


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