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.