Monday, December 27, 2010

The Bitter Truth

As an obese person I look back on my life and see pockets of time where I was super-excited about getting healthy.  There are four specific periods where I went through weight loss of any significance, and each time I really felt I nailed this health thing hard.  The positive part of each of these "healthy" periods was the inclusion of fairly strenuous exercise.  For someone who is largely inactive for the majority of my life, I can look back on these exceptional periods and be proud that I gave my body a break, if even for a little while.  But when I examine my methods when it came to my diet, my efforts were pretty disastrous.

First there was the method of limiting my fat intake to 10 grams of fat per day.  I can only remember this number of fat grams as arbitrary, but it seemed to hold my focus long enough for me to lose 30-40 pounds.  Once that weight came back, there was the time I lost close to 80 pounds eating almost nothing but foods that required more energy to digest than they supplied my body with.  The greatest hits of this disastrous mixtape were cabbage (often sauerkraut) & grapefruits.  This along with a restricted diet that was fairly bean-centric at best, but imbalanced to the point of ridiculousness.  So that weight came back, and while the third healthy period wasn't as successful diet-wise, I had a steady and dedicated Bikram Yoga practice which increased my body's flexibility (and continues to do so five+ years after I stopped) and had me feeling truly my best and healthiest, ever.

More recently I decided to become more scientific and logical about my approach to health, and thanks to some web research and a good amount of luck I've come across some life-changing things.  One of them is Crossfit.  Another is the Paleo Diet.  And one other thing has sent such shockwaves into my daily awareness of food intake, I would view myself as irresponsoble if I didn't share it with you.  Below is a YouTube video of a presentation by Dr. Robert Lustig (professor of Pediatric Endocrinology at UCSF).  It is called "Sugar: The Bitter Truth" and I cannot say enough about how life-changing it has been for me. The lecture delves in huge detail into the poison that is Fructose, the horror of the US diet, and how high-fructose corn syrup has infiltrated the American diet to a debilitating degree. Those even mildly curious with the source of the obesity epidemic should absolutely take the time to see this video.  Please spread it is truly amazing.

This video allowed me to train myself about the choices that I'm making for me and my child.  It really provides the framework necessary to go out into the world and actually succeed in subverting the allure of the American Diet.  I feel like for the first time in my life I've entered a healthy period that is balanced, informed, and the most natural approach to fitness I've taken yet.  It feels really great to be taking a steady course toward changing my life for the better. Tools like the ones mentioned above are only the beginning.  I look forward to finding more useful information and sharing it.  Feel free to share some of your own.  I'm absolutely all ears...

No comments:

Post a Comment