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From spoonfuls of sugar to fruits, vegetables & nuts

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POSTED June 14, 2009 1:42 a.m.
What a difference 45 years make.

Back then breakfast for me was non-existent except on Saturday mornings. It was The Flintstones, The Jetsons, Quick Draw McDraw, a couple bowls of Frosted Flakes, and about a dozen or so straight spoonfuls of sugar

Now it’s breakfast every day – an orange, an apple, a banana, a quarter of a watermelon, three yogurts, and a third of a can of almonds all washed down by V8 Fusion

Lunch is yogurt, V8 Fusion, and almonds.

Dinner is two Boca Burger paties, a container of cottage cheese, salad, and some type of fresh vegetable eaten raw usually with skin and all. Dessert? Nuts –pistachios or almonds - and V8 Fusion

I still sneak in some junk, a daily dosage of Basil vanilla crème cookies or splurge once in awhile on a Jamba Juice. It’s the same thing seven days a week.

I’m not eating exactly like Jack LaLanne but then again I’m not eating like Dennis Wyatt of 45 years or even two years ago.

There are only two ways to control your weight – exercise and coming to grips with food. It also requires you being honest with yourself.

There is no magic pill. It isn’t an overnight thing. And you can’t go back to your old habits.

If you know me, you know I’m obsessed with my weight. I weigh myself every morning like clockwork. There are a lot of reasons for that including hitting 320 pounds before I turned 29. I’ve had three major weight losses – going from 260 pounds to 220 pounds the summer between the seventh and eighth grade, dropping from 320 down to 190 when I turned 30, and then 18 months ago  dipping down to 168 from 195

Twenty-months after hitting 186 I’m still there. It’s a weight I probably was at in the fifth grade.

What brings this up is the insistence by many that it is obviously my exercising that has resulted in the last drop. The answer is no, no, no.

For years I believed that if you exercised and watched calories that you’d be OK. Boy was I ever wrong.

It is what you eat as much as how much you eat.

Now there’s something you’ve heard a thousand in one times. If you like me, you never believed it.

Take my word. They’re not lying. Except for an occasional meal out, the only cooked thing I eat any more are nuked Boca Burgers. It’s been that way for six months when I wiped out the last traces of food that worked against me – seemingly healthy frozen entrees – quiche and eggplant or vegetarian parmesan. plus diet soda. The problem with such stuff is they are loaded with calories for the amount of servings plus they have all sorts of wonderful preservatives. As for diet soda, common sense should tell you your body was not designed to rely on them for hydration.

I also came to grips with food. I’ve been a lacto-ovo vegetarian for the past 23 years but that doesn’t mean I was eating healthy. I refused to give up “comfort food” whether it was Chez-Its or plain M&Ms.

In retrospect, real comfort is found enjoying a chilled orange or cold apple first thing in the morning. Your taste does change when you drop the processed stuff.

It’s not discipline or will as much as realizing that your body wasn’t designed to thrive on McDonald’s, Pepsi products, Swanson’s, or even Haagen Dazs ice cream.

I am also not obsessed with my weight as simply being honest with myself. I know I will always be fat because I developed the propensity and habits during a good chunk of my life that could take me right back to 320 pounds.

The best advice I can offer seems trite but its true – eat to live don’t live to eat.

It is as simple as that.
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