Wednesday, January 09, 2013

carbs & sugar

Right, so now that I've scared everyone into knowing their cheese might be aiding cancer growth, making them fat, injecting unnecessary hormones into their bodies, manufacturing tons of mucus....let's move to the next installment of PEAS' CANCER-FREE, SKINNY-MAKING, LONGEVITY, ENERGETIC-LIFESTYLE DIET.

Again - as I was telling the girls over a lovely lunch of leaves and chickpeas - everyone's bodies are different. We metabolicisize shit differently and some people are more pre-dispositioned to have cancer than others. I also smoked a lot of cigarettes, and therefore am trying to reverse the damage. So continue to bear that in mind.

A friend of mine has volunteered to be my guinea pig! By doing my diet. He's coming to our wedding, so he will do it up until then,  (3 months or so), and keep a food diary.
I want him to be honest. If it's so goddamn awful that he can't have milk in his tea, or that he wants to jump off a cliff because he can no longer have a ham sarnie, then he must make it known.

He's an Irish [gay] man.This means his diet is meat and potatoes heavy, and he loves a Guinness. So this is a big challenge for him, and kudos to him for signing up. It's going to be interesting to see if he:
1) has more energy
2) feels happier
3) is healthier (longterm hopefully so!)
4) loses any weight
5) his skin is radiant and his eyes shiny

He's not heavy, but will still be interesting to see. I'll keep you posted with his honest-to-God comments.

So. Next food group: CARBS.

Poor old carbs; they get so much bad press. People blame them for lots of things, and at the same time reach for them when they're depressed and cold. Hence why the British food is made up mostly of carbs.
(And fuck they're good. Pies, mash, mushy peas, Victoria an ideal world, if I had a metabolism faster than Usain's Bolt's track record, I'd dedicate my life to eating pure. unadulterated.carbohydrates.)
They do make you fat though. The OMG book I referenced before says that the body doesn't need carbohydrates. This is something I disagree with. You can't cut out whole food groups. That's not a lifestyle or longterm solution. You can change what kind of carbohydrate you eat though, and in minimal amounts, they're actually good for you.

Refined carbs, the white, starchy ones; the ones that taste the best, are the ones to avoid. It's white, so there's your clue. It's been refined to fuck, stripped of all it's nutrients and minerals, and will make your blood sugar plunge to indescribable depths when you come down from the high.

What you want is slow-release, mineral-rich carbs. And few of these.
Bread that isn't white, and has tons of fibre, bran, and low GI release is good for you in small quantities.
Potatoes! They've had a terrible rap. When the potato famine hit Ireland, people died en masse. Probably also from heartbreak. Potatoes are fucking lush. Keep them for the Sunday roast, or the occasional jacket potato - they are packed with potassium and minerals. They are a whole food, free from processing, and when eaten in the right amounts, are good for you.

Pasta, white rice, white bread, noodles, dough, cake - if you want to get skinny, you shouldn't be eating this stuff. This really is a no brainer, but because it formulates so much of most people's diets, they don't realise how much of this stuff they are consuming. Swap it for protein. Or be clever about which carbs you eat.
Complex carbs like pumpkin, squash, sweet potatoes, carrots (yes, it's classified as a carb, as are peas - I am a living carb), turnips burn slower. And make you less fat, as they have less sugar in them.

Eat carbs for breakfast and lunch. Try not to eat carbs after 6pm. I don't do this, but would probably benefit from it if I did.

Subset of carbs, SUGAR.

Sugar is highly acidic, it doesn't give you anything nutritionally, and it turns to fat. The bad carbs turn to sugar, which is why they are bad. Sugar also feeds cancer, and is the worst thing you can eat for good health.

Unfortauntely we are human beings, not robots. And like my Brit, who has one massive sweet tooth, it's impossible to avoid.

This is how I manage and enjoy my sugar:

I eat lots of fruit. My breakfast is all fruit. Pineapple, banana, berries, every type of fruit I can possibly manage. Some diets like Atkins ban you from eating fruit. W.T.F. Fruit is a naturally growing, whole, nutritious food, and for the taking. To say it's unhealthy to eat is just fucked up. Vitamin C is not only good for fighting colds, but it's great for your skin. And keeping you young-looking.

Don't drink your calories.  In nature you don't get bottled juices, fizzy drinks. Drinking this stuff loads on the calories. If you just stop drinking sugar and don't change anything else, you'll probably lose weight just doing that. I don't touch fizzy drinks (and will get to the diet varieties in another post), and when I drink juice, it's freshly squeezed.

Taste test. When you want a biscuit, piece of chocolate cake, or a chocolate, don't deny yourself completely. That's just miserable and crap, and there are times when you just have to have dessert or you'll surely die.
Firstly, you can cut out things like cheesecake (dairy) and creme brulee (dairy). I usually go for the full-blown chocolate cake, and then instead of a whole piece, I'll cut it in half. After a few mouthfuls, I'm quite happy with that. It's satiated the craving.

I also round off my dinner with dark chocolate. Dark chocolate is rich in antioxidants, is mostly dairy-free and it gives you the sugar you need.

I would be lying if I said sugar isn't a battle for me. I love dunking tons of biccies into my cuppa, the weather here makes me crave sweet stuff, and frankly, I do love it. But giving myself a treat a day - even a small one - seems to keep the cravings and the weight in check.


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Flarkit said...

Right, right, right. Too much dairy = bad for you. Too much sugar = bad for you. Too much protein = bad for you. Too much (ok, 'many') carbs = bad for you.

To my fevered mind, it's all because (drum-roll)... we're OMNI-vores. Our diet is meant to consist of a combination of the above, right? Cutting out the carbs, or the animal proteins, or the veg, is unsurprisingly bad for us.

Now add the fact that each of us has a somewhat unique body, means that our diets need to be balanced for the individual. But if one simply learns to listen more closely to your bod, it'll probably let you know where you're making mistakes.

Thanks for the useful series Peas, hopefully it'll get them readers thinking more about the ole diet.

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Coffee & Books said...

From the Peanut Gallery:
Fruit best taken on an EMPTY stomach.
Full cream milk and butter far better for you than low-fat stuff etc which has been processed more. Low-fat/organic/Coke-Zero etc just another marketing scam. Organic wine is a joke.... has higher amounts of sulphur than other types. And don't listen to conspirationalist theories about "gentic modification etc" messing up the food/fruit so supplements are ESSENTIAL." Yet another marketing scam. A banana is a banana. Eat them. LIVE SIMPLY. EAT A BALANCED VARIED BASIC DIET UNPROCESSED STUFF (its cheaper anyway), DRINK LOTS OF WATER, 1.5 litres/day.. 2 glasses red wine daily is fine. and build MODERATE EXERCISE into your daily routine.. like simply walking fast to work. and RELAX! Dadx

Coffee & Books said...

..and laugh lots....

Peas on Toast said...

All true. Nice work dad xx