Saturday, January 07, 2006

The Winds of Change...

...are blowing with hurricane force. I've been contemplating this move for a few weeks now and the hard truth I've had to face is this: I need to drop some serious pounds. Period! After much research, introspection and pondering, my conclusion is to exploit my natural affinity for meat and my unusual interest in veggies (raw and cooked), two characteristics that I believe make me a pretty good candidate for smart low-carb eating. It's decided. I will begin a sensible low-carb way of eating effective Monday, January 9, which will be my official weigh-in day. I've also decided to include a weekly summary of my progress here on the site. So, starting Monday, I will limit my intake of high gylcemic carbohydrates and focus on consuming leaner protein, complex/low gylcemic carbs and healthy fats. For the next few weeks all cooking and recipes posted here will be of the low-carb variety.

After attempting vegetarianism for about a year back in the '80s (for what I considered at the time to be health benefits), I finally figured out that the vegetarian way of eating was quite unnatural for me, and I actually gained weight during that period. I ventured back to the veggie lifestyle a couple of times since then (last time was about a year and a half ago) and each time I felt great for the first couple of weeks, but after about 30 days, I found myself feeling weak, bloated and listless. Needless to say, common sense led me to abandon that idea. Now, I am in no way knocking vegetarianism, as I realise it works very well for many, and I happen to personally know a few people for whom this way of eating has done wonders. As it happens, I'm just not one of them.

While I do enjoy breads, pasta and rice, a lot, as well as the occasional dessert (completely eliminating these foods from my diet long-term is not my goal), I much more enjoy savory meat and veggie dishes (ever notice that sweets have never been showcased on this site?), which is why I've decided to give the low-carb approach a shot and see what happens. I have always enjoyed meat, even from early childhood. It's totally natural for me. What I've noticed is that when I eliminate those empty simple carbs from my diet, I lose weight. Plain and simple. But the kicker is that, unlike many people I've spoken with over the past couple of years, I possess a love for all types of veggies that they do not share. And I was quite surprised to learn that many of the people I interviewed revealed that they are not very fond of a large variety of veggies. Aside from the typical potatoes (particularly mashed and fried), carrots and corn, many rarely eat other vegetables and most simply do not share my passion for salads.

I'm a bit excited about experimenting with sensible low-carb recipes and I'm looking forward to the challenge. Though I do anticipate a bit of difficulty, particularly the first two weeks without my beloved Merlot (or any wine), I've decided that I will certainly give it my very best shot. Mos def! I plan to record my experiences here and since I refuse to forego flavourful, spicy foods (low-carb or not) and will not allow myself to become bored, I'm pretty sure the dishes I choose will be interesting, and at the very least, great tasting.

That said, I'm off to the market to stock up on the staples and other foods I'll need to ensure that my first few weeks of smart low-carb eating are successful.

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