acroyear: (lion rest)
Eat This, Not That - Kudos-to-Macaroni-Grill:
We've harped on Romano's Macaroni Grill for years. As home to such belly-ballooning classics as the 1,810-calorie Spaghetti and Meatsauce dinner and the 1,630-calorie New York Cheesesteak (with Caramel Fudge Sauce) dessert, we'd all but written off the Grill as a nutritionist's worst nightmare.

Those dietary disasters still lurk on the menu. But the latest upgrade in the Mac Grill's food offerings shows an entirely different culinary landscape. To our (enormous and pleasant) surprise, we now feel confident steering you toward this Italian-themed chain.

THE GOOD:
If you're at the Grill for lunch, order from the Mediterranean Grill section. If you're there for dinner, take your pick from the list of plates under Amore de la Grill (with the exception of the pork chops). All calorie counts fall in the reasonable range, and we're pleased that Romano's has added these fitter-fare choices.
They say the pasta's still awful in calorie-counts, but if you can hold yourself back, splitting a meal in two (either sharing, or saving for a second lunch the next day) might help. I've gotten better at that than I thought I would.
acroyear: (sick)
Self-refilling bowls: An idea whose time should never come : Cognitive Daily:
One "trick" dieters often use is to put their food on a smaller plate. The idea is to fool yourself into thinking you're eating more food than you really are. But doesn't our stomach tell us how full we are?

Actually, it doesn't. Brian Wansink has devoted his career to studying how perception of food intake relates to actual eating behavior. Together with James Painter and Jill North, he's come up with a dramatic demonstration of how wrong our stomachs can be.
acroyear: (fof pb neverending)
with the start of a new 14 week session by the ED, i've started up the fitness posts again.  if you didn't see one just before this one, but would like to be on the list to help me stick to it (I've added many already on the 14weeker, based on their FB membership), simply reply here.
acroyear: (cooking)
[open post, not locked to fitness filter]

'cause it's been more of the same - usual breakfast, difficulty finding lunch, careful with the snacking even under stress moments, stir fry or low-cal dinner, maybe i worked out, maybe not (last week was sick, so no exercise at all...)

was a good boy this week with Cheesecake Factory, Sunday being our first trip to a *really* heavy-cal restaurant since we started this.  both ate half of the plates and saved the rest for a lunch, AND only ate 1/3 of the cheesecake (and all the whip cream), saving the rest of that for yesterday, a day i intentionally didn't have a drink or afternoon snack in order to make sure i hate the calorie space for it.

2 nights ago, i got inspired to pan-sear some halibut from Wegmans, but made some changes:
  • before starting all this, I started a small pot of rotini boiling, timing everything so the pasta would be done 'round when the fish was ready to be pulled
  • in addition, i had a bag of fresh baby spinach leaves ready...

  • pour 1-2 tbsp olive oil into the pan and heat on medium-high 'til it starts shimmering
  • semi-coat both sides of halibut with searing-flour (a combination of flower, light salt, and white-pepper
    • here, i also added no-salt lemon and herb mix, same i used in a recipe a while ago
  • follow the directions to pan-cook it - 5 minutes, bottom-side up, then flip and 2-3 minutes top-side up
  • now here's where i got different.  instead of the basting oil, i made my own with
    • 1/4 cup white wine (a dry pinot grigio from tuscany will do...)
    • 1 tbsp margarine
    • rosemary and garlic from the spice rack
  • the wine boils faster, so be careful and be quick about it - push the fish to the side of the pan, pour those ingredients in and stir, spooning it onto the fish to baste
  • remove the fish and plate it (covering with foil) but keep the heat on...

  • pour the drained pasta into the frying pan
  • add half a bag or more of the spinach leaves (remember, they shrink quickly when cooked)
  • add a little more wine and butter
  • stir fry quickly, letting the spinach and pasta absorb the rest of the pan juices 'til the spinach is cooked
  • serve with the fish
thus, the pan-searing of the fish, AND a florentine side, all in one pan...maybe 650-700 calories each, depending on the size of the fish and how much of the wine you drink while cooking. :)

why am i not worried 'bout not journaling so daily anymore?  as of this morning, contingency is met: 15 pounds down since January 15th.  I am now at my weight from 2002.

Still 5 pounds to goal, but the discipline is sticking...and a co-worker (who's new and doesn't really know me) today asked why have I been "shrinking" :)
acroyear: (this is news)
The Intersection: Science Reveals How To Lose Weight And Keep It Off:
The latest edition of the New England Journal of Medicine features research out of the Harvard School of Public Health and the Pennington Biomedical Research Center. Scientists monitored individuals for two years on one of four popular diets: low fat, high carb, high fat, and high protein. The results (drumroll please.....)

It's all about calories.

Go figure.
NEJM -- Comparison of Weight-Loss Diets with Different Compositions of Fat, Protein, and Carbohydrates:
ABSTRACT

Background The possible advantage for weight loss of a diet that emphasizes protein, fat, or carbohydrates has not been established, and there are few studies that extend beyond 1 year.

Methods We randomly assigned 811 overweight adults to one of four diets; the targeted percentages of energy derived from fat, protein, and carbohydrates in the four diets were 20, 15, and 65%; 20, 25, and 55%; 40, 15, and 45%; and 40, 25, and 35%. The diets consisted of similar foods and met guidelines for cardiovascular health. The participants were offered group and individual instructional sessions for 2 years. The primary outcome was the change in body weight after 2 years in two-by-two factorial comparisons of low fat versus high fat and average protein versus high protein and in the comparison of highest and lowest carbohydrate content.

Results At 6 months, participants assigned to each diet had lost an average of 6 kg, which represented 7% of their initial weight; they began to regain weight after 12 months. By 2 years, weight loss remained similar in those who were assigned to a diet with 15% protein and those assigned to a diet with 25% protein (3.0 and 3.6 kg, respectively); in those assigned to a diet with 20% fat and those assigned to a diet with 40% fat (3.3 kg for both groups); and in those assigned to a diet with 65% carbohydrates and those assigned to a diet with 35% carbohydrates (2.9 and 3.4 kg, respectively) (P>0.20 for all comparisons). Among the 80% of participants who completed the trial, the average weight loss was 4 kg; 14 to 15% of the participants had a reduction of at least 10% of their initial body weight. Satiety, hunger, satisfaction with the diet, and attendance at group sessions were similar for all diets; attendance was strongly associated with weight loss (0.2 kg per session attended). The diets improved lipid-related risk factors and fasting insulin levels.

Conclusions Reduced-calorie diets result in clinically meaningful weight loss regardless of which macronutrients they emphasize.
acroyear: (sick)
and was shocked at how bad some restaurant's foods can be, even the ones you think might be healthy.

one example, Outback's salmon dinner w/ baked potato is actually far worse than the 8oz prime rib (mind you, with broccoli and baked sweet potato).

tgif's salads are mostly over 900 cal each thanks to the fried meats and excess dressings or sugars.

the loaded chili-cheese burger + fries at chili's has as much sodium at 14 large McDonalds fries.

ick.
acroyear: (fof morning already)
Cold breakfast cereal is one of those "can't stop" food items, and the reasons are clear once you understand the rules for eating cereal while watching after-school or saturday morning cartoons:
  • pour cereal to fill the bowl
  • pour milk
  • eat until you run out of milk
  • add milk
  • eat until you run out of cereal
  • add cereal
  • eat until you run out of milk
  • add milk
  • etc etc etc. 
  • repeat until by total coincidence you run out of milk and cereal at the same time.
  • then you're done. 
  • and so are at least 3 programs you were watching.
note that being "full" never enters into it.
acroyear: (sick)
I got a snack craving (it's a diet, duh), and am staring very very intently at the Nature Valley Sweet & Salty Bar that I, of course, can't eat because I'm awaiting to see if it is or isn't on the (still incomplete) recall list.

grumble...ok, gave up and just had regular peanuts...
acroyear: (Default)
tracking my attempts to keep an eye on my excess calories (and the drinking that contributes to them).  if anybody wants to keep glance at it (and nag me if/when i screw up and eat a whole freakin' outback nystrip w/ 2 beers after a large five guys lunch and a cholesterol-induced McD's mcmuffin all in one day), just reply here.
acroyear: (foxtrot saving time)
Frozen Scallops (about 20 total: 100 cal each person)
Brocolli (about 1 cup: 15 each cal - doubling to 2 cups acceptable if you can eat that much)
Lipton noodle-sides, "Alfredo" whole-wheat (110 cal each)
1 tbs butter/margerine (35 cal each - a second tbs is needed for the noodle-side but that's counted in there already)

seasoning: Salt-free Lemon & Herb, with a touch more black pepper from a mill.

while noodles are cooking, melt butter in frying pan with seasoning.  add scallops and brocolli and pan-fry on med-low heat 'til cooked, which should be about half the time the noodles will take (noodles: 12 min; scallops, 'bout 8 if frozen; less if fresh).

15 minutes, 300 calories, and i'm *done*.
acroyear: (beers and bells)
Cocktails and calories: Beer, wine and liquor calories can really add up. Here are the breakdowns for your favorite bar beverages - Nutrition | Shape | Find Articles at BNET:
What wets your whistle? A cold beer? A slushy margarita? A glass of red wine? At a party, a happy hour or a night by the fireplace, a drink is such a natural accompaniment that sometimes we forget about the calories we're consuming. Big mistake: Calories from alcohol add up quickly. Our bodies don't register liquids in terms of fullness," says Elizabeth Somer, R.D., a nutritionist and author of The Origin Diet (Henry Holt, 2001). "The reason you gain weight from alcohol is that you don't compensate by eating less later. You still eat the same amount, regardless of whether you had the drink."

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