Yesterday was Superbowl, a day for partying, eating too much, and drinking too much. I decided some time ago that I would go “off the wagon” and eat refined carbs. I know what that does– it rekindles the addictive component of eating– and I braced myself for it. I was so excited about pigging out that I had trouble falling asleep the night before! So, I first made a batch of brownies and set them aside to cool. I then made some pizza dough, but used whole wheat flour (2 cups), 1 cup of beer, 1 TBSP yeast, 1 TBSP sugar, 1 tsp salt and gradually spread it into an oiled 16″ pizza pan. I sprayed a bit of oil on top, baked it for 3-4 minutes at 550F, then topped it with tomato paste, mozarella cheese, bell peppers, onions, jalapenos, diced ham, turkey kielbasa. Next, I loaded a pound of tortilla chips into a large rectangular casserole dish, sprinkled them with a pound of blended Mexican cheese, then topped it with sauteed bison, onions, bell peppers, jalapenos, cream cheese, seasoning, kidney beans, black beans, and corn, then spooned the mix on top of and into the chips and cheese, then put it into a 375F oven to melt the cheeses. Whew! I cleaned up and sat down for the game, ready to pork out….
Oh boy! Now for that food orgasm! I dove into the pizza. It was very good– one of my best– but no food orgasm! Huh? So, I next dove into the nachos. They were good too, but still no food orgasm. Wow. By now, I was full (my stomach had really shrunk from 6 months of sensible eating). I ate one brownie. It was quite good, too, but no food orgasm. And, atop all that, I found the Superbowl game ho-hum (because I am a 9er fan) and thought the half-time show and the commercials were sup-par, compared with years past. So, there I sat, disappointed over the game, sluggish from all the food, guilty for eating 3000 calories, 180 grams of protein, and 280 grams of carbs– roughly 3 times my normal food intake– and braced for what comes next.
And what came next was the anticipated hunger/craving that results from eating refined carbs, especially a lot of refined carbs– 280 grams’ worth, not to mention the fat (which I don’t track). I woke up with my stomach growling, as though I hadn’t eaten in a day or two. Wow! I was braced for it, so I just ate my usual fruit, cottage cheese, and whey protein powder which I alternate with eggs, ham/sausage/meat or fish, and cheese. I came home at 3PM, after golf, and am usually not hungry until dinner time. I was hungry at 3PM. Foolishly, I ate some more of the same contraband as I had yesterday, though much less of it. Still, it added 1200 calories to my day– which is how much I had been eating daily, total. So, as I write this, I am up to 1700 calories and I know I will be hungry for dinner. I regret having the pizza, nachos, and brownie for lunch, much as any addict regrets their fix after it begins wearing off and vows not to do it again, only to repeat.
Been there; done that, too many times to repeat this. I need to nip this in the bud– who enjoys withdrawal of ANY kind? And, I will. I will eat minimally tonight– maybe even just some carrots and/or an apple. I am al;ready over-quota on calories, protein, and carbs, so technically, I need nothing more. But, the hunger/craving will make me eat later, so the best I can do is to keep it light. Tomorrow will be egg/ham day and I will eat 2 eggs and 100g of ham, 30g cheese. And, hungry or not (I WILL be hungry), I will not eat any more than an apple for lunch and a prudent dinner. In 2-3 days, I will be back to being comparatively “appetiteless”, which makes it MUCH easier to resist temptation.
And so it goes. I am so happy to be in control of my eating and understanding exactly how to break the carbohydrate addiction. Each time I deviate from sensible eating, I pay a price. It’s not all for naught, though, because each time I gain better insight as to how this works, what it does, and how the craving and normal appetite are indistinguishable from each other except for when one is eliminated by controlling its factors. I am momentarily re-addicted, but know that I can break it in a day or two (1st time, a week or two). I am in control of my eating habits now. But, how many people suffer, thinking that they lack willpower or that their metabolism is abnormal or their appetite is abnormal. When a fat person is hungry, they likely feel the hunger MUCH more intensely than a non-addicted person. Rest assured, this is the addiction– the craving– which manifests itself as intense hunger. I now know to avoid refined carbs religiously to break the addiction and, from experience, know how long it will take. After years of addiction, it initially took a bit more than a week to break my addiction. The good news is that you can do ANYTHING for a week or two, even not eat at all– not that that is recommended. And, the better news is that if you cave in and indulge in the refined carbs, it only takes a day or two to break the re-addiction. Both are quite doable by anyone who wants to lose weight, and you don’t have to endure the ravenous hunger that endures through most other diets. Just avoid sugar, flour, rice, potatoes, corn (and winter squash and bananas and excessive fruit for the first two weeks).
So, food orgasms are a thing of the past and are nothing more than satisfying the intense craving from simple calorie reduction. By reducing (not necessarily eliminating) refined carbohydrates, we can control our appetites. Want a reduced appetite? Cut back on the refined carbs. Still hungry, cut back more. The Carbs control the appetite! By reducing the carbs, our bodies transition into fat-burning metabolism to make up the calorie deficit, and we lose unwanted fat.
If you made a New Year’s resolution to lose weight, and your weekend of partying and going off the wagon now discourages you, DON’T be discouraged. You’ve had your fun, now you can go back to sensible eating with only a day or two of withdrawal, and given your past efforts, you KNOW you can tough it out for a day or two.