Thursday, November 23, 2006

Good Food, Bad Day

Would you want to live a long life without good food?

Chanced upon this article. (via).

Very timely. I have been on a calorie restricted diet for the past week plus. Ok, I should state that I am not at all a careful eater. I am, in fact, quite an indiscriminate eater. I hate mentally counting calorific and nutritional value of each and every food item I put in my mouth during the day. I really don’t know if that is a good thing. It’s definitely not the way we live back home.

I think it’s more or less true for a majority of people that they tend to put on weight when they move abroad. It’s especially true for students. Stress, no cooking skills, junk food everywhere and also the cheapest available. Well, at least as long as I exercise regularly I don’t have a problem with what I eat. I have however, pretty much given up trying to look skinny, because I really don’t think I could ever look skinny without looking sick. Last time I tried that I got told off by my mom who said my face looked dried out and dehydrated and why the hell did I want to look like 30 year old in my 20’s.

My exercise routine this term has been awful though. When I was working last term I used to go the gym five to six times a week. I thought school would give me more time, which is not at all true. There are group meetings, deadline, papers, mid terms, exams and my schedule is all over the place. I have probably averaged two visits a week to the gym over the last three months. Of course, I do walk as much as I possible can, which is a pretty decent amount.

So anyway, little exercise + eating anything I want = bloated me.
And say anything you want, a calorie restricted diet is the easiest and fastest way to loose weight. But it’s a short term quick start solution and definitely not a long term plan. And I just think that advocating it as a lifestyle is a bit scary.
From one of the blogs mentioned in the article:
“Last night I finished high: at 1687 calories. Its funny, I woke this morning with so much guilt….”

Of course there is also the small matter of us actually knowing very little about how food and nutrition actually work. Well, we all know that a lot of the junk food out there is really, really unhealthy but beyond that it’s a big grey area. Remember when nuts were considered completely unhealthy? Now they are healthy because they have ‘good’ fats – just don’t eat more than ten of them in a day. There are new trends every few moths almost it seems. No carbs, good carbs, no sugar, no eggs, no proteins for dinner. Nowadays, eating a little bit of ghee is actually recommended. Who’d have thunk? Oh and what about that study that said a low fat diet didn’t affect a person’s health much?

I do believe that there is value in a lot of the nutritional research out there. But one needs to take it with a pinch of salt. Plus why would I want to live till for a hundred or so years if I have to critically analyze every tiny morsel I put in my mouth? It’s like what they say about smoking. You don’t live longer…it only feels longer.

Have you ever had one of those days which seem like such a complete waste?? I feel like that today. I had to go to the Italian embassy today around 2 o’ clock (they don’t open in the mornings on Thursdays!). So I spent the morning getting all my papers in order. Only to land up at the embassy and be told that I needed a travel insurance with a $60,000 coverage and another letter from my school. Gah!!
So I rushed to the travel agents to get my insurance and badgered the school administration no end in the hope that I would be able to make it back to the embassy before they closed. Small problem – I (for some reason) thought they closed at 4.30. Only to reach the embassy at 3.56 and find out they actually close at 3.30. Sigh. What’s up with this one and a half hour opening time?? I just spent the whole day running around and have nothing to show for it. Except my taxi and insurance bills. Will trudge back to the embassy tomorrow. Hopefully everything will work out. *Prays*
P.S: I also came home and found out I had lost my cash card....crap day....


The Poodle's Friend said...

Of course ghee is healthy! It makes you happy, and anything that makes you happy must be good for you, right?

Oh dear. Stupid Italian embassy. Don't worry, szerelem, it'll work out. It wouldn't be worth it if it all worked out too easy. You have to stress over it first so that it's more fun when you eventually get there!

Tabula Rasa said...

oops bad day. write it off. hunker down with a bottle of booze and make the best of it.

i agree with tpf: anything that makes you happy must be good for you. but easy with that logic -- i had a health scare last year following which i dropped twenty pounds just by eating smart. the most critical thing is to avoid processed foods. poison.

Panacea said...

And here I'm bitching about a bad week. Yours seems to be clearly worse! Sorry! Well, it can only get better from here, cant it?

I gave up worrying about my food habits just a year ago. It just made me into a happier person, and a more satisfied person really. I havent even gained any substantial weight from last year, so I'm quite happy.

Salil said...

My sympathies...Bad Day...Bad Week... Wanna exchange places..? heh.. But I give you mine solemn assurance that I will make up soon... with vengeance..!!

So what’s wrong with the Italian embassy shutting down early, those people just want to enjoy a little afternoon siesta... :P Don't kill me!!

And I will plagiarize the comments from
Tpf: little Ghee is good; it would not be worth it without all the running around
TR: End you day with booze if you are having a bad day
P: Stop worrying about the food habits, just try eating healthy...

And don't misconstrue my intentions..!! :)

jerry said...

yea, a crap day...anyway best of luck!

MockTurtle said...

TR is spot on. Eat well, sleep well, exercise when possible and avoid processed foods like poison. Everything else will fall into place.
Wow, your travel issues never let up. Hats off to you for plodding on. I'm sure you'll enjoy your trip all the more for the effort.

Szerelem said...

TPF: =D If only food logic always worked like that!!
And stress or no stress I know I am going to enjoy Italia!

TR: I smoked one of the cigars I had lying around. I know what you mean about processed food. I just find it funny that healthy food is so much more expensive. Not to mention the fact that processed food with all that starch and sugar is soo addictive!!

Pan: well it did get better!! The next day the embassy gave me, well not no trouble, but very minimal trouble. Should have my visa by next week =D

Salil: Muchos thanks for the sympathies. And anal embassy pricks don’t need anyone’s understanding!! And I would only exchange places with you if you had better plans for December than I do =P
Btw, do you ever plan to update??

Jerry: Thanks :D

MT: No option but to plod on. Finer crossed till everything gets sorted out!

MISSquoted** said...

i tried giving up ice cream...for good...once...long ago...unsuccessfully.
now i just watch the beautiful girl[inxs] video for inspiration.
FAcT and FATe. cannot debate those down eh??

sympathies for the less than average day.

GhostOfTomJoad said...

Sorry, sounds like a lousy day. But, then, you're going to Italy and what's Italy without the drama :-) Hope the travel arrangements work out just fine.

Healthy food is so much more expensive than processed food because it costs that much more to produce :-)

Salil said...

I have submitted to the request.. you should overlook these small inconsistencies on my behalf,,, for old times sake... :P thanks for goading me into updating.. enjoy..

I am off from the 8thDec to some first week of Jan.. its aristrocratic treatment@HOME.. SO YEAH, i have the better plans... planning to roam the bylanes Brazil for next summer with couple of frens, wanna join..?

Salil said...

Traveler’s Tip:: A wise man once said, When in Rome,,,,,,,,,,, do the Romans..**

the wannabe indian punkster said...

Hold your head up grasshopper!

And welcome to the club of weird, indiscriminate eaters. I know for a fact that counting every calorie before putting the food in my mouth does not work because I've tried it and it only left me extremely miserable and disheartened. I gave up on it and started eating what I wanted to eat (I must say that Ive never craved junk food, sweets, chocolate or sugar...I dont have a taste for my taste palette comes in handy, actually) but I worked out 5 times a week and it really helped.

So everything in moderation and not worrying about food habits along with tons of working out and you should be good to g.o.


Szerelem said...

Miss**: No ice cream forever?? That just sounds depressing!! I could never do that I have a terrible sweet tooth!

Ghost: Ya, too much drama if you ask me. But as of now looks like everything should work out :D
Are you still in Bombay?

Salil: That’s unfair….obviously home doesn’t compare. And I would love to visit Brazil! Given I have the money which looks like a serious impossibility after this December trip =( We are not all working professionals you know!
When in Rome…… do the Romans..** *cringe*
I have been warned (even by Italians!!) to stay away from over friendly males in Rome… dangerous breed they are apparently, but I wouldn’t like to jump to conclusions and all =P

Punkster: I realized counting every calorie and being paranoid doesn’t work because it only sets you up to crash really badly! I love fruits and veggies as well, but I do have a taste for all unhealthy sweets and chaats and all….sigh!!
And, yep working out really does help….it isn’t even abou the weight after a while but you feel healthier and better. So I do try and keep that going…and if I miss the gym I usually go on a 60 – 75 minute walk/jog.

thalassa_mikra said...

Welcome to my world! For the last two months, I've just been so bogged down by work that I have had zero physical activity - hence the pounds have piled up.

I think calorie restriction with moderate exercise is the way to go, I'm doomed by crappy metabolism as well.

Please don't be alarmed by the behaviour of the embassy staff, they are nothing like what most people I met in Italy were - generous, helpful, kind and amazingly friendly.

Apart for my obviously biased preference for Greece :), Italy was my favourite country in all of Europe. Although sadly, in Venice and Como you'd probably run into more tourists than Italians.

anonymouse said...

Hmmm, I should really start saving up. Round trip costs to Brazil are high. June end is my target date.

Szerelem said...

TM: A slow metabolism...sigh, I am plagued by that too!
Actually the Italian embassy didn't give me any trouble once I had all my documents (unlike the British High Commission!) and the Italians at the embassy were really sweet when I went back to pick up my passport. Plus, all the Italians I know are adorable! They are so warm and friendly.
And yes, I have heard about Como and Venice or even Florence being over run by tourists...but December isn't peak period so hopefully they will be fewer in number.

anonymouse: Save, save! Travel is terribly expensive =(
And , why does everyone want to visit Brazil?!

Salil said...

OH.. come on..!! will you move out of your Europe dreams.. :P .. Brazil is the new exotic..! Did your DAD not tell you...? heh... Visiting far east is also on the cards actually, if the finances do not stack up... maybe i will drop by..