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Is it just me, or is there too much "math" to diet easily?

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Old 01-19-2007, 08:13 PM   #1
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Default Is it just me, or is there too much "math" to diet easily?

It would be one thing if we were just to have to learn how to properly "eyeball" or properly create a "single" serving of any amount of food...but I'm truly truly discouraged at having to figure out the correct number of calories needed per day and creating meals that are supposed to be delicious, but have so many "not in my pantry" ingredients...and then trying to multiply the recipes for my family of five (of whom three are complaining that now they are going to be on a diet because Mom is on the diet...seriously, is this type of "support" normal?)

But the calories and carbs and everything else is driving me nuts. I just want to sit and eat. I'm game for eating healthier, and *want* to learn what foods are better for me (dark green veggies vs light green veggies for example). But when I start having to count and perform mathematical feats...I just want to chuck it all.
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Old 01-19-2007, 08:28 PM   #2
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Honestly, I don't count calories unless I'm trying to get an estimate of where I'm at. I have a general idea of the calories in stuff and I constantly read labels but for actual food, I don't count calories. I know veggies are generally low calorie, I know beans are high fiber but aren't exactly low calorie so I limit my portions, I know brown rice is good for you but can also have calories so I limit portions, I know lean cuts of meat/white poultry is good but should limit portions as well.

Maybe you should work on portion sizes, eating foods in their more natural state, shopping for groceries in the perimeter of the store rather in the middle and increasing fruits and veggies. Honestly, that is all I really do. If I find I'm not losing weight at the rate I like, I do tweak it a bit. There are also some weeks where I will count calories just to get a general idea of where I am at.
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Old 01-19-2007, 08:47 PM   #3
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Exclamation Hugs Tookshire....

I think you should work within your comfort zone. I am all for the KISS method! Do what you are going to be able to continue or build upon long term. I don't count calories but I keep an general idea in my mind. Right now I am using Slimfast Ultima shakes for morning and mid afternoon "mini-meals" and I am making two other healthy meals--a lean protein, lots of veggies and a fruit. Then a small snack--diet hot cocoa, a small amt of raw nuts in the evening. I will soon replace the Slimfast with two more mini-meals but it was easier to start with just two meals for me. I keep a general tally to keep things under controll.

As for the support, I have 4 kids under 10 and a DH who drenches salads with drsing. I am the only one who will eat fish. I usually make a veggie or salad that we all share. I would say that half the nights we eat the same protein. The other nights I make two different dinners, but that is not unusual for me anyway. I am limiting my carbs for now so I make them what they will eat for now. I would like to change them over to brown rice and whole grain pasta but I will have to do that gradually. I come here for support. My kids know that I am trying to eat healthier but I am careful not to draw them into the "mom's on a diet mindset."

Does any of that help? Do what is easiest for now and then you can tweak it as you go along and get into it. Good luck!
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Old 01-19-2007, 10:41 PM   #4
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Hi Tookshire,

You might want to look for a plan that can work well with your day to day life. Not all plans require counting and measuring. Hubby and I are on Southbeach and the kids are eating the same meals we eat. They have complained about some things, but overall, the food is delicious and they are enjoying it. Southbeach doesnt require that you count calories. It is advised that you measure portions in the beginning to get a good idea about portion control. We tend to think that oversized portions are normal and don't realize that they are very oversized.

If your plan is aggravating you now, IMHO I dont think you will be able to stick with it for long term. Try to pick an eating plan that can become your lifestyle from now on....not just a diet.
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Old 01-19-2007, 10:45 PM   #5
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You know what... I've lost 74 lbs and I've honestly probably measured 2 things. Do what works for you! I just started eating my meals and salad plates, eating snacks in toddler bowls, drinking tons of water, and remembering that it's OK to slip once and a while as long as you get back on the wagon again . If you do something you can't stick with, it won't work! You have to do something you can do everyday and live with. I only ballpark count calories because it's an easy thing for me to estimate. I know a starch of a certain size will have 100 cals etc and it's easier to me than having to worry about all the other numbers.

You can do it!!! Slow and steady wins the race, too . Don't be discouraged if you don't lose 10 lbs a week... If you keep yourself in check, make healthy choices, and stay on track (or close to it most of the time) you will succeed!

Good luck!
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Old 01-20-2007, 02:37 AM   #6
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In the begininning I measured most things to get an idea what 4ozs of chicken cutlets look like. what one cup of cereal looks like, 1/2 cup of milk, 1 tsp peanut butter, etc. This wayI would have a visual of what everything looks like. I've measured a couple of times since then to remind me every now and then. BUt I really don't sit and measure my food. When I count my calories it's an approximate. A container of yogurt is always 60 calories. A pudding is 60 as well. I would probably say that I watch my calories as opposed to watcing them. If if have an extra few ounces of cauliflower or a few extra bites of chicken, no harm done.

Losing weight takes a certain amount of determination and work. No one said it was ever going to be easy. But it certainly shouldn't be difficult either. Find what works for YOU. Good luck
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Old 01-20-2007, 03:10 PM   #7
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Personally, I find counting calories difficult. I like to know the general nutrient values found in the foods I eat most often (like calories, total fat, saturated fat, sodium, protein, fibre) - and I try to pay attention to calorie/fat values for other foods. I sometimes wonder if I eat too little or too much at times, so counting calories can be hepful from time to time to make sure I am getting enough nutrients. I have been able to lose weight this way, although I would like to know that I am getting enough - but counting seems more inconvenient than helpful for me at this point and time. Most importantly, you have to find out what works best for you and go with your strengths. You can definitely do this, keep at it!

If your family has a hard time with the type of food they have to eat because of your eating changes, maybe they can help with food preparation and make some of the foods they like to eat too if they are old enough, etc?
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Old 01-20-2007, 04:44 PM   #8
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Thanks everyone. I've not given myself over to a plan as of yet...I was just trying to figure out what caloric intake I should have plus a few other things, like getting fat grams and carb things down. Portion sizes I'm actually pretty good at...I've never had a problem with those (though I remember years ago on a diet that I was shocked that a serving of cereal was so tiny). My fat-prob has rested with the inbetween eating and the total disregard for exercise on any regular plan. I've been waiting for the new paycheck and research on my part of varying diets. I don't truly want to be on a diet, and I would much rather stick to the perimeter of the store (fresh veggies, fruits, and that sort of thing). I'm finding it very expensive...though I have learned to cut costs by visiting a farmer's market and a local produce store for some items (bell peppers, dark lettuces and tomatoes, for example, are a steal at those places vs. the grocery). But I feel almost as if I'll slip farther and faster without some sort of written plan...much easier to cheat "just this once" if there's no rules to cheat on...but, ugh, the rules I know of are too mathematical. Thanks for the encouragement, ladies.
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Old 01-20-2007, 08:17 PM   #9
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Hi again! May I give just a word of caution? Although I joined 3FC in November, I didnt start actually dieting until almost 3 weeks ago. I put dieting on hold until I could find the "perfect" plan for me. But, there is no perfect plan. There are tons of diet books and plans out there. I understand that you'd like a written formal plan. That's what works for me, too. But in the meantime, you might try making small changes each day...ie, diet soda instead of regular soda, eating a healthy breakfast each day, etc. This will help you get started on building your new lifestyle and the whole family will benefit, too.
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Old 01-20-2007, 11:22 PM   #10
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You also don't have to tackle everything at once.

I started just watching portions and bringing snacks and lunch to work. Later I started calorie counting. Then I focused on exercise. Then I started paying more attention to WHAT I was eating.

Like many problems, if you break it into smaller ones it can become easier.
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Old 01-20-2007, 11:32 PM   #11
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I made normal everyday meals for my family. Meat, vegetables, potatoes ... I just didn't eat the potatoes and had salad instead. Like has been said many times ... little things make all the difference.
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