Another good book

I recently ordered a book by Susan Yager with the intriguing title The Hundred year Diet: America's Voracious Appetite For Losing Weight. I'm waiting for the book to come in, but the quote in The Wall Street Journal's book review section was enough to hook me. It mentioned a prior WSJ article with a great line from a physician saying, "If there were a drug with the same benefits as exercise, it would instantly be the standard of care."

Yager's book traces our preoccupation with dieting from the early 19th century to the present. Now we're tracking our calories, watching out for high-fructose corn syrup, but prior fads had us on high protein diets, chewing our food and chewing it and chewing it before we finally swallowed the mouthful, avoiding this food or that.

I'm waiting for Yager's relatively slim volume (it's only 260 pages in length), but in a few minutes I'm going to go to the gym and ride a recumbent bike for 65 minutes (or more) until I'm past the 20 miles/650 calorie mark. I'll do some stretches and work on a few machines, but for sure I'm going to ride the bike.

Lynnette in the meantime will be out walking. A recent book by Miriam Nelson and Jennifer Ackerman with the title of "The Strong Woman's Guide to Total Health" suggests brisk walking for an  hour a day. Nelson was the co-chair of the group that authored the 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans and directs a center at Tufts which concentrates on obesity prevention.

So there's two approaches to losing weight. I don't believe in "fad diets." I do believe in eating less and doing more. Our diet increasingly focuses on more fruits and vegetables and we're looking in to the options with a local CSA (community-sponsored agriculture) organization. We can purchase an "egg share," a vegetable share," a winter vegetable share," and/or a "fruit share."

Here are the concepts that appeal to me strongly: buy local, eat more of the good stuff and find some form of exercise that you're capable of and will do on a regular basis. Carve some time for it out of your busy life. Eat slower. Enjoy your dining companions conversation. Drink some water before that first bite. Serve really small portions of anything you crave that is obviously fattening.

Stay away from fad diets.

4 Responses to “Another good book”

  1. I've been reading a lot about the CSAs and it looks like there are interesting local options. Do you have any prior experience with Grant Farms or the others? I've purchased from several farms at our Farmer's Markets but have never tried the CSA option.

  2. Peter Springberg says:

    We've also purchased a number of food items from the Farmer's Markets, but this will be our first CSA experience. We plan to travel a good bit this next year and wondered what we'd do with food deliveries on the weeks we're gone. We will have a young couple staying at our home then, but they may or may not want to Get the CSA items at the nearby drop-off spot and eat here. Now we've learned that that Grant Farms will donate any food we'll not be able to pick up to our local Food Bank.

  3. Johnny says:

    Oh, superb text! No idea how you were able to write this’d take me days. Well worth it though, I’d suspect. Have you considered selling banners on your website?

  4. My wife and I are both retired Air Force medical people; she continues to see a few pro bono patients and I now confine my medically-related efforts to my blog. We each have a pension, find those adequate for our low-key lifestyle and otherwise donate to local causes. I don't mind getting a few $ for my writing, but would not consider commercializing my blog.

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