Friday, January 28, 2011

This is Why You're Fat

Jackie Warner's  This is Why You are Fat and How to Get Thin Forever sits on my counter next to my cookbooks.  I am not fat, and truthfully, I am a little embarrassed to own a book with this title. However, a good portion of the book is dedicated to talking about why our bodies are the way they are. Not only that, but this book makes complex bodily processes understandable to people who aren't in med school.

Personally I am a nutrition and fitness geek, so I really enjoyed reading about the organs in our bodies and the  processes involved in gaining and losing weight and/or building muscle.  I am making this sound complex but it really is very simplified in this book.

One of the chapters that I am most drawn to is her chapter on sugar. Warner claims that we are all sugar addicts, and I would hazard to guess she is right. Sugar is such an insidious, and almost invisible element to our food that we often don't realize how much of it we are taking into our bodies. To eliminate sugar out of my diet completely is daunting and well impossible. But, it is possible to only cook with agave and honey.  It is also possible to buy products that have less than 5 grams of sugar, and that is my goal for the next two weeks.  We will see where I will go from there.

Taking anything out of our diets is hard, weather its fast foods, or meat. Over the last 6 months I have become a vegetarian. First I cut out beef, than, chicken, and finally fish. I definitely could not have gone cold turkey (hahah get it) off of meat. I think the same is true for sugar, its going to take months to minimize my sugar intake. But......after doing some research on sugar, I am sickened by the image of my clean healthy body taking in this nutritional crack, that has no value, and does only damage.

Anyways, the chapter on sugar can be summarized  into one very simple statement: Sugar makes you fat, sugar weakens your immune system, sugar is addictive and changes your brain chemistry, sugar grows cancer, sugar ages your skin, and sugar makes you stupid.  Look I am not saying that I won't ever eat a piece of cake ever again, just like I may sometimes indulge in an elk steak, or a piece of sushi, but when i do eat something with high sugar content, I want it to be decadent. Eating something sugary should be a splurge not a 5 times a day occurrence.

The bottom line is that life is not a weight loss show. It is going to take months, maybe even years to transform eating habits, but I feel like the biggest threat to our health is the foods in grocery stores. This book really talks about how we can eat clean, and strengthen our body with our food choices, instead of being destructive. I have to say that I work out to damn much to counteract all my hard work by eating crap.

Over the next week I will go over in more depth this chapter on sugar as I try and cut it out of my life.

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