I'm still around, but I've been busy and subsequently veering a little bit off course in terms of everything I'm trying to stay on track with. (Including writing regularly, all kinds).
A few weeks ago, I got carried away at the library with Paleo/Primal books. I checked out Loren Cordain's The Paleo Answer, Dr. Gundry's Diet Evolution, and Taube's Good Calories, Bad Calories.
I cannot look at the cover of the last without wanting to eat a piece of toast.
I was trying to read all three, but couldn't get into them. I like books with stories. I want to hear what people did and how it affected them. I get very resistant, pissy, and critical when it feels like someone is pushing an agenda, and The Paleo Answer felt very much that way to me. The initial chapters include lengthy discussions of what's wrong with vegetarianism, what's wrong with dairy, and so on. Reading it, rather than feeling inspired, I found myself defending vegetarians and defending dairy. Cheese is good? What about Weston Price? So I stopped about a third of the way through.
Dr. Gundry's Diet Evolution is the book my doctor prescribed to me. It felt a little flat to me this time around. The most exciting thing is that he claims to have patients who reversed their cardiovascular troubles. That's worth trying. He also pushes away from the consumption of meat and moves toward more of a raw food diet, while keeping some animal products in there. Nonetheless, I also abandoned this book about a third of the way through. It reads like an infomercial.
I like Gary Taube's work, and I've kept plugging away at Good Calories, Bad Calories, albeit with a growing craving for toast. My mind is just on other things. I'm much more interested, right now, in reading Lawrence Durrell's Avignon Quintet. I'm also reading along through a big pile of Xanth novels my oldest sister sent my way, ostensibly for my kids, but I had never allowed myself to read fantasy, being a serious scholarly kind of person, and I'm enjoying them.
I've been slipping a little in my eating habits, and I think my weight is going back up. I had a little bit of Pad Thai the other night. I made some spaghetti for the kids and ate a little bit too. Yesterday, I ordered a sandwich at work and just couldn't bring myself to tell them to hold the bread. I ate an entire bag of Wasabi Wow trail mix from Trader Joe's in two days.
I'm convinced that cutting way back on carbs leads to better health, and I'm going to try to steer back in that direction, but I'm faced with a basic conflict that I don't think is addressed at all in any of the books on Paleo - I want to be healthy. Do I want to be ripped? No. Hell no. That's not really my self image. But do I want to be leaner? Hell yes. (Should I stop spooning down almond butter? Yes. Definitely.) However, I also don't want to be prissy about what I eat. Sometimes I just want a hamburger with the bun, and I don't want to be quizzing waiters about whether sugar is in the salad dressing. I like brown rice. I like the idea of vegetarianism. I like burritos. I like legumes, including peanuts.
It's hard to strike the right balance that will keep pushing you in the right direction in terms of weight and health. I'm going to keep trying to strike that balance, and I'll keep writing about it, but I think I'll write about other things as well here.
I'll leave you with a picture of our chickens. They're getting bigger, and they're eating a lot, and they're very affectionate. Well - you'll just have to trust me. Blogger doesn't want to upload the photo right now. I'll add it later, so I won't be late for work.