"The researches of so many eminent scientific men have thrown so much darkness upon the subject that if they continue their researches we shall soon know nothing."

- Artemus Ward

“If you aren’t confused about health and nutrition, then you haven’t studied it long enough or deeply enough.”

- Matt Stone

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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Starvation rations

This is a picture of my breakfast this morning. Coconut pancakes with a side of bacon. Does it look like I'm deprived? Yet the scale dropped again this morning. I'm now down 110 pounds, with 10 lost just since mid-March. And yet I eat food like this *every day*. In fact this is the same thing I had for dinner last night - though today I'm shaking it up a bit later on with a shrimp and scallop stir-fry with snow peas and mushrooms and garlic, and I have some chicken livers lined up for later on in the week.

Besides, only 4 eggs left until my next Real Food delivery on Saturday, so I have to husband them wisely. :-)

Yet when most people think of the word "diet" they think of starvation rations. Breakfasts of a small fat-free yogurt and a slice of dry toast with black coffee. Lunch of a small salad with minimal dressing. Dinner of a dry skinless chicken breast. etc. In many ways I feel it goes back to our Puritan roots - obesity is a *sin* caused by gluttony and sloth, and therefore you must do penance to atone for it - which includes starvation rations.

And I'm sure everyone hears that all "diets" are doomed to failure, and inevitably people gain back the weight they have struggled to lose. Yet I am currently rereading "Good Calories, Bad Calories" where Taubes mentions that the statistics on the high percentage of diet failure are *all* based on calorie-restricted diets.

Yet surely you must restrict calories to lose weight? Isn't that what everyone says? I don't have the answers, but the more I read the more I am convinced that it's the kind of calories that matter, and not the specific number. And what kind?

Well I don't think low fat is the answer. I don't think high grains is the answer. I do think adequate protein is part of the answer, and that decent levels of fat is part of the answer. And I definitely don't think sugars or refined grains have any part in the answer, nor high-PUFA vegetable oils.

So I don't even *count* my calories. In fact I don't count anything these days. I just eat to appetite from the food groups I allow myself - good fats, good carbs, good proteins, no processed foods with long lists of frankenfood ingredients. Basically everything is made at home from scratch. I'm a supermarket perimeter shopper. That's where all the real foods are. I don't even go down the aisles unless I need toilet paper or laundry detergent.

Do I have the final answer? Damn, I wish I did. I don't think anyone has it yet. But this way seems to be working for now. 110 pounds down total, and other health markers improved as well.

But I keep reading books and blogs. I don't want to become too wedded to my own beliefs, as who knows what new truths will come to light tomorrow.

Coconut Pancakes

- 1/4 cup cream
- 2 eggs
- 2 Tbsp coconut flour
- 2 Tbsp whey protein powder (optional)
- 2 tsp baking powder
- pinch of celtic sea salt
- packet of Truvia if desired

Mix all ingredient together in a bowl until smoothly blended. If necessary add water to thin the consistency. Then cook as you would any pancakes, though you need to keep them small - like silver dollar pancakes. Otherwise they are unlikely to flip well! I usually have them with bacon. I cook the bacon first, then cook the pancakes in the bacon grease. Otherwise I cook them in coconut oil.

P.S. - based on the comment I got I did try adding 2 tbsp of whey protein powder to the mix. I'm not sure yet if I like it better, but it does make them come out with more of a "pancakey" texture.


  1. If you add a tablespoon of whey protein powder, the pancakes hold together much better.

  2. I have some whey protein powder at home. I will try that next time I make these. -)

  3. Congrats!!!

    This last January, I discovered I was wheat-intolerant. The moment I dropped wheat, not only did my every-other-day-migraines stop but I also dropped 27 lbs! And that's without "starving" myself or counting calories or killing myself with exercise. Woot!