Thursday, November 18, 2010

Testing My Philosophies: Can I Help Joe Lose Weight?

I started working with a new client earlier this week. We’re not cooking together; instead, I am helping him revamp his diet in an effort to make him healthier (and to lose weight in the process). “Joe” has given me permission to chronicle our efforts in The Delicious Truth and I’ll update his progress periodically.

Joe, a 42-year-old white male with an office job and a family, has battled weight issues his entire adult life. As of last Friday, he weighed 238 pounds (down from 250 six months ago); he wants to get below 215. Joe, a good athlete who exercises regularly, has lean muscle mass of 188 pounds, which means even 10 percent body fat (very good) puts him at 207.

But I don’t care about Joe’s weight and told him not to care either. (I actually directed him to throw out his scale.) Our goal is to get Joe healthier by eating better food and changing the way he thinks about food. His improved energy, stamina and general health will far overshadow the corresponding weight loss.

Joe doesn’t smoke and his alcohol consumption is limited. He rarely, if ever, eats obvious junk food.

Despite eating seemingly well, Joe has fruitlessly tried many diets. (I don’t find this surprising; if any “diet” worked, the multibillion dollar diet industry wouldn’t exist.)

In my opinion, Joe is a prime example of what our modern food system and its marketing adjunct have created: a healthy individual whose physical and mental well-being have been jeopardized by the tainted food supply and the corresponding psychology of fear associated with food, weight and nutrition.

I believe society’s dieting mentality and its inherent myths have caused Joe to become afraid of food, leading him to eat items like lower fat dairy products and egg white omelets, and to avoid bread.

Add the hormones, antibiotics, pesticides and synthetic additives so pervasive in our food and it's difficult for Joe to
properly satiate his body’s nutritional cravings. Sure, Joe eats, but his body is hungry, leaving him prone to snacking, especially in the late afternoon and after dinner.

My plan, which I’ll detail tomorrow, is to get Joe full on whole foods that will provide his body the nutrients it needs. Some of my suggestions may fly in the face of accepted wisdom, but look around and see where accepted wisdom has gotten us.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Joe sounds like a stud. Can we see a picture of him?

Sue B