Monday, February 05, 2007


Can I substitute Vegetables for the fries? This has become the most common question I ask when I go to Restaurants. A simple yet effective way to eliminate useless carbs and grease from my diet. As part of my job, my presence is often required at business lunches, and being able to gracefully order and not create too much of a fuss is an important skill. At the generic chain restaurants, Apple-bees/Ruby Tuesdays/etc, which are often the venue, avoiding "white" carbs and grease is problematic. At the White Linen Tablecloth places that we attend, its rather easy. I often notice how the less expensive the establishment, the more food they serve per dollar spent. A big ass burger with a truck load of fries and a beer is 10 bucks. A steak with a salad, a side of veggies and a "Luncheon Sized" Manhattan, straight up of course, is 25 dollars. In the modern American sense of value,the cheaper meal is a better value. Now, don't get me wrong, I enjoy a beer and a burger as much as the next person, but, at what point did quantity become a substitute for quality? Is a slab of ground beef and processed cheese food really comparable to broiled tenderloin topped with roquefort, just because its cheaper? I cannot afford to spend $25 a day on lunch. Which is why I pack my lunch on most days. There are however many people who spend $10 everyday at these food factory's and suffer the consequences.

The advertising for the cheap food places says nothing about the quality of the food, its all about the quantity. Post WW2, I could understand the appeal of this sort of thing, just coming out a long period of national deprivation and all. But now, damn, what drives this whole mind set? The richest nation in the history of the world eats like a starved beggar at a banquet, eschewing quality, and simply gorging like there is not going to be a meal tomorrow

The conspiracy nut in me sometimes goes into overdrive. A fat, well fed, if sickly populace, is easy to manage and unlikely to rebel. Have we been sold down the path of cheap food to divert our attention away from what the government is really doing? Was the real lesson of the French revolution that you can do what ever you want as long as the peasants have plenty to eat? Hmm. One of the most common complaints I hear, and have myself, about eating a reduced carb, and nutrient dense diet is the expense. If everyone suddenly had to pay the real cost of producing food, with out government subsidies and fake fillers etc, how fat do you think the populace would be a year from now? How much unrest would there be in the streets? How much difference is there between cattle feed lots and modern corporate America? Keep the Animals from moving to much, feed them energy dense grain based food, and shove them full of medicine because the food is bad for them. I see striking ! parallels. Scully and Mulder, where are you when your nation needs you most??


Cindy said...

I mainly get salads when I eat out. Caesar salad with chicken is the most common. I could eat that every day.

You do have to be careful, but I have found that most places will allow at least a side salad in place of the fries. Dressing on the side! Last place I went to the dressing was apparently loaded with HFCS!!! They poured a big old ladle full, but I asked for it on the side. Good thing! At least I didn't get the full dose!

ike said...

Sorry but this has nothing to do with fries and salads per se.

I have been looking for info on the idea of an HIT/low-carb lifestyle, so this blog is refreshing.

I happen to be have juvenile diabetes. Now at age 28 I'm carrying far too much fat. Anywho, over the past few years I've noticed a few things. First of all when I go low-carb I lose weight for a while (usually a few months before I hit a platueau. I get to the point when I'm injectin so little insulin that if I forget to take any at all for a day, my blood sugar remains normal. (I start to think of researching needles that allow me to inject fraction of a unit at a time.)

I've also dabbled in resistance training and I've been convinced of the efficacy and superiority of HIT by the like of Mentzer and Ellington Darden. (I don't know about the whole superslow thing yet though. The effect of HIT on my insulin is similar to that of an LC diet, though not as extreme. I do have to drastically reduce the amounts of insulin I need to take. I lose some weight.

I haven't kept up the HIT for long ever. ANd i've never done both resistanc train and LC diet at the same time. It seems that I might need a unit of insulin a week if I do both.

To get to the point: It seems that HIT and LC dieting are incompatible. Apparently the body cannot use fat during HIT. It must use glocose. Atkins talks of Ketosis as a metabolic state. One is either in Ketosis or in Glycolysis. Therefore one cannot train that hard while in ketosis ( as necessary state for LC fat loss)

Do you see my dilemma? Am I right on the science. THanks

K. Dill said...

IMHO, A ketogenic diet, generally less than 60g carbs/day, and HIT are not the best match. A low carb diet, defined for this discussion as more than 60g Carbs but less than 150g, can work very well with HIT. Fred Hahn, of Serious Stength, would disagree. He and the Eades, (Protein Power), advocate a ketogenic diet, and use "SlowBurn" training. Its all very individual, and given that you have Type 1, there may be other considerations.

Big Daddy D said...

It seems that most of the cheap and convenient foods are high in carbs.I for one am willing to pay for quality over quantity. But it is very pricy to eat well.

It seems that it is very popular to blame obesity on fast food chains like McDonald's. What's next, blame the farmers who supply them?

You mentioned conspiracies... Another conspiracy theory... is the government's food pyramid designed in a manner to give more business to American grain farmers? Think about what turning the pyramid upside down would do to those who make a living on wheat and corn!