Eat 4 Today – The Commitment (Day 6)

I’m not going to eat between meals and I’m not going to take seconds. Just today. And I’m going to try it for a year.

Saturday is our shopping day. We’ve kept a list all week of groceries and household supplies and other objects that need. And later today we’ll go out and buy them. Among the other things I’m going to buy is another food journal.

They say that you’re more successful in losing and controlling your weight if you write down everything you eat and drink. And I know that for me that’s true. For one thing, I am much more likely to measure and weigh what I eat if I’m going to write down the answer. And I’m more in touch with what I’m eating when I can look over a week’s worth of meals and see exactly what I’ve done.

For example, I know that I’m not eating 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day (and they’ve raised the goal to 9 servings haven’t they?). I like vegetables (I don’t much like the fruit we get in Kansas) but the preparation necessary for 5 servings every single day just doesn’t happen. And since I don’t take vitamins, I’m probably not doing so well nutritionally.

So, today — I’m thinking about vegetables and how to work them into my daily diet — rather than throwing out their rotten remains next Saturday. And in a little while, I’ll be talking about Food Journals (watch for it).

This entry was posted in Eat 4 Today - The Commitment, Health Issues, Nutrition Info, Weight Control.


  1. AndiF January 21, 2006 at 10:38 am #

    How about taking carrots, celery, and humus for lunch?

    I’m going to go to the library to get “Lies My Teacher Told Me” for the book club. May not sound like much of a commitment but the library is 21 miles away.

  2. katiebird January 21, 2006 at 10:49 am #

    Have you looked into their Homebound Programs? Maybe you could get them to mail you your books?

    And, yes — I could take fresh vegetables to work. But, I’m just getting the habit of taking my sandwich everyday. And for me that’s a real challenge. If I also expected myself to chop fresh vegetables every morning (and I know, I KNOW, I should be doing it all the night before), I’d decide that I didn’t really need to eat lunch. Which is bullshit and I would end up eating out (eating more AND spending money I don’t want to spend). And losing walking time. And mister katiebird hates throwing away the vegetables I didn’t eat (he eats his share & more) and I can’t say I blame him.

    I’m a firm believer in baby-steps and tricking myself into the improvements I want to make. So, I’m thinking that an apple with breakfast might be managable.

    And I shouldn’t be implying that I don’t eat vegetables at all. I am pretty sure I get 3 servings with dinner most nights. So, I really only have to make up two. (or 6 if I’m aiming at 9)

  3. kansas January 21, 2006 at 11:06 am #

    I covet, for my compost bin, those veggies you don’t eat, kb. With only myself to feed, I have almost no leftovers.

    Just4Today I make a commitment not to eat between meals. I didn’t do so well on that yesterday, but this is a brand new day. Kb, you’ll be interested to hear that the only time yesterday that I did succeed at it was between lunch and dinner and. . .just coincidence, I’m sure (ha). . .that was also the only time I said here that I wouldn’t eat between meals. Today I’m committing early to the whole day.

    I’m still trying to figure out what is a reasonable “first helping,” so I’m backing off the seconds thing for now.

  4. DuctapeFatwa January 21, 2006 at 11:09 am #

    Katie do not buy a food journal. You already have one right here!

    And I will presume to say that I speak for more than only myself when I say that I frequently wonder, now what is Katie eating?

    Maybe we could have little bracelets made, inscribed with WWKE? :D

    Do not underestimate what an inspiration you are, and I think it would be very helpful if you would share your experience in this jihad as manifested in what you are eating.

  5. katiebird January 21, 2006 at 11:10 am #

    I was wondering if there was a market for a story about serving sizes, measurements and portion control. It sounds like maybe there is?

    (ps) We don’t actually throw vegetables away. mister hates doing it, so we use them in something. It’s just a lot of pressure on me as I see them sitting there day after day. Haunting me. Mocking me.

  6. katiebird January 21, 2006 at 11:14 am #

    WWKE!! I could wear one that says WSKE (should)! OK, from now on the Commitment page will contain what I eat.

    For Breakfast:
    1 cup of off-brand Cheerios,
    1 cup of skim milk &
    1 mug of Coffee

    What did you eat? Anyone? Everyone?

  7. DuctapeFatwa January 21, 2006 at 11:27 am #

    Hooray! Thank you!

    Do you put even a tiny bit of sugar on your Cheerios?

    When I have my special K, I put just under half a teaspoon, and the meter doesn’t seem to mind it.

    I have only had orange juice, I have never been a breakfast eater, and now that I must eat something in order to avoid level falling too low until I want to eat, that is my compromise.

    Several reliable sources have indicated that at lunchtime, pizza will become present, and having insisted, um, ascertained, that it will indeed be the thin crust with many vegetables and no extra cheese or pepperoni, I will indulge myself in a slice or two of that, and drink unnsweetened tea.

  8. Nag January 21, 2006 at 11:31 am #

    Katie, As for raw veggies, this time of year you are sometimes better off buying frozen. Frozen fruit isn’t bad, either… just read labels and avoid the ones with anything (like sugar) added.
    This is the time of year that a lot of veggies and fruits are imported from who knows where. I sometimes make a snack out of a small bowl of frozen vegs… pop ‘em in the microwave with a dollop of Smart Balance and ta daa. Also, I get sick to death of carrot and celery sticks… I love to munch on raw green beans. For something nummy and nutritous, I love to stir fry some canned beans, a handful of a frozen veggie and some endive. I often have that for lunch, with a giant cup of green tea and a large glass of water. Lots and lots of beans for me… they are loaded with soluble fiber.
    I’m getting hungry!

  9. katiebird January 21, 2006 at 11:32 am #

    Ductape, have you purchased a good calorie/nutritional value book? There are some excellent ones out there that include major restaurants and their menus.

    There is no reason at all that you shouldn’t have pizza — but you should be aware of what is in it.

    And that’ll really be the focus of my Journalling article.

  10. katiebird January 21, 2006 at 11:35 am #

    Nag, that sounds good! Our favorite dinner is a base of “zucchini stuff” which is stir-fried zucchini and other vegetables and mozzarella cheese. Sometimes just that, sometimes chicken or tiny slivers of beef.

  11. DuctapeFatwa January 21, 2006 at 11:41 am #

    Most of them have that stuff on their websites, and I have looked at most of the ones that I frequent. It is pretty predictable, and was partially the inspiration for the fast food piece I did on here.

    I have found that with pizza, although thin crust is preferable, even if you get one of the other crusts, the trick is just eat the part with the stuff on it, and leave that big rind of crust for someone else, whether it is stuffed or unstuffed.

    Pizza is actually an excellent covert method of getting vegetables into people like me.

    If you have leftover chopped up vegetables that you will not enjoy eating, consider adopting a guinea pig or bunny rabbit. They love stuff like that.

  12. IndyLib January 21, 2006 at 12:19 pm #

    Re: veggies, we do a lot of steamed vegetables around here just because they’re so easy. I sometimes eat a bowl of leftover steamed veggies for breakfast, if I’m running low on servings. Also, here’s a super-easy recipe I really like (which I make just for me, since azesmo is not a fan of the zucchini):

    Indy’s EZ Squash & Zucchini

    1 package fresh mushrooms
    (a pint maybe?, whatever kind you like, i use regular white mushrooms)
    1 large sweet onion
    2 medium sized yellow squash
    2 medium sized zucchini
    a few cloves of garlic
    garlic powder
    black pepper
    olive oil
    1 tbsp butter (optional)

    Coat the bottom of a 10″ pan with olive oil, put it on medium heat. Slice up the onion and throw it in the pan, let it cook while you mince the garlic. Make sure the pan isn’t too hot for the garlic, turn heat down a smidge if needed, then throw the garlic in there to cook while you clean & slice the mushrooms. Throw the mushrooms in there, give it a good stir, cover the pan.

    Clean and slice up the squash and zucchini into bite sized pieces. When the mushrooms are soft, add the squash and zucchini. Add garlic powder, black pepper (any other spices you can like can go in now, too), and if you want, the butter. Cover again and cook for about 10-20 minutes, depending on how soft you like your veggies, stirring occasionally. (If too much fluid accumulates, just take the cover off.)

    I always serve this over rice, with butter, but I imagine that various butter substitutes would also work. Sometimes I cut up some leftover baked chicken in there, also good.

  13. DuctapeFatwa January 21, 2006 at 2:39 pm #

    Not to distract from the important if distateful subject of vegetables, but I have discovered that Breyers makes a half the sugar or some similar name ice cream, it has 80 calories a serving, for those who count those, and of course, less sugar.

    I cannot tell a difference between it and the regular ice cream, the other night I made a chocolate malt using it and the organic 1% blue milk, and neither I nor any of the recipients could taste any difference. I had about 2.5 inches in a glass and gave the rest to other people.

    And today I had about two tablespoons of the ice cream with some chocolate syrup (Hershey’s Extra Dark, “mildly sweet.”)

    We will see what the meter says about that. Hershey also makes a reduced sugar and carb version, as well as a sugar free version, but what can I say? I like the Extra Dark. And if you are having a small amount of ice cream, you are going to be putting only about a teaspoon of syrup on it anyway.

  14. chocolate ink January 21, 2006 at 4:21 pm #

    Just 4 Today I will again eat my oatmeal for brunch and the equivelent of a half a candy bar while reading at night. I will never be able to eat breakfast as I always feel like I have the flu for at least 3 hours when I get up everyday…so eating any kind of breakfast has always been a no go for me. However I usually skipped lunch also and then of course at night I eat everything in sight.

    So I am trying to make my self eat this oatmeal as a brunch and it has helped in my not eating quite as much at night. Baby steps. And now off to eat that oatmeal as a matter of fact.

  15. DuctapeFatwa January 21, 2006 at 4:48 pm #

    To atone for my unwarranted outburst about ice cream, here is something else you can do with vegetables to make them less unpalatable.

    Heat some vegetable oil, canola, peanut, etc. or you can use I Can’t Believe How Many Kinds of Imitation Butter There Are on the Shelves, in a large skillet, then turn down the fire and add a dollop of ginger and garlic paste (if you want, you can make your own: one part grated ginger to 3 parts peeled garlic, make it into a paste in your blender or with mortar and pestle), a little biryani masala, curry powder, a few cumin seeds, cayenne pepper, salt, this is all very flexible. Mix in with the oil, careful not to burn the spices, this is why you have turned down the fire, let the heat of the oil do the work.

    Now throw in some cut up (Sufi chop) onions, sweet (bell) chiles, broccoli and/or cauliflower florets, green beans, yellow squash, pungent chiles (Indian, thai, habanero, jalapeno) this is also flexible, use vegetables you have and will eat.

    Stir them around a bit, cover if you like and let them cook until tender, then add a dollop of yogurt, you can use the fat free 1% whatever yogurt, or not, you are only using a dollop for a panful of vegetables that will feed 3 or 4 people. You can also at this point, add about a teaspoon or two of sugar and if you live under a glucose meter dictatorship, it will not render you.

    Serve over basmati rice, let people add chopped chiles, shredded coconut, cilantro at will. If you want to make it fancier, toast some sliced almonds and add those with the vegetables. To make it even fancier, throw in some sultanas.

    And you can also add chicken or lamb or beef or shrimp, or any combination, if you want to.

  16. katiebird January 21, 2006 at 5:14 pm #

    Please, Please — Post recipes as articles so we can mark them with the proper categories and find them in the future!I totally understand the impulse to post them as part of a conversation in the comments. But one of the restrictions of this software is that we can’t easily get back to them. And if someone isn’t following the thread, they could miss seeing in entirely.

    I know that Indy posted a wonderful zucchini recipe, Ductape the Ice Cream & this vegetable dish. And I think there’ve been a couple of others in comments earlier.

    I know it’s a bother, but if you could repost recipes as articles, we would all appreciate it. And if the correct category doesn’t exist, I think you can add it. Or you can notify me and I’ll make sure it’s added.

  17. DuctapeFatwa January 21, 2006 at 5:25 pm #

    I made the vegetable one into an article, I don’t know if the remarks about ice cream qualify as a recipe, I will make the chocolate malt into one, though.

    I post them in the comments because it seems impolite to make an article that will then be on top when people are still commenting on this one. I wish the titles of the articles could go down the left side.

  18. katiebird January 21, 2006 at 5:30 pm #

    I do too and maybe someday we’ll have something like that diary option. But, for now I wouldn’t worry about posting on top of a conversation. In fact that’s probably the best time to have your story noticed!

    And at least we now have the Current Comments column so we can more easily see who’s responding to what.

    I’d love to reach the point where we have several conversations going at once.

  19. katiebird January 21, 2006 at 5:42 pm #

    I should probably admit that my lunch wasn’t a total success. Or all these recipes are just very, very appealing. I don’t know.

    I had a vegetable/bean burger, whatever that is. It tasted pretty much like the mustard I put on it. And I had a serving of fresh fruit. At the time I thought it was filling and satisfying. But, I’ve been pacing the house for the last hour or so waiting until meal time.

    I’ve even come dangerously close to opening a box of water crackers. Ok, I got the box down and opened it and smelled the crackers. But I didn’t even lick my fingers after I immediately closed it again.

    And it wasn’t a “moment” it was flat-out starvation. From a failed lunch. Well, the lunch wasn’t failed, it was with a friend of ours, so it was fun. We had a great time.

    But, next time I’m getting the hamburger (I can cut it in half and take some home).

  20. DuctapeFatwa January 21, 2006 at 5:59 pm #

    I think you bring up a very important point. If you do not enjoy your food, you will not feel like you have eaten, and it will be difficult to impossible to avoid eating between meals, or eating more than you should at the next meal.

    Now you will resist even the harmless water crackers, because you are good at this, and have been doing it a while, but for those of us who are newer, and stumbling even with our baby steps, we will be lost.

    So in my opinion, making sure that you will like your meal is just as important as making sure that your blood sugar, cholesterol, blood pressure, lupus, autoimmune system, whatever insurgent organ or system you are living with, will like it.

    You could indeed have done the burger, no bacon, no cheese, and felt like you had eaten and still made your meter happy enough.

    The thin crust pizza turned out to be pan ( I do not think the word “thin” sounds like the word “pan” but apparently some people do), but it did have lots of vegetables, and while it was supposed to have pepperoni, I could not perceive any.

    So I had two pieces of that and the above mentioned two tablespoons of ice cream with chocolate syrup.

    Then when it was time for me to eat again, I discovered that the pizzas had not been completely consumed, so I ate another piece.

    But in both cases I did not eat the big piece of crust, I stopped where the cheese stopped.

  21. katiebird January 21, 2006 at 6:16 pm #

    And the other good thing about this site is that we can have “shared experiments”. Could you tell me what the pizza did to your shugga?

  22. DuctapeFatwa January 21, 2006 at 6:35 pm #

    I am only doing morning and night now, and I did not do a special one for the pizza at lunch, if I can remember, I will do one for the 5 o clock feeding :D

  23. DuctapeFatwa January 21, 2006 at 7:07 pm #

    2 hours post large piece of pan pizza (minus crust rind) 109 !!!!

  24. kansas January 21, 2006 at 7:25 pm #

    I TOLD you to get the thing you really wanted! (Whatever it was.)

    Feel free to smack me. :)

  25. katiebird January 21, 2006 at 7:56 pm #

    {{{Ductape}}} That is thrilling. It really is good news.

    And kansas, I DID get what I wanted. Sometimes what I choose is the wrong thing. It’s part of the experiment. Now I know, that unless I combine it with something more solid (and fruit isn’t that solid), I’m going to be hungry soon after eating. I probably should have had a baked potato or something.