Bread Challenge Day 13 of 30

IMG_1856I chose an assortment again today, picking a Walnut Raisin petite loaf, a sourdough boule, and two rosemary rolls totaling 540g. I’ll probably make a few veggie sandwiches, and eat the sourdough with some vegetable bean soup leftovers.

I weighed in again today at my previous low 79.7 kg from last week. It’s always nice to reproduce a low weigh-in; it tells you that the previous measurement wasn’t a fluke. This is my typical slow and steady progress under the all-you-can-eat-with-vegetables plan. Yesterday, I ate 340g of bread, a bowl of noodles, a bunch of almonds, and a dinner of tabouli, caprese, and lentil salads. That seemed like the right amount of food, since I did spin class in the morning, and rode 30km before dinner.

I’m not sure if I’ll exercise tonight or not. If I do, I’ll probably eat more starch than just this bread.

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Bread Challenge Day 12 of 30

IMG_1852This isn’t the 340g sourdough baguette I bought today, they’re some fresh egg noodles from Ranch 99 Market. It was my first time shopping at the asian foods store, and I found a lot of items far fresher and cheaper than anywhere else. This was the best noodle soup I’ve made so far, using with fresh noodles, leftover roast chicken, mushrooms, spinach, baby bok choy, cilantro, green onions, sesame oil, and a ramen soup mix package.

Needless to say, I’ve been eating plenty of additional “carbs” outside my daily pound of bread during this Challenge. They’re just calories, and when you balance them with fresh vegetables and other healthy nutrient-rich, high-fiber foods, you’ll fill up and lose weight.

Do you think I’m just lucky and have a special metabolism that can “tolerate carbs”? Then do you think the US population as a whole would get even fatter eating like I do? Or do you think they’d lose weight overall?

Telling everyone that “carbs make you fat” hasn’t worked over the last 15 years. But no accurate or reasonable nutrition advice would help the public either. People are going to eat the fat, sugar, and salt that the food industry makes for them. It’s human nature.

Bread Challenge Day 11 of 30

I picked up a loaf of Jalapeño Cheddar from Bread & Cie today. I was pretty hungry, and ate most of the 540g before dinner. Even with the butter, it’s not nearly enough calories for the day, so I made my famous Chinese No-Chicken Salad, and filmed the process:

I actually get a lot of requests from friends and family for this recipe. It’s always a hit at dinners and parties. This is probably the only dish I’ve ever created. (Besides my savory air-popped popcorn sprinkled with chicken-flavoured Top Ramen soup mix powder.) Hopefully, this video makes it foolproof to re-create it in your own kitchen.

And yes, I understand that this recipe isn’t vegan, and isn’t compliant with the McDougall plan, and wouldn’t make it into a Forks Over Knives cookbook. But this is one of the healthiest dishes I make, and the Top Ramen is an excellent source of resistance starch (it takes a while to digest).

Bread Challenge Day 10 of 30

IMG_1818I weighed-in at a new low of 79.7 kg this morning. I’m still waiting for the “bread makes you fat” effect to kick in. Instead of buying a single huge loaf of blandness today, I picked up an assortment totaling 420g. This stuff is pretty good, especially the Raisin Walnut bread. I won’t have any problems finishing today’s challenge.

Do people really believe that bread makes you fat? Yes, they do. Market studies show declining US per capita flour consumption, a 10% decrease in bread and roll sales from 2006 – 2011, and so on, and so on. These declines are attributed to negative beliefs about carbs, as started by Atkins diet in the early 2000’s, and periodically resurrected by various fad diets. Of course, people still got fatter eating less bread.

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So why do people believe that bread (carbs) make you fat? I think people are disposed to this idea, because we see that we’re all getting fatter, and we have to blame something. Some people (correctly) blame fast food and junk food. Other people’s reasoning goes something like this: A) meat is superior to bread, B) we’re eating too much of something, so C) let’s stop eating bread (alternatively, “it’s the bread that makes you fat”).

Or, the reasoning is something like, “eating meat will give me muscles”, “eating fat will make me fat”, and “eating dough will make me doughy”.

People might believe that “carbs make you fat”, because we naturally believe in the potency of small ingested things. (Our survival selected for it.) We also believe in the efficacy of extreme diets. So, restricting yourself to < 40 g/day of carbs, and going ketogenic must work to lose weight. In the process, we all miss the point that eating a whole-foods, high-fiber, traditional diet (based on starch, a lot of vegetables, with some meat and fat) has worked for millennia.

This low-carb silliness will never end. Their position has become intransigent, and they’ve developed Young-Earth Creationist type arguments about insulin spikes, calories don’t matter, Ancel Keys conspiracy theories, sugar is a toxin, mutated wheat, etc. If you tell them you’ve lost 25 kg eating primarily carbs, starch, and bread, then they’ll say about 1/3 of the population can tolerate carbs (but the other 2/3 must go ketogenic; there’s some magic -/0/+ quantum state in people). You can’t win with them. Which would be alright, except that the general population takes away the idea that “carbs make you fat”.

Sometimes I get excited when I hear Paleo advocates encourage people to “eat real foods”. But then they’ll tell you that beans, peanuts, corn, rice, tomatoes, etc. aren’t real food (according to their magic-spell diet). And they’re absolutely terrified of bread.

Bread Challenge Day 9 of 30

IMG_1807Ok, I’m back to eating a pound of bread a day, after taking a variety break yesterday. So far, in the first 9 days of the bread challenge, I’ve eaten 4.11 kg of bread (in addition to everything else I’ve eaten), averaging 457 g/day (1.01 lbs/day). I weighed in at 80.3 kg this morning, close to my low point, and more-or-less making weightloss progress. So, I’m not panicking that “bread makes you fat”, and I’m going with reason on this one: they’re just calories.

I wanted to eat some salmon burgers today, so I went with the Wheat Belly stack of 6 hamburger buns, totaling 450g for the day. Dr. Davis uses this picture to imply that “bread makes you fat”. Does everyone accept this because they envision eating it all at once? Sure, that’s how a lot of us eat. But me, I’m going to spread them out over the day. And I’ll probably get a workout in tonight.

Roast Chicken Taco

IMG_1804Ok, I got really sick of eating a pound of bread every day, so I decided to take a few days off. Or longer. Bread gets really boring fast, and I rather eat tortillas, beans, or potatoes. And when a loaf of bread totals more than 1500 calories, it doesn’t leave much room for variety. I only ate 200g of rolls yesterday, and instead enjoyed two packages of Top Ramen noodles, and a bunch of popcorn.

I felt like some fresh tortillas from Gabriel’s tonight, and picked up some roast chicken from the Mexican grocery store. I also bought some cooked beans, and will eat them with the tortillas as vegetarian tacos.

Bread Challenge Day 7 of 30

IMG_1799We had something of a family reunion over the weekend, and most of the get-togethers revolved around restaurants and meals. I went with the flow, meaning I ate a bunch of bad stuff (fried foods, desserts, “comfort food”, etc.)

On top of this, I added a loaf of bread each day for the 30 Day Bread Challenge. I didn’t buy a loaf yesterday, but finished off Saturday’s Challah. I’m still averaging over a pound of bread a day. I tried to work off the calories by biking everywhere, and developed a bit of tendonitis in the knees. I’ll slow it down now, since I’m back to eating my preferred vegetable dishes.

I picked up this “Seeduction” loaf from Whole Foods this morning, and will have it with some vegetarian curry stew I made.