Monday, March 26, 2012

Kitchen Confidential Part 2

Melissa Clark - Clark is a food columnist for The New York Times.

Tipping Point - I was always thin until I got to college. The food at the cafeteria grossed me out, so I ended up eating mostly peanut butter and bacon. I didn't exercise, and I ate too much and drank too much. By the end of my freshman year, I had gained 35 pounds. I was back at my parents' house, looking at myself in the same childhood mirror that I was used to looking skinny in . I asked my mother, who is never critical, how I looked and she said, "You've looked thinner before." That was the very moment I knew I had to do something.

The Strategy - I lost more than 40 pounds over a year or so, mostly by counting calories. My daily goal was 1,200, which I always exceeded. Usually it was more like 1,500. I also started running, which I never wanted to do. My friend told me, "Think of it as 20 minutes a day that will make you happy and thin." That still motivates me.

Weight Maintenance - I've found that what you think is hunger is often just a craving. You can usually wait it out; in 20 minutes or so, it's gone. I only eat when I'm truly hungry, and when I feed the beast exactly what it wants, it turns out I don't need that much (SNOB DIET!!!). Usually, it's toast with peanut butter, tomato or avocado. A lot of cooks end up eating the equivalent of two meals-One as they prep and one at the table. So, when I work, I'm always thinking that 'this is for cooking' and 'this is for eating', so when I sit down, the experience and calories register. Fat is good. A little makes you feel more full. I can't do fat-free dairy, so I have whole milk and a little sugar in my coffee, But that's usually enough for breakfast. I order steamed veggies from Chinese restaurants often, but I never eat them naked. I have to have a drizzle of sesame oil and soy sauce. When I'm not working, I make a point of ordering a salad for dinner, but never the one with the lowest calories. I'll get the blue cheese and bacon. I leave some of that good stuff on the plate, but still get a small taste of it in every bite.

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