In the 1990’s (for me age 11 to 21), I struggled with my size. My Mom would have to buy me adult clothes by that age because I didn’t fit in kids sizes any more. I read Dean Ornish’s Eat More, Weigh Less and adopted the idea completely that I needed to eat less fat infact almost none. No butter, little cheese and low fat everything. I even remember buying cheese cloth and straining yogourt for days to make a low-fat cream cheese. This is quite tasty to do, but I was doing it for the wrong reasons – I was doing it because at that time in particular, fat was bad.
We then moved into the Atkin’s age and suddenly all carbs were bad. We now we have Paleo which rejects modern processed food – and the jury is still out on it.
The FAT Project approaches all of these diets with a healthy dose of skepticism for their eschewing or labeling one thing in particular as bad. Our approach for right now is all about balance and as we go forward there will be continually assessment of dietary needs and the right methods to achieve success in the FAT Project
And now a fun article on the success of longevity with the Mid-Victorian diet:
Over the last few weeks, I have had a number of people say to me, “Hey, is this like Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead?” For those of you who don’t know, Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead (and its sequel) document the journey of Joe Cross as he uses juicing as a catalyst to create a healthier life, inspiring others to follow his lead. I admire Joe Cross’ journey with juicing to make his life better; I found it to be a powerful example of commitment and weight loss. Many people found Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead inspiring and I think it is worth a watch:
The short answer to the question is no, not really. I have set a goal to achieve, healthy and fit enough to complete an Olympic distance triathlon in 3 years time. While the FAT Project will document my journey to health and fitness, I have not landed on one path to achieve my goals. I am beginning my journey in a medically supervised program using a slow and steady approach to make lasting changes. I will take 3 years to cement lifestyle changes that I can maintain – not bad considering it took me over 30 years to build the habits that led me to put on the weight that I carry. I am open to trying different things, maybe juicing or meal replacements, and I look forward to figuring out what works best for me. We are all individuals so it makes sense to me that we each need to find our own way.
At my first clinic visit with the Dr. we talked about how the process of losing weight will be about 80% diet and 20% exercise, and that there are many unique factors that make up my personal situation. I will be working with the clinic to identify what those are for me – perhaps hormonal challenges, my thyroid, sleeping issues or depression.
Another factor that I will address so that I am never obese again is to delve into the emotional issues that I carry around. How did I get to 420 pounds? What keeps me obese? My father was here for Canadian Thanksgiving last week and he graciously consented to letting us film him answering the question, “Dad, why am I fat? My dad and I had an amazing conversation for nearly 40 minutes. I am grateful for the conversation and I think it will contribute to my long-term healing. My partners at RoadWest Pictures and I look forward to sharing the footage with you soon.