Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Taking charge of your health in May

I mentioned a plan of action to lose a few pounds and get healthier. Here it is. If any of you want to join me, you are welcome. We'll try this for a month. If you like what you see and feel after that one month and want to continue with it, you could make it a way of life.

Start Date: May 1rst
End date: May 31rst

Workout - We'll workout for 5-6 days a week.
  • 5 days of Cardio (walking/running/aerobics/swimming/etc) - minimum 30 mins
  • 3 days of strength training. For strength training you could do it at a gym or at home or do Calisthenics exercises that use body weight ala Madonna. Calisthenics are simple exercises which do not use weights - crunches, sit ups, squats, lunges, etc all come under this one. There are a million more calisthenics exercises. Use your preferred search engine!
  • You can substitute yoga / pilates that tones and strengthen the muscles giving the long, lean look in place of cardio or strength training. Or you could count gardening if its more than 20 mins of hard work. You are the best person to decide what works for you.
  • If you have never worked out before, take it slow - 20 mins a day and work your way up from there.
Calorie counting
This is important and you can't skip this. Portion sizes play an important role in weight loss and getting healthier a good way to track it is using calories consumed.
  1. We'll keep the total calories allowed for a day to be 1300-1400. If you are tall or of a bigger build, please find out how many calories you can eat to lose one pound a week.Use your favorite search engine.
  2. Divide each meal into approximately 300-400 calories
  3. Eat snacks - fruits or juices or herbal teas in between meals.
  4. There are lot of calorie tracking websites - TheDailyplate, fitday, sparkpeople, shape online journal etc. Select what works for you.If you don't want to create a journal, figure out how many calories you ate by checking online or on a book and make a note of it.
Food - Anti inflamamtory diet:
So what can we eat?? The food will be anti inflammatory - as it will help to cleanse the system as well as accelerate the weight loss.

  1. Grains (Brown rice, Amaranth, Quinoa, Buckwheat, Steel cut oats / old fashioned oats, Millet - ragi (fingermillet)/bajra(pearl millet)/white millet/African/kodo/Teff/etc are allowed.
  2. Fresh fruits - all except citrus fruits like grapefruits, oranges etc. No bananas. Lemons are allowed.
  3. Fresh veggies - twice everyday (check for the NO list of veggies)
  4. Protein - Chicken and Fish are allowed; so are Lentils and beans. Eat protein atleast twice a day. Protein powder is allowed - You don't 'have to' eat it, but it is allowed if you want to include it in your diet. which brand? what type? - you choose what works for you. There are a million choices out there. I use this.
  5. Eat atleast one serving of raw greens a day - either in juice or smoothie or salads
  6. Ground flax seeds - 2 tbsp everyday
  7. EV coconut oil and grape seed oil for cooking, EV olive oil for salads. I'll leave it upto you to decide if you want to use sesame seed oil (definitely, not the toasted one).
  8. Unsalted nuts and seeds are allowed in moderate amounts
  9. Condiments- sparingly, apple cider vinegar, sea salt, naturally fermented soy sauce or tamari, culinary herbs
  10. Sweetener - just a tad of honey / agave /stevia /molasses - just a tad!
  11. Dairy - Not recommended. But if you must have it, then stick to yogurt / kefir.
  12. Drinks - water, herbal teas, fresh juices, lemon water, almond milk, rice milk, coconut milk, diluted unsweetened apple juice, coconut water etc
  13. Drink 2-3 liters of water a day
  14. Slow down, Take time to eat well, chew, esp, the grains. :)
No wheat/barley/rye/spelt
No sugar/sugar substitutes, preservatives, additives, etc
No dairy (milk, cheese, sour cream, butter, cream etc)
No eggs
No red meat and cured meat
No corn and corn products
No yeast
No veggies list [tomatoes, eggplant, white potatoes, bell peppers]
No bananas or dried fruits
No caffeine - Coffee/Black tea
No alcohol
No chocolate
No fried foods
No peanuts

Where to find recipes

Think creatively. You'll surprise yourself with your ideas. You can also check out the blogs on the Left side menu under 'Food that's Good for you' - especially Kim, Ricki, Meghan, Naomi, Kelly, Susan and Ali & Tom. They have a lot of recipes that you can use. And Elana who uses almond flour in her cooking, has lovely crackers too. And check out the recipes mentioned on this blog as well.

How do we keep track
Please post about your daily intake/workout/total calorie consumed on your blog or leave a comment in mine if you don't have a blog. All works. This will motivate you to keep going and others too. Please do post about the total pounds lost at the end of the journey on May 31rst. Would be lovely to see that and cheer on that.

If you want to remain anonymous, please pick up some random screen name what appeals to you. Its tough to talk to somebody who doesn't even want to share an imaginary name. ;)

:) I know a lot of people are already asking 'Can I add just this? I can't do without it!'

Sure, feel free to modify it. The more individualized a plan is, the better it will work out! The main idea is to shake the body up from its usual rut and also get in some workout. Just remember to stick to portion size, calorie count, working out, eating enough carbs/proteins/veggies/fruits.

Disclaimer - See left side menu. Join this diet-a-thon at your own will, knowing your health conditions and your body's response. When in doubt, consult a doctor.

Now, who wants to take charge of your health in May?


Indira said...

Sounds good. I am in.
Thanks, Kay for the motivation and putting together a detailed and well thought out plan to follow.

Kay said...


The plan isn't mine. It's mostly from my naturopath's list. :)

Lauren said...

You are a great inspiration. Thanks for sharing motivation and knowledge.
I am also trying to lose weight, and I already follow most of these guidelines (or try to, anyway!)
I try not to put too much of a focus on calories due to my obsessive tendencies, although I definitely still take notice of them. I think it is helpful for a lot of people on their weight loss journey, so its a good idea.

Some of the things that I don't already do that I will now consider trying are the 2 tbsp flax and avoiding wheat, barley, rye and spelt. Also corn- I don't think I eat any corn products but now I will actively try to avoid it. I'm not ready to give up bananas, oranges, and black tea though! Hopefully they don't do too much harm.
Good luck, Kay! I'm glad you are feeling more energized these days, and I hope this routine helps you even more.

Anonymous said...

I am also IN.


Revathi said...

R u a darlin or what??? Uummmmmmmaaaa to u ! I will start a new blog

Anonymous said...

I echo Lauren's words - you're indeed a great inspiration. I won't be joining this time but I want to wish you and all the other participants good luck.


Arch said...

Hey Kay!! Count me IN! I am hosting a party on May 1st. Will try to restrict as much as I can. But May 2nd onwards, will update my blog regularly. :)

Thanks much!

Arch said...

I am thinking about dividing my diet based on Calories. I think I might need some direction from you on this one. Thanks again!

Sunita said...

Thanks for the motivation and the wonderful plan.. trying to follow rules all by myself was veeery difficult for me, I will blog my diet and exercise from Monday.

I have a couple of questions though -
1. Why are we avoiding Fruits with Vit C like Oranges, grapefruits?
2. I am high on diary normally, cutting down completely will be quite difficult to start with.. Can I reduce the intake as time goes by?
3. I'm a vegetarian.. I will try to eat other protein rich food but I do crave for eggs sometimes; Is limited Egg intake fine? (I do not have any food allergies as such, but I am trying to reduce the intake of Wheat, Eggs and Diary)

You have really been a great inspiration Kay, I have noticed that from just trying to mimic your diet I've started feeling energetic and healthier! Thanks again for the wonderful blog.


Kay said...

Thanks everybody! Going public and doing this with a group helps me too!

Sunita - to answer your why not citrus fruits - most citrus fruits like oranges, grapes fruits are considered inflammatory. We are restricting the food that's easy on the body.

To all those who wants to tweak the guidelines a 'bit', it would be wonderful to give your body a breather and eat anti inflammatory foods. But if tweaking is the only way you could do it, then by all means, feel free to do so.

Kay said...

Sounds like a great plan, really motivating. Your do's and don'ts are going to keep focussed.

N S said...

Timely post for me. I want to participate.
I can't start my day without small cup of tea. Can I just go with that?

Gayatri said...

Thanks Kay!! that's a awesome plan put together.
I can avoid wheat but can you tell me why do we want to avoid wheat - I eat 2 pulkas for lunch. Is brown rice good than whole wheat flour.
I just want to know the reason that would make me feel better that I have made good chioce.


sowmya said...

It is very encouraging. I don't have a blog so I would probably leave a comment on urs. I am in.

notyet100 said...

i will try my best,,,to follow this ,,,thanks for inspirin me,..

Kay said...

Gayathri, wheat is inflammatory.

Nutritionally there isn't much of a difference between brown rice and wholewheat. It is the gluten in wheat and over manufacturing that was done to increase the proteins in wheat that messed it up.

Gluten causes gut inflammation, joint inflammation and thyroid inflammation. This is why it is good to give the body a break for a while to see if it has any negative effects on your body at all.

Read my notes on tweakers at the end of the post.

Purnima said...

This is excellent, I am with you.
My goal is to lose 7 lbs this month.
Hopefully with this diet i can reach the "Goal".


Kay said...

Thanks and goodluck for everybody who are participating and also thanks to those who are cheering us from the sidelines.