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The Struggle to Lose Weight

There are many challenges to losing weight, but I have some unique obstacles on my road to success that make this much harder than for others. Most of these obstacles deal with what I cannot or choose not to eat or drink. I'm not the only one faced with these issues, because the need to eat healthy crosses all sorts of ideological borders.

First of all, based on my religious beliefs, I will not consume the following foods:

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  • Any pork product (ham, lard, bacon, prosciutto, and other products containing pork by-products which can include most cheeses). This means, for replacements, I have turkey bacon/ham, sausage from chicken/turkey/beef, cheeses made from vegetarian products, etc. I have to usually avoid many Italian sauces, pizzas, etc.
  • Any shellfish or bottom-dwelling sea creatures (thus, no shrimp, crab, lobster, catfish, shark, etc.). It's funny how many low-fat recipes contain these sources. It also continues to surprise me what other products contain these (some flavors of ramen noodle packages, certain sauces, etc.). This severely limits what I can eat at an Asian restaurant.

By choice (not religious belief), I avoid artificial sweeteners and high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS). Both of these make their way into so many things these days that it is almost impossible not to consume them. If it says reduced sugar, it most likely has sucralose or some other chemical. I recently found sucralose in a light version of mayonnaise (though the regular one contained no sweeteners). HFCS can be found in a ton of things now and so I'm very careful. Naturally, cutting back on HFCS is good for weight loss. Some people can lose pounds just by taking out sodas.

To top off all of this, I'm now on Weight-Watchers' Core plan, which means no oils (except the good ones in limited portions), no sugars (except what naturally occurs in fruit), no dairy products (unless fat-free and sugar-free), no fatty meats (everything must be lean), no alcohol, and no breads (only whole-grain sugar-free products and in a limited portion per day).

Now you have a clear picture of what my meals entail now that I've laid out all of the items I avoid eating for one reason or another. Thus, I now present an idea of what my last three meals contained:

  • Dinner last night: Roast Beef, carrots, onions, potatoes (potatoes are part of my limited whole-grain/starch intake), and brown rice.
  • Breakfast this morning: 1 cup of oatmeal with a small container of diced pears (just a little sugar in the oatmeal since I'm not quite ready for unsweetened oatmeal and won't eat it with splenda or something).
  • Lunch right now (just finished before I typed this post): 1/2 cup of ham salad (made from turkey ham, light mayonnaise, dill relish and onion), a handful of broccoli spears (raw), a handful of carrot sticks (raw), one banana and 1 small WW snack bar (1pt)

I'm working on ideas to expand my choices and make it less boring, but as of right now, I'm now setting a short-term goal. I found that this is the one thing I'm missing from my plan. I've lost over 30 pounds so far and if I push myself and lose one pound a week, I can get my 50 pounds lost magnet from WW by the end of June. Thus, my goal is to lose another 20 pound before summer really kicks into gear.

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Posted in Dentistry Post Date 05/08/2016


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