It’s spring once again, and honestly it has been a dismal winter in Southwest Pennsylvania. I think it snowed for 7 consecutive months. Not continuously, but every month from October through April there has been snow. If not, it feels that way. And most of the time if it wasn’t snowing, it was gray, overcast skies or raining. But Spring has sprung finally.
Around the holidays, I became more focused on my health and specifically the weight I had put on during the fall. For several years after losing some weight, I maintained my weight around 195-200 pounds most of the year. But I was up to 210 and not feeling my best. So I went back to my 4HB supplements and eating plan, but made little progress this time. So after 3 months, I started doing some more reading.
I pulled Mark Sisson’s Primal Blueprint 21-Day Transformation off the shelf and re-read it in about 2 days. I’m now following a largely primal eating and exercise plan, which isn’t much different than 4HB. The main difference is no beans in Primal, and no “Garbage Day”. I had dropped 7 pounds in 8 days. Then the weekend hit, we went to a party with virtually no Primal choices, and I had some beer. Then wine and a couple cookies last night. I’m back up 5 of the 7, but I think most will drop off in a couple days.
Honestly, alcohol is still my biggest challenge, as I crave it some nights after work. So as i started looking into why that is, I learned some interesting things about vitamin deficiencies in alcoholics, and regular consumers of alcohol in general. And also a little about willpower in general. I feel a little like Paul in Romans 7; I know alcohol is a poison, I don’t really want to have any, I know I will feel better in the morning if I don’t drink, but yet some nights, I drink anyway. If I stay on this path, it will become a problem.
So now I’m taking high dosages of Vitamin C (4,000-5,000 mg), B-complex Vitamins (300mg+), and Chromium(400 mg) daily trying to overcome the deficiencies that cause the cravings. The Vitamin C has so many potential benefits. I found Dr. Andrew Saul’s information about vitamins via The Fat Burning Man podcast. His website is Doctor Yourself.
My previous round of intentional weight loss in 2011-2012 was in response to being offered yet another medication for high blood pressure and low HDL. I was also having should pain, so an injection was suggested. I chose a different path: I started eating better, gave up alcohol, started exercising. So I’m going down the same path of making better intentional choices this year.
Much of our healthcare costs in the United States can be linked to our choices, primarily regarding what we eat. Ten days into eating cleaner, I had some of the best tasting broccoli ever for dinner last night. It was weird, but we both commented on how great the broccoli was. Food that is good for you can taste great.
I’m not a doctor, and this isn’t meant to serve as medical advice. But with the guidance of a good physician, I think most people could change their futures by eating better. Your DNA is a blueprint. But just like a house that is designed for maximum energy efficiency, if you don’t put the wall of windows facing south, you won’t get maximum benefit. We can affect the way our genes are activated by the fuel we give our bodies. Many of us are actually killing ourselves slowly with the food we eat.
My wife likes to cite family members who lived a long time without taking vitamins. But I know her grandfather had this apple cider vinegar concoction he drank daily. Most of them had a can of bacon fat sitting on the counter they cooked with. We didn’t ask them what they ate or what “elixers” they took. They couldn’t get most of the processed foods we eat. They grew their own vegetables and canned the surplus. They weren’t overweight.
Once again I’m trying to take control of a specific aspect of my future. What good will all the financial and strategic planning of early retirement be if I’m not health enough to enjoy it?