The Carb Question

Should I cheat? It’s a question I’m plagued with on a regular basis.

It may not have the same significance for a philanderer, you see, my affair begins with another love. His name? Complex Carbohydrates. He’s there when I need him, and he fills me up. Three years ago, I decided to cut him out of my life, and thus began our fragmented relationship.

I could not completely part with his starchy goodness though, and so I decided I would no longer eat complex carbs (a.k.a. anything made or that may have come in contact with flour or any of its grain counterparts) in the evenings in an effort to lose weight, and now, to maintain it.

I have always been relatively slim. I was a little chunkier as a child but then I grew taller and evened out, but still my weight fluctuates.

The “no carbs at night” started one day, when I was fed up with the yoyo-ing. I have my admirers, then I have those who question my dinner tactics. To be honest, I’m surprised it has lasted this long.

Only recently, I’ve come to realize how my diet affects others. It’s a rather strange phenomenon, but my eating habits can alter people’s moods.

Friends and family become increasingly pleased when I exclaim, “It’s cheat night!” You’d think they are as excited as I am to devour the tortellini, instead of a chicken salad. If it should happen that I choose not to cheat, a rumble of grumbling is set off.

It’s all or nothing with me. At a restaurant, I will return a salad if they have forgotten to exclude the croutons like I asked, or on the opposing end of the spectrum, I will leave no bread stick unturned.

I suppose you can call me an extremist, but it works. I remember my dad asking at the start of it all, if I were going to do this for life. I said yes, in the eager way you want to prove something to a parent. At the time, I didn’t really know how long I could go. Now, I see it as a lifestyle choice.

After breakfast, a snack, and lunch, I am officially done with my complex carb intake for the day. In the afternoon, I will have yet another snack, [a fruit or legumes,] and supper will comprise of some form of protein accompanied by veggies.

Cheat days are a rare occurrence, but not because I don’t allow myself the treat. Unless I’m feeling particularly ravenous, I’ll opt out of the bloated feeling that comes with bites of baguette.

I feel better by eating light at night. In fact, supper should be the lightest meal of the day because after dinner, the evening is usually set aside for rest and relaxation. One normally would not burn off the elevated calories ingested through complex carbs resulting in weight gain.

When, I do decide to cheat, I do not particularly limit my consumption. If it’s there, I’m going to eat it.

This brings me to my next point: Some loved ones have professed the notion that eating a limited amount of carbs on a regular basis at night would be a better choice. It would seem like a good idea, heck, it’s what I’ve done for the majority of my life, but this carb-less method suits me just fine.

Arguably though, the day after a binge, the evidence resurfaces. It has been met with some scepticism, but I kid you not, I see the effects. My body has gotten used to this routine, and when I indulge, the starchy delights adhere to my mid-section. The excess weight does not drop down into my derrière, as I would like, nor does it enhance my bustline.

Is it worth it? I think it is, and that’s why I continue to do it. I enjoy the satisfied feeling, contrary to the bulky, bloated, ‘un-do your button’ sensation brought on by pasta and bread in the late p.m. hours.

David Siscoe, fitness expert extraordinaire, commends my methodology. He says, it is highly recommended for someone trying to reduce body fat, or maintain, in my case. Bread, pasta, rice, the list goes on, are best consumed within the first half of your day. The second half should consist of fibrous foods. The natural carbohydrates found in vegetables are a sure fire way to shed those pounds.

With Christmas on the way, you can bet there is going to be a whole lot of cheating going on. Year after year, I tell myself, it doesn’t have to be this way, and I that I can withstand the smörgåsbord.

But, Christmas & cheating both start, and end the same way for me: with a cheerily chubby, red-cheeked individual in a jogging suit full of cookies.

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One Reply to “The Carb Question”

  1. It sounds like it’s a real drag to have to worry about this sort of thing.

    I never feel any different depending on what I eat, at least not for more than maybe 20 minutes after I am done eating.

    I hope you do not resent the lucky ones like me that can eat whatever we want, whenever we want it

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