How I Safely* Lost 23 Pounds in One Month (While Lazily Pigging Out!)
Jan 14, 2008 (Updated Aug 2, 2009)
Popular Products in NutritionThe Bottom Line Last Thanksgiving I weighed 195 pounds. A month later I weighed 172. I contentedly ate my fill, and I was surprised how easily one adapts to affordable, unprocessed, wholesome foods.
Prefatory note #1: Has your "New Year's resolution" weight-loss program yielded disappointing results? Well, for about 99% of the overweight human population, the below "diet"—if followed "to the letter" for at least one month—will engender significant weight loss AND be healthier than all those overhyped, mass-marketed diets.
*Prefatory note #2: I wanted to see how effective this dietary approach could be for one month even without (much) exercise. Therefore, I performed only a few of the easiest calisthenics for about two minutes once a day; and my lifestyle was otherwise largely sedentary. Obviously, you'd be MUCH better off to exercise ("reasonably" but not "excessively") vigorously for an extended time, at least every other day. And an important fringe benefit of exercise--especially if done daily--could be enhanced "regularity". (More on that below.)
I'm posting this "dietary" piece with the (outrageously optimistic) expectation that at least one reader will be influenced to do more than glibly agree that consumption of "the American diet" is dangerous to health and longevity. My wish is that you will embark on a "no-compromises", 30-day experiment culminating in the realization that all your unhealthy food addictions vanished within four weeks as you discovered--presumably for the first time in your life--what it's like to eat only the kinds of healthy food that your evolutionary heritage "intended" for you to enjoy.
That said, please know that in my personal life I still get along fine with the majority of folks I know who don't--and never will--eat as I now do. Just as one of my best friends still smokes cigarettes, most still eat junk. In this uncertain life "ya makes your choices, and ya takes your chances."
My Weight-loss Experience:
I'm surprised. It shouldn't be this easy to lose 23 pounds (or, I suppose, even 10 pounds) so quickly while exercising only trivially (if at all), lounging away each wintry day, and stuffing myself with satisfying food. Actually, my primary goal wasn't to lose weight; it was simply to try (for the first time in my life) consistently eating healthy foods while avoiding all "bad" foods for an extended period--ideally "forever". Now, what could be easier than that? ;-) But seriously, as days and weeks passed, I found my longstanding addictions to unhealthy foods increasingly subsided as my appreciation for (and sensitivity to) the taste of natural foods increased.
Some might say losing so much weight so quickly can't be safe. But how can I feel uneasy while eating "unlimited" amounts of fresh vegetables and fruits, "reasonable" amounts of low-fat protein and mixed beans, and "limited" amounts of raw walnuts and almonds? Even my characteristically skeptical doctor found nothing to criticize--especially after he saw me 23 pounds lighter.
Here's How I Safely Lost 23 Pounds in One Month While Lazily Pigging Out:
Every time you feel hungry, first make sure you're not merely thirsty. Drink plenty of ordinary water (instead of other beverages that might subsequently kindle food cravings or otherwise be unhealthful).
When you're truly hungry, well, just eat! Begin each meal with plenty of ultra-low-calorie veggies. Now, you could get fancy with some of the tempting (yet non-fattening) recipes included in the book that I'll mention in my below postscript. But for the moment I'll just keep things simple by mentioning examples of some fundamental foods comprising this (ideally lifelong) "diet". [NOTE: Consume the following food categories/servings separately (in turn) in the (numbered) sequence indicated below. Also note that numbers 3 ("Beans") and 4 ("Boca") amount to an "either/or" proposition, as explained below.]
1. Raw vegetables: BEGIN each lunch and dinner with a VERY LARGE tossed salad that includes a VARIETY of colorful, low-calorie fixings (thoroughly slathered with tasty dressing). For example, today my lunch began with a tossed salad flavored with plenty of my own fat-free, no-salt-added, ultra-low-calorie version of zesty/sweet "French" dressing (with assorted spices and a dash of garlic powder); and the fresh "fixings" included romaine lettuce; iceberg lettuce; spinach leaves; tomato slices; mushroom slices; zucchini slices; cucumber slices; green pepper slices; a finely chopped carrot; and some finely chopped red onion. (Notice the salad contained NO highly "sugary" varieties of vegetables or fruits; NO croutons, crackers or bread; NO cheese... basically NO "no-no's".)
Think of the salad as the main course. Mind, I'm not speaking of the sort of "salad bar" that includes such (more or less) unhealthy no-no's as pasta, breadsticks, cheese, and other fattening or processed foods. (Think "all-natural"!)
Note: Personally, I couldn't stomach a tossed salad minus a really flavorful dressing! The trick is to find/create a dressing that's both tasty and ultra-low-calorie. [More on this in the "Noteworthy points" section below.]
2. Cooked vegetables. At least until you attain your ideal weight, forget about such (relatively) starchy or sugary vegetables as potatoes, yams, corn, and sweet peas. Instead, consider any of the following items, which you can eat to your heart's content: greens and cruciferous vegetables (e.g., spinach, turnip greens, mustard greens, collard greens, kale, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts). Now, all varieties of lard, butter, margarine and oils are forbidden! So, forget about using 'em to "doctor up" your greens. ;-) Part of your success will depend on your willingness to gradually re-sensitize your taste buds to the subtle, natural flavors of fresh foods. That said, onions and spices--not to mention "No Salt" (non-sodium salt substitute, in moderation)--should be fine.
Keep in mind that these varieties of veggies provide more protein and iron than you might initially think. Admittedly, those substances aren't as readily absorbable as their counterparts in meat. Nonetheless, enough is assimilated to be highly significant in healthy human nutrition.
3. Beans. (Approximately one rounded "soup ladle full" per meal.) Various "dried" beans can provide vital phytonutrients, not to mention protein. Actually, I daily consume at least one helping of the 15-bean Cajun "chili" that I discussed in a review at Epinions.com. I challenge anybody to taste that easy-to-fix recipe and declare that "beans" are boring! A serving of such spicy, satisfying "chili" is frequently one of the highlights of my lunch or dinner. [And no, a (single) serving of that particular recipe doesn't give me gas.]
4. Imitation-meat: "Boca" (brand) soy "hamburger" patties (available in the frozen-breakfast-foods section of most supermarkets).
Note: Nutritionally speaking, my ongoing consumption of Boca "fake (soy) hamburger meat" is admittedly a (modest) compromise, a lingering manifestation of my former fondness for (excessive amounts of) real meat. To this day I still don't call myself a vegetarian; I'm no New Age "flesh-o-phobe". In fact, at one time I regularly indulged in all forms of meat, even the unhealthiest varieties of sausage or cold cuts. I just don't seem to get around to eating meat much anymore unless I'm in a social setting where it's served--which can happen, given I live in a suburb of Kansas City, "The BBQ Capital of the World". [To double the irony, Kansas is "America's breadbasket", yet I myself don't consider flour--at least not "refined" flour--a respectably healthy food.] Perhaps someday I'll wholly dispense with (not only "real" but also "faux") meat and focus on the spicy mixed-bean recipe mentioned above (not to mention other plant-derived proteins). Till then, I still enjoy a serving of "Boca" once every day or two, and real meat occasionally and sparingly.
Boca's "Original" flavor (fat-free) burger patties only have 70 calories each. Alternatively, Boca's "Flame-broiled" (flavor) burger patties (containing a modicum of "reduced-fat cheddar cheese") have a taste, texture and moistness that's much more "meat-like", though they do contain somewhat more fat and therefore 20 additional calories per patty. Either way, I've learned to relish one such Boca burger patty either at lunch or dinner. [NOTE: Do NOT carelessly substitute any of Boca's other "imitation-meat" products. First compare the nutrition (calories/fat/sodium) information on their respective packages! Certainly do NOT choose any of their "breaded", excessively cheesy, and/or excessively salty (high-sodium) products!] If I don't opt for a Boca burger, then the above-mentioned "15-bean chili" serving can substitute as the "protein entree" in a meal. [If you're serious about losing weight, don't eat both a Boca burger and a serving of the above "bean chili" during a single meal; instead, choose one or the other (per meal) as your "protein entree". If in doubt, or if you don't crave "meat" in the first place, forget about "Boca" (excepting perhaps their utterly fat-free "Original" burgers) and just stick with the still healthier "mixed beans" alternative. By the way, until you reach your ideal weight, it wouldn't kill you to occasionally (optionally) skip both the beans and the Boca during a given meal. You'd still be getting some protein from all the foregoing fresh veggies (not to mention the subsequent nuts), and you'd lose weight even faster.]
5. Raw, shelled, unsalted walnuts and almonds. [TIP: I generally save money by purchasing my shelled walnuts and almonds--not to mention some of my fresh/frozen veggies and fruit--at a nearby Aldi store.] Until you reach your ideal weight, have just four raw almonds and only half an ounce of raw walnuts at lunch and dinner. [If you (unlike me) regularly eat breakfast, you might need to slightly reduce the amount of nuts per meal till you attain your ideal weight.] Once you do attain your ideal weight, you can have about four ounces of raw nuts and/or seeds daily. Raw nuts and/or seeds are important, because they'll be your primary source of vital (vegetable-based) healthy fats. [Liquid oils are forbidden! (Consider: Your prehistoric ancestors didn't consume any "refined", denatured oils; they ate natural nuts and seeds retaining countless phytonutrients promoting optimum health!)] But beware of over-indulging in nuts (or seeds)! There's no quicker way to sabotage your weight-loss goal than to recklessly and repeatedly grab those (potentially addictive) items. So, avail yourself of an accurate "kitchen scale" and use it consistently.
6. FRESH (or perhaps frozen) fruit. I'm not talking sweetened, dried or canned fruit here; and I'm not talking juice (regardless of whether it's sweetened).
For dessert after every lunch and dinner, I eat all the fresh oranges and apples (or other comparably "low-calorie" varieties of fresh fruit) that I want. [It's pretty hard to overdose on fresh fruit after you've downed (in this order) an unlimited (HUGE) amount of tossed salad; unlimited amounts of cooked vegetables (of the above-discussed "permissible" kinds); a sensible serving of spicy mixed-bean "chili" (or a Boca burger); three or four raw almonds; and a thoroughly chewed and savored half-ounce of "buttery" raw walnuts. It's also pretty hard to miss your former (unhealthy, man-made) "desserts" when you're biting into your second or third perfectly ripe-and-sweet, succulent, chilled orange slice!]
Even on my modest budget, I can pretty regularly find oranges or apples (advertised in weekly newspaper fliers) at significantly reduced cost at one or two supermarkets in my city. If money were no object, I'd continually spring for numerous more exotic varieties of fruit. For anyone who could easily afford any type of fresh produce year-round, there's just no reason to feel it necessary to consume "man-made" desserts containing "refined" flour, "refined" sugar, and unhealthy types of fat. Such longstanding food addictions can be conquered much as a smoker's addiction to cigarettes can be conquered (with resolution, avoidance, substitutions, and time). If you consistently substitute succulent fresh (or perhaps frozen) fruits for all your "bad" sweets, within several weeks your sensibilities (and taste buds) will adjust, and you'll be delighted that you've rediscovered the kinds of natural sweets that our prehistoric ancestors relished. (Well, actually, our ancestors might've indulged in some honey occasionally; but don't you do that, at least not till you've attained your ideal weight.)
Alas, forget about bananas until you attain your ideal weight. Once you've reached your goal, you can enjoy the occasional banana, especially if you're active.
7. Occasionally (never more than once daily till you've reached your ideal weight), perhaps reward yourself with one or two cups of hot cocoa made with old-fashioned (Nestle's or Hershey's) powdered cocoa mixed with nonfat cow's (or soy) milk and non-caloric sweetener. For the latter I use "Splenda" (well, actually, I use Wal-Mart's store-brand equivalent to save money). For the milk component I use nonfat powdered milk (from Aldi or wherever), which is less costly than fresh (nonfat) milk--though the latter could serve about as well. I carefully weigh about 1.6 ounces [UPDATE: Very recently I've begun to learn to like half that amount] of milk powder in a microwave-safe bowl or pitcher, and then I add slightly more than two cups of water and stir. I then microwave the milk on high for about five minutes. After spooning some powdered cocoa and "Splenda" into a coffee mug, I fill the mug with some of the heated milk. I savor two successive cups of hot cocoa in that way. This slakes any ongoing cravings for conventional desserts, treats or chocolate in other (calorie-laden and/or unhealthy) forms.
Note: If you find that you can do without any milk consumption, well, good for you! Though you could do worse than to consume (preferably nonfat) cow's milk, it's the "least healthy" food that I consume on this (lifelong) "diet". I limit my intake. Moreover, the author of the book I'll mention in my below postscript advocates consuming milk either very infrequently or never. (Thus my fairly infrequent "cuppa cocoa" arguably constitutes my solitary dietary deviance, albeit a modest one.) ;-)
About "breakfast": Though I myself (all my life) have never felt hunger (as opposed to thirst) till nearly noon (consequently, I generally only eat two large daily meals plus the occasional nighttime snack), now that you know what kinds of foods are permissible with this (lifelong) "diet", you can surely find something that will satisfy you each morning. Some healthy folks use their blenders or food processors to mix assorted fruits and/or vegetables into "smoothies" or other highly digestible concoctions. A few raw nuts or seeds could provide a sensible amount of healthy, vital fat (including "omega-3's", for which, incidentally, I also take some "pharmaceutical-grade" fish oil capsules daily). And a "Boca burger" patty could substitute for conventional sausage as a part of breakfast. And don't forget a piece of fresh fruit, such as an orange or apple (but think twice about that banana till you've attained your ideal weight!).
About "salad dressing(s)": Decide which kind(s) of dressing has/have a flavor that will continually tantalize your taste buds as you devour a variety of fresh salad fixings. Unless you find a dressing that combines the virtues of gratifying flavor with no fat, sugar and (ideally) salt, there's little likelihood you'll relish extra-large tossed salads and lose much weight.
I discovered that I could mix "no-added-salt" tomato sauce (available in tiny cans at most supermarkets) with fat-free "mayonnaise" (I use Kraft's fat-free Miracle Whip, though it's harder to get the fat-free version 100% blended with the tomato sauce) and some non-caloric sweetener (e.g., "Splenda"). Optional ingredients (that I always use) include mixed "Italian spices" and powdered garlic.
About "withdrawal symptoms": During the first week or few of your adjustment to this (lifelong) "diet", you may or may not experience symptoms of "withdrawal" from your longstanding addictions to unhealthy foods. I myself only noticed moderate, tolerable symptoms of that sort. (Moreover, I was having so much fun rediscovering various raw produce that I didn't have much time or inclination for my erstwhile indulgences in candy bars, ice cream, donuts, bread, sausage, etc. to enter my mind.) Any such "withdrawal" symptoms should greatly diminish and finally disappear within a week or few.
About "constipation": Now, when it comes to regularity, "your results may vary". The majority of people should experience little or no irregularity even during the initial weeks of this (lifelong) "diet". However, after a lifetime of eating processed foods (etc.), some individuals' digestive tracts ironically might require a period of adjustment to a fully healthy diet. After about six weeks of eating like this, I'm relieved to report that "100% perfect" regularity is now the rule rather than the exception. However, especially if you don't exercise, drink enough water, and eat enough fruit, you might get constipated at some point during the initial two to four weeks of this "diet". That was indeed my early experience, but (I repeat) I was deliberately curtailing exercise for one month in order to evaluate the effectiveness of the diet per se (and "I'm feeling much better now!"). ;-) In any case, if you do experience irregularity, before resorting to something like Metamucil, try experimenting with different fruits to see what might best assist. If you're strong-willed, try eating a sensibly limited number of prunes after each meal; but one problem with any type of dried fruit is that some of us tend to over-indulge in such "candy" and ingest too many calories. I suggest that you place a predetermined amount of dried fruit on a dish, and then put the remainder safely out of view before you begin eating. Better still, stick with fresh fruit--including plums.
About "insufficient time or energy to prepare salads": Don't even try using that excuse! If you're serious about your health, you'll either make the time to buy fresh produce and prepare it at home, or you'll avail yourself of restaurants' salad bars or your neighborhood supermarket's "salad bar", where (for $3.99 where I live) you can quickly build your own takeout salad using a colorful plethora of healthy fixings. NOTE: If your notion of "getting your money's worth" at the salad bar means including (even the smallest amounts of) such dietary "no-no's" as pasta, cheese, croutons (or pretty much anything that you know full well would derail weight loss and/or optimum health), you might as well just head for the nearest McDonald's, get yourself "Supersized", and be done with it all. Moreover, do NOT use any of the SALAD DRESSINGS (especially the ordinary--cheesy, oily, and/or sugary--varieties) provided at the salad bar. Instead, make up some of your own delicious, ultra-low-calorie dressing ahead of time, and (if, unlike me, you're still a busy wage slave) carry a more-than-sufficient amount of dressing with you to work (i.e., the break room, your car, a nearby park, or wherever). At very least, purchase a commercial, "ultra-low-calorie" dressing from the store's shelf [but first double-check the product's nutrition-label (calorie) information!]. It's highly unlikely that any so-called "low-calorie" dressing at the store's salad bar will be sufficiently low-calorie to maximize healthy weight loss. And such "compromised" dressings likely wouldn't taste any better than what you could concoct yourself at home (e.g., using non-caloric sweetener; nonfat Miracle Whip/mayonnaise; salt-free tomato sauce; mixed spices; garlic powder; or whatever).
I no longer crave all the unhealthy foods that I formerly felt I had to have to be satisfied. (Name your favorite dietary "junk"; chances are I was addicted to it at one time.) Whenever I enter the local supermarket, I'm no longer sorely tempted to go check out their fresh bakery "goods" (?!), their four-for-a-buck candy bars, or their ice cream aisle. (I am, however, continually attentive to their fresh fruit specials.)
Looking ahead, I expect to continue eating healthfully and contentedly for the rest of my life, with perhaps only the most trivially infrequent indulgences in a bit of "junk" (e.g., the odd holiday brownie or candy). What's sad is that I waited till I was 54 to overcome all those deleterious addictions. According to the famous physician that I'll mention in my below postscript, many people could add twenty healthy years to their lives simply by eating the way our evolutionary heritage "intended". (Your average wild gorillas or chimps are reportedly about "98% genetically identical" to you and me. They never eat "processed" foods; should we?)
Ironically, once a person's taste and attitude readjust to the kinds of food that existed before modern man began "refining" them, he ends up enjoying eating at least as much as ever. Case in point, last month at a yuletide party, I found myself savoring the tossed salad mucho mas than the surprisingly "boring" meat and pasta. I'd never felt that way in all my past years! Now, as for finding the subsequent moist, frosted brownies downright boring, well, ask me next Christmas.
Postscript (the following information is supplemental):
In case you're wondering: My trivial "two minutes of daily exercise" that I alluded to (in my prefatory note) comprised the following sequence: about 10 "toe (actually "shin") touches"; 10 "sprinters"; 10 "sitting stretches"; 4 "pushups" (the easiest variety); 10 "arms-extended sit-ups" (the easiest variety); 12 "leg raisers" (the easiest variety: i.e., one leg at a time while lying on my side); and 30 small "flutter kicks" (lying on my stomach). I suspect the average employed American expends more energy (burns more calories) than that merely by enduring his weekly workload (and stressful morning preps and commutes). In sum, I attribute my 23-pound weight loss to the above-explained dietary approach, not exercise. If I'd exercised to a more significant degree (which, ideally, I should have done!), my weight loss could have been somewhat greater, and I'd have felt even better.
Also (in case you're wondering!), as of this writing I haven't regained any of that 23 pounds that I'd lost by last Christmas. Until very recently I'd hit a "plateau" at the 172-pound level, which, according to some longstanding benchmarks of "normal weight", is precisely in the middle of the "normal" range for a male of my 6' 1" height, medium-to-large build, and age. But during the past few days I've lost another couple of pounds and now weigh 170. I'd wager that I'll lose up to another ten pounds during the coming year as I happily stick with this never-go-hungry dietary approach and continue to be more physically active.
By the way (just in case you're wondering), I'm enjoying the taste of food more than ever! (I'm feeling better, too.)
As I write these words I'm watching a segment of the "Fit TV" network's National Body Challenge show. A dangerously overweight family has been struggling for weeks to lose a few pounds by painfully working out in a gym and subsequently settling for "lower fat" pork between thick slices of white bread. The resulting sandwiches are said to contain about half the usual fat and calories.
To me that's like furiously rowing your boat upstream. Why not just turn the canoe 180 degrees and enjoy a better ride to a more promising destination?
In other words, forget about the "somewhat-less-fatty" pork and the "man-made" carbohydrates. Why continue fighting your evolutionary heritage? Why not consistently eat only those foods comparable to what your "98% genetically identical" apish cousins naturally consume (and basically forget about "portion control" or "calorie counting")? The latter foods were (largely) the kinds I contentedly rediscovered while lounging around the house for one month, on my way to a 23-pound free fall.
Food for thought: Keeping in mind what your close cousins (the wild apes) regularly eat, what do you suppose would happen to your body (and present/future medical condition) if the following "human" foods suddenly and forever vanished from this world: all grains; potatoes (and comparably starchy species of vegetables); refined sugars (and nearly all honey); all fat (excepting several daily ounces of nuts and seeds); all dairy products (including cheese); all dietary salt (not already present in natural foods); and (at least 90% of all) dietary meats? And if this happened, do you seriously believe you'd starve to death (or that you could never to learn to enjoy many of the remaining foods)?
My inspiration for adopting this "lifelong diet" was the rather popular book Eat to Live (ISBN: 0316735507 or 0316829455) by Joel Fuhrman, M.D. [Incidentally, in the 1970's Dr. Fuhrman was a world class figure skater and member of the United States World Figure Skating Team.] Additionally, Dr. Fuhrman's web site (drfuhrman.com) has considerable information, including a "Nutritional Wisdom" box (link) that you can click to call up a window providing numerous (archived) hour-long "radio shows" featuring Fuhrman himself persuasively proselytizing his philosophy of "eating for health".
Arguably, no "diet guru" should be trusted implicitly; but I've found little, if anything, about Dr. Fuhrman's dietary guidelines to dispute. Although he himself is a vegetarian, he doesn't insist that everybody give up meat completely. Instead, he recommends no more than three modest servings per week. He also advises against eating too much "dairy": he considers cheese unhealthy, and cow's milk should be taken extremely infrequently and sparingly, if at all.
Anyone concerned about potential shortages of such things as vitamin B12, calcium, etc., should read Eat to Live, wherein Fuhrman thoroughly explains how to obtain all nutrients needed by the human body. He is not opposed to taking a multivitamin; but he points out that it's best to avoid the ones containing too much vitamin A or iron, both of which can be more than sufficiently derived by eating natural foods instead of processed or junk foods.
Note: I should also mention that Dr. Fuhrman's latest book, Eat for Health, is about to be published in two separate hardcover volumes. It should appear at Amazon.com sometime in January; and it should be ready to ship by sometime around February.
Also note: Perhaps Dr. Fuhrman's sternest warning involves "yo-yo dieting". If you aren't committed to the above-described way of eating for the rest of your life, then don't bother with it. Dr. Fuhrman warns that you'd actually be better off never losing weight in the first place than to lose many pounds only to pile them back on again. He says that, in the process of regaining all that weight, you're almost certainly lining the interior walls of your arteries with still more potentially deadly plaque. [MORAL: Short-term "dieting" is bad. Lifelong "healthy, natural eating" is good.]
Part of my weight-loss success is due to my Hamilton Beach Big Mouth 70590 "$50" food processor, which makes food preparation fun. Not only does it make it easier to create conventional tossed salads, coleslaw and snacks, but also it allows you the joy of endlessly experimenting with your own culinary concoctions using assortments of fruits, veggies, nuts, spices, and non-caloric sweetener (for the latter I use "Splenda" or a "store-brand" equivalent).
In that vein, recall the following lines from my prior Epinions review (of the Hamilton Beach Big Mouth 70590 "$50" food processor):
"... Joel Fuhrman, M.D. ... remarked that people generally don't or can't chew their food into fine enough particles for the maximum degree of nutrient absorption to occur in the digestive tract. Therefore, he advocated using a powerful blender (or, I presume, a food processor) to produce much more finely chopped food particles engendering markedly enhanced nutrient absorption and health."
Personally, I prefer eating my tossed salads and cooked veggies the old-fashioned way: savoring every mouthful, which I try to chew at least reasonably thoroughly. However, I can't deny the logic of Dr. Fuhrman's above words; and I've indeed noticed that after consuming a finely mixed or blended concoction of assorted fresh veggies and fruits, I generally start feeling more than usually energized shortly thereafter. I expect to be further experimenting with finely chopped/blended food, which, by the way, is reportedly healthier than continuously juicing your food (because mere juice not only deprives your digestive tract of regularity-promoting fiber but also is too quickly metabolized to be ideal for appeasing hunger for long hours). While I realize some "juicing" advocates might quibble with that remark, I prefer to eat, not drink, my dinner.
I must confess that after a month and a half of eating like this, I've developed one or two unforeseen, recurring symptoms. Whenever one of those mass-marketed diet-plan ads appears on my TV depicting smiley consumers of still more processed flour, sugar and fat, my face contorts, and I get nauseous. ;-)