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March 14, 2010

Comments

Ha! Exactly!

There's a great post here:

http://kateharding.net/2008/01/03/helpful-diet-tips/

One of the comments points out that idiosyncrasy of the American diet agency:

"As a thin anorexic, I was told over and over again that 500, 800, 1000, sometimes even 1200, calories a day wasn’t enough to even keep someone alive. I was told I should be eating 1800-2500 calories a day.

As a normal-sized anorexic, I was told (by a doctor) that I could 'eat 800 calories a day and exercise and still lose some weight.'"

Lovely.

And by agency, I meant industry.

Ah, thank you for the link, PiquantMolly! That was what I was thinking of the whole time!

(Hi! Hope your recovery is going well!)

The absurd bit that always hits me the hardest is how they present these numbers as universal for everybody. I mean, I'm sure there's some bell curve deal going on here and an average range in which most of the population will gain/maintain/lose whatever. But after years of not losing weight on all of the magazines' advice, I finally worked with a nutritionist and found that the only range in which I can possibly lose the holy grail of 1 lb. per week (with crazy amounts of exercise) was 1200-1300 calories per day. At which point I decided that this whole process was really not worth it and where do you keep the pies, please?

Hmm. Do you think you'd be able to manage pie filling?

Chocolate pudding made with some kind of milk (rice, almond, soy, goat, etc) sounds super tasty right now. Or banana pudding...like banana cream pie filling. Oh yeah.

I eat until I don't want to eat any more and I have this weight at which I sit comfortably. I have no idea how many calories per day I eat, but I suspect about 2,000. I don't really exercise beyond playing with kids, keeping house, working, etc. And when I nurse, I eat like a lumberjack truckdriver and maintain a normal weight. It's super awesome. And I am fine with being a size 12. I'm tall-ish and proprotional, although I wouldn't mind smaller thighs. But(t) the work to get them is not worth it.

Now THAT is an excellent question, Laura. I like the way you think.

And yeah, how absurd, right? When I'm breastfeeding a gigantic baby and running around after her big sister and moving through days at the speed of for-the-love-of-God- can't-I-have-a-clean-house-for -10-minutes, my caloric needs are HUGE. Heck, even before I got pregnant with Daphne, I charted everything I ate and did for months on FitDay, and I was consuming about 2800 calories a day! And LOSING WEIGHT!

Crazy stuff, metabolism. Especially since I've been through beans-and-rice periods and gained weight. But the PCOS wouldn't have anything to do with that...

No, it wouldn't. The PCOS is all in your head (or in my case...on your head, in your acne and cheek hair).

i have counted my calories on days when i feel that i'm starving myself, and i eat about 2400 calories on those days. normally, i eat close to 3000 (breastfeeding a toddler) and am being relatively discerning in my choices. i'm just so. hungry.

I dropped 15 pounds in 6 days after surgery. They came back, with a vengence.

But, but...they (doctors, diet "experts", random people) just want you to be healthy. Nevermind you are only eating enough to sustain a humming bird. Fat people are NEVER healthy, and skinny people ALWAYS are. Amirite?

/snark/

I remember watching an episode of the "Real World" back in high school where one of the cast members had her jaw purposefully wired shut to lose weight. I remember being horrified by such a thing and by the comments from people who commended her for her dedication to losing weight...

I have been continuously pregnant and/or nursing for over 4 years and I am guessing I have averaged around 3000 calories a day during that time. It will be interesting to see how my metabolism adjusts when someday I am done with the growing babies gig. I've always eaten what felt and sounded good to me, been very active, and I've always been generally happy with how my body looks. Hopefully I will continue to be so in future years.

Amen! I you haven't already, "Rethinking Thin" by Gina Kolata has an excellent summary of the evidence on starvation rations. Otherwise known as dieting. I'm tempted to buy a bunch of copies second hand and just give them to random people. I'm so sick of the message that it's WONDERFUL to take in less than 1500cal if you're fat or average, just as long as you don't get TOO SKINNY and your teeth and hair don't fall out. That would be gross, and it's all about health after all. And by health I mean looks.

It was entertaining to watch people struggle with the evidence in my epidemiology of chronic disease class. New-minted grad students desperately trying to find evidence that overweight causes health problems (as opposed to being associated with some, which it is). I also hat the Shapely Prose folks in my head going "obesity! booga booga!" the thole time.

Egads, pardon my horrible typing, stiff hands and an unfamiliar keyboard = might as well mash the keys with my fist.

Is it wrong that I kind of want to see the x-rays of your new face hardware?

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