Testing The Effects of Individual Food Items On Your Diet

I am coming off a fantastic day on the snacks-only diet. About half of what I ate yesterday consisted of smoothies. This could definitely make you think that smoothies are great for dieting. I would not conclude that too easily, though. However, there is a method you can use to possibly test the benefit of a particular food for dieting purposes. Just keep in mind that this may not be a foolproof scientific method.

It’s hard to test the benefit of individual food items on a diet unless that is the only food you eat. However, I seem to have been doing well overall lately on days that include smoothies. I don’t like to assume things, though. Whether a food is good for your diet also depends on other factors, such as how much of it you are prone to eat. Even something like smoothies could be a problem if you go overboard on them.

I don’t personally count calories for many reasons, instead estimating the weight of my food. However, even if you do track calories, it’s going to be difficult to ascertain the effect of a particular food item. One thing you can try is to test a full day’s diet as a whole and then replace items one at a time on ensuing days to see if you notice a difference when tracking the results.

It would take a long time to test using the “replace a single food” method. I would say you need about 21 days of results to get a decent estimate. That means 21 days with the new item you are testing while also not changing any other part of your diet. Any changes in other foods, and you will mess up the result.

For the snacks-only diet that I am on now, my focus is on eating approximately the same weight of food each day, but while keeping in mind that something crazy, like 2 pounds of bread or sugar, would probably be a disaster. So in addition to the weight, I like to balance things out with food from the different groups: a little meat, a little vegetable, a little fruit, a bit of bread or grains, and a small amount of sugar. I might throw a little dairy in there, at least when having smoothies.

My method is much easier than counting calories even if it arguably yields less useful results. But is it really less useful? My goal and your goal is to individualize diet and exercise, not to run a scientific study that yields an average result among 50, 100, or 1000 or more human beings. Does everyone have the same exact ideal calorie mark for their diet? Averages don’t even apply to an individual (either you or me). Studies are valuable because they give you ideas on what might work. But you then have to try it out and see if it works for you. I don’t even claim to be an expert and am not licensed in any field related to health. So what? Did that stop me from losing 68 pounds using my own system? No. Did it stop me from creating my own snacks-only diet to make the process multiple times easier? No. All of the studies in the world won’t mean a thing unless you experiment until finding the diet-exercise combination that you are willing and able to follow on a daily basis.

My first meal probably had a bit too much liquid this time, including some milk. So my weight was up to 78.4 from 78.0 even after waiting a while and going to the bathroom. I don’t really want to mess up yesterday’s great results, so I should be careful not to “celebrate.” It would be better to wait for a cheat day to celebrate my success.

I have never actually measured my weight increase after eating only a fast food burger with no fries, no coke, and nothing else on the side. I just had 1 1/2 chicken burgers that had only one chicken filet, a little lettuce, and a little mayonnaise. This was not a huge burger, like a Double Whopper or something like that. My weight went up to 78.8, and I counted this as 2 snacks. This is certainly not an endorsement to eat fast food. Read carefully what I wrote. I had no fries, no coke, and none of the other stuff that is often added to a fast food burger. This was the snacks-only version of fast food, not the usual pigging out that I do when eating such food. It worked out okay in terms of weight because there was nothing on the side. The calories still may have been pretty high. As I explained above, though, I do not count calories. As long my discipline is good on total food weight, which DOES include not overdoing it on sugar and carbs, then my tracking is showing that this works for me.

A frozen pizza was my next snack, and I ate a little too much (around .3 kg). This got me to 79.1 kg, which would not be so good if I were still hungry. But the pizza did its job, and I am really not all that hungry. I was supposed to eat 2 more snacks but can probably get away with eating one and a mini snack (something that is only 2 or 3 regular-sized bites and well less than .1 kg).

I probably overate a little today, but the results are turning into a disaster that I could not have predicted. When I went to bed, I was at 79.3, or 1.3 over. That is a little high, but it’s not super high or what would appear to be a major mistake. But when I woke up, I was still at 78.9, or .9 kg over for the day. That is the lowest overnight loss recorded in a while. There were 4 hours left until the official weigh-in at that time. I hope this is just slowly moving digestion or something, but today might end up completely erasing yesterday’s .5 kg weight loss. There is also a bit of a constipation issue. If that gets worked out, maybe I can lose some of this weight before the weigh-in.

Less than an hour and a half later, I was finally able to go to the bathroom. However, it’s not like it helped a huge amount. I did get down to 78.7, but that still left me .7 kg over with 2 1/2 hours to go. At this point, I would settle for gaining .5 today so at least I would only gain back what I lost yesterday. Getting down to 78.4 would seem like a relief at this point. I know my diet was not good today, but the results should not be this bad. The only thing I can think of is that maybe I lost too much yesterday, so the body is retaining weight to “compensate” for that. I really don’t know, though.

If you read yesterday’s blog, you will now understand what I meant about not celebrating after a great day. You have no idea what is going to happen the next day. You could gain it all back. That is exactly what is happening to me today.

Only 30 minutes before the final weigh-in, I was still at 78.6 kg. Disaster is about to be confirmed. I have not had such a wild 2-day swing in a while, but it’s not unprecedented. I am just going to remain optimistic because I am still ahead on this diet, and this is the worst day I have seen so far. Records (both good and bad) have to be broken at some point.

I lost .1 kg more and finished at 78.5 kg. So I gained back all the weight lost yesterday. Still, the overall results are fine.

Day 30 – gained .2 kg
Day 31 – gained .1 kg
Day 32 – lost .5 kg
Day 33 – gained .5 kg
Overall Result: lost 2.5 kg

“No Exercise” Days: lost 1.2 kg – 31 days
Simultaneous “No Exercise” Portion: lost .2 kg – 2 days
All “No Exercise” Stats: lost 1.4 kg in 33 days
Exercise Days: lost 1.3 kg – 2 days
30-min Days: lost .3 kg – 1 day
90-min Days: lost 1.0 kg – 1 day
Day After Exercising: gained .5 kg – 2 days
Average of Day Of Exercise And Day After: lost .8 kg – 2 sets of 2 days

Leave a Reply