Bread Frustration

Have you ever noticed in grocery store-bought bread that no matter what type of bread you are buying — “oat bread” or “rye bread” or whatever — the first and therefore most prominent ingredient is wheat, not oat or rye or whatever? This is my first pet peeve with commercial breads. They are all wheat bread, including the ones masquerading as something else. I would like to buy an oat bread made exclusively from oats with no wheat at all. It doesn’t exist.

Pet peeve number two is that all the breads now have sugar, that is, added sugar, usually from cane sugar, which I suppose is the cheapest, and therefore the one they all choose. Why must bread have ANY sugar, added or otherwise? I don’t want sugar added to my bread. I don’t want that additional insulin spike from added sugar — the insulin spike from the carbohydrates in the grains is severe enough. I want a bread with no sugar. It doesn’t exist.

Which brings me to the only alternative available to one who wants an oat bread with no sugar. Make it oneself.

And that thought has my more creative juices flowing. What would be the ingredients in an ideal bread that I might devise myself, given that all the options are open-ended? While I don’t want any sugar in MY bread, I do think the taste would be improved with some healthy fats, so I would combine the main ingredient — oats — with almond or walnut flour, and I would add sprouted seeds for their healthy fats as well as flaxseed powder for its omega 3 fat. I think the seeds would make the bread chewier, which is a plus. A touch of cinnamon would round out the taste. And the bread would include nutritional yeast, of course, and some apple cider vinegar.

Just Criminal!

Nutrition, A Soft Science

Nutrition is a soft science because it is in fact very difficult to prove anything when it comes to food. The reason is that everyone’s diet consists of a wide range of different foods, so that it is virtually impossible to show that for any specific food, here are the consequences, as all the other foods in one’s diet will have played a role too.

This is the reason why there is so much controversy in nutrition on virtually every point or aspect of different diets. It almost seems as if for any given issue, there will inevitably be “authorities” arguing for both sides of the coin. For instance, there is a huge debate in nutrition over how unhealthy, as in heart disease, saturated fat is — those who argue that it should be avoided at all costs and those who argue just as vehemently that it is harmless.

And also there is the camp that points out that correlation doesn’t prove causality, i.e., that two things happened to be very correlated could just be random chance and not causal at all. This is the argument that attempts to debunk many of conclusions drawn in the famous China Study that had such an impact on the course of nutrition as science (I don’t buy the argument here; I think the conclusions in the China Study are indeed causal). But in the absence of the type of concrete and irrefutable proofs that you can arrive at in other sciences, the argument that correlation isn’t proof has some weight.

And if this confusion of conflicting opinions isn’t bad enough to begin with, you must consider this: that not all the so-called “experts” on nutrition out there are speaking from a purely disinterested point of view where truth is the objective, but in fact are putting out ideas that support an agenda of a particular food industry. So you have pundits from the meat lobby throwing verbal grenades against the use of soy as a protein alternative because, according to these shills, it promotes estrogen in men! In fact, a huge percentage of the nutrition literature is pure propaganda from writers paid for and in the pockets of particular food industries. They are not telling you THE truth, but THEIR truth.

So what is the layperson to do with such a welter of contradictory and even perverse points of view in the “science” of nutrition? First, don’t give up. Second, keep listening to various experts and soon enough, you will find ones that are more convincing in their arguments. Third, when you have enough experts that you have come to trust, if they have common views about specific foods and specific diets, then that majority opinion among these experts that you have come to trust is what you ultimately have to go with. Not proof certainly, in the scientific sense, but definitely an educated guess.

My Experiment

My Experiment

I’ve been doing this experiment now for about 10 years in retirement. It has been an acceleration of what I was doing before retirement, as I have taken it to a much more intense level.

You see, I’ve grown a bit skeptical of the medical community being in a position to ensure my health. It seems what they offer relative to major illnesses and a general deterioration in one’s health is either pills (bandaids really) or surgery — not real cures.

Which brings me to nutrition. I believe that nutrition plays a huge role in one’s health. You are what you eat is literally true. And I think for the body to achieve maximum health, you have to feed it optimum vitamins and minerals. It’s just that simple. As the ancients understood, treat food as thy medicine. So instead of thinking that the medical community can safeguard my health, I came to believe that nutrition was the main pillar of health, not doctors.

As a consequence, the experiment has been to eat a diet that maximizes nutrition to as high a level as possible, which of course means that you have to have knowledge of nutrition. I’ve been reading about nutrition now for 25 years. I started reading about it in the mid-90s when I was seriously overweight and needed to find a diet that would help me lose the weight (a high fiber diet was the discovery then). So I have the knowledge, guided mostly by Joel Fuhrman and his Eat To Live treatise, but many other books and videos.

I call myself an “almost vegan,” as I’ll go for 6 months totally vegan and then 6 months where I eat a small amount of turkey, back and forth, but very little meat even when I’m eating the turkey (a single slice a day max).

I use cronometer and plan every meal precisely. I also do 19:5 intermittent fasting. My most recent major change has been to try to introduce more variety in my meals, so I started to use the service Leafside for their soups and sweet bowls, but even with those, they are just the starting point, as I add many and various nutritional powders to each to achieve true nutritional excellence. (Note: Leafside plugs their meals as nutritious certainly, but also very easy to make, which they are, but I didn’t go with them for that reason — ease of preparation. I just wanted to introduce a significant level of more variety in my diet with these 12 meals per month, as variety itself is a significant aspect of nutrition — the more the better. I also liked the endorsement by Michael Greger, a recognized authority on nutrition, so I knew from the get-go that their meals were of a high standard nutrition-wise.)

I’m always on the lookout to ratchet up the nutritional intensity of my diet, even with tiny little changes at any time. Now, what I eat on a daily basis is nothing like what anyone else is eating, I’m pretty sure. It is a totally unique diet that has never been done before — by anyone.

So the experiment continues.

Dragon Fruit

Dragon Fruit

Tried dragon fruit for the first time today. I didn’t know how to cut it up so I had to Google a video on that. You cut it in half and then peal away the skin. The video explained that dragon fruit is like bananas — the longer you let it ripen, the sweeter it gets.

Dragon fruit might be the most over the top food I’ve ever seen, from the point of view of how it looks. I can see where the name came from.

Have a recently opened Whole Foods near me and have been taking advantage of it to try new food — a kind of exploration.

Diet

Diet

Put myself on a real diet for 3 weeks — new thing for me as I have never done any kind of diet before.

Idea is to have a calorie deficit from 500 to 700 calories compared to what I normally eat — each day.

So I’m on the 11th day and there has been absolutely no change in my weight, despite having serious overall calorie reduction. Strange.

Perhaps the weight loss will appear suddenly and sharply, as in, say, losing 2 pounds from one day to the next. The body has its own mind.

Canelo

Butyrate

You have reached a certain level of understanding of nutrition when you have a real handle on knowing all about Butyrate. Until then, you are a lost sheep in the woods.

If you know about Butyrate, chances are good that you do understand leaky gut syndrome, which is another significant milestone on your nutrition self-knowledge journey.

Propionate is yet another serious milestone when you truly understand it.

Support Your Immune System

Baby Potatoes

Recipe for roasting baby potatoes in the oven:

Wash the potatoes with tap water.

Dry them on a cutting board.

In a large bowl, pour in liquid aminos (for some salt), balsamic vinegar, apple cider vinegar, and dollops of mustard.

Add almond flour to the mixture.

Cut the baby potatoes in half and place them in the bowl.

Tumble them around so that they are all saturated.

Sprinkle on garlic powder.

Sprinkle heavy doses of Dash Garlic and Herbs.

Place baby potatoes flat side down on parchment paper using a pizza pan.

While the baby potatoes are still wet, sprinkle on generous amounts of sesame seeds.

Pre-heat the oven to 450 degrees.

Place potatoes in the oven and cook for 45 minutes – or until the skins are crispy (from the almond flour).

Eat the baby potatoes the way they are or with smears of Gotham Greens Vegan Pesto.

Note: there is significant nutrition in the skin of a potato, particularly iron, so that eating mashed potatoes where the skin is tossed out significantly reduces the potato’s nutritional value, as in approximately cutting it in half.

Potatoes are a rich source of fiber, iron, vitamin C, and B-6.  Given their fiber content (which fiber passes through you but also feeds and promotes healthy gut bacteria) and low-fat content (so a volume of baby potatoes has comparatively few calories but makes you feel satiated), they are an excellent complex carbohydrate for losing weight.

Best Food for Weight Loss?