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  • What does your diet mainly consist of?
  • Do you normally plan meals ahead or pickup food from places often?
  • Has working out or being active pushed you towards a certain type of diet?

When working in a mostly sedentary industry I find this question interesting.


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    Main pointers of my lifestyle:

    • Always sleep plenty (I found my amount is 9hr + 1hr of falling asleep)
    • Eat only when hungry and not because of X (time of the day is a huge contributor to overeating)
    • Walk everywhere you can (or exercise)
    • Keep a good amount of body muscles (I travel a lot and I have a heavy trolley bag, so I get lots of workout there :P)
    • Eat lots of vegetables and fruits
    • Drink lots of water/tea
    • Avoid useless sugars/oils (unless it’s a treat)
    • Breakfast is not vital, sleep and drinking water is
    • Cook most, if not all, of your food
    • Meat/Fish is not as important as many cultures state

    Seems a lot but it’s not too hard to follow.

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      Main diet varies a bit, but it’s usually:

      • Breakfast: mashed bananas with oatmeal and a bit of honey (used to be chocolate, but I decided honey is probably healthier)
      • Lunch: Rice, potatoes/sweet potatoes, some meat, some type of cereal (beans, lentils, peas). I’m trying to cut down on the carbs, and I have Crohn’s disease, so that means cutting on the beans/lentils might also be a good idea. I’m trying to add more meat, and braised kale to compensate
      • Afternoon snake: black bread, jam and coffee of tea
      • Dinner: same thing as lunch

      There’s also ungodly amounts of coffee between every meal. It’s usually 2 cups (like, big ones, 400ml or more) before lunch, and 2 or three after. I try to not drink any coffee after, like, 6 PM, to avoid messing up my sleep pattern.

      I try to prepare lunch and dinner for the whole week, but not always succeed to stick to it, so sometimes I just eat out. The diet doesn’t change much, it just gets more varied, with more salad, eggs, etc, which I don’t do at home because it’s too much work.

      I’m trying to get back to working out regularly, but it hasn’t changed that much my diet. I’m trying to eat a bit more protein, mainly, and eating some carbs before training.

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        Better than it used to be; not as good as it could be.

        • Small breakfast, usually fruit or Staffordshire Oatcake with jam on
        • Couple of coffees in the morning, sometimes with biscuits (currently trying to cut them out)
        • Lunch is usually a sandwich or two
        • Dinner is whatever the other half has made, medium sized portions generally. Fairly healthy most of the time, she’s mindful of not feeding crap to the kids even if that’s all we want. Also try not to have seconds too often (but she makes v nice food.)

        On top of that, I’ll occasionally snack on biscuits, crisps or fruit. Trying to cut that out, or make it fruit more often.

        Then there’s the alcohol. Probably average one night a week in the pub for a couple of pints, and maybe another two nights a week at home with a couple of beers or a bottle of wine. Drinking at home not so much recently, as it’s the easier thing to cut out. (Pub with drinks/friend is my weekly therapy session effectively.)

        Exercise comes from either walking round town (see therapy session), or going for cycle rides. Alas I suspect the cycling will tail off as the weather closes in over winter, so I’ll probably have to start swimming again instead. Turbo training in the garage is just too boring.

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          What does your diet mainly consist of?

          Depends on whether or not it is an active day or not…. If it’s a day of low physical activity (like in the office):

          • 1 slice of bread with peanut butter and 2 cups of tea for breakfast (I can’t eat much in the morning). Also some extra vitamin supplements as I don’t get enough vitamin D because of the lack of sunlight.
          • Lunch: Mostly some cucumber, lettuce and bell pepper and a hard boiled egg prepared at home while having breakfast. Drinks: Tea, water, milk or some fresh-fruit juice I can get at work. (yes, no coffee at all).
          • Snacks: Free fruit from the office or nothing at all.
          • Dinner: Whatever I decide to make that day, but I try to leave out as much of the the “dead calories” (potatoes, rice, noodles, etc.) as possible. So that’s mostly meat or fish and veggies. I don’t do desserts.

          Do you normally plan meals ahead or pickup food from places often?

          If it’s a day with high physical activity, like cycling to work (adds 2 hours of activity to my day), walking around a lot or doing sports, my diet is mostly the same as on a low activity day, but I take some extra snacks, take-outs or I might add potatoes, rice or something else I usually leave out to my dinner. Usually the choice is dictated by the “whatever I feel like”-heuristic, but only when my body “asks” for extra food twice.

          Has working out or being active pushed you towards a certain type of diet?

          No, although I eat considerably more when I am active.

          I have basically a few diet-rules I go by:

          • I try to avoid eating anything pre-processed or pre-packaged as much as possible, so I prepare as much of my own food by myself. It’s cheaper and it gives you control of portion sizes.
          • Only eat extra when my body “demands” it. So I ignore the first “hunger itch”. It’s unpleasant, but you’ll get used to it after about 6 weeks and by then it’s easy. However if there is a second wave of “hunger” (the type I can’t ignore and makes me cranky) I give in to it and eat an early lunch or dinner, or take some extra on the go.
          • Coffee contains fat and fat is calories (no wonder it gives you energy), a bottle of beer is 2 slices of bread (so a double breakfast), soft drinks are (full of sugar), (passive) smoking is bad and in places where smokers eat, the food is bad because you can’t taste properly and not being able to taste properly makes it easier to keep eating. Avoid all when possible.
          • Most important one of all: Always make portions on the small side. You don’t have to feel “full”, you just have to feel “not hungry” for the next few hours.

          What did push me towards this diet is that one day I just “felt heavy” and less comfortable moving around. Due to that I checked my BMI and it was 25,5. That was when I thought: “No more, I don’t want to feel like this ever again, it has to go down to at most 23, that means losing about 10 kg and keeping it of! I want don’t want to let my partner down and I want to set a good example when I get kids!”. That was the strongest motivator to push me towards this diet.

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            Coffee contains fat and fat is calories (no wonder it gives you energy)

            Coffee has no fat. Espresso is ~ 1 calorie per oz

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              Allright I oversimplified things. Let me rectify that.

              It’s true that coffee has no fat and that Espresso only has 1 kcal per cup. However, this only holds if you purely disregard what happens inside your body after you consume the coffee.

              All coffee except for old style paper-filtered coffee, does contain Cafestol which is an amino-acid which gets turned into fat and increases LDL-cholesterol significantly. So you have to drink only black filtered coffee without milk or sugar if you want the “coffee contains no fat”-statement to hold. Also: Milk contains fat, cafestol and suger both get turned into glucose and fructose, and glucose and fructose eventually get burned or turned into lipids which eventually are truned into (body) fat.

              But you don’t have to believe me blindly, you can actually do this very simple science experiment by yourself for less about 10€/$: Get a few test tubes, some distilled water and some ethanol with a >70% purity. Put about 1 ml of coffee into the test tube, add about 2 ml of ethanol and 2-3 ml of distilled water. Shake the tube so that everything mixes properly and leave it to rest for about an hour.

              If there is a dark band floating on top, that is the fat in you coffee.

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                Coffee is coffee. If you add anything else to coffee grounds besides water, it’s no longer just “coffee”. I thought that was pretty obvious.

                I cannot find any paper that supports your claim that “cofestol” turns into fat. I can only find that it’s fat soluble, which is not the same thing. I can find that it stimulates insulin secretion and glucose uptake, but that is also not the same as your claim. If it turned into any form of sugar why would they be testing the use of cafestol to treat or prevent diabetes? That doesn’t make sense.

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                  There are multiple studies, conducted from 1991 until 2015 by the Netherlands National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, sadly most of them are not (yet) translated into English, which confirm that cafestol lowers the production of bile acid, which in turn heightens levels of LDL-Cholesterol. So more fat from other sources stay fat and it stays in your bloodstream.

                  For the breakdown path of cafestol (one of many lipids) you simply have to look up the common breakdown-paths of lipids in literature about diabetes. You have to connect the dots yourself though, but this is why patients with type-2 diabetes should consume at most 4 cups of regular black coffee per day, unless they have a low blood-sugar.

                  If it turned into any form of sugar why would they be testing the use of cafestol to treat or prevent diabetes? That doesn’t make sense.

                  Here I can only speculate, because I just don’t know the angle of attack this research might take.

                  Given that type-2 diabetes is essentially insulin resistance and the fact some studies have shown that cafestol increases insulin production and glucose uptake in muscle tissue in rats, that might be why there is research into it.

                  But given that any diabetes treatment is basically “keep blood-sugar levels between this safe lower bound and this safe upper bound” and that cafestol has been shown to lower the production of bile acid (in humans), which is required to turn fat (also a lipid) into glucose, then it might be possible to lower the amount of new glucose from being formed by lowering the amount of lipids being converted into glucose. This in turn lowers the required amount of insulin, but it increases the amount of LDL-cholesterol in the patient’s blood. The underlying reasoning would be: We have to get rid of the excess lipids, just store them anywhere we can so we can prevent them from being metabolized into glucose. It’s no real solution and you’ll die of Atherosclerosis in 2 to 15 years, but you’ll die in a few weeks due to a too high blood sugar..

                  In the end I just don’t know, because this is still unpublished research.

                  I do know that I am sceptical as hell when I see texts with “too good to be true” statements like “Coffee decreases chances of getting diabetes!” and “Researchers are using coffee to treat diabetes!”, because it’s too simplistic, it’s what many people wish for and it aligns perfectly with certain corporate interests. “Extraordinary claims need extraordinary evidence” and history has shown us time and time again that these types of claims have failed to provide said extraordinary evidence, or worse; they turned out downright false.

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                    Thanks for the incredibly thoughtful response. I’ll have to do some more research on this.

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                      You’re welcome. I understand where you’re coming from, as I myself was also quite baffled and couldn’t believe it when I discovered this information for the first time. That’s why I did more research and devised a simple experiment so I could see for myself etc..

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              Coffee suppresses the feeling of “tiredness”, no it doesn’t give you energy and no it doesn’t have fat.

              A double cream caramel frappucino with extra special pumpkin syrup from Starbucks is not “coffee”, it just contains it.

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              I try to not stress too hard about being strict to the rule, but I usually do the following:

              • Eat well prepared food (even if I’m eating out, I’ll go for a higher quality food if possible).
              • I don’t count calories, but tend to avoid unnecessary sugars (Cola, Most Desserts, Sugar in my Coffee/Tea).
              • Opt for Protein rich food over Carbs.
              • Try to not eat past 7PM (again, not a strict rule)
              • Eat only to 80-90% full, unless I’m working out that day or playing sports later on.
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                Please find my answers below:

                What does your diet mainly consist of? On weekdays, I eat a lot of fats (avocado, almonds, eggs, milk, tuna, meat), proteins, fruits and vegetables. I try to keep processed carbs intake down to the minimum. I avoid bread. I drink coffee every day.

                A typical lunch would consist of two large boiled eggs, one avocado, one apple and a bunch of almonds. Dinner would be some kind of meat and vegetables.

                On weekends I’m more flexible and eat anything (fast food, pizza, chocolates, beer). You know, some kind of cheat meal.

                I have been doing intermittent fasting for 2 years so I skip breakfast and start eating at lunch.

                Do you normally plan meals ahead or pickup food from places often? We (wife and kids) plan meals ahead on Sunday and prepare them every day. This helps us control spending and diet on weekdays.

                Has working out or being active pushed you towards a certain type of diet? Definitely. I have been training jiujitsu for 10 years and tried a lot of diets. A balanced diet + fasting is the diet I feel more confortable with these days at 36 years old.

                My takeaway is that eating clean and fasting allows me to enjoy workouts and have energy to work throughout the day.