Sunday, July 3, 2011

It's the New Splenda Lady Come to Call

MathMan and I are attempting a low carb lifestyle. Attempting is, of course, the operative word. Goodness knows the world is dark place of hidden sugars and sweet sabotage.

We're on day three and we've already, both of us, fallen off the turnip truck. Wait - are turnips considered safe foundation vegetables with Atkins? My brain is too busy coping with DTs to suss it out so let's do this - we've both tumbled belly fat first from the meat wagon. I licked my way to nirvana with a lemon custard ice cream cone and MathMan succumbed to the Blackberry Mountain Pie singing its siren song from the kitchen counter.

I ask you though, can you blame him?

This is so easy to make. And delicious.
Anyway, we realize we're on a collision course with reality. We either rid this house of all white products and listen to the wailing from the battlements when our children discover that there's not one speck of milk chocolate, nary a crumb of cupcake, not a single Cheez-It left behind OR we accept the fact that we're doing a modified Atkins which includes some whole grains, some dairy and wine for Lisa. A mash up of Atkins, low-glycemic, Weight Watchers and South Beach. Save us, Dan Marino! Won't you help us, Valerie Bertinelli? Have mercy on our fatty deposits, Marie Osmond. Rescue us from ourselves, Nutri-system and Jenny Craig! (for free)

Atkins. How very unsustainable. It's one thing to require me to stop propping up the refined sugar industry each time I drink a cup of coffee. It's altogether cruel to expect me to forgo some half and half or cream, too.

Our discussions focus around what we're eating, how much we're working out and the effect it's all having on our slap and tickle. One reason we've decided to take this route (again) is because MathMan doesn't find my admonition to not come into contact with my fat tummy much of an aphrodisiac.

We're competitive, comparing what we weigh and how much we've lost or gained. For the first time in memory, we're both in need of lifestyle changes at the same time. So often one of us has lost weight while the other has gained. It's very frustrating.

Even as we're in the battle together, we irritate the other. He's trying to undermine me so that I stress eat and I'm jealous of his ability to do pull ups and to make slight modifications in his diet and lose fast and his lack of hormonal issues like PMS that make sticking to Atkins especially tricky.

Yesterday, he was doing pull ups on the contraption that fits over the door frame and I walked by chewing on a celery stalk. "Now there's a sight," he huffed. "You don't even like celery."

"Shut up. This isn't celery. This is a Marathon Bar."

"They don't even make those anymore."

"You realize you're in a rather vulnerable position hanging there, don't you?"

I know the low carb thing makes me moody. I'm an addict, after all. My love of sugary things is inherited and began when I was quite young. I learned to count to ten putting teaspoons of sugar on my Puffed Wheat and Cheerios. There was always more jelly than peanut butter on my PBandJs. When I made the ice tea for my mom, she'd remind me to add some tea to the sugar. My dad, the guy whose daily breakfast was a tall glass of 2% milk with a quarter of the can of Hershey's syrup, used Brach's Malted Milk Balls and gallons of Meadow Gold Ice Cream to show his love and taught us to put milk and sugar on our cherry Jello. Imagine - sugar on...sugar. I'd say blech, but it would be a lie. I'd still eat my Jello like that if I could do it in private.

So here I am again, trying to change my ways without killing someone during a sugar-free rage. If only I could be dealt with like a heroin addict. Lock me in a room with nothing but black decaf, water, and three pounds of beef jerky and I'd get beyond the rough part. I don't even care if I hallucinate babies crawling across the ceiling, just release me from the gritty clutches of sugar, please.

Also, what was I thinking to begin this lifestyle caper over a holiday weekend while I'm experiencing those aforementioned hormonal issues? Madness. The kids aren't helping either. Chloe made owl cupcakes to take to a birthday party and the leftovers are in the fridge mocking me with their owl eyes.

So, listen, if you see me out there on the internets bumping into walls or showing my butt, as we say down here, please take no offense. It's a phase. Just shove an Oreo in my direction and get away fast before I say or do anything else obnoxious.

All of this is good for me, I know. When I'm seventy-two and not taking ten different prescriptions I can't afford, I'll look at MathMan, still fit and trim MathMan, over our 9 Lives entrees and be glad for every day we did better than worse when it came to moving more and eating better - more vegetables, more lean protein and less processed junk except for those fabulous Atkins high protein, low-carb bars which I can, given enough vodka in my system, convince myself taste just like Baby Ruth bars.

In the meantime, I think my brother said it best - if vegetables tasted like Ho Hos, I'd be a vegetarian.

What's your poison? Points to anyone who gets the title reference. I'll send you some sugar. Or rather "sugar."


  1. Try the South Beach Diet: healthier, more diverse and more sustainable than Atkins.

    I've been considering going back on it myself. The killer is the first two weeks: No alcohol allowed. Can't bring myself to do it...

  2. 1. How on earth are you doing Atkins while couponing? That book would sell.

    2. Omg, cramps are hell when they have been away for almost two years due to baby having.

    3. That movie was so sick. I am still traumatized by the dead baby scene, and I saw that film in 2007. Four freaking years of trauma. Thanks for bringing it up.

    4. Way to freaking go on cutting down on sugar. It's so lovely, and yet so bad for us.

  3. Sherry - It's the whole no alcohol allowed that's tripping me up, too. I think I'll just go with the Drinking Man's Diet and be happy.

    With every Manhattan, your stomach will flatten....

    Summer - Thankfully, Atkins has coupons for their shakes and bars. I can buy bacon with coupons, too. The produce and other meat takes more work to find deals and coupons, but I'm using a cool tool at to find the best prices for meat each week. Sadly, we're not close enough to a Whole Foods or somewhere where we can have more variety for organic meats and they're so dang expensive at Publix. We'll save ourselves from diabetes and heart disease and poison ourselves with pesticides and whatever awful stuff is in meat these days.

    Also, sorry for bringing up Trainspotting. It gives me the heebie jeebies, too.

    And you nailed it. It's cutting down on sugar, not eradicating it. That would make me an impossible beast.

  4. Lost in all this diet talk....referencing the classic Guess Who hit No Sugar Tonight/New Mother Nature (Guess Who), one of my favorite songs of my youth.

    No sugar tonight in my coffee
    No sugar tonight in my tea
    No sugar to stand beside me
    No sugar to run with me

  5. I almost spit my coffee all over my laptop when I read the title.

    (For those wh don't understand the reference.)

  6. I can send you some shelf stable bacon if that would help. I make bacon chocolate fudge, too. I suspect that's not Atkins Friendly, though.

    I'll send the kids a package of their own, with strict admonitions to keep it in plastic containers in their rooms.

    I am a sugar-caffeine-crap food addict. I stave off cravings by drinking copious amounts of Bigelow Green Tea. It's one of the few green teas that doesn't seem to require sweetener.

  7. Rich people can afford dieticians, tummy tucks, and gastro-bypasses - never mind sending the servants out to shop at Whole Paycheck. It doesn't take a Sherlock Holmes to figure out what stress and low incomes do to the rest of us.

    My poisons are cherries, dark chocolate, and cheese - not necessarily in that order.. but please don't show me any cherry covered chocolate cheesecake right now.

  8. You got it, Latka! And you know the prize for winning.

    comrade Misfit!!! Excellent link. Thank you.

    rennratt - Thank you. The kids thank you, too. And Bigelow Tea? I've got coupons!

    susan - Isn't that the truth. If I had the means and someone to whip up fabulous, healthy meals, I'd be a svelte size zero just like the fabulously wealthy. Instead, I dull the pain with ice cream, cobbler and homemade enchiladas.

    I promise not to show you any cheesecake. Sophie ate it all.

  9. I may be one of the most confused people on the planet re diet stuff.....
    Low fat, high fat, low carb, vegetarian, butter, margarine, food pyramids flipped, flopped & now a plate icon!
    Another thing that blew me out of the water, was I was trying to be so good & eating lots of steamed veggies.... chard, spinach, Kale-- gotta be good for you-- right??
    Until I landed in the ER with a kidney stone blocking my kidney & put me in sepsis!
    Surgery & a stint in intensive care.

    Turns out for "stoners", those who make kidney stones, need to severely limit things with oxalic acid.

    Seriously? Freaking spinach & kale & chard are on the "bad" list???

    Fine I'll just eat ice cream.
    See how me & my ass are in trouble???

  10. I'm still on the "new Mother Nature" plan

    "The situation must be right - A bag of goodies and a bottle of wine"

    Thanks for the laughs and the blast from the past."

  11. I thought I read MathMan had put on pull ups and really questioned whether a diet was the way to go for you two. Forget food, I think I need a new eyeglass prescription.

  12. Wouldn't owl be a bit gamey?

    Answer: poison.

  13. Hmmmmm. I was under the impression that one could have cream or half-and-half in one's coffee with modified Atkins, just not huge amounts. (I am, alas, now off coffee. Even decaf. Woe.)

    I don't know how I managed never to have heard that song.

    If you are allowed things like fresh fruit, you could have a couple of peaches or some strawberries or kiwifruit. Fiber, vitamins, sweetness. (Fainting is no fun.)

    Since you and MathMan are simultaneously watching your intake, it shoud be easier to keep temptation out of the house. The kids can consume all the trash they want (hmmmmm. How's their skin?) provided they do so not at home.

  14. A number of my friends have lost weight with the slow carb diet. Wendy has been doing it with good success.

    Nick is on a low carb diet again and he was quite strict for two weeks and definitely lost some weight. I did read an interesting article recently about diet soda increasing waist size: I do believe the fake sugar really fucks with your insulin, however that works.

  15. Ugh. I read this and thought, yes, I'm so with you. Something must be done.

    But I just don't want to...

    Weaknesses for me are all salt and fat. Give me a bag of Lay's plain old chips, the ones in the yellow bag and I'm done for. I can't stop until it's empty.

    I think I'd be okay without sugar until I think about my coffee...

    I got on the scale today and realized I'm at a new high barring pregnancy. Yeah, that's a good feeling.

  16. I am becoming a yo-yo abnd I was never like that before. I feel your pain and understand your search for the perfect dietary mix. Something you can live with and lose with.

  17. I am on limited bandwith up in the Adirondacks so am not going to click on the Youtube link that was posted in the comments...but I do know it's a Guess Who song!

    It's true, you can have WHOLE cream in your coffee on Atkins. Just not milk or half and half, lol! I actually think South Beach is healthier too, and let's face it, we'd all probably lose weight if we quit drinking. Me in particular. Not only does it add calories of its own but it makes me lose my inhibitions and eat more! But the Drinking Man's Diet really is Atkins with alcohol so go for it. My mom lost 15 lbs. back in the 60s on it!

  18. i've been making smores in my microwave.

    worse, i wait until the kids are in bed b/c we only have so many smores ingredients left from our trip and i want to make them last as long as possible.

    i'm worse than the person trapped on the island who won't share her food. i'm the mom who won't give it up for her kids. god save me.


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