New Year Rolls in and We Roll up!

The New Year has rolled in, and we have all rolled up our sleeves to do battle with resolutions, determinations, and major decisions that are supposed to revolutionize our world in 2016. Some of us sound like that broken LP with the needle stuck in the groove.

I am that LP when it comes to getting my work published. I have made the same resolution about publication year after year since 2010, and my good friend, Lynn Watts, a counselor, asked in one of her blog posts, “Do You Have a Monkey on Your Back?” I have had a monkey on my back for years regarding publication, but that should all end this year. I never had a monkey on my back as far as weight loss is concerned.

The last time I made a weight-loss resolution was in 2000 after logging around 25 pounds for four years after my father passed away. I looked for comfort in foods, sat down in one corner, and I cried my eyes out, did not care what I looked line. Four years of mourning with only food to console me, and I had to let go of food. I used the Weight Watchers program to lose 15 pounds within two weeks. Since then, I have tried to maintain. Gaining five points here and losing five points there have not been a big deal until 2015.

I took students to a Student Council fieldtrip in Arlington, and I allowed a friend to talk me into eating ice cream. One taste of it, and I was a goner! It was the most sinful ice cream ever made, and it should be declared illegal for anyone over the age of 35. I refused to buy it; my friend insisted on buying me two 1.5-quart containers, which I left in a freezer at work. I ate it for dessert during lunch. Enjoying that much ice cream in a matter of six weeks was catastrophic. Needless to say, the fat accumulated, and I gained 20 pounds!

Yesterday morning, I was dressing up for church and reached for a skirt I had not worn since 2013. I fought to zip it up, but the button refused to go through the hole. “Houston, we have a problem!” I am in Houston right now physically, and we do have a problem.

Looking back over my weight loss solution, I asked myself for the simplest and the most effective weight-loss program. I do not want someone’s laboratory concoction packaged and sent to me; I do not want surgery. I do not want to eat only meat, which is very high in cholesterol. I want to eat real food; I want to buy real food from grocery stores; I want raw: fresh fruits and vegetables. I want foods I pick and choose myself.

My own "Vegeghetti"(Vegetables spun like spaghetti.)
Over the 2015 Christmas holiday, Oprah Winfrey said hello to the world and informed us of her intention to join Weight Watchers line of celebrities (Jennifer Houston lost 80 pounds; Jessica Simpson lost 50, etc.). 

As she unveiled her plan, she asked, “Are you ready?”
“Of course, I am,” I said to the television screen, and I meant it.
“Let’s do this together,” Oprah invited.
“Sure thing,” I replied, and again, I meant it.

In December 2015, Weight Watchers unveiled its own plan to change from PointsPlus to SmartPoints. Under PointsPlus (or whatever it was called in 2000); my daily points were 22 back then. I was much younger, and the fat did not stick with as much tenacity. Now they hang on for dear life. Under Smartpoints, my points are now 26 per day with 35 weekly splurging points.

The new program is called "Beyond the Scale." I began the program right after Christmas Day and have lost EIGHT points! Do you hear me?? I have lost EIGHT pounds, and I am not starving. I snack a lot. The secret is to know how many points are in each food item you put in your mouth and to add in all the points. The internet is full of weight-loss calculators. Add it all in, yes, all of it. Cheating is self-defeating!!

The old point system was based on total fat, carbohydrates, fiber, and protein. The new point system is based on calories, saturated fat, sugar, and protein. As Hungry-girl notes on her website, “Protein lowers the value while saturated fat and sugars increase that number.” Onemorepound provides a table of beans and legumes with serving size and points. I have downloaded the most recent Weight Watcher’s calculator.

I love fruits and vegetables. I ate one-eight of a peach pie with vanilla ice cream on the 27th of December and used up 22 of my 26 points. I did not fret. Instead, I loaded up on steamed broccoli, green beans, and spinach for dinner and was quite full. For breakfast the next day, I ate one-third cup of oatmeal with half cup of vanilla Silk milk. Perfect! Just perfect! I could have dipped into my 35 weekly reserved points, but I chose not to do that. 

The Weight Watchers program is a life style; it is a mental process, a paradigm shift. It is not a dieting plan. Since 2000, I have remained within the weight into which my recent age settled: 150 pounds. When I was in my 20's and 30’s, my age settled around 130 pounds. Since 2000, no matter what I did, the weight refused to go back to 130, and I am fine with that. I just do not want to hit 170 ever again as I did in 2000.

Weight Watcher’s plan is the common sense way of eating and living that any nutritionist and/or medical doctor will tell you: reduce saturated fat, sugar, carbs, etc. Those are harmful to you. Instead, load up on proteins: peanuts, beans, fish, dairy, etc.; those are essential to the body’s well-being.

My daughter bought some red delicious apples. I took one bite, and I ate two apples that day. Those were scrumptious, definitely better than Granny apples. These apples were crunchy and very delicious. They say that one apple a day keeps the doctor away. Can you imagine what two apples a day will do? 

I thank Weight Watchers for the most amazing and most revolutionary program that empowers me in my efforts to shed 20 harmful and suffocating pounds. Once I lose the remaining 12 points, I will just concentrate on maintaining like I have been doing for years. I resolve not to fall into ice cream trap ever again, at least, not to eat ice cream almost daily for six weeks! That was gluttonous and suicidal. 

--Frances Ohanenye maintains this unusual site. Click on the "Open Source Cooking" tab for enlightening information. Thanks for visiting. Have a fruitful day!


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