Thursday, 21 August 2014

Fat Woman and the hobbit diet

Fat Woman is on the hobbit diet. This doesn't mean that Fat Woman is eating hobbits. Fat Woman would never eat hobbits, partly because they are fictional creatures but most definitely because Tesco don't stock them. This means that Fat Woman's three-meals-and-a-snack regimen that has kept her sane, healthy and in calorie deficit for most of the last three years is no longer working for her and that she is eating two breakfasts, elevenses, lunch, afternoon tea and supper/dinner. That makes six meals, like Bilbo Baggins in the book The Hobbit. In the film of Lord of The Rings Pippin lists seven hobbit meals, putting supper and dinner separately. Fat Woman is fairly sure that this is a cultural misinterpretation as supper and dinner were considered by Tolkien to be the same thing. Fat Woman explained the difference between supper and dinner to a friend as being roughly the same thing, but you'll probably get more courses at dinner and it will be served in the dining room. If it's supper you are welcome to help with the washing up.

Fat Woman has a lot more calories to get in to her these days what with carrying Small Baby as well. It took Fat Woman a while to work out what she was meant to be doing about diet whilst pregnant because the NHS likes to push contradictory advice and make ridiculous statements. The NHS is very sure of itself that fat women should make themselves unfat before getting pregnant, happily ignoring the reality that weight loss of more than 5lb works long term for hardly anyone and also that if you are only 5lb overweight you are hardly properly fat. Fat Woman has little patience with this doublethink and considers that the institution will have to work with her as she is now.

Then the health service gravely informs all unfortunately fat women who happen to be pregnant that they shouldn't put on as much weight as normal women. Fat Woman would like to tell them to fuck off at this point, but frankly the NHS got in first with lovely leaflets about how awful and terrible and dangerous giving birth is if you have a BMI greater than 30, and how you need extra special care, which so far as Fat Woman can tell is fifteen different ways of slicing, dicing and traumatising you. Anyway, having been told to fuck off and only put on 10-20lbs rather than the usual 25lb-40lb Fat Woman has also been instructed that it's good if she happens to lose weight. Fat Woman was okay with this as losing weight is what she's been doing for years, and she's been doing it rather successfully despite a screwed up endocrine system that is poised ready to undo months of work at any moment. But then Fat Woman is gravely informed that she absolutely must not diet.

Now, Fat Woman is not averse to following a diet. Fat Woman has had great success in following the low GI diet, and then a modified I-lift-weights version of same which is high in protein and includes some fat. Fat Woman likes calories because they inform you as to what you are putting in your mouth, and knowledge is power. Recently Fat Woman stopped at Burger King for the first time in about five years and nearly died when she saw how many calories there are in a Whopper, not because calorific food itself is bad but because to jam that many calories into something that size you have to use really low quality ingredients, lots of cheap fat and sugar. Fat Woman ate the Whopper and is not sure if she was so thoroughly unwell after because of Small Baby or because she just isn't able to tolerate junk food like she could when she was younger. Fat Woman is not going to Kentucky Fried Chicken whilst pregnant just in case she can never eat KFC chicken pieces again and she would have NO IDEA what to ask for as her last meal. Anyway, Fat Woman isn't opposed to diets, but she would like to know how The Powers That Be think she should be able to lose weight whilst pregnant without being in calorie deficit. If calories in are fewer than calories out your body takes from storage and you lose weight, right? To claim otherwise is to claim that your body violates the laws of physics, and Fat Woman is fairly sure that is impossible.

Having looked at the breakdown of what pregnancy weight gain actually consists of Fat Woman concludes that what TPTB means is that if you have lots of lovely fat on your body you don't need to put on the extra 8-10lb of fat your body requires for breast feeding. Fat Woman concedes, this point, but would like to point out that if hormone changes mean extra fat storage the fact that you already have fat is neither here nor there. Fat Woman thinks that this attitude is incredibly unfair to fat women, who have enough of a hard time with people blaming them for their existence as a fat person without TPTB making them feel bad that for once their bodies are acting normally.

Fat Woman found a very useful breakdown of from what the average pregnancy weight gain is made up.
At birth, a baby weighs about 3.3kg (7.3lb).
The placenta, which keeps your baby nourished, weighs 0.7kg (1.5lb).
The amniotic fluid, which supports and cushions your baby, weighs 0.8kg (1.8lb).  
The other two thirds of extra weight is due to the changes that happen to your body while you're pregnant. On average:
The muscle layer of your uterus (womb) grows dramatically, and weighs an extra 0.9kg (2lb).
Your blood volume increases, and weighs an extra 1.2kg (2.6lb).
You have extra fluid in your body, weighing about 1.2kg (2.6lb).
Your breasts weigh an extra 0.4kg (0.9lb).
You store fat, about 4kg (8.8lb), to give you energy for breastfeeding.
The bit about this that Fat Woman really doesn't fancy is that "your breasts weigh an extra 0.4kg". Fat Woman would like the universe and her body to know that she does not need anything extra in that area. If a pair of D cup breasts weighs 15-23lb Fat Woman could have practically hit goal weight by having a double mastectomy because she is waaaay further down the alphabet than D. Fat Woman has heard horror stories of how breasts can grow, and cannot fathom than more than three cup sizes is possible but the midwives exchanged looks and were very honest and said that anything was possible. Between the boobs and the bump Fat Woman is going to have to carry lead in her back pockets from October.

Fat Woman hasn't actually stood on the scales since she found she was pregnant. As she'd just lost 100lb and was at her lowest weight ever she is going by the fit of clothes. Fat Woman can still get into her jeans, although they are tight over the baby bump now, and Fat Woman uses a Bella Band when sitting or driving. Fat Woman is worried about slipping off the wagon though, because although she has an extra 700 calories each day (500 for not being in deficit, 200 for being pregnant) it is really, really easy to slip into the mentality that you can eat what you like. Fat Woman and Thin Husband got through a staggering number of biscuits during the two weeks that Thin Husband was on holiday, and have agreed that perhaps they wouldn't bring any more into the house for a while. Thin Husband is allowed to eat biscuits because he is Thin Husband. Fat Woman should not be eating many biscuits because they are not part of the healthy eating that keeps her feeling well. However, when Fat Woman confessed that she had eaten a white bagel for lunch followed by not one but two chocolate cookies the midwives weren't at all bothered. Personal Trainer would have had a fair amount to say about that kind of meal that wasn't even the once-a-week cheat meal. It's not going to kill anyone in one sitting but it's not healthy.

The trouble Fat Woman has with the hobbit diet is that she actually genuinely hungry very soon after meals during the morning. Small Baby has taken to kicking Fat Woman awake around 5am and then Fat Woman has to get up and eat breakfast because she is so hungry. Even if Fat Woman manages to sleep longer and eat breakfast between seven and eight o'clock she is ready for second breakfast at 10am, and although elevenses can be pushed back to 11.30am there needs to be three incidences of feeding before lunch, especially if any exercise is involved. The hobbit diet requires small, regular meals and Fat Woman is running out of inspiration. Fat Woman is used to eating high protein meals with lots of bulk at meal times and then forgetting about food until the next meal time. Now it seems that to stay out of calorie deficit but not get over-supplied Fat Woman is eating all the damn time, which means large bulky meals don't work for her any more. Fat Woman eats half, gets full up and then has to face finishing off leftovers two hours later. This is worst when Fat Woman is out exercising. Even walking around shooting sends Fat Woman's heart rate right up and her metabolism goes crazy. Fat Woman has always been seen at shoots eating cereal bars and bananas in an attempt to keep her blood sugar optimal for concentration but without slipping out of calorie deficit. Now Fat Woman is ordering a bacon sandwich before shooting and is quite happy to have lunch afterwards. The afternoon snack is now slightly larger, and dinner is the least interesting meal of the day.

Fat Woman has had two cravings so far. The first is peanuts, which she was having in the form of Picnic bars but is now having as peanut butter. The second is raspberries. Fat Woman has raspberry cordial, raspberry jam and if she is really lucky fresh English raspberries from the expensive grocery shop. Blackberries will do if no raspberries are available, and on Wednesday you could have seen Fat Woman stripping bare the two bramble cables that happen to grow in the gym car park. Fat Woman nearly went crazy when she went shooting and there was a whole bank of perfectly ripe blackberries just out of reach behind a wire fence. Luckily not even Fat Woman in the grip of a craving is fool enough to start wandering around in fenced off areas at shooting grounds. Fat Woman has her eye on several places that should be bearing fruit in a couple of weeks.

Fat Woman used to say that cut flowers were her favourite thing but what she really wants is an all-you-can-eat pass to the local pick your own. Or someone to arrive bearing punnets of berries. It used to be that Fat Woman thought an invitation to shoot on someone's land was the best of all invitations but now she'd much prefer permission to blackberry if someone had a decent patch.

1 comment:

  1. I try to pick blackberries every summer. It is always my aim to make 1 or 2 cobbler pies, then freeze another gallon or so of berries for a pie in winter. BUT my 11 YO daughter finds the berries in the freezer, eats them up, and no winter pie.