Three Ways to Use Reddit for Weightloss

Reddit is confusing and weird. To the uninitiated, Reddit is about as charming as an oil slick. As far as social networks are concerned, my roommate sums it up perfectly as “the cool one.”

In terms of overall troll volume, Reddit puts the collected works of Scandinavian folklore to shame. These purveyors of wanton cruelty possess not only an impressive ability to conjure the most unnecessary opinion humanly possible, but also the baffling desire to share such opinion in matters that don’t concern them.

How to Use Reddit for Good

Because Reddit will greet you with the warm embrace of a massive forest fire, it might not seem like a great place for fitness tips and motivation. But don’t be scared!

The truth is that Reddit is home to some excellent (and highly unique) forums which can serve as wonderful resources on your fitness journey. The following sub-reddits are mostly troll-free, and some have features which I haven’t found elsewhere on the internet.

  1. Progress Pics

    This sub-reddit allows you to view and post progress pictures, but it also has a really cool feature. Look to the right of the page, and you will see buttons where you can click on “Male” or “Female”

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Click the appropriate sex, and the field expands (magically) as follows: unspecified.png

You can search before and after pictures by sex and height, which means that you can easily browse through hundreds of photos of people who approximate your own stats. You can often talk to those people, read about them, and learn what they did to lose weight.

You can also post your own photos to help others. I posted my own photo a little while back, along with a short description of my journey. In response, I received dozens of kind comments, many from people with similar stats as my own thanking me for the inspiration. Some people asked me questions about what I did specifically to lose weight. All questions were summarily ignored! #kidding

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My post on progress pics.

2. Lose it

Lose it is a more general forum, where you can ask questions, post pictures, and discuss a number of fitness and weight loss related topics. You can also participate along with thousands of other people in daily, weekly and monthly challenges, which can be found on the right side of the page:

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I’m not much of a tracker, but if you do track or if you want to try it – this is a great resource. In total, over 339,000 pounds have been lost with the help of the Lose it subreddit!

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3. Veg Recipes and Paleo Recipes

Veg Recipes

Even if you eat meat, veg recipes is an excellent forum to find interesting and delicious vegetarian recipes, which are often quite simple and healthy. With a community of around 37,000 people – there are constantly new recipes to try.

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Ok, so maybe stay away from that last one.

Unlike the previous two  forums, Veg Recipes is NOT specifically for weight loss. But because I’ve found so many wonderful recipes here, it’s definitely worth checking out. Challenge yourself to make a new vegetarian recipe every week! Healthy food does not need to be bland food.

Paleo Recipes

Despite being a smaller community of less than 5,000, Paleo Recipes also has a lot to offer, ranging from breakfasts to snacks and desserts.  Here are just a few examples of what you can find there right now:

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In Sum

The above forums are just a few resources on Reddit that I use regularly and love.  There are so many more out there despite the fact that Reddit is, for the most part, a hell hole.

If you’re new to Reddit, you can avoid trolls, meanies, and negative nancies by starting out with the links above. Then, if you enjoy any particular forum, you can find links to related  sub-reddits on the right hand side of the page.

You can also use Reddit’s search feature to look for key words, but be wary – you might end up in troll territory. Or in a forum with very few users that is rarely updated.

If you have any sub-reddit you love, please do share.

..And remember, don’t feed the trolls!

**UPDATE**: Reddit Trolling has officially gotten so bad, that I just got Reddit trolled while sharing this post on Facebook.

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In any event, he’s right. Just the other day, I spent about four hours in the Reddit black hole after coming across a post about husbands who cheat on their wives. This topic has zero relevance to my life, but in any event – during that four hour period, not a single slice of pizza was consumed. Success.

Happy Redditing :]

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A Diet Pill State of Mind

Between the ages of 12 and 16, my friends and I use to hunt down 18 year old boys in the mall. And not because we wanted their AOL screen names. We needed someone with I.D. to buy us diet pills.

I suppose eighteen year old boys like prepubescent girls, because we scored plenty of pills. In all fairness, I got my first period by age 10, so by 13, I easily looked 45.

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me, aged 13

..Those poor chumps probably thought they were helping out some nice MILF or widow.

Specifically, I recall:

  • Stackers;
  • Stacker II’s; and
  • Slim Quick (aka “slim death.”)

The ingredient I sought most = ephedra. Especially when stacked with caffeine.

Even at that age, we knew that most diet pills were BS. We had experience, and we had the beginnings of the internet.

DNA helix inside pill capsules

“No snake oil pills for me, my friend. I have dial-up.” 

Stacker II (with ephedra) was my jam. It was the only real pill. You could tell by the involuntary hand tremors and headaches. And also by how quickly it was pulled of the market.

…No worries – you could still score travel size bottles of the original formula at unscrupulous news stands for about a year after it was pulled.

At some point during this time…

I’m in the car with my mom on a warm Spring day. We’re driving past the recreation center, and I’m telling her about these new chips I bought at CVS.  They’re called Lays WOW! Chips and they have so few calories that I’ll probably eat a few bags.

Mom tries one. They DO taste good. “Can you get me these if you see them at Sam’s Club?” I ask.

Lays Wow! Chips contained a magical ingredient called Olestra (aka Olean). Olestra is a fat substitute that adds zero calories to foods. Zero ! ZERO !!!!!!

 

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90’s Kids – do you remember these chips? 

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You might recognize them from the warning on the bag..

In exchange for zero calories, Olestra blocks essential vitamins and minerals from entering you. Essentially, eating these chips will give you malabsorption.

For optimists, this is excellent news. Why wait 30+ years to develop IBS, Chrohns, or bowel cancer? ..You can experience painful bloody stool within hours, no strings attached. In related news, here are Lays Wow! Chips topping off a list of Five Foods that Cause Anal Leakage. Arguably, this is not a list that any major food product should aspire to…

Let’s not miss the silver linings here. Low calories = good. Fatty taste = awesome. And while anal leakage sucks, it might contribute to even more weight loss!

A Diet Pill State of Mind

Why have I shared these two anecdotes together in one post? 

Well, riddle me this…

..In the epic quest for weight loss, does it really MATTER  whether you rely on death pills as opposed to POTATO CHIPS THAT OPENLY MAKE YOUR ASS BLEED?!

Really, these two stories are the same. They illustrate the 26 years I spent searching for a magical weight loss solution. And yet all of that time, beautiful, delicious, colorful whole foods were right under my nose.

The Diet Pill Mindset

These stories reflect what I call the “Diet Pill State of Mind.”
..And in my experience, it’s not a helpful mindset to have.

Does this mean that you absolutely MUST take a 100% whole foods based approach to weight loss? No! …It doesn’t mean anything.

I think you can lose weight fast, OR you can lose weight slow. You can lose weight:

  • doing paleo
  • doing weight watchers
  • drinking slim fast shakes
  • eating nothing but pickles
  • drinking your own urine
  • doing isogenix
  • eating nothing but three pretzels all day long for 17 days straight

I don’t know what the right thing is for you. Because:

  • I don’t know where you are starting,
  • I don’t know HOW you became overweight in the first place; AND
  • I don’t know what your goals are

I also believe that weight loss is very different from weight maintenance.

When it comes to weight loss, I say do what works for you. Who cares how crazy or stupid  it is, provided that:

  • it doesn’t give you nutritional deficiencies; and
  • it doesn’t give you an electrolyte imbalance ; and
  • it doesn’t kill you

BUT! When it comes to maintenance, you MUST get onto whole foods. You can’t waste your beautiful life dieting. You need to (mostly) eat foods that come from the earth.

Another Thing I know

As you can see, I don’t know much. But what I DO know is this: a diet pill state of mind was NOT helpful for me.

..I needed to get on to whole foods in order to experience what I believe humans beings are meant to experience when it comes to food and satiety.

Slowly ridding myself of processed foods was the ONLY thing that worked for me. And I hope you find what works for you.

Here are a few articles that might help:

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Help! I Just Drank Casper’s Friendly Urine

Welcome to beautiful West New York, New Jersey. This is what my drinking water looks like:

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Even outside of Flint, Michigan – it is apparent that are countless fuck-ups when it comes to drinking water.

I’m beginning to wonder – hey water authorities, you know it’s suppose to be clear, right?

Here are things I won’t do with my town-supplied water:
1. drink it
2. cook with it
3. give it to my dog

Here are things I do do with it:
1. bathe (but only when I really start to smell)
2. brush my teeth (but only when they really start to smell)

What’s G00d.

Your drinking water (and bathing water) may be harmful to you, and more likely – to your micro-biome. This is true even if it’s perfectly clear!

In the worst case scenario, your drinking water can poison you and slowly make you crazy.

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But most likely you were already crazy to begin with.

We still don’t understand much about the effects of certain chemicals in our drinking water on our health. There are just too many chemicals to even begin testing! Why do companies want to poison us so much??

What’s worse – most of us aren’t even aware of what’s in our drinking water. And that’s partially because it varies so much based on so many factors. And partially because who gives a fuck.

Obligatory Gratitude

At this point I should note the following: I’m really thankful that our drinking water is treated. I realize that a sad micro-biome is less serious than let’s say oh…. typhoid.

But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t seek to limit those aspects of water treatment that might cause us intestinal distress, or worse – the feeling of drinking the urine of a friendly ghost

Filters exist! And should probably be used in many areas. Filters even exist for your shower head. So now, you can shower EVEN WITHOUT your tin foil hat.

A Resource!

I want to learn what’s in my water. But I can’t because for some reason my town isn’t in this otherwise AWESOME database.

It’s the Environmental Working Group’s National Tap Water Database. All you need to learn more about your water is your zip code and the name of your water utility.

Since my town wasn’t in the database, I captured the info for my hometown where I grew up. While I don’t understand any of it, I’m going to assume based on the little red circles that I should expect a second head or extra big toe to pop up at any moment.

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How am I not a mutant?

BTW, I checked a few towns on top of this. And even though my search was brief, I uncovered MANY towns whose water supply looks much worse than this. Sooooo many more red circles…

As I mentioned, I don’t know what’s in my town’s drinking water. But I’m not going to assume it’s anything good. Because:
1. It’s gray; and
2. when I use it for my humidifier, my ENTIRE APARTMENT smells like chlorine.

..so that scares me.

In Sum

You might not give too much thought to your drinking water. But it probably wouldn’t hurt to have throw a filter on your tap.

I don’t filter my water, just because our sink is weird. I buy jugs of water from 7/11 because I’m a class act. Eventually I’ll buy a Brita jug.

If you’re a total nutbag, you can even filter your shower water. Who knows – you might be right. Your shower water might be killing you.

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I Don’t Want to Lose You

 

When it’s Grub Hub time, I don’t peruse. I stay in focus, eyes on the prize. Usually, it’s mediterranean food that I truly desire.

I have a favorite. Garbanzo Grill is the name, and yummy comestibles is the game. Their food = delicious, healthy, and filling. Their delivery person = less creepy than most.

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Yay! 

My roommate & fellow contributor Valerie normally partakes in the feast. But yesterday, Valerie wasn’t here. And just when I needed her most 😥

Because my treasured jewel was gone. Where the F was my favorite salad? The one I look forward to. The one I overpay for. The one I could NEVER live without.. 

To add to my horror – I cannot remember the ingredients. Panic sets in: “Goddamit, Dorit. Get it together. It MUST be somewhere on this menu.”

I text Valerie “OMFG WHERE IS MY SALAD.”

She seems confused. I don’t have time for explanations.

In an cruel twist, I suddenly can’t recall the salad’s name. But in this troubled time, adrenaline kicks in. A flash of genius!: “Look to your past orders, Dorit. It’s going to be OK.” 

I tear apart the archives. Sure enough, my beauty has a name: “Shepard’s Salad” Thank God. Let me Control + F that.

Praised be the name of God! It’s still here. And still 4 dollars for a serving the size of a small grape. The psychopaths had inexplicably removed it from the “salads” section to the “appetizers.” WHY YOU BUFFOONS WHY?

A proper scare. But nothing is lost. In fact, something is gained.

I will never take my favorite salad for granted again. I will learn about you, and I will give you all of the respect. I will learn to make you from scratch, my friend, and I will share you on the internet for all to enjoy.

Here are the ingredients: Cucumbers, tomatoes, parsley, red onions, olive oil and fresh lemon juice.

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Simple yet elegant

I love you my salad.  I’m so sorry I forgot your name.  And I’m sorry that I forgot all of your ingredients.

But I’m different now; I’m a better man.

AND I will NEVER be without you again. 

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Your Food Can Talk

Vegetables and fruits background.
“Listen up, human. We’re trying to tell you something.”

Your Produce is Alive!!!

It lives. It breathes. When you close the refrigerator door, the citizens of your fridge even communicate amongst one another through chemical signals.

So how you store and prepare your veggies affects them. And who you store them with affects them as well.

Examples

1. Ripen your avocado.  Want to ripen your avocado faster? Store it in a brown paper bag with a couple of bananas. The bananas emit ethylene gas, which speeds the ripening process.

2. Save your avocado with onion. Chop up some onion. Place it in an airtight container with your avocado or guac. If possible, keep the pit. The gasses from the onion will slow browning.

3. Torture your lettuce. This is kind of disturbing. Your lettuce is still living. If you tear it up, it begins to produce higher amounts of anti-oxidants to protect itself from the horrors of your inhumanity.

On the downside, the torture makes it respire faster. I mean – wouldn’t you respire faster if someone was tearing you apart? So once torn, it won’t last as long. (Neither would you!). But if you plan to eat it in the next day or so, tear that ish up and watch the anti-oxidant levels rise.

Preparing Your Veggies

How you prepare your veggies has an enormous impact on their nutritional value.  Some nutrients are destroyed by heat. Some are enhanced by it.

Some fruits and veggies are made less nutritious through the process of freezing/thawing. Others (quick respirators) lose nutritional value so quickly that you are better off freezing them than not!

There is no universal best way to prepare your fruits and veggies. It all depends on the item in question, and perhaps on what your goals are.

BUT there is a nearly universal bad way to do it: Boiling!

Forget about the problem of heat. For most plants, boiling will leach water soluble nutrients into the boiling water. Unless you’re using that water in a soup, stew or broth, you’re basically losing those vitamins.

All of these tips come from one of my favorite books, Eating on the Wild Side by Jo Robinson.  You should check it out.  It’s a wonderful read.

For tips on carrots, see my post on How to Get 8X More Nutrition from Your Carrots
For tips on garlic, see my post Garlic, You’re Doing it Wrong.

If you have any tips like this, I’d love to hear them and share them 🙂

Happy Vegging!

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Seven Magic Pills to Regulate Your Appetite

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          These magic DNA pills will give you thigh gap.

I spent 26 years looking for a magic pill to regulate my appetite.  I spent the last two years finding quite a few.

  1. Veggies and Fat with Every Meal. Non-negotiable. And yes, this includes breakfast.
  2. Eggs. The best food to ever exit a chicken’s pu**y. Need I say more?
  3. Start Your Diet with a Juice Fast. Good for you? Bad for you? I don’t know. But a few days of juice torture and I promise you  this – either you will be dead, or your appetite will be.
  4. Water with Every Meal. I know you know this already. Don’t roll your eyes at me.
  5. Hot Soup with Every Meal. Even in the Summertime. I wanna see you sweat!
  6. Intermittent Fasting. It works for me. Try it.
  7. Never eat carbs alone. Trust me, you won’t stop.
  8. Drive Slow Homie. If you can’t control your appetite, don’t begin a diet and exercise regimen at the same time. First get used to your new eating habits.

FAQ’s

1. What if I want a donut?

You can have one. But only if you eat a large plate of veggies first.

2. What if I want a chicken parm sandwich?

See question one.

3. What do I do if I hate all of your suggestions, and I’d rather be stuck to my couch? 

It’s a free world! Do it. Couches are comfortable.

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Help! I HATE Healthy Food

Hungry cute female reaches for donut at night near fridge

In the land of picky eating, I once reigned as queen. Processed carbs were my vassals. Flavor, my sworn enemy.

When I tried new foods, it felt like a terrible explosion in my mouth. Sometimes it still does.

My mom told me I’d thrive in jail. “All you need is bread and butter,” she said. Maybe that’s why I became a criminal defense attorney.

What to Do

  1. Try New Foods. Obviously. 

I love tomatoes. And I still can’t believe it.

Like most foods, tomatoes were once my enemy. Just the tiniest sliver made my whole mouth feel like it was vibrating. What monster brought these wretched things into being?

One day, I just grabbed a tomato and vowed that I would love it. In fact, I would make love to it. So I started adding tiny bits of tomato to my meals.

I’d put it on my fork, together with other flavors to drown it out. And I did it over and over and over again. I never made myself eat all of the tomato, but I always made myself have at least a little bit.

Now I love tomatoes. Weird. But that’s how our brain works.

2.  Start With Iceberg, then Romaine. 

I wanted to eat salads, but I could NOT stand greens, let alone dark greens.

I found iceberg lettuce tolerable, but I knew it had zero health value. So what, who cares? Eat it anyway. Soon you’ll move onto romaine, which is a little better. And after that, you’ll move on to darker greens.

When I first started eating salads, I used the following ingredients:

  1. iceberg lettuce
  2. microwavable popcorn chicken (yes, breaded)
  3. hardboiled egg
  4. small amount of shredded mozzarella cheese
  5. croutons or crushed up saltines
  6. small amount of kraft french dressing

Not exactly the picture of health. But it was a step.

Later, I would start using grilled chicken. Then I would add romaine. Eventually I removed the cheese. I added  cucumbers. I added a little bit of tomato.  Soon, I started mixing in dark greens.

..But not that soon. It probably took a good 6 months. I started with baby spinach. Arugula is good too.

At some point, the croutons were replaced with seeds. All of this happened because I wanted it to. Not because I made myself. I was getting tired of iceberg lettuce, and I wanted more flavor. Trust me, you will too.

3. Do a Several Day Juice Fast

There is a lot of controversy surrounding juice fasts. I won’t get into that here. But I will tell you this. Juice fasts absolutely 100% changed my food preferences for the better.

Once I finished a 10 day juice fast, I craved healthy food. After 10 days of juice, all I wanted was a salad.

Maybe 10 days is extreme. Try 3 days. Or maybe juice is too extreme. Try smoothies. All you need is veggies, fruits, and a blender.

I got my recipes (and inspiration) here.

4. Intermittent Fasting

Like juice fasting, a 5:2 diet will help you crave healthier foods.  I don’t know why, but it works. Maybe 5:2 isn’t for everyone, I don’t know. For me, it helps regulate appetite. And I was a binger of the highest order.

I don’t actively do 5:2, I just kind of do it naturally. It feels like the right way for me to eat now, and I imagine it will be for a long time.

For more on 5:2 check out “The Fast Diet” by Dr. Michael Mosley. Or, if you don’t want to read a book, check out the BBC Documentary “Eat Fast Live Longer” also featuring Dr. Mosley. It’s free on YouTube.

Share the Wealth

Do you have any tips or experience with regards to healthy eating for picky eaters?

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