I don’t remember the exact day Debbie and I began our present diet but it was mid-December a year ago. At the beginning, it was just a casual idea and an alternative diet to the many we have done over the years. We used to play a game of doing a new diet the first week of every month, doing it strictly the second week, mildly the third week and just coasting the last week. It was fun and we discovered that for us at least the low carb and low glycemic index seemed to be the easiest. A couple of years rolled by and we both slowly gained weight. I graduated from high school weighing 155 pounds and the years I spent running was generally in the 160s but even with that I slowly gained weight and was stable at 183 in the 1980s. My knees and feet were starting to feel the miles and in 2004 after moving into a new home, where there wasn’t a good running possibility, I quit running. But, I did walk a swift mile to my coffee shop, the Med in Berkeley, and a couple of hours later back to BART and home. Then I gained a few more pounds and a year ago was about 189. No one ever said I looked overweight, and I didn’t feel overweight at a BMI of 27, but since the official number is BMI 25 I decided to do a diet again. I read several serious diet books, and thought about the subject some and decided to do a daily intermittent fasting diet. Our strategy wasn’t all that much different from the way I ate as a youth. Breakfast about 7:30, lunch at noon, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich when I got home from school, and supper about 6:30. I don’t remember our family ever eating anything in the evening, and I remember being shocked when visiting my granddad and he ate a small bowl of ice cream later in the evening. The reason I mention that is because I still remember that event and it must have been back in the mid-1960s. It was that unusual.
Anyway, Debbie and I began our intermittent daily fast by not eating anything after 7PM or before 8AM. After a week that diet was so easy we moved the hours to 7PM to 10AM, and a week later from 7PM to noon. That finally began to feel like a diet, but our stomach had gotten used to the routine and didn’t complain. When we did eat we ate our usual meals and ate until we were full. For a while, we narrowed the eating time from noon to 6PM, and are still on that six-hour eating window. It is easy to do because we are totally in sync with that habit. We almost always take a fifteen-minute walk around our neighborhood before eating lunch. This diet has been so easy it is difficult to refer to it as a diet.
The results are that we both lost about two pounds per month since last December. I have lost, according to my Weight Gurus iPhone app, which links to my electronic scale, exactly 21.0 pounds. Debbie says she has lost 19.8 pounds. Some weight losers on TV can lose that much poundage in a week but the people who do that suffer and the statistics say almost all of them gain it back quickly. I doubt that I or Debbie will gain any weight back unless we choose to do so. I have regained some of my stair climbing ability and routinely go up three flights of stairs at the car parking structure two steps at a time. I take two deep breaths as I approach the stairs and then don’t even get short of breath at the top. Not bad for an 82-year-old who sits at a coffee shop or a computer quite a lot.
For me and Debbie the intermittent daily diet is easy and effective.