**Celebrate Independence from Refined Carbohydrates and Sugar**

Welcome to the 2nd issue of The Calorie Skeptic, the official e-Zine for Why-Low-Carb-Diets-Work.com!

This e-zine explores provocative topics related to the low carb diet.

The Founding Fathers never ate high fructose corn syrup... so why should you?

It’s almost 4th of July time, kiddies! You know what that means. Every two-bit blogger like me is gonna have some dippy special feature that’s somehow tied into Independence Day. Well, whaddya want? I’m enough of a radical as it is. Why rock the boat by bucking the trend.

To that end, here are 1776 cool ways to liberate yourself from the tyranny of refined carbohydrates and sugar. Just kidding. There will only be 7.

1. Track Every Gram of Carbohydrate That Touches Your Lips

Time to get zealous, people. Be a carb hawk. Write down every meal you have along with every gram (estimated) of carbohydrate you consume. Don’t do this necessarily to change what you eat. Do it to become aware of your habits and proclivities. Be honest with yourself. Seeing clearly is the first step on the path to real change. Or something. I’ve been reading a lot about Buddhism lately.

2. Self-Experiment

Play with your diet. Introduce/remove Splenda-sweetened treats, for instance. See what happens. Does Splenda screw with your weight/blood sugar?

Two caveats here. 1) Don’t do anything stupid, and talk to your doc before making serious changes to your eating (or other habits). 2) Be a good scientist. Change one thing at a time, and stick with it, and see what happens. Too often, dieters throw the kitchen sink at their beer bellies, and if something good happens, weight-loss-wise, they assume that X or Y was responsible. For instance, say I go on a low fat diet and cut calories from 3000 to 1500 a day. Lo and behold, I lose weight! Well, chances are huge that I am cutting carbs as well as fat. So what caused the weight loss - fat, calorie, or carb control? Who knows. Impossible to tell because I changed too many things at once.

To be honest, even the most scrupulous self-experimenter is not really doing science -- you have no control on the experiment, unless you can somehow contact a nearly identical (but for the only thing you tweaked) version of you in a parallel universe.

3. Stock Up on Low Carb Snacks

Meals are fine, right? Who doesn’t like a nice steak at dinner? And bacon and eggs make for a fun breakfast (although it can get tedious eating day-after-day-after-freaking-day). The real killer for me is snack time. What if I don’t feel like cubing a steak and stewing it for hours? What if I want to unwrap something and chow down NOW? To feed the beast, keep low carb kibbles handy. Yeah, have almonds and Atkins bars and shakes and the like at the ready. But keep some meat around that’s easy to eat. Cooked bacon. Hard boiled eggs. Chicken salad. That kinda thing.

4. Commune

Don’t go through the low carb experience all alone. That is the path of madness. Get support. Human beings are social creatures as much as they are natural meat-eaters. We need contact and value reinforcement, or we get lonely and depressed. And God knows there is already so much hate and confusion out there regarding low carb. Get on the forums, like Jimmy Moore’s forum or Atkins or Dr. Eades’ blog. Got diabetes? Go to Dr. Bernstein’s free online Q&A every month at diabetes911.net.

5. Reinforce

Yeah, you know low carbing works. That it probably is essentially a dietary cure-all/prevent-all for the diseases of civilization. Or at least you THINK you know it works. But then your vegan neighbor challenges you. And your doctor knocks you for eating so much red meat. And you see Dr. Oz on TV yapping away about eating fruits and grains. And your family gives you grief for your special, extreme, inconvenient diet. And, man, how good would a pancake with thick maple syrup taste right now? Or what about a waffle with fruit compote? How bad would that be? Can burn that off at the gym, right?

Stop it, man. Stop! Get yourself together. Fight those natural sugar cravings and battle back against the ubiquitous anti-low-carb-pro-sugar message out there. Reread the books - Atkins, Protein Power, Cereal Killer, Life without Bread, etc. Go to the forums (see #4 above) and listen to the podcasts on Jimmy Moore’s website. Educate yourself and then re-educate yourself. We are simple creatures. We need to hear things again and again to sink in.

6. Indulge. Sparingly.

No need to make yourself crazy. If you have the occasional slice of cake or bowl of pasta, chances are it won’t kill you on the spot. Just don’t make it a habit. Treat eating carbs like you would treat any other vice, be it pipe smoking, casino gambling, or listening to Talk Radio or NPR.

7. Self-Compassion.

If you have struggled with overweight, chances are that the message has been beaten into you that it’s all YOUR fault. YOU lack willpower. YOU are a glutton. Nonsense. Total and complete rubbish. Obesity is a disease driven primarily by hormonal influences. Would people really be fat today if all we could was seal meat? No freaking way. It is nearly impossible to overeat seal meat (I presume). The problem is our environment -- there are FAR too many carbohydrate foods out there, tempting us by literally changing the chemistry of our brains and making us addicted to carbs/sugar. The problem is physiological at its core.

To keep balanced, practice self-forgiveness. Bringing it to back to the whole Buddha thing (I am huge advocate of regular meditation -- almost as annoyingly evangelical about it as I am about low carbing), aim to treat yourself and others with loving-kindness.

Okay, that’s all for now. Good health to all, and happy July!



Comments? Questions? Feedback? Rants? Fanatical praise? Please email me. This e-zine and why-low-carb-diets-work.com are very much works in progress. Let me know what you would like to see, and I will try to make it happen.

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