The topic for this week’s Hump Day Hmm… is a pretty wide topic – Too much of a good thing.
For me, the thing I’ve always had too much of has been food. While I was in college, I had access to the dining hall, and almost always would fill two or three plates of food. I can remember having a plate filled with chicken nuggets, and eating them all. If it was breakfast, I’d have two eggs, and a whole bunch of sausage links and bacon. Generally, if it was there, I’d take it. Some days, I’d have a salad, but that was in addition to the full lunch or dinner I’d have. Along with that, I’d have a glass or three of soda, and they’d also get finished. I would also bring my own cup along so that I could fill up with soda before going either back to my dorm room or out to classes.
In my dorm room, the situation wasn’t improved – I’d have candy and snacks of all kinds available for myself, and the vending machines weren’t far away, so that I could get myself a candy bar (though it was usually two or three at a time) and take it back to my room.
Of course, my overeating goes to before college. I’ve always thought that I needed to have two of everything – two steaks, two pork chops, two hamburgers, two chicken breasts – for it to be a meal. We would have fruits and vegetables here, but it wasn’t a constant supply and I would regularly ignore them in preference to having the junk food.
All in all, it is too much food. On top of all that is the fact that I would drink way too much soda. There would be days where I’d drink four cans in a day – or more. I’d have soda with breakfast, lunch and dinner, and then have one at night.
However, there is good news in all of this – the first thing that I’ve done is weaned myself from drinking soda. First, it was two cans a day – lunch and dinner. However, I was still drinking diet soda. One day in May, I was given a couple of links that showed the effects of aspartame (the sweetener in diet soda) – Health effects and Dorway. Interestingly, one of the effects seen in people who consume aspartame is depression. Another thing that I learnt is that if it’s let to sit for long enough, Diet Coke disintegrates partly into turpentine.
From that day until about two weeks ago, I was having one can of regular Coke a day. The first couple of days of not having Diet Coke, I was a bear – almost as if I were quitting smoking after doing it for years. However, that passed within a couple of days and I was feeling better. Then, a couple of weeks ago, I was given a link to 9 great reasons to drink water, which led to me drinking more water, and now I’ve gone over two weeks drinking pretty much only water – the only other liquid I have is milk with a bowl of cereal in the morning. To think that I’ve gone from two sodas a day to none in such a short time is amazing, considering that I’ve had soda around me all my life. In fact, not 10 feet from me sits six 12-packs of Coke, purchased when it was on sale on the thought that I’d have a supply to last about two months or so; honestly, I’d now rather walk to the kitchen, fill my glass (or my bottles when I’m walking) with tap water than grab a can of soda.
Now, with the eating, I’ve started to cut back on that as well – the basic thought being that when you go to a restaurant, you don’t order two steaks or two chicken meals, and yet you leave there feeling pretty full. For a while now, I’ve had a lunch of a chicken breast with either just an avocado or a salad. Alternatively, I will have a Lean Cuisine meal. For dinner, I’ve just started cutting back on the quantity of food I eat, and so far I’ve done quite well – tonight, I had almost a whole pork chop before I started feeling full – a little while ago, it would have been two full ones, no matter how full I felt.
It’s just another step in my changes, and stepping away from too much of a good thing – changing it to good things, just in moderation.