I don't think of myself as an especially healthy eater. In line with that I've been putting off having a blood test - y'know the standard stuff - cholesterol, triglycerides, blah, blah. I figured I had so many eggs, red meat and beers (high quality craft beers, mind you), that my numbers would be pretty nasty.
That being said, I needed to have those tests done. My health insurance that I had through my soon-to-be-ex's plan was going to stop and I wasn't sure how much this kind of thing would be with my new plan. So I dragged my fearful butt to the hospital and had the blood taken, expecting some bad news in a couple of days.
About five days later I get a call from my doctor. I'm nervous, I work hard not to end the doctor's sentences and I prepare to tell him that I'll make all these changes to my diet, etc...
Well, it turns out my cholesterol is 202. I say, "is that bad?" He said "it should be 200 - you're almost exactly there!" I'm like wha??? me??? He also tells me my triglycerides are a bit high - 299 on a scale of 0-1000. He tells me that I'm eating too many carbs - (sounds like beer, bread and rice to me). Oh, and I need more vitamin D in my life. Being a studio rat and living in front of a computer most of my life - I can see that I might have a deficiency with regard to sun light - one of the major sources of D.
So I'm thinking - that he must be reading the wrong results, these aren't my numbers! But the doc assured me - my numbers were pretty damn good.
So now that it's been two weeks since I got that news, I've been thinking why is it that my numbers were as good as they were with all the 'bad' habits I thought I had. And then I started going though my daily eating habits and reviewing in my head what I eat habitually from day to day and I realized a some important things that I've been doing that are healthy:
- I eat 90% home-made food or food that's not processed with tons of chemicals, etc... I do eat ice cream from time to time, but only the good stuff (Americone Dream FTW). I rarely eat fast food and if I do get take-out it's from a place that makes things from scratch.
- I make my own bread. Since 2010 I have purchased store-made bread about 5 times. Every loaf of bread other than that has been made by yours truly with all natural - high quality ingredients. I'm very proud of this and I am certain that it goes a long way toward keeping my body healthy. BTW, I do not make white bread, I always make sure that my breads are at least 2/3 whole wheat.
- I don't drink soda or energy drinks.
- I don't put sugar in my coffee, I do put honey in it and for my tastes that is by far the better tasting sweetener.
- I eat freakin' Triscuits for almost every lunch with a bit of cheese (not American) and some Frank's Hot Sauce or sriracha on top.
- I drink high quality craft beers (Lagunitas Maximus and Founder's Dirty Bastard are my current faves). It's been determined that craft beers have the same effect on one's cholesterol as red wine, so drinking in moderation seems to be helping.
- I only use EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil) or canola oil when I cook although I recently got some grape seed oil and it tastes great - might add that to my repertoire.
So I guess what I'm saying is that when I got my numbers from the doctor, it gave me pause to reflect and I discovered that I've actually been eating quite well and that I should keep up with what I've been doing although perhaps in smaller quantities. I do have to lose at least 20lbs.
Cheers - Rob Houghton