Thread: Need Help!
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Old 11-02-2013, 05:22 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Sardines, with their oil, are an example of a food that is fairly rich in Vitamin D. But to get the calories, you need to include the oil. Also, if you enjoy cereals, most cereals in that section of the supermarket are going to be fortified. If you want to have your food be organic, it's worth looking for cereals like that in the 'Whole Foods and Organic' section of the supermarket.

Most people (Americans) don't get enough vitamin D. However, you get vitamin D when you spend time exposing your skin to sunlight, so that will not show up in your food diary. I mentioned to my doctor that it took me two years of taking a daily vitamin D supplement in pill form to get my measured vitamin D level to the normal range it is today. Measuring Vitamin D is now part of the regular chem analysis they do for the annual physical in my doc's practice. His answer was that all vitamins are different that way. Take into account - I spend hardly any time in the sunshine.

I don't like sardines much but if you take a canfull, oil and all, and smoosh it into some cream cheese and onion, it makes a good caloric spread for some whole wheat crackers or bread. This focuses the issue on just plain cooking - which is one reason amazon is loaded with cook books....

Cooking - what a useful skill that is!

It's easy to find rich sources of various vitamins and minerals in foods, googling 'food source vitamin E,' for example. That would give you a list of foods with the most of that vitamin (almonds and sunflower seeds are at the top of the list). But what you eat every day because it is - 1) your individual taste and 2)what's available and 3) what you can afford and 4) you know how to cook it - is so individual, you really have to figure out menus that satisfy you and aren't from just a narrow range of foods! Variety really helps because no one natural food fills the bill for everything, although the egg DOES come close.

What if you don't like sardines - see what I mean? What if you only eat egg whites to avoid more cholesterol?

I cautioned against more calories (when you increase portion size) because that IS the way to gain weight but it's a particularly delicious method when you consider food choices. Most people don't want to have to deal with the issue of being overweight even if they got there by eating massive amounts of 'good' foods.

There are supplemental liquid drinks or bars in the supermarket to help people who are dieting or who for some reason have food issues but these aren't the whole foods you tend to use.

Also, 1000 calories may be fine for you if you are in good health and it is appropriate for your height. Your doctor would probably have commented on your need for calories if you seem to be heading in an unhealthy direction. You're checking your food intake for a college course so I guess that this is going to be a learning experience anyway and your instructor will be giving great feedback when you hand in your food logs!

Adding fats to foods really piles on calories (a gram of fat is more than twice the calories of a gram of carbohydrate or protein). That's a way to add calories without getting the vitamins and minerals you're talking about!

Taking a daily vitamin supplement that is pretty conservative (not mega-doses of vitamins) is one way people who diet try to address the vitamin/calorie tug-of-war. Especially when dieting, as organized weight loss groups demonstrate when they advise members who are consistently cutting calories.

If you glance at the outlines of your 'thumbnail' graphs you've shown, you can see that the peaks and valleys do vary - doesn't that seem like a good thing? That makes me think that your diet could average out to be pretty good, especially given your sample menu filled with whole foods. Speaking solely as a person who's always dieting. Pure amateur.

I don't know if anybody can pack a regular diet so that every day it varies AND gives you all the nutrients you need within the confines of a constant limit of calories. Years ago, I attended a talk given at my work place. The topic was, 'Yes, you CAN get all your nutrition with food and just 1500 calories.' It was a masterpiece of juggling and figuring and measuring, but the nutritionist (my workplace did research, so she was pretty good) considered it an entire project worth an hour of talk. I went to the talk out of curiosity, but there are many times I wish I could hear that presentation again!

Last edited by Kathy13118; 11-02-2013 at 05:34 PM.
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