Saturday, May 10, 2008

Eat This, Not That

I just finished skimming through Eat This, Not That by the editors of Men's Health magazine. It is a popular (it was on wait list at the library for several months) handbook for healthy food substitutions. It is primarily geared towards casual dining and fast food restaurant eating, but has sections pertaining to grocery shopping as well.

You may notice I said I only skimmed the book. I got to page 'xii' in the introduction of "Top 10 Swaps". For burritos it told me to eat a Taco Bell Regular Style Steak Burrito Supreme instead of a Chipotle Steak burrito. I nearly put it down right then. Sure the Taco Bell burrito has less calories and's smaller. I can normally be sated with one Chipotle burrito. I've never just eaten one Taco Bell offering, and my stomach rarely lets me forget it. You can't tell me *pound for pound* anything at Taco Bell is better than Chipotle. With the author's credibility severely damaged, I warily continued.

As I flipped through I was struck by a combo of typos, contradictions and carb-phobia. Carbs are not evil, people. While only giving it a cursory glance, I found two cases where they recommended to both 'Eat' and 'Not Eat' a certain food (Goldfish Crackers and Kraft Zesty Italian Dressing). I will continue to eat both of these.

While I would not recommend this "book" (more of a glorified magazine), it had several redeeming qualities. First, the basic concept is sound. There are easy substitutions that you can make every day that can save calories (like don't put so much cheese, bacon and ranch dressing on stuff). Over time these small savings can prevent weight gain. I just don't know if I would trust anything in this book. It is not a "no-diet, weight loss solution" in my opinion. Secondly, there is a section called "8 Foods You Should Eat Every Day". Spinach, yogurt, tomatoes, carrots, blueberries, black beans and walnuts; each with several similar substitutes. All-in-all I'd say those are pretty good choices.

Bottom line, if you want to improve your diet: Read this (Advanced Sports Nutrition), Not that.

1 comment:

Winston Smith said...

Chief, perhaps the inherent and unavoidable diarrhea was a contributing factor to tip the scales in favor of the Bell to Chipulta.