Saturday, February 28, 2009

February Nutrition Analysis using CRON-O-METER

I started with the diet analysis program CRON-O-METER on February 7th, so I have 22 days of data. I am very pleased with the results because I have stayed reasonably on target.

The program provides very comprehensive feedback regarding the food I eat. I have been able to make some important "tweaks" to the eating program based upon this feedback. For example, I have somewhat reduced my fat intake from 21% of calories to 18% of calories by reducing nuts/seed consumption to 2 oz. per day, give or take. I have increased my starch intake which seems to give me the extra calories I need for cycling without the sugar from lots of extra fruit and fat from eating over 2 oz. of nuts/seeds per day. The extra starch does not appear to have compromised my nutritional profile in the slightest.

I haven't yet gotten into "heavy" training. When I do my calorie intake will increase. I plan to keep my fat % at 15% or so by eating more high nutrition starches. By taking the DHA supplement and 1 tbsp of ground flax seeds per day in addition to the 2 oz. of nuts/seeds it looks like I get plenty of healthy fat, but not too much. My Omega 6/Omega3 ratio is 3.4/1, which I think is on target with what the experts say is appropriate, but I need to research this subject more fully. I have read some articles that say the ratio should be 1:1 and others that say 4:1 is ideal. So, who knows? But, I appear to be in the appropriate range.

I have been consuming about 2200 calories per day and an average of about 45 grams of fat per day. Protein is about 60 grams/day and fiber intake is high at just under 70 grams per day. I feel very good on this regimen,sleep very well, my moods are good and I have lots of energy. My old bugaboo, heart arrhythmia (PACs and intermittent Atrial Fibrillation), have not been heard from since last June. My resting heart rate is about 50 and my endurance seems exceptionally good.

I am looking forward to increasing my cycling to the longer distances and think I have the correct eating style to fuel me along nicely. On my recumbent trike, I will be taking raw trail mix, bananas and cut up sweet potatoes and/or baked potatoes to eat on the longer rides. I have changed the raw trail mix recipe to relatively more dried fruit and less nuts/seeds, again to get my 2 oz. nuts/seeds per day, but not overdoing it with the fat.

Everyone needs to design their eating style to meet their individual needs. I am discovering that there is probably not a "one size fits all" approach, but there are certainly sound general principles that should guide us along. There is lots of excellent information on these principles along with detailed eating style information available on the internet from experts such as John McDougall, M.D., Joel Fuhrman, M.D. Dean Ornish, M.D., Caldwell Esselstyn, M.D. and nutritionist Jeff Novick, MS. RD. LD. LN. My thanks to all of them for doing what they do (which I know ain't easy!).

Here is the summary for February.


kneecap said...

Say, Dr. Fuhrman's next teleconference is this:
"Bodybuilding/Diets for Athletes/How to Gain Weight Healthfully"
Date: Wednesday, March 11th, 2009
Time: 9:00 pm EDT

You could ask him if there is evidence for the healthfulness of >2 oz of nuts a day. Or I guess you could ask that even more easily on the forums. or did you already?


Howard Veit said...

Wednesday the 11th is my birthday and we are having a party at my house, so I'll miss the teleconference. He had a session on fats a couple of months ago and it was one of the few I have participated in.

I asked him if there were downsides to eating more than 2 oz. of nuts/seeds other than weight gain. He said, the downside is that if you eat too many calories from nuts/seeds you will crowd other nutritional foods off your plate. But, he has consistently said that if you are very active 3-4 oz. of nuts/seeds per day is okay as a source of extra calories. I think he balks at over 50% of calories in a day. That seems like too much to me even for very active people. Unfortunately there is no research in this area.