The Kale Diet: Embarking

Okay, so I know that I don't tend to stick to my diets unless I blog about them. And I've put on a bit of extra cushion around my middle after too many kind friends brought me too much delicious food for the holidays and my birthday.  I loved those organic dark chocolate truffles as they dissolved on my tongue, but now that they are stubbornly living on my belly I am not quite as fond of them.

Thus, I am going to blog about this diet, friends.

My friend Jane and I came up with it.  We both love the nutritarian eating style recommended by Dr. Furhman, but we find it darn hard to keep up with.  It involves buying and preparing a whole lot of fruit and vegetables.  Jane and I are both a little on the side of - how do you say? broke-  and don't have cars in which to haul groceries. Or a whole lot of free mental energy with which to plan meals. So we decided that for the brief future we're going to eat a very simplified version of the nutritarian diet which just focuses on 4 very nutrient rich and whole foods: grapefruit, kale, black beans, quinoa and coconut oil.  Mmmmmmmm.

The general plan of the diet...

....is to have grapefruit for breakfast and throughout the day as a snack, while eating a meal of kale, black beans, quinoa and coconut oil for lunch and dinner. Obviously one couldn't eat this way for one's entire life. You need a variety of nutrients and phytochemicals.  But for the short-term, it's a pretty ideal way to eat. (Much better, say, than my "two Hot Pockets a day" Supreme Unutterable Misery diet that I ate this fall in the midst of an astoundingly deep depression induced by dramatic romantic mishap - I lost weight on it but I probably also shortened my lifespan by a few years with all that weird processed junk and inconsolable crying).

Here's why our Kale Diet is so damn great:

Kale - crowning the ANDI index at a ravishingly glorious 1000 points, this dark and lovely vegetable has more nutrients per calorie than anything else. Those nutrients include big doses of vitamin A, C, and K, along with B6, magnesium, and sulphur-containing phytonutrients.  It's also way high in fiber.

Grapefruit - is a low-sugar citrus fruit, which means that it's alkalizing for the body.  There's pretty substantial evidence that  the body thrives in an alkaline state and becomes subject to cancer and other ills when it's in an acidic state. It's high in enzymes that help the body burn fat and lowers your insulin levels, which reduces the body's tendency to store fat in its cells.  It's also highly detoxifying - so much so that it's dangerous to eat it with certain medications because it causes those medications to be released more rapidly in the body.

Black beans - they're dense with insoluble fiber and protein and flush with antioxidant and minerals.

Quinoa - it's got the most protein of any grain, with all nine of the essential amino acids. It's also got almost twice as much fiber as any other grain. Also, iron. Epic winning.

Coconut oil - the naturally-occurring saturated fat in coconut oil has been show to increase the metabolism and protect against heart disease. Also, it's full of this magic molecule called lauric acid which has antiviral and antibacterial properties that aid your immune system. It also consists of medium-chain fatty acids which your body finds very difficult to store as fat - and instead burns for energy.  Dr. Joseph Mercola points out that coconut oil is actually the only oil that's stable enough to healthfully use for cooking - every other oil, including olive oil - oxidizes at cooking temperatures and therefore becomes toxic. Also - it's delicious.

The digits So, planning on eating 3 grapefruits, two bunches of kale, 1 cup of quinoa, 2 cups of black beans and 2 tablespoons of coconut oil per day brings me and Jane to about 1200 calories, 52 grams of fat, 36 grams of fiber a day.  And a fuck ton of nutrients. Yay!

The idea, of course, is not just to slenderize but also to maximize our healthfulness, good karma, and vitality.

Currently, I'm weighing in at 145 lbs.  I'm trying to miniaturize myself by 10 lbs, so I'll keep you posted as to my progress.  This will involve a thrilling daily check-in wherein I let you know exactly what I've eaten (will she or won't she resist pizza with friends? oh, the suspense!), how my moods and health seem to be affected, and share with you my tips for making kale tasty.

Maybe you'll get inspired.

Posted on January 24, 2013 and filed under The Kale Diet.