Help with food choices?

Can someone like... critique my diary?

I swear it's always all or nothing with me.

If I am not eating a 3000 calorie "light lunch" from insert-fastfood-franchise-here, I'm eating.... air? Idk.

A few bullet points:

To lose a full 1 lb per week, I can eat at least 1796 kcal per day.

- I am below sedentary activity (constricted, for those with better calculators), and no exercise calories.

- 5'1,female, 42, 262.3 lbs.

- If I eat much for breakfast at all, I physically cannot stop eating all day. So I have either been either skipping breakfast, or have like 45g of oatmeal, or a banana, or an egg and a couple slices of turkey bacon... usually around 130kcal + 35ish kcal of "I should learn to like black coffee" so breakfast is always going to be either ~165 kcal or less OR 3000 kcal (slight hyperbole)

- lunch is where I'm thinking I could probably make changes?

- Dinner is usually some sort of baked casserole/pasta/lasagne type thing and like... broccoli lol

- there's no nutrient data for said dinners since Saturday April 22, because of the recipe issues, but its 8 servings made with 1lb ground beef and 1 lb pasta + lots of sauce, onions, peppers and some cheese. That's why the nutrients look weird

- literally no breakfast+lunch+dinner combos have hit over 1050 kcal, which is way too low so I fill it out with snack after snack

- I need ideas how to reduce the snacks and add more into meal times or... something?? I need qn evening snack but if I do a healthy low cal snack, my daily intake is too low!!

Arrrrgh halp

Replies

  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 26,805 Member
    It looks like you tend to be low on protein and fats (even when I try to mentally adjust for the recipe problem with the casserole thing or look at days before that)?

    If that's true, I'd personally try to add calories there. It's fine to be over on fats or protein (while within calories) or even both, not so good to be persistently under on either (or both).

    Calories are the key thing for weight loss, of course, but given that you're looking to add calories, that's why I'm suggesting that the first best place to look would be at foods that might fill out the dance card a little more fully, y'know?

    Are you feeling full enough, generally? That's not clear to me. You mention that breakfast tends to spike appetite for the day, but other than that, you didn't say how satiation was working out.

    If you're feeling full enough, so mostly just want to add calories, are you able to eat nuts or seeds? Peanut butter is high in good fats (if you avoid the brands with hydrogenated fats), high in calories, not that filling, if you can eat it. Other nuts are good, too. These are high calorie things, not very filling for most people (in cases where already feeling full is part of your scenario, maybe), and they do have a small (small!) amount of protein.

    Maybe more of regular cheese? High in fats, some types medium protein. Fattier meat or fish? Full-fat dairy foods, if you eat those? Oils or salad dressing on things, though those mostly add calories, not that much nutrition (besides the fats, which are an essential nutrient)?

    I have to say, mostly by way of joking around with you . . . you and I eat broccoli very differently. My last "serving" was 451g of frozen broccoli, oven-roasted . . . but I'm both vegetarian and a volume eater, so kind of a weird-o in that way.
  • Cluelessmama1979
    Cluelessmama1979 Posts: 129 Member
    @AnnPT77 yeah lol, I uh... never tasted a vegetable until my daughter was like... starting to eat table foods. I'm still struggling to eat more than a mouthful or two, and only very specific things I've trained myself to tolerate. Broccoli is one of the most tolerable but 1/2 cup to 1 cup is about my limit. I'm working on it.

    Nuts/cheese could be a good add in for snacking at night, though I'm prone to binge on both... I do that with other snacks too, so, might as well get the protein in...

    Satiety is... I don't tend to feel satiated no matter how much I eat. I mean, like... I one ate 10 double quarter-pounders with cheese from McDonald's in one sitting, and only stopped eating cause my jaw got tired from chewing lol.

    I think my hunger cues are messed up.

    I don't feel *hungry* or snackish between lunch and dinner.

    It's usually a couple of hours after dinner I start thinking about snacks. Then I've tended to like... look at my calories left for the day and eat whatever fits in there.

    The portions at dinner are fairly large, while the lunches are like...

    Well, I have a picture:

    2dzi5vgz3w8y.jpg

    So it's pretty packed with spinach and cheese but idk if it's enough.

    Wondering if I should be adding something in there ? or idk...

    Honestly that's just how I've always eaten, on days when I don't get fast food (though with less veg and more chips lol).

    Most of my daily calories have always come from fast food binges and Mtn Dew. Like I probably drank more calories than I ate, and I mainly just went no fast food/soda and now struggling to meet minimums.

    So I'm not *hungry*, but I'm not... *not hungry*? Unless I eat a big breakfast.... then all I can think about is food. All day. I'll eat like 6 times before lunch, idk why.

    Maybe the protein packed foods after dinner will solve it

    Just feel like I'm mathing out the spread wrong, somehow, lol
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 26,805 Member
    @AnnPT77 yeah lol, I uh... never tasted a vegetable until my daughter was like... starting to eat table foods. I'm still struggling to eat more than a mouthful or two, and only very specific things I've trained myself to tolerate. Broccoli is one of the most tolerable but 1/2 cup to 1 cup is about my limit. I'm working on it.

    Nuts/cheese could be a good add in for snacking at night, though I'm prone to binge on both... I do that with other snacks too, so, might as well get the protein in...

    Satiety is... I don't tend to feel satiated no matter how much I eat. I mean, like... I one ate 10 double quarter-pounders with cheese from McDonald's in one sitting, and only stopped eating cause my jaw got tired from chewing lol.

    I think my hunger cues are messed up.

    I don't feel *hungry* or snackish between lunch and dinner.

    It's usually a couple of hours after dinner I start thinking about snacks. Then I've tended to like... look at my calories left for the day and eat whatever fits in there.

    The portions at dinner are fairly large, while the lunches are like...

    Well, I have a picture:

    2dzi5vgz3w8y.jpg

    So it's pretty packed with spinach and cheese but idk if it's enough.

    Wondering if I should be adding something in there ? or idk...

    Honestly that's just how I've always eaten, on days when I don't get fast food (though with less veg and more chips lol).

    Most of my daily calories have always come from fast food binges and Mtn Dew. Like I probably drank more calories than I ate, and I mainly just went no fast food/soda and now struggling to meet minimums.

    So I'm not *hungry*, but I'm not... *not hungry*? Unless I eat a big breakfast.... then all I can think about is food. All day. I'll eat like 6 times before lunch, idk why.

    Maybe the protein packed foods after dinner will solve it

    Just feel like I'm mathing out the spread wrong, somehow, lol

    I think you'll do fine by experimenting, and observing the results.

    Try an eating pattern for maybe a couple of days or so - fair try, you know? - then analyze. Better than whatever preceded? Not as good? Experiment, analyze, adjust. IMO, it's about balancing personalized calories, satiation, tastiness, nutrition, practicality (and maybe more). There isn't a "one size fits all". Sustainable is better than some theoretically perfect thing we can't stick with long enough to achieve our goals.

    For sure, I'd encourage you to hit close to your MFP calorie goal, for long enough to see what the scale-weight results are: 4-6 weeks, looking at the same relative point in two or more different menstrual cycles for those to whom those applies. Undereating increases health risks. That 4-6 weeks is what dials in real-life calorie needs (so-called calculators, like MFP's, are just estimates . . . close for most people, though).

    Once you're confident in your personal calorie needs for sensibly moderate weight loss, then it's easier to figure out the satiation, nutrition, etc., within those calories.

    As someone who accidentally under-ate when first using MFP (because MFP and many other estimators underestimate my individual weird-o calorie needs), I would encourage everyone not to knowingly risk too-low calories. It's just not a good thing. (I was lucky, I only got weak and fatigued, maybe a little hair thinning/breakage a few weeks down the road - usually that effect is delayed, if it happens. Worse things can happen. Really bad ones, at low probability, but possible.)

    There can be a honeymoon period, where too-low calories seem to work out - feel OK, decent energy level, etc. But it may not last - probably won't, as a long-term thing.

    Really, only actual weight loss rate over a multi-week period tells you whether your calorie level is too low, too high, or just right. So many people are so worried that they won't lose fast enough, maybe not lose at all. It also matters IMO whether one is ramping up health risks, or making the process such that one can't sustain it long enough to lose a meaningful amount of weight.
  • Cluelessmama1979
    Cluelessmama1979 Posts: 129 Member
    @AnnPT77 yeah, I think when I was trying last time, my "sweet spot" was somewhere between 1440 and 1640, so I am trying to make sure I get at least that much in, lol

    Calculators are insane. The first time I tried to lose weight the first calculator I found was telling me to aim for 1000 kcal or something crazy like that. That was definitely not sustainable!

    I think you're right... mostly I just need to be patient and wait for more data.

    My biggest issue is like.... I know the calorie math and the numbers and the science but like... not how to translate that into food that meets my needs lmao.

    I'll try some cheese/peanut butter/nuts in place of random snacks moving forward, and just... wait to see.

    Got a month of free premium so I will put in some better macro goals and just watch the numbers for a month or three!

    Thanks for talking sense into me... I think I was panicking a little :p