Eating like a king

This isn't about king salmon. It's more important than that.


Eating can be one of the great pleasures of life. The trouble with pleasures is that they can be taken to extremes, which was my problem. Looking around, I've noticed that I'm not alone. Two out of three people seem to have the same problem.

Until the past couple of years, I ate anything and everything, not stopping until I was full. From age 30, I gained about a pound per year. By age 70, I was 70 pounds overweight. It was like going through life with a 70-pound pack. I finally became tired of looking fat and feeling tired.

I set about losing that weight. By eating less and getting more exercise, I lost 60 pounds at the rate of about a pound per week. More importantly, I've kept that weight off.

Some things about food and eating that work for me:

* Eat like a king at breakfast, a prince at lunch and a pauper at dinner.

* Eat nuts and lots of colorful fruit and vegetables.

* Swear off white rice, white bread, white potatoes. If it's white, it ain't right.

* Reserve ice cream, cream sauces, and other fatty and high-calorie foods for special occasions.

* Don't put bowls or platters of food on the table, but serve "restaurant style." When you've eaten what's on your plate, stop eating.

* Snack between meals, but 100 calories or less. An apple or a handful of raw, unsalted almonds are good snacks.

* Eat less red meat and more salmon.

* For breakfast, instead of boxed cereals, eat homemade museli. It's rolled oats and other cereal grains, combined with nuts and dried fruit, available in the bulk-foods section of a supermarket. Top it with fresh blueberries, strawberries and bananas and eat it uncooked with non-fat milk. Change it from time to time, so you don't get tired of it. You'll find recipes on the Internet, but make it to your own taste. You'll never buy another boxed cereal.

As for exercise:

* Whenever possible, get outdoors and do something. Anything.

* Walk at every opportunity. When you park in a store parking lot, park as far away from the door as possible.

* Get a bike and ride it often.

* Swim, dance, anything to get you moving and get your heart pumping. Try contra dancing, similar to square dancing, but more fun. Contra dances are held every third Saturday, from September through April, 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. at Kalifornsky Beach Elementary School.

It's impossible to overstate the benefits of losing weight and keeping it off. You'll feel better, look better and live a more enjoyable life. I just wish I'd done it years ago.

Contact Les Palmer at


An Outdoor View: Getting along with bears

Author’s note: The Clarion first published this column on Aug. 11, 2006. It has been edited it for brevity. — LP

Read more