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Thread: Healthy Eating for Survival

  1. #1
    Tracker Beo's Avatar
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    Default Healthy Eating for Survival

    Tactically and Survivally Fit...

    Those of you who are operators, sheepdogs, soldiers and Law Enforcement or first responders, or Survivalist/Outdoorsmen are usually fanatical about nutrition and fitness in tactical/survival training. Because of this we often get asked about eating healthy and for feedback on diet plans. After fielding tons of messages on these topics I have consolidated some of my (and other operators) suggestions here, in an easy to use list. I have kept this purposefully short, so that you can apply this now without having to memorize a ton of information, count calories or struggle with guilt over not following a strict plan. Enjoy!

    1. Eat five meals a day - breakfast, lunch, dinner and two snack meals. Each meal should be two hours apart and your portions about the size of your fist.

    2. Swap natural juice for soda. Diet soda is for fools - stick to juice, iced teas and water with lemon or orange slices.

    3. Eat a balanced meal - protein (meat, fish, chicken) - veggies (you know what this is damn). French fries are not a food group - if you must have them try sweet potato fries. Stop eating breads as much as possible.

    4. If you visit a fast food place, READ the menu - there are tons of healthy options - grilled chicken, salads, wraps at every major fast food place. Choose wisely you get wise results - choose silly stuff you end up looking silly.

    5. Hold the sauces or at least limit them. Ask for your sauces and condiments on the side and stop slathering your food in sauce.

    6. Drink a full glass of water before every meal...trust me it helps!

    7. It isn't a diet it’s a way of life. For some reason other people want you around for a long time - this isn't something you do for 30 days - you do this until you are no longer here on earth.

    8. Be proud for trying and don't give up if you screw up - just start over at your next meal! No whining, no excuses - just get back on it.

    9. Everyone cheats so one day out of seven - eat what you want but don't be an idiot and go overboard or hog wild.

    10. When you go shopping at a grocery store only buy food from the outside aisles of a food store. Do not go down any of the center aisles. If you do this you will improve your food intake profile vastly!

    Good luck and yes if you do all the above, get some light to moderate exercise you will feel better, live longer, be able to shoot more effectively, read faster, sleep better and be much more witty. Seriously, the above hints do work, they are easy to follow, it doesn't take a calculator or deep memorization. I hope it makes a difference for you.
    Hope this helps
    Beo,
    Last edited by Beo; 04-27-2011 at 10:11 PM.
    There is no greater solitude than that of the Tracker in the forest, unless perhaps it's that of the wolf in the wilderness.


  2. #2
    Senior Member BENESSE's Avatar
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    You're right on the money, Beo!
    Just one aside on the juices: healthy as they may be, watch the sugar content. OJ sounds good but it isn't. If you can stand it mix half and half with club soda.
    Giving up some stuff might be like giving up smoking--hard at first but once you feel and look better, you won't miss it.

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    Eating five meals a day is too much, I have read an article about that it could be dangerous

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    Senior Member BENESSE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joshua020 View Post
    Eating five meals a day is too much, I have read an article about that it could be dangerous
    Eating 5 meals a day is definitely not healthy. We have to give our digestive system time to rest. Constant snacking and late night eating is a recipe for obesity and a host of health problems. In fact, undereating is better especially if one's lifestyle is mostly sedentary.

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    Senior Member kyratshooter's Avatar
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    A year ago I was diagnosed as a type 2 diabetic and my entire life turned backwards.

    Blood sugar was 500, A1C was 12.?

    I started reading and discovered that reading articles on diet and diabetes was dangerous to ones health. The amount of California-yuppie, self help medical advice on the internet disguised as legitimate information is a crime more important and dangerous than any other form of "fake news" in the web.

    If you want diet/health information go to one of the legitimate guides from an actual hospital that specializes in your problem be it over weight, diabetes, heart problem....

    Following the recommendations of my doctor I started a diet and exercise program that brought my blood sugar into control within 90 days and has my numbers down to "normal" on minimal medication assistance.

    The 1500-1700 calorie diet with no sugar and extreme restriction of carbs has brought my weight down by 50 pounds in the past year. I eat 3 meals and a snack daily and the doctor does not care when I eat them, but I have discovered that I can not eat after midnight and have normal blood sugar readings the next day.

    Yes Virginia, you can live without icecream, candy, donuts, glazed ham, pancakes w/syrup, waffles, pizza, cake and all types of bread and all the other goodies modern times and the advertisers claim are necessary to sustain life.

    Start reading the labels and quit believing what the commercials on TV tell you is healthy food. Most of the "food knowledge" we think we have is newspeak dribble absorbed from TV commercials! And all those healthy fruits and vegetables??? You better get to reading about them too, their carb content and their sugar content. And quit believing that there is good sugar and bad sugar, good carbs and bad carbs and any fruit or vegetable you can get is healthy. It is all carbs and all sugar! Your body processes it all as excess calories and stores it as fat, or if you are a diabetic converts it to excess sugar and uses it to kill you.
    If you didn't bring jerky what did I just eat?

  6. #6
    Senior Member BENESSE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyratshooter View Post
    If you want diet/health information go to one of the legitimate guides from an actual hospital that specializes in your problem be it over weight, diabetes, heart problem....
    Amen to that, kyrat.
    Your discipline is inspiring. Tough at first, but boy, does it it pay off in spades.

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    Administrator Rick's Avatar
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    I just finished a golden round of kidney stones courtesy of walnuts. Walnuts! Who'd a thunk it. Walnuts, spinach and chocolate are the three bit bandits that cause kidney stones according to my urologist and the current literature. So, yeah, those things we think are good for us might not be. I started snacking on walnuts because they are healthy and then started giving birth to little Mack trucks. He suggested I drink 3 liters of water a day. I told him if I drank that much when I die they wouldn't bury me for a week. It would take that long for me to stop peeing.

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    Senior Member BENESSE's Avatar
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    Bummer, Rick.

    How about substituting broccoli and almonds? Both are considered "super foods".

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    Latest blood work showed up kinda high on blood sugar. I surmised that eating 8 full sugar popsicles every night was probably contributing to the "fasting" count. The average count was right at the limit for trouble. I take Cinnamon capsules and CoQ10 and really don't watch labels that much.

    #1 wife watches every gram of anything she eats and has all the things she's guarding against. I think a lot of health is hereditary. No doubt a predisposition coupled with an unhealthy diet is a recipe for disaster...

    I do it all wrong. A pot of coffee for Breakfast and Brunch, a ham and cheese sandwich for lunch, massive supper and eat all night, fruit, cereal (raisin bran) and anything else I can get away with. I usually don't eat anything after 10:00 PM...

    I do drink 6-8 bottles of water a day (more in the summer months). And yes, I pee all day. I drink bottled drinking water (cheap stuff, not from exotic islands or anything). I don't smoke or drink at all. I don't exercise but I work outside 6 - 8 hours a day.

    I do believe that some vitamins and supplements are beneficial and do work. I don't go for fads and I check out my intentions with my Dr. ahead of time. She is usually brutally honest in her assessments and I take them to heart.

    One last thing that both myself, my wife and my doctor all firmly believe, is that prayer and spirituality have benefits far beyond what anyone can imagine.

    To those who are making gains by doing the right things, keep up the good work.

    Alan

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    Senior Member WalkingTree's Avatar
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    Shoot...though I've been accused of never being able to get full...for quite a while now, years in fact, I have one meal a day. In the evening. Sometimes a day without even that meal. And I'm doing great.
    The pessimist complains about the wind;
    The optimist expects it to change;
    The realist adjusts the sails.

    - William Arthur Ward

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    Senior Member kyratshooter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WalkingTree View Post
    Shoot...though I've been accused of never being able to get full...for quite a while now, years in fact, I have one meal a day. In the evening. Sometimes a day without even that meal. And I'm doing great.
    No you are not.

    You just don't know it yet. I bet you are not being monitored on a regular basis or you would see the effects you do not think you feel.

    One meal a day means your blood sugar is shooting to the roof when you eat and bottoming out about the time you wake up in the morning. You are running all day in an energy deficit and not thinking or performing physically as well as you would if you were feeding your body and brain.

    If you are working for someone else you are cheating them with less than your best performance. If you work for yourself you are doing the same, only it is money out of your own pocket.
    If you didn't bring jerky what did I just eat?

  12. #12
    Administrator Rick's Avatar
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    Yeah, when you finally get your blood numbers checked there are tell tale signs that you can look for in your doctor. Saucer eyes...not good. Uh oh...not good. Frantically tapping only three digits on his phone....not good. I've never seen this before....not good. How are you feeling? when he looks at the results....not good. Just a few things to keep in mind when you finally get those numbers checked.

  13. #13
    Senior Member kyratshooter's Avatar
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    Same reactions can be seen when things go the other way too Rick.

    Twice in my life I have been met by doctors coming into the exam room with good news.

    First was my cardiologist when he released me from strict care after the 3rd year. he told me he had only done that a couple of times because most people that had a first heart attack did not change diet, exercise take their meds and stop smoking. By the end of 3 years they had a second heart attack that killed them. I had followed instructions and 14 years latter I am still kicking.

    I am still on heart meds but a few pills daily are a small price to pay for 14 years of extended life.

    Same for the diabetes. The day I was diagnosed my blood sugar was 6X the normal limit. Meds again, diet change, more exercise demanded. This time I was threatened with a slow death and removal of slices of body parts. It was what they refer to as a salami death: first a toe, then the foot, then up to the knee, then the other foot, then the other leg, then blindness, organ failure....you see how it goes.

    Three months latter I had the numbers down and out of the danger range and A1C was near normal. Doc comes in, looks at me and says "what the he!! did you do?". I told him I followed his instructions and too my meds. He got sort of pi$$ed off when he realized that most of his other patients high numbers and complaints were due to lack of self control.

    The normal attitude of diabetics and those that prepare their meals is "just a little won't hurt". Just a little sugar, a little bread, just one scoop of icecream, and surely fresh fruit has to be good for you because it is a natural sugar and the orange growers said they were healthy.

    I am still diabetic, probably always will be, but it is under control.

    Yep I take meds daily. I pop those pills like a little old catholic lady lighting a candle at daily mass. They are not "supplements" or made up number pills, they are prescription meds that keep me alive. Without the heart meds I would last about 2 very painful months and then die of a massive heart attack. if I miss those pills I can feel the effects within a few hours. The diabetes meds I do not feel any change. It is a sneaky disease with masked warning signs, but we already noted the results.

    My total med bill is $12 monthly and I have gotten 14 years of extended life.
    If you didn't bring jerky what did I just eat?

  14. #14
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    I got lucky. Twice! First? The Almighty saw fit to bless me with good genes. If you go to the cemetery in Lander and check the dates on most of my ancestors graves you'll see that a lot of them made it well into their 90s and a few were past the century mark. This was before life was easy too.

    Second? My ski coach got me started on a good diet when I was 14. It was an attempt to make me a winner instead of second or fourth or second and then third. She was a student at UW in Laramie from Norway. This was in the late 60's when the European endurance sports concerns were first exploring what we now refer to as carbohydrate packing before an extended endurance contest. I was racing biathlon in JR high. Long distance cross country skiing and at extended elevations is definitely an enduro sport. Oatmeal, yams, brown rice, sweet potatoes. Stuff like that. Complex carbs with no gluten and all the fiber missing from all the refined crap Americans are eating now. Lean protein, mostly fish. I gave up red meat, never did eat pork and no more dairy or poultry. The next year my freshman year in high school we were sent to a race in Bemidji Minnesota. I not only won it I was more than two minutes ahead of the rest of them.

    Two years later as a junior in high school I made it to nationals and damn near won that one too.

    I got away from the good diet in the military but went right back to it when I got out and to this day it is the single best decision I've ever made. There is no fat on me, I don't get sick or infections and I can still ski circles around a lot of people a third me age. My cholesterol is perfect and so are my triglycerides. My doctor told me last year I could easily make it to the century mark.

    %90 of what is for sale in most grocery stores is NOT food. I stick to the seafood and produce departments. That's about it.

    Again? I just got lucky.
    Thank you Lord.

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    Administrator Rick's Avatar
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    I don't do any of that. My cholesterol is perfect and so are my triglycerides. There is a LOT to be said for good genes. My ancestors made old age too. None of the crap I do has killed me yet. I just Aaaaarrrrrggghh......

  16. #16
    Senior Member BENESSE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Altitude View Post
    Again? I just got lucky.
    Thank you Lord.
    You got lucky but you are not pushing your luck--something most of us need to remember. Because we never know when that luck is going to run out.

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