Thursday, May 21, 2009

Advices from an "expert"

None of these... and none of anything else either, btw...

One of my foreign friends (Brazilian/Japanese) has been struggling with her weight for the last year or so. Although we have all told her the usual stuff: ”drink a lot of water, exercise, eat a lot of fruit and veggies and stay away from sweets and bread!”, she’s had a very moderate weight-loss success, so some weeks ago she decided (without telling us!) to go and see a Chinese nutritionist. She figured that since Chinese girls are so skinny, a diet according to some Chinese food specialist must be THE way to lose those unwanted kilos.

We were all quite shocked when we heard about it, but wait, it gets better… I almost fell off my chair when my friend told me what she’d been advised to eat:

Salads and fruits all day long. Only half of the amount of what one would normally eat.

Avoid meat, rice, bread, noodles, sweets, pancakes… well, basically, avoid everything except for salad and fruits.

Drink: tea and water.

However, in order to ‘clean out’ the body completely, no food or fluid can be eaten/drunk after 6pm at night.

-What? You can’t have a glass of water after 6pm at night? I asked.


-But it’s almost 30 degrees outside. Aren’t you scared of becoming dehydrated?

-Well, she’s a nutritionist… she should know what she’s talking about, right?

Oh lord. I try to tell my friend over and over again no to listen to this b***s***. Anyone can lost weight by just eating salad and not drinking a lot of water… but how to keep it off when you go back to eating normally again –that’s the challenge. I asked my friend how much she’d paid to get this ‘information.’

-400 yuan.


Now awaits our personal challenge: to convince our friend to start drinking water again after 6pm.


Brad Farless said...

Well, depending on the type of salad, eating fruit and salad all day isn't a bad idea. You just have to make sure that your salad includes beans, or shredded meat, so there's an adequate amount of protein intake, or she'll get sick.

Drinking tea and water all day is good too! Staying away from sweets is great!

Well, for the bad news... Not drinking water after 6pm is retarded. Plain and simple. I just can't even think of why, because it's such a basic concept. If you're thirsty, you drink, because that's your body telling you it needs fluid to survive.

And, Jonna, you're right. Just losing weight though dieting isn't enough, unless she plans to maintain that diet for the rest of her life. She'll have to implement some sort of exercise regimen to maintain her weight.

I wish you the best of luck with convincing her to start drinking after 6pm. The first thing that came to mind as I read this was: local "witch doctor" giving flaky advice.

Jonna Wibelius said...

Brad -well I hate when people say 'you wanna lose weight?? well just eat salads...!' because it's not long-term.. also, everyone already knows that. If u want something long term u need to come up with something else than just salads. Gosh, if I had to eat just one kind of food for 3 days in a row I'd get sick of it...

Emmy said...

Wow! Amazing what some people can get away with and get paid for it. Good luck convincing your friend, especially with the water part. Not eating a lot of food after that time is great advice, but no water! Bogus!

Brad Farless said...

Well, Jonna, I agree with you again that most people know already that it takes a good diet AND exercise to get fit.

I think most people can't help but want to find an easy solution. Not just in losing weight, but in everything. Working out is hard... really hard... especially when you first get started, compared to, say, just changing your diet for a while.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jonna,
I heard that from doing acupuncture helps with dieting. Basically they try to shrink your stomach eventually you'll eat less. Which results to weight loss. Maybe you can suggest your friend acupuncture.
And yes, no water after 6 is ridiculous, especially in this heat.

Mark's Blog said...


I think your friend has been ripped off by this "doctor"

Anonymous said...

Poor girl... She should try to modify her diet so that she can keep up with it for the rest of her life, not just to lose weight. This is way too strict. She'll get tired of this and quit. Then, she'll have a weight rebound...

Shopgirls Shanghai said...

hahahah that's the hardcore diet

i just eat in small plates, have 6 pieces of chocolate instead of 20.

and work out regurlarly

just tell your friend to work out a lot more!!!!

The Candid Yank said...

i wonder how old the girl is? No one believes in the salad diet anymore except 17-year-olds.

Is the girl really all that overweight, or is it just that she feels overweight compared to the locals? If you, Jonna, as a person with an obviously healthy body shape, is told that she is large and broad and "we don't have anything that would fit you", then perhaps a girl with just a little bit of extra is being told she's a disgusting cow?

My personal philosophy is that whatever's left after you cut out empty calories (i.e. alcohol, junk food, soda, excessive carbs) is what your body really wants. And if you're still not bone thin after you cut out all the stuff you don't need, then maybe your body was just not meant to be bone thin. But starving yourself on salad is just ridiculous.

Jonna Wibelius said...

emmy -I said the exact same thing.

Anonymous -yeah, I've hear that too. I'll pass on your advice!

Mark -yeah, I almost hope so. If that doctor seriously believes in this method it is quite scary.

shopgirl -well here's the thing.. she started running every night for 1 hour.. but she doesn't feel so good afterwards after sweating for 1 hour and then not being able to drink any water. I told her 76463 times that if she works out, she needs to drink.. but she really think this doctor's words are golden. Ahhhrggg! Frustrating!

Des -she is a bit overweight, so it's not just 'shallow complaints'.. and I think it's great she's doing something about it. I just wish she never would have gone to that doctor. Scary what power those people have over some people. But u r right about one thing, some people just cannot get stick thin... (me being one of them!) and I guess that's a good thing! :)

Pete In Syracuse said...

Oh Boy! Jonna,
I can't stay out of this coversation! All my life I have dieted, but in the last 2 years I've lost 68.18 kgs.
-Yes by limiting my food, but the way to limit it is not by cutting out "PROTEINS". We as people need liquids to be hydrated, but with out proteins at every meal you metabolism shuts down & it hurts muscle mass (like your heart is a muscle), because your body says "Famine hold on to what you can". The idea of dieting is that its not deprive, but fuel.

1. Don't eat & drink at the same time
- when you drink wait a half hour before you eat.
- when you eat wait 1 hour before you drink.

(The reason to do this is when you eat & drink the liquid pushes the food out of your stomach telling your brain it's not full - then you feel hungery and not full - Plus you salivate which helps with digestion. plus it takes longer to process solids than liquids.)

2. Chew your food 25-30 times before swollowing & wait 2-5 minutes taking another bite. This help your brain to to know your satisfied, because it takes 20 minutes of time for your brain to get the idea it's full. Most people eat a whole meal in 10-15 minutes ( Unless your on a date with someone you really like and there is a lot of talking the meal seem to go on for ever, henceforth that was a great meal!)
At the end of the time you will begin to stop eatting before the food is gone because you will feel staisfied not stuffed.

3. Vitamins - all the food you take will never satisfy what all the vitamins will provide with keeping the body in tune.

4. Excercize - obviously - but remember if you increase your exercize remember your protein intake must increase if not you will not lose weight you might gain it!

5. Write down what you eat in the beginning - because you don't know how much you are eatting untill you write it down & also write how you feel too!
-Eatting is an emotional thing too, sometimes we have to see why we are eatting because most eatting problems start between your ear's not your stomach.

If she doesn't lose weight this way I would be surprised

The reason this is so freeing is the fact you don't have to count calories you just eat 3 meals a day and make sure you don't eat over 40 mins a meal!

Brad hit it by adding the protein in (beans/shredded meat), but the rest of the comments tie in too!

Sorry to take up so much space on your blog....

mantse said...

that's a lazy method for those who want to lose weight without exercise.

ask her to check some websites then she will know what is balance of diet. meat and water is important. everything should be control.

Anonymous said...

Totally agree Jonna. It's keeping the fat weight off once you've lost a few kg. It's pretty hard to have the discipline to stick to a low calorie diet day in, day out, year in, year out.

It's really funny how your age can affect how easily you lose weight.

I used to eat 2 big mac meals a pop with no weight gain at all. And if I noticed my weight ever went up, I could lose it again by simply eating normally for a day or two. I was even underweight at one stage in my early 20's.

Now, if I overeat just ONCE, I'll put on a kg and it'll take a reduced calorie diet and take a half hour daily walk for a week to get vaguely back to my current stable weight, (which is about 25kg higher than it used to be when I was in uni! :( )

I think age sucks. It should be illegal to age.


Brad Farless said...

Good news Jonna!

Known issues:

Google is going to beat up China for not letting you blog.

Shopgirls Shanghai said...

tell her that most chinese doctors are all "kvacksalvare"

water contains 0 calories. DRINK DRINK DRINK!!!

Suiiki said...

That's silly, you have to have some kind of protein and carbs in your diet to balance the salads and fruit, and water is an essential nutrient which cleans out the toxins from the body.

I actually just lost a considerable amount of weight (I've been a very big girl all my life) by reducing my meat and bread intake, but not stopping it completely, and eating larger portions of fresh vegetables to make up for it. I'm eating the same amount of food but fewer calories. Also I drink more water, but I haven't given up things like fruit juice and pop. two months after making this change, I am finally able to wear pants that I bought a year ago and haven;t been able to wear in months! I also find that I need to snack less during the day and I don't wake up hungry during the night.

You should tell your friend she needs to make a lifestyle change rather than go on a diet, I've dieted since I was a child and always put the weight back on and then some right after. My high point was 275 pounds, right after a big battle with anorexia that ruined my emtabolism, and that's the weight I'm trying to lose now.

Emil said...

Yeah, and the fact is that most Chinese girls believe in this. I got this old woman in my office always telling us that we can not drink or eat in the evening, and no apples before 10 in the morning etc etc.

In the start I only thought she was stupid, but then I realized that actually most woman here believe in it. Did you also know that eating fish or anything that smells like fish in the spring will give you bad skin. Yeah, it is true according to a friend

mochi said...

That's crazy and down right dangerous. That nutritionist is putting her client at risk of long time health problem with prolong dehydration and starvation. Everyone else here got it right. Sustainability and healthy balance is the key here. Small portions of protein, carb and veggie 6 times a day does the trick for me.

Kikit said...

She might want to try banana diet. :)