it’s always like this

June 18, 2009


Filed under: growing pains, just shoot me, out of this world — notsojenny @ 8:40 am

okay, so i mentioned yesterday that i have a new diet as prescribed by the GI specialist and the EGD he performed that revealed a hiatal hernia.  if you don’t want to click through it basically means my stomach and esophagus had a fight and no longer want to be neighbors so they’re trying to separate (does that make sense?)

luckily we’ve caught it before it requires surgery, but in order to let my body repair itself and not make the situation worse i have to adhere to a very strict diet for the foreseeable future months.  what is this mussolini style diet?

no fat.

that doesn’t just mean eating healthy or reducing my fat intake,  that would be SOOO much easier.  this means no fat.  NO.  FAT.  okay, well not zero fat, but 3grams with each meal.  um, yah.  i dare you to try that it’s pretty much no fat. 

last time i met with this GI specialist he enlightened me on all of the things that create/exacerbate acid reflux and the number one was fats.  not spicy things like everyone thinks, but fatty things.  he mentioned mayo as the #1 culprit… i shirked into a corner as i alwasy get EXTRA mayo when it’s involved.  so after he ran down a basic list with me in his office i went out and bought no-fat mayo and no-fat miracle whip and i’ve been using those for a couple of weeks already.  he told me i could have steaks, just a filet so there’s not as much fat.   stuff like that didn’t sound too hard, cutting back the fat, but that was to reduce the reflux.

but the new diet i came home with after this procedure, it’s WAY harder than just portioning or cutting back or lightening up the fat intake… it’s ELIMINATING it!  it’s not a caloric thing, it’s all fat grams.  M and i went to the grocery store to restock on everything since pretty much everything in our house is off limits for me now.  i had to buy all new salad dressings, new yogurts, newcrackers, new everything!  you have no idea how much fat is in every damn thing until you can only take in 3g per meal.  i bought some of the “less fat” or “reduced fat” items in the snack aisle but all that means is that i can have 20 reduced fat cheezits instead of 15 regular ones.  i bought the reduced fat baked crisps to have something else salty, i get to have 7 of those at a meal (if that meal doesn’t already include any other fat grams). 

you really have no idea how impossible this seems and how much i wanted to cry in the middle of the grocery store… i’m actually afraid i’m going to starve!  but M is so wonderful, he took me tv-show-style through every aisle, showing me how to read the nutritional value info and figure out whether i can have it or not.  the best snack i’ve found so far?  graham crackers, i can have 2 whole sheets with a zero fat meal!  while it may not be as delicious it’s so much more appealing than the 1/2 of a sugar cookie i can have.

a handful of cheezits with a meal doesn’t sound so bad, right?  it doesn’t, until you think about it in terms of an entire day.  so to give you an example of how my days are looking…

breakfast –
juice (0g fat)
fat free yogurt (0g fat+ 50% less flavor  OR i can just have my good yogurt and skip the oatmeal)
banana (0g fat)
handful of bare naked (2.5g fat)

lunch –
turkey sandwich w/no-fat whip, mustard, wheat bread (2g fat, notice i can’t have a slice of cheese)
1 sheet of graham crackers (1.5g fat)
soda (0g fat)
apple (og fat)

dinner –
grilled chicken on salad w/2tbsp. croutons, cucumber, fat free ranch dressing, tomato (3g  fat)
juice or soda (0g fat)

that’s it.  that’s a day.  yah, that doesn’t sound too bad, but once you start to think about the options i have from day to day it’s awful.  i can make sandwiches, but i can really only use tuna or turkey because it’s so low in fat… genoa salami is my all time favorite but it’s completely out of the picture, i could have 1 slice and no other fat grams with that meal. 

then there’s my frozen lunches, i only found TWO that have less than 3g of fat in their skimpy little portions and even then i can only have fruit or veggies with it so i don’t add any more fats. 

here are all the things i’m going to miss…

bacon – we looked at the turkey bacon & veggie bacon, they looked like play-doh and i can’t imagine they taste much better than that
hotdogs – we bought veggie dogs because i can actually have ONE but i’m still mourning the loss of my all beef franks
steak – no filet because it’s less fatty, in this version it’s no steaks at all
ice cream – *sigh*
cookies, crackers, chips – pretty much all of them are out unless i want to eat one chip per meal.
cheese – oh man am i going to miss cheese!  there are low fat ones but they just don’t look appealing at all and still count against the other grams i can have that i might enjoy
potato bread – the thought of sammies on other bread makes me very sad
almonds – i can’t believe they’re SO good for you yet they’re fatty and i can’t have a single one!!
peanut butter – this is my go-to food when i’m starving but don’t feel like eating an entire meal, i’ll miss this protein
salami – my dear sweet salami how i will miss you!
chocolate – so long, bye bye, i will write whenever i can!


then there are things i’ve found that are either available as fat free or fit into the no fat diet because i can actually have a human size amount.  these are the things i will pretty much be eating from here on out …

chicken – i can eat about 3oz in a meal, think of 3 little chicken strips, that’s it, and they must be grilled or boiled
tuna fish – i’ll be eating tuna salad, tuna pasta, tuna sandwiches.  you name it, there’s 1g of fat in a can so at least i can fill up and still have 7 chips : )
sour cream – i’m not a huge sour cream fan in general but it comes in a fat free version swo i’m going to have to figure out how to incorporate it, i’m already planning on adding it to my no-fat mayo for veggie dips
mayo/miracle whip – both are available in no fat versions, thank goodness!
salad dressing – zesty italian and ranch are both available fat free, phew since so many salads are in my future
yogurt – light = zero fat
skim milk – i’m a whole milk girl, i’ve been living on 2% ever since moving in with M and now i’m resigned to skim, so not a fan of the slimy blue water they call skim
jell-o – pretty much the only dessert i can have and enjoy besides frozen yogurt but i can’t make that whenever i want
pancakes & syrup – surprisingly zero fat, i just can’t add butter (boo!)

oh there are so many more things i’m going to miss and things i’ve discovered i can have just in teeny tiny amounts.  things you don’t even think about are filled with fat that you can’t avoid, butter, oil, pretty much anything you use to make other things.  i can’t have any of the blueberry muffins i made the other night, i can’t finish my delicious caramel corn from Ocean City, i can’t have brownies or anything on my dessert shelf.

M keeps saying “you can have all the pretzels and fruit & vegetables you want!”  not a selling point my dear.  still, i’ve already bought apples by the bag.  i guess i’m ready but it’s still going to be hard to do this.

the overall idea is that in a few months when i’ve healed i can moderately begin to take fats back into my diet, but still not as many as i was consuming before.  i’m thinking of starting a bacon countdown clock, or maybe a paper link chain. 

seriously, look at your cupboard and find out how many grams of fat are in the last meal you ate not even including what you’ve eaten all day.  unless you’re on a crazy diet (like me) you’ll see that 3g per meal is freaking RIDICULOUS!  i’m essentially on a heart-patient diet. 

if you know of any good no-fat foods please share!  i’m starvin’ ova here!!



~ today i learned… Alaska is the state with the highest percentage of people that walk to work ~



  1. Oh my. that is quite a restrictive diet. I know I would have trouble with this because I have very little self discipline when it comes to food. But, you need to in order to heal. And I think it’s great that M is so strong and supportive for you – I think that will definitely help. This won’t be easy, but you’ll be able to do it. Maybe try to switch up eating graham crackers and the other ones you’re able to eat just to get a little bit of variety.

    Comment by DanceintheRain — June 18, 2009 @ 10:00 am

  2. Okay, it’s possible we may be twins. Separated by a few years. Whatever.

    Anyway, so I do have acid reflux and my doctor was “pretty sure” (don’t you love the medical world?) I was on my way to hiatal hernia.

    I did okay for awhile following all of the rules (I’m sorry, but you cannot tell an Italian “no garlic”). And now I ignore a lot of them. And occasionally I pay the price. Just last week I had to kiss Caesar dressing goodbye :(

    Comment by stealthnerd — June 18, 2009 @ 11:49 am

  3. oh man, if i think of anything or come across anything i will email you!

    Comment by Jackie — June 18, 2009 @ 4:23 pm

  4. I like the idea of a bacon countdown!

    Comment by imfb — June 22, 2009 @ 12:45 am

  5. […] me, out of this world, perfect strangers — notsojenny @ 8:37 am so after i’d been on the nofat diet for about 2 weeks i opted to weigh myself.  um yah, i almost cried.  i know i’m hungry all […]

    Pingback by seriously, no fat « it’s always like this — July 9, 2009 @ 8:56 am

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