I am uncommonly healthy for a man my age. And I claim credit for my health. I get plenty of sleep—sometimes as much as twelve hours in one day—lift weights for several hours every other day, and stick to a low-fat, high-nutrition diet consisting of multiple vegetables, three or four fruits, the equivalent of one egg a day, little meat, almost no starches, and no sweets at all. One indication of how spare my diet is shows up in my daily weight. If I eat away from home—at a restaurant or friend’s or relative’s house—my weight goes up.
For most of my life, I was a runner as well as a weight lifter. I thoroughly savor both forms of exercise, and I regularly enjoyed the euphoria of a runner’s high. Then I had knee replacement surgery. The surgeon botched the operation. I now walk with a slight limp and can no longer run. That means I have to work all the harder when I lift weights.
I limit myself to two meals a day. My evening meal is nearly always a large vegetable plate followed by a small bowl of homemade soup and a single piece of fruit. My mid-day meal follows a three-day cycle: eggs and a small serving of meat, beans and rice, and split pea soup, always followed by two to four pieces of fruit. The two soups I enjoy and my beans are prepared according to recipes I developed myself which emphasize onions, garlic, various spices, bullion, and a small quantity of roast pork pulverized in a Cuisinart processor.
I know that my eating habits put me at odds with most Americans, but I have no complaints. My observation is that nearly all Americans are overweight; downright obesity is commonplace; and our life expectancy is only 78.6 years, compared to an average of 82.3 years for equivalent countries—we rank 26th of 35 Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries for life expectancy. I already exceed even the OECD average.
More next time.