Carefully watching fat/sat fat, sodium (table salt), cholesterol,
caffeine, and sugars is an excellent start in your diet. Staying below the MDR (Minimum Daily Requirement, a government food
standard) for fat and cholesterol levels is fairly easy for a vegetarian.
Sodium, and sugar are another story, as they are used just
about in all foods to add taste, including vegetarian. Therefore, I read the labels in the food stores carefully and often
eat small portions when necessary to keep these percentages down. I also drink diet soda, tea, and coffee, all three with
low or no caffeine in them either.
There are many low-fat products and several low-sugar products
on the market, but rarely can you find a combination of low fat, low sugar, and low sodium in a single food product to help
you stay below the MDR for all three. This difficulty is encountered in so-called healthy foods such as weight-conscious frozen
entrees and even in vegetarian food products.
My daily calorie consumption, at 1190, is on the low side,
while consuming nuts, beans, and vegetable oils containing fat in them instead of unhealthy fat from meat, poultry, and dairy
Exercise - until recently, my daily exercising included using
a NordicTrack cross-country ski, a rowing machine, and an exercise bike. On occasion, I have done some Yoga and have
used all the computerized muscle exercise machines, the stationary bike, and the treadmill followed by the
whirlpool, sauna bath, and steam room at the gym. However, I no longer feel up to doing these, along with tennis
I still like to take long walks (mentioned
above) practically every day. Most often, I go to the Holyoke Mall, climate controlled for the entire year, and
to the two local reservoirs nearby generally on Sundays, weather permitting.
For better or worse, Americans have been deluged with genetically
modified foods, and the rest of the world is catching up. I believe that our foods should be labeled as such so that people
have a choice in this matter, but this hasn't happened. Positive reasons for using genetically modified organisms (GMOs) to
create plants include that they can be made more disease resistant, more drought or cold resistant, with certain added insect
and blight resistances, and more shelf life in the food stores.