Fun Friday - Diet & Nutrition

In our last fun friday we talked about exercise routines. The discussion in the comments was terrific and many connected exercise to diet and nutrition, which is totally logical. So I thought we'd just move on to diet & nutrition as our next fun friday.

The way fun fridays work is I talk a little bit about my current favorites in a topic category (books, movies, music, exercise) and then I turn it over to all of you to discuss in the comments. It is fun and I enjoy these friday discussions very much.

When it comes to diet and nutrition I am blessed in the sense that I have a fast metabolism and I have always been able to eat whatever I want and not gain weight. I was thin as a rail in college. I've added a bit of weight since then, maybe 10% of total body weight. A fast metabolism is a good thing for me because, as many of you know, the Gotham Gal is a very good cook and food is a big deal in our household.

I grew up in a household full of people built just like me. Diet was never a big issue in our family. My mom's advice was always "moderation in everything." We always had sweets, sugar, fatty food, etc in our diets but we didn't eat a lot of it. We didn't eat a lot of anything.

Then one day when I was about 12, my dad came home and said that his doctor told him his cholesterol was too high. My dad takes stuff like that seriously and so he (and our entire family to a lesser degree) went on a low cholesterol diet. We cut back on eggs, red meat, fatty foods, etc. To this day I still think twice before putting anything like that in my mouth. But I do put "stuff like that" in my mouth. My guiding light is "do everything, but do it in moderation." I think my mom would be proud.

Living with the Gotham Gal for 30 years now has brought a whole different approach to food to my life. We always have food out in our kitchen. This past weekend we had a chocolate cake. Two nights ago it was homemade "Hostess Ding Dongs" in our kitchen. Both came from a friend of ours who just had to share her amazing creations. And they were amazing. We keep ice cream in the freezer, usually from some boutique gourmet provider. And it seems like we always have homemade chocolate chip cookies in the cookie jar. My kids' friends like to come to our house.

We eat dinner at home most nights during the work week. But we go out to eat a fair bit too. You can read Gotham Gal's blog to get a sense of it. Our family are foodies and I very much include my kids in that description. We eat pretty much everything and we enjoy food.

But that does not mean our diets are bad. The Gotham Gal has counted calories and fat in her food intake since long before I knew her. And our kids know how to count calories and what is good and what is not. My girls like to go on juice cleanses and my oldest daughter avoids fried foods and red meat in her diet (with an occasional steak just because).

So that's my approach to diet and nutrition. Which is basically no specific approach. I eat everything but try to do it in moderation. I try to avoid the bad stuff most of the time. But I let myself enjoy it every now and then. I just had my annual physical and my doctor gave me a clean bill of health. At age 50, that feels good.

So with that backdrop, I'd love to hear what all of you do.

#Food and Drink

Comments (Archived):

  1. Rohan

    Had to pitch in with a nice Lifehacker piece on 10 Stubborn Body Myths that refuse to die –Myth 6: Your Slow Metabolism Makes You Fat—When you have a fast metabolism, your body is burning more calories. That means that fit and healthy people have faster metabolisms, right? Not necessarily. ABC News interviewed Dr. Jim Levine, an obesity researcher at the Mayo Clinic, who studied the human metabolism in both thin and heavy people.What he found was the opposite of the myth we believe. Referring to lean patient Kathy Strickland and heavier patient Dawn Campion, he said:Dawn’s numbers are actually higher because we find continuously is that people with weight problems who have obesity have a higher basal metabolism compared to people who are lean.Your basal metabolism is the calories you burn to keep your body going, so if your body is bigger of course your basal metabolism is greater. If your body is smaller your basal metabolism is less.Dr. Levin inferred that the weight problems in his patients was due less to the speed of their metabolism and more due to their sedentary lifestyles.That is, of course, only one part of the equation. Gaining unwanted weight can stem from an unhealthy diet, lack of exercise, and a number of other problems as well. It’s a complicated problem, and your metabolism isn’t necessarily to blame.—A few other great notes about food myths as well on Lifehacker. Not going to post all links in case Disqus marks it as spam.The link to this one is…

    1. fredwilson

      myth debunked. maybe it is my slow metabolism!!!

      1. LE

        I have a going joke with my wife related to things like this “Researchers now say…”Since the beginning of time white men have been saying shit and it’s THE FINAL ANSWER. Time passes and another answer comes along from other white men saying other shit that is now the definitive answer to the question. See, they were wrong. We are right.  We now know. Then there’s another study and the process repeats. 

  2. Rohan

    Thanks for sharing that Fred. My diet – Rice, yoghurt, vegetables, milk, egg etc are typically part of daily meal. Fruit every day (Bananas typically, apples sometimes). More fish versus meat these days. Not a big fan of green salads. No coke/spirited drinks, No chocolate (don’t like), No alcohol, No tobacco.  I love my food. Once I like something, I can eat the same thing every day. So, yes, I’m extremely boring when it comes to diet. And I love that. 🙂 We are all weird, after all! 

    1. fredwilson

      no alcohol. that’s one thing i don’t think i could get by without. actually two things. i like a cup of coffee (usually espresso) in the morning and i like a glass of wine with dinner. up and down.

      1. AMT Editorial Staff

        If you drink Chardonnay, please try a glass of my favorite, Rombauer! And agree, that nightly glass of wine is a wonderful end of day treat. 

      2. Rohan

        To each, his/her own 🙂

      3. RichardF

        +1No way I could get by without coffee or wine.

      4. LE

        “no alcohol. that’s one thing i don’t think i could get by without.”Well I don’t know what the current thinking of the “white men” is on this but last I checked most were in favor of a glass or two a day. (Which is what I do.)Being raised in a jewish family alcohol was never a big deal. We had no liquor practically other than crappy jewish table wine that was way to sweet.  I never drank in college at all and didn’t start the wine habit until much later. I actually naively discovered the benefits of alcohol in the happy hour of weddings and parties. If I had a drink it was much easier to enjoy, tolerate and have a good time. Ok I thought, this is why people drink!  That said I can’t tolerate alcohol in any quantity which would make me not able to balance myself on one foot easily (with the foot fully extended). I’m sure there is some genetic component to this.  The fact that I don’t want to drink and that I can’t really drink.

    2. William Mougayar

      If I may say something Rohan, it seems that you’re having too much animal products, and not enough fruit/veggies. Don’t eat the same thing everyday…you’d be missing essential ingredients found elsewhere. Variety is part of health. Get all the colors possible on your plate. 

      1. awaldstein

        Really interesting. This community is so well versed in exercise.Less so for all of us on nutrition is my opinion. So wacky that this is still below the surface.

        1. William Mougayar

          Part of the difficulty in NA is that you have to “try harder” to eat healthier. The choices aren’t starring you at the face, not in the typical food stores, not in the airports, not in the fast food chains, etc… You have to learn it yourself, seek it on your own, wash it, cut it, do it all, etc…It does take time. I spend so much time cutting fruit and vegetables…but that’s the price you pay, and I hate frozen stuff (only in exceptions).- posted via

          1. awaldstein

            Agree. It takes focus.Stop bye next time you are in town and we can throw a bunch of stuff in the Vitamix!

          2. Carl J. Mistlebauer

            Can you throw like donuts, brownies and chocolate ice cream in your vitamix?

          3. William Mougayar

            And brandy or bourbon for Andy. – posted via

        2. Rohan

          I think it’s also because nutrition is very very different culturally.

          1. awaldstein

            Why?When you get to the combination of food elements in various ethnic food yes. But you can have organic or even kosher Indian or chinese or whatever ethnic food.Not clear on this. 

          2. Rohan

            Well, I’ll take you back to a conversation I was having with a Chinese friend a couple of years ago around one of the versions of the food pyramid that was released. And she was joking since the food pyramid outlawed what would typically be considered staple back home – lots of rice being a simple example. It ended up in being a discussion being around food. and we realized that geography and climate play huge roles around food. For example, warmer climates find the concept of cold meals alien, the warmer the climate, the spicier the food typically is as well (this is part historical as well since spices were natural preservatives and useful since food spoils quickly in warm conditions!) And in most of these cultures, weather plays a huge role in ‘calorie’ intake. And then, you have various other factors like the predominance of agriculture in a society and availability of grain that play their part. And her comment was pretty insightful ‘Despite all of these seeming issues, we grow up pretty okay. And so did my grandfathers and great grandfathers and people before them.’ One of the things I walked away with following that discussion is that while there are many things that are universal when it comes to food and nutrition, unlike exercise, there are numerous factors that contribute to the habits around it.. and they vary from place to place.

      2. Rohan

        Heh. Thanks Will.I guess it doesn’t quite give the full picture. 🙂 ‘I can eat’ the same thing everyday. I don’t however.. haha. 🙂 

        1. William Mougayar

          Ah …OK! you’re off the hook. – posted via

  3. JimHirshfield

    Vegan for 17 years. Clean bill of health.I too love food; just had to say that ’cause some people think vegans don’t.I don’t watch my weight – because I don’t have too. Lost 20 pounds when I went to a vegan diet. Gained most of it back over the years. But that’s not a concern. Still weigh about what I did in college.

    1. fredwilson

      how old were you when you made the switch?

      1. JimHirshfield


  4. Lee Cooper

    I’ve always lead a very active life and participate in a lot of sports. For years I’d eaten what I want, when I wanted and not always in moderation. I considered I’d a ‘healthy’ appetite, really enjoyed my food and never gave much thought to what I was eating. If ever I felt I was gaining weight, I just upped physical activity and the weight would soon drop.Things had started to change in recent years (as I stare down the barrel of 40!) I wasn’t playing quite the level of sports anymore yet my eating habits hadn’t changed. This wasn’t so much an issue of what I was eating, just the amount. As a consequence, I started to gain weight. It seemed to creep on, stealth like, until one day I caught a glimpse in a mirror I really didn’t like!Since then I’ve been using technology. Specifically an app, My Fitness Pal (not a plug, Ive no connection whatsoever) and I mention it because it has completely changed my eating habits.Its incredibly easy to use. I log everything I eat from an extensive database of foodstuffs / products. It takes seconds. It has really educated me as to the calorie content of certain foods (some real surprises), fat content, salt etc and made me focus on a balanced diet.Ive dropped weight over a 12 month period, in a very healthy, safe way to the extent that I am now a weight I hadn’t seen since my late teens. Not once have I felt I was dieting.I can measure goals daily or weekly and therefore should I have a day of excess (which lets face it we all inclined to indulge from time to time) I can balance this out over the week.The impact on my sports has been huge ( I am running at a pace I thought I’d left far behind me ) and the social nature of the app has been such that my friends have been able to offer each of us encouragement to reach our goals. I’m a huge fan.In no way has it intruded on my enjoyment of food. In fact its enhanced it. I appreciate what I eat and understand it in a way I never imagined I would, I was never that interested.In my experience a great example of how technology can be used to positively impact health. I still eat what I want, when I want, I just regulate how much of it.

  5. Ed Freyfogle

    I highly recommend Michael Pollan’s “Omnivore’s Dillema” and “In Defense of Food” (read them in that order). Great books for thinking about what to eat.Simple rule of thumb – eat only things your great grandparents would have been familiar with, ie no chemicals, preservatives, etc.

    1. fredwilson

      i love that idea. eat the way your great grandparents ate. i can really get behind that because it is pretty close to what we do in our home already

      1. Ed Freyfogle

        Only one caveat, make sure you account for historical anomalies.My grandparents lived through depression and WWII in Germany and will literally eat anything. Wasting food of any type is something they couldn’t even contemplate.

        1. AMT Editorial Staff

          My grandparents “lived” a long life, but their later years were slow and mostly sedentary. Is that living? Moderation in nutrition and exercise is the better formula. I want to be like the 73 year old man I read about earlier this week who took up Kite Boarding at age 70! Or how about the IronMan competitors who are 70+. I recommend upping veggie intake for the nutrition part. Make room for veggies and naturally the “bad stuff” will fall away.  Find something to commit to with exercise. Anything.

          1. Tim Huntley

            Agree 1000% with respect to exercise.If you want some pretty compelling visual evidence of what a lifetime of exercise means vs. being sedentary (but of normal weight), check out the images in this post:……Tim

        2. markslater

          i was going to say. My mother was born under a table at an RAF base in norfolk. i’m not sure i’d want to be eating what grandma was eating and grandad was in a spitfire chewing on cured beef rind while trying to stay alive above france so…might not work for me. 

        3. Donna Brewington White

          And mine thought that fatty meat was a seasoning for vegetables cooked beyond recognition.  The one from the South thought that every part of a pig was edible.  Every part.  So, no thanks.The Depression created a culture.  To my grandparents’ credit, they wasted nothing.  Nothing.  My grandfather told me so often to save something for “hard times” that I confused this with the name of some sort of elf — like Santa or the Tooth Fairy. I imagined Hard Times creeping up at night to find the half of a candy bar that I had stashed away for him. He looked like my grandfather in my mind so I wasn’t frightened of him. Most of the time, he left it untouched for me to eat later.

      2. JimHirshfield

        Sounds nice, but I never knew one of my grandfathers. He died of heart condition in his sixties. My grandmother on that side, made it to 77, also passing due to heart related problem.So, some things have to change. I chose to change what I ate. I’d rather not end up taking a handful of pills daily.

        1. LE

          ” I chose to change what I ate. I’d rather not end up taking a handful of pills daily”I agree and this alone is a major health issue. Many obese and overweight people out there are kept alive by “a handful of pills daily”.It’s a disgrace. With their eating habits, and without pills, they would have died long ago or would have had a life changing event that shocked them into eating correctly. Now they can just take expensive medication (paid for by everyone) and continue the same bad habits. Did I say it’s a disgrace? I’ll say it again.

          1. JamesHRH

            My 87 year old mother had appendicitis. After the 8th medical person came in to ask what daily meds she took – the first 7 just flat did not believe her ‘ occasional Aspirin ‘ response – a brother basically threatened a lawsuit to get them off her back!A nurse said to him, ‘well, come on, EVERYONE we admit who is over 50, IS TAKING SOMETHING’.My Mom eats and exercises in moderation, a la Fred’s Mom. Trim, healthy & med free.

        2. Donna Brewington White

          Not one of my grandparents lived to see 80 — the oldest was 79, and my Dad died mid-70s.  In each case, there were lifestyle issues that probably contributed to shortened lives.  My Mom is 70 this year and in poor health; terrible diet and no exercise but amazingly still quite beautiful.So, as you can imagine, I am very health conscious.Let’s take it back, Jim!  We can do it.

          1. JimHirshfield

            Amen to that! Here’s to your health!

          2. Donna Brewington White

            And to yours!

    2. Otto

      Evolutionary lag.

    3. Marilyn Byrd

      Both are great books and I like your idea of eating what your GG-parents ate.  I love to cook and eat little or no prepared foods.  I was taught to eat everything on my plate …. so I just use smaller plates, which works well in super sized world. I do have a sweet tooth and I do eat sweets from time to time, but mostly I consider myself a dessert voyeur 😉

    4. Robert Thuston

      My grandmother is 92 years old and is a testament to following that rule of thumb!Note to self: Omnivore’s Dillema & In Defense of Food.

      1. ShanaC

        Omnivore’s Dilemma is also a great book when it comes to writing.

        1. Robert Thuston

          Just purchased it on kindle.  Thanks,

    5. ShanaC

      That would be a pretty simliar diet to what I eat now.  Lucky for me, my great grandparents on my father’s side were produce wholesalers.  They ate a lot of produce that would have been hard to get in the 1920s.

  6. Tom Labus

    We go for a bit of everything in out diet but do lean toward more veggies than main course and watch portions.I found out I had high pressure a few years ago and have been lucky to control it with diet and exercise.  It’s amazing to see the sodium levels in so many processed foods.  We completely avoid them and have learned to make soups, dressings, etc. with different spices for favor.Home made soups are on the menu during the winter and kiwis have been great this year.

    1. fredwilson

      i love soups and curries

  7. John Best

    That was always what my father said:”Everything in moderation, including moderation.”

    1. fredwilson

      that addition is great!

  8. Natasha Starkell

    Sounds like you have an easy life in harmony with food, Fred. Here in the Northern Germany people eat proper lunches and light dinners. I skip dinner altogether, which, with moderate exercises of 30 min jogging every day keeps me in a top shape. And I don’t eat sweets: when you are off sugar (takes about a year) then you have no cravings and can even be repelled by the idea of eating something sweet. Otherwise everything in moderation.

    1. fredwilson

      my dad always liked a sweet after lunch but not after dinner. i’m finding myself doing the same thing.

  9. Brian Crain

    Over the last three years, I’ve spent a lot of time reading about different diets and trying out different ways of eating. I’ve found myself disagreeing with a lot of the assumptions you make: – fast metabolism. There seems to be substantial evidence that metabolism doesn’t vary much between people and that ‘fast metabolism’ has little to do with not gaining weight.- cholesterol. Blood cholesterol is not bad in and of itself but usually an indication of other things that are wrong. It’s just easy to measure. There is also little correlation between your blood cholesterol and your dietary intake of cholesterol. Very little of the cholesterol you eat goes into your bloodstream. So cutting back on red meat, eggs, etc. is not a good strategy when measurements show high cholesterol. – fat. There is nothing bad about fat per se. Certain fats are bad like vegetable oil, hydrogenated fats, etc. – counting calories and fat. I don’t think that’s a sensible way of managing your diet at all. It matters much more what you eat and if you eat the right things you overeating will not be a problem anyway. I was a vegetarian for about 15 years in the past (more ethical decision back then and not related to nutrition). Then three years ago I became more conscious about diet. I tried various things among them raw vegan. Now I eat the ‘Paleo’ diet: meat, vegetables, fruit, fish, eggs, nuts. (I also eat some cheese). I don’t eat any processed food, no grains. Generally, high protein and fat and get most of my carbohydrates from fruits. Anyway, I absolutely love eating like this. It tastes great, I’m never hungry, have great energy. A good resource on it is Mark Sisson’s blog: or his book ‘The Primal Blueprint’. 

  10. jason wright

    Good hydration is important – still mineral water in GLASS bottles.Anything red except meat.Oils – olive, omega 3, 6, 9, fish – all organic.Forget tuna and other big fish – methylmercury (the next time you have a checkup ask your dentist if your teeth have a feint green tinge – if they have you need to cut back on/ out big fish). Avocados.No teflon cookware. Try steaming your food.Not that I’m trying to shove any of this down your throat…

  11. John Petersen

    I have always had a great metabolism and am thankful for that every day. I workout regularly and have really never had a need to diet, but I always “tried” to eat healthy anyways.A little over a year ago, I became infatuated with the alkaline diet. The basic premise is that all foods affect the pH balance of our bodies and that we should eat 80% alkaline producing and 20% acid producing. Obviously, the foods that are the most alkaline producing are your green veggies, seeds, nuts, etc and the most acid producing are meats, dairy, processed, carbonated, alcohol and so on.I’m not sure the science behind it works and I am not overly obsessed with following the diet exactly, but I try my best. It makes sense to me and it certainly feels healthy. With that said, I am a big believer of moderation as anyone who knows me from my “Bacon Fridays” days will tell you.

  12. Tim Huntley

    Hi Fred,I try and eat whole foods as much as possible, and avoid the center aisles of the supermarket.I do not use so-called “heart healthy” vegetable oils (canola, soy, corn, etc.) but stick with butter, coconut oil, and olive oil for cooking.And I eat very few things made with refined sugar or HFCS….Tim

  13. Geoff

    Not sure if you are a investor but it’s truly a great product that helps individuals to debunk the myth about fast/slow metabolic rate. The key sentence in your post is  “The Gotham Gal has counted calories and fat in her food intake since long before I knew her”It has been fascinating to see my own energy expenditure by 5min intervals plus the amount of calories that certain foods contain. I did a post recently on it…

  14. Bing Chou

    More from author Michael Pollan:”Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.”

    1. Gordon Bowman

      Absolutely. I love this.Pollan’s other book, Food Rules, is filled with other gems like this:…  

  15. Alessandro Pistilli

    I come from Italy, by consequence I eat a lot of fruits, veggies, beans, bread and pasta.My family educated me to choose white meat over read and blue and small fish over the rest.Wine has always been on our table and, taken in moderation, it is considered healthy.As a side note, In Italy meat is usually much pricier than veggies, I was horrified by the fact that here’s the opposite.

    1. Tom Labus

      Something right there, didn’t see many “fat” people.

    2. William Mougayar

      Very true and unfortunate. The global food supply chains are the big culprits. The weather also has a lot to do with it, California being the exception more or less. 

      1. Alessandro Pistilli

        Let’s not forget the fact that mostly all the fields here are used for corn and soy…

  16. DonRyan

    Moderation in all things. Words to live by. And drink a ton of water. 

  17. Carl J. Mistlebauer

    Since my market is big and tall I have developed quite a knowledge base on the subject of “obesity.”At one meeting with investors someone commented about being interested in investing in a cure for obesity rather than clothing the obese.  Of course, that is a noble sentiment and one everyone can say “here, here!” To which I responded, “…the reality is that the obesity epidemic in this country actually began with the invention of television and that wonderful bit of Americana known as a ‘t.v. tray’ and you can now rest assured that with the development of the internet and social media, we are even further from a cure….”Sadly, we look at “nutrition” as some sort of base measurement of our health but our health is a sum total of a lot more than what we eat or how we exercise.All of my grandparents lived to be in their late 90’s and did so with no exercise regimen nor did they monitor what they ate; they shared some common lifestyle features, such as they gardened, spent quite a bit of time outdoors, and they lived uncomplicated rather stress free lives.

  18. Lyecies

    I like to have our family focus on eating lots of fresh fruits and vegetables rather than what not to eat. I think that if you eat the recommended number of fruits and vegetables and keep it interesting with variety and preparation by default you tend to not eat a lot of the “bad” food or too much quantity on healthy but calorie dense foods.If I need to drop a few pounds I cut back/out bread and wine with dinner – both treats for me but they add a lot of calories without the nutrition or satiety.

  19. baba12

    Interesting Mr.Wilson, glad you have a healthy body and you eat in a balanced manner.I have always been a vegetarian since birth, never eaten meat, fish or poultry. I have incorporated eggs into my diet. Being vegetarian means I have tried most foods outside and find the options even today are limited in terms of varieties. Being a member of the Park Slope Food Coop for the last 14 years has allowed me to have good quality produce at reasonable prices, else I would not be able to indulge in having  good products. I cook every day even if it is at 1Am in the morning. I would recommend watching “Forks over Knives” a documentary that may have an influence on your diet in terms of how much of meat you consume even though it is in moderation.The other hope I would have for you Sir would be see if you can avoid drinking bottled water and carry your water in your own water bottle and at USV you have water in regular glasses and not bottled water service.I think having a good body is great but a good environment will help maintain a good body better and eating like your great grand parents is a good solution. I grow some good salad greens and summer vegetables in my backyard on a platform that has wheels that help me move around for max sunlight.To the next (50+n) years Mr.Wilson….

    1. JimHirshfield

      Forks over Knives +1!!!!also: Fast Food Nation, Supersize Me, Diet for a new America…

      1. awaldstein

        Forks over knives is a great film!

      2. baba12

        Yes those are good documentaries too but what I like about Forks over Knives it discusses it in a scientific way and more importantly doesnt say to give anything just asks to find a balance. Also I think when one eats a lot of meat and sea life one is not necessarily being environmentally friendly so as one stated eat like your “great grand parents ” we might see some benefits accrue over time possibly.My concern is for the next “n” generations, I don’t have kids wont have kids but for my friends who have them I feel they are not taking things seriously, food production plays a big role in environmental policy and it is interesting dilemma how to feed the billions without abusing the eco system.We shall strive I hope glass is always half full….

    2. Kenneth Younger III

      Fred, watch Forks Over Knives, and then read this:…I really don’t want to start a vegan/omnivore war here, but there were some serious issues with that documentary.

  20. SD

    I have lost nearly 80 lbs over the past year, which has been one of the most difficult things I have ever done, and I still have a ways to go. A few takeaways to date:- Diet has had much more impact than exercise in my weight loss … both were important, but on the way up, my bad diet overcame good exercise habits.- How much I ate was more important than what I ate (but when I ate crappy foods with lots of sugar, calories or animal fats, it meant I was able to eat less food in total)- Tracking EVERYTHING religiously and honestly made me feel accountable (the weightwatchers mobile app was fantastic for that) – and more importantly, added “mindfulness” (is that a word?) to my eating.My most surprising observation was that I could eat about anything as long as I controlled my total consumption, so I havent really felt like I’ve been “dieting” so much as “being conscious”.As a fat guy who has always struggled with food consumption, it is amazing how basic these principles are, yet how easy it is to violate them.

    1. Tom Labus

      Congrats.That’s a great accomplishment. 

      1. SD

        Thanks! I’ve learned a lot along the way.

    2. Donna Brewington White

      That’s amazing!  You go!

    3. fredwilson

      gotham gal always tells me that diet is way more important than exercise in losing weight.

  21. PrasannaKrishnamoorthy

    Everything in moderation – including moderation :)Usually eat till I am not hungry or slightly hungry, rarely till I am full (only if the food is home cooked and super awesome).Mostly vegetarian, a few eggs every week. Family history of diabetes, so careful with the sugar and sweet stuff.Just managed to stop drinking tea, now on one green tea or less a day. Lots of water.Right now on one square of 76% dark chocolate every couple of days. Trying to improve my chocolate palette and get to 85% dark chocolate next :)After reading some of the comments, I can’t classify myself as having a ‘fast metabolism’, but at any rate little of what I eat sticks 🙂 And I rarely over eat.

  22. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

    Fred, Have you ever tried your hands on “Phillies Cheese Steak”? some variants are close to 1500 cal/serving. But mouth watering. There are two legendary shops on the Passyunk Ave…People stand in queue even during late hours to get drowned into that taste. You can hear 50% of the people eating there murmuring “Screw the Dieting”.

    1. JimHirshfield

      Seriously? This is on-topic? 😉

  23. andyswan

    I go so hard at the exercise stuff and crank as much output as possible for 1.5-2 hrs/day precisely because I don’t want to have to say “no” the other 22 hours of the day.Moderation is great for those that can live it…. but excess in both directions is much more fun and inspiring.Oh, and bourbon.

    1. Carl J. Mistlebauer

      Andy,As I say, “I am not sure how much effort I should put into increasing the quantity of my days as I don’t know how much return on my investment I can control but I know damn well that I can get as much out of this day as I can, so I shoot for maximizing quality rather than quantity!”

      1. andyswan

        Hell ya. At 92 my grandpa told me to just never stop moving. He died a couple years in his bed after a day of work on the farm and cards with his buddies. I’m in.

        1. Jill Simper

          when my grandpa turned 65 he started walking 5 miles everyday! Now he’s 96 and we don’t know where he is!

          1. andyswan

            Hell ya! Hard to hit a moving target!

    2. JimHirshfield

      What’s the nutritional value of bourbon? 😉 Must be high in something, no?

      1. andyswan

        Highest from drinks 2-5

        1. fredwilson


      2. William Mougayar

        I think Andy was thinking Social value 🙂

      3. Dale Allyn

        It’ll elevate your HDL (good cholesterol), but don’t forget that “moderation” thing. Red wine is even better at boosting HDL. You’re welcome. ;)cc: @andyswan:disqus 

      4. Brandon Marker

        I already commented on the effects of ethanol. I did not comment on the marginal cost v. marginal benefit, however. Bourbon is one of those food pyramid musts if we consider it the latter terms!

    3. William Mougayar

      Yup, if you burn it, you can eat it.  A friend of mine is a 7-summiteer and he did an un-assisted expedition to the North Pole 2 years ago where they would burn something like 7-8,000 calories per day. Their daily diet included tons of butter and chocolate, and he lost 10 kgs over 11 weeks or so. 

      1. andyswan


        1. William Mougayar

          You eat your furnace? FAKE GRIMLOCK will be proud.- posted via Engagio

      2. LE

        “Yup, if you burn it, you can eat it. “See my comment above (re: negative consequences) and let me know your opinion.

      3. ShanaC


        1. William Mougayar

          What does that symbol mean Shana? Pardon my ignorance. – posted via

          1. ShanaC

            It is a smiley where ones eyes are popping out of ones head, like in cartoons.- posted via

          2. William Mougayar

            o_O (other eye for me)- posted via

    4. christopolis

      Have you ever seen the pictures of the monkeys where one eats a ton of calories and the other eats very few calories? I do not know if bourbon was involved or not.

      1. andyswan

        I have a mirror.

        1. Rohan


      2. Brandon Marker


      3. Creative Designer


    5. awaldstein

      Agree Andy. But when you make the connection that some food just really contributes back to exercise and the health benefit, it starts to change thinking.

      1. andyswan

        Agree. Egg whites and whole grains is a good start….my discipline wanes as day progresses so I start good early hahhaha

        1. awaldstein

          See if there is a green smoothie bar in your town. No kidding. One a day really helps. I have one just after a hard workout. Fills. Replenishes and stems appetite.

        2. LE

          Maybe emotional eating. How much sleep do you get normally?

    6. LE

      “as much output as possible for 1.5-2 hrs/day precisely because I don’t want to have to say “no” the other 22 hours of the day”Does “no” mean being able to eat more food? I’ve always wondered (and haven’t been able to find the answer) if you over exercise and eat large quantities of food (that are burned by the exercise so you don’t gain weight) whether you still have negative consequences. Why? Because you will be eating a larger quantity of the wrong foods. In other words exercise alone burning off calories doesn’t totally eliminate artery clogging effects as one example.In other words the feedback loop (gaining weight) is short circuited by the exercise. 

      1. andyswan

        Yes, it means not thinking about restricting myself. I try to gain about 2-3 lbs/year of muscle (strength increasing). Currently 283 lbs so by the time I’m 40 I may print 3-bills hahaha.So far my cholesterol and BP are great….no real hereditary concerns but I’ll keep an eye on it of course. Your concern is a legit one…and I don’t know the answer either. Personally I doubt the food has much chance to sit around and effect my blood but you never know.Active, growing and strong is better than being sedentary and weak, on that I am sure.

  24. Seanlogan

    It’s easy to see patterns where there are none. I measure what I eat and drink every day. The only thing I know for sure is that the number of calories matter. 

  25. William Mougayar

    I’m pretty much similar to your beliefs and process. I would add the following rules I try to adhere to:Don’ts:- Never skip a meal- Never open a can of anything (except imported Italian tomato sauce with no preservatives)- Nothing with preservatives or names I can’t pronounce- Nothing fried except for the occasional french fries or falafelDo’s:- A pound of fruit in the morning, a pound of raw veggies in the afternoon/evening- Stop eating before you get full. There’s a 20 min delay between the stomach and the brain (while eating out, I’d rather order 3 interesting appetizers than a main course- chefs hate that as it disturbs the kitchen flow of 1+1. I love restaurants that have small tastings menus)- Eat small portions over a long meal, not 1 big plate of anything- Eat local foods when in seasonThat’s it. My role model is my grand-mother who lived til 107 (1896-2004), whose life spanned 3 centuries and whose diet consisted entirely of wholesome and local food. She used to eat her meals like a clock. Never skipped her 6pm dinner by more than a minute.

    1. kevinmurphy

      Have read that we shouldn’t eat any form of tomatoes out of a can because the acid in the tomatoes eats away at the coatings inside the can. My bet is that you could say that about a good portion of canned food.

      1. William Mougayar

        Interesting…actually, the new ones are in the tetra packs, and I specifically choose the ones without added citric acid.- posted via

    2. JimHirshfield

      Awesome Wm!!

    3. LE

      Much good advice but I will single this out:”- Stop eating before you get full.”And add to this the simple concept that many times people who have weight problems fail to realize that liking what they are eating is no excuse to keep on eating it. While of course there is will power involved, when I am eating certain foods people don’t understand that, yes, I would certainly continue to have pleasure if I continued to eat the food (what’s there not to like when eating fatty foods or sugary desert?) But I choose to consciously limit my intake because you have to do that. Or you will gain weight. And it will lead to health problems. That said I can tell you exactly the mechanism that is at work here.The food creates such a positive response that it releases brain chemicals that blunt away any thought of the negative impact of eating the food. People have to realize it’s an addiction they are fighting.

      1. William Mougayar

        Well said & I agree. – posted via

      2. Susan Rubinsky

        Personally, I enjoy the foods I really love MORE when I eat them rarely as opposed to every day.

    4. JLM

      Your genes are the most important thing in longevity.

      1. William Mougayar

        Touch wood. I hope my wine drinking doesn’t mess it up. – posted via

    5. Donna Brewington White

      Some really good tips here, William.  I am always refining my diet and you’ve challenged me, in a good way — especially with the amounts of raw fruit and vegetables and not skipping meals — which I do constantly!I also like the idea of ordering appetizers.  More and more, I am seeking out a Whole Foods Market when traveling and depending less on room service — but of course room service is one of the small comforts of business travel so I won’t cut it out entirely. 

      1. William Mougayar

        Oh, forget breakfast room service unless you’re staying at a 5-star hotel, it’s really crap. I go find a fruit stand or WF & buy my own supply for the room. And I bring my bran/psyllium/nuts/raisins/flaxseeds/chia concoction in small portions ziplock bags wherever I go.- posted via

    6. fredwilson

      i love these rules. in particular the never skip a meal rule. i am religious about three meals a day with little or no snacking

  26. jer979

    I lost 25 pounds in 9 months so this is near/dear to my heart.About 18 months ago, I decided that “it was far easier to get in shape at age 38 than age 58.” i’m 5’8″ and was about 185. I worked out, but definitely could lose some weight.  I started counting calories (trying to stay under 2000/day) and cut out meat/chicken entirely.Also, pretty hard core on the exercise (40 mins on the treadmill and I just love Fitness Evolved on Kinect..probably another 20 mins/day doing that..once in the morning, once in the evening).Since then, I’ve realized that it’s all about counting calories (moderation that you described doen’t work for me).  And, recently after watching one too many documentaries on Netflix, I decided to give a vegan diet an 8 week try. So far, so good though I have to take supplements now. Not sure I’ll stay on it (I like fish and LOVE yogurt), but we’ll see.

    1. William Mougayar

      I’m looking for a good iPhone app that can count daily calories. Have you tried one? 

      1. JimHirshfield

        With today’s “food science” I think it’s very hard to calculate calories….unless you only eat natural ingredients and weigh everything.

        1. William Mougayar

          true, and i try to avoid these “invented foods”. i can calculate within 20% accuracy in my head, but would be a good experiment to see what the “app” will say.

      2. kreighwilliams

        try its a great app that i’ve been using here recently. would recommend it to anyone.

      3. Guest

        I actually make Lose It! which is a calorie counter found on web, iphone, and android.Here is the link to the…I am always looking for feedback, feel free to send me an email my name

        1. Brandon Turner

          Opps, I wrote that message from the wrong account.  This is my real account.  Let me know if you have any questions about Lose It!

        2. William Mougayar

          Thanks ! I will try it & let you know! – posted via

        3. William Mougayar

          I tried it, as well as myfitnessapp and noticed a striking similarity with the menu & design between the 2 apps. Are they related? – posted via

          1. Brandon Turner

            We agree they have very similar UIs…We didn’t even have a website when we launched the iphone app, but here is a video on youtube where Lose It! is featured in an iphone commercial in early 2009:…MFP launched on iPhone in 12/08/2009 according to their blog:…While the applications right now are rather similar, our next generation product is going to take us to a whole new place and distinguish us a lot from our competition.

    2. JimHirshfield

      Happy to help with vegan yogurt recommendations. Yes, there are some delicious vegan yogurts. As with any yogurt though, watch out for the high sugar count.As for supplements? Why and which ones? Eat a healthy well-rounded diet and you won’t need to.

      1. jer979

        Bring it on!I was concerned about calcium, iron, and B12.I eat a TON of veggies now (Forks over Knives got to me), but I definitely feel “fuller,” if you know what I mean 😉

        1. JimHirshfield

          Calcium – The science is very weak on this. Ask yourself why in the last 10 to 15 years has the food industry (or dairy industry) found it necessary to push calcium? All of a sudden in human history we’re not getting enough calcium? Why Calcium? Why not Copper? Magnesium? Osteoporosis on the rise, sure is. The science shows that a high protein diet robs the bones on Calcium. But there’s little evidence to show that dietary Calcium intake replaces the Calcium lost in bones.That said, most dairy substitutes are enriched with vitamins and minerals, such as Calcium and B12.I’ve never had an iron or B12 deficiency in 17 years of being vegan and having blood tests with my annual physicals.As for yogurt, I go for Wildwoods soy-based yogurt – the plain flavor, to avoid the high sugar content. I mix it with berries or mango chunks and a little bit of flax oil (breakfast #1 at 6:30am). Later, I have oatmeal (breakfast #2 at 9am/10am). The thing with yogurt (dairy or otherwise) is that in USA, the yogurt producers have gotten so far away from the genuine thing with added sugars. I think there are some more authentic ones out there now, but the whole frozen yogurt craze and such really took yogurt in the wrong direction. I can’t say enough about the benefits of probiotics in the diet. 

          1. jer979

            Tell me more about the probiotics please. You’re a wealth of info. This whole thread is further proof to Fred that a community can have multiple angles of intersection around a core central theme. Loving it!

          2. JimHirshfield

            The human gut is full of micro-organisms (healthy bacteria, aka intestinal flora). Poor diet and illness can cause the balance of good and bad flora to get out of whack. For instance, if you get sick and are prescribed antibiotics, this medication kills all bacteria – the good and bad. So eating cultured foods, like yogurt (with many different strains of acidophilus), miso soup, and sauerkraut help build and maintain a healthy gut. The results are better digestion and a stronger immune system.This is not medical advice.

    3. Rohan

      Myth #2 It’s all about Counting Calories… –While consuming fewer calories can certainly have an impact, not all foods have the same impact once we stuff them down our throats. If you want to think about it in a very simple way, consider the difference between a candy bar and a cucumber (in equal caloric amounts). They taste different, they consist of different nutritional elements, and are not the same thing. It doesn’t make sense that they’d be used by your body in the same way. A calorie, according to Wikipedia, “approximates the energy needed to increase the temperature of 1 gram of water by 1 degree Celsius.” Basically, calories are a measurement and not something your body uses for fuel. What your body doesuse is what it finds in the foods and liquids it digests. If you put crap in your body, you’re not going to be better off just because of a low-calorie rating. ‘@wmoug:disqus 

      1. jer979

        Fair enough that they aren’t used the same way. I’m not saying that 2000 calories of chocolate is the same as another 2000 calorie mix, but for me, the awareness of quantity made a huge difference.

      2. William Mougayar

        I would say that spreading these calories across the key necessary nutrients, ie antioxidants, calcium, potassium, vitamins, minerals, etc. is as important as the calories count. – posted via

  27. JimHirshfield

    One of my favorite quotes that I always thought was diet related:”Eat like a bird, poop like an elephant” – attributed to a Japanese philosopher; made famous in startup circles by Guy KawasakiI interpreted it to mean, eat low on the food chain (more frequent, yet small servings, healthy, nuts, seeds, fruit, high fiber) and your output will be “productive”. ;-)Only recently did I find out that he used this in the context of networking.

  28. Rohan

    @tao69:disqus A funny one for you..’It’s a recipe for disaster when your country has an obesity epidemic and a skinny jean fad.’ 😀

    1. Carl J. Mistlebauer

      Rohan,I spent two days at the student center of the local university and I realized that without a degree in engineering I would never understand how teenage girls can get soooo much in sooo little.  It really has to hurt to get dressed in the morning.Then its funny because girls are going for tighter and thinner while guys are going for loose and low hung, and I have no idea what the idea is behind wearing multiple t shirts……

      1. Rohan

        Hahahaha! 😀

  29. kevinmurphy

    As it relates to beef- grass fed is the way to go. Much much healthier for you- increased Omega 3 and 6 and a number of other vitamins, less feed additive and antibiotic issues and the animals are generally treated better as well.

    1. JimHirshfield

      Treated better? Really? ‘Cause last I checked, they still had to kill them. Just sayin’ it’s an odd justification. I’m not trying to be “holier than thou”. But I do think that if you’re using the sensitivity card (i.e. sensitive to animals) that it’s a hollow point.

      1. Tim Huntley

        Jim,ALL diets significantly impact other animal species….Tim (an 8 year vegetarian who now eats Paleo)

        1. JimHirshfield

          No argument there Tim.

      2. kevinmurphy

        It’s not justification. Eating beef in the world is not stopping any time soon. All things that move and then get eaten are killed- cold hard fact. I’ll leave it to you to decide for yourself on these matters.

        1. JimHirshfield

          True. I don’t dispute the facts, esp the point that the world won’t stop eating beef anytime soon. I just don’t like the industrialized killing that’s marketed as humane. 

  30. sbmiller5

    I eat about 5 smaller portion meals a day.  Keeps me full, without the weight of a full stomach, which slows me down when trying to work.  Lot’s of fruit.  At least 3 pieces a day.Lot’s of vegetables.  Big part of my lunch and dinner and when I’m organized, afternoon snack.  Eat nuts for snacks, pistachios, almonds and cashews.Try to limit dairy (hard), too much wheat and sugar.  Need less late night junk food.

  31. markslater

    well my story is a bit different. Being from the UK i have a highly – i mean highly sophisticated palette…….for indian food. All joking aside – spice is probably my leading vice – spicy aromatic chicken Faal, authentic spanish and mexican zesty food. So i fight moderate measure if indigestion more than occasionally. the price i pay for the vice i have.Being a father of 2 small infants (2 year old and a 3 month old) i’ve be introduced to a whole new way of eating thanks to my wife who insists on the very best for the bambinos. Our house is choc full of trader joes food, and its an absolute joy i have to say. the kids eat alot of frozen stuff – all natural burritos, etc and you cant match traders in terms of ingredient quality and flavor. Its no picnic fighting you way around a super market (on the days we don’t have stuff home delivered ) but taking the family around traders is far less challenging – they do all the little things right including stickers for the kids while we check out (might sound like a small thing – but i am a big fan of “getting the small things right”) so – spicy food and trader joes really. thats how we roll.

    1. RichardF

      I’ve just been on an indian cookery course this week, taught by an Indian lady who specialises in teaching what is cooked in the indian home.  Which bears no relationship to what gets served in a restaurant.It was fantastic to see how much lighter but still deliciously spiced the food is and how interesting the ayurvedic approach to nutrition is.  I now feel fully justified in eating a curry several times a week.  Albeit not from the local takeaway.

      1. Rohan

        If I may, Richard, I have an issue with the term ‘Indian’ food.That’s like saying ‘European’ food. And that, of course, can be italian/french/swiss etc etc. I guess it was South Indian cooking you learnt?

        1. RichardF

          you are correct it was mainly South Indian with a little northern as well.

          1. Rohan

            For the next time you’d like to try some great South Indian fare, check out Rasa ( and let me know how it goes. 🙂 

          2. RichardF

            Does your uncle accept fredbucks? 😉

          3. Rohan

            Hahahahaha. You’ve clearly been reading GG’s blog! 😀

        2. kidmercury

          no doubt, indian culture is very fragmented……indian sub-cultures might as well be different countries

        3. Donna Brewington White

          This is so enlightening, Rohan.  Also, I owe you an email.  Been crazy busy and managing crises.

          1. Rohan

            Coolio.. look forward dear Donna! 🙂

      2. markslater

        or late at night after closing 😉

        1. RichardF

          Like you I have a little one so that lifestyle has been severely curbed 🙂

      3. ShanaC

        IJealous…does she have a cook book? Or something she would recommend as technique?

        1. RichardF

          Yes shana her books are on amazon uk I don’t know about the us but if they are not let me know and I will source for you.

    2. Donna Brewington White

      Ha!  I so relate to this comment!A friend brought us a Trader Joes care package when I had just had my second baby and also a toddler, and a broken ankle.  That significantly changed my cooking patterns and our eating as a family (or maybe it was the second baby that did this — especially eating frozen and prepared foods — but without guilt since they are actually healthy and preservative free).  Reading the “What to Expect…” series of books while pregnant and raising young children revolutionized my thinking about eating and nutrition. I was really challenged by the idea that everything your child eats (or that I ate while pregnant) replaces something that he or she does not eat — sort of like opportunity cost for eating.  The mantra: Make every bite count.  Although it really helps if BOTH parents read the book!  Or maybe that’s just my family since my husband spends more time in the grocery store than I do.

  32. Anon

    I eat the same thing every day.Breakfast:1 pomegranate1 plate of watermelon1 bowl of moong sproutsLunch:2 chapatis1 bowl of lentils1 serving of cooked veggies1 cup of curdDinnerMostly out and generally heavyAnd several cups of tea during the day.In last one year I have added twenty pounds I guess because of eating out and no exercising

    1. JimHirshfield

      Perhaps you should reverse the calories to earlier in the day? Eat more earlier in the day – use those calories during the day- then it won’t sit in your gut all night long.

  33. awaldstein

    I was raised on Eastern European Jewish food. Borscht. Kashi Varnishkas. Kosher butcher. The whole deal. My grandfather, who immigrated from Russia determined what we ate.I made the decision a while back that with expected lifespan now 20+ years longer, I wanted them firmly in the middle.Exercise and putting on muscle was one way. Diet with mostly organic vegetables, fewer and only organic meets was another. And through the influence of my girlfriend, a green smoothie and raw food (still stealth) entrepreneur, a lot has changed.I strongly recommend looking at the green and raw worlds for answers for health, muscle strength and disease prevention. I’m a true believer.Did want to mention that the medical profession is very unaware in general of nutrition. My doctor is a large exception, but most doctors know very little. This needs to change. There is not a lot of work being done to popularize the benefits of nutritional research. This is a big hole.And those who know me at all (through my wine blog), know that Im a huge proponent for the natural and artisanal wine movement in general…for both taste and a true sense of terroir but also health.

    1. John Revay

      Agree – I am happy your girl friend had an influence on you re: green smoothie/raw food person!  – I need to switch to that diet…it is just hard in my house.I plan to spend some time on Lianna’s blog and see what she is whipping up.Pls enjoy the skiing

      1. awaldstein

        Thanks John.Snow is not great yet. Headed to Headwall today to find some powder though.

    2. Dale Allyn

      Arnold, what you say about doctors and their lack of knowledge of nutrition (among other things…) is very true. One quick example: I have a client with a rare blood disorder. She’s a great employee for her company, but has struggled with her disease for years – fighting fatigue, pain, etc. To look at her you would assume she was fine if not late in the day when she would begin to fade to pain. Her numerous doctors did nothing for her aside from prescribe meds for symptoms. Finally, on recommendation of a friend, she contacted a nutrition specialist in L.A. (she’s located in another state). He does work in a number of ways, but with her he agreed to work by phone at first. He was not aware of her condition as it was quite rare, but between the time of the first call to schedule a conference call and that conference he researched on her behalf. He needed to know what exactly her body was going through based on that condition. Bottom line is that he worked with her through diet and supplementation specific to her issues and she’s incredibly vibrant now. Her doctors are blown away. Prior to her nutritional approach she had always been appropriately thin, as she is now, but simply missing nutrients that empower her body to heal and fight adversity. Diet and nutrition matters. Edit: fixed a few typos

      1. JimHirshfield

        So true. Bottom line is that there’s no greater interaction we have with our environment than the food we eat. I mean there isn’t anything more impactful than what we put into our bodies – good and bad. So it’s astounding that doctors don’t spend more time focusing on that.

      2. awaldstein

        I’m not a kvetcher by nature so don’t like to complain without taking action.For everything medical (health and nutrition) I’ve found that I need to search out the best pros but at the end of the day, we need to hack the discipline and lead the decision ourselves.I did this with some health issues and now with nutrition. It just took a lot of time and focus.

        1. Dale Allyn

          I think many go to the doctor too quickly (or too often) to get a quick fix for certain ailments. I don’t want to start a rant, but it’s not easy to get good medical care in the “metered” medical model where each patient is seen for 8 minutes (even in an one hour appointment), prescribed some pharmaceuticals and sent on their way. Many of our aches and pains, and our low resistance to infection and viruses are a result of poor habits, including nutrition, and too many trips to the doctor for the magic pill. We’re fortunate that we have great doctors available to us in most of the developed world, but being a bit less “familiar” with them and more familiar with our own body’s needs (and providing for those needs) will do wonders. Sorry to be preaching to the choir here. 🙂

          1. awaldstein

            A worthwhile rant.What I’ve discovered is that being healthy and being fit happens without making food uninteresting or life boring.With wine…a whole different topic.

    3. William Mougayar

      Agreed. Green, raw, organic, local…are magical words that should be in any diet.

    4. LE

      “Eastern European Jewish food. Borscht. Kashi Varnishkas. Kosher butcher”Same but always lean corn beef.I remember my first wife’s aunt, the “fatty” aunt. We were at 2nd Avenue deli in New York. (I asked for a reuben and was laughed at by the wise guy jewish waiter. I thought it was a standard deli food (but milk/meat it’s not kosher)).Anyway the fat aunt, with all her gold jewelry and hair and makeup (which she thought made her beautiful) asks for a corn beef sandwich and to my amazement says “if it’s not fatty I’m sending it back!”She died about 5 years later from a heart attack.  This was years before the development of today’s therapy. Today she’d still be eating that food and costing us all money for that behavior.

      1. ShanaC

        note; there is some fatty jewish food I would recommend for health reasons.Matchas Herring for example.  herring is a great source of omerga 3s.  very fatty though

        1. LE

          I never thought of that. Thanks for that info. I already eat nova but I remember really liking herring back when I’ve eaten it (at my parents or an occasional shiva..) 

          1. ShanaC

            The only reason I know is because I like herring?Actually, why don’t more people eat herring, its delicious and survives shipping well because of the pickling. Great source of all things fish….- posted via

    5. ShanaC

      I was raised the same way.But at least I don’t know how to make a potato kugel, so my kids will be much better off 🙂

      1. awaldstein

        Really funny Shana. I’m sitting with an icepack on my knee after a day of skiing and smiling.

  34. Mark Essel

    About to have a blueberry banana frozen yogurt shake at the mall where I walk in the cold season. I’m pretty good about breakfast and lunch, but have bad dinner habits (portions too large, Michelle’s cooking too damn good).Trying to shrink those portions is my current healthy eating goal.

  35. Bill Phelan

    Let me extract two clues from your post.  “Everything in moderation””my dad came home and said that his doctor told him his cholesterol was too high.”If your dad had cholesterol problems, it is likely you will too.I have cholesterol problems too.  As these “problems” are cumulative, and really cannot be reversed, think about the following:Read Esselstyn’s book “Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease.” Read Colin Campbell’s book “The China Study.”These books will rock your world, particularly if you have “cholesterol problems.”This subject could consume my day, so let me just put a few things out here for those of us who have “cholesterol problems.”There is virtually no direct connection between cholesterol in your blood stream, and plaque build up in your heart.  Plaque buildup is impossible to reverse.  You can learn more about the plaque buildup on your heart by talking to your dentist than talking to your cardiologist.  If your dentist is regularly scraping plaque from your teeth, you will only wish he could scrape the plaque out of the arteries in your heart. I can practically guarantee you that you will have plaque building up on your heart based upon your dental activities. Plaque on your teeth is not accumulated food. It is PLAQUE!!Read the above statement again. If you think that by taking statins you have solved the problem, think again. There is virtually no proof that lowering cholesterol in your blood stream will reduce the plaque building up on your arteries.Find an imaging center that performs “Coronary Artery Calcium Scoring.”  Direct image of your heart and this will help you establish a baseline.  Test is usually NOT covered by insurance, and is worth every nickel you will spend on it.  If, for any reason, your numbers come back high, I have found ways to reverse this on myself, and I have proven it by going back to have the scan done again.  Happy to share these details if you need them. I am a one man petri dish on this one.Above all….moderation is slow death…IF you have cholesterol problems that are hereditary.Hope this helps…or at least challenges all of you to read these two important books.Hope this is helpful.

    1. fredwilson

      thanks!the good news is my dad is 83 and has not had any plaque related heart issues yet

  36. Joe Yevoli

    I’ve been following the “Paleo Diet” for a few months now.  I’ve always been very careful about what I eat since my dad passed away in 2006.  I’ve tried to stick to an all natural/organic food diet for the past few years.I’ve always had high blood pressure, and I thought it was just something I would have to deal with my entire life.  However, I started following the Paleo diet when I was training for the NYC marathon.  I really liked it, and I noticed a slight change in energy as well (maybe that was psychological).  During my training, I gave blood and for the first time EVER my blood pressure was at a normal rate.  The only thing that I had changed was my diet, so I assume that is what is responsible for the change.  I’ve stuck to it ever since and my blood pressure remains normal. 

    1. perfy

      +1 on paleo.  I’ve been following it for close to 2 years.  I have had a physical every year with bloodwork done, and I am the healthiest I have ever been at the age of 34.  My cholesterol and tryglicerides have improved every year.  I’m not that keen on the title or label of the diet, and I don’t go for the marketing of “paleo” products, I just eat by the simple rule of only eating whole foods, and removing grains and other refined carbs and sugars.The results speak for themselves.  This diet has TONS of doubters, and I understand since it goes counter to many of the things were were taught growing up (mostly that fat is a good thing), but there are too many success stories to doubt it in my mind.All of the doubters, or dare I say haters, are too scared to try it and see that it works.

      1. Joe Yevoli

        Yea, I even doubted it when I started out. People thought I was nuts when I trained for a marathon without carbo-loading. I’ve seen no indication that less carbs give me less energy. In fact, I’ve seen quite the opposite. I’ve recommended it to my cousin who I suspect may be gluten-intolerant. She’s been on it for over a month, I’m excited to see how she feels.

    2. Kyle Comeau

      1. Eat meat & vegetables, nuts & seeds, some fruit, little starch, no sugar2. Have carbohydrate, protein, and fat component to every meal…including snacks3. Don’t eat food that makes you feel like crap, e.g. gives you heartburn or gas, etc.4. Have a relationship your butcher, or better yet, your farmer.5. Intermittent fasting works really well.Basically, 1&3 come from the paleo diet; 2 comes from the zone diet; I heard about IF from Robb Wolf a couple of years ago.I personally eat beef and fish, mostly fruit (as opposed to veggies), and nuts or avocado. My farmer is named Jason. And I’ve added whole milk back into my diet to help add some good weight.

      1. William Mougayar

        Have a relationship with your fishmonger too….Depending on where you live, that’s a tough one. In NA, most fishmongers will cater to restaurant owners before consumers. 

    3. Nate Floyd

      I’ve been on and off the “paleo diet” for a year and a half now but have cut out all processed foods and refined grains/sugars which I think is really the most important thing.  Getting away from the western diet saves lives.  The fast-food, processed grain and dairy-heavy diets causes heart disease, diabetes, and a slew of other diseases (and cancers in my opinion)).  I’ve kicked off this new year going full paleo (no dairy, no grains, no alcohol, no pure sugar–only a little bit of fruit) and exercising 5-6 times a week.  I can honestly say that I feel better than I have in a long time–every levels very consistent, never bloated and feel pretty strong.As perfy says below there are a lot of doubters of this diet but I think it’s because people binge on lots of meat and miss the real point of “eating paleo”.  Eat lots of veggies (micronutrients), healthy meats/fish (pasture raised, grass-fed, organic, sustainable/wild fish–who knows what the long term effects of the various steroids and antiobiotics are that are found in normal grocery store meat), some nuts and fruits, all mixed with exercise, and as you suggest Fred, all in moderation, is the way to go.  Here are some of my favorite food blogs for recipes and inspiration for my own creations:….  

    4. fredwilson

      what is the paleo diet (in brief)?

      1. Dale Allyn

        I had to look it up, too. It’s essentially a “hunter-gatherer diet”. Not too far off my practices I suppose, which is: lean, low fat, limited carbs, nuts, veggies and fruit…, though I enjoy some cheeses and such, so I guess I fail. ;)…

        1. fredwilson


        2. perfy

          Only correction I would make is that paleo is not low fat. 

          1. Dale Allyn

            Thanks, perfy. I did realize that after posting my comment (and reading Joe Yevoli’s comment). My process doesn’t really qualify in other areas as well. But overall, for me, low fat intake is an important component for me feeling good. I don’t really follow any outlined diet and simply avoid that which makes sense to avoid and try to eat what makes me feel healthy. That generally means unprocessed, high-quality foods, with an emphasis on freshness, plus overall moderation regarding intake. I don’t like to feel full. 

      2. Joe Yevoli

        The way it was described to me: Paleo diet omits starches, grains, and beans. It consists of lean protein, vegetables, a little fruit, a sh$% ton of good fat, and nothing else.If I ever question whether something is allowed on the diet, I look at this page –

        1. fredwilson


  37. jbcolme

    I moved to Italy about a year and a half ago. Food here is awesome. But not pizza, I’m talking about real Mediterranean diet. People eat more fruits and vegetables than in Venezuela, where I grew up. To be honest, I’m enjoying it a lot. I’ve lost weight, digest better.I’m just loving Italy. And there’s a whole talk around about startups too. Let’s see what I can make of it.Also, people actually walk a lot here. And as an immigrant, well, I sold everything back home before moving, and haven’t bought one yet. This may sound crazy in the states, but I actually manage pretty well. The public transportation is great, and go shopping or just walking down Genoa’s historic center is just beautiful.So far, just by not using a car all the time and eating better, my quality of life has jumped.Meanwhile, me and my wife are planning to start swimming soon.Cheers!

    1. fredwilson

      if i had to pick just one cuisine, it would be between italian, greek, or japanese. i think i’d probably end up with italian but it would be hard to give up japanese. fortunately, i don’t have to make that choice.

  38. leeschneider

    Was in Europe the past two summers and noticed how the culture there is to walk everywhere. There seems to be far less concern about diet and consumption when people are active and out and about.  I’d have to guess we walked 5+ miles per day.  I’d think at that rate you can eat whatever you want.  

    1. fredwilson

      we walk a lot in NYC too. its a bit more painful in the winter. but i still do it.

  39. John Revay

    Re: The Wilson’s diet – I have often wondered over to the Gotham Gal Blog….and I see the great photos of the food that Joanne encounters – great recipes for dinning in, great photos of food nicely plated while dinning out…and even some day trips around the City and surrounding areas re; Bakeries in Brooklyn…My Home is a little different – we have cut back on Red meat – mostly eat Chicken as the main course/protein, however I have two out of three children that had severe food allergies early in life and are skinny as rails..Out pediatrician wants them to gain some weight so we probably eat more of the bad stuff than we should.I would be happy to go Vegan if we could re: I read through a good book from Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn (Cleveland Clinic) about preventing and reversing heart disease – He is big on natural unprocessed foods.Take away – eat the right stuff in moderation and work out on a regular basis,

  40. kenberger

    Cleanses, or even just having a breakfast of only fresh healthy juices have been life-changing.Organic Avenue, freshly delivered from the lower east side, are the best, though pricey.I also have a bunch of amazing nutrition talks from TED but can’t seem to find a way to share my boxee watch later feed.

    1. fredwilson

      that’s the one my oldest daughter uses

  41. Richard Taveras

    I go 80% paleo, 100% of the time!I love the flexibility of being able to choose when I eat non-paleo. It makes it much easier to adhere to the “restrictions” of the paleo lifestyle since i don’t have cravings as often. Just by doing both breakfast and lunch 100% paleo, i’m already at 66% paleo overall, which makes it much easier since it allows me to alternate one dinner paleo, one dinner non-paleo…. MUCH easier than going 4 days paleo –> 1 cheat day, although other people prefer that 

  42. jameskupka

    “everything in moderation… including moderation” -scott weiland.It’s a bit odd to say but that ex heroin addict has a point.  I behave roughly the same way you do, Fred, around food.  Occasionally I’ll excessively over-eat, however, and love every moment of it.  

  43. Ronak

    I’ve been doing two things since I began working on my own startup to make up for the reduction in my running miles (used to run 4-5 times a week… now it’s down to 1-2).1. I work from home now and have a tall bar table in my living room which now acts as my office desk. Best part about it, I can now work standing up. The obvious benefit is that standing burns more calories than sitting (8 hours of standing burns ~400 more calories than spending the same time sitting for my weight class). Standing also uses more muscles which aren’t generally used when sitting thus leading to improved posture. One advantage that I’ve seen is a drop in lethargy and increased levels of productivity, probably because my mind tries to match my body’s constant state of “activity”.2. I’ve started following a raw food diet based on this documentary I watched recently – Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead. The movie highlights the benefits of a raw fruits and vegetables consumed in the form of a juice. I’ve integrated the diet into my daily routine with a slight alteration – I don’t “juice” my food, but blend it all into a smoothie. 10-12 glasses a week of blended fresh produce means that I’m consuming enough nutrition to enjoy my meals no matter how unhealthy they are when I eat out. Secondary benefits are reduction in consumption of processed foods, less snacking while working (chips and pretzels during work are replaced by “green sludge”), better sleep and a natural regulation of my weight despite the reduction in exercise.I recommend both. 

    1. JimHirshfield

      My concern with smoothies (even 100% veg or fruit) is that consuming food in this manner is not natural and I fear may mess with the natural digestive process. Our food was meant to be masticated and saliva plays a key role in the proper digestion of many foods.

      1. Ronak

        Thanks for the comment. Totally agree with you. Which is why only 40-60% of my intake in a week is smoothies. Rest of it is regular food.As Fred said it’s all about moderation.I tried the 100% smoothie diet for a month. Enjoyed it, but combining it with a regular diet is way better, especially for my mental sanity.

      2. LE

        Agree. Same thinking as to why you simply can’t take a pill of nutrients. 

      3. William Mougayar

        Really? I thought that getting the food mushed up helps the digestion & it gets absorbed by your system easier. One cannot chew food as well as the blender.

        1. JimHirshfield

          “It is the first step of digestion and it increases the surface area of foods to allow more efficient break down by enzymes.””…and the enzymes in saliva begin to break down carbohydrates in the food.”…

          1. William Mougayar

            I’m with you. That’s why they say “chew your liquids”, and that include the smoothie, so you get the best of both worlds: easy to absorb + enzymes! – posted via

  44. Paul Sanwald

    I was a vegetarian from ages 18-33. started eating meat again after reading gary taubes’ work, and realizing that a high-carb diet probably wasn’t the best thing for me.we go out to eat on weekends but cook at home during the week, and bring lunch from home to work every day. it’s cheaper and healthier, we usually make a big pot of something and eat it all week (pumpkin chili this week!). I worked as a line cook in high school and some of college and I’m a pretty good cook, and I really enjoy it.Over the past couple years we’ve experimented with eating paleo, low carb, etc, but like fred, I find that moderation works best for me. I try to be reasonable about my sugar intake and keep on an even keel. all through high school and college I was between 180-200, and for the past few years I’ve been 160. feels great.

  45. Gorilla44

    I’ve been gluten free for a year and I’ve never felt better.  If you have any stomach ailments at all – ulcerative colitis, crohn’s disease, etc – I strongly recommend trying it.

  46. Kenneth Younger III

    Fred,I would _highly_ suggest looking into the Paleo diet. It’s based on our general knowledge of what humans evolved to eat prior to agriculture, with the added benefit of modern science. Check out Mark Sisson (, Robb Wolf (, or Paul Jaminet ( – these guys are on the cutting edge of human nutrition and are great places to start.Brief overview: – Grains and other neolithic foods are probably not so good for you- There is no need to be afraid of eating animal fat- You probably get too much omega-6 in your diet- Get rid of the added sugars- Diet *can* cure ailments. More accurately, your own body can given the right environment.I hope you do take a look. I have known a lot of people that have changed their lives reconnecting with their inner “animal”.-Kenny

  47. Miljenko Hatlak

    You can eat almost any food and it won’t hurt you as long as you are moderate. Diets based on restrictions of any food group is a bad decision, and it could be reasonable only in case you have some medical problem that asks for some kind of restrictions (low purine foods, non-gluten and similar) It is a good idea to respect recommended daily quantities for the different types of food. Try to avoid canned food and food containing various preservatives (E-) and flavor intensifiers which usually contains way to much salt that is bad for your blood pressure. Also it’s important to know which food groups could be mixed. French people are known for world biggest consumption of fatty cheeses but yet the are one of the nations with lowest percentage of people suffering from high cholesterol. Why? For example, because they enjoy in some excellent cheese accompanied with a glass of red wine, and not as we all usually eat cheeses by putting it on pizzas or in sandwiches. Regarding reducing on weight I would recommend Dukan’s diet plans

    1. LE

      “French people are known for world biggest consumption of fatty cheeses but yet the are one of the nations with lowest percentage of people suffering from high cholesterol. Why? For example, because they enjoy in some excellent cheese accompanied with a glass of red wine”Assuming this has been the practice for centuries or thousands of years it’s possible there is something else going on in their makeup that allows their body to not react in the same way. They have adapted to it. I think I read about a culture once who smokes and never gets cancer. Maybe because of something else, or maybe they just adapted.

      1. Miljenko Hatlak

        Nope!Through the evolution of human our diet was scarce, so our body developed ability to conserve energy by storing fats. When you eat some fats alone, your body starts to digest  it immediately (only cheese). But when provided with other food that is more easy to digest, your body will start to digest that food and fats will be stored for later (combination cheese + bun) .   Since I’m not expert in this subject, you should consult principles of Montignac diet, that is based on French cuisine, and  permits consuming food items like chocolate, cheese etc in limited quantity that is usually not allowed in other diet plans.

        1. LE

          You said:”French people are known for world biggest consumption of fatty cheeses but yet the are one of the nations with lowest percentage of people suffering from high cholesterol.”Now you are saying:”Montignac diet, that is based on French cuisine, and  permits consuming food items like chocolate, cheese etc in limited quantity””limited” does not seem to reconcile with “biggest”.I eat cheese in normal quantities. I don’t like any extremes with anything.

          1. Miljenko Hatlak

            Word “diet” in some other languages sometime means “loosing wait”. I wasn’t talking about what Mr. Montignac was eating, but about changing your eating habits when you want to loose on weight, what implies limiting your food intake or rising your burning rate.So if you love cheese, buy two or three types, cut reasonable amount of cheese in small cubes and put it on a plate. Invite your friends and serve some good vine. You may enjoy slowly eating cheese, drinking vine and talking let say about lean startups. But while eating cheese leave your bread untouched? That’s French !

      2. William Mougayar

        There is a secret about cheese, and that it helps you to digest what you ate before it, except itself. So, that works for small quantities only, and that’s why in France, they serve you a few slivers of cheese after dinner.The other thing is that this applies only to unpasteurized, raw cheese. So that doesn’t work for processed cheese which doesn’t even taste good.

  48. Elia Freedman

    This is fascinating and amazing to think that the way each one of us eats is so vastly different from the rest. I read 7 or 8 lead posts, plus Fred’s post, and each one was different.What it left me thinking about is how most of the US eats. And it looks nothing like what us middle and upper class “rich” kids eat. Ever read Five and Dimed? This came out a decade or so ago and highlighted how hard it is to live poor and eat healthy. And since food has such a strong impact on everything else, no wonder our schools are struggling. When kids come and haven’t eaten a healthy breakfast, how can they learn? Anyway, that is what it left me thinking about. That and how lucky I am to be able to have a conversation about the best diet.

    1. Conor

      I was left with the same thought.. A lot of these diets are fine for many of the posters here, and for myself, but what can poor people do to eat better? Organic and unprocessed foods are simply very expensive. Sadly good diet seems like a somewhat “luxury” product, not a basic right accessible to all in our modern society.

      1. LE

        “Organic and unprocessed foods are simply very expensive”(Most) Poor people aren’t interested in those types of foods.  They are interested in comfort foods. As a matter of fact even the majority of people who have enough money don’t want to buy primarily organic and unprocessed foods. It’s a niche market. As I’ve mentioned before, even in an upscale area,  you can’t easily find a local pizza shop that makes whole wheat pizza. I’ve asked various owners and they all say the same thing. Not enough demand. Same thing trying to get whole wheat pasta in a nice restaurant or a nice chain restaurant. You might find maybe a dish or two but that’s it. Everything else is tasty comfort food. The idea that people will make the right choices if the right food is available to them, for the majority of people, is not correct.

  49. davidcroushore

    I’ve tried a whole slew of different diets, but I haven’t counted calories in almost two years (at that point I was eating about 7k-9k calories per day in an effort to get “70s big”).  Best results I’ve ever gotten came from the slow-carb diet Tim Ferriss espouses.  I got down to 3% bodyfat on that one (a year after gaining 50 lbs on the 70s big diet). These days, here’s what I’m eating.Breakfast: Oatmeal or eggs and gluten-free sausageLunch and Dinner: Typically some sort of meat (usually chicken since that’s all my wife eats, but occasionally fish or pork  ), with some veggies stir-fried and served over cous cous or rice.  Snacks: An apple a day and some nuts or an energy bar. I eat whatever I want on the weekends.  Results are good.  I feel good and look lean.  Performance in the gym is good too.

  50. PD

    moderation is horseshit. telling people that eating toxic, anti-nutrients (e.g. gluten, high-fructose corn syrup, lectins, etc.) in moderation is OK about as smart as telling people that smoking cigarettes in moderation is OK. nutritional science is so lagging and broken; conventional wisdom is wrong. red meat, animal fats, eggs, etc. are not evil. i hate calling it ‘paleo,’ but count me as a passenger on that train; once you take the time to research it and apply it to your lifestyle needs (i.e., high(er) carb, low(ish) carb, more/less protein/fats), it just works.

  51. Brian Hewitt

    Our family found a chiropractor that uses Contact Reflex Analysis to find our nutritional deficiencies. The food supplements by Biotics and Standard Process etc. have been great for us. Even our kids willingly take their supplements. We all have different nutritional deficiencies so we all take different supplements. 

  52. kidmercury

    i eat too many sweets, that’s my confession and my only new years’ resolution. thankfully i was raised vegetarian and my dad is a gardener so most of the stuff we ate came straight from the back yard. when i was young i thought this was the dumbest thing ever though now i am extremely grateful. i’m not a gardener but still a vegetarian who has cut almost all processed food out and buys the overpriced organic stuff. or at least it seems overpriced, although the alternative — cancer — is far more expensive, so i consider it a worthwhile purchase. as a kook the other thing i do is avoid tap water as much as possible. i buy penta bottled water off amazon, although i’m about to graduate to a kook-approved water filtration system. it still won’t be as good as penta but good enough and less expensive in the long run. tap water is like  the public school system and organized religion, meaning it’s designed to dumb you down and limit your potential. you know who pioneered fluoridation of public water? hitler. no joke, look it up….. 

    1. Otis Funkmeyer

      What system? We have 3 nikkens aqua-pours that we quite like. Interested to hear your research

      1. kidmercury

        i plan on getting the berkey portable water filter, get water out of tap (or natural source) and it removes heavy metals, pharmaceuticals, and fluoride. i’m not too knowledgeable in the science of this, mainly looking for something designed to filter out fluoride, heavy metals, and pharmaceuticals, that has been approved by sources i trust who are more knowledgeable on this subject, is within my budget, and is easy to implement. based on those criteria i haven’t found anything that’s as as good as the berkey water filters. i’ll miss penta water though, i love that stuff.

        1. Otis Funkmeyer

          I’ve heard good things about berkeys. Check out the nikken–magnets and molecular re-configurating and alkalizing. Dismissed by many as nonsense, but I think you’re used to interests like that. #howdidbuilding7fall?

  53. kidmercury

    yup, breakdown of families is definitely a by-product of inflationary monetary policy and the corresponding disintegration of the middle class (which results in a plutocracy). fortunately, the scam is almost over, the family will outlast the nation-state as a model of social organization. 

  54. Brandon Marker

    A lot of people are talking about full diets and food, etc. I will put in my two cents on what I believe to be one of the faster approaches.I take out the Mountain Dew and Beer first when dieting. They become only weekend options. Liquor has ethanol, which slows down the metabolism so that needs to be taken back as well. People forget about these or ignore them. I find sodas, beer and liquor will hit you faster than most food items. These will impact me within 2 weeks very noticeably.A glass or two of red wine doesn’t hurt the body nearly as bad 😉

    1. fredwilson

      i have only one or two sodas a week. usually diet coke. i’d like to cut them out completely

  55. Scott

    Fat doesn’t make you fat like we thought it did. Gary Taubes has written 2 books on the matter. He also blogs at – for those considering paleo (I’m biased since I lost 35 lbs and have kept it off), is a Q&A stackexchange style site for the paleo diet.

  56. FlavioGomes

    I’m a food lover too and I find it bewildering when I come across folks who aren’t passionate about a well prepared meal.Not really disciplined when it comes to what I eat…although I force myself to stay away from fast food chains.   I eat when I’m hungry.  I find it difficult to have breakfast first thing in the morning and I know I need to change that.  I usually go for something a few hours after I’ve woken. I’m really fond of seafood, Indian, Thai and I love a great steak!   In fact, dangle a thick piece of wagyu my way and I’ll be momentarily yet completely lost to the world.

  57. Kevin Ball

    I think the biggest step forward for me in terms of healthy eating was cutting my meat intake to the point that I’m almost entirely vegetarian (I eat meat roughly once a month).  Combining that with living in California where there are fresh fruits and vegetables all year round, and my general diet is pretty healthy.The area that would bite me if I didn’t also have a very good metabolism is beer… I don’t drink a lot of beer in a sitting, but being in San Diego, one of the best beer towns in the country, I do drink a beer pretty frequently.  Pretty much every meetup group either includes beer or has their talk and then goes out for beer. 🙂  Great for networking, great for taste, not so great for the diet.

  58. David Bressler

    Fred,About 3 years ago, even though I worked out regularly and was no overweight, I felt that my immune system was weak. I thought it was diet related. I aggressively adopted juicing (not steroids! veggie juicing, and to a lesser extent fruit juicing).My results were staggering. My cholesterol dropped 10% and I stopped getting colds/infections. In the past three years, I haven’t needed to be on anti-biotics once. Prior to that, even small colds would turn into big infections that took me out for a week or two, and required a doctor visit and anti-biotics. Once, even a hospital visit and a steroid injection to keep swelling in my throat down.Anyways, I’ve blogged about how I started, what I did, and my results here:…Best,David Bressler

  59. monsur

    I try to eat very healthy during “regular” meals, like my usual breakfast, lunch and dinners at home. These meals are fruit and vegetable heavy and are light. But for meals that “matter”, like dinners out at restaurants or cooking something fun at home, I like to go all out and enjoy what I’m eating.My biggest problem with diets is the inherent guilt. There is guilt with straying from the diet, and then guilt with inevitably quitting the diet. And feeling guilty about something you do multiple times a day is no way to live. Instead, I’m a fan of building on small incremental changes that you can successfully maintain.

  60. ErikSchwartz

    We’re pretty much paleo I guess.Basically no refined sugars of grains. Almost no wheat. Taubes’ “Good Calories, Bad Calories” is a dense but illuminating read.

  61. MartinEdic

    I basically avoid anything that is white food as most of it turns into sugar. But I also subscribe to the ‘have one day a week when nothing is forbidden’ theory. But like Fred, I am thin and burn through calories…

  62. Luke Chamberlin

    I can’t remember if I heard this somewhere or made it up but I try to follow the “colorful food” diet.The more (natural) color in food the better. Lots of nutrients: blueberries, kale, beets, molasses. Not as many nutrients: potatoes, white rice, refined sugar, white bread.When I’m at the grocery store I try to make my basket as colorful as possible. It’s fun!

    1. panterosa,

      I love the food by color being a color consultant. I even taught four year olds a class on palette as palate. It was so fun. Being mainly a non meat eater it also makes sense that all those things are grown.I did read some books on this after I read Nature’s Palette on plant Pigments. Loved it deeply.

    2. fredwilson

      that’s a cool approach. i am going to give it a try.

  63. James Ferguson @kWIQly

    Hi This Ted Talk blew me away… .Too busy to chat at length today  – but if you care for your brain and body – you must watch this.

    1. fredwilson

      thanks. will check it out.

  64. Chris Motes

    Sugar makes me crave or crash. Sugar is the devil for me.

  65. LE

    Reading Fred’s post and thinking about my own behavior I realize that while I have a ton of discipline and have adopted good eating habits there is no question that (from reading what others are doing or the struggle they have or the girls I’ve dated) that others don’t have it so easy.I mean for me eating and maintaining weight is practically effortless.  I do nothing wacky and I eat in moderation whatever I want to eat.  I have never followed a diet and have never needed to. All the lab values are excellent. Diet was never an issue growing up either. My mom made basic foods (a piece of meat, some steamed vegetables). It was never something that you wanted to overeat. (This was in the 70’s).  McDonalds was new and maybe every now and then we got that. Or chinese food. Or pizza. Mom always cooked dinner. There weren’t really many restaurants to even eat at like there is now.   When my mom made eggs she used no butter. So they tasted “meh”. I had to put ketchup on the eggs. When I started dating my girlfriends mother used butter. I was like “wow” that tastes great!!!  So then I started to eat food and derive pleasure from the food. And then I gained weight. Just like that!  It took some time for me to figure out what was going on but when I finally did I realized that for many people you simply can’t allow yourself to have the pleasure from food and create a situation where you are always fighting temptation. It becomes an addiction. Oprah has long fought a weight problem. And while there are many reasons in her past for this one thing you will notice is how she will “light up” around food. Watch her face. I’ve noticed the same thing in many people. Notice the tone in someone’s voice who likes food or has a weight problem. It will rise an octave when you discuss a food or what restaurant to go to.  So the point is for some of us (Fred, me and others here) we are able to walk the line and maintain weight. Just like I can drink and not be an alcoholic. But some people can’t. They are addicted to food and it’s pleasures. They need to develop different strategies.

    1. Donna Brewington White

      Really good points, LE.I’ve had to change the way I think about food and the role it plays in my life — actually train myself to like certain things over others and not to think of sugar as a friend.  We become numb to the effects that food has on our bodies, the allergies or intolerances that we just become accustomed to. I try to listen to my body — to pay attention to how it responds to certain foods.  I think that the more in tune we are with our bodies, the more we will eat what we need and not eat what we do not.  Recently I had a strong sense that I should stop eating gluten and it wasn’t until after I stopped that I realized why. A muscular ache that was quite concerning to me just went away.I don’t think it is wrong to enjoy food and to eat for enjoyment. There is something right about food being part of our social and community activities.  The problem is when it becomes an addiction — and you don’t have to be obese for this to be the case.  (I by no means have this wired, btw.)

      1. LE

        “actually train myself to like certain things over others “Exactly. Over time certain things that previously tasted good don’t anymore, and other things that tasted just ok or “eh” taste great. Well know that many things that are delicacies you have to “acquire a taste for”.Not that I ever was a drinker of full sugar coca cola, but I don’t think I could even down a few ounces of that now. The sugary taste is totally unappealing. Also, whole wheat pasta tastes “right” to me now and combined with the rest of the dish is a totally good food trade off.

  66. Otto

    I’ve gone to a protein centric low carb diet and sugary sweets are a rare treat. A lot more fruits and vegetables, no juice. Soft drinks are rare. Fast food is few and far between, and when I do have it I pass on the french fries most of the time. I don’t eat bread, pasta, etc., type carbs until late afternoon or evening because the body needs protein in the morning after fasting all night. This includes beer, which I limit to one at dinner a few nights per week. The bread products I do eat are natural and still have some nutritional value. Starchy bread products just turn to sugar, wreaking havoc on the body, so I avoid them.Since converting two years ago to a protein centric low carb diet with fruits and vegetables I’ve gone back down to my high school weight, my cholesterol is great (good cholesterol up), triglycerides way down, liver numbers like new, blood pressure perfect, blood sugar and other lab numbers are normal. I’m fit, active, and haven’t had cold or flu symptoms in almost two years.

    1. Otto

      Just want to add that portion control is key too. Unless you’re burning calories like Michael Phelps, pay attention to your calories.

  67. jason wright

    So is porridge considered good or bad?

    1. fredwilson

      i think it is very good for you. and oatmeal. i eat a lot of oatmeal. had it for breakfast today.

      1. Dale Allyn

        We have oatmeal almost every morning (not the processed type or “quick”, but rolled). We add cranberries and sometimes walnuts. 😉

        1. fredwilson

          i never eat “quick oatmeal”it’s horrible

          1. Dale Allyn


  68. Salar Salahshoor

    If you haven’t already, I highly recommend reading “How to Live Longer and Feel Better” by the great chemist and two time Nobel Prize winner Linus Pauling.Link to book on Amazon:…I am a huge fan of the Gerson Institute and their prescription for a healthy life.  I think diets and weight loss regimens stink.  They don’t work because they are too rigid and not fun.  Linus Pauling had a bit of an extreme outlook on the role Vitamin C and other vitamins and minerals play in the diet and he practiced heavy supplementation (like Ray Kurzweil does today).  There is no hard science behind this stuff, but if you dig and probe, you’ll find that the smartest, most passionate people in the nutrition field are proponents of supplementation and offer great research and anecdotes worth considering.My philosophy is simple:-Eat more plants (especially green ones).-Eat Organic, especially when it comes to meat-Eat wild sardines and wild Alaskan salmon (in season) for their high levels of DHA and EPA fatty acids.-Eat a variety of foods and colors (try superfoods like spurilina and blue green algae)-Eat fruit instead of sugary treats.-Sugary desserts are okay once in a while as long as you are eating healthily overall.-Don’t drink too much alcohol (red wine being an exception, in moderation).-Meat is okay, especially if you stay active and eat enough other veggies.-Unless you are really active, reduce your starch intake.-Substitute yams in place of regular potatoes.-Drink green tea.-Eat smaller portions, and more often throughout the day (the snacking diet).It’s not a diet, but a conscious choice to choose the healthier path when you decide what to put in your mouth.  No guilt, no shame, no regrets.  Just do your best.  The better you do, the better you will feel, that is a promise and a great motivator.A product that has changed my life is the VitaMix.  It is the most valuable product (aside from my computer) that I own.  It cost $500 and I use it every day and it has significantly improved my health.  I make my own hummus, pesto sauce, soup bases, smoothies, almond milk, cashew butter, etc. and it’s amazing.  I get 3 servings of veggies and 3 servings of fruits within the first 10 minutes of waking up every day through the smoothies I make.Here are a short list of my favorite websites regarding nutrition: http://www.montereybayaquar… Documentaries worth watching (in order):Food MattersForks Over KnivesFood, Inc.The Gerson MiraclesSalar

    1. Otis Funkmeyer

      Vitamix +1Truly a life-changing device. Add a nut-milk bag and toss your juicer too.

  69. gleslie

    I have been fortunate enough to have both parents working in nutrition professionally. My mother does nutrition coaching for individuals and small organizations and my father is a raw foods chef. My biggest takeaway from mom has been eating 5 small meals per day to maintain high energy levels (amazing what this does for work productivity). My father has taught some great tricks for making healthy food taste great. Staying loyal to a raw food diet is a whole lot easier when you unlock some natural flavors through the right combinations. Also, realize that your pallet will adjust when you cut high sodium high sugar foods. You’ll start to taste flavors you couldn’t taste before and a lot of restaurant food will start tasting too salty etc.Recommendation for NYCers: The tri-color Panini from S’nice. Gorgonzola, walnuts, apples and mixed greens. You won’t realize you are eating vegetarian. 

  70. jason wright

    Seems as if Fred is having a very long lunch today.

    1. fredwilson

      i was not in this thread or the one yesterday much. trying to fix that today.

      1. jason wright

        I was going to jump the bar and serve free drinks. Thought better of it.

  71. DogmaStudios

    Thanks for touching on this.  In my case my interest in starting a business and dieting go hand in hand.  I’ve been on a no white carb diet (beer, bread, flour, even starches like corn) with a one day cheat day.  It gets hard thinking up new and tasty things to eat – cue light bulb – so I set about building a platform to provide some of these diet tools.  We are about a week away from launching.  We built what was supposed to be a MVP.  It never seems to end up that way.  It is coded on Drupal with one main feature – a discovery and search tool for diet recipes.You pick the diet you are on, the meal (lunch, snack, dinner), what you are thinking about – Chicken?, and other factors (as many as you want) and you get recipe search results.I “got out of the building” by connecting with lots of dieters.  In a self serving way we are focusing on my diet first, but looking to users to help add diets and recipes – UGC.We have lots of feature ideas.  Anything that fits into the toolbox for dieting is on our radar.My hope is that we can drive fellow dieters to help build the recipe search tool first and then iterate from there.How do you diet when you are trying to build a business – build a dieting business.Feel free to check it out.  Sign up and we’ll let you know when we launch.Scott

  72. sigmaalgebra

    Consider carrots: They play a big role in some of the best French cooking but also are low enough in calories to be good in diet food. From page 21 of:’Composition of Foods, Agriculture Handbook Number 8′, Agricultural Research Service, USDA.we see that the edible portion of raw carrots has 42 C per 100 grams. Since 1 ounce of weight is about 28.35 grams, carrots are about 42 * ( 28.35 / 100 ) = 11.907or about 12 C per ounce.In eating, 10 ounces of carrots are nicely filling but still only 120 C. How ’bout that!Rabbits might like crunching on raw carrots, but I prefer the carrots in, say, beef stew! With discipline, I’m leaving a nice beef chuck roast in the freezer! So, my idea is to fix a pot of carrots much like in beef stew except without the beef, fat, etc.So, here’s what I do:Take a 5 pound package of fresh carrots, peel, trim, and slice. Will get about 2 1/2 quarts of carrot slices.Take a pot with volume about three quarts (I still like the ‘classic’ Farberware pots of stainless steel with aluminum bottoms and have a good supply new in boxes!).Take a large, yellow, globe onion, about 1 pound. Peel it and dice into moderately large dice: E.g., quarter it through its vertical axis. Peel each quarter. Make about 6 cuts parallel to the axis and then make about 12 cuts perpendicular to the axis. Should get about 12 ounces of diced onion.Add onions to pot along with 1/4 C virgin olive oil and place on high heat. When onions start to fry, reduce heat to medium or low.Add about 50 twists of black pepper and 2 t of salt.Cook until onions start to get soft and translucent but not dry, crisp, or brown.Take about 2 cloves of garlic, crush, mince, add to the pot, and stir.Right away add:1 C full bodied, dry red wine, e.g., a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot (grapes famous in the Medoc of Bordeaux) by Frontera from Chile.carrots to nearly fill the potbeef and/or brown chicken stock, undiluted canned beef consomme or French onion soup, to nearly cover the carrotsBring to simmer, reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer.When carrots are nearly done, take a handful of, say, frozen (I buy them unfrozen at Sam’s Club and freeze them to keep them fresh) ‘Haricot Vert’ (French green beans), defrost in microwave, chop into thirds, add to the pot.Also add about 2 T of dried thyme and about 4 T of dried parsley.Bring to simmer, reduce heat to low, cover, and cook the beans.Eat with French bread or toasted American bread to soak up the broth.One such pot, reheated quickly, can provide big dishes of such carrots for a week or so.It’s good enough to eat, filling, and not very high in calories.Carrots, onions, stock, thyme, parsley, wine — these ingredients can be used for much better dishes if also include, say, celery, butter, cream, eggs, etc. So, some of the ‘good stuff’ can be white and brown sauces from France, red sauces from Italy, uses of sour cream from Eastern Europe and Russia, and desserts from Vienna, but such things are for now why I’m eating the carrot dish above! My recipes for Caesar salad, Coquilles St. Jacques Parisienne, Boeuf Stroganoff, and Sacher Torte will have to wait!Maybe I’ll try adding a can of anchovies to the carrot dish! Hmm …!

  73. Helena Bouchez

    After studying many different schools of thought I’ve come to the conclusion that the best thing to do is to use your own body as a laboratory. The results of my self-study, for example, have shown that I’m probably allergic on some level to gluten, because when I eat it I feel BAD. And I gain 5# instantly. For my body type I have found that the best fuel is a mountain of salad for breakfast, lunch and dinner with 3 oz of clean protein and a small starch such as brown rice. If I leave the gluten alone I can tolerate a candy bar once in a while without it setting off cravings. Alcohol doesn’t seem to bother me, except it impairs judgment and opens me to rationalization. (Just that one roll won’t hurt me…) I still drink, but it takes more effort to say no, is all!

  74. Tereza

    When I analyze what I eat, I gain weight. When I listen to my body + intuition and don’t stress it, I am healthy and stable.My mom fed us awesome healthy square warm meals with real food with real ingredients, always from scratch, that tasted great, in moderation. As an immigrant she totally didn’t get the processed food thing, so we skipped it entirely and luckily now so has society. I cook recipes from my grandmother and great-grandmother. I don’t cook often at the mo, but when I do it is with these recipes and we lick the plate clean. When I listen to what my body is saying, things work out best. My mom was a lot like Gotham Gal in being a great cook, exploring great foods. And if it’s shitty food, don’t eat it. Very “omnivore’s dilemma”, before Pollan wrote the book.I am pretty seriously anemic and despite daily supplements cannot get my iron to sufficient levels without eating red meat. There were about five minutes in college when I pretended to be vegetarian. I blew up like a balloon, was exhausted, and couldn’t stop eating because I never felt full. For me, it was a totally failed experiment.Confession, I am a carb addict, and could eat an entire loaf of fresh bread in one sitting if left to my own devices and then go into carbo coma. My husband always sends the bread basket away when we’re together. Ha!But my current obsession is, in fact, sleep. I am testing out the Lark device and kicking off sleep tracking. Lark is a sister portfolio company at Golden Seeds and is killing it — on sale at the Apple Store. Basically, Americans are at an extreme sleep deficit and you’ll lose weight and perform much better with sufficient sleep (“the new magic pill. except no magic, no pills”). Arianna Huffington discussed sleep at her keynote at the WEF on Tuesday. So stay tuned, I will blog about my experience tracking my sleep. FUN.BTW what a bang-up job Joanne did at the WEF. Such a fantastic event, my favorite of the year.

    1. ShanaC

      so is it working…i have sleep problems…

      1. Tereza

        Right now it is telling me how little I’ve slept this week. After a week I will be given a sleep plan.

        1. ShanaC

          hmm, well, i hope it works? I think if it does, I need something like that…- posted via

    2. Carl J. Mistlebauer

      “When I analyze what I eat, I gain weight. When I listen to my body + intuition and don’t stress it, I am healthy and stable.”THAT is the ideal definition of moderation!

    3. William Mougayar

      Tereza, “carbo coma”! That cracked me up.Sleep is the opposite of stress. Less sleep is a sure recipe for underperformance. If anyone has sleep issues, I recommend just learning breathing exercises & you’ll sleep in 10 mins

    4. Donna Brewington White

      So glad to come across this comment from you.  I miss you around here. What you shared is very similar to something I commented above — about listening to my body.  I have some stories about “sensing” that I should stop eating something and then later discovering the reason why.Sleep deprivation is the bain of my existence.  I am really convinced that this needs to be the year this changes.  Will look forward to reading about your experiment.I was sitting in an Entrepreneur’s conference today and reading your tweets about WEF during a slow moment. Thank you!  Was so longing to be there!!!  Followed the link to @GothamGal:disqus ‘s blog — the one that made you tear up and had a similar reaction.  Something interesting — the pitch contest I observed following the conference was won by a woman who happened to be the oldest person making a pitch. Which I personally found to be inspiring.  (Although I thought a young guy’s product idea was actually better and voted for him.)   I am now hooked on pitch contests.

      1. Tereza

        Miss you too!! And miss all you AVCers. There have just not been enough hours in the day to come on by. My dance card is really full w community managing and everything else over at Honestly Now. WEF was fantastic.Pitch contests … really fun for me as an observer, but as an entrepreneur participant, generally, less so. I am a good presenter and to really put on a good show requires time out of the business. You have to pay attention to how the judging is happening — for example the judges or your audience may not be well-matched for your biz, and as a result you can get negative mojo out there that even if it were positive would not have given you any audience or a credible, salable win. Also sometimes they do not call out conflicts. So I stopped doing them bc it was high-investment, low-return on the business. Women’s pitch events probably much more useful for me though a rarer beast.

        1. Donna Brewington White

          I’ll go to sleep if you will. 😉

          1. Tereza

            Funny — I went to sleep early and woke up at 4 — my body is so off a healthy schedule it doesn’t even know what to do. Need to change that!

    5. fredwilson

      i love great bread too. but i am careful to only eat it when it is amazing. which means not that often.

      1. Tereza

        That’s why continental Europe is very dangerous.

    6. Susan Rubinsky

      I totally agree about not obsessing. When I was in my 20’s I used to weigh myself every day and totally obsess about any tiny weight gain. I finally threw away my scale and all has been great since. If my pants start getting tight, then I just cut out carbs for a few days. No big deal. I am proud to say that I am 45 years old and can still fit into my 1980’s high school Calvin Klein jeans (though the cut is awful — I can’t believe we used to wear such high-waisted jeans!)

      1. Tereza

        Scales are the worst. Totally get you focused on the wrong thing!

  75. Richard

    Lots of good advice here. I’d like to see decisions on diet decided on with the help of data mining. It is one of my projects. With 99.999% of the world’s information on Diet and Disease/Peak Performance uncaptured and unstructured, this area is ripe for innovation.

  76. Farooq Javed

    I changed my diet radically after reading a bunch of stuff by Gary Taubes:- Good Calories, Bad Calories (dense but fascinating)- Why We Get Fat (highly readable and mind-blowing)- NYTimes Magazine article “What if It’s All Been a Big Fat Lie?” (great summary)- NYTimes Magazine article “Is Sugar Toxic?” (scared the crap out of me)There are so many philosophies out there, and of those that I’ve read, Gary’s writings are the most logically rigorous arguments I’ve heard for what is the ideal diet. Make no mistake, he’s controversial.As I understand it, the heart of his argument is that neither the “calories in v. calories out” or the “fat makes you fat” models of weight gain are correct (both logically–how can they both be true?–and through research and observation). Rather, insulin is the key driver of fat accumulation in our body and the thing that affects insulin the most is carbohydrates. Therefore, controlling our carbohydrate intake is the key to a healthy diet. Similar to the paleo diet, refined carbohydrates are a relatively recent item available to us as a species. So what we’ve actually come to think of as a “balanced” diet (carbohydrates with every meal) is in fact not a balanced diet. Taubes also does a great job of explaining how the common wisdom of today came to be–a fascinating read independent of all else on politics, group think, and psychology. I highly recommend his writings and have been encouraging all of my loved ones to eliminate sugar and all refined (i.e., “white” carbs). 

  77. Eric Leebow

    I recommend a lacto-ovo vegetarian diet (this is not vegan, you can eat dairy and egg), been one for 22 years, and haven’t looked back since to eat meat. I do realize some vegetarians may get many carbohydrates, yet from my understanding we will most likely have less risk of some of the other health challenges that people have who eat lots of meat.  I’m not saying it’s for everyone, and by no means would I be a vegan.  I don’t keep any specific diet as well.  I also recommend eating these health food bars (ie. Good Green Bars are great) with lots of fiber and protein, and taking a protein shake.  Not saying I’m perfect, as I enjoy to eat chocolate, and the occasional pizza. If you ever watch Dr. Oz, he has some good feedback on the diet.  The reason you’re good at what you do, is because you eat well. Fiber, Resveratrol, Omega 3s, Garlic, Ginger, Acai, Watermelon, Pomegranate, Goji Berry. Any others you know about?

  78. jbcolme

    For some reason I cannot read your blog on chrome. Maybe it’s me, but it’d be strange because I can see everything else perfectly. Had to switch to firefox. I’m on linux. Does this happens to anybody else? it started to happen only after the SOPA blackout.

    1. fredwilson

      hmm. we will take the code from the sopa blackout out of the blog template

  79. Joey Fulcher

    Eat food–not too much—mostly greens.  Its as simple as that!

  80. ShanaC

    After reading all the comments: I ahve some really bad but really good food habits.I tend to be out and about a ton.  This tends to lead to skipped meals (also, stress does that too, I’ll forget to eat) and crankiness.Though when I am out and about I try to choose things that a good mix of protein and produce.I don’t cook enough…even though I enjoy it.OTOH, I tend to choose produce as a snack almost every single time.  That, and I try to eat dark chocolate every day to kill my craving for sweets….

    1. fredwilson

      i get extremely cranky when i don’t eat regularly. so i eat regularly.

      1. ShanaC

        Do what I try to remember to do – carry a snack food with you.

  81. Renee

    I try to eat food…meals comprised of things that exist in nature.  No preservatives or artificial additives.  I’ve found that eating food works better for suppressing cravings and making me feel full than eating low-fat no-sugar-added prepared meals (which are usually a concoction of chemicals).I grew up in an Italian household with a stay-at-home mom who made everything she could from scratch – eg, sauce came from tomatoes and basil grown in the garden.  We ate a lot of carbs (homemade pizza & pasta), but were never overweight…you can control how much sugar, butter, and olive oil go into those dishes if you prepare them yourself.  Even though both my husband & I work and don’t have a garden, I try to cook at home 5 nights a week and make everything from scratch so I know what’s in it.  It’s all about the habits you learn as a kid – sounds like your kids have picked up great habits from you & your wife.And of course, I keep a totally nerdy Google Doc where I keep track of what I cook so I can discover trends. 😉 

    1. fredwilson

      cooking from scratch seems to be a big part of a healthy diet

  82. aarondelcohen

    No wonder you’re so thin.

    1. fredwilson

      not as thin as you think

  83. LE

    Back when I was single I used to make myself random meals and really get into the colors and the arrangement. So I would take pictures of anything that ended up looking appealing (I take pictures of everything so this is not that unusual for me). I would normally never buy the food in advance. I just stop at the market and pick up what I was going to make that evening. I never use a recipe – I don’t like reading instructions or following directions. I just throw something together that seems appealing using the basics. The photos are with an iphone so they’re not that sharp..Another thing I do is eat everything with chop sticks which I buy in bulk. Even rice.  I always read when eating as well. I really enjoyed making myself dinner. 

    1. JLM

      I will “see” your healthy food and raise you one chicken fried steak.

      1. Donna Brewington White

        Don’t you owe me one from that contest you had on Twitter?Although I did cheat by reading some of your back tweets.And I no longer eat anything cooked with flour (or wheat).Oh well.

        1. JLM

          Yes, that is correct.But I must admit that OK I ate YOURS last night anyway.  Thanks.

          1. Donna Brewington White

            Fair enough. Hope you enjoyed my steak.  

      2. Dale Allyn

        Haha, no coffee yet… I opened the image attachment and it looked like CFS on a STICK because of the knife handle. I thought you were pimping a new product! *JLM Pops*  Blinked and figured it out. 😉

        1. JLM

          Very good idea.  I may just do that.  I will cut you in for a piece of the action since I am basically stealing YOUR idea.

          1. Dale Allyn

            Draw up the paperwork (or actually, a hand-shake will do). I’m in! 

  84. mikenolan99

    I “Believe” that Diet and Exercise are important.I obviously do not “Value” these things, as I do not do them often enough.The challenge is to equate ones belief system with their values. I lost 20lbs and kept it off for a year when a health scare struck… my value system has fallen off lately.I also believe that an clean desk is important… another thing I must not value enough!

    1. fredwilson

      i bought my oldest daughter a vitamix for christmas so she can take to to college. i’m with you 100% on this

  85. joeagliozzo

    Paleo + dairy.

  86. zubinwadia

    This piece by Larry Smarr on his own Quantified Self observations was eye-opening in relation to how sensitive the human body is:

  87. Donavan Kealoha

    For me, a holistic approach for peak performance encompasses: diet, nutrition, and physical exercise, mental and spiritual development.  This is a great link:…



    1. William Mougayar

      Wow. GRIMLOCK burns more calories than a furnace !

      1. Donna Brewington White

        Grimlock IS a furnace.

          1. Cynthia Schames

            Remember: you must burn. 

  89. Jill Simper

    Good tips in the article for diet and exercise. I’m glad to see that it focused on diet and exercise as a coordinated effort. to add to the article, It would also be beneficial to determine how many calories your body burns and how many calories you should eat per day. Then you would have some accuracy in  adjusting your diet for weight gain or loss. I have found an online calculator that will tell you how many calories your body is burning and how many calories you should eat per day. For anyone interested the RMR Calculator  is located at . This could help you to know how to adjust your diet to either gain weight or lose weight.

  90. Joey Xu

    My diet changes all the time, but no matter what, I do these 2 things everyday:- Drink a cup of lukewarm water mixed with a teaspoon of honey – Drink a cup of water with half a lemon squeezed itAnd you will be doing your health a HUGE favor.Honey is one of nature’s most natural antibiotics. And for some reason, diluted honey is even more potent.Lemon water increases metabolism, slows sugar absorption, and is great for weight loss or just maintaining the same weight.

    1. fredwilson

      i like honey with tea

  91. Donna Brewington White

    So, now after reading this post and many of the comments, I am incredibly hungry.I do think this is an extremely important topic, one that I think about a lot with a child who has ulcerative colitis and a personal family history of diabetes and heart disease.  I personally believe that many ailments and health issues are associated with nutrition — weight is just a part of it — you can be thin and unhealthy.  One of the best things we can do for our children is to help them to develop healthy eating habits at an early age. I have spent much of my adult life unlearning eating habits.I do know that the healthier we eat, the more our grocery bill rises.  I have a burden for those who can’t eat as healthy as we can.  We are not rich, but we can at least make the choice to reallocate our spending to eat healthier.  Not everyone can do this.When I was a little girl, my parents made us clean our plates by reminding us of the poor children in (you pick the country) who don’t have food to eat.  To this day, I hate wasting food.  It pains me to throw something away that has gone bad in the refrigerator.  

  92. Scott Barnett

    I had a similar experience as a kid – my Dad was told he had high cholesterol when I was a teenager – that was the end of salt in our house!  My Mom would add it to recipes in small bits, but we never had a salt shaker on the table.  One of the smartest things ever.  The downside is that I find I gain weight when I eat out a lot (which I’ve been doing lately because of so much travel).  When my wife regulates the diet, I do great – but eating out makes it very easy to overeat and they over salt everything.  Another reason (like Andy) I work out 2 hours/day 5 days a week – to combat that!  I do NOT have a great metabolism, so if I just looked at that chocolate cake you ate last week I would gain 5 pounds! 

  93. Scott McMillan

    Lean or fatty steak?  I am teaching Growth and Motor Development at the moment and just came across this blog post (  Thought it tied in nicely with a lot of discussion here about exercise and eating well.  The pictures remind me of lean steak and really fatty steak.  Just they happen to be manly steak.

  94. Jeff Graves

    I was also fortunate enough to be born with a high metabolism and a very low “bad” cholesterol level, so I’ve never been all that concerned about what I ate.  I used to run a ton until it started to take a toll on my knees, and now I’ve taken up cycling.  But, after having some surgery a few months ago, I find myself starting to look a food a little differently.  My biggest thing is reducing my intake of processed foods, especially carb-heavy stuff like white bread, rolls, processed cereals, etc.  I’ve read a few books on the Paleo diet concept, and I guess I’m moving in that direction, although I like ice cream, pastries and my mom’s pies too much to go completely Paleo.

  95. paramendra

    Glad to know you and I share that high metabolism thing. I consider myself lucky. I weigh the same I did when I showed up in this country. …….  The Significance Of Eating An Apple 

  96. Matt Williams

    Without wanting to sound mean, a lot of the recommendations here are a combination of hearsay and old wives tales.In my opinion, solid nutrition exists at the intersection of what we thrive on from an evolutionary perspective and what modern biology tells us about being as healthy as possible.In the last 200 years, there have been numerous documented case studies of hunter gatherer populations migrating from their traditional diet to ‘the western diet’. By and large, the difference is that they didn’t eat grains (wheat, sugar, corn etc) or vegetable oils (they ate meat (including offal, in fact it was often prized), vegetables, tubers and seasonal fruit), and upon transitioning to a western diet they did eat grains and vegetable oils.This transition saw the emergence of the ‘diseases of civilisation’ as well as a marked decline in health in their small communities. People were getting fat for the first time. People were getting cancer and heart disease for the first time. Shit was essentially going crazy.Eating paleo/primal/insert-name-here is essentially mimicking these societies traditional diets. Since making the transition myself, I’ve become vastly more healthy, and I’m only 21 years old so I should by most standards be pretty healthy already. I’ve lost weight, have more energy, have perfect blood markers, and just generally look and feel a lot better.If you’d like to learn more about this stuff, particularly the studies of the hunter gatherer populations, have a read of why we get fat by Gary taubes, it may just change/save your life. In fact, I know it will

  97. Wardrobert

    My wife and I try toavoid any food with corn syrup or hydrogenated oils (trans fat). Anything else is fair game, in moderation of course.

  98. jason wright

    Enter the world of the cycling mind. Not entirely about diet and nutrition, but it is referenced;…

  99. Jim Ritchie

    A little bit of shameless self promotion for my new company that is launching very shortly, Delicious Karma, I have a background in competitive athletics having played soccer in college as well as completing multiple Ironmans and marathons, but my weight had gone up just a little bit in the last couple of years. I was trying to find a website where I could discover, learn about and buy delicious real foods including grass raised/finished beef, but I could not find a site that offered exactly what I wanted and we don’t always have time to shop the local farmer’s markets. Therefore, I decided to create Delicious Karma which provides a fun and engaging online shopping experience that helps people discover exceptional artisanal and gourmet foods, at great prices, while supporting the community of artisanal food producers.Our long term vision is to “help people discover amazing foods to live a more joyous and healthful life.” We hope to be able to do some good in the coming years. 

  100. Jim Ritchie

    Duplicate post…

  101. mattshamus

    Read “Clean” by Dr. Alehandro Junger: This book and philosophy will change your life. Literally, probably the best thing I have ever done for myself (physically, mentally, spiritually, emotionally).

  102. Lilmal

    Born and brought up South Indian, anything synthetic is anathema. This applies to vinegar too. So fresh and cooked vegetables pretty much 3 times a day. One day a week just smoothies and nothing else to give the body a rest. Smoothies with pumpkin seeds, raw vegetables, garlic, parsley, coriander and a little fruit, apple or pear.For me, the most important part of my diet is Vitamin D-ie. D3. Brown skin needs this by the bucket load. Cold, grey climes are the bane of my life.And excercise, even just a walk as I get older is mandatory.

  103. Justinkutcher

    Here is a blog post worth checking out… It breaks down the nutritional secrets of Olympic athletes! A lot of great tip.

  104. skelbkites skelbimai londone

    Counting calories can be excluded by using blood type diet, and also there wont be problems about how much too eat, only you will need to eat food that is for your blood type.


    I know you may not know me in person but anyway I was wondering if you could give me your daily lifestyle and how do you manage your time in general it doesn’t have to be ideal .. even if you don’t tell me what you usually do .. 🙂 I’m making time management vids and that would be helpful come check my channel to know what I’m talking about.thanx! @CARLI 

  106. baba12

    Yes Sir.

  107. William Mougayar

    True. I thought it was just the device but there is an App indeed that does that. Thx- posted via Engagio

  108. Dale Allyn

    Charlie, I knew it! It’s the fault of that woman in that very first Amana Radarange television ad. I remember it well. Where is she and what’s her defense?;-)

  109. markslater

    charlie -i got the fitbit along with my wife over the hols. She is a marathon runner and is using it to track her distances, along with her sleep patterns associated with our newborn. I am using it to learn about my daily and weekly habits so that i can put a plan together to shed 15lbs. two ends of a scale.The one problem i have had is that my device does not sync well. their support is poor, and the process of deducing the issue very frustrating and time consuming. Other than that – seems like a cool product

  110. jason wright

    …and don’t cook with teflon cookware.

  111. Carl J. Mistlebauer

    I always date obesity from the invention of the t.v. tray…From there came the realization that we could eat while doing other things…..Then of course we needed the means to produce food fast (like during commercials) and thus tv dinners and eventually the microwave.Out of five kids in my family, three have battled weight problems for years and two of us have never had to worry about it.  Of course the two that do not worry about it both garden and work out in the yard, they actually cook their own food, and use their dining room for eating.The three with the weight problems, eat out a lot, eat on the run, believe their dining rooms are museums, and watch a lot of televisions and movies….

  112. fredwilson

    wow. that correlation between microwave and obesity is very interesting

  113. Dale Allyn

    Unfortunately, as one who has traveled to Thailand for business for many years, I have witnessed a change in the “stature” of the once-slim Thai society. (Not that being slim is *necessarily* a sign of good health.) Over the years I have seen more and more western *culture* permeate Thailand with McDonalds, KFC (huge), Burger King, Pizza Hut, Mr. Donut, Dunkin’ Donuts, and now even Krispy Kreme springing up everywhere. Ugh. Now one sees Thai children who are no longer healthy and slim, but obese to varying degrees. It’s sad. We’ve exported the *culture* of fast food and MTV. What a shame.

  114. LE

    “aggravated by the offshoring of decent jobs so mom and dad have to work two or three jobs “I think there is also a “keeping up with the Joneses” factor going on as well.People compare themselves to others and feel inferior by comparison. This drives them to need to make more money which leads to more stress and the resulting problems.I think much of this is post war attitudes as well as the rise in TV and media which lets people see how others lived outside their family or small neighborhood.When I was growing up there was the one “rich guy” in the neighborhood who had the big Cadillac and then you watched B&W tv showing “rich” people in mansions. There were no “mc mansions” or any local frame of reference for aspiration that I remember. So people wanted less and were happy with less. There were of course tin TV dinners way before microwave ovens.The apple cobbler deserts were great.

  115. Donna Brewington White

    “Over the years I have seen more and more western *culture* permeate Thailand with McDonalds, KFC (huge), Burger King, Pizza Hut, Mr. Donut, Dunkin’ Donuts, and now even Krispy Kreme springing up everywhere.”A travesty.  Truly.

  116. LE

    “ATM did to savings accounts by making it very easy to get cash”Credit card before that of course. The extension of credit a key driver of growth. Not all bad either.It is not totally out of reason to pay for something over time that you are going to use over time (a house being the typical example but it’s true also with a washing machine and even clothing I guess). Of course this is going to lead to people who spend more than they should and on things that shouldn’t be paid out in tomorrows dollars and overpaying on interest by not paying off in a timely fashion.  And living from hand to mouth.