The Dude Diet: Sugar Rush
I am pleased to report that The Dude Diet has been chugging along this week without any major nutritional disasters. In fact, besides attempting to order a sloppy joe for dinner on Wednesday based on the argument that it was healthy “because it had avocado,” the Dude has been doing a relatively decent job of staying on the straight and narrow since returning from Chicago last Sunday. He even went for a run this week…
|I was on a walk when the Dude ran by me. I chased him for 20 seconds.|
I’m actually very proud of Logan, since he’s clearly been missing his “glory days” of crushing “dank shit on the reg.” I know this because a.) he frequently mentions how he wishes he could just “eat dirty,” and b.) he seems to have developed selective hearing recently when it comes to food. For example, on Monday morning he asked what we had for breakfast. I said, “There’s yogurt in the fridge.” He responded by screaming, “BAGELS?!” I don’t know how he heard bagels from yogurt, but that gives you a teeny bit of insight into how Logan’s brain works.
This week, I want to focus on a problem that The Dude Diet has shamefully overlooked thus far: sugar consumption. Honestly, Logan is more of a savory than sweet dude, so I’m usually too preoccupied with his Dominos and barbecue habit to worry about the occasional cupcake binge. My bad. I really should be paying more attention to Logan’s sugar intake, since when he does indulge a craving, it is every bit as terrifying as you would imagine.
First, let’s take a moment to discuss restaurant desserts. Even when they’re small, they are usually still packed with fat and calories. To give credit where credit is due, Logan rarely orders dessert in restaurants. However, if he does, he cleans his plate at warp speed. The worst part is that he will eat the entire thing and then throw down his spoon and complain that “it wasn’t that good.” Oh, and that he has a bellyache. Dudes, if you must eat dessert when dining out, please slow down and enjoy it. If you inhale your dessert without tasting it, it defeats the purpose of indulging a craving. It is also unattractive and inconsiderate to your roommate/date/friend that you should be sharing with.
I’ve found that many dudes are also guilty of casually consuming baked goods during the day. I understand that there may be a tray of donuts/cookies/brownies/cupcakes at work or at a party, but that doesn’t mean you should be mindlessly stuffing them in your mouth. If you must, have one and then back the fuck away. Also, baked goods should not be the size of your head, dudes. Please stick to things that are no more than 3 fingers in width. Seriously.
While restaurant desserts and baked goods pose a threat to The Dude Diet, it seems that the bulk of most dudes’ sugar intake comes from candy. When it comes to candy, Logan has zero portion control. This became glaringly obvious during a trip to Mr. Fuzziwig’s Candy Factory a few months ago. Logan was the biggest, happiest kid in that candy store, and he ended up with the heaviest bag of bin candy I have ever seen in my life. The nice proprietor even asked Logan if he was having a party. If by “party” he meant eating all of that candy while crushing beers in a nearby bar, then yes sir, Logan was definitely having a party.
|Biggest kid in the candy store.|
I’m actually surprised that I haven’t gotten diabetes just from watching Logan eat candy. He consumes anything bite-size, such as M&Ms, Good & Plentys, and gummy bears, quickly and in mass quantities. To be more specific, he takes a handful of the candy in question, shakes it in his fist (to make sure that none of the candy sticks to his palm) and then tosses it into his mouth. Repeatedly.
My mother made the mistake of giving us a 4-pound container of Jelly Bellys for Easter, so I’ve been observing Logan’s “scoop, shake, toss” routine regularly over the past three weeks. He defended this eating method yesterday, saying, “The problem with Jelly Bellys is that they’re too small. I mean, if I put just one in my mouth there would be like nothing to chew.” (Deep thoughts by Logan.) I’m also concerned that he thinks jelly beans are healthy because it says “fat-free” on the container. Dudes, “fat-free” does not mean “calorie-free,” capiche? And in case you were wondering, a handful of jelly beans is one serving. Eating 10 servings at once in unacceptable. And gross.
|What’s left of the jelly beans…|
Candy bars are another weakness of Logan’s, and he’s been known to enjoy a “casual Snickers” when driving or waiting in any sort of line. He’s particularly fond of fun-size candy bars, which I could get on board with if he was limiting himself to one or two. Sadly, as you know, Logan is more into bulk consumption, which was most recently demonstrated when we stayed at a hotel in San Francisco that kept a basket of mini candy bars at the front desk. The quantity of mini-Butterfinger wrappers in Logan’s pockets by the end of our 16-hour stay was comparable to the number of cocktail napkins he collects at a holiday party. Based on Logan’s candy bar consumption, the hotel probably lost money on our stay.
Obviously, every dude is different when it comes to how they prefer their sugar fix. Some eat ice cream by the pint, while others are more into candy, cupcakes, or baked goods. I even know a few dudes with donut problems. Whatever your poison, I want you to remember that sugar is not your friend. It suppresses your immune system, fucks up your insulin and hormone levels, and increases the rate of fat deposition in fat cells. Some studies even claim that it’s addictive. Long story short: Sugar makes you fat, dudes. Lay off it.
I’m fully aware that you’re going to give into your sugar cravings every now and then. I just hope that by this point you’ve internalized the idea of eating everything in moderation. Sure, you can have a Shamrock Shake (psych, you missed that boat already) or a cupcake from time to time, but in general I’m going to need you to make better decisions when your sweet tooth starts acting up.
I considered coming up with some sort of low-fat, low-sugar baked good to cater to Dude Dieters’ dessert needs, but some of you are still struggling with portion control. It’s just not safe for anyone to have an entire tray of cookies or brownies lying around. Plus, it’s getting warmer out, and you probably don’t want to be slaving over a hot stove, so I came up with a healthy, no-bake dessert option for you. You’re welcome. Dudes, allow me to present: Frozen Banana Ice Cream Sundaes.
The concept of frozen banana ice cream has been all over the interwebs recently, especially on Pinterest. Luckily, most of you dudes don’t use Pinterest (Logan still calls it Pine-tryst), so we can just pretend that I came up with this fabulous idea all by myself. Who would have thought that bananas had the potential to create a very convincing stand-in for ice cream without adding any additional ingredients? Clearly, I am a genius.
Making frozen banana ice cream is literally one of the easiest things in the world. All you have to do is put some sliced bananas in the freezer overnight and then throw them in a blender or food processor. Boom. High fiber, high potassium, fat-free “ice cream” in minutes. It’s sweet, creamy, and 100% guilt-free. Plus, it’s a good way to use up your bananas before they go bad and you end up throwing them out.
Frozen banana ice cream can be topped with whatever you like to create your favorite sundae. By “whatever you like,” I mean relatively healthy toppings. Please do not chop up an entire Snickers bar, put it on top of your frozen banana ice cream and skip off into the sunset thinking you’re doing your wonderland body a favor. You know better, dudes. I’m thinking more along the lines of a teaspoon of almond butter and a sprinkling of dark chocolate chips. You could also go the berries-granola-honey route or mix a tablespoon of peanut butter or Nutella into the banana ice cream itself. Eat if for dessert, as a healthy snack, or even for breakfast. Go bananas, dudes.
Frozen Banana Ice Cream Sundaes: (Serves 4)
Preparing your frozen banana ice cream:
-Peel your bananas and slice them into 1-inch rounds. Place them on a plate and freeze overnight. (Yes, you really do need to freeze them for at least 8 hours. Trust me on this one. I tried to blend them after 2 hours and ended up with a smoothie, which was not what I was going for.)
-Place your frozen bananas into a blender or food processor and puree. At first the bananas will take on a sort of sandy texture. This is normal, just keep scraping down the sides and pureeing until they take on the smooth texture of soft-serve ice cream. If you cant get your food processor/blender going, add a tiny splash of milk to help things along.
-When smooth, spoon your “ice cream” into cups and top with your favorite healthy toppings. Boom. Guilt-free sundae, dudes.
*You may also place your frozen banana ice cream in a sealed container and keep it in your freezer for an anytime treat. Cravings are hard to predict, please think ahead. Thanks.
4 ripe bananas, sliced and frozen overnight
Almond or peanut butter
Dark chocolate chips
Kashi Go Lean Crunch (or cereal/granola of your choice)
Peel your bananas and slice them into 1-inch rounds. Place them on a plate and freeze overnight. (Yes, you really do need to freeze them for at least 8 hours. Trust me on this one. I tried to blend them after 2 hours and ended up with a smoothie, which was not what I was going for.)
Place your frozen bananas into a blender or food processor and puree. At first the bananas will take on a sort of sandy texture. This is normal, just keep scraping down the sides and pureeing until they take on the smooth texture of soft-serve ice cream. If you cant get your food processor/blender going, add a tiny splash of milk to help things along.
When smooth, spoon your “ice cream” into cups and top with your favorite healthy toppings.
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