Snowstorm and calories

Eating Well

January 16, 1996|By Colleen Pierre | Colleen Pierre,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

What are we doing with all that bread and milk, Baltimore? Statistics say three-fourths of women fail to meet the RDA for calcium (largely from milk). Why is it we crave milk during a snowstorm?

Did we eat more during the "Blizzard of '96"? Did we need to?

What happens when national weight loss month coincides with a blizzard? Do we keep losing or reverse the trend?

Did we stock our larders out of irrational fear of being stranded for several months? Or did some primal urge prompt us to pile on the food (and the body fat) in case the stores ran out of supplies?

How long could we have survived on the food already tucked away in our freezers, cupboards and pantries, as well as on our waists, hips and thighs?

Were we able to share provisions with elderly and disabled neighbors? Did "share the wealth" beat "survival of the fittest"?

The energy cost of a blizzard

The typical American woman age 25 to 49 burns about 2,200 calories per day. The average man of the same age spends about 2,800. With the blizzard's disruption of normal activities, did you burn more or less than usual? Subtract the minutes normally spent in daily activities, then add minutes spent surviving.

Food foraging discoveries:

Mike: You can sweeten oatmeal with fruit preserves when you run out of sugar. Marty: Even in the worst of times, when Roy's and McDonald's are dark, Dunkin' Donuts is open, offering hot coffee, chicken salad sandwiches, and low-fat muffins. Bobbi: A "Marie Callendar's" chicken pot pie contains 1,600 calories and 106 grams of fat. "Mrs. Bud's" contains 320 calories and 14 grams of fat. Choose the low-calorie one and add an extra handful of frozen vegetables. A two-ounce Eckrich smoked beef sausage provides 240 calories and 21 grams of fat. Three ounces of Healthy Choice Kielbasa provides only 100 calories and 3 grams of fat. Wrap the low-calorie one in a big club roll (190 calories) and pile on the sauerkraut (5 calories per half-cup) and mustard, and you'll be back in your bathing suit by spring. Ted: When the bread shelves are empty, check the freezer for garlic bread, bagels, pita and bake-your-own-dough.

Colleen Pierre, a registered dietitian, is the nutrition consultant at the Union Memorial Sports Medicine Center and Vanderhorst & Associates in Baltimore.

Feel, and compare, the burn

Here are normal daily activities, with the number of calories burned per minute while doing them, as opposed to not-so-normal snow-day activities:

NORMAL DAY

Activity ................... Woman (123 lbs.) ........ Man (163 lbs.)

Typing ..................... 1.5 cal./min. ........... 2.0 cal./min.

Writing/Dictating .......... 1.6 cal./min. ........... 2.1 cal./min.

Jogging .................... 10.8 cal./min. .......... 14.3 cal./min.

Circuit training ........... 10.4 cal./min. .......... 13.7 cal./min.

ECleaning house ............. 3.5 cal./min. ........... 3.7 cal./min.

EDriving .................... 2.1 cal./min. ........... 2.7 cal./min.

BLIZZARD DAY

Digging Out ................ 7.1 cal./min. ........... 9.3 cal./min.

country skiing (level) ... 8.0 cal./min. ........... 10.6 cal./min.

X-country skiing (uphill) .. 15.3 cal./min. .......... 20.3 cal./min.

Snowshoeing ................ 9.3 cal./min. ........... 12.3 cal./min.

Walking (plowed street) .... 4.1 cal./min. ........... 6.0 cal./min.

Watching TV/Reading ........ 1.2 cal./min. ........... 1.2 cal./min.

ECard playing ............... 1.4 cal./min. ........... 1.9 cal./min.

EShopping for food .......... 3.5 cal./min. ........... 4.3 cal./min.

Cooking .................... 2.5 cal./min. ........... 3.4 cal./min.

Eating ..................... 1.3 cal./min. ........... 1.7 cal./min.

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