A traveller's experience on applying the wai diet

no testimonies, no problems; just ups and downs
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michael
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A traveller's experience on applying the wai diet

Post by michael »

I just came back yesterday to Europe after a long time travelling around the world, which has given me a lot experiences and, I guess, new perspectives. I've been trying to eat as much wai as possible, without conflicting with my other objectives in life - which is easier said than done! Having been on the wai diet on-and-off for more than a year, I knew that it would be more difficult not being a student anymore and implementing the diet into a employee's (or backpacker's) everyday life. In that sense, I've been more of a regular eater than most in here, but somehow I wanted to use ideas from here while still living a normal life (going out to restaurants, clubs etc).

I sold my apartment in Stockholm and moved to London in June to do a summer internship at an American bank in the City. The firm paid for dinners every night, so money-wise, eating sashimi and fruits everyday was not a problem. The problem with implementing the wai diet without sipping juice all the time, however, is that work requires you to eat lunch, dinner and really nothing in between, making energy management more difficult. There was nothing stopping me from bringing fruits to the desk and sipping oil - but I was too weak to stand up for myself and I didn't want people asking questions about supposedly 'strange' food habits. I admire you guys for not caring what people think - I'm still afraid of people judging me for not eating or acting like everybody else, especially in a macho-macho industry that is investment banking. The 90-hour weeks also took their toll, and not going to bed until 2-3 in the morning every day increased my cravings for much foods to the extent that I gained a lot of weight during the summer (bringing my BMI over 20 for the first time). Another effect of being on the wai diet is that I look significantly younger now than I did before I started the whole thing. People said I looked like eighteen, and I had to struggle to make them realise how qualified I was for the job. I'm guessing this may be connected with low testosterone levels - could this perhaps be caused by a too-low intake of yolks and sashimi?

After my stint in London, I flew to India to study on an exchange program and travel around. I had never been to Asia before, but it was a big shock and a wonderful experience, at the same time. The Indian food is very oily, and so spicy it makes your head spin. I don't know much about biochemistry, but these spices must be addictive and affect our nerve systems, no? I spoke to a guy on a train in Madya Pradesh who kept eating powder from a small plastic bag. It turns out he ate Masala spices as a snack, giving no energy - but a rush? Otherwise, I was amazed by the sheer amount of fruits available in India. I had lots of fun walking in fruit markets with a swiss army knife and just savour the different (super-ripe!) fruits available. In the campus cantine, I had amazing watermelon or pineapple juice each morning, which tasted nothing like it does back home - it was more of a deeper, sweet and savoury taste. The mangos, hell even the bananas were amazing. I keep thinking that the way they treat the fruits sold in Europe (picked when they're not riped and then transported for a long time) is not really ideal. I met a guy in Kerala that came from the province of Goa and he told me how they traditionally used raw egg yolk combined with sugar as an all-purpose medicine, a cure that dated back to the pre-colonial era. Anyhow, apart from the spices, all Indian food is very oily, which at least makes the energy management a bit easier. The quality of the oil is another matter, however, and it seemed to me that they reused old oil over and over again to save money. The coconut oil available in the southern regions of Kerala and Tamil Nadu was amazingly sweet and good-tasting, and I had a bottle with me most of the times if I needed oil to balance otherwise sugary food.

After India I went back for Christmas and then directly to China and southeast asia for some travelling by myself before starting to work full-time. I had a hard time finding good food, at least in the northern provinces where everything seemed to be deep-fried and spiced up with MSG. After consulting my dictionary, I learned how to pronounce the mandarin word for MSG, which at least saved my body from dealing with glutamate when ordering noodles. For that reason, I was pleasantly surprised that in Hong Kong, people have become very conscious about the dangers of MSG, to the extent that many restaurants use it as a unique selling point for health-conscious professionals. While travelling in the inner parts of China, I was invited by a Chinese family to live with them for a few days in their house, during which I, out of gratitute, chose to eat everything they ate, including yak-milk and a variety of pig's organs. They even gave me their finest chop-sticks they had to show respect for the friendly westerner. To this date, I don't know what I ate there since only the son spoke English, and he didn't know the words for the kind of food we ate. Again, everybody said I look young - very young. When I said I just graduated, they always said - oh, from high school? But I guess that will benefit me when I'm older - looking 30 even though your well in your 40s.

I then travelled southwards to Thailand and Malaysia where all-abundant, and coconut milk seems to be used in every kind of dish available. It's easy to become accustomed to fresh fruit juices and not having to juice everything yourself - I could live with it! In Songhkla in southern Thailand, they even put oil in the juice. It was probably sunflower oil or something similar of low quality but still - I was like 'Yes, yes - that's the spirit!' :D . In the archipelago south of Koh Chang in Thailand, we discovered an island that was called Koh Wai (the Wai island) and absolutely beautiful. Again, the beginning of the mango season has just started and I was pleased to be able to buy super-ripe mango again in Malaysia and Singapore.

I'm starting to work full-time in London in a few days and am a bit apprehensive about getting back 100%, even though I really want to look and feel the way I did when I ate according to the wai diet. You have to get your room-mates and your new work-colleagues to accept your habits and make time to 'squeeze that juice'. I'm starting to realise that it's all in my head (people don't really care), that I should get these limiting beliefs out of my head and just get on with it. Finding room-mates, colleagues and a girl-friend all on the wai diet themselves, that would be something. I'm still dreaming about the idea that someone came up with on this board, that we should buy an island (maybe Koh Wai?) and start a small Wai community, living in harmony with the nature, eating fruits and living like we're supposed to do. Maybe a few years down the line, or perhaps I'm just dreaming to much... :D

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Recent photo from northern Thailand
michael
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Post by michael »

Sorry, another try with the photo:

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RRM
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Re: A traveller's experience on applying the wai diet

Post by RRM »

Welcome back and thank you very much for your report, Michael!
Very interesting....
michael wrote:work requires you to eat lunch, dinner and really nothing in between, making energy management more difficult. There was nothing stopping me from bringing fruits to the desk and sipping oil -
You can also always carry a coloured plastic bottle with you, so that people cannot see whats inside. Its as if you are drinking coca cola all the time.
I'm still afraid of people judging me for not eating or acting like everybody else, especially in a macho-macho industry that is investment banking.
Yeah, thats completely understandable, especially if you are new to it.
But, as I said, there are ways to disguising your eating habits. And you dont need to eat whole fruits when they can see it. Drinking juices is just as good.
The 90-hour weeks also took their toll, and not going to bed until 2-3 in the morning every day increased my cravings for much foods
Yes, thats making it extremely hard indeed.
People said I looked like eighteen
You do.
I'm guessing this may be connected with low testosterone levels - could this perhaps be caused by a too-low intake of yolks and sashimi?
Not if you ingest all required nutrients.
Are you eating enough? Whats a typical day for you? (what do you eat)
Looking younger than your age is normal on this diet. Thats because aging is not accelerated by water retention and increased skin shedding.
these spices must be addictive and affect our nerve systems, no?
Absolutely. Thats why they are used.
I keep thinking that the way they treat the fruits sold in Europe (picked when they're not riped and then transported for a long time) is not really ideal.
Indeed...


It's easy to become accustomed to fresh fruit juices and not having to juice everything yourself - I could live with it!
Yes, THAT is what i call luxury!
I'm starting to realise that it's all in my head (people don't really care),
Exactly. More so, once they know you for some time, they dont 'know you any differently'. People have issues with different behaviour when its new to them. Once its not new anymore, the issues are gone.
Finding room-mates, colleagues and a girl-friend all on the wai diet themselves, that would be something.
Thats the easy way, but not at all required to be able to do the diet happily. All it takes from you, is to be consistent. People get used to it.
Koh Wai is everywhere. Everywhere you want it to be.
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Oscar
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Post by Oscar »

Thanks for your story, it's a fun read! :D

You do look eighteen, which is great. Looks do not earn respect, actions do. I also look(ed) younger than my age, and I personally always took pleasure in the way it put people off balance. They tend to underestimate you, which can be an advantage.

Like you said, people don't really care about how you eat, because they themselves don't really care how they eat. Questions in that case will be limited to only a few in the beginning. And if someone is genuinely interested, it makes for a nice conversation.

You seem to be in the perfect line of work to be able to buy Koh Wai in some years... ;)
spring
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Post by spring »

I know the exact feeling about looking much younger than your age. I was asked for my ID when entering clubs and casinos when I was 31. When I was 39 and applied for a job and told them my age, the boss said he thought I was 16!

People say I'm lucky to look so young for my age but like Michael, people don't tend to treat you seriously which has its disadvantages. Workwise it's a bit of a problem, and also datingwise, I was attracting people 10, 15 years younger than me which is not good when you're a woman. And you develop a complex about telling people your age because it becomes embarassing: "I didn't think you were THAT old," is what I used to hear all the time. Ah well, as I'm getting older I appreciate my youthful looks more and more.

Unfortunately in the last couple of years I've been off Wai's diet, put on 16 kilos and noticed wrinkles under my eyes for the first time.

I have to go back on it and look young again. ;) I noticed my skin really did glow when I was on Wai's diet. When I was fruitarian and vegan, I looked much older than I used to - probably because of weight loss? For some reason, when on Wai's diet, I lose weight but my face doesn't look as baggy or as hollowed out - though my face does look younger when I have a bit of weight on me - filled out cheeks and wrinkles.

I agree you look young, Michael. I had similar experiences when traveling too. What did the yak-milk taste like?
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Oscar
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Post by Oscar »

I think that part of what makes us look young is the animal protein.

BTW, this thread is almost a year old, don't think Michael visits the forum regularly at the moment. ;)
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