Email from my brother: How many calories in a kiwi fruit?

Hi Fay

So the boy racer that crashed into Maurice and Valerie’s culvert died this week. Sad for his family, but thankfully he was the only one who paid the price for his stupidity. I mean anyone of us could have been using that driveway when he A-Teamed his car into it and where would we be then?

The headline in the newspaper was “Highway for Hoons” based on a quote from a more irate neighbour. Maurice and Valerie came round for dinner last Saturday & Valerie wasn’t aware that she was using the word “Coon” for “Hoon” until we pointed it out. She hadn’t heard of either word before and was very embarrassed when we told her what it meant. “Highway for Coons” as a headline would’ve swung the focus of the story in a totally different direction don’t you think? So on with the good news …

This week, for the first time ever, I’m trying a diet. It’s a sea food diet. Whenever I sea food … hang on that joke doesn’t work in print. When we first applied to come to New Zealand we had to go through a proper medical that included blood tests and X-rays and eye tests and everything. From these tests we both found out that we had non-alcoholic fatty livers but recent blood tests for life insurance have shown we’ve sorted that one out mainly with a firm application of ignoring it. Ignoring it worked! Result! That hardly ever works. (Our diets did change after our move here so there is that.)

However I do know I’m over weight. I know this because the specialist I saw about my liver three years ago got out a height to weight chart that was colour coded in bands of green, yellow and red. When I told him my weight and height he ran his fingers through the colours, tapped the red band and just turned to me with raised eyebrows. Cheeky b*stard.

So back in 2009 we had a fancy set of scales that you program your sex, height and age and it shoot electric currents through you and works out percentage body fat. First time I programed my stats in I found out I was 33% fat. That’s why I think yellow suits me best. I’m a walking tub of I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter. Unsurprisingly 33% fat is outside the healthy range for me so I sat back and did nothing about it again. F*ck all. Skip forward to 2012 and we’ve still got the scales and I’m still the same body fat percentage.

So we decided to try this 5:2 diet where by two days a week we limit our food consumption to 600 calories and the other days we eat normally. The idea is that’s kind of how our ancestors ate, fasting when there wasn’t food and feasting when there was. We’ve never done any sort of diet before but the upshot was we’ve decided to try it for three weeks to see if it’s any good (i.e. if we lose weight at all). So far we’ve done a week and it’s a bloody horrible diet. I’ve never done so much maths. Well apart from when I did my A-level in maths. What grade did I get? Oh yes, a U. So again, I’ve never done so much maths.

How many calories in a kiwi fruit? How many in a cup of brown rice? What about a banana? Is it a big banana, a medium banana or a small banana? Look it up and then convert kilojoules to calories, convert them back again, dived the total by two, multiply by tablespoons and eat it at the rate of six dolphins per fortnight. Why is nothing ever simple?

The thing is I went and weighed myself again and this time I actually picked the scales up to look at the little icons. I had to scratch off a blob of cheese, flick away some rice-crispy cake and wipe away the remnants of some splashed full fat mochachino from the display but I did find that I’d had my profile set on female instead of male. This had been set like that for four years and only now I’d realised my mistake. So now I find out I’m 19% body fat which is in the healthy range. I had been wondering how doing three hours of pushing a lawn mover around per week, digging ditches, shifting logs for hours, splitting wood and shooting a 119lb longbow still meant I medically had the body of Humpty Dumpty. Mystery solved! I had the brains of Humpty Dumpty. I think there’s 83 calories in a Humpty Dumpty. Mmmmmm, Cadburys Cream Humpty Dumpty…. It’s going to be a long three weeks.

Take care,

Love Mark xxx


As always Mark


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