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‘Eat like Grandma’ did

Bruce Becker spent most of last year on an eating plan that may sound familiar to many Western New Yorkers.

“I love craft beer and I love pizza,” he said. “That, and lack of exercise, really put the weight on.”

The job he landed last October proved a godsend in more ways than one. The new senior project manager in Financial Systems Initiatives with Sedexo loves the work, but also relishes the company wellness challenge that started in mid-January. During the first four weeks, he lost almost 20 pounds.

Becker, 54, of Orchard Park, credits FitNation fitness in Amherst, which is running the 10-week contest, as well as 65 co-workers who have added accountability and camaraderie to his efforts. FitNation owner Dwayne Brinson maintains that wellness is 20 percent exercise and 80 percent nutrition.

Q. How has your diet changed?

I’ve been consistently eating the right amount and eating frequently – eating smaller meals throughout the day, up to six meals. All good foods, organic. Free-range chicken, beef, pork or fish. I drink a cup of raw milk every day. I do a protein powder that Wegmans has. It’s organic, non-GMO. It’s more of a snack. I eat a lot of nuts. We pick blueberries at Burdick Farms and we have been using Thorpe’s Farm for shares of milk, and fruits and vegetables. The stuff they call organic today used to be called food years ago. I like to say, ‘Eat like Grandma used to eat and you’ll be healthy.’

Q. Can you walk me through what a day’s eating is like?

After I wake up, I’ll have three eggs. I’ll have a meat along with that, whether it’s ham or bacon. Sometimes, I’ll make an omelette using vegetables from the night before. Lunch is usually salad greens, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, Mother’s apple vinegar, which is really, really good. I usually eat half, and save the other half till 2 or 3 in the afternoon. I usually have nuts and protein drink as a snack. When I get home, I’ll cook up some type of protein and some type of vegetable. We like cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, broccoli. And usually at night I have raw milk with protein. I drink a fair amount of water and I mix in powder gelatin called Great Lakes Gelatin. It’s really good for flexibility of the joints. Another thing I take on a regular basis – and some people laugh – is cod liver oil. I take a tablespoon every day. It’s for the immune system. It has omega-3 and vitamin D.

– Scott Scanlon