Low Cal No Fun

Well, after about 5 or 6 days of 1500 calories and walking every day I kind of fell off the wagon.  Who wants to be on a wagon anyway.  There’s nothing to look forward to on the wagon.  The entering of calories became cumbersome when we were cooking.  My husband made some really awesome Paleo Crabcakes (I would link but I don’t know where he got the recipe).  I just didn’t feel like entering each one of the 20 ingredients into an app to figure the calories…so I put it off…and put it off…and before you know it 3 days have passed and my Lose It! app is neglected.

Ok, so that didn’t work for me.  If I’m not willing to do it, it doesn’t work for me.

It occurs to me that I should start looking at this the way a behavior analyst would.  This is what I do, after all.  When I write a behavior plan with the intention of increasing the frequency of a desirable behavior I arrange for the consequences of that behavior to be reinforcing (a.k.a. rewarding).  Behavior is lawful.  People tend to repeat behavior that result in rewards and don’t repeat behaviors that provide unwanted results.  If I analyzed my own behavior with regard to counting calories over the past week, I’d say the reinforcement schedule was too thin (i.e., there wasn’t a powerful enough or frequent enough reward to make it worth doing).  Sure, it was nice to see the scale move…but apparently that delayed gratification – that moment in the morning when the scale gave me good news – was only enough to keep me on plan for 5 or 6 days…it was not powerful or immediate enough to motivate me to enter 20 crabcake ingredients, and then the slippery slope began.

So what I need to do is manipulate the consequences of the behaviors that make up my plan so the rewards are more powerful and/or more frequent…so I don’t fall off the wagon again.

So what am I willing to work for?

Let’s do a reinforcer assessment first.  This is basically a list of crap I’m willing to work for.  Ideally, they’re things that can be provided quickly and in high frequency, so not too expensive or too difficult to come by/organize. You can use bigger or more expensive rewards too, and use tokens for the little steps toward the big reward.  Here we go, off the top of my head – a list of things I don’t typically allow myself very often because I’m pretty stingy with money these days.  I think I’ll have to do a token system since almost everything I like costs $.

  • Music downloads (2 tokens per song)
  • Time at a coffee shop alone (10 tokens)
  • A movie alone (15 tokens)
  • Clothes (20 tokens for $10 worth of clothing)
  • Pedicure (40 tokens)
  • A new book (20 tokens for $10 book)
  • Sushi (50 tokens for sushi takeout)
  • A night out with David (100 tokens)
  • A lab test (e.g., lipids, Vit D) (150 tokens for $75 test)

So here are the tasks I’m going to reward myself for.  The number of tokens I can earn is directly proportionate to the difficulty and/or importance of the task for me right now:

  • 30 minutes of exercise (walking or other constant movement) – 1 tokens
  • 15 minutes of yoga – 5 tokens
  • Logging all food for the day – 1 tokens
  • Drinking no alcohol – 2 tokens
  • Staying under 1500 net calories for the day (meaning, if I burn off calories exercising I can eat that much more) – 3 tokens
  • Taking all of my supplements – 1 token

So starting tomorrow: ABA Program – Day 1.

Low Cal / Low Carb – Day 6

Down another pound this morning to 195.4.   I actually did get hungry yesterday and ran out of calories, so I ate more.  I’m just not going to be hungry.  My totals for yesterday were as follows:

  • Calories: 1901
  • Protein 180g (39%)
  • Carbs 62g (13%)
  • Fats 99g (48%)

I also walked for 30 minutes.

Lose it!  is totally the best app for tracking calories, macronutrients, and exercise.  It has the cool barcode scanner, is very user friendly, and the nutritional information for the foods isn’t entered by people who are guessing.  The food database isn’t as large as MyFitnessPal, but I’d rather have accuracy than size.  So I highly recommend it.

Baby’s gut has calmed down again.  Poor thing.

So back when we had money a few months ago we signed up to participate in this American Gut Project – it’s a massive project to investigate the intestines of humans around the world.  They send you a kit including instructions and sterile swabs.  You send back bio-samples of various kinds, and in like 6 months or so they send you an analysis of the bacteria in your gut.  We’re about to send in our stuff.  And then wait for 6 months.  I guess I should just forget about it for a while.

Low Cal / Low Carb Day 5

Down another pound this morning to 196.4.  Nice to see the scale move.  I assume it’ll be slowing down soon…and then I’ll just need to be patient.

I almost got hungry yesterday…I could have eaten more last night but I ran out of calories.  But still no big deal.  Last time I lost a significant amount of weight was in 2006 right before I got married (such a cliche, I know).  I lost about 35 pounds and was hungry most nights going to bed in order to do that.  I can’t get over the fact that I’m not hungry and cranky and scale is moving.

I’ve started taking Maca, which supposedly helps with sex drive.  So far I’d have to say that YES it seems to already be making a difference.  It’s only been a few days though, so this could be placebo effect.  I’ll let you know in a month or so for sure.

My daughter still has really loose stools, which are causing her some serious distress.  She had just finished potty training and now she can’t make it there in time.  My bad, honey…sorry about that.  Note to helicopter moms everywhere – go easy on the probiotics with little ones.  Geez.  I weighed her a couple nights ago and she’s lost like 3 pounds.  Her colon must be completely empty by now.  It has not been pretty.  Back to micromanaging my own health problems I guess.  Things with her will be adjusted SLOWLY.

My Fitness Pal is great in some ways for tracking macronutrients and calories – I really like the barcode scanner and the large database of food options.  I’m learning, however, that a lot of the foods in the database were entered by users and the macronutrient totals don’t always add up to the calorie total.  This is making it difficult to determine my % of calories from fat, carb, and protein with any accuracy.  Yesterday 10% of the  calories I ate were unaccounted for.  I’m looking for another app.

One thing I’m learning right now is that you can trust no one who says they have all the answers.  I know that sounds obvious, but it’s very easy to get sucked in by someone confident who claims to know a lot about what you’re struggling with.  I think it’s fine to try things out…but give it a month or two.  If you’re not getting results, then it’s time to look critically at what you’re doing, take the good, and ditch the bad.  I wish I would have done that a year ago.

Edited to add…I’ve started using a new app called Lose It! I think the nutritional info for the foods in the database was entered by the manufacturer, so hopefully it will have some accuracy to it.

Coffee, Diet Coke, and Insulin

I’m baffled about this phenomenon that is unfolding before me.  I can stick easily to a low calorie diet now (1500 calories, which is about 600 calories per day less than my body requires to maintain weight).  I used to get very hungry eating 1500 calories a day, even when eating low carb.  It seems the link to hunger for me is consuming diet drinks, things artificially sweetened, coffee, or tea. It’s not the caffeine that’s the issue because I take caffeine in pill form every day.  I can understand the diet drinks and artificially sweetened stuff causing hunger – I’ve tested my blood sugar before and after eating food sweetened with Erythritol (Truvia), and have seen it drop 30 points in 1 hour.  This suggests to me that my body produces insulin when it THINKS sugar has been consumed – i.e., when it tastes sweet.

I don’t know why unsweetened coffee has that effect on me too…but it does.  Others do not seem to have this problem.  This article talks about coffee:

Two recent studies have shown that coffee doesn’t cause the release of insulin, and may even reduce insulin resistance.  Interestingly, this effect is true for both coffee and decaf coffee, suggesting that it is isn’t the caffeine that reduces insulin resistance. In fact, decaf may even help keep insulin producing cells healthy.

Mark Sisson has done some research on artificial sweeteners.  He cites several studies that found no insulin spike related to aspartame (the sweetener in Diet Coke), and concludes:

Overall, the evidence seems to suggest little, if any, effect on insulin secretion as a result of tasting or consuming aspartame.

After I’m a svelte zen-like goddess of good health I plan on doing some blood sugar trials to see the extent of the blood sugar fluctuation in reaction to these foods.  Not right now though…no way am I waking up the sleeping Appetite lion right now.

Anyway…down another pound this morning, to 197.4.

Low Cal / Low Carb Day 3

Breakdown today was as follows:

Calories Carbs Fat Protein
1584 9% (37g) 54% (95g) 33% (132g)

I don’t know why that doesn’t add up to 100%.  That’s what My Fitness Pal gave me.  I think it’s flawed.

Also, I went for a 30 minute walk today in the bright sunlight.

Down 2 pounds this morning to 198.

I keep waiting to get hungry and be frustrated about it.  So far that hasn’t happened.  I know this is only day 3…but I may soon be forced to conclude that all my previous low-cal weight loss attempts were foiled by Diet Coke and coffee.  Both drinks seem to stimulate insulin for me and cause me to get hungry much sooner than if I don’t drink them.  That’s right…I think Diet Coke helped make me fat.

I know others don’t have that experience with these drinks.  I’m not sure what it is about coffee that causes me to get hungry.  It’s not the caffeine because I use caffeine pills every day.  It’s something about the coffee itself.

Anyway, things are going well.  I have energy, my mood is good, and I’m not starving.  I like eating some carbs…maybe that’s helping with things too.

My daughter on the other hand…having some bowel issues today.  Is it quitting dairy?  Is it starting a probiotic?  Is it the epsom salts in the bath?  This is the problem with starting multiple things within a short period of time of one another.  I suspect it’s because of the probiotic.  We’ll probably put that and the epsom salts on hold for now…and introduce things more slowly.

Low Cal/Low Carb End of Day 2

I’m avoiding work so I think I’ll do another post today.  Again today had no real hunger.  Here are my stats for today:

Calories Carbs Fat Protein
1426 14% (49g) 54% (85g) 33% (119g)

I had a day of silly snacking all day – but I think I did a pretty good job of accounting for all of it.  Tried twice to go for a walk.  Managed to piece together about 30 minutes of walking, and 5383 steps.  That’s not awesome.  I’m going to have to step up the walking a little.  In my group of 5 walkers I had the fewest steps last week – about 36,000. I need to be a lot closer to 10,000 steps per day.  I think I’m just going to have to get up earlier or something.

We tried to make Paleo waffles today….not good.  Here’s a pic:


Yes, my husband was using the chopstick to try to pry the waffles out of the waffle iron.  Oh well.

Hey I forgot to mention a couple of effects I’m noticing now that I’m no longer on the Wiley Protocol.  My bras fit again – my breasts had been all swollen up from all that progesterone.  So now even though I’m at my highest non-pregnancy weight, my shirts are fitting better.  Hooray!  Also, my one whisker has grown back.  I’m about to do the TMI thing…so gentlemen, you may want to turn away….but my period has also completely calmed down. On the hormones it was awful…I know I had fibroids while I was supplementing estrogen, and I think maybe now that I’m off of it they’ve shrunk back down, meaning less mess.  Another hooray!  Wiley was not right for me.

I guess that’s all I’ve got to report for the moment.  Cheers – till tomorrow.

Low Cal/Low Carb Day 2

Yesterday was Day 1 and it went well…I actually don’t get as hungry as I thought I would if I stay away from sweet things (artificial or otherwise).  I guess last time I reduced calories I was probably drinking Diet Coke, which stimulates insulin and causes me to get hungry.  Yesterday I actually could have eaten less.

According to My Fitness Pal, here are my numbers for yesterday:

Calories Carbs Fat Protein
1496 11% (40g) 54% (89g) 36% (133g)

I also walked 30 minutes.

And today I was down 1 pound.

I guess I’ll just settle in for a long process.

Yesterday I started my little girl out on a probiotic and put epsom salts in her bath.  I found out today that my husband gave her cheese last week so she’s been totally dairy free for probably 3 days now.

I feel that I should take a moment to apologize for focusing on things as mundane as my calorie intake when such terrible things are happening in the world.  Since I had my daughter I can no longer watch shows, movies, or news stories that depict people being hurt, tortured, or killed.  I used to love Criminal Minds and the Primetime/48hours/Unsolved Mysteries shows that usually involved women being kidnapped or killed. As a genre, I nicknamed them, “Missing White Woman” shows, because…well, that’s what they are.  They never profiled a missing poor black woman or a missing Latino man….always white women.  Anyway, I can’t watch things like this, or horrific news stories anymore because they raise my anxiety that something awful will happen to my daughter…and that is an unbearable thought.

So I turn away from it and try to make the world a better place in ways I can control.

Changing Focus

Two factors are leading me to a change of plans this morning.  (And yes, I realize I’ve become a compulsive plan-changer. When something feels right I’ll stop.) First, I re-read my last post.  My daughter’s health is more worrisome than mine is.  My enterolab results showed no food sensitivities (I couldn’t believe it).  Yes, my metabolism is a wreck – I have high blood sugar, high cholesterol, low thyroid, low sex hormones, and I’ve recently developed high blood pressure.  But she’s 3 and her body is already having an immune reaction to everything she eats.  If I don’t fix this for her now she may have more serious problems in the future, like migranes or autoimmune issues.  I’m not basing that on anything scientific – just on noodling around the internet and knowing a few adults with serious leaky gut issues.

Secondly, I stepped on the scale this morning.  It was up to 201.  I suspect it’s falsely elevated – I rarely gain an additional 2 pounds in 2 days and have it stick around – but still it’s dismaying.  Also my blood pressure has been consistently high – averaging around 145/88.  I’m out of time to play around with self-experimentation.  I have to do what I know will work – it’ll just be uncomfortable.  I’m going to start a 1500 calorie diet today and take a 30 minute walk every day.  That’s it.  That’s my entire plan.  Simple.

Right now I need to devote my time figuring out how to shop and cook for my daughter.  I need to research healing a leaky gut…cuz she’s got one.

Delayed Start

Ok, my fat-diet experiment was delayed.  I got some compelling information that made me think I’d be wasting my time by doing this fat-diet experiment but I decided to go ahead and start it tomorrow anyway.  I figure…even if low-carb is harming my thyroid function or is otherwise counterproductive…it’s only a week. So I’m going to go ahead and start my experiment tomorrow.  2000 calories a day of mostly fat.  I’ll post my menus as I go.

I really want to get labs done, but I can’t afford a thyroid panel right now…plus the nearest lab I can use is 60 miles away.  I have insurance that will only benefit me if I’m near death, and my current doc wouldn’t even order it if I had insurance.

Our medical system is kinda screwed up.

I’m working and have some income right now, but no benefits…Our household income is about 1/7 of what it was while we were in California, and 1/4 what it was a year ago.  It’s a struggle to afford high quality food, let alone labs.  It’s worth it in a way – I get to be with my daughter more, and she gets to have her parents raise her.  I’m recovering from being overstressed.  You can’t really put a price tag on that.

In other news…we’ve had my little girl off dairy for like a week now.  We just stopped giving her milk and cheese.  No big deal really.  In the past she cared a LOT about milk…now she accepts our lame excuses that we “don’t have any” and drinks water with no fuss.  She has weird rash-like things going on in various places on her body, including her face.  This is the one on her leg:


She’s had this for at least a month and it just doesn’t ever seem to change.  I finally took a picture because it’s just so weird that it doesn’t get better or worse.  It just stays there.  It doesn’t itch.  I keep in mind that our Enterolab results for her indicated that she has sensitivities to gluten, dairy, and many other things.  (Edited to add: It occurs to me that I never actually included her lab results in the blog.  I’ll add them to the bottom of this post, for those who are interested.)  When I called the lab the nurse I talked to said that the additional sensitivities can occur when the items of primary sensitivity are still in the diet (which we thought was gluten).  She’s been gluten free for sure since we took her out of daycare and moved back here, so at least 2 months, and very low gluten before that.  The dairy is new though, and I’m surprised she is adapting so well.  I’m wondering if her skin will start to clear up soon.   If it doesn’t I’ll have no idea what’s causing the skin issues.


Babygirl’s Enterolab Results:

Date: 12/18/2012

A + C) Comprehensive Gluten/Antigenic Food Sensitivity Stool Panel
(Combines Panels A and C at a discounted price)

Mean Value 11 Antigenic Foods    25 Units   (Normal Range is less than 10 Units)

Fecal Anti-gliadin IgA    299 Units   (Normal Range is less than 10 Units)

Fecal Anti-casein (cow’s milk) IgA    55 Units   (Normal Range is less than 10 Units)

Fecal Anti-ovalbumin (chicken egg) IgA    36 Units   (Normal Range is less than 10 Units)

Fecal Anti-soy IgA    37 Units   (Normal Range is less than 10 Units)

Add Gluten Sensitivity Gene Test to Panel A+C, A, C, D, or E at a discounted price
HLA-DQB1 Molecular analysis, Allele 1    0501

HLA-DQB1 Molecular analysis, Allele 2    0602

Serologic equivalent: HLA-DQ   1,1  (Subtype 5,6)

Interpretation of Mean Value 11 Antigenic Foods:  Overall, there was only a modest amount of immunological reactivity detected to these antigenic foods in terms of fecal IgA production.

Many foods besides gluten, cow’s milk, eggs, and soy are antigenic in their own right; the main classes of which include other grains, meats, nuts, and nightshades (potatoes being the primary food eaten from this latter class). Minimizing exposure to antigenic foods is an important component of an anti-inflammatory lifestyle to optimize immune system health. This is especially important for those with chronic abdominal symptoms and/or chronic immune/autoimmune syndromes, or for those who want to prevent them.

For immunologic food sensitivity testing, the actual numeric value (in Units) for any given test or for the overall average of a group of foods is important mainly for determining: 1) if the immune reaction is present or absent, and 2) in relative terms, the immune reaction to different foods tested in a given individual at a given point in time. It is not a score, per se, to be interpreted as a measure of clinical or immunological severity for that individual or between individuals. This is because the amount of IgA antibody made by a given person is particular for the immune function of that person. Furthermore, sometimes a person can display what can be viewed as immunological and nutritional “exhaustion,” whereby a more significant and symptomatic immunologic food sensitivity is accompanied by a lower positive measured anti-food antibody value (rather than a higher positive). In such an instance, following clinical improvement and improved nutritional status (while the suspect antigenic foods are withdrawn), values can actually be higher for a time before finally falling into the negative range after several years.

Thus, the overall average food sensitivity antibody value for this panel is an assessment of your overall humoral immunologic food reactivity, which can help determine if dietary elimination trials may help you. If the mean value is less than 10 Units, the humoral immune reactions can be considered absent (negative); if greater than or equal to 10 Units, they can be considered present. Rather than reporting the absolute value of a positive result for each individual food, since it cannot be considered as an assessment of severity, the results are reported in relative terms between the foods tested. This provides you with the knowledge of which foods are stimulating the most immune response which, in turn, is indeed the most practically applied information to dietary elimination trials. The report information that follows is based on these facts.

While all of the foods tested can be immune-stimulating, the hierarchy of reactions detected were as follows:

Food toward which you displayed most immunologic reactivity: Oat, Rice, Tuna, Beef
Food toward which you displayed intermediate reactivity: Corn, Chicken, Pork, White potato
Food toward which you displayed least immunologic reactivity: Almond, Cashew, Walnut

Within each class of foods to which you displayed multiple reactions, the hierarchy of those reactions detected were as follows:

Grain toward which you displayed the most immunologic reactivity: Oat, Rice
Grain toward which you displayed intermediate immunologic reactivity: Corn

Meat toward which you displayed the most immunologic reactivity: Tuna
Meat toward which you were next most immunologically reactive: Beef
Meat toward which you displayed intermediate immunologic reactivity: Chicken
Meat toward which you displayed the least immunologic reactivity: Pork

Nut toward which you displayed the most immunologic reactivity: Almond
Nut toward which you displayed intermediate immunologic reactivity: Cashew
Nut toward which you displayed the least immunologic reactivity: Walnut

You displayed immunologic reactivity to white potato, the member of the nightshade family usually consumed most often and in greatest quantities. While this does not necessarily mean you would react to all other nightshade foods (tomatoes, peppers, eggplant), it is possible. In the realm of elimination diets for immunologic disorders, nightshades are usually eliminated as the entire food class (i.e., all four previously mentioned foods in this class). This is especially important to the clinical setting of arthritis.

Dietary Recommendation Based on Test Results to Individual Foods: This test panel was designed to guide your choices when building a new more healthful, less antigenic dietary plan. The results are delivered in such a way that you are not left with “nothing to eat,” but instead they guide you in avoiding the foods in each group that are most stimulating to your immune system. We discourage dietary changes that involve removing too many foods at once. This can lead you to feel too hungry too often, especially if adequate healthful replacement foods are not readily available. Dietary elimination (beyond gluten-free, dairy-free, and soy-free) is best approached over a period of weeks to months and sometimes years, removing one or two additional foods at a time, rather than removing many foods at once.

If you reacted to more than one of the grains, meats, or nuts, we recommend that you first eliminate from your diet the one food from that class you reacted to most strongly, while keeping the ones you reacted to less strongly. When you want to try and eliminate additional foods, do so in the order of the strength of reaction from highest, intermediate, to least. In the case of potato, you may want to eliminate it if you reacted positively to it.

You can use the hierarchal results from each specific class of food, within which you reacted to multiple antigens, to make the wisest dietary decision when choosing which food(s) from that class to keep in your diet. Choose the food(s) to which you were least reactive (or in the case of potato, non-reactive).

Avoiding all grains, most antigenic meats (such as these), and nightshades is an important part of the most optimized anti-inflammatory diet.

As nuts and seeds are a very healthful source of vegetarian protein and heart-protective oils and minerals, rather than avoiding all nuts and seeds, you can render nuts and seeds less antigenic, more digestible, and more easily tolerated by choosing the few that you seem to best tolerate overall, soaking a one-day supply in a glass jar filled with clean water for 4-8 hours (or for ease, overnight), and pouring off the water and rinsing before eating. The resultant soaked nuts or seeds can be eaten as is (alone or with fresh or dried fruit), blended into nut butters (by adding some water), or added to “smoothies.”

Interpretation of Fecal Anti-gliadin IgA:  The level of intestinal anti-gliadin IgA antibody was elevated, indicative of active dietary gluten sensitivity. For optimal health; resolution or improvement of gluten-induced syndromes (mainly falling into six categories abbreviated as NAAAGS – neuropsychiatric, autoimmune, asthma, abdominal, glandular deficiencies/hyperactivity or skin diseases); resolution of symptoms known to be associated with gluten sensitivity (such as abdominal symptoms – pain, cramping, bloating, gas, diarrhea and/or constipation, chronic headaches, chronic sinus congestion, depression, arthritis, chronic skin problems/rashes, fibromyalgia, and/or chronic fatigue); and prevention of small intestinal damage and malnutrition, osteoporosis, and damage to other tissues (like nerves, brain, joints, muscles, thyroid, pancreas, other glands, skin, liver, spleen, among others), it is recommended that you follow a strict and permanent gluten free diet. As gluten sensitivity is a genetic syndrome, you may want to have your relatives screened as well.

For additional information on result interpretation, as well as educational information on the subject of gluten sensitivity, please see the “FAQ Result Interpretation,” “FAQ Gluten/Food Sensitivity,” and “Research & Education” links on our EnteroLab.com website.

Interpretation of Fecal Anti-casein (cow’s milk) IgA:  Levels of fecal IgA antibody to food antigens greater than or equal to 10 Units are indicative of an immune reaction, and hence immunologic “sensitivity” to that food. It is recommended that for any elevated fecal antibody level to a highly antigenic food such as milk, that it be removed from your diet.

Interpretation of Fecal Anti-ovalbumin (chicken egg) IgA:  Levels of fecal IgA antibody to food antigens greater than or equal to 10 Units are indicative of an immune reaction, and hence immunologic “sensitivity” to that food. It is recommended that for any elevated fecal antibody level to a highly antigenic food such as egg, that it be removed from your diet.

Interpretation of Fecal Anti-soy IgA:  Levels of fecal IgA antibody to food antigens greater than or equal to 10 Units are indicative of an immune reaction, and hence immunologic “sensitivity” to that food. It is recommended that for any elevated fecal antibody level to a highly antigenic food such as soy, that it be removed from your diet.

Interpretation Of HLA-DQ Testing:  Although you do not possess the main HLA-DQB1 genes predisposing to celiac sprue (HLA-DQB1*0201 or HLA-DQB1*0302), HLA gene analysis reveals that you have two copies of a gene that predisposes to gluten sensitivity (any DQ1, DQ2 not by HLA-DQB1*0201, or DQ3 not by HLA-DQB1*0302). Having two copies of a gluten sensitive gene means that each of your parents and all of your children (if you have them) will possess at least one copy of the gene. Two copies also means there is an even stronger predisposition to gluten sensitivity than having one gene and the resultant immunologic gluten sensitivity may be more severe. This test was developed and its performance characteristics determined by the American Red Cross – Northeast Division. It has not been cleared or approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

For more information about result interpretation, please see http://www.enterolab.com/StaticPages/FaqResult.aspx

Stool analysis performed and/or supervised by: Frederick Ogunji, Ph.D., EnteroLab
Molecular Gene Analysis performed by: American Red Cross
Interpretation of all results by: Kenneth D. Fine, M.D., EnteroLab

Thank You For Allowing EnteroLab to Help You Attain Optimum Intestinal And Overall Health.

New Experiment

I am endlessly fascinated these days by the divide amongst those in the online weight loss community.  How do you lose weight?  I sure don’t know because I suck at it.  In the time that I’ve been writing in this blog – 14 months now – I’ve managed to gain a net total of 8 pounds.  This morning my weight was 199.  Teetering on the brink.

There are those who say it doesn’t matter what you eat – a calorie is a calorie.  If you eat less than you take in you’ll lose weight.  Yes, this is probably true.  We’ve all been on weight-loss diets designed to create a calorie deficit, and we’ve all lost weight, temporarily.  Then there are those in the Paleo community and in the low-carb community who say that calories aren’t the issue – it matters what you eat (and possibly when you eat as well), the object being to avoid foods that increase insulin.  I’ve been really holding on with both fists to the idea that I can eat whatever low-glycemic foods I want and lose weight…but it’s not happening.  I didn’t happen when I avoided all carbs for 6 months.

About a month ago I embarked upon a fat fast.  It was effective for losing weight – I lost about 5 pounds the first week and my body quickly entered a state of ketosis, but I suspect any 1200 calorie diet would be effective in this way.  I’m going to try a new experiment.  Here it is….Ready?

For 1-2 weeks I’m going to eat mostly fat – like between 80 and 90% fat, and almost no carbs.  How is this different from the fat fast?  I’m going to eat the same number of calories that I would currently eat to maintain my weight – between 2000 and 2200 a day.  If my weight hasn’t budged in a week, I will draw the conclusion that conventional wisdom is right in this regard: YOU NEED TO HAVE A CALORIE DEFICIT IN ORDER TO LOSE WEIGHT.

If I can lose weight eating mostly fat and eating NOTHING that has an effect on my blood sugar (or close to nothing), then I will conclude that the Paleo community is correct – it’s WHAT you eat, not HOW MUCH that matters.

I’ve been tracking using My Fitness Pal, but this app doesn’t do a great job of breaking down your daily nutrients into a nice pie chart with %.  Also I feel like it judges me.  Why can’t I just find an app that doesn’t have an opinion about how I’m doing, that just reports the facts?

Please join me on my high-fat N=1.