Reconsidering Options

I really wanted Ray Peat’s work to be The Answer for me. I think Peat’s work benefits some people greatly – in fact, it may be the most brilliant nutrition and health advice ever.  But when it comes to deciding what I should put in MY mouth at mealtime, I don’t think it’s for me.  Here’s my analysis:

The Pros:

Progesterone – I had given up on sex hormone supplementation after my disastrous encounter with the Wiley Protocol.  I blamed progesterone for the fact that I gained 20 pounds, had heart palpitations, and became so fatigued that I could barely get out of bed.  At the time I concluded that progesterone was the culprit because I found a website on which a bunch of lay people decided it was so.  I was so fatigued and depressed I would have believed anyone.  Recently I’ve started supplementing with Progest E, the progesterone supplement developed by Ray Peat himself.  I find Progest E alone – without the estrogen that Wiley had me taking – to be wonderful, balancing, and soothing.  I imagine I’ll take it for the rest of my life.  Estrogen, not so much.

Liver – I’ve gone on and on about how eating liver once a week has made my skin look great.  This week I tried eating all 4 oz raw, washing it down with milk.  I thought it was a lot easier than trying to eat it cooked.  I’m considering just having an ounce or so raw every day or two.

Shellfish, bone broth, raw carrot, coffee, aspirin, vitamin K2 – all of these things I don’t mind taking or using and will continue to do so, just because the promise of better health is worth the effort.  I also love the smell of broth cooking in the crock pot.

The Cons:

Sugar – Yesterday I tried all kinds of things.  I tried a teaspoon of granulated fructose with breakfast and tested my blood sugar after – it was up 25 points at one hour and up 35 points at 2 hours. That part was ok, but also I felt hungry soon after, despite eating a 300 calorie meal.  So I ate ANOTHER 300 calorie meal and paired it with the smallest wedge of an orange ever.  It was a clementine orange – small as a baby’s fist, and I ate one small section of it.  An hour later my blood sugar had dropped 50 points and I was hungry again.  I then ate several hundred calories of protein/fat along with a very small amount of sugar (cuz Ray Peat said to), and within 45 minutes I was hungry.  Now, keep in mind, a pure protein/fat breakfast – without any sugar – normally keeps me satisfied for hours.

I thought about eating for 5 hours straight.

This is what pisses me off about those who say people get fat because of “food reward and palatability” (translation: fatties get fat because they eat too much cuz food is so damn tasty).  I HATE BEING HUNGRY AND WANT NOTHING MORE THAN TO JUST BE DONE EATING ALREADY.  IF I DIDN’T GET HORRIBLY UNCOMFORTABLE I’D BE CONTENT TO NOT EAT AT ALL.

So at that point I was fed up (not literally) so I got fed up (literally).  I ate a huge meal that would keep me satisfied for the rest of the day – it included all kinds of terrible things, including mayonnaise (PUFAs!), bread (gluten!  starches!), and industrial meat (inhumane! hormones! antibiotics! PUFAs!).  Some might call it a binge.  It was less food than I used to eat back in my binge-eating days, but I guess it was a binge.  And FINALLY, I was done being hungry.  That meal lasted through the rest of the day, all night, and well into today.  I didn’t get hungry again till 1:00PM – almost 22 hours later.  It was wonderful.

Dairy – I’ve had some sort of nasal congestion or phlegmy cough for the last…oh, about 6-7 weeks.  About the same amount of time I’ve been following Peat’s dietary recommendations.  I thought I was just getting one cold after another.  But it occurred to me today that maybe the addition of lots of dairy into my diet was causing this.  I’m going to take a break from dairy for a few days and see if my forever-cough clears up.  Then I’ll add it in again to see what happens.

So what’s next for me?   I’m fairly desperate to lose the 5-or-so pounds that I’ve gained in the last 2 months since eating carbs.   As well as the 20 pounds I gained following the  Wiley Protocol.  As well as the 40 pounds I was overweight when I started this blog.  So now, I’m going back to eating what makes me feel good – mostly low carb with small amounts of potatoes here and there.  I know low-carb isn’t ideal.  But what I’m doing now – getting fatter and hoping there’s magic in milk – isn’t doing my health any favors.  No more fruit.  No more sugar.  Maybe no more dairy.  I’m going to stay away from PUFAs as much as I can.  I’m going to exercise at least 30 minutes a day to manage my blood sugar.  I’m going to count calories again, and stay at or around 1500/day.  Finally, I’m going to continue to supplement with thyroid hormone, so my broken metabolism has a shot at making it’s own steroid hormones.

It’s possible my body will be running on cortisol till the day I die.

Right now, I’m ok with that.

That’s all.

Updates

Amino acids supplements don’t seem to do a whole lot for me.  Well, actually the 5HTP seems to help with depression, but the L-Tyrosine and DL-Phenylalanine aren’t making me peppier or happier.  I haven’t tried the GABA yet…was waiting till I felt anxious.  I’ve been more depressed than anxious lately.

I started having a problematic cough at the beginning of May.  I thought it might somehow be related to iodine supplementation, since it correlated in time to other detox symptoms I was having.  Only, this never went away and I stopped supplementing like 2 weeks ago.  I finally went to my doc yesterday and got an antibiotic.  My entire body is exhausted from coughing for the last 3-4 weeks.  In Maslow’s heirarchy of health needs, my need to stop coughing far outweighs my need to have perfect gut flora.  So bring on the Z-pack and the probiotics.

Maca is not good for me.  I started taking it about a month ago because I heard in a podcast with Sara Gottfried that it can help increase sex drive and “regulate hormones”.  Well, I suppose it can help regulate hormones if you’re estrogen dominant because I learned that what it does is increase progesterone.  Well, I don’t need progesterone.  I have too damn much progesterone after doing the Wiley Protocol.  My boobs started spilling out over my bras again, and my tummy started sticking out further again.  So I stopped it and things are again returning to baseline.

I decided to go back and read my blog for clues as to why I’m struggling so much with my health.  I know being in California got me off track (stress).  So did hormone supplementation (the Wiley Protocol) (weight gain, carb cravings, increased fatigue).  So I re-read the first 2-3 months of this blog and I learned some interesting things.  Doing the Leptin Rx was the best I’ve felt in years.  No calorie counting, no snacking, just meat, fat, vegetables and lots of sleep.

My first few weeks of the Leptin Rx were interesting – within 2 weeks I had lots of energy and stopped getting hungry between meals.  I also had some detox symptoms, but those passed quickly.  My sleep became solid and predictable and my fasting blood glucose was trending down – it dipped under 100 on 2/20/12 for the first time in months.  This was about 9 days into the Leptin Rx.  On 2/20/12, later in the day, I posted about making Paleo Pizza (with cheese and an almond meal crust).  The next day I posted that my sleep had been disrupted the night before and I was noticing some problems with thermoregulation.  That day I ate something with artificial sweetener in it.  My blood sugar jumped back up and stayed up for about 2 weeks.  It came down again after 3/16/12 – after I started supplementing with Vitamin K.  So the takeaway?  Leptin Rx = good.  Almonds, cheese, and sweeteners = bad.  Vitamin K = Maybe good.

So I’m doing this again.  Leptin Rx, minus the silly dalliances that seemed to interfere.

Update on my little girl – she’s been off dairy for 2 months or so now.  She has adapted really well and only asks for milk or cheese occasionally.  (See doesn’t get it).  The weird thing on her knee is still there…so maybe not related to dairy.  I’ve thought about trying the probiotics again with her – maybe in very very small amounts.

Oh, and we’re moving again – in the next month or two.  To Wisconsin.  My husband got a job there.  I’ll be continuing to work part time from home.

I hope to stay there forever and never. ever. move. again.

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:

922352_4944117557533_1468361980_o

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.

Moving Forward

Only have a few minutes to write today…

…so here’s what’s going on.

The PA finally responded…said the delay was someone else’s fault.  Hm…a pattern emerging?  Anyway…her reaction to my labs:  “Everything is really low.”  So she’s ordering me up some hormones from a mail-order pharmacy in Indiana today.  All signs point to my cycle not starting anytime real soon.  Lately I’m a moody crazed mess right before, so chances are I’ll get the hormones in the next couple days and be able to start this month!  Very exciting.

In unrelated medical news I had a blood draw this morning – a liver profile and a lipid panel – ordered by my PCP.  I have a pap this week.  Normally I like to put those off, being as icky as they are, but after Kruse told me I was at risk for ovarian cancer I went ahead and made an appointment.  It’s been a year since my last one.  The labs were ordered because she doubts the wisdom of my choice to abandon my Lipitor.  I guess I’ll withstand the tongue lashing on Friday in order to get some insurance-paid labs done.

I’ve been reading Sex, Lies, and Menopause in my (little) free time. Actually had a half hour to read today while waiting for the lab draw.  The book is written by T.S. Wiley, the creator of the Wiley Protocol – the BHRT system upon which I’m about to embark.  She says the same things Kruse does, about artificial light and fake food causing hormonal disruption.  She focuses much more on the evolutionary benefits of women’s natural biological tendencies, which we (or course) screw up by getting jobs and waiting till we’re 40 to procreate.  It’s hard to read this without feeling guilty…I’ve obviously done everything wrong.   I felt that way after my consult with Kruse too.  Then I remind myself I am a product of my environment and my society.  Now that I know better, I’m going to do better.

Yesterday I ate my BAB at 6:30AM and then got hungry for lunch around 2:30PM – 8 hours later.  I’m going to do the same thing again today…no eating lunch till I’m hungry.  Hopefully that’ll be around 4, and then I’ll be done eating for the day after 2 meals.  Definitely an improvement.  I remember a couple months ago thinking it was great that I could go 6 hours without eating.  In my pre-Paleo life I was hungry every couple hours or so.  8 hours is awesome.

BAB today: grass fed beef, 2 eggs fried in coconut oil, hot water with a dollop of coconut oil in it.

T.S. Wiley

Ok, my computer has been acting wonky for the last 20 minutes and now I only have 5 minutes to write.  Hm…well, the most important thing going on for me is that I’m seriously looking forward to my appointment with the PA tomorrow.  Here are a couple podcasts I found in which T.S. Wiley is being interviewed – she came up with the Wiley Protocol, a system of BHRT that makes a lot of sense to me (…thanks, Darleen for the tip!).

Lights Out: Sugar, Sleep, and Survival with T.S. Wiley

Ask T.S. Wiley

Ok…out of time.  I haven’t actually listened to these yet…just found them.   Going to listen on the way to work!

Hope

So what’s been going on the last two days?

The Good (I’m really excited about the Good):

  • I found a physician’s assistant (PA) that does BHRT using the Wiley Protocol.  Her office is about 2 hours away from me  The best part about it is that she’s covered under my insurance!  I didn’t expect that.  Maybe this won’t be as expensive as I thought it would be.  The other awesome part is that I have an appointment scheduled for Tuesday.  I don’t know yet if she has a problem doing BHRT for someone who is still menstruating (Dr. K thought this might be an obstacle for me).  I do have an email in to her so I hope to hear back before I make the trek over there.  I’m glad I put a hold on the CT – if new labs are ordered I want them to be real…not swimming with estrogen from detox.  In fact, I may not have stopped soon enough.
  • Stressors are gradually exiting my life. We just got rid of a car I didn’t like (it was a gas hog) and bought a used Prius.  Yeah!  Sell house – check.  Sell car – check.  Find more time in the day to get things done – check.  Start doing yoga – hm…maybe today.  Get consulting work done – er…avoid.
  • My food journal has been really helpful.  The most useful part is the checking in an hour or two after eating to see how I’m feeling.  I didn’t used to do that, and now I’m identifying patterns I might have missed before.  Examples:  Dairy = GI issues, I’m tired after most meals, regardless of the quality of food (hello, adrenal fatigue), and green tea makes me hungry.  Hm.  Very interesting.
  • Got the Hormones webinar working over at Dr. Kruse’s site.  It’s really pretty chock full of information.  Haven’t had time to listen to the whole thing yet.  Maybe today during Baby’s nap.

The Bad

  • My blood sugar started climbing again as soon as I stopped doing CT.  It’s now over 100 again.
  • I’ve really started paying attention to the ways in which I’ve come to accommodate adrenal fatigue.  I just take a caffeine pill every day…as if that’s normal.  IT’S NOT NORMAL TO NEED STIMULANTS IN ORDER TO FUNCTION.  Oh sorry…didn’t mean to yell.  Sometimes I have to yell at myself because I can be…well…a little avoidant.  Also, the hypoglycemia that I’ve been battling for the last few years – another symptom of adrenal fatigue.  I used to just eat my way through it and now I’m trying very hard not to snack.  I think the CT may really help with this, in the long term, and I’m looking forward to getting back to it.  I also need to learn to manage stress…first of all by staying away from stressors, and secondly by dealing with it better when it’s unavoidable.  Currently I do neither.
  • I started chugging green tea (as Dr. Kruse recommended to me)…but I started feeling hungry all the time.  Like, 2-3 hours after my BAB I’m getting hungry.  I don’t  understand it.  I had the same experience when I was drinking coffee…and I’m pretty sure it was high quality coffee.  Nobody else I know gets hungry from drinking coffee and drinking tea.  Why do I?  I don’t know.  I asked Dr. Kruse on his forum why this might be and the answer was “stimulates cortisol.”  Hm…well, caffeine pills don’t do this to me, so it’s not the caffeine.  I don’t know…but I know I don’t like it.  Avoid.  I’ll probably go back to drinking water and take yet another supplement in the form of green tea extract.  What the hell…what’s one more pill.
  • Still having a weird reaction to putting a hold on CT.  Hot flashes and sweating mostly, but also crying about things I don’t normally cry about.  It is 100 degrees here so I don’t know how much that’s contributing…but my temperature regulation definitely appears to be off.  It’s like my body is saying, “I’m ready to go!  Where’s the water!”

Time to go and enjoy the 5 more minutes of me-time before Baby wakes up.

I’m really excited about Tuesday!  I hope the PA will work with me.