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  • New and confused

    This is day 7 of my going gluten free and day 3 of slowly changing over to carb, dairy, and sugar free. I have about 40 lbs to lose and have been diagnosed with PCOS and insulin resistance. This is a huge change for me, but so far I love it!

    I recently found out I have a gluten intolerance and have been about a week off of all gluten products. It was suggested that I try a Paleo diet and introduce grains back into my diet 1 at a time to see what else I have issues with. I was in no way interested in going that "extreme" and then I stumbled, mostly by accident, on this site and slowly convinced myself to try it. I'm no longer interested in just trying it, I'm going to do it! The problem I'm having, and this may be a result of growing up thinking you have to count calories, is I have no idea if I'm eating correctly. How do I know how much fat I need to eat? I know I need to stay under 150g of carbs, but the fat/protein part I'm having a hard time figuring it all out.

    Also, I'm dealing with a major case of carb flu and have serious foggy brain. I expected that because my whole life has been centered around carbs. I have oral allergy syndrome and am not able to eat any raw vegetables or fruits. I've since been told that going on a paleo/primal diet the OAS might go away /dance! What I'm finding is the hunger feeling never goes away. I feel hungry all the time, which may be a sign I'm not getting enough water, but even on days when I am fully hydrated I still feel hungry. I'm ignoring the hungry feeling for now, hoping it will go away, but some days it's all I can do to not raid the pantry and eat everything in sight! Is this normal? When should I expect this to feel like a normal human and not some wild animal that wants to eat everything?

    Also, I should add that I tracked my calories today and I've only consume about 1000 calories, which seems like no where near enough. Doesn't eating below 1200 calories put my body into starvation mode? I'm still trying to figure out how this all works... My carb intake was 72g, fats 44g and protein 74g. I'm 5'3 and 160 lbs (6 months post pregnancy so I have a pretty high percent of body fat). Should I be eating more protein or possibly more fat?
    Last edited by ErinF; 10-12-2011, 08:45 PM.

  • #2
    Hi Erin. Welcome!

    You really need to stay under 100 grams of carbs, maybe even less. Eat enough protein and fat to feel satisfied. In the case of fat, especially, you can eat until your body says "No more today!"
    Ancestral Health Info

    I design websites and blogs for a living. If you would like a blog or website designed by someone who understands Primal, see my web page.

    Primal Blueprint Explorer My blog for people who are not into the Grok thing. Since starting the blog, I have moved close to being Archevore instead of Primal. But Mark's Daily Apple is still the best source of information about living an ancestral lifestyle.

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    • #3
      I'm staying under 100 grams of carbs for sure, and as far as my body saying no more, lol I don't think it has a shut off valve when it comes to fats. I guess I'll try to add more fat and veggies to my diet today to see if I can get my calories above 1200.

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      • #4
        Hi Erin, there are so many knowledgeable people on this board that will give you good advice. I just wanted to comment on the carb flu. I started eating Primal 3 weeks ago. The first week I felt great and then I got carb flu the second week. It wasn't the worst I've ever felt but it wasn't good either. Now I'm in my 3rd week and feeling good again so hang in there, it really does go away.

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        • #5
          Just one day of plugging everything I ate into fitday helped me to see how food translates to meaningful numbers. Not calories, but carbs, protein and fat. When beginning, you are not really going to need a shut-off valve when it comes to fats. You maybe never will. Make sure the fats you are eating are coming from good sources--get those Omega 3s.

          Have you read The Primal Blueprint?

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          • #6
            I want to read it, but we don't have it here in our library and my husband just changed jobs and for a while we're going to be living on a tighter budget than normal so I have to wait to buy it. I've been using myfitnesspal which does break down the #'s into grams of fat, protein, carbs, etc. I've been trying to get in more omega 3's and am researching fish oil pills so I can supplement. So there is no rule on how much fat I can eat? It's hard to change my thinking from fat is bad to fat is good, so having no limit on good fats is just hard for my brain to process :P

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            • #7
              Originally posted by ErinF View Post
              I want to read it, but we don't have it here in our library and my husband just changed jobs and for a while we're going to be living on a tighter budget than normal so I have to wait to buy it. I've been using myfitnesspal which does break down the #'s into grams of fat, protein, carbs, etc. I've been trying to get in more omega 3's and am researching fish oil pills so I can supplement. So there is no rule on how much fat I can eat? It's hard to change my thinking from fat is bad to fat is good, so having no limit on good fats is just hard for my brain to process :P
              Girl, I have been at this for months, and I still have a hard time eating enough fat. It helps to think of it as fuel, but still...

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              • #8
                Originally posted by ErinF View Post
                So there is no rule on how much fat I can eat? It's hard to change my thinking from fat is bad to fat is good, so having no limit on good fats is just hard for my brain to process :P
                You might be surprised how quickly this can change, I know I was. Do you like bacon? Start there...bacon fat and butter - cook veggies in it and you will start squashing down the hunger pangs. Water is good for quenching thirst, not hunger. Welcome here and glad you found this wonderful resource!

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                • #9
                  hi Erin!

                  Here's just my two cents worth of advice as you start on your primal journey.

                  My advice would be to not drive yourself nuts trying to do everything perfectly all at once. I'd suggest starting with 1- get enough sleep, 2- eliminate grains, 3- eliminate sugars (fructose mostly). Don't stress about omega 6s and calorie counting or is all your meat grass fed, and certainly don't delve into stuff like intermittent fasting, carb cycling etc. If you do just those 3 things you are on a good start. It's probably helpful to run thought your kitchen / pantry and toss out the junk so you won't be tempted. Eat until you are full 3 times a day without snacks.

                  Once you have the basics, which lets face it, when you are starting out just eliminating grains and sugar is no small task. Once you have acclimated to that you can start thinking about honing it in, start paying attention to what fats you use (go buy that gallon drum of Tropical Traditions coconut oil) and then maybe start doing the whole fish oil thing. Maybe you'll want to start rock climbing or join a gym.

                  But again, take it slow and start with the basics. If you do nothing other than eliminate wheat flour and corn syrup, you are 90% of the way there.
                  Apathy is tyranny's greatest ally.

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                  • #10
                    Erin,

                    Congrats on taking the first step. I didn't see that you mentioned your activity level. Can you give me an idea of what you do, if anything, for exercise?

                    Also keep in mind your caloric needs are different/higher if you are nursing your baby, CONGRATS on that too.

                    Have you read any of the Paleo books? There is a wealth of knowledge in them. You seem to be on the right track and I think when you are starting out, you need to manage your caloric intake and macro break down until you can eyeball it. The weight will come of and you will be a happy little lady. Then when you are hooked, and want to get to optimal bodyfat levels, you will need to go back to the measuring again.

                    While I agree that there are a ton of very smart people on this board, there are some not so smart people making declaritives. If you start by reading some of the literature, you can make your own choices and experiment.

                    I would recomend you eat your body weight in protein if active, and about 75% of your body weight if not. Your carb intake should be indicative of your activity levels as well and my suggestions is that you limit it to 10% of your total caloric intake. The remaining calories should come fat.

                    I did the quick math and your BMR is roughly 1600. This is your minimum caloric intake, eating under that would is not advised.

                    Protein - 120 grams ......30%
                    Carbs - 40 grams..........10%
                    Fat - 107 grams...........60%

                    You will have to experiment and give it some time. My assesment is not gospel but I think it is a fair starting poing for you.

                    Good Luck and go well!

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                    • #11
                      I was typing as KestrelSF was and I agree with what he says as well. You will see results giving up the grains and sugar, but if you've done that, go ahead and make the right food choices in the right portion as well.

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                      • #12
                        Thanks everyone, that is so helpful! My activity level is about average. I have a 20 month old and a 6 month old so I'm always running around the house with them. Unfortunately getting enough sleep is not something I can fix right now, the baby wakes up once or twice most nights, and while she goes right back to sleep and I don't have to get out of bed, it still wakes me up and breaks up my sleep cycle. I don't have a hard time eliminating sugar, because I've never had a sweet tooth. I usually go for salty snacks if I'm craving something. I've also not liked bread all that much either, so eliminating wheat has been super easy. The problem for me has been eliminating all dairy, or at least most dairy (I still use butter, cream and milk on occasion). I bought coconut oil and have been cooking with that. I don't usually buy bacon, but I love it so I wouldn't mind adding that to my grocery list.

                        I plan on buying grass fed meat, but won't be able to do that until my husband is out of training and we have more $ coming in. Our eggs come from grass fed chickens and the butter I use comes from grass fed cows. I wish I could just throw out all the junk in my pantry, but my husband isn't fully on board with this diet yet and I need some easy snacks for the kids when I'm exhausted. Once my husband is on board 100% it will be easier to get rid of the junk. Most of it is wheat based which I know I can't have and am not tempted to eat because of the horrible side affects.

                        Right my exercise looks like this:
                        All week - chase around the little ones, and go on nightly walks with my husband for 30 - 60 mins.
                        Twice a week I go on shopping trips and walk around the store/mall pushing the kids in a stroller/shopping cart for at least 30 mins
                        I do 20 minutes of sprints once a week
                        and I'm going to start following the exercise routine that came in the ebook when I signed up for the newsletter. (2 weight training sessions a week).

                        Thanks for all your help, now that things have been cleared up I'll have a easier time with this transition. I think part of my problem is I have the "carb flu" and the foggy brain and confusion is hitting me pretty hard.

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                        • #13
                          How to Eat According to the Primal Blueprint | Mark's Daily Apple

                          I will tell you that my husband doesn't even know he is on this plan. When he eats what I make/buy for home he is primal. I have no control over his lunches, but other than that he is primal.

                          I might have missed it, but did you say you have a problem with dairy? It is a lot to stop everything all at once.

                          Also, since you are trying to lose weight (and this will be controversial, so take it however you want I am just giving you personal experience here) I would tell you that at some point the calories are going to matter. What the calories are (ie the macronutrients) are super important, but at some point the total calories will matter-for weight loss.

                          for the carb flu, I found it went away (finally) when I was being meticulous about getting all of my protein, mine lasted for months. I had been vegetarian so getting used to eating enough meat,etc took some time.

                          good luck
                          Chris
                          "Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass. It is about learning to dance in the rain."
                          Unknown

                          My journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread36279.html

                          My "Program": doing my version of a 4:3 - 3 day fast diet with real food every day, with a little twist of anti-inflammatory mixed in.

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                          • #14
                            I'll have to try that with the protein, I was eating vegetarian before coming over to this diet. I don't think I could deal with months of carb flu! I know my husband will switch over to this diet, especially since in the week I've been doing this I've lost close to 5 lbs versus only 1/2 pound weekly for WEEKS with heavy exercising. Right now he's not on board because he'd have to give up his precious salsa and chips. He spends weeks making home made salsa and bottling it, so I really doubt he'll ever give that up :P

                            I think I have a slight intolerance or allergy (I can't remember the difference) to casein, but I can still eat cheese, butter and on rare occasion heavy cream. I have some scary symptoms pop up after eating dairy so I have to really be careful.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by ErinF View Post
                              Right now he's not on board because he'd have to give up his precious salsa and chips. He spends weeks making home made salsa and bottling it, so I really doubt he'll ever give that up :P
                              Salsa is very, very good for you. Honeslty, I have yet to give up my salsa and chips. I am a Mexican, so I feel like just giving up fresh, hot homemade flour tortillas is plenty. I don't eat the chips every day. They are my cheat, and I savor every crunchy scoop. Tip: get some corn tortillas and fry them in coconut oil.

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