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Chocoholic Goes Primal

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  • Chocoholic Goes Primal

    The skinny girls that I work with (Iím tempted to say skinny bitches, but that would be unfair as my only resentment towards them is the fact that they are thin and I am not) eat pop tarts and sugary cereals and toast for breakfast. I eat eggs with spinach. They eat pasta and pizza and peanut butter & jelly sandwiches for lunch. I eat chicken with kale. And yet I weigh more than they do when they are nine months pregnant and I am not.

    Admittedly, when I do eat unhealthy foods, I go all out. I donít just eat half the gluten free pizza, I eat the whole entire thing. Myself. Alone. No sharing, no slices left on the plate. When Boyfriend and I first moved in together, in the days when I was still eating gluten and suffering the consequences, we would regularly buy packages of cookie dough, bake it, and eat every one of those cookies in a single night.

    We donít eat that way anymore, but it seems like everything adds the pounds to my 5í2Ē frame and practically nothing takes them off. There was a brief, golden period eight years ago when I achieved my adult goal weight of 120 pounds by following the Candida diet, which is basically a stricter version of Primal. At the time I was motivated by health issues, but the weight loss was an extremely welcome side effect. The twenty pounds I lost climbed back on, however, when I returned to the Standard American Diet, and thirty more joined them thanks in part to Boyfriendís and my shared cookie habit.

    Every New Yearís I vow to lose the weight and fit back into the skinny clothes that haunt the back of my closet, and ever December I mourn the lost opportunities to refuse those French fries or pieces of Seeís candy.

    But this year, Iím ready. Iím sick of feeling sick and having no energy. Iím sick of hiding when cameras are pulled out and Iím sick of despising clothes shopping because I hate how everything fits. (Iíd rather just despise it because clothes shopping sucks.) I am ready to commit to my long term health by foregoing the short term pleasure of pizza or chocolate or even sushi. Give me the fish, hold the rice, and here we go.

  • #2
    Hi Token Chick and welcome,

    That's great that you've made the commitment, but remember this is a lifestyle change that we should enjoy making and not forcing a torture test on ourselves.

    Here's what I mean; you can still enjoy pizza, chocolate and sushi... I do, I just do it smarter now.

    Example 1: Primal Pizza- THIS IS AWESOME!

    Example 2: I love this 85% dark chocolate, just focus on the higher % dark.

    Example 3: I still get sushi, just go with the sashimi over the rolls.

    Start thinking of things you enjoy eating and try to find a paleo/primal version. You're more apt to stick with that for a lifetime than avoiding all your favorites... just my .02!
    Self-realization. I was thinking of the immortal words of Socrates, who said, "... I drank what?"


    • #3
      ELCO14 - I appreciate your feedback! I completely agree with you - this is a new way of life and a chance to feel healthy and find the body I know is under the blubber I think for the first time in my life, those concerns are outweighing the immediate gratification of some of the junk foods I would have sought out in the past.


      • #4
        The Canary in the Coal Mine

        A friend bought me the book ďWheat BellyĒ for Christmas. I read the first chapter at the gym last night (yes, I worked out!) and was immediately irritated by Dr. Davisí claim that his patients started dropping multiple pounds a week just by eliminating wheat from their diets. I stopped eating gluten-containing grains over two years ago and the pounds have stubbornly remained.

        Once I overcame my annoyance, (thanks in part to those lovely exercise endorphins) I realized that the results he was seeing go perfectly with my Canary in the Coal Mine theory of weight as it relates to the SAD. Those of use who are overweight, despite healthy eating habits, are like the canaries in the coal mines; our visible weight issues are the early warning signs of a diet that will kill you.

        The people who can stay skinny on the SAD are at one end of the spectrum Ė they may still be unhealthy, but it manifests for them in other, less immediately visible ways. The people in the middle of the spectrum are the ones who can eliminate wheat and still lose weight, even though theyíre still eating sugar and other grains. And then there are those of us who have to cut out all grains and sugars to see a difference. Rather than blaming overweight people for failing to overcome food addictions, American society should thank us for being the visible reminders that even the packaged foods claiming to be ďhealthyĒ that dominate the shelves of our grocery stores are not what our bodies evolved to digest.

        I started the PB on January 2nd (Iíd intended to start January 1st, but had a slip up.) I have only lost a few pounds so far, but am already seeing a huge difference in my mood. The anxiety and depression Iíve been battling on and off forever are both lessening. My mind feels clearer and I donít crash in the afternoons. Itís amazing to me that I can see such a difference in only a few weeks and that so many people I know are more willing to pop pills and be miserable than to take so simple a step as changing the way they eat.


        • #5
          Originally posted by Token Chick View Post
          A friend bought me the book “Wheat Belly” for Christmas. I read the first chapter at the gym last night (yes, I worked out!) and was immediately irritated by Dr. Davis’ claim that his patients started dropping multiple pounds a week just by eliminating wheat from their diets. I stopped eating gluten-containing grains over two years ago and the pounds have stubbornly remained.
          That made me NUTS! I eliminated wheat and my weight did not drop off like that at all, and I had plenty to lose. It dribbles at a rate of less than one pound per week. (But at least it is going.)


          • #6
            Hooray for Primal shorties! ;-)
            I lose really slowly (but if you've lost a couple of pounds already, you're doing great), but I did notice that eliminating sugar improved my moods and energy levels. I like your committment! have fun with PB and experiment until you find what works for you. Then your body will start to change and you'll find you can't fit an entire gluten-free pizza in your body.
            Cooking Primal with Otter - Journal
            Otter's (Defunct) Primal Log
            "Not baked goods, Professor, baked bads!" ~ The Tick


            • #7
              Boyfriend called me one day a few years ago with a riddle. "I bought something today that will make you angry and depressed."

              It didn't take me two seconds to figure it out. "A scale." He was justifiably impressed.

              But I have to confess – I weigh myself every day, first thing in the morning. I know you’re not supposed to do that. I know your weight fluctuates and it’s best to weigh once a week. But every morning, just before I jump into the shower, I can’t help but pull out the damn scale and see if my weight has changed.

              Last year, I kept gaining and losing in the same five pound range. If I had a good week (I was basically eating Primal without 100% commitment) and had lost a few pounds, I would treat myself on the weekend. Monday morning, I’d have regained the few pounds I lost the week before. I certainly hadn’t consumed an additional 7,000 calories that would justify the gain, but my body doesn’t react well to sugar or grains, so any consumption seems to bump my weight up. If I’d had a bad week and didn’t lose, I’d be depressed and would treat myself anyway because obviously dieting didn’t make a difference either way.

              This morning my weight was up two pounds from yesterday. TWO POUNDS. I have basically not lost anything since going Primal three weeks ago. I’m not letting the scale give me permission to cheat, but am trying to use weight fluctuations determine what’s working, or, as seems to be more common, what’s not working.

              I have been hitting the dark chocolate a little hard lately, so I’m going cold turkey until I start seeing a downward trend. I also made Primal pizza two nights ago and had an allergic reaction to the almond flour. My heart rate went way up right after eating it, so I do wonder if my body is reacting to that. I’ve suspected that I have nut allergies, but that was a fairly blatant confirmation. So here we go again – Monday morning, up two pounds without weekend cheating. I just hope that the scale is more forgiving next Monday.


              • #8
                Ug. It has been a rough couple of weeks. The scale has not been moving, despite near perfect compliance to the food guidelines. I have been constantly questioning my consumption - am I eating too much dairy (mostly whipping cream and a little cheese), am I not eating enough fat, am I eating too much chocolate (only 85% dark.) Worse than the stalled weight, though, is the exhaustion. Every morning I wake up tired, I slog through the day, but at night I can't sleep.

                Finally I took a step back and realized if I'm eating this well and feeling this crappy, there must be something else going on. I started reading some of the other forum content, and have now decided that I have adrenal fatigue. It explains the constant feeling that I'm on the verge of getting the flu, the stalled weight, the tiredness. It's funny when you try to research something like that though - half the sites say it doesn't exist, and the other half are trying to sell you a supplement to cure it. I think the stress I went through last year probably set it off, and then the extreme low carb I've been doing since starting the PB may have brought it to the forefront.

                I've always been a big believer in alternative medicine, so I bought some adrenal support supplements and am going to seek treatment with a natural healer. I'm also going to boost my carb consumption - mostly with sweet potatoes, as those seem to be the best carb option out there.

                Interestingly, I took one dose of the supplement last night and the scale was down this morning for the first time in weeks. I also ate fries on Friday night - not the good carbs I'm going to eat going forward, but I had decided I would eat something carb-y and when we went out, that was the best option. I think my body prefers potatoes, even fried, to any grains. But I wonder if the carb boost and the supplement helped nudge the scale in the right direction.

                Mostly I hope I can break out of this tired funk. After work I've been too tired to go to the gym, and the last two weekends I've just laid low and relaxed. Not that that's a hardship for me, as I always have something I'm reading and a stack of movies to watch, but the idea of pursing health, needless to say, is actually feeling healthy.


                • #9
                  I think that Primal has already changed my perspective on food, even if the scale isn't reflecting it. Last night, I "cheated" and had, for dessert, some dates and peanuts. Dates are probably too high in sugar and I know that peanuts are a legume and therefore should not be consumed. To contrast my wild binge, Boyfriend sat on the other end of the couch eating peanut M&Ms. Not only was I completely uninterested in his dessert, I was kind of grossed out by it.

                  Today, my office mate had pizza for lunch. I had Primal meat loaf, a very small helping of sweet potatoes, and some greens with olive oil. The smell of her pizza actually made me a little sick. Of course I'm still consuming some dairy (high quality cheese and cream for tea) and 85% dark chocolate. But the rest of the stuff I've given up doesn't seem to interest me that much. My only crazy craving in the last few weeks has been for Krispy Kremes, which I wouldn't eat even off Primal, since they are gluten-y and make my stomach very angry.


                  • #10
                    About a year and a half ago I got a series of traditional lab tests done. My blood sugar and cholesterol were both high - 106 for the sugar (it should be under 100) and my cholesterol was 285 (it should be under 200). I told my doctor I wanted to use diet and supplements to control them and said I would come back in six months for a follow up. I never followed up. I was scared to go back and see no change and I was scared that they would insist on putting me on drugs that I personally consider worse than the numbers.

                    Having been Primal for a month and needing to see my doctor about other issues anyway, I decided to have my labs redone. I saw the results this morning and nearly had a heart attack. My cholesterol has jumped to 300! Once I calmed down, I took a closer look at my numbers. My HDL is great at 67. My triglycerides have dropped from 144 last time to 61. But my LDL number alone is more than your total cholesterol should be according to my doctor! Thanks to this site and a few others, I am now not as concerned about the total number and know that the LDL is determined using a calculation that is invalid if your triglycerides are under 100, as mine are.

                    Being a geeky analyst, I spent the morning preparing a spreadsheet that illustrates the overall improvement in my numbers and the flaws in the LDL calculation. I will take those with me to my appointment and hope that my doctor is receptive. Ironically, I work for a Western health care organization, but I much prefer the Eastern approach that takes into account all the systems and not just a few semi-meaningless numbers.


                    • #11
                      Just wanted to say hi! I'm a huge fan of dark chocolate also (and of krispy cremes, and peanut M-n-Ms for that matter [sigh]). I would have freaked out over that cholesterol number also, glad you were able to find information to put it in context!
                      44 year-old chick, 5'8"-ish, 2/6/12 Start Weight: 189.2
                      My boopy stuff: MDA journal | Daily Plate


                      • #12
                        Boppy - love the name! What's your favorite dark chocolate bar? I've been experimenting with a few - my favorite is absolutely Trader Joe's Dark Lover's bar.