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  • Primal Problems

    So I started going primal close to 3 weeks ago, and saying it has been bumpy is an understatement. I'm just glad I have this much willpower

    I had a horrible first week craving carbs. And by craving carbs, I mean looking murderously envious at my sister eating a simple whole wheat grilled cheese sandwich.

    My nut consumption suddenly went up, because I was eating a lot more of it, especially at breakfast. Enter a horrible acne-breakout on my face with a vengeance. This is from someone who's never had any acne issues!

    So now I've stopped nuts, and it seems that no new acne has surfaced; I'm just waiting for my chicken pox looks to heal over :/

    I should probably say I'm one of those petite girls who didn't eat a lot (I once counted 1200 calories on a normal day) and didn't really have a big appetite.

    My problem is that with this primal eating, I'm hungry ALL the time!! Meals only last 1-2 hours before I need to eat. Yesterday, I had 2 pieces of big fat medium rare steaks with salad, and was hungry again within 2 hours. In a fit of hunger, I had some canned salmon with a homemade olive oil mayo, and soon afterwards ate half a dozen tangerines, and a couple of hours later, I just gave up and put a tsp of cocoa power and melted some 70% chocolate in a mug of milk (YUM!!) just so I don't go to bed hungry. And I'd already eaten eggs and a banana for breakfast, and snacked on cheese and fruit during the day. Let me say, this is NOT what I used to eat before going primal!!

    Last week I started exercising, doing bodyweight exercises to gain some weight and get in shape. I'm gaining a little weight and I'm trying to eat more but it's really mentally exhausting to come up with this much stuff to eat. Especially when I have to do it again in a couple hours.

    Seriously, is the hunger normal? Any suggestions to big filling light-on-meat meals that don't include nuts?

    *Off to eat some strawberries and bananas with cream.*
    My art blog.

  • #2
    lots of fruit in your list. a banana blows the carbs right out of the water.

    i would suggest meals that look like this:

    breakfast: eggs and veggies (with or without oil; depends on how you want them);
    lunch: meat and vegetables, fruit with coconut cream (berries are best);
    dinner: meat and vegetables.

    i usually have an afternoon snack of fruit and tea, because i don't have fruit at lunch. and that's not every day. I'm currently eating fruit about once a day or every other day.

    i mostly eat meat and vegetables. i put olive oil on the vegetables. if i'm eating an avocado, i don't use olive oil on the vegetables, just the avocado. i cook my eggs in butter, and if the meat is lean (ie, venison), then i add bacon fat.

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    • #3
      haha, you sound a lot like me when I first started out. I had the worst time transitioning over from a high grain diet to the primal diet. I would eat eggs and bacon and it felt like I never ate anything at all. I think my body was just waiting for the carbs to come. It took me at LEAST 3 weeks of constant ravinous hunger and exhaustion to finally switch over to efficient fat burning. I did probably gain maybe 3 pounds during that time too. But it all went away after a month or so, including the extra weight. Now I'm looking leaner and fitter.

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      • #4
        What did you eat before going Primal? Most people (and this has been my experience too) see a drop in appetite going Primal, not a steep rise like you're describing. The only thing I can guess (and it's really just a guess) is that given the influx of genuinely nutritious food your body is now trying to get as much of it to correct insufficient nutrition from the past (I can't imagine getting all the micro-nutrients you need on a 1200-kcal CW diet)

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        • #5
          I second the suggestion to focus on meat/eggs and vegetables. Cheese, nuts, and fruit are all delicious; but none are as satiating as plain old meat & veggies (with plenty of fat, of course). Try to think of them more as a condiment than as a staple foods.

          If your meals are only keeping you full for 1-2 hours, try eating bigger meals (or adding some extra fat to those meals).
          The Primal Holla! Eating fat. Getting lean. Being awesome.

          You were sick, but now you're well, and there's work to do. - Kilgore Trout

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          • #6
            If you want solid advice post:

            Age, Weight, Height
            Your weekly work out plan
            Your exact diet over a day. Weights and everything.
            If your food is fast, maybe you should fast.

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            • #7
              Especially when transitioning, fruit can be a trap. Fruit for breakfast sets even many long-time primal folks off on a Bad Day. Just the sweet taste in your mouth can distort the food signals for some people.

              Saute veggies in bacon grease instead of eating salad, and if you are hungry eat a big meal (not a fruit snack). Satiate, don't graze!

              Just my two-cents' worth
              "If man made it, don't eat it." ..Jack LaLanne
              "It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn't matter how smart you are.
              If it doesn't agree with experiment, it's wrong." ..Richard Feynman

              beachrat's new primal journal

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              • #8
                I also agree with eating large meals and lowering fruit, but I'm confused by the hunger after 2 "big fat ... steaks".

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                • #9
                  "big, fat" are subjective terms. what may be "big fat" to a person who was eating 1200 cals/day might be miniscule to someone who eats primally for a year. kwim?

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                  • #10
                    Wow. Thanks for all the replies.

                    Honestly... I'm just eating the fruit because it's handy and I'm hungry.

                    I'm 24, 4'11", and 97 lb. Yes, I'm tiny.
                    I'm working out for 30 minutes, 4 days a week. Bodyweight training, I switch between arms, core, and legs.
                    I'll take stock of what I'm eating and get back on that.

                    The appetite increase and slight weight gain, I'm very happy about. My older sister started the primal diet, and had the decreased appetite and lost weight, but she always had a healthy appetite. I on the other hand, used to eat the CW healthy diet with dessert twice a week. But I didn't eat much at all and I've had an awful appetite ever since I was a kid. I often skipped meals because I just wasn't hungry or I'd suddenly feel very tired and remember that I'd forgotten to eat. My doctor last year suggested I try and gain some weight. Her advice was to try and eat regularly big meals. So I spent 3 months pigging out (or at least trying hard to), gained about 4-5 lbs and lost them in a few weeks once I stopped trying so hard.

                    I'll try to follow the general advice of eating less fruit, more meat/veggies/fat. Now that I think on it, I probably do need to increase my portions. I think meal sizes in my head are still based on my old small appetite.
                    My art blog.

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                    • #11
                      Why do you want your meals to be light on meat?
                      It sounds like you had a lot of meat that day, until I start realizing you didn't tell us how much of any of it you ate. You had: eggs, 2 pieces of steak and some canned salmon. How much of each? Can you estimate the number of ounces, count the number of eggs and/or tell us how much of that canned salmon you had?

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                      • #12
                        Yeah, that's true. Me, I think of a 16-22oz rib-eye or porterhouse. I need my dad to visit again, that's the only way I can afford the premium steaks

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by melodious View Post
                          Why do you want your meals to be light on meat?
                          It sounds like you had a lot of meat that day, until I start realizing you didn't tell us how much of any of it you ate. You had: eggs, 2 pieces of steak and some canned salmon. How much of each? Can you estimate the number of ounces, count the number of eggs and/or tell us how much of that canned salmon you had?
                          I had 2 eggs fried in butter, the salmon was the same as a regular tuna can. The steak... hmm... I have no clue as to the weight (my dad made those) but each was about 1/2" thick and around 5"x3".

                          Speaking of which, how many eggs are you allowed to have per day. I'd like to eat more, but I read something somewhere once that too many eggs can be bad for you. Any info on that?
                          My art blog.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Wafaa View Post
                            Speaking of which, how many eggs are you allowed to have per day. I'd like to eat more, but I read something somewhere once that too many eggs can be bad for you. Any info on that?
                            I do not think there is a limit. I often eat 6+ in a day, though there are days I have none. I have read a couple of posts where people have become intollerent of eggs and then they had to stop eating them but it is not common (at least from my reading here). If you are one who counts calories (I don't) then keep their calorie content in mind, but beyond that it seems you can eat as many as you want.

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                            • #15
                              4 eggs a day is my regular amount, but I've had more. Eggs do have some sort of anti-nutrient in the white, but it's neutralized by cooking -- that could be driving the intolerance that canio6 mentioned. Just cook the whites (I like raw yolks and firm whites myself) and you're good to go.

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