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Feedback Needed (3 months into primal)

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  • Feedback Needed (3 months into primal)

    I've been working on going primal now for a few months and feel it's time to get some feedback on the changes. Here's generally what I eat in a week:

    2-3 avocados
    1/4 lb lamb or beef liver
    1/2 lb lean ground beef
    2 large chicken breasts or thighs with skin
    2 lbs pork or beef strips (little fat if any)
    1 - 2 servings salmon
    2 packages bacon (daily breakfast)
    8 - 12 eggs
    3-4 pints heavy cream
    5 - 7 oz gouda or goat cheese
    5 - 6 bananas
    3 - 4 cups berries
    1 - 2 green & black chocolate bars
    1 sweet potato (or 1/2 sweet potato plus 1/3 c white rice) daily
    small handful almonds daily
    cabbage, greens, tomatoes, cukes, bell peppers, carrots daily
    coconut oil for cooking and salads
    EVOO for salads
    kombucha
    occassional TBSP plain yogurt

    My goal is to get around 150g carbs each day, hence the sweet potatoes and bananas, although chocolate and berries add to that I'm sure. I believe according to my lean body mass that my protein requirements are around 50g. I'm 5'6" and 120lbs. My only exercise is walking right now.

    What I'd like to know is, does my consumption of any of these foods seem excessive? Does the overall balance of proteins/carbs/fats seem good to you? Am I too heavy on the saturated fats, if that's possible?

  • #2
    There's no way anyone can give you an answer until they know at least

    age
    gender
    goals
    medical condition
    activity level
    progress so far

    about you, and preferably also

    sleep
    stress
    medications
    alcohol/other drug use

    Then maybe we can give an informed opinion.
    Lifting Journal

    Comment


    • #3
      Not sure what you are trying to do--lose weight, gain, maintain? I'm a 5'11, 175lbs guy and I'd say overall you are eating twice what I eat in a week. But, everything on that list looks primal enough. If you are meeting your goals--good job! About the only thing I see is 5-6 bananas, most PB people seem to try to limit sugary fruit to 1-2 per week. If you are trying to lose, I see a lot of things you could drop or limit (chocolate, cream, berries, cheese, cream).

      Comment


      • #4
        Hey, thanks to you both, I appreciate the responses. And thanks for the tip on the bananas. I am in my 40s, female, never been overweight and scared to get any thinner actually. My exercise is a 45 minute daily walk. I went to a naturopath for fatigue, IBS, and basically losing all of my muscle tone. Ironically, overall, I am healthy and all my tests for vitamins and hormones are good, except that my naturopath told me I am insulin resistant. He told me to cut the grains and carbs and eat more meats/fats/veggies. That's how I found PB. My fatigue is nearly gone now, my IBS is under control, doesn't even bother me unless I drink alcohol, and I would eventually like to gain back some muscle once I get this routine diet down. I do wish I had more energy to exercise with heavy weights.

        When I cut the grains I lost too much weight, hence all the fatty foods I found keeping me steady now. I worry about too much protein and fat, though. I wonder if it is safe to eat avocados every day, how much cream is too much, and if coconut is necessarily healthier than dairy. I sleep like a rock 8-9 hours. Stress level is low/normal. Awaiting cortisol test results. I drink probably a 6 pack of beer per month. My only meds are asthma and ibuprofen. I can't believe I eat twice what otzi eats, how can that be?
        Last edited by Goldstar; 09-21-2011, 03:46 PM.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Goldstar View Post
          Hey, thanks to you both, I appreciate the responses. And thanks for the tip on the bananas. I am in my 40s, female, never been overweight and scared to get any thinner actually. My exercise is a 45 minute daily walk. I went to a naturopath for fatigue, IBS, and basically losing all of my muscle tone. Ironically, overall, I am healthy and all my tests for vitamins and hormones are good, except that my naturopath told me I am insulin resistant. He told me to cut the grains and carbs and eat more meats/fats/veggies. That's how I found PB. My fatigue is nearly gone now, my IBS is under control, doesn't even bother me unless I drink alcohol, and I would eventually like to gain back some muscle once I get this routine diet down. I do wish I had more energy to exercise with heavy weights.

          When I cut the grains I lost too much weight, hence all the fatty foods I found keeping me steady now. I worry about too much protein and fat, though. I wonder if it is safe to eat avocados every day, how much cream is too much, and if coconut is necessarily healthier than dairy. I sleep like a rock 8-9 hours. Stress level is low/normal. Awaiting cortisol test results. I drink probably a 6 pack of beer per month. My only meds are asthma and ibuprofen. I can't believe I eat twice what otzi eats, how can that be?
          It can be because you are trying to gain/maintain weight. That makes a huge difference.

          All the fats you listed are tremendous for you!
          Lifting Journal

          Comment


          • #6
            I eat more protein than that - I am 5'7" and 120lbs and I eat around 80-100g of protein a day - looks like your protein is a little on the low side. And you may eat twice what some men eat - we really all have different metabolisms and it is amazing how much some people can eat and not gain weight. I would watch the avocados, they are high in omega 6 PUFAs. Why not track your food intake in a program for a day or 2 and see how it looks regarding what calories you are getting, your macronutrient ratios, and your vitamin and mineral intake?

            I generally end up (while maintaining) at around 1/3 of my calories from each of carbs, fat and protein. I eat a fair bit of fruit - the sugars in fruit seem to suit me better than the starches in sweet potatoes, etc.

            We are each individual in what twist on paleo works for us. Lots of people here are very low carb, but it is not the only way to go, especially if you are maintaining, or close to it.
            Karin

            A joyful heart is good medicine

            He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose. - Jim Elliot

            Mmmmm. Real food is good.

            My Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread29685.html

            Comment


            • #7
              Karin, I actually would prefer not to be very low carb. Good idea about tracking my meals for a few days. I'm intrigued, what types/how much fruit do you eat? And what do you mean by you do better with fruit sugars than starches? Is it an energy or digestion thing? Do you have IR, too? Thanks for the input.

              Would fresh coconut meat be a good substitute for avocado?

              Comment


              • #8
                Fresh coconut meat would be an awesome substitute for avocados.

                I have digestive issues, and end up with the runs if I just look at the wrong foods, lol. My tummy seems happier with fruit, as long as I don't overdo having too much at any one time (like not the 1/2 a cantaloupe at one time I tried a few weeks ago - not a good idea). I also feel better on the fruit carbs (sugar rather than starch) - my energy is better and I feel "lighter" I guess would be the best word. I am taking in prolly around 150g of carbs a day now, mostly in fruit. There is a paleo guy named Ray Peat, whose ideas I have been reading lately, and his take on paleo is what I have naturally fallen into, which is high red meat and milk products, and fruit - some veggies, but avoid ones that have toxic qualities for the most part (not many leafy greens). I dunno if it would work for everyone, but it is for me. The one concession I make is I use goat milk rather than cows, because I have big tummy issues with cows milk and goats milk doesn't upset my stomach at all.
                Karin

                A joyful heart is good medicine

                He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose. - Jim Elliot

                Mmmmm. Real food is good.

                My Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread29685.html

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Goldstar View Post
                  I can't believe I eat twice what otzi eats, how can that be?
                  I IF from 6pm til noon, don't snack. Rarely eat cheese, nuts, or fruit.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I would definitely vote for increasing your protein. Depending on your body comp, 115lb is probably the minimum you could go for a healthy lean body mass (as in, structure and minimal musculature included, but not the the point of wasting away). I base this off of me being the same height, and being terribly thin (around 112-115lbs) throughout high school.

                    But overall, if you're feeling good, why are you worried? Is there something you're looking to improve? You said you're worried about getting thinner, but are you actually getting thinner now, and are you looking to gain weight?
                    Depression Lies

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I wouldn't worry about the bananas at all (I'm a pro-real-carb paleo girl myself, and think we each have unique needs and some of us do better staying at moderate carb levels.) *You* are not trying to lose weight so it really should not be an issue staying in the maintenance range (100-150g carbs a day), or even going a bit above that depending on activity levels etc. The forum sways more towards low/very low carb than moderate carb, in large part b/c so many folks are dealing w/ metabolic issues and trying to lose weight. Sweet potatoes, bananas, berries and even white rice are all pretty 'primal' carb sources which *you* may need in order to function optimally due to your weight, metabolism, etc. (We are all so different!)

                      I think if you feel awesome, your health is good, sleep is good, weight is good, etc., that's what really matters! IMO, you are NOT taking in too much sat. fat, and there are many who would say of all the fats, (mono, PUFAs, and sat.,) saturated is the kind you want the MOST of. You may find the info on The Perfect Health Diet site helpful--their recommendations seem very in line w/ what is working for you currently.
                      My Before/After Pics
                      Are you new here? Be sure to check these links FIRST, before reading anything on the forum! Succeed & PB 101

                      "I am a work in progress." -Ani DiFranco

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by JKC View Post
                        I also feel better on the fruit carbs (sugar rather than starch) - my energy is better and I feel "lighter" I guess would be the best word. I am taking in prolly around 150g of carbs a day now, mostly in fruit. There is a paleo guy named Ray Peat, whose ideas I have been reading lately, and his take on paleo is what I have naturally fallen into, which is high red meat and milk products, and fruit - some veggies, but avoid ones that have toxic qualities for the most part (not many leafy greens). I dunno if it would work for everyone, but it is for me. The one concession I make is I use goat milk rather than cows, because I have big tummy issues with cows milk and goats milk doesn't upset my stomach at all.
                        Interesting Karin! I've gotta look into that--I've read something by Ray Peat before. Maybe Stabby linked to him once? I personally feel much better w/ fruit sugars in place of starches (although I cannot do any dairy...) and also eat in the maintenance range for carbs, on average. I absolutely know what you mean by feeling 'lighter' when avoiding starches. Will be googling more on that today!

                        And Goldstar, starches may work GREAT for you, so don't cut them b/c some of us w/ gut issues (etc) feel better w/out them. From my reading here, it seems that more forumers prefer starch over fruit (in large part b/c of the lack of fructose) as a primal carb source when needed. See that Perfect Health Diet link I shared for more on a pro-starch argument. It's really all about figuring out what works best *for you*. (In general from reading folks n=1 reports, it also seems those who tend towards being 'too' thin naturally may do better w/ added starches. YMMV. )

                        For a great thread on starchy carb sources which may be useful, check out this: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread19263.html
                        My Before/After Pics
                        Are you new here? Be sure to check these links FIRST, before reading anything on the forum! Succeed & PB 101

                        "I am a work in progress." -Ani DiFranco

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by FairyRae View Post
                          *You* are not trying to lose weight so it really should not be an issue staying in the maintenance range (100-150g carbs a day), or even going a bit above that depending on activity levels etc. The forum sways more towards low/very low carb than moderate carb, in large part b/c so many folks are dealing w/ metabolic issues and trying to lose weight.

                          I think if you feel awesome, your health is good, sleep is good, weight is good, etc., that's what really matters! IMO, you are NOT taking in too much sat. fat, and there are many who would say of all the fats, (mono, PUFAs, and sat.,) saturated is the kind you want the MOST of.
                          FairyRae, it has taken me a while to realize that many members here are working on weight loss. I was confused about whether to go low carb or moderate carb based on the low carb discussions here so I appreciate you pointing that out. Hooray, I just finished reading The Perfect Health Diet book! I decided to go for the 100-150g carbs per day because of it. What I haven't decided on is the best carbs for me.

                          There's not much info I can find regarding carbs for people who are IR, working at maintaining weight, and want to go primal/paleo. It seems like the advice is usually based on people with good metabolisms. I agree with you gals that fruit feels better than starches, but since I have no idea how I got to be insulin resistant I've been leary of it. Sweet potatoes feel heavy and filling, white rice makes me hungrier, bananas make me a little bloated. I do feel I could do better in this area. Since there is so much conflicting advice regarding fruit and IR I have no idea what to do. Would love to know what fruits you and Karin have chosen as staples? I think you are both very sweet and I appreciate your help.

                          Karin, I'm envious. I absolutely love goat milk. I couldn't do cow milk either and then I got hooked on goat milk. Unfortunately, it made my arthritis flare and my cravings for it kept getting stronger, so I quit and switched to cows cream (because I can't get goat cream.) It's weird how we cannot tolerate cow milk, but we can tolerate cream and butter.

                          namelesswonder, not trying to lose or gain, just maintain and get my ratios correct and avoid causing new health problems. I'm not good with ratios. I thought if I made a list of what I eat, any glaring ratio problems would stand out.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            The fruits I stick with most are oranges, orange juice, berries, grapes and melons. Some fruits tend to be higher in polyols, and those I tend to stay away from (apples, pears, plums, apricots). As well, I try to stay away from things that are high in phytoestrogens, since I can tend to be estrogen dominant anyways (it is rampant in women in their mid forties).

                            I think both the goats milk and the fruit are fairly easily digested, and that seems to be the most helpful for my digestive system. It feels like it is giving it a break, which it needs to heal. I may be able to go back to more types of fruit and to cows milk if the tummy gets healing. Even if not, I am feeling comfortable on this, and anyone else who has had these sort of issues knows that feeling good is well worth it, if you can!

                            In regards to being insulin resistant - I think you have to try out and see what seems to suit you best. I have taken a few different approaches over the time I have been here, and I am continuing to zero in on what is working best for me now. Chris Masterjohn wrote a great post a few months back saying that what works for someone else may not work for you, and what did work for you before, may not be what works for you now - that it is a matter of trying things out: The Daily Lipid: Against Dietary Dogmatism
                            Karin

                            A joyful heart is good medicine

                            He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose. - Jim Elliot

                            Mmmmm. Real food is good.

                            My Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread29685.html

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Goldstar,

                              I recommend keeping a food journal for a few weeks, but also record how you feel each day. Eventually you will have enough data to look for patterns between how you feel and what you eat. You could start by leaving out every food you suspect might be a problem for you. Stick with this very strict diet for 2 or 3 weeks, then add foods in one at a time and record how you feel. Bottom line is that you need data!

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