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  • #16
    Really excellent, encouraging comments, even for someone that has been her for a few months, the MDA I love.

    Good luck with primal, remember we are looking at the whole body, the weight gain is a manifestation of other problems, these have to be looked at first.
    Life. Be in it.


    • #17
      While I, personally, am a fan of intermittent fasting in some cases, I'm not sure it's appropriate for you right now. Your bodies are already suffering from poor sleep and excessive stress. Fasting is just another stressor. The body's hormonal response to stressors (cortisol release, among other things) tells your body to hang onto fat. I'd focus more on some intentional relaxation (meditation, Feldenkrais, prayer, slow walks at sunset, whatever works for you) and improving quality and quantity of sleep (9+ hours per night. not kidding).

      Also, nix the processed foods, even the relatively high quality ones (those beef sticks and deli meats). Replace with fresh versions cooked in healthful fats. Try replacing most of the fruits with veggies.

      Some thoughts on IF: Fast? Food. NightLife
      Nightlife ~ Chronicles of Less Urban Living, Fresh from In the Night Farm ~ Idaho's Primal Farm!

      Latest post: Stop Being Stupid


      • #18
        I took a lot of notes off the archevore website. This post is very good: Archevore - Archevore Blog - How to Lose*Weight

        Basically, he says there that if you are having trouble losing weight or metabolically broken, you have to get your body into ketosis. You may have to go to as little as 5% carbs in your diet. You should probably eliminate fructose entirely (that means fruit). You may want to eliminate artificial sweeteners because they jack up insulin in some people. Absolutely no gluten grains or vegetable oils or foods high in Omega 6. Try eating only one big meal a day with decaf coffee and heavy cream to tide you over during the day (but don't nurse on it.) Once you are keto-adapted, which is when you can be in ketosis without feeling dizzy, fasting (one meal a day) will come easily and naturally. Until then, two meals will suffice.

        This has so far been working for me although it took some time to see any progress and I still can't do only one meal a day every day. I'm going to continue as long as I possibly can.
        Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.


        • #19
          As I'm new 'round here, I have a limited scope I feel I can comment on. However, has your wife especially considered eliminating eggs and nightshades for a couple of weeks, then re-adding (challenge) to see if they bother her, especially in regards to her arthritis? I never realized how aggravating they were to me until I cut them out, and they are a common trigger for arthritis and joint pain. Eggs seem to only sometimes bother me, but the nightshades made a huge difference for me. White potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, all peppers, chiles, cayenne, chili powder, paprika. For me, I stumbled upon Primal after researching anti-inflammatory diets to deal with the systemic inflammation I've had all my life.

          Just my n=1 experience: you may not see appreciable weight loss until you eliminate whatever is causing your auto-immune issues (for me, asthma, eczema, joint pain, chest wall inflammation, hypothyroid, and depression all went together). As my inflammation and all the corresponding symptoms start to fade away, the weight is coming off, too. I have to be extremely careful with ingredient labels, since I discovered a severe corn intolerance. Even a lot of deli meat has corn in it, and I react most severely to corn than anything else. Cutting it out entirely from my diet has made a tremendous impact on my health and pain levels.


          • #20
            How do you determine how badly stressed you are? The thing is, we've both lost considerable amounts of weight before (I did Turbulence Training), but we were working out consistently. We got into this b/c we were under the impression that diet alone is 90% and that we would see results right away. There is just no way possible we can get 9+ hours of sleep with our schedules. It's impossible. We are going to make more of an effort with our workouts (going to use and see how that works. I just want to know how do you know if you are hormonally imbalanced?


            • #21
              I might get yelled at for saying this here, but this is based on my personal experience.

              In addition to following primal principles, try eating less. The calorie in, calorie out still holds true to some extend (it did for me). At least for me, despite of what I ate quantity of food played a big role. I went from 222 to 185. Some things that gave me a big push is fasting, smaller portions and eating less frequently. Good luck.


              • #22
                Monitoring calories probably would help, especially without exercise.

                High stress+no exercise is a pretty lethal combination that feeds on itself....
                Lifting Journal


                • #23
                  Originally posted by Apex Predator View Post
                  Monitoring calories probably would help, especially without exercise.

                  High stress+no exercise is a pretty lethal combination that feeds on itself....
                  +1 Especially if you are in an environment that makes it easy to overeat like at home with a stocked pantry/fridge.
                  Currently dabbling in: IF, leangains, Starting Strength, 5/3/1


                  • #24
                    Same experience ^

                    Part of the reason why I was suggesting IF as a means to achieve caloric restriction. (there is a difference, but they can be related)

                    In my experience, it wasn't just what I ate, but how much I ate. We can pretend it doesn't matter, but it really does. It was so easy to lose track of what I was eating throughout the course of the day with eating 5-7 meals (let's not pretend that snack isn't really a meal). Once I stopped snacking, I realized how much food I was really eating. I've also figured out that I don't need quite as much food as most calorie estimations would recommend for me (even going really low on my caloric expenditure). Which was a good lesson for me. (meh, when the food shortages come...we'll be better off <uncomfortable laughter>)

                    I'll reference gnolls again for another cool article I enjoyed:
                    Why Snacking Makes You Weak, Not Just Fat &#45; GNOLLS.ORG

                    I know we're not going for historic re-enactments here, but consider the idea that old time human beings didn't have such lavish spreads of food immediately available to them on demand...they had to work for it. The hunger signal is more of a prompt that your body requires food soon. It also encourages you to perform better to get that food (see my post above re: Ghrelin). You won't shrivel up from missing a meal or two or pushing your eating into a window that leaves a larger fasting period.

                    Those first signals are pretty light, but most of us run to the fridge...maybe even before the REAL signal comes out of boredeom, depression or even anger. You will not starve to death or even do anything wrong to your body for missing a meal or two...or three. Trust me, you'll know when you're starving to death; that 3pm urge to snack is nothing.

                    It's a pity that most Americans will live their entire life without ever experiencing the power and edge that Ghrelin gives them. IMHO, it's one of those little things that makes us human...clever and powerful. A lot of people search for solutions to their woes (and attempt to fill the missing piece within themselves with anti-depressents) without understanding that it was within their grasp every day by simply stopping the cycle of eating. Again, are you eating because you're hungry or are you eating because you've just always ate at those times or for that emotion?

                    Be critical of your lifestyle and habits. You DO have the time, but you spend it otherwise right now. Sometimes you need to shift things in your life in order to make yourself a priority. It's worth doing. Hang in there and don't be discouraged. This isn't a's a lifetime of constantly evolving effort and research and experimentation on yourself.

                    (some about me: I was 300#s this time last year. I weigh 174 today...once your body figures it out, it's remarkable how quickly it snaps back into shape. I'm astounded at the abuse I gave it for 37 years and how fast it forgave me when I stopped punishing it with neolithic garbage food)



                    • #25
                      Originally posted by LessThanZero View Post
                      Be critical of your lifestyle and habits. You DO have the time, but you spend it otherwise right now. Sometimes you need to shift things in your life in order to make yourself a priority. It's worth doing.
                      Well said. We all have the same amount of time. Only our priorities differ.

                      Have you read Mark's books, particularly on the subject of exercise? If so, then you know that you could effect dramatic change in a matter of about 2 hours per week of "exercise" -- three, 30 minute bodyweight workouts plus 1 sprint workout per week is enough for someone in your situation and with your goals. Throw in a 20-60 minute, relaxing walk several times a week, and you'll benefit even more.
                      Nightlife ~ Chronicles of Less Urban Living, Fresh from In the Night Farm ~ Idaho's Primal Farm!

                      Latest post: Stop Being Stupid


                      • #26
                        I don't exercise past just normal daily activities. I stick to around 50 grams of carbs a day and I track my food to make sure that's where I am. I don't eat fruit every day -- just a few times a week.

                        Breakfast is normally 2 eggs scrambled in butter with onion, spinach, tomato, bell pepper and mushrooms with either bacon, sausage or ham or a combination depending on how hungry I am.

                        Lunch is a big salad with protein -- chicken, steak, pork, ground beef with taco spices, etc. I use walnut oil for salad dressing.

                        Dinner is a large helping of protein with a side of veggies. I cook with butter or olive oil.

                        I don't snack in between either. I have seen the weight coming off. My sleep quality is tons better. I've given up several medications.

                        I would eliminate the snacking for a while and try to eat bigger meals to keep you full longer. Also cut back on the fruit.


                        • #27
                          Stress is probably a big part of your problem, but your diet is also not quite perfect. Peanut Butter is extremely inflammatory, and is likely causing a lot of the problems for your wife. I've been using a really cool device called an emWave to control my stress levels. Here's a good article about it:

                          Train Your Heart & Brain to Work Together Better (and Liberate Your HRV Data) | The Bulletproof Executive

                          How is your sleep? If you aren't sleeping, nothing will feel that much better. That said, there are some really cool techniques you can use to "hack" your sleep. You should read these articles for more info on improving your sleep:

                          7 Steps to Bulletproof Sleep – How to Get Less Sleep Without Polyphasic Headaches | The Bulletproof Executive

                          While eating "primal" is a good start, there are still a lot of toxins in a regular paleo diet. That's why I eat what's called a Bulletproof Diet. You can read more about it here:

                          The Complete Illustrated One Page Bulletproof Diet (Upgraded Paleo) | The Bulletproof Executive

                          It's basically an expanded and more in depth paleo diet that works much better for almost everyone. You should check it out

                          Hope that helps!


                          • #28
                            Yes please count your calories, get a 500 calorie deficit per day over your BMR adjusted for activity. A site like All Things Food and Diet - FatSecret is a really great tool.


                            • #29
                              Counting calories doesn't work. I've eaten 4000-4500 calories a day for 2 years straight, without exercising, and gotten leaner and stronger, and my cortisol dropped and my HDL improved. The "calorie myth" says I should weigh 623 lbs today. I weigh 210.


                              • #30
                                Counting calories did work for me. My ad libitum eating pattern had me holding at around 10 pounds heavier than I wanted, even though my diet was quite strictly paleo. A food log showed that I was eating a few hundred calories too much per day, so I counted calories on for 10 weeks and dropped 13 pounds, eating 2000 calories per day, averaged out over a week.

                                For my body, there's nothing magical about the calories in certain foods. If I eat more food, I gain weight. If I eat less food, I lose weight. Starch dysregulates my appetite and drives me to overeat, so I eat fairly low carb. Which is not to say that there aren't people who can eat huge quantities of calories and not gain weight. There very well could be, but I am absolutely not one of them, and for me, counting calories to eat less works perfectly.