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  • when is enough enough?

    This is the question I keep asking myself. I am 5' 9" and I weigh 205 pounds. I am a 43 year old female. I have been doing primal for many months and altogether I have lost 82 pounds. But I've been stuck at 205 since April.

    And here's the thing: I am bipolar and take some heavy duty psychotropics. One of these slows my metabolism and increases my appetite. (Don't bother telling me to get off of the drugs. I wouldn't be a functioning member of society without them. Really.) So this drug leaves me hungry all the time. Primal eating has helped a lot since I don't have carb cravings or blood sugar dips, but I can still eat a lot.

    I feel really good. I don't have high blood sugar anymore. I don't have sleep apnea anymore. I don't have chronic acid reflux anymore. I can get around like I never could before. I walk 5 days a week and do 2-3 days of bodyweight exercises. My doctor is thrilled with my current health.

    I eat primal probably 95% of the time. I already do a 16 hour fast daily. I have tried more exercise. I have tried VLC. Nothing budges the scale. Is this a plateau, or is this the weight that my body wants to be at?

    A typical day of eating:
    Lunch: 5 oz of turkey, romaine lettuce, 1/2 avocado, 1 bell pepper
    Snack: 1 cup plain greek yogurt, 20 almonds, 1 very green banana
    Dinner: 4 eggs, 4 oz breakfast sausage, 1.5 cups brussel sprouts, 1 oz. 85% dark chocolate

    Whaddya think?

  • #2
    I think all bets are off when your relying on drugs. Seems your doing all you can nutritionally. My personal perspective is that if you provide your body and brain with the what it requires to produce health and remove the interference then that is what your body will produce. How quickly symptoms resolve is relative to how long they have been present and how much damage your body must repair. Healing takes time. Health occurs from above down and inside out....medication can get you by for a short time, but in the end lifestyle changes and real health may take a bit longer. Anything that improves health improves your innate recuperative abilities will help you along. Three aspects to focus on IMO nutrition, movement, and mental/spiritual.
    Last edited by Neckhammer; 07-03-2012, 06:39 PM.

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    • #3
      I'd say try some fasting up to 24 hrs with strong ginger tea &/or green tea,if you need some boost at the end of 18-24 hrs, if you feel very comfy doing 16 & have been doing it for some time. I'd actually recommend resting more (45-90 extra minutes in the rack on weekends at a minimum) &/or (do you nap? It is summer), exercising less, do some pampering (emotionally & physically). If you have a partner, let the pampering come from both yourself & the partner, & friends too. Sometimes, less doing & more being is what's needed to jog things loose. Also, you could try some ketosis for 2-4 days (with again, lots of qual rest/sleep - so very important), if something more intense appeals to you, rather than my former gentler suggestions :-)

      Also, it seems to me that you may need more fat & calories in your regime. Also 20 almonds + a starchy banana + yogurt seems like a hella lot of carb for a "snack"... I'd add some more sat fat & perhaps a wee bit less carb to meals & if it were me, I'd definitely fatify your snacks. Ya know, everyone is different, really you have to just do controlled experiements, keep track, & see what works & feels like something you can live with & more importantly, something you can & do ENJOY.
      Last edited by Betorq; 07-03-2012, 06:59 PM.
      "Science is not belief but the will to find out." ~ Anonymous
      "Culture of the mind must be subservient to the heart." ~ Gandhi
      "The flogging will continue until morale improves." ~ Unknown

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      • #4
        That is a pretty big dinner. 4 oz of breakfast sausage? That is a lot of breakfast sausage. Maybe use a leaner meat at dinner so you are still eating a similar amount of food but it is calorically less.

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        • #5
          I have a friend who has bi-polar disorder who struggles with her weight as well. She exercises and looks great, but does run a bit more heavy. I think you should be thrilled with your success and be okay with the possibility that you may stay at this weight for some time.

          However, I would still try mixing it up a bit. For one thing, it seems to me that you hardly eat anything. If it were me, I would double the size of your lunch and add more fat to it, eliminate the dairy and nuts completely, skip the snack, and add some more red meat to your diet. Are you avoiding beef and pork for a reason? Because they are really great for filling you up for a long time.
          Last edited by jammies; 07-03-2012, 07:15 PM.
          Using low lectin/nightshade free primal to control autoimmune arthritis. (And lost 50 lbs along the way )

          http://www.krispin.com/lectin.html

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          • #6
            "I feel really good. I don't have high blood sugar anymore. I don't have sleep apnea anymore. I don't have chronic acid reflux anymore. I can get around like I never could before. I walk 5 days a week and do 2-3 days of bodyweight exercises. My doctor is thrilled with my current health. "


            Sounds like you are doing pretty damn good to me.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Sihana
              When is the last time your system was clear of the medications?
              What happens to you while off them?
              It's been 10 years since I was on nothing. I nearly died. I would be interested to see how I would do without meds, but don't know if I have the guts to try it. My psych. would probably kill me anyway.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by ereiam View Post
                It's been 10 years since I was on nothing. I nearly died. I would be interested to see how I would do without meds, but don't know if I have the guts to try it. My psych. would probably kill me anyway.
                Can you work with your psych to slowly taper down the meds? Perhaps see if you do okay on a lower dose with the change in diet and weight. Definitely don't go off meds without proper supervision.

                Do you feel stressed with your current lifestyle? I agree with maybe backing off on the exercise for a little while and letting your body rest (perhaps as you taper down the drugs?)

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                • #9
                  I can't really be of much help since I don't honestly know much about the subject, but I do remember there being A LOT of discussion about psychotropics making weight loss difficult. I would do a forum search to see if there have been any threads/posts about the particular meds you are on and see if anyone else here has had the same experiences or issues.

                  Hoping you find something that helps.
                  Durp.

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                  • #10
                    Honestly, I know people are trying to help, but suggesting that someone should try to get off their meds for psychological problems just seems wrong. You guys know absolutely nothing about this woman and her psychological issues and a professional that knows about these medications and knows this person is prescribing them to her.

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                    • #11
                      Alarm bells ring when it is suggested you come off your meds. I'm not sure if anybody who has replied in this way is a Psychiatrist and knows your medical history, but I suppory your desire to leave meds as they are. Of course this doesn't have to be permanent, but Bipolar is not to be messed with and your life is at great risk if you try to come off meds when you are not ready or able to do so.

                      I take 12.5mg Seroquel daily plus an SSRI. The Seroquel is acutally for sleep purposes (the side effect) and I can take it or leave it, at the moment I need it. It's a very low dosage but I know it messes with my blood sugars so I have sympathy for anyone taking a stronger and more regular dose.

                      It sounds as though you've done a great job so far. I would talk at length with my Psych to discuss the possibility of tapering, changing, coming off meds and particularly with weight loss in mind.

                      Good work and Good Luck wioth whatever you decide to do.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by jimhensen View Post
                        Honestly, I know people are trying to help, but suggesting that someone should try to get off their meds for psychological problems just seems wrong. You guys know absolutely nothing about this woman and her psychological issues and a professional that knows about these medications and knows this person is prescribing them to her.
                        Good lawd but I'm 100% with you on this one.

                        There are some great suggestions here about trying to shake up the system to bust a plateau. Sometimes it works, somtimes the body just needs a breather to reset.

                        Bu for goodness sake don't listen to the "quite the meds" talk... especially in pursuit of a few more lbs lost! You are doing so well! You've lost a significant amount of weight, and you've become a healthier person.

                        I have a friend in TN who is BiPolar and decided to go off meds because some of her friends talked her into it... because "she seemed fine, why should she take those horrible drugs all the time"...
                        The thing is when she first quit she went up so HIGH she felt wonderful and like the pills had been holding her back and making her a zombie, and OBVIOUSLY the doctors were so wrong! And then she crashed. Yeah, it ended badly. Hell, it ended badly before she even crashed... she was out of control. Her parents took her children. Then when she finally crashed they had the court step in and commit her because of a suicide attempt. An she had to agree to stay in a hospital until they decided she was done because they told her if she didn't she would never see her children again (there was already a restraining order). It took her a long time to fully recover from that whim to stop her medicine... and it was a couple of years before her children lived with her again.

                        So... PLEASE... DO NOT TELL people to just stop their meds without knowing what the deal is!
                        It's so irresponsible to do that you can't even imagine...
                        And there are NO POUNDS worth losing, that are worth that!
                        Last edited by cori93437; 07-03-2012, 08:31 PM.
                        “You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist.”
                        ~Friedrich Nietzsche
                        And that's why I'm here eating HFLC Primal/Paleo.

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                        • #13
                          So, you had a 3 month stall, but lost 80 plus pounds before that?

                          I think a few things:
                          1. The smaller you are the less food you need. It doesn't seem like you eat a ton though, but some need less than others.
                          2. Change up your fitness- add a HIIT day or do new lifting exercises or whatever-just change it up.
                          3. Maybe change up your foods- try different proteins etc.

                          I think plateaus are common. I'm at a plateau and got kind of burned out on tracking etc. So I'm on a break- my weight is maintaining at my low point. This month is about bumping up exercise and August is about cleaning up the diet. I know for me- little things have slipped in- less portion control, more lunch time eating, snack, too liberal with ice cream, plus some bored with same foods. Bought some new cook books and gearing up to hit it hard in August.

                          And I'd maybe talk to the doctor about the drugs, but it sounds like you are having positive benefits from the plan and doing well. There are things I'd try before ditching meds that keep one mentally well.

                          http://maggiesfeast.wordpress.com/
                          Check out my blog. Hope to share lots of great recipes and ideas!

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Sihana
                            In my defense (and experience), I suggested it not for losing the pounds, but to truly see if she needs them anymore, or even needs that high amount of dosage. No one here suggested she quit cold turkey. All were suggested under guidance of a psychiatrist. The best time of my own mental history was when my psychiatrist listened to me about my desire to drop the medications. It took months, and it turns out, that my change to paleo fixed the majority of my issues. We had already discussed possible medications I would go on if I started going bad again. I still visit them once a week, I still check in, and I still have some high-dosage lithium carbonate if I go into an unexpected mania.

                            Just because something involves pills and doctors, does not mean it needs to be thrown off the table. You forget that the drugs do more than hinder weight loss.
                            Sihana, it's really interesting to hear your story and how much lifestyle and diet have helped you. I wasn't making an attack to you or anyone else, but it does alarm me that it is so quickly suggested on so many threads that medication can be stripped away and replaced with diet.

                            I find your story intriguing and very hopeful. I am not Bipolar but have a diagnosis of Major Depression plus a very colourful history of other chaotic behavioiurs and episodes. I'd love to come off my medication and I plan to, I'll know when the time if right.

                            You are exactly the kind of member the OP needs to hear from, good to hear your views. It's very empowering to know that PB and a good psychiatrist can go hand in hand.

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                            • #15
                              I feel really good. I don't have high blood sugar anymore. I don't have sleep apnea anymore. I don't have chronic acid reflux anymore. I can get around like I never could before. I walk 5 days a week and do 2-3 days of bodyweight exercises. My doctor is thrilled with my current health.
                              Great! Now ditch the scale and continue to focus on optimal nutrition and having fun. Life can be awesome in spite of some arbitrary number on a scale. You just listed a handful of measurements of wellness that aren't calculated in pounds.
                              Sandra
                              *My obligatory intro

                              There are no cheat days. There are days when you eat primal and days you don't. As soon as you label a day a cheat day, you're on a diet. Don't be on a diet. ~~ Fernaldo

                              DAINTY CAN KISS MY PRIMAL BACKSIDE. ~~ Crabcakes

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