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2nd symptom of ketosis is - Sugar stupidity

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  • 2nd symptom of ketosis is - Sugar stupidity

    Hello!

    So I've been struggling with low-carb and primal for a long while now and am an avid reader of primal/paleo/low carb forums. Something I see over and over again is that newbies and stumblers (like me) who are trying to lose weight get down to the "optimal carb" level hit ketosis for a day or two, don't feel hungry, eat lots of fat, and then do something really stupid. For me, today, it was taking a hit of grains and HFCS in a sandwich and chocolate shake at Arby's.

    People describe this as a "carb craving" but that's not really how I experience it - it's not like I'm sitting here thinking "I'm thinking Arby's." It's a sudden spur of the moment decision to just ignore everything that's gone right over the last 48 hours and eat a roast beef sammich and a shake. It's like a foggy loss of control. The logical, "ask yourself if this decision aligns with your goals" is totally unhelpful because this is not a logical decision or action, it's like an instinctual action. If you've never experienced this it probably sounds a lot kooky, but I keep seeing this happen to a subset of us. I'm wondering what is living in my gut that takes control over my brain at these moments!

    I was wondering if anyone had working theories on this.

  • #2
    Sounds like classic addiction. Ask an alcoholic why he picked-up a drink after long term sobriety and he will probably tell you the exact same thing you said in your post. I was talking to an alcoholic last week who, after 4 years of sobriety, was driving to his beach house and pulled into a liquor store. He got drunk and stayed that way for 3 years. Lost his wife, house and business. I asked him why did he do it, what were you thinking when you pulled into that liquor store? He said I wasn't thinking anything. I don't know why I did it, I just did. Very sad indeed.

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    • #3
      If you're used to something, and you deny it to yourself, the desire to get the fix will be stronger. It's like being a kid and seeing your parents give an unwanted toy to your sibling...you may not have wanted it before but you sure as hell do now.
      F 28/5'4/100 lbs

      "I'm not a psychopath, I'm a high-functioning sociopath; do your research."

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      • #4
        Carb cravings. For me, I don't think about it either - it's just a nagging feeling and a desire to satisfy it. When I started low-carb, my hands would just automatically grab a chocolate bar on the way out of the supermarket, barely even noticing it. It's really annoying.

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        • #5
          try L-glutamine amino acid supplementation as a good and almost instant fix for the cravings when they occur, and supplementation with Chromium is a well used method to stabilise blood sugars, important when getting over food addiction. These can both work well to break the cycle

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          • #6
            So 40 grams of L-glut or less, 45 mcg chromium picolate, PureFunctional?

            Artbuc and Reindeer know what this is - it's not a mental craving, but a bodily one.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Artbuc View Post
              Sounds like classic addiction. Ask an alcoholic why he picked-up a drink after long term sobriety and he will probably tell you the exact same thing you said in your post. I was talking to an alcoholic last week who, after 4 years of sobriety, was driving to his beach house and pulled into a liquor store. He got drunk and stayed that way for 3 years. Lost his wife, house and business. I asked him why did he do it, what were you thinking when you pulled into that liquor store? He said I wasn't thinking anything. I don't know why I did it, I just did. Very sad indeed.
              There's a whole chapter in the Big Book of AA that describes exactly this.

              For alcoholics they suggest that if you are thinking hey a drink sounds good you should go talk to another alcoholic. So next time it happens to you, talk to another food addict.
              Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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              • #8
                For me, it has always been a remembrance of the pleasurable taste. From a few lapses over the last couple of years, I have finally gotten through to a place where I know it won't be that pleasurable. My tastes have changed enough that the old flavors no longer hit the spot.

                But I had to learn that the hard way.

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                • #9
                  sbhikes - A spur of the moment impulse to swing into Taco Bell doesn't leave much time for rationalizing with another food addict! We're not thinking. That's the problem.

                  Annlee - I hope the pleasure meter swings away from chocolate shakes eventually. That'd be great.

                  I do mindful meditation. It helps with willpower when my brain's engaged. I'm interested about when my rationality is not engaged!

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                  • #10
                    Maybe up your carbs with some healthy veg, fruit or sweet potato. Cary a fruit snack with you at all times and eat that instead.
                    it may also not be a carb craving but rather some other processed ingredient that is calling you.
                    Eating primal is not a diet, it is a way of life.
                    PS
                    Don't forget to play!

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                    • #11
                      Another thing that helps me is the material that Phinney and Volek stated in their books (both books) that true nutritional ketosis* takes 2-3 weeks (and for some people a bit longer) to fully develop. And I'm not willing to set myself back and need a recovery for such a transient pleasure. Especially when it ain't what it used to be.

                      * While the body shifts to burning fats when it needs energy and glucose isn't handy, the production of ketones (BOHB and AcAc) begins in earnest after a few days of no handy glucose (low carb). And after a few days more, the body changes the partitioning so that the BOHB is preferentially consumed by the brain and the muscles no longer take some of them, relying instead on FFAs.

                      When I'm at that point, I am so steady, and I am handling the stress of my job so much better, that I am not interested in losing that. It's like I've been burning diesel in a high octane engine, and suddenly the system's been purged and I've got the good stuff flowing.

                      Kind of hard to describe, but you know it when you feel it - like PaleoBird said.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by sarasue624 View Post
                        sbhikes - A spur of the moment impulse to swing into Taco Bell doesn't leave much time for rationalizing with another food addict! We're not thinking. That's the problem.
                        Ah, but you are aware of it now. Next time on the spur of the moment as you drive into the parking lot, you'll think to yourself, here I am doing it again. One day you will want the change enough to admit that this addiction has a stronger hold over you than you thought. It's then that you will make a change. That's the day you pull back out of the parking lot and go home. You're not there yet, but you will be.
                        Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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                        • #13
                          Have you tried following the primal blueprint, as written, for a few months? Are you trying to get into ketosis for a specific medical reason, or just to boost your weight loss?

                          Many find that the sweet spot for weight loss is between 70 & 100g of crabs per day, as recommended in the book. But of course your miles may vary.

                          If you do want to get int ketosis quickly, it can certainly be done in a matter of days, not weeks.
                          Johns Hopkins hospital in the US has been effectively using ketosis to treat epilepsy in children for years and in the book The Ketogenic Diet: A Treatment for epilepsy by several Dr's who run the program (j.m. Freeman, j.b. freeman and M. Kelly) they describe getting the child to fast for a couple of days before starting to feed a low carb, high fat diet, as this kicks them straight into ketosis.

                          Their aims are different from yours (assuming your aim is weight loss) in that they need deep ketosis to prevent seizures, so they also prescribe lower than ideal levels of protein, as the body converts a percentage of that into carbs which can effect the depth of the patients ketosis enough to reduce the benefits in treating seizures. Ketosis for weight loss doesn't need to be at the same depth.

                          The Johns Hopkins ketogenic diet is not paleo/primal, which is one of the reasons it's so hard for the kids to stick to it. The diet is relies on heavy whipping cream and MCT oil to provide the high fat content, and often the MCT can cause stomach upset at the recommended levels.
                          If you're interested in my (very) occasional updates on how I'm working out and what I'm eating click here.

                          Originally posted by tfarny
                          If you are new to the PB - please ignore ALL of this stuff, until you've read the book, or at least http://www.marksdailyapple.com/primal-blueprint-101/

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                          • #14
                            When I do this, it's because I'm craving the feeling - not the food or the taste. The non-rational part of my brain is just screaming at me to do whatever it takes to get that feeling. It's kind of numbed out happiness. It comes out of tiredness or when stress has just passed (when I'm in the stress, I'm not hungry). I'm getting better at recognising it and finding my own version of healthy alternatives, but I'm a long way from being bulletproof yet!
                            Started Feb 18 2011

                            Tried basic primal and almost everything else in pursuit of IBS control, mood stability, and weight loss.

                            Journalling here

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                            • #15
                              I'm working on the ketosis thing, too. Probably won't make it very well, since I have to rely a little on what's currently in the school cafeteria - however, if your cravings are really bad, you could just eat SOMETHING and make damn sure it doesn't involve carbs. I carried around a bunch of boiled eggs in my bags, and probably ate three times as many calories of fat and protein than I actually needed to stay sated. But the point was that if I was disgustingly full, I wasn't as willing to consume the carbs. Probably not healthy in the long run, but it was my ticket to get out of the ever lasting carb swamp.

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