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Last Plea For Help - Desperate, Confused, and Giving Up
Where can I read about this type of approach? I have read some of Richard Nikoley's articles about the potato diet, but have been hesitant to follow it because of my blood lipid improvements once I eliminated starches.
Weight loss as a dietary goal is a recipe for disaster, particularly if you're expressing significant health conditions already, which you've indicated you do.
Suck it up and stop letting your mind wind you around in circles, your body knows much more than your brain and is holding onto that weight for very good reasons.
You say you're well read and intelligent, hence you should then have a clear idea in your head of what a healthy diet consists of and you are talking about making unhealthy changes for the sake of weightloss, knowing full well it will cause further damage to your body, that's the sort of logic your brain is giving you?
Settle on a healthy diet and start to deal with the real issues you have expressed, the sleep issue is a major one and you need to do some real research in regards to circadian rhythms, modern life with late night TV, computers and I phones in bed can have very negative effects on circadian rhythms, this is likely where a vast number of your issues lie.
In addition to that, as suggested, get some serious testing done to determine whether there are any other underlying deficiencies you have, both minerals and vitamins, and if so do appropriate research to guide yo as to how to balance these, many have opposing interactions and you usually have to take multiples to geta a balanced process.
You are not morbidly obese, and with all the exercise and movement are likely physically fit, from a skeletal muscle point of view, so that probably puts you far ahead of the majority of the population, the weight issue is most likely driven by psychological perceptions, and I understand at your age it is a bit tough in that regard, but you still need to make long term choices, and chasing a short term target may have serious long term side effects.
"There are no short cuts to enlightenment, the journey is the destination, you have to walk this path alone"
I don't want to sound like one of those "I have a wacky diet - but I swear it works" kind of people... but I will. Have you looked at the Shangri-La Diet thread that was going on here for a while? It is nothing that can hurt really - just eating a little more healthy fat and it has helped a lot of people get over a non-weight loss response to diets that seem like they should be causing weight loss (slightly reduced calories, good exercise patterns, etc). While you are incorporating Vit D and getting nutritional advice and working out your sleep issues, you could concurrently take 2 tbsp a day of coconut oil and see if it "magically" helps you like it did other people. And if it doesn't - use the rest of the coconut oil for cooking
Seriously, sometimes changing your goal is the way to go.
I agree on this point. Once you have healthy eating habits and exercise habits established maybe stop overthinking it. Work on improving your lifting or fitness. Crossfit has been a great mental break from obsessing about my diet and weight, because I can watch my improvement there and it has nothing to do with my weight.
Chasing down the magic bullet is often fruitless.
That and well, this is the hard part, but maybe you will just end up not being able to lose much more weight. I laugh... but losing weight is no ticket to happiness in life. I'm a size 10 now, and distinctly remember being much happier as a size 22. You say your weight gets in the way of relationships. It's not your fat. You might think it is, but its not. Unless you are trying to cut weight for a specific job. Or a pro athlete. Or a body builder.
You sound healthy, so keep eating healthy, working out, go shopping, buy flattering clothes, get a makeover and live and don't worry about your fat ass, jiggly arms or belly. Don't ruin your life obsessing over the magic fat loss bullet.
I'm in a very similar boat, currently trying to find a new doctor to get thyroid testing (including antibodies to check for Hashimoto's) because that's the only thing I have left on my list and I have many of the symptoms. I even had what I think was a goiter for a few days after trying an iodine supplement. I would definitely look into having the detailed thyroid check in case that's your roadblock, there are non-synthetic thyroid hormones that can be prescribed.
First, don't give up. You are in control of the situation and no one is running to come save you.
I want to make sure you have mindset taken care of, I've seen many people struggle in the battle with themselves and end up causing so much stress that it reverses any benefit gained from a healthy Paleo/Primal diet.
Do you meditate? I recommend deep breathing on a daily basis.
Have you taken a test from Wellness FX? It's the first thing to do.
I have tried everything, for many years, from high fat/low carb/low protein to moderate fat/low carb/moderate protein, to even low fat and vegan and vegetarian diets in my younger years - all of which were unsuccessful. I have counted calories, I have exercised daily, weekly, have done hiit, weight lifting, body by science training - everything (obviously separately and for appropriate test lengths). I have tried all these things for months at a time, and some years at a time.
Which nutritional approach if any, improved your sleep and energy level? If you know, adopt that eating style. If you don't know, try the eating style that accommodates things you love the most. Since sleep is your problem, I would say ketosis is not a good option.
On the fitness side of things, I agree with the recommendation of abandoning everything in favor of prolonged outdoor activities and deep relaxation, in sauna or pool or laying in the grass and not letting yourself think about weight.
Weight that is not coming off despite serious efforts is one of the most unfair things that can happen to a person short of tragic things, so it is completely understandable that you feel down... basically the alternative is worse though. You need to feel happy, even at the weight you don't like. It's frigging hard, but it is a good skill.
I'm with those who say to find a different goal. Feeling awesome and lifting weights has been my goal. I don't look any different now than I do in my little avatar photo which I took last July, but when I move around, there is visible muscle moving around and that looks better. Plus I have a spring in my step and feel pretty awesome most of the time. Feeling this way makes me almost feel sorry for the skinny girls I see all around me who probably feel as horrible about themselves as I did in my youth when I was thinner.
Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.