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Reality check: Counting calories

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  • #31
    cool. i had no idea either way, and i didn't think you were stressing out. just throwing some ideas on the wall. i also don't closely monitor who is and who isn't VLC and what not in the journals, so i can't say.

    like i said, calorie restriction is a fine option, and there's no reason not to start there if it seems like the logical place to start. also, checking up on the medication can help. you never know.

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    • #32
      Def. agree to try calorie restriction if you want to. If it doesn't work for you, you could try vlc (under 20 net grams) for a couple of weeks--can't hurt!
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      • #33
        Originally posted by marcadav View Post
        By changing our focus. IMO, this is a lifestyle. A lifestyle that if lived daily, over time, improves and maintains health. If you are healthy, by medical markers, and by making healthy choices-- daily-- then the number on the scale is simply that-- a number on a machine we stand on.

        Have you had medical tests -- Lipid, Vitamin D, fasting BGL, HbA1c, fasting insulin, thyroid (TSH, Free T4, Free T3), ferritin-- done to see where you are?? If not, I suggest having them done.

        There is a possibility that your fasting regimen has impacted thyroid function-- specifically T4 To T3 conversion. My understanding is that IF is just that---intermittent fasting. Your fasting seems so controlled and routine, it seems out of control.
        I have had every test known to modern medicine including thyroid and am, by all accounts, ridiculously healthy. 175 for my height is the "official" borderline between "healthy" and "overweight" but I am not hung up on that. I am only using weight numbers to communicate with others. I know I am overweight because I see it in the mirror. Unless one is doing Batty intensity lifting however, "losing weight" is a measure of losing fat.

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        • #34
          On the days when you IF for 24 hours, what do you eat for dinner?

          I am having trouble envisaging a pile of food that meats basic primal guidelines (lots of green veg, some starchy veg, enough protein for your lean body mass, plus the fat) that would be sufficient calories to cause weight maintenance in someone with a reasonable amount of weight to lose. I don't believe I could eat that much in one sitting.

          Which brings me to a thought about using IF....maybe by eating a full day's food in one sitting on a regular basis, you are not adjusting your expectations (particularly in your stomach and your brain) for what represents a normal, reasonable portion of food? So that then on the days when you are eating more meals, they are all too big?
          Liz.

          Zone diet on and off for several years....worked, but too much focus on exact meal composition
          Primal since July 2010...skinniest I've ever been and the least stressed about food

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          • #35
            Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
            Thyroid is fine and San Diego sunshine gives me all the vit D I need.
            What does your "fine thyroid" look like? I ask because I was told mine was fine for years. During those years, I was lucky if I maintained my weight. Overall, I gained 65 lbs because my thyroid, on meds, was "fine".

            I finally convinced a new doctor to up my meds by 12 mcg. Things changed after that.

            BTW, San Diego sunshine does not guarantee adequate vit D levels. I lived there, walked Lindo Lake 1+hr/day, maintained a large yard,etc., and was severely deficient--prescribed 50,000 IU/week.

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            • #36
              Originally posted by marcadav View Post
              What does your "fine thyroid" look like? I ask because I was told mine was fine for years. During those years, I was lucky if I maintained my weight. Overall, I gained 65 lbs because my thyroid, on meds, was "fine".

              I finally convinced a new doctor to up my meds by 12 mcg. Things changed after that.

              BTW, San Diego sunshine does not guarantee adequate vit D levels. I lived there, walked Lindo Lake 1+hr/day, maintained a large yard,etc., and was severely deficient--prescribed 50,000 IU/week.
              I have no idea what all my test numbers are. Having seen that they were fine I didn't feel the need to keep them around my head. I am quite the sun worshiper spending a lot of time at the beach, walking, surfing, swimming. Plus, in case it wasn't mentioned earlier, I feel great! I really don't think any of the go-to deficiency diagnoses apply to me.

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              • #37
                Originally posted by lizch View Post
                On the days when you IF for 24 hours, what do you eat for dinner?

                I am having trouble envisaging a pile of food that meats basic primal guidelines (lots of green veg, some starchy veg, enough protein for your lean body mass, plus the fat) that would be sufficient calories to cause weight maintenance in someone with a reasonable amount of weight to lose. I don't believe I could eat that much in one sitting.

                Which brings me to a thought about using IF....maybe by eating a full day's food in one sitting on a regular basis, you are not adjusting your expectations (particularly in your stomach and your brain) for what represents a normal, reasonable portion of food? So that then on the days when you are eating more meals, they are all too big?
                This is a very good point Liz. Because of this "eat when hungry, don't when not" freeform eating, I haven't been paying much attention to this.

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                • #38
                  Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
                  Then there is me. None of the above. Just a lady coming up on 50 who would like to lose some weight. No major health problems and not a huge amount to lose, (30lbs) but no desire to revisit the uber athletic days of my youth. I have always been health conscious and physically fit. I don’t think that some brown rice and tofu did me any irreparable harm. Not optimal, I understand that now, but not really that awful. I never did eat junk or over eat sugar or carbs. I have never had an eating disorder, I don’t have cravings or binges. I am very compliant with PB eating rules. I sleep well, get plenty of all natural vitamin D and include lots of play in my life. I eat tons of veggies, no processed junk (I mean Zero) lots of PB approved proteins and fats. Dairy free, legume free, minimal nuts and berries. I am almost always good about following the PBF workout routine. And I IF for 24 hours about 3-4 times a week. I’m doing everything “right”, right?.
                  Paleobird, Except for the "IF for 24 hours about 3-4 times a week" this is ME. I do a daily IF (eating my "breakfast" at noon) I've been here since September. I have lost 2 lbs. I need to loose 30. I've gradually restricted items until last month, when I did a 30 DONN. End result? I lost a few inches, but no weight.

                  Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
                  About Batty’s thread which I so adore, Yes, body composition has shifted around allowing me into a smaller size jeans. But I am not buying the “muscle is more compact than fat so you should ditch your scale” argument. At the levels I’m working out, I am not packing on pounds of muscle. Batty is a different story. They don’t call her workout room “Batty’s Basement of Doom” for nothing. My PBF push ups, pull ups, planks, etc. are toning things up a bit so the size 10s fit and I’m loving that. But the reason I’m not seeing falling numbers on the scale is not because of muscle mass gain although it would be reassuring to believe that and keep eating my bacon.
                  Again, this is ME

                  Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
                  Then there is the question of if I really need to lose 30 lbs or if some chart just says I do. I don’t care about charts. I know what I look like naked and it’s not what I want to see. Also, even though I am healthy now, I would like to prevent the health problems that can be a result of excess weight down the line. (Also I am not one of those size 2 people needing help getting to size 0. I am 5'10" and 180 but I would like to be 150)
                  Again. ME. There is no way anyone can tell me that 148 lbs is a healthy weight for a 5' 1/2" 46 year old woman.

                  Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
                  I have read Taubes and understand that there are good calories and bad calories. But there are still calories and too many of them, even the “good” kind and weight loss is not going to happen. I realize that the “calories in-calories out” thermodynamic explanation for weight loss/gain is over simplified but still calories DO count. So I am going to count calories. They will all be PB approved high quality calories, but I will restrict the quantity and see how it goes.
                  I have not read Taubes yet. I've never been good at counting calories and I don't want to "go there".

                  Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
                  I think it does work as a maintenance mode once you are at optimal weight so I can look forward to coming back to it eventually.
                  I'm maintaining very well. I never gained over Christmas or during my Jamaican vacation, BUT I never lost during my 30 DONN.

                  Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
                  I do sprints weekly. I eat a square of dark chocolate and a glass of red wine maybe once a week. I don't think cutting these out will do something magical but all over calorie restriction might.
                  I used to do this too (but I had a few more glasses of wine). I cut them out last month. There was no magic.

                  Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
                  I was considering doing a Whole 30 style experiment. I read through the supposedly stringent requirements and said, "hey, with the rare exception of m-nuts, 88% and a glass of Pinot, I already eat this way all the time. They kept saying how doing this would "change my life". That is what I meant about "the Switchers" above. If you are coming from that extreme, a whole 30 really would change your life.
                  That's how I was eating. My 30 DONN didn't "change my life". It just proved that I could say "No" to certain foods for a set amount of time.

                  Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
                  I have had every test known to modern medicine including thyroid and am, by all accounts, ridiculously healthy.
                  Same.


                  If you discover the "answer" I'd LOVE to know what it is...
                  "Be careful what you pretend to be because you are what you pretend to be." Kurt Vonnegut
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                  • #39
                    Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
                    I have no idea what all my test numbers are .
                    I think it's very important to get copies of all test results. It allows you (general) to track trends over time. It also gives a medical record, in case you move, change doctors, etc

                    And, I will say it again-- Fine, does not mean optimal. It generally means the results can be found within the "normal range" given by the lab.

                    Case in point-- my lab's normal range is 11-152. If my result is 15 I can be seen as fine by " the normal range. However that doesn't mean I'm optimal or without symptoms of low ferritin. In fact, many believe ferritin needs to be over 50 and closer to 100 for optimal health.

                    Sorry Paleobird, my years of being "in the normal range" fine, yet suffering, makes me get on my soapbox about test results. I'm stepping down now.

                    I hope you find your solution.

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                    • #40
                      I've become a major fan of Dr. Michael Eades. Here's a post on low carb/calories: http://www.proteinpower.com/drmike/w...nd-calories-2/ He says you can eat low carb and as many calories as you want and not gain weight, but to lose weight, most people have to calorie restrict at least a little (there are some lucky folks who don't).

                      Here's another post of his regarding IF: http://www.proteinpower.com/drmike/i...ttent-fasting/

                      I've also become a fan of Fast-5: http://www.fast-5.com/ I suggest you download his e-book (it's free if you register) where he talks about losing weight via IF. His is a 5 hour eat window / 19 hour fast.

                      I'm not a big fan of leangains - he's a little too hard core body builder for me. But I am enjoying this man's paleo/IF blog: www.theleansaloon.com Very good writer.

                      I know for me that I HAVE to calorie restrict to lose weight. I've also found that IFing (I have a 6 hour eat window - breakfast/lunch, skip dinner) and slight calorie restriction works like a charm for me.

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                      • #41
                        I think we can all agree that PB is not "one size fits all". What works for some, doesn't work for others, and we all have to tweak to see what works best in our own situation.

                        I have been lucky I guess - I went full PB 1/21, kept dairy, nuts, the occasional wine and cadbury egg, eat an average of around 1700 calories/day ( lots more than I ever ate on a CW calorie restricted diet), don't IF at all unless you count the 7-8 hours I sleep, still eat potatoes at least 2 meals a week, rice at least one meal a week, am 46 and perimenopausal, and went from 135 to 125 lbs. I did start regularly doing fitness 2 weeks ago which I had never regularly done. I have tons more energy and feel better mentally and emotionally than I have in years.

                        Do you have any idea how much calorie-wise you eat now? I am wonder if, especially since there are so many days that you IF, if you are on the whole undereating (maybe days you don't IF you are getting 1500, days you do IF only getting 500, which doesn't average to a lot of calories/day overall). From experience and from stories I have heard from others, when I underate doing CW type diets, I would lose a few lbs. then stop. I think there are some people's bodys that reset their metabolism to expect X amount of calories when they only eat X amount of calories, thereby stalling weight loss. Just like some can't lose unless they do VLC, or some don't lose unless they take out dairy, I think some can't lose is they restrict calories too much.

                        Maybe you could eat like you are right now and track to see how much the average over say the period of a week you are actually eating, just to get of how much you are actually taking in. If the numbers average to say 2500/day over the course of a week, I would say yeah you may could restrict some. If you are coming up with 1300, I would say you may want to slowly increase the calories and give it at least a few weeks to see what happens. You may notice an increase in weight when you increase calories, but you body may realize it's going to keep getting more and start burning again.

                        Edited to clarify: the increase in calories may temporarily cause a small increase in weight, but given time your body may realize it's going to keep getting X more calories and will start burning again.
                        Last edited by sanepsycho; 02-27-2011, 05:45 PM.

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                        • #42
                          Originally posted by Dragonfly View Post
                          Def. agree to try calorie restriction if you want to. If it doesn't work for you, you could try vlc (under 20 net grams) for a couple of weeks--can't hurt!
                          Wow. Under 20. That is hardcore. I have been shooting for under 50 to get into ketosis. Do you think there are degrees of ketosis? Do you go "farther" into it at a lower carb level or is it like an on/off switch, either in it or out?

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                          • #43
                            I know that I lose weight at around 30g of carbs / 70g protein.

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                            • #44
                              Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
                              Wow. Under 20. That is hardcore. I have been shooting for under 50 to get into ketosis. Do you think there are degrees of ketosis? Do you go "farther" into it at a lower carb level or is it like an on/off switch, either in it or out?
                              All I know is I maintain when I let my carbs creep up to 30-70. I lose when my carbs are under 20. Just very insulin-resistant at the moment! Taubes describes this in WWGF.
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                              • #45
                                Originally posted by winencandy View Post
                                Paleobird, Except for the "IF for 24 hours about 3-4 times a week" this is ME. I do a daily IF (eating my "breakfast" at noon) I've been here since September. I have lost 2 lbs. I need to loose 30. I've gradually restricted items until last month, when I did a 30 DONN. End result? I lost a few inches, but no weight.
                                Again, this is ME
                                Again. ME. There is no way anyone can tell me that 148 lbs is a healthy weight for a 5' 1/2" 46 year old woman.
                                I'm maintaining very well. I never gained over Christmas or during my Jamaican vacation, BUT I never lost during my 30 DONN.
                                I used to do this too (but I had a few more glasses of wine). I cut them out last month. There was no magic.
                                That's how I was eating. My 30 DONN didn't "change my life". It just proved that I could say "No" to certain foods for a set amount of time.
                                Same.
                                If you discover the "answer" I'd LOVE to know what it is...
                                Hah! Thanks, W'n'C. It's good to know I'm not alone in this. It just seems like we get so busy re-inforcing each other with, "Yay you lost an inch off your waist. Don't even look at a scale, it lies. You are gaining muscle, really you are." And everybody wants to believe this can be done without even thinking about counting anything but, let's not kid ourselves, the weight loss is not as "effortless" as the book cover says.

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