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Increased My Calories and Lost Weight

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  • Increased My Calories and Lost Weight



    So I just had my weekly weigh in this morning and I lost another 2 pounds!!! I had hit a sticking point a few weeks ago in my weight loss (5'11" 183 lbs.) and weighed in at 181 this morning.


    I know 2 pounds isn't a big deal over the course of several weeks but the way that I got there seems to defy logic. I lost the weight by increasing my calories by 500-600 calories a day. I didn't just increase calories though, I also dropped my carbs from 200-225g a day to 140-160g a day. I should also note that I am eating only primal / paleo foods.


    This definitely flies in the face of the calories in, calories out theory of weight loss. I'd be interested to see if I dropped my carbs even further if I would experience even more weight loss but there's not much more I can do to lower carbs without giving up my beloved fruit .


    Anyhow, just wanted to pass along some more anecdotal evidence that's its not just about calories. Food choices are also VERY important if not more important than calories.


  • #2
    1



    I'll add another n=1 study.


    I also increased my calories... before, was eating low-fat higher-carb, about 1300 calories a day.


    Switched to Primal foods, stopped counting calories, am averaging about 1600 calories a day, with carbs under 80g most days.


    Broke a month-long weight loss plateau and lost 3 pounds last week (my first week). With no exercise at all (meaning I've been on the couch most days). I can't wait to see what happens when I can start exercising again.

    Eating lots but still hungry? Eat more fat. Mid-day sluggishness? Eat more fat. Feeling depressed or irritable? Eat more fat. People think you've developed an eating disorder? Eat more fat... in front of them.

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    • #3
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      FlyNavyWife, by how much have you reduced your carbs during this time, as that will affect things a lot?

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      • #4
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        I don't have the data on carbs from before because I was mostly paying attention to the "all-powerful Calorie"... but I will tell you it was a LOT. Cereal for breakfast, pasta or rice at most other meals, bread to accompany meals... etc. I also ate less protein before; my diet was really carb-focused.

        Eating lots but still hungry? Eat more fat. Mid-day sluggishness? Eat more fat. Feeling depressed or irritable? Eat more fat. People think you've developed an eating disorder? Eat more fat... in front of them.

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        • #5
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          OK, just to add more fuel to the calories in, calories out debate - below is a link to the crossfit nutrition board where a significant number of people lost weight by following their normal diet and then eating ice cream right before bed.


          And for those of you thinking that it is just a bunch of spam or hackers saying they lost weight on ice cream - the crossfit board requires you to use your real name to register. They also tightly monitor the boards and delete threads and ban people regularly.


          Reading this thread has me seriously considering adding some ice cream to my diet right before bed.


          http://www.board.crossfit.com/showth...hlight=breyers

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          • #6
            1



            Sorry, I haven't gone through the thread yet, but could you get the same results with an option that doesn't use processed sugar? Example, eat a bowl of blueberries and heavy cream with maybe some honey added; instead of ice cream. It seems to have the same components but without the processed sugar/carbs.


            I know, in the end sugar is sugar, but I'm just trying to approach this problem from a Primal perspective.

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            • #7
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              Apparently there are all natural ice creams out there that use real sugar (Breyer's seemed to be the popular choice). Also, most of the folks were choosing the ice cream that had the most fat and least amount of sugar.


              As far as replacing the ice cream with something else, one of the guys experimented with it (I think he used whole milk) and found that he didn't get the same results as he did with the ice cream. His theory was that there was something unique about the ice cream and he couldn't replicate it with other foods.

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              • #8
                1



                When I was eating non-primal, I would eat a bowl of Breyers ice cream for my nighttime snack (really, only like 5 ingredients so not THAT bad, right!). It was not a huge bowl by any means, but those nights I slept so well and woke up feeling refreshed. I still have the ice cream but have not touched it since going primal. I may have to experiment a little with it now, just to see what effect it has now.


                Oh, and I never gained any weight doing this either!

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                • #9
                  1



                  Interesting. If true, I wonder what is different about the ice cream than heavy cream & fruit combo? I've been doing so well on the PB right now that I don't think I'm comfortable experimenting w/ ice cream just yet!


                  But, Conan, do keep us updated on any results you have if you undergo this experiment.

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                  • #10
                    1



                    A slightly less scary test would be to mix up some heavy cream, eggs, vanilla, and artificial sweetener for a low carb ice cream, and see if that has similar effects. The only change from their protocol would be the sugar.

                    It seems like most of those people are eating low fat to begin with, and mostly in-shape/not insulin resistant. So it may be that their bodies tolerate the sugar fine, and the addition of the fat to their diet is what boosts their metabolism, because low fat was holding them back.

                    Of course, a cup of Breyer's vanilla is only 260 calories: 14g fat, 28g sugar, and 6g protein. If you were sufficiently strict the rest of the day you could eat that and stay under 50g/day carbs.

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                    • #11
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                      Here is a quote that touches on this subject:


                      "So only with carbohydrate overfeeding (CHO OF) comes the increase in energy expenditure and leptin. Hence why you will see many diets nowadays allowing for “cheat” meals of ice cream, pizza or whatever. That is what they are hoping for, a reset and increase in energy expenditure and Leptin (and then back to a lower calorie/carb based diet)."


                      Here is the source of the quote:

                      http://www.fitnessspotlight.com/2009...d-weight-loss/

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                      • #12
                        1



                        The first study cited in that article has Barry Sears tacked on as the last author (i.e. bigwig), so you can't really be surprised when it finds that a zone diet macro breakdown beats the ketogenic diet. One thing to look at there is that they went from 4% of calories as polyunsaturates in the NLC diet to 8% of calories in the ketogenic low carb diet, which is pretty dangerous. I suspect that was nearly all O6. That kind of increase is going to significantly screw with all kinds of important signals -- it's like comparing zone to a keto diet, but putting the keto diet people on prednisone or something.

                        Also, 40% of calories from carbs in their non-ketogenic low carb diet == LOL.


                        Anyway, if you do a little evolutionary thinking it's not that crazy. During the spring and summer, you'd expect to find more surprise caches of sugary carbs, which would cause your body to raise metabolism and put on muscle and fat. Then, during the winter, when all you have is mammoth jerky, your body slows down its metabolism to conserve calories. I don't know if that's true/accurate, but it's at least plausible.


                        You could do such a carb-cycle primally, like eating 3 pounds of berries or pretending you found a beehive and just drinking a glass of honey. I might try such a thing. If I do I'll monitor body temperature and heart rate before and after.

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                        • #13
                          1



                          Nick, I had the same "evolutionary" viewpoint when it came to carbs (sugary, mostly).


                          I figured that Grok ravenously ate them when he came across them. The problem was that sugary carbs were hard to come by. Either they were very high in a tree, had a very tough outer shell to get through or guarded by bees! But when he did get a hold of a good stash, he probably ate the $h!t out of them. And they would have been available during the warm months.


                          As far as the who's who of scientific studies and breaking down studies, I usually leave that to much smarter people than myself. So thanks for your input, as I never would have looked that closely! I just try to wade through as much info as possible and glean a common-sense middle ground that works for me.

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                          • #14
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                            I also think there are some things that work for people that science may not yet have an explanation for. A lot of the CrossFit folks do what they call "Black Box" experiments where they hold all other diet variables constant and then tweak one thing - like eating ice cream before bed. If they get results they stick with it and don't worry about the science. I would say that CrossFit folks are much more results oriented than theory oriented.

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                            • #15
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                              Well, I think we can all agree the current "theory" of metabolism is spotty at best. If we actually understood it, any nutrition scientist would be able to measure everything they could find out about someone's body, and then make their body do what was desired, be it gain muscle, lose fat, or both. But most of them are almost helpless to do that.


                              If you get results that don't agree with theory, it's more likely theory is wrong. The caveat I strenuously add is that with an n of 1, the experiment is still only true for someone with your physiological parameters, of which there are hundreds of variables (insulin sensitivity, hormone levels, existing body composition, training, mineral and vitamin deficiencies, and many more).


                              So while you might get me interested enough to try it by saying 'eat ice cream before bed, you'll lose weight, it worked for me', an n of 1 with a CrossFit-training hardbody doesn't trump well-conducted studies, and it doesn't necessarily apply to the obese or insulin resistant.


                              I think any school of dietary/metabolic thinking, whether it's the low fat camp, or the low carb camp, or any of the smaller sects (like primal or paleo), need to present a complete theory of metabolism -- one that explains what is different between people who eat more calories and lose weight versus those who gain weight, why some people lose weight spontaneously when they restrict carbs and others have to count calories still, why carb-loading works but high carbs all the time is bad, etc. Otherwise opponents will always be able to point to an edge case that your theory doesn't explain as a disproof (and these exist for every modern theory), and they'd be right: the power of a theory lies in its ability to predict, and a lack of disproving evidence.

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