[QUOTE=sakura_girl;1064157]So...how do you know when the body goes on a bingefest for high-grain foods after you eat them that it's not an instinct for the nutrition it needs?[/QUOTE]
There is such a thing as carbohydrate cravings that are non-beneficial. There are physical mechanisms (like unbalanced gut flora, messed up dopamine, Ca deficiency leading to agouti problems and then NPY, etc.) that can make you crave carbs in any form (including HFCS-filled storebought nasty cake), and can make you crave inordinate amounts of carbs.
To my knowledge, there are none for protein and fat.
In addition, I know, b/c bingeing on grains or sweet foods will make me bloated, overfull followed by famished, and many other signs that will be very individual. In just a short time, they'll lead me to an incredible weight gain (6 binges on carbs in 6 weeks made me gain 10lb, whereas eating a stick of butter a day for a month led to NO weight gain).
Sure, Sue (whose pony does one trick very well) is right that there may be a specific carb craving that is physiologically appropriate - say, you desperately need iron and refuse to eat meat, so you crave leafy greens - but a generic carb craving should never lead one to eat a whole bunch of industrial carbs, or unnatural amounts of natural carbs. Think about how it could ever have been possible, prior to the industrial age, to grow, reap, grind, properly prepare, and bake a whole bunch of wheat goodies. You could never have done it in the short amount of time to feed your binge.
Likewise, you could never have eaten a whole bunch of nuts and done it more than once. I remember my grandfather talkinga bout walking through a pecan orchard and eating a ton of them. He couldn't have eaten a ton, b/c of all the shelling required, but it still was enough to give him a bellyache. That's what foods with anti-nutrients (grains, nuts, seeds) do. That's what they're supposed to do. They're not meant for digestion. They want to be eaten and pooped out and then sprouted. That's why you know not to indulge a craving for them or anything else that is biologically inappropriate.
In the last five days, I've eaten anywhere from 400 to 2200 calories in a day, with the average being 1375. I don't track macros anymore, but I eat the majority of my food as and from animals. I eat potatoes (an 8 oz serving has about 40gms of carbs) on a regular basis, but not daily. My potato days are my highest carb days, and that may be a whopping 75 gms of carbs for the day. A typical meal for me is a hunk of animal plus a handful of something like brussel sprouts or cauliflower.
Spring is around the corner, and as the weather gets warmer, most likely the potatoes will disappear and I'll eat more fruit. I'll most likely eat more mangoes than I 'should' occasionally (high sugar fersure), and will most likely indulge in one watermelon fest, but mostly I stick to berries.
I'm sort of experimenting right now with varying high/mid/low calorie days to see what effect it has on my body and psyche. And though you didn't ask, I mostly eat one meal a day with a small (primal) snack before bed.
So I guess I'm also atypical...
I eat between 2500 and 4500 calories per day, depending. Today I'm clocking in at just over 4000 calories: 50% fat and about 25% each carbs/protein (it's squat day :D). On days when I don't lift heavy, I typically have a lower carb/calorie intake, and fats make up a higher percentage of calories. I've cut out dairy as of December-ish so no more butter, but I make my own ghee from Kerrygold.
Since switching over to primal/paleo, I've gained about 15lbs, lost maybe an inch or two off my waist, and dropped a pants size. I'm currently 26 years old, 170lbs at 5'9" with a 27" waist and 41" hips. If I had to guess, I'd say I'm somewhere between 17-22% bodyfat (it's been a while since I had it tested - semi-visible six pack, but I carry more fat around my thighs/hips). I would be happy to gain another 15lbs. I lift heavy 3 times a week, try to cycle-commute 3 days a week (at a leisurely pace), and practice yoga a couple times a week.
My bloodwork is fine. Just over 200 for total cholesterol, over 90 for HDL. Can't recall my triglycerides off the top of my head, but they were in a healthy range as well. I also have a "family history" of CVD (all 4 grandparents, to varying degrees), but I feel the best I ever have in my life eating this way.