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Thread: Newbie with a question about calories page

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    reba627's Avatar
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    Newbie with a question about calories

    Hi everyone!

    I'm a somewhat new follower of MDA and brand new to the forum here, but I figured this was as good a place as any to get some information as I slowly work my way over to paleo/primal eating and I'm a little confused.

    A long time devotee of the gym and eating the foods that weren't the best for me, paired with PCOS (poly cystic ovarian syndrome and weight clinging to me, especially my midsection, for dear life), I finally resolved that I needed to be healthier so a friend and I have been implementing our "baby steps" challenge to gradually get over to eating the Mark Sisson way

    Here's my issue though. I had my metabolism tested a couple of months ago and my RMR (resting metabolic rate) was 1649, so she said for weight loss I should be eating around 1800 calories a day. And I'm trying to keep my carbs under 150g/day and while I've been doing good at this, I'm only eating around 1200-1300 calories a day, then when I go to CrossFit and have an intense workout, there's times where I'm just not hungry after.

    I'm trying to eat more calorie dense food, like nuts as a snack, and while I'm still a far way from being 100% primal eating, I'm on my way, but now I'm worried that while I'm trying to be healthy (and watch my sodium because I have a history of kidney stones), drink enough water, eat lean meats, plenty of veggies and fruits, healthy oils, etc., that I won't be taking in enough calories and for me, when I don't eat enough, I plateau. My weight hasn't budged in the 5 weeks I've been eating better and doing CF, nor have any of my measurements changed, so now I'm getting frustrated, but I'm trying to focus on the positive, my strength is increasing, I don't get that 2pm tiredness that I used to, I don't seem to have a problem with chronic bouts of diarrhea, I'm sleeping better and feeling better. I know it's not about the numbers on the scale, but I'd like to see those numbers start to decrease! (FTR-I'm 169 right now, 5'5", 32 years old, wear a size 8 so I know that I'm not heavy by any means, but I've steadily gained back 25 of the 30 pounds I lost a couple of years ago).

    Sorry to turn this into such a long winded post but any advice/suggestions would be welcome so I can figure out the line between too much and not enough.

  2. #2
    mrs_moesy's Avatar
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    I'm a newbie too, but what if you tried eating meats with fat? Lean meat is yummy and all, but what if you tried eating something with more fat in it? That is going to be more calorie dense.

    I've been a fan of lean meats for the longest time and eating meat with fat in it skeaves me out a little still. But, baby steps for me. I ate some duck on Christmas and it was yummy. Today I ate chicken skin and it was actually quite good. I was a little surprised.

    Maybe make the leap to eating 100% primal and chuck out anything that isn't. That might be enough to take you to enough calories and also keeping you interested in eating primal food. And if you're not hungry, don't eat. I think that's one of the best parts of PB, if you're hungry, eat. If you're not, don't. No schedules or anything you need to stick to.

    I don't know if that helps any, but I don't think you should stress about it. If you are feeling better and stronger and more vibrant, I think that is all the reason you'll need to stick with it.

  3. #3
    Diana Renata's Avatar
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    I agree. Fats, in my opinion, are preferable to nuts. Especially in the form of coconut. Fattier cuts of meat are heavenly. There's nothing like some nicely cooked beef or (especially) pork fat.

    If you feel like you're eating enough volume and don't want to add to it, simply slip in some extra fats with the fattier meat, or add some coconut milk to your coffee, add coconut oil to your veggies, etc.

    I agree, if you're feeling healthy and vibrant, don't worry about the numbers. (I really should take this advice as well- lol.) If you feel less energetic, add some more fat, but if you're feeling fine don't worry too much.

  4. #4
    Sue's Avatar
    Sue
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    With PCOS you're probably insulin resistant so I would start off keeping my carbs up to a max of 50g not 150g.

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    reba627's Avatar
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    I'm trying to gradually cut down my carbs. When I tried to do low low carb (low for me at least, under 100g), I experienced a lot of symptoms like shaking, sweating, nausea, etc., and with my job (massage therapist) I'm on my feet most of the day and can't really afford to feel weak while working, but all week I've been well under 150g/day so it's getting easier.

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    I agree about the fat. I would target a certain level of protein intake (such as .75 grams per pound of body weight, or whatever works for you), carbs of just over 50 grams (which for me was about 6 to 8 servings of veggies a day or a little over 2 servings per meal) and then the rest of your calories should be healthy fats like the fat on grass fed beef, organic eggs, the skin on organic chicken, olive oil, avacados etc.

  7. #7
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    Problem 1

    "I'm on my way, but now I'm worried that while I'm trying to be healthy (and watch my sodium because I have a history of kidney stones), drink enough water, eat lean meats, plenty of veggies and fruits, healthy oils, etc., "

    It is real easy to increase calories by eating fattier cuts of meat. Real easy and real tasty.

    Problem 2

    "I know it's not about the numbers on the scale, but I'd like to see those numbers start to decrease! "

    The number on the scale is only half the equation. Get a cheap pair of calipers and find your estimated BF. Then you can watch for a downward trend in BF no matter what the scale says. You may see the numbers decrease but you won't know if it is fat or if you just had a great bowel movement.

    Problem 3

    "And I'm trying to keep my carbs under 150g/day and while I've been doing good at this, I'm only eating around 1200-1300 calories a day"

    Decrease carbs to less than 100g. By increasing the fat in your meats you will increase you energy available and avoid the shakes.


    Problem 4

    Crossfit + severe calorie restriction (1200 in this case) = cortisol = forget about losing fat. Either rest more, eat more, or Crossfit less.

  8. #8
    Griff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by reba627 View Post
    I'm trying to gradually cut down my carbs. When I tried to do low low carb (low for me at least, under 100g), I experienced a lot of symptoms like shaking, sweating, nausea, etc., and with my job (massage therapist) I'm on my feet most of the day and can't really afford to feel weak while working, but all week I've been well under 150g/day so it's getting easier.
    The symptoms you're describing are what we call the low-carb flu. It's carb withdrawal; your body is kicking the addiction to carbs. You should not put that off if you can avoid it. If you must, reduce your carbs by 10g per day until you're under 50g per day.
    Primal eating in a nutshell: If you are hungry, eat Primal food until you are satisfied (not stuffed). Then stop. Wait until you're hungry again. Repeat.

    Looking for my Cholesterol Primer? Here it is: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum...mer-(Attempt-2)


    Ditch the scale!: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread33283.html

    My Success Story: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread30615.html

  9. #9
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    It is great that you are taking steps toward improving your overall health. While you say you have not noticed a change in your weight or body composition, you HAVE noticed some healing going on on the inside. that is fabulous!

    I encourage you to take some time to read up on Bee Wilder's site about PCOS.

    http://www.healingnaturallybybee.com...les/women7.php

    Her [FREE] program is as such: no grains, no sugar, no starches, no dairy (butter is not dairy), no fruits. She has a list of HIGHLY recommended supplements (which she does not sell nor profit on).

    This program acts like a "cast" on the "broken bones" of your health; once you've healed, then you can go back to a more relaxed paleo way of eating.

    Regarding salt, read this (from Bee's site):

    "Your body will crave "bad" salts (table salt) contained in the foods you previously ate, which are added to most processed foods. Table salt is bleached, deodorized, and refined, removing any minerals that may have been present, and containing harmful chemicals. Your very blood requires "real" salt to function, but it needs other minerals that are also found naturally in Celtic sea salt (Nature's Cargo in Canada) or other good ocean sea salts. Your cells must be bathed in sodium-based extracellular fluid which includes a balanced mixture of essential minerals your body needs and craves.

    You can greatly minimize your salt cravings by adding a good ocean sea salt, i.e. Celtic (Nature's Cargo in Canada) or Himalayan, daily, which contain over 84 minerals. "

    http://www.healingnaturallybybee.com/articles/help5.php

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    i'll just take my healthy diet..i don't eat processed foods that's makes you unhealthy..
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