Ketosis question - please help
I'm starting primal cold turkey after eating the typical sad diet. I'm not overweight (probably need to lose 5 lbs) but am pretty flabby. I guess you could call me skinny fat. I haven't exercised since getting out of high school over 10 years ago. My question is this: do I need to do VLC (under 20g/day) at the beginning to get off to the right start? Is it necessary in order to start losing body fat? How long does VLC need to last, a couple of weeks?
I just stayed under 50 g/day and the weight melted off. Now, there were probably a lot of days were I naturally stayed under 20, just because my only carbs were from veggies, but knowing that I could eat 50 and be fine helped me cope, I think.
No, I wouldn't say it's necessary and I personally wouldn't advise it. That said, you definitely want to be in the sweet spot (50g-100g carbs) to see steady improvement if you're following PB. With only 5 lb to lose, I wouldn't be in too much of a hurry. Enjoy the lifestyle change and reap the rewards. You'll be tight and firm in no time. Just don't sweat it! If you put yourself under too much pressure, any diet/fitness concept becomes a chore. Since PB is so damn great, don't start off on the wrong foot, attitude-wise.
Also, if you lose too much weight too quickly, skin stays loose, I believe. It's better to go a bit more slowly and let your skin regain elasticity. (Though someone way more knowledgeable in that area could say more.)
My philosophy is this: if you move a bit more slowly and do it right, you only have to do it once. Try to rush it and you'll end up taking longer getting the results you want because of little mistakes and set-backs that could have been easily avoided by slowing down a tad.
Last edited by Patrick; 02-02-2011 at 02:08 PM.
Reason: ha! wrote "food" instead of "foot"
"Oh, you wanted answers...yeah, sorry, I'm not so good with those. Uh, probably something to do with science or something..."
August 2010: 207 lb, 37" waist, 25+% BF | Currently: 177 lb, 33" waist, ~15% BF
Sometimes blogging as The Primal Mind. (My unorthodox and filthy-mouthed journal is semi-retired at this point)
I'm reasonably new, so probably a poor person to ask, but I didn't start with VLC - partly because I had too many sugar addictions to break (sugar in coffee, sweetener in greek yogurt, etc). I started out just trying to stay under 100 for a few weeks. By the end of week 2 it got very easy and I found I was between 40-70 just on veggies. I don't do the same thing every day - some days I'm up closer to 100, other days I eat almost entirely protein and fat with very little carbs/veggies. Now that I've gotten the clouding influence of grains and sugar mostly completely out of my life, I just eat what my body seems to want at any given time. I did lose a lot of weight when under 50 per day (a lot is relative, 6 pounds on me is plenty).
But I do think in my case if I had tried to go very, very low on carbs right away I may not have been able to stick with it. I had to sort of ease in.
(and just as random info, before I started this I was eating well over 200 g of carbs per day, even though I was eating fewer total calories - averaging 1300-1400 before, now averaging 1800-1900. Funny, that.)
Last edited by handgallop; 02-02-2011 at 07:58 AM.
I have actually had difficulty losing weight on VLC -- for whatever reason, some people apparently don't lose while in ketosis. I actually ate less, but as soon as I added my fibrous veggies back into my diet? The weight started coming off again.
I say hit the sweet spot and hang out there. If you feel good after a few weeks, try VLC. If that makes you feel even better, great! If not, you can always up your carbs again.
I am the same... too low and I don't lose. I am losing weight eating between 50-100g.
Originally Posted by darkersolace
Personally, I would start VLC and gradually work them in. When you go VLC, your body stops craving crap after a few weeks. You can thrive on like 1200 calories a day without issue. Fasting is easy.
If you 'ease' into primal, avoiding french fries is a daily struggle. You're in a constant battle to avoid eating crap, and when you're not eating it you're thinking about it.
Processed food really is like a drug. Once you've broken the habit, though, it's easy.
That said, I don't lose weight easily in ketosis. However, I like to get there at first just to get rid of all the cravings.
This was my experience. Whenever I tried to get into primal style eating a little bit at a time I struggled and often gave up. This time around I did just plunge in and it seems to be working.
Originally Posted by cavemanj
I do tend to lose weight in ketosis, but then I'm still nearly 100 lbs overweight, so I could probably lose weight with the slightest calorie restriction at this point.
Thanks everyone. Great advice Patrick! Attitude is everything.