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  1. #1
    iniQuity's Avatar
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    Need opinions...

    We routinely get topics where posters (new and old) have a small freak out episode where they gain anywhere from 2 to 6lbs (for argument's sake) they then go on to list what they ate the day or week before, what they did as far as activities or workouts, and it usually ends with posters telling them to either: relax, or to eliminate x,y,z, etc.

    While sometimes these topics are constructive, because you'll find that the OP may have some type of serious ailment, or is secretly eating something decidedly bad for them, etc. I was just thinking about something that I'd like to get some feedback on:

    You cannot gain too much weight following a primal diet.

    What I mean is, if you simply eat primal, lift heavy things, sprint once in a GREAT while (shit, I haven't done a single sprint session since November, and I'm sitting pretty at the same weight as back then) and generally aren't a couch potato, you cannot gain too much weight following a primal diet. Even if your PRIMAL carbs are somewhat high, or you like to overdose on butter, drown your coffee in cream, etc. You may plateau, you may not lose as rapidly as you'd like, but my argument is: you will never be fat/obese on a primal diet -- unless your starting point is that of a large person. I argue that even IF you started out obese, you will lose enough then perhaps stay, but you will NEVER get back to obese if you just KIP (keep it primal!)

    I thought of this because, when you see threads such as the one I mention above "help! gained 3lbs in two days!" I automatically think "does the OP think that unless he/she does something RIGHT NOW he/she will continue to gain 3lbs indefinitely and eventually become a beached whale??" and though I understand that this is just MY assumption, the urgency in their words seems to indicate that this is a true concern, that unless you drop carbs/drop dairy/eat less/workout harder/add this/subtract that/etc he/she is going to keep gaining and gaining and gaining following a primal diet. My argument is that this would be hard to do.

    I'm sure the counter argument to this is, if you routinely eat a lot of everything and do lot of nothing you will gain weight, but that's not what the primal blueprint is about. I'm saying, KIP and things will fall into place.

    A lot of you guys know me, but for those who don't, a quick story:

    Started primal Jan 2010 at ~175lbs, 24 y.o. Hispanic male, 5'7. In about 6 months I had lost around 20lbs. In Nov of last year did a whole30 and got to 144lbs. Did a 180 and went back to my careless ways (weed smoking, chip and ice cream eating mess) but I kept it primal throughout (when I wasn't high, of course) and I'm sitting at 148-150 right now. I understand that I can't be compared to females of any age, and even to males of varying ages, but what I'm trying to convey is that even if you go off the rails sometimes, if you just find yourself KIP* most of the time, I just don't see a way for anybody to gain too much weight.

    Am I lean right now? I don't have the bottom portion of a six pack, but I kind of look similar to what I did post whole30, a little bit more flab to be sure, but not what you'd expect from reading that for at least 2 months straight (post whole30) I was literally eating tons of junk food, smoking a lot of weed, not sprinting worth a damn, and only really exercising when I was high (don't ask why, but I'm a super active stoner) so despite all my bad habits, I did KIP as often as I could and/or wanted to.

    I'm not saying I'm a person to be followed or a model Grok or anything like that, I'm not asking anybody to purposely go on binges or anything of the sort. Just so nobody gets confused.

    For the record, I'm currently drug free and trying to KIP all the time, not just sometimes, but I'll admit that not all my meals are always primal, but it's the way I like to live my life, slightly more carefree. I have other stressors and I don't want food or constantly thinking about good/bad choices to be another one.

    So, what do you all reckon? am I full of it? Am I just lucky, gifted or genetically superior? Trust me, I'm none of those.

    (* I'm not trying to start a "thing" with the KIP keep-it-primal short hand, I'm just effin lazy )

    PS: I have nothing against "freak out" threads, I wanted to start this discussion to see if my little theory holds any water, in the hopes that folks can relax a little bit. This is not a personal attack on anybody or any group. I'm so PC.

    Edit: I forgot, I'm talking strictly body composition on this issue. I'm sure people that are way more true primal than I am are HEALTHIER than I am. I do not claim to be healthy, I'd like to think I'm better off than people that eat a SAD diet, but what I'm speaking about mostly here is body comp, fat gain/loss etc. Body comp is an important marker in health but it's not the end all be all. I definitely believe those that don't indulge like I do are healthier. Fact.
    Last edited by iniQuity; 02-27-2011 at 08:53 AM.

  2. #2
    Balance's Avatar
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    I agree with what you are saying about all the "freak out" and "newbie" questions. I think a reasonable solution would be to have a sticky at the top of the page giving beginner advice and also have answers or links to the heavily repeated questions on this Primal Nutrition forum.

    Oh and congrats on your personal success.
    "If man made it, don't eat it" - Jack Lallane

    People say I am on a "crazy" diet. What is so crazy about eating veggies, fruits, seafood and organ meats? Just because I don't eat whole wheat and processed food doesn't make my diet "crazy". Maybe everyone else with a SAD are the "crazy" ones for putting that junk in their system.

  3. #3
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    I don't know, my gut feeling is that you could still get pretty fat if you absolutely stuffed yourself on high calorie items (double cream for example) day in, day out.

  4. #4
    denise's Avatar
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    For what its worth, I think that PB is a perfect way to maintain your weight and improve your health and maybe your body composition. I think it can work for some people (especially those with a LOT of weight to lose) as a "weight loss program" with comparatively little effort and great benefits (compared to CW for example). I think (from reading peoples posts) that the truly dedicated can adapt PB along their own researched lines to give astounding results - though the discipline involved is probably outside my scope without PB becoming an obsession (I am given to perfectionism and obsessing if not careful). I think eating the PB way "fixes" some health issues simply because it removes so many harmful frankenfoods and naturally occurring poisons from the diet.

    SO - I think what I think ..... is that I agree with you on many points. For someone like you, a relaxed way is enough. For others it isn't - or they aren't going to "settle" for the relaxed results.

    I also wouldn't swear that someone couldn't put on weight on PB - maybe they "needed to" or maybe they missed out the little bit that's about eating to satiety not "stuffedness" (or because "its so damn delish I just want MORE of it")

    I don't know where I fit myself. Husband is maintaining effortlessly but obvoulsy eating "too much" to lose the weight he wants to lose. I am - not weighing but aware of changes for the better in many areas of my life and I'm pretty sure that - once I am where I want to be - the fully Primal (occasional 20%) way will be enough to keep me there.

  5. #5
    Dragonfly's Avatar
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    I wish I could agree with you, Iniquity! You haven't read Why We Get Fat, yet--have you?

    What I mean is, if you simply eat primal, lift heavy things, sprint once in a GREAT while (shit, I haven't done a single sprint session since November, and I'm sitting pretty at the same weight as back then) and generally aren't a couch potato, you cannot gain too much weight following a primal diet
    Taubes shows how exercise builds an appetite--it doesn't help folks lose weight (new paradigm for me!)

    You cannot gain too much weight following a primal diet.
    Too much for whom? That's a moving target. 5 lbs of actual body fat would be too much for me.

    Even if your PRIMAL carbs are somewhat high, or you like to overdose on butter, drown your coffee in cream, etc.
    Carbs being too high for that particular person can be an issue. Followed by habit/emotional eating.

    So, what do you all reckon? am I full of it?
    I think you are well-meaning, but using your n=1 experience is not very helpful. Your metabolism is completely different from that of a 30-50 yr old woman--or a 30-50 year old man.

    It's really about the hormones in almost all cases. Insulin, estrogen, thyroid.

    I do wish folks would get rid of their scales. And read Batty's fantastic thread. Maybe we wouldn't have so many of those threads, then!

  6. #6
    iniQuity's Avatar
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    Please, let's not let this thread evolve into an "us vs them" or a bashing of people that are more mathematical in their approach to the PB.

    I want this to be more about whether or not you can gain a considerable amount of unwanted weight while following the PB. I'm arguing that you cannot. I'm saying your body will reach homoestasis. Your body will NOT put on tons of flab. Dig?

  7. #7
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    i agree almost 100% (...i also think that you can gain weight eating way too many calories, but you actually have to be trying to gain weight). the freak out posts do seem to be reactionary. unless someone is gaining weight consistently over a period of a few weeks, i don't see a big need to worry.

    regarding your idea of eating primal and not gaining weight, i've spent the past 5 weeks doing very little exercise (2 of which were absolutely no exercise) due to a knee injury, and was eating more than usual, and i doubt i've gained more than a pound or two. i've seen slight smoothing around my abs, but nothing to sound any alarms over. i think you're dead-on with eating primal to stay where you are or even lose more.

    by the way, i love the whole KIP thing

  8. #8
    Dragonfly's Avatar
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    Please, let's not let this thread evolve into an "us vs them" or a bashing of people that are more mathematical in their approach to the PB.
    Not my intention in any way--simply pointing out that the scale is not a very useful tool to measure progress.

  9. #9
    denise's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonfly View Post
    Not my intention in any way--simply pointing out that the scale is not a very useful tool to measure progress.
    amen sister

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by iniQuity View Post
    I want this to be more about whether or not you can gain a considerable amount of unwanted weight while following the PB. I'm arguing that you cannot. I'm saying your body will reach homoestasis. Your body will NOT put on tons of flab. Dig?
    Gaining weight in the form of muscle is easy to do while following the PB, which is why Dragonfly's posts (and her link to Batty's thread) are so important. But I recognize that, in the quote above, you specify unwanted weight. In this respect I think I generally agree. One of the wonderful benefits of primal foods are their satiating power. This generally helps prevent overeating.

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