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Thread: Could the focus on low-carb in fact be promoting carbohydrate intolerance? page

  1. #1
    Mike333's Avatar
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    Could the focus on low-carb in fact be promoting carbohydrate intolerance?

    I am an athletic male in my middle twenties and have been consuming good Primal produce for about 2 years now. During this time I've experimented with the full range of natural macronutrient possibilities. I have noticed something peculiar though...

    The forum has become very focussed on low-carb primal diets and the restriction of carbohydrates. Now, I have often successfully lost body fat prior to wrestling competitions through means of tweaking my diet- but the best results I've seen have not come from restricting carbohydrates! Albeit I am very active, but even during times of little or no training for weeks on end (injury time-outs) I can successfully lose body fat and keep the muscle, without stressing about macronutrient breakdown etc. My general daily diet consists of about a kilogram of sweet potatoes, another kilogram of green vegetables and about a kilogram of meats (mostly fish and organ meats - kidneys, livers, hearts.). This usually being eaten as 3 square meals.

    My question is...does anyone think it's possible that the chronic avoidance of carbohydrate, which seems to have reached a phobia in many, could in fact cause a carbohydrate intolerance? I remember reading about some vegan who tried to eat meat, but over X years of eating only vegetables her body was no longer able to process meat. I am really curious, because I used to be real finicky with my carbs- and in hindsight I believe counting the carbs and stressing over them caused me a lot more harm than good.

    Now when I want to lose fat, I just eat natural foods without any seasoning or sauce etc i.e. a piece of meat, some plain boiled sweet potatoes and some steamed green veg with each meal. I never ever overeat because it just doesn't taste that great; hence over a few weeks the fat just melts away. That is my theory to solid fat loss- just eat plain foods for a couple of weeks and you will see- there is no temptation to overeat. BUT if you put some genuinely Primal dessert in front of me, I WILL overeat, no matter how good the calories are. That's the true power of natural foods- they were never really sooooo good until we started combining them all and throwing in seasonings and sauces. Only once we concoct those delicious flavours such as presented all the low-carb dessert recipes etc, does the temptation to overeat come in. Very similar is the general failure of people who start playing with nut-butter.

    Anyways, let me know what you think about carb intolerance being spurred by the anti-carb movement? I just feel the cortisol caused by stressing over carbs did me a lot more damage than carbohydrates ever did! But it's all natural carbs- definitely, bread and dough and crap are a no-go zone. Don't get me wrong
    M

  2. #2
    ZoŽ's Avatar
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    Physiological insulin resistance (as opposed to pathological).
    Hyperlipid: Physiological insulin resistance

    When you consume starch after eating low carb diet for a period of time, your blood sugar control will be whacked. It's a natural response that many animals have evolved in order to keep blood sugar high enough while in ketosis (while starving).

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    Mike333's Avatar
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    Thanks Zoe, that's a fascinating article!

    Here is the thing, I used to be real fanatical about carb-counting when trying to lose body fat- I would eat only meat with green veggies on the side. And I'm vigilant with what I eat- I really stick strictly to the primal range of ingredients. I just found that although I did manage to stay lean, I was often put in the position where my carbophobia caused me more stress than it should have. So the last 2 months or so I have just thrown my consideration for macronutrient ratios OUT THE DOOR- I now eat sweet potatoes, meat and fibrous veggies with each meal and I feel fantastic. I must add that my blood sugar was not "whacked" by any means when I added a pile of starch back into my diet, which brings me to a new question...

    Does anyone on this forum really believe that steamed vegetables (including starchy veg) have in any way been the cause of fat gain. And I'm not talking day to day fluctuations, I mean does anyone believe that unflavored, unfried, unsauced starchy vegetables made them fat? Because it has surprised the hell out of me that eating all this starch again is NOT making me fat- in fact I'm getting leaner by the day and feeling great. It's made me rethink carbohydrates and realise that the only time I fattened up to any visible extent, was when I ate SAD crap. Now I feel more than ever like Grok- a happy Grok who was blessed to inhabit fertile lands undergrown by dense tubers that gave him great power to destroy enemy tribes.

    I really feel much leaner, more powerful and energetic than ever before. And nobody is more surprised and happy than me! It was a big leap of faith to allow sweet potatoes into my life, but it was the best choice I ever made! I think Mark is an absolute legend; this website has changed my life completely and I believe the whole stress-free attitude he puts out is just as important as the diet. So I just got rid of the last bit of stress in my life- carbohydrate counting If they come from the earth, eat them...none of us ever got fat because of our boiled potato/apple/orange addiction, I am so sure of that now!

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    Mike333's Avatar
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    I just want to add that I COULD get fat very easily if I allowed something like tomato sauce back into my life- it's these little ingredients that add so much damn flavor which have caused me to put on fat in the past. I would never overeat on boiled potatoes, but as soon as they are drizzled in some tangy dressing (even the primal ones) I will come back for seconds and overeat. So when I need to lose fat, I just turn to a bland diet- that's my little fad for weight loss Thanks for tolerating my rambling.

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    So your approach to weightloss, in a nutshell is to make the food so boring that you naturally consume less? And eat sweet potatoes every day. Correct?

    Do you eat eggs?

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    If you body isn't used to eating much carb, then sure it would take a while to adjust if you go back to a high carb diet. Just like eating a high carb, low fat diet means your body isn't using the fat burning pathways and it takes time to egt them up and running again. The body is very efficient and doesn't make enzymes and activate pathways it doesn't currently need to use. I don't see that as a concern though.

    In fact if I react more strongly to sugary stuff now, that's a good thing, as it affects my health negatively anyway. If that helps me stay awayf rom it, it's all good.
    Gluten intolerance and hypermobility syndrome http://www.cfids.org/pdf/joint-hypermobility-guide.pdf

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    I think that when you constantly consume bad carbs you don't even realize how bad they make you feel. Then you get off of them for awhile and try them again and see the full impact. I feel that I actually have greater tolerance for healthy carbs. For example the very occasional piece of dried fruit on an empty stomach doesn't affect me in the least whereas it used to make me feel sick. I think my pancreas is back to functioning like it did before I developed blood sugar swings in my late teens.
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    Hey Mike, I think your point is interesting and I (anacdotally) agree. I have recently added more starch into my diet after discovering that VLC was making me so damn tired all the time, I could barely find the energy to get out of bed. I also ate quite regularly when eating VLC. My old ratio used to be approximately 80/15/5 fat/protein/carbs, now I aim for more like 70/15/15 and I find that, not only do I have stacks more energy, I also am satiated for far longer. I don't need to snack anymore.

    No-one is more surprised than I am about this, let me tell you! Also, I have dropped a few kilos since I started this too. I had been plateau'd for quite a while while low-carbing.

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    Mike333's Avatar
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    That's awesome team!

    Adrianag...yeah you pretty much hit the nail on the head haha. I am a bachelor so I can get away with eating boooooring things. BUT, funnily enough- I really look forward to my boring food. When I eat my steamed vegetables I savor every mouthful with nothing at all added. Same goes for the meats- a bland kidney would have repulsed me in the past...now I just chuck 'em on my plate boiled and relish them, along with the poatotes. I am eating either sweet potatoes or regular white potatoes with each meal, and just pretending I've never even heard of "glycaemic index" etc. Six months ago I was fear-stricken by these beautiful spuds. Eggs? Hell yeah, I whack them back in abundance- usually on top of a tin of oily fish. Champion stuff.

    So to make it very clear, I have not put carbs back into my diet at the expense of the "good" stuff. I have simply added some good, unaddictive carbs (thereby increasing my calorie intake) which has had an amazing result. My energy levels have been soaring and I just generally feel less stressed out. I used to worry about every meal: "ooooh, that tomato has put me over 100g carbs" etc lol. It was ridiculous! Now, I generally get about 200-300g carbs a day (potato, sweet potato and butternut mostly) and feel like the real alpha male. Even though I work in a cage (office), I spend most of my time doing isometric crunches and doing little muscular twitches- it's tough to explain but it's the sort of energy you see in....you guessed, children after they just ate a ton of sweets And I never had this energy on a fat-based primal diet! Sure, I had good energy in the sense that I could do a gym workout and survive the day, but it didn't come close to the power I'm putting out now with my little tubers beside me!

    And horsewoman, it didn't take me any time to adjust, this is what I'm so psyched and surprised about! One day I feared carbs, because of all the befuddled low-carb posts insisting that carbs are more fattening than everything else. However, the more I thought about it, the less plausible I found it that eating things like potatoes and fruits ever made me gain fat. So the next day I just said "hell, I am sick of this ridiculous carb-counting nonsense". Every bit of data I've read about potatoes rates them as among the most satiating of natural foods per calorie. They never caused man to fatten at all until he so foolhardily fried them in oil and covered them with tomato sauce. I believe very similar is true for rice, although I do not eat rice at all.

    But to sum it up, I've removed a huge stress factor from my life and to my great surprise, the additional energy I have gained from consuming these carbs are causing me to lose body fat!!! I do not count calories at all, but if I had to estimate I'd say I eat around 3000kCal and I know I was eating much less on a high fat diet (generally about 2000kCal/day when I checked). And my activity is currently almost all small muscles twitches and just happy, excited little movements. Haven't been doing any gym or sport for the last 2months due to injuries.

    It's insane, but I have delved into a number of articles on slowly increasing energy intake to increase metabolism...some people have been on calorie-restricted diets for so long that their inner beast is just begging for more calories so that it can finally unleash! My beast is out...beware

    Haha, Nourishedem your small profile photo looks just like Drew Barrymore! 15% carbs is still soft...try forget about any ratios or any glycaemic nonsense and throw a big potato onto your plate. But I think the trick is you have to believe in it, you can't feel guilty about it! Guilt is a real Primal downer- God knows Grok never felt guilty when he dug up a spud...he probably ate it and then went to conquer new territory to burn off the insane energy it gave him!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike333 View Post
    Haha, Nourishedem your small profile photo looks just like Drew Barrymore! 15% carbs is still soft...try forget about any ratios or any glycaemic nonsense and throw a big potato onto your plate. But I think the trick is you have to believe in it, you can't feel guilty about it! Guilt is a real Primal downer- God knows Grok never felt guilty when he dug up a spud...he probably ate it and then went to conquer new territory to burn off the insane energy it gave him!
    Ha! I wish, i have a serious crush on Drew Barrymore.

    I am getting there, but this is a relatively recent transition for me. I am eating potato, sweet potato, other starchy root veg and I do include rice. I'm not tracking my calories or macronutrient ratios because I really can't be bothered, but I am concerned about gaining weight so I'm being careful. If I continue to see improvement I may well abandon all restraint and eat potatoes by the bag.

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