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  1. #1
    Edith's Avatar
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    I believe firmly that a low-carb or lower-carb way of life is the way to go, but I for the life of me cannot get my act together and keep it together when it comes to keeping my distance from carbs (or should I say BAD carbs, since fruit and veggies have--DUH--carbs in them). I am here to try and find out how to do that and do it permanently.


    Back in the summer, I did "induction" and lost seven pounds in two weeks. It was a hard-scrabble effort to keep to the routine, but I did it, keeping in mind the goal of losing weight to (hopefully) eliminate the need for use of a CPAP machine (I have moderate sleep apnea).


    It was hard because I was used to the immediate, if unhealthy, jolt of temporary energy and clarity that comes from carbs. And as much trouble as I had eating regularly with a high-carb diet (due mostly to work), eating an induction diet was much worse. Blowing off a meal to meet deadlines once resulted in the closest I have ever come to fainting.


    Even after getting through induction, I struggled because, even though I have TREATED sleep apnea, I still start to fall asleep anytime I have a quiet moment during the day; I am desperate all the time for energy and focus, and low-carb eating of the variety that I have tried has not given me any. It's just given me headaches and a desire to sleep more.


    In addition, because I am tired AND eighty pounds overweight, any exercise program I try never lasts long or is very strenuous. I have been walking slowly, three days a week, twenty minutes each day, for a month. Yesterday, I had a doctor's appointment, and I was startled to discover that my blood pressure was 125 over 50. Back in October it was 133 over 80. I think walking has something to do with that, but I'm not sure.


    So as someone who absolutely lacks energy and focus and who is way too sedentary, I am here to find out what the heck I can do--what very simple baby steps I can begin to take--to a healthier way of life.


    What I have seen of the "primal" approach seems kinder, gentler, much less of a grit-your-teeth approach. So I will continue to read, consider, eat the eggs, pork chops, and pecans that are now a regular part of my diet, and hopefully find some answers.


    Thanks!


  2. #2
    nina_70's Avatar
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    Hope you can find the anwers. Congrats on the drop in blood-pressure by the way!


    For low-carbing I've really found fat intake makes a huge difference to how I feel. When your body switches from carb-burning mode to fat-burning mode, it uses the fat intake as fuel. How are your fat intake levels (as % of total)? Alot of people round here aim for ~60% fat as % of total daily caloric intake.


  3. #3
    Sharonll's Avatar
    Sharonll is offline Senior Member
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    Hello, Edith. Congratulations on finding the Primal Blueprint. Have you read Mark's book yet? I also recommend reading Good Calories, Bad Calories by Gary Taubes. It's a tough book to get through, but once you get into it, it's extremely interesting and revealing. I'm not quite half through, and I've learned more from that book than anything I've ever read before.


    I also have a lot of weight to lose. I'm a 54-year-old female, started PB a little over 3 months ago, and have lost 20 pounds. I still have at least 50 pounds to go. Strenuous exercise is hard for me, too, as I am recovering from frozen shoulder and have very sore knees. But I walk a lot, at least 3 miles every day, and work in my garden and yard, lifting heavy things and moving slowly. As the weight drops off, I am sure I can engage in more exercise.


    I'm impressed by your blood pressure, too! Just dig in, make a strong committment to yourself, and it will get MUCH easier after a while. I no longer think of anything with grains or sugar in it as food, but it took time to get to this point.


  4. #4
    PrimalK's Avatar
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    Hi there and welcome! Well done on the blood pressure improvements, that's great!


    For me, increasing my fat intake to around 70% really helped with the carb cravings, without a doubt. It's worth a try.


    There are loads of people on here with great knowledge - I'm sure they'll be able to provide you with loads of information and advice.


  5. #5
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    Have you gone through the pantry and cleared it out? That helps so you don't have easy access to the wrong types of food. When you get home from the grocery store, pre-chop any veggies, it helps when needing to make an omelette or Big Salad, and even dinner. I've heard someone call going through the first week/or two of low carb as the low-carb flu. You get very sleepy, headaches, and cravings. The worst thing you could do (if you want to prolong the cravings) don't eat sugar or grains. Just try really hard to stay away from them until your body adjusts. You will be so surprised at how much better you feel, and in control of the cravings. If you are eliminating the carbs, then you do need to replace them with fat. 60-70% is usually really good. Mark has some great posts on adding fat to the diet. Personally, I have to stay around 60% if I want to loose the weight. If you get to the gym really start lifting weights too. It's so good for your overall health and as you increase muscle mass you have more mitochondria to burn fat. Once all these things start getting settled its much easier on you and the urge to be sedentary decreases! So the baby steps are start to organize your life so that things are easy for you. That way you have more energy available for the things that are harder to do. Hang in there. You can do this with the baby steps you are needing.


  6. #6
    Edith's Avatar
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    Thanks for encouraging comments and suggestions. I don't know how to get more fat in my diet without gagging.


    I use butter and olive oil liberally in cooking; I add dollops of mayonnaise to veggies and salads; I eat cream cheese and bacon and eggs and pork chops and the highest-fat hamburger I can find in the store. Occasionally, when I am hungry but very busy at home, I will eat a stick of butter.


    Currently I take two tablespoons of fish oil per day and one tablespoon of coconut oil.


    My biggest problem is this: when I am at home, I can easily control what I eat for breakfast and supper. However, when I am at work, I have little ability to control what I eat for lunch or snacks. I work in an office--that I moved to recently--where the workload sometimes makes it hard to get to lunch when I am hungry, and when I do get out to lunch, I use up half the time walking for exercise and often end up coming back early in order to get work done. Lunch is whatever I can grab along the way.


    I have tried bringing lunch, but it usually ends up getting eaten before lunch, and then by lunch I am of course hungry again.


    My problems relative to my work life don't come from a lack of knowledge or understanding; they come from an inability to organize my time so that I can a) plan what to eat, b) shop at a nearby store (cannot afford fancy stuff), c) prepare food that is simple and convenient and d) eat when I need to.


    If I had a chef or was just down the street from some fabulous store that carried lots of great meat and veggies and nuts and whatnot, it would be fairly simple.


    But since I live in an urban neighborhood with stores that have way too many kinds of chips and sugary drinks and additive-laden processed meat products and canned vegetables and fruit, it is not at all a simple thing to find and pepare good things to eat. And it is not a simple thing to find time to eat either. In fact, it is sometimes so complicated that it's easier for me to skip lunch and keep going with two or three cups of coffee.


    A promotion or early, early retirement could be the answer, but neither one looks likely to happen soon.


    Edith


  7. #7
    emmcubed's Avatar
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    Mark's Big Ass Salad saved me. I'm a teacher, and, during the summer, I choose to teach as well. I made one of those the night before each day before I'd need it and let me tell you: they're so 'big ass' that I'd have salad left over and feel zero cravings the rest of the day. I bought some organic chicken breasts and kept the produce as organic as I could, spent one evening cutting up all the stuff and preparing in separate containers, and it was an absolutely satisfying meal. Made me eat less at dinner even.


  8. #8
    emmcubed's Avatar
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    Also, if you're in an urban neighborhood: find a Chipotle. I go there for lunch frequently. Their pork and chicken is pastured and antibiotic-free. I get the carnitas bowl with no rice/beans, add peppers and onions, tomato (mild), tomatillo (hot), guacamole, and lettuce.


    Sometimes I can't finish it. And I'm not as hungry at dinner.


  9. #9
    PrimalK's Avatar
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    Is it possible to eat at your desk (if that's the kind of environment you're in)? I have days where taking a lunch break isn't alway possible, but I can have an easily portable snack to hand. I use nuts (not salted/roasted) which help to stave off hunger and don't require me to stop what I'm doing. Nuts may not be good for you personally, I know a lot of people have a problem with control on those, but something snacky that doesn't need a knife and fork or two hands could help.


  10. #10
    emmcubed's Avatar
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    Hear hear on the nuts, PrimalK. Almonds are hunger kryptonite.


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