Crazy carb cravings ! Help!
I am a 46 year old female. I am an avid long distance runner ( 3:49:12 marathon time). I lift weights 3 times per week. Became interested in the primal diet about 6 months ago. I was diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis and had found information suggesting that the primal diet might help. I tried it and felt much better for a few weeks although my endurance when running suffered! Then the craving of all cravings hit! I began craving carbs like I have never in my life and found myself eating as many as I could get! My weight soared 7 lbs over night! Help! What causes this, and what do I do to prevent it from happening again. This has happened a couple times so far. I appreciate any guidance. Would like to continue eating primal but can't keep having this happen.
As you know crab is high on cholesterol, high on fat..So you should avoid eating it always, just take some for sometimes. Its not good for the health, that's seafood, remember? And though you are taking primal, I think its not good to just depend your diet on it totally. You have to watch your eating habits also. Its also a matter of self-discipline.
If you are still doing a lot of running, you will need more carbs. Many women also do not do well on very low carb long term. Try adding in some primal carbs - potatoes, sweet potatoes, fruit. If you make it part of your everyday or weekly food cycle you are less likely to crave and binge.
I run but in the 10K range. My PB is 54:15. I'm also female so I'll be blunt -- do not fear eating fat. I went running on the beach and ate bacon and eggs fried in the bacon drippings (note: NO TOAST). The run was fine. So you don't need carbs. Any run over an hour though you'll need some, but try having coconut date rolls so you get some fat too.
I took a whole month to accept I can eat fat and not get fat (I did keep running ... just in case). And I didn't! When I get carb cravings I have some veggies smothered in butter. Works like a charm. Toss in a sweet potato if you had a long run that day.
The big trick, from what I've seen, is to ease back on your pace - basically make sure your body stays in a fat burning state, rather than pillaging your muscles for glycogen. At which point I've seen folk talk about running an entire marathon in a fasted state with precious little loss to their overall time!
Thanks for info and encouragement.
+1 for what calochortus said, eat more fat. That will curb your hunger and cravings quickly. When ever I cook grass fed beef, my wife makes me drain the fat off. I simply pour it into a dish and toss in fridge. When I'm hungry, I eat some of that meat/fat mixture. Instantly satisfied!
Before I went to a primal consumption lifestyle (I prefer not to call it a diet), I ate lots of carbs without caring/knowing, and I'd typically go a little light on the meal immediately preceding a long run (usually dinner the night before). When I switched, I too noticed a significant loss of energy, usually very early in the run (3 or 4 miles in).
My solution has been pretty simple, and so far effective-- I make sure that the preceding meal is substantial, sometimes even doubling the energy consumption I would normally eat for that meal. You'll be a little full but it'll be there for you on your run. When I started doing this, my carb cravings post-run returned to a stable level.
+1 to teach and cal. Sweet potatoes/yams are tough to beat for superfluous amounts of energy and are permissible for long distance runners. I also eat fruit daily but would advise that you keep your sugar-to-fiber ratio less than 2-to-1. If you watch that ratio and stay away from processed carbs, you should be able to adequately load for your runs and keep your cravings in check.
Eating more fat is not an answer I would accept. Neither is slow down your pace. By giving this kind of advice, you're telling the OP that they will just have to perform suboptimally eating this way. Isn't the whole point about this lifestyle to improve health and perform optimally?
The Primal Blueprint is not a low carb diet. It is not a high fat diet. It never has been and it never will be. It's a diet that suits individual needs. If you want to weight train and run long distances, don't cut back on carbs. You can't or you will suffer in terms of performance AND recovery. Just make healthy carb choices - potatoes, bananas, sweet potatoes, apples, oranges, melon, parsnips, plantains, hell even white rice is okay in moderate quantities (there's no nutrition so don't make it a staple but it's harmless in terms of anti-nutrients and toxins). The Primal Blueprint is a low-toxin diet, and in your case, you should be adopting a moderate fat, moderate protein, higher carbohydrate plan.
I would recommend you eat something along the lines of:
40%/30%/30% calories from fat/protein/carbs on days you rest.
25%/30%/45% calories from fat/protein/carbs on days you're training.
The idea is to avoid toxic food, not carbs. Embrace them. They are healthy. Just adjust the carb load to suit your training.
Also, you did not "gain 7 lbs." You went from glycogen depleted to glycogen replete. It's all water and glycogen storage. I can shift my weight 15 lbs in one week by adjusting carb-load and training intensity. It's all water and muscle glycogen. The reason why you had the worst carb craving of your life is you were literally killing yourself doing all that training on no carb storage. You felt horrible because your body was breaking down muscle and connective tissue into glucose to feed your starving body. Embrace the mighty sweet potato, my friend.
Last edited by ChocoTaco369; 07-18-2012 at 11:39 AM.
yeah, what choco said.
Originally Posted by ChocoTaco369
Tags for this Thread