Our Mission Statement : A group a of Primal/Paleo/Grain free women who blog about their experiences/life/benefits without grains. It’s a great way for others (who may be wanting to lose weight, reverse an acute/chronic health trend, and/or transition from commercial weight loss programs) to read about real life women who are living the life and succeeding!
March 2014- Health Benefits in Long Term Weight Maintenance, from the No Grains, No Gains group.
My health has done a complete turn around. Even more than weight loss, when I went grain free (and processed sugar free,) I got my health back! All I wanted was a stable weight. I got a lot more.
NOTE: Pay close attention to how long it took. Being grain free and realizing the benefits (except joint pain) is not an overnight or even a 30 day process. It's not one stop shopping for health. It's a constant work in progress.
|Feb 2012 and Feb 2014 Longest time at a normal weight!|
Here's a list of the benefits I've seen:
1. Stable weight post a 68+ pound weight loss. Weight loss maintained for 2+ years.
Time that it took to feel comfortable in weight maintenance: 1.5 years or so.
The take away: Life is easier for me from a movement, pain, and self-esteem point of view.
The BONUS: same pants fit year in, year out. Yeah!
I now eat about 95% Paleo. I'm a short, smallish boned person, so in my case, BMI is okay for a starting place for health for me, for now. I have more muscle strength now in 2014 than I did the other years.
2010 my BMI = 34.0
2011 my BMI = 25.9
2012 my BMI = 22.7
2013 my BMI = 21.9
2014 my BMI = 22.4
2. Better blood work (hs-CRP, Lipids, HA1c, )
Time that it took: 1 year on Paleo for my hs-CRP to drop <1.0
2 years tinkering with my food template to have lower inflammation
The Take Away: Food effects my blood work the most (removing gluten, dairy, and nuts)
Bonus: I get discounts on my insurance for my BMI and waist ratio. $40 a month!
Click here to see my last 4 years of blood work. 4 years of blood work
2012 = mostly Paleoish,
2013 = Very Paleoish
3. Better Sleep: I sleep 7 to 7.5 hours a night
Time that it took: 1 to 1.5 years.
The take away: keeping my carbs around 50-90 grams/day and walking outside daily.
Bonus: I have more energy and I feel I have more brain clarity.
The sleep benefit is just amazing. After my Whole30 in Jan 2013 I knew I slept better, like a baby. Then when I did a low carb challenge in May 2013 and I repeated my sleep success, I knew that I wanted to put time into sleeping so the rest of my day could be better.
4. Smoother transition through menopause:
Time that it took: 4 years to transition
The take away: Eating nutrient dense food seems to minimize hot flashes
Bonus: I feel much more comfortable, most of the day, when I'm eating well. If get an unintentional gluten exposure, I have major hot flashes and feel terrible.
What can I say? Who knew that I'd go through menopause the first 1-2 years of weight maintenance?
5. Migraine Headaches are gone!
Time that it took: 3 years, with a steady decrease over time
The take away: Food (s) combined with the better sleep help.
Bonus: More time vacation and having fun compared to being sidelined in a dark room
Going low inflammatory by the grain elimination, removing the sugar spikes, then getting diary out and finally removing nuts from my diet seemed to end my headaches. Of course, having the hormonal effects of menopause may have also helped in stopping my headaches, too.
I used to buy the large bottles of 500 Ibuprofen at the large box stores, and use about 200 tablets. I now buy the small 24 tablet bottles. I might use 2-4 tablets before the bottle expires and I toss the rest.
6. Fewer emotional urges to eat
Time that it took: 40 years, with additional support
The take away: Real, whole foods that are grain free and processed sugar free fill me up and helped to decrease the urges so that I could deal with them.
Bonus: Life is easier when I can put time in to living and not cycling with food
Grain free living is not 100%, but it helped get me started to dealing with something that I could not turn off from age 5-6.
7. Fewer colds and no sinus infections
Time it took: 1.5 years (eliminating dairy helped)
The take away: Getting dairy out helped my sinuses heal
Bonus: I recover faster and get more vacation days.
I still get sick, but for shorter duration and less often. Maybe 1 cold every 1.5 years. Maybe. And fewer days being sick.
8. Joint pain gone
Time it took: 10 days gluten free
The take away: grain, for me, is inflammatory
Bonus: Feeling and moving like I'm 27 and not 47.
The overall take away: Being grain free has improved my health more than just weight maintenance
What didn't work in the past:
1. Yo-yo dieting. Counting points and fueling with 100 calorie packs turned out to be a diet fad for me. (If it works for you, great!). For me, grain free was the first major step in getting well again. I used to blame myself that Kellog's Special K cereal, snack bars and other food products did not help me lose weight. Now I understand that grain is used to fatten up animals, I no longer blame myself for buying into commercial hype. I see clearly now the commercial messaging as a fad, for me. No bowl of cereal is going to end obesity! Crazy talk in my opinion. Walk away from that. :)
2. Not addressing the root cause of the inflammation sooner (hs-CRP ) . Glad I lived to tell on this one.
3. Not considering the sleep/ diet connection.
4. Not considering the hormonal signaling (store fat!) with the high carb foods. Not considering that my body needs the right fat, without the grain inflammation to live, menopause or not.
5. Not doing an elimination diet for my migraines. I thought I had done a decent job, not so.
6. Not connecting the dots on grain filled foods and emotional eating.
7. Just giving up and saying "Well I get sinus infections" and accepting it.
8. Thinking that having joint pain in my early 40's was "Just part of aging"
The overall take away: The benefits can happen soon with grain free living, but plan on taking
Be sure to add these blogs to your reading lists. Great learning from great ladies!
Gwen S http://www.skynsurf.com/
Jeannette C http://wolfforlife.blogspot.com/
Leigh C http://poonapalooza.blogspot.com/
Lynda S http://achangeoflife.blogspot.com/