Sunday, September 27, 2015

Back to my regular food template- LCHF Sept 2015, lessons learned- Don't mess with what is working

The Sad news: I ended my AltShift experiment only about 10 days into it.

You messing with the food template?
Reason: Joint pain. Lots of it. Multi-location. Always my body's way of saying.... "Hey! Listen up! Whatever you are doing/eating needs to change right now!!"

The Weird News: I'm food sensitive to Turkey. I blew up like a balloon. Could have floated me in a Macy's Parade.  Good to know, especially with Thanksgiving approaching.

Could the two have been related. Not sure. I'd have to re-test without the turkey. Not this year.

Why the wheels fell off the Karen the bus: I'm really not able to incorporate the starchy carbs the AltShift calls for (rice,  potatoes), so I'll probably skip any challenges in the future with this protocol. It's not a good fit for my current health management. That's okay, it's not a bad plan, just not a good fit for me. I can see why it works well for others.

The Good News: I'll be able to use some of the non-diary sauces in my current food template and other people are having great results with AltShift. That's great. It's an interesting protocol. I'd describe it more of a Primal-ish food template.(many of the recipes have dairy- can be modified for Paleo)

More Good News: I have a new appreciation for my pain free living, I used to live with joint pain and just accept it as a part of "aging"- in my mid-40's. What?? No way. Now I know better.

Interesting News:  As part of one of my discussions on the Facebook AltShift community, I realized how many sulfur rich, non-starchy vegetables I was eating and it did cause me to wonder how close I was to one of the Wahl's Protocols. I  picked up a copy of the book The Wahl's Protocol. MS runs in my family, multiple blood relatives.

Sure enough, my chosen, low inflammatory LCHF food template is very similar to the Wahl's Paleo Plus protocol. Low level ketosis, non-starchy veggies, coconut oil. Yes, yes, and yes.  It's nice to see that there will be clinical trials around the Wahl's protocol for both MS and obesity. I think it's no accident that I chose this food template, genetic wise. There's undoubtedly some genetic component at play.

It feels good.  One major difference is that I include eggs in my food template, since I'm more in it for the low-inflammation and the side effect of weight management and avoiding obesity.

Some more good news:  I'm extra motivated to keep the organ meat (chicken livers and chicken hearts so far- hey- saute in garlic and onions, not so bad!!)  in my food template and to be extra mindful of leafy greens. I'm also getting up to 1/2 cup of berries into my food plan with super good glucose results.

Massive Gratitude: Food is medicine for me, more than I appreciated before.

Doctor agrees: on a recent check-up: "Keep doing what you are doing. Oh, lets look at last year's lab results... okay cholesterol slightly high, oh, your HDL is very high, well nothing to worry about there."  Happy dance that my doctor understands detailed lipid panels.

*I still have to get this year's lab work done, so, I could still be in line for some changes.

Binge Urges: at an all time low. Binge eating thoughts are far, far from my mind. The switch is off. I couldn't binge if I wanted to now based on my full signals after each meal. The deepest I've been into long term remission as I've ever lived life.  Like a switch that is on OFF.

Don't worry, I'm not naive, eating sugary, grainy foods with emulsifiers (xanthan gum or guar gum) could change that in a microseconds. That switch could be turned on and it's my full responsibility to make choices within my food template so I can remain food sober. BS-ing myself = lapse or relapse.

That's it, back to regularly scheduled food programming.....  very thankful and I have a new appreciation for daily, pain-free living. I feel so much better.

Smooth sailing on the SS LCHF ship


  1. Yes, it's very easy to take a "normal," "pain-free" life for granted! Sorry that AltShift didn't work for you, but I'm glad that you are doing what's right for you!

    1. Yeah, Andrea, Love that food is my medicine. And that what works for others won't always work for all. Customization is where it is.

  2. I have tried to vary my eating plan and the same happened to me. But at least we know what we can eat. ;)

    1. Larcana, yes... anytime my food addict brain trys to wander, my body gives me the feed back. Small, single food 2-3 week trials give me the most info. I need to stick with that and do what I know. :) Karen P

  3. Turkey. You are so careful and knowledgeable that this probably does not apply to you, but...

    I have had swelling issues, to put it mildly, with turkey, too. I always blamed it on the stuffing I'd consume with it. Until I didn't eat the stuffing...and still ballooned up.

    Turns out, it is the helpful chemical swill the turkey company injects into the turkey to make it "better." I had avoided the birds that had prominent proclamations of injected flavor, but turns out that most turkeys have this addition. They just don't highlight it. The info is found only in small print or just in the small ingredients list under the nutritional info. Even turkeys purchased fresh, not plastic wrapped and frozen, can be injected with salty flavor and chemicals. One mus ask.

    For me, just turkey , only turkey, equals no more swelling.


    1. Interesting Deb, I may give this a try with a fresh, organic turkey slice sometime. I also get facial swelling from fennel seed, , too, and mustard.

      The turkey I was using was ground fresh, but not organic- special snowflake Turkey. I stopped eating roasted chickens from Costco due to MSG like compounds. I could feel like eating the chicken, but not wanting to stop at a normal serving. Sure enough, injected with a lot of junk. "spices" is always a catch all... Karen P

  4. I heard a podcast with Jason Seib and I am intrigued, but. . . .

    I read your blog post first, so I am a little concerned, and he went on and on in the podcast about how ANY diet shows immediate results, it's the long term that is proof. Right now this is so new, all the glowing testimonials are from people who have done it a max of 8 weeks. So I think I'm going to sit back and wait and see how they do in the long term.

    I've been stuck for a couple of years about 40'ish pounds higher than I want to be (but maintaining a 75 lb weight loss). So I'd like to get more off. However, I'm taking your experience as a cautionary tale.

    A few questions:

    It sounds like glorified carb cycling. Is it? (I know he's selling his plan so not much info is getting out)

    I'm not a heavy exerciser--mostly wimpy yoga and walking. Does the plan depend on heavy exercise?

  5. Hi Jan,
    You bring up many good points here and questions I have and had myself. If you listen to Jason's recorded Periscope videos He'll answer more questions and give you more info.

    My answers
    1. Length, his wife and his gym clients (a lot are in their 40's-60's) seem to be having lasting results, longer than 8 weeks. Now his Paleo buddies are already pretty fit and only 8 weeks. Facebook groups for whom which it working are only 8 weeks in or less.

    1.5 There are people in Jason Facebook group that are taking blood glucose measurements and posting them, people with T2D.

    2. Facebook group is free and you do not have to buy the book. I recommend you go there and read or ask questions.

    3. IMO- it's different than glorified carb cycling, in that the shifts happen in sets of never ending 5 days of eating a certain amount of carbs (LCHF) and 3 days of eating lower fat. Some people find the 5 days LCHF to be harder, others new to Paleo find the 5 days to be harder. The carbs on the 3 shift are meant to come from real foods (think resistant starch), etc. rather than junk food - lots of people there where carb nite worked, then stopped working at 2 months.

    4. No exercise requirements for the AltShift. I also walk a lot only strength train 15-20 mins 2 times per week.

    Jason answers many questions and gives more details about the AltShift plan on his recorded Periscopes here

    Congrats on your success and I understand treading lightly. We've both been around long enough to see early success, then blow outs. Heck, I switched from blueberries to raspberries and have had a big shift in fasting blood glucose higher. .... my body is pretty good about signaling me, so I just need to pay attention to that feedback.

    I do see some long time weight loss people who were stuck and who are now having results. I suspect that the inclusion of the resistant starch for 3 days on and the combo of LCHF may be a cell signaling gut bacteria ticket for some.

    Good luck and Kudos for continuing to keep 70 pounds off. I also understand the frustration of the extra weight. I hope the future brings more variations and that one will fit people like a glove. Karen P.

    1. Thanks, that helps a lot. I've experimented a little with "safe starches" particularly resistant starch and haven't had particularly bad experiences except I do have to watch my blood sugar. But my set point has moved a few pounds higher than it has been the past few years as a result of my experimentation (not as carefully as I should). I made a request to join the FB group, that will help me see what's what.

      I think my husband may be driven crazy, though. He's the family cook, and if I can eat rice and starchy veggies one night but not the next, he's going to go bonkers trying to keep track