Monday, May 29, 2017

"Eat Fat Until Satiated" careful what you tools adopt, does it work for you as an individual? Sometimes it works! Sometimes NOT

What's working now: RE: Weight Maintenance Long Term, 

Tracking food intake rather than eating fat to satiety. I'm still Paleo, LCHF with Keto sprinkled in due to a 17:7 fasting, eating window.

I'm by no means low-fat. The SAD and DASH diets  work even worse for me.  Eating low fat and low salt- made me sick and obese, for sure.  My hs-CRP was 6.8 before I started lower carb eating. Yikes! I was only 46 at the time. And lower carb eating brought lower blood pressure, and the need for adequate salt.

I eat ADEQUATE fat, protein, and  carbs for my age, activity level, body weight, genes, and good sleep.

1. Tracking my food and staying within certain parameters that give me best lean body, best muscular body, best sleep, and that in turn gives me the best long term weight maintenance.

I've got to just say, I'm Paleo, LCHF and sometimes Keto, but I cannot use the tool that most folks use "Eat Fat Until Satiated" or full. Guess what,? I only feel reasonable full feelings maybe 33% of the time.

  • It's luck
  • I've had enough sleep
  • I'm not stressed out
  • I've not chosen a binge food (think abstaining)
  • The stars are aligned, planets, and extreme woo
  • Unicorns are pooping rainbows 
  • A magic fairy preps the food with MLM powder, for hundreds of dollars a month
Oops, my inside voice is speaking out loud.
Sorry about that. Ahem... back to the topic at hand. 

What hasn't worked in the last 5 years.

I cannot eat fat until I'm full. It took me a long, long time to figure it out. But that's okay. Don't get me wrong, sometimes I feel the correct signals.  Getting the correct fat signals is a true gift, please add that to your gratitude list.

I've come to the personal conclusion that most do get an "off signal". I don't always, which makes it better for me to track my food intake and stay in the same general calorie, macro, and food template for 6 months to 1 year at a time.

Then I re-evaluate. Am I gaining, maintaining, or losing? 

What does work:

2. Knowing and accepting why: most likely my FTO (obesity and diabetes associated)genes and my extra Ghrelin (hunger hormone) gene. Both came out to play when I was 6 years old. While I have the genetic predisposition to be obese, type 2 diabetic, and over eat, I use my tools so that I don't have the gene expression, MOST OF THE TIME.

I still get inappropriate full/hungry signals. I will likely the rest of my life. I don't need to Paleo/LCHF/Keto harder. 

Ghrelin SNP's that express themselves are a real force for me to contend with in weight maintenance

I give myself and anybody who is in my situation major kudos for successfully getting to their best health and their best weight maintenance despite their odds, what SAD diet they were sold, and what tools being offered up as a best practice. It's not always easy, sometimes it is. Okay good for you, that it's easy. But for me- it's a lot of work.

I didn't have access to the right tools so I could be successful in the past. Once I started using the right tools, I had a lot more success. 

Yep, I was obese in the 1970's, at age 6. Now age 51, I don't have obesity, same genes, different food template

What didn't work in the past for me

WW, counting points, Low-fat (for weight maintenance), counting calories, low meat, low avocado. Doesn't work for my health. Might for others. Skinny Cow Ice Creams didn't work, but some folks maintain weight oaky with one thrown in there.

SOAP BOX time: There is no one way, only the BEST for YOU WAY.

There are various ways to lose weight and to maintain weight: 2-3 will work better than other suggestions. Don't feel bad, just get to work on the right tools for you.

It may be Paleo, Primal, LCHF, Keto, Gastric Bypass, Low Fat, AIP, Wahl's Protocol, Pescatarian, DASH, maybe even Vegetarian- who knows?

I will say that low processed foods may be the best for any food template. That's probably something we can all find helpful. Real, whole foods.

Adequate fat, protein, carbs- for right now

If you track your food intake and have found that by not eating unlimited amounts of fat helpful, please know you are not alone. Keep working on your own personal food template for your overall goals and age and genetics.

Any thoughts on this? Constructive, please. I'm not sure about anyone else but all I get are fat pants If I over eat dietary fat (and calories for that matter). I have limits, I use tracking tools,,and that's okay.

Caution: I see it a lot in support groups and there seems to be a lack of acceptance that not everyone is going to lose weight by eating fat until they are full. We may be in the minority, and I fully respect those who can, but should we be open minded enough to accept there are different paths for different folks?  Just like moderation, abstainers will get the heave-ho from many support groups. Ugh.

The boot can be a good thing, though, if it helps you arrive to the right support group.

Purchasing expensive products also seems to be a trend. I did for weight loss, but got off them quickly for weight maintenance. Financially either my kid goes to college or the MLM-er gets lots of trips... easy decision for me.

40 years prior of fat pants, the next 40 years are mine, 5 down and 35 to go. Higher Power willing.

And there is no magic fairy. Most of my tools are now free or inexpensive.

I eat ADEQUATE fat, protein, and  carbs for my age, activity level, body weight, genes, and good sleep.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Cyclic Weight Maintenance Patterns and Reversing a Small Trend- my Weight Maintenance GOLD May 2017

So, I noticed a bit of a weight gain trend from the end of April 2017 until the first week or two May 11, 2017. There are many reasons for this, nothing for me to get upset or spin my brain out about, or drop everything and eat all my old binge foods.

Kudos to FitBit for adding a blue trend line to their data. Brilliant!

Not losing my mind is key:  It took me about 5-10 minutes a week to take a peek at a few graphs, think about a plan. That's it no going back, no massive ruminating but planning with actions (we all have planned with no actions!), knowing I might level out or the scale might increase.

Now taking action, say cooking and doing dishes, moving 60 minutes a day, gym 2X week,  that is the time consuming part of weight maintenance, in my opinion.

Doesn't matter, it's data, I plan, record, move on, evaluate, re-plan. THIS is my gold. 
Weight Trend early May 2017

I'm still within my Best Weight 2017 of 113-116 lbs ( my BMI is hanging right around 21.6- 21.9 for reference).  No big deal now, however awareness on getting level averages will be key for me staying in my best range for June 2017.

Here's my personal GOLD of Weight Maintenance: The best practice of finding my root causes and making small adjustments to current food, lifestyle, and food sober living choices. In May 2011, I knew there were others who could stay in weight maintenance and I told myself I would be one of them, in a best me sort of way.

Now that I've repeated my best practices over 5 years, I'm finding it easier and easier to take 2-3 weeks, assess, experiment, and move onto other things. I can make a few educated decisions based on trend lines alone.

April 27, 2017 to May 27, 2017 All leveled out

I don't have to stay stuck trending upwards- beyond my best weight, I can level out and then either stay at level or reverse the trend to loss.  Holding onto level is pure GOLD. Once I get too high with my weight, well my 40 years of obesity fat cells start to take on a life of their own and a less than optimal .  Food sobriety is a daily gift I give myself, so there's that, too.

A. Why is there a trend?  I can guess for April and May 2017

Normal fluctuations, curious self experiments, and a bold re-test of a prior binge food

1. Natural, cyclic nature of Weight Maintenance= normal (cyclic natures = respect!)

2. Self experiments around NOT 17:7 fasting before a blood draw = curious (great data! learned a lot)

3. Self experiments with 4 grams of Macadamia nuts, 3 days in a row. (prior binge food) = re-testing theory  (ALL the nopes!!! I cannot eat even a smidge of prior binge foods)

B. Can I get leveled out and see a flat line? Yep! Okay, mission accomplished. I'm still within my Best Weight range, so that's what I'm looking for in maintenance patterns.  It's normal for me to have a wave pattern.

In general, cyclic patterns happen all the time in nature.

C. Can I sustain the level line?, or am I about to Pivot higher? Corkskrew? (see Dr. Berkeley's post)

Well next month will tell. I get what I get and I don't throw a fit. It's data, I just keep going and try something else.

Jan 1, 2017 to May 27, 2017- those normal cycles

For a very, very small time investment, AND taking a fair amount of daily action- Paleo/LCHF- probably Keto some days. Bringing my own lunch, getting out to walk, some strength training and HIIT here or there... I can have what I promised myself I wanted for life, a normal weight. I never thought I could get my best weight, but that's what practice and honesty and very frankly- Food Sober Living gave me.

Owning my own data in weight maintenance. Not letting me get me. Staying Food Sober without a relapse.  Lapses, yeah, they happen.

What is working in the late Spring 2017

1. Plotting my data each day with easy to use digital tools, Fitbit, My Fitness Pal, Apple Health, Heads Up Health

2. Looking at graphs 5 minutes each week, taking ACTION on the results.

3. Paleo/Low Carb, sometimes Keto, cyclic. Keeping my 17:7 fasting most days.

4. Not letting me get me- AKA- food sober living, while taking a reasonable risk here or there.

What did not work in the past:

1. Not using the right tools for weight maintenance, skipping weigh ins at WW to hide (wasn't effective, nor was counting points!)

2. Not having a graph meant I could not look at it and I wouldn't have to do the work of weight maintenance.

3. Low fat, calorie counting did not work for me past the age of 35.

4. I rather liked the food high that I had cycling in my life, that was kind of fun, until it started to hurt physically and mentally. Ouch.

Okay, here's to finding your own personal GOLD in weight maintenance. Your plans and tracking will vary. There's no one way, but probably 2-3 that will be more effective. Onward,  constructive comments are welcome.  

Sunday, May 21, 2017

How I keep my lower GI system running smoothly, your milage and output may vary- Spring 2017 Poop Post

Hello All,

I got a question from a bloggy about friend elimination and the lower GI track.
**Please, if you have GI problems, get the correct diagnosis from a doc or other reasonable practitioner***

Sometimes, we are all left tinkering on our own. Specifically- lets talk about poop! In the lab world we use the words fecal or stool. Sometimes the topic gives folks unpleasant feelings So skip this post if talking about taking a dump is a deal breaker. I totally get it.

 I'll try to keep the topic moving a long and brief (LOL, not sorry, punny!!!) Your milage can and will differ based on age, disease status, medications, food template and gut microbiome (which is all highly theoretical but does matter, who knows why or how much...)

  These topics were mentioned for discussion.

1. Going daily
2. Going fully
3. Clean wiping
4. Minimal odor

Great topics. Let's get started

1. Going daily:

What does work: For me  going daily has a lot to do with the types of food that I eat. Mainly, am I eating foods ( Paleo/LCHF/ Keto-ish mild) that agree with my gut.

This means  for me meat from animal sources, leafy greens, brightly colored veggies, and enough fat- think natural fat in eggs, beef or lamb, sardines, avocados, or added olive oils.  Also seeds like pumpkin but not small seeds like chia or sesame. Some fermented veg- like sauerkraut can be good (but I do limit my intake, too much is too fast transit time for me). Coffee, several cups-truth!

I've noticed good results from eating meat off the bone: Chicken drumsticks, thighs, wings ( I take off most the skin, most days) or beef ribs, or eating the whole thing- like sardines or smoked oysters.

 I'm currently on a coconut oil abstaining period for some self- experiments.

Edited to add: Magnesium- I take 2 tsp of Natural Calm Magnesium (lemon/raspberry flavor). It has a teeny bit of Stevia in it, but I dilute it so food cravings are not triggered from "sweet".  Too much magnesium = too fast for me. Too little and I can get night leg cramps ( lots of LCHF's get this).

What didn't work in the past:  grains, dairy, low-fat WW and other diet foods, added fiber and high fiber cereals- cause me to have a "colon blow" effect. Painful digestion, upper and lower- Lots of GERD, lots of GI pain. Horrible gas- smells like sewage. Folks running out of the bathroom gagging.

Yeah, I really, really don't miss poor GI function. And, to think that I thought FiberOne with low-fat milk was going to save me from Colon Cancer and/or diabetes. Or oats for that matter.... gads!  All it did was make me sick and in doubled over pain, most days. I was too far in it to see it.

Oh, those high fiber muffins at Trader Joe's were like food addiction CRACK- ate them for breakfast, thinking that the low points would surely keep me lean and all I got was sick. Never wanted to connect those dots. All I got was morbidly obese on those muffins- and a bloated belly. BIG bloat. Like a pant size difference.

Even my pets wanted to stay away from me when I ate dairy products and high grain fibers. OMG!

2. Going fully:

Has a lot to do with my foods, but eating at similar times, similar foods, staying hydrated (don't over drink water- that has very big problems electrolyte wise) just adequate hydration- not over, not under, drink to thirst- if you are at elevation, then you may have to change it up in the mountains or high mesas.

Squatty Potty is helpful, but not mandatory. I have one upstairs, but not at work or downstairs. Get your food settled and that goes a long time in going fully.

Disease Management: Some diseases create pooping problems, along with medications. Ugh! This is a tough one. Work with your doc on this.

3. and 4. Wiping and Odor:

What's working now: Well if you get your food in order, wiping becomes standard, not too much of a problem. Odor- yes, poop smells bad, but getting your GI system humming a long will go a long way.
There are products to purchase to put on top of the bowl before you poop to make the smell minimal, but you can also throw money out the window of your car as you drive along your commute, too.  I wouldn't spend my money on toilet bowl fresheners other than cleaners.

What didn't work in the past: 

Everybody poops, but sometimes it's an easier thing than others. Even prepping for my colonoscopy in Nov 2016 was more pleasant than eating low-fat, high grains, and FiberOne. That's a sign. That I needed to change up my diet.  I believe this was  body's way of hating what I was doing to it. Sad, but some good experimentation can help.

Karen's personal NOTE A:  If there's a lot of problems, I might go to a regular doc for an Ova and Parasite test. If there is nothing concrete, then I'd head to a functional person who does not over test (Michael Ruscio) functional  doc.

I can surmise from Dr. Ruscio's podcasts that he does not over test, he does drill down quickly, without much diagnostic costs to his patients, and he is very experienced in the area. There's a whole bunch of woo and high out of pocket costs both in the functional and traditional space, but picking an ethical practitioner would be key- IMO. SIBO can affect folks, so I'd want someone to help me who's honest and ethical.

Of course in the traditional medicine, you can still pay  a lot and get nothing but a recommendation for Fiber One and Gut Busting high fiber crack muffins at Trader Joe's.  Those may work great for some, but who wants to have colon blow and fat pants from the weight gaining grain foods?

Karen's personal NOTE B: Some folks are so upset about dropping a duce in the same hotel bathroom as their spouse, kids, husband or wife that they will run down stairs to the common bathrooms while traveling.  For these matters, I recommend talking to a good cognitive behavior therapist who can help  manage thoughts and behavior around daily bodily NORMAL functions.

You may have to sit down with the fam bam and tell them to stop with any shaming or blaming.  Every body poops. Yep, it smells bad for a reason. Don't eat where you dump from an evolutionary prospective. Everybody has to wash after they go- because the bacteria thrive in the nether regions even if it's urine- wash your hands, male or female.

Hand washing is key for post bathroom activities, but all my readers will know that and I'll bet you all practice good hand washing practices already. I'll tell you, having a compliant kid made things good from disease prevention at my house.

Karen's personal note C: Travel to other countries and/or hike in the back country. It gives you a totally different perspective on taking a dump- for sure!

Karen's Personal note D: Some folks do great on high grain fibers. Yaaaaay you. Do what works!

Hope this helps the person who asked the question. See you in the comments.

Prickly Pear flowers to take your mind off the topic as you go about your day...

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Weight Maintenance Update 5 Years, 3 months staying steady, inside "my best for me "ranges

May 2011 to May 2017

May 2011 to May 2017

Starting weight 187.4 lbs
Goal Range 113-125  lbs
Current Weight 116.0 lbs
Keeping off    71.4   lbs

Time in maintenance 5 years, 3 months

Age 51
Menopause 3+years
Height 5'1"
BMI 21.9
BMI ave this month 21.8
BMI ave last month 21.7
Glucose (fasting & 2hr post this month range 71- 93 mg/dL)

Food Template:  Paleo, LCHF, Keto (some days), 
Abstain from all grains, most sugars*, dairy. Nut free, artificial sweetener free **
* 85% chocolate 1X per day
** Tiny bit of stevia in my Natural Calm

Food Timing or Time Restricted Eating Window or Intermittent Fasting 17:7 or 18:6

17 hours fasting (water only)
7 hours eating, 3 meals
Eat 6am Stop eating at 1 pm

Or 18:6, I change it up a bit

Auto-Immune Hashimotos 1997, 100 ug Synthroid daily
Food Addict in Recovery: 6+ years
High Risk, but never diagnosed Type 2 diabetes

Walking 12,000-13,000 steps per day

Weight lifting : 2X per week

Sprints on the rowing machine 1 days per week OR stair sprints 

Stair Ave/day for the month 18 stairs (Apple Health Kit)

What's working for me May 2017

1. More LCHF than Keto lately. Digging more vegetables on my midday meal. Works. Total carbs not much more than 50 grams/day, all from veggies and some 85% chocolate. 

2. N=1 experiment on some health parameters. May lead to more testing. Vague, I know.. not serious.

3. Celebrated 6 years of food sobriety. That's very special to me. I'm proud. I choose recovery over the disease. I'm very grateful for my choices. There's not much margin for error in the process. I've navigated well. I give myself a lot of credit. 

4. Really digging roasted chicken legs on salads. Yep! Check my Instagram feed for photos (Link)

5. I'm on the data watch for an upward trend the last 2 weeks, probably related to my n=1 self experiments, but I continue to use My Fitness Pal as a tool to help me navigate the weight maintenance space.  

I'm still in my "best for me" weight ranges, but I do take upward trends seriously and look at my overall total food intake, movement, sleep, and stress management. 

This month:
This month weight trend May 2017

Compared to April 2017 trend
Still feeling great. Not pulling an ostrich. Not freaking out either. 

What did not work in the past

1. Counting calories and points rather than carbs
2. Not experimenting with my health parameters to optimize and understand.
3. I ate to sooth myself, to celebrate, to get food high. Junk food was my life. 
4. I ate terrible tasting, dry chicken breasts, just nasty, with low fat chemical blitzed dressing. (YO, low points)
5. I did not hop on the scale so I missed the opportunity to make changes and improvements. 

May Gray 2017, good for flower photos

 Weight Graphs, because they are a great tool for me. And, I deserve the best tools possible.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

6 year celebration of food sobriety- pleased, but powering onward- May 2017

6 years of Food Sobriety 2011 to 2017
I'm 6 years food sober today.

May 3, 2017.

Six years.

I know it's earned, not a given.

What's working now

 1. I eat 3 meals a day ( a few days a 4th)

2. I fast 17:7 or 18:6 most days (not all)

3. I abstain from my trigger foods
(grains, most sugars, guar and xantham gums, nuts)

4. I eat a Paleo, Low Carb, sometimes Keto food template

5. I exercise and sleep on a schedule (most of the time)

6. I get abstaining based support when needed.

7. I'm honest with myself (sometimes I lapse)

8. I'm honest and have trained myself to catch slippery slope thinking, reversing that ASAP.

What didn't work in the past:
1. Ate all day, all the time and at night many times
2. I only went 1-2 hours wihtout eating
3. I moderated all my trigger foods because I was told I had to or I would binge eat (Ughhh!)
4. I ate the Standard American Diet, low fat diet products, and sugary foods.
5. I thought I moved a lot, but was sedentary
6. I didn't seek the right support system- moderation made my food addiction worse.
7. I wasn't honest about how much I was eating and that I was getting sick a lot.
8. I sunk further and further into slipperly slope thinking so I could get food high.

To anyone out there who has helped me, thank you.  Thank you very much.

I feel that food sober living is easier than food addiction, so I will stay living in food sobriety for another meal.

Next up, May 2017 check-in and that poop post for our blogger friend. LOL. Onward.