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Let's lose some weight in 2021. Back to the grind... who else is in?


bostonfred

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2 hours ago, Chadstroma said:

Back to the drawing board...

I tried to modify my diet to do the keto, which I had great success with, but be careful to not get gout and kidney stones with more water, additive to the water (citrate) and watching how much food I was taking in that were not good for kidney stones and gout. 

Pretty much everything I find that has citrate has some level of carbs. So, I tried to drink more water and less of the Crystal Light kind of drinks with the citrate. I ended up with a minor flare up of gout a few months ago and so I went back to drinking lots of citrate out of fear of kidney stones (citrate is more about prevention of kidney stones but I got a lot of flare ups of gout leading up to the stones so I am worried it was a sign of stones too). Doing that kept me out of ketosis. I kept trying to find a balance but I ended up with another big flare of gout right now. My weight loss stalled. 

So, forget that balance. Keto is out. The purines that cause uric acid and the phosphates are in a lot of similar foods. 

I think I will go to a low calorie and watching portions approach that leans away from the foods that are to be avoided for gout and kidney stones. 

My approach

Get started tracking.  Get the myfitnesspal app, set it to lose 2lb/week and sedentary lifestyle, get used to logging foods and staying under calories (but not too much) and logging every bit of exercise even long walks at the grocery store.  It all counts at first because you are rewarding your activity.  It really helps motivate you to walk more and eventually add more and better quality exercise. 

Start a streak of consecutive days under your calorie goal and set a target date. 90 days.  August 11th.  July 18th.  Pick something you can do and do it.  Then plan to take a cheat day or two and get back to it.  

Don't worry about perfect nutrition early on.  You need to lose a lot of weight, and that's a bigger priority than adding in chia seeds and kale to your smoothies.  Focus on big picture stuff, like if gout is an issue have tart cherry juice in the house and also cut back on salty meats and stuff you shouldn't eat.  Stay hydrated and cut back on the alcohol.  Whatever the recommendations are for you. 

If you can find healthy, low calorie foods you like, start adding them in more often.  Berries are the key for me, strawberries/raspberries/blueberries almost every single morning, loads of fiber and healthy antioxidants and vitamins, taste amazing, but not bad on calories. I love broccoli and cauliflower so I have one or the other or both for dinner almost every day. Fiber fills you up and keeps you from getting backed up which can happen easily when you're dieting because you aren't pushing as much toothpaste through the tube as you used to. 

Give yourself cheat meals - things that feel like you're cheating because you aren't supposed to be able to have it when you're on a diet.  Find foods you really like that aren't too many calories.  If you have a fast food habit then give yourself an occasional fast food day.  If you need pizza then have a pizza day.  But scout out the foods you can have.  Some pizzas are like 500 calories a slice, Papa Gino's is a chain near me, a large cheese slice is 230. That's a huge difference. I feel like I'm getting away with something when I eat three slices for 690 calories but it's just a normal sized dinner. 

You can probably lose 2lbs/wk on about 1900 calories without exercise right now. That's a lot of food once you get used to it.  You can get a big chicken burrito at chipote for 1000 calories... or a smaller burrito, or cut out the rice, or take out the cheese, sour cream and/or beans.... if a burrito is the comfort food you like then make that your goal every day.  Corp just ate nothing but burrito bowls and chick fil a nuggets almost every day and lost a lot of weight. 

All kinds of things you can do but the two most important things are 1) to start, but 2) consult your doctor before beginning this or any diet or exercise program because I am not a doctor and this is not medical advice. 

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37 minutes ago, bostonfred said:

My approach

Get started tracking.  Get the myfitnesspal app, set it to lose 2lb/week and sedentary lifestyle, get used to logging foods and staying under calories (but not too much) and logging every bit of exercise even long walks at the grocery store.  It all counts at first because you are rewarding your activity.  It really helps motivate you to walk more and eventually add more and better quality exercise. 

Start a streak of consecutive days under your calorie goal and set a target date. 90 days.  August 11th.  July 18th.  Pick something you can do and do it.  Then plan to take a cheat day or two and get back to it.  

Don't worry about perfect nutrition early on.  You need to lose a lot of weight, and that's a bigger priority than adding in chia seeds and kale to your smoothies.  Focus on big picture stuff, like if gout is an issue have tart cherry juice in the house and also cut back on salty meats and stuff you shouldn't eat.  Stay hydrated and cut back on the alcohol.  Whatever the recommendations are for you. 

If you can find healthy, low calorie foods you like, start adding them in more often.  Berries are the key for me, strawberries/raspberries/blueberries almost every single morning, loads of fiber and healthy antioxidants and vitamins, taste amazing, but not bad on calories. I love broccoli and cauliflower so I have one or the other or both for dinner almost every day. Fiber fills you up and keeps you from getting backed up which can happen easily when you're dieting because you aren't pushing as much toothpaste through the tube as you used to. 

Give yourself cheat meals - things that feel like you're cheating because you aren't supposed to be able to have it when you're on a diet.  Find foods you really like that aren't too many calories.  If you have a fast food habit then give yourself an occasional fast food day.  If you need pizza then have a pizza day.  But scout out the foods you can have.  Some pizzas are like 500 calories a slice, Papa Gino's is a chain near me, a large cheese slice is 230. That's a huge difference. I feel like I'm getting away with something when I eat three slices for 690 calories but it's just a normal sized dinner. 

You can probably lose 2lbs/wk on about 1900 calories without exercise right now. That's a lot of food once you get used to it.  You can get a big chicken burrito at chipote for 1000 calories... or a smaller burrito, or cut out the rice, or take out the cheese, sour cream and/or beans.... if a burrito is the comfort food you like then make that your goal every day.  Corp just ate nothing but burrito bowls and chick fil a nuggets almost every day and lost a lot of weight. 

All kinds of things you can do but the two most important things are 1) to start, but 2) consult your doctor before beginning this or any diet or exercise program because I am not a doctor and this is not medical advice. 

Thanks... I think this will be the direction I go. 

One really frustrating thing is that I was at the gym again every weekday. I even have gum buddies to keep me on even when I may not want to go (the kids, they go to the kids area and play etc and love it) but with the gout that has been done for last week. I was hoping to go back today but I am getting a flare up in my heel right now where the toe is basically gone.... double grrrr.... but I think I am still going to go when my wife gets home to hit the pool. 

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10 minutes ago, Chadstroma said:

Thanks... I think this will be the direction I go. 

One really frustrating thing is that I was at the gym again every weekday. I even have gum buddies to keep me on even when I may not want to go (the kids, they go to the kids area and play etc and love it) but with the gout that has been done for last week. I was hoping to go back today but I am getting a flare up in my heel right now where the toe is basically gone.... double grrrr.... but I think I am still going to go when my wife gets home to hit the pool. 

Gout blows, and trying to power through it is usually counter productive.  Swimming is good.  Can you work upper body, maybe lifting and rowing?  The investment now is like compound interest when your muscles are burning a few extra calories a day the entire time you are trying to lose, especially if you work core and back.  

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7 minutes ago, bostonfred said:

Gout blows, and trying to power through it is usually counter productive.  Swimming is good.  Can you work upper body, maybe lifting and rowing?  The investment now is like compound interest when your muscles are burning a few extra calories a day the entire time you are trying to lose, especially if you work core and back.  

Rather swim as the walking from station to station is not fun.... though it is coming up strong right now so I might push that back and just stay home and do some curls etc with dumbbells. 

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On 6/25/2021 at 12:01 PM, bostonfred said:

There have been a few times recently where I have thought #### it, i can have a drink or two tonight. Or craved chips badly.  Or thought, I'm not really in any hurry to lose this many pounds by this date as I looked in the fridge.  It is harder to stick with this than it was before, and I don't know why. I think part of it is that I feel a lot better and healthier now than I did before, so I'm mostly just trying to look better. It's easy to not give that much of a ####.  Maybe it's because I got used to not getting takeout during the pandemic and limiting myself to what was in the fridge but now I feel like I can shop ten times a week if i really want to. Or just dealing with the swings of having 1500 calories one day and 2600 the next that I've talked about plenty.

Regardless I am not used to it and it sucks.  I think there's a psychological/behavioral issue here I need to figure out if I ever want to solve this permanently, and I'm not sure if it's new or the same old same old.

I've talked about this some and I know @culdeus has talked about it too.  The idea of a set point that a person/body has and how extremely difficult it is to lose a lot of weight and keep it off.  I say that not to discourage you but to encourage you to be the exception and to analyze what is going on.  Your body will fight you to get back to where you were - maybe it's a starvation mechanism, maybe it's mental, maybe it's both but it is absolutely not easy once you've already gained all the weigh and especially if you've gained it and had it on for years.

What I would say to you or anyone here is to stay focused on it and have accountability - here and at home.  As much as you can get helps.  I'd love to have you people call me out for not staying on target.  I say this as someone who has yo-yo'd so much my name should be Duncan.  I've lost 60-80 pounds a few times in my life.  A lot of my journey over the last 6-7 years is documented in the Otis thread and a few others.  I definitely have a problem with food.

I'm in a good spot right now - my wife is onboard, which is huge and lost 30+ pounds.  I'm sitting at 183 today and I've done the one day a week fasting for 6 weeks now.  I still don't love it but I try and use that day to focus myself and understand that I have control over food and it doesn't have control over me - sounds hokey but I find it important. 

I'm going away from low carb for a while and will try and focus on water, fruit and veggies.   Will still do IF and my fasting days but I want to see how I react.  My biggest problem right now is I'm still way too sedentary.  I need to move - 2019 I was doing like you and running long distances.  Please don't burn out like I did and start heading in the wrong direction.  Sometimes taking some time to let your body get used to your new normal is a good thing and will help with long-term success.

 

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30 minutes ago, Clown Car said:

Does weight loss count if it’s not fat? I’m in Los Angeles visiting #1 and we got haircuts. Probably cut 1-2 pounds of hair off. But I’m sure I’ve eaten enough to make up for it. 
https://imgur.com/a/0beW5Dg

When I beat @The Gator and @BassNBrew in the weight loss challenge I shaved off every hair on my body.  EVERY HAIR.

 

 

 

 

Ok, I didn't really do this but I did wear a waterproof raincoat in my house for hours at a time and took steaming hot baths to sweat off weight the last week.

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57 minutes ago, AAABatteries said:

I've talked about this some and I know @culdeus has talked about it too.  The idea of a set point that a person/body has and how extremely difficult it is to lose a lot of weight and keep it off.  I say that not to discourage you but to encourage you to be the exception and to analyze what is going on.  Your body will fight you to get back to where you were - maybe it's a starvation mechanism, maybe it's mental, maybe it's both but it is absolutely not easy once you've already gained all the weigh and especially if you've gained it and had it on for years.

What I would say to you or anyone here is to stay focused on it and have accountability - here and at home.  As much as you can get helps.  I'd love to have you people call me out for not staying on target.  I say this as someone who has yo-yo'd so much my name should be Duncan.  I've lost 60-80 pounds a few times in my life.  A lot of my journey over the last 6-7 years is documented in the Otis thread and a few others.  I definitely have a problem with food.

I'm in a good spot right now - my wife is onboard, which is huge and lost 30+ pounds.  I'm sitting at 183 today and I've done the one day a week fasting for 6 weeks now.  I still don't love it but I try and use that day to focus myself and understand that I have control over food and it doesn't have control over me - sounds hokey but I find it important. 

I'm going away from low carb for a while and will try and focus on water, fruit and veggies.   Will still do IF and my fasting days but I want to see how I react.  My biggest problem right now is I'm still way too sedentary.  I need to move - 2019 I was doing like you and running long distances.  Please don't burn out like I did and start heading in the wrong direction.  Sometimes taking some time to let your body get used to your new normal is a good thing and will help with long-term success.

 

I can bump in some of the more recent theories on diet breaks and where that cuts in.  I think I ran down some of the latest stuff back in April timeframe perhaps.  Most of it with the idea that breaks prevent the leptin spikes. 

I think it's pretty clear now that there is a much easier path to gain weight back and that takes people by surprise.  There's also a huge hormonal response to weight loss that is just screaming at you to consume more. 

From the year that Otis did a similar thread, wasn't it ?you? to send a survey out to everyone.  IIRC 80% had gained back everything within 6 months and additional 15% were over where they were to start.  1 in 20 were still in some sort of progress state.  That's very expected.  

This #### isn't easy.  

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My only really change in philosophy in recent history is still that low carb diets tend to fare better because there is a minimum of fat you need to function, and you do better to eat higher protein in a deficit so there's really nothing else to cut but carbs. So basically by rule there's not really an option to go much over 100g carbs in a day and realistically keep dropping fat.  

That and I'm still bought in that calorie counting on MFP should not consider exercise calories when > goal weight.

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32 minutes ago, culdeus said:

I can bump in some of the more recent theories on diet breaks and where that cuts in.  I think I ran down some of the latest stuff back in April timeframe perhaps.  Most of it with the idea that breaks prevent the leptin spikes. 

I think it's pretty clear now that there is a much easier path to gain weight back and that takes people by surprise.  There's also a huge hormonal response to weight loss that is just screaming at you to consume more. 

From the year that Otis did a similar thread, wasn't it ?you? to send a survey out to everyone.  IIRC 80% had gained back everything within 6 months and additional 15% were over where they were to start.  1 in 20 were still in some sort of progress state.  That's very expected.  

This #### isn't easy.  

It was @fatguyinalittlecoat - I believe he had a  wager with someone- my vague recollection was he thought most would gain it back but I think he lost the bet as we had several who kept it off.  I was one of those and eventually went from like 245 down to 158 (at my lowest).  I’ve since gone back over 200 two different times.

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45 minutes ago, AAABatteries said:

It was @fatguyinalittlecoat - I believe he had a  wager with someone- my vague recollection was he thought most would gain it back but I think he lost the bet as we had several who kept it off.  I was one of those and eventually went from like 245 down to 158 (at my lowest).  I’ve since gone back over 200 two different times.

Yeah I don’t remember the exact details but it was something like if 5 people keep off some specified amount of weight loss I would lose.  And yeah, I lost.

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39 minutes ago, fatguyinalittlecoat said:

Yeah I don’t remember the exact details but it was something like if 5 people keep off some specified amount of weight loss I would lose.  And yeah, I lost.

Maybe I remember Otis failing enough for 3 people.  

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1 hour ago, culdeus said:

My only really change in philosophy in recent history is still that low carb diets tend to fare better because there is a minimum of fat you need to function, and you do better to eat higher protein in a deficit so there's really nothing else to cut but carbs. So basically by rule there's not really an option to go much over 100g carbs in a day and realistically keep dropping fat.  

That and I'm still bought in that calorie counting on MFP should not consider exercise calories when > goal weight.

I disagree with almost all of this, but I am taking a behavioral approach and you are taking a medical one. 

You think exercise calories shouldn't be counted because people tend to over count, exercise calorie burn is not sustainable unless you continue to increase time distance or resistance. 

As a fat guy I feel pretty strongly that exercise sucks and I wouldn't have done it if I didn't get to eat more afterwards.  I'll gladly trade off the accuracy of my tdee calculation for the motivation that the extra calories provide to get off your ###.  

Research clearly shows that people over compensate for exercise by eating more afterwards than they burned.  The new mantra seems to be that exercise is good but it should be its own goal. 

#### all that, too.  Counting exercise calories is absolutely critical to learning CICO.  Its a huge part of the CO.  But you have to use myfitnesspal strictly.  Stay under calories every day, and if you go over, work it off.  You'll stop overeating "by accident" and start planning your dinner and dessert before you eat it if you know you'll have to get on the treadmill at 9pm to burn off that half slice of cheesecake.  I learned to plan my intake much more honestly and carefully by rewarding good behaviors and "punishing" myself for bad ones.  The research I've seen studies the effects but doesn't isolate the approach.  For every person who does what I said, there are many more who just get off the treadmill and say I was good give me cake. 

All the hormonal stuff seems to be misunderstood too.  Yes it is hard to override what your body is telling you. Yes your body adjusts to doing the same exercises over time.  There are a lot of good studies that seem to agree on the physical stuff.  And I agree with you about diet breaks making you more efficient when you get back to it (although I take longer and much less healthy breaks than you suggest). I agree that your approach is more efficient than mine, where I have been going down 35, up 10, then down some more. 

But while your approach is more efficient in a vacuum, it doesn't teach good behaviors or reward effort.  The only reward for your approach of working hard on the diet is weight loss... and studies show that people who work hard on the weight loss tend to gain it back, because as you say this #### is hard. 

My approach is built around the long term. I've been doing this for two years and I'm not going to be done for a few months still.  That sucks.  But I've learned how to maintain my weight, I've learned how to monitor my weight and set the canary in the coal mine for when I've started to gain back more than I want and I've learned how to get back on a diet when my weight is up. Those are skills I will need for the rest of my life.  And by losing the weight gradually, I've given my skin time to tighten around my smaller frame each time before getting back on it.  I don't see the amount of loose skin I'd been warned to expect from losing 70 plus pounds and I'm hopeful that I'll be able to say the same when I'm down 100 this fall. Those are all much more important to me than the more efficient approach you espouse.

And low carb diets are great for some people, but I think they sweep a lot of problems under the rug.  You can lose weight and specifically fat quickly with keto but then you still need to keep it off, and the only skill you've learned to do that is to eat low carbs.  Maybe that works for you long term but for a lot of people- specifically fat people- thats going to be a difficult path.  So they inevitably stop doing keto, haven't learned much about how to maintain their weight and they end up gaining it back. 

My approach is focused on really understanding every calorie i put in and every calorie I burn and how many of each I should expect at every step in the process. I'm fully aware of how many calories are in the things I eat and I can make a good educated guess on things I don't usually eat too.  So even when I'm not formally dieting I have a good sense of whether I'm around maintenance calories or over or under, and I can manage that much better than I did for years as I got fat in the first place.  I'd venture a guess that most people who got really fat did a bad job of this because thats how they - I mean we- got fat. I'm willing to trade the efficiency of keto for the much better understanding of nutrition I have now from tracking protein and fiber and sodium and all that good stuff every day for almost a year now, and tracking calories for over two years.  

I appreciate what the studies say, I appreciate the information you bring to the table, and I fully agree that what you've said has scientific evidence and will work best for people with good overall habits who need to lose weight in the short term or who need simple rules to lose weight. 

But it's the exact opposite of what I'm doing and what I'd recommend to people with longer term goals like mine. 

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148g protein 

50g fiber

3710mg sodium

Stayed under calories (yes counting exercise).  Sodium a bit high, fiber and protein both very good.  Ran about 45 or 50 minutes on the treadmill at MAF pace... haven't done my longer run in a few days and with the heat I'm probably not going to tomorrow either but hopefully soon.  

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1 hour ago, bostonfred said:

I disagree with almost all of this, but I am taking a behavioral approach and you are taking a medical one. 

You think exercise calories shouldn't be counted because people tend to over count, exercise calorie burn is not sustainable unless you continue to increase time distance or resistance. 

As a fat guy I feel pretty strongly that exercise sucks and I wouldn't have done it if I didn't get to eat more afterwards.  I'll gladly trade off the accuracy of my tdee calculation for the motivation that the extra calories provide to get off your ###.  

Research clearly shows that people over compensate for exercise by eating more afterwards than they burned.  The new mantra seems to be that exercise is good but it should be its own goal. 

#### all that, too.  Counting exercise calories is absolutely critical to learning CICO.  Its a huge part of the CO.  But you have to use myfitnesspal strictly.  Stay under calories every day, and if you go over, work it off.  You'll stop overeating "by accident" and start planning your dinner and dessert before you eat it if you know you'll have to get on the treadmill at 9pm to burn off that half slice of cheesecake.  I learned to plan my intake much more honestly and carefully by rewarding good behaviors and "punishing" myself for bad ones.  The research I've seen studies the effects but doesn't isolate the approach.  For every person who does what I said, there are many more who just get off the treadmill and say I was good give me cake. 

All the hormonal stuff seems to be misunderstood too.  Yes it is hard to override what your body is telling you. Yes your body adjusts to doing the same exercises over time.  There are a lot of good studies that seem to agree on the physical stuff.  And I agree with you about diet breaks making you more efficient when you get back to it (although I take longer and much less healthy breaks than you suggest). I agree that your approach is more efficient than mine, where I have been going down 35, up 10, then down some more. 

But while your approach is more efficient in a vacuum, it doesn't teach good behaviors or reward effort.  The only reward for your approach of working hard on the diet is weight loss... and studies show that people who work hard on the weight loss tend to gain it back, because as you say this #### is hard. 

My approach is built around the long term. I've been doing this for two years and I'm not going to be done for a few months still.  That sucks.  But I've learned how to maintain my weight, I've learned how to monitor my weight and set the canary in the coal mine for when I've started to gain back more than I want and I've learned how to get back on a diet when my weight is up. Those are skills I will need for the rest of my life.  And by losing the weight gradually, I've given my skin time to tighten around my smaller frame each time before getting back on it.  I don't see the amount of loose skin I'd been warned to expect from losing 70 plus pounds and I'm hopeful that I'll be able to say the same when I'm down 100 this fall. Those are all much more important to me than the more efficient approach you espouse.

And low carb diets are great for some people, but I think they sweep a lot of problems under the rug.  You can lose weight and specifically fat quickly with keto but then you still need to keep it off, and the only skill you've learned to do that is to eat low carbs.  Maybe that works for you long term but for a lot of people- specifically fat people- thats going to be a difficult path.  So they inevitably stop doing keto, haven't learned much about how to maintain their weight and they end up gaining it back. 

My approach is focused on really understanding every calorie i put in and every calorie I burn and how many of each I should expect at every step in the process. I'm fully aware of how many calories are in the things I eat and I can make a good educated guess on things I don't usually eat too.  So even when I'm not formally dieting I have a good sense of whether I'm around maintenance calories or over or under, and I can manage that much better than I did for years as I got fat in the first place.  I'd venture a guess that most people who got really fat did a bad job of this because thats how they - I mean we- got fat. I'm willing to trade the efficiency of keto for the much better understanding of nutrition I have now from tracking protein and fiber and sodium and all that good stuff every day for almost a year now, and tracking calories for over two years.  

I appreciate what the studies say, I appreciate the information you bring to the table, and I fully agree that what you've said has scientific evidence and will work best for people with good overall habits who need to lose weight in the short term or who need simple rules to lose weight. 

But it's the exact opposite of what I'm doing and what I'd recommend to people with longer term goals like mine. 

This matches my own experience very closely.  It’s the only thing that has ever worked for me consistently when it comes to losing and keeping off weight.

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15 hours ago, Chadstroma said:

Back to the drawing board...

I tried to modify my diet to do the keto, which I had great success with, but be careful to not get gout and kidney stones with more water, additive to the water (citrate) and watching how much food I was taking in that were not good for kidney stones and gout. 

Pretty much everything I find that has citrate has some level of carbs. So, I tried to drink more water and less of the Crystal Light kind of drinks with the citrate. I ended up with a minor flare up of gout a few months ago and so I went back to drinking lots of citrate out of fear of kidney stones (citrate is more about prevention of kidney stones but I got a lot of flare ups of gout leading up to the stones so I am worried it was a sign of stones too). Doing that kept me out of ketosis. I kept trying to find a balance but I ended up with another big flare of gout right now. My weight loss stalled. 

So, forget that balance. Keto is out. The purines that cause uric acid and the phosphates are in a lot of similar foods. 

I think I will go to a low calorie and watching portions approach that leans away from the foods that are to be avoided for gout and kidney stones. 

I know low carbohydrate diets are all the rage, but you point out a couple of the health risks from eating a ton of (mostly animal) protein: gout and kidney stones. Additionally, there’s evidence to suggest increased risk of chronic kidney disease and some types of cancer.

Diets associated with longevity aren’t low carbohydrate. Quite the opposite; they’re heavy on fruits and veggies, with animal protein/fat eaten sparingly, if at all. 

While achieving one’s ideal weight probably trumps actual nutrient intake for overall health benefit, we shouldn’t lose focus of a neglected dietary goal: living a long, disease-free life.

I’m not picking on you, just making a public service announcement as a healthcare provider, with a good friend who runs an academic weight management program.

 

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8 hours ago, bostonfred said:

148g protein 

50g fiber

3710mg sodium

Stayed under calories (yes counting exercise).  Sodium a bit high, fiber and protein both very good.  Ran about 45 or 50 minutes on the treadmill at MAF pace... haven't done my longer run in a few days and with the heat I'm probably not going to tomorrow either but hopefully soon.  

Without re-reading the whole thread, what are your goals for the three nutrients? How did you derive them?

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Just now, Terminalxylem said:

Without re-reading the whole thread, what are your goals for the three nutrients? How did you derive them?

My goal is to get enough protein to not lose muscle and/or add muscle.  On days I am not especially active, I don't get as many calories, so I'm usually around 75.  This is a combination of percentage of calorie intake (20 percent of my alotted 1500 daily calories is 75g) and various reading on protein and muscle growth.  On days where I'm physically active, especially long runs and/or weight lifting, i aim for 100 plus grams protein and prefer to get closer to 150.  I don't know if it's necessary to get that high but I have found that if I have a couple lower protein days while doing exercise, I feel it with muscle soreness and tiredness.  

My fiber goal is 38 g per day, preferably never below 15 to 20.  When i first started dieting, I thought a bowl of oatmeal and zero fruits or vegetables was a lot of fiber.  My system appreciates my current approach.  I have also seen recommendations of 20g and 35g for adults. I err on the higher side.  My brother passed of colon cancer when he was my age right now, so that's an additional motivation to keep my system moving properly.

I do not monitor any other carbs or fat except to try to get healthy fats like salmon and avocado in my diet when I can.  I eat seafood at least once a week and often more although a good amount of it is scallops and shrimp which don't have the omega 3s.  

Sodium I target 2300mg which is a regular "low sodium" recommendation in the US but a regular "no sodium restriction" recommendation anywhere else. My understanding is that 1500mg is considered low sodium in most other places and that US foods are just so salty that most people end up much higher than 2300.  I have always had pretty good blood pressure, even when I was heavy, but I had a couple high readings at a pharmacy do-it-yourself machine and an emergency room visit that scared me. I bought a mebak sleeve thingy and found that I'm routinely in the 120/80 range when I sit for a minute before pressing the button, so I'm not going to freak out about it but I'm keeping an eye on it for now because I don't want to get bad later.  I have some family history there including my father. 

My bigger goal is calories which I aim for 1500 daily as a 45 year old who weighs about 215. When I started at 284.6 lbs I think I got 1700 or 1800 - it's been a while.  Those are the numbers set by myfitnesspal for lose 2lbs per week if you're sedentary.  I've found that they are very accurate for me over multiple long trials but culdeus will likely point out that NEAT, musculature and other factors play in to those numbers too.  

My 1500 calorie days usually have coffee with milk/creamer, Icelandic yogurt with strawberries raspberries and blueberries for a later breakfast, a 500ish calorie lunch of whatever I want, and some kind of lean protein with one bag (4 cups) of broccoli cauliflower and carrots. On days that I run I burn between 400 calories for a shorter 3 mile run, and 1100 for a longer 7 to 9 mile run.  Switching between 1500 calories and 2600 is difficult sometimes so I've recently started to allowed myself to "borrow" calories on rest days and "pay them back" on days I run.  That's not something I used to do because I found that strict adherence was important for me to stick with the diet, and I'm not sure that it really works that way - I know 1500 net calories seems to put me in a 1000 calorie deficit that burns 2lbs per week but I don't know whether 2000 net one day and 1000 net the next is as effective or even particularly healthy. But I found that if I didn't do that, I was motivated to skip rest days and run more than is healthy, and that's a recipe for injury, so here i am. 

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1 hour ago, Terminalxylem said:

I know low carbohydrate diets are all the rage, but you point out a couple of the health risks from eating a ton of (mostly animal) protein: gout and kidney stones. Additionally, there’s evidence to suggest increased risk of chronic kidney disease and some types of cancer.

Diets associated with longevity aren’t low carbohydrate. Quite the opposite; they’re heavy on fruits and veggies, with animal protein/fat eaten sparingly, if at all. 

While achieving one’s ideal weight probably trumps actual nutrient intake for overall health benefit, we shouldn’t lose focus of a neglected dietary goal: living a long, disease-free life.

I’m not picking on you, just making a public service announcement as a healthcare provider, with a good friend who runs an academic weight management program.

 

Agree with this - people really should talk to their doctors before beginning a diet, especially with gout/kidney stones and metabolic syndrome, pre-diabetes/type 2, etc.  As much as I believe in boring old CICO, I still think people can screw things up if they keep at it for too long and don't get enough fiber and protein and end up hungry all the time, losing muscle, and not pooping. Like you said, losing weight is probably the highest priority but it's better to do a good job of it.  My personal approach and non medical recommendation is to start with tracking calories in myfitnesspal, get used to staying under your goal every day without fail, then add in things like fiber and protein tracking. 

My thought process is

Doing everything at once is hard and probably a recipe for failure 

If you can only do one thing right now, cut calories or improve your nutrient intake, cutting calories is probably better for most people because it takes longer to reach your goals

Learn to use myfitnesspal and eat back your exercise calories because it gamifies diet and exercise and makes you want to earn more food.  

Establish the habits and reward your efforts with results

Then figure out the nutrient stuff and start to see the benefits there too

And take "diet breaks" if you have a long ways to go

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Thanks for the thoughtful replies @bostonfred. FWIW, I agree with nearly everything you wrote. My unsolicited thoughts:

If you've ever had trouble with high BP, I'd err closer to 1500mg of sodium daily (American Heart Association recommendation for optimal cardiovascular health), subbing stuff like Mrs. Dash if needed.

Favor plant over animal protein, when possible. The appropriate amount is somewhat controversial, but I think contemporary diets, especial low carbohydrate ones, tend to overdo it. A person your age and activity level should probably consume ~1-1.5 g/kg/daily.

Your fiber goal is great. And colonoscopy guidelines are in the process of changing, so 45 is the starting age. Regardless, having a first degree relative diagnosed with colon cancer qualifies you to have been scoped already. 

One's palate is super malleable, and it really isn't that difficult to develop a taste for healthy foods. The trick is determining what is healthy, and not getting sidetracked with garbage, or overwhelmed with pop nutrition touting the superfood du jour. I like Michael Pollan's (author of the Omnivore's Dilemma) advice: Eat food. Not too much. Mostly Plants. 

Exercise is trickier, as you need to balance the risk for injury as you age. In general, picking something social and fun tends to be easier to maintain. But running yields great bang for the caloric buck, as does resistance training, by building/maintaining muscle and increasing BMR.

I don't like the idea of "rewarding" yourself with unhealthy food/"cheat" days, as I think the psychology of eating is an extremely important component of dieting. And people tend to be terrible with moderation. But I haven't reviewed the literature on this topic, so maybe I'm being too strict.

Anyway, good luck and keep on your path toward healthier living!

 

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2 hours ago, Terminalxylem said:

I know low carbohydrate diets are all the rage, but you point out a couple of the health risks from eating a ton of (mostly animal) protein: gout and kidney stones. Additionally, there’s evidence to suggest increased risk of chronic kidney disease and some types of cancer.

Diets associated with longevity aren’t low carbohydrate. Quite the opposite; they’re heavy on fruits and veggies, with animal protein/fat eaten sparingly, if at all. 

While achieving one’s ideal weight probably trumps actual nutrient intake for overall health benefit, we shouldn’t lose focus of a neglected dietary goal: living a long, disease-free life.

I’m not picking on you, just making a public service announcement as a healthcare provider, with a good friend who runs an academic weight management program.

 

My first go around where I lost 70lbs pre-pandemic was a doctor supervised diet that was low carb but not keto. Every single health metric improved while on it. From all the different blood tests (though everything was in normal range except low testosterone and low cholesterol, both good and bad kind) to BP. 

Gout, though not diagnosed, has been in an issue for me for years though increased during the diet as my intake of foods high in purines was increased. 

I believe the kindey stones were caused due not only to the huge increase in phosphate in my diet with decrease in dairy (calcium) but compounded by taking water pills (to decrease BP) and not keeping up with my water intake (basically being dehydrated too much). Being "healthy" low carb, I ate a lot of phosphate rich foods not just meals (protein and the veggies I like are all high phosphate veggies) but my snacks were all high phosphate = broccoli and hummus and pistachios or cashews. 

The plan was never to be low carb forever but to lose the weight and then adapt to a maintenance diet. 

The success on it was like nothing I have had before. Ketosis is a powerful tool to lose weight. I am frustrated that I can't use it. I think there were major mistakes made that helped cause the issues but I believe I am predisposed to kidney stones and gout was pre-existing. 

 

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Just to be clear, I'm not a keto advocate.  My philosophy on carbs hasn't changed much. It's simply

--> Limit carbs to likely 100g a day.  (somewhere at 1/2 your lb. bodyweight in g carbs +/-)

--> Where carbs are eaten ensure they come with some fiber

I feel like for the vast number of people following that guideline alone will promote weight loss no matter what else you do.  Mainly because it is so hard to overeat the other macros, and hard to overeat carbs where fiber is along for the ride.  

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1 hour ago, Terminalxylem said:

Exercise is trickier, as you need to balance the risk for injury as you age. In general, picking something social and fun tends to be easier to maintain. But running yields great bang for the caloric buck, as does resistance training, by building/maintaining muscle and increasing BMR.

I don't like the idea of "rewarding" yourself with unhealthy food/"cheat" days, as I think the psychology of eating is an extremely important component of dieting. And people tend to be terrible with moderation. But I haven't reviewed the literature on this topic, so maybe I'm being too strict.

I think there is a correlation here. I agree that cheat days are susceptible to leading one down a dangerous path, but that risk is mitigated with exercise. How much? It depends on the quantity of exercise. If one exercises several days per week then they are less likely to regress utilizing cheat days. If exercise is a priority then the psychology is a bit different when considering a cheat because that future exercise influences the decision making process. Exercise is not enjoyable when you're not feeling well and that is often what happens on the other side of cheat days. 

Anecdotal example - I spent the last several days in Louisville sipping bourbon and consuming all sorts of foods I usually wouldn't. It's no coincidence I only exercised one time while we were there. I didn't expect to exercise much, so I was rigid about what I consumed both prior to leaving and as we travelled Sunday. I wanted to get as much as I could out of exercise before leaving and a two-a-day Monday was on my mind as we made our way home. My system isn't totally flushed out as I write this, but despite the horrendous weather conditions yesterday's workouts weren't awful and I'm hoping for the same today then to be back to normal tomorrow. In addition, I'm aware a holiday weekend of cheating looms ahead...but I am making exercise a priority around the festivities, which should restrict the amount of cheating I actually do.

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1 hour ago, Terminalxylem said:

Favor plant over animal protein, when possible. The appropriate amount is somewhat controversial, but I think contemporary diets, especial low carbohydrate ones, tend to overdo it. A person your age and activity level should probably consume ~1-1.5 g/kg/daily.

 

For plant protein, are you mainly thinking of legumes?

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42 minutes ago, culdeus said:

Just to be clear, I'm not a keto advocate.  My philosophy on carbs hasn't changed much. It's simply

--> Limit carbs to likely 100g a day.  (somewhere at 1/2 your lb. bodyweight in g carbs +/-)

--> Where carbs are eaten ensure they come with some fiber

I feel like for the vast number of people following that guideline alone will promote weight loss no matter what else you do.  Mainly because it is so hard to overeat the other macros, and hard to overeat carbs where fiber is along for the ride.  

Agree wrt fiber, disagree on the gram limitation. Blue zone diets are typically ~ 65% carbohydrate - way more than 100 g/d.

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5 minutes ago, Cowboy Dan said:

What is your view of whole grains (mostly thinking of whole wheat, brown rice and oats) as it relates to a healthy diet? 

Absent gluten intolerance, I think they’re OK, certainly way better than white rice, processed flour, etc. Still, I think they take a back seat to fruits and veggies. TBH, I’m unclear what the ideal amount to include in one’s diet, but I don’t believe they’re terrible, as contemporary carbophobia sometimes suggests.

I’ll ask my buddy, the guy who runs the weight management program, and a nutritionist I know what they think. Full disclosure: they’re both vegans (I’m pescatarian).

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31 minutes ago, Terminalxylem said:

Agree wrt fiber, disagree on the gram limitation. Blue zone diets are typically ~ 65% carbohydrate - way more than 100 g/d.

There are a lot of problems with the blue zone stuff, it feels like curve fitting.  A lot of the longevity stuff is really dominated by the changes during WWII and smoking.  The science is nowhere near as clear as people would think, and those factors are not easily teased out of the data.  Not to mention survey data is a horrible way to determine what people actually eat, those since that have taken closer looks haven't been thrilled with what they found.  

I think we all get it that processed food and added sugar is not great.  Pushing beyond that is hard to get a clear next step.   

This is a weight loss thread, not a lifestyle one anyways, reduction in intake is going to have to come from somewhere.  

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2 hours ago, Terminalxylem said:

One's palate is super malleable, and it really isn't that difficult to develop a taste for healthy foods. The trick is determining what is healthy, and not getting sidetracked with garbage, or overwhelmed with pop nutrition touting the superfood du jour. I like Michael Pollan's (author of the Omnivore's Dilemma) advice: Eat food. Not too much. Mostly Plants. 

 

I don't like the idea of "rewarding" yourself with unhealthy food/"cheat" days, as I think the psychology of eating is an extremely important component of dieting. And people tend to be terrible with moderation. But I haven't reviewed the literature on this topic, so maybe I'm being too strict.

I agree with both of these points, but I think the approach for people with more than a few pounds to lose has to be phased.  People don't do a good job making lots of drastic changes overnight.  People are much better at making gradual changes, with rewards. 

I used to drink an extra large dunkin donuts coffee with skim milk and sugar every single day for almost 30 years.  Literally every day including Christmas. I cut back for my diet but I really missed it and made room in my calorie budget for it while I was getting started.  I stopped going out during the pandemic and made my own coffee at home. Went to dunkin the other day and ordered my coffee, I wasn't used to it anymore and I didn't really like it.

If you had told me the only way to diet successfully is to give up my daily sugar bomb, I would have quit the diet.  I did not want to give up my coffee.  But logging the calories made me realize I was starting out in a deep hole each day and I tried iced coffee with a little milk, and then eventually I chose to make the change.  The reward of extra calories later made me change my behavior.  Same thing with exercise. 

I get that you should choose healthier foods, but just eating less food is a big change. If you make me eat cauliflower rice, too, I'll push back. 

But if you can get me eating less food, and then I find out that you can eat a pound of cauliflower rice for the same calories as a scoop of brown rice, suddenly I'm interested. 

And more importantly, instead of telling me to eat cauliflower rice - or chia seeds- it's now my idea, and I want to find those good foods.  Give me information so I can make my own good choices and enable me to make positive changes instead of telling me I have to. Don't tell me I have to exercise, give me extra calories for exercising. 

That's 90 percent of change management/behavior modification.  Gamify the process by rewarding good behavior then fade out the rewards once I've developed the good habit.  

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1 minute ago, culdeus said:

There are a lot of problems with the blue zone stuff, it feels like curve fitting.  A lot of the longevity stuff is really dominated by the changes during WWII and smoking.  The science is nowhere near as clear as people would think, and those factors are not easily teased out of the data.  Not to mention survey data is a horrible way to determine what people actually eat, those since that have taken closer looks haven't been thrilled with what they found.  

I think we all get it that processed food and added sugar is not great.  Pushing beyond that is hard to get a clear next step.   

This is a weight loss thread, not a lifestyle one anyways, reduction in intake is going to have to come from somewhere.  

I think this is a chicken or the egg sorta thing. Generally speaking, sustaining goal weight is a function of one's lifestyle. Making decisions with the latter in mind enhances ones ability to maintain the former. Of course intake matters, but if person X chooses a bean salad and person Y chooses soft tacos who is more likely to consume > 500 calories.

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4 minutes ago, MAC_32 said:

I think this is a chicken or the egg sorta thing. Generally speaking, sustaining goal weight is a function of one's lifestyle. Making decisions with the latter in mind enhances ones ability to maintain the former. Of course intake matters, but if person X chooses a bean salad and person Y chooses soft tacos who is more likely to consume > 500 calories.

It's easier to eat 500 calories worth of tacos than bean salad. 

But

Bean salad guy will be more likely to eat more and not count it because "I'm being good", or struggle to stay on the diet, or cheat and eat a soft taco later.  Soft taco guy will say "I can't believe I'm on a diet where I can eat tacos and lose weight, this is awesome" and be excited to stay on it.  

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11 minutes ago, culdeus said:

There are a lot of problems with the blue zone stuff, it feels like curve fitting.  A lot of the longevity stuff is really dominated by the changes during WWII and smoking.  The science is nowhere near as clear as people would think, and those factors are not easily teased out of the data.  Not to mention survey data is a horrible way to determine what people actually eat, those since that have taken closer looks haven't been thrilled with what they found.  

I think we all get it that processed food and added sugar is not great.  Pushing beyond that is hard to get a clear next step.   

This is a weight loss thread, not a lifestyle one anyways, reduction in intake is going to have to come from somewhere.  

Nutrition data is definitely far from perfect, but we certainly can learn from cultures whose diet + lifestyle is somehow associated with functional longevity. To my knowledge, nowhere are those people eating a lot of protein and fat at the expense of carbohydrates. 

I think the easiest reduction to facilitate weight loss is caloric, when one shifts from the SAD to just about anything not laden with heavily processed stuff. While proteins and fat are great at promoting satiety, if one focusses on upping fruit and veggie intake (rather than limiting carbohydrates), it’s hard to overeat IMO.

Lastly, it’s impossible to accomplish sustained weight loss without addressing  one’s lifestyle, as behavioral psychology is arguably more important than  macronutrient intake in promoting obesity.

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26 minutes ago, bostonfred said:

It's easier to eat 500 calories worth of tacos than bean salad. 

But

Bean salad guy will be more likely to eat more and not count it because "I'm being good", or struggle to stay on the diet, or cheat and eat a soft taco later.  Soft taco guy will say "I can't believe I'm on a diet where I can eat tacos and lose weight, this is awesome" and be excited to stay on it.  

There aren't firm rules with either guy, it was just a micro level example. The macro picture is what matters and must drive decision making. And each person's own macro picture is unique vs another. I think it's pretty clear where I stand with cheating. I encourage it in moderation because it generally increases the likelihood of sustainability. If in this example the tacos are the cheat then go for it. The problems are more likely to surface when the tacos are not the cheat and something else is on top of it. 

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172g protein 

46g fiber

Let's not talk about the sodium 

I took my kid to the doctor's after work, and he wanted to go outside and play afterwards but it was way too hot out so we compromised and went to chick fil a.  I was good the rest of the day but those nuggets got me.  I ended up about 750 calories over target, so I figured out how long I needed to run on the treadmill and did it. 

But that's the thing - if you have the discipline and physical ability to work off what you've eaten then counting exercise calories against my food intake allows me to slip up without derailing my diet.  And allowing myself to slip up without derailing my diet helps me get through the long haul of these months-long pushes I've made.  I screwed up on the sodium today and I didn't make progress towards my ongoing goal of improving my every day eating habits,  but I've made a lot of progress on both goals and a few months from now when I'm looking back at my streak of successful days/weeks and the fact I ran and did my daily planks challenge and spent time with my kid, I will remember today as a good day along the way.  

I understand the allure of keto and I am certain that plant based protein and a pescatarian diet would have been better and that my run might have been even more beneficial if I hadn't counted the calories burnt or if I'd lifted instead of running.  I am "only" down 70 lbs in 24 months when I could have been down 100 plus already, so I could have been more efficient and burnt the weight off faster if I'd followed the best science out there.  But I'm in the best shape of my life, I've avoided the loose skin problem so far... you know the drill.

And yes I've struggled at times with the mental endurance, eating like crap today.  I had a bad cheat day in February, I remember it like it was yesterday because it was the only day between Christmas and Easter that I had a drop of alcohol and I drank like a fn champion after discovering my snowblower dumped an entire tank of gas on my garage floor the night before a 23 inch snow storm that I had to shovel by hand while airing out my garage.  I got back on the diet the next day. It's part of the learning curve and I'm better at dealing with these ups and downs now.  

Keto guys have to get good at staying on keto, testing to make sure they're in ketosis, drinking weird booze and giving up nutritious foods... it works great but then they have to learn how to maintain.  I've been learning about my food quality and how many calories everything has, I've learned how to bounce back from a bad dinner by exercising or a bad day by getting back onto the diet the next day, how to start back up after weeks or months of eating poorly, how to deal with those early hunger cues and all the mental stuff that made dieting hard when I first started. 

I really believe that this is the way.  For me, anyways.  I am not a doctor, and this is not medical advice. Consult your doctor before beginning this or any diet or exercise program.  

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I don't know about the "keto guys have to get good at keto" part.  I've never bought into any of that.  Just a lifestyle where I eat lean protein, avoid all things processed, avoid most starch/carbs (I'll have lettuce wrapped vs bread) and especially sugar.  For me I also limit red meat because of other health reasons.  When you limit red meat, white flour, processed stuff and sugar you are going to do pretty well.  Oh, and booze.  For me that's the hardest thing.  I like red wine

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Posted (edited)
3 minutes ago, Judge Smails said:

I don't know about the "keto guys have to get good at keto" part.  I've never bought into any of that.  Just a lifestyle where I eat lean protein, avoid all things processed, avoid most starch/carbs (I'll have lettuce wrapped vs bread) and especially sugar.  For me I also limit red meat because of other health reasons.  When you limit red meat, white flour, processed stuff and sugar you are going to do pretty well.  Oh, and booze.  For me that's the hardest thing.  I like red wine

What do you do when you want a drink?  Vodka tonic instead of wine?

What about when you're craving something crunchy? Do you eat those parmesan crisp things?

What do you do when you are at your goal weight vs when you are trying to lose weight?  Do you still go low carb but just eat more? Or do you eat carbs again?  

What are some good replacements for sandwiches?  You mentioned lettuce wraps 

What about when you crave something sweet if you're cutting out sugar and processed stuff?  Do you have favorite foods like halo top ice cream or keto snacks?  

Those are all things you have learned about how to do keto, and it didn't happen overnight.  I didn't learn to eat less or which foods had how many calories and which foods had the best fiber to calorie ratios or which foods secretly had a ton of sodium overnight either. 

But the skills I've learned are transferable to maintenance mode because knowing about food in general makes me better able to control my weight long term, and the exercise I've been doing to earn calories is helping me long term too. Getting good with cico and diet and exercise was harder but it's worth it to me.  Getting good with keto or low carb is good too and you seem to have had good success with it but I don't think it's the right answer for everyone, just like my approach wouldn't work for everyone. 

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Just now, bostonfred said:

What do you do when you want a drink?  Or when you're craving something crunchy? 

What do you do when you are at your goal weight vs when you are trying to lose weight?

Good questions.  I'm trying to only drink on Fridays and Saturdays.  Couple vodka/sodas.  Or tequila with fresh squeezed lime.  But good red wine is tough for me to pass up. So I'll have it on occasion.  Drinking is way harder for me on business trips, especially now when everyone is seeing each other for the first time in 16 months.

Crunchy I'll have a handful of mixed nuts.  Guilty pleasure is a couple of crispy shredded chicken tacos on a Friday night.  But with no bread those 2 corn tortillas aren't bad for a whole week.  When we do this we just politely decline the basket of chips.  Pick our spots.  It's not perfect but it seems to work and my blood work is great.

On vacations I'll eat without restriction.  If I'm in Spain I'm having tapas, paella, whatever.  Walk it off and get back on the program when back.

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2 minutes ago, Judge Smails said:

Good questions.  I'm trying to only drink on Fridays and Saturdays.  Couple vodka/sodas.  Or tequila with fresh squeezed lime.  But good red wine is tough for me to pass up. So I'll have it on occasion.  Drinking is way harder for me on business trips, especially now when everyone is seeing each other for the first time in 16 months.

Crunchy I'll have a handful of mixed nuts.  Guilty pleasure is a couple of crispy shredded chicken tacos on a Friday night.  But with no bread those 2 corn tortillas aren't bad for a whole week.  When we do this we just politely decline the basket of chips.  Pick our spots.  It's not perfect but it seems to work and my blood work is great.

On vacations I'll eat without restriction.  If I'm in Spain I'm having tapas, paella, whatever.  Walk it off and get back on the program when back.

This is exactly what I meant about keto guys getting good at keto 

You're good at keto. You've figured out where you can cheat and where you should limit things like tacos without chips. That's part of the learning curve. 

I'm good at tracking calories.  I have more complex rules and have to plug things into my app but I don't have to restrict myself from having chips.  A few weeks ago, I drank a whole bottle of wine and ate half a bag of tostitos with that yellow cheese in a jar and it was fn awesome. I don't have any craving for that right now but the knowledge that i could have it again if I wanted it makes it easier for me to stick to this every day.

Maintenance mode for me means that I eat less overall and when I eat more one day I eat less another.  If my weight creeps up I get back on the diet and get it back down. I'm practicing these skills. 

Maintenance mode for you means you still do keto except on vacations, and you're a little less strict.  That's cool if it works for you but it's what I mean about being good at keto means you have learned how to do keto and now you have to keep doing keto because you haven't learned another way to maintain. That wouldn't work for me.  It's awesome that it works for you. 

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I told you I was in Los Angeles visiting #1. Today we hiked up to the griffin observatory. It’s .6 mile up. I do two miles on the treadmill so I figured I could do this no problem. Well I was half right. I did it but it wasn’t easy. The incline was far more than I’ve ever done for longer than I’ve ever gone. But I did it!! I can’t imagine I would have been able to a year and +35 pounds ago. 
Thanks for the encouragement!!

https://imgur.com/a/t3Xn5p3

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6 hours ago, bostonfred said:

What about when you're craving something crunchy? Do you eat those parmesan crisp things?

I know your questions were meant to illustrate the finer points in maintaining ketosis, and I was giving you a hard time about sodium intake, but these are a slightly less unhealthy, delicious crunchy snack.

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1 hour ago, Terminalxylem said:

I know your questions were meant to illustrate the finer points in maintaining ketosis, and I was giving you a hard time about sodium intake, but these are a slightly less unhealthy, delicious crunchy snack.

They're sold out but at 130 calories for a whole bag, I'd try them. 

And illustrating the point further- a huge part of making this a permanent lifestyle change for me is finding foods like this and choosing to add them to my diet. Or not, if they suck. 

Some people just want someone to tell them what to do and they do it. You want me to have cantaloupe for breakfast?  Ugh.  I need to eat cauliflower crust pizza? Ok I guess. If they can tolerate the food then the diet works, or the diet fails when they get sick of it, but they eat the stuff they're supposed to eat. 

Keto appeals to people like that because you get to eat burgers and bacon and chicken and all the best foods.  Sure you don't get bread but you don't need bread and besides, carbs are bad for you. For people like that, it's a "trick" - I get to eat foods I like and I get to lose weight.  But they don't plan to do it forever, and they look forward to eating carbs again.  When they do, they haven't learned how much food they can eat without gaining weight, they've only learned how to cut carbs... so they fail in maintenance. 

People like Judge Smails can continue on low carb, take breaks for vacations or client meetings, and just amp it back up when they need to. That's a lifestyle change. 

CICO doesn't change when you go to maintenance except that you get more calories every day. It's easy to fall back into over eating which is why people continue on myfitnesspal long after they've hit their target weight, much like Smails continuing keto.

But you've learned how many calories things have and how many you get so you have all the tools you need to maintain even if you don't use myfitnesspal or track anything.  You can eyeball it and still maintain.  And with my approach of pushing hard, taking breaks, practicing maintenance and over Indulging for a while, then getting back to the diet, I've practiced the skills I'll be using when I am done with this. 

It was really hard for me the first time I had a "cheat day" almost two years ago... the next day I didn't have the motivation to stay under calories and I ended up going over my target by a few hundred.  The same thing the day after that.  I knew that I wanted to get back on the diet, but I also knew that if I can have a cheat day and not gain weight then I can have 500 calories under maintenance and still lose weight so why do I need to stay 1000 under?  It took me a few days to finally get back on track and I was scared to take another cheat day after that.  Now I've done it many times, or gone off the diet altogether for a few months then started back up.  And it's still not easy, necessarily, but I know what to expect and I can draw on that experience when I'm trying to muster the motivation.

I will end up hitting my goal weight, but I also know that I will eventually put some back on.  I will pick a weight that's the canary in the coal mine - maybe 10, 15 lbs over my target weight - where I need to get back on the diet and lose my way back down.  That's what maintenance looks like for me.  I know that yo-yo dieting isn't great and creating a new set point is important and all that, but I'm pretty keenly aware of how I work now and that is how it's going to be until I get past it.  So a big part of my approach is not just losing the weight right now, but learning the skills I'll need to be able to do that.

People considering keto should look at what smails is doing as a good example of how maintenance will look and consider the whole package when choosing the diet that's best for them. 

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5 hours ago, bostonfred said:

Keto appeals to people like that because you get to eat burgers and bacon and chicken and all the best foods.  Sure you don't get bread but you don't need bread and besides, carbs are bad for you. For people like that, it's a "trick" - I get to eat foods I like and I get to lose weight.  But they don't plan to do it forever, and they look forward to eating carbs again.  When they do, they haven't learned how much food they can eat without gaining weight, they've only learned how to cut carbs... so they fail in maintenance. 

This makes me sad, and is a big reason I’m not a fan of VLC diets. Rather than retraining their bodies to crave healthy foods, ketotics use rapid weight loss as the end-all for what constitutes a good diet. In the short term, they’re probably right, but it’s rarely sustainable, and some the most nutrient dense foods are cast aside in the quest to avoid carbohydrates...which aren’t intrinsically bad for you in the first place. 

It’s like high intensity interval training for nutrition. Sure it works wonders for some people, but many, many others are on a burpee roller coaster, just as likely to injure themselves as attain any level of long term fitness.

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15 hours ago, Clown Car said:

I told you I was in Los Angeles visiting #1. Today we hiked up to the griffin observatory. It’s .6 mile up. I do two miles on the treadmill so I figured I could do this no problem. Well I was half right. I did it but it wasn’t easy. The incline was far more than I’ve ever done for longer than I’ve ever gone. But I did it!! I can’t imagine I would have been able to a year and +35 pounds ago. 
Thanks for the encouragement!!

https://imgur.com/a/t3Xn5p3

Awesome!!  I’ve done that hike too, and it isn’t simple or easy.  Great job and good progress!

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7 hours ago, Terminalxylem said:

This makes me sad, and is a big reason I’m not a fan of VLC diets. Rather than retraining their bodies to crave healthy foods, ketotics use rapid weight loss as the end-all for what constitutes a good diet. In the short term, they’re probably right, but it’s rarely sustainable, and some the most nutrient dense foods are cast aside in the quest to avoid carbohydrates...which aren’t intrinsically bad for you in the first place. 

It’s like high intensity interval training for nutrition. Sure it works wonders for some people, but many, many others are on a burpee roller coaster, just as likely to injure themselves as attain any level of long term fitness.

I dunno. Nothing rapid about my weight loss.  Been pretty much doing the same thing since the day after Christmas.  I have gained about 3 pounds back from my low, but expected after 2 alcohol fueled golf tourneys with the boys and some business trips.  So more diligent this week.  And I'm not hardcore keto.  Just generally favor it over other strategies, and I've always been a protein/salad type guy anyway

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Posted (edited)
On 6/29/2021 at 3:43 AM, Chadstroma said:

My first go around where I lost 70lbs pre-pandemic was a doctor supervised diet that was low carb but not keto. Every single health metric improved while on it. From all the different blood tests (though everything was in normal range except low testosterone and low cholesterol, both good and bad kind) to BP. 

Gout, though not diagnosed, has been in an issue for me for years though increased during the diet as my intake of foods high in purines was increased. 

I believe the kindey stones were caused due not only to the huge increase in phosphate in my diet with decrease in dairy (calcium) but compounded by taking water pills (to decrease BP) and not keeping up with my water intake (basically being dehydrated too much). Being "healthy" low carb, I ate a lot of phosphate rich foods not just meals (protein and the veggies I like are all high phosphate veggies) but my snacks were all high phosphate = broccoli and hummus and pistachios or cashews. 

The plan was never to be low carb forever but to lose the weight and then adapt to a maintenance diet. 

The success on it was like nothing I have had before. Ketosis is a powerful tool to lose weight. I am frustrated that I can't use it. I think there were major mistakes made that helped cause the issues but I believe I am predisposed to kidney stones and gout was pre-existing. 

 

Ketosis promotes rapid weight loss - better than many, if not most other diets. And it improves many short-term health metrics.

My argument is it’s not sustainable, nor the healthiest way to lose weight. For the few who remain on carbohydrate restriction long term, I’d expect other health problems to crop up. What I don’t know is if these problems outweigh the benefits achieved from losing weight. There’ve been some studies looking at overall mortality based on carbohydrate intake and the source of non-carbohydrate calories, and the results seem to support my gestalt:

Quote

Background

Low carbohydrate diets, which restrict carbohydrate in favour of increased protein or fat intake, or both, are a popular weight-loss strategy. However, the long-term effect of carbohydrate restriction on mortality is controversial and could depend on whether dietary carbohydrate is replaced by plant-based or animal-based fat and protein. We aimed to investigate the association between carbohydrate intake and mortality.

Methods

We studied 15 428 adults aged 45–64 years, in four US communities, who completed a dietary questionnaire at enrolment in the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) study (between 1987 and 1989), and who did not report extreme caloric intake (<600 kcal or >4200 kcal per day for men and <500 kcal or >3600 kcal per day for women). The primary outcome was all-cause mortality. We investigated the association between the percentage of energy from carbohydrate intake and all-cause mortality, accounting for possible non-linear relationships in this cohort. We further examined this association, combining ARIC data with data for carbohydrate intake reported from seven multinational prospective studies in a meta-analysis. Finally, we assessed whether the substitution of animal or plant sources of fat and protein for carbohydrate affected mortality.

Findings

During a median follow-up of 25 years there were 6283 deaths in the ARIC cohort, and there were 40 181 deaths across all cohort studies. In the ARIC cohort, after multivariable adjustment, there was a U-shaped association between the percentage of energy consumed from carbohydrate (mean 48·9%, SD 9·4) and mortality: a percentage of 50–55% energy from carbohydrate was associated with the lowest risk of mortality. In the meta-analysis of all cohorts (432 179 participants), both low carbohydrate consumption (<40%) and high carbohydrate consumption (>70%) conferred greater mortality risk than did moderate intake, which was consistent with a U-shaped association (pooled hazard ratio 1·20, 95% CI 1·09–1·32 for low carbohydrate consumption; 1·23, 1·11–1·36 for high carbohydrate consumption). However, results varied by the source of macronutrients: mortality increased when carbohydrates were exchanged for animal-derived fat or protein (1·18, 1·08–1·29) and mortality decreased when the substitutions were plant-based (0·82, 0·78–0·87).

Interpretation

Both high and low percentages of carbohydrate diets were associated with increased mortality, with minimal risk observed at 50–55% carbohydrate intake. Low carbohydrate dietary patterns favouring animal-derived protein and fat sources, from sources such as lamb, beef, pork, and chicken, were associated with higher mortality, whereas those that favoured plant-derived protein and fat intake, from sources such as vegetables, nuts, peanut butter, and whole-grain breads, were associated with lower mortality, suggesting that the source of food notably modifies the association between carbohydrate intake and mortality.

I know I have an uphill battle convincing Keto people to look past the scale, but IMO you’re much better off taking a slow-and-steady, non-carbohydrate restricted path featuring increased plants at the expense of animal products.

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1 minute ago, Judge Smails said:

I dunno. Nothing rapid about my weight loss.  Been pretty much doing the same thing since the day after Christmas.  I have gained about 3 pounds back from my low, but expected after 2 alcohol fueled golf tourneys with the boys and some business trips.  So more diligent this week.  And I'm not hardcore keto.  Just generally favor it over other strategies, and I've always been a protein/salad type guy anyway

I don’t really want to derail this thread any longer, but did you ever consider the  Ornish program? It’s a plant-based diet proven to reverse coronary artery disease that’s advocated for cardiac rehab.

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22 minutes ago, Terminalxylem said:

Ketosis promotes rapid weight loss - better than many, if not most other diets. And it improves many short-term health metrics.

My argument is it’s not sustainable, nor the healthiest way to lose weight. For the few who remain on carbohydrate restriction long term, I’d expect other health problems to crop up. What I don’t know is if these problems outweigh the benefits achieved from losing weight. There’ve been some studies looking at overall mortality based on carbohydrate intake and the source of non-carbohydrate calories, and the results seem to support my gestalt:

I know I have an uphill battle convincing Keto people to look past the scale, but IMO you’re much better off taking a slow-and-steady, non-carbohydrate restricted path featuring increased plants at the expense of animal products.

Well I eat vegetables, nuts and peanut butter.  Just not a lot of bread.  I don't eat a lot of red meat or dairy either.  So it's not Atkins.  If I eat grilled chicken, salad and a grilled veggie like asparagus, but don't have a potato, rice dish or slices of bread are you saying I don't have it right? It's not even the weight part.  I eat a bagel and I feel blown up for days.  And just try to digest that......I'm fine.  No convincing needed.  Scale, clothes and bloodwork say otherwise.

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