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10/15/13 7:07 P

Hi How long did it take you to lose your weight and how many carbs do you so a day?

Thanks emoticon

9/17/13 11:13 A

Low carb for me is simply about eating 90% of my carbs from nutrient dense vegetable and fruit sources. This makes me low carb even on the days I choose to eat a two or three servings of starchy vegetables.

I think if everyone limited added sugar and processed grains the population in general would be so much healthier.

RUSSELL_40 Posts: 16,826
9/17/13 9:12 A

The problem with the way people do low carb is they agree with the middle section of the low carb diet to be " Mod-Carb ".

It isn't.

The low level of any low carb diet is just the beginning. I do Atkins, and Induction allows for 20 NET carbs. This isn't low carb. It is just one level. I have slowly added up to 75 NET carb through OWL, and in another 30 lbs will go into Pre-maintenance, hopefully around 100 grams. Hoping for Maintenance level to be at 120 grams.

Those levels are all low carb. Moderate carb would be more like a diabetic diet of 150-200 grams a day.

Most people will not be able to stick to 20-50 grams a day for long periods, although it is possible, and some do it, and feel great. Most people don't though, and I haven't read of any low carb plan, that does not add back in carbs over time. The problem is not low carb, it is people's understanding of it. While 100 grams is low carb, the average person thinks that at that level the low-carber has switched off a low carb diet to a " healthier " moderate carb diet.

In the end, you will be eating a lot more carbs than you do at the start of low carb, and will have changed the quality of the carbs you eat, as much as the quantity. On Atkins, you start adding 5 grams every 2 weeks, so in 3 months, you would be at 50 NET carbs. This means if you ate 20 grams of fiber, you would be eating 70 grams of TOTAL carbs. You should be eating closer to 10 servings of vegetables, and 1-2 servings of fruit at that point, and maybe some beans several times a week, if they aren't an issue for you.

You don't need a plan to do low carb. Atkins, Paleo, Dukan, are all just slightly different plans so they can sell you a book. The base of the plan is the same though, cut out bad carbs, and you will lose your cravings. Then by eating the proper amount of calories, you will lose weight. As long as you don't add in a food that you have an addiction to, an allergy to, or is a trigger food, then those carbs are fine.

While you may not be able to eat 300 grams a day and lose, you may be able to eat 150 grams a day, and even have oatmeal, quinoa, or potatoes every so often. It all depends on the individual. The reason that Atkins goes so low is to break away from addictions, allergies, trigger foods, and make the selection just about foods that are 100% safe as far as causing cravings. Plus it shows you that losing more than 2 lbs a week can be very easy, when most people struggle to lose 1 lb a week.

You need to realize that the starting levels of these low carb plans are drastic measures, and meant to be temporary. Just like any other diet, for it to be followed for the rest of your life, it has to adapt. After Atkins proves that you can lose, you then just have to slowly add back in healthy carbs that don't cause you any issues. Cutting carbs out after 2:30 isn't the answer either. You should have carbs at every meal, and space them out. You can only use a small amount of carbs at any one time, so you want to eat a little carbs at a time, but just having zero carbs will make some people feel deprived. While it is possible to have zero carbs, it is not desirable for most people.

Whether you are on low carb of any other diet, I also think drinking your food is a huge mistake. All it does is spike your blood sugar, causes a huge Insulin release, which drops your blood sugars, and makes you hungry again. Most of these protein drinks are loaded with carbs also. They would be better off eating real food, and spacing out their carbs, as well as fat and protein. Low carb might mean there will be less carbs overall, but even if you eat 10% carbs, it should be 10% per meal. Since you are on a diet, you are most likely eating less than 2000 calories, or not much higher. So why not eat that as delicious whole food?

Low carb diets are delicious. Have a mushroom omelette with a side of raspberries, and chicken or fish for lunch with a huge salad, and vinegarette dressing. Dinner can be a chili with either ground turkey or beef, tomatoes, kidney beans, onions etc. Stop thinking of low carb as anit-carb. Many carbs are delicious. You are limiting them, not eliminating them, and just choosing better carbs to eat. It takes a lot of veggies to get to 100 grams of carbs.

Lastly, many people have no need to go low carb, and moderate carb may work for them. In reality, if they just switched to eating better carbs, and less sugar, and processed foods, as SP suggests, then they would do fine. Low carb is an option, but just one option. It may not be the one for you, but at least if you do plan to try low carb, start by learning about it. It isn't an easy way of eating to follow, so most people that just " wing it ", fail.

FERNCREST Posts: 1,023
9/17/13 8:18 A

The girls I train don't eat carbs after 2:30 in the afternoon. They eat all their carbs before that unless they are exercising after 6 pm. Basically, breakfast is oatmeal with fruit and a lean protein, snack is a protein drink with fruit, lunch is a lean with a green and brown rice, snack is a protein drink, dinner is a lean protein with a green, late snack is cottage cheese because it is a slow burning protein which helps keep muscle while you sleep.

MICHELLEXXXX SparkPoints: (11,719)
Fitness Minutes: (5,830)
Posts: 3,629
9/17/13 7:25 A

Swimming, I believe it depends on your degree of insulin resistance.

Edited by: MICHELLEXXXX at: 9/17/2013 (07:28)
SLIMMERKIWI Posts: 25,932
9/16/13 5:46 P

SWIMMING_GLEE - I had a little peek at your Nutrition Tracker think that part of the problem is that you are very low protein some days and low on the rest. Try to aim for at least a minimum of 60g - some days it was in the 20's. This might help to prevent you craving the cookies/puddings etc. that don't have any or much protein.

Also, considering you are a sweet fan, have you thought about buying something like Werther's Original Sugar Free Cream Candies? Because they are hard and should be sucked, they take a while to consume one (well, takes ME at least - LOL!) and one might just satisfy that sweet tooth. Chewing sugarless gum can also help.

As far as going 'whole hog' is concerned, I don't advocate this at all - it sets you up for yo-yoing, which is what that member of your family is doing. You need to learn the habits that will last you for a lifetime, and that is where 'sensible' and moderation' comes into it's own!


9/16/13 2:42 P

Do you really need to follow a particular program to be considered "Low Carb?" I grew up watching a member of my family going on and off Atkins for EVER, but if I see a bleeping Pork Rind in my apartment, I am going to lose it! I read on "About.Com" regarding going Low-Carb and they say that doing the mid-section plan of the Low-Cab Diets, essentially going "Mod-Carb" might be the way to go (For me, at least.)

I'm skimming carbohydrates from my diet- I started to do this when I noticed almost a week of going OVER my SP Carb recommendations. I didn't like this because I know I can be somewhat of a slave to my sweet tooth, which could hinder my desire to shed the pounds I am carrying.

Is it ENOUGH to skim the carbs and try to examine and/or moderate the desire for them or do people REALLY have to go "Whole Hog?" I'd rather not do Atkins if I can help it... I'm not a huge fan of diets in general, I'm on SP because I feel like there's more involved than cutting particular foods.

Thank you

ANN5497 Posts: 1,591
9/5/13 10:00 P

I've been living low carb for one year now, and I feel great. Lost 25 pounds and my digestive system feels better than it has in decades. I can actually run now without hurting my knees.

Sometimes I fall off the wagon. Whenever I do that, the old temptation to eat sugar and starch comes back. But then I get right back on the wagon and, after a few days of eating clean, I am back where I need to be.

I recommend you read Why We Get Fat by Gary Taubes. Changed my life.

RUSSELL_40 Posts: 16,826
9/1/13 7:59 A

9 lbs in 2 weeks is very good. There has been no stall at all. You are about to quit a successful diet. What you need to do instead, is start adding carbs back in slowly to expand your variety. Now is the time to add berries, or another serving of vegetables. Induction is just the start, you aren't supposed to stay at that level.

I have been on it for over 4 years, and lost about 154 lbs. I tend to get around 10 serving of vegetables a day. I am diabetic, but have been off my meds for 38 months now. One of the issues you may be having is that you are trying to avoid fat. I eat about 60% fat, and still eat 2000-2200 calories. I was eating about 1600 calories, and found it to be quite hard to stick to it. So now I add a few tablespoons of olive oil, or a 1/4 cup of macadamia nuts to boost fat, and calories. I eat 5 eggs a day, 365 days a year, with a 1/4 stick of butter, and my cholesterol has dropped 90 points, to 104. My HDL is up 50%, and my triglycerides are below 100 now. My BP is 95/65

There is a lot of meat. I eat 1.5 lbs a day, 12 ozs. for lunch and dinner. I was never a big fan of bread, so I don't miss most of the food I was eating. Low carb isn't for everyone. One thing I will say, is that if you are doing it correctly, you should not be hungry at all. It is why you eat less, and lose weight. many people do their own version of Atkins, and they get cravings. This is why they overeat. That is another problem with low carb. It is complicated. You can have this, but not that.

I would suggest that you read more on the topic, and see if upping carbs makes it more likely to stick to it. It may not be for you, but don't use the excuse that you are stalled, when you just lost 9 lbs. Give it a fair shake, since you aren't even in the 2nd phase. If it still is not something you wish to do, then move on to another diet. One that fits your lifestyle more. There are 100's of diets out there, because they work for someone. None of them work for everyone though. Hope you find what works for you.

MICHELLEXXXX SparkPoints: (11,719)
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8/31/13 4:48 P

I would consider 9lbs in 2 weeks to be very successful results.
I feel best on a Paleo/Atkins nutrition plan.

NIRERIN Posts: 14,081
8/31/13 4:08 P

i'm not really sure how you think you have stalled out if you have lost 9 lbs in the past two weeks. if your ticker is accurate to where you are now in terms of weight, you could not lose an ounce for another two weeks and still be losing right where you should be. figure for someone who weighs just over 200lbs, 2lbs per week is right where you want to be. and nowhere near stalled out. if you hadn't lost anything for six weeks that would be stalled out. but you're well over where you should be aiming right now.
in general part of the loss is from the cut calories. i've never looked at atkins, but the south beach menus i've tracked are all about 1100 cals. another thing is that the drier carbs tend to require more water to make it through your digestive tract, and water is heavy. so when you keep more of them in your system, you carry around a little more water weight doing so. when you cut them out, you don't have the extra water weight.

as far as what you should do, take a look at the maintenance menus. are these things that you feel like you would eat indefinitely? how is the after induction/losing/phase 2 looking? are they foods you like eating? in preparations you enjoy? if so, then stick it out. if the thought of eating along those lines seems tedious to you, then it might be time to look at something different. and if you're looking at it and thinking a little too much protein and not enough fruit but otherwise okay, swap out some protein for fruit, give it a good six to eight weeks to work, and evaluate based on the results. if you're still losing at about 2lbs per week, then call it good and stick with what you're enjoying and what's working. keep in mind that as you get closer to below 200, that 2lbs per week is going down to 1.5lbs per week and that has nothing to do with diet, it only has to do with there being less of you to lose.

ARTLOVER24 SparkPoints: (3,312)
Fitness Minutes: (2,064)
Posts: 25
8/31/13 12:59 P

Thanks everyone for your input.
I just feel like I have stalled my metabolism so much by doing so many different "diets" that I am at the point where my body just refuses to lose weight. Its frustrating and I was hoping that cutting carbs was going to help restart my body.

It truly is that "wanting to lose it all quickly" feeling. I know I put the weight on over the years, but I've seen people lose so fast and keep it off all around me and I just can't lose! GAHHH.

I think I should talk to a nutritionist or dietitian to get some help in figuring out the best route for me. Doing it by myself I am finding it a LOT harder and I might be making it more complicated than it should be.

MISSFAE SparkPoints: (5,371)
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8/30/13 12:20 A

The whole reason I got back "on the wagon" of trying to alter my diet to lose weight is because I came across "". That's the first time I ever invested myself in the "low-carb" concept. What made the difference for me is that it does not involve carb counting and it only restricts one vegetable (potatoes). On that plan, you cut out potatoes, grains (including corn) and only cut out fruit for a short while if you have more than 20lbs to lose, you cut milk products for 2 weeks, but have the option to re-introduce them and see how they affect you. I think it's still wise to be careful you don't go carb-crazy with other high-carb veggies, but they're not officially restricted on the diet. Just eat real meat, and a good variety of veggies, along with some legumes and nuts if you like. Eat three meals a day, each with both protein and lots of veggies, drink your water, have a snack or two only if you're hungry. Once you've got the hang of it, you can re-introduce grains and see how much and which grains you can tolerate without stalling your weight-loss, or you can choose not to re-introduce them ever, or until you're ready for maintenance.

I think it's a fairly balanced version of low-carb and ultimately ends up close to what sparkpeople advocates, except we end up getting all our carbs from sources that are higher in other nutrients than grains (veggies!)

Focusing on making sure you get a certain amount of vegetables (emphasis on leafy greens) and a certain amount of protein and healthy fat at every meal seems to work better at curbing cravings than focusing on what you can't eat. After I got through the first couple weeks of my plan, I found I could have a small cheat (after I eat my veggies and protein) once every few days without derailing anything and causing problems with more cravings. The odd time that I have included grains in a meal in the last couple weeks (I'm about a month in now), I find myself satisfied with much smaller portions. Same goes for milk products. I reintroduced them and don't have a problem with them, but I find myself enjoying them more and being satisfied with far less than before. My biggest challenge is making sure I have time to prepare healthy meals and making sure I eat enough calories.

I re-started using sparkpeople in conjunction with this plan so I can keep an eye on my total calorie intake and my balance of fat/protein/carbs to make sure I'm getting the most out of the plan, and to help guide my choices of portions when I do indulge. I also use it to keep an eye on my intake of a variety of nutrients and use it to guide my veggie choices so I don't become deficient in anything.

That's what's working for me. Low carb doesn't have to be as strict as Atkins. It just means cutting out the fast, easy, super high-glycemic carb choices, then easing back into them and paying attention to how your body reacts so that you know what you can and can't handle.

SLIMMERKIWI Posts: 25,932
8/29/13 11:50 P

I don't mind the idea of a "Low Carb Diet", but I do NOT like the VERY LOW Carb Diet, (unless advised and monitored by a Registered Dietitian or a Dr who also has certification in Nutrition. My thoughts are that rather than cutting out fruit and veges, you are better to cut out processed carbs - reducing pasta portions (fluff them out with more veges), and remove sugary drinks, sweets, cakes, etc. By doing that, odds are you are going to reduce your calories significantly which in turn can lead to a good weight-loss. It may not be a quick one, but that is better than fast.

I know a few who have done the Atkins Diet and followed it faithfully, and some of those have ended up in hospital with gut problems and a warning to not try this type of diet again. I am not saying that this can and does happen to all or most, but there are quite a large number where health problems do arise because of it.


8/29/13 8:10 P

I enjoy eating a low carb, high fat diet. I get roughly 80% of my carbs from vegetables, 10% from fruit and 10% from gluten free baking. I eat over 10 servings of vegetables every day. Lots of healthy fats and delicious pastured meats. It is incredibly healthy and sustainable.

8/29/13 5:56 P

Well, I do Atkins. I've lost 210 pounds on it and cured my diabetes, so I won't be quitting. Tht's for sure. I've gone from 325 pounds and a size 28 to 115 pounds and a size 3. I can't imagine ever doing anything else now.

LOVE4KITTIES Posts: 4,689
8/29/13 3:57 P

Yeah, I tried it a couple of times for several months each time. I lost weight for the first couple of weeks and then the weight loss would come to a complete halt because I was eating too many calories on it to lose weight. The weight I did lose was mostly just water weight. Overall, it was ineffective for me and I also didn't feel good on it. Actually, to be completely honest, I was completely miserable. I lost almost 100 lbs and felt good while doing it by following the Spark People recommendations (which my registered dietitian also agreed with) and that's what has worked well for me--moderation and making permanent lifestyle changes.

I've seen a lot of people do Atkins or other low carb diets, but, everyone who I know personally has eventually fallen off the low carb wagon and gone back to eating like they were before going low carb and then regained any weight they managed to lose. A couple of my family members keep going on and off low carb. It's like they are only okay on it for so long. Then, one starts cheating on it with a particular high carb food (strangely enough, she seems to lose weight when she starts cheating) and the other starts eating piles of almonds every night and doesn't lose anything.

Overall, I feel like it's not a sustainable lifestyle for most people. I also don't think that doing something temporary to lose weight is the way to lose weight and maintain that loss. I believe in making permanent lifestyle changes because this truly is what I believe leads to permanent weight loss. Diets, in my opinion, are basically temporary things that we torture ourselves with until we either give up (which is the most common outcome, in my opinion) or reach our goal and then we go back to eating the way we were before and then the weight comes back (often plus a little more).

Without going into what makes up a healthy diet... Calorie restriction is the key to losing weight. Weight loss only occurs when you restrict calories so that you are burning more than you eating. Over the long term, there is no difference between weight lost on low carb and regular or even high carb diets. You can restrict calories in ways that are healthy and ways that are unhealthy (and I'm sure we can all agree that the Twinkie diet is an example of an unhealthy diet that someone managed to lose weight on).

So far as what's healthy... I think we can all agree that most people need to eat more veggies, avoid the processed/refined carbs and just eat more real, unprocessed, food (things made from ingredients, not boxes) in reasonable quantities while upping the exercise.

Edited by: LOVE4KITTIES at: 8/29/2013 (16:11)
GIPPER1961 Posts: 738
8/29/13 12:47 P

Low carb diets are a subject that engenders quite a few opinions. I am no different. I came to low carb because of type 2 diabetes.

That being said I do not follow Atkins or any other structured low carb diet. In my case I found I simply could not keep my sugar in line eating the 40 -55% carb plans so many encourage even factoring in 'good carbs'

my diet plan is very simple and works very well for me but I offer no guarantees that it will for others.
1. No added sugar
2. No processed flour or rice (limited amounts of whole grains are OK for me).
3. Mostly chicken and fish but I don't avoid red meat, I just don't eat much of it (it is expensive).
4. real food for everything else. I avoid processed food as much as is possible.

These guidelines keep me in the 15 - 25 percent carb range and I have no food cravings other than emotional desires for comfort which I am more able to fight off now than when I was eating higher amounts of carbs

In short I believe low carb to be the healthiest way of eating whether you use one of the designed diets or just make your own prorgam. I predict you will get a lot of people say the exact opposite. You have to see what works for you and your body

Edited by: GIPPER1961 at: 8/29/2013 (12:50)
OBIESMOM2 SparkPoints: (220,792)
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8/29/13 11:52 A

personally, I could never do Atkins. I can't eat like that short term - no way it could be a new lifestyle (which is what's required to maintain).

I did South Beach, and while I'm not on a strict South Beach plan, I still defer to the recommended foods (no white bread, no white rice, etc). That CAN be a lifestyle for me because I prefer whole grains.

if you go to the Spark Teams page (click COMMUNITY tab; it's on the drop down) and type ATKINS in the search box, you'll find several low carb & Atkins teams. Read some of the team message boards.

good luck! emoticon

ARTLOVER24 SparkPoints: (3,312)
Fitness Minutes: (2,064)
Posts: 25
8/29/13 10:48 A

Hey everyone,
So I wanted to try a low carb diet and I tried Atkins, and just fininshed phase 1 with a loss of 9lbs in two weeks. The only thing that really bothers me is the restrictions on vegetables (no fruits at all the first two weeks) and the amount of protein they suggest eating per meal (at least 4 oz at each meal) just seemed way to much for me to handle. Granted not eating the breads, pastas, rice, and processed foods is great because i fully believe you are what you eat and I love bread and that is exactly what my belly feels like...feels like bread dough.

Also, I was tracking the majority of what I was eating on FatSecret and I noticed that my carb intake would range from 1100-1500 a day, staying at the 20 Net carbs per day. I think that may be where the weight loss came from rather than cutting the carbs.
I've read different articles both for atkins and against it and those that were against it kind of scared me about the program. I am wondering if I should continue it or go back to a calorie in/calorie out way of eating that has a better balance of nutrition.

Thoughts? Any experience with low carb diets? Both positive ones and negative? Any suggestions?

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