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Success with low-carb dieting /lifestyle



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JALEWI02
Posts: 43
4/24/12 11:20 A

Thank you all for you feedback and great low carb meal ideas!



SMILINGEYES2308
SparkPoints: (501)
Fitness Minutes: (650)
Posts: 21
4/23/12 9:47 A

I eat between 60 - 100g of carbs a day. I'm fairly new to this as well and it's definitely a lifestyle change you have to be willing to work for. Before deciding to lower my carb intake, I ate rice/potatoes every night for dinner along side with meat and some veggies, so the transition has been a bit hard but I feel I have control over it now.

A typical breakfast for me is a spinach omlette.. 1 egg, 1 egg white, handful chopped spinach, a bit of turkey, topped with some cheese. Yummy and low carb but high in protein.
Sometimes I have 1/4c of porridge instead but that may only be 1-2 times a week.

Lunch is typically a half can of tuna mixed with 1tbsp regular mayo and I eat it with cucumber. Sometimes I'll have a half turkey sandwich [1 slice of bread] with some cheese & veggies.

Mid-day snacking is usually cut up veggies [carrots, peppers, broccoli] with low-carb spinach dip, plain greek yogurt with some berries or a handful of unsalted nuts.

As for dinners, I make them as usual as I've never really cooked "unhealthy" but instead of having rice or potatoes or pasta, I serve my dinner on a bed of spinach depending on what it is, or like last night, with a side spinach salad. Last night for dinner we had Baked Balsamic Chicken & Carrots with a large spinach salad for me and rice for my boyfriend.

It will take a while to get used to it, my body is just now starting to get out of the shock aspect of it. Don't be afraid to allow yourself things that you love, just be sure there in moderation.

Friday night, we ordered some pizza, I had 2 slices. No regrets at all. Limit your refined sugars, flours, etc intake and you'll notice a huge difference in your carbs.

A little trick I found works for me during the week, if I'm craving something sweet [I LOVE chocolate] is I'll have one sugar free chocolate square, or one sugar free campino. Helps me everytime.

Try and get more fat in where you can, stay away from 'low fat/fat free' stuff. I bought regular mayo the other day, first time in a looooong time, we normally buy fat free everything. Buy regular fat sour cream, cottage cheese, cream cheese, yogurt, etc. Low carb AND low fat is a no go. Only do one or the other or you will not benefit from low carbing at all.

Technically low carb is under 20g net carbs a day...what we are doing is "moderate" BUT, you will see changes if you mainly get your carbs from veggies. Healthy carbs is what you're going for.

Sorry for the amazingly long post. Just wanted to share my advice. Hope you try it again!



SMERRIMAN7
Posts: 296
4/23/12 9:16 A

My first ever attempt at 'dieting' was low carb. I ate a lot of cheese, meat, eggs. Ate veggies that are fairly low carb (lots of broccoli) and nuts. While I had no issues with the restrictions, I must also confess it didn't last long. Not because of the 'diet' but due to life's wicked since of humor. You see, that first ever attempt started Jan. 1st 2003. I did 10-20 minutes on the exercise bike everyday (which was alot of activity for me), ate low carb, and drank alot of water. Lost about 10 pounds in just over 2 weeks. Then on the early morning of January 19th - I was in a BAD car accident. Maybe the universe had to go big to get my attention LOL.

Anyhow - I do now eat less carbs, especially less of the junky carbs. But its not because I'm avoiding them in particular. Since I'm eating in a reduced calorie range (1300-1600 most days) my #s are also lower for protein & fat. And I'm more particular about getting in good sources of food energy - so I eat less junk food. If I feel the need to eat more, I do, as I think listening to my body is important. Then again, I'm not dieting. I've made lifestyle changes. I don't say those junk foods have no place in my life - but its very limited. I either turn to slightly better junk food (had 1 oz tortilla chips & salsa w/ dinner last night) or keep the portions in control.

My mother in law follows a low carb diet of sorts. She doesn't do anything extreme, but goes for the higher fiber/lower carb breads/wrpas, eats a lot of lean meat and veggies. I guess its more accurate to say she avoids overly processed carbs - like sugar, flour.

Edited by: SMERRIMAN7 at: 4/23/2012 (09:17)


MARATHONDAD
SparkPoints: (28,046)
Fitness Minutes: (18,075)
Posts: 1,260
4/23/12 9:13 A

I dont belive in low carbs u needs carbs for energy and so much more. just make your carbs healthy and eat lots of fruits and veggies and u will be fine



BEARCLAW6
SparkPoints: (27,813)
Fitness Minutes: (15,376)
Posts: 1,939
4/23/12 9:04 A

As Russell wrote, what you were experiencing is sometimes called the "Atkins Flu". When you drastically lower your carb intake, it takes some time for your body to adjust to burning fat for calories instead of always turning to carbs first. Those feelings generally go away in week 2. The cravings that cause binging generally go away sometime in weeks 2-4. It is suggested that when you do have a major craving that you answer it with something that is higher in fat like avocado (almost all carbs in avocado are fiber).

It takes some getting used to. We live in a society where everyone thinks that the unhealthy part of a bagel is the cream cheese when if fact for many of us it is the bagel! If you butter those vegetables and eat your fat and protein at every meal, then you do not need that pile of starch to be satisfied and healthy. Nuts and cheese are your friends, too.



RYOKOSITH
Posts: 160
4/23/12 7:04 A

Regarding what Russell posted, if you try to do low-carb, you must also remember to eat enough fat. Your body can be fueled by carbohydrates or by fat. If you remove one, you must provide the other in order for your body to be able to function. This is why it is a bad idea to do low-carb/low-fat diets as you cut out both of your body's main sources of energy.

That and fat helps you feel sated. I find that if I don't eat enough fat in my meals, I will quickly feel hungry again. If I have enough, I can go for several hours before I begin to mildly feel peckish. Prior to going low-carb, I would be hungry again within a couple hours of eating. I tried the calorie counting and low-fat methods, and I might stick with it for a few days, but then I would begin to experience ravenous hunger in even less time and could not sustain my efforts.

Also, something to watch out for, are the "hidden" carbs. If you go to eat soup or have gravy with your meat, chances are a thickener was used. Everything from candy to hotdogs may contain sugar or HFCS. Juice, even if all natural, has fructose in it. Milk, especially lower fat versions, has milk sugar (lactose) that you may need to account for. Depending on how closely you're monitoring your intake, these may easily be missed and quickly add up.

Again, there's still a lot of variety available. I'm eating veggies far more now than I was before I started this. It just may take reworking in your head what foods you feel should "normally" go together or be used in certain contexts. Instead of mashed potatoes, what about mashed cauliflower? For some, instead of using regular flour, they use almond flour/meal for making breads.

Edited by: RYOKOSITH at: 4/23/2012 (07:19)


RUSSELL_40
Posts: 16,826
4/23/12 2:12 A

Well, first of all, if you are eating moderate carb, like you did, you never get low enough to reap any of the benefits of low carb. No hunger, so you don't feel deprived for one thing. Then, if you made it a week, your energy would return. The problem is, you are experiencing withdrawal from foods you ate before starting moderate carb. I don't think it is a good sign to be experiencing withdrawal symptoms from a food..lol.

I personally ate a mushroom omelette this morning, then pork, tomatoes, and onion for lunch, then 3 b/s chicken thighs with green beans for dinner. I try to stay below 40 total carbs a day, and eate around 8 servings of vegetables as my main carb foods. Plus I eat a little bit of carbs at every meal.

Without getting low enough in carbs to get into ketosis, I doubt I could eat low carb, and stick to it. I guess if you are losing a lb a week at 100 g of carbs, it could work, with willpower. Seriously though, if we had willpower, we wouldn't be looking for a different diet. It's why you cheated after 4 days.

Lastly, the type of carbs you have matter as far as staying in ketosis, reducing cravings, and allowing a greater volume of carbs to be eaten. A square of chocolate can have as many carbs as a cup of green beans, along with fiber.. which one is going to help reduce your hunger more? Plus it doesn't spike your blood sugar as much.

Low carb works just fine.. the fault usually lies with the person implementing it. Either they didn't do any research, or they listened to all the moderate carb ideas, and are not doing low carb properly.. whatever the reason, the results are the same.. failure.

Blaming low carb for not working is like a drunk driver blaming the car , or the alcohol for running into a tree. Maybe even blaming the tree.

You felt terrible because you body was getting rid of the toxins we live with eating a horrid diet.
You felt weak, because low carb has a diuretic effect.
You felt hungry/ deprived because you still ate too many carbs.

Besides the last one, these would diappear in Week 2. The last one can't be corrected except by paying attention to what types of carbs you are eating, and lowering carbs to break your addictions, before you add carbs back in.

The vegetable options are thousands, there are dozens of meat dishes available.. variety is not any less on low carb. Ham and peas, Lamb and carrots, beef and mixed peppers. It just takes a little more imagination. I remember my Mom making us 1 meal for every day of the week.. 7 meals total.. Most restaurants have 25-50 meals available.. you can make thousands of different meal on low carb.

I don't know if you want to do low carb again, and are searching for ideas, or are just saying it doesn't work for you. I hope you find something that works for you.

Edited by: RUSSELL_40 at: 4/23/2012 (02:19)


TACDGB
Posts: 6,081
4/23/12 12:57 A

I eat from 50 to 80 carbs a day. It is lots lower that sparks recomends. But I also eat a higher protein diet than sparks remcomend. I found by doing that my hypoglycemia is so much better. I also need the extra protein for lifting weights. So I guess I am not much help. I do know that carbs are not the enemy. You do need them for fuel. It's the good kind like whole grains and ones in fruits and veggies that you need. Good luck.



JALEWI02
Posts: 43
4/23/12 12:19 A

Hello All,

After counting calories meticulously and exercising with minimal results, I considered a new approach. I actually tried a low-carb diet for about 4 days.(I ate between 50 and 100 carbs, when I usually eat over 250-going by my spark reccomendation) I did lose weight, but felt tired, fatigued, and mentally miserable. I ended up bingeing on carbs a few days later. Basically without carbs, i felt that there wasn't enough to choose from. How can people eat 35 g of carbs a day or even less. Please give some ideas of what you eat, how you stay full and some "carb replacements" that you might use.



 
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