GRANDMA0627   4,328
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25 days and down 13lbs!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

I can eat healthy food all the way to the grave, and have the muscles to get me there, but if I'm 100 pounds overweight, it will be an EARLY GRAVE.

Finally, I've found what works for me. I came to terms with the fact that my body just doesn't lose weight easily. I've dieted lots of times...and for more than a year had been really striving to eat nutritious foods. But the weight just wouldn't come off.

After lots of introspection...a trip to my doc...and a complete revamping of my cupboards to make sure they were rid of artificial this and thats, and full of only healthful whole grains, fats, veggies, fruits, and lean proteins, I finally realized that healthy food, alone, was not making me lose weight.

In fact, my weight had begun to edge upward.

More research, to determine exactly what triggers the body to burn stored fat, brought me to the decision to drastically cut carbohydrate intake. I started out not sure how many carbs to shoot for, and set my daily goal at 30. I was losing weight fast. Then I read information that made me think maybe I should be consuming a bit more carbs each day. There is SO MUCH INFORMATION OUT THERE. I increased the carbs to 50-80 per day. AND I QUIT LOSING. Just like further weight loss. I was only consuming a total daily caloric intake of 650-800 calories, but I quit losing.

So, I did more reading, and came across some reassuring new information from a study done by a Dr. Ludwig. (link below) And further information about a recent finding that low carb/high protein diets DO NOT HARM healthy kidneys. (link below) So I cut my carb consumption to 20 or less daily. And I'm once again losing weight.

I hesitate to even publish this in my blog. I know the course I'm following is not supported by Spark, or even considered mainstream.

The thing is, I've found what is working for me. Years and years...decades...of sugar/carb abuse had left my body unwilling to use stored fat for energy. I ate "healthy" and worked out like crazy, but wasn't losing. And as long as my weight approaches 100lbs too much, my number one health risk is my weight. I can eat healthy food all the way to the grave, and have the muscles to get me there, but if I'm 100 pounds overweight, it will be an EARLY GRAVE.

The Atkins approach, as it turns out, is working for me. I eat lots of protein (80+ grams daily) and a healthy amount of fat (30 or so grams daily). And I eat loads of veggies. I feel great. And most importantly, I'm losing the fat that threatens my very existence.

Current stats: fasting glucose 74, blood pressure: 115/73, 13 pounds down.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DIBANANA 9/18/2012 10:11PM

  Only you know your body. I find I lose much quicker if I eat fish and cut out carbs. I LOVE carbs and don't care for fish without butter! So, if you have found something you can stick with and works for you, more power to you.

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PROUD-GRANDMA 9/17/2012 11:36PM

    Congrats! Everyone is unique! I'm glad you found what works for you!!

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PKBOO3 9/17/2012 2:41PM

    Best of luck to you by whatever method you find that works. I've got a Denise Austin book with 28 days of recipes. I'm not following it day by day, but I am trying the recipes. Some are good & some not so good. Some of the ingredients are hard to find, but most I can do. Anyway, I am learning new foods to eat, & have taken off about 4-6 pounds and still working on losing at least another 4-5 pounds.

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TIG123GER 9/17/2012 11:36AM

    You know, you have to do what works for you because nothing is one size fits all no matter how much the tag says it! I think limiting carbs is not a bad thing as long as you're not eating high fat food in its place. Being able to eat 100 pieces of bacon because it's protein isn't the right approach either. In ANY program it's balance and you seem to have found what works for you and as long as you're eating good, healthy food, I think that's fantastic! I wish I had your will power because I am a carb addict and couldn't imagine not having them....

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DIET_FRIEND 9/15/2012 3:14PM

    Limiting carbs has worked for me too. Right now, I'm trying to go the Spark Way, but I really try not to eat many carbs nevertheless. As long as you are feeling fine, you are likely on the right track!

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CHESSAPEKE 9/15/2012 2:24PM

  Whatever works for you. Once your down all the weight you want to be then you'll know how to eat so you stay exactly the weight you want to stay!! Good luck and good job!!

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Choosing Me...Enticing bit of carby sweet

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

Choosing Me
by donna falco

Enticing bit of carby sweet

On grocery shelf we often meet.

I know you better than before;

I’d gobble you and want for more.

I’ve come to realize the fact

that longing in my soul comes back.

Eating one bite never fixes

What that hunger surely misses.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TIG123GER 9/15/2012 12:32PM

    So very it.

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SKEETOR 9/7/2012 8:00AM

    Ha! emoticon

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And then finally (and pasta has HOW many carbs?!?)

Thursday, August 30, 2012

And then finally:

I finally realized that all the healthy, nutritious, delicious food I was eating was not only keeping me at an unhealthy weight, but it was making me fatter!

Eat enough you will gain weight, no matter how healthful that food is!

After completely overhauling my grocery shopping practices, cleaning the pantry of undesirables, and learning to make an amazing loaf of whole wheat bread…after going to the doc to be sure I am healthy, I had hoped that my switch to whole foods and vitamin supplements would cause me to slowly achieve my ideal weight.

But when the nearly stationery scales began to move upward, I had to have a long talk with myself.

The goal was to become healthier. And the biggest risk factor I have is my weight.
I’ve tried slow and easy diets. For me, the problem with such diets has been that it’s a little too slow (not much lost) and a little too easy (easy to gain that weight right back).
Clearly, my body has been programmed to store sugar in the form of fat. I did a lot of reading and, and decided the best plan for me is to get my body accustomed to burning stored fat for energy.

So I am on a reduced calorie diet that is high in protein. Think Atkins, only not really. I monitor everything going into my mouth. I’ve researched everything I eat. I watch my carb intake carefully, as to avoid beginning to burn carbs for fuel, rather than fat. I make sure protein intake is adequate, to safeguard that my body doesn’t make use of muscle protein for fuel.

Will this work? I don’t know.

I’m on day 9. I’ve lost 8 pounds. The first few days, I lost a pound every day. Everyone said, “Ah, that’s just “water weight.” Whatever…I don’t know. I know I’m drinking a gallon…whole gallon…of water every day, tracking every ounce (to help dilute toxins from the fat I supposedly will be burning).

Dinner last night:
I made a family favorite for dinner last night: Spaghetti. My husband’s family is Italian. Homemade pasta sauce is a way of life. I was SHOCKED at the carb content of that homemade delight…that is, until I read the nutritional information for spaghetti noodles themselves. Wow…now I know…It wasn’t dessert that made me fat. It was spaghetti with homemade sauce! (And no, that isn’t what I ate for dinner ;)

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GRANDMA0627 8/31/2012 9:04PM

    Thanks, everyone, for such great encouragement. Know what I did? I carefully measured 1/2 cup of that sauce and put it over the lean meat on top of my salad. It was really goood that way! But I tend to enjoy mixing warm foods with cold salad. And I ended up right on spot with my nutrition goals for the day.

I know I should like the whole grain pasta (i love whole grain bread) but I just cant stand the stuff LOL.

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SKEETOR 8/31/2012 12:26PM

    I have to watch my carbs and I have found that the whole grain pasta works for me. I don't mind it too much, although it is a little chewer - but I like a little "bite" to my pasta anyhow.
The carbs are released a lot slower so your body doesn't have the sugar spike that releases the insulin that stores the fat (or something like that). All I know is that my blood sugar doesn't spike after the whole grain pastas but it goes sky high after "regular" pasta. (plus whole grains=more filling=less intake)
Everyone's body is different though, but you could always give it a try.

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TIG123GER 8/31/2012 10:26AM

    Pasta is sooo good and soooo bad for you in the diet realm. 1/2 cup is nothing and has so many calories and carbs. It's a bummer because I love all things pasta. I've tried the low carb pasta and it tastes like cardboard. I feel your pain because you think if you eat "all the right things" that will make you healthy but it still doesn't work the way it should. Sounds like what you're doing is working for you so keep it up. It isn't all water weight....don't believe are doing great and I'm jumping up and down for your success!

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AZURE-SKY 8/30/2012 1:29PM

  Several years ago, I participated in a hospital-run diet study for breast cancer survivors. We were all middle-aged, female. Our Resting Metabolic Rate was determined, and we were put on a calorie restricted diet. Half of us were on Atkins, following the Induction Phase (20 Net Carbs) for 2 weeks, then increasing daily net carbs by 5, for each of the following weeks. The other half of the group were on a low-fat plan.

I was on 1350 calories per day, following Atkins. That was hard, but I found ways to eat Italian food without all the carbs. I would make stuffed shells, filled with low-fat ricotta (to reduce the calories), with meat sauce. Then, I would unstuff my portion & just eat the filling. I really didn't miss the pasta shells, and I was getting plenty to eat.

I did lose, quickly at first, then slowing down as I added in more carbs. I finally stalled at 70 net carbs per day.

One thing that did not change for any of us in the study - we were told not to increase or change our activity level during the study, because they wanted us to focus on the diet only. If I had been exercising regularly before the study & continued during the study, I might have lost more weight. But I was happy with the results.

Unfortunately, afer the study ended, I went back to the old ways, and gained back all the weight I lost, and more. So I'm back to low-carb for the duration.

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CATHYLC 8/30/2012 1:01PM

    I am doing a modified Atkins diet refined sugar, pasta,bread,rice or white far 37 days! I have lost 12 lbs and I have so much more energy.
Good luck!

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DIET_FRIEND 8/30/2012 12:12PM

    I have tried that soy pasta substitute, tofu shirataki, in the healthy refrigerated section of the grocery. It is pretty good and you can really eat a lot of it. I too am a big believer in a low carb diet for quick results. Unfortunately for me, it's not sustainable because I'm such a carb addict--I think carbs are as addictive as heroin. I always come back to carbs. So now I try to be aware of carb consuming and to limit portions as well as not relying on carby foods for every food choice even though nothing is easier. This means no baking at my house--and we love to bake. I find that I'm the primary consumer of baked delights.

I learned about shirataki from the Hungry Girl on television. She has a lot of ideas for satisfying the burning appetite in all of us.

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DIBANANA 8/30/2012 12:08PM

  One of my biggest problems is pasta. Nothing better than a big plate with a great sauce. (now my mouth is watering) Good thing I'm not married to an Italian or I would be twice as big as I am now! I've been to Italy a couple of times and am amazed that the women aren't bigger! I figure they walk more than we do and probably eater smaller portions. I can't imagine not eating a lot of something I love. Thus my weight problem.

Sounds like whatever you are doing is working. I doubt 9 pounds is water. I know I looked at a diet program I think was called 6 week makeover. Anywya, it went by the shape of your body and what you should eat.

I ate all the wrong foods for my body type. Even the wrong fruits!

Good luck


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The second thing I did:

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Second thing: Went to the doctor for a complete physical. I wanted to know exactly what I'm starting with on this new journey to a healthier me.

The unexpected death of my father (heart attack, February 2012) jarred me out of my absent-minded pursuit of the same fate. I began to make immediate changes to my diet, and began to pursue better health.

By the time I got to appointment day, I'd been on a whole foods diet for two months, which consisted of lots of whole grains, fresh produce, and lean meats. My pantry, one product at a time, had transitioned: BEFORE: loads of prepackaged foods full of high fructose corn syrup, fats of several descriptions, artificial flavors, and preservatives. NOW: very basic whole ingredients: Whole wheat flour, brown rice, a variety of legumes. My refrigerator was now stocked with lots of fresh produce and lean meats. I had made a goal of preparing meat-free meals at least three times a week.

But the scales were largely unimpressed. I still needed to lose a lot of weight. My cholesterol levels, on the other hand, were pretty good: HDL: 42 (low by some ideas LDL: 63 TRIGLYCERIDES: 113

I couldn’t remember what my last cholesterol numbers were, but I did remember the doctor, at that time (2003 maybe) fussing at me about my high triglycerides. (Which I knew nothing about, did absolutely nothing about, and certainly had no idea it was due to consuming sugar.) So I immediately gave myself a private little pat on the back, assuming it was my new way of eating that had worked that little miracle.

My blood pressure was a tiny bit high: 132/89
Fasting glucose: 101
Lots of other numbers…basically my thyroid was borderline (had been back in 2003, too). My hormones were all low (hysterectomy, 2005).
All the other tests came out great…I was even told I have the bones of 98% of the 18-20 somethings. I’ve bragged about that one repeatedly.

But there was one big surprise for me: I was actually vitamin deficient in two categories tested: Vitamins D and B12.

I was eating as healthfully as I knew how, but was actually vitamin deficient? When the doc was discussing this matter, I stammered, “But I’m out in the sun all the time. How can I be deficient in D?” To which she replied, “Don’t do that.” with a look on her face that made me feel a little foolish. But hey, I garden…can’t do that in the dark.

Nevertheless…vitamin deficiencies were the only real negative in all the tests. Now I knew what I was working with. I knew I was a fairly healthy, 100 lbs overweight, vitamin deficient woman about to turn 50.

Fairly healthy?

“For how long?” was my next thought.

I began vitamin therapy, modified our diet even further, and waited to see if that would be the magic bullet that would melt the pounds away.

My story, in bite sized portions

So, the first thing I did

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SKEETOR 8/29/2012 9:39AM

    It's always great to have a starting point from which to measure your success and so you have an idea where to make changes. Have a great day!!

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TRYINGTOLOSE64 8/28/2012 9:04PM

    Well, at least you know where your numbers need working on. Good for you!!

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PROUD-GRANDMA 8/28/2012 7:55PM

    Your doing great! knowing your numbers is so important. I'm sorry to hear about your father. Heart disease runs on both sides of my family.

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So, the first thing I did:

Monday, August 27, 2012

Back in February, 2012, following the death of my father, I realized that I had to make drastic changes in my eating habits and general health, or, I figured, follow in his footsteps, and those of my grandmothers. The eating heritage of our family had caused many premature deaths. Why would I be different? And I'm not ready to count down my last 20 years on this earth, enjoying my family and life in general. I want more time, and more health to enjoy life with.

So the first thing I did was quit eating a bunch of things. My first thought was to not eat anything that I had heard could clog my arteries. When I looked at hot dogs, I could see them wedging themselves in a ventricle. And they lost their appeal. When I looked at butter, I imagined it globbing onto my artery walls.

Hailing back to my Butter Buster days, I was sure that oils and fats of any kind were lurking everywhere, enticing me, planning my demise. And I just quit eating them. I read about healthy oils, and started using olive oil and canola oil.

Now...there is so much information out there. I'm learning. And I've learned a great deal since those first couple of weeks in February.

But the point is, that losing my father had proved to be a strong catalyst for change. I read more, studied more, worked hard to begin putting healthy foods in front of my family, and myself. And it's still an ongoing process.

Definitely, though, the first thing I did was the first thing I could do: I started making healthier choices in WHAT I was eating. I started exactly where I was. I didn't wait to know everything. I didn't wait to even get to the store and buy new groceries. I just immediately started trying to eat foods that seemed more healthful.

We can all do that.

My story, in bite-sized portions
So, the first thing I did

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GRANDMA0627 8/27/2012 3:10PM

    Thanks Craftinwife!

Yes, Skeetor, they do! I've been a sugar junky for ...well... all my life. I'm learning to eat right away if I start feeling that craving...but I choose protein instead. And it quenches that desire. And the salads! the greens! the smoothies! the lean meats! I made a veggie soup the other day that was delish! I'm really enjoying the food. I don't feel deprived.

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SKEETOR 8/27/2012 2:36PM

    And it is just amazing how well that healthier food can taste! emoticon
Have a great week!

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CRAFTINWIFE 8/27/2012 10:37AM


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