VHALKYRIE   16,233
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What If I'm Not Hungry?

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Coming from a diet that spiked my insulin levels and left me in a chronic state of hunger, relearning when to eat was an unexpected twist. For years, before, during and after eating, I was always hungry. I went to bed hungry; woke up hungry. I counted down the minutes until I could have my next meal.

When I switched to low-carb, I found myself in a perplexing and bewildering state.

I was never hungry.

I realized I conditioned myself over the years to believe hunger was 'normal'.

It isn't. Being hungry means malnourishment. We live in a world where malnutrition is predominantly in the form of excess bodyfat.

I was used to eating 5 meals a day. Breakfast, lunch, dinner + 2 snacks. A lot of the old rules didn't apply anymore. What about this rule? Should I still eat this way? Should I skip meals if I'm not hungry?

In the past year, I've experimented with both ways. Eat 4-5 meals even if not hungry, and eat meals only when hungry.

I found eating 4-5 meals works better for me. I believe this is partially because I am a smaller person than average at 5'0". Big meals will overload my capacity quickly. Eating meals not much bigger than 450 calories keeps my system running smoothly.

I tend to start with a small 250 calorie breakfast, 350 calorie lunch, 2x 250 calorie snacks, and ~400 calorie dinner. That puts me right about 1500 calories per day. The range varies from 1200-1600 on most days.

I'm very rarely hungry when I eat.

Why do I eat if I'm not hungry?

I believe there is something to the notion that undereating calories will downshift metabolism. When I experimented with eating only when hungry, it seemed more difficult to maintain weight after a time. If there is a scarcity of calories, the metabolism will rev down so it can function on less.

I found that if I wait until I'm hungry, then it's already too late. My body has switched out of fat burn mode and sends distress signals, causing tendency to overeat.

Another reason I eat smaller meals is because more than 30g carbs in one meal will cause a glucose spike, kicking me out of fat burn for several hours. It also triggers insatiable hunger and binge episodes.

I need to eat minimum 90g protein per day. If I skip meals, it is very hard for me to get my minimum protein level. If I eat more than 30g protein in one sitting, it kicks me into gluconeogenesis. Our livers are capable of converting up to 60% of consumed protein into glucose. Excess protein is converted to glucose, instead of being used as building blocks. I get a glucose crash from overeating protein.

Thus resuming my weight loss, I employed strategies to rev my metabolism back up to speed. Eating 1200-1600 is about right for me to accomplish this. I'll discuss more on Wednesday after my monthly overview.

An occasional skipped meal if I'm out running errands is fine. I don't try and eat then if I don't feel hungry.

I skip a meal if food is unappetizing. That usually only happens if I'm ill, or overeaten. I've had that happen at Brazilian grills with the endless streams of meat. My stop point used to be when my stomach became distended. These days, after a certain point, my brain says 'stop'. This happens well before the bellybutton bursting point.

I skip breakfast a day after a Brazilian grill night out because I'm not hungry.

In general, my hunger level and eating schedule goes like this from a scale of 0-5. 0 = starving, 5 = not hungry.

0 : So hungry I could eat anything. Distress signal.
1 : One hour 15 minutes until lunch time...one hour 14 minutes until lunch time...
2 : Daydreams about lunch start emerging.
3 : Oh is it lunchtime? I should have something to eat.
4 : Is it lunchtime? Ehh...maybe I'll go in another half an hour to an hour.
5 : No desire to eat.
5+: Overate - food looks unappetizing and thought of taking another bite makes me feel ill.

I eat my meals at hunger level 2-3. Less than that I waited too long, or I ate things that spike glucose. More than that is too soon.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EATNBOOGERS 7/29/2012 12:54PM

    I know *exactly* what you're talking about, and I use similar strategies (even though we eat very differently).

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-LINDA_S 7/29/2012 10:05AM

    Very interesting insight. I need to see how it might apply to me. Thanks!

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HELEN_BRU 7/29/2012 2:29AM

    I found this to be true with me also.

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DOTTIEJANE1 7/28/2012 7:07PM

    Great blog, glad you have got a plan that works for you .Most of us ned to look at hunger and food a little diffrently then we do .

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SALONKITTY 7/28/2012 3:33PM

    Great post, and perfect timing! I was just sitting here thinking how not hungry I am and trying to decide if I should eat dinner or not. Yes, I should eat dinner, jeezo! It's so true about the low carb diets eliminating the cravings that we read as hunger. I generally never feel hungry anymore, and do have to just stick to a schedule of eating. Nice reminder, thank you!

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DRB13_1 7/28/2012 3:16PM

    you are well in tune with your body cues and this contributes to your success

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VHALKYRIE 7/28/2012 2:18PM

    BOB240: Actually, oats were one of my least offensive carbs, too. I don't eat them currently, but when I did, they didn't give me the typical carb crash. When made with steel cut oats and whole milk, that is. The instant quaker oatmeal with sugars loaded into them did. Of course.

More comments later...

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BOB240 7/28/2012 2:14PM

    This is broadly the approach I use to control weight. i.e high protein (adjusted to body weight), low carbs and many meals.

The interesting difference is breakfast. Contrary to low carb approaches my breakfast is nearly always oats and actually I don't have the usual carb issues.

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LYNDALOVES2HIKE 7/28/2012 2:04PM

    Good analysis and great guidelines!

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WOUBBIE 7/28/2012 12:12PM

    People simply do not associate obesity with malnutrition but that is a CRITICAL point for them to understand. Gary Taubes spent a lot of time looking at case studies of cultures where the children were spindly and obviously malnourished while the mothers were fat. That the two issues are caused by the exact same factors is simply so counterintuitive that you literally have to have it shoved in your face to make the connection.

Hunger is a fascinating subject. Coming from our culture of overabundance it is so hard to separate out the different "hungers" and label them properly so that you can take the appropriate measures. I still have to constantly remind myself to drink water to thwart my brain's tendency to misread thirst as hunger.

But after a year of low carb eating I can CLEARLY tell the difference between real hunger and carb cravings. I used to mix them up, particularly since sometimes they appeared at the same time! Now it's very obvious when I only "want something to eat" even though my stomach and my energy levels clearly say I don't really need anything at the moment. I have to look back at what I ate an hour or two before and I inevitably find stealth carbs.

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CATH63 7/28/2012 11:40AM

    Great post! How can you tell that eating over 30g protein in a sitting causes gluconeogenesis? That's a term I'm not really familiar with but plan to research. And are the symptoms of a glucose crash caused by a protein overload the same as those of any other sugar crash?

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LADYIRISH317 7/28/2012 10:27AM

    I think you've figured out what works for you and your body, and that's better than a lot of us do! You're doing awesome.

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DH Experiment Over

Friday, July 27, 2012

In an attempt to win the award of "Least Popular Blog Post", I'm going to demonstrate an experiment.

Let's play "Food Showdown" Spark style.

Which is healthier?

Round #1:

Yoplait Strawberry Yogurt versus a Snickers Bar

Winner: It's a tossup!

Sure, Yoplait is lower fat (if you care about that) and calories weighing in at 1.5g fat and 170 calories. A Snickers bar is a hefty 11g fat and 266 calories.

But wait...

Yoplait has 27g sugar and Snickers has 28g.

The probiotics aren't going to eat your bodyfat. Sorry.

Round #2:

Which is healthier?

Snickers bar versus Costco low-fat frozen yogurt

Winner: Snickers!

Say what?

A 2oz Snickers bar has 266 calories and 28g sugar. A full container of Costco frozen yogurt is 390 calories and 53g sugar.

Better off with the Snickers, unless you're sharing with a friend. Frozen yogurt is a dessert, just like ice cream. Just like cake.

Round #3

Which is healthier?

100g Whole Grain Bread versus 100g Avocado?

Winner: Avocado!

Weight by weight, avocado is a winner. 100g of Whole Grain bread has 234 calories, 75mg potassium, 24mcg folate, 0 vitamin A, 0 vitamin C, 0 beta carotene and 2.5g fiber. 100g of an Avocado has 160 calories, 485mg potassium, 81mcg folate, 146mg vitamin A, 10mg vitamin C and 6.7g fiber .


What's got me fired up?

DH and I went out today to get groceries and look for a new apartment. We had a cookie at one of the apartments, which was fine. It's a Friday treat. I allow myself one treat a week. Usually I prefer something healthier like a sweet potato, but I haven't had a sweet treat in almost 4 weeks. DH has one too. Alright, we're good.

We go shopping at Costco and load up on tons of healthy foods: halibut, sockeye salmon, no-nitrate turkey breast, avocados, lettuce, blackberries, tomatoes, mixed nuts, bok choy, etc, etc.

We get to the end of the checkout and he orders a frozen yogurt.


He says he's hungry and it's something to tide him over.


I asked him how that was going to work. He said, "It's yogurt".

Yogurt = great! I make my own yogurt. I love yogurt. I eat lots of yogurt.

Yogurt churned with 53g of sugar is a recipe for diabetes. Low fat yogurt isn't a bubble shield from the insulin load.

I predicted within an hour, he'd be sleepy.

Within 30 minutes, he was yawning in the car.

It reminded me of posts on the message boards where people say the 'good outweighs the bad' concerning the sugar in yogurt.

If Snickers added probiotics, would it be as 'healthy' as sugar yogurt?

This is why I learned to make my own yogurt. Processed food yogurts are desserts, not breakfast.

With my diet, I've chosen to eat more avocados and less grains. I used to forgo avocados because of the fat content, but I was short changing myself on all the nutrition it packed. It's nature's multivitamin.

Go to your kitchen and weigh 53g sugar. Eating that much sugar on a regular basis is what gives people non alcoholic fatty liver disease. That is what causes atherosclerosis. That is what causes metabolic syndrome.

I was pretty sure it was going to end this way. My DH's 'diet experiment' is over. It put me in an uncomfortable position of dietary police, which I don't want to be. I don't want him eating pizzas and sugary frozen treats, then saying the diet doesn't work.

His younger brother has already been diagnosed with diabetes. He isn't even 40 yet.

Enjoy a treat in 'moderation'. Like I said, I had a cookie today. I would have passed on an Oreo or Chips Ahoy, but this was something special. It was a white-chocolate cranberry cookie. I enjoyed it. My first baked sweet treat in almost a month.

Pretending that the sugary yogurt or frozen yogurt is better than a Snickers bar is delusional. Fear of fats preventing eating avocados is tragic.

That type of thinking at one time prevented me from making any progress, too.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GETSTRONGRRR 7/29/2012 3:06PM

    Good on you for seeing the light and not getting on DH's back.....we're big boys and must make our own calls.

I gave SWMBO a copy of "Why we get fat" for her kindle; she read about 1/3 of it on our trip (of course she finished 3 entire mystery novels).

But that 1/3 of taube's book opened up some interesting discussions....I had to catch myself from preaching with the zeal of a convert, just letting her ask questions ("How do I eat fat if I don't like the taste of butter?") and answering them the best i could ("You can use olive oil instead, you like that don't you")

I've found that giving the gift of knowledge is better than prescribing her path.

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MRS.CARLY 7/29/2012 1:17PM

    I just read a book about probiotics and it basically said that all processed yogurts are not made with the healty bacterias that we need. They shortened the process and get crappy bacteria that forms some kinda SLIME istead of the healthy yogurt we think we are getting.

My husband is obsessed with yoplait. I lecture about the amount of sugar in it.

And get this....I caught him putting in an ADDITIONAL tbsp of sugar into his yogurt.

I don't think your husband it the worse when it comes to diet. I think mine is....

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EATNBOOGERS 7/29/2012 1:00PM

    I knew where you were going with this.... ;-)

I've had a hard time with my mother, who has high blood pressure and whose blood sugar is creeping up, to understand that those little Yoplaits are NOT health food. (I make my own yogurt, too.)

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KAYOTIC 7/29/2012 12:43PM

    Love, love, love my avocados....

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LEIGHWOMAN 7/29/2012 8:51AM

    That "conventional wisdom" of what is good and bad surely does confuse people. Myself included!

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SALONKITTY 7/28/2012 3:28PM

    I like this post as it's quite shocking to see the actual numbers behind these foods people think of as healthy.

I think your husband will eventually come around. I can completely understand not wanting to be the diet police! That is never a good dynamic to have. I have that to some degree with my husband and it totally annoys him, and me as well. He has a rare (but luckily not severe) form of MS, so I am concerned about his diet for good reason, and want to try to eliminate his inflammation. He is doing better in many ways, but still has to have his (almost daily) bacon sandwich, which is whole wheat toast with butter and bacon in between. Also the toast with jam, marmalade, etc. He doesn't have much interest in eating fruits or veggies at all, and will say he's "too full" or "can't eat them" and they will end up in the garbage if I'm not there to save them. Very frustrating, but I usually don't have the energy or the time to go to war over it, so I just give him raised eyebrows and keep quiet. He knows! And ultimately, it's his body. I just wish he'd care about it a bit more.

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LYNDALOVES2HIKE 7/28/2012 2:02PM

    I do not want to be anyone's "diet police" and don't want anyone to be mine so good decision - stuff like that could damage a relationship for sure!

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DETERM1ND 7/28/2012 1:02PM

    Don't give up....

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BALLOUZOO 7/28/2012 12:23PM

    I love the mini snickers-just one-as my treat.

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MYLADY4 7/28/2012 11:27AM

    WOW, your hubby sound like mine except mine does not want to change yet.

He likes to by the "red" label yoplait and I HATE it. He was going to get some on Monday and thank goodness I was with and made him get the light. It still is not great but at least it does have less sugar then the red. He just does not get it.

Hang in there.

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DOWNEASTB 7/28/2012 9:03AM

    I also showed this to my DH and he said "See? Told ya Snickers bars are healthy!" Wise arse.

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WOUBBIE 7/27/2012 11:44PM

    Eh. It's like filling a 5 gallon pail with an eye dropper. You can do it, but it's gonna take a long long time.

My DH is getting his blood work tomorrow. He's tested his blood sugar the last 2 mornings and it has been very good - and HE HIMSELF noted that he had had less to drink than usual the last couple of nights. So tonight he ate dinner before drinking and turned in (ie. quit drinking) earlier than usual. Hopefully the test will confirm (to him) that lower alcohol definitely = lower blood sugar.

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_RAMONA 7/27/2012 11:12PM

    Cathy, I gave the Mr. your husband experiment trilogy posts to read... I wanted to see how he would see it... lots of chuckling and head nodding... and he wants you protein bar recipe, LOL! Could you pass it on to me, please?

{{{{{{{{{{ HUGS }}}}}}}}}

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DRB13_1 7/27/2012 10:31PM

    Knowledge is power, and you've really educated us on food choices.
Over time, habits improve with continued persistence. I had lunch with a girlfriend today and she asked "isn't there less of you?" I told her one of the things that is different is that I no longer buy bags of candy. Funny thing, I don't miss it, either. Progress, one choice at a time.
Hang in there.

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_RAMONA 7/27/2012 10:22PM


Oh, I SO feel your pain!!! This was me and my Mr. just two years ago... and now he's eating Paleo! Don't lose heart.

I, too, refused to be invited into being the food police... I stopped packing Mr.'s lunches forever ago... it's hard to bite one's tongue, though, and even harder to carry the burden of concern over a loved one's health.


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Calorie Inflation?

Thursday, July 26, 2012

I noticed something weird about how Spark calculates calories. Or maybe it's an error on my part.

1g carb = 4 calories
1g protein = 4 calories
1g fat = 9 calories

Tonight my macro count is:
68g carbs (total, not net) = 272
103g protein = 412
82g fat = 738

272 + 412 + 738 = 1,422

Except my Spark tracker is showing 1,527.

I'm showing this consistently across my spreadsheet.

Am I underestimating calories in my calculations? Or is Spark overestimating??

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

VHALKYRIE 7/27/2012 7:22PM

    FITGIRL15: Unfortunately as I mentioned in my post, I do have to follow them to some degree. Left to my own devices, I will eventually fail. =/

4A: I agree...as long as one sticks with consistency (either under or over), then it doesn't matter. I also wondered if the 9/4/4 kcal per gram are rounded estimates, but I can't find any information on the 'real' values, if there are any. The rounded numbers are easy to remember, so even if they aren't the 'real' values, I'd still stick with them. I'm am curious, though!

Comment edited on: 7/27/2012 7:37:00 PM

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FITGIRL15 7/27/2012 11:29AM

    Merp... I can't answer your question... and this is why the numbers aren't always the best indicator to follow!


Step away from the calculator, Hun! LOL

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WOUBBIE 7/27/2012 9:32AM

    Well, I would much rather it overestimate than under, I guess.

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 7/26/2012 11:38PM

    holy crap.

I use LoseIt! to track my food and it seems to be UNDERESTIMATING my calories...

The calories it reports for today is 2137.
If I add up my macros it comes to 2325.9 cal.

Yours is 6% off in one direction, mine is 8% off in the other!

I have a feeling that the 9/4/4 kcal per gram numbers themselves may be rounded, possibly compounded with general rounding error, as you outlined below in your comment.

The good news is that I've been consistently using the LoseIt! data to estimate my burn, so as long as I stick with that tracker I should be able to fine tune my intake. It doesn't matter what the "real" numbers are, as long as everything is calibrated to the same system.

Comment edited on: 7/26/2012 11:44:20 PM

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VHALKYRIE 7/26/2012 8:01PM

    If rounded up then it IS calorie inflation.

You're right. It is rounded. If you pull up the nutritional details for the eggs, it shows 10.0g fat and 12.4g protein.

10 x 9 = 90
12.4 x 4 = 49.6

90+49.6 = 139.6 ~ 140

Comment edited on: 7/26/2012 8:05:09 PM

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NEILITHICMAN 7/26/2012 7:58PM

    It could be an anomalie due to rounding. I saw that one food item on your list was was 10g fat and 12 g protein which would add up to 138 calories but it was listed at 140. It was probably like 10.3 grams fat which was rounded down to 10 when it was put in the tracker but the calories still go through at 92 since it's a whole number.

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VHALKYRIE 7/26/2012 7:38PM

    I'm using the macronutrient grams Spark reports. I just get a different number when I actually add the calorie calculation.

Comment edited on: 7/26/2012 8:15:33 PM

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LYNDALOVES2HIKE 7/26/2012 7:32PM

    It looks like your math is correct - I started to think maybe they were calculating 5 calories per gram of protein but that doesn't add up either.

Does the Spark tracker count the same number of grams of each macronutrient? That is, if you are entering items by the item itself, there might be a discrepancy between the number of grams you are using and the number of grams they are using - so if you thought XYZ had 16g of protein and the spark tracker thinks XYZ has 17g or 18g of protein, that could account for it.

In other words, the discrepancy could be accounted by SP thinking what you ate had 6g more of carb/protein plus 9g more of fat than you calculated - [or 15g carb/protein + 9g fat].

Either way, you might want to point out the discrepancy to the tech support people because there's apparently something hinky in their program - but it might not matter in the long run. A lot of people don't understand that many [all] of these 'counts' are nothing more than educated guesses based on sampling and individual servings may vary. If you are cooking your own food or eating raw foods, it doesn't take much variance to throw off a calorie calculation.

Comment edited on: 7/26/2012 7:33:44 PM

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_RAMONA 7/26/2012 7:27PM

    Okay... that's just weird. I just went back in my tracker and checked a couple of days, and they add up correctly. I wonder what that's all about?

Now, it's not like I consistently track, but how is person supposed to trust the tracker knowing it actually can be wrong?


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My n=1 Weight Loss Analysis, Part 2

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Continuing from www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo

As long time Sparkfriend 4A-HEALTHY-BMI can attest, the job isn't over after losing weight. You have to learn how to maintain it. She was recently on the Joy Bauer show to spotlight this very issue. If you haven't seen her segment on Today or read her very informative blogs yet, head on over!


Quick timeline before I get into the meat of the subject:

2000: Gained weight very rapidly from ~125lbs to 160lbs by overeating fast food, chain restaurants, soda pop, snickers bars and margarita mixes. Bodyfat ~44%, size 12 jeans.

2003: Obese, broke, jobless, and single, moved to Seattle. Stopped eating all fast food, snickers, and soda pop. Walked everywhere. Lost 15lbs without tracking a single calorie. Size 10 jeans.

2004: Got passport photo taken so I could go to Seoul, S Korea for my birthday. Completely mortified by my passport photo. I still looked obese. Weighed 145lbs.

2005: Decided it was time to get serious about weight loss. I bought cooking utensils, cookbooks, watched the Food Network, and joined eDiets to track my calories. Watched "Biggest Loser" season 2 for motivation. Exercise was difficult due to extra weight putting strain on my knees. Bought "Dance, Dance Revolution" for my PS2. When DDR became too easy, I bought a bike. Lost 10lbs. Weight 135lbs. Size 8 jeans. Bodyfat 35%.

2006: Rode bike 1 hour every day after work. Weight loss stalled. Couldn't budge from 135lbs, or if I did, it wasn't for long. My food choices, calories and activity level maintained my weight. 135lbs seemed to be my body's "set point" that it kept going back to.

2007: Switched from eDiets to SparkPeople.

2011: Still ~135lbs. Cut back wheat, grain and starches from my diet. "Set point" broken. Process discussed in previous blog. Weight 125lbs. Size 4/6 jeans.

From October 2011-June 2012 I went on an unwitting 'maintenance' experiment. Statistics show that 95% of dieters fail to maintain their weight loss and rebound within 3-5 years.

The following events came up that had a very high likelihood of reversing my progress:

Holidays: Stuffing is my favorite Thanksgiving food. How would this work with my new low bread diet? (Smaller portions.)
Visited UK and France: Went with future-DH to spend Christmas with his family. Went on a side trip to France. Ate pastries and coffee for breakfast every morning. (Didn't gain weight. Miraculous!)
College Course: Enrolled in a very difficult project based course. Little time for food planning, exercise, or even spending time with the SO.
Wedding in May: Because of my wedding planning, I didn't even have time to finish the last section of my project (I still got an A).

I stopped tracking food, calories and weight in October. I just had to hope that my weight would stay stable long enough for me to get into a wedding dress!

In previous years, I gained an average of 8lbs over the holidays.

In this graph from Oct 2010-Jan 2011, I went from ~131 to ~138.

From Aug 2011-May 2012 just before I went on honeymoon, I went from ~125 to ~130.

Ut oh. What happened? Maintenance fail?

According to my spreadsheet, I bodyfat was 26% in August. In May, it was 28%. There was a weight slide, but it wasn't happening as fast. It took 3 months on my high carb diet to regain 8lbs, and 7 months to gain 5lbs on lower carb.

Because I wasn't tracking my data, I don't really know what happened. I think I was eating the same, limiting breads, pasta, and potatoes as much as possible. That is just speculation and relying on memory, which is a terrible record keeper. If I didn't track, then I don't know.

I'm pretty sure I maintained my weight when we went to the UK/France. We went out for beers one night with a friend of SO. He later told me that his friend texted to him: "Mate, I thought you got a new girl. She's a lot hotter than I remember!"

Here I am at Windsor castle. I'm all bundled up, so it's hard to tell about my shape, but I don't think I gained any weight. My new clothes all still fit.

The weight creep was either very slow, or it happened from January to May.

I suspect it was the latter.

Once I started my class and wedding planning, more and more fast food entered the picture. Being a big fan of "FatHead", I tried to follow Tom Naughton's strategy. Just stick to the burgers and skip the fries.

Except over time, a few fries started entering the picture. I thought it would be ok to have occasionally.

I *seemed* to be maintaining so effortlessly. Probably getting over confident. If you think there are no consequences, you do stupid things.

I *think* I had fries occasionally, but who really knows? I wasn't tracking during that time. It probably was more frequent than my dietary amnesia wanted to admit.

Just like my husband not being sure whether he had 3 or 4 slices of pizza.

In October, I was almost ready to drop out of size 4 pants. In May, my size 6 pants fit better.

I still managed to get into my wedding dress in May. Like any bride, I wish I could have lost more weight before the event. But I was certainly a much happier bride at 28% bodyfat than I would have been at 35%.

When I resumed detailed tracking in June, I dreaded the rebound. I was afraid I gained weight over the honeymoon, and I'd have to do a lot of work.

To my surprise, I weighed 128lbs. I lost weight while on honeymoon, despite vacationing at an all-inclusive resort.

More calculations revealed 28% bodyfat and 92lbs lean mass. Even though I gained weight during my 'maintenance' break, I managed to retain my lean mass.

This is a huge deal. More lean mass means burning more calories at rest, making it easier to maintain and lose weight.

In Part 1, I explained that I gained lean mass when I changed my diet.

Lean Body Mass:
May 20,2011: 86lbs
July 7, 2011: 91lbs
July 2, 2012: 92lbs

My advice if you want to keep the weight off in maintenance? Keep tracking. I can do intuitive eating to a pretty decent degree short term as I've described in my blog "Understanding the Language of Fat"


But long term? If you start slipping, it's easier to make a course correction if you see it coming.

After losing weight and failing to maintain, many people reported that it's harder to take the weight off the second time. The body seems to stubbornly hang for dear life onto those pounds.

In Part 1, you saw how rapidly my weight dropped last year. How has restarting weight loss mode worked out for me?

I'll let you know next Wednesday after my 1 month progress report is up.

Hint: It is good news.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TRIANGLE-WOMAN 7/27/2012 8:24PM

    Another great blog! Thanks for sharing!

Tracking is key for me also! Food amnesia is really easy to fall into!

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DOWNEASTB 7/27/2012 1:52PM

    I gained weight when I lived in Sweden, but guess what I ate and drank nearly every day? Pizza and full sugar Coke! *facepalm*

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VHALKYRIE 7/27/2012 11:19AM

    Not yet, because I'm not at goal. ;)

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EATNBOOGERS 7/27/2012 10:06AM

    YES. I so agree. Are you on the at goal and maintaining team yet? I think you'd be a good addition!

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 7/27/2012 12:09AM

    Yup, for me, anyway, tracking is key. But then, I lurve me some data. I think I might be even more compulsive about gathering personal data than you are! LOL


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VHALKYRIE 7/26/2012 6:18PM

    Karen: I agree that it's hard to maintain weight in the US. =/ I think it's the sugar. They add it to everything.

Comment edited on: 7/26/2012 6:19:10 PM

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ARCHIMEDESII 7/26/2012 6:17PM


I LOVE that honeymoon photo of you ! It's absolutely fantastic.

Oddly enough, I'm one of the few people who DOES lose weight when they go on vacation. And believe me, I eat like a horse when I'm over seas. But, what I'm not doing ? Not snacking between meals. eating normal sized portions, not over sized ones. Not eating junk. at least, not toooo much junk. And I'm walking everywhere.

Basically, I really ought to be living in Europe. But, there are no jobs there either. sigh.

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JUSTBIRDY 7/26/2012 6:06PM


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VHALKYRIE 7/26/2012 6:02PM

    I know all passport photos are bad, but mine was BAD! Since I lost weight, I've actually had customs officers tell me that the photo doesn't look like me, and asked for additional identification!

Comment edited on: 7/26/2012 6:03:22 PM

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JUSTBIRDY 7/26/2012 6:01PM

    I inch up, too, unless I am careful. It seems like it happens in the summer. Right now, I am back on strict low carb to beat it back. It seems like if I take my carbs up to even 60 grams these days, I can't rely on hunger alone to judge where I am.

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JUSTBIRDY 7/26/2012 5:58PM

    sorry to break it to you, and I don't want to take away your defining motivational moment, but everyone is horrified by their passport photo, no matter what the weight. emoticon

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FITGIRL15 7/26/2012 4:14PM

    Losing large amounts of weight is easy... losing small numbers (5 pounds) is harder!

Basically, I think we are too hard on ourselves to achieve perfection... which is a very shifty target to aim for anyways!!!

Thanks for the recap!

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MCFERRET 7/26/2012 2:39PM

    I think we do need to stay focused. When I get to where I want to be, I seem to become a bit overconfident that my weightwon't fluctulate. I have been proven wrong. So here I am, with good company, mindful again of what I eat and how it affects how I feel. You are leading the way to "yes, we can!"

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EGALITAIRE 7/26/2012 2:10PM


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LYNDALOVES2HIKE 7/26/2012 1:01PM

    Love your wedding picture - gorgeous!! And I can't wait to read your 1 month progress report.

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DOWNEASTB 7/26/2012 12:21PM

    "Went on a side trip to France. Ate pastries and coffee for breakfast every morning. (Didn't gain weight. Miraculous!) "

"I lost weight while on honeymoon, despite vacationing at an all-inclusive resort."

Welcome to being metabolically stable. Had the same experience last year after dropping the wheat and sugars for five months. Instead of gaining the usual 10+ pounds on vacation, I gained two. And that was after the longest stay at an AI resort to date.

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MYOWNHERO 7/26/2012 11:49AM

    You are a beautiful bride! Love the floaty dress!

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WOUBBIE 7/26/2012 10:34AM

    So cool! Can't wait!

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MOVIEGRL1737 7/26/2012 9:39AM

    Wow, very informative. Thanks

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DH Can't Fish

Wednesday, July 25, 2012


Follow up to my blog: Teach a Man to Fish with Food Choices www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo

My friends, tonight's tale is about how a dieter failed.

On Sunday, my husband asked me to help him with his diet. I'd be his 'nutritionist' for the next month, telling him what to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Great! I get an opportunity to make food choices for DH! Something I'm sure many of us have wished for!

Yesterday, I picked all of his food choices, and guess what? He was full. No snack binges when he came home. He didn't even raid the pantry in the evening.

Seriously. No snacks before or after dinner.


Today he was on a training course where they provided lunch. When he came home, I asked him what he had for lunch.

Any guesses? What kind of lunches would a company provide?

emoticon emoticon emoticon

Bwahahaha! Yeah. No.

emoticon emoticon

Pizza. Yes. Of course pizza.

I asked him how many slices. He said 3, maybe 4.

Ok, so it's 4.

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

I entered it into his food tracker. My jaw hit the floor.

Calories: 1469
Fat: 62g
Carbs: 163 (!!!)
Protein: 63g

The exchange went like this:

Him: (coming home, raids the refrigerator for snacks)
Me: Hey!! I'm making dinner here.
Him: I'm hungry.
Me: So...what did you have for lunch?
Him: Ummm. You're not going to like this. Pizza.
Me: (grumbling)

(We eat dinner. I go to enter his calories in the food tracker.)

Him: So how bad is the damage?
Me: (grumbling) Let me check. How big was the pizza?
Him: It was a medium.
Me: (skeptical) Are you sure it was a medium?
Him: Yeah, it wasn't a large.
Me: How many slices did you have?
Him: Ummm. 3, but maybe 4. I can't remember if I went back for a 4th.
Me: So it was a large, and you had 4.
Him: No! No! It was a medium and I had 3, maybe 4! I'm sure of it!
Me: (puts in 4 slices of large pizza)
Him: How bad is it?
Me: I'm quitting!
Him: It can't be that bad.
Me: 1469 calories! You just ate more calories at lunch then I've had the entire day! I ate 1275 calories. FOR THE WHOLE DAY!
Him: (laughing)
Me: You were supposed to have 80g carbs for the day, and you've had 210g.
Him: (laughing) But you said I needed more protein! I went for the meat pizzas! (laughing hysterically)
Me: (literal facepalm. Seriously. I facepalmed.)
Me: (pointing at the data) This is why you're fat.
Him: Ok, ok. Maybe I should go exercise.
Me: Exercise won't make up for this! You can't exercise away a bad diet!
Him: Exercise will help!
Me: If it helped, then you wouldn't be fat!
Him: Ok, ok.
Me: I quit!
Him: Awwww! I just had a bad day!
Me: If you keep doing this, then I'm ending this experiment because I can't undo what you're doing.
Him: Ok, I get it. Can I have a snack? I'm hungry.
Me: !!!!!
Him: Maybe some nuts.
Me: You wouldn't be hungry if you didn't have 163g carbs in 15 minutes! You spiked your insulin through the roof. That's why dinner didn't make you full, and why you still want to eat.
Him: (goes to the pantry and raids the nuts.)
Me: Admit it. My food choices were better. When you came home yesterday, you didn't raid the pantry for snacks. After dinner, you didn't go looking for snacks.
Him: (silence)
Me: Well?
Him: (pouting)
Me: Right? You weren't hungry.
Him: Ok, I get it!
Me: I quit!
Him: (laughing) Awww it was a bad day! I'll do better tomorrow!

Yeah, I know this cycle all too well. Been there, done that.

So yesterday's 'fishing' lesson didn't get through. Bwhahaha! You probably all knew that already.

Maybe I'll try wax on/wax off next.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

VHALKYRIE 7/27/2012 8:34PM

    Oh... I'm about to kill him. Just about to blog about it now. ;)

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TRIANGLE-WOMAN 7/27/2012 8:29PM

    Good luck! Based on the transcript I just read...I would not touch this experiment with a ten food pole!

Also, part of me does not want my husband to diet because he would do something like cut out one beer a day and lose 10 lbs and then I'd have to kill him....

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CAROLJEAN64 7/26/2012 6:55PM

    Keep trying. He was in a training session... I'm sure there were no other choices... make sure he is drinking his water.

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KELPIE57 7/26/2012 12:25PM


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DOWNEASTB 7/26/2012 12:16PM

    My husband and I have had similar conversations. You are giving him all the right answers and support and it sounds like it's getting through slowly but surely.

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VHALKYRIE 7/26/2012 10:24AM

    It was a lighthearted exchange. There was lots of laughing. :) He was sent off this morning with a healthy lunch to get back on track!

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MYLADY4 7/26/2012 9:25AM

    Wow, hope he gets it soon. Keep trying.

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BILL60 7/26/2012 7:55AM

    We all fall off. Give him some time. I have all the faith in him.

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SALONKITTY 7/26/2012 6:12AM

    HAHAHA! Well, I think he'll get it eventually. Becoming aware of the insulin spikes and ensuing hunger is really important...good for you for pointing it out to him. He seems to want to learn this stuff, which is good!

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BUTEAFULL 7/26/2012 4:00AM

    he sounds like he still WANTS to continue that's better than with my DH

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EATNBOOGERS 7/26/2012 2:06AM

    He can get back on the wagon. (As long as he learns from it, right?) ;-)

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 7/26/2012 12:23AM


Come to Upstate NY and plan and cook all of MY meals!

I'd eat 'em and avoid the pizza!


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WOUBBIE 7/25/2012 11:13PM

    ROFL! Actually, I think this went pretty darn well! At least he didn't try to justify 12 beers!


(This is not me doing yoga, this is me laughing my bleep off!)

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MYOWNHERO 7/25/2012 11:11PM

    Oooops. I know just how he feels. Been there...um...recently!

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NEILITHICMAN 7/25/2012 10:20PM

    (sigh) that just reminds me how when I was a student my friend and I used to eat 3 large pizzas between us in one sitting. 4 slices? how about 12?

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_RAMONA 7/25/2012 9:47PM

    ROFL! THIS is why I refuse to engage with my husband in this context.

Our journey toward being together on this journey was an extremely looonng one. it took four years of watching me find my way and start achieving some success, talking about my own growing understanding of portions, balance... he slowly started adopting my habits in his own way (and he still struggles in public situations with both extremely limited and too many choices)... but it was very much a two steps forward, three steps back journey. What drives my husband right now, and keeps him solid is the 'not hungry' factor, and the fact that he respects what I'm trying to do for our daughter and he supports me by being the best example and support he can be.

Take heart... your example and success WILL win in the end!

{{{{{{{{{ HUGS }}}}}}}}}

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JUSTBIRDY 7/25/2012 9:20PM

    sounds like he is on the 20/80 plan

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JUSTBIRDY 7/25/2012 9:19PM

    ha ha! He doesn't have to fish. He caught a wife!!!!!

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