Saturday, September 10, 2011
I had my follow up appointment with my nutritionist. It's the session where she tells you what your body comp is and how much you should be eating, etc.... There have been some adjustments to our sessions because most people who go see her have not already been losing weight successfully on their own. They don't have as much knowledge about micro and macronutrients as I seem to have. I've often thought I should have been a dietician in another life as much as I have read over the years. I also have a pretty good grasp of research about insulin resistance, hormone balance and prevention of diabetes. This weight problem has been a long journey for me over the past 19 years - the first time I "went on a diet." I say all of this because sometimes she would look at me and say - you are doing everything right. I'll explain further.
How much should I be eating?
Given my exercise level and weight loss goals I am eating within a good calorie range. Frankly, she is not a huge supporter of counting calories as a general healthy approach, but the science of calories in and calories out is undeniable. She subscribes to the train your body to know what is good for it and then listen to your body approach. She also kind of laughs about it because she knows how difficult it is to trust your body after it seems to have let you down. So, she has given me portion recommendations and supported my continued efforts with calorie counting if it helps me with portion control. The way she would like me to eat on a day to day basis would make it nearly impossible to overeat calories, but I don't trust myself yet...and maybe I never will. Baby steps.
How should I control my eating?
The reason she believes people can be successful not counting calories is because her main goal is to help you solve emotional overeating. Most people who come to her feel they have no power to lose weight. She tries to help teach you coping strategies for overeating (she is a recovering overeater as well) and strongly believes that if you can figure out why you are eating so much you can have a healthy relationship with food. You have the power, but it’s so often not about food. You are feeling powerless or empty.
This discussion came with a book recommendation. Women, Food and God by Geneen Roth. I read some reviews and frankly I was unimpressed. She said it really woke her up to her eating habits. She said, you can overeat hummus and carrot sticks just like you can overeat cake. It’s not about what you’re eating it’s about why. She did mention that some of the things the woman said in the book were so ridiculous you just had to laugh at her. So I went in search of a book on overeating that I could read without wondering why I am reading it. I found a book called Shrink Yourself: Break Free from Emotional Eating Forever by Roger Gould MD. So far I am really enjoying it. I’ll update when I’m done.
We talked about being mindful when eating. I had already incorporated some of these strategies in getting myself to slow down and taste my food. Don’t eat in front of the t.v. or on the run. One cool thing she recommended is to try eating food you’ve eaten over and over like you’re eating it for the first time, like you are a food critic. Feel it, taste it, smell it and really enjoy each bite. I’ve tried it and it’s kind of cool!
What should I be eating?
I’ve been eating pretty on point with what she recommends to her clients - a whole foods approach. She has this really long questionnaire that she uses to determine your food type. She has you swish a liquid in your mouth and checks your tongue. In the end she tells you if you are a protein type, protein/carb or just a carb type and then she makes recommendations on what you should eliminate from your menu. Before you begin your new way of eating she has you do a 10 day detox which consists of refreshing your liver and ridding your body of inflammation and cravings associated with food sensitivities or allergies. I also have to keep a food journal during this time for her to review. She says many people crave foods that they are sensitive to and it takes your body 10 days to stop craving sugar. Many people feel like crap on the detox, but since I’ve been eating very close to her guidelines already I may not feel much different. The detox eliminates fried and processed foods, caffeine, sugar, grains, dairy and soy and is accompanied by lots of water, cranberry juice and lemon. After the detox we will add foods back in slowly to see how my body responds. Because of my hormone issues she has recommended I stay away from soy unless it is fermented. No dairy either since I know I am lactose intolerant. The regular eating plan includes “free meals” much like the 80/20 philosophy.
She has no complaints here, but does recommend that I not increase my exercise in length. If anything I could increase intensity when I am ready to step it up.
Body Composition Analysis
At the time that I saw her I weighed 262.4 lbs. This was the breakdown.
115.2 lbs fat = 43.9% body fat
147.2 lbs fat-free mass
49.1 liters total body water
23.9 liters intracellular water
25.2 liters extracellular water
Approximate Daily Expenditure: 3125
Body fat is comprised of essential body fat and storage. Essential includes your brain and any fat surrounding your organs. She said that I could lose 65 lbs of solid fat and be in a great place and even half of that would be wonderful. She says I have a lot of muscle tone right now because my body is used to carrying around so much extra weight. Normally she recommends doing as much as you can to retain muscle mass, but that she would not be surprised if I lost some just because my body did not need it anymore. Technically I should have more intracellular than extracellular water. She doesn’t know if it’s an electrolyte imbalance, hormones or inflammation, but I seem to be carrying around an extra 15 lbs of water weight. The max recommended extracellular water is 19.1 liters for my body size and I have 25.2 liters. So my detox is also focusing on electrolyte balance with coconut water after cardio and a little pink Himalayan sea salt in my water.
I go back the day after the end of my detox for another body comp analysis and to go over the rest of my nutrition. There was a supplement evaluation as well, but nothing worth mentioning. Neat stuff!
When I came home I told my husband how much I weigh for the first time in 9 years. I think my emotional health, motivation, determination, body acceptance and pride are on a new level!