My New Experiment in Eating, Part 2
Saturday, May 31, 2014
This past week I have implemented the plan I thought up for how to eat Primal fashion 80% of the time, and I am really shocked at the results! In case you didn't see the blog last week, I'll quickly recap the plan. According to the book I am reading, "Primal Blueprint," the idea is to shoot to avoid all grains, dairy, legumes and sugar, at least 80% of the time. I decided to try it, and to calculate the 80% I thought 4 meals on, 1 meal off. Since I usually portion my calories over 3 meals and a snack, that is how I figured it. So, for example, Thursday this week was a strictly Primal eating day. Yesterday I could deviate for breakfast, so I had Grape Nuts with full fat Greek yogurt, almonds and blueberries. Today, lunch is my deviation meal, and I plan to have homemade zucchini lasagna (has cottage cheese and mozarella) and a Snickers bar my dad gave me a few days ago. Tomorrow, deviation meal will be supper, Monday it will be snack, and Tuesday will be 100% Primal.
So, what I've done is track to shoot for about 100 grams of protein daily, and 150 grams maximum of carbs. When almost all your carbs are coming from only fruits and veggies, that is not too hard to do. 100 grams of protein is a little harder, it means more meat and eggs than I would normally have. The rest of the calories come from fat, which feels weird and scary and like it wouldn't work. I can't tell you how odd and wrong it feels to be able to grab a handful of nuts to snack on, or dip my apple slices in almond butter (not peanut butter, since peanuts are legumes). Or have bacon sometimes, even! But so far, the results are very satisfactory!
I have felt terrific. If I'm hungry, I eat. I haven't had to feel starving at all. Sometimes I've even been unable to finish the amount I had tracked and planned to eat. My energy levels have stayed very level all day long--no crashes coming down off carb highs. I have had a very marked decrease in gassiness, which is a big plus in my opinion. I think it's the limiting of dairy, but perhaps grains played a part as well. I haven't ever felt bloated or painful, in spite of getting very full at times. I've had no headaches. And sorry if this is too much information, but I need to put it down for my own faulty memory's sake: I have hardly needed to use any toilet paper at all, which is the exact opposite of before.
The most surprising result of all, though, is that I keep dropping weight! In spite of eating so much food, it's just falling off! My maintenance weight is 135. I started trying the Primal experiment a couple weeks ago when I tipped the scale at 141.8, I think it was--perhaps it even got up to 142, I can't remember at the moment. Anyway, it was an upward trend that I didn't like, and eating Primally for a few days brought it right back down to target. But then I dropped even more, without trying at all. Today I'm at an all time low of 132.2!! Who knows, maybe my secret long-time dream of weighing 125 will actually come true! (Only if the rest comes off my thighs and calves, though--otherwise, I'll stay at 135-ish.)
I guess the last thing this 4-on-1-off plan has done for me is stop the bingeing. I know exactly when I can choose something special, and have days to think ahead of time as to what, exactly, I want that special thing (or things) to be. In the meantime, I don't have to go hungry, and truthfully, it almost feels like bingeing to grab a handful of almonds or cashews to curb my late afternoon hunger while I'm cooking dinner.
So, if anyone who may read this is feeling stuck, or needing to change things up a bit for variety, I highly recommend trying this experiment! It certainly is working for me.