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Should I carb refeed?

Commented on March 14, 2014
Created March 13, 2014 at 4:32 PM

I've been paleo for 10 weeks and really rockin it. I've lost 24lbs in the first 8 weeks (only weighing every four weeks) but I have a significant amount of weight to lose still. I'm eating very few carbs and therefore have been in ketosis. I'm not eating dairy, fruits, or nuts. Just meats and non-startchy vegetables. I'm also not exercising due to some very slow recovering injuries. My question is, am I missing out on something by not carb refeeding? If so, how often should I do it? I've not plateaued yet and also a little worried old habits and cravings will come flooding back if I step out of ketosis.

86c97b2779feab3c330f5e1c5fea7e25

(2312)

on March 14, 2014
at 04:06 PM

Yes now I cut calories on fasting days. So my Tues-Thurs heavy lifting days I eat ~3000 calories...fasting days tend to be around 1000 or so. I think it's good to balance out calories and kind of keep my body guessing. Today is a fasting day so maybe I'll do some HIIT cardio, run, burpees...then I'll go with a carbless dinner and protein smoothie. Tomorrow is my YOLO day =)

De1095b2ba29c1035f00428cbfe3cc7c

(777)

on March 14, 2014
at 01:28 PM

Cheers, I got into fasting last year quite a bit, even did a week long fast. Good tips, I heard cinnamon helps with insulin sensitivity. Do you cut calories on your fasting days or just do IF?

86c97b2779feab3c330f5e1c5fea7e25

(2312)

on March 13, 2014
at 09:22 PM

One tip to improve insulin sensitivity is try fasting 1-3 times/week. I typically fast Mon/Fri, lift heavy (and eat heavy) Tues-Thurs then weekend can vary big time. If you steam sweet potatoes, let them cool then eat with cinnamon, fat (olive oil?) and acid (vinegar?)...it helps as well to not spike insulin. This also gives you some resistant starch in your diet!

De1095b2ba29c1035f00428cbfe3cc7c

(777)

on March 13, 2014
at 09:11 PM

That's true, in the past i ate way too much processed sugar & subsequently damaged my metabolism of carbohydrates, i find the only way of keeping symptoms at bay is eating under 50g net carbs, otherwise i'd likely be eating 100g of starchy carbs daily aswell, but mostly for muscle gain, not necessarily for health.

From a purely scientific standpoint i think that VLC is healthiest because of the hormonal hypothesis, mainly insulin levels. Whether it strongly applies to humans i'm not sure, but i am sure that i generally feel best when i keep my carbs very low

86c97b2779feab3c330f5e1c5fea7e25

(2312)

on March 13, 2014
at 08:14 PM

Yes I read the Keto for Athletes book and was very intrigued, however I enjoy a variety of food and love sweet potatoes too much.

Curious as to why you are "very convinced that going low carb is probably ideal for health"? Honestly, my 150g carbs/day is "very low" for most non-Paleo eaters.

De1095b2ba29c1035f00428cbfe3cc7c

(777)

on March 13, 2014
at 07:49 PM

Cool, i think eating carbs when lifting heavy weights can be fine as resistance training helps to lower insulin resistance. I'm very convinced that going low carb is probably ideal for health but im 30, still somewhat vain & want to put on a bit of muscle ;)

I know that carbs can definitely pump up muscles with glycogen, and give you energy to lift big & gain big, but i also find the claims that full on keto-adaptation can actually spare muscle mass intruiging

86c97b2779feab3c330f5e1c5fea7e25

(2312)

on March 13, 2014
at 05:51 PM

Yes for the most part I added carbs to gain muscle mass...I don't necessarily think it's NEEDED but it sure did help me. In combo with heavy lifting I have put on great muscle and minimal fat.

Also, ketosis became too much of a burden. I am about 90% Paleo during the week, but weekends can fall more to a 70/30 ratio. Typically non Paleo means non keto-friendly. Even if I could jump right back into it, I preferred not to even have that on my min.

I find I can get into a mild ketosis during my fasts now (usually around 20 hours going from dinner to dinner with some MCT oil in the morn)

De1095b2ba29c1035f00428cbfe3cc7c

(777)

on March 13, 2014
at 05:10 PM

Why did you reintroduce yourself? I'm starting to reintroduce myself due to wanting to gain weight in the right places & poor sleep quality, although I don't necessarily think VLC prevents the second as I could just not be fully adapted.

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1 Answers

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86c97b2779feab3c330f5e1c5fea7e25

(2312)

on March 13, 2014
at 04:56 PM

I don't think there is a need for a carb refeed at this time, especially if you are not exercising. Now, if you are having problems sleeping/pooping/focusing or anything else, you might want to consider some carbs. However, if you are feeling fine, losing weight and enjoying ketosis, I woudl say to keep it up for now.

When you can start working out, you can either stay in ketosis, do a carb refeed or just add some daily carbs in. Play around with it and see what works best for you. I did ketosis for a while and enjoyed it...now I have probably about 150g of carbs daily (mainly sweet potatoes + gluten free granola for breakfast after workout).

De1095b2ba29c1035f00428cbfe3cc7c

(777)

on March 13, 2014
at 05:10 PM

Why did you reintroduce yourself? I'm starting to reintroduce myself due to wanting to gain weight in the right places & poor sleep quality, although I don't necessarily think VLC prevents the second as I could just not be fully adapted.

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