1

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Weight loss, triglycerides & cholesterol frustration

Answered on November 06, 2014
Created October 22, 2014 at 6:25 PM

Hi all,

As many others, I can`t seem lose weight. I have been doing Paleo for 2 years. I lost about 15lbs at the begining but didn`t continue to lose weight and gained it back while on a very non-paleo vacation.

I`m a 33 year old female, weight aprox 210lbs. I dance 2-3 times a week (1x ballet, 2x jazz dance). I did Crossfit for about a year but had to quit due to back issues. I just got the results of my blood work and my tryglicerides are at 340!!! They were at 270 for years, then down to to 240 and now back up. Total cholesterol 273, HDL 43, LDL 162. I sleep 7-9 hours every night.

I decided to track my calories based on comments I saw in other similar questions. Considering two "cheat" meals, I tracked my calories for 9 days. For those 9 days my calorie intake averages 1900 calories a day ( everything summed up and divided by 9). Carbs average about 150 gr per day (some days 70, some days 160), from fruit, veggies (occasional sweet potatoe). I have tried lower than that but after about 10 days I`m exhausted, can`t even drag myself out of bed. I get about 50% of my calories from healthy fats. The only occasional dairy I eat is organic full fat yogurt or some blender cheese (goat & cow mil combined). I eat freshly gound flaxseeds daily plus take chia seed oil capsules. I drink kefir 2-3 times a weeks and have about a tablespoon of sauerkraut daily (probiotics). I drink a lot of water.

The one thing I don`t do most days is eat breakfast because I`m simply not hungry for 2 or 3 hours after I wake up. I have tried to force myself to have breakfast but it really hasn`t changed whether I lose weight or not so I stopped.

When I cheat, I do cheat with crappy stuff, such as a cupcake or a cheeseburger, but I try to make sure they were made by human beings with fresh ingredients (real bakery, restaurant for burgers with grassfed beef, etc, no fast food)

I have no idea what else to do or try. I am incredibly frustrated, so any help will be much appreciated.

Thanks in advance!

01114547678b001f3e52cc3a9d343fd1

(-23)

on October 22, 2014
at 10:41 PM

If you don't want to do something as radical as treating thyroid with an alternative practitioner, vitamin E supplements (gamma tocopherol) also reduce cholesterol. Fixing the metabolism in a purely natural way, with diet, can take years.

01114547678b001f3e52cc3a9d343fd1

(-23)

on October 22, 2014
at 10:39 PM

Blood tests are not a good way to diagnose thyroid function. In the 1940s, when thyroid function was diagnoses by symptoms, high cholesterol was enough to diagnose you with hypothyroidism. Doctors in the 1940s were right, conventional doctors are wrong. For more information, learn about Broda Barnes.

59d7daeefde79811c4f66be1bfb60e5b

(35)

on October 22, 2014
at 10:36 PM

Every time I have done any bloodwork to determine if I have any thyroid issues, it comes back normal... even though I do have dry skin and very fine hair which I have been told could be other symptoms.... tests are always normal. Suggestions?

01114547678b001f3e52cc3a9d343fd1

(-23)

on October 22, 2014
at 10:14 PM

high cholesterol = low thyroid function

Low carb isn't required to have low cholesterol at all.

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7 Answers

0
Aa1daf4d6a9f3337473ec5b72edff7d4

on November 06, 2014
at 01:44 AM

Best advice I received in regards to diets, is to stay the course. There will also be obstacles and setbacks and best thing is to persevere and keep on trucking. Much of the advice frrom other forum members is spot on. Basically keep it simple, stay the course on the diet, exercise consistently, and have a strong support group. Good luck and look forward to hearing more about your journey.

0
E9bccb35b532e7eeb6abb54ed021726a

(0)

on October 28, 2014
at 08:56 AM

Hi Veronica,

I'm not very long on paleo. But from what i read, for example from Stefani Ruper, flaxseeds (and soya)are not adviced because they consist of phytoestrogens and as you have problems to loose wait, maybe you are estrogen dominant so no more estrogen needed.

She in general doesn't advice nuts and seeds on daily basics. And it make sense for me. It will probably not solve your problem but try it without seeds and see what happens.

0
79d3dfb3fa661532f373c508d4320c12

on October 26, 2014
at 08:15 PM

No matter what anyone may claim, you have to create an energy deficit to lose weight. "Counting" in versus out is isn't likely to work because it's practically impossible to gauge either accurately. But cutting back in general may help.

You shouldn't have to spend 2 hours a day doing any kind of activity. A half hour walk most days and 2-3 HIIT workouts with resistance training each week should be more than enough.

150 grams of carbs isn't too much if it doesn't cause you to eat more calories than you use. The magic of low-carb is in its ability to satiate and curb hunger. Replacing some of your carbs with fat or protein may help you reduce your overall calorie intake. You might also explore cyclical low carb or carb "back loading" if you're already doing vigorous activity. This way, you can eat more carbs just after your workout and be in ketosis again very quickly. The extra boost of carbs seems to be all it takes to manage address "low-carb" issues. 

Becoming low-carb adapted can take as much as 3 weeks... sometimes the transition is called the "paleo flu", and that can be the hardest part to get through. But try pushing through it anyway, the worse it is, the better the chance you'll benefit from low-carbing. 

Also, if you haven't had your thyroid checked, I'd recommend that. Hypothyroid is pretty common these days and fighting a slow thyroid can be a losing battle. 


Mike Eades has a blog entry on the steps you can take to reduce the discomfort. Apparently I haven't earned the right to post a link yet, but if you Google "Eades Tips & Tricks For Starting (or restarting) low carb", it should be the first hit. 

Good luck!

 

Medium avatar

(10601)

on October 27, 2014
at 02:52 PM

If you're not spending 20 hours a day doing manual activity you're not paleo. 2 hours a day is a weak imitation of what is fundamentally a shift in lifestyle. Diet is a part of it but not the only part.

Be157308a0438e382b88d9db4c12ab30

on October 27, 2014
at 03:12 PM

@thhq 20 hours a day? So you only sleep for 4 hours a day? That doesn't seem very healthy or Paleo. Seems more like insomnia.

Medium avatar

(10601)

on October 27, 2014
at 06:52 PM

Of course I'm exaggerating, but the paleo ideal is 100% manual IMO. The benefits are in lipid panel and blood pressure, as well as weight regulation.

0
Medium avatar

(10601)

on October 23, 2014
at 12:09 PM

I recommend dedicating 2 hours a day to an exercise you can sustain, such as walking or cycling. Every day. No cheat days. See what happens in 6 months.

Medium avatar

on October 27, 2014
at 10:24 AM

Wanna add one more thing exercise as well as proper diet is also necessary.

Medium avatar

(10601)

on October 27, 2014
at 02:56 PM

If you focus on activity you'll start to understand why carbs are useful. I'm not talking about processed foods either.

0
543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on October 23, 2014
at 03:43 AM

you may find some answers over at 'perfecthealthdiet'. Paul Jaminet has done some posts that may give you some ideas, here are links to a few of them;

2011/03/low-carb-paleo-and-ldl-is-soaring-help

2011/03/answer-day-what-causes-high-ldl-on-low-carb-paleo

2011/04/how-to-raise-hdl

2011/09/high-ldl-on-paleo-revisited-low-carb-the-thyroid

Medium avatar

(10601)

on October 23, 2014
at 01:45 PM

The downside of Jaminet is that he WAY overthinks things. But in the middle of endless speculations he fesses up to the benefits of getting off his lazy butt and doing something. Sitting and lying around for 23 hours a day is the major chronic modern disease.

0
01114547678b001f3e52cc3a9d343fd1

on October 22, 2014
at 10:13 PM

A low carb diet with exercise (dancing) seems a pretty bad idea.

0
Be157308a0438e382b88d9db4c12ab30

on October 22, 2014
at 08:58 PM

You eat way too many carbs. For a woman like you, 150g is way too much. Those triglycerides, low HDL and high LDL are a clear sign that you eat a very high carb diet. Counting calories is clearly not working for you because you are currently 210 lbs, either because you are undercounting your calories or you just need to eat a lot less than 1900.

So you have the following two options:

1. Keep counting calories, but reduce them drastically by at least 500 cals.

2. Go low-carb and reduce the amount of carbohydrates you eat to no more than 75g.

In your case #2 would likely be more successful since going low-carb would lower your triglycerides and raise your HDL. This would result not only in weight loss but in an overall better lipid profile. Cutting calories even more might cause you to lose some weight but your triglycerides and HDL would remain really bad like they are now. 

If you feel tired it's likely because of your weight, 210 lbs is a lot and being overweight can cause fatigue and exhaustion. I am a man and my energy requirements are a lot greater than yours and I do just fine under 20g, so I can assure you it's not a deficiency of carbs. Lose the weight first and you will have a lot more energy later.

Also, stop cheating, it's a big part of the problem.

Remember, this isn't easy, and there's no magic bullet. It takes discipline, sacrifice and a lot of willpower. It won't be fun, and if you do it right you will go hungry a few times or miss certain comfort foods, but there is no other way. You don't even need to exercise, you just have to watch what you eat. 

01114547678b001f3e52cc3a9d343fd1

(-23)

on October 22, 2014
at 10:26 PM

If you feel temptations to cheat, it's because the selection of foods is bad. I good diet allows you to have no tentations and keeps you healthy at the same time.

59d7daeefde79811c4f66be1bfb60e5b

(35)

on October 22, 2014
at 10:31 PM

Thank you for your comment. I`m only tired AFTER going very low carb for more than a week. I`m not tired because I`m overweight, I`m an extremely active person, getting me to stay still long enough to go to sleep for 7-8 hours a night is quite the accomplishment. I have an abundance of energy except if I try to go very low carb, hence the request for input.
Cheating will happen on occasion, there is alway a birthday party or some such situation, so I reserve "cheats" for those days. I`m trying to work the 80/20 or 90/10 thing here. No lookign to count calories in general, I did it for this period just to see where I was at.... any additional input will be much appreciated.

3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on October 24, 2014
at 09:44 PM

Everyone is tired after going low carb for a week.  It's part of the adaptation process and also your electrolytes may be low because of the loss of water weight.  The trick is to drink salty broth and potassium rich vegetables (avocados are great for this) to keep electrolytes balanced and push on through it. Gradually decreasing carbs helps, too--if you are doing 100 now (your triglycerides indicate that may be an underestimate), try going to 90, then 75 over a week or two. 

It takes a few weeks to feel all the way better but when you do, you feel 1000 times better than your normal.  As your carbs come down, your hunger and craving come down, too, so that you will be less likely to want to "cheat", and you may find your calories come down without effort as well. 

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