10

votes

Is the Initial Phantom Fat Loss on LC Paleo Leading Us Astray?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created September 01, 2011 at 7:11 PM

I've seen the ratio of glycogen:water listed anywhere from 1:2.4 to 1:4. In any case, there is water weight lost when someone restricts carbohydrate intake. Additionally, I just experimented with raising my salt intake for a few days and my weight increased by 5 pounds. I am by no means very large, so the latter phenomenon would likely be more pronounced in a heavier person. By not eating packaged food or in restaurants, a person's salt intake would likely decline precipitously.

I've seen a lot of posts where people lost 10 or so pounds initially and then not much after that. I took measurements before and after the salt test and there was a difference there as well, so all indications would be that someone is shrinking as a result of the diet change, but little fat may be lost.

This isn't an argument against LC paleo or reduced salt intake, it's simply a reiteration of the need to make changes if something isn't working, even if it did before (or at least seemed to).

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 05, 2011
at 01:58 AM

Kinetic: Thank you. It's become a real passion of mine. I am in transition, having effecitvely retired from along nursing career and am looking at certification in wellness coaching, with a burgeoning plan to contact some local clinics and look at individualized work with overweight.obese folks. I already do this sort of on the side (and unpaid) when women seek me out at Curves where I contract to teach Zumba in the circuit a couple days a week. It's becoming something that really "lights me up." Thanks for the feedback!

65660697ed243c7980725fd014eb00e0

(494)

on September 05, 2011
at 01:39 AM

Mem- I love everything you wrote here! I think your ideas for lifestyle assessments and individualized plans is fantastic. We'd all be a lot better off if that was the norm.

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 03, 2011
at 09:21 PM

@Aaron and karlub: Gotcha. See my response to Travis. And thanks for your comments!

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 03, 2011
at 09:19 PM

(con't) crafted in real partnership with the patient(person) with an emphasis on their unique style and approach to the world (personality and temperament characteristics.) And then, the very important info that they need to know to be and remain motivated needs to be communicated clearly in *person-ese.* No "just do this." The plan must fit the person and the life! And it must be a good fit for life! (I quite obviously get all excited about this...but I deeply believe this sort of info informed individ. plan, is THE missing piece, into which all others must ultimately fit.)

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 03, 2011
at 09:04 PM

(con't) attention to the care that needs to be taken from the outset in exact *individualization* for each person, which needs to take into account individ health issues, stressors and their attendant behaviors and the very real brain chem changes that are wrought secondary to these, history of child or adult trauma of many kinds, individual temperament characteristis, body type, length of overweight history, # of previous IWL attempts/how much/at what ages, sleep history, and a very careful look at anxiety/depression and "high stim" types. There's more, but this is some. Plans need to be

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 03, 2011
at 08:58 PM

@LB: I always appreciate your posts for their honesty and inclusive/broad view. I, too, would love to have a discussion among bigtime maintainers who have maintained for a substnatial period of time. I am extremely interested in individualization, both in weight loss plans and in maintenance. i am a belieer that Guyenet's, Taubes, and Lustig's work are quite valid. They are facets of a kaleidescope of a complex, multilayers, multifactorial health issue. I believe the MOST important missing piece involves the mythology we are still dealing with in weight loss recommendations AND in our lack of

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 03, 2011
at 08:51 PM

(con't) is not uncommonly a "paleo blindspot." Average per day consumption of carbohydrates as of 2000= 490gms. This is 100 gms greater than 1970 levels, with the increase largely driven by use of grain products and sugar sweeteners. So, probably 5lbs of that 15 you cite is in reality water weight. Another 10 drops off lickety split related to the sudden marked decrease in carb.Now the person needs to find out at what level of carb intake they can get into ketosis, which is individualized. And in my book, they need to memorize Lustigs: "isocaloric does not =isometabolic."

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 03, 2011
at 08:41 PM

(con't) are left head scratching, suspended in what I would call the "gray zone." They are still eating fruits, nuts, starchy carbs, chocolate etc at an overall decreased carb level, but, at a level that keeps them out of the "sweet spot" (ketosis) for actual fat burning. IF they were very patient, which almost no one ever is, infact, they would, in most cases (dependent on age and other individual factors) lose at a slow to very slow rate. But to really begin losing significantly, yes, they have to get into ketosis range. For the majority of those who are really significantly overweight, this

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 03, 2011
at 08:35 PM

@Travis: And to be clear, my "water balloon" statements were tongue in cheek. BUT, you also need to understand that for those of us who started low carbing back in the 90's, we were regaled with this "you're killing yourselves and you will ONLY lose water weight." The phenomenon that you are describing is clear and known. Yes, lower levels of carb intake, even much above ketosis level, will promote diuresis. And we see, as per my answer, instances here all the time of folks who do NOT decrease carbs adequately for the level of weight they have to lose. So, yes, they get some diuresis, but then

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 03, 2011
at 07:55 PM

To be clear, I'm talking specifically about the posts here and elsewhere in the paleosphere where someone loses 10-15 pounds max and then nothing again. *Obviously* more than that is not just water.

03fa485bfd54734522755f47a5e6597e

(3944)

on September 03, 2011
at 03:36 PM

Yes, the "it's only water weight" dismissal is simply dumb, and probably reflects a mindset that most people who go on a diet to lose weight never lose more than a few pounds, so they simply don't know how to react to someone losing large amounts and keeping it off. Yes, when you first go low-carb, you'll lose several pounds of water that were being used to retain glycogen. On alt.support.diet.low-carb, we used to call that the "Whoosh." We knew it was water, and why it was a one-time thing, but it was also a nice psychological boost to see the scale drop several pounds whatever the reason.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 03, 2011
at 02:24 PM

Sure, karlub, low-carb has a diuretic effect, well documented most recently by Phinney and Volek. But what gets a lot of successful long-term low-carbers either angry or amused (depending on temperament, and sometimes both) is being told that 15, 25, and eve 75 and 100 pound losses are water weight. Surely you can see the silliness of such assertions.

F5a8a14fc6a4d33c2563d0dd3066698a

(714)

on September 03, 2011
at 01:11 PM

I agree with practically everything you wrote. But...Eating lower carb *does* cause you to retain less water. This is established, and it's what gave that crazed dietitian the confidence that she was on to something. But this is a good thing, especially for really heavy people. Those people frequently have that Syndrome X suite of problems: Insulin resistance, obesity, high blood pressure, etc. Well, while losing weight which would you rather do to lower your BP? Take pills that mess with your renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system? Or throw some water naturally and bring your BP down?

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on September 03, 2011
at 12:33 PM

love this post, mem. for me there's an argument to be made about strategies to returning to a more moderate- or even high paleo carb- diet after weight loss. but for the process of losing and repairing, the low carb is magical. i really want a discussion to be had- equal input between men and women- who have lost and maintained and what their maintenance diets are. the surprising thing to me on this board is that there seem to be more women low-carbers than men. i find that fascinating. anyways, great post.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on September 03, 2011
at 12:22 PM

Dylan, good answer. LC is a tool in the toolbox for certain people (I would say the bigger, obese folks). I, too, while already thin went LC then VLC in a misguided attempt to really lean out and I lost a good chunk of muscle definition, spirit, energy, etc.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on September 03, 2011
at 12:19 PM

I think your subject line is pretty accurate. For someone looking to ditch a large chunk of fat then yes LC will prolly help them along. But its the hatchet approach, rather than scalpel. For someone not obese, and just looking to lean it out some, maintain a lean fit life, etc I don't think LC is the way. So, although I believe it helps the seriously large folks with big chunks of unneeded weight, I don't think it's necessary for others. Tool in the toolbox for certain people.

Ce762ef3660ab44dbc72fdd7ff8fb168

(290)

on September 03, 2011
at 08:34 AM

Yep, you don't lose 40 or 50kgs by accident. I love it when some "expert" tells me Im doing it wrong.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 02, 2011
at 07:37 PM

Karlub, I actually agree with that general observation, but am always motivated to ask why the person is eating soooo much. After all these years, I no longer believe it's lack of self-control in most such people, or "psychological" or "emotional" eating. To me, that seems very much like the cart before the horse. If they're that hungry, there's still some metabolic issue that is unresolved -- the million dollar question, of course, is what is that issue?

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on September 02, 2011
at 03:21 PM

@rose and paleo2.0 the caveat i want to throw in here is that i think calorie restriction is something you throw in there once the hormonal issues are fixed. with women, unfortunately, it's more than just leptin/insulin. it's also possibly being estrogen dominant and/or having hypothyroid symptoms. lately, i have been trying to be really clear in pointing out that women have more confounding issues with weight loss than men.

7d64d3988de1b0e493aacf37843c5596

(2861)

on September 02, 2011
at 11:31 AM

Rose - I would add to my prior comment that it depends on whether it is a real stall or whether it is a perceived stall like the original question was talking about. If it is not a real stall, then eating less food is the answer.

F5a8a14fc6a4d33c2563d0dd3066698a

(714)

on September 02, 2011
at 11:29 AM

Rose: Calorie restriction isn't the answer, per se, but for many of us it is foolish to ignore them altogether. To take an extreme example: If someone eats a six egg omelet and half pound of bacon for breakfast, half a stick of pepperoni for lunch, then a 20 oz. porterhouse with a large side of buttered shredded cabbage for dinner, that person will be unlikely to have lost any weight that day.

7d64d3988de1b0e493aacf37843c5596

(2861)

on September 02, 2011
at 11:02 AM

Rose - I am not saying they are stalling because of LC, but in the Paleo/low carb world the #1 advice to break a stall is usually to go even lower LC. In my personal experience "change" seems to work best - I would ramp up my food consumption up to maintenance levels and "reset" by body out of diet-mode for a while.

B14dc4aa1ddefbec3bc09550428ee493

(3909)

on September 02, 2011
at 04:26 AM

The difference between who it works for and who it doesn't, IMO, is patience. You have to be willing to not give up when you stall. My own weight loss has been slow and I have gone through a couple of stalls before it started up again. If I had given up because of that I would consider it a failure, but, because I hung in there and let my body do it's thing to adjust, I consider it a success. I think people just give up because they want fast results and then blame paleo.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 02, 2011
at 03:25 AM

And I know folks will come back with "calorie restriction" as the answer instead of VLC/ZC. But most of us fatties and former fatties have *years* of failed calorie-restricted diets behind us. That's gonna be one tough sell.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 02, 2011
at 03:18 AM

Just an N=1 perspective: The people who are likeliest to plateau may not be stalling *because* they're LC, as the assumption seems to be here, but truly because they're not LC enough, even though Paleo2.0 thinks that's just a "mindset." Obese people are likely to be extremely hyperinsulinemic, and even 20g of carbs a day can be too much for some people. Ask me how I know, lol. That doesn't mean extreme LC will work in every single case -- there are bound to be outliers -- but as diabesity gets handed down thru the generations, I think we'll see lots more folks who need to go extreme LC.

66974b2cb291799dcd661b7dec99a9e2

(11121)

on September 02, 2011
at 12:37 AM

Pt 2: I should also mention I eat most of my meat almost raw, barely cooked in most cases, also use sea salt and only drink water, no coffee, tea, etc.

66974b2cb291799dcd661b7dec99a9e2

(11121)

on September 02, 2011
at 12:30 AM

@Travis, pastured beef, free range eggs, bone broth almost daily, eat raw liver 3x a week, some salmon & other seafood, good oils, sweet potatoes once in a while, some 90% dark chocolate on occasion, berries in cream as a treat when the mood strikes.

7d64d3988de1b0e493aacf37843c5596

(2861)

on September 02, 2011
at 12:09 AM

Luckybastard - It just never seems to be the people “heavy on the potatoes and rice” who are plateaued in the paleosphere. In the paleosphere it usually seems to be the people already at 50 carbs or less. The people coming to the forums to ask for help already tried dropping the potatoes and rice. I do agree that getting past plateaus are what losing weight is all about, but there seems to be too many at 30 or more pounds above their goal, eating 20g of carbs a day, and wondering why the magic isn’t working for them.

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 02, 2011
at 12:06 AM

@Rose: mem shakes head vigorously - YES! And as usually, well put.

0dbd7154d909b97fe774d1655754f195

(16131)

on September 01, 2011
at 11:17 PM

@LB - It's your dang b-day. Stop hacking and go out and PARTY!

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on September 01, 2011
at 10:57 PM

Travis, before I knew anything about paleo, I lost a ton of weight while eating high omega 6 oils. Also, I know of no one who has done low carb right not lose weight. They may be out there but from my observations they would be the exceptions. I think it is almost a no-brainer that the metabolically damaged try low carb first- not because it's the only way that works- but because it makes it easier for most than any other approach once u get past induction.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 01, 2011
at 10:56 PM

A thousand times yes. Just surveying the literature as much as one amateur can, and various fora filled with anecdotes, I agree that obese subjects are metabolically very different from non-obese subjects, and that being obese results in possibly permanent changes to the body. *And* that the longer one is obese, the more profound those changes are. Non-obese people get annoyed when fat people say, "you don't get it," but it's not a *cultural* or *personal* thing. The fat body is a very different internal, biological milieu.

F5a8a14fc6a4d33c2563d0dd3066698a

(714)

on September 01, 2011
at 10:53 PM

Picked up that factoid in Taubes' "Good Calories, Bad Calories." Here's a link that confirms the observation, but it does not provide the rationale re. fluid volume. For the time being you'll have to take my recollection of Taubes on that part ;-) http://www.webmd.com/diet/news/20100125/low-carb-diet-lowers-blood-pressure

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 01, 2011
at 10:09 PM

What does your version of LC-VLC consist of, generally speaking?

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 01, 2011
at 10:09 PM

It definitely works for thousands of people, but it also simply doesn't work for a lot of people. We need to find out what the difference is. Is it for example more effective for those who focus on MCT-rich fats like coconut instead of fat in general?

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 01, 2011
at 10:06 PM

It's healthier in a lot of ways, it just may not be the best route to fat loss.

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on September 01, 2011
at 08:56 PM

very interesting. you have any more information about that?

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on September 01, 2011
at 08:53 PM

i think there has to be a discussion on how to move people's setpoint when they hit a plateau. i think the calories don't matter dogma is too simplistic and may obscure the fact that low carb is a form of calorie restriction the way most people use it- replacing calorically dense foods with fat for satiation. IF'ing should be talked about. PSMF should be discussed. and yes, going a bit lower carb if you're heavy on the potatoes and rice.

7d64d3988de1b0e493aacf37843c5596

(2861)

on September 01, 2011
at 08:42 PM

The mindset seems pretty entrenched in places like this that if you stop losing weight, you have to go lower and lower carb. It’s the low-fat craze all over again.

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6 Answers

11
66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

on September 01, 2011
at 08:47 PM

from my experiences and thousands of others, the fat loss from going lc and vlc is very real. could the same loss for a very overweight or obese person be achieved by rote calorie counting or low fat? probably but i doubt it'd be as facile. the lc/vlc camp feel very strongly about their opinions because the effect of ketosis from lc eating is almost magical in that it takes your appetite away and restricts calories mindlessly in most people- at least for a period of time. i've experienced this and have observed others experience this. so it's calorie restriction but it's done in a way that i don't think can be replicated on a lowfat diet. it also is good for leptin/insulin sensitivity resetting initially- although i'm in the camp that believes that at some point you should start cycling starchy carbs and ramping up to maximize that sensitivity. just my $.02.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 01, 2011
at 10:09 PM

It definitely works for thousands of people, but it also simply doesn't work for a lot of people. We need to find out what the difference is. Is it for example more effective for those who focus on MCT-rich fats like coconut instead of fat in general?

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on September 01, 2011
at 10:57 PM

Travis, before I knew anything about paleo, I lost a ton of weight while eating high omega 6 oils. Also, I know of no one who has done low carb right not lose weight. They may be out there but from my observations they would be the exceptions. I think it is almost a no-brainer that the metabolically damaged try low carb first- not because it's the only way that works- but because it makes it easier for most than any other approach once u get past induction.

0dbd7154d909b97fe774d1655754f195

(16131)

on September 01, 2011
at 11:17 PM

@LB - It's your dang b-day. Stop hacking and go out and PARTY!

B14dc4aa1ddefbec3bc09550428ee493

(3909)

on September 02, 2011
at 04:26 AM

The difference between who it works for and who it doesn't, IMO, is patience. You have to be willing to not give up when you stall. My own weight loss has been slow and I have gone through a couple of stalls before it started up again. If I had given up because of that I would consider it a failure, but, because I hung in there and let my body do it's thing to adjust, I consider it a success. I think people just give up because they want fast results and then blame paleo.

8
Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 03, 2011
at 07:40 AM

What I see over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over on these boards is people "going paleo" with very significant amounts of weight to lose who are eating: fruits, nuts, high starch/carb veggies etc. These questions are asked in great abundance here.

So, yes, it is suggested to these folks who are not infrequently obese or morbidly obese, that they need to dump the fruits, nuts and high starch/carb veggies, as well as the chocolate and ice cream, and alcohol they have on the weekend...or more often...

The, ah, waterweight theory is a bit farfetched in my book. It reminds me of the crazed dietician who literally chased me around at work 13 years ago because she observed me eating a few times and figured out I was one of the "dread low carbers." This woman would tell me repeatedly, every single day, and I had to work with her every single day, that I was "only losing water weight." Well, my intial goal weight was 90lbs down, which I hit in about 2.5 years and have been maintaining since 02. I have in the last year year dropped another 8 lbs, so i am just about 100 WATER WEIGHT POUNDS down for nearly 10 years.

What in the #$%^[email protected]#!! do we think I was - a water balloon?

Also, please consider that timing and the whole picture is everything. Some of the suggestions given could be very useful suggestions well down the road of weight loss. They would NOT be useful suggestions to a person who has failed to cut out the obvious offenders in a low or lower carb paleo diet. There is a whole bag full of tricks (tools) that can be used, but when they are used and the readiness of the person to use them well is crucial. Believe me, as I have seen it so many times that I am saddened just thinking about it, people DO fall into proverbial mounds of potatoes for months at a time when they are not very firmly entrenched in lower car eating. They fall in and sometimes they stay in for a long time and many pounds regained.

We are not talking about body builders here. We, in this question, as it was asked and stated, are talking about at least very significantly overweight people or obese or morbidly obese people.

So yes, as first "tool" dump the high glycemic index stuff, dump the nuts, dump the starchy vegetable, throw all the chocolate and icecream and booze in the trashcan! Drink at least 8 glasses of cold water and salt your food well.

And do the supplement repletion that most obese folks, who are often the very worst nutritional nightmares, need more than anyone, and imho, need right away.

And if it is an anxious/depressed/insomniac/Type-A high stessed type, then at the very least, get walking every day to get that cortisol down and increase skeletal muscle insulin sensitivity, both of which will also affect ingestive behavior and decrease/stop the cortisol shunting to fat and if the walking is at a good enough click, will decrease triglycerides and start decreasing visceral belly fat.

Take it a step at a time. Talk to successful loser/maintainers and increase the tools, a tool at a time, in your tool-bag.

And reframe "plateau." IF you lose 30-40- 50lbs and are "stuck" there for a year, OK. It's an opportunity for you to practice maintenance and also to pick up some new tools and to get verrrrrrrry realistic about how much harder dropping that last 30 is going to be. You're out of kindergarten now and running with the big league losers and it will be a whole diferent ballgame.

And be assured that unless you are a waterballoon, that 60-70-80-90- 100lbs you take off IS NOT WATER WEIGHT.

Ce762ef3660ab44dbc72fdd7ff8fb168

(290)

on September 03, 2011
at 08:34 AM

Yep, you don't lose 40 or 50kgs by accident. I love it when some "expert" tells me Im doing it wrong.

03fa485bfd54734522755f47a5e6597e

(3944)

on September 03, 2011
at 03:36 PM

Yes, the "it's only water weight" dismissal is simply dumb, and probably reflects a mindset that most people who go on a diet to lose weight never lose more than a few pounds, so they simply don't know how to react to someone losing large amounts and keeping it off. Yes, when you first go low-carb, you'll lose several pounds of water that were being used to retain glycogen. On alt.support.diet.low-carb, we used to call that the "Whoosh." We knew it was water, and why it was a one-time thing, but it was also a nice psychological boost to see the scale drop several pounds whatever the reason.

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 03, 2011
at 08:41 PM

(con't) are left head scratching, suspended in what I would call the "gray zone." They are still eating fruits, nuts, starchy carbs, chocolate etc at an overall decreased carb level, but, at a level that keeps them out of the "sweet spot" (ketosis) for actual fat burning. IF they were very patient, which almost no one ever is, infact, they would, in most cases (dependent on age and other individual factors) lose at a slow to very slow rate. But to really begin losing significantly, yes, they have to get into ketosis range. For the majority of those who are really significantly overweight, this

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 03, 2011
at 02:24 PM

Sure, karlub, low-carb has a diuretic effect, well documented most recently by Phinney and Volek. But what gets a lot of successful long-term low-carbers either angry or amused (depending on temperament, and sometimes both) is being told that 15, 25, and eve 75 and 100 pound losses are water weight. Surely you can see the silliness of such assertions.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 03, 2011
at 07:55 PM

To be clear, I'm talking specifically about the posts here and elsewhere in the paleosphere where someone loses 10-15 pounds max and then nothing again. *Obviously* more than that is not just water.

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 03, 2011
at 08:35 PM

@Travis: And to be clear, my "water balloon" statements were tongue in cheek. BUT, you also need to understand that for those of us who started low carbing back in the 90's, we were regaled with this "you're killing yourselves and you will ONLY lose water weight." The phenomenon that you are describing is clear and known. Yes, lower levels of carb intake, even much above ketosis level, will promote diuresis. And we see, as per my answer, instances here all the time of folks who do NOT decrease carbs adequately for the level of weight they have to lose. So, yes, they get some diuresis, but then

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 03, 2011
at 08:58 PM

@LB: I always appreciate your posts for their honesty and inclusive/broad view. I, too, would love to have a discussion among bigtime maintainers who have maintained for a substnatial period of time. I am extremely interested in individualization, both in weight loss plans and in maintenance. i am a belieer that Guyenet's, Taubes, and Lustig's work are quite valid. They are facets of a kaleidescope of a complex, multilayers, multifactorial health issue. I believe the MOST important missing piece involves the mythology we are still dealing with in weight loss recommendations AND in our lack of

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 03, 2011
at 09:21 PM

@Aaron and karlub: Gotcha. See my response to Travis. And thanks for your comments!

F5a8a14fc6a4d33c2563d0dd3066698a

(714)

on September 03, 2011
at 01:11 PM

I agree with practically everything you wrote. But...Eating lower carb *does* cause you to retain less water. This is established, and it's what gave that crazed dietitian the confidence that she was on to something. But this is a good thing, especially for really heavy people. Those people frequently have that Syndrome X suite of problems: Insulin resistance, obesity, high blood pressure, etc. Well, while losing weight which would you rather do to lower your BP? Take pills that mess with your renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system? Or throw some water naturally and bring your BP down?

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 03, 2011
at 09:04 PM

(con't) attention to the care that needs to be taken from the outset in exact *individualization* for each person, which needs to take into account individ health issues, stressors and their attendant behaviors and the very real brain chem changes that are wrought secondary to these, history of child or adult trauma of many kinds, individual temperament characteristis, body type, length of overweight history, # of previous IWL attempts/how much/at what ages, sleep history, and a very careful look at anxiety/depression and "high stim" types. There's more, but this is some. Plans need to be

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on September 03, 2011
at 12:33 PM

love this post, mem. for me there's an argument to be made about strategies to returning to a more moderate- or even high paleo carb- diet after weight loss. but for the process of losing and repairing, the low carb is magical. i really want a discussion to be had- equal input between men and women- who have lost and maintained and what their maintenance diets are. the surprising thing to me on this board is that there seem to be more women low-carbers than men. i find that fascinating. anyways, great post.

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 03, 2011
at 08:51 PM

(con't) is not uncommonly a "paleo blindspot." Average per day consumption of carbohydrates as of 2000= 490gms. This is 100 gms greater than 1970 levels, with the increase largely driven by use of grain products and sugar sweeteners. So, probably 5lbs of that 15 you cite is in reality water weight. Another 10 drops off lickety split related to the sudden marked decrease in carb.Now the person needs to find out at what level of carb intake they can get into ketosis, which is individualized. And in my book, they need to memorize Lustigs: "isocaloric does not =isometabolic."

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 03, 2011
at 09:19 PM

(con't) crafted in real partnership with the patient(person) with an emphasis on their unique style and approach to the world (personality and temperament characteristics.) And then, the very important info that they need to know to be and remain motivated needs to be communicated clearly in *person-ese.* No "just do this." The plan must fit the person and the life! And it must be a good fit for life! (I quite obviously get all excited about this...but I deeply believe this sort of info informed individ. plan, is THE missing piece, into which all others must ultimately fit.)

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 05, 2011
at 01:58 AM

Kinetic: Thank you. It's become a real passion of mine. I am in transition, having effecitvely retired from along nursing career and am looking at certification in wellness coaching, with a burgeoning plan to contact some local clinics and look at individualized work with overweight.obese folks. I already do this sort of on the side (and unpaid) when women seek me out at Curves where I contract to teach Zumba in the circuit a couple days a week. It's becoming something that really "lights me up." Thanks for the feedback!

65660697ed243c7980725fd014eb00e0

(494)

on September 05, 2011
at 01:39 AM

Mem- I love everything you wrote here! I think your ideas for lifestyle assessments and individualized plans is fantastic. We'd all be a lot better off if that was the norm.

8
66974b2cb291799dcd661b7dec99a9e2

(11121)

on September 01, 2011
at 10:02 PM

Almost 50lbs down on my version of LC-VLC paleo and it has stayed off with no effort. I didn't lose 10lbs or so in a few days mine just came off slowly over a few months, even though I went paleo cold turkey. I was going for healthy my mind was not narrowed by the allure of weight loss, it was just a by product of living healthy.

66974b2cb291799dcd661b7dec99a9e2

(11121)

on September 02, 2011
at 12:30 AM

@Travis, pastured beef, free range eggs, bone broth almost daily, eat raw liver 3x a week, some salmon & other seafood, good oils, sweet potatoes once in a while, some 90% dark chocolate on occasion, berries in cream as a treat when the mood strikes.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 01, 2011
at 10:09 PM

What does your version of LC-VLC consist of, generally speaking?

66974b2cb291799dcd661b7dec99a9e2

(11121)

on September 02, 2011
at 12:37 AM

Pt 2: I should also mention I eat most of my meat almost raw, barely cooked in most cases, also use sea salt and only drink water, no coffee, tea, etc.

3
F5a8a14fc6a4d33c2563d0dd3066698a

(714)

on September 01, 2011
at 07:47 PM

It's also an argument in favor of lower-carb eating in that throwing off that water is good for your blood pressure.

This is a great thing to point out, though. People don't talk about it much.

66e6b190e62fb3bcf42d4c60801c7bf6

(12407)

on September 01, 2011
at 08:56 PM

very interesting. you have any more information about that?

F5a8a14fc6a4d33c2563d0dd3066698a

(714)

on September 01, 2011
at 10:53 PM

Picked up that factoid in Taubes' "Good Calories, Bad Calories." Here's a link that confirms the observation, but it does not provide the rationale re. fluid volume. For the time being you'll have to take my recollection of Taubes on that part ;-) http://www.webmd.com/diet/news/20100125/low-carb-diet-lowers-blood-pressure

2
22424c9eef944ade83d4e4ffda907056

(1402)

on September 01, 2011
at 10:35 PM

I think the discussions have to differentiate between obese and non-obese subjects. It's a lot easier to say LC or VLC is good for obese subjects because they're generally a lot more worried about weight loss than they are muscle retention or activity level.

I decided to cut sugar out of my diet and ended up going VLC. I lost 10 lbs in about 2 weeks. I've never gotten an accurate calculation of my BF% but I'd guess it was between 10 and 15, so at the start I didn't really have that much weight to lose and especially not that fast. My biceps lost close to an inch of diameter so glycogen definitely has a lot to do with that effect on the scale. VLC caused a lot of problems and wasn't very enjoyable (the food was fine and my appetite was fine but my mood and energy level went downhill). I think if I lost 10 lbs of fat I'd easily be in the single digits BF%, this 10 lbs weight loss barely looked any different and my waist is not noticably smaller.

Cbb1134f8e93067d1271c97bb2e15ef6

on September 02, 2011
at 12:06 AM

@Rose: mem shakes head vigorously - YES! And as usually, well put.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 01, 2011
at 10:56 PM

A thousand times yes. Just surveying the literature as much as one amateur can, and various fora filled with anecdotes, I agree that obese subjects are metabolically very different from non-obese subjects, and that being obese results in possibly permanent changes to the body. *And* that the longer one is obese, the more profound those changes are. Non-obese people get annoyed when fat people say, "you don't get it," but it's not a *cultural* or *personal* thing. The fat body is a very different internal, biological milieu.

667f6c030b0245d71d8ef50c72b097dc

(15976)

on September 03, 2011
at 12:22 PM

Dylan, good answer. LC is a tool in the toolbox for certain people (I would say the bigger, obese folks). I, too, while already thin went LC then VLC in a misguided attempt to really lean out and I lost a good chunk of muscle definition, spirit, energy, etc.

2
Af9537cfa50562b67979624e9007e12a

(1334)

on September 01, 2011
at 08:23 PM

I have been wondering this for a while actually. It seems to me that calories still count more than anything for weight loss.

But, I feel younger and perkier with none of the aches and pains or sickness most people my age seem to have, so dumping the grains and sugars and processed BS has been very worth it to me.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 01, 2011
at 10:06 PM

It's healthier in a lot of ways, it just may not be the best route to fat loss.

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