I've been trying out the Paleo diet for 4 days now. I'd like to lose about 15 lbs (from 145 to 130) by any healthy means. I'm about 5'7".
Would it help at all to up my fat intake just a bit and to lower my carb intake just a bit (by getting rid of grains and tubers)? Or would not attempting the 65-15-20 fat-protein-carb ratio be somehow detrimental to my health?
I've realized I just do not like the taste of greasy and fatty foods that much and also that my stomach is not very good at digesting them. Even if my stomach adapted, I don't think my taste buds can adapt to support the 65% fatty calories I'd need on Paleo.
Today was the first day I ate rice, bread, and cheese in 4 days. I had major indigestion yesterday and was nauseous at the thought of having to consume more greasy foods. So I had about 6 pieces of kimbap (rice rolls like sushi, w/o raw meat) and 1 medium-sized slice of pizza throughout the day.
What I'm most worried about is that if I don't at least try to follow the suggested calorie ratio that I'll in fact end up GAINING weight because my fat intake has gone up but I still have relatively high carb intake due to veggies, fruit, and about 3/4 a cup of rice (that's how much I want to eat lol). (on this site, 1 cup of cooked sweet white rice has 37g of carbs, 35g if you subtract fiber)
Do you think the slightly raising fats and slightly reducing carbs will be worse than returning to my normal routine of pretty small amounts of lean meat with lots of carbs (from rice, cereal, and breads)?
Thank you so much!
asked byRin (8)
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on August 13, 2012
at 10:21 AM
4 days is of course to small an amount of time to have a paleo diet show any signs of weight loss. You might not lose 15lbs in a month either. Something like 1lbs/week is typical on a very strict, low carb paleo diet.
Also, eating any form of bread is not paleo at all.
Things to avoid: all grains (wheat, oats, barley, rye, brown rice). All legumes (all beans including soy, and including peanuts.) Processed bagged/boxed foods. All dairy at first, especially actual milk. All sources of sugar, and especially artificial sweeteners. All industrially produced oils.
Eat only good quality meats, fish, eggs, and vegetables.
We avoid grains and legumes because they contain anti-nutrients and because they cause damage to our gut lining, which in turn can cause a whole slew of auto-immune diseases.
Consuming grains from any source, bread and pizza included, will continue to cause damage to your gut lining and prevent it from healing. You'll need at least 30 days without any grain sources whatsoever to have it heal, and even after that you will need to stay away from it.
This is independent of the carb aspect of grains, and has to do with healing your intestines so that you can properly absorb nutrients, and also prevent the possibility of auto-immune diseases, which grains (and legumes can cause.) You're absolutely not doing a paleo diet if you ingest grains. Sorry.
Some people do fine with fermented dairy, but it's a good idea to take it out - at least in the beginning. They may stall your fat loss, and also you may have issues with dairy that you might not be aware of. It's best to reintroduce them after some time. (But you should at all costs avoid grains and legumes.)
On the fat loss side of the equation, carbs matter. Raising good fats and lowering carb sources (yes, even from fruits and veggies) will help you lose fat. Entering ketosis is a good idea, but may be very difficult if you're addicted to carbs.
The reason you want to avoid carbs is that carbs, especially sugar and processed foods, all get converted into glucose one they're digested. Yes, even the so called "healthy" grains, which are actually detrimental. Whether you eat a bowl of pasta, rice, cereal, or sugar, the overall effect on your blood sugar will be the same. When glucose, (blood sugar) gets too high, this causes insulin to rise.
Insulin is a signal to fat and muscle and liver tissue to absorb all the fat, glucose, and protein in your blood because glucose is too high and there's a danger of glucose causing damage to various tissues such as nerves, and eyes. However, when fat cells are full, they get insulin resistant and can't absorb any more, so after your pancreas has to make increasing amounts, and after a while we get insulin resistant, and then we start to get diabetes.
Insulin also stops us from burning fat. So we can get leaner by avoiding things that cause a rise in insulin.
So eat good quality meats, preferably from grassfed sources. If you can't get these, eat lean meats and lots of seafood, as well as whole eggs. Make sure that you do eat some fat along with it if you have no choice but to eat lean meats and also take plenty of good quality fish oil with it.
Good fats include: avocado, ghee (or butter if you do tolerate dairy), extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, palm oil (or better yet, red palm oil as it has special forms of vitamin E that you can't get elsewhere), and even bacon.
Bad fats include anything modern: soy, canola, corn, "vegetable", safflower, sunflower, margarine, crisco, fake butters, trans fats, etc. Because of the ways these are produced, they're full of transfats that are harmful to us, that is they're really rancid, oxidized oils that have been damaged, but they're bleached so we see them as pretty looking clear oils and they're deodorized so they don't smell rancid. They're absolutely health destroying, so avoid them.
You want your omega 3 to omega 6 ratio to be as close to 1:1 as possible, so make a lot of your meals fish or seafood (or again, use a good quality fish oil supplement.)
Another thing to keep in mind is that if you eat too much protein, your body will convert the excess protein into glucose, and will prevent fat loss. So eat based on your ideal lean weight - that is 0.8-1gram of protein for every lbs of ideal lean weight every day. (Higher if you're trying to gain muscle, 1.5g if you're not trying to lose fat.) Note that this isn't 1gram of meat, it's 1 gram of protein. Most meat is 25%-33% protein, so multiply this by 3 or 4. So for 130lbs you'd want 130 x 1 x 4 = 520grams of meat/day or about 18oz (1.14lbs).
Too much protein will also cause an insulin response (but it will cause another hormone cause glucagon to be released which lowers insulin.) So if you do eat too much protein, you will gain weight. Also, avoid protein shakes as whey does cause a large insulin response.
Keep carbs to under 150g/day, fix protein at what your ideal weight is, and the rest of the calories you need should come from fat. So you'd be eating very little carbs, medium protein, and high fat until you're satisfied. You can do something like bulletproof coffee (or just use coconut oil).
You should eat some carbs, if you go zero carb for too long, you'll spike cortisol production as your body uses this to signal gluconeogenesis - that is it will catabolize protein in muscles (including your heart tissue!) to make glucose to keep your red blood cells alive. This will raise your stress levels and prevent fat loss. So the trick is to eat some carbs that don't spike your blood sugar, avoiding an insulin spike.
After you're at the fat level you want, you can eat fruits and starchy veggies. You can have a small handful of berries while you're trying to lose weight, but limit these to after an hour or two of exercising.
Speaking of exercise, don't do cardio. If you must run, do short intense bursts of running (i.e. sprints), don't do slow, long runs at the same rate. Favor lifting weights instead.
on August 13, 2012
at 10:19 AM
Low carb diets are effective because they change your body's source of fuel. Right now you are being fueled by carbs, so you'll crave them and be tired and lethargic without them. When you reduce your carbs enough, your body will become fat adapted and rely on dietary fat for the energy you need. This is the way our bodies are evolved to operate, which is why we store fat instead of carbs on our bodies as a backup energy source. Once you become fat adapted, your body will feel comfortable burning your excess fat as fuel, instead of saving it. In order to become fat adapted, you have to put yourself in a position where your body has no choice but to find an alternate fuel source. You do this by limiting carbs enough to put your body into an energy imbalance (which is why you'll feel tired and lethargic when you first start eating this way) Once that happens, your body will need fats for energy in the same way that you need carbs now. I recommend reducing your carbs as much as possible right off the bat. Give it a few weeks, and let your body adapt to the new energy source. Once it does, you'll find yourself craving carbs less, and fats more. You'll NEED fat in order to keep your body going. I think you'll find that your weight loss will be directly related to how low your carbs are. If you reduce them a little bit, you'll lose a little bit of fat. If you reduce them dramatically, your body will become fat adapted and you will lose a lot of fat.
Best of luck!
on October 09, 2012
at 10:07 AM
Who knows? Very loosely paleo sounds like "not paleo" to me. Lots of Americans (and Europeans) successfully gain lots of weight on a "not paleo" diet, so eating bread, rice and pizza will probably work wonders at increasing your belly size too.
on August 13, 2012
at 11:49 PM
Are you of the mindset that if you eat fat alone you will be okay, but adding in carbohydrates somehow traps the fat and makes you fat? I used to think that way and it isn't true.
I would highly (HIGHLY) recommend educating yourself on paleo before you start. Gather all the info you can and if you are still interested, then do a whole 30. Don't tweak things or cheat until you have a good handle on how you feel after 30 days.
Once you have a good handle on eating Paleo, then you can start to work on the weight loss. I wouldn't worry about ratios at all. Go to myfitnesspal.com or something similar and track your food. Only look at calories, don't worry about fat (you'll be way over) or carbs (you'll be way low). You will most likely start to see the weight drop. I just wouldn't do it without getting a handle on the basics. Paleo isn't really a weight loss plan and if you want to eat grains and cheese, you might as well do weight watchers or something (not to say that's bad, necessarily, just different and if your goal is simply weight loss and not health, you'll probably lose with a plan like that).
Good luck to you!
on August 13, 2012
at 01:13 PM
How about trying some digestive enzymes for a few days when you consume meat to see if that helps kick start your digestion? Regarding your aversion to "greasy" food: I also thought I would have trouble on this diet because fatty food always made me feel very sick - I was probably the only kid in the world who hated fish sticks, fried chicken, etc. Turns out that it was just the vegetable oil that made me feel so ill. Healthy fats never make me feel this way.
Give the full paleo diet a try for about 30 days!
on October 09, 2012
at 09:04 AM
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