I recently decided to go Paleo and lasted about 3 weeks until I went on holiday to France and really did not hold back (sandwiches, cheese, ice cream - the whole bit, even despite my allergies to gluten, soy, and dairy). I just got back on the Paleo wagon today and I really want to lose some weight. I am 5'1 and 140 pounds, and have been trying to lose 15-20 pounds for years and have been unable to. I eat healthy, and have been gluten and dairy free for over 5 months, yet I struggle with portion control. I decided to try low-carb paleo this time round but I am unsure of what exactly low-carb is (what foods to eat, what to avoid, what to indulge in, etc), and how low-carb I should go. I am also wondering what the best kind of exercise is for weight-loss, I have never lifted weights and don't know where to begin. Any pointers on how to accelerate weight-loss is much appreciated. I understand that this lifestyle takes a while to adopt to, and I am willing to be patient, I just need the motivation and some ideas on where to get started!
Thanks for your answers!
asked byplunk (40)
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on July 15, 2013
at 02:19 PM
For starters focus on eating real foods, with the bulk coming from unprocessed meats and vegetables. Avoid anything can can be made into a flour if you are looking for weight loss (ex. rice, potato, anything starchy). Avoid grains and any type of grain, vegetable oils. Eat animal fats and fruit fats (ex. coconut oil, palm, olive, etc). As for portion control, eat until full, but make about half your plate meat and half vegetables (spinach, squash, leafy greens, broccoli, etc). By doing that, about 75% of your calories should come from meat and 25% from veggies. Do not snack. If you eat until full, you will have no problem going until your next meal. As for exercise, do short bursts of high intensity exercises. If you can do some sprints followed by rests, even better.
on July 15, 2013
at 02:44 PM
What I wish I'd known back then..
Weight loss is all about diet. Some people lose weight slower if they do cardio.
If you don't lift weights about 30% of the weight you lose will be muscle.
You can't get a straight answer to "how much protein should I eat", so try about 1 gram per pound lean body mass. Insane amounts of fat in your diet are purely optional. High protein, medium fat, low carb works fine.
Low carb is great but I need a few carbs while lifting. Some people say it works for them, but for me zero carb lifting is ugly.
Some people treat their weight lifting theories like religion. Squatters and crossfitters are particularly prone to full blown kool aid cultism, so keep that in mind when reading their replies about what sort of lifting you should do.
If you do choose to do squats go watch some Mark Rippetoe videos on youtube. He's high priest of the cult of squatting, but I admire his form nazism. Most people squat with poor form and will eventually injure themselves.
on July 15, 2013
at 07:30 PM
15-20 pounds for years: Been there, done that. The truth is, every BODY is different; it will take some time for you to figure out what foods really work for you, however, it is best to have a diet that is 50% produce, and 25% each of protein and starch; no caffeine or snack food at night.
best kind of exercise is for weight-loss: Again, it depends on you. Keep this in mind...muscle weighs more than fat. So, if you start lifting weights to lose weight, you will probably gain some weight initially. Unless you have all-day to be in a gym, or on the track, it is best to find a means to boost your metabolism. Most count calories as they workout. However, it is how well your body burns calories AFTER your workout that is most effective. The best recommendation here would be 30+ mins of continuous activity daily.
The other consideration would be taking supplements. I just read a review about such a supplement called Plexus. It was initially designed specifically for Type 2 diabetics. Anyhow, the reviewer, a running coach, really seems positive about it...see the link below.
on July 15, 2013
at 05:24 PM
I forgot to adress your physical activity. I do Insanity 6 days a week. I know that is "Insane" and probably not suited for most people. However some kind of interval training will work. There has been more and more studies showing that moments of intense exersize with alternating moments of rest do more for your heart and muscle tissue than long sustained exersize. You can choose cardio or weights or alternate between the two. The reason I do Insanity is beacause it addresses both cardio and stregnth training without the use of weights and I dont have to leave my house to do it. But the most important thing is to raise your hear rate. That may mean just a walk around the block right now or a full on 30 minute interval cycle; whichever works for you just make sure you do it.
on July 15, 2013
at 05:08 PM
I dont want to be a hater but you said you were Gluten and Dairy free for over 5 months and yet you just got back from France where you ate everything you wanted. The trick to staying Plaeo and losing weight is to change your eating lifestyle forever. Most importantly in the begining when you are overweight and you are trying to alter your bodies ability to process the foods you eat. If you eat any sort of grain your insulin will spike and your body will trigger itself into storing fat... again! Once you have changed your body and your eating lifestyle then you could cheat if you want, I submit though, you will not want to cheat by then. Your body will no longer crave those foods. What so many people do not realize is that food can be compared to a drug in that it is highly addictive, especially the foods that alter your bodies chemical makeup, like grains. When your body gets that insulin high it wants it again and again. Thats why so many people eat with their emotions, like when they are sad, or stressed and even when they are happy. Or on vacation ;) I view Paleo more as a lifestyle than a diet, I do not count calories or even worry about what I eat as long as I eat Paleo. Animal fats keep me full, I use everything Coconut (flour, water, milk, flake, oil, sugar, etc.) and vegetables and fruits give me all the carbs and fiber I need. One of the best things to do is to prepare your food ahead of time like on a Sunday and make food for the week. When you plan ahead you know what you are going to eat that week and it helps keep you from making last minute decisions which is where most people end up cheating by choosing something that is quick and easy as opposed to something that is good for you. And most importantly, remember that you are the only person you are lying to when you when you curb a late night or mid-day craving with something that you shouldn't eat. Just because you can rationally explain it to yourself and nobody is around to tell you otherwise does not mean that your body is not going to know.
on July 15, 2013
at 03:03 PM
We don't count a thing, usually, and have been eating a very strict Paleo diet since September, 2012. (I think not having to count calories or carbs is part of the beauty of it.) I am down about 55-60 pounds and my husband has lost around 30. It has seemed pretty simple for us since we had eaten a grain based, meat free diet for about 14 years prior to trying Paleo. I guess we were used to being restrictive, and this just opened up a whole new variety of foods to us. (Not that I didn't whine about eating meat again, but I did get over it.) I speak to people every day who just don't want to give up grains, dairy, legumes and refined sugars. It is tough when we cling to comfort of foods we grew up with and grew to love. We also have 'food pyramids' and diet advice that contradicts much of what the Paleo approach says. I really think if you try eating strictly Paleo for a month, you will be so surprised at the results! Here are a few tips from our first month: We had a glass of wine every night with a piece of the darkest chocolate we could stand, I think it was 80% cacao. We didn't give up coffee! Buy the prettiest vegetables you can find like carrots, red bell peppers, yellow squash, zucchini, and onions. Lots of onions, lol. Chop and roast them at 425 degrees (usually for an hour until they are a soft and a little crispy, turning once), using coconut oil. You will be amazed at how sweet and satisfying they are. Make extra and stir them into your eggs at breakfast. Try to eat 4-6 ounces of protein at every meal. Salads are great for lunch; use olive oil and lemon juice for the dressing. Eat bacon! ( I know seriously, bacon!) Remember that rice and white potatoes are not Paleo foods. We also tried to eat at home for the first month to better be able to monitor what was going into our mouths. We do tend to limit fruit and I just don't really eat a lot of nuts except on salads. I am not much for eating between meals, but I read that many people eat these if they are hungry for snack. I have also read that when people are not having success, it's usually because they over indulge on these quick and easy foods. Of course, it's a good idea to clean out your fridge and cupboards of sugar, flour, cereals, rice, etc. right away if you can. Just do it...don't wait until you use it up. Donating it to a charity seems like a good idea, but it isn't good for them either. We did give ours to a neighbor who thought we were crazy for getting rid of 'all that good food' in our pantry. Try and read up as much as you can on the science-y stuff like neuroregulation of appetite. It is really interesting to learn how eating whole foods impact cravings. I understand that it takes a while for your gut to get used to this and that some folks have pretty severe withdrawal. We did not and I am very grateful. Getting back to lowering carb intake, we do try to figure it out every now and then. We've found that we stay way under 100...it isn't hard if you choose the right foods. Make sure to read labels on the packaged stuff that you do buy. We didn't realize that our favorite dark chocolate contains soy and has way too many carbs to make it sweet. There is stuff everywhere that can sabotage your results. We've also found that we no longer have much of a sweet tooth. Well I guess it's obvious that we have embraced this lifestyle. I have to say that for me, the weight loss has been secondary to the fact the I no longer suffer from near debilitating back pain. I actually work out at a CrossFit box 4-5 times per week and lift some pretty heavy weight. I love it! You may want to look into joining and try that for a month as well. It isn't easy, for sure, but it is amazing how successful you can feel after having your hiney kicked! BTW I am about 5' 5.5" tall, have gone from about 190 to 135 pounds and I'm 54 years old. Good luck to you and hope this helps a bit!