2011 New Year’s Resolutions: Lose Weight!

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Along the same lines as the last blog post – a long-winded and passionate article on getting beyond the pathological fixation on weight, diet, and body image issues affecting modern humans to an unacceptable degree, here is an audio program encouraging you to not TRY to lose weight as a New Year’s Resolution.

The focus of any New Year’s Resolution should be making a resolution to spend more time doing what you find to be the most fulfilling, satisfying, and enjoyable things in life – establishing a healthy relationship with food and exercise in a way that supports those endeavors instead of functioning as a major distraction, and just letting go and letting the pounds fall where they may.  Enjoy, and feel free to pass it along to anyone you know whose life and aspirations are being undermined by their inner body image, weight loss, and dietary battles.


  1. Thanks for the thought-provoking video Matt, I'm sending it to all the diet-fixated people I know, to wake them up to the incredible wisdom of their bodies which we can all tap into if we stop fighting ourselves and cultivate what should come naturally – a healthy relationship with food. Eating just shouldn't be that big of a deal in the grand scheme of life. I look forward to seeing you take the intuitive eating topic further in the coming year. :)

  2. Mr. Stone,
    I have to tell you that with not much effort it seems my body is stabilizing and the gut is slimming down. I am eating lots of good fats and just not focusing on anything but living a satisfying life.
    Gotta love that,
    deb xoxo

  3. Great one Matty boy. I'm gonna be sending this one out to some folks too.

    I have a small success story to share that happened today actually. I took off work today (from the job I've worked @ 10 years and that I hate more than Nikoley hates you) to run a lot of errands. I dropped my vehicle off to get it worked on and had a chance to relax and see the 11:05 showing of The Fighter. I got combo #3 (large Mr. Pib, large popcorn, and a box of goobers) and sat down and hate almost every bite and enjoyed every minute of it and the movie. I continued on with my my day not being in too much of a hurry and felt like I was on crack (with Dickie Ecklund) just not having to be at work. In the midst of all this I had the best BM (dump) I have had since the end stages of RRARF (yea, after eating combo #3).

    You're on to something with this mind over matter stuff. Keep at it.

  4. Okay. This is good. I am so grateful to not be caught up in the weight-loss cycle of so many Americans. And, like Matt said he can do in the video, I can also eat 2 pints of ice cream (or more!) and not gain weight. And my body automatically craves good quality foods most of the time anyway (especially now after the onslaught of that which is Christmas). It was nice how Matt explained it all… how our emotions work with it, how our bodies naturally know what to do, etc. Makes sense. Makes lots of sense, and I never really thought about it like that before, so thank you for that, Matt.

    My kids can also eat a lot of food, just like me. Which makes me wonder how we aren't all going to end up in the poor-house someday… a family of five eating voracious amounts of good-quality foods.

    Awhile back (two years ago), I made a video showcasing how much my then newly turned 3-year-old son could eat in one day. And it seemed like A LOT for a 3-year-old.

    Here's a link to the vid:


    So, yes, in closing… food + healthy relationship with it = good.

  5. Hey Matt,

    I am certainly not the only person who got the book "the 4 hour body" by Tim Ferris.

    My question would be, if it would be a mistake to do the slow carb diet (I bet you know this diet)?

    I know it's like a dumb question after reading your book + blog NOT to diet ever again, but I don't know how to say it, you got some new information how to lose fat fast and want of course to try it! :)

    And the advantage is it's most "unrefined" starch or to say better resistant starch (all kinds of beans and lentils).

    You are eating this kind of food 6 times per week over and over again.
    Of course you will be satisfied and feel no hunger at all though you are eating less calories over the day.
    So it's no starvation triggering right? (I don't know about this exactly but it's just my assumption – clear me up please :)

    And one day in the week your are going nuts to raise leptin levels and eat as much as u want to tell your body that you are not in starvation-mode.

    So what do you think about it?



  6. Fuktiol is the greatest drug in the world. I took a job that pays 25,000 a year over one that pays 50,000 because I don't want to hate my job. My mother resents me for it, but this also falls under the category of things I don't want to cause me any stress.

    What Matt is trying to do is get people into a state of mind where they don't go apeshit after they find out that the HED of RRARF lifestyle doesn't fix their weight problem in 5 days.

  7. Matt, best of the season to you and thanks once again for a great post. Enjoyed the video and am going to send it onto some people I know.

    You said something in your post/report about the Twinkie Diet that really turned on the proverbial light bulb in my head. How people never really get the body/health they want, bouncing back and forth between "skinny fat" and "fat fat". I really thought about that and realized I am neither. I am "muscley fat" and that's fine. I have a lot of raw material to work with! Then I saw Matt's answer to a comment I made in early November where he told me to not worry about calories (as I am really getting into some of Scott Abel's stuff, his training protocols and all). Just eat well, train hard and my body will lean out and shape into whatever genetics I was given. How so very true!

    So yeah, duck fiets and enjoy life!

  8. sly,
    tims slow carb is a pretty non "diet" approach in my opinion as nothing is counted and on a good note it avoids the typical SAD foods. I have pretty much eaten this way for years and i have seen no ill effects. Beans are something i grew up eating alot of because they are an important staple in my culture for some people that might be too drastic of a change and they may not stick with it. I do also eat alot more carbs that tim would not suggest but I fundamentally think the same principals are at work in the "diet" I eat and tims slow carb.

    it is definitely a no brainer approach to weight loss but for some it may be too restricting and it does not really get at the root of the problem which does not make sustainable weight loss effortless.

    people that are primed to be fat, eat shitty food. its not eating shitty food that causes one to become fat.
    it can make the situation worse but it is not the cause when the cause is addressed the weight normalization is automatic.

  9. Sly-

    I've identified what I believe to be the primary food factors that change weight set point up and down that I hope to share some time soon. Monotony, calorie density, blandness, water content, chewing time, particle size – these are the factors that exert a greater influence on weight set point, not absorption rate which is a smaller factor. But Timmy's diet falls into that category for sure, and I can sort of go into detail as to why it may be effective, even though in a sense that is highly disordered eating.

  10. I would have to vote NO on highly disordered eating of any kind.
    I am sort of an expert on that kind of thing.
    BTW I am commenting so I guess I got over the porn fest on the last post.

  11. Matt,
    " Monotony, calorie density, blandness, water content, chewing time, particle size – these are the factors that exert a greater influence on weight set point"

    I have seen these be a factor in total food volume one can digest but not specifically anything to do with the set point so I'll be looking forward to your thoughts in that post.


    :) YAY !

  12. Thanks Chief, I was really thinking I would have to quit 180 for a bit there.
    But I got over it.
    I'm a big girl. Age wise that is.

  13. Thx CHIEF and Matt,

    so it's okay to do it a few weeks without any "metabolic sideeffects"?

    Hm, interesting, could you just answer these questions in a quick too?

    The topic with the water content, the higher the water content of a food the better??

    And what about monotonie, does it mean you eat less through monotonie? (Of course I think.) But DOES it mean a positive OR a negative weight set point?



  14. Sly,
    you wont see any metabolic down grade with a diet high in legumes and low in white flour and sugar even if you did it for months or even years as long as you did not restrict and took into account things your body needs. You just might find it boring and it maybe not the best solution when you skip some rather tasty and nutritious foods.

    monotony will reduce the volume but in the end make you search out other sources IF they are available. for instance try an all chicken breast diet for a week you will see quickly what happens. they have tried in overfeeding studies to go all meat , the result is a eater pushes his plate away quite early on but they could easily eat other foods given the option.

    higher water content would be good for those who do not drink enough. higher water content will reduce the amount that can be eaten in a sitting but if your body requires more, such as after weight training in as little as 45 mins you will be hungry again. reducing calorie density has been shown to increase volume eaten.

  15. Ha ha Deb,

    Don't take the comments on the last post too hard. I didn't even read most of them and it's my frickin' blog! I love the irony of a post on the unimportance of attractiveness morphing into a lengthy debate about what is attractive though. Classic. Humans seem hellbent on having their minds completely governed by the insignificant. That's why I read a lot.


    I don't think there's any metabolic danger there or anything like that. Just don't get too carried away with limiting any macronutrient group or not eating when you are hungry. I think that's where real problems emerge.

    As for the food factors that influence weight set point, most see it as Chief does – that foods with high water content or more fiber or whatever just discourange a person from eating. But the science shows otherwise.

    There is something about the pleasure of the food itself in relation to what you are accustomed to that makes your weight set point change to a new level and then be maintained at that new level.

    But it's kind of a trap. I wouldn't recommend eating food below the level of pleasure and satsifaction you seek in your food or you will be forever condemned to eating that diet to maintain any losses.

  16. I think the high water content encourages eating by making up for lost calories later as the body over the course of a few days seeks to reach a certain calorie level. try eating nothing but a bunch of cucumbers after hitting the gym shortly there after i predict you will get a signal to a eat more.

  17. Water content is just one factor (bread raising weight set point more than pasta due to water content differences for example).

    Sweetness is another big one: aspartame, sucralose, and saccharin raising weight set point the most followed by HFCS, white sugar, other sweeteners

    Particle size is another:

    Whole, intact grain lowers weight set point – fine powders raise it (in part because more chewing is required, in part due to other factors like higher absorption in the GI tract of small particles vs. large)

    And more…

  18. Matt,
    You know I've been a 180 degree follower for over a year now, but I'm not sure if I can agree with the message now.

    I agree with the whole not trying to diet in terms of calorie restriction or killing oneself with exercise, but this should only happen while eating nutritious whole foods!

    It just does not work to eat whatever you want including ice cream, doughnuts etc… And I know you said in the video that eventually your body will stop craving the sweets but I really doubt that, in fact, in my experience eating the sweets just made me crave more sweets, It wasn't until I embarked in the REAL Whole foods HED that I stopped craving junk food. I just think that we've taken a step back from the original HED, because by telling people that they can eat whatever they want as much as they want, they will just get fat. Instead with the original HED you told people to eat whatever nutritious whole foods they want, whenever they want and this not only provided the adequate nutrition that their bodies needed but also made the cravings for sweets to disappear.

    Cutting cold turkey on something addicting like cigarettes or doughnuts is harder in the beginning but it will allow you to overcome it easier and faster than if you just try tapering it down.

    Eating whatever (whole foods and junk foods) you want as much as you want will only get you fat. This woman (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1341683/Donna-Simpsons-feast-The-30-000-calorie-Christmas-feast-eaten-worlds-fattest-mum-ONE-hour-sitting.html) plus millions of people in the world are proof of that.

  19. rosenfeltc,

    that woman puts my eating skills to shame ..damn
    On the opposite end of the spectrum you could also use Gal sone as an example that calories in of themselves do not make you fat.

    without isolating all of the variables it is pretty impossible to say the calories alone make some one fat. I personally believe the calories one searches out are a result of an internal mechanism that will happen regardless how much you attempt to control it not the food causing you to become fatter and need more calories I say this because my first attempts to re-become fat lead me on a epic buffet eating wild goose chase ( everything i wanted and then some) with no fatass-ification I had to look elsewhere for the causes.

    I have found telling people at first to just eat whatever and focus on the other stuff first has the highest success rate mostly because people love their food and because there is alot of problems associating guilt to eating it's tough to make a giant shift in diet for some people especially morbidly obese who have little else in their life…

  20. @rosenfeltc

    the 30.000 kcal woman want to be fat, and she wants to be even heavier, read the text.

    Little stroy from me what I have experienced today:

    I decided to go nuts with eating in december with everything and starting to eat clean at new year, (yeah I know your vid Matt ;).

    The last days I ate whatever I want, and even eat cakes, cookies, pastry and so on even when I was fully full!
    Because I CAN! That's a weird think.

    Don't know how to explain, even if I was really stuffed I kept on eating.
    So, today I think I reached a point where my cravings for junk diminished huge.

    After lunch at 1 PM (desert some cake though :P) I went on a walk at 4:20PM
    On the way home at 7PM I crossed a pizzeria, and I REALLY LOVE PIZZA!! fav food. And the best "buy one get TWO! – only today" what a luck I thought.

    But I heard my stomach and it said: Nothing. I wasn't hungry, maybe a little bit. Though I went in, watched at the menue card and stepped out of the pizzeria. Very odd for me, really…

    I thought I have to eat something and went to the supermarket. Not because I was hungry because I COULD and out of boredom I think too.

    So I stared at all junk they had, really thinking hard what would taste really good and what I would want to eat – chips,cookies, pastry, bars and so on and guess what: I didn't buy anything, what the f**k I thought.
    I was in the supermarket for almost 30 minutes just watching at junk food lol!!!

    OKay, I really tried hard to buy something but I had NO urge, desire or whatever, but I thought to leave some money in the store just out of habit you can say. But I didn't.

    Instead on the way home again an old woman asked me to buy one of her self painted pictures, I wasn't interested but watched some of these to be polite.
    Then she offered 3 for one price.
    I told her I am not interested and gave her my money what was supposed for some junk food.

    Heaven I'm coming ;D

  21. @ Matt,
    Its. Not. Working.

    I cannot function eating moderate carbs. My body started shutting down again, headed in the same direction I was before I went lower carb.
    This morning, I ate eggs and cheese and I feel wonderful.

    Sure, my temps came up. Better then they have been ever.
    But which should I choose?
    Better temps or utter exhaustion?
    Not being able to get even the simplest of housework done?

    The only other option I can see, is going grain free, and sticking with starchy veges for carbs.

    I totally get your stance on inflamation, but I don't think we are going to see great reductions of it in our generation. We need to raise up a new generation that does not eat SAD.


  22. Sly,
    I did read the text, maybe you should get your head out of your ass and you can understand what I'm saying.

    That woman does NOT work out, does NOT stress out about food, has NOT dieted in her entire life and is eating whatever she wants whenever she wants and as much as she wants, hint hint, she is basically doing what Matt is now recommending and is FAT getting FATTER.

    Regardless if she wants to get fat or not, from what Matt mentions, eventually her body should fight her back and force her to lose weight either by down-regulating her appetite or/and increasing her metabolism, yet it hasn't.

    So my point, which still remains the same, is that if you take out the junk food/man made crap like preservatives, additives etc… (Once again, the ORIGINAL HED) the body would eventually regulate to a normal weight, however the addition of junk into the diet will only make the person fatter.

    Undertow and I have both gained weight on HED, to eventually with time slowly lose it back while still eating to appetite (actually in my case I basically eat till one more bite would make me throw up) but it only worked by eliminating the junk food. If I would have thrown in a bunch of ice cream, chocolate nutella, doughnuts etc… I would have craved more and ate more of that junk slowly replacing the actual healthy wholesome nutritious food that is really what my body needs.

  23. Paula,

    I don't get it. Why would starchy vegies be better than grains?

    Did you have these same problems with carbs before you went low carb?

    The extra energy you get from the low carb diet could be due to it increasing your cortisol/adrenaline levels as your body tries to keep it's blood sugar up. You may have some blood sugar or adrenal issues.

    You may want to keep carbs lower in the earlier part of the day and then increase the carb ratio later in the day. This is what I do, but I have starchy carbs with all of my meals.

    Maybe you should seek out help from a medical professional to see why you cannot tolerate the normal human food of starch/grains. i had the same issue as you then I got tested and found out I had a pretty bad case of adrenal insufficiency that was due to my low carb lifestyle.

  24. JT,
    I had the same issues prior to going low carb, and yes, I do have some adrenal issues. But they had gotten better prior to HED.

    Today I had no carbs for breakfast, moderate at lunch.
    Dinner is not yet planned.

    I do have Celiacs, so I am limitd on grains anyway not only because of that, but cost as well.
    I do better with taters and squash.

    I just think its important to note that grains are just not going to work for some people, either short term, or longer.


    PS. we know I do not have blood sugar issues, because we have tested ;o)

  25. Good point Rosenfeltc. This is especially true if the person already gains fat easily. This person will get fat and unhealthy eating as much as they want unless they restrict it to purely unprocessed low calorie density foods. The problem is that most people cannot tolerate this type of diet. They will seek out calorie dense foods because the cravings for it will be extreme. Sticking to a clean diet is not easy, especially for someone with food issues.

    So, we need to face reality. If you are not naturally lean and want to become lean then you will have to restrict your eating in someway. Calories will have to be below maintenance if you want to lose fat. You can do this by counting calories or you can do this by eating unprocessed low calorie dense foods that will cause you to eat less calories.

    If you don't want to do this then just move on and accept your body the way it is. There is nothing wrong with having a little meat on your bones.

  26. Hey Rosenfeltc
    I know Matt has a "let it all hang loose" policy, but do you have to tell Sly he has his head up his ass ? Really?? Obviously Sly is trying to 'get it' and telling us his experience and maybe he did not get what you were saying but being mean and rude.. just makes my blood boil.

    Sorry, just had to say it. I don't want this post to go spiraling into the toilet like the last one did. I hope we can all respect each other and not 'bash' each other.
    We are all on our own journey, we all all learning. Not to get all Kumbaya on your ass, just wanted to ask for some kindness here. Most of us get beat up enough by our own thoughts, we don't need more hurtful stuff happening when we come here to learn and share.

    My two cents.

  27. Paula,

    If you have confirmed adrenal issues with low cortisol, then it is even more likely that the reason you have energy with low carb is because it jacks your cortisol levels up.

    For energy, I have found that I do better with a higher protein ratio in the morning and a higher carb ratio in the evening. Seems to provide better energy for the day and sleep at night. I do not like zero carb meals anymore because it seems to confuse the body's enzyme system on what fuel to be ready for. You should read Schwarzbein for more info on why it is not a good idea to keep carbs too low.

    I used to believe the same thing as you concerning starchy vegies vs grains when I was into "paleo". I actually believed that I felt better when I avoided grains too. But, now I know it was just mental, and the truth for me was the opposite. There many grains that celiacs can eat with no problem.

  28. Ugh! Its like Junior high in here! Why?
    I am here for specific help, and I have to slog through stuff in the comments that are way out of line and have nothing to do with health.
    It makes for a stressful time :o(

  29. Paula-

    You should probably choose utter exhaustion, and eat high carb not moderate carb, in the neighborhood of 300-400 grams per day or more.

    That's the whole point. Resting piss poor adrenals and healing the body feels horrible, not good. If you feel terrible and can't even get simple house chores done, then your adrenals are at rock bottom. This is how you rest your adrenals, which is one of, if not the primary purpose of RRARF. That's what I define as "working."

    It is designed to be continued until you no longer feel so lethargic, which takes a matter of a few days to a few weeks depending on how earnestly you commit to eating a lot of food.

    Low-carb, in my experiences, is a dead end, and the worst possible diet for a person with hypoadrenia and food intolerances to be on.


    I appreciate your thoughts. I would agree, but my health and more importantly, my life, is better eating a more relaxed diet with more junk food.

    One important detail not to be forgotten is that differences between how lean people eat and how obese people eat have not been found. There is very little to distinguish the two. Even calorie intakes have been reported to be similar and sometimes less on behalf of the obese.

    A bigger link is between restrained eating and obesity, not the composition of the diet itself. I would agree with that based on my own personal experiences and observations.

    But most people are not like you, coming off of an all-meat diet with soldier-esque adherence to a very strict diet in the name of health. For an obese person eating SAD, extremes of dietary restriction are the last possible message they need to hear. Even the desire to nourish themselves must go through an extensive psychological rehabilitation process before conversations of PUFA or fructose or whatever can be addressed.

    And, overfeeding studies in which the consumption of junk food was promoted did not end up with permanent weight gain at all. Eating junk food does not make a person fat. It is more complex than that.

  30. Matt, would you agree with JT, that low carb at breakfast working up to higher carb by supper may work better?

    I cannot have zero energy. I have 40 some chickens, chicks and turkeys, and 6 goats that require a great deal of work in our sub zero temps.
    And a home to keep!

    I can rest plenty, but not 100%.
    I don't have a maid, LOL!

    By the way, a few weeks? I am way past that mark, lol!
    I know hitting the moose nearly three weeks ago surely set me back, but we were barely hurt!

  31. If you need to be more functional yes. And as I wrote in an old post, this may help establish more normal cortisol rhythms.

  32. Matt,

    I agree with you that a low carb diet is not a good idea for most people, but it might not be a good idea to jump from zero to 400 overnight. It takes time to build up. I would prefer to increase the carb ratio over weeks or months. Having too high of carbs too soon will make the adrenal problems worse because there will be swings in blood sugar which will really stress them. The goal is to have enough carbs to maintain a stable blood sugar level without causing the body to have to increase cortisol to keep it stable.

    Also, it will take a lot longer than a few days or weeks or someone to rest and heal their adrenals. It took me bout a year.

    Lets not look past properly prescribed medications from your doctor. This can be of great benefit to those in need.

  33. Ok, I will make that my practice now.

    …..off to haul a few sled loads of firewood…yeah, I need energy BAD!

  34. Arrgh!!

    That's my frustration showing. I've been on the 180 wagon for two years (that's actually since before I discovered 180, but I'll give Matt credit for fleshing out the theory I got from Price, et. al.), and do you know how much weight I've lost? Go on, guess.

    Zilch. Nothing. Zero. In two years.

    Other things have improved, such as body temp, fasting glucose, etc. But I'm still way heavier than I should be (or want to be). I can't even enjoy the occasional piece of cake or pasta dinner, as one serving can send me up 4-5 lbs. overnight. And it's not temporary. It'll take weeks for that to slowly disappear.

    For instance, just two weeks ago I was at 239. Spagetti alfreo? 244. Two slices of coconut cake at Christmas dinner? 248. That's where I am now. Everything else I eat is whole, unprocessed, good-fat, organic (if possible), etc. No weight is lost.

    I get plenty of sleep, plenty of water, gotten off coffee, and have eliminated every source of stress I can think of that I have power over.

    So, in conclusion …


  35. JT,
    No meds for me. The few I have had in my life did horrible things to me!
    I'll stick with fermented cod liver oil.

    I guess when I compare this winter with the last one, things are much better.
    I no longer have any cold fatigue.
    I keep forgetting about that.
    So that is a huge positive.

  36. Thanks JT. I would recommend seeing practitioners more frequently, but in my experience roughly 99 out of 100 medical professionals don't have the slightest idea what they are doing when it comes to medicating people. Most don't even acknowledge hypoadrenia unless it is extreme. Putting one's health into the hands of a professional is fraught with danger. This site has always been more of a consortium of ideas for how to improve health without having to resort to "professionals."

    Having said that, there's no doubt in my mind that someone with experience in reviving those with hypoadrenia could probably do a fantastic job using hydrocortisone in conjunction with other physiologic doses of complementary hormones to do the job safely, effeectively, and without the hassle of having to play around with the diet so much.

  37. Brock,
    Read my post above. If you are not naturally lean and want to get lean then you will have to restrict the amount of calories you take in. The question you need to ask yourself is if it is important enough for you to be hungry a lot of the time. If not, then quit worrying about it, accept your bodyfat and just enjoy your food.

    What will cod liver oil do to heal adrenal insufficiency?

    I used to think the same thing as you about being totally natural and ended up digging myself into a big hole with my natural paleo lifestyle. Hydrocortisone was really beneficial in allowing me to function as i healed my adrenals. It provided energy and allowed me to rest my adrenals at the same time. I don't need it now, but glad my doctor knew how to use it when i did.

  38. JT, The fclo provides a huge dose of vitamin D.

  39. Brock,
    I disagree with Jt, I have seen plenty of "naturally fat" people effortlessly lose weight without restricting a single calorie and comparing to what average people eat would be considered gluttony.
    there is obviously at least one stone still left unturned in your quest. When i'm normal i can eat a retarded amount of cake and gain nothing but at one time that would have been laughable.

    perhaps its not weather you have control over said stress or if you can eliminate it but how you interpret it based on your personality or learned behaviors. the fact that you posted your weight here in a comment is proof that it is stressing you. throw out the scale monitoring it wont make it move.

    do you do any exercise ? what kind of work do you do?
    what is your favorite food ? and what is the single activity which brings you the most joy in life?

  40. Super great and inspirational! Thank you Matt and Happy New Year everybody!!! Let's loose weight next year!!! lol, jk….Let's do the things that we love and that makes us happy!!!
    Lisa :)

  41. Took me about 9 months to gain then lose the initial 10lbs overeating whole foods. Still try to overeat or beyond appetite every day, my set point has been stable for about 6 months now. Finding the more I overeat eat now, the leaner I am getting, still need to add in some exercise, will start that in the new year.

    I do like all this talk of letting go, which I have with regards to amounts I eat, but won't be buying into eating processed foods. Grew up stress free, eating junk and loads of it, it got me chubby, acne, etc…

    My list of avoidance seems small though, and I don't feel I am losing out by skipping this stuff like 97.98% of the time, eating a at restaurant its unavoidable:

    seed oils, refined gluten, soy, plus keeping refined sucrose really low

  42. JT, I disagree about calorie restriction. I tried that one a decade ago. Ate super low-carb paleo, low calorie. Lots of exercise. I got lean. I also got two-pot addicted to coffee and killed adrenals. Then over three years it all came back. Not interested in doing that again. 

    CHIEF, I know. I don't think about it most days. I'm pretty Zen for the most part. But when I do think about it, I get frustrated. I'm a patient man but two years is a long time for anyone I think. 

    throw out the scale monitoring it wont make it move.
    No good. I still have to put on pants in the morning and they'll tell me. 

    do you do any exercise ?
    Some. Not consistently though. But I often feel weak, as if my muscles are sluggish. I don't want to over-exercise either and I'm not sure how hard to push myself. It's quite possible this is the missing variable, but not sure. 

    When I do exercise I do short, intense stuff. No jogging. 

    what kind of work do you do?
    Corporate law. I work at a bank. Recently switched to in-house, which is much lower stress than private practice. Better hours too. 

    what is your favorite food ?
    Hmmm. Sweet potatoes? Steak? Not cake or cookies if that's what you're asking. 

    what is the single activity which brings you the most joy in life?
    Reading and playing with my son (age 16 months). I do both of these things every day. 

  43. I didn't even read most of them and it's my frickin' blog! I love the irony of a post on the unimportance of attractiveness morphing into a lengthy debate about what is attractive though. Classic. Humans seem hellbent on having their minds completely governed by the insignificant.

    I didn't read most of the comments either, but I suspect the reason the discussion went that way is that the fundamental issue your post touched on was the natural human concern about social status. Attractiveness is a huge aspect of status. I think your point was that being concerned about physical attractiveness isn't necessary which is good advice for women.

    It seems to me the problem is that our culture is extremely shallow. We care too much about beauty (as an indicator of status) and too little about beauty (for its own sake and as a marker of health) at the same time. This causes many bodies to produce stress chemicals that harm health and make the issue worse.

  44. Chief,
    If your friends lost weight then they had a calorie deficit. There is no way around this. It is a biological fact that has been shown in plenty of metabolic ward studies. if you can document that your friends are losing weight in a calorie surplus then you should document it and publish it as a scientific breakthrough. Of course, things may change a little if pharmaceuticals were involved.

    Tell us exactly what your system is so that we can see what is really going on. Maybe you really have stumbled upon some breakthrough that no scientist has ever seen before.

    You were unsuccessful because you did it wrong.

    Do you not see the gigantic logical leap you made by equating lower calories to low carb paleo?

    I also had horrible consequences from a low carb paleo diet, but i had great long lasting results from dieting and exercising in the RIGHT way.

    If you want to get lean without taking drugs then you will have to realize a few things. You will need to burn more calories than you consume. You will be hungry and you will have to get used to it. If this isn't worth it to you then keep doing what you are doing and accept your body the way it is.

    Matt even agrees with the necessity of a calorie deficit to induce weight loss. Why do you guys keep clinging to this position?

    Also, there is no way that you gained 5 lbs of fat overnight from just eating 1 piece of cake. You can put on some water, but this should dissipate quickly if you are really just having 1 piece and then going back to eating clean. If you really are gaining this much this quickly and retaining it then you need to get evaluates by a medical professional to figure out what is really going on.

  45. Cheif didn't say his friends lost fat without a calorie deficit, just without calorie restriction.

    I've lost fat without calorie restriction and especially without hunger on zero carb. It's a matter of hormones.

  46. Brock-

    Since you are in the banking business, I will say that JT's recommended approach would be similar to telling someone in search of becoming wealthy to play the lotto daily.

    Having said that, there's no doubt that weight training without carb restriction and some restriction of calories like Abel uses is more likely to succeed, but very difficult, life governing, potentially unhealthy, and not something that anyone can expect to use for getting off more than 20 pounds (about the maximum flexibility of the weight set point).

    As for your ability to gain weight eating food like that in such short periods of time, I've experienced that as well. 14 of the 20 pounds I gained post vegan experiment last year came in a total of 7 days.

    But I honestly believe at this point that sending the psychological signals of hoarding can cause this. Those signals would be, "well, I don't eat this very often so I better chow down on it while I have this rare opportunity." I am totally willing to believe that deviating from your diet more often as opposed to less often will prevent this from happening.

    As for calorie deficits for weight loss, that is true. But one can easily eat 4,000+ calories per day and not exercise and be in a calorie deficit. The human body has an almost infinite capacity to dissipate excess energy when above the weight set point, including even completely altering digestive flora so that fewer calories are aborbed. Gut bacteria are responsible for up to 30% of absorbed calories for example, and that's just one tiny fragment of the energy balance equation. Some of Abel's devotees may get competition lean on 1,500 calories per day, but there are also bodybuilders who compete at the highest levels eating 5,000 calories per day prior to competition.

    There's a lot more to it. And as far as the metabolic studies go, similar studies have shown that cutting calories to a level that causes weight loss is also causing weight gain, at identical calorie levels, within 6 months.


    Listen in to more of the fine details as well. I don't say that we should all run around plowing doughnuts, but that part of the program is to eat to nourish yourself and pay attention to what makes you feel good. After eating lots of refined sugar for the past 5 days I was ready to flip a coin for whether I should have oatmeal for breakfast or a shotgun barrel. Refined sugar still has the ability to throw my brain chemistry down into a dark hole. But I will not continue to eat lots of it or exceed my tolerance for it knowing how it makes me feel. Eating food that you know is destructive to your body is not a healthy relationship with food. The "unrestrained" element of "the new 180" is about total healing of people's relationship with food – including reeling in natural tendencies toward extremism.


    It's going to be a great year. Thanks. Remember that even though you aren't totally "well," that doesn't mean that you can't live life to the fullest and start to ditch the health obsession. There are amputees, parapalegics, and highly disabled persons far more physically impaired than anyone here and many of them are living it up, inspiring others, and replacing fixation on their illness with fixation on squeezing every last drop out of life. Don't let anything hold you back, especially not your diet or some Buteyko breathing exercises. Nah mean?

  47. JT,

    I understand the law of thermodynamics to the fullest. Like Kirk pointed out, I said without restricting … not that a calorie deficit was not created within the body or by the body making you do certain things. obviously if matter is energy and energy can't be created then that fat has to go somewhere. what you and most people seem to miss is that the deficit does not need to be made at the end of your fork. I Have laid it out in its utter simplicity in my comments if you are fat and you try what I am saying you "will see what is really going on"… and no its not any heart racing drug.

    regardless of what matt thinks or you or even king koopa, I will cling to this notion because it is simplistically obvious and straight up " money".

    I will be doing my typical method over the course of the next 5 weeks or so and like clockwork i will be hitting up buffets and dropping fat like sonic the hedge hog coins Once I hit my normal weight regardless of what i do here n there such as eating a 2 kg bag of peanuts or an entire chocolate cake the scale will stay the same.

  48. Here's an interesting idea from Jon Gabriel and I think this is what Matt is getting at… some folks get stressed and it triggers a "fat gain program", like Brock perhaps? Sort of a you better slow down and save your resources because a famine is coming and we need to conserve energy up in this mo fo.
    Some get the same stresses but it triggers what he calls the "get skinny or die (tiger chasing you) program".
    I have been fiddling with the visualization of a mean dog, say a pit bull full of rabies, nipping at my heels and doing a quick sprint during my dog walks and also doing some visualization of that scene when not exercising. He also says to visualize your body being lean and strong, whatever your goal is, when resting.
    I think he is on to something.. a way to use your human brain to sort of choose your adventure if you will.

    Lisa: I love the saying "I was so sad that I had no shoes till I met the man who had no feet." Yeah, I have cancer, yeah I'm an old hag with shitty hormones, but I am breathing, living, loving and laughing daily. I always say, if you wake up and there is no chalk outline around your body, it's a good day. :)
    Much healing to you!
    Lady Haga

  49. brock

    i think you just answered your question until you have done everything obvious such as a reasonable exercise regiment there is still one stone unturned :)

    email me ill see if i cant help you troubleshoot some more or help you on your path.

    you do not have to be hungry to lose weight as JT said.
    To me that is like smacking your skin repeatedly with a belt to increase circulation. sure it works, it sucks but it may also have side effects.

  50. What? The belt does not work?

    Darn it! I thought I had it nailed.
    love ya Chief

  51. debbie "christina" Haguilera

    the visualizing yourself in the body you want is a MUST…. your brain can do amazing things.
    i believe even post pone your chalk line ;)
    just keep thinkin' tan lines no chalk lines … tan lines no chalk lines…


    kudos on the hoarder connection I've been saying that forever , i could have used that "back up" in that little hoarder convo we had a while back. :)
    what you spoke about is my primary reason for a cheat day you never have to decide if you should eat it you just postpone it.

    and i can say first hand i have been in the 4000+ calorie range and lost weight. you are spot on about the body being able to dissipate it the more i look into it to make sense of it all the more i am amazed at little shit like radiation of heat via electromagnetic waves and gut floras amazing capacity you mentioned. Iz in the last post probably burned more calories in that pool than ten minutes on bike.

  52. "So, in conclusion …

    Arrrrgghhh! "


    "regardless of what matt thinks or you or even king koopa"

    :D :D

    On a more serious note:
    "the visualizing yourself in the body you want is a MUST…. your brain can do amazing things."

    I completely 100% super duper agree with that. Your brain/imagination is capable of amazing things and definitely is also strongly influencing your body. I think the power of this is greatly underestimated by most people. Your brain can definitely make you fat, so why shouldn't it be the other was around aswell?

  53. "Your brain/imagination is capable of amazing things and definitely is also strongly influencing your body."

    True, and don't forget that the emotions are constantly influencing both the brain and body.

    The brain can only fool the body by repressing emotions for so long… and even during that time, I don't think the body's as fooled as our brain would like to believe.

    So instead of mind over matter, or mind over body:

    maybe matter = emotions.

  54. "Humans seem hellbent on having their minds completely governed by the insignificant."

    "hellbent" should be "Hell-bent". Hell is a place name, so it gets a capital letter, and it's two words so it's hyphenated.

  55. "Chief,
    If your friends lost weight then they had a calorie deficit. There is no way around this. It is a biological fact that has been shown in plenty of metabolic ward studies."

    That is not true. There are plenty of animal studies which show that the quantity of food doesn't matter. The quality matters. If you feed rats either a high sat-fat or a high unsat-fat diet, the obesity at the end of their lifes corresponds exactely to the ratio of sat-unsat. fat, even if they ate the same amount of calories. Your view on weight loss is an oversimplification.
    I initially lost about 10 pounds, eating way more than 3000 calories in the form of milk, OJ, cheese, potatos and a lot of sugar.

  56. For example, if you eat sugar you will produce and use more energy than with starch. So, if you eat sucrose rather than starch, you will burn more energy and therefore stay lean. A calorie isn't just a calorie!

    Metabolism. 1996 Oct;45(10):1235-42.
    Postprandial thermogenesis and substrate utilization after ingestion of different dietary carbohydrates. Blaak EE, Saris WH.
    Department of Human Biology, University of Limburg, Maastricht, The Netherlands.
    Whole-body thermogenesis, substrate utilization (opencircuit ventilated-hood system), and exogenous carbohydrate oxidation were evaluated in 10 healthy lean
    male volunteers (aged 27.8 +/- 2.5 years) for 6 hours after oral ingestion of 75g naturally enriched fructose, glucose (both derived from corn starch), cane
    sugar, and a good digestible corn starch (all mixed with 400 mL water). The integrated areas under the glucose and insulin response curves above baseline were highest with glucose and starch, intermediate with sucrose, and lowest with fructose, whereas there were no significant differences in the integrated
    nonesterified fatty acid (NEFA) response between carbohydrates. The total increment in energy expenditure (EE) above baseline was similar with fructose
    (130 +/- 24 kJ/6 h) and sucrose (141 +/- 17 kJ/6 h), was higher with sucrose as compared with starch (108 +/- 24 kJ/6 h, P < .05) and glucose (94 +/- 20 kJ/6 h,P < .05), and tended to be higher with fructose as compared with glucose (P =.059). Both the increment in total carbohydrate oxidation (P < .05) and the increment in exogenous carbohydrate oxidation (P < .01) were significantly higher with fructose and sucrose compared with glucose and starch. The initial
    inhibition of lipid oxidation was higher with sucrose and fructose than with glucose and starch, whereas the integrated decrement in lipid oxidation over 6 hours was only higher with fructose compared with glucose and starch (P < .05).
    In conclusion, thermogenesis and substrate utilization vary considerably after ingestion of different types of carbohydrate in young lean males, indicating that
    the carbohydrate composition of the diet may have important consequences for energy and macronutrient balance.

  57. Undertow,

    Was 10 pounds all you gained initially? Shit man, I was 150 when I started this like 3 months ago and now I'm up to 170 – 175. I have noticed that I am a lot stronger though, perhaps some of it is muscle mass.

    How is your digestion? I know we talked about that before, but I just wanted to know if you are having any troubles.

  58. Chief,
    The bottom line like I mentioned above is that there must be a calorie deficit. It doesn't matter how you get it, but it is only possible to decrease the weight if you burn more calories than you consume. You cam eat nothing but fibrous veggies all day and completely stuff yourself and still lose weight because you have created a calorie deficit. Or you can be like Michael phelps and eat 10000 calories apt junk food a day and lose weight because your activity level is so high. Or do something to increase your metabolism like take thyroid And eat nothing but coconut oil and sucrose like Peat talks about.

    Yes, if you are naturally lean and want to get really lean then you will be hungry. If you are not hungry then something is probably wrong like your metabolism is downregulating. This happened to me when I shriveled up on a low carb diet. I lost a ton of weight, i was never hungry, but I damaged my metabolism. So, if you are lean without downregulating your metabolism then you will be hungry.

    You have never given us a clear picture of you method. Please do so and try to be as clear and detailed as possible.

  59. Jannis,
    Nothing you mentioned disproved my point. I have been familiar with peat and his works for over 5 years.

  60. Kirk,
    Read my post above. The reason you lost weight with a low carb diet without hunger is probably because your metabolism slowed down. It's basically like inducing a sickness so that you body reacts by trying to prevent you from stuffing down more of what you were eating. Hopefully you didn't do permanent damage. If you have a healthy metabolism then you will have a healthy hunger drive as well.

  61. Above I meant to say:
    If you are NOT naturally lean and want to be lean then you will be hungry.

  62. "Nothing you mentioned disproved my point. I have been familiar with peat and his works for over 5 years."

    What does this have to do with Peat's work? If you eat 3000 calories in the form of soy oil, you will utimately become fat. If you eat the 3000 calories in the form of something else (coconut oil for instance) you won't become fat. That's a fact.
    If that doesn't disprove your point, than please be so nice and explain what your point is.

  63. JT,

    I'm glad you're back, I appreciate your calm, reasonable way of looking at things and discussing them with others.

    "JT: The Voice of Reason."

  64. But, JT, I have some questions for you:

    What is the physiological reason you have for believing that, to paraphrase you, "weight loss without hunger means your metabolism is slowing down"?

    Here you give a brief explanation:

    "The reason you lost weight with a low carb diet without hunger is probably because your metabolism slowed down. It's basically like inducing a sickness so that you body reacts by trying to prevent you from stuffing down more of what you were eating."

    Do you care to elaborate?

    I ask because I was under the impression that if the body is ready for fat loss –that is, the metabolism and hormones are in proper working order– the body fat set point would spontaneously decrease and the individual would naturally eat less and start to lose weight. Moreover, they would lose weight without hunger because the calorie deficit created by eating less would be compensated for by the ease in which their body could tap into its fat stores and burn them under these conditions.

  65. except for the spontaneous change in body fat set point DML has it spot on, it can happen that way only usually it takes a little "finesse" on behalf of the person.

  66. JT, i have never disputed the need, technically speaking to have a deficit within the human body. I disagree with your statement which i will quote below :


 Read my post above. If you are not naturally lean and want to get lean then you will have to restrict the amount of calories you take in. "


there is no need to restrict food to achieve fat-loss and in my experience that has little if any long term success and can actually be really bad.

    I have laid out my methods in all their simplicity some choose to dispute or shrug it off instead of asking for help in understanding. The problem is, it is utterly SIMPLE !!! you just cant see the forest from the tress my friend.


In my consultations, i start by evaluating how much someone knows. For instance if they are well versed in fitness, health and science, i tell them because of this i can not guarantee their results and need to be paid upfront. :) This leaves them puzzled and they argue with me the whole way usually only giving in when they see me eat at buffets….and lose weight. ignorance is bliss when it comes to fat loss. these people struggle mostly due to how smart they think they are.

in peace as always….

  67. "The reason you lost weight with a low carb diet without hunger is probably because your metabolism slowed down."

    What? This seems backwards. If my metabolism [resting metabolism, energy used just to stay alive] "slows down" then I'm using LESS energy. If my metabolism slows and everything else stays the same, then I should gain weight by the calories in-calories out theory.

  68. JT wrote:

    If your friends lost weight then they had a calorie deficit. There is no way around this. It is a biological fact that has been shown in plenty of metabolic ward studies. if you can document that your friends are losing weight in a calorie surplus then you should document it and publish it as a scientific breakthrough. Of course, things may change a little if pharmaceuticals were involved.

    Tell us exactly what your system is so that we can see what is really going on. Maybe you really have stumbled upon some breakthrough that no scientist has ever seen before."

    JT is this sarcasm? (I can't tell, because obviously I can't hear voice tone or see your face.) Matt has repeatedly referred in previous blog posts to force feeding studies in which prisoners were force-fed 10,000 calories per day and kept sedentary. The subject who gained the most weight gained something like 10 pounds. So it's certainly not something "that no scientist has ever seen before".

  69. JT,
    I don't understand you saying a person needs to restrict calories to lose weight. I thought we already covered on this blog that it is not an effective long-term way to lose weight:
    You can force the body to do all kinds of things in the short term, and results based on that don't really impress me.

    Loved your post about binging and then thinking critically about what it is you really want. I've had similar experiences myself. I think it's part of a phase of exiting out of the restrained eater mindset.
    It's interesting to have a day where you have plenty of junk but the the most intense flavor you remember was a couple of olives on a gyro or some pickled beets on a salad.

  70. TGraham,

    I went from 185 to 196, really quickly, probably within the first month. Then over the next 8 months, the weight came off. Its now been 15 months of RRARF / overeating / eating beyond appetite, and the weight set point is stable at about 186. During the last 15 months I only up'd the calories, never reduced.

    Digestion is still not 100%, and I suspect this is what is keeping my basal low and my acne lingering. Some large starch meals will cause heartburn, a symptom of low acid (common with hypothyroidism) Supp'ing with HCL seems to help somewhat, see what time does… also planning to try the RS3 salad this week, and see how that goes.

  71. DML,
    Thanks man I missed you too!

    I am not sure of the exact mechanism tying metabolism to hunger, but I am interested in seeing some research on it. My belief in this is based on anecdotal reports concerning myself and others.

    If your body burns 3000 calories a day to maintain your current metabolic setpoint then you drop those calories to 1500 you will lose weight quickly for a time. Then your body will adjust to this by increasing the hunger drive. If it doesn't get calories then it will try and slow down the metabolic rate. Now your body can maintain the weight at 1500 calories instead of 3000 because the metabolic rate has slowed and hunger isn't as bad because the body doesn't need as many calories to maintain that weight. But, If you can keep your body thinking it needs 3000 calories to operate then the hunger will stay high but the metabolism will not down regulate. So the key is to use strategies to keep the metabolism from slowing down, but you must be willing to accept the hunger that comes along with being a fat burning machine!

    Hunger is maybe the most important instinct that living beings possess. Without hunger we probably would not even exist. So you can see how dietary strategies that eliminate this drive should be viewed skeptically. This is what we see in those on a zero carb diet who completely lose their appetite as they slowly get weaker, slower, and colder, all signs of a slowing metabolism.


    I would appreciate it if you would lay out your method in a structured simple way so that we can all see what you are doing?

    So far what I can put together is that you combine Mike Mentzer HIT training with intermittent fasting. I have seen quite a few HIT guys that are into intermittent fasting. Do I have it right?

    If you agree that a calorie deficit is necessary then there is nothing to dispute. I have already said that there are multiple ways to induce the deficit. So the question is what is your method for inducing this?

  72. Tezza,

    No I wasn't being sarcastic. There has never been a metabolic ward study that showed calories don't matter. Matt has already said above that there has to be a calorie deficit to induce weight loss. The only thing that study you mentioned shows is that in the SHORT term the body will adjust to maintain its currrent metabolic setpoint If you keep feeding the sedentary person 10K calories a day over a couple of years then you can be sure that this person will gain a lot of weight.

    How do you think bodybuilders bulk up? This is a serious question and I would like to know what you think how people intentionally gain weight.

    Read Matt's most recent comments. He says that a caloric deficit is necessary.

  73. I've actually been quite surprised at some of the things I have been reading around the internet lately concerning weight gain/loss not being a matter of calories in or out. This is something I personally am not willing to delve too deeply into as far as researching; for me it has worked the same for many many years.

    I have been training for a very long time and it was necessary to alter my weight often. I have never had a problem with this and it has always been a matter of eating more or less. This in combination with intensity of training, again, more or less. Bulk up? More food. Lose weight? Less. As a matter of fact I'm in a gaining stage right now….food, food, food.

  74. Debbie: Yeah, most of my exercise this past year has been mental visualization. I do 15 minutes a day of step sprints, hopping, balancing and I'm always visualizing an accute stress. I'm not shoveling snow, I'm shoveling coal into a furnace to keep from being beaten by the overlords.

  75. Jenny to the N!
    I think the mind is key in all of this!
    You need to THINK what to eat, You need to be able to get it which takes brains, you need to Think about moving or not moving, etc etc.

    So we all need to lose weight in our brains before our bodies will obey.

    Or something like that.

  76. Ian2, Thanks for link, I have read those articles, it's the same as the low-carb candida diets out there, which do nothing (I tried one for 9 months). Funny how Price isn't credited, but he would never write that unrefined starches are bad.

    I was on many different types on antibiotics in my youth, so I do believe these gut flora, digestion, metabolism, hypothyroid issues are all tied together somehow…

  77. Much better day today. I had very low carbs for breakfast, and after famr chores and shoveling snow for 1/2 an hour or so, I came in and ate a couple of GF pancakes with honey and butter.
    Meat and rice for lunch and I will eat a banana in a bit.

    I am actually able to get things done today!
    Looks like I will stick with this method of getting the carbs in.


  78. Anyone ever get bloodwork eating like what is posted here?

  79. JT-

    You'll be pleased to know that I've written this in the 2011 Edition of 180 Metabolism (due out in a couple of days)…

    "I have much stronger suspicions that long-term leanness is a result of being hypermetabolic, which often equates to having a ton of energy, a massive appetite, and a totally fearless, casual, and unrestrained attitude towards food in general."

    That was all mentioned in stating that it was mistaken of me to automatically asume that eating in a way that blunted hunger was an objective for weight loss. That doesn't have to be the case.

    As for how to achieve a calorie deficit, I've always argued that there are two fundamental ways of doing it: Plower (eating a lot) and Force (restricting calorie intake or burning more through exercise)

    One it temporary, hard, destructive, and depends on drowning out the body's natural cries for food. The other is permanent, and when it happens, it happens automatically through the body's own calorie accounting system.

    Metablic ward studies show that less than 1% of subjects are able to maintain changes in weight (up or down) that are induced via "force." They are ineffective. Bottom line. End of story. Telling someone to restrict calories and exercise more to lose weight is bad advice when there is a 99% chance of failure when taking such advice. Clearly, a better solution needs to be advised, or we should all throw in the towel (and potentially throwing in the towel is precisely that better solution).


    Only problem is, undereating causes overeating in a normal person. Overeating causes undereating in a normal person. We know that the weight set point is flexible within about a 15-20 pound range, but that's it. Calorie manipulation is not a solution applicable to those with serious weight problems.

  80. Undertow,

    I haven't read the article in a while, but I can't recall the author recommending going low-carb and cutting out all starches, or saying that all unrefined starches are bad. I do recall fiber being mentioned as an antagonist, esp. in the form of grains, though. I know it makes a difference in my case.

    Anyway, good luck with healing.


  81. "Hunger is maybe the most important instinct that living beings possess. Without hunger we probably would not even exist. So you can see how dietary strategies that eliminate this drive should be viewed skeptically."

    I partially agree with that, but I doubt that this can be used as a good argument to support the thesis that hunger for a long period of time is something normal/good/not bad.

    What does hunger do? It tells you to go eat. (Duh!) So assuming that there was no shortage of food – which is probably the case in most natural (human) environments – I highly doubt that this hunger would have ever lasted very long. And even if there was a shortage, hunger probably wouldn't be that present anyways. People who fast are NOT hungry most of the time.

    Actually, constand hunger seems dangerous to me. What other choice does the body have, but do downregulate the metabolism? The body obviously wants calories, but it won't get enough, so I think a long term drop in metabolic rate will be inevitable. Of course you can probably ameliorate all this by cheat days and what not, but that still doesn't seem like a good approach to me.

  82. par the usual in my comments, i come from a background in anorexia… heres my take…

    everybody *wants* to eat a lot of food, its just human instinct when you get hungry you see food(advertisements or just a potato) and the idea of eating comes into mind, you get hungry. every single anorexic *wants* to 'be able to' eat a lot of food.
    the ONLY answer or 'way' to eat a lot of food is to eat a lot. there IS NOT other way to speed up your metabolism, than to eat a lot of food. EXCESS food is going to speed up your metabolism, grow muscles that use more energy etc. im with rosenfeltc on overeating on whole foods until you speed up your body. but that comes with weight gain. while your body adapts to eatingmore, you have to gain weight, again this is human body adaption. when you metabolism IS sped up, the body catches up.
    when you want to lose weight, your body adapts as well. you eat less you lose weight but again, your body adapts to using that amount of food. then it can become dangerous when functions/organs shut down.
    essentially you can have the same body eating 1500 calories as you can eating 5500 calories.

    but there's a time when youll gain because you adapt, you just gotta wait on your body and hope you dont have preexisting internal damage. like when you lose weight, you gotta wait because you body is use to running on X amount of calories and as it downshifts it lose weight and learns to run at lower calories

    this is common sense, but i think people are missing this point. i think it is what both cheif and matt are trying to tell you.

  83. Very Cool Blog I like to book mark such blog….

    Smith Alan

  84. JT,

    not at all.. you don't have it right
    HIT and IF would not even rank in my top 2, i would put buffet eating above them both because with out that both are pointless. The fact that you mention these tells me you are hung up on the notion that I absolutely must be doing something in direct relation to some type of reduction in food intake and some type of output because in your mind it cant possibly be anything else, keep an open mind, i assure you I'm not crazy and I have nothing to gain lying to 180 folks.

    I'm used to being a maverick so it does not bother me when much of what i say has been disregarded as mumbo jumbo by others on 180 even though in my opinion the real secret lies in the "mumbo jumbo".

    As an example, you feel humans are only made for warm weather and i can show you how exposure to cold can even help drop fat aside from it improving your testicular fortitude :) (-55 will put balls on steve urkel ) Im teasin' but my point is if you disregard half of what i say then how can you dispute it.

    honestly, I think you are only misunderstanding me because you clutch on with a deathgrip to a draconian concept of body weight management because you have seen it work (reduce calories mixed with increase output). I will say that this does work for short term force reduction purposes and can work to reduce a few pounds of fat if it is within a body fat set point as Tommy described above. On the other hand when someone is trying to lose 50 plus pounds it is total disaster. The incredible urge to eat when trying to force your way past a set point is like being held underwater fighting to get out you but you cant and nothing but the surface of the water matters.

    Fighting a weight set point feels the same way, I know I have been there I would rather be tortured by the CIA. I have also felt the mild hunger pangs associated with a little meal skipping and this is a slap on the wrist in comparison.

  85. In the last 14 months I have experimented with a few different ways of eating for health reasons. Granted, I would like to have tested each method for longer but I think I got the information I need. The point is that my last test was low carb. I kept sweet potatoes in my diet to aid my workouts but hovered around 150 g or less per day. I didn't want to lose weight but the weight just kept dropping. I started out being satisfied by the amount of food I was eating; mostly fat. My weight stabilized for awhile. The last few weeks of my testing (around 3 months in) I began to be hungry all the time and my weight started to drop again. I'm now back to what worked best for me. More potatoes, rice and beans. I ate around 400 g carbs yesterday. It's the only way I can see to get my weight back. This is how I was eating before and it is what gave me the best lipid panel.

    I don't know if my sudden hunger pangs were a result of anything you guys are talking about…my body adjusting to less calories (?) Just thought I'd mention it.

  86. I think Malpaz has is right as does Chief.

    I just ate 2 eggs cooked in butter with some turmeric/salt, a chunk of bison sausage cooked in bone broth and a bit of spinach sauteed in mac oil with a jalapeno. I pretty much feel like I don't need to eat for at least four hours or more. And I feel good, warm and happy.

    Without enough food, the body stays hungry, slows down, get's cold and start mining your bones and organs for fuel, sort of like trying to run a wood fire with newspaper.. burns up quickly and does not get you very warm.

    Happy Freakin' New Year Everyone!
    Eat Up!

  87. JT, because you and matt have asked for a centralized layout of my methods I was starting it in the comments here but i quickly realized 2 things.
    1) it is quite alot of info , 2) it wont make for easy discussion within a thread so I will be making a blog post and I promise to post a link up within a week or so.

    In the meantime, you asked how one gains weight on purpose I'll share with you my fat gain protocol I use to get fat so I can experiment with weight loss.

    the first time I tried to gain weight after losing it and becoming normal I found it almost impossible to gain weight. After alot of trial and error this is what I now do :

    purposely eat all day long, eat sensible meals, reduce nutritional density and eat alot of junk like white flour and sugar shot for at least 30 %, eat late and right before bed, use an alarm clock to jerk myself out of bed, stay up for days, search out stressful situations that I know were a big problem in my past. (Im a serial entrepreneur and starting a business with absolutely no money was a stressor and a half so now I cut up bank cards and jump into it full bore now to imitate my past reality lol I surround my self  with stress ball people. cut sex down to zero, do steady state errands/work and stay on the go, absolutely no weight training and I avoid things that bring me joy while doing a bunch of stuff I hate with a passion.

    all this for me = 30 pounds in 5 weeks and probably only slightly above what is considered typical calories intake.

  88. chief, please stop doing that to yourself!!!! It sounds like hell on earth.
    It also sounds way too much like the old me.. go go go, don't stop to have fun, eat good food or anything worth living for.

    Recipe for disaster Son.
    D. Hagluiera

  89. Chief,
    I never said you are spouting mumbo jumbo. The only thing that will make me disregard what you are saying is if it is not clearly and logically laid out to be evaluated.

    I never said that IF necessarily means calorie reduction. Actually I can take it more calories when I eat less frequently. You have mentioned fasting before and you have mentioned Mike Mentzer and HIT. If this is not what you intended then it seems like there has not been clear communication.

    Humans are made for warm weather!!! Just because you can survive in the cold for a short period of time doesn't mean that it is optimal. You can find monkeys in the zoo drinking milk, but this is not optimal, they were made to live in the jungle and eat bananas! If you want to live in extremely cold climates then you must resort to artificial means like stealing fur of another animal who is designed for the cold like a bear.

  90. Chief,
    I am not talking about getting fat and unhealthy. That is easy. I want to know what you would do with someone that needs to get or stay healthy and gain weight. Like a fighter or bodybuilder that needed to move up a few weight classes. Like a middleweight that wanted to compete at heavyweight. Or, like someone who is just too scrawny and they need to get bigger and more muscular to get healthy.

    You say that I am just misunderstanding you because I cling to some draconian concept. If this is true then could we please have all the people who do understand you post it clearly here.

  91. Matt,
    That is pretty cool man. Your understanding of it all is constantly changing and improving. Something I admire as it shows you are honest and genuinely concerned with the truth, not just defending your current belief.

    Having a strong hunger drive is essential. It is the same as the sex drive. Having a strong libido is a good sign that things are functioning at a high level. Dietary strategies that eliminate both of these drives like low carb, paleo, fasting, should be evaluated in this light.

    Good points. You know this because you are an athlete and you have had to actually do what works. Hopefully people here will be able to learn something from your experience.

  92. HAGen daz,

    Do not worry Deb this is the last time I "wear the fat suit " in the pursuit of knowledge. LOL Life is an adventure and it cant be worse than staying fat this whole time. 6 weeks of fatass 5 times is nothing when you think about it. Ironic as it is I just hit 255 this week and it seems like it is stable now so I may start my path to "normal" tomorrow. I did not mean for it to be a new years resolution but it kinda looks that way. If i can get my camera tomorrow I will start because I want to document this journey. A lot of people need to see it to believe it. I think ill document all food with pics too..

  93. JT

    never said YOU called it mumbo jumbo btw I mentioned many things besides these 2 things we shall evaluate em, ridicule em and perhaps learn or improve it.
    I hope you didn't take anything i said as disrespect. I respect you even though we disagree more or less you keep it respectful.

    I say it is draconian because it is is like a steam powered car sure it works but there are better way.

    if you meant what I suggest to gain muscle mass? usually typical scrawny types have one of three issues digestion issues which means they cant absorb enough nutrients, buffet-phobia meaning they cant mentally eat enough or they simply do not have enough "nut-up n shut up" in the gym.
    I train athletes as well, only had one scrawny kid not pan out. Exactly like the few people that set out to lose wait but failed, he is not ignorant enough. He argues and does the opposite of what I tell him and he says "but humongous guy in muscle and fitness mag says do this".

    this one is for you :) lol


  94. HAG en daz
    Good One!
    I wish you well on your eat all the food, lose all the weight program
    YES, pics and food pics too please.
    and your blog is???????


  95. Chief,

    PLEASE do that– take pics of you, take pics of the food/buffets, etc. It will do everyone so much good to see & believe what you say… even though I already do for some reason?? :)
    And I agree with grass fed momma… blog??

  96. just got done celebratin for all 2 mins (my excuse for shootin the guns off !) woot happy new year christian calendar followin' folks !


    Worry not ,

    even though i got a gut now and some chub going on I'll gladly put it all out there because of something bigger than myself…:)

    Ill let you know when my blog is ready :)


    Im working on how it will all go as we speak I'll most definitely be have a dedicated food porn pic spread. I am actually trying to figure out how to put all the calories in … maybe be all nutball about it and bring a scale to the restaurant.

  97. > http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=madoDvtKEes

    I like this guy. Oddly enough, I caught this clip for the first time not 24 hours ago and thought immediately of this blog– I wonder whether what Hof does (a less extreme form, for sure) might be a useful strategy for RRARFers who haven't quite reached that sweet spot when it comes to body temperature.

    This occurs to me as I've been taking cold showers for a couple of weeks (about 63F, maybe 7-10 minutes a day), mainly to see if I could make the season less unpleasant. (God knows my grandparents dealt with a few chilly nights, not to mention the rest of my ancestors.) A RRARF-like approach to diet has done wonders for curing my cold hands and feet, but I wanted more, and after only a few days on this regimen, here's what I noticed: frigid weather no longer a bother, ear temperature peaking at 99.4F (that's a slight increase) and I'm exuding MUCH more heat from my muscles than ever before. Even as a child my extremities were rather lukewarm, I was jealous of kids who could leave seats warm. Now I'm doing that consistently.

  98. Meant to link above to an abstract which suggests that gettin' cold may ramp up thyroid activity: Adaptation to exercise in the cold. "[W]ith more sustained exposure to cold air or water, humans can apparently develop the humoral type of acclimatisation described in small mammals, with an increased output of noradrenaline and/or thyroxine."

    Hope this is of interest to y'all… Now off to the bathroom.

  99. Happy New Year, all you weird people!

    Awesome video. Also I agree that exposing yourself to coldness does seem to have some benefits, I recently noticed that myself, but just in a minor fashion. Perhaps I should take advantage of the rest of the winter and do some experimenting.

    Also I love how the narrator of the video acts all like he possesses some superhuman powers that are unique to him and how all the experts are totally clueless.
    This once again only shows that
    1) the human body/mind is amazingly capable. If that guy can do that, everyone can. It's just a matter of training, dedication and knowing how to do it. Of course it could be a weird genetic mutation, but I highly doubt that.
    2) basically (medical) experts suck^^ and that scientific knowledge can actually be a kind of burden in it's own way. I think too many equate something not being explicable with current science as automatically false and mumbo jumbo. 200 years ago electricity would have seemed like the weirdest kind of magic to people.
    That's also one of the reasons why I think that ancient wisdom is so valuable. Many cultures, and I think especially the Chinese with TCM, were/are onto something, and I think this knowledge gets disregarded way too often just because science is only starting to understand it.

    Oh, and to finish of this post, I got a little present to all the 180 readers and especially Matt and, no, it's not the taters song:
    Here you go

  100. JT

    "Hunger" as it is usually understood (gnawing stomach discomfort, low blood sugar, irritability, shakes and diffuse feeling of weakness, etc) is a highly debilitating feeling that leaves you unable to function optimally and thus in a very bad position to actually seek out and obtain food. I doubt these feelings are evolutionarily selected responses to becoming too lean, but are rather probably symptoms of other problems you usually develop on a calorie-restricted diet. The fact that this "hunger" typically disappears completely during complete fasting when you're losing fat at the most rapid and probably would be in greatest need of finding food, points to this discomfort not being part of the bodys evolved motivational systems to eat.

    I think it more likely that appetite, quite simply the pleasurability of eating or thinking about eating food, felt at the mouth and throat, is the proper driving force of feeding behaviour, similar to how thirst is the driving force behind instinctual drinking behaviour, not unpleasant symptoms that may occur as a result of dehydration. With a lifestyle and dietary approach that takes care of the problems of blood sugar regulation and gastric juice secretion (like IF usually does well), I believe you can become very lean indeed without having to suffer the nagging hunger that more than anything usually makes typical low-calorie dieting unbearable, even allowing you to comfortably eat so few calories that you could actually inadvertently damage your metabolism, which is a risk with both IF and Low carb.

    The real question is how to go about becoming very lean without having great surges in appetite and various cravings, as well as the fatigue, poor libido, cold intolerance and other problems that come with putting your metabolism in famine mode. I'm not sure if someone like Martin Berkhan has succeeded completely with this. He does have shitloads of muscle mass and to my knowledge hasn't admitted to any problems with fatigue or cold intolerance, but he also seem to be rather obsessed with food and I have a feeling that if he were to let himself go and always eat what he craves most, he would probably gain quite a bit of fat, unlike true constitutionally lean people.

    But "hunger" is usually a lot easier to remedy, I don't think any overweight person wishing to become lean should necessarily be doomed to a life of incessant gnawing hunger, as long as they take steps to heal their metabolism and adapt a proper lifestyle.

  101. Humans are meant to live in warm climates isn't very helpful for those of us who've lived generations in the cold. I agree that doing just about any activity outside in the winter boosts the metabolism like crazy. The last blizzard all we did was shovel snow and eat, eat, eat. I got several weeks of metabolism boost out if it.

    Happy New Year, everyone. Off to make hoppin John and greens.

  102. There are very few activities more invigorating than snow shoveling! There's something about going out into the cold, busting your ass, then coming into a warm place. It sucks when you have to do it twice a day for days and weeks on end because your back ends up aching, but here and there? It's awesome.

  103. Collden,
    You stated,
    ""Hunger" as it is usually understood (gnawing stomach discomfort, low blood sugar, irritability, shakes and diffuse feeling of weakness, etc)"

    Wow! The fact that you chose that definition of hunger shows that there is some major emotional ties, mainly fear attached to your relationship to food. My definition of hunger is just the most basic form: desire to eat food.

    A while back when I leaned up on a low fat bodybuilding diet and maintained a calorie deficit over a period of several months. I was constantly hungry, but never experienced any of those symptoms you mentioned. I was so hungry I could have easily downed a couple large pizzas and then had dessert! I felt strong and stable with good energy and i trained hard everyday. This would have been the ideal state for someone in a primitive environment that had to obtain food.

    Compare this to my experiences with low carb dieting and fasting where I was never hungry. I was weak and lethargic. A terrble condition for someone in a primitive environment needing to survive.

    I do agree that being hungry is uncomfortable, but if you experience the symptoms you mention above then you are not doing it right.

  104. JT

    My impression is that the term hunger, at least in the context of prolonged dieting, is pretty widely conflated with hypoglycemia symptoms and/or gnawing stomach pain. This is for instance how the men in the Minnesota Starvation Study described the constant excruciating hunger they started to feel after a while. But as I said, I don't consider those symptoms to reflect true hunger but rather metabolic/gastrointestinal problems like dyspepsia that can usually be solved or minimized. The point being that this kind of purely physical discomfort/pain is in no way inevitable for an overweight person to become lean, yet it is often what people experience as the hardest thing to endure when running with prolonged calorie deficits.

    Your definition of hunger as "the desire to eat food" isn't very informative as there can be many different reasons you'd desire to eat food, including to alleviate symptoms of hypoglycemia or dyspepsia. However, if by "desire" you mean appetite, expected pleasure, as in "Mmm, a couple of pizzas would taste so good right about now", then we're in agreement. Though personally I wouldn't describe this feeling as uncomfortable, just as I don't think being horny is uncomfortable. In both cases I'm motivated by an expected pleasure reward, not alleviation of pain or discomfort.

    You say you were constantly hungry during your diet, and claim that hunger is uncomfortable for you. Does constant physical discomfort really sound ideal to you? I personally prefer to not experience any physical discomfort and let my appetite guide how I eat. The carrot is so much nicer than the whip.

  105. Colden, JT,

    I would describe three types of "hunger"

    1.) desire for reward such as yumm' the pizza would be good, which can be easily dodged if you are full from rarrfing(your favorite foods will be gross) or mentally "full" from other sources of pleasure.

    2.) and the ghrelin induced variety which is more like an alarm clock to remind you to eat such as a slight discomfort and the typical "grumble grumble " found the original zelda this own can go away with fasting to make life bearable in starvation situations.
    However eventually you will hit number 3 type or die.

    3.) a deep urge to intake calories. The "drowning in water" type I described in my other comment which is more of an "a eat or die" response that typically lean people can not understand unless of course they were stuck on a deserted island such as the starvation study colden mentioned.
    this feeling can also manifest itself from intense weight training.

  106. Hey Chief, your references to classic video games like Zelda and Sonic haven't gone unnoticed or unappreciated.

    When in calorie deficit type dieting I would occasionally experience that sort of desperate hunger that had nothing to do with rumbling in the tummy or hypoglycemic symptoms. It was a overpowering desire to eat, usually carbs, that could only be satiated by eating a ridiculous amount in a short period of time. I can remember coming home from the gym so hungry for carbs I would look at a canister of raw oatmeal, longingly. Like yeah, I could and DID eat raw oatmeal or pasta in that state. It had nothing to do with metabolic need and everything to do with the psychology of deprivation.

    That's the kind of damaging hunger I've pretty much been free of since eating to appetite for an extended period without macronutrient restriction.

  107. jenny,
    I know what you mean about that "desperate hunger"– while I gained weight going from slightly underweight back to *a bit above* my setpoint, food tasted sooo good… ANY food. I remember eating unflavored, wet protein powder that I was going to mix into something.. GROSS. Now, not all foods taste good to me and I am becoming a somewhat picky eater again. I consider this a good sign that my body is being a little more selective with nutrients.

  108. Jenny,

    ;) I should have said sonic rings though lol rings coins..stupid trademark issues its all the same

    thats what i was talking about though that "fuck it gimme those uncooked ramen noodles" hungry
    I would argue the phycology of deprivation is only true when you deprive below metabolic needs therefore it would not exist without the other. hence the phycological problem van only exist if your body requires more than you give it. such as the chicken and an egg dilemma.

    damn I type bad sorry … here is how it should have read.

    typical "grumble grumble " found ( IN) the original zelda this ONE ( not own ..wtf lol) can go away with fasting to make life bearable in starvation situations.

  109. I have to agree with Collden on this one. True hunger for me is indeed:

    ""Hunger" as it is usually understood (gnawing stomach discomfort, low blood sugar, irritability, shakes and diffuse feeling of weakness, etc)"

    And it is something I still experience and have done since the last few years, probably since I started eating Paleo and stressed out my adrenals, also while dieting back in the day. In fact i can still get this feeling daily (not as extreme as it once was) if I do not eat enough or my meals are thrown out of schedule.

    It something I really would like to get over in the next year as it makes things difficult when I cant eat when I want to. I am assuming it will come with better adrenal health.

    In my early teens I could be hungry but feel fine mentally and physically, just knew I needed food. I am guessing this is because the body could cope with the need for food by some kind of mechanism.

  110. @Jenny re: raw oatmeal, been there, done that! Back during my full blown ED days, I would binge on raw oatmeal a lot. Ugh. Thinking of all the nice bowls of cooked oatmeal with butter and brown sugar I could have had instead, I just want to kick myself. But instead, I will be kind and promise to feed myself a bowl of oatmeal the next time I feel like eating it.

    RE: low-carb WAPFers, looks like KTKK shouldn't have skipped Stephan's talk at Wise Traditions! I am curious to see how this Weight Loss & Wellness Adventure pans out…

    So glad I'm having a Diet Free January, and 2011, this year.

    Oh yeah, I also could only find a link to the original 180DM in my email. Are others having this problem?

  111. @Gazelle: Same for me with the original version.

  112. Hey guys just wanted to share my experience with you guys, I followed the instructions on http://www.lessenfat.com and it helped me alot. I lost 30 pounds in 45 days. I highly recommend you guys try it.

  113. Such a inspirable and good post . I got new knowledge able while reading this . Keep sharing this type of post.


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