Reactive Hypoglycemia

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In the last post on Anorexia, I promised to discuss what I believe to be a very common problem for any long-term dieter – particularly one that has taken their metabolism down to the extremes seen among underweight anorexics. This is what is deemed “reactive hypoglycemia.”

The telltale sign of reactive hypoglycemia, without using a glucose meter, is tremendous hunger and shakiness within an hour or two of eating a meal. A glucose meter provides more hard evidence of the condition, and typically shows a high fasting blood sugar level that plummets after ingesting food.

The basics of reactive hypoglycemia, which are experienced most commonly by people who have lost a lot of weight and have entered into a functional state of starvation (whether going from 400 to 250 pounds on a low-carb or calorie-restricted diet, or going from 120 to 80 pounds via eating disorders seems to be somewhat inconsequential).

In this well-hidden Jimmy Moore podcast, a former colleague of Dr. Atkins, Keith Berkowitz, describes how, in those who have lost a lot of weight, he keeps repeatedly seeing the strange phenomenon known as reactive hypoglycemia in his patients.

CLICK HERE TO LISTEN

Traditionally, it is well known that eating a diet with a pretty high ratio of dietary protein to carbohydrate helps to medicate this problem. The high ratio helps to trigger glucagon release, which triggers the release of stored carbohydrate – keeping blood sugar levels more stable. One of the first to publish a book exclusively on hypoglycemia was Broda Barnes, who published Hope for Hypoglycemia: It’s Not Your Mind, It’s Your Liver with his wife Charlotte in 1978 – the year the world began (at around midnight between February 6th and 7th according to my mom).  More on Broda Barnes in DIET RECOVERY.

In the book, Barnes reveals some tremendous insights. The first is that he was able to give “hope” to hypoglycemics by supplementing desiccated thyroid extract in sufficient doses to raise basal body temperature to 97.8 to 98.2 degrees F (armpit temp). This appeared to completely eradicate the condition for many patients, allowing them to eat foods they never thought they’d ever be able to eat again, like chocolate cake, without having extreme hypoglycemic reactions (like that noted by Ailu in the comments in the last post, who has literally passed out after eating pancakes by themselves for breakfast).

This makes perfect sense when you consider that, when dropping well below the body weight set point, humans have been repeatedly shown to have huge drops in body temperature/metabolism – well beyond what can explained by the change in body mass. In fact, this quote by Robert Pool, author of what I consider to be perhaps the best book written on the puzzling illness of obesity in reference to Rudy Leibel’s work, says it all:

“Leibel found that the non-obese group, which consisted of 12 men and 14 women who weighed an average of 138 pounds, needed an average of 2,280 calories per day to maintain weight. By contrast, the obese group, an identical number of men and women who weighed an average of 335 pounds, needed 3,651 calories a day. This wasn’t surprising – the obese subjects weighed nearly two and half times as much as the control group, so it seemed reasonable that they might need an extra 1,400 calories a day to maintain that weight. What was surprising, though, was the comparison after the weight loss. After the 26 obese patients had lost an average of 115 pounds apiece, they weighed an average of 220, and at this reduced weight their bodies demanded just 2,171 calories a day. In other words, these reduced-obese patients, who still weighed an average of 80 pounds apiece more than the lean subjects, had to eat 100 calories a day less to maintain their weight.”

Might I also mention that these reduced obese subjects, when eating the 2,171 calories required to maintain their new weight, ALL experienced ravenous and gnawing hunger which persisted until every ounce of weight they had lost was regained.

Anyway, the point is that whether fat or thin, the starvation reaction of the body is the starvation reaction of the body – whether you weigh 220 or 60 pounds. And the result is often the same when it comes to reactive hypoglycemia, which very commonly affects the hypometabolic, and is a huge barrier for the anorexic and reduced obese alike when it comes to reintroducing carbohydrates into their diet. Because when they do – crash and burn. Not only that, but it re-awakens a beastly and outrageous hunger that is the worst nightmare of both Anorexics and obese alike. Fear of weight gain and out-of-control eating set in quickly.

So, what the hell do you eat if you are trying to overcome hypoglycemia? That’s a good question, because the standard high-protein, low-carbohydrate diet given to hypoglycemics since forever to control and medicate the condition, also happens to lower metabolism according to Dr. Barnes, who knew a thing or two about it…

“…it has been clearly established that a high protein diet lowers the metabolic rate, [therefore] symptoms of hypothyroidism will be aggravated… Hypoglycemia may be controlled on the high protein diet, but the other symptoms of thyroid deficiency which usually accompany hypoglycemia are aggravated.”

I agree, and it makes sense on some level that protein would lower metabolism. For starters, protein, calorie for calorie, is more satiating. Therefore, you eat less food – not good for the metabolism of someone in a functional state of starvation. Secondly, consuming EXCESS protein beyond what your body uses (and your body uses very little for muscle-building if you are not eating very many carbohydrates – the Taxi for getting dietary protein into muscle cells), forces the excess protein to be burned as energy (protein oxidation). Uh oh, you need a rise in adrenal hormones like cortisol to use protein as fuel, which are antagonistic to the thyroid, increase insulin resistance, etc.

And lastly, protein requires more energy to digest, which is one reason nearly all diet authors advocate big protein intakes. It causes a greater heat production (thermogenesis from food digestion) than any other type of food – grounds for saying it “raises your metabolism!” Well yes, it “burns more calories” and causes a postprandial rise in body heat, but when this causes your body’s resting energy expenditure to decline, then it’s actually counterproductive, not productive.

“To date, when the symptoms of hypothyroidism are relieved, hypoglycemia, like the others, disappears.”

-Broda Barnes

I should also mention that reactive hypoglycemia appears to be caused by secreting WAY too much insulin in response to ingested food.  I believe this to be an aggressive attempt by the body to store food into cells – part of the programmed famine response of the human body.

136 Comments

  1. I think "slightly creepy" is an understatement. Honestly, what the heck where the people who made that picture thinking.

    And congratulations to your award-kinda thingie.

    Oh, and good post as well, but that was to be expected.

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  2. I beg to differ on one important point. The world began about 3-1/2 months earlier on October 26th, 1977.

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  3. "eat high-fat/low-carb with the RIGHT amount of protein (1 gram per kg of body weight) and slowly displace an increasing amount of fat with carbohydrate"

    I have been doing this for the past few months and it's going well. I didn't tolerate carbs for a long time. After my digestion finally got better and energy improved (yes on high-fat, mod protein, low-carb), I managed to slowly increase carbs without the blood sugar crashes and waking up in the middle of the night episodes. I kept a moderate protein intake pretty steady the whole time and started eating more fruit and potatoes. I went from feeling good on 90-120g of carbs per day to about 150-200g per day.

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  4. Good post,

    I am wondering if the amount of protein consumed is important, as eating protein causes a rise in glucagon which as a function raises blood sugar.

    Is it possible to be glucagon resistant?? Perhaps too much glucagon is causing the realease of excess sugar which causes a greater release of insulin to counter balance, if that is physiologically possible

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  5. Great Kat, good to know, and glad to hear it.

    Annabelle,

    I have come across some evidence that suggests that the world did indeed exist prior to 2/6/78, but don't find the evidence particularly compelling or interesting.

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  6. I've been reading some of your past posts and really looking through what you have to say (via e-book, guest posts) and find it fascinating.
    I am in "recovery" from bulimia (which has been more of bulima-rexia from a pathology standpoint) and was wondering what you think about doing the RRARF for that? I rarely binge, and my purging is more confined to either overexercising, restricting, or "normal-meal vomiting." I think I have been undernourished for many years and am coming off of a high-carb vegetarian transition to low-ish carb pescetarian, but I am now trying to normalize my eating habits and alleviate e.d. symptoms. I have been underweight and low-normal weight for the past few years, but my body fat is likely higher than it "should" be considering my level of exercise, amt. that i eat, etc.
    I really want to try the RRARF despite my intense fear of the weight gain because i think it might get rid of food thoughts, obsessions, and the hunger i experience on a day-to-day basis. I have very low blood pressure (almost faint upon standing), and increasing daily fatigue.
    Suggestions?

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  7. Looking more and more like the Kitavin ratios everyday. If I can eat white rice, yams, and white potatoes as my starch, veggies as desired, throw in some fruit for fun, some animal meat and a little butter to top it off, that is definitely sustainable. I will still have a high-fat/low-carb meal here and there (salad with dressing and feta cheese) but I like the idea of keeping to the outline above. Please let me know if I'm off course.

    So we're pretty much eating to satiety?

    The more I think about this approach, the more I think that this makes sense with what we've been doing for awhile. I remember reading a very interesting part in the book Born to Run where he describes how once we started eating starch, that we were able to divert energy to brain development and away from digestive efforts. That is what made us what we are today. I don't mean to go Paleo on you but I think it's appropriate.

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  8. I've been eating balanced meals for several months now, have cut out the espressos and cigarettes, gained thirty freaking pounds, haven't reached proper body temperature yet and am still having problems as evidenced by experiencing extreme fatigue to the point of passing out after eating oatmeal for breakfast yesterday.

    This is an abosolute bitch. Yes I'm sorry for years of starving myself, eating poorly, partying, staying out late, smoking drinking freddos all day, having a good time and being in my freaking 20's while looking good and feeling energetic but I'VE FUCKING HAD ENOUGH OF BEING A FATASS. THIS ABSOLUTELY SUCKS.

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  9. Riles/JT, have you seen the seemingly effortless fat loss/muscle gain that Matt has in the past couple of weeks when you switched to high starch, mod/low fat and protein? Thanks

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  10. Mark-

    I think you're on track, and the Kitavans are just one of many human cultures that ate a ratio like that. Many people all over Africa and Asia consumed even more carbohydrate by percentage of calories – particularly in terms of its relationship with fat (an 8 to 1 ratio or higher). In fact, no other primate species consumes less than 70% of calories as carbohydrate.

    And I'd say my diet has been low-fat (10%) and moderate protein (15%), not moderate fat and low protein.

    Yeah, I would eat just enough to satisfy your appetite and not beyond. If you notice hunger rising, you can eat beyond appetite for a day or two while keeping fat extremely low (5-10%). This will give you a little muscle growth, increase metabolism, and decrease hunger with vitually no potential for fat gain during that period. Then resume eating just enough to satisfy appetite.

    I think you'll get better recovery from those intense Crossfit sessions too.

    KASH-

    Hang in there stallion. We need your experience with reintroducing carbs to provide some good insight on how it can be done, because once you do, I think you'll be able to pursue whatever body composition goals you have in mind. I have no interest in being a fatass or keeping my followers from being able to get lean either.

    Nicole-

    Although a lower carb diet can be rebalancing for a long-term vegetarian, I think your only major problem as a vegetarian stemmed from undereating and eating no animal protein whatsoever. I would rather see you incorporate fish and continue eating high in carbohydrates than swing to low-carb or anything close to it.

    I also think your chances of fat gain are much less if you can keep your ratio of carbohydrate to fat pretty high.

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  11. @ Mark,
    Yes I saw dramatic composition changes but it wasn't instant. I saw an increase of muscle first along with increased stamina while lifting. Then after another month I began dropping fat rather fast. Now, I am to the point where I can stuff myself with food and still continue to get leaner. But I want to mention that I also do high volume high intensity training.

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  12. Thanks Riles. The training does have an impact. I have done low volume high-intensity training myself, but it still makes a big difference even at low volume. I think part of the reason is due to incorporating all muscle systems in the workout, and doing lots of MET-style movements (asymetrical, high-speed, involving multiple muscle groups at once).

    Working out builds strength, muscle hardness, and alters hormones to drive more protein into muscle and less into fat. But ultimately I think eating is where most increases in muscle growth will come from, like the MNP guy suggests.

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  13. Matt,my bro,my compadre etc etc….great post and hits home as I am a severe hypoglycemic.I have been trying your high carb/low protein and fat diet but can't help think you have come back to SAD.Yes its potatoes instead of wheat but converted in the body its all glucose.That said I feel alot more energetic and not really having bad hypo attacks.At work I am literally running up stairs where before I would take elevator.Just a better feeling of health and energy.Only thing is my blood pressure rises rapidly when I high carb.If I stick with this and get the results I want I will just medicate for BP as I have in past.

    You failed to mention one thing and that is liver IR.I believe it is my issue and probably alot of hypoglycemics.The video "Sugar the bitter truth" opened my eyes to what might be happening.See as Dr.Lustig pointed out fructose hits the liver like alcohol….in effect the same thing.So what am I getting at here?Well when I go on a bender and drink for 2 days straight my hypo becomes debilitating.Anything I put in my mouth causes me to enter nodsville with all its ailments like change of personalty to very shy,extreme nervousness from common things like a door opening,labored breathing and of course the oh so lovely nods.Same thing from sugar though I have been startingto learn.I am alright when I eat glucose but when I break and go to town on ice cream,donuts and soda I revert back to the alcoholic feeling.Since I have been a heavy drinker and drug user my whole life this happens very rapidly…one day sugar binge and two days alcohol.Maybe one day with the alcohol but the hangover covers it up.

    I remember yrs back I went to visit my father and read Sugar Busters on plane ride.I got off the plane and went full steam ahead with it.Cheerios and low fat milk for breakfast as example.In the two weeks I spent there I leaned up and looked and felt healthier than I had in yrs.Even a picture of my last day there proved that it wasn't in my mind.Sadly I quit it shortly after wards.Past two days I have eaten 5cups cheerios with 2 cups milk for breakfast,lunch is huge plate rice and beans with some steak and dinner is 3 large potatoes with6 corn tortillas and one hamburger patty made into a stew.Feeling pretty good right now typing this and I hope this cures me of my hypoglycemia and love handles too.

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  14. Thanks Matt, I'm looking forward to your post on a sample day of eating. It will help me wrap my head around what to eat.

    I've been skipping breakfast (just coffee with some cream) and eating lunch during the week because my workday is very busy before noon.

    Hopefully the increased calorie intake will be offset by better lifting sessions so that I can still lean out/fill out muscle.

    Thanks Riles, I really appreciate the feedback. I don't know if my workout is as high volume as yours is but I do 2-3 days of Krav Maga and a couple of days of exhausting full body movements (squats, handstand push-ups, deadlifts, ring dips, weighted chins) following Scott Abel's approach of, "How much you lift is secondary to how hard you lift." I'm thinking more high rep sets to failure rather than 5×3. Plus a Crossfit WOD or two if I feel up to it.

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  15. It's funny now that I think back to when I was fatter and didn't do any exercise and diet was SEE-Food style, I would have headaches and dizziness/nausea all day if I didn't drink soda. I am pretty sure now that I think about it, it was probably from hypoglycemia maybe spurred by the minimum 6-pack of pepsi I drank every day.

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  16. Matt- So what happens when you decide to have a big Matt Stone mixed meal? Are you enhancing your metabolism to be able to tolerate it without gaining fat, or are you confined to bread without the butter forever (should you choose to remain lean)?

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  17. Trading a 6-pack for a 6-pack. I like it. Jannis in the last post didn't believe that Americans could possibly consume 200-250 grams of sugar per day. Welcome to America baby. A 6-pack of soda daily for every man, woman, and child (this does not include breakfast cereal, Sunny D, sugared yoghurt, Chips Ahoy, Oreos, or Doughnuts).

    Wolf-

    Great post. I'm glad to hear it's working. My preference for switching to high carbs is just diving in, and probably keeping meal size very small – eating every 2 hours for someone just coming out of the gates.

    And yes, the liver has a lot to do with hypoglycemia. Anything containing fructose or alcohol are the only things that have ever given me classic hypoglycemic reactions (wake up at 4am, sweating, with hunger pangs for example). This even happened recently on the vacation I took (in April) which I have mentioned dropped my body temperature, increased body fat, and sent my appetite wild.

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  18. Katerina-

    Surpisingly, I can still digest huge mixed meals really well. Last night I had a huge pile of beans, a cheeseburger, several pieces of high-fat cornbread, corn on the cob, crab dip, crackers, raw vegetables…

    It was a big meal and a very complex meal, but my digestion was perfect. I was actually a little surprised.

    As far as leanness, I think just about anybody, once they've achieved a high body temperature, will be able to eat large, mixed, whole food, high everything meals to appetite and maintain energy balance without willpower. But I am definitely starting to believe that it is important to heal the metabolism without fat gain, and that maximizing the starch to fat ratio in the diet is the key to doing that from a recovery standpoint. At least for many that will be the case, particularly former low-carbers.

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  19. Nicole,

    I was in your shoes almost 20 years ago, having slid into anorexia after a few years of poor eating and teenage anxiety (I too believe that the vegetarianism/low protein diet was a trigger). When I tried to get over the anorexia by eating more (sweets of course) I was diagnosed with bulimarexia — bingeing/starving. Those years were HELL on earth.

    I would suggest a very slow transition rather than jumping right into HED — just because I remember the craziness and bad thoughts and terrible digestion I had when I ate a lot. What helped me was a rigidly controlled, totally balanced maintenance diet that helped me eat normally and regularly without, at first, gaining weight.

    Once I got the wild swings under control, I could slowly begin to work on gaining weight.

    BTW, people say that you "never recover" from this stuff — I don't believe it's true. Soon after reaching a normal weight, I felt something snap in my brain, and I KNEW I'd never be able to starve or binge again. I haven't.

    best of luck to you!

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  20. Great stuff.

    Digestive problems will also cause hypoglycemia, i.e. leaky gut or food sensitivities or general malabsorption.

    I have a friend who has been having hypoglycemic symptoms for quite a while (severe shakiness an hour or two after eating), but as far as I know he's never "dieted" or been anorexic or obese. He does, however, do a lot of strength training, is very lean and muscular, and mostly eats protein (probably too much) and carbs (prob not enough), and is very fond of beer and wine.

    Maybe I just answered my own question, but can anyone pinpoint why he would be hypoglycemic, given such little information about him?

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  21. One thing that i have found is that it helps to reverse the normal eating patterns. Most people eat high carb low/no protein breakfasts, and then later in the day the have higher protein. I like having higher protein for breakfast and then high carb low protein at night. This will help if people have hypoglycemic problems on a high carb breakfast.

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  22. Matt said: "I am definitely starting to believe that it is important to heal the metabolism without fat gain"

    I was wondering about this myself. The prevailing wisdom here a few months ago seemed to be different: heal the metabolism first, then lose any fat gained. It sort of seemed inevitable. If you have damaged insulin, leptin, or adrenal systems, how are you going to control fat gain and fix the issues at the same time? But maybe keeping fat gain low or nonexistant is a sign of keeping other systems in balance while things heal.

    I do agree with Matt that somebody has a healthy metabolism should be able to eat large mixed meals. Who wants to be on the rabbit food diet all their life?

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  23. WELL, for me… and i am only on day four of his switch-a-roo in diet… here's what happens an i 'think' works but would like comments

    - my fasting glucose is in the 80's… good or bad? i dont know

    - i increased my carbs, the first day without much fat/protein at all. had wild high blood suagr, horrendous digestion etc etc

    - second-4th days… fasting glucose still in te 80's, but eat very high fat and moderate carb and least amount of protein i can get by with. i feel good, but my blood sugar is still drpping sometimes instead of rising aftr meals.

    you mentioned the shakiness aftermeals… i get that. my hands tremble and i feel literally shaky. but im not anymore hungry at all(well i never actually feel hunger i just eat). only happens when the carbs are higher and fat is not adequate for it. this happens IMMEDIATELY after eating for me, not an hour later.

    everything you said makes sense. i now 'get it' about the protein and metabolism. so it doesnt really speed up the body(in my case) it is actually causing more problems for me than i need at the moment. my body thinks when it has excess prtein it needs to work overtime and it is already working overtime persay with recovery. and i def dnt need more cortisol and adrenal problems than the massive ones i have now.

    why is it you recommend matching protein to carb and LOW fat? my carbs are higher than my protein, and my fat is definitely high.

    hunger definitely scares me, and i am scared for the ay my body is like WOAH feed me. a low protein, mod fat-carb is what seems to be helping. i am in love with coconut butter…high fat, 12 carbs in 2 T and lots of calories!

    5 to 1 ratio in a healed body of carb to protein…that one is something to work toward.

    good fat is so freaking healthy why is it you want to increase carbs while lowering fat?

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  24. I agree that once you reach a proper metabolic set point, you can eat just about any macronutrient ratio without gaining weight(fat). But I think the best way to maintain and stay lean and healthy is with low fat diet.

    Eating high carb low fat 90% of the time with the occasional high fat mixed meal is much more satisfying and seems to match with how most cultures ate for the most part.

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  25. OK, I'm assuming here, because it hasn't been stated directly – is this high unrefined carb, low fat, low protein going to be the best way to lose extra fat? I've been eating the original-style HED for 5 months, and while my BBT is up, blood glucose is down, weight/size is stabilized, I'm still carrying around about 50 (?) lbs of extra fat (30 of that came in the last 4 months after ditching 1.5 years of low carb.)

    I know I've heard before that the best way to burn fat is to increase muscle, but really, being a girl I don't need huge biceps and I'm not worried about having a 6-pack. Matt has been talking about losing a pound of fat per week on this high starch/low fat deal, but I've been doing it for 2 weeks and haven't noticed anything as far as body composition is concerned. My fasting and postprandial BG is excellent – even better than when I was on insulin for gestational diabetes. So I know good things are happening. But for pete's sake, I'm sympathizing with Kash Money here. Fat sucks.

    Let me tell you the advice I'm looking for: keep pounding the potatoes and be patient. Because I really don't want to switch up my diet any more and I'm kinda liking the potatoes.

    What I really wish is that I hadn't eaten all that extra fat these last months. I thought I loved cheese and lots of butter and bacon etc etc, but right now I feel completely fine without it. I took Jenny's advice and use milk now in my potatoes and I'm just as happy as when they were loaded with butter and sour cream.

    Anyway.

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  26. JT, I second the protein with breakfast comment. I notice that my first meal needs to contain the most protein, and then usually I can make it to the next meal without any major blood sugar problems. I also seem to have less cravings later on in the day if I've had a good dose of protein earlier.

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  27. I'm also interested in Dannyelle's question although I have much less fat to lose.

    I'm not overly interested in gym workouts but will do maybe a couple a week.

    I want to know what is meant by "high volume", "low volume", "high intensity". And somebody please explain "How much you lift is secondary to how hard you lift".

    I really struggle to understand the Scott Abel stuff.

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  28. Hey Aaron. I pulled that Abel quote from his blog. I don't have any of his books or DVDs but if I have it right (JT would be the point man on this), Scott Abel wants people to train with intensity and full effort. He prefers people to use higher reps at a lower weight vs doing 5×3. This isn't a freebie to start using the neoprene dumbbells because you still need to push yourself. Thinking about thus I would agree. I can do 3 sets of deadlift/squat/bench at under 5 reps and even come close to failure on a couple of the sets and be ready to do a Crossfit WOD in 5 minutes. 1 set of 20 rep back squats with a weight that is my 10 rep max, that's intensity and leaves me walking for the door. Hopefully this helps and please chime in with tour thoughts JT because I could be way off the mark. My workout in an hour is Going to be like this, I'm looking forward to hitting it hard and then having 3-4 cups of rice!

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  29. thanks matt and maggieo… it's a frustrating process to get my body healthy while my brain keeps trying to get in the way. i will try a moderate approach–though of course moderation is the hardest thing for me to achieve!

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  30. Aaron,
    Volume and Intensity are relative words it is hard to use numbers as it is very individual.

    Volume is generally understood as the amount of time muscle is under tension and also the frequency of the training.

    Intensity is about not so much the amount of weight(% of 1RM) that you use but actually taking training to a point of failure aka making your training more difficult. You can increase intensity by shortening rest between sets, changing tempo of the weight being lifted, increasing volume, etc.

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  31. why do you say that carbs are the "taxi" for protein to get in cells? amino acids themselves are insulinogenic and can get into the cells themselves without carbohydrates.

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  32. Had severe hypoglycemia most my life. Learned years ago that the best way to get a migraine is to eat sugars/carbs and no protein….

    When I quit eating cane sugar ten years ago my boyfriend said that he got a new girlfriend….that's how much better my mood swings got. But it all came back when I went low carb to the point of my psychologist thinking I had gotten a new wave of PTSD….but it turns out now that it was the low carb… curses to low carb….

    When I got off of low carb 6 weeks ago, I actually got hypoglycemia from as little as two tablespoons of raw milk on an empty stomach….but then about 2 weeks later, I was able to drink a whole cup before I got hypoglycemia. (Then I realized I was allergic to it for other reasons and quit milk altogether). I get an instant migraine still today if I eat a pack of blueberries between meals. But I get skin breakouts and stomach cramps if I eat berries with a meal…..oh the joy…..

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  33. Matt, my podcast interviews with Dr. Keith Berkowitz are not "well hidden" in any way. If you type in "Reactive Hypoglycemia" in a search on my podcast web site, then you'll see all three of my interviews with him listed in plain sight.

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  34. Ha ha. I didn't mean that they were suppressed from view or anything like that Jimmy, just that few have listened to your Berkowitz podcast from way back when.

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  35. AaronF-

    Sorry, there are a few training nerds around here. I wouldn't be joining them if I didn't think some of Abel's ideas were applicable to improving metabolism, health, and body composition – which I think they probably are.

    Abel doesn't have one single approach or style of training. He uses several different styles for various types of results, which is what makes him a superior trainer for fitness competitors, and among the best, if not the best sports and body recomposition scientist out there.

    His basic traning methods are referred to as Metabolic Enhancement Training, Innervation Training, and various Hybrid training approaches for bodybuilders.

    His most valuable ideas when it comes to straight weight training is that keeping the targeted muscle under constant tension yields better muscle growth than going into the gym and just "doing exercises."

    One example he gives is the world record holder for situps, and how he does not have developed abs. Why? Because he's not training his abs. Getting good at doing situps means recruiting as much support as possible from secondary muscles, using momentum, and doing whatever you can to take the strain off of the abdominals. A proper set of ab work would probably be 15 reps with just the abs, and no other muscles, constantly under strain.

    And it's not that he's about light weight, he's about using the appropriate weight so that you can isolate the muscle correctly and not involve other muscles in the exercise. Like biceps… Doing regular curls is a great way to work your back and shoulder muscles and take strain off of the bicep. However, extend the arm straight out and use a cable instead and you are working the bicep with maximum efficiency. Note, these biceps are on a guy who passes polygraphs and multiple drug tests, and is a steroid-free natural bodybuilder…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0FDnQrUJ6XM

    He also doesn't count reps, but "feels" the reps, and uses biofeedback to know when to stop instead of just reaching a particular number. It's all about working the muscle hard enough to force it to adapt. The result is that he is as huge and ripped as Franco Columbo ever was, but probably half as strong. His emphasis is building muscle, not strength.

    His other ideas are totally different though, designed to activate whole muscle groups with high velocity and improve metabolism. Kind of like full-body plyometrics.

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  36. Matt,

    I am in the same boat as danyelle1 – I've been gaining weight pretty steadily since February when I switched from low-carb to HED (well, my version … I have digestive issues).

    I hope you plan on offering advice for people who transitioned from low-carb to HED and gained a lot of fat. Maybe the new approach you're advocating is the best one, but I hope you have some advice for those of us who did gain a lot of fat after leaving low-carb behind (whether by following HED or any other diet).

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  37. Danyelle-

    We're working on it. I do think that, as long as you are not starving yourself, that potatoes may very well take you there. I know you are not concerned about abs or anything like that, but the principles of fat loss without destroying metabolism are ultimately the same for men and women, young and old, 10 pounds over weight or obese. We'll keep chipping away at it.

    Glad to hear that you've noticed some big health improvements. Like I say, the weight is often the last thing addressed, but the healthier you are, the more likely you are to lose it. I hope your patience will be rewarded.

    Malpaz-

    The healthiness of pounding excess fat is certainly debatable. Fats will help you, and I see no reason to restrict them. I think JT said it best when he stressed that no major food restriction of any kind should occupy the forefront of your mind as you try to improve your health.

    But I do know that fat gain is a major concern of yours, and that upstaging both fat and protein with carbohydrate can dramatically improve your carbohydrate tolerance, metabolism, etc. – not to mention give you greater muscle mass in proportion to body fat as you go from underweight to normal weight.

    Anonymous-

    Protein does trigger insulin just as carbohydrates do, and can, without carbohydrates, transport amino acids into cells. But it cannot do so at nearly the same rate of efficiency of carbohydrates, consuming excessive protein is a major health negative from my experience (and expensive), and the vast majority of the excess protein still gets converted to glucose – but with a huge rise in cortisol and drop in thyroid activity to go along with it unlike using carbohydrates for the same function.

    Protein, as a "taxi driver," basically takes you to your destination but doesn't let you out of the car – then drives back halfway in the wrong direction before letting you out.

    Lisa E.-

    I first noticed big decreases is in carb tolerance only 4 months into a low-carb diet. Milk was the first thing to set off a hypoglycemic reaction (drank it by itself for breakfast one day). Of course I said, "wow, sugar in the milk triggers hypoglycemia – sugar baaaaad!!!"

    I continued to do the same detective work with fruit, other sugars, etc. After 2 years of low-carb I couldn't eat a banana without having a crying fit within the next 24 hours following.

    Anyway, these problems can be overcome, and it's not the carbohydrates' fault, but the person with the shoddy metabolism's fault.

    Reply
  38. "But I do know that fat gain is a major concern of yours, and that upstaging both fat and protein with carbohydrate can dramatically improve your carbohydrate tolerance, metabolism, etc. – not to mention give you greater muscle mass in proportion to body fat as you go from underweight to normal weight. "

    BTW- I am a 'normal' BMI of 18 by standards in weight now, as I have put on 10 lbs the past 10 weeks. Obviously, I know best that I am not meant to sit at a BMI of 18 and most likely it wont restore my period.

    What does upstaging fat and protein with carbohydrate mean?

    Reply
  39. Danyelle:

    I'm glad the milk and taters are working for you.

    I think you should definitely hang in there. It might take a while for your body to adapt to the new regime and start loosing fat. Also, is your body temperature up where you want it to be?

    I think many of us really need a fat refeed. I know I needed it after years and years of low fat dieting. I also needed it to stay on RARF bandwagon in the beginning. Since you were low-carb already, maybe you didn't need the huge amounts of fat. And since you have dumped the fat easily, maybe you could have stayed on game in the beginning without it.

    I think you shouldn't second guess yourself and beat yourself up about it. Look at the positive health gains. Concentrate on those as you work on body recomposition.

    Reply
  40. danyelle wrote:

    "OK, I'm assuming here, because it hasn't been stated directly – is this high unrefined carb, low fat, low protein going to be the best way to lose extra fat? I've been eating the original-style HED for 5 months, and while my BBT is up, blood glucose is down, weight/size is stabilized, I'm still carrying around about 50 (?) lbs of extra fat (30 of that came in the last 4 months after ditching 1.5 years of low carb.)"

    This could have been written by me! Except I was low carb for about 7+ years, including a 2-year stint of ZC (which I highly regret). I also wish I hadn't included so much fat in my return to carbs, 2 years ago. I could have saved myself a massive rebound.

    But keep it up, really. I've been at the low-fat, controlled-protein thing for about the same length of time as Matt and I'm also losing about an average of a pound a week. I have only weighed 2 or 3 times in this period since my weight fluctates a lot with my cycle and I don't want to be discouraged by water retention. Nor am I prepared to be a slave to my scale again. So I wouldn't weigh yourself more than about once a month, if I were you. Just keep at it and expect great things. :)

    Reply
  41. Also, remember that a lot of that gain is lean mass. I just calculated my body fat (approximate, just from my wrist, hip and waist measurements) and although I have gained the same amount of weight as you have, since reintroducing carbs, I also currently have a LBM of approximately 133 lbs. And I'm only 5'4". So, basically, I'm built like a brick shit house under all my chub. ;)

    That desire of most women to weigh under 130 lbs, no matter what their height is just silly. Why would I want to give up any of that precious metabolically-active lean tissue?? I'd really love to maintain it all as I'm losing fat, so my metabolism stays nice and high. Remember, muscle doesn't always make you look really bulky. It weighs more than fat. You can have lots of muscle still be very lean and compact.

    Reply
  42. Glad to hear hypoglycemia can be overcome. I guess RRARF will do it eventually?

    I can only dream of a day when I can drink milk and eat fruit again without getting major problems…..

    I basically have all the symptoms that Dr Berkowitz mentions in the interview. (frequent night urination, feeling hungry after you eat, dizzy, heart palpitations, fatigue, anxiety, tired after eating etc)

    I find it interesting that the body itself seems to be telling us what to do, when it sends the signal of hunger right after a meal, it probably does so because it still needs more nutrients. Smart body….. :)

    But in typical fashion the Dr comes up with suggestions in how to best ignore the feelings of hunger…instead of honoring this signal. (eating cinnamon or more frequent small meals)

    Also, a big fat THANK YOU to everyone here on 180 for participating in this ongoing major research/emperiment in how to heal metabolism, and how to get off of low carb diets. All your hard work is helping me getting back to a more normal life. I can't tell you how much it means to me. I wanted to get off of low carb for at least a year before finding 180, but didn't know how. I fear I'd still be on it if it wasn't for everyone over here, and of course Matt's brain, but also your collective experiences are crucial in this process. I'm honored to finally be a part of the "ex-low-carber-pack". :)

    Reply
  43. I think the question some of us girls have (or at least I have)is – we've put on the fat, and we're switching to HC/lower-fat. Can we get the fat-loss results you've been talking about in your posts without the training? Call me lazy, call me tired, call me a mother of three, but I just have no interest in reps, HIIT, Crossfit, or any additional exercise and all that stuff. I prefer to get my exercise from walking the dogs, gardening, raking the yard, hanging the laundry, etc. And honestly, by the time I'm done with all that, I'm just too tired. I've seen a lot of health improvements, but I'm… still too tired…

    So, can we lean out on HC without doing specific exercise?

    Reply
  44. And I need to add, I'm still gaining, still! Eating HC/LF to appetite. And I don't think it's muscle based on the measurements.

    So do I need to be patient or do I need the muscle-building exercise?

    Reply
  45. @Lorelei – I am 100% with you on that. I am curious about the same thing.

    Reply
  46. Matt said: "Anyway, these problems can be overcome, and it's not the carbohydrates' fault, but the person with the shoddy metabolism's fault."

    That's gold Jerry! gold!

    Sorry about that. Ok, so I have been doing RRARF for a month now. I outgrew all my shorts I bought for work and am in my (fat) size 34 pants and sweatin it up at work everyday now (thanks Matt). I haven't checked my temps in a week but they aren't budging. My skin is still dry as a chip.

    Here's a sample day's meals(where do the apostrophes go there?) :

    Brefas 6:28am – huge bowl of oatmeal, few tbsp butter, 2 eggs w/ lil cheese, 2 cups milk

    Lunch 11:12am – 3 oz salmon, whole bunch of fried taters in coconut oil, steamed broccoli w/ butter, 3 cups milk

    Snack 3:55pm – 2 cups milk

    Dinner 5:30pm – same thing as lunch basically

    I'm coming off low carb and had most of my weight gain in the first few days. I am loving eating this way but after reading the last few posts and comments I am not sure what to do now. Do I: 1) keep going like this and be patient, 2) up my starch and lower my fat intakes, or 3) go buy Sisson's primal cookbook and start runnnin barefoot?

    Reply
  47. Oh and I found the Berkowitz podcast no problem at LLVLC. It wasn't hidden Matt, it was in plain sight! You rascal you.

    Reply
  48. Ok I’m confused! What happened to the High Everything Diet (HED)/RRARF approach that you recommend in your FREE eBOOK (RRARF), Matt? Which, btw, I see that you are still recommending people read it (in your recent posts). Have you revised it based on this new HIGH CARB(starch)/MOD PRO/LOW FAT approach you are recommending now??

    After reading that free eBook, I started doing HED/RRARF a couple months ago, and I too have gained a significant amount of weight (like others here have stated) – But I do feel great! And everything has improved from digestion to sleep and too many others to list. Loving it!! (but not loving the weight gain :( )

    Matt, you may have addressed this already and maybe I just missed it, but reading your last 2 blog posts and all of the comments of both… many others seem to be confused by this too…

    Is this new HIGH CARB / MOD PROTEIN / LOW FAT approach just for healing with minimal weight gain? For those of us who did HED/RRARF, as you recommended, and gained weight (as someone commented that it hasn’t been directly stated) do you now believe this new approach will help us start losing the fat we gained?

    Can you give us an example of what you eat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner?

    I have been eating a lot of good fats, coconut oil, butter, sour cream and raw whole milk with my (high) carbs. How do you eat lots of carbs with a LOW FAT approach? I love rice, but I sauté it in coconut oil or butter. How do I eat rice without fat? For those of you commenters that recommend rice (Riles, JT, and others), how do you eat your rice? I eat a lot of sweet and white potatoes, but again, I often fry them in coconut oil, as well as use butter when I bake or mash them. How do you eat potatoes without fat?

    In other words, how do you eat a HIGH CARB diet that is LOW IN FAT and still tastes good???

    Also, I drink at least 3 glasses of raw whole milk per day. Is that too much protein/fat per day? If I continue to do this, should I not eat any additional animal protein? I don’t want to give up or cut down my raw milk – it’s so good for you and it's one of the few truly natural (un-messed with) foods I have available to me.

    Please give us an example of an ideal HIGH CARB / MOD PROTEIN / LOW FAT day of eating.

    And I want to say thanks so much, Matt, for you continued pursuit of nutritional truth and sharing your discoveries, interpretations, conclusions with us.

    And thanks to all of you who contribute your feedback and opinions/advice. This blog has helped me a great deal more than anything else! Thank you MATT and ALL!

    Reply
  49. I am with Hawaiigirl and April! With kids and housework I am just tired. One income household equals no funds for gym or home equipment and the other option are lame cardio videos which I am thinking arn't good for the adrenal function. Walking is my only free, available outlet and that is weather condusive as i don't live in S. Cali. I am very worried about adding more meat to my post baby frame and not being able to get it off. I have been holding steady with marginal weight loss and no gain for about three years without doing anything more significant than trying to eat healthy and reduce sugar. I am looking for a way to lean down and I also need to get my temp up a bit I am about a degree low. I also get aweful sugar cravings after eating straight carbs like a bowl of brown rice and butter will make me sugar crazy. Looking forward to suggestions.

    Reply
  50. interesting study links meat to weigh gain… was it the meat or the excess protein? or the excess fat?

    Abstract:

    Quote:
    BACKGROUND: Meat intake may be related to weight gain because of its high energy and fat content. Some observational studies have shown that meat consumption is positively associated with weight gain, but intervention studies have shown mixed results. OBJECTIVE: Our objective was to assess the association between consumption of total meat, red meat, poultry, and processed meat and weight gain after 5 y of follow-up, on average, in the large European population who participated in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition-Physical Activity, Nutrition, Alcohol, Cessation of Smoking, Eating Out of Home and Obesity (EPIC-PANACEA) project. Design: A total of 103,455 men and 270,348 women aged 25-70 y were recruited between 1992 and 2000 in 10 European countries. Diet was assessed at baseline with the use of country-specific validated questionnaires. A dietary calibration study was conducted in a representative subsample of the cohort. Weight and height were measured at baseline and self-reported at follow-up in most centers. Associations between energy from meat (kcal/d) and annual weight change (g/y) were assessed with the use of linear mixed models, controlled for age, sex, total energy intake, physical activity, dietary patterns, and other potential confounders. RESULTS: Total meat consumption was positively associated with weight gain in men and women, in normal-weight and overweight subjects, and in smokers and nonsmokers. With adjustment for estimated energy intake, an increase in meat intake of 250 g/d (eg, one steak at approximately 450 kcal) would lead to a 2-kg higher weight gain after 5 y (95% CI: 1.5, 2.7 kg). Positive associations were observed for red meat, poultry, and processed meat. CONCLUSION: Our results suggest that a decrease in meat consumption may improve weight management.

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  51. @Danyelle, Hawaiigirl, April, Dawn, Butterfly, and all the other 180 girls out there:

    Take heart! I am in a similar position but am finally (finally!) seeing a light at the end of this tunnel. I started my healing journey long before I found Matt and 180, about two years ago in mid 2008. That's when I finally decided to prioritize my health over my weight. It was a hard decision to make at the time, because I was at the thinnest point I had been in my life and felt very attractive. Of course, I was also at the most miserable point in my life and that's why I was willing to make the change.

    I've gained about 27 lbs since that point two years ago. I have also put on about 10 lbs of lean mass (hooray!). And now, in the last few weeks I have finally lost the first few lbs of fat and am looking forward to losing the rest–and I'm seriously enjoying that fact that I finally feel like I can do this.

    This whole time I've been waiting to lose the weight magically. It never happened. Maybe it's possible that we can restore our metabolisms to the point that our appetites and body fat are regulated completely unconsciously, but that never fully happened for me (well, not yet at least). So during the last couple of months I've been experimenting and finding what works for me. To peddle some of JT's famous words, you gotta find what works for you, what feels right, what helps you (as an individual) the most.

    What I've learned here at 180 is that there's no blanket answer for everyone and we do have to learn to listen to biofeedback to figure out how to heal and how to eventually achieve the body composition we want.

    And what I learned about myself is that after years of yo-yo dieting I was sick and tired of restrictions and plans and exercise, too. I binged on butter at first (Sally Fallon-style, buttered bread you can sink your teeth into!). Everything was floating in butter and coconut oil. And I loved it and honestly I personally received a lot of healing during this time. Then I freaked out about the weight gain (I had been steady at a 15 lb gain at that point for several months) and did a couple months of low carb, and lost a lot of healing quick withing a few weeks. Then I started frequenting Matt's blog, and I slowly started reintroducing carbs and then started eating gobs of them when I let myself, hence the additional 12 lb gain.

    Continued below…

    Reply
  52. …continued from above…

    My question now was did I need to gain the weight? I don't know. I'm still not sure if it was a physiological or psychological drive that kept me on the path to gaining weight. I have a hunch it was both. I feel like my body needed the fat, and I feel like my body needed the carbs. Maybe I could have done it in a way that didn't lead to so much weight gain, but for the overall health improvements I can still honestly say it was worth it.

    During these last few weeks I have finally come to the point where I am not hating cutting a few calories some days or breaking a sweat during a workout. I DID NOT FEEL LIKE THIS JUST A FEW MONTHS AGO. That's what I want to stress here. I am now regulating my food intake and doing some more intense exercise because for the first time in two years I actually derive pleasure from doing so. I'm not miserable. And I'm also seeing progress in the right direction, losing fat and inches while possibly still gaining lean body mass.

    My point is to hang in there. Try a little restriction (well, I prefer the term regulation), and see what you can handle physically and mentally. Don't push it, don't make yourself miserable. You never really know when you're going to have that light-bulb moment, when things will start to turn around. Healing takes time, and sustainable fat loss takes time.

    For me personally, going below 30% fat is uncomfortable and not enjoyable at all. I was actually quite surprised that I could go this low and still enjoy my food quite a bit with just a little coconut oil, butter or sour cream instead of heaps of it. I still drink my raw milk daily and eat only whole eggs, too, so I actually get most of my fats from these. So far this has been a sustainable way for me to eat. But as usual, I am always open to changing it around if I feel the need to. Every once in a while I'll eat without much restriction, but otherwise moderation has helped me a ton. And realizing I can lose fat again without hurting myself has been a real revelation.

    And now, since this is turning into a blog post length comment, I will shut up. :)

    Reply
  53. Thanks Elizabeth… I always love your comments. You were the one who led me to Matt first! I am where you were – I was a great weight, but had lots of issues. Now I'm 20 lbs more and gaining, so I'm glad you're turning around, although 2 years is a loooong tunnel.

    But are you actually on-purpose exercising to build muscles? I know it's all individual, but I just can't wrap my mind around doing weights or anything right now. Maybe the desire will come to me, but I can't figure out if I need to just do it in order to get the lean mass, or if I can eat my way there :).

    I've read other people talk about how they just feel stronger and whatnot, but the more I gain, the more I feel tired and heavy, not strong. I have to keep reminding myself that other things are better, and it's a lot of reminding to keep me from going back to eating all I want, low-carb, but fitting my clothes…

    I don't feel ready to regulate in any way, food-wise yet. I'm still getting used to eating lots of cooked starches, and not piling on the fat. And trying not to crave protein. I really, really, look lovingly at the meat in the fridge… I guess that's the only regulation I'm doing. I love my meat (no sick thoughts, please), but I love my adrenal glands more.

    So I go back to the question, will this lead to more lean mass, less fat, without on-purpose building muscles?

    Reply
  54. Yeah, it has been a loooong tunnel. I don't know if it really had to be that long, though. I didn't start pounding the saturated fat until late 2008 and then carbs earlier this year, so I probably had some unnecessary road blocks along the way. Plus my life has been pretty stressful during the last couple of years, so that probably played a role in the length of my recovery as well.

    I started strength training about four years ago, and continued with it lightly throughout the last two years while I was working on healing. I'm sure that helped with the lean mass. But this is the first time in quite a while I'm willing to bring some intensity to my workouts. After hearing the guys here talk about Scott Abel and Rachel Cosgrove I've been exploring that kind of fitness and adding it to my routine. It's made things really enjoyable and I actually feel like I'm getting something out of my workouts. I still don't do much cardio aside from walking for 15 minutes a few days a week (to get the mail, yes my mail box is that far from my house). Otherwise I've been doing 45-60 minutes of resistance type work three days a week. Sometimes I throw some Callanetics in there, too, on off days. I'm a mom with two little kids myself, and the nearest gym is 40 minutes from my house, so I do this all at home. Hand weights and body weight offer plenty of resistance for me right now, believe me. I didn't realize how out of shape I was!

    I wouldn't restrict protein to the point of discomfort, Lorelei. I've been doing high(er) protein myself–about 90-100 grams a day–and I honestly think it's been helping.

    Reply
  55. Hi Elizabeth, thanks for the post. I think many of us are like you. Never really had any body-image or health issues, then jumped on something like low-carb.

    I have appreciation now for what a tricky process it is to restore the metabolism. I'm glad to know that others are working through it and seeing the results they want.

    I think it takes a lot of knowledge, patience, and biofeedback. The point Matt made in a previous post about avoiding anything overly pleasurable is a good one. Maybe it's akin to being more in tune and listening to subtler forms of biofeedback.

    We'll be second-guessing ourselves a lot of the way. It's just part of the process I suppose.

    Reply
  56. Hello all I have been trying for ages to get a post on here! I am a 62yo woman and am following matt's diet recommendations to raise my body temperature. All my life I have been a wholefooder, and the last 2y, until 2 months ago was following wapf. About 5 or so years ago my husband got sick and died 3 1/2 years ago. I went from my life long stable weight of 137lb (5'6") to less than 100lb. Under the wap I went up to 117lb, which has remain stable for about a year. A couple months ago I got fed up with wap, all the trouble of it, and I hadn't seen much health improvement except for a big reduction in my smokers cough and not get dryness in my mouth corners. After alot of reflection I think, without intending to I was following a low or lowish carb diet. I certainly recognise the symptoms Matt describes from his fump diet experiment. I also recognise some of the symptoms of anorexia/starvation. I am a life long no breakfaster/no luncher. I guess since my weight was stable I got enough calories. I would like to have a more even and stable energy level. I would like to be able to eat and enjoy food. I find food so boring. This carb eating is totally strange to me. The very blandness of it is making it easier to eat more often. Its sort of two steps forward and three steps back. The first 2 weeks I ate kefir and sourdough bread, and some broth in the evening, and some meals. This week I have started soaking grains and cooking them in the slow cooker. I thought they'd be too heavy but I seem so far to be able to eat them. My appetite hasn't come back yet and I can't see much change in temperature but I guess its early days. I SO appreciate this group! And Matt! Theres absolutely nothing else like this out on the internet. One gets so sick of the dictating tone of most nutritional advice. It so refreshing to finally find people who are honest about the fact that we are gropping for our way.

    Reply
  57. sydney -

    Couldn't agree with you more – "I SO appreciate this group! And Matt! Theres absolutely nothing else like this out on the internet. One gets so sick of the dictating tone of most nutritional advice. It so refreshing to finally find people who are honest about the fact that we are gropping for our way."

    For all Matt's skill as a researcher and knowledge and wit he's pretty darn humble I think. He's like we're in this thing together and we're learning together – pretty cool indeed.

    Reply
  58. @ malpaz,

    Regarding that paper, c'mon, you're telling me I can't find a paper linking carb consumption to weight gain? Let's not get manic here…

    Reply
  59. Frustrating though it is, I especially like how Matt grows and learns and changes his stance. Even more, I like how he wades thru all the crap out there and does his best to put it into perspective based on other research and real-life observation. And he's funny too.

    So this could be the Why Matt Stone ISN'T a Douche section of the comments.

    Thanks Matt! And answer our questions for us!

    And lest we forget, how is your sweetie-pie doing?

    Reply
  60. Hi — What about Iodine supplementation for Thyroid? Like Nacent Iodine of Ioderal? Or does dessicated Thyroid help the best? Also which dessciated thyroid brands do you reccomend the most? — lg

    Reply
  61. "So I go back to the question, will this lead to more lean mass, less fat, without on-purpose building muscles? "

    In theory, yes it will, that's at least what the studies say. High carb, (very) low fat overfeeding will lead mainly to lean mass gains, without much fat gain. Exercise however, will increase that effect and also burn some fat. That's basically what the MNP website says.
    So, even without exercise, there probably will be lean mass gains, I just don't know how much fat loss there will be.

    Also, you don't need any equipment or gym membership to get a decent workout. Body weight exercises are pretty much all you need. Also, body weight exercises tend to produce a more athletic physique and not the bulky bodybuilder look, even though I think that this isn't an issue for women anyways, as even lifting heavy weights likely won't produce a bulky body builder-esque physique in women.

    Reply
  62. Lisa, I wonder if coconut water or kombucha tea would work for you. I could drink both of those when I couldn't eat any fruit or vegetables. Lita Lee has a good article about coconut water.

    Reply
  63. @AaronF: So true. I never had so many body image problems in my life as I did when I was hard-core exercising and dieting. I honestly feel much better about myself now–even though I don't have my ideal body composition–than I have in years. I think eating well has given me far more mental and emotional stability than I can ever remember having before.

    And I agree that listening to biofeedback is a tricky thing at times. Sometimes what feels great at a given moment (like binging on M&Ms or overexercising) makes you feel like crap later on. There really is a lot of patience involved in learning what works best for you as an individual and what's really the right choice for your body's needs at the moment.

    Reply
  64. With regards to adrenal fatigue, there’s a new web site that gathers much of the information from Val, who’s been helping people treat adrenal fatigue and hypothyroidism, including rT3 issues, for a long time: http://nthadrenalsweb.org

    Highly recommended.

    Reply
  65. Hi 180 ladies,

    If you are truly new to working out and you try to do any big serious resistance workout for the first time, expect to be quite sore for the next few days. Whenever I take a couple of weeks off and try to teach a class (I'm a very very part-time volunteer fitness instructor), I can hardly walk or get up out of my seat for a few days!

    But remember that pain like that is really only an issue after your first time, so don't let it discourage you. I try to really visualize my muscles getting stronger during this period, just to offset the discomfort and to remind me that it's for a good cause! Give yourself a good few days to recover afterward, even if it takes you most of the week. As long as you do a workout at least once a week, and keep it up, the after-workout soreness will be very mild in comparison to that first time.

    I agree about bodyweight exercises being convenient anywhere and are all you really need.

    To start, try marching or jogging in place for 2 minutes, just to warm up your muscles, then try a simple circuit of:

    - squats, (combined with an overhead press, holding a couple of tomato cans, as you get better at them and are comfortable with the form of the squat alone)

    - push-ups (from your knees or even against a wall, or chair propped up against a wall, if doing them from your toes is impossible)

    - crunches (with feet on floor if you're a beginner; in table-top position, if you're more advanced; or pointed straight, up in pilates stance, if you're more advanced, still)

    Do each exercise until you don't feel like you can do another with proper form because your muscles are starting to feel weak. Keep the movements slow and controlled. Don't rush it. Then repeat the circuit 3 more times, resting for 1 minute between each circuit.

    Those exercises, alone, are enough to work most of the major muscles in your body and that little routine should only take you about 12 – 15 minutes. Don't feel like you have to do a 45-minute workout or it's not worth it. You can get a lot done in 10 – 15 minutes and it will be a great start in building strength, confidence and enthusiasm for exercise as you notice yourself improving.

    Go to youtube to find the proper form for all these exercises, first. Proper form will make the difference between building strength and just hurting yourself. Also, remember to stretch afterward. This will help reduce soreness and stiffness, afterwards.

    Always give your body at least 1 and preferably 2 rest days in between resistance workouts.

    Hope that helps!

    Reply
  66. I had what might have been reactive hypoglycemia on low carb too. Every morning, I had a coconut milk/ raw milk smoothie with berries for breakfast, along with a sweet potato and sausage, eggs, and cabbage. In the morning, no problem. Sometimes when I came home from work, and didn't want to cook, I'd have anotehr smoothie, same as the morning, and would get light-headed and wobbly. Wierd. Maybe reactive hypoglycemia was what was going on.

    And excited for more of the fitness authors coming up. I like Abel's emphasis on the feel of an exercise and his focus on the neural system more than the muscular system. Remidns me of Frank Forencich a bit, who I'd encourage everyone to look into. He's probably closer to the paleo camp in principle, but I think super grounded and not really dogmatic about much. His website is http://www.exuberantanimal.com/ and he has a few really great books out. In one, he poposes movements that are primal, practical and playful. That is, movement that makes sense for us as human animals, as primates, movements that make sense for our day to day life, and have some relevance to our regular experience, and movement that is intrinsically rewarding, that encourages us to do it, refine it, repeat it because it is pulls us in. Think about climbing trees or hopping fences or whatever you did as a kid that was just awesome to do. That allows us to not mail in the performance at the gym and just 'do exercise,' it incorporates our nervous system mroe fully because we're invested in it, because we're not workign for some extrinsic reward that may or may not come down the road.

    His most recently released book is a compendium of games to play using various basic pieces of equiment like ropes, physioballs and medicine balls, that constantly shift and vary, that icorporate new movements, that integrate rather than isolate muscles for increased nervous system adaptation, and again, most importantlly, that are fun and frequently social ways to challenge ourselves physically. He's my favorite 'exercise' writer because he, better than just about anyone else I know, seems to have a really holistic approach to wellness, and address on multiple levels the disconnection we experience at the heart of so much of our ill health. Love your take on him, matt, or others, if you get around to it. He has a bunch of free essays available here:http://www.exuberantanimal.com/essays_stories_writing/index.php

    Reply
  67. Matt, I'm not trying to be a douche, I'm just coming from a place of confusion. Of all the 10 or so docs and nutrition researchers I read and respect, you are the only one who advocates LF and processed grains. So either they are all misguided. Or you are. This makes me have trust issues.

    Also I did HED and I got FAT, and now I'm kind of pissed cuz you're saying I should eat pounds of tasteless potatoes and rice in yet another restricted diet so I can lose the fat I just gained from HED which was supposed be the end of restricted dieting! Khaaaaannnnn!!!

    That is all. Love you matt. ~G.

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  68. @ Malpaz regarding point made by John,

    Malpaz, regarding the paper you referred to, I suggest you check out the following critique, with particular note to methodology, bias, and vested interest;

    http://www.drbriffa.com/blog/2010/07/23/nonsense-study-being-used-to-claim-that-meat-causes-weight-gain/

    Perhaps it would be helpful too, to take note of flaws in china study Denise Minger (http://rawfoodsos.com/) adeptly outlined in her critique in order to become more aware of methodological flaws. I know articles such as these have helped me no end, to look more critically at the articles and claims strewn through the media and blogs such as the one you have referred to.

    Reply
  69. Matt,
    I am puzzled that you seem recently to have changed your tune about fat consumption. You seemed to be all for higher fat consumption and now you seem to be recommending less than 20 percent. It seems to go against the 180 degree philosophy. Sounds more like the standard nutritionist mantra.

    I question the suggestion for hypoglycemics. As one myself I have done a lot of research. And after researching it I was shocked to discover that fat(the thing I was most avoiding) could help mitigate bad reactions to high glycemic foods. You always hear to add fiber or protein to keep from having hypoglycemic episodes. But neither appears to be particularly effective while fat on the other hand works great.

    Possibly eating more fat could make you gain weight in the short term but I would think that it would cure you much quicker( get your body temp up, balance thyroid, stabilize blood sugars).

    Reply
  70. I am so very confused. Would you say that eating a hypocaloric primarily carbohydrate/low-low fat diet would be unlikely to cause fat gain?
    But if it is a high carb- low calorie diet, it will cause muscle wasting and even fat gain?

    I would like to make sure to eat enough calories, but I would like to gain little to no fat, and eat "to appetite." What does this look like?

    Reply
  71. Thanks Annabelle, that workout does sound do-able.

    The problem is just that with putting on all this weight, I seem to be more tired than ever… so if the choice comes down to using what energy I have left for feeding the kids or doing squats, I want to know that I can skip the squats without guilt for now – maybe things will progress slower, but at least they will. Ok, maybe nothing as drastic as the choice between childcare and squats, but at the very least between household chores and squats! And I figure lots of these chores have to have some resistance to them! I'm certainly hurting after a day of yard work.

    Rob A, I'm going to look into that guy. I've never enjoyed exercise just to exercise, but to exercise with another goal (like hike to a cool spot) is right up my alley. Maybe there'll be some good family games to inspire us.

    MadMUHHH, I hope what you say the studies suggest is right – how "very" low fat does it say? Like some other girls, I just can't seem to cut the fat too low without getting shaky, ravenous, etc.

    And for all of us who are now fat and mad at Matt (hmm, what a rhyme), in his defense, we're the ones who chose to do what he only suggested seemed logical according to his research. The new lower-fat stance is in response to folks like JT, and like us whining about how we hate being fat! If I'm getting him right, HED/RRARF is still good, this just may be faster or better or less fattening. At least I hope. I'm outgrowing my last shorts that fit… even with the lowered fat.

    Reply
  72. Riles, you inspired me to try breadfruit again. That will be the last time, unless we're starving. It tastes like floury jakfruit to us… and jakfruit tastes like… well, slightly rotten Juicy Fruit bubble gum. Not too bad as a fruit, but terrible as a starch.

    Now poi, on the other hand… Auntie taught me last week how to ferment it and store it on the counter, and it gets better and better. She was telling me a lot of the Hawaiian kids today won't eat fermented poi, which used to be the staple, because they're so used to everything sugary. That's too bad.

    Elizabeth, you're right, biofeedback/learning to listen to your body is so hard. If I crave sugar, I know it's gotta be bad, but if I crave protein… in huge juicy quantities… is it an "addiction", or is my body telling me something? Sigh…

    It's so sad that we have no food culture to guide us. We try to emulate other eating cultures, but unless we're fresh off the boat, we're just not going to get it all the way right. We can eat only meat like the Inuit, but we don't eat it LIKE them. We can eat lots of rice like the Japanese, but we're not eating the LIVE seafood and fish paste (ewwww). Or we eat all the yams like the Kitivans, but, what are we missing from their diet?

    And maybe it's not even what they eat, but how… like how often, when's the biggest meal of the day, etc? Or maybe the Kitivan diet only works if you live, in say, their corner of the world, due to temperatures and daylight and local minerals in the soil.

    We live in a reductionist time. We're always trying to reduce health to "this is the way to health, this ONE thing", but we keep forgetting how complex it really all is.

    Maybe our goal should be to eat as close to how the local indigenous population ate (presuming they were healthy!) as possible. Which for lots of you means like Injuns (as opposed to Indians and curry, of course). Me, I get to eat poi.

    Then again, maybe genetics really do matter. Asians have bigger amylase glands… but is it truly genetic, or does it happen after birth because they eat more rice, and ours could grow bigger with use too?

    And then we have to take into account our current state of health, which might be completely at odds with all the previous factors. We might be from a wheat eating culture, but if we're allergic to wheat, then that's not going to work so well!

    Sheesh… getting too philosophical… and confused. I need a reductionist theory to get me through! Sleep! Sleep is the one key to health! Time for bed!

    Reply
  73. Ok, ok, one last thing. Speaking of eating like Inuit… There's a store in Ottawa (Canada) that sells seal meat. As far as I can figure, for the local Inuit. Well, how often do you get to try seal? Tastes… different! Kinda like heavy liver. My daughter freaked out when I wanted to get some horsemeat… so we skipped that.

    Reply
  74. @Lorelei: I honestly can't tell you. The MNP blog recommends 75-85% CHO, 5-10% FAT, 10-15% PRO but I really don't know whether it would also work with higher fat or perhaps work even better with lower fat. I think in the end you will have to decide that. The lower in fat you go, the more fat you probably will lose, but then again, that may taste too bland to you or you might feel like crap or might run into a deficit in the long run.
    I really do not think that I am in the position to give out any recommendations, I would ask people like Riles or Matt who already have had some success with it, they probably have more insight on this than me.

    Reply
  75. I wonder too whether if you go so low in fat that you trigger Shangri-La diet style a lowering of the set point based on teh fod's blandness. I know the few days I was going all out. before I figured out how to make the food very tasty, I would get through half the portion and have to force more of it down, just cuz it didn't taste good. Wonder if that contributes to set point lowering and more fat burn and muscle building.

    Also, good points about reductionism Lorelei. Be interested to know what you think of Frank and Exuberant ANimal folks if you get around to reading some of his stuff.

    Reply
  76. Hey homies-

    Little short on time this morning. My dad's in town and we're gonna go all Jeremiah Johnson today out in the mountains.

    As for everyone's confusion, the reason that other avenues are being explored is quite simple. Although overfeeding on a mixed diet works really well for increasing body temps, improving digestion, improving sleep, and all the many things people have mentioned – it's also pretty clear that 80% of people gain fat eating to appetite or beyond appetite on a diet like that.

    So, is there a more efficient way of achieving that? If there is, I want to know about it.

    If fat intake is low enough while overfeeding, fat gain is impossible and lean mass gains are guaranteed. Your body has to do something with the excess energy intake, and in the absence of fat, you gain nothing but lean mass while overfeeding. This, in and of itself, is a very important discovery.

    Also, excess carbohydrate increases thermogenesis, and fat does not stimulate the metabolism the same way that carbohydrate does. Carbohydrate has limited storage capacity, so eating excess carbohydrate increases body heat, physical energy, etc. whereas excess fat is just stored.

    When it comes to the objective at hand, carbohydrate is a clear winner over fat.

    However, I do suspect that fat gain is part of the therapy, and part of what makes people feel health improvements. After all, leptin is a primary determinant of metabolic health, and the more fat tissue, the higher your leptin goes. If your leptin sensitivity remains the same, then you come out of hibernation mode, stop having sugar cravings, lose your appetite, have speedy digestion, strong immune system, and so forth.

    What I want to know is can the benefits of overfeeding be obtained without fat gain?

    Plain and simple.

    You can definitely overfeed without fat gain, but the higher the fat intake, the more fat you gain in proportion to muscle mass. I'd be a fool to ignore the crystal clear relationship there.

    When it comes to losing fat, I've had hesitations about a low-fat diet for fat loss, because, in head-to-head comparisons with low-carb people lose more lean mass and less fat – and generally the less lean mass lost, the higher the long-term success rate.

    I believe, after many weeks of doing a low-fat diet myself, that this can be sidestepped. In fact, while losing fat over the last month or so, I've had greater lean mass gains than at any time in my life. It can be as easy as overfeeding on starch one day per week, losing fat 6 days per week, and doing a 30-minute full-body exercise routine once per week – mostly bodyweight exercises (my only gym equipment consists of 2, 15-pound dumbells and a pull-up bar, which is totally optional).

    Anyway, all this will be covered in the new 180 Kitchen, we are going to continue beating this topic over the head unmercifully over the next few months, and Sydney, I will be adding an "addendum" to the free eBook to discuss macronutrient ratios and what might be the most efficient route to not only raise body temperature but to improve insulin sensitivity and get huge muscle gains in proportion to fat gains.

    Rob A.-

    Without a doubt a starch-based diet can trigger some Shangri-La lowering of set point.

    Reply
  77. Thanks, Matt, I knew you would have a logical explanation as usual :)

    Will some of you who have and are following this new low-fat/high carb method with success, PLEASE give us some examples of what you eat, how much, how you prepare/cook your food, etc. I'm still trying to figure out how to eat this way without feeling like I'm (back to) DIETING and depriving myself again!

    Thanks for your help!!

    Reply
  78. "It can be as easy as overfeeding on starch one day per week, losing fat 6 days per week, and doing a 30-minute full-body exercise routine once per week"

    I'm confused, we are only overfeeding one day a week now? What do we eat the other 6 days to "lose fat"? Please clarify, thanks.

    Reply
  79. Hey Lorelei,

    You'll still avoid the fat gain with overfeeding, provided your diet is really really low in fat, even if you don't exercise. The exercise definitely just speeds along the muscle growth and the fat loss.

    If you're having trouble with keeping the fat low enough right now, that's probably why you're still noticing fat gain. But like Matt said, it's not all for naught. Fat gain is probably rehabilitative, up to a point. How much excess fat do you reckon you have, right now?

    I actually still get shaky without food for more than about 3 hours. I can't manage to eat a huge breakfast, so I find I get shaky about mid-morning. Then sometimes again in the afternoon. I'm not convinced it's actual hypoglycemia, since my BG isn't low during this time. I believe it's more to do with your body's reaction to when blood sugar drops quickly from any point, even if it's starting out quite high. If your BG still goes very high after a meal and then drops 30 points, then you can get that hypo feeling, even if your BG is still above normal. I think this resolves over time. At least, that's what I'm banking on. I find exercise actually helps keep that feeling at bay, rather than making it worse.

    Rather than pounding fat to combat the shakes, I've just taken to being really prepared. I carry dates in my purse and I will stop in a grocery store and buy a few bananas, if I have to. Also, I cook my breakfast the night before (usually a sweet potato that I drizzle with a touch of honey and sprinkle with cinnamon). I try to make lunch really simple, like cooked brown rice with some kind of tomato and vegetable-based based sauce (to give it some moisture and to make up for the lack of fat). Or, if I'm unprepared, I'll stop and get some sushi and tell them to hold the avocado. I don't worry about the sugar in the rice, considering most of my calories are still coming from starch.

    I've even broken my no-gluten thing a few times, rather than go without food. I'll grab a whole wheat bagel in emergencies. I actually find I'm tolerating wheat a lot better now. Probably because my metabolism is speeding up.

    Yard work definitely counts! If I have a particulary active day, doing lots of chores and moving around a lot, then I definitely count that as exercise. Particularly if it involves a lot of squatting, like with yard work. But actually, exercise shouldn't tire you out or sap your energy. It shouldn't come down to a 'this or chores' situation. You might be sore afterwards, but it should actually energize you. If it doesn't, then you're probably not ready for exercise yet. Keep up the RRARF and exercise when you're compelled to. I found a dramatic increase in carbs and lowering of fat was necessary for that shift in my desire. My carb intake is directly proportional to my desire to move my body.

    Reply
  80. Annabelle said:

    "But actually, exercise shouldn't tire you out or sap your energy. It shouldn't come down to a 'this or chores' situation. You might be sore afterwards, but it should actually energize you. If it doesn't, then you're probably not ready for exercise yet."

    I completely agree with this statement. Once I got started on the healing track, exercise became exhausting for me. I still kept up a routine, but I started taking more days off and toning down the intensity a lot. I went through weeks where I tried to pump up my workout in an effort to lose some fat, but it never lasted long because in the end it just made me tired and hungry.

    This has all changed in the last few weeks. When I started some more intense routines recently it actually shot my energy through the roof. I actually *want* to exercise now, it feels really fun and rewarding. I don't remember ever feeling this way about exercise before.

    I also agree with Annabelle that upping my carbs may have had a lot to do with my recent desire to move more. I think my body's finally at a point where it's ready for this, and I think the carbs really pushed it over the edge.

    So for anyone hesitant to exercise, I say take a good long break first and focus on healing with food and rest. Then try workout a little and see how it makes you feel, and go from there.

    Reply
  81. Matt,
    Your response to people's comments makes me more confused. You are stating emphatically that you will not gain weight overfeeding with starches and low fat. How do you think most of America came to be overweight and diabetic? In my opinion it is because people followed the nutritionist dogma of low fat, high carb.

    The only way you could even be slightly justified in offering this advice is if you are talking about a zero fructose, but high starch diet. But even then I am skeptical.

    In my opinion health is more important than vanity. Who cares if you gain some weight? If you are healthier metabolically that seems a win to me. And I am not so sure there is any way around gaining some weight after a history of extreme dieting. That is the body's response to abuse.

    It seems to me the main issue here is vanity. I think you have to be willing to go all in to heal yourself metabolically. You can't say you're willing to heal metabolically but you aren't willing to gain any weight. We don't get to dictate the terms our bodies do.

    Reply
  82. I was reading old comments and someone said that barnes had recommended leaving the thermometer under the arm 10 minutes before taking the reading. I tried this and got a higher reading. When I have taken readings in the past, I have taken 2 reading one straight after the other. I have one of those cheapie digital thermometers that beeps when ready to be read. This new higher reading, is more in line with what I'd expect from other indicators. Maybe others could see if they get higher reading warming the thermometer up for 10 minutes.

    Reply
  83. Summer,
    I totally get your point about the body dictating the terms of its healing but for some of us the idea of packing on extra weight is a bad option if not necessary. I am a 5'5, 170lb female, size 14. I would say that besides my weight I am pretty healthy. I have a very healthy diet, way better than SAD that evryone i know is eating. Almost 0 processed foods in our home, all scratch cooking, I'm talking growing my own tomatoes for my spaghetti sauce, homemade. Limited and only natural sugar, very few refined grains, no HFCS, no additives, blah, blah, blah. You get my drift. I have been eating like this for a couple years now. I also will mention we also eat mostly organic, raw dair, and free range meat. You don't even want to see my grocery bills! ;0 I have never been a dieter, or an exercise junkie, or had yo-yo weight. I think I have normal stress. I just don't think I need a miracle matabolisim healing. I do need to figure out how to get some of this weight off and boost my energy. I really believe my weight is a product of too many years of post dinner dessert and a couple of babies. I have totally stalled the weight gain and even lost a moderate 7lbs since adopting a whole food mentality. I would even say I have accidently been doing a HED diet. My current goals are to get off caffine. Which I have begun. Can anyone give a shout out to THIS SUCKS!! I also want to get my temp up about 1 degree for the sake of my metabolisim. I DO NOT WANT TO GAIN. I am not sure anyone can convince me that gaining 10 of 15 more pounds is going to be healthy. I can understand this principle if you are nutritionally compromised or burned out but not if you are otherwise healthy. If I am wrong I am open to the argument, but so far I am not convinced I need to re/over feed.

    Reply
  84. summer-
    SAD is not just high-carb. It is a few different things. For a lot of people eating processed foods and going out to restaurants, they are simply getting too many calories from vegetable oils, white flour, sucrose, and HFCS. It can take a long time for the damage to build up, depending on where you started out, so a lot of people won't show weight gain for quite a while on this diet.

    But others are following nutritional guidelines and slowly but surely gaining weight. I believe this is a more subtle thing. Matt has already acknowledged that a low-calorie, high-carb diet is possibly one of the worst on a long term basis. Many people can subtly fall into this in the desire to be healthy. "Watching what they eat", etc. Standard dogma still favors PUFAs over saturated fatty acids and products like Soymilk are gaining widespread acceptance.

    There's a few guys from a company that shares our floor space that I would say fit this mold. Soymilk on almond flakes cereal in the morning. Run in the middle of the day. Keep fat intake low. A couple of them I would describe now as skinny fat, although I don't remember them being that way.

    Of course, once somebody notices even the first smallest increases, eating less and exercising more probably becomes part of their focus. And thus begins the metabolic spiral. Most people eventually just chalk it up to a "slowing metabolism", as if that answers the question of why appetite was able to regulate weight before, but not now.

    And high-carb for most people still means a lot of processed flour, even if it is whole wheat. And enriched white flour flies under the radar all the time. Ask somebody what they're concerned about in their burrito. It's not the white flour tortilla, it's the fatty meat and sour cream.

    What Matt is saying is that on a high-carb, high-calorie, very-low-fat diet, it will be difficult to gain fat. There are other reasons he believes this may possibly be a better path to metabolic health than a more mixed diet, especially for former low-carbers. But as far as the verdict on this whole approach, as far as I'm concerned the jury's still out. I'm with you that a lot of this is about vanity. But honestly, can you blame people?

    Reply
  85. By the way my first thing in the morning under arm temp is 97.1 almost every day.

    Reply
  86. Dawn, good point about fat gain for non-dieters. Any gain in fat weight has to be addressed with the question, is this a sign I'm doing something right or something wrong? For people that formerly practiced some restrictive diet, like myself with low-carb, I see it as part of the healing phase.

    But for non-dieters with only general health issues, or former dieters that are now gaining a lot, it takes a lot of faith to stick through that. That's why we need a lot of information.

    Reply
  87. Aaron, I was kinda thinking the same thing about Dawn's post.

    Actually Dawn's story/comments kinda scares me. She has been eating whole foods for 2 years and STILL weighs 170 lbs. Why no fat/weight loss after 2 years? Especially since she has not been a yo-yo dieter in the past.

    Granted she would have needed to heal from the damage of life-long consumption of PUFA, HFCS, refined flours/sugar, food Adds, etc. prior to the way she's been eating the last 2 years – like the rest of us.

    But she's been eating whole foods for 2 years and no weight/fat loss??? That scares me!

    Reply
  88. Exactly my point Aaron. If someone can convince me that gain equals loss I can be open minded. When I first looked into this it looked like one month of rrarf followed by "something" that equated loosing which I thought came from the increase in metabo from increasing temp. But now I am hearing people talk about many moons of rrarf with out any sign of weight loss which makes me timid about trying. I also want it ot be understood that I am not about vanity. Don't get me wrong I would love to be svelt but health is totally important otherwise I would have already jumped onto the Weight Watchers band wagon like all my friends who are looking at my fat body feeling sorry for me. They are all munching wasa crackers and fiber bars as I eat my well balanced, nourishing, yummy food saying its all about health my friends. All vanity aside, being fat is not healthy and I know I am doing something wrong. I am here to try and figure out what that is.

    Reply
  89. Oops, I realize that I miss spoke about Dawn losing NO weight/fat. She did say she has lost about 7 lbs since eating mostly whole foods. But 7 lbs seems very insignificant – heck, 5 lbs could be water.

    Dawn, was the 7 lbs loss gradual over the last 2 years or has it been recent? Wondering if maybe the loss was due to healing and now your body is starting to shed the fat – if the loss has been more recent.

    Reply
  90. Anonymous,
    Don't freak out! I have stalled weight loss. As per all the experts I should be gaining every year around 10lbs. I have actually lost 7. Something is right there. I also do 0 0 0 0 0 exercise except what life requires. I do chase after little kids all day but do not pump the old ticker. I also am not a hyper healther. I do eat the occasional pizza, cake, ice cream, and the occasional Chickfilet (small children you know) Not as a lifestyle but because I have a life. I do not diet, I eat healthy. Maybe these occasional things are my sole problem, if so I am destined to be fat because a life with no pleasure is not a life worth living. The main thing that drew me to this site was "eat the food" no diet mentality. I thought it was too good to be true, it probably is. Only time will tell.

    Reply
  91. Sorry about the double post. The weight loss has been more like small bumps as I made choices. Like not putting sugar in my coffee. Eating less pasta. Eating eggs for breakfast. Doesen't it sound like LC? Anyway, those little "healthy" decisions seemed to make the difference. I can say that my weight will fluctuate up and then back down during stress. A few pounds up when things suck, process the problem, feel better, a few pounds down. I hate stress. This cortisole issue is why i am trying to dump the caffine. I think it may help me loose some more weight. I am a 3 to 5 cupper every day and a total addict. My body is screaming from the deprivation and I have not even gone cold turkey.

    Reply
  92. Thanks for your feedback, Dawn.

    "The main thing that drew me to this site was "eat the food" no diet mentality. I thought it was too good to be true, it probably is. Only time will tell."

    Me too. The no dieting mentality is what brought me here too. And starting to think same thing – too good to be true.

    It's really starting to look like the mentality is going back to the standard low- fat mentality, "Don't eat fat, fat makes you fat" and exercising to lose weight.

    And from what others, including Matt, have said, you should be able to sometimes eat non whole foods without problems – especially if you've been eating mostly whole foods for 2 years!

    I'm still confused. If we keep doing HED (instead of doing the low-fat approach to minimize fat gain) will we ever lose this extra fat?

    Reply
  93. Annabelle and Elizabeth, you give us hope! I have gained 20 lbs (I was 120 to start with, so that's a lot), and based on my waist going up 7 inches and my butt growing a whole lot too, I would say it's all fat.

    It's not JUST vanity that makes me freak. Hauling around this extra weight has got to be contributing to my overall increased exhaustion.

    And I've been eating healthy for the last two years, I would call myself orthorexic for sure. See FoodRenegade.com if you don't know what I mean. So I don't know that I really needed the fat gain.

    But then, since I upped the carbs and lowered the fat, (it's only been one month so I hope this holds true), I can reach my arms out to my kids running straight at me, rather than trying to protect the boobs from any touch. It's a big deal.

    Annabelle, trying to be high carb, no wheat, and living out in the world is almost impossible! We have been eating waaaay more wheat, and sure it's all soaked or sprouted, but I'm thinking it's contributing to my general malaise. We'll try cutting it out next week.

    At any rate, I'm glad I don't have to exercise. Right now I just want to lay in bed and stare at the ceiling!

    Reply
  94. BTW, this has been commented/asked by others…

    How come nobody wants to share how to "do" the low fat/high carb approach? For those who are doing it, what do your meals look like? How do you eat your carbs/starch? Plain?

    For those of us having a hard time with the thought of doing low fat AND high carbs – it would be very helpful to see how it can be applied in a practical way on a day-to-day basis. What do we eat and how do we eat it???

    Reply
  95. For thosw wonderign about how to do the high carb, low fat regimen, I asked the same question about how-tos a couple weeks ago, and you can look up Matt and DML's response in the comments of this post here: http://180degreehealth.blogspot.com/2010/07/improve-insulin-sensitivity.html

    Also, Matt is releasing an updating version of 180 Kitchen soon (July 26th-ish) with some recipes and suggestions for this sort of body recomposition, high carb low fat diet.

    I agree with everyone,that it's important, though, and am looking forward to seeing the other suggestions coming soon.

    Reply
    • Rob A.
      there are many posts at this link but i do not find the one you are referring to, unless it’s well tucked into something else…thanks
      danbey

      Reply
  96. Annabelle, Jenny, Elizabeth and Butterfly: thanks for the amens and encouragements. I'm glad to hear that you're losing, Liz, with little effort, aka "naturally." I'll be patient and keep eating my potatoes and walking around my neighborhood. I've also started doing 100pushups.com

    Anonymous (that wants some what to eat tips): Jenny shared a tip on making mashed potatoes that I've been using most every day. Instead of using lots of butter/sour cream/cheese, just use a splash of milk when you're mashing. Gold potatoes, with a dash of milk and plenty of good celtic sea salt make for really tasty potatoes that I can eat quite a bit of. Sometimes I add some Tabasco too.

    Lately I've been steaming a big pot of brown rice, then scrambling some eggs with spinach and peppers in just a little butter, then mixing that all together in a bowl with soy sauce. It makes a very satisfying breakfast with plenty of protein, unrefined carbs, fiber and nutrients without excess fat.

    On another note, I went on a 3 day vacation from all dieting this weekend. By the end of the second day, I swear I looked pregnant – my belly was sticking out so far I couldn't even begin to suck it in. It didn't make sense at first – I knew I couldn't have gained that much fat that quickly. My sister suggested it was "bloat" and that's when I started reviewing what I had been eating the most of: white flour. Pasta, pizza, rolls, cake, flour flour flour. I don't know if it's a true gluten intolerance or what, but it is very obvious that a pound of potatoes is much more agreeable to my gut than a pile of bread.

    Thanks again Matt for being humble enough to re-examine and contradict your own advice, even if it makes you look a little douchey. (doucherific? douchetastic?) Keep up the douchebaggery.

    Reply
  97. I would like to say something about the high carb language we have going on here. Although this is dumb talk I think it is important to seperate carb from starch. At least for me. I say this because when you say carb my mind says bread and pasta (grain) but when you say starch my mind says potato, corn, beans, peas, rice (not grain). From my own experience and observation of some other LCers starch is much more friendly than grain. I don't know why, just a simple mommy brain in observation. So I am really asking if we are talking about increasing only starch and not grain or all carbohydrate foods. I personally lost some weight by reducing grain. My mom who is a LC can also eat starch and keep her weight steady but she can not eat much grain without gaining. I am interested to see if that is key to this approach.

    Reply
  98. Also, for the criticism that 180 is just coming around to the standard nutritional advice- maybe, but I don't think Americans are getting sick and obese from eating a high complex carb, low fat, whole foods based diet. When you point to the recomenndations and say,'look how sick people are,' you've gotta keep in mind that most people don't actually eat that way. Americans eat lots of fat, maybe not 60-80% like low-carbers, but more than Kitavanas and lots of other indigenous food cultures the world over. Combined with the nuance Matt's suggesting here- low fructose, prioritize saturated rather than unsaturated fats, you have quite a different diet than the one most Americans are eating and getting admittedly damn sick on.

    Reply
  99. I'm at 10 months of over-feeding. Or eating beyond appetite daily.

    About one month ago I switched to overfeeding with reduced fat, protein, and larger amounts of unrefined carbs. Since switching I have lost 5lbs, down to 190lb. Morning basal is still pegged at 97.2.

    Meal examples:
    Most Mornings
    2 cups cooked soaked steel cut oatmeal, cinnamon, 1/2 raw milk, small amount coconut fat, tbsp gelatine, sea salt.

    Most lunches and dinner
    2lbs potatoes or any tuber, .5 tbsp coconut fat, 2 tbsp sour cream, 1/2 cup raw milke, lots of sea salt, pepper
    Either two eggs, salmon, lean hamburger, chicken breast, hard cheeses with the carbs
    Sometimes 2cups of white or soaked brown rice instead of tubers.

    I find for myself, unrefined starch with small amounts of fat and lots of salt/pepper is palatable. Also easy to make large portions of starches, then the rest of the family can add whatever fat amounts, spices they want. I am seeing fat loss with overeating and no exercise. But my basal, which is stable, is still low, after 10months, so maybe this will help. Time will tell…

    Reply
  100. Matt said, "If fat intake is low enough while overfeeding, fat gain is impossible and lean mass gains are guaranteed. Your body has to do something with the excess energy intake, and in the absence of fat, you gain nothing but lean mass while overfeeding. This, in and of itself, is a very important discovery."

    "in the absence of fat" – does this mean that it would be best to eat carbs by themselves? I know that seems kind of obvious, but what happens if there is fat with the carb? And how little (if any) should the fat be when we eat it with carbs?

    Matt said, "It can be as easy as overfeeding on starch one day per week, losing fat 6 days per week, and doing a 30-minute full-body exercise routine once per week."

    I'm confused by this too, as Sarahsmile said.

    Thanks, Matt!

    Undertow, thank you for your input! I was hoping to hear from you. I always find your comments helpful! :)

    And thanks so much to the rest of you for your feedback – especially liked hearing from the ladies, since I am one. But the guys have been helpful too, thanks guys! :)

    Reply
  101. These are just some thoughts that have been bouncing around in my head. I'm very tired, though, so it isn't written well, please excuse.

    With respect to Broda Barnes book about hypoglycemia, it's not your mind, it's your liver, has anyone been doing anything in particular for their liver? Also, it seems strange that he said the cause is the liver, but then used dessicated thyroid to deal with it.

    Some people think the thyroid is the master gland, and that kick starting it will help clean out the blood and the condition of your liver will improve. TCM considers the liver the master gland, and that dealing with your liver problem will in turn help improve the function of your thyroid.

    Traditional Chinese Medicine looks at hypoglycemia in a totally different way than our western culture does. It says that it's blood deficiency which then causes liver heat, in the way that a car's engine would overheat if it didn't have oil. That may explain why Berkowitz saw so many people who lost a lot of weight develop hypoglycemia. Skinny people are much more likely to have dehydrated blood.

    I can think of more than one type diet for healing that says that in order to help the liver, cut out or cut back on animal fats. So perhaps the low fat diet is actually helping the liver. I cut out dairy again, and am only using olive oil to see if that helps. One lady who had a thyroid protocol recommended taking olive oil not only with your meals, but also inbetween meals. Carbs without fat can be very drying, so anyone who seems to need lubrication might need a little extra oil.

    My Chinese friend also said that not being able to lose weight or gain weight are both caused by liver problems.

    Don't forget, too, that eating a low carb diet usually means eating lots of meat, and we all know what those nasty purines can do. Jam up the liver and kidneys, mess up your pancreas, and Haig doesn't talk about the thyroid much, but I am convinced that a lot of thyroid problems are not caused by a "lack" of something, but by glandular uric acid toxicity.

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  102. Matt – I commented on your Low-Carb Lowers Metabolism post about my recent reactive hypoglycemia incident. Now, I can hardly eat fruit or potatoes without feeling sick and shaky.

    Even further, I've developed pretty severe heartburn and abdominal pains that seem to be aggravated by carbohydrate consumption. I've seemingly become carbohydrate-intolerant!

    This makes following your advice and getting off the low-carb diet difficult. I checked out your post on heart burn where you got rid of it by eating pizza! I'm a little wary of doing this, as trying to eat a corn-tortilla quesadilla made me extremely shaky, cold, and sick. How the hell am I supposed to start eating carbs when they induce sickness and heartburn? Should I just go low-carb until I'm feeling better, then gradually try to add carbs back in? This is so frustrating.

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  103. I started monitoring my temps and fasting BG these last few days.

    Fasting BG was 60 mg/dl this morning, but my temp was only 96.2.

    I check my body temp yesterday morning and afternoon as well. In the morning it was 95.3, and in the afternoon, after eating 2 meals, it only got up to 96.4.

    I've never had weight problems, and wouldn't consider myself as having low metabolism. I've always eaten truck loads and have never given any mercy to carbs, except for the last 2 months on my low-carb experience. I don't know if low carb would have screwed up my body temp that bad in 2 months.

    It is weird that it would be so low. It would be interesting to know what my body temp was before.

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  104. @Dawn: As you said, it sounds like you have a pretty mild history in terms of health, but the fact that you feel addicted to having several cups of coffee per day really stood out to me. The need to drink that much caffeine hints that a biochemical imbalance could be the underlying issue. It particularly points to adrenal problems. Unfortunately from what I've read and from my own experience, those with adrenal problems tend to gain fat weight during recovery whether underweight, overweight or a normal weight at the start. Not to say that you *have* to gain weight (Matt's new ideas may be helpful for that), but just that it's more of a possibility. However, if you've been eating good amounts of real food for a longer period of time, simply eating more might not be what you need. You're probably right in trying to tackle the caffeine addiction at this point, and an important part of that would be considering if there is any underlying cause (i.e. why the need to self-medicate with coffee? Are you getting enough sleep?… etc.).

    Also, amino acid therapy seems to be helpful in quitting caffeine. I've used it with success, as have other real foodies (like Ann Marie Michaels, for instance, did a good post on it recently). Phenylalanine and tyrosine seem to be particularly helpful.

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  105. Thanks Elizabeth. I will look into the amino acid therapy. As for caffine it is a life long addiction. I started drinking coffee at 15 as it was a staple drink in my home. I drink nothing else except water and milk and have always been that way. Caffine addiction is a result of use more than need. Although I NEED it now! :) I am actually weaning off with green tea and will swith to straight herbal once I feel better. I am big into replacement stratagy as psychology (habits) can be just as hard to manage as physiology. I actually am feeling a little better right now. This is the beginning of day 5. I went to bed with an excruciating headache but awoke with none. I have also had some body and joint pain but that is gone also. I am so excited about this transition and I am really positive that it will make a difference. As for the eating plan, I am still undecided. From my own biofeedback, I feel great when I eat high protein and even fat but when I eat carbs and starch I feel terriable with lots of indigestion and then strong sugar cravings. I can eat grains and starch with my protein but if it is the predominate portion I will feel a bit ill and be hungry in an hour. My best meals are heavy vegtable with a normal portion of protein and a small portion of carbohydrate with a good amount of fat. This morning I ate polenta (made according to Matt's recipe, I love grits) and a scrambeld egg with some cheese. The polenta was 2/3 and the egg was 1/3 of what I ate. Both at normal dietary portions and now I feel like someone droped a brick in my stomach which feels terriable. I just want to go lay down. Forget energy or even movement. I don't know yet what I am going to do. Still trying to work it out.

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  106. I really don't understand why all of you guys are so confused. If you are having hypoglycemic problems with eating too high of carbs and low fat, then don't change so rapidly, it takes time for the body to adjust. Do 1 gram per pound of lean body mass of protein and carbs and then slowly decrease the fat and increase carbs.

    Most of the world eats a high carb low fat diet. It is not that hard to eat this way, all of asia does it. Rice, pasta, potatoes, bread, corn, etc are all high carb low fat foods.

    If you want to be lean and defined, then you are going to have to put in some effort, unless you are one of the genetic elite. Just because you eat whole natural food will NOT give you this type of body. Look at some of the artwork of the past, there were people who were fat eating whole, organic, unprocessed foods, and in many cultures being fatter was a good thing.

    So, make a decision on what you want and do what it takes to get it. Do you just want to be healthy and don't really care about being lean and defined, then just eat whole unprocessed food and enjoy daily activity like walking, gardening, etc.. Do you want to be lean and defined? Then realize you will have to be more strict about what you eat and exercise with some volume and intensity.

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  107. OK…so, nothin about this no fat low protein high starch diet looks or even sounds palatable. i dont know how you people choke down 2 lbs of potatoes or rice.

    then 'it s impossible' to gain overfeeding with low fat high starch… non believer here so please prove me wrong

    then, matt goes on to say overfeed yourself with starch once a week, work out once a week etc…

    'overfeeding' sounds like putting yourself in a deficit the rest the week, but earlier you mention that UNDEReating with low fat high starch is the CAUSE of weight gain…confused yet?

    in the scheme of things, it sounds like some body-building motto blah blah eat low fat and cutting foods and refeed once a week.

    any bodybuilding website will tell you this. hell and if yall are so interested in 'what to eat' just check out some meathead workout site… chicken breast, loads or plain rice or potatoes with hot sauce, plain veggies, bowls of plain oatmeal, "I cant believe it's not butter' junk…

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  108. PS- CORN IS A GRAIN…might wanna stay away

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  109. P.S. Corn is delicious and I eat lots of it.

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  110. malpaz,
    I believe that Matt is referring to eating to appetite most of the time with the occasionally overfeeding. What is so hard about understanding that.
    If people are focused on looking a certain way, why not base it on those you have the most experience(bodybuilders) and implement techniques to acquire what is desired?

    Also, for those who dont know how to eat high carb like most of the world, look for inspiration in asian cuisine, indian cuisine, african cuisine, polynesian cuisine for meal ideas.

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  111. Sorry didn't have anything intelligent to add to the conversation.

    But a good conversation it is.

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  112. Thanks JT. I think your comments are some of the most rational ones i have heard so far. The reality is is that there is no such thing as a non diet, just eat the food lifestyle. You have to eat the right things in the right amounts with the right exercise to get somewhere otherwise you just end up like me. Resonably healthy and FAT!

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  113. Malpaz,

    I think the difference is that Matt is suggesting a very very mild calorie deficit. A deficit so slight that you're only losing about pound a week and maybe not even seeing the loss on a scale, since you're also putting on lean mass. And as your lean mass rachets up, your metabolism follows suit, which increases the fat loss effect.

    I can eat a very low-fat, moderate protein, very high-unrefined-carb (and flavourful!) meal and be stuffed full after 600 or 700 calories. Alternately, I could eat the very same meal with 200 or 300 calories of added fat. And actually, I could probably eat more because of the palatability factor.

    This way, you're always eating to fullness, but your fullness kicks in a bit sooner. And the metabolic advantages are there, too, which compounds the effect.

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  114. I'm really not sure I understand why everyone is looking for meal suggestions and complaining about blandness.

    I basically eat the same I stuff I ate when RRARFing, just with, you know, how should I say it, less fat (gasp! – and less protein too, but whatever).
    Of course combining fat and starch is ultra-delicious, but I still don't think that a low-fat diet has to taste bland.
    I base my meals around a huge serving of starch, some veggies and most of the time some kind of stock/tomato purree based sauce with lots of spices and salt. That way you can easily cover all the potatoes with some spicy goodness. The only thing that has changed for me, that I put less butter/coconut oil into the sauce, but it still tastes very good.
    I'm quite a sucker for spices, but I really do see no reason to avoid them. they are delicious and often have great health benefits.

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  115. I used to wonder how to flavor potatoes and rice meals, and I found that the starch eaters following Dr. McDougall's diet have many suggestions.

    e.g.

    Baked Potato Toppings?
    http://www.drmcdougall.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=14041

    I like salsa too, and Matt provided a great recipe video for that, but there is really a lot of variety available to make starches taste even better without having to resort to added fat.

    For tasty low fat ideas, the McDougall folks have been doing this long enough that they have a wealth of quick sauces and recipes.

    Here's another example:
    http://drmcdougall.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=7981

    There's some nice fairly simple examples there like Hawaiian Tacos (using a pineapple salsa) and Black Bean pizza.

    Personally I adore the taste of plain steamed potatoes and especially sweet potatoes, but whenever I feel like something different, there's endless possibilities.

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  116. Annabelle 1 pound a week fat loss ie 500 calories less per day is not a small deficit at all for a small woman. I would love to lose 1 pound a week as it is I struggle to lose 1 pound a month. I have a pretty heigh amount of muscle so am not looking to gain more really… everyone asks me if i work out as the muscle mass is pretty visible.

    I personally think you can make tasty high carb low fat meals but to me they aren't as tasty as higher fat, but if it will temporarily help i guess it doesn't matter. As JT says let's get real looking really good takes effort :)

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  117. I did as sydney suggested this morning (warming up the thermometer for awhile before taking my temperature) and my underarm temperature was 98.3. It's been no more than 97.2 previously. So I guess what I'm wondering is whether my real temperature is actually higher than I thought, or whether warming it up artificially inflated it.

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  118. @Jedi: I agree. A daily 500 calorie deficit is difficult for me. I find I have to switch from eating in a deficit and eating normally, plus a little bit of overfeeding here or there. This adds up to a deficit of maybe 1,500-2,500 calories per week, which ends up being only a couple lbs a month. Slow, but doable at least.

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  119. Thanks everyone for your feedback and tips – even for the points about a high carb low fat diet not having to be complicated or tasteless – points taken :)

    But I do understand why those of us who have been cooking and seasoning our carbs with coconut oil, butter, etc. would feel lost as to how to eat even MORE carbs with MUCH LESS fat.

    And many of you who have commented how simple and flavorful high carb/low fat can be, didn't really offer examples (other than subtle hints). Was just simply asking for some help with suggestions or to be pointed in the right direction to get us started.

    I thought that was what this blog and comment section was here for… to help each other – not make people feel uncomfortable about asking questions or for help.

    Thank you, Shane, for that info! The tacos sound delish!

    BTW, I made garlic mash potatoes last night for dinner with no butter! :) Mashed 'em with a little raw whole milk and garlic salt to taste – they were quite yummy! Try it!

    Thanks again to all! :)

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  120. Sorry, I should have written "a pound or less". :)

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  121. "I did as sydney suggested this morning … So I guess what I'm wondering is whether my real temperature is actually higher than I thought, or whether warming it up artificially inflated it. "

    Well, as long as you are only using your body and are not creating any friction (rubbing your hand etc, but that would screw up the reading anyways, because you wouldn't be measuring the "resting" metabolism anymore) to warm up the thermometer, there really is no way to artificially inflate the temperature you are measuring. Kinda impossible to get something above body temperature by only using your body.

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  122. I wonder about the body temp thing too. I use two thermometers at the same time. I take 4 readings each side, then switch them and do 4 more. You can see a lot of variation doing that, sometimes over a degree. But still I don't warm them up anything close to 10 minutes. Not even one minute. It'd be interesting to do temps with longer warm-up times. Many of us may be higher than we think.

    As for losing weight/leaning out, it sounds like the practicalities of it are so slow, it would be hard to tell whether it's happening or not. The easier approach may just be to resort to something like leangains.

    I'm still intrigued by the overfeeding study where the lean subjects gained hardly any weight. I don't think it's really known the best way to lose weight. The 180 community might be at the front of the pack. In several months, we'll probably have a lot more info as some may start to naturally lose, or others try specific approaches.

    One thing I'd like to know: can I program like leangains lead to a lowering of the body-fat set-point?

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  123. Dawn said:
    "Anonymous (that wants some what to eat tips): Jenny shared a tip on making mashed potatoes that I've been using most every day. Instead of using lots of butter/sour cream/cheese, just use a splash of milk when you're mashing. Gold potatoes, with a dash of milk and plenty of good celtic sea salt make for really tasty potatoes that I can eat quite a bit of. Sometimes I add some Tabasco too. "

    I think it really helps to warm the milk and add any seasoning to the milk first and then add it to the potatoes. You can make really amazing low fat garlic mashed potatoes this way.

    I also think you are going about your caffeine addiction the right way. I went from a pot of sweetened tea (4-6 cps) a day to drinking no tea at all, by slowly weaning down from black to green to white to herbal to nothing. Red roiboos was really helpful since it has a hearty robust flavor like black tea but no caffeine. It is also really stain-y so I quit drinking it because if I'm not going to drink tea I might as well have white teeth again.

    I have had a really awful stomach virus off and on for the last few weeks and caffeine has really helped get me through it. Nothing like a little caffeine to kick that washed out feeling. But the difference is a cup of tea is a lot of caffeine for me now. I used to not even be able to get out of bed without at least one cup of tea (usually with a heap of sugar in it.) The caffeine reduction took months. I never had headaches though because I did it really gradually.

    One thing that happened over that period is I started sleeping better. It's a vicious cycle. You sleep badly then you are tired so drink caffeine and then you sleep even worse. Once you start sleeping better, you won't be so addicted, I think. It's so wonderful to just wake up and go with no faffing around for my first fix of the day.

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  124. If you wanna get rid of a coffee addiction, it also helps to watch this video, seriously.

    Reply
  125. Thanks for the caffine junkie love! xoxo. I am honestly doing awesome. Day 5 I was feeling great. I am still getting a modest amount of caffine from some green tea which I will continue to deminish very slowely. I really have noticed how much more alert I feel waking up than I did before. The big thing now is that early afternoon crash I still have. Today I am indulging in some organic chai with a teaspoon of raw honey and a little half and half. A little caffine but much less than a cup or two of coffee. Plus, I fugure i get my caffine and sugar fix in one nourishing little cup of tea.

    Reply
  126. Matt, I have been following your blog for awhile now and like a lot of what you are doing but I have a couple of questions/concern I would like your response to.

    First you seem to be making a jump from from recommending low carb to high carb. You seem to be making this recommendation after doing something similar yourself. My thought is that you as a former low carber you have probably corrected any problem you would have had with insulin resistance but recommending this to somebody who is suffering from insulin resistance would not have the same effect and even eating good carbs wouldn't let the insulin resistance heal.

    My second concern is that you recommend that everyone hit a certain body temperature before attempting weight loss. While I definetly agreee you have to feed your body and get it out of starvation mode before attempting weight loss I have my doubts that an obese person having the same arm pit temperature as Matt Stone. My thought is that since an obese person is going to have a different mass volume ratio, more adipose tissue and several other anatomical and physiological factors that may prevent them from reaching a given arm pit temperature even with a healthy metabolism and core temperature.

    Thank you for your time.

    Cameron

    Reply
  127. Matt:

    "If fat intake is low enough while overfeeding, fat gain is impossible and lean mass gains are guaranteed."

    Do you have any reference to prove this?

    The carbohydrate overfeeding studies I know all show fat gain.

    One example I already posted is the guru walla overfeeding.

    http://www.ajcn.org/cgi/reprint/56/3/483

    The subjects gained about 70% as fat and 30% as lean. C/F/P was about 70/15/15.

    Another overfeeding study:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC436949/

    Mean weight gain was about 57% fat and 43% lean. C/F/P was 70/22/8. 5 out of 7 gained LBM, so lean gains are NOT guaranteed.

    "Your body has to do something with the excess energy intake, and in the absence of fat, you gain nothing but lean mass while overfeeding."

    Carbohydrates are turned into fat via de novo lipogenesis. With small amounts of carbs hepatic lipogenesis is used while adipose lipogenesis occurs with higher carb levels.

    "Also, excess carbohydrate increases thermogenesis, and fat does not stimulate the metabolism the same way that carbohydrate does."

    That´s true.

    You could argue that fat levels were still to high in those studies. Would there be a different outcome with lower fat levels. Maybe but I doubt it.

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  128. Shit.

    I was trying the … fuck, can't remember the name, diet again. Have only been on it a week. 1 g protein/ 0.6 g carbs / kg LBM. Just ate a normal person sandwich and I've been mentally incapacitated for the last three hours. My head feels like one of those whirly baloons on a gusty day.

    I can only surmise that my body is not releasing body fat in sufficient quantity to feed the lean tissues, and therefore I am starvation mode. Shit, shit shit.

    Pardon the language. Really can't think right now. Which is a problem because I'm supposed to be drafting a contract.

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  129. I feel much better now. I'm still on the Evans & Strang diet (which is the name I couldn't remember when my brain was in shutdown). I feel great, have plenty of energy, etc.

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  130. My daughter has thyroid issues and we got her this product. So far it's working really well. I think that most people who have thyroid issues should try this, because they offer a free trial.

    Maybe it will work for you!

    check it out here

    Reply
  131. Danny Jimmy-

    Not sure where your comment went but it showed up in my email inbox.

    To answer your question, I do believe that a hypometabolism has everything to do with hypoglycemia, as this is what Broda Barnes treated to eliminate hypoglycemia.

    I'd be very curious to see if you could overcome this condition by overfeeding, slowly increasing carb quantity as you progress.

    I know it can be done with those who have developed it via dieting, but most dieted in the first place due to a hypometabolism causing a crappy body composition. At 5'9" 140 and still a little chubby this is definitely the body type of a someone with a chronic low metabolism. Low muscle mass, low testosterone (not very lean) and so forth.

    Reply
  132. Matt-

    Thanks for you reply

    Could you also please elaborate on the fact you mentioned that it could also:

    "be as easy as overfeeding on starch one day per week, losing fat 6 days per week, and doing a 30-minute full-body exercise routine once per week – mostly bodyweight exercises (my only gym equipment consists of 2, 15-pound dumbells and a pull-up bar, which is totally optional)"

    I don't seem to tolerate overfeeding for many days in a row or underfeeding for many days in a row, but I seem to do better when I alternate the two so what you said is very interesting.

    Also could you tell me what exercises you do? I burned myself out on gym exercising 6 times a week but my dislike for exercise grew so much that I became sedentary. Now I'd like to find an happy medium to keep myself fit without a huge effort. I'd like to exercise once or twice per week, short sessions and using basic easy exercises mostly bodyweight and some that can be done with dumbbells sitting down (I don't tolerate exercising standing up, it triggers some kind of orthostatic intolerance in me)

    I would really appreciate it if you could answer those questions.

    Thanks for your precious help

    Reply
  133. At your weight I think you'd do better to reverse that recommendation, doing mostly overfeeding instead of mostly underfeeding.

    For example, at the same height I have about 155 to 160 pounds of lean body mass alone.

    As far as exercise is concerned, doing very high-heart rate cicuit-style training where you are really pushing yourself for 30-60 minutes once or twice per week is probably a much better and more sustainable program for you. A blend of body weight exercises mixed with a few traditional weightlifting movements is great.

    Reply
  134. sorry but this is not working for me! Every morning i wake up nice & ‘thin’ but by mid morning i start bloating up..cortisol fat? too much water? (i Don’t drink much!) but eating tubers seems to hurry it along. I’ve been eating high protein to help re balance my adrenals but have tried cutting back on that & eating more carbs.
    at wits end
    dabney

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  135. God this is porbably another reason we have thin Type 2 diabetics, that starved themselves and screwed their metabolism.

    I was bulimorexic and usually my issue was hypoglycemia from not eating. As soon as i got back to normal weight and ate PCOS because apparent (insulin resistance is a part of it) and I have a long history of diabetes in my family. I got sick at 13, now at 20 I have high fasting blood sugar and reactive hypoglycemia. When I feel a little bit off my blood sugar was 3.1( i think that’s 55) God only knows what it is when I wake up shaking and vomiting.

    So now what? I usually forgo eating and end up with a hypo or eat like people tell me to, have a spike then a massive hypo… which just makes me want to eat more… then I feel low from another hypo and want to start purging again >_<

    Reply

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