Tag Archives: nutrition

Low-fat diets discredited

Low-fat diets are starting to be discredited all over the place. Here is a study that spent $700M over 8 years, trying to prove that low-fat diets with lots of added veggies and whole grains helped post-menopausal women avoid or recover heart disease and diabetes.


In fact it found the exact opposite.
“Women with diagnosed cardiovascular disease at the start of the trial who adopted the ‘healthy heart’ low-fat eating option had a risk of developing future cardiovascular complications that was 26% higher than that of the non-intervention group.”
“The leanest women at the start of the trial gained weight on the low-fat diet and those with the least insulin resistance at the start of the trial were at greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM) if assigned to the low-fat diet.”
“The low-fat diet also worsened glucose control in women with diagnosed diabetes”

More links along the same lines

The episode of Dr. Oz’s TV show where he denounces low-fat dietary advice

The acclaimed article in BMJ on saturated fat not being the problem

The report from Credit Suisse on the dangers of sugar

The recent episode of the Australian science television show on how saturated fat is not the cause of heart disease.

Plan for September: eat MORE and exercise LESS

My plan for this month is to eat MORE and exercise LESS. Yes, I know that sounds backwards, but here is my thinking.

1. I have had great results with Paleo but I have been playing fast and loose, and having stuff I shouldn’t be having a bit too often. I can have bread, but I’ve decided I don’t want to have it every day. So I’m taking this month to re-focus on core Paleo. Also, there’s some “extra” stuff I’m doing that is sort of OK but not really important to basic paleo. For example, intermittent fasting, and carb re-feeds. It doesn’t hurt, but it would benefit me more to get my basic, core paleo skills back on track. Here is my resource for that: http://everydaypaleo.com/just-paleo/ and Whole30.

2. I lowered my calorie budget a LOT and I think that it allowed me to lose some weight, but it’s brought me closer to “starvation mode” than I like. Mark’s response to someone’s letter brought this home for me. So I’m raising my budget closer to what Lose It suggests for my size. Key reading here: http://everydaypaleo.com/fat-loss-template/ and http://www.marksdailyapple.com/…/

3. I have been doing heavy lifting with a small amount of cardio. But I have been neglecting the #1 primal workout: walking. So for September I will try to get as much walking per day as possible and not go for my normal lifting/cardio schedule. Key reading material: Month 1 of http://everydaypaleo.com/fat-loss-template/ and “2. Move around a lot at a slow pace.” http://www.marksdailyapple.com/…/

4. SLEEP is crucial and I have been staying up late and rising early, too often. So I will commit to going to bed on time and trying to get 8 hrs of quality sleep during September. I know it’s important, I just need to do it. I should stop eating around 8 or 9 and get to bed between 10 and 11.

Depending on how it goes in September I will probably want to move on to Month 2 of http://everydaypaleo.com/fat-loss-template/ where I add back in some lifting and may even take up meditation for stress reduction. Hmm.

Weight loss journey: skills and practices

Here are some of the important life skills and practices that I have learned in my weight loss journey.

1. Logging and measuring everything, at least while I’m making changes.
2. Really listening to my body to know when I’m hungry or satisfied.
3. Being aware of nutrient balance (fat/carbs/protein)
4. Experimenting, pushing the limits for 4-week intervals in the early game.
5. Being honest with myself about what plans will be sustainable over the long term (rest of my life) and rejecting anything that still requires lots of motivation after the first 4 weeks.

I think I do 1 and 2 every day, many times a day, and I do 3,4,5 once a week — weekly check-ins are important to my plan.

Whole30 round 2 planned for June – I’m doing this

I have decided to do another Whole30 in June, starting today. Is anyone interested in doing it with me? Reach out to me if so.

The story so far: I’ve posted quite a bit about my Paleo journey so far. “A tale of two diets — How I renegotiated my relationship to food” ( http://blog.nekodojo.org/archives/2013/1010 ) is a great summary. Quick version: Over many years I have tried different diets and lost about 20 pounds, but nothing really worked well for the long term. Then I found Paleo and LCHF, then it just clicked. It has been 1.5 years and I’ve lost another 78 (for a total of 98 pounds).

I found Whole30 only later, but it is very closely matched to what I was already doing. The only difference is that Whole30 is more strict (i.e. no dairy) and designed to be used for only 30 days, then you’re free to choose your own path again, adding back some of the questionable foods carefully and seeing how it goes. Whole30 is designed to be a 30-day experiment, to reset your system and find a new baseline. So, I did this in March along with a few friends and had some good results.

Since then I am still doing fine, though I’m not losing as much as I want and I still think I would like to lose another 15-20 to be in a healthy range. I am pretty happy with my eating now, but there are still some minor adjustments to make. So during june, no cheat/treat days, no dairy, no dark chocolate. These are things that I definitely want in my life, but I’m taking a break from them for 30 days, so that after this time I can appreciate them properly in smaller amounts.

Also I’ve made some friends on Lose It ( http://www.loseit.com ) and we’ve had successful Whole30 challenges during Feb, Mar, Apr and May. So I’m also doing this to show support for folks who are trying this during June, or continuing what they have already started. I’m thinking of you, Marilyn, Donell, Joy, Stella, Barbara, buzybee, Jazzy, ervic, Jay, Megan, Paula, Carol, Julie, June, Krista, April, Tiffany, Anne, Kristie, Emily, Buffy, Beccah, and many others I’m probably forgetting. You’re all doing great.

So if you have been thinking about a change and you want to join the Whole30 team for June, let me know!