On September 2, 2012, I was 207.6. This morning, October 10, 2012, I am 193.0 – 14.6 lbs down in 39 days.
Today, if I haven’t messed up in my counting, I have been on a strict ketogenic-type low carb diet – pretty much a long-term Atkins Induction for 30 days straight and am less than 10 pounds away from my target weight of 185, which is when my wife starts to complain that I look too thin.
I am on day 30. I haven’t been in ketosis this long for a long, long, time.
I have proven conclusively something that I thought I could do but had no proof: that after another 9 years older, I could have the same kind of results I had on Atkins the first go-round.
There’s a notion in the low carb community about ‘The Golden Shot’ – that low carb only works once, and if you lose it and gained it back, you can’t repeat it.
In actuality, it seems you can do this – it just takes a little longer. But what I am finding is that I don’t care about how long it takes because the diet is making me, in general, feel better.
It is said that it take a person 6 weeks to become fully keto-adapted. I have a little less than 2 weeks to get there. In the meantime, how do I feel, aside from the weight loss? What are the other benefits that makes me see this not as some burdensome effort I must do to get to my target weight, but a pleasant lifestyle change with a number of benefits I had either forgotten or never experienced?
Sugar and sweets hold no allure for me.
They surround me: the box of Krave on the kitchen counter, the Japanese cookies the wife and kids gobble, the cake, the candy. It interests me about as much as a rabbit might be interested in a steak. I’ve had 2 packets of Splenda and a few squirts of low carb ketchup since the start – that’s the extent of my artificial sweetener usage. No soda, no Atkins Shakes. I’ve eaten my old favorite, the Lindt 80% Dark chocolate which is wonderfully low in carbs – I can have 4 big squares and still maintain ketosis. It fills my occasional sweet tooth, which arises every few days – not every few minutes. It’s like being unshackled from a weight.
I see no reason to stop.
Atkins always talked about Induction as being a short-term, 2 week thing. Me, personally, see no reason to stop until my winter vacation in mid-December. If I manage to hang in there until then, I would be in ketosis for 90 days straight. As always, I’m reporting, not recommending.
I seem calmer in general.
While my life has certainly NOT been calm as of late, I have seemed calmer in my reaction toward it. Not that there haven’t been moments, but it seems that my personal drama level has decreased. Without being hungry all the time, and not pining for sweets and treats, a lot of mental burden has lessened at least in that area. I might be eating a smaller variety of foods, but I am changing things up enough to keep me interested. I still enjoy eating, I just don’t need to eat all that much.
Low carb diets have been recommended for epilepsy, diabetes, GERD, and PCOS – might a low carb diet also be helpful in anxiety disorders?
The diet is boring – in a good way.
Don’t get me wrong – I still love food and love eating. It just doesn’t have the ‘crack pipe’ pull it once had. I get hungry, I eat, I enjoy my meal, I finish and get on with life. The number of mental inventories of the refrigerator have lessened considerably. I went out to dinner with my wife for our anniversary and did the standard low carb trick of getting the simply prepared meat (seared Ahi tuna in my case) with 2 sides of the vegetable as a replacement for the starch, and skipped the bread, except to have a small taste just for the experience of the meal. This bit of bread did not cause some trigger to go off – I didn’t give it a second thought after that, enjoyed the meal and had a lovely time with my wife.
No headaches, unusual fatigue or constipation – might that be because of salt?
All these symptoms might be because there’s not enough salt in a low carb diet. By the way: I have NOT been supplementing with fiber. A lot of the butter I eat is a European variety with sea salt mixed in – I certainly don’t avoid salt. You aren’t supposed to on a ketogenic low carb diet – your body handles salt much, much differently. There is also mounting evidence that our war on salt as being something bad is another misguided health initiative. My blood pressure the other day – after drinking a pot of coffee – was 125 over 75. That’s OK for a guy with a family history of hypertension and had a blood pressure of 190 over 110 when he was 28.
Of course, I have a history of sabotaging myself right after self-congratulatory posts such as these.
As always, should this happen, you will get a full report on any dietary faux pas.