Low Carb FAQ

[UPDATE: I am busy with a number of things and thought I might leave this post in place for a while, updating occasionally with new questions. Let’s see how this goes]

A lot of people get to this site through search engines, and I can see what these folks entered into the search bar to find me. A lot of these form questions, and I thought I could save you the miserable experience of reading through my site and instead provide a short FAQ of my answers to popular questions.

Please note I said my answers – not the answer. I am no expert. Consider me just some schlub answering your question and not any authority on the subject. Do your own research: I might be a loony.

At present they are in no particular order – and will probably stay that way. I’ll put the most recent at the top so the readers who keep tabs on me don’t have to dig.

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What is ‘Nutritional Ketosis’ (Without the Gobbeldygook)

I’ve used the term ‘nutritional ketosis’ in a few posts but I haven’t taken the time to explain it – as if everyone’s a nutrition nerd like I am and knows what the heck I am talking about.

I could get all ‘sciency’ on you, but I’d rather not. Most people aren’t all that interested in the sciency details – and I would just be lifting from a book that has become a bit of a bible to me in my current approach to low carb:

The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living: An Expert Guide to Making the Life-Saving Benefits of Carbohydrate Restriction Sustainable and Enjoyable by
Stephen D. Phinney and Jeff S. Volek

I’ve read the book twice and it is well-highlighted in my Kindle. Recommended for all you nutrition nerds, but many of you aren’t nutrition nerds and don’t want to read a book written by two doctors written for other doctors. It isn’t a breezy read.

Instead, why don’t I give you the explanation I give myself – dope that I am. For goodness’ sake – check this out for yourself if you have even the slightest curiosity. I give no promises for accuracy. You have been warned.

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Shopping Low Carb: Whole Foods, Supermarket, Trader Joe’s, and Amazon Subscribe and Save

Shopping low carb – at least the way that I do it, can be a pain in the ass. The reasons for this are:

  • The conventional supermarket has the most variety and the best prices generally, but the specific items I’m looking for are either unavailable or at a higher price
  • The specialty markets (ie: Whole Foods) have more of the items I am looking for and the prices are comparable or better than they would be at the conventional supermarket – the problems is that the rest of their stuff is immorally overpriced
  • The ‘value specialty markets’ (ie: Trader Joe’s) provide an eclectic selection that ranges from treasures to junk
  • Some things are only available mail order – or only economical mail order

What this means is that I have become used to buying food at 5 different stores.

A pain in the ass – see what I mean?

Let’s take a tour.

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My Wife’s Theory on Why Low Carb Works for Me

The past few days I have not been particularly vigilant in my record-keeping – I just haven’t felt like it, so I can’t provide even rough numbers on calorie counts or proportions of fat, protein, and carbs.

I can say I have been following my diet: mostly fat, some protein, and little in the way of carbs. I have also eaten what feels to be a lot: I walk away from the table more than full thinking I ate too much – but the scale still trends downward – at the moment I am 204.

My older daughter has come to enjoy my olive oil mayonnaise: “Daddy, that mayonnaise you make is really good.” She – like my wife – are not ones to throw complements haphazardly. Usually, she would say nothing, or perhaps utter a Spock-like: “Ummm.”

I have avoided the pizza and the donuts. The ice cream and the blueberry cornbread. I did have the cream spooned off the top of the unhomognized milk we’ve gotten as of late and had at least a half-dozen tablespoons of the stuff with some blueberries – what a flavorful dish.

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Simple Cooking: Quick and Easy Baked Cod Recipe

I think cooking, above much else, is a must for any dieter. The problem lies in that many of us don’t know how to cook. It is becoming a lost art, something for hobbyists, enthusiasts, manufacturers, and professionals.

Knowing nothing about cooking does not mean you can’t cook quick, simple items on the go – and not leave the kitchen looking like the aftermath of a ‘sloppy chef cook-off’.

This isn’t about the recipe as much as the technique. I work long hours. Am rushed by commitments, and am tired when I get home. So here’s how I tackled this one particular dish.

Over the weekend I went to Trader Joe’s and bought a package of frozen cod pieces – an unfortunate name if you are familiar with the history of men’s clothing styles. What you get is the trimmings of cod for a whole lot less than you would pay for a full fillet. They taste perfectly fine – they just come bite-sized.

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Day 15 of Atkins Induction – Now it’s ‘Nutritional Ketosis’

The Atkins plan – at least the 1992 Atkins plan I started with – recommended a 2-week induction period with a slow and steady increase in carbs which, while it might slow weight loss a bit, was supposed to be much more tolerable – or so I imagine the reasoning was.

I’m going past that, baby. Now it’s ‘Nutritional Ketosis’.

There are some people who live in this state constantly. Perhaps not many, but there’s some. I think in the past I’ve gotten to 6 to 8 weeks before I flubbed it, but there’s nothing that says you can’t go right back into it.

If you’ve allowed yourself enough variety of low carb-high fat, healthy food, in my opinion there is nothing wrong with this.

When I started this I was 212 – I’ve been as low as 204. My weight has inched up a bit, but that’s to be expected when you weigh yourself daily – and nothing to be concerned with.

I find that of you have variety and keep the rules and regulations to a minimum, it can be an awfully pleasant way of living.

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Low Carb Confidential is 6 Years Old

It would have passed without notice but I got a notification from WordPress – the nice people who host this blog – that I have been cluttering the Internet with my navel-gazing and filling search engines with useless search results for 6 years now.

With the passing of time and over 500+ posts, I think it’s time for a bit of a cleanup.

As with 500 of anything, some stuff here is better than other stuff here – and it can be quite hard for find the gems among the thought-turds I’ve dropped across the span of 6 years.

So I am going to begin a cleanup.

Little-by-little, I am going to do some spring cleaning, which might make this blog a better resource for folks looking for information – or maybe just a semi-entertaining read. It also give me a chance to see how I’ve changed and grown over the years.

And this reflection might also be the source of new posts. My thinking on low carb has surely evolved over the 10 years I’ve been plugging away. I’ve done a lot of experimentation, failed a lot – and learned a lot.

As well as most likely forgotten some things I perhaps should remember again.

This blog is a constant surprise to me. I had only the goal of keeping recipes online so I could review them at work and maybe stop at the grocery store to pick up some items on the way home, and I assumed that I would be the only visitor.

It somehow morphed into this.

I’m as curious as you might be to see what happens. As always, it will be without an overarching plan, timelines, or direction.

Same as it ever was.