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Does it what exactly what you eat?

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Old 06-08-2014, 11:46 AM   #1
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Default Does it what exactly what you eat?

Some experts think that our bodies go by the pure rule of thermodynamics and 1200 calories of Twinkies would result in the same weight loss as 1200 calories of healthy proteins and veggies. (obviously protein and veggies is much more nutritionally rich.)

My question is this.

In your own PERSONAL experience, does it matter what you eat? Do you lose faster and better with a particular combination of protein/carbs/fat? Do you avoid certain food categories or do you try to eat a little of everything in moderation?

I'm asking because I have the distinct impression that I lose faster and plateau less often when I eliminate almost all carbs except for milk in my morning coffee and non-starchy veggies and fill up on lean proteins like fish. However, I don't know if it's just because when I do that I actually end up managing to consume fewer calories overall or if it may be true that I lose faster without carbs, perhaps due to an underlying level of insulin resistance.

Wondering how this works for the rest of you.
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Old 06-08-2014, 12:05 PM   #2
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Well, I've never gone on a 1200 calorie Twinkie diet, but my experience is that high carb foods make me hungrier, more lethargic, and lower/depressive. So, I could lose on that diet if I could stick to that diet, but I doubt I could stick to that diet for very long.

I have found that works best for me is to mix bits and pieces of different diets that make it the easiest for me to stick to. That means counting calories. That means eating a lot of fat. That means doing intermittent fasting. That means reducing carbs. That means moderate exercise and that means getting enough sleep.

When I do all of that this "diet" is easy. The weight falls off without me feeling deprived. I still eat sweets on occasions, but rarely. I still eat super yummy foods, just less of them, etc. but it's for me. My husband would do it totally differently because his needs and triggers are much different from mine.
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Old 06-08-2014, 03:28 PM   #3
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In my personal experience, a calorie is a calorie and it's all about the number of calories I eat in a day...
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Old 06-08-2014, 03:59 PM   #4
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When I was a teenager, I didn't understand much about nutrition. When I wanted to lose weight back then, I just ate whatever I wanted and the weight came off as long as my daily calories were low enough. I know the "1200 calories of Twinkies" that you mentioned is an exaggeration - but it's not far off from what I actually ate sometimes!

Of course, that's when I was 15 or 16 and generally had a healthy lifestyle and a young resilient body. Now that I'm in my early 30s and my lifestyle for the last decade has NOT been healthy (much more sedentary and junk-food-filled than it was as a teen), I'm not entirely sure if my body would react the same way.

I'm not willing to eat like my teenage self just to be sure. But it seems that from my personal experience for my body, a calorie is a calorie.
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Old 06-08-2014, 04:37 PM   #5
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I seem to be able to eat about 300 more calories on low-carb, but that may be because I have more energy and move more when I'm not eating junk.

Science is also finding more and more sources of calories that humans can't digest or can't digest fully. Fiber, sugar alcohols, inulin and other resistant starches...

If we can't digest (use) the calories, they might as well be nonexistent.

Wood has calories, but you'll starve to death trying to eat it (unless you're one of the animals that can digest it).

Some calorie counters subtract the calories from fiber, but many don't (and resistent starch is such a new discovery that it's almost never factored into calorie counts). This can make a couple cups of broccoli seem to have more calories than a cookie, but your body will take in and use more calories from the cookie than the broccoli.

Our ability to accurately determine caloric value is severely limited, but with all its flaws, calore counting is still one of the most useful methods of intake management.

I also like exchange plans, because they control calorie intake and are useful in insuring nutritional needs are being addressed.

Ultimately, you may have to experiment to determine what works best for you, and the why may or may not matter.
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Old 06-08-2014, 07:51 PM   #6
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Yes, based on my experience, I'm inclined to think the biochemical make-up of a calorie does indeed play a factor in how our bodies process those calories. Great observation!
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Old 06-08-2014, 08:46 PM   #7
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No. To lose, it's all about calories for me wherever they come from. Need a deficit.

But to maintain is a different story. My body does not seem to be able to turn protein to fat. So if I eat A TON of lean fish one day, I won't lose weight but I won't gain either.
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Old 06-09-2014, 03:25 AM   #8
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For me, personally, a calorie is not just a calorie. Monitoring macronutrients - protein, carbs, fat - is far more important to me than counting calories. If I eat too many carbs and not enough protein, I am constantly hungry, my blood sugar ricochets all over the place which makes me miserable and moody, and my weight loss stalls. Also, I have to make certain to eat enough veggies and fruit or I start to feel malnourished and ill.
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Old 06-09-2014, 06:53 AM   #9
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I am my own guinea pig, and I've been experimenting with my body for quite some time. For me, the quality of food truly matters. My body is much more efficient at utilizing the energy from higher quality food sources (like raw fruits and vegetables). If I consume more protein than anything, my system becomes sluggish. If I consume more breads/starches than anything else, my weight loss slows down. My weight loss is superb and my energy levels are fantastic with the bulk of my intake coming from fruits, vegetables and fats. I scatter meats and dairy in here and there and breads/starches are not eaten as often.
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Old 06-09-2014, 03:38 PM   #10
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For me, a calorie is a calorie, losing-wise

However, if I eat fast food burgers I feel gross. If I eat a homemade hamburger off the bbq, I feel fine.

I've learned whatever garbage they put in (soylent green in my mind) fast food does not agree with me
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Old 06-09-2014, 03:47 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pattience View Post

As to doing it the low carb way, as i haven't done it, i don't know in what ways the body would make it easier or harder for you. Well i know some. I know that there is the two week carb withdrawal thing which you have to get through first. Then, i haven't heard it discussed much but i wonder if people are missing out on some nutrients but certainly whenever you are denying rich and habitual nutritional sources, it think the body will fight against the program.

On the other hand, if you are doing the low carb right, i understand that hunger isn't such an issue because of the way the body is getting its energy. I just don't think i could do it.
SOME people go through a carb withdrawal and feel awful while going through it. Others do not. I don't have any sort of withdrawal symptom when I go lower carb - none. I just have a day or two where I want to eat simple carbs a bit. If I can ignore those urges for 24 hours, I'm usually fine, but that has more to do with getting the sugars out of my bloodstream than anything.
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Old 06-09-2014, 03:50 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trazey34 View Post
For me, a calorie is a calorie, losing-wise

However, if I eat fast food burgers I feel gross. If I eat a homemade hamburger off the bbq, I feel fine.

I've learned whatever garbage they put in (soylent green in my mind) fast food does not agree with me
Me too. I can eat whatever I want and as long as I stay under my calorie target for the day, I lose fairly predictably. I am selective about some of it though as sodium heavy food tends to make me feel bleh, which is most fast food.
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Old 06-09-2014, 05:16 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pattience
I know that there is the two week carb withdrawal thing which you have to get through first.
Quote:
Originally Posted by berryblondeboys View Post
SOME people go through a carb withdrawal and feel awful while going through it. Others do not. I don't have any sort of withdrawal symptom when I go lower carb - none.
I am exactly like you in this, berryblondeboys. I dropped my carb level from the 200 or 300 or whatever horrid amount it was to 50 and not only did I not have withdrawal, I actually felt instantly healthier. It was like my body was screaming, "Thank you!"
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Old 06-09-2014, 08:29 PM   #14
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Thank you all for your interesting responses! Just shows we are all different.

I find that lean proteins really help me not be hungry, and when I'm really hungry I feel like I'd need a plateful of pasta to fill me up but a moderate serving of fish will fill me up.
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Old 06-09-2014, 09:03 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Novus View Post
I am exactly like you in this, berryblondeboys. I dropped my carb level from the 200 or 300 or whatever horrid amount it was to 50 and not only did I not have withdrawal, I actually felt instantly healthier. It was like my body was screaming, "Thank you!"
Exactly!
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