Weight Loss Support - Please Help! I'm so confused!




View Full Version : Please Help! I'm so confused!


Kaitie9399
02-05-2014, 09:41 AM
So, I've been around here for a long time. I lost 47 pounds and then gained back ten. I restarted my weight-loss regime (exercise and 1200-1400 calorie intake) last week and immediately dropped 3.5 pounds--Awesome! Except, that Friday night I woke up with the shakes and had to eat something. Ever since then I have been absolutely starving all the time---I tried to stave off the hunger on Saturday, eating more often but about the same calories. Sunday, I just gave in and ate whatever I wanted to eat, pretty much the whole day. My thoughts were that my body was somehow thinking that it was starving so I should just feed it to turn off that starving signal in my body. Didn't work. Still hungry all the time, to the point of feeling sick because I'm so hungry.

What is going on?

My DH said that I sent my body into starvation mode--but how, I'm eating! This has never happened before. My scale has gained back all three pounds I lost last week, so essentially I did a week's worth of work for nothing. I'm frustrated--and hungry. (I have been drinking enough water).

Please help. Thanks.


Paulitens
02-05-2014, 09:50 AM
Was your tummy actually rumbling?

Wannabeskinny
02-05-2014, 09:56 AM
You did not send your body into starvation mode. It takes a long time to be able to send your body into that state. Starvation mode is happening in certain parts of Africa, not you.

You may have sent your mind into starvation mode though lol. A funny thing happens when your body perceives that you are taking away food. At the same time, if you're not giving your body the proper nutrients that it needs it will also rebel. I'm not sure what caused you to wake up with the shakes. But that could just be hunger. You can eat something small to ward off the shakes but that doesn't mean that you need to eat 3 fried eggs, bacon and pancakes iykwim. So what exactly are you eating in this 1200-1400 calorie range?

My doctor told me something kinda funny once. I went to him because I was regularly getting weak. I told him that if I don't eat protein then I start to feel really really weak. So he said.... "eat some protein then." Sometimes it doesn't need to be analyzed and figured out, sometimes you just gotta listen to what your body is really saying.


Kaitie9399
02-05-2014, 10:11 AM
Paulitens: My stomach just aches and feels empty.

Wannabeskinny: My typical regime is Kellog's Protein Special K cereal for breakfast; a fruit or veggie snack; either a lean cuisine or healhy choice meal for lunch; a fruit or veggie snack; and chicken and some kind of carb for dinner (the carb is a measured serving) It's all typical foods I have been eating for a year so I don't understand why now, all of a sudden after two months off the wagon that I'm getting this feeling. When I get the "I must eat now" feeling I usually have a couple peanut butter crackers.

I'm not eating exorbitantly and I'm not starving myself...what's going on!

Wannabeskinny
02-05-2014, 10:23 AM
Cereal for breakfast = sugar

Your body needs more than sugar. The only cereal that I've ever seen in the super markets that does not contain sugar are Grape Nuts and Shredded wheat. But still, wheat for breakfast and no protein? It seems like the diet you describe is full of carbs and very low on protein. I can't speak for you but my body on that diet would get very hungry too, very very very hungry.

pixelllate
02-05-2014, 10:28 AM
Maybe its a gradual thing - like chipping away. Over time, suddenly you'll feel a big ol' sensation if "i'm super craving food right now!" It could be for some people due to eating around the same thing every day (although we do it consistently for a few years, its so small compared to the 20+ years I ate a varied whatever-I-want)! I love eating the same thing everyday, but everyone is different. OR it could be what is being eaten finally rearing its ugly head!

The cereal even if its packed with protein would leave me quite hungry, the fruit wouldn't help with my sensitivity to sugar (I eat fruit, but not all the time, and rarely combined with grains) and frozen dinners like that for me anyways, don't feel as filling after the veggies are a little limp from being defrosted compared to fresh ones and the pasta. I think that it is definitely possible to feel satisfied with those foods, but maybe instead, don't have them all at once? Like have a special K day, combined with more of that chicken and fresh veg - which is more filling for me anyways. Then the next day, a fruit day and then also with some sort of meat and fresh veg, etc. I find that I can make do with foods that don't super-fill-me-up for quite awhile, but eventually, even if its not right away, sometimes I'll end up getting a huge hunger sensation and then I reevaluate what I am eating. Perhaps trying out something new like that will help.

Kaitie9399
02-05-2014, 10:30 AM
:-( It's protein cereal.... my dietician said that it was good.

I'm going to go make a protein shake....

Thanks for your advice. :-)

Mrs Snark
02-05-2014, 10:36 AM
Just brainstorming here: I don't know what you were eating as you gained the 10 lbs back, but if it was significantly more than 1200 -1400 calories/day and significantly different foods, maybe your body is reacting poorly to the drastic change -- both in quantity and type of food.

Why don't you give yourself a "transition" week or two. Raise your calorie level but eat ONLY healthy stuff and maybe aim for higher protein/good fats and lower carbs?

Hang in there. Isn't it funny (weird) that sometimes the very body that has been ours from the moment of birth can be such a freakin mystery to us!

Wannabeskinny
02-05-2014, 10:52 AM
:-( It's protein cereal.... my dietician said that it was good.



I have such a hard time believing that. That's so confusing to me that anyone that claims to be a dietician would think that's a healthy breakfast. If it comes out of a box I don't eat it.

I'm not on a carbs tirade or anything, but refined white flour and added sugar is by definition not real food.

Ingredients:
Ingredients: Whole grain wheat, wheat gluten, sugar, rice, soy protein isolate, wheat bran, defatted soy grits, contains 2% or less of salt, cinnamon, malt flavor, L-lysine monohydrochloride, sucralose, BHT for freshness. Vitamins and minerals<bold>:</bold> Reduced iron, vitamin E (d-alpha tocopherol), niacinamide, vitamin B6 (pyridoxine hydrochloride), vitamin B2 (riboflavin), vitamin A palmitate, vitamin B1 (thiamin hydrochloride), folic acid, vitamin B12.

Those are the ingredients. You know what they say, lots of ingredients and no nutrition. All the words I've highlighted in red are words for sugar. This is processed food at its worst really.

Why not try having a scrambled egg with some frozen spinach, and a slice of toast (must be labeled 100% whole wheat in order for it to count as whole grains). Or instead have some yogurt with almonds and fruit. Or an egg sandwich on whole wheat with tomatoes? Or a slice of cheese and fruit? Or a small bowl of oatmeal with real fruit? I can list a dozen more breakfasts that are not going to give you the shakes.

Remember, what works for us when we're young doesn't work when we mature. When I was young I was able to eat Fruit Loops for breakfast every day and not gain weight or feel jittery but now if I did that I'd be back to square one.

Sorry for the rant, I have a particularly sensitive pet peeve about cereal. It takes up an entire aisle at the grocery store, it's full of sugar and refined wheat, offers no nutrition, costs a fortune and is a breeding ground of false advertising. And don't get me started on muffins (which are a healthy sounding invented word just to get people to eat cake for breakfast.)

pixelllate
02-05-2014, 10:57 AM
I just use my doctor appts for the physical results (and even then I don't take it at face value, I evaluate those too), I am way healthier when I don't listen to my doctor! Or at least do some side research on my own. hahah but I never bother to argue. Just nod and keep on getting the good results.

Tilly5
02-05-2014, 12:23 PM
Hi Kaitie

You said

My typical regime is Kellog's Protein Special K cereal for breakfast; a fruit or veggie snack; either a lean cuisine or healhy choice meal for lunch; a fruit or veggie snack; and chicken and some kind of carb for dinner (the carb is a measured serving) ... I'm not eating exorbitantly and I'm not starving myself...what's going on!

I don't know about you, but if that was my eating routine I definitely would feel hungry. For me I would have to do exactly what Mrs Snark suggested

Raise your calorie level but eat ONLY healthy stuff and maybe aim for higher protein/good fats and lower carbs?

If you go too low on calories, fat or protein it will be hard to sustain.

Kaitie9399
02-05-2014, 12:26 PM
So, my reaction is going to be key here. I could be annoyed that I was just publicly shamed for eating a cereal that I've been eating for almost a year based on a registered and qualified dietician--who knows me (and I've lost 47 pounds) or I could ignore the public shaming and put on my happy little smiley face. Or I could just be passive-aggressive and moderately address the issue--that sounds good.


My problem isn't my breakfast, it's the insatiable hunger of the last few days. It doesn't matter what I eat or how much water I drink, the hunger is still there. Protein, sugar, carbs, veggies---anything I eat I still have an insatiable appetite.

Mrs. Snark, I gained the weight back after yet another failed IVF--depression weight, giving up, not caring about jack-diddly. And I agree, according to myfitnesspal, if I keep doing what I'm doing I should be 157 pounds in 5 weeks--yet I'm gaining weight.

Wannabeskinny
02-05-2014, 12:35 PM
I'm sorry you took it as a public shaming, that was not my intention at all. I even went as far as to say "sorry for the rant" because cereal has that particular effect on my as do medical professionals who don't know what they're talking about. It wasn't a shaming of you, it was an opinion about cereal.

Stress is a huge factor in our lives and our bodies do react to it in different ways but weight gain can be typical, it is for me! Fertility issues caused a lot of stress for me too and weight fluctuations as well. It made me feel so out of control and food was a great comfort. What have you tried to do in terms of stress management?

QuilterInVA
02-05-2014, 12:53 PM
Some dieticians have to be at the bottom of their class. That cereal is more junk. You aren't getting adequate protein, there are too many carbs and too much refined foods.

krampus
02-05-2014, 12:53 PM
Special K is probably the least satisfying food in the history of food. You need to make sure you eat fat and protein on such a low calorie amount or else feeling like crap from hunger and binging will be a constant issue. Your meals sound very small in volume and low in fat and protein.

If you want to lose on said calorie amount and be able to function in life, getting the most nutritional bang for your buck will be key.

Try eating one or two giant meals a day instead of three squares? Calorie cycling that you can eat a little more on some days? There are a lot of options. Also consider that unless you're 80 years old trying to go from like, 110 lb to 100 lb, you may be able to lose on more calories.

Patsy42
02-05-2014, 01:12 PM
I would cut out all grains and starchy veggies for the next while, load up on protein and good fats. Eat nothing out of a box. It works for me!

Lovely13
02-05-2014, 01:45 PM
"My stomach just aches and feels empty."

I never post on here, but I had something different to say, so I wanted to write. For years I was having this stomach aching and empty feeling that I assumed was hunger. Sometimes I would wake in the middle of the night with it and have the urge to drink a glass of milk (then it would go away, so I'd assume it was hunger). I don't know how, but at some point I coincidentally took some tums instead when I had that feeling and it went away! It turns out, that for me, that feeling is different than tummy rumbling hunger... it is actually a form of indigestion or heartburn, I guess. It's in my stomach, not in my chest, so I just assumed hunger. So, it has taken me a few years to distinguish between indigestion in my tummy and true hunger. Sometimes I will try tums and a glass of water and figure if it doesn't go away then maybe it's hunger (it always goes away). Obviously, this is only if I know I shouldn't be hungry, like I've eaten recently. Just my experience and two cents worth.

MissKaila
02-05-2014, 01:58 PM
@QuilterInVermont
I just have to say that I saw your signature on another post, and you are amazing and my new hero. I started at 280lbs and am down to somewhere around 240 I think. (I went on vacation at 250lbs, but have clearly lost weight since then with no idea how much!) I hope I can be as productive as you at losing this weight!

Locke
02-05-2014, 02:05 PM
I second the post above (Lovely13). Hunger shouldn't be a "gnawing" sensation in your stomach. You may just be producing a bit more acid in your stomach. I agree with most of the folks here that Special K isn't the most filling breakfast. It's certainly got vitamins and nutrition to it and isn't the worst breakfast in the world- I understand why a nutritionist would approve.

I understand your frustration. You thrived and lost weight on this meal plan before and now you don't understand why you are hungry on it. There are a variety of possible factors. You haven't mentioned what you ate when you weren't trying to lose weight.

Eating and digesting food is a complex process that involves several systems in the body. When the diet is abruptly changed this throws the body out of balance for a little while. I could explain it in more detail but it would probably bore the **** out of you.

Long story short: give your body a few weeks to come back to equilibrium. You were successful eating this way before, and you will be again if you stick to it. Don't get frustrated with the carb police on these forums. Many people have had success here by limiting carbohydrates but that doesn't mean it's the best for everyone.

Stick with it, drink plenty of water, and breathe. This is a marathon, not a sprint.

p.s.- Wannabeskinny- gluten isn't sugar, it's wheat protein

krampus
02-05-2014, 02:14 PM
I think OP sounds like she is describing hunger and not heartburn or something else. 1200-1400 calories of a 65/25/10 carb/protein/fat split (pulled this ratio out of nowhere based on one days description) distributed through a whole day doesn't go very far and feels pretty bad after a while for most adults, certainly younger ones or anyone active.

Some people do better on low calories than others and not one solution worms for everyone.vvI personally struggled massively trying to eat under 1500 low protein low fat and gained 10 lbs in a few months through massive binges every other week that undid any fat loss progress. I chose the path of more calories, no breakfast and a lot more exercise and found that to be sustainable.

One thing for sure - it's a lot easier to gain than to lose!

MissKaila
02-05-2014, 02:26 PM
Okay, now that I have read the entire thread, I can add my thoughts. :)

I know everyone's body is different, and this might not work for you, but I have felt what you are describing before. The answer itself is, admittedly, unhealthy; but as you know, unhealthy can be okay in small doses. Any time I had the feelings you are having, the only thing (literally) that made me feel better at all was a glass of chocolate milk. That is it! And not the sort of chocolate milk that you follow the directions and add two tablespoons or however much it says to the glass. What I do is just you one or two teaspoons, two being my limit, and I feel much better. Even a chocolate flavoured protein shake can work, but I find that the simple milk itself works much better. I know, I know, I'm probably going to get yelled at for suggesting such a thing on a health thread, but it's such an awful feeling and if I can provide an idea for something that could legitimately make you feel better; it would feel more wrong of me not to!

ChickieChicks
02-05-2014, 02:58 PM
Hi! Lots of good advice already. If the Special K is your thing, stick with it. Obviously it was fine for the past year!

Maybe the hormonal changes with IVF, etc, are causing an insatiable feeling? The only time of the month where I feel my hunger is completely out of whack with the calories I am consuming, is near my period.

HuggerBunny
02-05-2014, 04:20 PM
Kaitie, I'm so sorry to hear about your struggles with infertility. I'm struggling with the same thing. It definitely makes sense that it could lead to depression and having a harder time with food.

That being said, I agree with those who have said maybe your body is re-adjusting to how you're eating? I've been doing this for 3 months now and I've had a couple of random weeks when I was super hungry for no explainable reason, too. It passes, though. Are you able to resist during that time or does it feel torturous? Incorporating more protein like others have suggested sounds good, too. Protein is the #1 thing that stops me from being hungry and makes me full longest. If you want to keep the Special K, maybe you could add a serving of protein as well, like a hard boiled egg, cup of yogurt, or homemade turkey sausage patty. Then for your snacks, maybe you could try something with protein instead of (or in addition to) the fruit, or do a veggie and protein for a snack. I eat fruit every day and usually pair it with protein like nuts or something.

Good luck :)

Tilly5
02-05-2014, 04:44 PM
Oh, Kaitie, PLEASE don't take the opinions given here as public shaming. Some of the opinions may have differed from what you heard, but they are meant as honest feedback to your question. The bottom line is for you to do what works for YOU. We are all wishing you well in your weight loss journey!!! :-)

Sasha29
02-05-2014, 05:45 PM
I don't see where anyone wrote something that was "public shaming." You asked for help, and people are giving you their thoughts. You're free to take it or leave it, but getting angry at people who are trying to help isn't very respectful.

I agree with what others have said. You probably need to up your protein. I have gotten that shaky feeling and gnawing hunger before, and it was after eating a small, carb-laden breakfast. I would eat breakfast at 8 a.m. and then crash by 10 a.m. If I had an egg and a protein shake instead of cereal, I would be fine until lunch. I would try increasing your protein, and if it doesn't work, try something else.

Just because something worked for you doesn't mean it will always work. Some dieters stall after awhile because their body gets used to the plan. If you switched to a low carb diet or some other plan, it could jump start your weight loss. I hope you find something that works.

Pattience
02-05-2014, 05:55 PM
I haven't read all the posts below but essentially i agree with your doctor. 1200 - 1400 calories is too low for you and have triggered the hormonal response that says you need to eat. Other things than trigger this response like certain medications (antipsychotics) and depression. But you are probably not eating enough calories.

Try not to be too disheartened by your backstop. most of what you lost was just water. You will lose it again in no time.

However, don't go so low with your calories. Its simply not necessary and as you can see its not advisable.

You've already lost a lot of weight and that weight reduction from your normal amount is what it is thats probably triggered it. I read the other year in a very good article about why people have trouble losing weight is because when you lose around 10% there's a body reaction and you get ravenous. That's where you are at right now.

I would suggest trying to normalise the reaction by figuring out what calories you can eat to maintain your current weight. And eat that for a week or until you appetite settles down. Then when that happens, reduce it a little bit but not a lot. YOu need to lose weight more slowly now. Whenever your appetite goes a bit wonky like above, go back to maintaining rather than losing calories.

This is what i intend to do this time. In fact i'im probably going even slower than that. You need to be a bit patient and don't panic though its good you went to see your doctor.

Also what are you eating? I don't know if it makes a difference really whether its high protein or normal healthy eating but you might consider changing to a normal eating style rather than low carb if that's what you doing simply because you can't eat low carb for the rest of your life. Its not healthy.

I'im about the same weight as you and my recommended calorie intake with no exercise according to fitness pal was 1650 to lose half a pound a week. I used MFP to work out the calories and said i didn't do any exercise. If i was going out to an office, i would put my exercise up a tiny bit higher because that is a hungrier situation. Im at home.

Occasionally i do some heavy gardening and this usually causes quite a drop in my weight. Eventually i want to exercise but not yet. Too busy.

Pattience
02-05-2014, 05:57 PM
Sasha there were probably more calories in your protein shake and egg breakfast than the carb laden one. That would be why you did better on the protein. Satiety from protein is only a short term thing. It comes at the time of eating. Low GI carbs will keep hunger away for as long as any protein if eaten in the same quantity of calories.

Locke
02-05-2014, 06:07 PM
Sasha there were probably more calories in your protein shake and egg breakfast than the carb laden one. That would be why you did better on the protein. Satiety from protein is only a short term thing. It comes at the time of eating. Low GI carbs will keep hunger away for as long as any protein if eaten in the same quantity of calories.

I have to disagree with you here. If I eat two eggs I'll stay full much longer than if I eat the caloric equivalent in cereal. Much of that has to do with the insulin response that is provoked when you eat carbohydrates. I didn't want to chime in with the rest of the low carbers on that point because they had already beaten that horse enough, but in all honesty calories are not digested the same depending on the food.

Eating moderate protein, high FAT meals will give you the greatest satiety. I was skeptical about this premise at first until I tried it. Of course you can say that "everybody's different" etc. etc. but there are also controlled studies of this phenomenon. Some foods stick with you longer- I used to eat very low fat and low protein vegan whole foods- I was hungry all the time no matter how many calories I ate. Now that I eat moderate protein, high fat, and low carb I can go for hours and hours without eating even after a small (400 calorie) meal.

That said, you can't just eat tons of protein and expect to be satisfied all day long. Judging by the meal plans I've seen there are many people here eating far too much protein. Excess protein is converted to glucose in the liver and actually triggers an insulin response just like sugars and carbs do. The best thing to eat for satiation is fat. We've been made fat-phobic by health professionals for decades now and it has only made our waistlines expand.

TL;DR: Eat fat. Some protein. Ditch carbs. That is the recipe for fullness.

JuvenileNarcissist
02-05-2014, 06:15 PM
I get insatiably hungry when I ovulate (to the point where I would be close to tears on my drive home from work, because I was so hungry) . Wasn't always that way. Has only really started in the past couple years. So it could be hormonal. Especially if you've been doing IVF treatments I imagine. It's very much the same for me. Doesn't matter what I eat, I will be hungry. So that might be something to keep in mind. My episodes last from a few days to a week. If that's not it, I hope you can find something that will help. I hate it when I feel so hungry like that. It's miserable. And I'm sorry you're having such a frustrating time trying to conceive.

Kaitie9399
02-05-2014, 07:14 PM
Thanks for the positive and uplifting advice.

I upped my protein today, I'm at 122 grams for the day. I'm wondering if since I went seriously hard core back into my exercise that my muscles were just starving. I did another seriously intense day of exercise (and snow shoveling!!!!!) and at the moment feel good. Maybe the extra protein is what I needed. So, if it really was that I needed more protein than my muscles will soon start burning off more fat--and that's a good thing!

Thanks again for the advice, and I'll let ya'll know how I feel tomorrow--see if the extra protein did the trick.

:trampo:

patns
02-05-2014, 09:24 PM
Cereal for breakfast = sugar

Your body needs more than sugar. The only cereal that I've ever seen in the super markets that does not contain sugar are Grape Nuts and Shredded wheat. But still, wheat for breakfast and no protein? It seems like the diet you describe is full of carbs and very low on protein. I can't speak for you but my body on that diet would get very hungry too, very very very hungry.

This what I thought too. More protein.You should have some protein even with a fruit snack. Also very low on fat. You need fat to burn fat. Add some good fats (olive oil, coconut oil etc.)

thesame7lbs
02-05-2014, 09:46 PM
Special K is probably the least satisfying food in the history of food.

This made me seriously :rofl: I couldn't agree more.

I agree with everyone who has recommended reducing carbs (esp processed), increasing protein, and increasing calories. 1200-1400 and hardcore exercise is a recipe for big-time bingeing. BTDT.

novangel
02-05-2014, 09:49 PM
I chose the path of more calories, no breakfast and a lot more exercise and found that to be sustainable.

Same here!

DrivenByAmbition
02-05-2014, 09:53 PM
p.s.- Wannabeskinny- gluten isn't sugar, it's wheat protein

I was going to say the same thing. Gluten is the absolute devil for me. Stupid wheat.

Arctic Mama
02-05-2014, 11:41 PM
Dietitians are idiots, by and large. There - I said it.

As for solutions, are you open to actually hearing something other than what you're currently doing, or do you want advice on how to tweak your current diet instead of a complete change of mind and composition? Serious question - my advice would differ depending on what you're actually looking for.

Wannabeskinny
02-06-2014, 09:23 AM
For a moment I thought I got called out as crazy for thinking cereal was not the best option and most likely the culprit of causing the shakes. I wasn't publically shaming anyone other than the stupid cereal companies who promise us the world, have managed to convince all of America that they're the perfect breakfast, and have delivered us nothing but sugar and cravings. I'm glad I'm not the only one who made the suggestion.

And I am NOT the carb police. It's all too easy to fill up on refined carbs but if cereal is your thing then go for it... but why not choose some whole food cereal? Like muesli or oatmeal? Why must it be processed refined wheat?

krampus
02-06-2014, 12:59 PM
Aren't most dietitians primarily certified vehicles of the Big Grain/Corn Lobby?

freelancemomma
02-06-2014, 02:32 PM
I have to disagree with you here. If I eat two eggs I'll stay full much longer than if I eat the caloric equivalent in cereal.
Eating moderate protein, high FAT meals will give you the greatest satiety. I was skeptical about this premise at first until I tried it. Of course you can say that "everybody's different" etc. etc. but there are also controlled studies of this phenomenon.

And then there are people like me, who find that macronutrient composition makes no appreciable difference in satiety. I've also never experienced any changes in appetite or cravings (or mood) at different points in my menstrual cycle. It's basically about calories for me.

As far as psychological satisfaction is concerned, I find carbs by far the most satisfying, and in my book that's gotta count for something.

F.