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Eating more calories when low carb?

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Old 06-01-2014, 08:48 PM   #1
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Default Eating more calories when low carb?

I have been trying to stay lower carb with a focus on increasing my protein and fat intake. I know there are members here that practice/ believe that a calorie is not just a calorie, especially with new research showing that it may be (is) carbs/sugar that are the culprits in obesity, not fat.

Anyway I read a study once that showed that diabetics following calorie controlled diets actually lost less weight than their counter parts that ate more calories, but those calories with mostly fat and protein, low carb.

I've noticed that when I eat low carb (ideally, no grains, carbs from veggies only, and some fruits) that I can eat more calories and still lose weight. Like a couple hundred more a day, and the weight still comes off. But when I start having some grains, I notice that I need to drop my calories back down a few hundred for my weight loss to continue.

Does anyone know of any literature or studies that talk about this? If you can link it that would be great, but even if you can just tell me you've read this before, or even your own experiences.
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Old 06-01-2014, 08:55 PM   #2
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My own experience is a little more nuanced. To lose weight you need to cut calories whether they come from fat, carbs or protein.

But to maintain, it gets interesting. My body seems to have a real hard time turning protein to fat. So, if I eat a ton of fish, for example, I don't lose weight but I don't gain either. If I eat a ton of fat and carbs, I don't lose but gain. If I eat low calorie, I lose.
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Old 06-01-2014, 09:06 PM   #3
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I always figure carbs are high calorie, so eating low carb is eating low calorie by default.. which leaves room for more food. If that makes sense.
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Old 06-01-2014, 09:57 PM   #4
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I count both calories and carbs and have experimented with various levels of both. I lose faster on 1200 calories of low carb than I do on 1200 calories with higher carb foods. For the past few months, I gave myself a maintenance break. I tried keeping my calories to 1500 and letting myself have a little bread. I started gaining weight and my cravings came back.

I am short and in my late fifties and I am sure that is why I just don't need many calories. I also believe that I am very carb sensitive. I am sorry that I don't know of any studies about this but I am an experiment of one.
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Old 06-01-2014, 10:02 PM   #5
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I can lose a decent amount of weight if I keep to strict low carb and 1800 calories. That's 1-1.5 pounds per week pretty reliably, if I'm exercising. Given that I'm pretty highly weight reduced and hypothyroid that's great. The same amount of calories on calorie counting and higher carb diets only works for a few weeks for me before I end up extremely hungry, and I lose more slowly.

For maintenance I am also much more obesity resistant on low carb than with any notable carbohydrate. I regained in a hurry at the beginning of this pregnancy precisely because I was eating a little higher than maintenance but of the wrong foods. I can halt that pretty quickly by altering my dietary composition. But my body goes nuts with fat storing if I'm eating more insulinogenic foodstuffs.

This varies by individuals, but it's pretty consistent that more weight is lost and weight lost is more easily maintained when carbohydrates are controlled, and this is irrespective of calories (at any calorie level it is true to varying degree).
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Old 06-01-2014, 10:30 PM   #6
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I only know I can eat less and feel less hungry on a low carb diet. I am eating 1100-1200 calories a day with light exercise (daily walking) and about 60-70 grams of carbs a day. I was eating 1500-1600 Claire's before and about 120 grams of carbs and I felt hungrier then in 2012 on that amount than I do now on this amount.

I don't know what would happen if I ate 1500 calories on lower carb versus 1500 higher carb as far as weight loss goes, but i know I would want to eat more on the higher carb diet, thus making it harder for me to stick with it.
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Old 06-02-2014, 02:17 AM   #7
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There was a recent study that found Atkins to have a caloric advantage of about 300 calories (this was an average).

I don't recall the details, except that JohnP pointed out that the study sample was very small.
I found the study interesting because I had posted on 3FC long before the study was published that I noticed about a 300 calorie advantage on low-carb. To lose about the same amount of weight (not counting the first two weeks in which water weight confuses the results) I can eat 1500 calories of high carb and be hungry all the time or eat 1800 calories of low-carb and have far less hunger (I'm hungrier on 3000 calories of high carb than on 1000 calories of low-carb).

This wasn't always the case though. When I was younger, I lost about the same on 1500 calories of low-carb as on 1500 calories of anything else, but as I've gotten older, I've become more and more carb sensitive and insulin resistant.

I don't believe that extreme low-carb is optimally healthy, so I'm still trying to find my "sweet spot" low enough carb to lose weight and control hunger, but high enough to include some healthy carbs so I can exercise without feeling woozy.
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Old 06-02-2014, 02:43 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arctic Mama View Post
I can lose a decent amount of weight if I keep to strict low carb and 1800 calories. That's 1-1.5 pounds per week pretty reliably, if I'm exercising. Given that I'm pretty highly weight reduced and hypothyroid that's great. The same amount of calories on calorie counting and higher carb diets only works for a few weeks for me before I end up extremely hungry, and I lose more slowly.

.
Arctic Mama, if you feel so inclined could you give me a sample diet of what you would consume in a day of low carb, 1800 calories? \
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Old 06-02-2014, 04:04 AM   #9
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Sure!

Average day would be:

Three hardboiled eggs with Dijon
Iced coffee with chia seed and heavy cream
1 oz macadamia nuts
Salad with 1/4 cup each bell pepper and onion, 1 oz artichoke, 1 oz feta cheese, 2 tbs dressing, ten olives
1 tin sardines
3 oz sharp cheddar cheese
18 grams 82% dark chocolate
Bunless cheeseburger with two patties, 1 tbs mayo, 1 tsp ketchup, cheddar slice, on a bed of lettuce.
Tea with tsp heavy cream
1/2 cup sunflower seeds for snacking

That works out to around 35 net carbs and 1850 calories. I haven't been food logging strictly the last few weeks because I don't have to right now and I'm so used to low carb that, for pregnancy, I do fine just eating my staple items. But it's incredibly easy to do.
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Old 06-02-2014, 02:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GlamourGirl827 View Post
Anyway I read a study once that showed that diabetics following calorie controlled diets actually lost less weight than their counter parts that ate more calories, but those calories with mostly fat and protein, low carb.
In ward studies when protein is sufficient people tend to lose the same regardless of higher fat or higher carbs. From a purely metabolic standpoint there does not appear to be an advantage one way or another.

Individual circumstances in the real world are different.

Insulin sensativity and activity levels are two big factors that dictate what diet might cause more calories to be burned in the wild.

To put it another way, BMR doesn't seem to be affected by macronutrient percentages much but NEAT and SPA are and it could go one way or another depending on the individual and insulin sensativity plays a big role.

Furthermore, compliance can be affected heavily by macronutrients. This varies by person but fat and protein tend to be much more satiating than carbs which again is compounded by insulin resistance.
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Old 06-02-2014, 04:09 PM   #11
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I don't count calories. I just don't have the time. I'm lucky if I can even get food into my system between audits, never mind critique it.

I do know that I can not restrict my carb and fat without feeling like I am depriving myself. Once I feel deprived, I will binge.
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Old 06-04-2014, 02:23 PM   #12
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I don't count calories...I just eat low carb and the weight comes off ...it's pretty awesome actually
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Old 06-06-2014, 09:18 PM   #13
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I agree that protein and fat are much more satisfying. I do feel its easier to stay within my calories if I avoid carbs (those from grains mostly, and fruit moderately.)

Artic Mama, I am hypothyroid as well, and I have read that insulin resistance is more likely in those with thyroid disorders. I know that I had an Ha1c done right after the birth of my baby (10 mons) and I was just at the point of being prediabetic. I haven't had it repeasted yet, though I suspect it has improved.

I am really on the fence on the topic of a calorie is just a calorie. I don't hafve enough knowledge on the topic to decide one way or the other but I am inclined to believe that the body can use/stored and manage differnet calories differently. And that some calories my prove to be more useful (and their for less likely to store as fat) than others.

John P What is NEAT and SPA? I read something just the other day regarding protein intake and muscle wasting while losing weight. I think is was on that site, Marks Daily Apple...so I don't know how reliable it is, but it was saying that during weight loss we lose muscle mass (that I've already heard) but eating sufficient protein or even more than typically needed can help reduce muscle loss.

Kaplods, I too am trying to find a sweet spot. My undoing lately have been apples. I like them and eat 1-2 a day. For a while I was not eating any fruit or grains. Fruit was an absolutely splurge. Now it has worked its way back in and I eat 2-3 servings a day. I think this has increased my cravings and appetite over all. I know I should cut out the regular fruit but I then struggle with feeling deprived, which can trigger a binge for me.

Nolightz, If you want to get to your goal weight you very likely will have to make time for those sorts of things. At higher weights it is easier to lose, and when I was at my highest (see ticker) I didn't need to count calories or critique my food either. But the lower you go the harder it gets. I also run and just started lifting. I am putting a once sedentary body under a lot of stress and I need to make sure I feed it well so it performs well, but at the same time I want to continue to lose weight so its a very delicate balance between eating enough (and well enough) to be fueled for runs, especially long or intense ones and to provide the nutrients for repair after runs and lifting; BUT not eating too much that the scale doesn't budge. I am busy as well, but I make time for this because its very important to me.

I am thinking of possibly doing IF along with cutting out the fruit again (really its those damn apples)...I'm hoping this aids in reducing my calories..
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Old 06-25-2014, 05:58 AM   #14
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http://www.zoeharcombe.com/2014/04/t...ct-five-a-day/

Agree on the veggies, disagree on the fruit. Fruit is vastly overrated for nutrient content. And so are some veg. See above.

Low carb should be high fat. I also found going grain free was essential to me. Grains mess up my appetite and well everything a lot. I have no hunger now, nor does my wife. Many people report this on high fat low carb. Took me a few months of really doing the high fat low carb everyday. But so nice to be free of hunger now.
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Old 06-25-2014, 06:05 AM   #15
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If you take in too much protein your body converts it to glucose so need to be aware of that. A calorie is not a calorie. I was so obese, so unhealthy. Carbs made me way more hungry then anything else. CONSTANTLY hungry. They also drive insulin which is THE fat storage hormone. So with high carb say I eat 2,000 calories, but stored 400. Well I am hungry because my body only 'saw' 1600. So I eat 400 more, but it sees 300, etc. Also it couldn't access fat so it constantly told me to eat carbs. At that point I had down regulated my fat burning machinery so much my body constantly needed carbs.

Anyone can literally wall of their fat. Going high fat low carb you will become fat adapted. Your body will make more mitochondria and start burning fat for fuel. Trust me a beautiful thing when this happens for appetite, weight loss, energy, well being, mental health, and health.
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