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Trying different "diets"

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Old 03-05-2014, 04:37 PM   #16
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I wasn't trying to claim that calories in / out are the only factor for weight loss or nutrition. My comment was on methodology. Even if you are eating strictly low carb ad libitum it is quite possible to consume more calories than you wish to.

Calories are simply of measure of energy. I am eating a whole foods vegan diet for health and weight loss- and counting calories, too. Many people who eat my way feel like they don't need to count calories- that's fine, but it's those same people who hit plateaus and wonder why they can't lose anymore weight. It's also very easy to underestimate the food you are consuming if you aren't weighing and measuring.

The study you provided was conducted by feeding measured amounts of food to people in a hospital outpatient setting, therefore it was calorie controlled. The implications for human metabolism are interesting, but it doesn't provide an adequate basis for choosing a diet. That low carb produces short term weight loss for many people is indisputable in the literature- the long term effects are what concern me.
1. The article was not about non-calorie control vs calorie control. I already said that. It was more to show that where your calories come from matters.

2. Low carb will produce long term weight loss as well. I have not seen any literature showing that those follow low carb stop losing weight or see it slow dramatically, unless they go back to a heavy carb diet. But that's with any diet, you go off it, it stops working. Likewise, calorie counting will produce short term weight loss...

3. After many years of reading, learning, and work, along with much of the new studies that are starting to show that the real culprit is not saturated fat, but rather carbs and sugar, I would say that my greater concern is the long term effects of those things in our diets. Now I'm not saying that whole grains like oatmeal are going to kill you. But our bodies evolved on a diet without several foods. Including grains and dairy. I am not a history buff, but these started to come about with farming and agriculture. I did the vegan thing about 10 years ago, but I was misinformed and I believe now that vegan is a very unhealthy diet. I believe it does lack much of what our bodies evolved to use as fuel.

4. I do agree that it is possible for people to adopt a "diet" and then over eat. Actually a friend of mine is vegan and very over weight. She's probably a size 16. And as she struggles to lose and talks talks talks about how she's going to get thin, my weight is just coming off. I was bigger than her after my last baby, and now I'm smaller. She eats uncontrolled thinking that because she's vegan, she's eating healthy. But she still eats a lot of processed, sugar filled stuff, fried foods, and she's simply over eating. I don't offer her advice because she hasn't asked. But I do feel if she went to whole foods, it would help a lot.

You are vegan. I don't know how long, but I can tell you as someone who was vegan you are not getting the experience that a paleo/primal gets with not counting calories. When I was vegan I filled up, but without that animal protein, I was not getting the satiety I needed to carry me meal to meal, so I had to be careful about what I ate too. The ability to over eat is greatly diminished with the paleo/primal type diet, which is why it is kind of touted is not having to count cals. KWIM?
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Old 03-05-2014, 08:23 PM   #17
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What's the best diet you have been on?
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Old 03-06-2014, 10:26 AM   #18
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@Glamourgirl

The diet I'm eating now is made of whole plant foods without added oil, sugar, or grains. Mostly potatoes, beans, vegetables, and a few nuts and seeds. The food is some of the least calorie dense out there- your stomach will fill up long before you can get more than 600 calories into it. I agree that vegan isn't necessarily healthy- one can eat only oreos and still technically be vegan. I'm still going to be tinkering around with my diet, especially since I want to preserve lean mass. Might go ketogenic for a while. We'll see. I'll continue to count calories because as long as I stay under a certain calorie goal I'll lose no matter what sorts of food I eat.
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Old 03-06-2014, 10:47 AM   #19
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What's the best diet you have been on?
Jenny - over the years I've been on several different diets, and I lost weight on all of them.

Trouble is, eventually I gained it all back - and then some - because none of those diets addressed the issues I had with food. That is, eating for reasons other than hunger.

Here's a list of all the "diets" which resulted in weight loss for me:

1. Calorie counting (age 18) - lost about 25 lbs.

2. The Woman Doctor's Diet for Women (age 24) - lost 25 lbs. Again.
(I ran across this book the other day when I was cleaning up my office. It really is a very effective diet, although terribly austere. I don't know if you can even get the book any more. The author is Barbara Edelstein, M.D.)

3. Pregnancy & motherhood (age 28-48) - not a diet, but unabated morning sickness resulted in my losing weight during early pregnancy with first child. Subsequently I had a small net gain during that pregnancy, maintained my lower weight, had another child with only a 20 lb pregnancy weight gain, was even thinner after second child was born, and maintained that weight until menopause started kicking in. Never gave a second thought to what I was eating during that time. Thought my metabolism had changed completely.

4. Jenny Craig (age 54) - yep, lost 20 lbs with this one too. How ridiculous to think I'd maintain that loss when having to go back to eating food that wasn't out of a box???

5. Calorie counting (age 58) - lost 30 lbs. Eventually gained it all back due to restriction.

Now I'm 62 and I have sworn off dieting for the rest of my life. I eat just the way I ate in that 28-48 year age range. I eat when I'm hungry and stop when I'm not hungry any more.
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Old 03-06-2014, 01:11 PM   #20
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We sound similar. I have done calorie counting in the past and yes, for me it is a disaster too, for various reasons.
I guess what I am doing is like primal, like you said. I didn't realize there was a difference between paleo and primal, but I have dairy too. Its not that I found this diet and set out to follow it. It was more, as you said, evolved from me making adjustment that help me avoiding craving, over eating and what controls my appetite the best.
I didn't set out to be 'paleo' or 'primal' or 'Atkins', but at the start try to start eating as many whole foods as possible. I read Mark Bittman a lot and for decades he has been saying whole foods whole foods whole foods. If your great grandparents wouldn't recognize it as food, it probably isn't.

But I also wanted to eliminate breads and pasta because my belly was huge and diabetes runs in my family. I was and am insulin sensitive. Then I just kind of tweaked away.

So I did come across Paleo sites during the journey and I didn't find the no dairy convincing at all and dairy agrees with me. But a whole foods approach is working for me and Primal gives up grains but has dairy so I guess if you had to put me in a 'diet' that is what I would be closest to.
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Old 03-06-2014, 02:02 PM   #21
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I did the vegan thing about 10 years ago, but I was misinformed and I believe now that vegan is a very unhealthy diet. I believe it does lack much of what our bodies evolved to use as fuel.
I would disagree with you that a vegan diet is by definition an "unhealthy" diet. It certainly can be unhealthy, just as a low carb diet can be unhealthy, just as any diet plan can be unhealthy if it is implemented in an unhealthy way.

That's just my opinion.
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Old 03-06-2014, 03:01 PM   #22
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I would disagree with you that a vegan diet is by definition an "unhealthy" diet. It certainly can be unhealthy, just as a low carb diet can be unhealthy, just as any diet plan can be unhealthy if it is implemented in an unhealthy way.

That's just my opinion.
I applaud you for your moderate viewpoint and I completely agree.

Sadly moderate viewpoints don't generate book sales or web traffic.
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Old 03-06-2014, 03:56 PM   #23
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I would disagree with you that a vegan diet is by definition an "unhealthy" diet. It certainly can be unhealthy, just as a low carb diet can be unhealthy, just as any diet plan can be unhealthy if it is implemented in an unhealthy way.

That's just my opinion.
I agree, as someone who has been vegan for over 6 years. I think there are those within following a vegan diet who have done it unhealthfully or questionably. I try not to judge anyone by any diet they follow, I think it really is up to the individual to find what works best for them.
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Old 03-06-2014, 04:12 PM   #24
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I have pulled different approaches from paleo/primal, Atkins, IF, calorie counting, volumetrics... the list goes on.

With very few exceptions, I find that I pick up at least one helpful habit/tip out of most healthy, moderate ways of eating. Think of this as a journey. Learn what your body feels best on, and build on it from there.
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