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andrea levy




 
 
 
 

Post  Mon, Aug 05 2019, 7:05 pm
I bet you think this thread will be about low carb. But it isn’t.

I’ve come to realize a number of things over the past two years.

First let me acknowledge a few things. I was 315 pounds. I am five one. I am 51 ( almost 52, started at 49.5) on May 11/17, I started a food plan meant to solve a physical issue ( diabetic retinopathy.) In the process of solving this issue, I’ve kept to my food plan every day for the past 2.3 years. I’ve learned a lot.

Yes, I’ve lost around 95 pounds. And yes, I maintained the first 80 for over a year before starting to lose more. And yes, I probably could still stand to lose sixty to eighty more.

I no longer have diabetes( nor do I take medication to control it) and my retinopathy healed. I accidentally solved my eating disorder ( after 44 YEARS of severely disfuctional eating.)

I feel like I’ve picked up some wisdom along the way. I don’t care what food plan you are on, or how much weight you have to lose. I believe that these things apply to everyone, no matter what their body type or food history to some extent. The rest is completely customizable to you. I don’t tell people to do what I do. What I do is specific to me, my body and my triggers, emotionally and chemically.

Let’s get to it.

For some parts of my out of control life, I was able to get on a diet and stick to it for various amounts of time. I did crazy amounts of dieting and weight loss and re-gain. I broke myself but good.

I did weight watchers and Jenny Craig and opti- fast and diets where I only ate 500 calories a day and where I stopped sugar and flour and where I only ate low fat. I did OA and I did grey sheet.

In the beginning, I could follow a diet for a time, but always, always failed in the end. After 34 years, I was so desperate and so hopeless of ever finding a solution, that I gave up.

I knew I was going to die of a massive heart attack. I had nothing left. I was sad for my family and friends but knew that I would finally have peace, once I was dead. I lived like that for a while and gained weight.

I did two half marathons (walking) and managed to gain weight. I was a mess.

In the end, what happened to me was pretty interesting. It completely changed my life. Who knew that these failures and descent into gluttony were chemical reactions to what I was eating? Who knew that chemical reactions for gluttony were even a thing?

It never once to me that what I was eating created a reaction in my that made me want to eat more. Never, even once.

So, when it happened, I was shocked. To get my blood sugar lowered and stable, so I would not go blind, I stopped eating fruit/grains and starchy carb sources. I went very strict because I was very scared. I was actually very lucky this happened to me before I was diagnosed with diabetes formally, or I’d probably have been put on insulin, which tends to make everyone who takes it fatter, or at least struggle to keep flat.

Anyways, for me, the combination of not eating these things plus eating mainly protein and lower carb veg, meant that my body was cleared of its chemical triggers for the first time. In my case, what those triggers probably were, were fruit, grain and potatoes.

Those things would cause my blood sugar to rise and my insulin would kick in and then I’d get irresistible cravings to eat more. I did not have so much of a sweet tooth or even a love for junk food , so for me it showed up mainly in eating more protein or savoury grain based stuff. Occasionally, idbinge on sugar, but mostly, I was eating what many people would consider a decent diet for meals, but then the meals were causing me to eat uncontrollably because I was so sensitive to changes in my blood sugar and insulin levels. I was literally a victim of my own body chemistry.

As I abused myself over and over again, I never knew what my problem was. I thought it was a moral failure on my own part. I never realized that peace could exist for me.

Two days after I went strictly low carb ( I’d call it Atkin’s style without the processed food) and suddenly, sitting at the shabbat table at lunch two days later, I felt satiated for the first time since I was six.

For me, that was the beginning of stability with food. I did not have time to experiment, really, because I was trying to get my niagara restaurant up and running but I found I was able to follow my food plan.

I did not weigh and measure but did carefully follow my boundaries for what I did and did not work. I got stable. When I ate something that didn’t agree with me (in terms of making me want to eat more- so an insulin reaction) I’d take notice and not eat that any more. My peace became the most important thing in guiding me as to what does and does not work in my own body’s ‘eco-system’ so to speak. To this day, I won’t eat things that disturb my peace. I won’t jeopardize my stability for ANYTHING.

I have a friend who has lost sixty pounds and is maintaining that loss. Her plan is vegan and involves shakes. She wrote recently on her Instagram that she struggles constantly with cravings and to keep them at bay, needs to walk 5-10 km a day plus so her intense beach body work out daily just to maintain. Her food plan is not working for her. She is struggling constantly. She is not at peace.

I have another friend who is vegan who is eating no sugar/sweetener/grain or starch. She is eating food that is minimally processed and focused on getting her nutrients in the simplest ways possible. With real fat, moderate protein and low carb veg. SHE IS THRILLED. No longer struggling, losing weight slowly and steadily. Learning how to eat until she is satiated. She is doing what works for her. As she goes, she is assessing what works for her. If something doesn’t work, she gets rid of it. She is happy!

From the place of stability I found, I have been able to assess many things in my diet. If they work, I keep them, if they do t, I don’t. ,I admit to struggling with nuts when I eat them, so in general I don’t eat them. I find it hard when they are in the house. I sort of loathe to say I’ll never eat them again, given that I already don’t eat a number of other foods, but I’m conscious of it, and paying attention.

Recently, for the first time, I recorded my food to see what I was really eating. I was a bit surprised at how many calories I ingest on a daily basis and still maintain my weight or even lose slowly. One thing that I’m working on now, is adjusting my food to caloric levels that won’t make me hungry but also will allow me to lose more weight. No, calories in and out are not the be all and end all. Some calories are better than others. But on someone as short and middle aged As me, they do matter.

It’s all about stability. This is a marathon, not a sprint. I could starve myself and lose the rest of the weight, or I can work out exactly what I need to do, to lose it sanely and then maintain it. That’s what I’ll be doing over here.

I’ll distill down what is most important for me and my stability:

-Don’t eat processed foods. ( I don’t consider whole grains, unprocessed to be processed, but I also don’t eat them)
-When you find what works for you, keep it steady. Don’t mess around.
-When something destabilizes you, stop doing it. It’s much easier to keep going then to get ‘back’ on.
- Eat to satiety. If you don’t know what that feels like, find out why. Figure out what is causing that feeling.
- If you feel stuffed and can still eat more, that is not satiety. That is an insulin reaction.
- if you do go low processed/ carb, don’t forget you need to add salt to your diet.
- Accept the inevitable. No one can eat indiscriminately and maintain a weight loss. I can’t and don’t cheat, because I can’t handle it. BUT, If you can, more power to you. As long as what you do works for you, you’ll be able to keep doing it and not lose your control. If cheating works for you and doesn’t derail you, that doesn’t mean you do it every day. It just means that once in a while, you can and it won’t derail you.
-ANY DIET YOU FOLLIW WONT CONTINUE WORKING AFTER YOU STOP DOING IT. The key is to find a way of living that doesnt t make you want to stop!

- food is fuel. Not entertainment.

Now, who is in to change how we view food, our bodies and gd willing, our long, healthy lives?
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amother




Gray
 

Post  Mon, Aug 05 2019, 7:30 pm
This is my problem. I tried keto very strictly together with exercise and it just made me so weak and exhausted that I list extra "sick" days from my job. Then, I stopped keto and tried low carb like lentils etc..but now ive tried also doing intermittent fasting and im having trouble eating enough calories bec if I eat eggs, some meat, lentils and vegetables...

Thats not a lot of calories and since I dont have a big eating window, im eating at most 1 to 2 meals a day..so im not losing like im supposed to but maybe im eating too little maybe not (I also do resistance training /weights 20 min a day)...I do eat dark chocolate which is my only treat but I was never a big eater.


Interesting how u said that if u craved a food it means ur insulin increased, because I never had a problem with hunger...especially at work or home with my kids...im so busy that yes, sometimes I want to have bread or pasta but im not really hingry and I get full fast...

Im really struggling but I know that eating less carbs is still healthier but nothing is working for me...

Last night I did exercise and felt weak after but my eating window was over...and im not sure if I ate enough or maybe I did and...???

Im not that overweight but im atypical as I have had problems with insulin even when I was extremely thin...and ppl with tofi are harder for medical drs to understand...

Now I gained a little weight from my preganacies but not that much and I followed a woman online who eats one meal a day but eats whatever she wants like spaghetti and rice and...and it works for her she lost a lot of weight and now just maintains it...but im trying fasting and eat healthier but I didnt lose so my body is confusing.
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PinkFridge




 
 
 
 

Post  Mon, Aug 05 2019, 7:51 pm
You really cut to the chase: Whatever food plan a person adopts must be sustainable for the duration.
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amother




Gray
 

Post  Mon, Aug 05 2019, 8:17 pm
PinkFridge wrote:
You really cut to the chase: I food plan a person adopts must be sustainable for the duration.


Even if its sustainable is it working?...
I have tried so many things and nothing works..so I can sustain it bec I've always been a small eater and in control but I'm struggling to lose.
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amother




Floralwhite
 

Post  Mon, Aug 05 2019, 9:57 pm
amother [ Gray ] wrote:
Even if its sustainable is it working?...
I have tried so many things and nothing works..so I can sustain it bec I've always been a small eater and in control but I'm struggling to lose.


You also need to figure out why you feel you need to lose weight. Is it for health? For looks? Maybe you're having a hard time losing because you're at a healthy weight already. You can have an overweight BMI and still be healthy.
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Emotional




 
 
 
 

Post  Mon, Aug 05 2019, 10:57 pm
How does keto differ from Atkins?
Also, how does intermittent fasting work? Why does it help with weight loss?
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andrea levy




 
 
 
 

Post  Mon, Aug 05 2019, 11:40 pm
amother [ Gray ] wrote:
This is my problem. I tried keto very strictly together with exercise and it just made me so weak and exhausted that I list extra "sick" days from my job. Then, I stopped keto and tried low carb like lentils etc..but now ive tried also doing intermittent fasting and im having trouble eating enough calories bec if I eat eggs, some meat, lentils and vegetables...

Thats not a lot of calories and since I dont have a big eating window, im eating at most 1 to 2 meals a day..so im not losing like im supposed to but maybe im eating too little maybe not (I also do resistance training /weights 20 min a day)...I do eat dark chocolate which is my only treat but I was never a big eater.


Interesting how u said that if u craved a food it means ur insulin increased, because I never had a problem with hunger...especially at work or home with my kids...im so busy that yes, sometimes I want to have bread or pasta but im not really hingry and I get full fast...

Im really struggling but I know that eating less carbs is still healthier but nothing is working for me...

Last night I did exercise and felt weak after but my eating window was over...and im not sure if I ate enough or maybe I did and...???

Im not that overweight but im atypical as I have had problems with insulin even when I was extremely thin...and ppl with tofi are harder for medical drs to understand...

Now I gained a little weight from my preganacies but not that much and I followed a woman online who eats one meal a day but eats whatever she wants like spaghetti and rice and...and it works for her she lost a lot of weight and now just maintains it...but im trying fasting and eat healthier but I didnt lose so my body is confusing.


You may need to increase your salt intake. I think what happened with the insulin is that when it rose to lower my blood sugar, I reacted. Some people are super sensitive to it and it’s not really about how much insulin you have but how you react to it.

Intermittent fasting is interesting. It’s not uniformly successful for everyone who does It. That said, it’s worth taking a look at what you are eating and when. Are you eating enough? Are you eating too often? I don’t know the answers. You have to figure out what works for you. Maybe staying weight stable is good for you with elevated insulin? That’s what I mean by we have to do what works for us.
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andrea levy




 
 
 
 

Post  Mon, Aug 05 2019, 11:41 pm
PinkFridge wrote:
You really cut to the chase: Whatever food plan a person adopts must be sustainable for the duration.


Yup. If you can’t sustai it, you won’t. It’s not magic. You have to DO it if you want it!
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andrea levy




 
 
 
 

Post  Mon, Aug 05 2019, 11:42 pm
amother [ Floralwhite ] wrote:
You also need to figure out why you feel you need to lose weight. Is it for health? For looks? Maybe you're having a hard time losing because you're at a healthy weight already. You can have an overweight BMI and still be healthy.


I agree with this possibility
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andrea levy




 
 
 
 

Post  Mon, Aug 05 2019, 11:51 pm
Emotional wrote:
How does keto differ from Atkins?
Also, how does intermittent fasting work? Why does it help with weight loss?


Atkins was sort of a broader plan that didn’t measure much but carbs. There was a general suggestion of a food plan. He did encourage fats and protein. But then he also included a lot of processed food. Which some people on keto also eat. Keto is focussed more on counting macros. I don’t really count anything. I don’t eat sugar or grains/starches or sweetener. I do eat fats and moderate protein. I lean toward carnivore eating mostly animal protein and fats. Ultimately I have more in common with my vegan friend who doesn’t eat processed food than I do with keto people who survive on sweetener and protein bars.

Intermittent fasting helps with blood sugar management and insulin/sugar levels. By limiting the tones you eat, you give your body a chance to lower tour blood sugar and insulin more than if you eat constantly. Insulin does cause weight gain in many people and diabetes is good for no one. In my case, I am actively trying to continue lowering my A1C and insulin and intermittent fasting is a tool I use. I am not dogmatic about it. If circumstances dictate that it is advantageous socially or hunger wise for me to break a fast, I do. Like on Shabbat. I eat dinner and also lunch. Many other days I eat one meal a day. Some days I have a four or 8 hour window. IF keeps me remembering that I should not be constantly eating. Not sure exactly how much it helps with weight loss. For me it’s the whole package if what I do that works for me.
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sirel




 
 
 
 

Post  Mon, Aug 05 2019, 11:56 pm
Emotional wrote:
How does keto differ from Atkins?
Also, how does intermittent fasting work? Why does it help with weight loss?


Atkins is high protein, keto is moderate protein.

Some people who have done the atkins diet have had kidney/liver issues later in life bc of too much protein.
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andrea levy




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, Aug 06 2019, 12:55 am
I dont think the Atkins thing is true. In any case, many, many people who did Atkins were already diabetic and heart diseased when they started. I’d like to see where that story about the kidneys and Atkins came from. People with advanced kidney disease need to be careful with protein, and should consult their nephrologist for the right amounts of nutrients in general. Ultimately, I believe that if you need protein to get you off of carbs or processed food, it’s a wash.

The original Atkins has around 16 ounces of protein a day in the books food plan. Some people on keto eat more than that. I don’t believe this is a keto versus Atkins idea. Per se.
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Emotional




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, Aug 06 2019, 1:03 am
Andrea, have you found that your way of eating has given you improved energy? Less sleepiness and lethargy? Fatigue is my #1 health complaint. I'm wondering if keto would help me with that. I just need a kick in my rear end to get started...😃
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andrea levy




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, Aug 06 2019, 1:20 am
Emotional wrote:
Andrea, have you found that your way of eating has given you improved energy? Less sleepiness and lethargy? Fatigue is my #1 health complaint. I'm wondering if keto would help me with that. I just need a kick in my rear end to get started...😃


Oh my gosh, the energy! So basically, I’m 51 and still quite overweight but I feel better than I did when I was twenty. I sleep better and I get up better too. Today, from about 10-30 am to 5 pm I worked on purging my house and then from 5-12:30 am I worked at my job. It’s 1:14 am and I’ll be ready to sleep soon, but I’m not exhausted.

Another interesting thing about this is that as a significantly overweight person who does not exercise, I was recently in a women’s retreat and our room was on the second floor. I was the only low carver in the room and the only one who didbt huff and puff and get red in the face walking up from the dining hall. Get this- I don’t exercise.

Also, to clarify- I do t particularly start people on ‘keto.’ As it is commonly referred to in the media. I am very pro NSNG and there are many nsng peeps who do keto. I feel like the nsng part is more important than the keto part. No sugar/sweetener/starchy carbs/grains. Eat fat. Eat animal based products. Don’t count the carbs left once you don’t eat the heavy carb ones. Get a craving? Eat fat and salt! If you want a good way to start, send me an email. I’ll send you the PDF.
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rainbow dash




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, Aug 06 2019, 3:22 am
I have soo many issues with my weight, I know that I can lose 800 grams a week on weight watchers but I have to drink 2 litres a day. I have pain in my ankles, the cartilage in my knees are eroding, I have a discal hernia with sicata. High cholesterol, and now according to my husband I'm snoring plus I need to nap every day. I'm a celiac and lactose intolerant.
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PinkFridge




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, Aug 06 2019, 8:05 am
amother [ Gray ] wrote:
Even if its sustainable is it working?...
I have tried so many things and nothing works..so I can sustain it bec I've always been a small eater and in control but I'm struggling to lose.


That's a good question. My personal experience is that sustainable isn't meaning continuing to lose weight. But it does mean that I'm not regaining what I've lost, which I can live with.
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amother




Coffee
 

Post  Tue, Aug 06 2019, 8:49 am
andrea levy wrote:
Get a craving? Eat fat and salt! .


Please don't hand this out as blanket advice. If someone had hypercholesterolemia, congestive heart failure, renal insufficiency..... this advice can be truly detrimental to their health.

Signed,
A Registered Dietitian Nutritionist who works in the clinical setting of Medical Nutrition Therapy.
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PinkFridge




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, Aug 06 2019, 8:58 am
amother [ Coffee ] wrote:
Please don't hand this out as blanket advice. If someone had hypercholesterolemia, congestive heart failure, renal insufficiency..... this advice can be truly detrimental to their health.

Signed,
A Registered Dietitian Nutritionist who works in the clinical setting of Medical Nutrition Therapy.


I think that in general, it's good to hear that we shouldn't be so scared of salt and fat. But it's all individual. I try to eat less animal fat than I used to but I'm not scared of nuts, for example.
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amother




Salmon
 

Post  Tue, Aug 06 2019, 8:59 am
andrea levy wrote:
Oh my gosh, the energy! So basically, I’m 51 and still quite overweight but I feel better than I did when I was twenty. I sleep better and I get up better too. Today, from about 10-30 am to 5 pm I worked on purging my house and then from 5-12:30 am I worked at my job. It’s 1:14 am and I’ll be ready to sleep soon, but I’m not exhausted.

Another interesting thing about this is that as a significantly overweight person who does not exercise, I was recently in a women’s retreat and our room was on the second floor. I was the only low carver in the room and the only one who didbt huff and puff and get red in the face walking up from the dining hall. Get this- I don’t exercise.

Also, to clarify- I do t particularly start people on ‘keto.’ As it is commonly referred to in the media. I am very pro NSNG and there are many nsng peeps who do keto. I feel like the nsng part is more important than the keto part. No sugar/sweetener/starchy carbs/grains. Eat fat. Eat animal based products. Don’t count the carbs left once you don’t eat the heavy carb ones. Get a craving? Eat fat and salt! If you want a good way to start, send me an email. I’ll send you the PDF.


Can you post the pdf here
I would like to stay anon
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andrea levy




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, Aug 06 2019, 9:10 am
PinkFridge wrote:
That's a good question. My personal experience is that sustainable isn't meaning continuing to lose weight. But it does mean that I'm not regaining what I've lost, which I can live with.


Agreed. That’s why I talk about maintaining all the time. It’s part of the miracle!
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