Low Fat, Take 2

I’ve decided it’s time to tackle one of my remaining health problems…my weight.  I’ve got 60 pounds to lose.

So, for the last 2 days I’ve been following a Peat-inspired lowish calorie (1500-1800 cal or so) and low fat diet. I was inspired by Denise Minger’s presentation at the Ancestral Health Symposium earlier this month. Here it is:


I feel like I’m pretty stable now.  My hormones and digestion is good.  No more depression.  Not much anxiety.  Feeling good most of the time and great some of the time.  It’s time to take a risk. MORE CARBS. LESS FAT.  Much less fat.  I’m eating about 20g of fat a day now.  Which, surprisingly, isn’t that hard when you can tolerate starches.  I’ve been having rice or potatoes with an egg and juice for breakfast and I’m just not that hungry until about 1:00 or 2:00PM.  Then more rice and cottage cheese for lunch, maybe a snack in there somewhere, and a fruit smoothie for dinner.  Skim milk at every meal, coffee when I feel like it.  Eating high fat, it was very hard to stay below 2000 calories per day.  Suddenly it’s easy.

I’m interested to see if this will have an effect on my blood sugar.  Perhaps, as in Minger’s video, it will improve.

The only struggle I’m having with this so far is at night.  I’ve been getting hungry in the middle of the night – so much so that I need to get out of bed and eat something (milk with honey or vanilla yogurt).  Hopefully this will resolve.

I’m going to give this a week or two and see how I feel.  If my mood is still good and the scale is nudging downward I’ll continue it.

12 thoughts on “Low Fat, Take 2

  1. I have been living on these foods for months: low-fat 1% cottage cheese, 50% reduced-fat Jarlsberg Swiss cheese, Great Lakes Hydrolyzed gelatin, Fage 0% fat plain Greek yogurt, plenty of seafood, very lean grass-fed beef, 99% fat free turkey breast and TONS of fruit, OJ, coconut water, coffee and yes, pure 100% fructose sugar. I use a lot of salsa, fresh squeezed lemon or lime juice and various spices to make food tasty. Initially, I thought it would be difficult to eat lower fat too, but you get used to it. The weight is falling off which is rather shocking to me actually as I was a complete and utter carbophobe for years. I never ever would have thought it was possible to fix my majorly effed up metabolism, especially at my my age. I do restrict calories for now (1500) Monday through Friday and eat freely on the weekend. I am 12 pounds from my goal… I have yet to add any meaningful exercise, I do some walking, but not a lot. I am hoping that with time and more exercise and getting rid of all stored PUFA that I won’t need to restrict calories so much. YOU CAN DO THIS!!! I feel way less estrogen symptoms for sure, so that’s another huge bonus besides just feeling good in my own skin and clothes. How much do you figure you need to lose? I’m cheering for you!!!

  2. P.S. I thoroughly enjoyed the vid with Denise Minger, thanks so much for sharing!!! I love that she is open minded enough to consider an alternative to low-carb ketogenic diets.

  3. Awesome – I was wondering what you’ve been eating so I’m glad you wrote all this! Congrats on the success with your plan – How much have you lost? I need to lose about 60 pounds to be at a place I feel comfortable, and even that is a good 20-30 pounds higher than the height/weight charts tell me to be at. I think I can do this! Hunger has been my greatest obstacle with cutting calories, but with starches in there I’m not hungry. If I try to eat the way you are – with fruit as my main source of carbohydrate – I’m hungry all the time. I’d like to get to that point but my body just doesn’t handle sugar well enough yet. Thanks for the cheers!

  4. I know, she’s one of my favorites from Paleo land. It takes a strong person to question the dogma but especially to do it in front of a large audience.

  5. It took me many many months to be able to handle sugar. Prior to Peat I was your typical low-carb high fat Paleo freak. I ate a lot of nuts, nut butters, flax seed oil and fish oil, bacon and avocados. I’m embarrassed to say that I used to boast about how much fat I could eat. It worked great for almost three years and I thought I had all the answers. But then I started to gain weight for “NO apparent reason” and no matter how much I fasted or restricted carbs to zero I kept right on gaining. I was cold, bitchy, had no energy at all and could not sleep. I started Peating last November, but didn’t really have the concepts or diet down until December. I gained weight continually from November through March which was very depressing. Seems like I had to eat every two hours and often anything sweet would put me to sleep in the middle of the day. But then I would wake up between 2-4 a.m. starving. I often had nightmares and my heart would be pounding out of my chest. I had to drink salted OJ or sugared milk in order to be able to go back to sleep. There was a time period that I honestly believed that I was permanently broken. I slowly raised thyroid meds and kept at it and some time around mid-April I noticed that I stopped gaining. By the end of April I had lost five pounds and had more energy, I think that’s when I added a lot B vitamins and cut the fat in my diet waaaaay back. I was also very hungry so I upped my protein from 80 grams a day to 100 grams and some days it’s even more. I find protein keeps me satisfied longer. I have lost steadily since mid April to now, 30 pounds in four months. I can go for hours and hours without eating and I no longer wake up at night, that stopped back in June I think. I truly believe that people can heal from blood sugar issues, but it has to be done within a very restricted fat diet, at least that’s been my experience. My liver is so much happier, like I said earlier I have no estrogen issues any more and I can drink alcohol again without feeling like death. The most important things for me were getting my gut dysbiosis under control (controlling endotoxin) with the garlic. Raising my thyroid meds beyond what my doctor is comfortable with. Severely restricting all fat in my diet, especially PUFA. Increasing my protein to 100 grams and, contrary to everything in me, eating WAAAY more sugar and fruit. Also Progest-E was a game changer….and B vitamins. If I had it to do over again, I would have tracked things better on Cron-OCD earlier in my experiment and would have gone slower with carb introduction initially. Instead, I dove in head first and suffered through the rocky transition. I dunno, perhaps it wouldn’t have made any difference at all. I do fine with rice too. I love potatoes, but the last time I ate them they did not love me back, maybe it was the mountain of butter and sour cream I smothered them in??? More sugar, less fat….who knew? This is so contrary to what we are bombarded with on a daily basis. Sorry this is sooo long!

  6. I love your long comments!! Cron-OCD….hahahahahaha. It’s so true.

    I really appreciate hearing your story so much. This gives me confidence that I’m not doing everything wrong, and that I just need to let some time pass, that healing is possible. I woke up hungry again last night – I think this is just going to be how it is for a while. My blood sugar was 112 this morning – that’s the lowest it’s been in a long time, so I think I’m doing the right things. My energy and mood are great today. I feel so lucky right now to have been pointed in the right direction by you and other commenters. I wouldn’t have figured this out on my own.

  7. I feel so lucky too, which is exactly why I want to pay it forward in any way possible. I absolutely owe The Two Rays of Sunshine my life, literally. I think I mentioned this before, but I struggled with obesity and Hellacious Hormones for DECADES. Paleo was merely a temporary band-aid for my weight issues, certainly not a cure and, in the long-run, made everything much worse. I have so many more tools and pieces to the puzzle now. The internet has been a blessing to be able to share info and ideas on what works. Oh, I should mention one other thing that Cron-OCD helped with was making certain that I was getting enough calcium. I have found that Peat’s recommendations are spot on and same goes for his calcium/phosphorous ratio. I can’t tell you WHY it matters, but once I earnestly paid attention every single day (yes, obsessively) and supplemented with extra calcium if needed, then things really sped up. Someday I hope to fully understand enough of this stuff to be able to thoughtfully articulate it to others, well I can hope…. until then, I just point to The Rays. I find them to be quite refreshing in this age of internet hucksters. Keep up the great work! I really feel that you/we are heading in the right direction, no more time-wasting rabbit holes.

  8. Hey, Lanie – We talked last year when your wrote the blog about RS and persorption. I re-ran that blog on my blog today (click my name to see) and on a lark, decided to see what you were up to. Imagine my surprise to see you talking about Denise’ AHS presentation.

    I’m also the guy responsible for the Potato Diet that Denise mentioned. Do you ever look at Mark’s Daily Apple? Lots of Peat fans there found a nice home. We are actually just now getting ready to do our 3rd annual round of Fall/Winter Potato Hacking, several have already started. You should stop by, lurk, read, introduce yourself if you like.

    The Potato Diet is a blast. It’s all about a radical new way of eating and short-term. Many people learn a lot about themselves when doing it.

    Have a look: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread109763.html

    Take care!

  9. Shes a smart cookie but seems like she hasnt read Peat stuff. Its easy to explain from that perspective. No “magic” needed. Low PUFA and high sugar equals high high metabolic rate. Paleo would befine as long as you stick to saturated fats but avacados, nuts and bacon are not saturated fats and over time can suppress the metabolism like in Memes case.

    For most “normal” people Peat recommends 1/3 each protein, sugar, fat. But to fix chronic conditions upto 50% sugar (OJ, milk, fructose). Havent we been here before. I think you were having trouble with hunger you said.

    I dont agree with the calorie restriction. 1500 is way too low to raise metabolism.

  10. Here’s what I know, N2P, specifically with regard to my own N=1. I’ve been following a Peat-inspired diet (with a few bumps in the road) for 9-10 months. I do have trouble with hunger when i eat fruit and simple sugars. I’m adding some starches (about a cup a day) because the satiation I get from them is exponentially better. I feel great eating simple sugars but the hunger gets old. I’m also tired of being fat. It undermines my confidence and my clothes don’t fit. I’d like to give weight loss a try again. I’m keeping an eye on my pulse and temps and if they start dropping off I’ll determine that this isn’t possible for me right now. Regarding the Minger video, I think this is about more than just avoiding PUFA. When I keep my fat very low my blood sugar improves. Eating lots of saturated fat, my fasting blood sugar consistently stays in the 130s to 140s. Fasting BG has been below 120 the last 2 days after keeping ALL fat low. I’m attempting to walk a fine line between eating pro-metabolic foods, maintaining a caloric deficit to lose body fat, and avoiding hunger.

  11. Hey Tim! I’m so glad you wrote because I want to thank you for something. A while back you wrote in a comment on FTA that if you’re having trouble tolerating resistant starch you should take that as an indicator that there may be trouble brewing in your gut. Well after reading that I started learning more about the gut and what could be going on with me, causing depression whenever I ate RS or any other starch. I ended up fixing this problem using Ray Medina’s ideas:


    And now I can eat anything and my depression is gone.

    So thank you so much for your research and your willingness to share what you’re learning about the gut. It’s really important stuff.

    I’ll check out the MDA thread. Thanks again!

  12. That’s really great to hear. I know people were leery of RS at first, and I’ve since learned that there are other fibers with similar qualities, but they all act on the gut. The gut-brain connection is such an amazing part of our physiology. I hate seeing so many diets being used for weight loss and maintenance that have virtually no gut microbe friendly components. Glad to see you are still blogging!

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