Metformin, Part 2

I have become discouraged, and I started taking Metformin, again.

I started exercising last week – some high intensity interval training (HIIT) or just walking as well as some basic resistance training (squats and planks, mostly).  My hunger increased.  I can’t leave for work now without packing half of the refrigerator in my bag, just to get through the day without becoming desperately hungry.  I calculated what I’m eating and when left to my intuition and one rule (Eat Real Food) I eat about 2700 calories a day, about 50% fat, 25% protein, 25% carbs.  It’s a lot of flippin food, but otherwise I feel like I’m starving.  I’m unable to keep my blood sugar stable while eating carbs unless I just eat a ton of them, and if I do that my triglycerides are 500.  I can’t tolerate too much fiber because of the endotoxin (serotonin?) problem, so a diet of low glycemic carbohydrates (beans, brown rice) is out.  And somehow in the middle of this I’ve managed to gain weight in the last week.   Bah.

I just have too much going on now.  I can’t manage it all anymore.  I can’t have marital difficulties, a socially demanding 6 year old, 1.5 jobs, and also be dealing with blood sugar swings all the time.  Plus, my former relaxation time – my lunch break – is now being used for exercise.

I give up.  Bring on the drugs.

Lab Results

Serotonin, Whole Blood

  • Current: 145 ng/mL (Range 11-204)
  • Compared to March 2014: 155 ng/mL

So, serotonin is down 10 ng/mL.  The March 2014 draw was taken on a day that I felt great – no depression, no anxiety.  The current draw was taken on a day I was crying, anxious, and depressed.

Now, before drawing conclusions I should mention that I wrote to Ray Peat last week and asked him about ways to lower serotonin.  I also asked him about blood tests for serotonin.  Here was his answer:

Foods like chicken consomme and ox-tail soup, with a lot of gelatin, help by reducing the amount of the precursor, tryptophan. Raw carrots or boiled bamboo shoots, by slightly disinfecting the bowel, help to lower serotonin. Some ways of testing the blood are very misleading, because what’s in the platelets isn’t necessarily causing trouble, its when the platelets can’t retain it to deliver it to the lungs for destruction that there’s a problem. Checking the urine for 5-HIAA can show how much serotonin is being destroyed. It’s the platelet-free plasma that should be measured, and there the level should be as low as possible.

Hm…the platelet-free plasma you say.  Well, wish I would have known that before spending money on labs that are essentially meaningless.

Ok, next (and possibly more importantly):

CA 19-9, which I tested because I’m a paranoid idiot who clearly spends too much time on the internet:

  • CA 19-9: 18 U/mL (range 0-35)

So, not elevated.  Doesn’t necessarily mean I DON’T have pancreatic cancer (or some other cancer) but it’s not looking likely.  Apparently 5-10% of Caucasian people don’t even have the ability to express this antigen, so it’s not enough information to rule cancer in or out…but seeing that there’s no elevation, I’m less freaked out.

I think it’s time for me to take a step back from all this.  I’m clearly making myself nuts, and I don’t have the knowledge to even order the correct tests for myself.  I’m not seeing results and I’m getting more sick, more depressed, and have fewer answers than ever before.

Time to re-evaluate.

 

Without Your Health….

…you’ve got nothing.

At the age of 44, my health is now starting to interfere with everything I care about.

This used to be a hobby…something fun and interesting to do in my spare time.  AROUND my other real-life activities like work, family, exercise…

Now my health is making all of that much harder.

I had a really good opportunity to promote my business today.  Things came up and got in the way, as things are prone to do in life.  If my health were good I could have made it work anyway.  It wouldn’t have been easy, but I could have managed it.  I would have needed a lot of energy and focus, neither of which I have right now because of my new blood pressure medication, which is making me foggy, lifeless, and depressed.

I started on one medication on Monday….a calcium channel blocker called Diltiazem.  My ankles started swelling and it did nothing for my blood pressure.  I called the doc to inform her and she told me to stop taking that one and start taking Metoprolol, a beta blocker.  Now I’m 3 days into this one and the side effects are worse – I felt like a zombie last night.  Plus my ankles seem to be swelling again, but I can’t tell if that’s psychosomatic.  And, as if that’s not enough, it doesn’t work.  Blood pressure is unchanged.  I’ve just taken one more dose – if things aren’t somewhat improved in some respect by this afternoon I’ll be calling the doc again.

I wonder how many people lurking and reading this blog are laughing and saying, “Yep…she poo-pooed the EMF boogeyman and now look at her.  She’s so dumb.  And now her health sucks too.”  Yeah, well I still don’t think it’s EMF.  I think it’s serotonin and I think the reason I’m struggling is because my body doesn’t tolerate starches, and they’re in EVERYTHING.  They’re in cocoa powder, supplements, caffeine tablets – even when I’ve avoided starch, I’ve still been consuming starch in these items.  I learned yesterday that bananas and dates contain a lot of serotonin.  Not sure if my catatonia-like depression last night was because of the dates I ate or because of the new medication.

Did you know even confectioner’s sugar contains starch?  That’s right…some sugar contains starch.

I’m beginning to think that ALL of my problems are related to high serotonin, and my high serotonin is related to starch intolerance.  The best I’ve ever felt in my life was when I gave up most starches (didn’t even know about the hidden ones yet) and ate sugar – finally I had energy (carbohydrates) and no starches to pull me down again.  And seriously, aside from followers of Ray Peat, who would try this?  How many people EVER IN ALL THE LAND actually eat a ton of sugar and eat no starches?  First of all, it’s friggen hard to avoid them because they’re in everything processed and even when following a whole food diet, they’re so darn delicious.  Second, EVERYONE IN ALL THE LAND says that sugar is bad.  It’s a foregone conclusion now – people don’t even feel the need to provide citations for this stuff anymore.  “Sugar is bad.”  Everyone in the room nods.  Duh, of course it is.  So I (and other Peatarians) might be the ONLY people IN THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD to know that starch intolerance is not the same as carbohydrate intolerance.

Here’s what I think most people do (and indeed, it’s what I did): They feel like crap and they’re overweight and showing early signs of chronic illness.  They hear low-carb or Paleo will cure it all – lower blood sugar, less inflammation, weight loss.  What could go wrong?  So they try low carb.  Some people are turned off by the fact that their energy is sapped within 2 days (about how long it takes a healthy person to burn through their glycogen) and give up.  Those of us persistent, determined, or desperate enough persevere, and eventually our body gives up signaling us to eat carbs and we begin living on adrenaline and cortisol.  Feels good at first!  Energy!  Plus, if you have an intolerance to some (or all) carbohydrates because of an enzyme deficiency (or gluten sensitivity/celiac, or whatever) you feel SO MUCH BETTER.  Not because low carb is the way to go but because the offending substance is gone from your diet.  Inflammation drops, Jack Kruse pats you on the back, and you keep going.  Weight’s dropping too – yay!  “Low carb FOREVAH!”  you say.

Until other things start failing.  Your TSH starts climbling, you’re cold all the time and your sleep starts to suffer.  Weight loss plateaus.  You say, “I must be eating too many carbs!  I’ll reduce them again because that’s what worked last time!”  So you cut down from 30g of carbohydrate a day to 20 or 10.  Pretty soon you eliminate vegetables and start eating weird things like animal hearts and fish heads.  You try to convert everyone you know, because you’re sure this is the path to health!  It has to be!  It worked for a while!  I must be doing it wrong now!

You get tired.  People on the interwebs say you have “Adrenal Fatigue.”  No you don’t.  You need carbohydrates.  EAT SOME HONEY ON A SPOON.  GO! DO IT NOW!  You’ll feel better.

Anyway, I did all that.  Did it for years.  Got really hardcore in 2012, eliminated every last shred of carbohydrate except for some veggies.  Got cavities in my teeth from malnutrition – first ones since I was about 8 years old.  Tired, stressed, a mess.  So I found Ray Peat – he said to eat carbs.  I ate them.  Started adding starches, sugar, whatever.  After experimenting I’m learning that for ME, sugar = feel good, starch = feel bad.  Low carb felt good, not because I was doing the right thing for my body but because I was avoiding something I was intolerant to.

I think my starch-eating experiment in May completely raised my serotonin level.  I break down and cry so easily now.  I never feel really happy, even when I avoid all starch (even the hidden ones).  I’ve been drinking black tea and matcha green tea, both of which contain theanine, which lowers serotonin, but I suspect they don’t lower the serotonin produced by the body, just the brain’s ability to receive or recognize it.  I say this because they do lift my mood a bit, but the effect wears off after an hour or two, and then I’m back in the middle of it again.

I think the only thing that will really work for me is to avoid all starches.  My new medication comes as a tablet containing starch.  Check it out:

The tablets contain the following inactive ingredients: microcrystalline cellulose, corn starch, sodium starch glycollate, colloidal silicon dioxide, sodium lauryl sulfate, talc, magnesium stearate, hypromellose, titanium dioxide, polyethylene glycol and polysorbate 80. In addition, 50 mg tablet contains D&C Red #30 Aluminium Lake and 100 mg tablet contains FD&C Blue #2 Aluminium Lake as coloring agents.

Seriously?  My white 50mg  tablet contains red dye?

I guess I’ll use one of these enzyme supplements I just got every time I take it.  I’m still considering taking cyproheptadine or some other serotonin antagonist, but I’m not sure it would be any more effective than tea, and it has a long list of adverse side effects.  Probably the best thing to do is just avoid starch, and over time maybe my serotonin will drop as my intestinal tract is given a rest.

I”m so tired of being tired and depressed.

Oh and by the way…I had a dentist appointment a couple days ago.  No new cavities.  After months of sugar and orange juice.  The dental hygienist, right after telling me that sugar and orange juice cause cavities, told me she was “prone to cavities” and had just had one filled.  I told her to try vitamin K.  She sounded excited about it.

Ray Peat, right again.

Crazy Train

All Aboard the Crazy Train.  Guess who’s conducting.

I’ve had some stressful things come up.  I’ve been crying and worrying.  I thought all the crying and worrying was because of the stressful things.

Nope.

Let me back up a bit.

I was eating simple sugars as my primary source of carbohydrates for 2 or 3 months there, from January or February through April of this year.  Occasionally I’d have starches and I’d invariably regret it, because it would almost always make me unbearably depressed.  A few days later, after being off of them again my mood would improve.I realize this isn’t normal, and have accepted that there’s some bad stuff going on in my gut, including lots of serotonin being produced and released into the bloodstream when I eat starches. In March my serotonin level was 155 (range 11-204) – fairly high.  And that was on a GOOD day.  Hence, the depression that is always just under the surface.

Well I felt GREAT eating sugar, but it seemed that doing so was making some of my labs worse, so I decided to stop and to instead eat starches.  It was rough going – depression, irritability – these things became commonplace to me again, after feeling so much better for a long time.  There were some days that felt a little better, but in general I struggled during those few starchy weeks.

About a week ago I noticed my 4-year old becoming more anxious and telling me she’s scared of me when I yell.  She became unwilling to let go of me when it was time to say goodbye in the morning. She was crying more and was startling more easily.  I realized I had to stop with the starches again.  It was more important that my daughter have a sane mom than for me to have triglycerides in the normal range.  Today, at least.  So after 3 weeks of eating them, I again stopped.

I’ve been back to sugars again the last few days.  But I haven’t been able to regain that sense of calm.  I’ve been crying and sad – less aggressive maybe, but still depressed.  My dad is having health problems, which scares me, and things are changing in my work life.  I thought these stressors might be putting me over the edge.  It was in this frame of mind that I wrote my last two posts, and called to make a doctor’s appointment, thus giving up my quest for unmedicated health.

I figured maybe 3 weeks of eating starches had raised my serotonin so high that now I couldn’t cope with life. Today, while unable to concentrate on my work, I started researching Cyproheptadine, an antihistamine that Ray Peat says can be effective at reducing serotonin.  It’s not without side effects though – most commonly sedation and sometimes weight gain.  Neither of those sounded good to me, which is why I’ve hesitated to try it thus far.  Then I came across a thread from a month or two ago on my Facebook Ray Peat group.  Someone asked the group if there was a NON-SEDATING way to reduce serotonin.  One person suggested black tea, saying it was helpful for her in that respect, and a couple others agreed.  Worth a try, right?  I went to the store and bought some Luzianne iced tea bags – iced tea is double the strength because you’re likely to water it down with ice cubes after it’s made.

About 20 minutes into this cup of tea I started feeling like myself again – able to concentrate, to sit up straight, clear headed and emotionally stable.  Happy even!  What a relief.  Now I know the depression wasn’t due to life circumstances (though of course they’re on my mind)…because they haven’t changed.  They’re still there.  My dad’s still not well, and my work is still stressful.  But now I feel like I can cope again.

Black tea.  Serotonin reducer.

I know it’s not the caffeine that made the difference because I’ve been drinking coffee and swallowing caffeine tablets on top of it, trying to muster enough energy to get through the day.

Depressed?  Drink black tea.

I’m so going to cancel that doctor’s appointment.

Depressed (Updated)

Depressed today.  Ate starches several days this week.  I’ve been feeling dull the last few days, and today it’s full-on depressed. I’m sure it’s because of the starches…because this is what happens.  But you know what?  I’d really like to be able to eat a slice of home-cooked gluten free bread now and then without it having such a dramatic effect on my mood.  I’m tired of having to stick to such a restrictive diet in order to feel ok.

After reading this post over at Free The Animal, I’m asking myself if my current restrictive diet (basically just dairy, coconut oil, butter, meat, eggs, fruit, juice, seafood (1x a week), liver (1x a week), and sometimes chocolate) is really just symptom management.  I feel great when I’m able to stick to it for a string of consecutive days, but eating the same 9-or-so things is monotonous and isolating.  I don’t feel like I can eat at restaurants or sit down to meals with my family, because most often I’m having something weird like juice and cheese for dinner.

Again, though – I feel great when I can stick to this.  But as I’ve said before, a diet is only as good as your ability to stick with it long term.  I can’t stick to sweet drinks and cheese for the rest of my life.

So I’m wondering if my gut needs some serious help.  Why the hell can’t I eat regular foods and still feel ok (and by regular foods I don’t mean the Standard American Diet – I mean a daily serving of gluten-free bread, potatoes, or a salad).  I don’t want to get into the details of my bowel health or function, but things in that department are inconsistent, and depend greatly on eating raw carrots.  Miss a day or two of those and I’m not doing well.

I’m considering doing a Metametrix GI Effects test, to test for digestive system problems.  Unfortunately you need a doc to order it, and my insurance covers NOTHING unless I’ve had greater than $12,000 worth of illness in one year, so we’re looking at probably $600-700 dollars, between doctors visits and testing.

Hm….the tax man just took all my money.  Maybe I’ll just continue on, avoiding things that trigger symptoms.

Back to no starches.  Maybe I’ll feel better by Monday.

Update:

It occurs to me that I should really put some effort into learning how to cook with the few ingredients that make me feel awesome so I can learn to tolerate a restrictive diet.  I’ll share the recipes I come up with.

Labs and Many Variables

I haven’t written much because it’s been a rough week.  I definitely have ups and downs, more so now that I’m following Peat because I didn’t used to have many “ups”. Unfortunately I don’t always know the cause of the mood/fatigue roller coaster, because I haven’t done a good job of controlling variables.  That’s going to change.

To summarize, my depression returned and stuck around for a week.  I’d recently started resistance training, so I took a week off (mostly because I didn’t have the energy – not because I was scientifically eliminating variables…but the result is the same.).  That didn’t help…so I conclude that exercise probably wasn’t the cause.  I had some mild food poisoning from a seafood stew I made last weekend – maybe the intestinal irritation released a bunch of serotonin into my system?  Well, maybe…but the depression lasted till Friday.  Seems things would have returned to normal before that.  I forgot to take my pregnenolone supplement 2 weeks ago, so I took it last Tuesday.  Nope…still had 2-3 more days of depression, and I’m sure it would have kicked in before that.  I also “forgot” to eat liver for 2 full weeks (forgot = avoided).  So I ate liver on Friday, and seriously within 2 hours my depression was gone and has stayed gone since then.  Maybe I was low on Vitamin L. (<–“liver”).  Seriously though, maybe I was low in B vitamins – liver is my main source of these.  So no more skipping Liver Night.  In fact, I’ve taken a pound of grass-fed beef liver and cut it into 16 1-oz pieces and then froze them individually in an ice cube tray.  I’m going to thaw and eat an ounce of raw liver most days (5-7oz/week) in an effort to stabilize my intake and make it more routine.

This whole thing has made me very aware that I keep changing multiple things at once without taking time to evaluate the results before introducing another change.  Not very scientific.  So I’m going to go about this more methodically from now on.  One change at a time, with at least a 2 week period of time between interventions.  So here’s what I’m doing now that seems to be working well for me so far, and contributing to my health:

Supplements:

  • Progest E – 6 drops per day
  • Niacinamide – 250mg 1x/day
  • Vitamin D – 5000mg/day
  • Magnesium Glycinate – 100mg/day
  • Cynoplus – ¼ tab/day
  • Pregnenolone – 500mg/week
  • Aspirin – 325mg 1-2x/day
  • Vitamin K – 1mg/day

Food:

  • Liver – 5-7oz/week
  • Wild-caught shellfish – 1x a week
  • Dairy
  • Salting food to taste (which for me is a lot)
  • Orange juice/honey
  • Raw carrots daily
  • Coconut oil
  • Eggs
  • Very low starches – some days none, but some days one serving
  • Avoidance of PUFAs – 4g or less most days.  I’m very strict about this.
  • Grass fed beef, occasional low-fat chicken breast or ham
  • Bone broths
  • Coffee – about 24 oz per day of a weak brew

Habits:

  • Lights – 2-3x/week for 30 minutes
  • Resistance training – 2-3x/week for 1 hour

The things I continue to struggle with:

  • Unstable mood (but that seems to be resolved when I follow the above supplements/foods or habits and don’t “forget”).
  • Weight loss (as in, there is none and I’d like there to be some)
  • High blood sugar (fasting blood sugar currently averaging around 130 – lower when I avoid starches consistently and stick to simple sugars instead).
  • High blood pressure – still averaging around 148/94.

Interventions I want to try (singularly, and with an appropriate evaluation period following):

  • More Cynoplus (T3/T4 hormone) – for better thyroid function, increased metabolism = weight loss
  • Epsom salt/baking soda baths – for blood pressure reduction and overall health – increased CO2 in blood
  • Bag breathing – for blood pressure reduction and overall health – increased CO2 in blood
  • More gelatin/less meat – ok, “some” gelatin – I haven’t been loving the gelatin – for overall health (less phosphate from meat = less inflammation).
  • Sugar at night and again when I wake up in the middle of the night – for blood sugar management, and cortisol/adrenaline reduction, ultimately resulting in weight loss
  • Lowering dietary fat – for blood glucose control and weight loss
  • Cascara Segrada – for intestinal health, lowered serotonin
  • B vitamin supplements – specifically B1 for cognitive benefits and B6 for estrogen management and libido.
  • Complete avoidance of starches (low isn’t low enough).

Hm…where to start.  I really should start with low-fat.  That seems to directly affect weight loss and blood-sugar.  All right.  2 week trial of low-fat Peat eating starts tomorrow.  I’ve tried sporadically to do this but haven’t committed to it.  I’ll committ to it.

Ok, next on the agenda – Peat-inspired labs that I had done recently.  Here are the results:

Parathyroid Hormone: 22 (range 15-65)
Prolactin 5.4 (range 4.8-23.3)
Serotonin 155 (range 11-204)
hs-CRP: 8.08 (range 0-3.0) HIGH

My preliminary interpretation:

  • Inflammation (hs-CRP) is still high but is down from my last result of 13.58 6 months ago.
  • Serotonin is solidly in the top half of the range.  On the day my blood was drawn I felt really good – I was in a happy zone.  I can only imagine what that level looks like on a bad day.  I was tempted to go back and test again this past week, but can’t really afford to do that.
  • Prolactin is on the low end, which may suggest estrogen is being well-managed with my current dose of progesterone (estrogen and prolactin tend to increase one another, if I remember correctly).
  • Parathyroid hormone is also toward the low end – not sure what this means really.  More research is in order. I think parathyroid hormone is released to liberate calcium from the bones when calcium intake is low or when the calcium/phosphate ratio (ideally around 1:1) is low.  So maybe I’m getting enough calcium now.

I posted my lab results on my Ray Peat Facebook group and got lots of great Peat quotes, references and advice from folks who I’ve come to respect a lot.  Here are some of the quotes/references offered in the comments:

“The hypo-osmolar blood of hypothyroidism, increasing the excitability of vascular endothelium and smooth muscle, is probably a mechanism contributing to the high blood pressure of hypothyroidism. The swelling produced in vascular endothelium by hypo-osmotic plasma causes these cells to take up fats, contributing to the development of atherosclerosis. The generalized leakiness affects all cells (see “Leakiness” newsletter), and can contribute to reduced blood volume, and problems such as orthostatic hypotension. The swollen endothelium is stickier, and this is suspected to support the metastasis of cancer cells. Inflammation-related proteins, including CRP, are increased by the hypothyroid hyperhydration. The heart muscle itself can swell, leading to congestive heart failure.” – RP, from Water: swelling, tension, pain, fatigue, aging.

“Honey has been used therapeutically for thousands of years, and recently there has been some research documenting a variety of uses, including treatment of ulcers and colitis, and other inflammatory conditions. Obesity increases mediators of inflammation, including the C-reactive protein (CRP) and homocysteine. Honey, which contains free fructose and free glucose, lowers CRP and homocysteine, as well as triglycerides, glucose, and cholesterol, while it increased insulin more than sucrose did (AI-Waili, 2004).” -RP, from Sugar Issues.

J Med Food. 2004 Spring;7(1):100-7.
Natural honey lowers plasma glucose, C-reactive protein, homocysteine, and blood lipids in healthy, diabetic, and hyperlipidemic subjects: comparison with dextrose and sucrose.
Al-Waili NS.

“Bacteria thrive on starches that aren’t quickly digested, and the bacteria convert the energy into bulk, and stimulate the intestine. (But at the same time, they are making the toxins that affect the hormones.)” –RP

“One of the major “acute phase proteins,” C-reactive protein, is defensive against bacteria and parasites, but it is suspected to contribute to tissue degeneration. When its presence is the result of exercise, estrogen, or malnutrition, then its association with asthma is likely to be causal, rather than coincidental.” -RP

“Systemic metabolic problems make local problems worse, and if a local injury is serious, it can cause the liver to produce stress-related proteins called “acute phase proteins,” including fibrinogen and serum amyloids A and P, C-reactive protein, and other inflammation-related proteins. These proteins are a primitive sort of immune system, that can directly bind to some harmful substances. Endotoxin absorbed from bowel bacteria is probably the commonest reason for increased production of these proteins.” -RP

“The liver is the major source of the acute phase proteins, and it is constantly burdened by toxins absorbed from the bowel; disinfection of the bowel is known to accelerate recovery from stress.” -RP

Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2001 Apr;33(4):549-55. Anaerobic exercise induces moderate acute phase response. Meyer T, Gabriel HH, Rätz M, Müller HJ, Kindermann W.

Other recommendations were Cyproheptadine for reduction of Serotonin, cascara for intestinal happiness, spending less awake time in the (stressful) dark, and engaging in more things that lead to general happiness and fun.

Love that group!

Anyway, please help me hack my labs – any and all info is greatly appreciated!

Updates

Some updates on all things me:

1.  Started weight training.  I really like it – it’s the first time I’ve lifted weights with an actual program designed by an actual professional trainer – usually I just go to the gym and meander around the circuit training area.  I’m lifting 3 days a week for about an hour each time, and I’m already getting stronger – after only a full week.  I’ve had to bump up the weights on several of the machines I’m using.  I didn’t think I’d care about getting stronger – I mean, if I can pick up my kid how much stronger do I need to be?  Turns out it makes a big difference.  Like, already I notice it’s easier for me to physically get out of bed – I need to do a sit-up motion to get up, which used to be hard.  Now it’s getting easier.  I know, pretty weak, right?  It’s been about 24 years since I’ve lifted weights.

So my trainer asks me, “Are you sore?” to gauge how hard I’ve been working.  I want to tell her yes, but the truth is, my muscles are not sore.  They’re fatigued and I’m working my ass off at the gym, but for some reason my muscles aren’t that sore.  When I’ve done resistance training in the past my muscles were sore for days, so I’m not sure what’s different now.  I’m supplementing aspirin when I can remember, but not every day…maybe muscle soreness is the result of something I currently don’t have in my diet?

2.  I decided to tell the trainer that I’m not going to follow her stupid diet.  She gave me a diet that recommended starches for breakfast and lunch and no carbs after 4:30PM.  Wow.  I tried that for a couple of days.  My mood was terrible after eating oatmeal for breakfast, and I was too tired to do anything but lie down.  Also, no carb after 4:30 and my heart was pounding with adrenaline by 9:30 at night.  Not going to work.  Also, she wants me to have less than 1500 calories per day.  That just wasn’t enough food.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned lately, it’s that nothing is more important than feeling alive and happy every day.  I have that now.  It’s the direct result of eating simple sugars (fruit and honey), lean protein (I just don’t like gelatin, but I’ll try again at some point), saturated fats, eggs, salt, dairy, liver, seafood – a nutrient dense diet low in PUFAs.  Oh, and of course my progesterone.

3.  My weight is oddly stable. For the last 9 days, it doesn’t matter how much I eat, how much I drink, how much I work out, my morning weight is always exactly 208.8 lbs (94.7 kg).  Exactly.  To the tenth of a pound.  Isn’t that weird?  My whole life my weight has been up and down a pound or two a day….but now it’s so stable it’s freaking me out.  I’ve eaten 1600 calories one day and 3000 the next…doesn’t matter.   One day I made homemade gluten-free bread for my daughter and husband (well, homemade from a mix) that was so good I ate like 4 slices of it with butter.  Completely defied my no-starches rule.  I was really full.  The next day?  208.8.  Well, at least I’ve stopped gaining.

I am interested in losing weight, of course…and I think I’m going to try to accomplish this by drinking skim milk rather than eating cheese.  Also, I’m going to trade out heavy cream for skim milk in my coffee.  Those two things account for a lot of my daily fat.  I don’t want to count calories anymore.  I did that for a week for my trainer, and it made me feel like eating a pizza.  It’s more important to be emotionally healthy around food than to track every calorie.  I don’t want to be obsessed with this stuff.  It’s only a PART of my life.

Did I mention that I feel really good almost every day now?  Now if my mood is low or I feel tired I can usually directly attribute it to something I did differently than usual, like eating starches or experimenting with a new supplement.  Before Peat-ing I was tired, depressed, and anxious most days.  I never felt “happy”.  Then after adopting some of Peat’s recommendations I started feeling better in the mornings – not every morning, but a lot of them, and in the afternoon I’d go back to feeling low-energy.  Now almost every morning is delightful and a few times a week I feel great all day long.

I had some labs drawn last week….getting Peat-inspired labs is kind of a hassle.  I ordered labs for serotonin, parathyroid hormone, hs-CRP, and prolactin from Life Extension.  Went to the lab with my requisition, and the tech tells me that to test serotonin they need a “special tube” and that I’d have to go over to the “main lab” 12 miles away for that draw.  Ok…so I went to that lab instead. Then a few days later I got a call from Life Extension – they told me that the blood they drew to test my parathyroid hormone didn’t contain enough plasma…so I’d have to go back to have it retested.  Huh?  Not enough plasma?  Where’s all my plasma?  I haven’t had the retest done yet.  Anyway, they promise results in 10-14 days – I’ll update with results when I get them.

I’ve got my husband eating less PUFA, using red lights, taking aspirin and vitamins K, D, E, and A, and eating liver.  He keeps walking around saying he feels great and doesn’t know why.  haha.