" For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; the flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land. " Song of Solomon

December 7, 2008

So here’s the deal. I've been frustrated with my stalled weight loss and recent gain. I’ve been gaining weight even though I’m eating the same amount of food.

Before I actually weighed myself, I noted that I felt bloated--that my clothes felt tighter. That was what tipped me off that I needed to check in at the scale. I wasn’t surprised to see it ‘up’. With the way my clothes were fitting and my past history it was to be expected--par for the course.

In my frustration I didn’t really know what to do--I’ve been at this bend in the road many times. What I do know is that I can’t give up. I don’t want to regain the whole 50 pounds I lost back in 2002. But where to go from here--what is the answer?

Help came from an unexpected source: Eater’s Digest Monday--this issue: December 8, 2008

The issue contained several articles that caught my eye and shed some light on what might be my problem. It wasn't new to me information--but I have failed to incorporate it into my eating habits with any regularity. I slip back into old habits.

I got some insight as to what may explain my weight gain and inability to lose even though eating in a range that should cause weight loss.

One of the articles made this summation and in a nutshell it explains what I think is going on with my stalled weight loss:

“someone could be eating a relatively small amount of calories daily but at the same time be promoting a great deal of fat storage by: 1) making poor food choices; 2) combining macro-nutrients in a nonproductive fashion and 3) consuming food infrequently at inopportune times”.


You can read the articles in their entirety. Here they are with their links:

***Overlooked Fat Loss Factor

***High Protein Meals May Help Overweight Burn Fat

***Secrets of Health Conscious Foodies

Who’s to say if the research is right or not? Most of the statements “suggest” a reason for the outcome, so it‘s not necessarily hard core fact. At any rate--I’m taking them to heart. Why?

Number one, I’ve got nothing to lose if they don’t work and number two, because it dawned on me that while my food volume/caloric intake had not really changed, the make up of it had… I resemble the examples given in the articles--so maybe there is an application for me.

I’ve been eating lots of crackers, cookies, bread--simple carby stuff--and very little protein. I've never been a big meat eater and it's hard for me to eat enough protein to promote weight loss. And I've been pretty much skipping the dairy too.

Also I’ve taken to ‘needing’ a night time snack every night without fail (too many carbs and not enough protein during the day?).

Those nighttime snacks have been the carby stuff. I'll feel hungry--get out something low cal but high carb and before you know it I've scarfed down a lot of carbs.

As I mentioned, my protein intake has fallen way off . By days end my protein intake was really low. And that, I think, may explain the weight gain. More carbs mean our bodies store more fluid by volume to metabolize those carbs. Hence the bloated puffed up me. And according to the research a big carb loaded meal causes a rise in insulin which promotes fat storage.

To give you an idea, here are some initial changes I’m putting into place.

--Swap out my one egg and two pieces of toast for 2 eggs and one piece of toast . This changes the protein/carb calorie ratio.

--Eat better during the day (as in more protein) so I don’t ‘need’ the night time snack--but should I indulge in a night time snack, I’ll change it up--no crackers, cookies, dark chocolate chips. Instead --a cup of milk..or some plain yogurt. The milk/carb ratio in dairy is almost perfect. If I ‘give in’ and eat crackers I’ll be sure to accompany them with a low fat string cheese and limit the crackers to a few.

Here are some of the points that jumped jumped out at me:

the actual number of calories you consume is not the only factor that affects your fat-loss efforts.”

“protein carries the highest thermic effect.
Eat more protein; burn more calories.”

"people with higher body fat burn fat better after a high protein meal"

“fiber, as an indigestible nutrient, will not be absorbed…will pass through your intestinal tact undigested” (Key: eat fiber, it fills you up but not out)

“when high levels of insulin are present within the blood,
fat burning is brought to a screeching halt” (Key: eat low glycemic foods for fat loss)

carbohydrate ingestion stimulates a large insulin response and fat ingestion give rise to blood lipid levels--when the two are consumed together, they promote the greatest fat storage.” (Key: eat fat or carbs, add protein)

large infrequent meals tend to promote storage of the ingested nutrients” (key: eat small meals frequently)

“ingesting a
large amount of carbohydrates before bed spikes insulin, deters nocturnal thermogenesis and increases fat storage during sleep....whereas consuming a great deal of calories early in the day does not bring about this problem--these calories are likely to be used as energy to support daily activities”

Fat loss isn't just a matter of calories in, calories out--it's more complex than that.
"....there have been many times when I have shed bitter tears, when if I had understood the situation better, I would have celebrated my good luck instead."


I am not a doctor and all information, suggestions, etc are my personal opinion only.