Diet, Uncategorized

“Fat Free” Diets Are For Fat People.

Ok, I know what you’re thinking after reading a title like that, are you crazy?

In the scheme of things, “Fat Free” dieting has been useful for people with sensitive health conditions like Diabetes and for body builders who tend to utilize carbs/protein for bulking.

The idea with diabetics is that since their bodies have great difficulty producing insulin, a ketogenic or insulin reducing diet can be dangerous. This is why medical professionals often recommend high fiber/low fat diets to those with diabetes.

Fat Free is not totally without merit and evidence has shown it to be effective in some configuration. However, counting Fat and avoiding Saturated Fat both have major shortcomings. Saturated Fat may increase cholesterol but can also be metabolized by muscle growth. Eating the alternative without exercise appears to spur weight gain faster than Saturated Fat.

Effectiveness of this diet for losing major weight is limited. Most Fat Free diets cannot promise much. Many of us have tried them and still are left unsatisfied while looking for the perfect alternative. Worst of all, the portions leave us hungry and mischievous.

The oversimplified premise “eat fat to get fat” is dangerous. Empiricism sets simple logic straight when people who live the fat free diet enter obesity from eating bread and pasta. The liver has its own process for converting sugar into fat and it’s storage is often long-term. We’ve had more than 50 years of the high carb regime….and we live in it’s aftermath.

There are healthy fats which your body craves. Omega 3s are incredible at antagonizing glycogen while Boosting metabolism (and therefore energy levels) for those in Ketosis. To the contrary, Omega 6s (Unsaturated Fats) found in seed oils and nuts are being proven harmful over the long term.

This diet can be ignorant of macros, nutrients, and metabolism. While hyperfocused on Fat as the enemy (which it isnt) we forget that an effective diet is an orchestra with supportive roles for many of our other macros. Eliminating fat often limits our protein intake while leading to increased carb consumption to fill the void.

The exercise required to burn off a carb rich diet can be undoable for most people. To burn the excess glycogen of the Western Pattern Diet, it may take the activity of a dedicated athlete. While not impossible, it’s out of the question for most of us–especially if we have joint problems. Ancient athletes who relied on high carb diets would not be considered fit according to modern beauty standards–in fact, they were fairly “flabby”.

A reliance on fruit or vegitables can be either the gateway to carbs or a boring monotonous routine which feels like work. When we’re not satisfied or dangling a sample prize in our own faces every day, it becomes extraordinarily difficult to carry on. A part of why this diet is for the unsuccessful is that our own will-power is existant…a thing….and something (all too often) we underestimate the power of: Positively and Negatively.

Measuring everything can be a pain in the ass. Not to say that other diets won’t have you measuring…to be a hound for the details is taxing. I have to do it with keto though I will say this, the diet’s success does not make it the least bit in vain.

What I have found fat free useful for:

I’ve found fat free useful in emergencies where I unknowingly consumed carbs after a cheat day. Segregating fats from carbs can be time intensive–it takes X time for insulin levels to drop again after eating carbs.

Lately, I added Fat Free dressing to a salad which had carb-laden ingredients as a measure to avoid it being stored as fat.

Conclusion: while a Fat Free can be useful in certain circumstances, it’s most common result is leaving diet-goers unsatisfied, frustrated, and unchanged.


Diet, Uncategorized

Counting Calories vs Carbs–my experience

Dieting is almost synonymous with counting calories. Almost every dieting recommendation that I’ve ever heard required it–so much is the case that children know to talk about calories before even learning the definition.

…Asking someone for the definition used to be a smart-ass way to provoke a conversation.

Counting Calories is effective…Dogma.

But how useful is the whole calorie counting complex for people like me?

I needed to lose almost 150lbs….fast.

My health conditions, time, pain…all closing in on me and every single calorie focused diet was unsuccessful.

What did I find? What is my relationship with Calories now that I’ve lost 95lbs in 2 years with Keto and Fasting?

Calorie counting is like a fine tuning adjustment when you need more acceleration.

It’s simple but there is a darkside when the emotion of wanting to lose weight catches up with the limited knowledge of calorie restriction.

Calorie counters will sometimes get aggressive by only focusing on what they can cut rather than what their bodies need.

To put this into the engine analogy, if counting calories is a fine-tuning mechanism, these counters will starve the engine of fuel or air until it overheats and shuts down.

Meanwhile, all that was needed for acceleration was to open the throttle.

But the human body isn’t an engine; it’s a complex organism–made of other complex organisms.

Our bodies are closer to gardens than motorcycles.

Counting carbs was immediately effective for losing large amounts of weight and even they authorities who do not approve of Keto and Intermittent Fasting still recommend low carb diets—which require counting carbs.

Calories are important and even after losing the weight, I now have to optimize my intake in order to fine tune my diet to its best.

There are points of too few or too much;

I once limited my caloric intake to aproximately 500 calories–while working out;

That was the month that I couldn’t lose a pound–after months of explosive weightloss.

Apparently too few calories in a diet can put the body into starvation mode where it retains as much as possible–while tying up energy expenditure.

The old idea of simply taking in less and expending more needs a reworking and serious clarification.

For people of normal health, more harm has come from this misconception than Keto or Fasting.

-A person needs to learn more about their metabolism and their resting and operating rates.

-Having to measure everything can be a serious pain in the ass.

-A diet which has a low probability of success when eyeballed is fragile;

If it cannot be eyeballed and work, it’s too complicated.

This post is not to bastardize calorie counting or worse tracking our diets.

I’ve even found a way to make my daily Keto totally compliant with calorie restrictions—and implementing that is my next step going forward.

In the end, a diet should be tracked using easy metrics which are readily available on packaging, fair enough.

That said, the lack of focus on nutrition and establishing that perfect (albeit temporary) balance of macros to consume is a sad killer of any diet.

I give my body the fuel which works best, disregarding my palate, and that’s why it rewards me—funny enough, none of that fuel has been “diet food”.

The hungrier I’m left after eating, the more likely I’ll be munching with total disregard.

The feeling of hunger is only one strong dimension of insatiety which eventually gives your diet a cold shower.

Low calorie diets left me feeling hungry and weak.

Overall, I respect Calorie Counting, not as a panacea, but a tool to optomize my diet.