Sunday, October 29, 2006
I'm doing Intermittent Fasting (IF) and on my eating days I usually don't worry about what I eat....but within reason. This past week I splurged. I had a sub, and a milkshake, and regular cheesecake with chocolate fudge. It was all very tasty, but time to get back on track!!!
Went to see my oldest this weekend. She's so happy!! She's in college up in Boone, and she's still plugging along!! She was refused further financial assistance, but is going to continue to fight for it. She's an English major with a concentration in creative writing. She's a very good writer and enjoys everything about English! Funny tho, she's had trouble with her foreign language!! She tried and failed with Spanish, even with tutors, and now she's taking German. She's doing well, but she still needs a tutor!! She wants her Master's, but she's still got a long road ahead of her. She's technically a Junior (I think), and is only able to go part time.
We went to see the Appalacian State football team trample Furman University. Final score was 40-7! And man was it cold!!!Luckily Laura had a hat and gloves for me. I remembered to wash my coat and bring warm sweaters, etc....but forgot all about my head and hands!! I was amazed at the number of girls (students) who appeared to put fashion over comfort!!
I am so proud of my kids!!!
Here's my Brian this past summer:
Here's Laura and Chris (her honey!):
I'll be weighing in Tuesday AM, will post again then.
Oh yea...I couldn't forget my puppies!!
That would be Daisy on the left and Duke on the right.
Sunday, October 22, 2006
Long Term Effects of Ketogenic Diet in Obese Subjects with High Cholesterol
Authors: Dashti, Hussein; Al-Zaid, Naji; Mathew, Thazhumpal; Al-Mousawi, Mahdi; Talib, Hussain; Asfar, Sami; Behbahani, Abdulla
Source: "Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry"
Volume 286, Numbers 1-2, June 2006, pp. 1-9(9)
Abstract:Objective: Various studies have convincingly shown the beneficial effect of ketogenic diet (in which the daily consumption of carbohydrate is less than 20 grams, regardless of fat, protein and caloric intake) in reducing weight in obese subjects. However, its long term effect on obese subjects with high total cholesterol (as compared to obese subjects with normal cholesterol level is lacking. It is believed that ketogenic diet may have adverse effect on the lipid profile. Therefore, in this study the effect of ketogenic diet in obese subjects with high cholesterol level above 6 mmol/L is compared to those with normocholesterolemia for a period of 56 weeks.
Materials and methods: In this study, 66 healthy obese subjects with body mass index (BMI) greater than 30, having high cholesterol level (Group I; n = 35) and those subjects with normal cholesterol level (Group II; n = 31) were selected. The body weight, body mass index, total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol, urea, creatinine, glucose and triglycerides were determined before and after the administration of the ketogenic diet. Changes in these parameters were monitored at 8, 16, 24, 32, 40, 48 and 56 weeks of the treatment.
Results: The body weight and body mass index of both groups decreased significantly
Conclusion: This study shows the beneficial effects of ketogenic diet following its long term administration in obese subjects with a high level of total cholesterol. Moreover, this study demonstrates that low carbohydrate diet is safe to use for a longer period of time in obese subjects with a high total cholesterol level and those with normocholesterolemia.
Document Type: Research article
DOI: 10.1007/s11010-005-9001-xAffiliations: 1: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
I really wish I could afford to buy the study and see just how this research was carried out. There are so many studies that are really crap science.
Thursday, October 19, 2006
It started off great, woke up early, dogs pottied on demand, traffic going to work wasn't bad....but then it all went downhill!!!
We're in new offices. We're freezing!!! Or at least I am!!!
I am a QA Analyst for a company that has several different products, all related to healthcare. Most of our applications are either on a PDA or PC, but we also have a couple that are internet based. The product I work with is internet based. There are well over 700 screens in our application, and as you can imagine, several share data. The application is for Utilization Review (justifying admissions and treatments), Case Management (helping make sure your patient gets the services, equipment, and follow-up they're supposed to have), Disease Management (same as CM, but disease specific), and Quality Management (Making sure standards of care are followed). We have the capability of interfacing with the hospital ADT (Admissions, discharges, and transfers) feed as well as several other products. I am VERY proud of our product as I started with the company before we even had our first release.
My job is to test different aspects of our application. For the most part it's going to a certain screen (or two or several) and make sure all the buttons work, and the data is populated correctly in all associated screens. We also have a fairly extensive reporting structure, and we're currently changing how our reporting actually works.....and there's the rub.
Lately I've been called upon to do some of the minor report testing....extracts are more like it. The problem? Our equipment doesn't work right!!!!! It's fine for our users, but apparently, but for us testers, we get shut out quite often. It can be very irritating!!
We get logged out of the database within 20-30 minutes. We have a couple of interfaces and they keep shutting down!!! Apparently it's because our volume is too low!!! Weird, huh?
Oh well, the day is over and tomorrow I get to work from home. I love working from home!! I can stay in my PJs all day, and I don't have to deal with anyone directly!!
Tuesday, October 17, 2006
WHOO HOO!!!! 3 more pounds gone!!!!!
I'm still doing the intermittent fasting and staying pretty close to plan when I do eat. I'm actually amazed at how little effort this it. I'm rarely hungry on my fasting days, and when I do get hungry I just have some water. I do allow myself coffee and tea, both with a little cream or milk, but not much. Actually on fasting days I get most of my calories from my fish oil and Vitamin E!!
I kind of lost track of what I've been eating, but I'm still getting enough on my eating days to pretty much cover my fasting days. I guess because you regularly eat and eat well you don't get into a starvation response. I think maybe that only happens when you have long-term reduced calories?? Who knows all I know is I'm loosing, and it's been pretty easy!!
Long Term Goal:
Monday, October 16, 2006
One forum I'm on, a diet site that is extremely pro low fat, I posted the results of a study done that shows that people with a higher protein intake have smaller waists. A fellow poster called this an "urban legend". Huh? The results of a study....a study done on almost 45,000 people...a study that has been published in the world’s most prestigious nutritional journal...THIS is an "urban legend"??
On another forum, someone posted a question of whether low carb diets are good for you. Again, this is an extremely pro low fat diet site. Various comments include:
--"eating low carb is not good for u." (ok...opinion stated as fact, nothing more)
--"i have never done a low carb diet, but my theory is that if you go on a diet that you are not happy with you wont keep the weight of." (and obviously no one can be happy eating low carb, right?)
--"I agree with the previous poster. If you feel you cannot stick to a food plan for the rest of your life, it's not a good one to be following. You need carbs for brain function and to fuel your activities." (the human body, a most amazing thing, is fully capable, given enough protein, of "creating" all the glucose you need)
--"i don't eat red meat at all, i don't eat butter at all, i only eat olive oil (1 teaspoon for salad), i only eat chicken or fish , i eat every fruit possible and any veggie except potatoes cause i hate them! i eat cheese, yogurt and milk and only egg whites" (this poster later admits she's a former vegetarian....and few vegetarians are big on low carb)
--"I've never done the Atkins because I get so concerned about fat and cholesterol." (well, until the medical/pharmaceutical Industry stops brain washing people into believing fat is bad, cholesterol is bad, etc there's not much you can do with a comment like this)
--"First of all, the brain and other body systems NEED carbs to function properly." (like I already said, the body is capable of metabolising protein to provide all the blood glucose you need....besides, low carb doesn't mean NO carb!)
So many people voicing opinions as fact. So many people stating "facts" that are just incorrect. So many people who don't have a clue about what their bodies need!!!
Our bodies need 2 things, other than air and water, and the 2 things we need are protein and fat. There are "essential amino acids" that are required and can only be taken in as food, we cannot manufacture them without protein. And there are "essential fatty acids", which are required for various body functions. However, there are NO essential carbohydrates!!!!
Fats are needed for various things:
1. Without fat you can't absorb certain vitamins.
2. Fat is an integral part of virtually every cell membranes.....in fact, saturated fats make up about 50% of the membrane!
3. Fat can be converted to glucose by the liver
4. Fats are required, again specifically saturated fats, to properly use calcium and incorporate it into the bone structure.
5. Fats are required for proper function of the immune system and in fighting infections.
5. Fats are required for formation of stress hormones and reproductive hormones, and growth hormones.
Now for a word of caution about vegetable fats. Vegetable fats are very high in Omega 6 polyunsaturated oils. Too high an intake in Omega-6 can lead to a disruption in the production of prostaglandins, which can lead to an increased tendency to form blood clots, inflammation, high BP, irritation of the digestive tract, depressed immune function, sterility, cancer and weight gain.
It's best to stick with saturated fats and mono saturated fats. Monosaturates come from nuts and olives. Corn, soy, canola, and other vegetable oils contain mainly polyunsaturates and should be avoided due to their high Omega-6 content.
Trans-fats, artificially hydrogenated unsaturated fats, should be avoided at all costs. More on this in a later post.
Protein is also essential for good health:
1. Proteins are essential for healthy muscles
2. Protein is essential for healthy strong bones
3. Protein is required by virtually every cell in the body and is essential for proper function and replacement of cells.
4. A healthy nervous system is dependent on protein.
5. Protein helps move energy into cells.
6. Protein is required by many cell components, which have to bind with protein to be used or transported.
7. Protein is essential in the creation of many enzymes in the body, which are required for many cell functions, including DNA repair and replication and RNA sysnthesis.
Now, for Low carb diets. I am NO expert on low carb diets, but they all pretty much limit carbs and replace them with either protein or fat, or both.
I'm sure there's at least one out there, but every low carb diet I have read about encourages intake of veggies and some fruits. Yes, they also more or less encourage fat and protein intake, but they also encourage home cooking and avoiding processed foods and "fake" foods.
FAQ about low carb diets:
Can you stick with a low carb lifestyle for many years? Certainly, many people do. Check out some of the blogs out there! Some have lost hundreds of pounds and have been following a low carb lifestyle for 5, 10, 20 years and some even longer!
Is low carb safe? Of course it is. It's the diet we evolved on. Science shows that when we started eating meat is when our brains grew and developed. Even today many tribes follow a low-carb diet and not only do they survive on it, they thrive on it!!
Doesn't eating so much protein put a "strain" on your liver and kidneys? Nope. Our liver's job, in part, is producing the correct chemicals (bile salts) needed to digest meat. And for those of us with healthy kidneys, there is no problem with a high protein intake.
But what about ketones? Don't they cause ketoacidosis? Nope. Benign dietary ketosis is simply a result of burnign fat. We use carbs before fat, so with low carb you burn fat faster, so therefore have more ketones. Ketoacidosis, on the other hand, is a potentially fatal condition that results from high blood sugar. With diabetics, the body essentially gets confused with too much sugar in the blood and not enough insulin. Because a diabetic can't handle the blood sugar, the body thinks it's starving and begins to break down fat for energy. This leads to a high level of ketones, along with high blood sugar, and can result in coma and even death if not treated.
Isn't the high fat content of many low carb diets a danger for heart disease? fatty liver? metabolic syndrome? diabetes? Once again, the answer is no. Heart disease seems more and more to be the result of inflammation, and/or oxidized LDL. Fatty liver is actually caused by too high a carb intake, as is metabolic syndrome and diabetes (Type 2).
Does low carb really result in faster weight loss? For many of us yes, but I'm sure not for all. To me the biggest plus in dieting with low carb is that you stop having cravings and at the same time eat foods that fill you up faster and stick with you longer than even unrefined, high fiber carbs.
But don't we need carbohydrates? No, we have no "need" for carbohydrates, but we do need to have glucose. Our bodies can and do use ketones for energy, but some organs do require glucose. If there are adequate calories, fat and protein the body can and does "manufacture" all the glucose we need. We don't NEED carbs, but we do need glucose.....isn't it amazing that our bodies can produce all that we need as long as we get enough good food?
OK....so what's the downside of low carb diets? Well, for many the initial withdrawal can be horrendous. In fact, many call it the "low carb flu". This will pass, however, if you stick with the plan and keep your carb intake low. There is also a "side effect" of bad breath....specifically "ketone breath". And yes, this can be quite nasty. There are times that I feel like I haven't brushed my teeth in days!!! But, increasing your fluid intake (always a good thing) can help with this. Many find that this goes away after being on plan for a while, probably because of an increase in carb intake.
Low carb diets can also lower your blood pressure, so some may have to monitor it, especially if they take blood pressure medication. Low carb can (and does) also lower clood sugar, so again, if on medication it will have to be monitored.
Additionally, some people complain about constipation, but if you get enough fluids and fiber, this shouldn't be a problem. Many of the low carb diets recomend supplementing with additional fiber, but personally, I've never found a need to supplement.
Some people also might see a transient rise in the blood cholesterol levels, but this is not usually a problem. For one thing, saturated fats increase your HDL cholesterol, which most feel are beneficial, and secondly the rise in LDL cholesterol, if seen, is often a rise in the big, fluffy kind of LDL, which is not considered dangerous. Evidence also shows that levels normalize within a year or so. (of course, there is no real evidence that high cholesterol causes heart disease, but that's another subject) The other thing about low carb diets, which some feel is the most important, is that blood triglyceride levels usually fall dramatically, and most feel that high triglycerides are a major contributor to heart disease.
So, if you're interested, give low carb a try. BUT, it it very important for you to read a book or two about the plan you pick prior to starting on it. Personally I usually recomend Atkins (Dr Atkins New Diet Revolution or DANDR) or Protein Power Life Plan (PPLP). Both DANDR and PPLP encourage natural foods over artificial and processed foods. Both also note that exercise is VITAL for properly following a low carb lifestyle.
If you can't afford to buy a book, or not sure of what plan will suit you, I have 2 recomendations. Forst, go to your local library and see what they have. Second, check out the ActiveLowCarber Forum for a synopsis of the various low carb plans. Once you decide which plan sounds like you can work with, try it for 2 weeks. And give it your all.....for just 14 days. Remember you might feel horrible the first few days, but stick it out. If, after 14 days you don't feel better, them maybe low carb isn't for you.
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
I apologise to anyone who's been following my weight tracker. I keep getting the numbers mixed up! This week I lost 2#. I am very happy about that and hope it keeps up. I'm happy with 1-2# a week, and even a no loss here and there. But I hate it when I gain!!!
From my starting weigh to now, I'm down 40#!!! Just 3 more and I'll be halfway there!! I still have a skirt and 2 pair of pants that I want to be able to get into. Probably another 15-20# before those will fit, but that's OK.....I've got a goal!
On my short-term goal of 20 pounds in 20 weeks, I'm down 14 and have 6 to go!! Woo hoo!!
Once this 20 in 20 is over I'm going to immediately start another goal. I think that's the best way for me to work.
Oh well...back to the plan. I fasted a couple of days this past week, so all my totals look pretty messed up. I am definitely not eating twice the calories on my eating day, but mainly I'm not getting the protein I need. Tomorrow I fast, then when I start to eat again I'm going to look towards higher protein foods. I find I feel better with the higher protein. I've been eating pretty much on plan, although the past 24hrs have not been. I need to get back to drinking the protein shakes and eating meat and fish instead of cheeses and eggs.
I really enjoy following PPLP! My back and neck feels better, I have more energy and just all around feeling of wellness. It's hard to describe unless you've felt it. But to eat foods that you like and are truly healthy foods, your body knows it's getting what it needs and responds accordingly. I sleep better on low carb too!
Things are going to get a bit stressful over the next few months.
I'm trying to get my house straightened out so I can put it on the market and move into a much smaller place. The place is a mess and I own way too many things!!! I am really going to downsize on what I have!!! I went to see a place on a whim last week and was amazed at how little storage I'm going to have!!! I never even considered that part! LOL
Many are going to think I'm nuts, but I want a little place 800-1000 sq ft is ideal. I will absolutely need to have some outside storage, for lawn mower if nothing else. I only want 2 bedrooms, but would take 3 if the price and location is right. My son may or may not go with me, but if he does, it won't be for long! Then it's just me and the puppies! Yippee!!!!
I sometimes think I'm nuts. I love my kids, and I'm very proud of them....but I can't wait to live alone again!!! All I've truly had in living alone was a couple of months before getting married. When Jeanne and I still lived together, but she really lived with Fred. Before Stephen moved in and we got married. Since that day I have lived with others, and I'm tired of it.
I want to be able to put something down and have it remain where I put it. I want to know that anything in my house is not going to get touched unless I allow it. I just want to be alone for a while!!! Oh I am sooo bad! LOL
Actually, I figure some day one or the other are going to come home. Even if it's just for a visit. And, someday I'll probably have grandchildren! I hope to be the nana that they go to sleep over with! My kids had a great relationship with my mom, and I hope I'm at least as good a nana as she was!
Oh well....enough for today. I'm not going to post my totals this week, but will probably next week. I am going to continue to fast, but during non-fasting times I'm going to stick with the plan and go for protein.
Long Term Goal:
Sunday, October 08, 2006
Diabetes: Why would anyone think it makes sense to eat the very thing that caused your disease???? I know the general consensus in the medical/pharmaceutical industry is that there is no cure for diabetes, I personally believe that excess sugar intake causes diabetes (NOT Type 1 that starts in childhood, but Type 2, which is preceded by insulin resistance).
OK.....so even figuring that sugar/carbohydrates don't cause diabetes (which they do), we all can agree that diabetes is a condition in which the body cannot handle the amount of sugar that is found in the blood. For most diabetics this sugar comes from the food they eat. Right?
The body can't properly metabolize glucose. So we feed the body mainly glucose? OK, yea, that makes sense!?!?!?! Not to me!!
Gluten Intolerance, what do you do to treat this? Avoid gluten.
Seafood or peanut allergy? Don't eat seafood or peanuts!
Intolerance to food additives like soy, MSG and sulfites? Don't eat them!!
Can't metabolize phenylalanine (PKU)? Don't eat high protein foods!!!
But man, if you can't metabolize carbohydrates what do they want you to do? Yep, eat more carbs! Insanity! But that is exactly what they want people to do! Eat more carbs!
I'm not sure if my school was behind or ahead of the times, but I was taught in nursing school that diabetes, then called "adult onset" was caused by high carb intake and that people on diabetic diets should not only count their carbs, but they should restrict them. I remember a "serving" of cake for a diabetic being a mere 1" cube of angel food cake! Forget any other kind, you just don't eat it!
My first 8 yrs of nursing were working in the acute care hospital. (I can remember when you were admitted for GI tests!!!) I worked on both medical and surgical floors, pediatrics, and have over 3 years working in intensive care (ICU/CCU/ER/Recovery/OR).
During that time, the majority of patients I saw that had complications of diabetes were patients that didn't follow their diet and/or take their meds!!!! People didn't have limbs removed the way they do today! And people didn't die of kidney disease as often as they do today....and I remember the days before transplants became routine!
I don't know the numbers, but I have read several articles that indicate that more people get complications of diabetes today at a much higher rate than they did 30, 40 and more years ago! The prevalence wasn't as high back then, no one argues that. But the incidence of complications was much lower than they are today. And the complications seem to be much more severe.
Unfortunately, the levels that the medical establishment says is appropriate for diabetics are way too high. Again, I say.....stop feeding diabetics sugar and you'll prevent the complications of the disease.
This is funny too....sad funny, not funny funny. The cause of diabetes as far as the medical/pharmaceutical industry is concerned is fat. Not being fat, overweight, and obese....but dietary fat!!!
Now, think of this. Our ancestors ate high fat diets. Yep, lots and lots of fat. Our ancestors evolved on eating fat.....so why did diabetes not show up then? Why has the incidence of diabetes gone up, even though the intake of fat for many has decreased? Maybe it's because fat plays little or no role in developing diabetes????? Now, if you're talking about body fat, especially visceral fat, then yes....fat does likely at least contribute to diabetes. But that fat is a symptom of insulin resistance and diabetes. A symptom that becomes part of a vicious, dangerous circle.
Drugs. Oh this is my favorite!!!! First line of treatment is not diet, not lifestyle change, but drugs. Initially you might get a drug that increases your insulin sensitivity....later it's drugs to push your pancreas into producing ever more insulin....and then finally, when your pancreas is completely (or almost completely) destroyed, you take insulin injections!!!!
If people were put on a low carb diet and a simple exercise program, they would likely be able to prevent medication....or at least slow the progress from one drug to another.
But do they do this? Far too often the answer is no. They tell people to eat carbohydrates, even though those very carbs are what is causing all their problems!
From the CDC:
The Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP), a landmark study sponsored by the National Institutes of Health, found that people at increased risk for type 2 diabetes can prevent or delay the onset of the disease by losing 5 to 7 percent of their body weight through increased physical activity and a reduced fat and lower calorie diet.
Now, I can't argue with loosing weight or the lower calorie diet. Since it's a good bet that the person is overweight any cutback on intake is only going to be good. And any weight loss will also be good. But where does fat come in?
Is insulin influenced by fat intake? No, not really.
Is blood sugar level influenced by fat? Not by much!
Sooooooo....why are diabetics told to limit fat intake???? Because they are at higher risk of heart disease of course! Does dietary fat have anything to do with heart disease? No (except for trans-fats). So why are people told to cut back on dietary fat? Because everyone KNOWS fat is bad!!! (More about this later)
Does the fact that we require certain fats matter? Nope. Does the fact that we also require certain proteins matter? Again, nope. Does the fact that we have no requirement for carbohydrates matter? Once again.....NO!!!!
This is the way I see it. A diet of 45-55% carbs (some articles I've read have advocated as high as 65% from carbs recently!) provides too many carbs and too few calories from fat and protein. We evolved eating a high protein and high fat diet. Our ancestors not only survived, but thrived on mainly fat and protein. Yes, I'm sure they also ate fruits and veggies that they found wild, but these were mostly seasonal, not a part of their regular diet. In preparation for winter our ancestors preserved extra meet and fat for use at a later date. They probably didn't do much with trying to preserve fruits and vegetables because they didn't have the technology. (I have no doubt they did dry some fruit and maybe veggies, but in small quantities, not large amounts like meat and fat)
Since we haven't been around for very long, I believe that we have not yet evolved to be able to handle a diet that is only 45-55% fat and protein!!!! We need fats and proteins....we don't need carbs. Since we evolved eating mostly fats and proteins doesn't it make sense to understand that we still would do better on a diet rich in fats and proteins?
If, on top of this you have a disease that prevents you from metabolizing those carbs, does it make sense to continue to promote a high carb low fat and low protein diet? The
Please, if you have diabetes read Dr. Bernstein's Diabetes Solution, if you have heart disease read Heart Frauds, and if you have high cholesterol read The Cholesterol Myths. Check out some of the blog links, especially both of the Eades and Regina Wilshire. And talk to your doc. I'm hearing more and more about docs who are turning to low or lower carb diets for their patients, especially diabetics, but many only recommend it if a patient asks.
Thursday, October 05, 2006
No loss this week. Not surprised. I think it was probably at least in part due to a brunch I ate on Sunday. I had a little bit of salad, a couple of pieces of cantaloupe, scrambled eggs, bacon, ham and sausage. I also had about 1/2 slice whole wheat toast. The bacon, the eggs, and the ham were all loaded with salt!
I'm not a big salt eater, so when I have a dose like I got with that meal, I retain fluid. I have a tendency to retain anyway, and large doses of salt like that really make a difference. I don't avoid salt, but I just don't think of it. I got out of the habit of using salt when I was in school. And I've never gotten back in the habit of using it.
Here are my averages for the week:
As you can see, I am very low on Iron this week. But remember, this is an average. One day I had no iron in my diet at all.
I do eat red meat, eggs and cheese, but I don't eat that much. I use protein powder and shakes to bring up my protein intake. Fats go along with it usually, but not necessarily red meat. I also fasted 2 days during this week. One day it was 9PM to 10PM, the other day it was 11PM to 9PM. I only had chicken this week, and only 3 times.
Long Term Goal: