Since January 6th up to today I have lost about 40 pounds by running, intermittent fasting, HIIT, low carbs (<25), moderate protein, lots of fat (coconut oil, butter,avocados, EVOO, brain octane), no fruit or grains of any kind,and water to drink (120+ oz). I realize the scale goes 4 lbs either direction,but since I started BP about a week and a half ago I have gained back 8 lbs. I am eating in the green area of info chart, grass fed this, grass fed that, BP coffee with butter, brain octane, and coconut oil, only green veggies (my carbs), salad, no cheeses,I'm starting to wonder if I should just go back to what I was doing. I seemed to have lost more that way. And pink do you keep from retaining water? I do drink a lot of water, but seem to be a little swollen. Do I stick it out or go back to what was working? Any advice is appreciated!


  • ACH85ACH85 ✭✭
    edited February 2015

    That's tough... in this community we are generally in favor of n=1 experiments, and your experiment of one would seem to indicate your previous protocol was achieving your goal better. (Your goal seems to simply be weight loss?) 


    However, we are also in favor of using collective knowledge to inform our decisions. Most of our collective knowledge points to the combo of extreme low carb with high activity being at best not sustainable in the long term and at worst creating problems like adrenal burnout. In addition, the risks seem to be greater with worse nutrition (crappy protein and no veggies for micronutrients) and also for women. Long term carb depletion can also reduce mucous production, including the mucous lining the gut, and the ensuing leaky gut can cause new food allergies. Adrenal burnout + being newly allergic to the foods that helped you lose weight = no more weight loss and potential health problems. 


    So, a few thoughts:


    1) Whatever you do, be on the lookout for the initial signs of low mucous including dry eyes and sinuses, followed by symptoms of leaky gut. Carb refeeds at least every 7th day are recommended on BP, as are a small amount of nightly carbs you are not currently having (see the bottom of the "starch" column in the infographic) and would also be recommended if you return to your previous protocol. 


    2) You are right about 4 pounds weight fluctuation... sort of. For most women (slightly less total glycogen storage than men) four pounds weight fluctuation is about right for glycogen changes and the associated water with which the glycogen is stored. However! Both carbs and fiber can store a bit more water in the intestines, and salt and other electrolytes can store more water. So 8 lbs is totally reasonable and should not be assumed to be any fat gain. Plus, you could add muscle which weighs more than fat, but that would be a good thing for "tone," increased metabolism, posture, etc. Without high testosterone you're simply not going to bulk up, so muscle gain should be seen only as a big positive. The scale, like calories, is a primitive and deceptive measure that is very easy to focus on simply by virtue of being so simple. I'd recommend adding measurements in multiple locations around your body or body fat percentage measurements as a way to augment the simple "weight" metric. And, if your current goal is indeed "weight loss" I'd recommend switching it to "fat loss." There is a big difference. 


    3) Drinking tons of water on a very low salt diet just flushes you out, and it's actually unhealthy. You've only been using higher salt for a week and a half, so your body could still be adjusting. Personally I don't go crazy with the salt, but when I started adding a bit to my waters I did hold on to a bit more water weight. This is good. "Swollen" is not good, but just make sure you're not perceiving swollen simply due to retaining a healthy amount of water for the first time in a while. For an extreme demonstration, you can easily Google images of MMA fighters at weigh-ins and then fighting the next day, with 15+ extra pounds of healthy water weight. You don't want to be walking around dehydrated and depleted of electrolytes just to be a pound or two lower on the scale. (Unless you're weighing in for a competition.)


    4) Improved nutrition from grass-fed protein and organic veggies is almost certainly not a bad thing. It is almost certainly a good thing. Keep those even if you return to the original protocol. 



    The above thoughts and logic are more important than this part, but in your shoes I'd stick with it a bit longer. One and a half weeks is not a conclusive experiment. And, if you're really serious about testing BP, you've got to add those carb refeeds. Green veggies have nowhere near enough starch to cut it. 

  • Thanks for all the information. My problem with carbs is I have type 2 diabetes,so I watch the carbs religiously. I would pprobably go into a coma if I ate white rice and sweet potatoes all day. I want to be healthy and I want to do it right. The protocol as you call it that I was on before I was using whole grains (quinoa, whole grain English muffins) and a few green veggies to fill up carbs. I will give it a bit longer. I think my body may be stressed out from the beginning of something new and different! I am starting the recommended supplements tomorrow (the ones Dave suggested everyone take. Are there any others you would suggest? Those are expensive! Go broke just in the vitamin shoppe ;-) Thanks again!
  • No meds by the way. Trying to control with diet. By BS were much lower on my other protocol. Just discouraged...
  • After I posted I saw your other post on diabetes, and that sure does complicate things. Hopefully some others will chime in here. 


    So the previous protocol had whole grains but was less than 25g carbs a day?


    The supplements can get pricey, but you could attempt to go for whole food sources. Weekly liver and wild caught salmon might get you the vitamin A and omega 3's you need. The Upgraded Aging supplement is supposed to help with blood sugar a bit, but it's also pretty expensive. 


    Also, I wonder if you can sneak more carbs in inside the post-workout window without crazy blood sugar spikes. A similar concept, in the Four Hour Body Tim Ferriss recommends very brief muscle contractions as a way for non-diabetics to minimize fat gain on cheat days. The concept is that even just a bit of muscle contraction causes nutrients  â€“ blood glucose and others – to be preferentially pulled into muscle cells. This is like 30-50 air squats, wall pushes, and resistance band pulls. Just enough to feel a slight burn, no sweating or super heavy breathing. I wonder if a few sets of those spaced throughout the day could keep BS lower? 

  • Yes whole breakfast was an egg and one egg white on whole grain English muffin and only veggie carbs in the evening. I was skipping lunch because I wasn't hungry. Next day would be 1/2 cup of quinoa and the rest of carbs were green veggies. I eat sockeye salmon more than anything else. I did start buying the grass fed beef. I'm not certain about the exercises. Worth a shot anyway.
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