No Fail Fat Burning For Women Carb Depletion Phase

Hello All:::


I'm new to posting in the forum, though I've been following it for a while and really appreciate the general atmosphere of support, compassion, and generously shared knowledge.  I now have a question of my own and I'm excited to hear your responses! It's a little complicated to explain so thanks for taking the time to read this...


I'm about to embark on the No Fail Fat Burning journey, starting the 10 day carb depletion phase after the weekend (I work weekends). I've read Skye's book and I think it's great.  I'm so grateful that she and others among you have done so much great research and work to find a bulletproof-conscious  plan that is really geared towards women.  I tried going bulletproof at the beginning of the year, and I think I got a little too excited about limiting carbs.  I ended up totally destroying my sleep.  I loved how my mind and emotions and focus felt in ketosis (I don't know how deeply I was in ketosis or not because I didn't measure it, but it was a very distinct feeling of a calm sense of energy, clarity and focus for me during that time), but after a month my sleep really suffered, worse than it ever had in my entire life.  Other than my change in diet, there wasn't really anything else different going on my life that I could see that would have caused such a disruption in my sleep. I tried a ton of sleep hacks, quit caffeine, tried herbal supplements, acupuncture, etc, and still my sleep was horrendous. As in many nights of almost no sleep at all. So horrendous that I nearly had a nervous breakdown, totally ditched the bulletproof way of eating (which for me just meant going back to my typical mostly paleo diet with some quinoa and brown rice), ended up going on sleeping pills (trazadone), which made me very depressed. Finally three months later I've been off of them for over a month and I'm sleeping much, much better, and feeling human again. 


However, I have about 5-10 pounds I would like to loose...and I am curious if I could find a balance between being in intermittent ketosis and in also getting enough carbs in my system to keep my hormones and sleep in balance. Am I crazy for wanting to try this again? I would really like to try the NFFB plan, though as you might imagine I feel a bit tentative considering my experience earlier in the year.  


What I am most concerned about is the carb depletion phase. I would like to understand why it is such a crucial part of the plan.  Skye writes (and I really hope it's ok that I copy this to the forum, hoping it's not bad form or something) Anyway, she writes: 

 'Ten-day carb depletion is exactly what it sounds like. It is THE critical factor in your fat loss and body detoxification. Repeat it with me: THE CRITICAL FACTOR. It’s not an option for those who want to be successful here.'



'You can do anything for ten days. If you have a slip up and consume more than 30 grams of carbohydrates (including fruit or alcohol) you’ll need to start all over or else the program WILL NOT work. That should be a good motivator.'


 But nowhere could I find an explanation of WHY it is so important for success, and why the program will not work without it.  I'm sure she has a good reason for saying that...I'm just not sure what that is. I've scoured the book to make sure I'm not missing something here, and please forgive me if I missed something...I have been known to look for my sunglasses while they are sitting on my face :)


So my questions are....Does anyone out there know why the carb depletion phase is so important?  Does anyone know the science behind that or the metabolic effect? Has anyone tried the plan without that phase and had success?  Has anyone else out there had such a dreadful experience with ketosis and sleep?  And do any of you have any insight into whether just 10 days of carb depletion could send a woman into hormonal havoc?  


I know we are all different, and all of our bodies are different...but I would be so grateful for your insight into this!  It's great to be a part of a community of people who are committed to hacking our bodies and our lives and living the best, most vibrant life possible for us.  I appreciate your time and support, and thanks so much for reading this!



  • RekaReka ✭✭✭
    edited May 2015

    I really don't understand this hype about low carb for fat loss. Unless you have ruined your carb metabolism by eating extremely low carb for years, there is no reason to eat below 30 g carbs daily. I experienced no connection between my carb intake and fat loss or gain. Obviously I'm not really eating high carb, and I work out hard, but eating 30 or 100 g of carbs makes no difference in terms of fat gain at all.


    The only thing I lost eating low carb and high fat was a ton of energy, and I actually gained fat. I haven't read the book and I know many praise it but if you feel dreadful I see no reason to do this to yourself.After my experience I couldn't care less about ketosis anymore. It's very overrated in my opinion, and so is minimising insulin all the time. They may work well for other purposes, but they are not as important for fat loss as they are made seem.


    On the other hand, I had lost lots of fat by controlling my calories, it's just not easy to maintain, and also not a good approach for energy and metabolism. Play around with your calories and macros to find the balance where you are slowly losing fat but don't ruin yourself.  I guess it's good to be on a plan like this because it gives a roadmap stability, but you can lose that weight without feeling awful. 

    It doesn't get easier... It's you who gets better.


    Is your social worker in that horse?


    Success has a price, not a secret.

  • I wonder what she might say about it? Skye is very lean... I'm guessing that she is saying this because of her personal experience and from working with women that this 10-day thing is effective?


    Personally, I lost a nice amount of belly fat and love-handle fat since being BP for the last 2+ years, but I still have some that is stubborn and won't go. I wonder if this kind of thing would kickstart my system to burn thru the last bit? I imagine it would get you into deep-ketosis.

  • edited May 2015

    Good morning,


    Thanks for your responses Reka and mmejoana, I appreciate it!


    Reka, you definitely have given me some food for thought.  I'm not attached to doing this thing if it's not good for my body, and I'm not attached to it being the only way I can loose weight....and it's interesting to hear that you actually gained weight being low carb and high fat.  I get it that all of our bodies are different, and I think the most valuable thing that I've gotten from this whole Bulletproof thing is that it's up to me to do the detective work to find what works the best for my own body.  So I guess I'm finding my way.  The truth is, I felt REALLY good eating low carb and high fat for a while (which by the way for me was never crazy-low carb, never under 30g a day), until my sleep slipped and I started to feel like an insane person. Obviously, that's not the way to go.  So I would like to find the balance....periods of ketosis with enough carbs cycled in at certain times, via refeeds, etc, and Skye's plan seems pretty right on and well researched...but heck, if this ends up throwing me off, I'll ditch the whole thing.  It's just not worth it.  I'm curious about your idea of playing around with calories and macros to see what works best for me.  Is there a macro-tracker app that anyone out there likes?  These things kind of baffle me.


    And mmjoana, I agree that there must be a good reason behind the carb depletion thing, I just sure would love to know what that is... And yup, maybe it's just from experience...Or chance...Skye is reading this...and she wants to let us know? :)


    I'm also curious about the Adrenal Reset diet and the Leptin Reset diet and Tim Ferriss's 4-hour/Slow Carb diet ...In the end I think what might work for me best will be aspects of all these different diets combined.  Anyway I'd love to hear people's experiences on any of these diets or NFFB if anyone wants to chime in....


    Thanks all, have a beautiful day:::

  • mmejoannammejoanna ✭✭
    edited May 2015

    Just throwing it out there: 10 day complete carb depletion and most subjects will loose a large amount of water weight which looks like up to several pounds on the scale, the subject responds with "this is amazing" which licks them in, then when there is no water left and weight loss stalls or rebounds with likely other side effects, the response is "you aren't doing it right" which takes owness off the author and puts it squarely on the subject. See all RFLP threads and nffb threads for reference.




    1) Good info!


    2)  "Onus" : ) 

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