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March 05, 2012


Thank you, thank you, thank you for this. I've been hoping you would give us more details of your plan. I asked a few weeks ago, and didn't want to bother you again for the scoop. One question, if I follow the plan will I also become a funny, brilliant, irreverent, bad ass like you are? Okay, enough flattery. But, really, thanks.

Insufferable? Hardly. I'm in awe of your triglycerides, which by my standard seem abnormally low, but that's mostly tied up in the fact that my own are ten times higher seemingly regardless of what I eat or how I move (I got the gene, man, and a complete lack of hormone receptor control). Happy to report my HDLs are 120 and my A1C is 5.3% sans Met, though. I eat and move in just about the same way as you, and like you, it developed kind of instinctively.

I want to know what kind of stevia you use, because I haven't used it in years... I used stevia drops for my coffee when I gave up sugar for Lent four years ago, and they were horrible. I suffered. But perhaps stevia technology has improved?

Cathleen, aw jeez, thanks! :)

Maura, I think I read that trigs bounce around a lot from day to day, so who knows. Am jealous of your HDL. WOW.

Summer, I use SweetLeaf flavored drops. Vanilla Creme or English Toffee. (I don't usually do flavor-y things but it does make a difference with stevia, I find.) The toffee one in particular imparts kind of a neutral brown sugar flavor. Oh and start using WAY less than you think you need -- like 1-2 drops per cup.

I tried the Chocolate and they were gross.

I also like erythritol, especially for baking (which I don't do much of these days).

I've done something roughly like this and it was great and I was thinner (but not thin--not since I was younger).

But it isn't working for me right now and I think it is sleep--the lack of it. That is the fourth leg or whatever, when you are me. No sleep throws me off.

But you are EXACTLY right about everything. And I'm not just yanking your chain. Everything you mention here is precisely what I discovered myself--best is no sugar, no wheat, and the rest fruits, vegetables, lean protein, everything whole. And running.

You did not mention MOOD. It is sooo good for mental health, at least in my case!

I can't fully explain why it does not work right now but it is mostly sleep and lack of time to shop and cook.

Wow, inspirational! I'm okay with eating for the most part but I need to exercise. Can you talk about the retinol habit? Does it do anything for saggy skin on post-pregnancy belly?

OH SLEEP! Yes, absolutely! Not getting enough will make it difficult to lose or maintain weight (dang cortisol), plus it will screw up your workouts and recovery. (Ask me how I know.)

And yes, this fixes my mood better than anything else. So true.

I don't know if something like prescription Retin-A would help with that -- maybe I need another skin-related post! I do have some ideas...

I used to eat like that (minus the fruit usually). Well, I didn't necessarily eat mass quantities of saturated fat, but I definitely did lower carb. Then... my colon disintegrated, and I had to have it removed. (No, I'm not blaming one on the other - diverticulosis runs in my family so it probably IS genetic, although I never had an issue until I went lower carb.)

Now I HAVE to eat lots and lots of carbs daily (or suffer acidic diarrhea every 30 minutes - and I wish I were exaggerating there!) I'm trying to find a good balance without completely gaining all the weight I lost while lower carbing it. Considering Dr. Ornish's "Eat More, Weigh Less."

FYI, my cholesterol is at its highest right now... The total is 136. My doctor was concerned about my HDL being too low until she looked at the total. I think that must be genetic too. The lowest it has ever been (once I started having it checked) was 128, and that was when I weighed about 80lbs more.

I run 3x per week (3 miles each run), and have thought of adding 30-Day-Shred to the off days. We shall see. I have to get the eating part taken care of first, because really, you can't do much of anything if you're in the bathroom every 30 minutes burning your ass.

I hear you on the eating sugar translating into serious sugar cravings.

Wow, Mary Flashlight -- that would be a completely different set of medical issues! I hope you can find something that helps. I'm impressed that you're still able to run that much!

Yes. That is all.

Thanks for this, Jo! I too have been hoping you'd tell us the long story behind your eating/exercise/etc. I'm looking forward to figuring out the answer to my own puzzle eventually. I'm partway there already. My weight is great, I've found a doable and effective way to exercise, and I feel great too. Diabetes runs strongly in my family, but I show no sign of developing it. (Yay me!) However: my triglycerides are quite high, and that piece of the puzzle has me stumped.

I'm so excited that you're running! Not that I'm a running guru or anything (not at all), but, my gosh, there is nothing like the feeling you get during and after a really great run.

I found that when I was losing weight after baby #1, the first few days of restricted calories felt like total deprivation, after which I quickly got used to it. Everybody probably already knows that but me, but I had never tried to lose weight before.

Tine, what are you eating these days?

I'm currently doing a low-calorie diet (about 1550 calories per day) using online tracking software for the second time in the past few years, and it's amazing that once I've been doing it for a few weeks, I feel great, I have more energy, I don't feel deprived, and the weight loss almost seems like a bonus (I've lost about 12 pounds in five weeks). My problem is maintenance, so I'm hoping I will be able to succeed in that regard once I hit my goal weight.

Hmm. A pretty balanced diet, I think. Yer basic MyPlate (or whatever-the-hell-they're-calling-it-these-days).

For example, today I've had...
breakfast: 2 pieces whole wheat PB toast + 1 lemon yogurt (low fat)
lunch: leftover spinach-and-tofu lasagna I made the other day
snack: (this is rare) a piece of that stupid delicious chocolate cake I baked yesterday
supper: salad of romaine lettuce w/ chopped peapods, carrots, grape tomatoes, and 2 pcs. crumbled bacon (leftover from BLTs the other night). No wine.
I'll probably have a glass of wine and some popcorn later. I do like me some butter & salt.

This was a pretty typical day, except for the cake.

I don't really restrict myself from eating any foods in particular. Nor do I go off the deep end overeating anything. I don't crave sweets and rarely eat them. I avoid trans fats (because they're yucky and evil). I have 1-2 glasses of wine per day (sometimes 1 with dinner, but not always -- and almost always 1 after I get the kids to bed).

Anything jumping out at you?

Hmm. Nothing jumps out. Are they consistently high, like over several readings? Because those numbers, especially triglycerides, can jump around quite a bit.

You're not really eating that much, and it's not especially carby either. It's different from how I eat in terms of macronutrients -- you're eating way less protein and fat than I am -- but I'm not going to suggest you change it up or anything. :) I have NO IDEA, in other words.

Yes, my triglyceride readings have been consistently high over several readings. But I just realized that I left out one key piece of info....

Until 2 mos. ago, I had been exercising little-to-none. I'm naturally thin and can eat like a complete idiot without gaining much weight, so I never felt motivated to exercise. (Having 2 kids and a job didn't help either.) Then I got the latest (and highest) of several high readings in Jan. At that point, I realized I needed to do something. I started exercising moderately every day. I haven't missed a single day.

I have not had a cholesterol test since then. I don't know how long it takes for exercise to lower a person's readings, so I'm not sure when to go back. I'm thinking it might be a good idea to schedule another test in July, though. That'd be 6 mos...seems like that should be long enough to make a difference.

And that would be key. :)

That should be long enough to make a difference. Worth seeing what's changed -- I bet your HDL has gone up and your trigs down.

Lowest tri ever for me was 340 (unmedicated, very young), highest 550, and that was while I was a personal trainer/aerobics instructor/runner/crazy with the exercise. Parents, sibling, aunts/uncles/cousins roughly similar (they all have high HDLs, too and no MIs or CAD - yay!) - we were all studied at Mass Gen awhile back. Diet's always been good, weight/BMI always within spec. 10mg Crestor took it down a little (got my LDLs down), but remained consistently above 300, so the Lovaza was added. It's just super-concentrated omega-3 esters. Neither have caused any issues (so far, haha). Obviously, if diet mods/exercise haven't been tried, I'd work those pretty hard, but don't take it personally if it doesn't work enough. Some of us are just a little greasier. ;)

And all these years I thought my Sicilian hubby was the greasy wop in this family... ;) Thanks for the reassurance and good advice, Maura.

Please give more advice.

Also, when I said mood--I meant eating without processed food. Even when I don't sleep, that does great things for mood.

I now believe I am good with anecdotal guessing based on my body--for example I have always thought that blueberries and spinach both affect my mood positively and now there is data to show this!

So I like that you confirm what I notice already.

I've just eaten a ton of candy darn it.

I ate cookies last night and lots of them, so.

Also, Tine, if you and Maura are matching freaks we have to all have a party about it.

All *my* grease is on the outside.

Well gosh. Now I kind of want to be a freak, just so we can all have a grease party!

I had to come back and read this again, because it sounds similar to what the dietician told me to eat. Not the same, but similar, and it sounds low glycemic, which was her recommendation. I'm hoping it helps with the stupid cravings.

p.s. Just heard salt can cause hunger/cravings, and I like salt. A lot. You?

Salt can CAUSE that?

Huh. I had not heard that. But...huh.

Oh and yes, this is indeed low glycemic.

Chances are good we're (me/Tine) both mutants, and I think it's important that we stick together.

I have been doing something kind of similar for almost 3 weeks. I lost 5 lbs the first week, 2 lbs last week and this week is a work in progress. I'm not eating as much fat as you are, and a lot more fruit. I have 2 eggs for breakfast, a giant latte w skim milk, a salad for lunch, 3 or 4 pieces of fruit a day, maybe some yogurt, and chicken or fish and a ton of veggies for dinner. I can't believe how easy it is when I'm not eating simple carbs. The cravings are gone. We've had a dozen boxes of girl scout cookies here the whole time and haven't eaten one. AND IT DOESN'T BOTHER ME!! It's shocking to me. I'm happy, awake, have lots more energy. The only thing I worry about is that at some point my body will go "good god, we're starving!" and decide to ramp up my hunger. I really would like to feel content with my eating for my life, and I'm totally willing to give up simple carbs to do it.

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Green tea is no different that any other food. If it is grown in
good fertile soil and processed in the proper way, it can be very good for you.

The Japanese drink approximately 22 cups of green tea each day.
There are a few problems with green tea. It contains lots of fluoride.
This depletes the body of iodine. The Japanese people eat lots of
sea weed, fish, and sea vegetables that are high in iodine that compensates
for this issue. Green tea also contains lots of caffeine.
This causes you to have problems with your adrenal
glands due to the high cortisol it generates. . . The bag
green tea, bottled green tea are all radiated or pasteurized
and this ruins the biological activity and makes it not that good for you.
A good green tea is to find pure green tea that is fresh from
a Japanese grocer and then make it fresh.
. . I have found one company that makes a green tea extract that uses a very unique process of using probiotics to
remove the caffeine and fluoride, leaving the concentrated form of the pure ingredients that give you all the benefits.
1 teaspoon of this is equal to about 20 cups of
green tea. By mixing pure water with it, you have the best of
all worlds. You can purchase this on line
at: (800) 370 - 3447. They are in Texas and can ship to you.
. . Adding sugar to the tea is just not a good thing to do.
It doesn't affect the tea itself, but does affect your body. Adding cinnamon can be a benefit to you if the cinnamon is pure.. . Green tea in the form I suggest, will help protect you from radiation in the environment and has a very good effect on many organs in the body, but it will NOT clean out your colon.. . good luck to you

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