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Pear shape, low libido, 5'4", paleo can't cut the low part of me

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Updated about 4 hours ago
Created October 14, 2013 at 3:23 PM

Been on the paleo program for near 3 months now and have experienced some changes for the good. Going from a sugar laden grain (granola) based diet to proper nutrition. I was at 130 pre paleo with little muscle mass. In and out of sugar binges for about a year. Participated in a dozen or so crossfit type workouts in the last month and have seen some changes. Lean our but now 135 lbs. Hip 36" waist 29. Can't seem to shake the hips and want to lean down the thighs and calves . Eating 80/20 or a little better. Any suggestions for areas of research?

Stay away from nuts? I have fallen for nuts/butters a few times since pulling the sugar out.

For more Paleo Diet hacks: http://paleohacks.com/questions/119469/fight-that-pearsex-hormones.html

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690 · April 27, 2014 at 6:39 PM

DId I miss the OP's age as well? There's got to more to this situation.... :(

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851 · April 27, 2014 at 8:51 AM

Thanks for the clarification. I understand your frustration @michaelpowell44 , bad enough being a pear shaped female, but it's a fairly common shape, and there is plenty of advice for women (good and bad). Have you tried increasing DHA or even taking DIM? How are you getting on now?

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690 · April 27, 2014 at 6:05 AM

I forgot that was cleared up previously, my bad. Obvouislly, he's outside the range of the model.

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4458 · April 27, 2014 at 5:35 AM

the OP is male. see the comments beneath the question

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690 · April 27, 2014 at 2:12 AM

@eimearreclaimedhealth this is an old thread but I've wondering since the beginning, was the OP male or female? If OP was female, I think she used the calculator that linked to incorrectly (left gender as male).... BF% calcs at ~24% for a female, a resoanble number.

If the OP was male.... his shape 29" waist & 36" hips are outside the normal range for a guy and the BF % is erroneous at 8%

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0 · October 16, 2013 at 1:06 PM

I was a size 4 on top and 14 on the bottom. Losing weight brought me to 4 on top 6 on the bottom. Tried everything.... Finally began jogging/ running. It worked. I'm now a 5 all over. Running burns up fat on thighs and butt, tones, and yes (!) Reshapes the body...I would not have believed it if I had not seen it for myself

:)))

Yesidid

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24538 · October 16, 2013 at 6:35 AM

Whoopsidoodle! I know two women named Michael, and I made some assumptions based on height, and the waist to hip ratio. If you are a dude, get thee on a bicycle stat.

B6e06781553fe1f61a3c9ef2cc9c6aa8
0 · October 16, 2013 at 2:51 AM

I am MALE

B6e06781553fe1f61a3c9ef2cc9c6aa8
0 · October 16, 2013 at 2:44 AM

@jake3_14

Hahaha. What parts should I include or disclude since it seems your answer was written for a female? I appreciate your input.

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4458 · October 16, 2013 at 1:39 AM

to avoid incorrect assumptions, are you male or female

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4458 · October 16, 2013 at 1:38 AM

no need to be embarrassed @jake3_14, the asker does not mention his/her sex.

but the username would tend to favour male.

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2401 · October 16, 2013 at 12:55 AM

I am *so* embarassed — I assumed from the OP's username that I was addressing a male!

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690 · October 15, 2013 at 9:26 PM

My guess ... there is something meaningful missing from all this information.

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690 · October 15, 2013 at 9:22 PM

A comment I wrote failed to post.:( That body composition model is based on height, weight, waist, age & gender. The model works in most situations. Waist is an attempts to get a 'shape factor'. The model assumes a typical physical form for height, age, and gender. If your actual physical form differs substantially from the model's assumed form, the results will be way off. btw the waist measurement is meant to be taken ~ belly button + 1" higher with the tape not compressing your body. What is your age? Read the info provided at the link.

B6e06781553fe1f61a3c9ef2cc9c6aa8
0 · October 15, 2013 at 7:32 PM

Yes. Abusing nuts, hahaha, as I was sugar.

I realize the wording of that sentence is super confusing as it took me 4 tries to understand what I said.

I am trying to say the amount of suggested meals (per paleo meal plan) are a bit larger than what someone of my size should be shooting for. Right or wrong?

In regards to the BF%, thats what I say. I agree. The link BobK suggested I plug my dimensions into says that I am at 8% which is absolutely not true.

I appreciate all of the help.

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4458 · October 15, 2013 at 2:38 AM

yep, usually the 1st area to gain fat (expand/fill fat cells) is the last place to lose fat (shrink fat cells). for some this could be the belly for others the thighs (etc).

Which just means you have to keep at it. there is no quick fix. the hard bit is losing fat without losing too much muscle (and risk ending up as a 'skinny fat' person).

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11 Answers

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851 · April 26, 2014 at 7:51 PM

I wouldn't say you are pear shaped with a 29inch waist and 36inch hips- a 0.8 waist-hip ratio. A pear is usually less than 0.7. I have 26 inch waist and 38 inch hips, which is progress (used to have hips closer to 40 but my waist hasn't changed). It took me about 6 months plus running and HIIT to get in good shape, but that was 3 years ago when I was 24, so it may take longer if you are older.

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690 · April 27, 2014 at 2:12 AM

@eimearreclaimedhealth this is an old thread but I've wondering since the beginning, was the OP male or female? If OP was female, I think she used the calculator that linked to incorrectly (left gender as male).... BF% calcs at ~24% for a female, a resoanble number.

If the OP was male.... his shape 29" waist & 36" hips are outside the normal range for a guy and the BF % is erroneous at 8%

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851 · April 27, 2014 at 8:51 AM

Thanks for the clarification. I understand your frustration @michaelpowell44 , bad enough being a pear shaped female, but it's a fairly common shape, and there is plenty of advice for women (good and bad). Have you tried increasing DHA or even taking DIM? How are you getting on now?

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2401 · October 23, 2013 at 9:48 PM

Nuts have four problems:

  • lots of inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids, except for the pricey macadamia nuts
  • protease inhibitors in the skins,

    except for the pricey macadamia nuts

  • phytates in the skins,except for the pricey macadamia nuts

  • hyperpalatability -- temptation to eat a boatload of calories at once.

Items 2 & 3 require soaking or quick boiling of the nuts, removing the skins and dehydrating them to make them palatable again and protect against mold. Items 1 & 4 remain a danger regardless of the preparations.

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0 · October 23, 2013 at 8:46 PM

It's only been 3 months? Give it some time! If it's been 3 years and you still can't get your ideal body, then start looking for problems.

If after a significant amount of time at your ideal weight you still can't shave off your problem areas, you could always save up for some spot lipo. I know many would consider it to go against the spirit of a natural diet, but there are only so many things diet can do at the end of the day. At 3 months though your body is still adjusting, so it's much too early to start worrying.

As for nuts, I don't really see the problem with them. They're high fat and low carb, much healthier than sugary snacks.

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24538 · October 16, 2013 at 12:47 AM

You really have two questions here. To answer your questions about body shape, pear shape is partially hereditary, and partially diet. Having a natural amount of fat below your waist is an investment in your future health, and health of your offspring. Depriving yourself of those fat stores can mean more falls and broken bones when you get older. The popular representation of women right now in the media represents a frighteningly low amount of sub-femoral fat. If you feel like you have an excessive amount of sub-femoral fat, there was a study that showed cycling (either real bike or stationary) resulted in a reduction of leg circumference in overweight children. I suspect the same would true for adults.

If you want to read more about this, the following link has some good stuff: http://www.huntgatherlove.com/content/why-women-need-fat

About low libido that can be for all sorts of reasons: low thyroid, low testosterone, not eating enough, not eating enough carbohydrates, being pregnant, being on hormonal birth control, not enough fresh air or sunlight, not enough or even too much exercise. If you haven't had a checkup in a while you can go in and ask for a full test of sex hormones (which might require multiple visits to track you through your cycle), and a full thyroid panel.

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2401 · October 16, 2013 at 12:55 AM

I am *so* embarassed — I assumed from the OP's username that I was addressing a male!

B6e06781553fe1f61a3c9ef2cc9c6aa8
0 · October 16, 2013 at 2:44 AM

@jake3_14

Hahaha. What parts should I include or disclude since it seems your answer was written for a female? I appreciate your input.

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2401 · October 15, 2013 at 6:44 PM

@michaelpowell44

I'm puzzled by your statement "I believe nuts and nut based products are my hanging on to sugar addiction." Do you mean that you're substituting the former for the latter?

I'm also puzzled by what you think is flawed: your size, the paleo diet, or your results from following the diet. Just because your results don't match the promise of a diet or the results of people who lose weight where they want doesn't make any of the things I mention flawed.

Regarding your BF%, if you're truly at 8%, that's at the low end of healthy, and your body will not shed any more fat, nor should it.

B6e06781553fe1f61a3c9ef2cc9c6aa8
0 · October 15, 2013 at 7:32 PM

Yes. Abusing nuts, hahaha, as I was sugar.

I realize the wording of that sentence is super confusing as it took me 4 tries to understand what I said.

I am trying to say the amount of suggested meals (per paleo meal plan) are a bit larger than what someone of my size should be shooting for. Right or wrong?

In regards to the BF%, thats what I say. I agree. The link BobK suggested I plug my dimensions into says that I am at 8% which is absolutely not true.

I appreciate all of the help.

B6e06781553fe1f61a3c9ef2cc9c6aa8
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0 · October 15, 2013 at 2:51 PM

I put my dimensions in there and the calculation for body fat was 8%. I highly doubt I am twice that low. My hip is 36 inches. Seems to be the largest area of accumulation.

I believe nuts and nut based products are my hanging on to sugar addiction.

Also being the size I am following a normal paleo diet regime by the book is flawed. As my resting metabolic rate is far slower due to my size.

It requires total body fat loss to see those inches come off my hip (butt) area right?

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690 · October 15, 2013 at 4:48 AM

check out

http://home.fuse.net/clymer/bmi/

Some interesting correlations about BMI (it sucks), waist & waist to height ratio,

Their model is not perfect but it's decent especially for the larger trends.

With your "numbers" (btw, 'good on you' for giving waist size) you've got a ~.45 waist to height ratio which is quite good.

Any idea what your waist was before you went paleo & did crossfit. Be careful, crossfit is a great way to get hurt.

IME ...men seem lose fat with greater ease than women. My experience with VERY strict paleo or VERY strict 4 Hour Body... the fat flies off! When I was ~200 (6') and I did it "by the book" I could shed 2 to 3 pounds per week, without any exercise other than ~1 hour walking every other day and working in the garden on the weekend.

Nuts (almonds & pistachios) have stalled my fat loss & caused fat gain on more than one occasion. If I want to drop some belly fat.....no nuts. :(

I didn't notice your age. Prior to hitting the weight room quite heavily, about 45 years ago, I guess I could have been described as pear shaped. IME, once the muscle comes and stays for an extended period, another kind of muscle memory takes over. :)

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2291 · October 15, 2013 at 4:26 AM

I have found that eating coconut oil every day along with living in a house with stairs dramatically cut the bottom of me down.

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2401 · October 14, 2013 at 7:49 PM

@michaelpowell44,

One possibility is that is will take longer than 90 days for your body to lose fat in some areas. I've lost 50–60 lbs. multiple times, and each time, my belly fat is the last to go; it happens around the 8–9–mo. mark.

The other possibility is that your genetics or epigenetics dictate that whatever fat you have gets stored preferentially in your thighs and butt. In that case, there's nothing I know of that you can do about it.

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4458 · October 15, 2013 at 2:38 AM

yep, usually the 1st area to gain fat (expand/fill fat cells) is the last place to lose fat (shrink fat cells). for some this could be the belly for others the thighs (etc).

Which just means you have to keep at it. there is no quick fix. the hard bit is losing fat without losing too much muscle (and risk ending up as a 'skinny fat' person).

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0 · October 14, 2013 at 6:15 PM

Is what I have seen so far pretty stock standard. Could there be some underlying issue?

Each time I follow the regiment closely I can tell I am leaning down. Most leaves the button, face and hips. Is it possible to lean down the area of thighs and butt even more. How can I tell what weight I should be?

I understand what you say. When you say that does it mean bone structure only or storage of fat deposits as well?

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0 · October 14, 2013 at 3:31 PM

If you are really having trouble dropping the weight, try to be a bit stricter about your diet instead of doing the 80/20. I know it sucks, but your body will definitely thank you and the weight will come off quicker. I had a weight loss goal of 15 pounds and lost 5 in one week when i stopped cheating and went 100% paleo. Now i do more like 90/10 or better, but the weight is still dropping. A plan like that may work for you.

Also, keep in mind that no diet will change your body type. Bone structure will still be there even when the weight is gone. Even if you're unhappy with your body type, losing a bit of weight and working out will still make you feel better about yourself :). I hate my large chest, and even with all the weight i lost it's not going anywhere. But i still feel better about my body in general, and i'm sure that even if you don't get the exact results you're looking for you will still find yourself with more confidence if you stick with it.

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