I understand that a lot of people on this site have adopted the paleo lifestyle in order lose weight, and that it is generally accepted that getting into ketosis via high fat, low carb is a great way to drop some lbs. However, no one acknowledges that you can get into ketosis simply by restricting calories. This is why anorexics who are not eating high fat diets have ketotic breath- it is a simple consequence of restricting calories enough. So, why risk the health damages of doing high fat paleo to lose weight when you could just restrict calories enough and still eat small, balanced meals just in sufficiently reduced quantities. For example, eating up too 800 calories a day like the VLC (very low calorie diet) and burn ketones, improve insulin sensitivity, and experience a number of other benefits as well (just so long as you don't restrict long enough to become severely underweight and anorexic). I also think that insisting on doing high fat is why so many fail to reach their body composition goals, and others reach plateaus before they've reached their ideal weight. Ketones are burned if you restrict calories enough. High fat is not necessary for ketosis!
Just want to see how much flack I get for this and hope I learn something in the process b/c after all the studying and experimenting i've done, i still just don't understand the high fat diet (especially when so much controversy surrounds which fats are healthy, benign, and unhealthy and in what ratios- it would suck to go wrong and be eating over 50% of your cals from something that's ruining your health).
As I wrote in the comments to that question, I'm not sure if I fully understand why you are proposing eating 800 calories a day as a method of going into ketosis. From the numerous books and studies that I've read, saturated fat is hardly the culprit for insulin resistance, nor are n~3 or n~6 fats. The whole concept of this way of eating is getting back to natural foods, and meats have a lot of saturated fat in them.
As far as I know, insulin resistance happens when the insulin receptors in your muscle cells basically turn off because of too much glucose. When your liver glycogen and muscle glycogen is all full up, your blood-glucose levels rise, and you release more insulin to deal with the extra glucose. Now, because your glycogen store are all full up, your muscles turn off the insulin receptors, leaving only adipose tissue open to store the excess glucose. This is why we gain weight and lose muscle when insulin resistance sets in. Now, the more carbs you eat, the more likely this is to happen. This is not the way your body metabolizes fat, however.
If you want to get the scoop on saturated fats, google Chris Masterjohn, he's making his name as the saturated fat myth buster, basically. He knows his stuff. Fats are healthy. I know that for me, since I began incorporating way more cholesterol and saturated fat into my diet, all of my biomarkers have improved. Glucose, triglycerides, HDL, LDL, LDL particle size, all that good stuff. I'd say that I get around 55% of my daily calories from fat. 30-35% from protein, and 10-15% from carbs. Been this way for 18+ months now, and I've never felt better. So I suppose if you want to do a semi-starvation diet and it works for you, then do it. But I would say that it's not the most ideal way to lose weight, nor is it the healthiest.
I can only speak for myself...
...but the decades - DECADES, PEOPLE - that I attempted a low calorie diet, I felt little bits of my soul die and dessicate, flit off in the New Mexican wind to some other planet, perhaps, or Dallas. Not sure which.
But when I chucked my low calorie days and embraced full-on-fat, I started recollecting those pieces of my soul! I really did! I wasn't hungry! I wasn't thinking about food! I wasn't obsessing on the size of my jeans or my back fat. I just felt so alive, so loved, so ready to move into a new reality where I was in charge of my own destiny.
This is the Power of Fat, my boy.
I will never, ever trade my beloved ribeyes for a low calorie diet where I feel hungry, grumpy, uncertain, starving, tired, achy, bitchy, sad, morose, and comatose. Never. I don't care how high my cholesterol goes.
For me, it's the moment, this moment, it's the way I feel day-to-day that dictates my action. And today? I'm eating a bunch of fat.
Just try to take it away. I dare you. ;)
Sorry about the rambling, I'm kinda sleepy today... and I'm so very sick and tired that people nowadays don't know how to eat and are scared of food (note, I myself fell into this trap and became unhealthy after I moved to USA)
By restricting calories, you are also restricting intake of nutrients. Not good!!
Anorexics aren't simply unhealthy because they restrict calories, they also have many nutrient deficiencies. This is not something you should sacrifice to lose weight.
I'm sure some people would consider losing weight on Paleo via heavy calorie restriction, for example, if they are facing a bad financial situation, then I guess they could have an excuse to get by with less food. But why someone would do this for more than a week is beyond me. (Yes, I read the low-calorie wiki thing you linked to)
I can see myself doing that if I had one week to fit into a.. umm.. wedding dress or some such; but I wouldn't do it more than one week.
A lot of people found Paleo after doing lots of low calorie dieting which obviously didn't work for them. It's not sustainable, after you stop the low calorie diet, you regain the weight. Plus other people have to deal with a grumpy you. Grr!!
You seem to have the impression that fat is unhealthy. It's not. Fat is very good for you.
There's plenty of information on fat on MarksDailyApple, Weston A. Price Foundation, and other places. Go to your library and ask for help finding very old fashioned cookbooks from cultures outside the USA. I stress they must be very old books, because now most of the world subscribes to the USA low-fat dogma.
Or read Nourishing Traditions book, it has old fashioned recipes, and explains about nutrients and fat, etc.
I was fortunate to grow up in a tiny island in the middle of nowhere. I'm only 24 years old but I grew up in a place where most people did not own TVs and did not own cars at all. I grew up eating home made meals the old fashioned way. We raised and butchered our own animals, made our own sausages, grew our own vegetables and fruits, and so did every family in that place. Our meals were naturally high fat, simply because that's how things are!
I mean, my mom cooked meat and vegetables, with plenty of animal fats, I mean, what was she supposed to do, travel to the future to get non-stick spray? Or throw chicken thighs and pig belly in the trash because they're "too high fat"? NO WAY! We ate what we killed or got from the garden, no more no less.
I grew up knowing that fat was very good for our health, everyone always talked about how it was so important.
Ask any grandma from old-fashioned times, she will tell you that to lose weight you should eat less bread, less potatoes, less rice, not fat!
I feel very sorry that you didn't grow up naturally like I did, if you did you wouldn't be so scared of fat.
I'm not saying that is what you should do, but maybe it helps you understand "fat ratios" since I come from a culture who knew how to feed themselves (unlike most people today):
I eat now the way I ate when I was growing up on that little remote island, and when I track stuff on fitday it comes to about 65% fat, mostly from meat and fish, lard and tallow, marrow, and eggs.
I don't do anything fancy, just heat some fat in a pan, throw in my piece of meat, throw in some vegetables. I don't understand what's so unhealthy about this :-)
Exactly! That low carb thing is so 1997 and yeah we all know all that fat just cannot be good for you. I mean come on people! Don't you read People Magazine!? And calorie restriction well that's for wusses. What all the fat people need to do is this but they're all too stupid and lazy and gluttonous that they probably can't push themselves away from the dinner table to get it installed. Stupid fatties. Losing weight is not that hard. They just need to stop eating so damn much! Honestly I don't think they even try.
I started Paleo as a 35 year old woman at 5'4" weighing 167 pounds with 28% bodyfat almost one year ago. I currently weigh 160 pounds and just got my bodyfat retested. I am now at 16%!! I did this eating very high fat Paleo, never restricting my calories. My resting metabolic rate is 1821 calories. So the concept that anyone can do ANYTHING healthy for their bodies at 800 cal/day is beyond ridiculous!
This is an untrue assumption
So, why risk the health damages of doing high fat paleo
Ain't nothing wrong with fat. Just don't get caught up in the pissing contests where people brag about how much fat they eat; that's not healthy either.
I spent 8 years (2000-2008) trying to lose a middle age gut, following all the 'right advice': low fat, lots of jogging, even a marathon in 2004.
I gave up for 6 months, got heavier, ran more, got heavier.....April 2008 I started a 25 year old, medically researched, commercial ketogenic low fat VLCD, 610-800 kcal/day. I lost 50 pounds in 4 months, wasn't hungry after the 3rd day. (no exercise for 4 months)
Then back to low fat, calorie counting, jogging. Weight started coming on again. Went online, Started reading.......
Taubes, Sisson, Briffa, Eades, Wolf, Leangains, Lean Saloon, PHD, Kresser. Guyenet, Harris, Masterjohn, FTA. LLVLC and many more. (Despite being a lapsed 1974 biology post grad I'd heard nothing of epigenetics. I got very excited about that in feb 2009) I forgot the low fat mantra (took a year not to feel guilty from the CW brainwashing) Did quite a lot of Dolson (low carb) to help break away from bread/cake/pasta shaped food.
Lost the belly again, lifted a little bit, ran a little bit, cold showers for 2 year. Settled into paleo+butter/hwc, for 3 years so far. Feel good!
Point of all this rambling is that it was the commercial ketogenic VLCD that finally introduced me to the fact that i could quickly, simply and easily influence my body to 'burn fat' by how i ate, and I am very grateful for that.
I'm 60. 5ft 8in. I weigh 155lb. (My father and brother, both 5ft 8in, died age 63 and 71. both 240lb+)
Because you got a lot of backlash on this question, I thought I'd put together a comment just explaining why it put me off right at the start. I flinch hard with questions like this, I didn't mean that link as aimed personally at you, but at the whole concept of "overweight people, why aren't you just eating less". I think it resonates emotionally with a lot of people here, which is why you're going to get some defensive backlash when discussing anything like this. Comes with the territory. Also, when you are discussing caloric restriction as a weight loss method, comparing it favorably to anorexia is pretty offensive for anyone that has experienced or been around someone experiencing anorexia. Saying that it is not anorexia just because the person isn't small enough puts a standard that you can't have a serious eating disorder until you reach "X" amount, which as many people will attest to, is not the case. You can be severely eating disordered and weigh any amount, healthy or unhealthy. Encouraging extreme caloric restriction and methods that encourage weight loss at essentially "any cost" (including satiation and happiness) is an encouragement of disordered eating a lifelong stressful relationship with food. I already put the stat up, but if you had a kid today that child would be 229 times more likely to develop an eating disorder than type two diabetes during childhood years. Yo-yo dieting, binging, anorexia, bulimia and many more can be the result of this behavior, all of which will cause enormous strain on your body. Even if you are just restricting calories and have all the psychosocial aspects under control, the saying is "the easiest way to gain 25 lbs is to lose 20" because most quick weight loss will be gained back plus some change.
Most people here didn't try paleo/primal/ancestral eating as their first kick at the weight loss can- I would challenge you to find one person who has lost a significant amount of weight that DIDN'T try some sort of low-fat caloric restricted diet. And yet, we are still all here, some people with some pretty amazing stories of improved healthy, well being, and, yes, weight.
It takes some experience to have a conversation like this. I'm younger than you, but I've walked the stepping stones enough to find out what is and is not appropriate to say (for the most part). It's good that you are working that out now, I mean you aren't going to learn if you don't try it! But I wouldn't be surprised if you get some negative responses when talking about weight loss if you haven't been around the conversation for very long. The most important thing is to listen in your position, to the other people in this conversation,.
800 calories is well below the basal metabolic rate for even the smallest people. I've never seen a recommendation below 1200 calories, and that's pushing the bottom limit. Personally, I attempted low-calorie, low-fat, and low-carb all at the same time (based on flawed CW and absolutely no research/prior knowledge), ate 1800 calories a day, and felt terrible. I dropped about 20-25lb, but I felt tired walking up too many flights of stairs, and I looked no better than I do now (probably worse, actually), consuming 3500-4000 calories.
You might induce ketosis by restricting calories, but you're also causing your body to break down muscle tissue, preserve fat tissue, slow your metabolism, and basically revolt against you, physically and emotionally. The weight loss benefits of ketosis are IMHO cancelled completely by the negative effects of extreme calorie restriction.
I think you are failing to realize that the "high fat" content of the paleo diet is coming primarily from mono-unsaturated fats from nuts, avacados, lean fish and meat. This should not be a detriment to ones health, nut rather an improvement. I technically have not lost weight on my 2 month paleo lifestyle adjustment, but my body has flourished. My stomach, hips, thighs, butt and all other fat storing regions have reduced in size dramatically. In regards to exercise, I have more endurance, stamina, and lung capacity than ever before, and I never feel hungry. The thought of eating a typical carb filled diet seems agonizing to me, and the taste of cheese, bread, and pasta generally repulses me at this point. Also, if you were to calorie restrict to the point of ketosis you would additionally deprive yourself of important vitamins and minerals, which a paleo diet amply provides. Yes, why the fear of fat? I suppose if your idea of paleo is eating nothing but fatty hamburger covered in bacon, you could be scared, however if that is the case, you have not researched paleo to any point of understanding, and have no grounds to judge it.
High Fat Low Carb Source 6 Answers
Best sources of good fats? 5 Answers
Fat does not fill me up. 10 Answers