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I am going to need some SERIOUS help.


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All the data points to less calories = weight loss.  So does all the anecdotal evidence.  Claiming that the most basic and well understood physiological process behind weight loss is 'out moded' is ridiculous.  I cannot stand when people spread that kind of misinformation.  People can eat and do whatever they please, but don't mislead people with nonsense.

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Ok, there is some really bad info going on here.  

 

Let's start with your diet. I don't follow a paleo diet, because I think there is too much of an emphasis on animal protein.  Don't worry about counting calories.  Calories in vs Calories out is an outdated Nutritional theory based on the fact that different types of calories cause different metabolic reactions in your body.  It can help, but right now you need a shift in your diet in order to lose weight.  The majority of the volume of food you are eating should be plant based in order to cleanse your body, and start losing consistent weight.  The book "Eat to Live" is something that sounds like you should read, and get some info from there. 

 

I'm not saying don't eat meat, but meat should not be the bulk of your calories.  Greens, and a full color spectrum of fruits and vegetables should be the bulk of the volume that you are eating.  Eat as many vegetables as you would like.  Because of the high fiber content, you will be full long before you overeat.  Carbs aren't the absolute evil that paleo's make them out to be, but they have to be the right kind.  A good rule of thumb is that if it is not processed, it is ok to incorporate in moderation.  Let me know if you want a more in depth meal plan.  It will take dedication on your part, but there is no better way to lose weight than a plant based diet.  

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Please find me peer reviewed literature done on humans to prove your claims that caloric deficits do not work to lose body fat.  You're making the claim that it's an outdated model, so the burden of proof is on you.  Citing a book is not the same as citing controlled studies.

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Ok, there is some really bad info going on here.  

 

Don't worry about counting calories.  Calories in vs Calories out is an outdated Nutritional theory based on the fact that different types of calories cause different metabolic reactions in your body.  It can help, but right now you need a shift in your diet in order to lose weight.  The majority of the volume of food you are eating should be plant based in order to cleanse your body, and start losing consistent weight. 

 

If you don't eat less than your TDEE, you will not lose weight.  This is not 'out dated' information.  If you eat a million calories in tofu and beans you will still get fat.  Different energy sources get utilized for different things in the body, but they all get broken down for energy.  Period.  Fat, carbohydrates, and protein can all be stored as fat, and they will be if you are eating in a surplus.  Period.  If you don't know how much you are eating and you are trying to lose weight you are being irresponsible.  If you were capable of responsibly monitoring your caloric intake by how the food 'feels' and how your body reacts to it, you wouldn't need to lose the weight in the first place.

 

Yeah, vegetables and fruits are awesome.  They are not magical.  Nothing is.  You can't just pick a food and eat in abundance and think your body will magically transform.

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When did I say it doesn't work?  I even stated "It can help".  My point is that 2000 calories of vegetables is going to have a different effect on how full you are vs 2000 calories of meat or 2000 calories of potato chips.  It's an outdated model because people put too much of an emphasis on the number, rather than what they are eating.  If you are eating a balanced diet high in vegetables, you are not going to weight 300 lbs.  Your body stomach can only hold so much, and if it is full of low calorie, filling vegetables, it helps to lose weight.  

 

On the other hand, the fun of nutrition is that everyone can disagree, and find reasons why any way is right or wrong, so feel free to demand proof and disagree with me.  

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My fault - must have been taken up by the general tone of the discussion back and forth.  Just because some people misunderstand how a model should be used does not make it outdated, though.  I'd agree that meal composition is important for overall health, but I maintain that from a purely fat loss perspective, energy is energy.  Vegetarians can be obese if they eat calories in excess of what they need.  Whether or not that's easy to do is another matter, given the lower energy density of some veggies compared to deep fried foods.  If it's about what someone finds satiating, that's another matter as well; certainly everyone has their own preferred nutrient or meal that gets them through the hours.

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I will try to be less hostile with this discussion.  No, you did not say it doesn't work;  what you did say, however is that it is an outdated nutritional theory.  That is a fallacy, plain and simple.  Again, if someone could control their diet based on feel alone, based on satiety, they wouldn't need to lose the weight in the first place.  My brother is an obese vegan; if you have taught yourself to over eat, you have to condition yourself to do the opposite as well.  Regardless of how it gets dressed up, people need to eat less food to lose fat.  The best way to accomplish this is to track what you eat.  Going the veggie route is great, I'm not knocking that at all.  But there is no such thing as an "eat as much of X as you want and still lose weight" diet. 

 

Another thing about this that erks me.  If you don't track your intake and teach yourself that level of control, you won't have the control to maintain the weight loss once you reach your goal.  If you never learn how much food is actually too much, you'll never know, and overindulgence will be far too easy a trap to fall into.

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Don't worry about counting calories.  Calories in vs Calories out is an outdated Nutritional theory based on the fact that different types of calories cause different metabolic reactions in your body.

 

'Different' calories is a whole different debate to simply eating fewer calories than you burn off, or the surprising realisation that if you eat more calories than you need the rest is stored as fat. If you dispute those basic tenets, what do you think weight gain and loss actually is?

 

 

The majority of the volume of food you are eating should be plant based in order to cleanse your body, and start losing consistent weight.

:numbness:

 

OK, so apart from you selling vegetarianism, it's still the same theory. He is unlikely to go over his calorific needs eating nothing but vegetables, so ultimately he'd lose weight on such a regime - due to lowered calorie intake, not any inherent magic of vegetables. He would have filled up on veg and thus take in fewer calories overall.

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I wish there was a magic vegetable...

 

From what I've read so far you appear to be making a large number of changes in one go, the thing with this is that it;s very hard to actually nail down what is working and what isn't working, you then see a gain and it all goes out of the window to try something new.

 

By the sound of things you're doing the whole paleo thing which is admirable (not for me but those that do have my respect) but you should also be eating be adding more veg to your meal, even if it's a stack of frozen veg, you'll get different nutrients, plus the protein from you meat portion too?

 

Have you considered seeing a nutritionist instead of a doctor?  They may be able to provide more assistance with the diet aspect, or at least point out any mistakes you could be making?

 

Looking at your weight loss you do appear to be on board for about 1lb per week, which is healthy, you've got to remember that you're a strong 6'3 bloke, the upshot of this is that you will be a bigger guy than a lot of others but it;s not just the scales you should be looking at, it's your body shape - I'd recommend sticking with strength training for at least 2 months and see what happens overall, not just if you put on weight on one day, you may be surprised.

 

And the biggest thing really is make a small change and stick to it, then make another change and stick to that...then you'll see the difference

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Don't worry about counting calories.  Calories in vs Calories out is an outdated Nutritional theory based on the fact that different types of calories cause different metabolic reactions in your body.

Quit spreading this BS nonsense. You have no idea what you are talking about.

In an actual real studies, where calories and exercise were strictly controlled and measured, protein controlled (which is well proven to matter) and actual body comp changes were measured (rapid weight loss due to glycogen is cute and a way that disingenuous researchers prey on stupid people who don't understand the difference between "weight" and "fat"), the smoking gun is yet elusive; thousands have tried, but the one study that finally shows that the "quality" of the calories matters in the slightest bit for fat loss as of yet does not exist.

As far as "theories" go, that calories in/out governs is ridiculously proven by science beyond a shadow of a doubt; this has been the case for decades. The only reason people are skeptical is that they want to be, and the internet is very good at filling this desire; it has made Gary Taubes (and others who follow in his footsteps) A LOT of money.

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I'm not here to argue the merits of different nutritional theories,  I'm here to help someone that asked for help.  I'm not even telling him to be vegan or vegetarian.  If he is not interested in my advice, than I will leave this thread.  If you guys are looking to argue further, I am done.  

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When did I say it doesn't work?  I even stated "It can help".  My point is that 2000 calories of vegetables is going to have a different effect on how full you are vs 2000 calories of meat or 2000 calories of potato chips.  It's an outdated model because people put too much of an emphasis on the number, rather than what they are eating.  If you are eating a balanced diet high in vegetables, you are not going to weight 300 lbs.  Your body stomach can only hold so much, and if it is full of low calorie, filling vegetables, it helps to lose weight.  

 

On the other hand, the fun of nutrition is that everyone can disagree, and find reasons why any way is right or wrong, so feel free to demand proof and disagree with me.  

 

Of course composition makes a huge difference - you'll definitely feel different eating 2000 calories from different things.  But your weight gain/loss will be pretty much (if not exactly) identical, because that's how calories work.  I've lost weight eating junk food and doing nothing and gained weight eating healthy and exercising - because the underlying calorie numbers trump pretty much everything when it comes to weight.  Good composition (whatever that means to you) should always be a goal, but not for weight loss reasons - just for energy, strength, happiness, avoiding scurvy, and general well-being.

 

That said, I'm usually not a fan of obsessive counting (or really any plan more specific than "eat a reasonable amount of mostly healthy things"). I don't count personally, but I also don't have any weight-based goals beyond continuing to fit in my pants.  And while I do believe that you can learn to manage weight by "feel," OP's personal history suggests that's not a viable approach for him at this point - he needs something a bit more concrete.  And by all the science I'm aware of, calories are still the key to weight loss, so that's what he should be counting.

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When did I say it doesn't work?  I even stated "It can help".  My point is that 2000 calories of vegetables is going to have a different effect on how full you are vs 2000 calories of meat or 2000 calories of potato chips.  It's an outdated model because people put too much of an emphasis on the number, rather than what they are eating.  If you are eating a balanced diet high in vegetables, you are not going to weight 300 lbs.  Your body stomach can only hold so much, and if it is full of low calorie, filling vegetables, it helps to lose weight.  

 

On the other hand, the fun of nutrition is that everyone can disagree, and find reasons why any way is right or wrong, so feel free to demand proof and disagree with me.

"How full you are"

"Helps to lose weight"

Are mutually exclusive topics, only related by self control, or a lack thereof.

You say don't worry about counting calories yet that is the be all end all control mechanism; telling you whether you have eaten too much or too little. Going by how full you are is a poor control mechanism.

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The majority of the volume of food you are eating should be plant based in order to cleanse your body, and start losing consistent weight.

In top 10 lists of "how to spot if someone giving diet/nutrition advice is full of shit and spouting nonsense", #1 is and will always be: do so and so to "cleanse" the body of toxins.

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Oh hi. 

 

Let's start by saying that for weight loss/gain counting calories works. But it ignores some of the finer points. Macro balances for your activity level, micro balances for hormonal balances.

 

Eating a caloric deficit by consuming only twinkies works. Is it healthy? Probably not. That's where the fun comes in. Every individual is slightly different when it comes to caloric needs. If you want pure weight loss, eat less food, doesn't matter what kind. 

 

If you want to qualifiably (notice i did not say it is quantifible since there isn't a standard measure of how one feels taht we can agree on) feel better, eat a balanced diet that works for you and get in some exercise. 

 

Now that being said, can we stop rehashing the same CICO vs healthy diet debate? Or if you want to start another thread. The OP asked for advice not an argument. 

 

Thanks! 

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Some of you guys are a bit too high strung.  It helps when you learn to not take nutrition disagreements personally.  There are plenty of ways to lose weight.  I'm simply providing him with an option that is sustainable and geared towards a balanced lifestyle change, and a healthier life in the long run.  Diets don't work, and that's why counting calories tends to fail in the long run, but if you shift yourself toward long term healthy eating, you are better off.  

 

Waldo, thanks for your strong opinions.  

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If you want to qualifiably (notice i did not say it is quantifible since there isn't a standard measure of how one feels taht we can agree on) feel better, eat a balanced diet that works for you and get in some exercise.

...and if you want to feel epic....

Bulk!

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I'm simply providing him with an option that is sustainable and geared towards a balanced lifestyle change, and a healthier life in the long run.  Diets don't work, and that's why counting calories tends to fail in the long run, but if you shift yourself toward long term healthy eating, you are better off.

Well I totally disagree with this.

This is talking about the holy grail; how to lose weight and keep it off permanently, something that no approach can claim to be better for (though clean eaters sure like to tell you that their way is better despite no good evidence to support that; you want evidence for counting go check out myfitnesspal's success stories forum).

Calorie counting doesn't tend to fail in the long run; when used properly it accelerates the process of understanding the parts of the diet and how it all fits together. It gives you a level of understanding about your diet that all other methods lack.

If you want to keep it off, trying to eat "healthier" is barking up the wrong tree. You need to build a firewall that prevents drift toward your former self and that firewall should include multiple protection mechanisms such as:

- Weighing/measuring yourself frequently. Daily weighing is the best.

- Exercise at least a little bit every day.

- Continuing to count cals or at least regular diet evaluation/reevaluation.

This advice (at least the first two items) comes direct from the National Weight Control registry which tracks people that have successfully lost a lot of weight and kept it off (which BTW I am a member of).

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If you want to keep it off, trying to eat "healthier" is barking up the wrong tree. You need to build a firewall that prevents drift toward your former self and that firewall should include multiple protection mechanisms such as:
- Weighing/measuring yourself frequently. Daily weighing is the best.
- Exercise at least a little bit every day.
- Continuing to count cals or at least regular diet evaluation/reevaluation.

 

I have to disagree with weighing yourself every day, once a week is probably best as your body can and will fluctuate between days, once a week will give you an idea of your general trend (up, down or static) which is better than worrying about an extra lb one day which can then change the next day.

 

However, being active each day is a massive help and trying to challenge yourself each day will also be a big boost when you see the changes that you can make.

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I have to disagree with weighing yourself every day, once a week is probably best as your body can and will fluctuate between days, once a week will give you an idea of your general trend (up, down or static) which is better than worrying about an extra lb one day which can then change the next day.

Daily weighing is habit that many/most people that are successful at maintaining their weight loss have.

If you keep track of you weight information, the interval doesn't matter at all for discerning trends (actually smaller is better because anomalies are easier to spot).

Worrying about an extra pound is not something you would expect out of someone very experienced at weight loss.

One of the most used maintenance methods is the "band", whereby you allow yourself say a +/- 5 lb band around your target weight, and regularly weigh to verify you are in that band. If you are outside of it, no big deal one day, but if you get a certain number of days in a row outside of the band (3-5 usually), its time to take corrective action and diet back to your target weight. This sort of dieting though is of the easy variety that only lasts a few weeks. This low effort simple control mechanism is probably the most used successful "keep it off" technique.

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I think the fluctuations are actually an argument in favor of weighing yourself daily rather than weekly.  Personally, I generally fluctuate from 185-188 (roughly) without any actual gain or loss (I sometimes fluctuate about 5 lbs. on either side of that by actually gaining or losing fat).  Because I weigh myself most days, I know this and don't worry about it.  If I weighed myself weekly, I might catch a 185 one week and a 188 the next and think I gained three pounds.  Or I might catch a 188, then actually gain three pounds and be fluctuating between 188-191, but catch a 188 again and think nothing changed (or talk myself into thinking that despite my pants being noticeably tighter).  With daily weighing, I can see what's really happening.

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I have to disagree with weighing yourself every day, once a week is probably best as your body can and will fluctuate between days, once a week will give you an idea of your general trend (up, down or static) which is better than worrying about an extra lb one day which can then change the next day.

 

There's lots of ways to skin a cat, but in my personal opinion - once a week is the absolute worst interval to weigh yourself if you are trying to lose weight.  Let's say you are trying to maintain a 500 calorie daily deficit, or 1 lb a week (a pretty normal target for most people).  If you weigh once a week, you expect that number to go down by 1 lb every week.  If daily fluctuations catch you at the wrong time, that number could easily be up a lb instead of down.  This would be far more worrying than it would be to someone who weighs in every day and is used to those daily fluctuations.  If you don't want to weigh every day, space it out at least a few weeks at a time.

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I personally find that weekly weighing is best (for me) when I'm actively trying to lose. I understand fluctuations but they are bad for my motivation. Weighing weekly allows me to see if the overall trend is weight loss without worrying about daily fluctuation. 

 

That being said, on maintenance I think daily weighing is a smart habit. 

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