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Old 11-15-2009, 05:43 PM   #1
george nesrallah
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Default Effects of prolonged low carb?

I have been eating low carb fairly consistently for the past 11 months or so. My main method of eating has been CKD, with it usually lasting 4-6 weeks and than I do 2 weeks at maintenance calories (I gave Paleo a good try but for some odd reason I felt horrible on it and my fat percentage went up).

Over the past 2 months the scale has pretty much stalled with only 3 pounds lost and body fat remaining fairly consistent within 1-2%. I have decided that I am going to increase my ratios and calories, with it being a 40/40/20 split of carbohydrates, protien and fat at 2300 calories (I have been between 16-1800 calories for a very long time).

I guess what I am wondering is it possible I have done serious damage to my metabolism by staying regimented with CKD for so long? Even during my maintenance with CKD I did it quite improperly, only going up to 15% max. of carbs daily in my eating plan. So basically for the past 11 months I haven't eaten over 15% carbs on any given day (except for designated cheat days which were about once every 5 weeks and carb. load days).

Sorry for the long post. I think I am just really frustrated at the lack of weight/fat loss.

Thanks
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Old 11-16-2009, 03:09 AM   #2
Darryl Shaw
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Manipulating macronutrient intakes has no effect on body mass (weight) independent of energy balance. You lose weight on a diet, any diet, because your energy intake is less than your energy output (negative energy balance). If your weight loss has stalled you are now in energy balance so in order to continue losing weight you will have to either reduce your calorie intake further or increase your energy output until you are once more in a state of negative energy balance.
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Old 11-16-2009, 09:49 AM   #3
Steven Low
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To answer your question, no as long as your body is operating heathily.
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Old 11-16-2009, 05:38 PM   #4
george nesrallah
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darryl Shaw View Post
Manipulating macronutrient intakes has no effect on body mass (weight) independent of energy balance. You lose weight on a diet, any diet, because your energy intake is less than your energy output (negative energy balance). If your weight loss has stalled you are now in energy balance so in order to continue losing weight you will have to either reduce your calorie intake further or increase your energy output until you are once more in a state of negative energy balance.
Makes complete sense however I am worried about going even lower than 1600 calories per day. Training is Starr's 5x5 (3x weekly), CF 2x weekly, and BJJ 1x weekly. Would going under 1600 calories a day not be harmful?
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Old 11-17-2009, 06:27 AM   #5
Darryl Shaw
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Quote:
Originally Posted by george nesrallah View Post
Makes complete sense however I am worried about going even lower than 1600 calories per day. Training is Starr's 5x5 (3x weekly), CF 2x weekly, and BJJ 1x weekly. Would going under 1600 calories a day not be harmful?
Short answer: Yes, it would be harmful.

I don't think you need to worry about that too much though because in your earlier post you said that you've been on "16-1800 calories for a very long time", yet you aren't losing weight. I don't know how big you are or how much you weigh but I suspect that's close to or less than your BMR so if you aren't losing weight you're probably eating more than you think. That's the problem with calorie counting, it's impossible to do it accurately unless you're prepared to weigh and measure absolutely everything or hire a dietitian to prepare all your meals for you.

How should you go about losing weight then? Well a daily caloric deficit of ~500kcal per day is required to lose ~1 lb of fat per week* and there's three ways you can go about creating that deficit -

1: Eat 500kcal less per day than normal.
Pros: It's a no brainer; eat less and you'll lose weight.
Cons: Feeling hungry all the time. Requires willpower. Reduced metabolic rate. Lethargy. Loss of lean body mass.

2: Expend 500kcals more per day than normal.
Pros: It's a no brainer; exercise more and you'll lose weight. Maintains lean body mass.
Cons: Finding the time to train. Requires willpower. Overtraining. Increased risk of injuries.

3: Eat 250kcal less per day and expend 250kcal more per day than normal.
Pros: It's a no brainer; eat less exercise more and you'll lose weight. Maintains lean body mass. Maintains or increases metabolic rate.
Cons: Can't think of any.

Which option is best? Up to you to decide what fits in with your lifestyle but personally I'd go with #3.

If that's how you lose weight but calorie counting doesn't work the next logical question is what are you supposed to eat? Simple, you follow a regular healthy diet that includes a good variety of natural foods and you eat less of it or (and this is the smart option IMO) you change your diet so that you're eating more low calorie density foods ie. fruit and vegetables and less high calorie density foods ie. junk food, fatty meats, added fats etc then as long as you're sensible with portion sizes you'll lose weight.

It really is that simple; eat a little less, make smarter food choices, do a little more exercise and in a years time you could be 52 lbs lighter than you are today assuming you've got that much to lose of course.

You can find some good information on healthy eating along with some recipes you might want to try at www.mediterrasian.com

* Note: If you're losing more than 1 or 2 pounds per week you're losing more than fat.

Last edited by Darryl Shaw : 11-18-2009 at 02:55 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 11-17-2009, 11:28 AM   #6
Derek Weaver
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These are great posts and points Darryl. The effects of prolonged low carbs/calories can and often is more detrimental to long term bodyweight/composition pursuits than most realize.

Without combing through the articles again myself I'll just post the link to the page (w/f safe) on Lyle's site that should hold any other answers you haven't posted. there's certainly more he's written on his site, but I just got back into town and am lazy.

http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/ind...ght+regulation
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Old 12-06-2009, 08:21 AM   #7
Craig Van De Walker
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I don't see that 40% is a low carb diet

Did you mean to say you were on a low calories diet?

Why don't you try a 20:40:40 ratio of carbs to protein to fat? You might even consider upping the calories a touch.
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