Question and then follow up comment from a client after a Nutrition/Lifestyle Consult

I have eliminated all sodas. I am only on water, tea, and seltzer water. I am eating more protein/fat/carbs more frequently. I am gluten free. I have been buying organic. I have a couple of questions. I am gaining weight so what I am doing wrong? I want to feel healthy in physical and mental. However, I do not want to gain 10 pounds. Also, why whole milk versus 2% or fat free when the vitamin and nutrient content is the same?

A sample meal:
Morning: chicken natural sausage
banana, strawberries (few), (few) watermelon.

snack: cheese-mozzarella and two slices of ham

lunch: sausage, strawberries and watermelon

snack: egg and almonds (10 to 15), a couple of chips to help with the carb carving

dinner: turkey burger with cheese no bun, mushrooms, butternut squash, black eyed peas, and lima beans - all vegetables small amounts.Q


My Response:

Change takes time. You are wearing what you were doing to your body (thinking, breathing, drinking, eating, moving, sleeping) six months ago. And though you may have gained some weight, less than one week is likely not a trend which is what's more important to follow than any day to day fluctuations of the scale. Besides, the scale only tells a very small part of the story. I'd urge you to consider more how you look/feel/function. That's a true indication of health.

However, I know for most of us, weight is a very compelling reason why we eat, exercise, etc. So why would you gain weight and feel better?

Healing is an individual process. One which requires calories and nutrition. The World Health Organization defines starvation as starting at 2000 calories/day and under. Many people I know aren't eating this minimum amount because their thyroid (and their metabolism and, therefore, they themselves) are not healthy after years of metabolic damage. Reversing this process takes time.  Making matters worse is that much of people's fat stores are in the form of PUFAs.  Replacing these stores with saturated fat takes time.  But as it happens, lypolysis will not be as metabolically damaging.  And since PUFA release will be minimized, your thyroid won't be down regulated and inflammation (i.e. swelling/weight) will be minimized.  In addition, you'll actually be able to use the glucose which your body craves instead of having it adversely impact your health or your waistline.   But you have to feed the flame! You wouldn't expect to drive your car long/far/fast without filling the engine. And the complexity of the human body makes the combustible engine look like an elementary school project....

Sorry if that's a long winded explanation. And if it's not clear enough, feel free to give me a call. I know this can be difficult to truly get. After all, most of us have had years of indoctrination of what's "healthy" to eat/do.

As for full fat vs. low fat, etc: It doesn't come out of the cow fat free, and Mother Nature/God/the Universe isn't stupid. The macro nutrients (carbs/fat/protein) work together as co-factors to bring out the nutrition in a food. Besides, Vit A and D (in milk) are fat soluble. For calcium to be properly assimilated into the bone structure, saturated fat is needed. In fact, there is nothing in Nature which is a carb or protein or fat in isolation. It just doesn't happen.

Fats curb your appetite, by triggering the release of the hormone cholecystokinin, which causes fullness. Fats also slow the release of sugar into your bloodstream, reducing the amount that can be stored as fat (and which has more sugar--8 oz of fat free milk or 8 oz of whole milk...). In other words, the more fat in your milk, the less fat around your waist. Not only will low-fat milk fail to trim your gut, it might even make you fatter than if you were to drink whole, according to one large study. In 2005, researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health and other institutions studied the weight and milk consumption of 12,829 kids ages 9 to 14 from across the country. "Contrary to our hypothesis," they reported, "skim and 1% milk were associated with weight gain, but dairy fat was not." This "finding" is nothing new to me as I understand how the body works. And it's quite a bit more involved than simply calories in vs. calories out.

Hope this helps on some level. It can be a lot, I know. But I think if you'll continue to focus primarily on health, you'll be pleasantly surprised on how the body responds. And I'm here to help as possible.


Her Feedback 5 Weeks Later:

I have been doing much better following your advise of going Gluten free, water, no diet drinks, fat-protein-carb combination. I have lost a good bit of weight and feel much better. I have not had hardly any low blood sugar incidences. Thank you for your guidance. I hope to still lose more weight but I am happy to being feeling better and looking better.


PATIENCE AND CONSISTENCY (with the right program, of course)...

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