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low carb help

post #1 of 55
Thread Starter 
after reading so many posts from mama's who lose weight when restricting their carbs, I'm wanting to give it a try. I guess I'm looking for practical suggestions/tips.

My situation: I gained 60 lb. during pregnancy, lost it over the next year, gained 60 lb. in my second pregnancy, and lost that over the following year (my kids are almost exactly 2 years apart). I am currently nursing a 2yo. After being over 200 with each pregnancy, I mostly feel good about how I look, but I feel my 155lb. is still probably too much for my 5'4" frame. I sure thought so 5 years ago, prekids. My worst spot is my stomach, which I think some muscle strengthening would probably help (must start strength training!). On a side note, I think looking back that the two times in my life that I tried losing weight and it worked were through semi-unintentional carb constriction (as a teen I cut out deserts and white bread and after my first baby was born I read EFLF and was eating lots of coconut and again cut out white bread) and the year before I got pregnant when I could not seem to lose weight I was eating TONS of pasta.

So give me your best tips and advice. What do you eat? How do you stick with it? How do you avoid the yummy bread/etc you make for the rest of your family? How long does it take to see results? Do you do urine tests for ketosis? If so how much ketones should I see in my test? Do you track what you eat? Online? Which site do you use/recommend?

Right now I already eat lowish carb I think and have since finding TF 4 years ago. Other than I know I am eating too many deserts lately. I blame it on the discovery of coocnut milk icecream! I've been trying to limit my carbs for a week now. Though I'm not sure how strict I need to be. I've been substituting squares of dark chocolate or some cottage cheese and fruit for my late afternoon sugar cravings (which have been really bad the past few months, get real it has probably been a year or more). That's been working really well. I've also replaced whatever carb I'm serving the familyl with usually a large pile of broccoli topped with butter and cheese. I made some coconut flour garlic cheese muffins that are ok, if eaten with enough butter. I still find myself having very small servings of carbs here and there. a 1/4 piece of garlic bread, 1/2 a small almond cookie, the fruit to go with my cottage cheese. and of course the glass of raw goat milk i use to swallow my liver pills each morning.

OK, tons of questions. Thank you if you made it this far!
post #2 of 55
First, kudos for you for reading EFLF as a teen!! I was still calling myself a vegan while eating fries, soy dogs, and vegan cookies!

So we are going from carb "conscious" to low carb. I was getting about 40% of calories from carbs until about a week ago and am in the 20-25% range now. I am taking the family with me!! So that answers your question on how to avoid the yummy carbs the family is eating! Of course DS is only 2, so he's not complaining! DH is having a little carbs at work and after DS goes to bed to feed his desires (grew up in a carb-loving italian family)

So I am also working out what in the heck to eat, trying to figure out how to eat some of our favorite foods/meals without grains (and only a smidge of potatoes).

So last night we had what I am calling "poor man's stroganoff" as a play on "poor man's steak". We LOVE stroganoff over buttered egg noodles, so I made the ground beef into burgers and then made the sauce based on stroganoff (had one T of flour in it). It was mostly beef broth, sour cream and mushrooms. So I served the sauce over the meat with some buttered green beans on the side. I am trying to figure out other meals I can revamp without the noodles, rice, bread, potatoes.

I have also been just resizing the portions on our plates. So I made a dover sole with beurre blanc and served it with roasted fingerling potatoes and asparagus. BUT we each had about 2 potatoes (if you don't know fingerling potatoes, they are small, called finger-ling for a reason!) but lots of fish and butter sauce!

For breakfast I find I can do without something carby if I have mineral water (I have no idea why this works for me, but it does). So we eat a fried egg, some breakfast meat, and sometimes a little yogurt, and pellegrino.

Lunch has been tricky! I make "snack" plates of avocado cubes, lunch meats, cheese, pickles, etc. but it is really getting old and it's just too salty, so I need to do something else! I have no idea what!

I don't really snack, especially now that I am eating so much fat I am just not hungry all the time like I used to be!

My sweet cravings have almost disappeared! I tried to "splurge" last night with a creme brulee from Trader Joe's (twice as much fat as sugar!) but it was too sweet! I couldn't eat it! I attribute this to 2 things: 1) getting enough fat is decreasing my craving for sweet and 2) my lowered intake of sweet/starch is lowering my "tolerance" level and making sweet things taste overly sweet (yay!) so that milk is now a sweet treat and cookies/cakes/candy are foul.

I hope this has helped at least a little--Good Luck!!
post #3 of 55
Rice substitutes: Grate a head of cauliflower and saute it in some butter - it has the same consisitancy as rice.

Noodle options: Angel hair cabbage (you can buy this in a package) or finely shred a head of cabbage and saute for a bit in butter.

Meal suggestions - this is a fantastic site with a million and one low carb recipes and meal plans:
http://genaw.com/lowcarb/
post #4 of 55
Great ideas so far. For a pasta substitute, I like to take a zucchini and peel strips from it top to bottom with a potato peeler. I'll then add the strips to the sauce I'm serving them with a minute or two before removing it from the heat - if I add them too early they get a little too soft.

amcal - I love Linda's low carb site! Such a great resource!
post #5 of 55
Thread Starter 
i will try some of these ideas for subbing different veggies for carbs. just for variety. i may get tired of salad for lunch and broccoli for dinner. today at lunch i didn't even think about it and ate a sandwich, . if i eat carbs at one meal, how long will that throw me out of ketosis?

i can't see taking my family with me into low carb -they will probably stay at 'carb conscious'. my husband has a very physical job and a high metabolism, we just couldn't afford to buy enough meat to fill him up with no carbs. right now 1 lb. of hamburger per meal feeds us (dh, me, 4yo ds, 2yo dd) but just. and he has switched ok to carb conscious, eating more veggies and smaller portions of carbs, but i don't think i can push it any further. but for breakfast and lunch, i am feeding the kids low carb with me. we'll have eggs or hotdogs and kraut (with no buns). i'm sad not having pancakes anymore though! sometimes its hard to get my 2yo to eat meat/eggs. she just wants bread/rice/fruit. she'll actually prefer not to eat (and nurse later) rather than eat the protein. not always, but atleast once a day.
post #6 of 55
I don't do low carb with my kids - the get ezekiel sprouted bread or whole grain tortillas/flat breads. I make brown rice or whole grain pasta for them - they get sweet potatoes etc...

Low carb is super easy but, I would really recommend you pick a plan and read the book so you aren't left in the dark wondering what to eat so you grab a sandwich.

For me, I rarely think about food - eggs for breakfast, usually left over dinner for lunch or if I'm making lunch, it's typically egg, tuna, salmon salad over lettuce with peppers, celery and cucumbers. Dinner is almost always something from the website I linked - meat and veggies of some sort or a casserole or soup/stew.

In the link I posted - you can find everything from crackers to pizza to soups, stews, coney island chili dogs etc....

It's all about learning how to substitute high carb foods for lower carb ones.

My family doesn't even realize that most of the meals I make are low carb.

Forgot to add that there are a ton of low carb pancake recipes - I think that site I listed has a few.

I also highly recommend www.lowcarbfriends.com It's one of the best low carb sites out there.
post #7 of 55
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Holiztic View Post
First, kudos for you for reading EFLF as a teen!! I was still calling myself a vegan while eating fries, soy dogs, and vegan cookies!
I wish I had read it as a teen!! No I read it shortly after the birth of my first child.
post #8 of 55
Thread Starter 
another reason i have begun baking for my family again, is that then i have yummy things to give them when we are out with friends. so they don't look deprived and get constant offers of their junky food. which they usually end up eating small portions of.
post #9 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vaquitita View Post
I wish I had read it as a teen!! No I read it shortly after the birth of my first child.
Sorry, I read it wrong, thought you said it was all together: teen, no desserts, first baby, EFLF. Sorry, that's what happens when trying to read while telling the toddler what each song is about (playing on the cable toddler music channel!)
post #10 of 55
I keep it really simple. Here is my general meal plan lately--
B-Eggs and vegs or avocado or lower carb fruit (apple/berries)
L-chicken salad with evoo dressing
D- meat and low carb veg (add potatoes or rice for family) or bone broth based meat and veg stew.

snack-nuts or coconut milk + berry smoothie or liver pate on zuccini rounds
I use coconut oil for cooking and topping vegs ect.

(I can't do cheese but if I could that would be a good snack.)

I only allow myself a little honey and one serving of fruit a day. I am also careful on my portion sizes (especially with nuts)

I am able to stay away from breads because I am trying to heal my gluten and dairy problems on the GAPS diet.
post #11 of 55
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by newcastlemama View Post
I keep it really simple. Here is my general meal plan lately--
B-Eggs and vegs or avocado or lower carb fruit (apple/berries)
L-chicken salad with evoo dressing
D- meat and low carb veg (add potatoes or rice for family) or bone broth based meat and veg stew.

snack-nuts or coconut milk + berry smoothie or liver pate on zuccini rounds
I use coconut oil for cooking and topping vegs ect.

(I can't do cheese but if I could that would be a good snack.)

I only allow myself a little honey and one serving of fruit a day. I am also careful on my portion sizes (especially with nuts)

I am able to stay away from breads because I am trying to heal my gluten and dairy problems on the GAPS diet.
why are you careful with nuts? do almonds have alot of carbs? because i've been eating more of them.

anyone have a list of which are low carb fruits?
post #12 of 55
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by amcal View Post
Low carb is super easy but, I would really recommend you pick a plan and read the book so you aren't left in the dark wondering what to eat so you grab a sandwich.

...
I also highly recommend www.lowcarbfriends.com It's one of the best low carb sites out there.
any book recommendations? are there any out there that are TF friendly? That site looks good, I will have to try some of her recipes.
post #13 of 55
There are so many plans - Eat Fat Get Thin, Protein Power, Carbohydrate Addicts, Atkins, South Beach - all have their strong points. It's important to review each plan and see which fits best with your lifestyle.
Here is list that will have a pretty good summary of each:
http://www.lowcarbfriends.com/bbs/weight-loss-plans/

Also, I think you can make most any plan TF friendly. For me, low carb means protein, veggies and fat - all very consistent with a TF and low carb lifestyle.

Also, really, the only lowish carb fruit is berries. Make sure you eat them with fat - full fat yogurt, coconut cream in a smoothie etc...

As far as nuts - they're great in moderation but, they are pretty moderate as far as carbs go and a serving size is small so moderation is a must or the carbs and calories will add up.

Most low carb plans don't emphasize calories but, calories do count - carbs count more but it is important to be aware of your calories.
post #14 of 55
I am careful with nuts because of calories. I can just keep snacking on them without noticing what a large amount I am taking in
post #15 of 55
2 recipe sites I use often (and adapt to make them NT friendly) are:

http://www.genaw.com/lowcarb/recipes.html (I don't use splenda, etc. etc.)

and

http://healthyindulgences.blogspot.com/ (like the blog author at this site, Lauren, I like to use erythritol and stevia to sweeten).

eta: agree w/ the recommendation for lowcarbfriends as well. There is an organic/natural eating forum there. Definitely a mix of people and not everyone is NT in mindset, to say the least. But still lots of good ideas and you can modify/adjust recipes to be more NT friendly.
post #16 of 55
Thread Starter 
so I've created a fitday account and have inputed the past few days. i seem to average 50-65% fat, 20-25% protein and 15-25% carbs. which doesn't seem too bad. but then i looked at how many calories i'm eating! 2643, 2181, 3976!, 2634, 3547, 2747, 3019. so now i'm wondering if i'm just eating too much. i've been preg and/or nursing for 5 years, so i'm used to big portions. but with dd now being 2, i'm probably now eating more than i really need. though i haven't gained any weight, just stayed the same. hmm. well, i'm going to try to pay more attention to my hunger cues. try smaller portions and drinking a glass of water when i feel munchy.
post #17 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vaquitita View Post
so I've created a fitday account and have inputed the past few days. i seem to average 50-60% fat, 20-25% protein and 20-25% carbs. which doesn't seem too bad. but then i looked at how many calories i'm eating! 2643, 2181, 3976!, 2634. so now i'm wondering if i'm just eating too much. i've been preg and/or nursing for 5 years, so i'm used to big portions. but with dd now being 2, i'm probably now eating more than i really need. though i haven't gained any weight, just stayed the same. hmm. well, i'm going to try to pay more attention to my hunger cues. try smaller portions and drinking a glass of water when i feel munchy.
Well, I, too, am 5"4', and I too used Fitday and found I was eating 50-60% fat, 20-25% protein, 20-25% carbs. BUT, I am getting about 1800 calories a day. I am not nursing and not pregnant. However, I am about 125 pounds.

You can look up a formula for how many calories you need to maintain your weight (then adjust for loss) based on your height, weight, age, and activity level. I would guess the calories you are eating are right for maintenance at 155 lbs (not the 3976, though!!). I wouldn't recommend cutting calories sharply as that is just not nice to your body. But if you can try to get a couple hundred less (without feeling starving all day!!!) that would probably help!!
post #18 of 55
Thread Starter 
all i've eaten is breakfast so far today and i'm already at 943 calories! i ate:
1 oz liver
8oz raw milk
CLO & BO in 2 oz. juice
4 chicken breakfast sausage links
1 coconut flour muffin with 2 tblspns butter

75% fat 17% protein 8% carb

i'm not sure i want to cut back on my breakfasts. i will try to eat a small dinner for sure. lunch, well i'll just see how hungry i am i guess but i'll try not to go into it thinking i need to eat BIG.

i know there are definitely times when i could cut back the amount i eat without being hungry, i've just gotten used to being hungry/big portions. and eating when i'm not hungry! i had to when i was pregnant.
post #19 of 55
Thread Starter 
well today i managed to keep it to *only* 2470 calories. 69% fat, 11% carbs, 19% protein (118g).

i tried a meatball recipe i found on one of hte links, with pasta for my family, with sauteed zucchini for me. i wasn't sure if i'd like that or not but it was good. some of my foods i find hard to enter into fitday. like my tomato sauce. i ended up putting 1/8 of the main ingredients in, separately. 1.5 oz tomato paste, .5 cup beef broth, 1 oz mushrooms, 2 tbspns butter. i could figure out a custom item, but then i don't make my sauce the same way twice.

i'm feeling munchy, but am not really hungry. maybe i'll go for a big glass of water or a mug of tea. after that if i still want something, a square of dark chocolate.
post #20 of 55
I had the same issue--I was just eating way too much food. I lost about 7 pounds just limiting snacking and portion control in the past couple weeks! I did not have tons of weight to lose either..I just wanted to lose a little and mostly firm up with exercise.

I also eat a large breakfast because it keeps me from snacking in the morning. The book The Diet Cure talks about having more calories at breakfast being good too.
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