Last week at the Low Carb Meet & Greet, I spoke to Jimmy Moore about the new n=1 experiment he is doing. It involves eating higher fat and lower protein than he usually eats, because there is the chance that eating too much protein is causing it to turn to glucose in his blood, and stopping his weight loss. He is also testing his blood ketones with a specialized meter that is usually used by diabetics to check for ketoacidosis. (Ketoacidosis is not to be confused with nutritional ketosis, which is the goal here.) The meter can also be used to check for ketone bodies in the blood as a way to measure whether or not you have entered ketosis and are burning fat for fuel rather than sugar.
Since I've tried just about everything else, and still need to lose an additional 22 pounds of body fat, I decided to give it a go. I ordered a ketone meter just like Jimmy's (which arrived yesterday) and the strips to use with it (which will arrive soon) and I started tracking my macronutrients again. The last time I kept track of all of that was almost a year ago, so it was a little tough getting into the swing of that again. I came up with a plan for how many grams of fat, protein and carbs to eat each day:
187 grams of fat (85% of total calories)
54 grams of protein (based on my height of 5'3")
20 grams of carbs (not net carbs)
I've been doing this now for 6 days, and so far, I am losing weight and inches for the first time in over a year. Here are some of my charts:
In summary, in the past 6 days:
I lost 1/4" around my neck, 1-1/4" around my waist and 1/2" around my hips.
I lost 3.2 pounds on the scale (lost 3.8 pounds of body fat and gained 0.6 pounds of lean mass).
I went down 1.8 percentage points on my body fat.
I went down 0.021 points on my waist-to-hip ratio.
So I would say that this is working. I'm encouraged to continue another week. And for those who have asked what I am eating, click here to see my daily menus, and then you can click the page numbers at the bottom to see each individual day. I probably won't continue to post these each week unless I drastically change something, because it's too time consuming and boring.
Here is the average of the six days that I tracked:
183.1g fat (84.5%)
54.2g protein (11.1%)
21.4g carbs (4.4%)
I came pretty close to the goal I set for myself that I shared at the beginning of this post.
The big question, obviously, is if this way of eating is sustainable. As far as hunger goes, I think it is, because I'm not hungry. In the past, when I would go on high carb, low fat diets, I would sometimes lose weight, but I starved all day, and I just could not keep it up. So, hunger wise, I'm golden.
Another problem with it is whether or not I can keep up eating so little protein. I have no problem eating all the extra fat, because that's fun. Having very small portions of protein is a bit of a sacrifice for me. Right now, I am eating about half the grams of protein that I am used to eating. I feel a little deprived.
The only other factor I can think of is boredom. I'm going to have to come up with some creative ideas for high fat, lower protein meals. Of course, if my choice is to be bored or to be overweight, I'll choose boredom any day!
I will really be happy to start testing my blood ketones so I can see how my ketosis level factors in to all of this. Looking to the future, if this works the way it is supposed to, it means at some point I will need to increase protein or carbs or both in order to stabilize my weight. So, right now, it's possible that I could be eating a little more protein or carbs and still be losing weight.
Today started Week 2. I'm feeling good. I'm encouraged. See you next week!