Sunday, July 28, 2013


 A little over a week ago, I was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes.  I was both surprised and not surprised at the same time.  The doctor said he did not mean to offend me or upset me by telling me this.  I assured him that I was neither.  It really does answer some questions for me, like why I have had such trouble losing weight and why my blood sugar raises into diabetic levels unless I eat extremely low protein and low carb.  Also, there is a genetic component to this disease, and my maternal grandmother was a needle-carrying Type 2 Diabetic, and others in my family appear to have developed the disease, but have not been diagnosed.

During the time that I have been doing Nutritional Ketosis, I have been periodically checking my blood sugar with a home glucose meter, and I have found that eating around 130 grams of fat, 57 grams of protein and less than 25 grams of carbohydrate per day has kept my blood sugar at an average of 86, including both fasting and after eating.  Eating this way has also kept my blood ketones in the ketogenic level, meaning that I am burning ketone bodies for fuel instead of glucose.  So that's good.

But wait, there's more...

The reason I started Nutritional Ketosis in the first place was that I suspected that I was eating too much protein.  And testing ketones did confirm to me that eating about half of the amount of protein that I used to eat did, indeed, raise my blood ketones and lower my blood sugar.  Both good things.

I do lose weight and feel good eating this way, but there is a problem...  Although, at first, I found that my appetite had been satisfied with this small amount of food, it has become increasingly difficult to feel satiety after eating.  In other words, I'm hungry!  Plus, with eating this small amount of food, I really have to only eat twice per day in order to get more than a few bites of meat at each meal.

So when my doctor advised me to change the way I was eating, I was all ears.  He said, simply, to...

Just eat meat.

He said that he, himself, just eats meat.  He said that he eats steak for dinner with a side of chicken.  Interesting!  I have been thinking about starting a zero carb way of life for several weeks and have been reading up on it, so, starting on July 21, I took the challenge to go Zero Carb, which does not mean literally no carbs, but only the trace carbs that come from animal products.  I am eating meat, a small amount of dairy, some healthy fats and I am drinking water only.  I am testing my blood sugar before meals and two hours after meals to see how I am reacting to cutting out all vegetable and berry carbs and increasing my protein substantially.  I am carefully tracking what I am eating.

Here is what I have learned so far about how my blood sugar reacts to food:

On July 22, I ate meat, healthy fats and water and found that my blood sugar was very stable and in the acceptable range, only a few points over my normal of 86.

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 On July 23, I added some dairy to each meal, based on my recent discovery that I am moderately intolerant of dairy, and I eat it no more often than every four days.  I also had some bacon for breakfast that had more sugar in it than my regular bacon.  My blood sugar was less stable, and close to 100 at times.  It is either the sugar in the bacon or the dairy that caused this.

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 On July 24,  it was back to just meat, healthy fats and water to drink, and my blood sugar went down with each reading, into a very nice range.

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On July 25, it was just meat, fat and water to drink, but I did try having the more sugary bacon for breakfast, and it raised my blood sugar.  The next time I eat dairy, I will then see if the dairy also raises it.

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On July 26, it was meat, fat and water as usual.  I saw a little bit of instability, but I'm not sure why.  At any rate, it was still in the acceptable range.

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On July 27, something interesting happened.  I ate dinner at a friend's house, and although I passed on the cake and ice cream dessert, I did have about a serving of vegetables and a very small salad.  With only that small amount of vegetables, I was surprised that my blood sugar went up to 110.  I know that it is not extremely high, but it is higher than what I am used to, and higher than a non-diabetic would get after eating a few bites of low-carb vegetables.  I had been wondering what would happen if I ate vegetables, and now I know.  I had been toying with the idea of putting veggies back into my diet, but I think I will wait a while before I think about that again.

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So this is my experience so far with eating zero carb.  Although the main reason I am doing this is to manage my blood sugar and be able to remain diabetic complications free, I also am hoping that it will help me lose these last few pesky pounds.  Along those lines, how did I fare eating zero carb?

I started new charts to show my progress.  You know how I love my charts!  Here they are, after the first week on ZC:

The charts speak for themselves, so I won't say much, except that my body size is going down.

RELATED POST:  Zero Carb Results by Week

Tuesday, July 23, 2013


 It was that time of year again - time to travel to Bloomington Indiana to the home of Dana Carpender and Eric Schmitz, otherwise know as "T.N.B.I.M."

Last year, I forgot about the time change between Illinois and Indiana and I showed up an hour late and missed a lot of the fun and the meeting of people.  This year, I remembered the time change, allowed an extra hour to get there and arrived at 12:15 pm, thinking I was fashionably late, since it started at noon.  Except it did not start until 1 pm.  I was 45 minutes early! 

Of course, Dana was gracious, as always, and I got to spend some of my time in the kitchen with Dana and a few others, putting the finishing touches on the food spread.  Anyone who was there will no doubt remember how artfully the raw veggies were cut up and piled onto the serving dish!

Another highlight was my tour of the chicken coop, guided by Eric.  Last year it was too hot to go outside, but this year I wanted to be sure to see the chickens.  There were a bunch of them, and Eric said they lay too many eggs for them to eat and they sell the ones they don't need.

There were some new faces there this year, and I met two ladies that I really clicked with.  And here they are, Debbie Prim with me, below, and Lynn Weiler, with me, below below.  Oh, and Debbie has a blog that you should check out called Confused and Gassy.  What a hoot!

Of course, Jimmy and Christine Moore were there, and Jimmy read the introduction to his new book which will be released soon.

And I was happy to have my picture taken with Amy Dugan and Dana Carpender, who wrote most of The Fat Fast Cookbook, along with me, who wrote but four of the fifty recipes in that book.

Amy Dungan and me
Dana Carpender and me

These two ladies are so much fun and so sweet, and I am so happy that we get to spend time together, even if it is only once a year.  If you want to see some more of Dana's cookbooks, click here.  You can also visit her website, Hold the Toast.  Amy has her own blog, Healthy Low Carb Living

The food Saturday was fantastic, as usual, with the highlight for me being the low carb chocolate cookies, of which I ate WAY too many!  

The day started out with good weather, but around 2 pm, the storm hit and we all had to scurry to the shelter of the house and carport.  It was still great, and not as hot as last year.

A real thrill for me was getting to meet Dr. James Carlson.  I have read many of his blog posts and part of his book, Genocide: How Your Doctor's Dietary Advice Will Kill You.  I did not know he and his wife, Gloria, were going to be there until a few minutes before they arrived.  I was hoping to have a moment or so with Jim to ask questions, and I was formulating some in my mind.  I did get the chance to talk to him, and not just for a few minutes.  He was very outgoing and happy to discuss diet and health with anyone who would listen!  All together, we probably talked for over an hour.  He is going to be my go-to doc if I run into any problems involving weight, etc.  It turns out that he lives about an hour from me!  Yay!  I think he picked up at least two patients that day, although I am sure that was not his intention in coming.

Me, Dr. Jim Carlson and his lovely wife, Gloria

All in all, I had a wonderful time, and I can't wait to go again next year.  In fact, I am wondering if there is a way to get something like that going around my neck of the woods, which would be the Chicagoland area.  Is anyone interested?  We could do it at my house, which is about 40 miles southwest of Chicago.

Friday, July 19, 2013


A couple of weeks ago, I read the info on the internet about the new book "The Smarter Science of Slim" by Jonathan Bailor.  The research he has done is significant and compelling.  However, after trying to eat as many vegetables as he recommends (10 servings per day), I gained 8 pounds in 6 days and all of my body measurements went up and so did my body fat percentage.  Not to mention the fact that my normal after-eating blood glucose went up from an average of 86 to 116, which I think is problematic.

So, for now, at least, I am going to give this plan a pass.  Jonathan does say that if there are people who are very carb-intolerant, they may have to try doing the plan low carb, but still with all the vegetables.

Although it did not work for me, I still recommend the book to people who can tolerate 75-100 grams of carbs daily.

Sunday, July 14, 2013


On July 9, 2012, I started eating in such a way as to be fueled by Nutritional Ketosis.  If you are new here and do not know what that means, look at the links at the bottom of this post to read more about it in detail.  The short version is this:  I am eating very high fat, moderate protein and very low carb.

As I mentioned last month, I gained back a bunch of weight and inches, but now I am back in Nutritional Ketosis and I am seeing results.  As you can see from my charts, there is a large blank between November 2012 and May 2013, when I was not weighing and measuring.

The darker lines are my actual numbers, taken each Sunday morning before eating and the lighter lines are the average of the prior eight weeks, so I can see the trend without all the bouncing around.

With the initial losses and the subsequent gains, since starting Nutritional Ketosis in July 2012, I have:

Lost 5.2 pounds on the scale
Lost 2.9 pounds of body fat
Lost 2.3 pounds of lean body mass

Lost 3/8" around my neck
Lost 7/8" around my waist
Lost 1/4" around my belly
Lost 1/8" around my hips
Lost 1/2" around each of my thighs

Lost 0.7 percentage points off my body fat
Gained 0.7 percentage points into my lean body mass

These charts show the average of the macro nutrient breakdown for the days that I tracked in this past month. (Click on any chart to enlarge it.)

I've started doing a little bit of blood testing for ketones and glucose.  Here are those charts:

Here is my "body goal":

136 pounds scale weight
40.9 pounds body fat (30%)
95.1 pounds lean mass (70%)
11-3/4" neck
28-3/8" waist
38-1/2" hips
To get there, I need to lose 9.9 pounds of body fat, gain 3.7 pounds of lean mass and lose 3" around my waist and 1-5/8" around my hips.

Up until the end of June, I was still doing The Virgin Diet.  To read more about that, click here.