To understand My Blog,
Read My Story Below:
This blog should have started 3 months ago when my life changed, but I didn’t start it then, as I had no idea that I would still be eating this way, 3 months in, and to be honest, I just thought it would be another weight war failure.
So back to the beginning of sorts (I’ve had many beginnings, but I will address that as we go), and actually it was prior to 3 months ago. It was sometime in October 2016, that I was absolutely fed up with being fat, no matter what I tried, I just got fatter. I was obese, and would have coped with that (I think), yet I wasn’t staying there, I continued to get fatter, and couldn’t control it. No, I never ate mountains of food, or got up in the middle of the night to eat or ate chocolates, chips and cookies all day long. For the most part I ate fairly normally, following the Standard Australian Diet (SAD) you know, the food pyramid. I certainly had my times of eating too much, or too much snack food, but that wasn’t an everyday occurrence, and from what I had seen on many diet/documentaries or TV shows, I wasn’t that person. So why did I continue to put on weight? This was a question I asked myself almost daily, there had to be an answer, I’d been to doctors and two naturopaths and paid for a genetic test, (the genetic test showed I wasn’t predisposed to being genetically fat, which means they thought I ate too much), this cost me lots of money, not to mention every other diet, gym and weight loss regime I’d tried in the past. In fact, I will try to list below all of those diets; I may not remember them all, as it has been over 35 years that I have been on and off diets.
Calorie counting using Alan Borushek’s diet book (boy was he wrong). I think the first time I tried this I was between 13 and 16, couldn’t stick to it long enough as I was always starving. But I do remember one year losing some weight on this, but it was hard work, and not sustainable.
Gloria Marshall: I will always remember this one, as she said I had such tiny arms, so we won’t work on them, funny how she still signed me up and took my money. Looking back now I was not overweight, just didn’t like my size and shape, wanted to be a size 8 instead of a 10, and my hips and bottom were more like a size 11, so I didn’t like that. Oh how I wish I had that problem now lol.
Weight Watchers I tried this at home and at meetings, both times, hard work but reasonably successful. At one time, about 10 years ago, I lost 15 kgs over a year, and was only off my goal weight by 2 kgs. They say the last 5 is always the hardest, it took me over a month to lose the 3 kgs, but I couldn’t shake the last 2. I was sick of paying the fees, and following the plan religiously only to get to the meetings to be told I’d put on weight or stayed the same, yet I was doing everything right, but the scales didn’t say so, and that made me miserable. You know I remember at one of the meetings, a girl in her early twenties, who only had about 10 kgs to lose in total, would come to the meetings and lose every week consistently, and even bragged one week about having KFC, and yet she still lost weight. I thought, that is so unfair, I would never cheat like that, I couldn’t afford to, and the scales would always show it. I think that week, I had been particularly stringent and had some points left over for the week, (which should have meant more weight loss), yet I still gained weight. It never made sense!
The Dukan Diet: Lasted 8 weeks and did really well, but after the first week, I didn’t enjoy the food, I just stuck with it, as I was getting good results. I used to read someone else’s daily posts of what she ate, and her exercise, and if it wasn’t for that, I wouldn’t have stayed that long on it. That’s partly what inspired me to start this blog. That girl didn’t know me, she didn’t even know that I read her posts, and she lived on the other side of the world, but she helped me stay focused, then I think she got to her goal weight, and stopped posting. It was around that time, that we decided it was time for a cheat day (my husband joined me on most of my diets, he’s a keeper, but more about him later). So we went out and enjoyed all the carbs we could get, but it was like we couldn’t stop, we tried to go back to the diet, but it was just too hard, so like everything else, we failed, and eventually put on more weight than we lost, AGAIN!
The cabbage soup diet
The Atkins diet
The South Beach Diet
The raw food diet
Lite n Easy
Shake diet from Woolworths supermarket
David Gillespie Sweet Poison - With this one, I cut out sugar for 8 weeks including Christmas Day, it was very hard, but I stuck to it, without touching a granule of sugar, only to find I'd gain weight at the end. No wonder I kept feeling like a failure.
Vita Diet bar and shake diet
Just a side note here, I tried most of these diets more than once, as I knew they could work, but somehow I couldn’t make them work long term.
I feel like I have dieted all my life, but in reality I should never have started in the first place, and if I knew then what I know now, I would never have had to diet, and I would never have had a weight problem.
I’ve never been a big fan of exercise, or not the sort you do just for weight loss, but with all the diets I’ve done, I have always incorporated the exercise, in fact sometimes I did the exercise and not the diet, as I thought that may have been the secret.
I played netball, mostly wing attack or defence, so a fair bit of running in those positions.
Jogging (lots of this, never helped. I think I was the fattest jogger out there, I could jog for 30 mins, not bad for a fatty)
Dancing, I loved dancing, just about any type. My hubby and I went for a few years, but eventually this is what caused a tear in my tendon, and tendonitis, so I had to stop that.
X-box aerobics, which included boxing and also had sit-ups and the like incorporated in it.
So I’ve done my fair share of exercise, but still remained a fatty.
What I found now and have been following does not require exercise for weight loss, exercise is good for many things, but you don’t have to do it to lose weight. I am finally proof of that.
So back to October 16, and it is now February 2017, so not that long ago, and this is really only the start of my new journey, as its only been 3 months.
As I mentioned back in October, I had, had enough of being overweight, the tiredness, no energy, not being able to do things, nothing fitting, being a size 22, and growing, I had to do something drastic. I heard an ad on the radio, on my way to work one morning. It went something like this “have you struggled with weight for years, have tried many diets with no long term success, you know it’s not your fault, obesity is a disease” or something to that effect. They did say it was bariatric surgery (cutting out most of your stomach or stapling it, so you could only eat very little), and the surgeon was a leading bariatric surgeon. Now I was pretty sure I knew what bariatric surgery was, but I phoned and checked and made an appointment, anyway. I had always been against bariatric surgery, it had a stigma, and I thought it was only for people who ate too much, and for the most part the amount I ate wasn’t the problem, so I didn’t understand how it would benefit me. But I was desperate and wanted to find out more, I had a work colleague who was interested in it, and his ex-wife had had it done 18 months ago. So he organised for me to meet with her to hear her story, so I did that before my bariatric appointment, and this is a summary of what she said.
R: "I had part of my stomach removed 18 months ago, and I love the new me. I’m an unusual case, as I had a few problems, like they found I had celiac disease when they were doing the pre surgery check-ups. I have malabsorption of vitamins, so they are monitoring that, and I do need to be careful when I eat as sometimes I throw it back up or need to go to the toilet quickly. But as I said I am an exception to the rule. I can pretty much eat what I want, and don’t follow their diet recommendations. I just eat really small portions of whatever I want and I can still drink, so I’m really happy with the results. I’m nearly at my goal weight, and love the results." We talked about a lot of stuff, but you get the picture. She wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it and would do it again.
I came away from that luncheon, thinking, yes she looks amazing, but those side effects don’t sound good, and I wasn’t sure that she convinced me, that it was a good idea, as she did look amazing, or was it a bad idea, cos that didn’t sound like a life I wanted to live, just to be thin. So I made the appointment with the surgeon as I wanted to find out as much as I could, didn’t need to commit to anything yet.
My darling hubby came with me, and was very supportive; in fact he was keen to have it done as well. We wanted to get an appointment each, but they couldn’t fit us in together, at a time we could both make, so we figured if I do the appt and he is with me, he will hear it all, and then he can have his own assessment appt after that.
The appointment (appt):
I was extremely nervous, but the staff were very kind. I had to fill in a lot of paperwork, get measured, and then have a discussion with the nurse. She took my blood pressure, and it was high, and I always have normal blood pressure, the nurse asked if I was tense about the appointment I said yes, so she said she would note that down, as that explains why my blood pressure was up. Then the surgeon came in, and discussed the choice of procedures and we were then ready to book in. I asked a lot of questions, but I still didn’t understand why I was a good candidate, from what I could gather, as long as you fit their parameters, you were in. I was expecting them to ask me about how I eat etc., but none of that was discussed. So we booked the surgery for 21st December 2016, I also had other appointments to book, with the psychologists, dietician, and a throat specialist (re: my heartburn problems). I also had to get some blood tests. So I got the blood tests done, that was lengthy they took 6 or 7 vials. Now I just had to wait to have the other appts. I was still really uncertain; hubby decided it was not for him. So I started to do as much research as I could, because I wanted to make sure I fully understood what I was in for.
What I discovered:
This whole process was not the easy way out for fat people; it is one of the hardest things I’ve seen. This is a summary of the process. Two weeks before surgery you are put on a liquid diet, well I was worried that I couldn’t even survive that, as I hate the shake diets. Then you have surgery, where they remove most of your stomach, you are in hospital for a day or two on liquids only, then its 2 weeks liquids, two weeks of mashed foods and liquids, and two weeks of just mashed food. Then I believe you gradually go onto solid foods. You are eating no more than about a half cup of food. The next 18 months to 2 years is basically following a calorie restricted diet. Coping with dumping (which I think is having almost an uncontrollable bowel movement), nausea, vitamin deficiency, and that’s just the common stuff. Wow, that did not sound appealing at all. I would never be able to enjoy eating out again. But I had little choice, or so I thought. My son couldn’t understand why I would do it, and suggested I try his stuff. I said I have tried a million diets with all sorts of combinations, and can lose the weight, (albeit it very slowly) but can’t stay on them long enough, due to such poor results I just felt something was wrong with me, but I didn’t know what! I even said at one stage, I must be meant to be fat, so I just have to learn to live with it, and threw out all clothes that were not a size 18 and above, no more skinny clothes; they were just taking up space. My son said, go to Diet doctor.com and see what you think. So I did, and did a fair amount of reading, and it seemed to be a little different to everything else I tried. I really didn’t know what at the time, but I do now. So I decided to give it a try for 1 month, and if didn’t work, then this was the last shot, and I was going in for that surgery. Hubby started with me, and we started on Monday 7.11.2016 and of course we used the weekend to eat all of the carbs and sugary foods we could find. Not the best way to start, but it was the way we always started a new diet. Little did I know that this was not another diet! I really wish I had started this blog then, but to be honest, I’ve said I was going to write a book or start a blog many times, with my struggles and success, but success has always been temporary, so didn’t really expect this to be any different.
I mentioned earlier, that LCHF seemed to be a little different, and I realised the difference, was the high fat, the only other thing I tried that was high fat, was Atkins. I never lasted on that more than 3 days as I got so sick with it. I now understand that, that was Keto Flu and was to be expected. The last time I tried Atkins must have been over 12 years ago, wish Atkins could have explained that to me, and how to deal with it. Then I may have not wasted the last 12 years, but then again, maybe I wasn’t ready to listen or understand. I thought Atkins was another fad diet to go on, and come off at some point, I didn’t understand the whole plan or all the benefits, and I didn’t know it would be this easy. I think Atkins probably had it mostly right, but I don’t even have the book anymore so don’t really know.
So the first week, was starting off with breakfast of bacon and eggs, and lunch was either leftovers from a meal Id made from the Diet doctor website, or bacon and lettuce, something quick and easy. On day 3 of LCHF, we had a farewell lunch on, for one of the girls, I really didn’t want to break this new plan, I had to give it 100% for the first month, but I needed to be there for Karen. I brought my lunch in that day, as I had looked up the menu the night before and considered having a burger without the bun, but then I didn’t know what oils they cooked their food in, and thought if I eat before I go, I’ll be full and I can just have a coffee. However I was busy and didn’t get a chance to have lunch before I went. Got down to the Club and ordered a sparkling mineral water and a pot of tea, and I did ok. Although tea is not my favourite, especially with no sugar, but in the beginning I wanted to cut down on my coffee intake. Amway, all was good, got back to work, and by 2pm thought I had better eat, as I didn't want to leave it any later, as it would be too close to dinner. I remember thinking I’m not really hungry, maybe I won’t bring lunch tomorrow, cos I’m only eating cos I brought it.
It must have been about 3 pm that the headache started, and it got so bad I wanted to throw up, and considered lying down on the floor in my office. I texted my son and asked if he thoguth if I should take some panadol, he said " I wouldn’t, take some salt in water". I had been taking a bouillon broth each morning already, as that was what was recommended on the doctor’s website. My son said if that doesn’t work then take the panadol. So I made myself a glass of water, put some Himalayan salt in it, and drank it up. It took the edge of the headache at about the 30 minute mark, and around the hour, the headache was almost gone.
I couldn’t believe it, in fact if I hadn’t of experienced it, I’m not sure I would have believed anyone else. Felt like it was nothing short of a miracle. So I always make sure I have a bouillon broth or salt at work so I can take it as needed.
Intermittent Fasting (IF):
So I had tried intermittent fasting a few years ago, and actually did quite well on it, (but nothing compared to now). I was doing the 5:2 diet by Michael Mosley, and I then went overseas, and was in a car accident, so took a bit to recover from that. When I felt well enough again, I tried to do the IF again, but couldn’t manage it. Thinking back now, it was partly because when I did eat it wasn’t the right food, and partially, I was still suffering from the headaches due to the accident. The physio tells me concussion can last a long time and can easily be re triggered, apparently that was what was happening to me. Anyway back to IF. After about day 2 of this new way,of eating, I was no longer hungry at breakfast, so I stopped having anything to eat till lunch time, besides my water and a morning coffee. I had read a little about IF on the diet doctor website, so I made sure I was aware of any issues and knew what to expect. Somewhere between the end of week 1 and middle of week 2 I stopped having lunch occasionally, as most days I didn’t feel like it. In the beginning it was every second day, and then it went to 5 days a week, and then again sometimes on the weekend. I really just tried to eat when hungry, so it really wasn’t that hard. Sometimes I feel a little hungry, and I might just ignore it and it goes away, sometimes I’ll have some water, and if the hunger persists, then I take it as real hunger and have something to eat. I always ensure I have some macadamia nuts at work, so if I do feel hungry, I have something there. Even as little as 6 nuts will get me through until dinner. Another amazing attribute of this diet! I’m normally a person who can’t stop at just a few nuts, and according to the genetics test, that’s in my DNA. I find that interesting, as before LCHF I had to force myself not to eat more, and it was hard and I often failed, and that was just at snack time. Now I rarely snack, and when I take out a few nuts from the packet because I’m hungry, that’s all I eat, and I don’t even think about going back for more, because I’m satisfied and no longer hungry. So I gotta say IF is not a problem as long as, when you do eat, it’s the LCHF way.
I’ve always had problems sleeping, but since changing to LCHF, that changed. However about two weeks or so ago, I started waking every 2 hours throughout the night. Didn’t have a clue what that could be since, nothing had changed. I thought maybe caffeine was a problem, yet I have been drinking coffee for years, and never had an issue with it, even went off it completely for a week, and it never helped my sleep situation, but thought I would switch to decaffeinated in the afternoons and see what happens. So the effect was almost immediate. So I now only have decaffeinated coffee after 12. I’m sleeping really well again.
So that pretty much sums up my dieting history. I now write a daily post of what I eat, I share my struggles and successes, so that I can hopefully support others who are on this same journey. This is a very personal process, and when I think about other people reading it, I really don't want to put it out there, especially when I'm still fat, but I really do hope it will help others, and we can do this journey together. Please also be aware, that the fat is not melting off me, I'm losing at a much better rate than I ever have before, but I notice on other forums, that people lose a lot quicker than me. Which is ok by me, but don't get me wrong I do get frustrated by it sometimes, but this is a life long journey and life has it's ups and downs, and I will never be perfect. As long as I am following the guidelines, and succeeding at losing weight and feeling healthier and my blood work shows I'm healthier, then I am happy with that. My other goal is to help others, so if you would like to email me and ask questions, I am always happy to help.