Friday, January 28, 2011

3 weeks (and change)

Well, although I "fell off the wagon," as they say, I did manage to lose another pound, for a total of 5 pounds in 3 weeks.  I haven't done well at all over the last 4 or 5 days (which I attribute largely to my first real post-partum period, which really threw my hormones for a loop!)  So, no more excuses, and back on the wagon tomorrow :) 

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

2 weeks

Two weeks, and one more pound lost.  I was hoping for a couple of more, but I had a hard time staying on the diet this past week, so I'll take one :)

My averages for the last 2 weeks are 2,213 calories a day, with 60% fat, 23% carbs, and 17% protein. 

So, positives and negatives-

  • It definitely works, when followed to the letter!
  • Plenty of calories so you don't feel hungry, even with eating 3 meals and no snacks
  • Good, nutrient dense food that's all homemade; no processed "health food"
  • Cost!  It's inordinately expensive, at least for me.  I think I've spent like $500 on food in two weeks, and I just do not have that kind of money.
  • Time intensive.  Even as a stay at home mom, the amount of time necessary to follow it perfectly is a little overwhelming.  I can't imagine how people who work full-time could do the diet perfectly without being exhausted.  And, anything shortcut that cuts down on time (like pre-made ferments, kombucha, etc) increases the cost.

So, where does this leave me?  Hmmm.  I certainly plan to continue, but I'm going to have to make adjustments.  I just can't spend $800+ a month on food.  Coconut oil (high quality!) alone is ridiculously expensive, and if my husband and I follow the guidelines, we're supposed to be consuming 12 tbsps between us, just before meals!  And, even though I SAHM, that doesn't mean I'm home all the time.  With 4 kids, we're usually pretty busy :)  So, I also need to find ways to make it a little easier on myself.

Cost wise, here's what I'm thinking-
  • No organic produce, outside of the "dirty dozen" (when available)
  • Pastured chicken and pork, but conventional beef and lamb
  • Keep eating eggs from my chickens, but supplement with conventional eggs when it's not enough
  • Learn to make kombucha and ferments (time consuming, but kombucha is $3 or more a bottle, and ferments are $13 a pint!!!  Big money suck)
  • Regular cheese instead of raw milk cheese
I'm not sure how to work with the time issue without increasing cost, any tips?

So, I'm going to try to do that (though I'm not sure what the heck to do for the rest of the month, since my food money is pretty much gone!!)  I'll certainly need to step outside of the recipes in the book to work with what I've got, but I'm going to do my best to keep to the basics; 2500 calories a day, 60% fat, 1-2 tbsps of coconut oil before each meal, fermented cod liver oil each morning.  I have found that as a nursing mom, I usually need a light afternoon snack (I usually do a couple ounces of cheese and a piece of fruit).

I also really need to start working out!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Staying on the wagon

Oh yikes, has it really been 6 days since I posted last?  See, this is why I could never be one of those official type bloggers, I'm no good at it!

I've been working hard to stay on the straight and narrow!  Friday some friends invited us over for tacos, and who can turn down tacos, especially when someone else is cooking?  Not me, that's for sure!  But I managed to show some restraint and not gorge myself.  Realistically, tacos aren't too bad; the worst about them is that the corn for the shells hasn't been soaked.  I probably should have skipped the white chocolate macademia nut cookies, but I did only have one...there...and then two more at home...hmmm.  You know, it's difficult going from eating as much as you want of whatever you want to eating with restraint.  I ponder at the time if I should own up to it, because it's a bit embarrassing, but struggling is a part of dieting (even a wonderful, filling diet like EFLF!) so I figure it's best to be honest.

I did great yesterday!  So that's good.  I did break down today and have some coffee, which I haven't had in weeks.  Baby steps!

Tomorrow will mark 2 weeks!  I'll do a weigh in (hopefully my little "cheats" haven't done too much damage!) and I'll talk a little about what I see as the pros and cons of the EFLF diet.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

As I was chopping veggies for cream of vegetable soup this evening, I had to snicker at the reputation traditional foods has (especially Nourishing Traditions!) as being "meat heavy."  I've even seen people try to claim that NT tells you not to eat vegetables!  Too funny.  I admit my veggie consumption was never the best, but it wasn't awful, yet I feel like I'm eating more fresh produce now than I ever have!  And not nearly as much meat as I had expected.

Still feel like I'm spending all day in the kitchen, but I guess I'm getting used to it!

Here's todays stats!

Calories-  2,355
Fat- 155.5 (79.9 sat fat)
Carbs- 151.7
Protein- 100.1

59% fat, 24% carbs, 17% protein

1 week down!

One week down, and I've lost 3 pounds!  Which gets rid of my holiday weight, so hopefully I can lose another 2 or 3 next week and get past this 236 plateau!  I think 2-3 pounds a week is a good aim, since I am nursing.  That would be 8-12 pounds a month, not too bad.

Here are my averages for the week-

Calories- 2507
Fat- 173.8 (93.3 sat fat)
Carbs- 128.4
Protein- 114.6

61% fat, 20% carbs, 19% protein

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Day 5

Oops, got busy and skipped over day 4 there, didn't I?  Well, don't worry, here's my stats for yesterday!

Calories- 2,647
Fat- 199.7 (92.1 sat fat)
Carbs- 78.7
Protein- 139.5

67% fat, 11% carbs, 22% protein

Cutting down on the coconut oil has helped a lot with the nausea.  I've been doing 1/2 tbsp before meals, tomorrow I think I'll try to up it to 1tbsp and see how it goes.  My husband commented last night that he feels like he's eating a lot!  It's 3 meals a day, no snacks, so the meals are pretty filling.

English Breakfast this morning.  Any diet where I get to eat eggs fried in lard, bacon, and then toast soaked in bacon grease and fried in lard is pretty freaking awesome.  We get our bacon from a farm just a few miles down the road, how awesome is that?

Lunch was some roast beef, parmesan shavings, and lacto-fermented pickles.  Yum!

We were out of town for dinner, but I was good this time and got a Greek chicken salad from McAlister's Deli.  They said the dressing was made from olive oil, I hope they were right!  I know you're only supposed to do the 3 meals and no snacks, but since my dinner was light, I was only at 1800 calories and starving.  Not good for a nursing mom, so I'm having another round of roast beef and parmesan along with some herbal tea to take my coconut oil, since I didn't get it in earlier.

So, including that, here are today's stats!

Calories- 2,218
Fat- 151.4 (65.5 sat fat)
Carbs- 97.3
Protein- 115.5

61% fat, 17% carbs, 22% protein

Friday, January 7, 2011

Day 3

I had a nice evening out to celebrate my husband's birthday.  I was looking at the menu and in my brain saying "okay, salmon, salad, veggies, yes" but then the waitress came and I opened my mouth and "chicken tortellini" fell out.  How did that happen??  Oh well, thankfully I did great for breakfast and lunch, so my overall calories and fat weren't bad, considering!

Calories- 2984
Fat- 170.4 (88 sat fat)
Carbs- 224.6
Protein- 141.7

50% fat, 30% carbs, 20% protein

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Day 2

Lamb, nom nom
Day 2 was a bit hectic, we had our homeschooling co-op today (which means we're gone for 5 hours!) so I had to prep ahead. I made lunch (chicken salad with curried mayonnaise) last night, and then prepped tonight's dinner before I left (roasted leg of lamb with root vegetables...I LOVE lamb! But I discovered I am NOT a fan of turnips, yuck!)  I have a hard time cooking lamb.  It kind of scares me.  It's expensive and if you over cook it sucks, which just makes you sad and angry.  But it's hard for me to tell when to take it out!  I thought it was done and took it out for my husband to cut up, it was basically raw in the middle.  Gah.  Irritating, plus I was tired from a long day and hungry.  I threw my fork down on the counter and yelled "That's it!  I'm done!"  One fo those days.  But, my husband put the half cooked pieces back in the oven with the veggies that were cooking in beef stock, and it all turned out okay.  Kitchen hissyfits are sometimes necessary to preserve one's sanity.  At least, that's what I tell myself.

I also read elsewhere on the web that too much coconut oil can cause intestinal issues, if you're not used to it.  Which explains the awful nausea I had all night last night after consuming the EFLF recommended dosage of 6 tablespoons through the day!  I did 2tbsp today before breakfast and lunch and couldn't bring myself to do the dinner dose.  So I think tomorrow I'll reel it in and try 1/2 tbsp before each meal and see how I feel with that.

Tomorrow is also my husband's birthday!  So we're probably going to go out for dinner, but I don't think it will be too hard to eat something EFLF approved, thankfully.  I'll just have to restrain myself when it comes to dessert!

Today's stats-

Calories- 2,560
Fat- 168.5 (108.4 sat fat)
Carbs- 153
Protein- 121.8

57% fat, 24% carbs, 19% protein

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Day 1 down!

Day one is done and I am BEAT!  I'm used to spending a lot of time in the kitchen, but geeze!  I feel like I spent all day cooking.  I sure hope my time in kitchen eases up as I get used to the routine. 

Lunch- Coconut Corn soup, kombucha, 1 oz raw cheddar cheese, and one multi-grain wasa cracker.  The soup was decent, not something to drool over, but I'd make it in the fall after I harvested corn (actually, I made it with corn I canned from last year!)

Taking the coconut oil is more difficult than I thought.  Not physically, I mean, just trying to remember to take it 20 minutes before I eat.  I actually found the easiest way is to just dissolve it in some warm water and gulp it.  I've tried putting it in with herbal tea, but didn't really care for it that way.  It's like "oh yum, tea!  Oh god, what's with the oil slick on top?!"

Dinner was delicious!  Mesclun salad (which I figured out is just mixed baby greens, now I feel like a dolt) with blue cheese, toasted pine nuts, and balsamic salad dressing.  And a yummy triangle crouton made from some Ezekiel sprouted grain bread and fried in lard.

Dinner was so good, actually, that I was halfway through devouring it before I realized I forgot to take a picture!  Oh well, here's my $25 chicken dressed up in some delectable coconut peanut sauce.  Also some buttered green beans and there's some fermented kimchi hiding in there somewhere.  The coconut peanut sauce was totally awesome.  Something I would happily make again.  And, since my kids wouldn't eat the sauce (it was a bit spicy) I had about half of it left over.  So I froze it to use later.  I'm assuming if you're reading you have Eat Fat, Lose Fat, so I won't post the recipe unless someone asks :)

I tracked all my food today on fitday, and here's the breakdown-

Calories- 2,683
Fat- 221.1 grams (133.3 saturated)
Carbs- 104.8g
Protein- 86.9

72% Fat, 15% carbs, 13% protein

Starting stats

Okay, this is hard for me!  But I'm putting it out there so that a few months from now when I've shed a bunch of weight and inches and I can brag about how much I lost :)

Weight- 239 (though I only gained 3 pounds over the holidays, so that's something, right??)

Bust- 47"
Bicep- 15"
Waist- 41"
Hips- 52"
Thigh- 26.5"

Doubling for biceps and thighs, that's a total of 223 inches!!  I will weigh once a week, but I'll only measure once a month.

I'm pretty sure I ate more for breakfast today than I ever have in my life.  Which actually isn't difficult, since I've never been good about eating breakfast, come to think of it.

Grapefruit with coconut sprinkles.  So pretty, but grapefruit is every bit as disgusting as I remember it being as a child!  I was hoping my adult taste buds would appreciate it, but apparently not.  It tastes fine going down, but the aftertaste is unmistakably vomit.  Not appealing.  So I think in the future I will substitute a whole orange, instead.

The bacon, eggs, and toast were delicious though, of course!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Prep work

Well, my husband's birthday is this Friday, so I was going to push back our "start date," but I realized I would probably just keep finding excuse to put it off, so I decided to do my prep work today and start tomorrow!  So, I took my VERY LONG grocery list out today, and was able to get most of what I needed at Kroger.  I did have to drive 45 minutes to the nearest town that has a health food store for the rest (ah, rural life!)  There were only a few things I couldn't find, and I think I'll be able to substitute them easy (like, no mesclun!  Not sure what I'll substitute for papaya, maybe mango??)

So, I got that all gathered up.  Made my Mary's Oil Blend (1 cup each extra virgin olive oil, sesame oil, and melted coconut oil), isn't it pretty?  I've got my coconut sprinkles in the oven (made with maple syrup from the next county over).  Looked over the recipes for tomorrow and set out what needed to thaw (beef and chicken stock, and a whole cut up chicken, which, okay, cost me TWENTY FIVE DOLLARS because I'm out of my own chickens...I am SO ready to order my next round of meat birds!!)

So, I think I'm all ready for tomorrow!  I'll get my weight and measurements in the morning before breakfast (it will probably kill me to share them publicly), and I'm going to try to track it all on so I can report what my ratio of fat/carbs/protein is.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Background Part 2

Part 1

So I ended part 1 with my first pregnancy, which had a starting weight of around 200 pounds.  I gained 35 or 40 pounds during the pregnancy, and never lost much of it.  When my daughter was still a baby, I decided to try out vegetarianism, mostly for ethical reasons, but also hoping to lose all the weight I had gained in the previous few years.  I stuck with it for a coupe of years.  Unfortunately, it just seemed to make things worse.  I couldn't lose weight, I felt bloated and irritable all the time, and I was always exhausted.  We also tried unsuccessfully to get pregnant for over 6 months before I couldn't take it any more and gave up trying.  I even tried veganism for a few months, but that really made me feel awful (though out of embarrassment I told my vegan friends that I felt great on it, I just couldn't stick with it!  I figured I must be doing something really wrong to feel so bad on what was supposedly the healthiest way to eat!)  Of course, now I know more about the problems soy can cause, and the downfalls of veg*n diets.  Eventually I decided that if I was going to be fat and feel like crap, I might as well get to eat meat!

The one lasting benefit of my stint with vegetarianism was that it forced me learn how to cook.  All the food we ate growing up was processed and canned, and my mother rarely cooked anything "from scratch."  So when I was 18 and married with a baby, I had no clue how to cook.  Because we live in a rural area with few vegetarian convenience foods (back then, anyway!) I had no choice but to learn to cook.  I am grateful for that!

Generally we ate the "standard American diet," and it wasn't until I finally got pregnant with  our second daughter that I began to develop an interest in healthier eating.  But, I was still very much trapped by the "low-fat, high-carb" mentality.  I gained 40 or 45 pounds with that pregnancy and did lose all of it in 4 months thanks to a successful breastfeeding relationship that time around, but I was still pretty overweight.  I kept eating low-fat, restricting calories pretty significantly, and started working out at Curves.  I did lose another 40 and got down to a size 10 (a pretty nice size for my height and body shape), and while I certainly felt better than I did in my veg*n days, I was still tired, still irritable, and still plagued with the heavy, painful periods I'd suffered since puberty started.  I just assumed I would always be that way and kept up with my low-fat, low-calorie diet and exercise 3-5x a week, hoping to to lose another 10 or 15 pounds.  But then came my pregnancy with daughter number three, and my largest pregnancy weight gain so far (over 50 pounds!)  The second I dropped the low-fat diet, my weight piled right back on.  Talk about frustrating!

But, I told myself that if I did it once, I could do it again.  I found I couldn't get myself back into the low-fat and calorie way of eating (breastfeeding makes you ravenous!), and also decided to cancel my gym membership to help save money.  I only managed to lose half of my pregnancy weight gain before I found myself in the ER one evening with a ruptured fallopian tube from an ectopic pregnancy.  I'd been unaware I was pregnant and had written off my abdominal pain as gas until it was unbearable and my husband insisted on taking me in.  Good thing, too, because by the time they took me into emergency surgery I had hemorrhaged over a liter of blood into my abdomen (the doctor who did the surgery told my husband and my mother that if I had gone to bed that night instead of coming into the ER, I would have bled to death in my sleep).  I was very weak for quite awhile afterward, due to the blood loss, and gained about 10 pounds.  I got pregnant again just a couple months later, and after ectopic pregnancy was ruled out and we heard a strong heartbeat at my 12 week appointment, I assumed everything would keep going on normally.

Sadly, I started bleeding at 16 weeks and ultra-sound confirmed the baby (a boy) had died 2 weeks earlier.  I won't go into the details here, but suffice to say it was extremely emotionally and physically traumatic.  I had already gained some weight during the pregnancy, and I easily gained another 10 or 15 afterward from depression.

So, I started my 6th pregnancy with extra weight from 3 pregnancies and the aftermath of 2 miscarriages. Thankfully, this pregnancy (a boy!) went well.  I gained 40 pounds and quickly lost almost 30 (again, yay breastfeeding!), but now I've "plateaued" and the weight isn't coming off easily.  About halfway through my last pregnancy, I began learning about traditional foods from a woman from my church.  I read Nina Planck's Real Food: What to Eat and Why and loved it!  It made so much sense, and after seeing it all laid out, it seemed so obvious that this was a common sense way to eat.  I quickly picked up Nourishing Traditions and started implementing the principles there.  Of course, with holidays at that point being right around the corner, and having a junk food junkie of a husband, I certainly haven't been following it anywhere near the extent that I should, and so my weight has stayed the same.  But now with the new year upon us and the holidays over, I feel very ready to dive in head first!  Because I am breastfeeding, I don't currently plan to move onto phase 2 (or, if I do, so that I can cook for my cooking challenged husband who desperately needs the phase 2, I will add enough calories back in to stay around 2500).  Yes, I know the book doesn't recommend even phase 1 for pregnant or nursing moms, but after going through every recipe in the two weeks of phase 1, I feel confident that it's a heck of a lot more nutritious than how I've been eating over the last few weeks!  But of course, I will add in calories if need be. 

Thanks for reading!

A brief background on me and food/weight, part 1

Well, I will try to keep this part fairly brief, because it's apt to be a bit depressing.  But you know what they say, to know where you're going you have to know where you've been.  And I think that everyone has an underlying cause to their weight issues, whether emotional or physical (or both).  I think it's rare that it's solely because a person is lazy and gluttonous.

Sadly, my issues with weight started in infancy.  I won't get into detail, but my father was not a nice person (he's currently serving a lengthy prison sentence).  I was 4 days old when I came home from the hospital, and my mother was immediately forbidden from taking care of me at night (yes, including feeding me).  As a result, I was born a healthy 7 and a halfish pounds, but at 3 months old, barely weight 9.  Food issues with my father didn't stop there.  When my brother and I were small, everyone was done eating when my father was, whether or not you were really done.  For whatever reason, when we got older, it changed to no one was allowed to leave the dinner table until their plate was clean.  Even the flu didn't excuse you from cleaning your plate; I vividly remember my brother being 5 or 6 years old and terribly sick with the flu, running to the bathroom to throw up in between bites (and being beaten for getting sick).

I was very thin during my childhood, but when I started going through puberty at the tender age of 10, I gained some weight, which is very normal and healthy.  My father didn't see it that way, though, and started oinking and mooing at me during dinner.  As a result, I quit eating much, and by 12 I was pretty well anorexic.  I found my "food diary" years later, with entries like "Today I ate half a piece of toast."  "Today I ate 3 saltines and half a Popsicle."  I also became a big "exercise bulimic," exercising in the middle of the night in my large closest until I passed out.  At first my father seemed pleased with my thinness, but as I passed "thin" and went to "skinny" and then "sickly" he got angry.  Now, instead of mooing at me during dinner, he would scream at me while I pushed food around on my plate and tell me that if I was going to starve myself to death I could do it in my room, because he wasn't going to waste the money to put me in the hospital.

So, to say that my childhood history with food is disordered is probably an understatement.

Although I never went into a program specifically for anorexics, I did get into therapy (after a suicide attempt at 13) and my mother took custody of me.  After a couple of years I got back to a healthy weight, and I was also doing Tae Kwon Do with my mother and brother, which I really enjoyed.  I still had a lot of emotional issues, but physically I was in great shape!

I met my husband a month shy of my 17th birthday.  He was an ornery punk rocker and we spent most of our time drinking lots and lots of alcohol.  When we ate, it was pure crap (usually fast food).  We both gained a lot of weight, I quit TKD, and by the time I was 18, I was nearly 200 pounds and looking at a positive pregnancy test.

Sunday, January 2, 2011


If you've stumbled across this blog, hello and welcome!  My aim is to blog my attempt to lose weight by following the "Quick and Easy Weight Loss" plan laid out by Sally Fallon and Mary Enig in Eat Fat, Lose Fat.  I started learning about traditional foods half-way through my pregnancy with my son (who was born in October '10) and have been working on implementing TF principles into our life.  My husband and I are both ready to go "whole hog" on EFLF (though my husband is considerably less enthusiastic than me!)

People often ask if weight loss is truly possible with a traditional foods approach, because it's so contrary to the teachings of the mainstream "diet dictocrats," as Sally Fallon calls them.  I hope to prove that it IS possible (and enjoyable!)

In the next couple of posts I'll be sharing my history of struggles with food and weight as a precursor to starting EFLF, so stick around.