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Old 03-07-2013, 10:22 AM   #1
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Ravenrose, and anyone else: Q RE LC with cal restriction...

How low are you keeping your calories?

I am reducing mine to 1600 max, 1400 min. Have noticed to my horror and regret that this time round not only the carbs matter...

Any tips or insights are welcome!

Xxx
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Old 03-07-2013, 11:04 AM   #2
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I am not actually trying to keep calories at a particular level, but I've found that some days I have a hard time eating much. I would say most days I eat between 940 and 1400 cals. But I have not been very active. I can feel on my lowest calorie days that I'm in very deep ketosis bc I feel like I want to just jump out of my skin and start doing cartwheels or something. Lol

If you ever feel like its hard to meet your calorie goals, I suggest trying high fat/moderate protein. I have almost no appetite at all eating this way and I can normally happily put away a good amount of food, iykwim.
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Old 03-07-2013, 11:12 AM   #3
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I am eating high fat, moderate protein. I try to keep an eye on my ratios too. Thankfully online trackers makes life easier with everything I need to keep an eye on! LC was so much more effective for me the first few times! Now that it has become my WOL because of my health, it is not working as quick. I think age and years of yoyo dieting did it.
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Old 03-07-2013, 01:20 PM   #4
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yeah, that's my range too. about that... some months I do better than others! hard to be hungry all the time. I am even taller than you are and that isn't a lot to eat. good luck!
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Old 03-07-2013, 03:28 PM   #5
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Roughly 1600. Much lower than that and I get a might peckish.
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Old 03-07-2013, 03:58 PM   #6
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When I was actively losing, I was told not to worry about the calories, only about the carbs. It just didn't make a lot of sense to me, so I watched the calories too, anyway. I was between 1200 and 1600 most of the time. Occasionally, I'd go up to 1800...and some days I was down to 800...but that was rare.

One thing that helped me to keep calories lower was to sip a cup of chicken or beef broth if I was hungry before my regular meals.
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Old 03-07-2013, 04:09 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mimosa23 View Post
I am eating high fat, moderate protein. I try to keep an eye on my ratios too. Thankfully online trackers makes life easier with everything I need to keep an eye on! LC was so much more effective for me the first few times! Now that it has become my WOL because of my health, it is not working as quick. I think age and years of yoyo dieting did it.
Ya know, I have never been able to lose any other way. I did atkins for years because it was great for my blood sugar but ended up 15 pounds heavier for my effort. Sigh... So, even though I am losing fairly slowly, I am thrilled to be losing.

I am also doing this for the long term and for health reasons (though very happy to also look a bit better ) and I find that it actually kind of helps me stick to it. Like, on friday I exercised for the first time in forever and then ended up having a low blood sugar on saturday morning. I ate a bowl of berries w some HWC and on sunday I woke up 4 pounds heavier. I finally got back down to the same weight I was at saturday morning today, so 4 days, but my blood sugar was super low and I ate some cheerios (which I imagine could only cause more damage than berries ). But through all of that frustration, I haven't had my old thoughts of "I may as well be eating chocolate cake if I'm not losing." I am taking things more in stride. I have a low, I eat something I wouldn't normally want to, I move forward. I feel like I don't really need to lose this weight quickly because I'm going to be eating this way forever regardless. I feel more patient, I guess, which is good because I can tell you that being impatient with it is not helpful. lol

Anyway, good luck!
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Old 03-07-2013, 04:38 PM   #8
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I aim for 1200-1400. Most days are closer to 1200. I like having the leeway for the extra calories on more hungry days. And once in a while, I go up to 1800 or so. My seven-day running average is about 1300.
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Old 03-08-2013, 01:47 AM   #9
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Sigh.... I see that I am not the only one! Thanks for stopping by and letting me know what works for you!

Yesterday was a good day, I ate just under 1600 for the day and my ratios were ok. A bit high on the protein, but I think that's because I ate quite a bit of chicken which is quite high in protein.

I will see how it goes and reassess in a months' time to see if this brings anything. If not, it's time for a visit to the doctor!
xxx
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Old 03-08-2013, 09:39 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Mimosa23 View Post
Sigh.... I see that I am not the only one! Thanks for stopping by and letting me know what works for you!

Yesterday was a good day, I ate just under 1600 for the day and my ratios were ok. A bit high on the protein, but I think that's because I ate quite a bit of chicken which is quite high in protein.

I will see how it goes and reassess in a months' time to see if this brings anything. If not, it's time for a visit to the doctor!
xxx
I'm not sure if you said somewhere how long you've been doing this, but I want to warn you that after I lost the initial water loss, I bounced around in the same two pounds for three painful weeks before I lost another pound. Since then, though, I have been losing at an okay pace for me. So, I month might not have been enough for me to see results.

I hope that what you're already doing does the trick for you, but... if you haven't tried it yet, I would suggest checking out JUDDD (there is a sub-forum here) if you haven't already. JUDDD is the only thing other than strict low carb that has helped me lose weight. Unfortunately, when I did it, I slid right into eating carbs, thinking maybe I could get away with it bc others were and having good luck. I was able to lose that way, even eating pretty carb heavy, which is amazing bc a good old fashioned low calorie diet does not do anything for my weight. But in a matter of about three weeks, it led me right back into the depths of my addiction and I lost all control. If I ever hit a wall again with the loss, though, I think I will try to do low carb JUDDD, which a couple of other people here are doing and having luck with.

Also, had to come update about my saga with the berries and cherrios. Day after berries, I gained FOUR freaking pounds, day after cherrios I lost half a pound. I was certainly not expecting that. I wonder if I was just due for a whoosh. But I'm happy. It's a new low (this time around) and I am not half a pound under my pre-first-pregnancy weight, where I feel much more comfortable because I spent about 8 years here once.

Here's to another good day!
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Old 03-08-2013, 09:46 AM   #11
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I've been bouncing around here since 2002 and have tried JUDDD too... I know what works for me and that is LC. Just sad that calories are now important too....
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Old 03-08-2013, 10:05 AM   #12
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The only thing you have to worry about with going too low cal is SNS downregulation. It is characterized by feeling cold and lethargic. It means your body will decrease its resting metabolism to match your lowered calorie intake and you will stall. So if you bring your calories up a bit when this happens, it will keep you losing. For me it happens when I go 500cal below my maintenance intake. I try to go no less than 250 though, it seems to be a safer deficit.
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Old 03-08-2013, 10:06 AM   #13
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For what it's worth, when I started Atkins I started eating on saucers, you know, the small salad plates instead of the full-size dinner plates. And that helped me to learn to eat smaller portions. I had (have) a huge problem with portion control -- lunch on my teaching days was 4 volcano burritos AND 4 baja beef chalupas, often (usually) with 4 crunchy taco supremes. Seriously, the girl at Taco Bell once told me, "We keep these shopping bags here just for you." For most dinners, I would eat an entire extra-large pizza with 14-piece chicken tenders and three dipping sauces. So I felt that I didn't just need to change what I was eating, but also change how much I was eating because even I realized that what I was eating was ridiculous.

When I started using the smaller plates, I found that I was satisfied after a meal even though the meals were SO much smaller than I was accustomed to eating. I didn't shoot for a specific calorie range -- I just tried following the Atkins guideline in my book (Dr Atkins New Diet Revolution) to "eat until satisfied but not stuffed." I found that I was genuinely satisfied with much smaller portions than I'd originally thought I *needed*. I track everything I eat, so I know that I was eating 1,200-1,600 calories per day even though I wasn't *aiming* for that specific calorie range. That's just the amount of food it took to satisfy me in a day.

For the first 6 months on Atkins, I was eating 5-6 small meals each day. I think this helped my mindset -- I didn't feel deprived because I knew that I could soon have another meal if I was still hungry. But I found that, most of the time, I wasn't actually hungry after a small meal. In my 7th month, I started eating 2-3 meals per day, instead of 5-6, because I just didn't feel like eating that frequently anymore. But I still eat on small plates and my portions are still much smaller than my old style of eating and I'm still quite satisfied by my meals.

I don't know if this would actually work for anyone else -- because I was never actually *hungry* when I was eating huge meals, I just had a weirdly twisted mindset about *needing* large quantities of food to avoid hunger. I just wanted to mention the small plates, in case someone else might find this approach helpful.
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Old 03-08-2013, 10:19 AM   #14
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I do a lowcarb version of JUDDD, with 300-500 calories on my down days and 1700-1800 calories on my up days. So I'd say that I average 1000 to 1100 calories per day. JUDDD is perfectly compatible with low carb. I know you mention having tried JUDDD but then say "what works for me is LC." I think a combination of the two is best for me, and I'm not alone in doing them together, in terms of people regularly posting to the JUDDD part of this board.
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Old 03-08-2013, 11:13 AM   #15
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I aim for 1200 but last 2 weeks its been lower.Around 800.I been sick with a cold and lost my appetite.
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Old 03-08-2013, 11:21 AM   #16
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I did LC JUDDD, but I was focusing on food too much, and up days were problematic. I prefer fasting less structured... I am actually doing ok on lower cals. Have not felt deprived yet. Then again, at around 1600 cals it is not that bad! I am disappointed I cannot be calorie carefree like ten years ago!
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Old 03-08-2013, 11:25 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trillex View Post
For what it's worth, when I started Atkins I started eating on saucers, you know, the small salad plates instead of the full-size dinner plates. And that helped me to learn to eat smaller portions. I had (have) a huge problem with portion control -- lunch on my teaching days was 4 volcano burritos AND 4 baja beef chalupas, often (usually) with 4 crunchy taco supremes. Seriously, the girl at Taco Bell once told me, "We keep these shopping bags here just for you." For most dinners, I would eat an entire extra-large pizza with 14-piece chicken tenders and three dipping sauces. So I felt that I didn't just need to change what I was eating, but also change how much I was eating because even I realized that what I was eating was ridiculous.

When I started using the smaller plates, I found that I was satisfied after a meal even though the meals were SO much smaller than I was accustomed to eating. I didn't shoot for a specific calorie range -- I just tried following the Atkins guideline in my book (Dr Atkins New Diet Revolution) to "eat until satisfied but not stuffed." I found that I was genuinely satisfied with much smaller portions than I'd originally thought I *needed*. I track everything I eat, so I know that I was eating 1,200-1,600 calories per day even though I wasn't *aiming* for that specific calorie range. That's just the amount of food it took to satisfy me in a day.

For the first 6 months on Atkins, I was eating 5-6 small meals each day. I think this helped my mindset -- I didn't feel deprived because I knew that I could soon have another meal if I was still hungry. But I found that, most of the time, I wasn't actually hungry after a small meal. In my 7th month, I started eating 2-3 meals per day, instead of 5-6, because I just didn't feel like eating that frequently anymore. But I still eat on small plates and my portions are still much smaller than my old style of eating and I'm still quite satisfied by my meals.

I don't know if this would actually work for anyone else -- because I was never actually *hungry* when I was eating huge meals, I just had a weirdly twisted mindset about *needing* large quantities of food to avoid hunger. I just wanted to mention the small plates, in case someone else might find this approach helpful.
Thanks for this, it will certainly be something I will use on weekends! Xx
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Old 03-08-2013, 03:58 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trillex View Post
For what it's worth, when I started Atkins I started eating on saucers, you know, the small salad plates instead of the full-size dinner plates. And that helped me to learn to eat smaller portions. I had (have) a huge problem with portion control -- lunch on my teaching days was 4 volcano burritos AND 4 baja beef chalupas, often (usually) with 4 crunchy taco supremes. Seriously, the girl at Taco Bell once told me, "We keep these shopping bags here just for you." For most dinners, I would eat an entire extra-large pizza with 14-piece chicken tenders and three dipping sauces. So I felt that I didn't just need to change what I was eating, but also change how much I was eating because even I realized that what I was eating was ridiculous.

When I started using the smaller plates, I found that I was satisfied after a meal even though the meals were SO much smaller than I was accustomed to eating. I didn't shoot for a specific calorie range -- I just tried following the Atkins guideline in my book (Dr Atkins New Diet Revolution) to "eat until satisfied but not stuffed." I found that I was genuinely satisfied with much smaller portions than I'd originally thought I *needed*. I track everything I eat, so I know that I was eating 1,200-1,600 calories per day even though I wasn't *aiming* for that specific calorie range. That's just the amount of food it took to satisfy me in a day.

For the first 6 months on Atkins, I was eating 5-6 small meals each day. I think this helped my mindset -- I didn't feel deprived because I knew that I could soon have another meal if I was still hungry. But I found that, most of the time, I wasn't actually hungry after a small meal. In my 7th month, I started eating 2-3 meals per day, instead of 5-6, because I just didn't feel like eating that frequently anymore. But I still eat on small plates and my portions are still much smaller than my old style of eating and I'm still quite satisfied by my meals.

I don't know if this would actually work for anyone else -- because I was never actually *hungry* when I was eating huge meals, I just had a weirdly twisted mindset about *needing* large quantities of food to avoid hunger. I just wanted to mention the small plates, in case someone else might find this approach helpful.


I too try to use small plates, but I get dirty looks from my family when I give them small plates.

Also, I always tell myself that I can eat half now, and the rest later to maximize the the enjoyment of a particular food inspite of the the theory of diminishing marginal utility (i.e. the first bite is always the best, the 100th bite is only okay...). Helps me rationalize cutting portion size now, in exchange for more enjoyment overall.
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Old 03-08-2013, 05:27 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trillex View Post
.. I just wanted to mention the small plates, in case someone else might find this approach helpful.

I use this approach too and it's helped me with portion control. I also leave the serving dishes in the kitchen so that I have to get up and consciously refill my plate and more often than not I think about it, realize I don't need more and just leave my plate in the sink.

I eat between 1000 and 1400 calories a day. I'm not really counting, but I track my carbs and protein so I see what calories I eat on my tracker. I also usually eat in an 8 hour window between 12 and 8 pm although lately I've been wanting breakfast around 10 and when that happens I just go ahead and eat it if it's bugging me. I never eat past 8pm if I'm at home though.
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Old 03-09-2013, 06:37 AM   #20
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I switched to small plates because my food looked kind of 'lost' on the larger, traditional dinner plate. I have since gotten a bit compulsive with the little serving plates... here is a pic of my current favorite snack plate and that is a small dill pickle...
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Old 03-09-2013, 11:20 AM   #21
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I stick with a low carb lifestyle most of the time because of gluten allergies. However, I find if I go over 50g of carbs/day for a period of time I tend to gain weight even if my daily calories do not seem too bad (1800-2000). When I'm transitioning back to 50g carbs/day or under I am quite hungry, but I can eat quite a bit (i.e. 3000 calories) and still lose, but that only lasts about 3 weeks or less, then I have to drop my calories below 1500 (never below 1200) to keep losing. It gets easier to restrict calories then, because then I am adjusted to fat burning and am not as hungry.

I don't use the guides on my online nutrition tracker for calorie intake because it has me at a maintenance level. Instead I go by Tom Venutos Lose the Fat, Feed the Muscle e-book to calculate how much I should be eating. He argues (others do as well) that women of any height, age, weight, should not go below 1200 calories/day.

I see lots of women on this forum eat around 800-1000. Unfortunately, I've never been one of them I never seem to lose my appetite completely. I just don't feel like I'm starving all the time. So I guess the best approach is to keep tracking like you are to see what works for you. Keeps us posted!

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Old 03-09-2013, 11:25 AM   #22
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Similar to JUDD, but not as extreme (and I don't mean that negatively), Venuto recommends the zig-zag approach or AKA calorie cycling. So you could try eating at your low calorie 1400 level for a few days then have a 16-1800 higher calorie day. Then back to your lower calorie days and so on. For some people, I think it's the same for those doing JUDD, knowing that you're close to having a day where you can eat more, helps you stick to your target on lower calorie days.
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Old 03-09-2013, 11:34 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rosie Posie View Post
Similar to JUDD, but not as extreme (and I don't mean that negatively), Venuto recommends the zig-zag approach or AKA calorie cycling. So you could try eating at your low calorie 1400 level for a few days then have a 16-1800 higher calorie day. Then back to your lower calorie days and so on. For some people, I think it's the same for those doing JUDD, knowing that you're close to having a day where you can eat more, helps you stick to your target on lower calorie days.
there are calorie calculators which have a zig zag calculator component and will 'zig zag' your weekly calorie numbers for you

Last edited by Maryposa; 03-10-2013 at 07:00 PM.. Reason: removing hints to fitday and instructions on how to find it.
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Old 03-09-2013, 11:58 AM   #24
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I go by Tom Venutos Lose the Fat, Feed the Muscle e-book to calculate how much I should be eating.
OK so I found my book by Tom. He writes that 1200 is the min. daily calories for women and 1800 is the min. for men OR 1000 calories below maintenance level. He suggests reducing your caloric intake by 15-20% below maintenance levels for optimal safe weight loss. He says the larger calorie deficit you create (calories expended vs. calories taken in) means the sooner your body will catch on that its dieting. (Note: I'm not sure if/how this applies if you're in ketosis/shifted yourself to primarily burning fat). This is why he suggests zig-zagging calorie levels. Note: he says high calorie days should be at maintenance level.

Disclaimer: He does not exactly promote low carb diets, he thinks not everyone needs to restrict carbs to lose weight, however, he does admit that some people may be extremely carb sensitive (in other words carbs screws with their insulin) and thus should restrict their carb intake accordingly.

However, I still like his take on caloric needs, because I haven't found anything better so far in the low carb world. I loved Gary Taube's Why we Get Fat, I think it makes so much sense. However, I find I still need to watch calories, I can't just eat whatever I want everyday even if under 50g/carbs and still lose weight.

OK back to Venuto. He provides a formula to figure out your BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate). He says it is very accurate for all except the extremely muscular.

Men: BMR = 66 + (13.7 x weight in kilos) + (5 x height in cm) - (6.8 x age in years)
Women: BMR = 655 + (9.6 x weight in kilos) + (1.8 x height in cm) - (4.7 x age in years)

1 inch = 2.54 cm
1 kilo = 2.2 lbs

Then you take your BMR and multiply it by your activity factor (determined by lifestyle)

Sedentary = BMR x 1.2 (little or no exercise, desk job)
Lightly active = BMR x 1.375 (light exercise/sports 1-3 days/week)
Moderately active= BMR x 155 (moderate exercise/sports 3-5 days/week)
Very active = BMR x 1.725 (hard exercise/sports 6-7 days/week)
Extremely active = BMR x 1.9 (hard daily exercise/sports & physical job or 2 x day exercise/sports etc.)

This should give you your maintenance level of calories. Then you subtract 500-1000 and that is your weight loss calorie goal or 1200 whichever is higher.

He notes these are estimates only and you should adjust your caloric intake based on weekly results.
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Old 03-09-2013, 02:49 PM   #25
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Dr Atkins stated that calorie counting was not normally required with LC but in extreme cases he said it might be required.
I don't count calories per say but I do weigh my meats at dinner so I don't over do a good thing.
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