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Old 04-17-2013, 05:46 AM   #1
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Counting calories and LC

I keep reading the term "your mileage my vary" YMMV. Evidently some people cannot lose just doing LC alone and they need to count calories as well. This sounds like a double whammy and not sustainable. Thoughts?
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Old 04-17-2013, 05:51 AM   #2
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Low carb makes it much much much easier to feel satiated at lower calories. But yes, a lot of people (certainly not all, and I wouldn't begin to guess percetages), especially as they get closer to goal, have to be <i>mindful</i> of calories, if not count each and every one.
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Old 04-17-2013, 05:52 AM   #3
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It's actually the opposite I think- low carb makes counting calories sustainable because you stay full on lower calories.

I could have settled for a higher number eating more and not counting but I wanted to reach my goal weight.

1200 calories keeps me full and at goal so I'm happy.
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Old 04-17-2013, 05:57 AM   #4
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I have to do LC AND count calories - but I've been at this a very long time. Eating LC keeps my blood sugar stable, my energy up, and my cravings in check. To lose weight I have to cut calories. I'm down to the last 10 pounds and most days, I find cutting calories to be intolerable because being hungry all the time upsets me. Lately, I've just been trying to keep them under 2,000/day to not gain any of the weight back.
All of this being said, since you are new to this journey, please don't worry about it right now. Stick with a clean LC diet, eat enough to not be hungry but don't overeat, and enjoy losing weight. Most of us who have chosen to ratchet down our program have done so gradually over time. Back 14+ years ago when I was very heavy and eating carbs all the time, I would have never imagined I would follow a WOE that is as strict as I have now. Truthfully now - I really enjoy the LC food so it's not a problem. I can stick with it just fine and feel totally satisfied - I just don't like being hungry.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:02 AM   #5
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If I eat very low carb I will automatically cut calories because I get full so fast.
I believe that for me I must keep an eye on the amount of food I am eating and I should never eat pasted full.
I do count carbs and staying under 10 grams usually will take care of my calorie intake.
It takes a little time but you will figure out what works for you.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:05 AM   #6
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i don't count calories, but I know I do I eat fewer calories with LC, but the reason I eat fewer calories is becuase I'm not very hungry. When I do get hungry I eat, but I don't overeat. So I do think it is very sustainable.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:15 AM   #7
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I don't count but I wonder if people are too worried about overeating on fat and therefore don't feel sated.
I mean if I eat lo carb as on Atkins induction I can eat so little after the first 4 days that calorie control is not an issue. However I do not limit amounts in these 4 or 5 days. After that it should be normal to eat like this unless boredom sets in and I go off plan. For me that was the beauty of the LC plans that they regulate my appetite and so far it has worked.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:27 AM   #8
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I don't count but I wonder if people are too worried about overeating on fat and therefore don't feel sated.
I mean if I eat lo carb as on Atkins induction I can eat so little after the first 4 days that calorie control is not an issue. However I do not limit amounts in these 4 or 5 days. After that it should be normal to eat like this unless boredom sets in and I go off plan. For me that was the beauty of the LC plans that they regulate my appetite and so far it has worked.
Not in my case. I could actually overeat on fat more easily than protein/vegetables. For example, I could put 4tbs of evoo on my salad (I love evoo as dressing) and not feel a difference in terms of hunger at all compared to 2 tbs of evoo (and that's an extra 240 calories). But, again I am at goal so I don't have room for a lot of extra calories. Now I pretty much know the calorie/carb counts I eat and can stay within my 1200 easily.

I don't think I am the only one- how many times has someone posted about eating a whole lc cheesecake or way too many fat bombs? Fat is satiating to a point, but it can also lead to overeating.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:31 AM   #9
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Back in the day (a couple years ago) I did Weight Watchers. I always ate less than my allotted number of points but I could not lose weight! Team leaders told me to eat at least my number of points, still did not lose. I have also tried calorie reduction (just counting) and failed at that. When I was at WW and counting I did not count carbs. I ate bread, pasta, sugar etc. but stayed at the right calorie or point count. So, now I am very leery of counting anything! Counting carbs AND calories to me seems horrible. Just sayin'
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:34 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by SadieJack View Post
Counting carbs AND calories to me seems horrible. Just sayin'
I think it depends how much you hate being fat, plus you get used to it, because you know all the calories/carb numbers for different foods and it becomes second nature.

I hated being fat and really wanted to get to goal so counting didn't seem that much of a bother.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:38 AM   #11
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I'm only 5 weeks into Atkins, for the very first time. I started 5 weeks ago with 14 lbs to lose. So I was already realllly close to goal when I started. I track every single bite that goes in my mouth on the Atkins app. It automatically tracks calories as well.. So even though I wasn't intentionally trying to track them, this info has been useful for me. I'm just so close to goal, so for me, after about week 2, I stalled. Then I looked at my calorie intake. I have noticed that if I stay around 1800 cals/ less than 20 g carbs/ drink 12-14 8oz glasses of water and exercise at least 30 minutes a day, I can see small loses every day. But that's just what works for me.. While LC is based on very scientific facts, all of us have different metabolic make-up, and therefore we just have to be mindful of our bodies to see what works best. As with any diet, you give something a good try and if that doesn't work, you analyze.... Then keep trucking, making pretty minor tweaks along the way.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:41 AM   #12
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Quote:
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I think it depends how much you hate being fat
Good point. I think I am discouraged because I have been on every diet known to mankind and I am still fat.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:42 AM   #13
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Good point. I think I am discouraged because I have been on every diet known to mankind and I am still fat.
Don't be discouraged. Have you ever done lc for a longer period of time?
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:46 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nolcjunk View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by SadieJack View Post
Counting carbs AND calories to me seems horrible. Just sayin'
I think it depends how much you hate being fat, plus you get used to it, because you know all the calories/carb numbers for different foods and it becomes second nature.

I hated being fat and really wanted to get to goal so counting didn't seem that much of a bother.
The more damaged your metabolism is, the more you have to do to get the weight off. I don't know how much you have to lose, but it could be a while before counting calories is a big deal to you.

When I'm in ketosis, I have ZERO appetite, I'm slightly nauseous all the time, and food is just gross. To the point where I don't/can't eat. So I have to stay just out of ketosis to lose.... which also means being more aware/careful with calories.

But I'm also 5' 4.25" (so not tall) with a small frame, so I don't need a lot of calories - certainly no where near the 2000 that seems to be recommended by the USDA (if you read labels and it talks about the "percentage of daily calories" part). And yes, being mindful of that is important.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:47 AM   #15
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I've been thinking about this topic lately myself. I've used software called dietpower off and on for many years to track my macro's and nutrient intake, as well as my metabolism, as it has an algorithm that will change your calorie needs based on how much weight you are losing vs. what you have been eating and how much exercise you are performing.

What I know to be true for me; if I am moderately active ( daily activity plus walking for 40 minutes 3-4 times a week, eating a fairly "balanced" diet, I can eat about 2800 calories and maintain my weight. When I am eating low carb I can eat about 3000 calories a day and lose weight. This is an average calorie intake for the week though. When I am low carbing my calories fluctuate a lot more. for example in 7 days, it would look like 1700/2200/4300/1400/2700/2500/3200

So I firmly believe that there is a metabolic advantage to eating low carb.

Somedays I am just really hungry and I eat a lot of fat on those days (these are the days my calorie count goes quite high). I notice that the next day or two, I am often not as hungry though. If I go below 2000 calories too many days in a row, my weight loss slows.

Now in the past I have stalled *full 6 weeks* and a partial fat fast (couldn't make it the full time too hungry), plus a strict induction following, restarts weight loss. But my calorie requirements are less after about every 30 pounds of weight lost.

My situation right now is different than before, as I get a lot of exercise through my job. When i first started working, I could eat a pretty hefty amount of carbs (still moderate amount >100 and as low as 20 on some days) and still lose weight. As my body has adjust though, I had to go back into induction, still eating more calories, but back into ketosis to begin losing weight again. ( all of this at a similar calorie intake )

To be clear, as an adult I have never weighed below 275. So these calorie counts are based on my specific metabolism.

But clearly the info I have for me, is if I cut my calories too low on low carb, my weight loss slows. But if I stall and am eating plenty, it is time to look at my calorie count and reduce portions slightly.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:51 AM   #16
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I did LC in 2003 when it was all the rage. Because of so many years of calorie restriction and certain foods being "bad", I had a hard time with the concept. For example, I never ate eggs because of the cholesterol, never ate bacon because of the fat, etc. I ate low fat, low calorie. Like you are SUPPOSED to (or so I thought). But I did eat WW bread, sugar, etc.

anyway... I didn't care for the LC back then. So, 10 years later and numerous attempts to lose in whatever way I could, I am at my heaviest and feeling lousy.

I told my doctor that I can't lose weight on constricted calories, and he said I have the type of metabolism that would be helpful in case of a nuclear attack. I could live many days in a bunker without food. I know he was kidding, but that stuck with me. He offered no advice on how to lose.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:52 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SadieJack View Post
Back in the day (a couple years ago) I did Weight Watchers. I always ate less than my allotted number of points but I could not lose weight! Team leaders told me to eat at least my number of points, still did not lose. I have also tried calorie reduction (just counting) and failed at that. When I was at WW and counting I did not count carbs. I ate bread, pasta, sugar etc. but stayed at the right calorie or point count. So, now I am very leery of counting anything! Counting carbs AND calories to me seems horrible. Just sayin'
It is not what you are counting that matters....it is what you are counting is MADE up of. You said you could not lose counting points that consisted of breads, sugar, starches etc.

Counting carbs is different...you feel fuller and eat less calories inadvertently...at least most do.

I think strict calorie restriction on low carb is for those with a very damaged metabolism or closer to goal and stalled.

Just remember counting carbs does not give a license to binge on fatty high calorie food because they are low in carbs.

Don't over think it, just do it and if it works good, if not you will have to research something else...sounds like you are talking yourself out of trying and giving up before you begin...jmo...good luck with whatever you chose.

We are here to help if you chose this woe.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:54 AM   #18
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I did LC in 2003 when it was all the rage. Because of so many years of calorie restriction and certain foods being "bad", I had a hard time with the concept. For example, I never ate eggs because of the cholesterol, never ate bacon because of the fat, etc. I ate low fat, low calorie. Like you are SUPPOSED to (or so I thought). But I did eat WW bread, sugar, etc.

anyway... I didn't care for the LC back then. So, 10 years later and numerous attempts to lose in whatever way I could, I am at my heaviest and feeling lousy.

I told my doctor that I can't lose weight on constricted calories, and he said I have the type of metabolism that would be helpful in case of a nuclear attack. I could live many days in a bunker without food. I know he was kidding, but that stuck with me. He offered no advice on how to lose.
Are you ready to do Atkins this time by the book? With butter, bacon, and eggs? You don't have to push fatty foods but you also have to not fear them. I hate anything that is greasy or has visible fat ( like floppy bacon or steaks with fat on them) but that is just a personal preference, I still eat crispy bacon, butter, eggs, evoo, avocados, fatty fish, full fat dairy.

Try a 2 week by the book induction- 4oz cheese limit, limited AS and hwc, vegetables, enough food so you're not hungry but also not stuffed, supplements, and some homemade broth to help with induction flu .

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Old 04-17-2013, 06:58 AM   #19
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Thanks everyone... don't want to be a Debbie Downer. I will try to 2 week induction and see how that goes. I weigh 250 as of today. So, I will report back in after 2 weeks.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:58 AM   #20
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The theory behind atkins and WW are very different. Atkins reduces carbs where as WW reducing calories. When you reduce carbs you reduce the mechanism behind your body's fat storage capabilities. In theory it means that you will be using the incoming nutrients (ie. fat, protein and some carbs) as opposed to storing the nutrients as fat. This means you will need to eat less calories to support your BMR, in theory. WW only restricts calories so for people who tend to store incoming nutrients as fat, calorie reduction alone might leave them hungry. That is why atkins works better for some people. The only issue behind low carb for some people which also forces them to also count calories is that still on a low carb diet some people's bodies will still tend to store incoming nutrients as fat instead of leaving them circulating in the blood to be used as energy. The only way around this is to try to encourage the body to release its stored fat to compensate. Things like fat fasts, staying warm, and exercise tend to help in people who have this issue (ie. metabolically resistant), these people also benefit from counting calories on LC so it helps to know if they are in fact over-eating.
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Old 04-17-2013, 07:14 AM   #21
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The theory behind atkins and WW are very different. Atkins reduces carbs where as WW reducing calories. When you reduce carbs you reduce the mechanism behind your body's fat storage capabilities. In theory it means that you will be using the incoming nutrients (ie. fat, protein and some carbs) as opposed to storing the nutrients as fat. This means you will need to eat less calories to support your BMR, in theory. WW only restricts calories so for people who tend to store incoming nutrients as fat, calorie reduction alone might leave them hungry. That is why atkins works better for some people. The only issue behind low carb for some people which also forces them to also count calories is that still on a low carb diet some people's bodies will still tend to store incoming nutrients as fat instead of leaving them circulating in the blood to be used as energy. The only way around this is to try to encourage the body to release its stored fat to compensate. Things like fat fasts, staying warm, and exercise tend to help in people who have this issue (ie. metabolically resistant), these people also benefit from counting calories on LC so it helps to know if they are in fact over-eating.
WW re-did their program and no longer in includes calories in their points formula. They now factor carbs, protein, fat and fiber.

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Old 04-17-2013, 07:27 AM   #22
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Thanks everyone... don't want to be a Debbie Downer. I will try to 2 week induction and see how that goes. I weigh 250 as of today. So, I will report back in after 2 weeks.
You can do it. It sounds like Atkins would be a good start for you. I don't really count anything, but I am losing steadily, though, I do only eat foods that are pretty much all on Atkins phase 2, however (I don't freak out about the occassionaly carrot though). And I try really hard to eat only when I am hungry. I am not afraid to eat fat. I do use a tracker sometimes and I have an idea of how many carbs and calories I eat in general, but I don't obsess over it on a day to day basis. Just start and see where it takes you.
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Old 04-17-2013, 07:56 AM   #23
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WW re-did their program and no longer in includes calories in their points formula. They now factor carbs, protein, fat and fiber.
Carbs and Fat are both weighted pretty heavily in the points equation, too( counterproductive). You know, I also did an experiment while I was on WW.. I logged all my points and also used a calorie tracking app at the same time, for a week, because I was curious how many actual calories I was consuming. It averaged to be about 1200 per day. I also walked/ran 6 days a week for about 60-90 minutes. No wonder I was starving and so unhappy.
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Old 04-17-2013, 08:11 AM   #24
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Carbs and Fat are both weighted pretty heavily in the points equation, too( counterproductive). You know, I also did an experiment while I was on WW.. I logged all my points and also used a calorie tracking app at the same time, for a week, because I was curious how many actual calories I was consuming. It averaged to be about 1200 per day. I also walked/ran 6 days a week for about 60-90 minutes. No wonder I was starving and so unhappy.
My sister lost all her extra weight with the old WW points system and is now maintaining with the new version and really doesn't like it. She's also a marathon runner, so she's probably not eating enough She is maintaining with it, but what's the point if you're miserable?! I keep dropping hints that she needs to switch to JUDDD lol.

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Old 04-17-2013, 08:20 AM   #25
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I have to count carbs and calories. Not real fun, but I gotta do what I gotta do.
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Old 04-17-2013, 08:52 AM   #26
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why do you think so many people are fat? when you have metabolic syndrome, ANYTHING that keeps your weight down is tottering on the brink of unsustainable all the time, I think. we have tremendous hormonal urges to "behave badly" and every opportunity.


yet some people manage, don't they. they are heroes. *s*
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Old 04-17-2013, 08:59 AM   #27
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In the beginning, I didn't count calories, and I still lost weight. When I got closer to my goal, my weight wouldn't decrease, so I started counting calories, and it helped me lose weight again.
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Old 04-17-2013, 09:03 AM   #28
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i've tried not counting calories while low carbing and with only eating when hungry. didn't work!

using the same number of calories, i can lose weight following a lower carb diet, yet not losing with higher carbs. the two go hand in hand for ME.

ymmv

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Old 04-17-2013, 11:27 AM   #29
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I actually don't mind counting calories; it's easier now, thanks to the Internet and the mandatory nutrition labels, than it was when I was in my prime. Counting carbs is new to me, I'm doing it; I don't really know how much is right for me, but am sticking to less than 100 g. per day.

If I didn't count calories, I'd probably eat a lot more...
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Old 04-17-2013, 01:01 PM   #30
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It is a YMMV thing definitely.
I hate counting or worrying about food but by doing Atkins I don't have to.I lost 50lb back in '04 all the way down to 'skinny' and maintained until I quit smoking without ever counting a calorie.
I am losing now without counting.However I did not have a weight problem until my mid twenties and I only ever got up to the 50lb overweight range.I also don't drive and keep my muscle tissue up walking everywhere carrying stuff so my metabolism is probably pretty undamaged.
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