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Old 06-04-2013, 01:03 PM   #1
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Do you or don't you count calories?

Sorry, I did a search, and didn't find what I was looking for, though I am sure this has been asked before.

The exact plan that I want to base my diet on calls for 30 carbs a day. and a limit of 1350 calories, I believe. ( The book is coming on Thursday, so just trying to recall what I read )

I'm a 264 pound guy.... I can do 30 carbs without any issues, but no way in hell can I get by on 1350 calories if most of them come from fat..... That would be very little food for a guy my size.

BTW, I'm not planning on following it 100% . I ordered the book mostly for his thoughts on diabetes. But I think I can pretty much handle only 30 carbs a day.

So, do you count calories or not? Do you think I should be? Right now, I am eating about 1800 calories a day, and keeping under 30 carbs and it feels "about right". I have twinges of hunger but no serious deep hunger..... I think this is day 4 or 5 of 30 carbs or less.

Last edited by Garlic; 06-04-2013 at 01:10 PM..
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Old 06-04-2013, 01:05 PM   #2
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Which book is it? I agree that it sounds extremely low.

Currently I'm not counting calories, though I will occasionally put some in a tracker to calculate out a few things (carbs, fat, protein, etc.)

I lost a lot of weight tracking before and I just don't want to do it again.
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Old 06-04-2013, 01:07 PM   #3
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I don't religiously count my calories, but I enter them into a tracker once or twice a week just to see where I'm at. IMHO, 1350 calories a day doesn't sound like nearly enough. If you're losing with what you're already doing, then I would leave it alone. You shouldn't be hungry with this WOE, you should get plenty of fat and protein to keep you full, so don't starve yourself, there's just no need to.
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Old 06-04-2013, 01:08 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by AnnetteW View Post
Which book is it? I agree that it sounds extremely low.

Currently I'm not counting calories, though I will occasionally put some in a tracker to calculate out a few things (carbs, fat, protein, etc.)

I lost a lot of weight tracking before and I just don't want to do it again.

Dr. Bernsteins "The Diabetes Solution".
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Old 06-04-2013, 01:17 PM   #5
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That is very low, especially for a man your size.

No, I don't count calories. I keep my carbs very low (fewer than twenty total per day), am mindful not to eat too much protein, though I don't count that either, and get the rest of my calories from fat. Every once in a while, I'll plug everything into my app, and I typically eat between 1600-1900 calories per day, with some outliers. That's how it comes out when I eat to satiety and don't consciously limit anything but carbs. It's working for me.

ETA: my protein is typically in the 100-130g range.
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Old 06-04-2013, 01:28 PM   #6
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Hi - I do Atkins and I have never counted calories from the day I started. I just eat to satisfaction. The only thing I have ever counted carbs. Now that I have been in maintenance 9 months I don't count those everyday anymore - I just do a spot check once a month take make sure I am not having carb creep.

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Old 06-04-2013, 01:44 PM   #7
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I didn't specifically but and didnt watch them at all at first but eventually paid attention to portion size. I assume you are doing a ketogenic diet. At first, I would only worry about that. I ate more than that . I probably eat about that now and I'm 102 pds. What plan is this?

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Old 06-04-2013, 01:46 PM   #8
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I do not count fat or calories. But...one time I was in NYC and I always eat Bubba Burgers there cause the fresh meat is too lean. I would eat 4 at lunch and 4 to 6 at dinner. I made the mistake of flipping over the box and checking. Each burger was over 300 calories and about 30 grams of fat. I am died and promised never to look at calories again! So, I know, I usually eat between 2000 and 3000 calories a day and a ton of fat!
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Old 06-04-2013, 01:48 PM   #9
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Are you sure you're understand Bernstein correctly? That calorie amount sounds extremely low. I'd suggest it for a 50 year old, 130 pound woman to maintain on, not a a man to lose on (who is double that woman's size!).

Most folks, especially starting out on low carb and with plenty of weight to lose, should not need to count calories if they're following a basic plan with carb counts to stick to. Just counting the carbs and sticking to the permitted food lists should be MORE than enough to lose well (keep it simple, sweetie ).

Now. If you have less to lose, a very resistant metabolism, or are like me - having lost much weight already and down in the home stretch - adding in a basic awareness of calories (especially on things like nut butters, mayonnaise, or fats like tallow and coconut oil) might be necessary to help you stay in calorie deficit and lose. But don't mess with additional factors if it isn't absolutely necessary - the more simple you keep your tracking, the better chance you have of maintaining the habit for life. Overly complex or burdensome systems can be very discouraging.

While I have no issue weighing, measuring, logging all my food for life, not everyone can do that without getting frustrated.
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Old 06-04-2013, 01:49 PM   #10
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hmm, Dh and I must have missed the part where you restrict calories with Dr Bernstein's diet?!?! But what DH does works well for him and he has lost what little weight he had to lose. He follows the 30 carbs a day, usually eating closer to 20. He has been in ketosis off and on. He is type 1, so sometimes he gets a low from misjudging how much insulin he needs and has to eat some fruit to bring his bs back up, and so it kicks him out of ketosis.

But he eats closer to the 2-2500 calorie mark.

I would say if 1800 calories works for you, to go with it.
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Last edited by SweetMe678; 06-04-2013 at 01:50 PM.. Reason: I'm a dork with spelling!
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Old 06-04-2013, 01:54 PM   #11
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I don't count calories, but I have to watch portion sizes since I am so close to my goal compared to when I first started. I personally have to stay pretty low in portions and carbs to lose these days unfortunately :/ So even though I don't count calories, I do make an effort to eat less, if that makes sense..however when I did first start I ate as much as I wanted (was doing Atkins). If you are just starting I wouldn't worry about calories, just cutting back the carbs should do it for you.

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Old 06-04-2013, 02:36 PM   #12
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I don't count them on purpose but the tracker I use to count my carbs, fat, fiber and protein (to keep them where I need them) tracks calories, too. I just ignore it for the most part. As long as my carbs are where they need to be and my fat is high enough, it is all good.
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Old 06-04-2013, 02:50 PM   #13
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My husband and I both are LC people...we don't count our calories except when we have a higher free meal we love maybe every 2 weeks....we try not to get carried away...We just do not have flour or sugar daily and stay low carbs that way....Everyone has to know what they can really keep to on this plan....As long as I keep mixed nuts, pork rinds, diet jello, diet A&W rootbeer and low carb vanilla ice cream on hand for the DH he does well....He loves sweets....I am the flour person so none is around....We use our one free carb meal as I said every 2 weeks and now we don't over do...and we get back on track next meal...Good luck...You have to eat to lose and keep it off....
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Old 06-04-2013, 03:59 PM   #14
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I hate counting calories, so when I started this woe 4 months ago, I didn't count them. Started adding them to my daily log about a month ago. You'll notice I said "adding to my log" not "counting." I realize the function appears the same, but my mind set is different about it.

Carbs are my priority, and I give myself a nice leash on the calories, 1500 to 1800 a day and I almost always land somewhere in there, without trying on LC. I like adding them to my log just to KNOW what I'm eating. It's just a matter of information for me right now---and it sometimes comes in handy when I've eaten and recorded something not worth the calories to me. I'd rather know that and choose something else.

But I still have quite a way to go to goal. As I get closer, as everyone seems to say, calories may be more important.

Also, I'm a tall woman, and 1350 a day wouldn't do it for me, no way, not w/getting in enough fat, and staying un-hungry. Like Scarlet O'hara said "I'll never go hungry again." Been on those low calorie diets and they never worked for me over the long haul. And that's one of the benefits of LC eating, you shouldn't be hungry if you're doing it right. And 1350 a day does not sound right for your size. Even 1800 sounds on the low end, but if you're comfortable there, that's where I'd stick.
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Old 06-04-2013, 04:16 PM   #15
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I personally don't count calories. I occassionally track my food, so I know I usually eat between 1300-1500 calories. This is fewer calories than I used to eat, becuase I don't get as hungry being in ketosis.

I just looked through both Dr. Bernstein's Diabetes Solution and his book The Diabetes Diet, and I don't see anything in there about restricting calories. His recommendations pretty well falls in line with the low carbohydrate, moderate protein, high fat WOE that many people here follow.
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Old 06-04-2013, 04:33 PM   #16
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Old 06-04-2013, 04:36 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Garlic View Post
Sorry, I did a search, and didn't find what I was looking for, though I am sure this has been asked before.

The exact plan that I want to base my diet on calls for 30 carbs a day. and a limit of 1350 calories, I believe. ( The book is coming on Thursday, so just trying to recall what I read )

I'm a 264 pound guy.... I can do 30 carbs without any issues, but no way in hell can I get by on 1350 calories if most of them come from fat..... That would be very little food for a guy my size.

BTW, I'm not planning on following it 100% . I ordered the book mostly for his thoughts on diabetes. But I think I can pretty much handle only 30 carbs a day.

So, do you count calories or not? Do you think I should be? Right now, I am eating about 1800 calories a day, and keeping under 30 carbs and it feels "about right". I have twinges of hunger but no serious deep hunger..... I think this is day 4 or 5 of 30 carbs or less.

I count carbs first and foremost but I am also mindful of calories. I try to stay away from too many calories but I don't meticulously count them like I do carbs. If something is low in carbs, I don't worry about the calories too much as long as it's not like 1000 calories in one thing or something extreme like that.
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Old 06-04-2013, 04:57 PM   #18
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Just a rough estimate, I ran you through a calorie calculator (just google: calorie calculator and it's the first one) and I get this - not knowing all your stats I put in 5'11", 50 years old and 264 as you weight in the first post of this thread and sedentary and get:
Results:
you need 2496 Calories/day to maintain your weight
you need 1996 Calories/day to lose 1 lb per week
you need 1496 Calories/day to lose 2 lb per week
you need 2996 Calories/day to gain 1 lb per week
you need 3496 Calories/day to gain 2 lb per week
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Old 06-04-2013, 04:58 PM   #19
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Old 06-04-2013, 05:01 PM   #20
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Garlic, just take another look at the book when it arrives on Thursday. I think 1350 for a man your size is too low and I doubt the book recommended that.

You said:

Quote:
Right now, I am eating about 1800 calories a day, and keeping under 30 carbs and it feels "about right". I have twinges of hunger but no serious deep hunger..... I think this is day 4 or 5 of 30 carbs or less.
I think 1800 sounds much more reasonable for you. It's good that you're recognizing the difference between twinges of hunger and feeling urgently hungry or very uncomfortable. To me, that's "just right".

Here's a question for anyone in general: when people say they hate counting calories, what does that mean to you?

Do you hate the necessity of writing things down or entering a meal plan in a tracking site? Do you resent feeling like you're supposed to be eating a certain amount? Do you expect to feel hungry on certain lower numbers of calories, based upon past diets you're tired--and if so, have you tried revisiting those numbers on a low-carb diet?

I'm not going to argue that anyone needs to do it or not do it--I just would like to know why people profess to hate it, and what they hate about it.
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Old 06-04-2013, 05:04 PM   #21
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I do not count calories. I'm only concerned with carbs. I am on prolonged Induction, so what I do as Blue Skies hinted is I "log my intake." I'll get my handy-dandy notebook and start with my grand total of carbs I plan to consume during the day (usually 20) and from that 20g I subtract all the carbs I consume. Although this may sound tedious, it really isn't. Being a "visual learner" and such, this "seeing is believing" approach has helped me stay honest and on track.
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Old 06-04-2013, 05:09 PM   #22
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Ok, well, I did get the 1350 from a website, that on the surface, at least, seemed credible. I have no affiliation with that site. It was just where I read 1350.
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Old 06-04-2013, 05:12 PM   #23
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Some people have to keep calories low, others don't (YMMV ).
But a good majority have to watch or lower calories as they get closer to goal.
That being said, don't restrict if you don't have to, until you have to
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Old 06-04-2013, 05:13 PM   #24
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Sorry--this:
Quote:
based upon past diets you're tired-
...was supposed to be diets you've tried. I didn't catch it.
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Old 06-04-2013, 05:18 PM   #25
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I don't count calories, I constrict enough foods as it is.
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Old 06-04-2013, 05:24 PM   #26
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Ok, well, I did get the 1350 from a website, that on the surface, at least, seemed credible. I have no affiliation with that site. It was just where I read 1350.
I would recommend you check out Dr. Bernstein's own website while you are waiting for the book. In fact he has several chapters online (possibly from the prior version of the book, I think) I don't know if I can link to it, but google "Dr. Bernstein's Diabetes Solution website" and it will come up (the website has the same name as the book).
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Old 06-04-2013, 05:27 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peanutte View Post

Here's a question for anyone in general: when people say they hate counting calories, what does that mean to you?

I just would like to know why people profess to hate it, and what they hate about it.
For some people (like myself) counting calories can lead to horrible binge eating disorders.

This time around I will LC, but I will not count calories!

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Old 06-04-2013, 06:14 PM   #28
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I don't count calories. If you're doing LC or LCHF you should feel so full most of the time that you're naturally eating fewer calories.

Andreas Eenfeldt, MD. has a wonderful LCHF website. You might want to check him out too.
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Old 06-04-2013, 07:04 PM   #29
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we eat fewer calories, merely by cutting out all the "bad" carbs.

if i were to add up the calories from starches & sweets, which i dropped, it would no doubt be circa 1000 calories a day. I also am paying a great deal of attention to my appetite. If I am full before I finish eating....then I am finished eating! Ergo, I am saving calories by not eating the rest. Difficult, for me, but do-able when i stay focused. However...actually COUNTING calories is not my thing. I forswore counting many years ago...as that is DIETING. Love & Profits: FLATFERENGHI
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Old 06-04-2013, 07:36 PM   #30
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I forswore counting many years ago...as that is DIETING. Love & Profits: FLATFERENGHI
That's the other thing...for me, I am not dieting.
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