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Old 01-24-2018, 10:07 AM   #1
DGLauren
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Introduction and taking a fast track into ketosis ... Q's

Hi. I'm afraid I might have gotten impatient and jumped into the deep end before I was quite suited up, but I couldn't wait any longer. I am 69 years old, 70 in July. I am overweight and have been pretty sedentary for the last few years. I work from home on computers and websites, freelance as a proofreader and editor, and am also a private tutor in basic computer skills. In other words, I sit... a lot. I plan to change that in the near future.

I am excited about the health benefits you can expect from a ketogenic diet/lifestyle. I am not on any medications but have been "borderline diabetic" for decades and manage to stay just below full blown by food choices. I never knew until I found a few of Sarah Hallberg's talks online how poorly those choices were. I cooked for a diabetic for three years and thought I was doing a great job due to the glucose readings an hour or two after those meals. I based my own diet along the same lines.

I still have a number of questions I wanted answers for before I started this transition, but as I said, I got impatient so I figured I'd just get them along the way.

First, I'll tell you about the fast track I chose, then I'll ask the most pressing questions. Thanks in advance for any help you can give and feel free to pick and choose whichever you'd like to answer. I'll be grateful for every single bit of help you can give.

Lauren
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Old 01-24-2018, 10:31 AM   #2
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Dr. Darren Schmidt's fast track

After watching one of Dr. Schmidt's videos outlining an easy and quick way to enter ketosis and avoid keto flu, I decided this was the way I'd start. The plan is to eat one avocado + a green drink every morning and evening for five days. It's called a "fasting mimicking diet."

I went shopping yesterday for many of the things I'd need, but still don't have everything and will probably go shopping again later today. I did buy four avocados to start with, though. In the video, he said that one person had gotten into ketosis within one day. I hope that will happen, but I'm planning on five, if necessary.

My immediate questions are:
1. Should I be drinking a ton of water every day? And if yes, should I be taking a pinch of salt with each glass? I have both Celtic and Pink Himalayan.
2. If I reach ketosis within 2-3 days, would I be able to just drop the mimicking diet and start eating ketogenic meals? Should I ease into it in any way?
3. I have urine test strips arriving tomorrow, but I'll stay with this plan until I'm certain I'm in ketosis. Eventually, I hope to get one of the blood ketone testing kits. (Not really a question, was it? lol)
4. The powdered green drink I'm using has 4g carbs (Sugars 1g, Dietary fiber 1g) and only 40mg of sodium. I think the one Dr. Schmidt showed has 6g carbs. Should I be adding anything like Magnesium or Potassium at this stage of the game? If yes, how much?
5. Can you see anything I should be aware of with a process like this?

I'd greatly appreciate any help you can give my questions. Thanks!
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Old 01-24-2018, 11:42 AM   #3
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My newbie questions

6. (1-5 were in the previous post) I've heard a lot about "keto breath." Is that something that goes away in time, or something you need to live with? How would you describe it?
7. I have a relative who is experiencing some of the extreme effects of diabetes (loss of a toe, damage to his vagus nerve). Can living a ketogenic lifestyle offer hope for improving nerve damage? Is there any harm in trying to switch to ketogenesis when in advanced stages of diabetes? (It's type II.)
8. Many of the recommended ingredients in the diet are fairly expensive. If you have to cut corners in some places, which things are not as crucial as others?

Now that I'm at it, I can't remember most of the questions I have. I'll need to start keeping a list and come back to this thread. In the meantime...

9. These are the books I have (mostly cookbooks). Also, I plan to get Stephen Phinney and Jeff Volek's The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living
Are there any others that you would recommend?
Amy Ramos: The Complete Ketogenic Diet for Beginners
Dana Carpender: 500 Ketogenic Recipes
Celby Richoux: Bacon and Butter; The Ultimate Ketogenic Diet Cookbook
Molly Pearl and Kelly Roehl: The Deliciously Keto Cookbook
Jen Fisch: The Easy 5-Ingredient Ketogenic Diet Cookbook
Emily Willis: 500 Ketogenic Diet Recipes to Cook at Home
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Old 01-26-2018, 09:36 AM   #4
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Hi Lauren ~ Thank you for sharing!! am a 55+ semi-retired gal who was diagnosed with pre-diabeties, high blood pressure, thyroid health issues, and depression for many years. Take meds daily for this, but I am hoping to lose enough weight to reverse diabetes, and get off some of those meds. I found the ketogenic diet through word of mouth. My nephew has lost 30 lbs doing a strict keto diet. An aquaitence of mine has lost 60 lbs and my sis has lost 4 lbs. She is working on losing the last 10 lbs towards her goal weight. Have been on this keto diet since January 1, 2018 of this year. Had some difficulty this past couple weeks because I over indulged in eating too many nuts and blueberries, marble cheese. Now I measure 1/4 cup and eat them in moderation. Made a big difference in my weightloss this week. Lost the 2 lbs I gained! I bought and ordered "The Complete Keto Diet for Beginners" Book through a local Black Bone Book Store. It should arrive any day now. Will be very informative! Since I am a newbie, I cannot answer all your questions, but will share what I have learned. I am doing my own research on these issues! Hope what I have shared helps you in some way.

Have a wonderful day!
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Old 01-26-2018, 11:31 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by DGLauren View Post
9. These are the books I have (mostly cookbooks). Also, I plan to get Stephen Phinney and Jeff Volek's The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living
Are there any others that you would recommend?
Amy Ramos: The Complete Ketogenic Diet for Beginners
Dana Carpender: 500 Ketogenic Recipes
Celby Richoux: Bacon and Butter; The Ultimate Ketogenic Diet Cookbook
Molly Pearl and Kelly Roehl: The Deliciously Keto Cookbook
Jen Fisch: The Easy 5-Ingredient Ketogenic Diet Cookbook
Emily Willis: 500 Ketogenic Diet Recipes to Cook at Home
I really like most Volek and Phinney books, though ASLCL is one of my favorites, it can be pretty dry.

I've read many keto books over the years I've been doing it. One recent one I enjoyed was "The Ketogenic Bible" - I found it a great combination of information from a wide variety of resources. Plus, depending on how you want to read, you can skip around to what you think is most relevant to you.
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Old 01-26-2018, 01:13 PM   #6
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Kristie Sullivan's youtube and cook books are a great resource for me.
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Old 01-26-2018, 05:14 PM   #7
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Thanks so much for the welcome, Tammy. I responded to some of your questions in another thread, but I haven't been back there to see if you saw them. I'm brand new at this, too. And I do mean BRAND new! I'm on the third day of the Fast Mimicking Diet and it does get easier every day.

I don't know what to think about the test strips, though. I didn't get to the store yesterday to get avocados for today and it was quite a while before I left the house today. I don't know if it was because my urine was concentrated and I hadn't eaten or what, but it quickly went to the highest reading on the strip. I'm online now to find out if I need to address such a high reading after only 50-52 hours.

(It wasn't until 2:30 in the afternoon before I could get more avocados.)

I have heard that the strips can give false positives if you take a reading too soon after waking, that you should wait a few hours, so I did...about three hours. It might be more than I could hope for that I'm already in ketosis. I've decided I'll still go all five days, though.

Thanks again for your response!
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Old 01-26-2018, 05:22 PM   #8
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Hi, Hayek! Thank you (too) for responding. I saw that book on Amazon and almost bought the e-book form. Thanks for the recommendation. I'm going to go back and get it.

I think Dr. Phinney's videos might be my favorites so far. I know his book (with Dr. Volek) will be packed full of information, which is definitely what I need at this stage. How many years have you been doing this? There's an awful lot to learn!! Do you think I should be adding magnesium and potassium to the 5 day diet I'm on?
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Old 01-26-2018, 05:28 PM   #9
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Thanks for the cookbook-and-video recommendation, Leisha. I've copied down a lot of recipes from online videos, already. I'll add Kristie Sullivan. Are you familiar with Keto Connect's YouTube channel? They're a really cute couple and I've gotten a lot of great meal ideas from them.

I probably should take a look at my profile and fill it in, I guess.
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Old 01-29-2018, 08:45 AM   #10
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Regarding the ketosticks:

If you have the time and really want to know why ketostix will not tell you much, read pages 164 and 165 of The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living by Volek and Phinney. This is the section headed by Ketones: To Measure or Not.

If you do not have this book, read this summary:
  • Ketostix were designed to help diabetics avoid ketoacidosis which is a dangerous condition involving very high blood sugar and very high serum ketones. If you have near normal blood sugar and serum ketone levels consistent with nutritional ketosis, you don't need to worry about this.
  • Ketostix only measure excess levels of acetoacetate, which is not the type of ketones that correlate with nutritional ketosis.
  • The ketones that correlate with nutritional ketosis are known as beta-hydroxybutyrate. This type can be measured only with a blood ketone meter.
  • There is a built-in time lag. Ketostix are measuring what has happened in the past since it takes a while for the kidneys to produce urine.
  • Exercise can influence how many excess ketones are excreted.
  • You can be in nutritional ketosis even when Ketostix show no excess acetoacetate. In the keto-adapted state, very little acetoacetate ketones will be excreted in urine even though blood ketones may be high.
Note that it takes a period of four to six weeks of being in ketosis every day in order to become keto-adapted. Someone who is keto-adapted has adapted to using fat as the primary fuel for muscles and various organs. The keto-adapted brain uses ketones in place of glucose for most of its energy needs. When keto-adapted, most acetoacetate is not excreted. Instead, muscles convert it to beta-hydroxybutyrate and return it to the blood for use by the brain.

----

As long as you don't let them demotivate you, there's no harm in using them.
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Old 01-29-2018, 09:48 AM   #11
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Hayek, thanks so much for your reply and the great information. I still don't have the Phinney/Volek book so I appreciate the time you took to write that out for me. Since posting this, I did find basically the same information which answered my questions. I always hope for a quick response from a forum, but I don't usually stop searching in the meantime. (Forums, whether technical or now dietary.) Still, you gave clarity to it that I hadn't found. Thanks!

I honestly don't think anything could demotivate me, even if my weight loss slows down, stops, or reverses. I'm in this for my metabolic health. Weight loss is just a benefit on the side. Once I knew not to trust the readings -- especially at this point -- and that it wasn't anything to be concerned about, I dropped the issue from my list of things to attend to.

I just finished my five days of the Fasting Mimicking Diet and can start my first day of keto meals now. I'm extremely excited...and hungry, but that's more from anticipating what I'm going to make, lol, than actual hunger. I lost 12.6 pounds during those five days. It's such a joy not to have swollen ankles anymore, which I always get after spending the holidays with family. I think running up and down stairs all day here at home helps prevent that.

Thanks again for your help. I really appreciate it.
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Old 01-29-2018, 09:53 AM   #12
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Oh, and a report in general on the Fasting Mimicking Diet: (Dr. Schmidt's version)

I don't know if it will continue or not, but I had NO ill effects whatsoever from this method. It is said to get you into ketosis without having to go through the keto flu. I had a slight headache the first day, the same kind I sometimes get if I go too long without eating, but other than that...nothing. I did discover that avocados are delicious with salt on them. I'd eaten them plain all my life until I needed to be mindful to keep my electrolytes up.
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Old 01-29-2018, 05:06 PM   #13
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I don't own any books on the subject but I have watched tons of video by Dr Berg, Thomas Delauer, as well as lectures from Dr Eric Westman, Jeff Volek, etc. can learn a lot from all those Utube videos. most of the recipes I have came from sources like Ketoconnect, and other similar sites.
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Old 01-29-2018, 06:29 PM   #14
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I don't own any books on the subject but I have watched tons of video by Dr Berg, Thomas Delauer, as well as lectures from Dr Eric Westman, Jeff Volek, etc. can learn a lot from all those Utube videos. most of the recipes I have came from sources like Ketoconnect, and other similar sites.
I have been watching Dr.Berg on you tube !! He has helped me understand a lot about ketosis !!
I feel better after 3 days and I am not even hungry fasting!!
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Old 01-30-2018, 08:04 AM   #15
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Thanks Lauren! I'll look at Keto Connect! I'm always looking for new ideas to help with sustainability!
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Old 01-30-2018, 08:53 AM   #16
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I have been watching Dr.Berg on you tube !! He has helped me understand a lot about ketosis !!
I feel better after 3 days and I am not even hungry fasting!!
Wendy & Leisha ~ What is fast track? I too have been watching Dr Eric on Youtube, and also follow a couple blogs from instagram. They'really very helpful and informative!

Have a great day!
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Old 01-30-2018, 12:00 PM   #17
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"Fast track"

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Wendy & Leisha ~ What is fast track? I too have been watching Dr Eric on Youtube...
Hi, Tammy ~ I just used the words "fast track" on this thread to describe what I had chosen to do. Other than that, I don't think there is any formal sort of "fast track" in keto.

I called it a fast track because the Fasting Mimicking Diet can get you into ketosis within a day (for some people) but it's designed to be done in five days. I needed to get into ketosis quickly because I needed to go grocery shopping and for sure didn't want to buy the wrong foods if I knew this is what I wanted to do (go keto).

There are a number of FMDiet versions out there, but I chose Dr. Darren Schmidt's because he said it was a way to avoid the keto flu. From my own experience, he's right. I chose the third and "easiest" way of the three versions he offered. I ate one avocado and one green drink in the AM and again in the PM for five days. Between meals I drank a lot of water and took pinches of sea salt to keep my electrolytes up. Other than one slight headache on the first day, I've had no discomfort or flu symptoms. I used this to get into keto. I don't think I'll ever need to do it again.

Dr. Berg is great. I read somewhere that he had been living the ketogenic lifestyle for 20 years. Dr. Phinney for 12 or 13. I've never seen this as a "diet" but a way of life, since so many have now proved it's possible.
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Old 01-30-2018, 12:05 PM   #18
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Thanks Lauren! I'll look at Keto Connect! I'm always looking for new ideas to help with sustainability!
You'll probably love Matt and Megha. They offer so much to us, both on YouTube and on their website. Plus, they test and review lots of the products and supplements we're tempted from every angle to buy. In addition, you get a heaping helping of entertainment.

By the way, I really like Kristie Sullivan and subscribed to her YT channel. I copied down quite a few of her recipes before I realized I just needed to get her book, and did. Can't wait to make her keto chicken pot pie! Thanks again for that.
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Old 01-30-2018, 12:10 PM   #19
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I feel better after 3 days and I am not even hungry fasting!!
Starrhae, are you only on your first three days of keto? If so, congratulations on choosing it! I'm brand new, too, so maybe we can compare notes along the way.
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Old 01-30-2018, 12:18 PM   #20
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I don't own any books on the subject but I have watched tons of video by Dr Berg, Thomas Delauer, as well as lectures from Dr Eric Westman, Jeff Volek, etc. can learn a lot from all those Utube videos. most of the recipes I have came from sources like Ketoconnect, and other similar sites.
You and me, both, jshaf! I watched videos for two months before coming to the conclusion that this was IT for me. I haven't watched Thomas Delauer yet, but now that you've mentioned him, I will. My first eye-opener was Dr. Sarah Hallberg's TED talk at Purdue University and then one thing led to another; I was hooked. She and Dr. Westman probably did more to convince me this was the way to go more than any others. Everyone else (especially Dr. Phinney) have just been icing on the cake.

When someone asked Matt of Keto Connect which YT channels he watched, he said he didn't follow other channels as much as listen to the experts on the subject [so he could keep learning]. Then he listed a few people I hadn't heard of. I can't find where I copied down the list right now, but I can get back to you if you're interested. In the meantime, check out Amber O'Hearn. The woman is made of knowledge!
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Old 01-30-2018, 01:20 PM   #21
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By the way, I really like Kristie Sullivan and subscribed to her YT channel. I copied down quite a few of her recipes before I realized I just needed to get her book, and did. Can't wait to make her keto chicken pot pie! Thanks again for that.
I can't wait to try one of the biscuit recipes! I have her book, also, but can't seem to find the time to experiment!!
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Old 04-27-2018, 09:40 PM   #22
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Ok. What is a green drink? And are you saying the fast track is limited to avocado and green drink once in morning and once in evening? Nothing else?

Over the last 2 years, I have been trying (unsuccessfully) to get ketoadapted. But about 3 days in, I end up with such a loss of energy that I can't even get through work, far less any exercise. Is this the flu? I am farther in than I have gotten yet at 10 days and I am STILL experiencing this energy loss. HELP
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Old 04-28-2018, 09:01 AM   #23
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Ok. What is a green drink? And are you saying the fast track is limited to avocado and green drink once in morning and once in evening? Nothing else?

Over the last 2 years, I have been trying (unsuccessfully) to get ketoadapted. But about 3 days in, I end up with such a loss of energy that I can't even get through work, far less any exercise. Is this the flu? I am farther in than I have gotten yet at 10 days and I am STILL experiencing this energy loss. HELP
Hi, Skeeter, and thanks for your post. You brought me back to these forums and that makes me happy. If you'll go to YouTube and search for "3 Ways to Get Into Ketosis. #3 is Easiest and Fastest," (exact title) you'll see what's recommended as the green drink. I used a different one because I had some on hand and it was reasonable re. carb content. It's just a powdered form of nutritional greens. That, plus the avocado, pretty much meet your most basic needs while on a Fasting Mimicking Diet.

And yes, one whole avocado and one green drink in the AM and then another avocado and drink in the PM. I was surprised at how much the two kept me from being ragingly hungry. You know you're fasting, but it was easily "doable." I'm pretty sure I was in ketosis within 48 hours, but I still went the full five days, to be positive. And add salt! Himalayan Pink Sea Salt and Celtic Sea Salt are what's recommended. As far as "that's all?" I also drank water and tried to start taking in little bits of salt throughout the day.

If you're feeling lethargic and exhausted, from all I've heard, that's an electrolyte problem. The green drink helps address that, but being in ketosis makes your kidneys process sodium better, so you need to boost that. I kept and still keep a little saltbox beside my computer and occasionally dip my finger into it when drinking water. 5000 mg daily is what is recommended on keto -- more than twice what's normal for those on other diets -- which is about two teaspoons. I use that same saltbox to salt meals and recipes I make throughout the day. Dr. Eric Berg has great videos on YT explaining what you need to take (in the way of potassium, magnesium, sodium, etc) based on how you're feeling.

"I am not a doctor!" but it sounds more like low electrolytes than the keto flu, to me. If you are experiencing the keto flu and you hang in there, things start changing drastically at a certain point and you begin to feel better than you ever have in your life -- my own experience as well as what I hear from countless others, at this point. (Check out the post I'm going to make right after this one.) Good luck! It's worth it.
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Old 04-28-2018, 09:34 AM   #24
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3 months + 1 week progress report

Wow. This has been everything I had hoped it would be. I was nervous and feeling unprepared at the beginning, even after studying the issue for 2-3 months prior to starting, but everything fell into place.

One thing I would recommend to anyone just getting started is to check out the "meal prep" videos you can find online (my top recommendations: Keto Connect; Headbanger's Kitchen; Keto Savage) and spend a day cooking ahead of time. If you have a ready supply of keto meals in the fridge and freezer, plus basics to throw a quick meal together, it sure makes the first couple of weeks easier. There's enough to think about without trying to figure out what you need to eat.

Another first thing would be to figure out your "macros" (www.KetoConnect.net has a free calculator on their site, plus Matt has a video you can watch/pause as you're inputting data into the calculator.) so you'll know what to shoot for. After a couple of weeks, if tracking isn't your thing, you should be able to wing it... just be careful to keep your carb intake within keto range. You can get a free dietary tracking app for your phone to help this process and I've been using MyFitnessPal. There are others that might be better, but that one's pretty easy to work with and comes highly rated.

But! I didn't intend for this to be a "how to" post; I wanted to let you know how things have gone over the last 3 months. My latest A1C was 5.6! My blood pressure, blood glucose, and now triglycerides are all consistently in the low normal range, no matter when I take readings. I have lost 28 1/2 pounds, but more importantly, I have lost 4 inches off both my chest and waist... from what I understand, the most critical area to be carrying extra fat. And, I haven't done ONE step of exercise. I keep telling myself this would work so much better if I'd start working out again, but I've had a deadline that has kept me tied to the computer for weeks now and all this has happened without me even trying. I cook a LOT, I can say that, but I'm also eating better than I have in years and I still lose weight.

Someone's at the door and rather than risk losing what I've already written, I'm posting this, as is. Hope to be back in a few...
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