Calorie and insulin question


(d128ee4a423c92522c2d) #1

Two questions:
please don’t tell me I don’t need to count calories😁 because
I just want to know what it would be +/- for a
165lbs 5’6” female, 60 ish.
Several calorie counters say that I need to eat somewhere around 1400 to 1500 calories. Does that sound about right? And then I read that as long as you were eating a well balanced keto macro diet, you still had to reduce calories to lose weight because you would be drawing down the deficit from your plate from your body fat. Confused.
Also
If you are fasting what happens if you trigger insulin with a sweetener that supposedly triggers insulin and you have food/glucose in your blood? Wouldn’t you not have anything to put in your fat cells?


(Carl Keller) #2

As you become fat adapted, your body is more inclined to use your body fat for fuel and the number of calories you will eat should decrease if you simply eat to satiety. In rare cases where a person’s leptin signal is not working properly it might be a good idea to have an exact goal for what to eat but most people don’t have this problem. In the ideal setting, the number of calories will come down naturally. Just form a good relationship with your hunger and make the correct response. :slight_smile:

I was a 210 pound male when I started and I never ate to satisfy a macro, but I still logged the data and found I was eating about 1500 calories on most days. But there were days when I ate 2400, some when I ate 1000 and I was never terribly hungry.


(Karim Wassef) #3

Here’s my simple take on keto and calories.

Let’s take a simple analogy: your car needs gasoline to go… fact. Your cars ability to use gasoline depends on a lot of other factors including how hard you push the pedal, how often you start and stop, the age of your engine and when you last had the spark plugs changed, etc…

So if I walk up to you and say “which is it? Gasoline or how you drive?”. The answer is both and it’s depends.

Calories are the de-facto simple math… but you can eat at a deficit and gain weight… and you can eat at a surplus and lose weight.

Before everyone gets excited that’s this violates physics… let’s look at calorie counting. You assume that you need 1600cals but the reality is that the other factors (non-calorie) can change this from 0.5 to 1.5x

If you eat a large meal, and depending on the makeu of that’s meal, your metabolic rate can change. The same with activity and exercise and hormones and 1000 other variables (just like the car).

So the idea of eating at a deficit is flawed since only an RMR year can tell you where you are and it’s going to change as soon as you do something. It’s also flawed because the foods you eat are not all absorbed the same… so the “calories in” is a guess as is “calories out”…

So unless you have a scientific way of measuring both- it’s guesswork and constantly changing… therefore it’s good to understanding but useless practically. You can’t plan for things you can’t objectively measure without lab equipment.

Keto on the other hand triggers everything else. When you’re in keto, your body pushes your metabolism and satiety to waste energy and reach satiety quickly. This means that if you stick to it, you’ll be satisfied at a caloric level that’s naturally at a deficit.

There are many more benefits than that but simply put “ketosis allows fat burning and satiety… that naturally reduces caloric intake below expenditure… so you lose weight”

This is rough and imperfect but generally good enough. Hope it helps.


(Polly) #4

In order to burn fat your body needs glucagon. Glucagon and Insulin are antagonists and cannot both be working at the same time. If you spike your insulin with a non caloric sweetener you will switch off your glucagon ie this also switches off your fat burning mechanism. Because your glycogen stores will have been depleted by the fast and there are no ingested sugar sources to rely on you will “hit the wall” in the same way that marathon runners fuelling on carbs do. You will feel shaky hypoglycaemic and rotten rather than the alert ketone fuelled creature you aspire to be.


(d128ee4a423c92522c2d) #5

This makes sense to me, thanks

I’ll try and keep this in mind because I keep thinking that if I reduce calories it will be a good thing, but if I’m not satiated it’s not. Thanks

I think this is where naysayers chime in and say the reason keto works is because of the caloric deficit. Thanks for the explanation


(Karim Wassef) #6

all weight loss works because of a caloric deficit. The deficit is the end-product, not the starting point.

It’s like saying that your car works because it has tires… yes, the tires are key to a car moving, but it’s not the driving force - just a necessary component.


(It's all about the bacon, baby) #7

No, it sounds too low. If you deliberately restrict your calorie count, you court the risk of slowing down your metabolism. The body has mechanisms to get us through times of famine, and one of them involves holding on to stored fat as a reserve. If you insist on eating to a caloric target, be sure your app is set to “maintenance,” not “loss.” But by far the simplest way to be sure you are eating enough is to eat when hungry, stop eating when no longer hungry, and not eat again until hungry again. That will give your body enough energy to feel safe increasing the metabolic rate and releasing excess stored fat. Eating less because you’re not hungry has a very different effect on the body from eating to a pre-determined target.

Our ancestors somehow managed to survive over the past two million years without even knowing what calories were, much less counting them, so it’s clearly not necessary. But do it, if it makes you feel more comfortable.