Kevin Hall Weight-loss Plateau Study


True, and then there’s the fact we were all (usually) bigger, therefor had higher TDEE’s, so eating satiating meals vs ones that drove hunger would have us in a deficit. We get smaller, RMR drops, we keep eating the same, and we work our our one time deficits into maintenance.

Then, there’s a ton of people who have seen Thyroid function drop after being in Ketosis forever, which I’m included in. Only noticed that after the fact when I kept hearing of Doc’s in the fitness space talking about it, including a couple that were once huge Keto proponents. Started going back through labs over the prior years and it was right there, dropping a little each one. Since going to my TKD/CKD Hybrid, Thyroid values are back where they were and it’s not much easier to lose and modest deficits.


I’m reading about all this in Jason Fung’s The Obesity Code right now! I just read last night about several studies comparing what happens with really high calorie diets that are low carb vs high carb as well as how exercise really doesn’t make a difference to the fat loss and why. How CICO is completely flawed. It’s amazing how different calories are processed/expended between the two diets, and what actually happens in the bodies of each. I have so much more to read still and need to take it slow to wrap my head around it all. I’m trying to understand better to unlock my own mystery of why I have a definite caloric window where I stop losing weight and start to gain. I’m determined to reconcile that with the wisdom about calories in this book.

(Alec) #23

I always laugh when I see people say that they have/are/will be eating “healthy choices”. What they usually mean is they are going to be eating lots of plants, loads of whole grains, and in extreme cases, loads of seed oils. None of which are healthy in any way whatsoever. They think they are doing the right thing because of what they’ve been told. Which is 100% plain wrong.

(Alec) #24

Spot on. And let’s talk about a few of the other reasons that CICO is just useless:

  1. We also have no real accuracy on what we are a consuming energy-wise. The bounds of accuracy are very wide.
  2. Calories are defined as how much heat energy is created when you burn an object (it could be food, it could be anything). We ain’t burning the food we put in our mouths, we are processing it chemically. Calories as a measurement of this is just inappropriate… eventually it will get dropped as the unit of measure of energy intake and expenditure in the human body because it just doesn’t work.
  3. As you have said, you have no control over how much energy your body spends. Added to this, a major factor is how much energy from the food we intake is actually converted for use in the body, and how much is moved out the other end. Anyone up for putting their poo in a BOM calorimeter? Thought not….

As Shinita said…. It just ain’t useful.

What fun…


Thanks to Alec, I didn’t miss that part in @VirginiaEdie’s comment this time…

Poor soul :cry: (Okay if he is fine with that but it would be horribly tragic for me.

But the healthiest choices are the highly palatable ones… Okay, it’s individual but I always am so baffled when they are considered very far away from each other. Many people act like bad food would be tasty and good food would be barely edible. I am a hedonist so I have a very strong compulsion to eat the most palatable food possible or very close (health is still my first priority and there are other things to consider but I would have at least temporal serious mental problems if I had to give up tasty things I like - and I am physically unable to eat food I really dislike, even in small amounts and I must love my food to eat it regularly) and I feel quite fortunate that the cheapest (while satiating, the ones leaving me hungrier don’t count), healthiest and tastiest food is about the same for me.
So I get it, we have different tastes but people usually like meat, dairy, eggs… At least some kind. Yes, many people consider them horribly unhealthy too but I really don’t know how they could arrive there, when I knew nothing about nutrition, they still seemed very normal, good food to me… Never had any doubt about that. Now I know that is something to appreciate as well.

We are humans. We have zillion ways to eat okay, we have so many options. It is highly unfortunate not to find anything nice among the options. It’s not sooo bad if we need to eat 9/10 food and avoid the 10/10 ones but when one looks at healthy food and see something not enjoyable… I can’t even imagine living like that. But I am a hedonist so if I had an unfortunate healthy diet where I wouldn’t like the food, I am sure I would just change my tastes subconsciously (as it’s pretty much impossible consciously). It never could be perfect but still, I could eat and health is the most important thing. But it’s an odd thing driven by my high level hedonism out of necessity. (And a theory only but with some extrapolation. My desires and tastes can change when I am very stubborn.)

Some people can use it as some approximation so it can be a tad useful for them I suppose. Not that much for others. But even if I know I should eat this much and I will slim down, it doesn’t help me at all with HOW to do that. So CICO is just the things happening but not really helpful. And extreme focus on some almost random fixed numbers can do plenty of bad. It’s the wrong thing to focus on (and it’s so inaccurate and we are not robots). I know I could slim down just fine eating sugary food if the amount would be little enough. But it’s not good, not healthy and not possible by my own will anyway. I should focus on very very low plant net carbs, apparently, tasty satiating protein sources, not eating when I don’t need… Those are smart rules for me and makes the macros fall into place on average even if I never could calculate them accurately. And those macros shouldn’t be the same every day, my needs change, my hunger changes… Going to bed hungry would just result in bad sleep and no energy and mood the next day to go out for my walk! And it’s horrible too.

Of course, I get it, people like simple things. Eating below N calories is simple. (May be impossibly hard but simple. Well, figuring out what to eat to minimalize suffering may be not simple but not everyone does that.)
Finding out near ideally healthy diet that even helps with our figure, it may be not easy, not quick and not simple. But I still consider that the right way to do things. Even if we stay fat, we probably get healthier if we manage to find what is really healthy for us.

Eating little is still key for many of us. We don’t need to handle numbers though. My SO slims down if he skips dinner. I probably would too but I don’t do the suffering :slight_smile: I do use tracking to get information (especially about what satiates and satisfy me well) but amount wise I just trying to eat as little as possible, it is a great attitude for me. Not for everyone, of course, normal people aren’t prone to serious overeating on any possible diet for them. I can’t undereat at all so that is no concern.

So I am all for the right, healthy method. Not numbers which may or may not have to do something with reality and forcing them may do more harm than good even if they aren’t very off. I do have a smallish calorie range target for myself and I am pretty sure that would work fine for fat-loss but it’s just the end result, not the method, not an inflexible goal and I would be the happiest if I wouldn’t have this range and I could just lose fat eating 2-3000 kcal a day. But I can’t, my last years showed that. I doubt I have interfering items when I don’t go off but I try to eat as little dairy as I comfortably can for other reasons so I do what I can in that front.

(Bob M) #26

Sorry, looks like I got some of the terminology wrong. DEE is the daily energy expenditure, including exercise. Here’s the relevant page:

You can see that the DEE is “constrained”, and this is based on physical studies.

Edit: BMR = basal metabolic rate, an estimate of how many calories you need just to live. Oddly (to me), it doesn’t change, meaning that the energy decrease comes from somewhere else.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #27
  1. Studies have also shown that the amount eaten in any given 24-hour period on an ad libitum diet bears no apparent relation to the amount of energy expended during that period. However, the correlation between the amounts eaten and expended over a 7- or 8-day period was “astonishingly precise.” Regardless of whether that is because expenditure rises to make use of increased intake or lowers to compensate for reduced intake.

Also, I’ve recently learned from recent on-line classes led by Professor Bikman that insulin lowers the metabolic rate, and increased insulin lowers it significantly more. The extremely fast metabolic rate in the absence of insulin is the reason that untreated Type I diabetics starve to death.

(icky) #28

What’s the Maria Emmerich diet? Is it possible to sum it up in 1 - 2 sentences?

(Bob M) #29

@sugar-addict It’s a high protein, lower calorie, lower fat diet. With some days of high protein, very low calories. (So called PSMF, protein-sparing modified fasts.) 1-2 days of PSMF per week. My wife got to her lowest weight in a long time using this diet. I find it a bit too low calorie for me.

But I don’t want to discourage people from restricting “calories” if you think that’s useful. There are/have been people on here who believe that controlling “calories” is critical. Who I am I to say that’s not true?

(Edith) #30

You did say you would give update on how the diet is working for you, so…. How’s it going?

(Bob M) #31

Sorry. It is both okay and not okay, and we’ve had limited time to do it this week.

Update #1: Following her food amounts for someone using only my sex (male) and height (5’8"), I was starving. Had to increase calories. She does include more exact numbers if you go through something of hers, but I had no time to do that.

Update #2: I do like her high protein/lower fat puddings. She also rotates some higher fat days in, with corresponding more calories.

Update #3: I’m at my lowest weight since when I was fasting a ton. I’m also a lot stronger than I was then. I can fit into all my 34s, even my “thin” ones from back when I was fasting a ton. My belts are getting too big. I wanted to tighten the belt I had on yesterday to another hole, but I didn’t have a hole to go to. The belt I currently have on is at its limit. Down 2 belt holes from where I started with this belt.

Update #4: We had Mother’s Day this weekend, and before that, our 18th anniversary, and both kids are inundated with stuff to do (one is in the play for the school, 5 or 6 shows this week and a concert last night; the other has dance recital this Sunday with tons of practice this week. My wife had to have a colonoscopy (her dad died of colon cancer). Having a hard time cooking everything because there’s a lot of cooking involved.

Update #5: On this diet, you tend to cook things the night before or when you need them. That goes against my philosophy, which is that I like to have all my lunches (first meals) done on Sunday. And for the protein puddings, you only get 2 servings for one recipe, although we usually split into 2 larger and 2 smaller. But that means to get any meaningful weekly amount, you’re in the kitchen a while making multiple sets of the same recipe.

Update #6: I can’t tell if I like a lot of eggs or not.

Update #7: I miss beef. There’s too much lean chicken, egg whites, not enough beef.

Update #8: This weekend will be brutal – one kid has multiple shows; the other kid has a dance recital starting immediately after the first child’s play is over. No time to make anything.

Update #9: For the PSMF days, I usually eat one meal. Eating 2 meals of not much is harder, I think.

Update #10: What I’d like to do is continue the lower calorie, higher protein and PSMF for a while, but then add some higher fat days (particularly with butter/animal fat/dairy) in. Not sure whether that’s a day, a weekend, a week…

Update #11: Due to various circumstances, I’ve dropped from 5 days a week of workouts to only 3-4. And dropped the number of body weight workouts down. Trying to get 2 days/week of jogging with the pup if I can. But sometimes that means fewer body weight workouts. This affects when I do the PSMFs, as I do those on the days I don’t work out.

Anyway, those are my updates.


Oh thanks it was interesting. Can’t just do it with whatever you want, keeping the high protein, low fat? Beef can be lean enough… I already find the starvation level calories impossible and more harm than not but it’s me - but all those unnecessary extra rules? They just make people liking variety, convenience and having a different taste or workings (chicken makes me hungry and eggs aren’t THAT good either) quit.
I am always all for making our own rules for our individual bodies. We can try out things looking good, using them as a starting point but if we miss some very okay item, why not to add it? And eating meat and eggs shouldn’t involve much cooking. I suppose the work goes to make the horribly lean ingredients palatable? And that works better than simple ones…? Surely there are people where it’s true, I am too different so I can’t imagine it.

So it’s REQUIRED, actually? If not, it wouldn’t go against it. And why? I cook whenever I want… Usually right before I jump my food, that is the best but I do love I don’t need to cook for myself every day… At least not my main meal. I thought it’s about the protein and fat amount though I knew about the egg whites. I have my leanest times right now and I use extra egg whites but they are for the dishes where it works for me. And they help little, eating a lot of protein is easiest with meat. Maybe quark but PSMF is so super lean that maybe even that is too much for it.

I stay interested, it’s a bit like raw veganism, very much not for me but it’s interesting to see what others do with it and I can pick up recipes in very rare cases.

Definitely true for many of us. I wouldn’t even think about using more meals, I use one even for fat fast days and fat doesn’t make me hungry near as much as protein does when my meal is tiny. Of course it’s individual. When do you eat that meal? I would try to fast for as long as possible to avoid the worst hunger at bedtime (I would probably fail. I would try if I could but I am amazed I eat 60% fat or a bit below now, it’s already super low, I start to crave fat at this point as I don’t eat many calories either. it’s not the calories, it’s the fat grams)…

(Edith) #33

I’ve been doing a lot more resistance training and I guess you could say reverse dieting. When I get done with the 12 week program, I am going to want to do a cut. I’m thinking about trying to do a PSMF. I may try Maria’s concepts, as in the macros she uses, but use my own foods.