Hi Paul, seems then like your body is recovering. The body has an amazing ability to heal if given enough time, but as we grow older it rather ceases to bounce back and instead we learn how to be more kind to it, more forgiving and patient. I think that is also the lessening and mellowing of the ego as we age, and we no longer think we have super powers, lol. I know about fatigue, as I experience it daily due to Tamoxifen. It is like the very air can weigh you down, certainly you feel more than just grounded, your limbs heavy and every exertion zapping ever more energy from you. Of course, when you do some physical exercise you feel really good. But then afterwards, even more tired, with those reserves and limited stamina used up. So I’ve learned to be kind and forgiving to myself. Encouraging pep-talks. And to live in the moment. Fresh air is vital as we are simply not meant to be cooped up too much indoors. Fresh air, some sunshine, a positive mind and some pleasant exercise. In my own humble opinion it is all it takes alongside a healthy WOE to be healthy. We can only do what we can do with what we’ve been given. Wishing you continued recovery.
Hi Bob, thanks for the article. Both those diets were actually high carb, but I can well believe that by increasing one’s protein intake one would be more likely to gain lean muscle. As without protein the body lacks vital building blocks, and I imagine there would instead be quite a bit of muscle wasting. This is encouraging to me as I have both fatigue and muscle weakness, and would love it if this improved over time. I imagine I eat a moderate amount of protein, I eat quite a bit of meat, various cuts, and eggs daily, but I would still say I eat more fat than protein, and follow my appetite, aka stop eating when I reach satiety. It’ll be interesting to see if my body will transform and put on some lean muscle over time.
The dietary guideline for protein intake is 0.8 g/kg of lean body mass/day. This is the minimum replacement amount for the nitrogen lost daily to various bodily processes (the human body can utilise only the nitrogen found in amino acids, which means we require a certain amount of protein daily; this is apart from the issue of the essential amino acids, which the body cannot make from other amino acids).
At any rate, the government recommendation is a bare minimum for most people and won’t even be adequate for certain people. The main keto recommendation for protein intake is 1.0-1.5 g/kg, and some experts recommend even as much as 2.0 g/kg. There are some people in the keto world who claim it is impossible to eat too much protein, while others are concerned that an excessive amount of protein can inhibit ketogenesis. You may find yourself happier with proportionally more or less protein in your diet; you’ll have to experiment to find what works.
Two things to bear in mind: First, when people talk about the percentage of protein in the diet, they are talking about percentages of total calories. Because protein is 4 cal/g and fat is 9 cal/g (approximations, but close enough for nutrition work), equal amounts of protein and fat by weight are 31% protein and 69% fat by caloric count.
Second, meat is roughly 1/4 protein, fish slightly less. So if I want to be sure I’m getting 100 g protein a day, I need to be eating 400 g (14 oz.) of meat, and somewhat more than that of fish.
The net effect of protein on insulin secretion is less significant on a low-carb diet, much more significant on a high-carb diet. This has to do with the secretion of glucagon by the pancreas. Glucagon is secreted by the α-cells in the Islets of Langerhans; insulin by the β-cells. The ratio of insulin to glucagon regulates the metabolic milieu of the body and either stimulates or inhibits ketogenesis in the liver.
One reason I stopped using the scale was because there were multiple times the scale did not move, but I would get some other indication (smaller size belt hole or smaller pants). Something was happening.
Though I exercise, as I have always exercised even while gaining 90 pounds, so that might have done something.
Oh, I’m sure it’s for real. Good for you!!! One of the many benefits of keto. Sounds like you are eating very clean.
Hi Marianne, yes I am eating clean, albeit including dairy on my WOE. My staples are cream, cheese, any cut of meat I like, fish and eggs. As well as a small handful of almonds in the morning and occasionally some broccoli to accompany my meat, usually on the weekend when we do our big roasts. I love coffee with cream, green tea and camomile tea. I don’t really do any exercise besides my 40min morning walks.
You should measure your biceps, wrists, waist, hips, thighs, knees, calves and ankles every month and record the numbers. If you’re losing fat but gaining muscle, non-muscular spots (wrist, knee, ankle, and sorta waist (there are important muscles there, but they’re pretty flat and you have to be a crunch monster to make them visibly bigger)) should shrink while the other places that contain big muscles grow or stay the same.
You could also get repeated DEXA scans, but a cloth tape measure is MUCH cheaper. OTOH, it doesn’t give you a nice number for “visceral fat.”
Hi BuckRimfire, thanks for the tip. I hadn’t thought to measure all those different areas. My top half is pretty small, my wrists, arms and waist small as well, but because of my lipoedema affected lower limb shape, my bottom half looks bigger. But you would probably look at my overall shape and think, there’s hardly any muscle there. I have daily fatigue and muscle weakness. So I’m not sure therefore if I am gaining muscle, but my body does appear to be going through a kind of recomposition nevertheless. This is for life for me, this WOE, as in keto I have found much relief for my condition. I like to think it is a healing process and a kind of rebuild of battered cells, finally allowing respite from damage and inflammation and it certainly does seem that way so far.
For me, this would resolve down to my waist. and maybe hips. My wrists, thighs, knees, calves, ankles have basically zero fat. I can see all 4 heads of my quadriceps for my thighs Not as good was when I was younger, but fine. All of my fat is in my belly. (Maybe not technically all, but so much that the fat elsewhere is very low.)
As an example, I can pinch very little fat on my thighs, but can still grab handfuls on my belly.
Hi Bob, as far as I am aware men tend to store most of their fat on their belly, and so it’s the last place perhaps for you to go. My SO’s fat is predominantly in that place too. While women, unless apple shape, tend to store their fat more around their hips. Though my own stubborn place of fat is on and around my knees, my calves and ankles due to the lipoedema.
It seems we all have our stubborn areas, but perhaps going beneath a certain percentage of body fat isn’t even all that healthy? It would be interesting to read some studies on that. I think the idea of recomposition, however, is so promising, in that rather than one just achieving weightloss which could be seen both healthy and not so healthy, there seems much more purpose to the recomposition, like the body finally healing itself and rebuilding because it’s been given the right building blocks.
I am the same… most of my excess fat has now gone from most of my body, but I still have a tummy with lots of fat left… hoping that carnivore will deal with that in the coming months… it’s dealt with everything else!
I can ALMOST guarantee you’ll get there over time, especially as carnivore.
I am right there too, it is mostly my belly, love handles and upper thighs.
Well of course many of us do that. Main thing we eat enough protein (and not too much but many of us can’t do that. I can overeat protein and do it almost all the time but it’s not unhealthy, I stop before that, just unnecessary and costly). Someone with a high energy need should typically depend on fat more. We can’t just eat 500g protein or something.
My body definitely doesn’t make my muscles bigger only because of my protein intake and my more or less half-assed workouts, walks obviously does nothing like that to me, I don’t even understand how that exactly works (when it’s significant, not just not losing weight while becoming a tad thinner) but I want a properly muscular body (i.e. as much muscle as I can naturally and being a 46 years old woman who is even lazy… but I like muscles and my workouts when I am in a good mood for it so there is hope) so I can’t avoid proper strength train anyway
Lots of women are like this too, me included… I have too much extra fat not to have other fatty areas (especially hips) but my belly is the worst by far. I don’t say there is the most fat by volume, IDK but it’s the worst looking due to the rolls there.
Of course it’s not healthy to go too low bodyfat… Especially women need a decent amount of bodyfat, not like men could keep a super low one for long…
Hi Shinita, I am far from an expert, just someone voicing my opinion, but perhaps the way we store our fat and where changes as we age, and we begin to approach menopause. I do feel women have a bit of a disadvantage when it comes to both losing weight and building muscle as so much is controlled by our hormones, and for a woman, to go much below a certain percentage of body fat would have more dire consequences than for a man. Women of child bearing age tend to store the fat on their hips more because of estrogen, in preparation for birth, I imagine. When I was pregnant with my first child at 32 I put on 20kg and a lot of that certainly went to my hips. When I was pregnant with my second child at 34 I put on about 10kg, again mostly on my hips, as once I’d given birth my stomach became very soon flat again. It took perhaps a few days to a couple of weeks. The fat from the hips were much harder to shed and took me 6 months.
Now, however, nearing 40 years of age, and after childbirth, and on Tamoxifen which is essentially an estrogen blocker, my stomach is not flat like how it used to. It has a bit of softness. You wouldn’t see it if I was clothed, but I can feel how much softer it is as apposed to when I was young. And I imagine this will be a place my body might be wanting to store fat once I hit menopause. Though hopefully keto will prevent any from actually getting there. But I think as we age we have to accept we can’t get our bodies to look like when we were young. Though I’d certainly want to be putting on some lean muscle, and to keep my bones strong, would be the priority.
Some things change but I definitely want way more muscles and way more fat than when I was young… I always was fat, after all. And of course, if I control my food intake, I control these things. I never wanted unrealistic things, I just wanna lose my extra ~40lbs and if I really put in some serious effort, it obviously will happen. I don’t think I ever had anything between me and an okay body composition beyond overeating and laziness. Mostly the former.
But I am still healthy and I have way more important goals (though if I get a weeeeee bit healthier, that’s good. 40lbs fat is still a burden even if it’s little and hardly affect my health significantly). I just want this too
Veronica, my mom called it her little pooch. She was very tiny and skinny her life. But as she aged, she got a little soft below her waist and indeed had a little pooch. I think it’s pretty common.
Somehow I wonder if gravity isn’t part of the equation too. Tummy fat heading south. Having babies probably plays a role too. Oh, who knows. And really, who cares. If we can’t change it, we might as well embrace it.
Hi Robin, I’m not really bothered about the softness, what your mom referred to as pooch. I find, in the morning my stomach is really flat, but then throughout the day as I eat and drink and my stomach then expands, the softness is more noticable. However, in a dress or skirt it is not really noticable, well perhaps a bit when I’m sitting down.
Yeah that’s perfectly normal, of course this happens. My SO experience the same. I obviously never had it as I always had a fat belly as I mentioned but I will LOVE only have a rounder belly later in the day if I ever reach that…
You are very thin, I definitely don’t want that, it would be impossible for me, I am sure one need to born that way… My anchestors (the ones I know about) had good genes and an okay lifestyle as far as I know, they weren’t obese but they definitely weren’t slim either.
I mostly want to be healthy and somewhat active all my life. That is what really matters.
Hi Shinita. I absolutely agree that that’s what matters. Staying healthy and strong. My daily mantra is a little is better than nothing, so it’s just my 40 min morning walks for now. But I am thinking of increasing the duration during the summer. I would love to walk in the beautiful landscape you have nearby you. Your mountains.
People do say I look slim. Weightloss was never why I embarked on keto, but to combat the lipoedema condition. The lady at the lymphedema center assessing me for it told me my slimness only emphasised my lipoedema more, at least when wearing trousers and a top. Which is why I live in dresses and skirts, as they hide it well.
What the ketogenic WOE has done for me already (a blessing) it took away the lipoedema-associated pain. I have been and still am experiencing great relief from my condition, even though my lower leg shape is still the same. Perhaps it won’t change even with keto, but the improved mobility and lack of pain is still a major improvement. Now everytime I find myself becoming critical of my legs, I remind myself I have legs, mobility, fresh air and my beautiful countryside walks to enjoy each day, and so I continue to feel hopeful and grateful. I am also so grateful I discovered Keto. I believe there is more healing in this WOE for me than just keeping the lipoedema in check. I believe it may be possible for me to stop taking Tamoxifen in another three years (having completed 2 years already) because of keto.