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Insanity? Diets with Fewer Veggies & Fruits


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Is there any long term diets that don't weigh in heavily (pun intended) with servings of fruits/vegetables in abundance? I've done and succeeded on WW but it's too slow going. (yes, yes slow is best but SHHH I don't want to hear it.)

I'm looking for a long term diet that doesn't involve eating like a rabbit! I really have a strong dislike/aversion to most green vegetables and no, I can't change. If I'm not allergic to the fruit/veggie, it's usually one that a dietitian says is high in starch or sugar and can't be eaten in larger quantities. (Peas, carrots etc..) But I would like to find a strategy that works long-term, it only seems that portion control is the only answer but maybe someone out there knows of other diets that might work?! Maybe something new, different I've not heard of yet.

Please be kind I may be feeling fragile in this category lately! (grin/lol) THANKS!

Stacey C-Anonymouze@aol.com

*Censorship ends in logical completeness when nobody is allowed to read any books except the books that nobody reads!-G. B. SHAW

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I'm looking for a long term diet that doesn't involve eating like a rabbit!  I really have a strong dislike/aversion to most green vegetables and no, I can't change.  If I'm not allergic to the fruit/veggie, it's usually one that a dietitian says is high in starch or sugar and can't be eaten in larger quantities. (Peas, carrots etc..)  But I would like to find a strategy that works long-term, it only seems that portion control is the only answer but maybe someone out there knows of other diets that might work?!  Maybe something new, different I've not heard of yet.

Hey Stacy - I'm your foodsoulmate and have tried them all. Portion control is *almost* everything. WW is NOT slow-going if I may say so. You can lose many pounds on WW in six months - say 52. But if you walk everyday (or 5 times per week) or whatever gets your heart up to an aerobic level you can get it up to 65-70 pounds lost in the same 6 months, improving your CV system to boot.

Weight Watchers is misleading (last time I checked) in that it says you can eat anything you want, just not as much as the good-for-you stuff. You just basically have to adapt your food preferences to those with more nutrition per calorie.

You know that when you eat fiber-laden foods, then you can tolerate more calories. When you eat fat-laden foods, then you tolerate less. There is no magic bullet. I still think WW is the best system around, especially if you become active in the online stuff and really learn about food relationships.

One last note: I always hated tofu. But now I love it. Thanks to marination and baking, tofu is a perfect source of the macronutrients. There is a great thread here which explains how to make it so you don't have to spend a fortune at your locan health food store.....

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Thanks John!

I do exercise one or two times a week depending on how I feel healthwise for 1 hour in the pool doing various reps designated by my PT. Yes the answer is always the same on most diets less calories/intake and more exercise than you are accustomed to but sometimes there are special circumstances when you can't really exercise more (health-issues/problems)... I've lost 19.75 pounds in 20 days on WW then after a month or two I give up again. I really do feel that they are the best for us folks who eat "on the go" and don't feel or want to cook.

Stacey C-Anonymouze@aol.com

*Censorship ends in logical completeness when nobody is allowed to read any books except the books that nobody reads!-G. B. SHAW

JUST say NO... to CENSORSHIP*!

Also member of LinkedIn, Erexchange and DonRockwell.

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I've tried all kinds of "diets", and I regret to report that while I dropped a lot of weight fast on the various high-protein/low-carb (ie low veggies) diets, both the fast weight loss and the high protein did seriously bad things to my health. Specifically, in my case they took my inherited predisposition to gout, and turned it into full-fledged and very painful gout.

I realize you said you didn't want to hear such things, but from my experience I would be very irresponsible if I didn't offer a word of caution about any kind of weight-loss plan that goes any faster than a two-pound-a-week weight loss. Any faster than that, and a person does stand a significant risk of touching off any number of health conditions (kidney stones is another such risk). Faster weight loss than this is just really really rough on the kidneys, and IMO should only be done with a doctor's close supervision. (For instance, I understand that Optifast participants are required to have their blood and other factors checked every two weeks to make sure this super-fast weight loss regimen isn't causing any complications).

As to the veggies issue: after many years of dieting, I too had gotten a certain attitude about vegetables--not in general, because I do like many veggies, but I definitely had a kind of aversion going on for green leafy salads, celery sticks, and a lot of the other typical "diet-friendly" vegetables often thrust on the desperate dieter. I had come to view them as penance-foods for the repentant fat person, and way boring to boot. Plus I was (still am) a really devoted fan of animal protein, and both my gout and my need to lose weight was breaking my heart over having to cut down on meat.

Now, I came up with various strategies to address this that work for me--no guarantees that they would appeal to anyone else, but here they are for what they're worth:

1--I realized that if I hated leafy green salads and celery so damn much, I jolly well didn't have to eat them! I instead choose vegetables that have some substance to them.

2--I concentrated on various preparation strategies to bring out the more "meatlike" qualities of vegetables, such as a denser or even chewy mouthfeel, and that savory qualitiy well-summarized by the concept "umami". Things that help with this: roasting, grilling, browning, caramelizing, and other deep-flavor cooking techniques; adding "umami" through combining with naturally glutamate-rich vegetabless such as mushrooms, tomatoes, and kombu seaweed; seasonings such as soy sauce that majorly up the savory factor; using lots of meat-based broths and stocks to add flavor punch.

3--Instead of making meat the main event of a meal, I tend to use meat as a condiment/flavoring to imbue vegetables with meaty flavor.

4--I tend to avoid traditionally "diet-friendly" techniques such as steaming vegetables, as being really boring, adding minimal flavor and making some vegetables unpleasantly watery no matter how carefully you watch them.

Above all, I have almost completely banished the word "diet" from my vocabulary. What I am doing now is not a "diet" that I'll be on for a short while solely to lose weight; it is a sustainable health regimen for the duration, which right now happens to have a weight loss component, but which will not change substantially once I hit my goal. And my goal is in fact not defined by a "goal weight", but in terms of functional qualities such as being able to walk with minimal to no pain. While it's nice for me to know that I've lost over 37 pounds since January, I am doing my best to avoid excessive focus on that number on the scale--in fact, I don't even own a bathroom scale; I weigh myself weekly at my HMO when I go in for my weight-management support group. And I'm finding that, even in the weeks I don't lose much of anything, I am still ahead because my general health condition is getting better simply because I am eating healthily and exercising.

I do have my own challenges in exercising, due to joint pain from arthritis and a seriously cranky knee. I have been able to come up with work-arounds with the aid of folks at my HMO (like exercise videos of routines all designed to be performed while seated in a chair). I also aim my exercise sights way low--in my book, even walking around a supermarket instead of using the store's electric scooter for disabled customers counts as exercise. :smile:

Anyway, that's my two cents' worth. If you're interested in more about my weight-management process, strategies, and work-arounds, I invite you to click the link in my sig for my blog on the subject.

Edited by mizducky (log)
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I know this isn't what you want to hear, but slow and steady is the only way to lose weight healthfully. When I was on Weight Watchers back in the day, I lost weight extremely fast, mainly because I always, always ate under my point range for the day. If I got 20 points, I would eat 17, no more. Some days I would push myself and eat as few as 10. I essentially starved myself, and as soon as I got skinny and started eating normally again the weight surged back on with a vengence. Now my metabolism is shot all to hell, and it is much harder for me to lose weight.

On South Beach, you do get a lot more food than WW, but you also have to eat a lot of veggies so it may not be for you. Also, I know you say you don't really like veggies, but have you tried a bunch of different variations? What about spagetti squash mixed with marinara sauce? totally veggie, but really tasty. It's all about experimentation and finding what you DO like. No one is telling you that you have to eat nothing but raw celery and kale to get your veggies. Yuk! There are lots of good things to do with vegetables.

-Sounds awfully rich!

-It is! That's why I serve it with ice cream to cut the sweetness!

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Y'know, on reflection, maybe it would be worth your while to look into Optifast. It is admittedly rather spendy. But it is definitely fast, and like I said, they supervise your progress closely so as to nip any weird side-effects in the bud. Plus depending on the version of the program you choose, you'll either be totally on their pre-formulated shakes, or on the shakes plus a single light meal daily, so there's definitely a decrease in cooking, and in produce consumption, while in the weight-loss phase.

Mind you, once you reach your goal weight, you will need to learn all the balanced healthy-eating/portion-control things in order to maintain your weight loss (i.e. if you just go back to your previous way of eating, all the weight will come back, and rather more quickly than you can imagine). But the Optifast program does include a maintenance follow-up training to ease you into that. Anyway, just a thought.

Edited by mizducky (log)
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One last note:  I always hated tofu.  But now I love it.  Thanks to marination and baking, tofu is a perfect source of the macronutrients.  There is a great thread here which explains how to make it so you don't have to spend a fortune at your locan health food store.....

I don't know where Anonymouze lives, but if she is in a large city with a Japanese or Korean population of any size, she should be able to find ready-made tofu without having to spend a fortune on it.

At most of the Asian supermarkets in and around Philadelphia, one can find dirt cheap, perfectly good tofu. I just snagged a pound of firm tofu from a Reading Terminal Market produce vendor (Korean) for 99 cents.

The way my college's food service prepared tofu scarred me deeply, and I avoided it for a couple of decades afterwards. I now find it a valuable addition to my menu repertoire, even though I remain a carnivore at heart.

Ellen's techniques for preparing vegetables are worth considering, and mushrooms are a good flavoring agent to have on hand. BTW, Ellen, wish me luck: I've started spending my lunch hours working out at Widener's Wellness Center. I'm hoping that this will enable me to shed my spare tire without having to make drastic alterations in my eating habits.

Sandy Smith, Exile on Oxford Circle, Philadelphia

"95% of success in life is showing up." --Woody Allen

My foodblogs: 1 | 2 | 3

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...

Ellen's techniques for preparing vegetables are worth considering, and mushrooms are a good flavoring agent to have on hand.  BTW, Ellen, wish me luck: I've started spending my lunch hours working out at Widener's Wellness Center.  I'm hoping that this will enable me to shed my spare tire without having to make drastic alterations in my eating habits.

I agree; one nice place to start might be the roasted cauliflower thread here on egullet. I've made that as a pasta dish for a mixed dinner of carnivores and vegetarians and everyone was very happy. The dish has a rich, meaty flavor from the roasted onions and cauliflower. Sometimes I add in some roasted peppers as well.

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

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I'm looking for a long term diet that doesn't involve eating like a rabbit!  I really have a strong dislike/aversion to most green vegetables and no, I can't change.  If I'm not allergic to the fruit/veggie, it's usually one that a dietitian says is high in starch or sugar and can't be eaten in larger quantities. (Peas, carrots etc..) 

Please believe that I am not writing out of a desire to change you, judge or proselytize. Nonetheless, I am extremely curious about the reasons why people do not eat vegetables and why they don't like them. I have my own aversions to things others here at eGullet adore, so I understand. I hope you can trust that and would be willing to answer a few questions.

I am writing specifically to you, Anonymouze, because you began this thread. However, I would be interested in responses from others if they identify with the sentiments expressed in the original post. You don't have to answer each of the following questions if you prefer to respond to the general issues they raise. Thank you.

1) What kinds of vegetables did your family serve you when you were growing up?

2) Which ones were canned? Frozen? Fresh?

3) How were they prepared?

4) Of the ones you mention, rank them either as 1) LOATHE :angry:; 2) HO HUM :hmmm: tolerable, but could do without; 3) LIKE/ENJOY/LOVE even if it is a vegetable :smile:. A short explanation of a few of these reactions would be interesting.

5) Did your family like vegetables? Did they make you eat them or....? What did they say?

6) Give an example of a typical weekday meal at home.

Feel free to elaborate, whether providing more than one example, or addressing whether you ate the same kinds of meals--and vegetables--all year long, or if meals changed with each new season.

7) When you left home, during those first four years or so on your own when you could make your own choices, how did you eat compared to the way you ate when your family fed you? Keep the theme of vegetables in mind.

8) What about now?

9) You specify a particular aversion to green vegetables. Why?

You also say you dislike "most" green vegetables. Which ones are okay...and why?

10) Finally, would you be willing to tell us more about the way your allergies were determined and how your body reacts to produce it cannot tolerate? Are you allergic to anything else, such as nuts, dairy...?

Thank you.

Edited by Pontormo (log)

"Viciousness in the kitchen.

The potatoes hiss." --Sylvia Plath

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Pontormo -

1) What kinds of vegetables did your family serve you when you were growing up?

Anything I would eat... I limited myself to 4 - "DelMonte Carrots" in a can!, Corn any style, type would do. Potatoes, any style, type would do. Tomatoes in only the form of Ketchup or Tomato sauce (in small doses!).

2) Which ones were canned? Frozen? Fresh? (see #1)

3) How were they prepared? (see #1)

4) Of the ones you mention, rank them either as 1) LOATHE angry.gif; 2) HO HUM dry.gif tolerable, but could do without; 3) LIKE/ENJOY/LOVE even if it is a vegetable smile.gif. A short explanation of a few of these reactions would be interesting.

ALL other vegetables I loathed the smell, taste or texture.

5) Did your family like vegetables? Did they make you eat them or....? What did they say?

Everyone ate everything except ME, I didn't.

6) Give an example of a typical weekday meal at home.

Brady bunch dine at the table meal, except me, I am "me". :-) (I was an obstinant child)

Feel free to elaborate, whether providing more than one example, or addressing whether you ate the same kinds of meals--and vegetables--all year long, or if meals changed with each new season.

7) When you left home, during those first four years or so on your own when you could make your own choices, how did you eat compared to the way you ate when your family fed you? Keep the theme of vegetables in mind.

I learned to like Iceberg Lettuce, Lima beans, string beans (if thin and w/garlic soy etc), peas, carrots any style if cooked - allergies..., all cooked peppers, shallots, garlic, onions.

8) What about now?

See #7.

9) You specify a particular aversion to green vegetables. Why?

I am a "supertaster"? I've been told that is why - something about *See Wiki: being a supertaster is not without some risk. A tendency to dislike certain generally beneficial foods such as green vegetables and grapefruit can make supertasters face additional risk for the conditions these foods prevent. On the positive side, however, supertasters generally do not enjoy alcohol or coffee. I do not like anything bitter, or peppery or anything that smells or tastes "grassy" (I have a strong dislike for brussel sprouts, broccoli smells also asparagus and any lettuce EXCEPT Iceberg lettuce or Boston/Butter Lettuce!) I am allergic to some vegetables if not well cooked such as eggplant and more recently I DO like Spinach "indian or pakora style". But I HATE coffee and the smell - ALOT!

You also say you dislike "most" green vegetables. Which ones are okay...and why?

(See #9)

10) Finally, would you be willing to tell us more about the way your allergies were determined and how your body reacts to produce it cannot tolerate? Are you allergic to anything else, such as nuts, dairy...?

Allergic to Milk/Dairy, Raw Fruits/Veggies - some!, Strawberry allergies cause me severe distress in many ways as does raw Tomatoes.

I think I covered it ! :-) What do you think?! :laugh:

Stacey C-Anonymouze@aol.com

*Censorship ends in logical completeness when nobody is allowed to read any books except the books that nobody reads!-G. B. SHAW

JUST say NO... to CENSORSHIP*!

Also member of LinkedIn, Erexchange and DonRockwell.

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I am a "supertaster"? I've been told that is why - something about *See Wiki: being a supertaster is not without some risk. A tendency to dislike certain generally beneficial foods such as green vegetables and grapefruit can make supertasters face additional risk for the conditions these foods prevent. On the positive side, however, supertasters generally do not enjoy alcohol or coffee.  I do not like anything bitter, or peppery or anything that smells or tastes "grassy" (I have a strong dislike for brussel sprouts, broccoli smells also asparagus and any lettuce EXCEPT Iceberg lettuce or Boston/Butter Lettuce!)  I am allergic to some vegetables if not well cooked such as eggplant and more recently I DO like Spinach "indian or pakora style".  But I HATE coffee and the smell - ALOT!

Wow, that's pretty fascinating. (If challenging to deal with ... )

You know, you might be best advised to find a nutritionist and/or alternative care practitioner you really trust, to help you work up a diet that works around this condition and also makes sure you're adequately covering required nutrients, because this is beginning to sound just a tad too complex to just go at with an off-the-shelf weight-loss plan. Don't want to have you coming down with scurvy or anything ... :smile:

Or perhaps the Optifast thing might really suit you well.

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Stacey: I am sorry I overlooked the fact that you answered all these questions in such a good-natured fashion.

I was hoping there might be something in the way your family incorporated vegetables into meals and the way they were prepared that offered clues. However, it sounds as if they were valiant and tried much more than you could bear without being overbearing themselves.

Often we refuse foods when very little as a way to assert our individuality or powers to control, and then, when newly independent, either mimic our family's traditions or rebel utterly against them before gradually developing our own ways with food. Many eaters shy away from the unfamiliar and are reluctant to try new foods, a tendancy that is difficult to overcome especially if they were not exposed to many new things in childhood, or if their families treated their reluctance in a way that made a lasting, unpleasant impression. (Please excuse the simplistic nature of such pop psychology. Not exactly news, I'm sure.)

However, you're well past these points and nothing you've divulged suggests a pattern. I can understand why something as bitter as certain types of broccoli or as pronounced in flavor as asparagus would be as off-putting to you as they are to others. Some vegetables are pungent. However, a tolerance for iceberg and butterleaf lettuces and aversion to other leafy greens does have me baffled.

For me, the fact that vegetarianism became a fad during my years in college was a source of salvation, that, and exposure to market streets abroad just before the explosion of farmers' markets here in the States. I always loved fruit, but was raised on canned LeSeur peas, frozen French-cut string beans, and pale mealy tomatoes that came in miniature green plastic "crates" wrapped in cellophane, a pattern broken only by corn, tomatoes and cucumbers from roadside stands during the summer. The hippy-dippy paperbacks my friends and I bought while living off-campus may have gone overboard on the cheese, but they introduced us to new ways to feature fresh vegetables and made us receptive to later trends. I thought there might be something similarly broadening that could be applied to your situation.

I do hope you find a medical professional who can help you. Nutrionists seem to offer little in the way of tempting incentives to eat the produce you shun. Other food groups are indeed more fattening as you have been told. The only other options I can think of have been eloquently stated by Miz Ducky, especially when it comes to the virtues of Asian dishes that incorporate vegetables, but also include nuts, meat and grains. They might help you become accustomed to eating certain vegetables when sauced and cut into little bits.

You also might try listing all the foods you do enjoy and see if they are all bland or if they say something about the flavors a Supertaster finds appealing that might carry over to produce. I realize that your goal is to lose weight and not to appreciate vegetables, though.

"Viciousness in the kitchen.

The potatoes hiss." --Sylvia Plath

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I know you may laugh... but I don't like things like Milkshakes so Optifast and Slimfast n stuff are out. ::sigh:: Maybe, just maybe one day I'll find a "doable" diet before I die "fat & happy". :blink: (And no to those who suggest surgery)

Stacey C-Anonymouze@aol.com

*Censorship ends in logical completeness when nobody is allowed to read any books except the books that nobody reads!-G. B. SHAW

JUST say NO... to CENSORSHIP*!

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Frankly, the ideas of health foods in our culture are horrible. I've never been able to lose weight in America because we have this idea that we have to give up flavor or eat "empty" foods to be healthy.

My two-plus years in Korea have dropped my weight dramatically, and I didn't even realize it. I've been out enjoying good Korean and Japanese food daily. Then a friend who hadn't seen me in a while dropped his jaw.

"Joe, you really lost some weight."

I'm still fatter than most Koreans, but dang, I was gettin' huge before I came here.

And it's what's nutritionists always preach. I didn't diet. I just went through a lifestyle change -- even though it was forced on me by living in a country with scant non-Asian cuisine (Gawd, do I miss tacos).

Korean cuisine uses a lot of rice, barley, and vegetables and keeps meat in a respectable balance. I can eat meals and not even notice that the meat is not the center of the dish.

I grew up with the tradition of the big slab of meat as the center of the meal, flanked by little side dishes. That idea is way off balance when you think of basic common sense nutrition. These days I see the big meat in the center as an overgrown cyst on the meal. It throws it off the balance and makes me ill.

But that's what two years of eating Korean will do to you.

<a href='http://www.zenkimchi.com/FoodJournal' target='_blank'>ZenKimchi Korean Food Journal</a> - The longest running Korean food blog

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i think what you are looking for is a ketogenic diet.

things like fruits and vegies are verboten. as is any other carb - the closest to a true keto diet is Atkins.

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i think what you are looking for is a ketogenic diet.

things like fruits and vegies are verboten.  as is any other carb - the closest to a true keto diet is Atkins.

Really? All the bodybuilding keto diets I've seen/tried have involved plenty of fibrous veggies. It's starchy or sugary vegetables, and fruit, that are left out. The thing is, they darn near have to. If you go low-carb and DON'T eat fibrous vegetables then most people get to a point at which they need a bulldozer to have a bowel movement. (And fibre supplements, I can tell you from hard experience, don't cut it.)

You don't have to eat vegetables to diet; it just makes it easier, which is why most plans include them. Large portions of bulky, more-or-less calorically impact-free vegetables are the only things that allow most people to suffer the pain of reduced calories and portions, is all. But if you're willing to suffer real, physical gnawing emptiness as well as actual caloric shortfall, there's no reason you need to chow down on celery and cucumber.

Drink lots of water.

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compassrose - you make a good point. I guess i just don't count fibrous veggies as food. *lol*

altho i have seen BB'ers that are so paro about any carbohydrate that they just rely on flax seed for the plumbing.

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compassrose - you make a good point.  I guess i just don't count fibrous veggies as food.  *lol*

altho i have seen BB'ers that are so paro about any carbohydrate that they just rely on flax seed for the plumbing.

Flaxseed has carbs too.... that's what fibre is. But yes, and then they're posting on BB forums moaning that they're constipated and wondering what they can take for it. (I tell 'em Triphala.)

Back to your original problem, Anonymouze; you can make your own "diet plan." A diet -- correction, diet is what you eat, whatever -- a diet for weight (or preferably, fat) reduction consists of eating fewer calories than you burn. That's it. If you ARE a bodybuilder or otherwise going for a specific physique goal, then things like the balance of those calories becomes important, but for most people simply seeking to lose, or start losing, pounds, you just have to reduce your calories. Not too much, or you will have the opposite effect; your metabolism may slow and you will feel awful, too.

So, if you are that picky, take what you are willing to eat, and do eat, and go to one of the useful sites like Fitday. Track yourself a week or so's worth of meals (honestly! honestly!) and that will give you your maintenance -- what it is taking to keep you at your current weight. Then reduce your daily intake, taking bits off your meals here and there.

Many people find it easier to stick to "A Diet Plan" in the short term because it feels special, eating all those special diety foods. (But by the same token, means when they feel they're "done", they go right back to their old habits and regain.) And it is true that certain foods are better for dieting purposes than others, just cos you don't feel like gnawing off your, or your nearest co-worker's, limbs at the earliest opportunity -- whole grains and vegetables and other fibre-containers being notable for that. So if you like any of those things, try slotting them in where you can. But if you can put together a viable plan from what you actually really eat, you probably in fact have a better chance of success.

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Oh yes -- and I just read your original post more carefully, and saw the part about "fast weight loss."

Just... don't. As others have pointed out, an Atkins-esque or starvation diet WILL make the weight come off fast, yes.

The first time. Or maybe even the second, too. However, many of us who are naturally weight-challenged are also more or less metabolically thrifty as well. Speaking of bodybuilders. Many competitors do drop weight in more or less unhealthy ways every year for shows -- and it works for them. Others do it once, and never again. That's not always because they don't want to -- sometimes, it's because they can't.

Me, I lost a hundred pounds the anorexic way a few years back; it was psychologically painful, but quite fast -- and then, after my recovery, I competed in one bodybuilding show. One.

Now, I'm carrying about fifteen or twenty more pounds of fat than I would really prefer, thirty pounds over my very lean competition weight (and fifty pounds more than my this-side-of-dead anorectic weight) -- and NO diet strategy works for me. Seriously. None. And after eating disorders plus some years of bodybuilding, believe me, I know diets. My entire adrenal system is more or less unhappy, though not to a clinical level.

This is quite common in chronic dieters, particularly women, and particularly those with a history of crash dieting; our systems tend to be more resistant to fat loss in the first place (survival trait). You know this of course, but I just thought I would repeat it. After years of happy, healthy, heedless fat followed by the sudden discovery of thin followed by the apparently irreversible loss of same, I personally find this phenomenon horribly embittering.

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things like fruits and vegies are verboten. as is any other carb - the closest to a true keto diet is Atkins.

There is a lot of misinformation out there about Atkins and similar diets. It's not a no carb diet--it has a LOT of vegetables. That's the biggest component of the diet. An Atkins meal should contain three to five ounces of meat, preferably lean meat, and the rest is made up in veggies. Veggies are carbohydrates. Maybe when people say no carbs, they mean no noodles, rice and potatoes. And even some of those can be added in later on in the diet, along with fruits. Just because there are people out there who think they are on Atkins who consume ten bunless bacon cheeseburgers for dinner, that doesn't mean that's how the diet really works.

As others have pointed out, an Atkins-esque or starvation diet WILL make the weight come off fast, yes.

I'm not sure if you're saying that Atkins is a starvation type diet, but it isn't. The appeal of low carb diets is that you aren't constantly hungry, as you might be on a higher carb diet. Fat provides satiety, whereas excess carbs make blood sugar levels unstable, leading to hunger. And not everyone loses weight quickly, either. It took me two years to lose 45 pounds. BUT it was the only diet I've ever lost weight on, and I felt a lot better, too. My cholesterol levels got much better, and my blood sugar went from borderline diabetic to very healthy.

I wouldn't advise anyone to lose weight quickly. How long did it take to gain the weight? Why such a big hurry?

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As others have pointed out, an Atkins-esque or starvation diet WILL make the weight come off fast, yes.

I'm not sure if you're saying that Atkins is a starvation type diet, but it isn't. The appeal of low carb diets is that you aren't constantly hungry, as you might be on a higher carb diet. Fat provides satiety, whereas excess carbs make blood sugar levels unstable, leading to hunger. And not everyone loses weight quickly, either. It took me two years to lose 45 pounds. BUT it was the only diet I've ever lost weight on, and I felt a lot better, too. My cholesterol levels got much better, and my blood sugar went from borderline diabetic to very healthy.

No, I wasn't. That was my lack of clarity. Keto and low-carb diets are a staple, however, of the person who needs to lose weight in a fair hurry -- as long as they don't mind regaining it practically immediately when they're done (the rebound of most bodybuilding competitors after a show and the last few weeks of carb depletion? Not pretty.)

Extremely low-carb diets have their place, but I would suggest not as a lifestyle way of losing weight, unless one's prepared to eat that way for the rest of one's life. IMHO, anyway. I have found, AFTER low-carbing it, that not only do I rebound (and I no longer lose weight or fat on low carb, anyway, like anything else these days) but I am much more sensitive to carbs and my blood sugar will go nuts if I eat them.

If you plan a higher carb diet right, though, you aren't "constantly hungry". The mistake many people make is 1) not eating protein with every meal (and contrary to what diet magazines will tell you, a tablespoon of peanut butter isn't a serving of protein) and 2) eating refined carbs -- sugar, white flour, and so on, figuring "if it fits into my WW points it's fine" when these will send your blood sugar reeling. I don't think it's necessary (unless one is lifting large barbells with fair regularity) to eat, as I do, one gram of protein per pound divided into six meals plus the allotted fibrous carbs, starchy carbs and EFAs -- but for a normal sedentary person, at least half that (plus the other macronutrients), and five small "meals" rather than three, is usually a less painful way to diet.

And of course, if physically possible, adding in some exercise and some lifting of weights to increase muscle mass and metabolism is never ill advised.

I wouldn't advise anyone to lose weight quickly.  How long did it take to gain the weight?  Why such a big hurry?

couldn't agree more.

Edited by CompassRose (log)
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When I was strictly on Atkins, I wasn't able to lose much weight but I felt a lot better. But then, I have a really hard time losing weight. And not just because I love food so much! After adding in more fruits I started losing weight a bit faster.

Unfortunately, if I just eat a "normal, healthy" diet I gain weight. I've learned that our bodies are all different--I can eat very low calorie, low fat, whatever, and my very efficient system figures out how to hold onto every ounce. Because of a disability, exercise isn't an option for me. It's too bad, because I know that's what would help take the weight off if I could do it.

I agree about the protein at every meal--I think it does help. I have a small snack with protein right before bed and it helps keep insulin spikes away during the night.

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I think another thing to be taken into accounts is WHEN you eat. There does seem to be some evidence that eating most of your daily calorie intake at night is more fat-producing than the reverse, which makes biological sense - a bit like filling up the tank of your car before making it work for the day.

Which is saying the same as the old proverb "breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, dinner like a pauper", or , as I read it somewhere (an Iranian version????) - "eat breakfast alone, take lunch with your friend, and give your dinner to your enemy".

Just a thought.

Happy Feasting

Janet (a.k.a The Old Foodie)

My Blog "The Old Foodie" gives you a short food history story each weekday day, always with a historic recipe, and sometimes a historic menu.

My email address is: theoldfoodie@fastmail.fm

Anything is bearable if you can make a story out of it. N. Scott Momaday

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Is there any long term diets that don't weigh in heavily (pun intended) with servings of fruits/vegetables in abundance? I've done and succeeded on WW but it's too slow going.

No optifast please. I hate shakes and drink stuff like that. There's got to be a plan out there that does NOT involve veggies or fruits as the mainstay. Something besides plain calorie or "point" counting or weighing of the food. Like an all focacchia diet or something different. (wishful thinking on my part?!)

Stacey C-Anonymouze@aol.com

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You're not listening. "Long term" = "slow going". It just does, and there's no way round that. Fast weight loss and rebound go together like the chocolate and peanut butter you'll be binging on in your deprived state.

"Long term" also usually = "not eliminating whole food groups." It is true that some people do manage to low-carb long term, particularly if there are attendant medical issues -- but honestly, other than that, those who give up particular foods or food groups entirely to lose weight, or eat nothing but *** in order to lose weight, normally can't stick with it.

Seriously. If you don't like veggies or fruits, plan something that doesn't include them. Which will mean counting, probably, yes.

Fruits and vegetables are beneficial in a diet, because they are:

- high in fibre, which helps one not feel deprived

- high in fibre which also helps one stay regular on reduced food volume and calories (some people can use fibre supplements for this, but they don't work for me -- TMI)

- very nutrient-dense and energy-poor (which means "fulla vitamins, low in calories) which helps one to keep healthy on reduced calories -- women in particular often have difficulty meeting even minimum nutrition requirements on a reduction diet -- supplements will again help here, but personally I feel that real food is always best, given a choice.

BUT YOU DON'T HAVE TO EAT THEM.

Unless you are in a situation such as mine, or my friend Terrasanct above, in which case macronutrient balance and such becomes important, to lose weight eat less than you burn. That can be all fruits and veggies, no fruits and veggies, all bacon, whatever -- in the long term, anything that excludes large ranges of food WILL PROBABLY HAVE AN EFFECT ON YOUR HEALTH, be aware, but you will almost certainly lose weight.

That's it. That's the answer, and it's an easy answer.

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