Saturday, August 2, 2008


The last few weeks I have had facial ticks occurring, uncontrolled twitching of muscles around my mouth. Concurrently the past few days I have had pain in my lower left back, which my wife informs me is a Kidney infection. My pee stinks lately so I thought it was just ketosis, but I guess the wife may be right after all.

The ticks are likely due to both diet issues and severe stress at work and at home. I read up on it and it appears that Magnesium deficiency may be the culprit. I haven't been supplementing with vitamins as much lately. Reading up on this they recommend bananas, almonds, and supplementation. So I have noticed that eating bananas and almonds make it go away, but the ticks come back later. So off to the store for vitamin and nutritional supplements with Magnesium, and more bananas and almonds.

I have been worried that this is more than diet, more than just stress. Things run through your mind. I was hoping this would just blow over but it has persisted for so long now. On the other hand, Magnesium seems to ward it off a little.

So I will wait and see what happens. Hopefully, it's nothing major. But it just goes to show you that you need to carefully watch your diet and to supplement with vitamins and essential good-stuff when your diet is restricted. Especially when stress, lack of sleep, etc is taxing your bod!

Hope all is well with all the low carb friends I have out there in Internet land.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Good Stuff - Low Carb Yogurts!

One of the fun things I enjoy is discovering new low carb products that are excellent in quality, relatively inexpensive, that taste great - and then sharing them with my friends and family.

There are those of us on the low-carb way of eating (or way of life), and others that are just simply looking to eat healthier and make better choices overall.

One of the products that I discovered not long ago is the Kroger Carb Master yogurts. I had been eating the Dannon Low Carb Yogurts to the point when they changed their packaging, and moved to smaller servings of their low carb yogurt products. They (Dannon) went from decent sized more round servings to taller and thinner product offerings that seemed to give you less for more (like many products nowadays). Whether that was the case or not in fact, I don't know - perception may be reality, but in any case I was somewhat disappointed with a product I had been satisfied with previously. In fact, it was sometimes hard to find the Dannon low carb yogurt in-stock, especially in more than just the strawberry flavor.

About the same time I noticed that Kroger had introduced a Carb Master line of yogurts. They are big, and full of chunky bits of fruit. They are tasty, ...just really delicious!. They seem to have runs on the product as well at my local Kroger's and when it is in-stock we load up (I am sure others are doing the same). I have witnessed others at our local Kroger's loading their shopping baskets (folks call them "buggies" down here) with the Carb Master yogurts and we usually do too. They come in several flavors that all seem to be in-stock (unlike Dannon where I could mostly find only strawberry and vanilla in stock) - Kroger's has Peach, Raspberry, and Strawberry - and I think they also have a Vanilla (I just don't go for Vanilla much myself).

This past weekend we shared Kroger's yogurts with others in my family, and even those not on low carb approved of the flavor, taste, and overall quality. On our prior visit they were shocked to find that they really appreciated the taste of Atkins low carb Chocolate bars - something else they had never tried before.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

More on Plateaus & Stalls: Reactive Hypoglycemia

Jimmy Moore did a podcast that really hit home with me on his Livin Lavida Low Carb podcast. It was an interview with Doctor Keith Berkowitz and touched on something he has seen in a number of Atkins low carb patients who were very large, lost ALOT of weight, then stalled. Turns out what they were experiencing were symptoms related to Reactive Hypoglycemia

As he read down the list of the many symptoms, I had most of them. Feeling good after not eating breakfast, with high energy, then having an energy crash after eating, and feeling tired. Also, being hungry after eating. I have stalled pretty hard after losing ALOT (about 112 lbs) over a years time. I have been floating just above and below 300 lbs for some time now. Apparently, one of the causes that doing the same old things stops working is this metabolic situation that can develop.

Anyhow, it is interesting as the very things that I have been thinking about doing are some of the very things that the doctor recommends to counteract or deal with this. I have been intrigued by the Body for Life program and have purchased the workbook and book. I have wanted to figure out a low carb version of it. The key to Body for Life is small portions, more often, with very high intensity exercise. One of the points of reference is the palm of your hand. You don't eat a cut of meat larger than the center of your palm - which guides you to portion size in an easy to figure and easy to remember way. If you haven't looked into it, you ought to.

Jimmy got on to this subject when he checked his blood sugar after eating and saw that it actually fell from a pretty normal level to an even lower level after he ate. Which is pretty much the opposite of what you would expect. Pretty cool stuff, just on a science level. Trying to figure out what to do now to get past the stall and the insulin dumping associated with this situation is interesting.

Give it a listen here: 

Comments, insight, and helpful advice much appreciated!!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

From Around The Net: Plateaus and Pizza

I have read a couple of interesting articles about low carb and plateaus people hit. The best was at the Protein Power author Dr. Michael Eades blog entitled Low Carb and Calories, and was really interesting for me. I have slowed in my weight loss pretty dramatically. The article provided hints for me. Bottom line = Calories Count, at least they do more and more as you lose on down to lower levels.

I lost weight like crazy when I started this, and it continued to fall off me pretty regularly until I hit around 300 lbs. From then on it's been pathetically slow. I have been looking into exercise programs, walking, modifying things, and even given thought to calorie restriction. When I started I NEVER considered calories at all, only carbs. 

I am still losing weight and inches, about to have to punch another hole in my belt right now, yet still it is so slooooooow, compared to before. I am having to believe it is all about the calories at this point. It makes sense and fits with what I have heard from other low carbers about having to lay aside nuts and cheese to the degree that they'd been able to eat it to this point. In other words, calorie dense low carb foods start to matter more than before. :sigh:

The other article was in CNN, and focussed on a low carber who hit a plateau but went on in a fitness program and diet regimen that got him to the point he now sees himself as "Mr. Low Body Fat".  Same theme, same problem. Interesting approach.
Anyhow, what say you?
Ever hit a plateau?
What worked for you??

As for me, I am staying the course for now, and considering my next moves. I am thinking about a low carb body for life implementation, or some related type of fitness program, walking, or something at least more calorie burning or calorie restricted.

Also - The Pizza Recipe I was talking about...

Experiment. We made it cheezy, supreme, and pepperoni. It was AWESOME!! I liked it better than typical high carb pizza!!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Who says Low Carb Doesn't Work?

Daniel, my stepson, has made tremendous progress on the Atkins Low Carb life! He started at the end of November 2007 at around 270 lbs and now weighs somewhere between 215 and 220 lbs! Look at the tremendous difference achieved in just a few short months (Before and After)!!!!

Dan is now planning on moving into maintenance levels of low carb life. 

He is healthier, he can jump higher than ever before, and is just doing awesome. 

And as for mental performance on low carb - Dan just completed his second year of college, winning accolades for his academic performance - graduating summa cum laude, receiving the Student Leadership award for his campus, and was named the department student for the area he is focussing his studies in. 

Now we just have to convince a few more members of our family to join us in the low carb life!

Tonight Dan made an awesome killer low carb pizza (pepperoni & supreme style)! I think I liked it better than regular pizza!!! He found the recipe on the Net, but I may post it here later for those interested! It is absolutely wonderful!! It is great that he is finding all the good things you *CAN* have on the low carb life, rather than lamenting those things you cannot have!



Monday, April 21, 2008

Progress Post

This is me when I started low 
carb at 410 lbs and at 85 lbs lighter!

This is me today! 112 lbs down!
Many more yet to go!

A fellow low carber, "Big Daddy D" asked me to post a progress post/pix of myself. So here you have it! 

I have a long way to go yet! I am hoping to continue to lose over the next year or two or more till I reach wherever it is that I find bottom. I have posted progress pix at and here at my blog in the past, but I haven't updated in a while. I am a long way from my goal, and hopefully there will only be before and in-progress pix. I hate to think of an AFTER picture. I doubt I will ever ARRIVE at some happy place where I can say I have arrived. I think of myself like one of those websites "Under Construction". Towards better health and happier living! Here's to Low Carbin' it!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Quick Update: Low Carb Life

Well, losses have slowed for me, but they are still clicking a little. I am down another couple pounds over the last few weeks. I am maintaining my prior losses and still eating and living low carb. At this point I am down 112 lbs from where I started, which is great! I still have a long road ahead of me yet, and hope to continue making progress over the weeks and months ahead. I occasionally find myself with carb creepage, getting too high on occasion. Then I whack things back into line with some steady focus on meat and eggs for a little bit, then back to meat and mostly green veggies (green beans, asparagus, broccoli, etc). I am about to sell or donate a bunch of my "fat clothes" and it will be a joy to type somewhere (maybe eBay) "MY LOSS IS YOUR GAIN" on the ad!!     :smile:

My oldest stepson has lost a grunch of weight on low carb (Atkins) and is now inspiring others too to join the low carb way of life (or at least to try it). I am really happy for him as he looks great and is doing very well on it. It is about time for him to find a way to transition to an ongoing maintenance level of Atkins low carb. That's a scary thing as you are so worried about over-doing it and totally blowing the low carb gains you have made in weight loss and health.

I have personally found myself spending less time on the low carb forums and posting of late as work and life has gotten hectic lately - between long hours at work, and lots of stuff going on at church and with our family of late (hospital visits, gospel meetings, graduation and awards ceremonies, visiting, etc). I do still like to peek in and catch up at intervals, and hope that sometime soon I will be able to get back to posting and participating more regularly again. I really miss it and many of my inspiring online low carb friends!!! I love the sense of community and support and sharing that exists online in the low carb blogosphere and Internet sites.

Mom and dad recently found out that they are diabetic - type 2 I guess (non-insulin dependant). They recently attended diabetes training classes that included training by dietitians. What was great is hearing them describe basically a low carb eating regimen (really a cross between low carb and low cal/low fat). At least it is a step in the right direction for my folks to reduce their blood sugars and get control of their health. It is nice to see that the Diabetes nutrition experts are shifting at least some of their advice to low carb and low glycemic recommendations.

It has been hard to find time to excercise yet as I was planning, but that is the next step for me. I have been taking the stairs occasionally at work and trying to focus on walking harder and faster when I can, whenever I am going some where. Hopefully it is baby steps in the right direction. I did get several interesting books to read lately and have been grazing through them. Living the Low Carb Life, by Johnny Bowden is excellent! I also got copies of Dr.'s Eades books (Protein Power Life-plan, I think - also EXCELLENT!), and I got my copies of Body for Life book and the Body for Life workbook/success journal by Bill Phillips and they are motivational and informative as well. 

It is really wonderful to see the low carb community get recognition with all the great work being done by so many - case in point, the latest conference sponsored by the American Society of Bariatric Physicians - the "2008 Nutrition and Metabolism  Society Seminar". Reading about Gary Taubes, Jimmy Moore, Regina Wilshire, Dr. Mary Vernon, Dr.'s Eades, and so many more making so many great advances, studies, and sharing this information with the larger scientific and medical community is really inspiring, informative, and encouraging. Read about it on many of their blogs (links on the side of my blog if you are having trouble finding them). Awesome!!

Hope your low carb journey is on-track, and you are making all the progress you plan to. This is a wonderful way to obtain and maintain healthy living, lower weight, and eliminate many major health and life problems (blood sugar issues, diabetes, Reflux/GERD, hypertension, high cholesterol, etc). Keep on truckin'!!