I have, in my drafts, a post about letting go of vanity. I haven’t finished the post – yet today I’m going to post about yet another diet I’m trying. That seems a little ironic that part of me wants to let go of concern about my appearance and on the other hand, I’m still trying to lose weight. Apparently, letting go of vanity isn’t going to come easily.
Anyway, Since November I’ve been on the Dr. Bernstein Diet (It’s a Canadian Thing I believe). For those of you who aren’t familiar, this diet is based in low carb, much like Atkins but less fat and fewer calories – “Doctor Supervised”.
You attend the clinic 3 times per week and are seen by a nurse who tests your supplied urine sample for “among other things” (so they say) for levels of ketones. Ketones are ejected from your body when you are eating so little carbohydrates that your body starts to burn fat stores – thus – rapid weight loss.
During your visit you also get a shot of B12/B6 and they check your food diary for issues.
From November 13th to January 7th I lost not quite 20lbs. Now factor in that over Christmas I went off the diet and then spent a week re-loosing about 7 lbs.
The diet is very restrictive and it takes about 3 days of being on it to start loosing ketones. When you are loosing ketones you don’t feel hungry and the weight drops pretty fast but one screw up and you are toast – start over again.
The other huge downside is that you can’t just stop the Dr. B diet without consequences – notice that I put on about 7 lbs in the 2 weeks over Christmas. You can’t just go all willy nilly and start eating carbs again when you have lost the weight. You are supposed to go on their maintenance program – I hear that is for about a year and, well, it isn’t cheap!
Ok, so I knew all that going in – there was no Tom Foolery or Evil Trickery – I went in with my eyes open and I’m not bashing it, just giving the low down on why I always have my eyes open for something better. I may just have happened on the ‘something better’.
Enter The 4 Hour Body! (from Timothy Ferriss – Author of The 4 Hour Chef and The Four Hour Work Week).
I heard Ferriss interviewed on The Kickass Life podcast and although I didn’t listen to the interview that Dean Dwyer did with him, I know he interviewed him as well so I took a look at the book and I gotta say that I was hooked especially after reading about “cheat day”.
Ferriss offers that most diets fail because people can’t maintain them long term. This is not news per say but it’s not a lot of diets that actually build in a cheat day to the plan.
The 4 Hour Body does just that with instructions to eat a regular on diet breakfast, then go crazy and eat as much of and whatever you want one day a week. This does away with the uncontrolled binges and feelings of deprivation that often goes along with dieting.
I myself know that when I’m on a program – like Bernstein’s – that I will eventually cave to a craving and more often than not, this leads to a binge that typically will last a day and, in the case of Christmas, led to a 2 week diet hiatus.
What typically happens is I have a “little” of something and then I’m overwhelmed by a desire to eat more of it. I LOVE food. I love the taste and the texture and the smell. I don’t eat because I’m hungry – I eat because my taste buds are hysterical with desire and that’s what fails me each and every time.
As a side note, my middle son does not enjoy food at all. An athlete that doesn’t eat is not a good mix so I am constantly trying to lure him to eating high protein – high calorie foods. I only WISH that I had that issue!
So… first the taste, then the binge and then the beating myself up and throwing the whole thing out the window because it’s pointless – I DON’T WANT TO LIVE MY LIFE NOT BEING TO BE ABLE TO EAT GOOD FOOD!
Ok, so I really like the 1 day a week that I can eat what I want but what about the other 6?
Beans Beans Beans. I like beans which is a good thing because this diet consists of protein, legumes and veggies… heavy on the first 2. At least 20 grams of protein with legumes and some veg. I can do that.
You are supposed to eat this every 4 hours, 4 times a day with lots of water (naturally). So, with a bit of trepidation, I launched into The 4 Hour Diet on Wednesday and here’s what happened….
I started out weighing in on Wednesday morning at 179.5 lbs. – On Wednesday I ate 3 eggs, black beans and mushrooms for breakfast – chicken breast, black beans and tomato with mushrooms for lunch – same at dinner and then could not eat the 4th meal because I wasn’t at all hungry.
Thursday morning I weighed in at 178.5 lbs.
Thursday I ate 3 eggs, lentils with salsa for breakfast – chicken breast, lentils and a few tomato slices for lunch with balsamic vinegar, same for dinner and again, could not eat the 4th meal for lack of appetite.
This morning I weighed in at 176.5 lbs. I weighed myself 3 times because I couldn’t believe it.
I get hungry 20 minutes before it’s time to eat again. This is not water weight because I have been steadily dieting and loosing for several weeks already. I’m stunned.
So – that’s where we sit.
Today at lunch I didn’t have beans because I had lunch out with a friend and there were no beans to be had so I had a spinach salad with chicken breast and the kicker – salad dressing which is a no-no… I didn’t think to ask for oil and vinegar which is ok… we will see what effect this has tomorrow.
Tomorrow is cheat day. Even though it’s recommended to be on the diet for a week before indulging on cheat day, I am going to go for it anyway because I have been restricted for more than a week – I will update as this goes along!