On Saturday I shared on my Facebook page(HERE), a post I wrote some time ago. “Carbs for Breakfast? BIG Mistake!”(HERE) As it happened the first time when I shared it, the article provoked opposing comments. But today I do not intend on talking about the comments. I want to share my opinion about people, who after all trusted me enough to try my way of eating ( or at least they think so), but they are still having some difficulties and they do not feel as good, as I assure them they’d feel if they follow my nutrition plan.
First of all, my observations show me that 90% of people ( an now I am not exaggerating the number), only fool themselves that they are eating the way I recommend. If I ask them to share what they ate today, they usually confirm my opinion- that they limited their carb intake, but consciously or not, they forgot to increase their fat intake. In this case, no wonder that they are feeling bad and that they are constantly hungry. I’ve tried following a “diet”, which consists mainly of proteins, and the only thing I could think about was FOOD!
I know that it is hard, when we keep in mind that for years we’ve been told how unhealthy it is to eat fat, and it is impossible to change your mind in one day, and start eating bigger quantities of fat, without having any worries. That’s why initially you just need to be braver and consciously add more fat, even though you are feeling scared. Just as it is in life, when you are afraid of making a particular step forward, because of everything that other people say, but somehow something is telling you that you are on the right path… and you just give it a try, no matter what happens next. And thus at the end, it turns out that it was all worth it. It is the same with eating more fat, trust me!
In case I am making a wrong assumption, and you really increased your fat intake, but you are still not feeling well and in the afternoon you start feeling tired, don’t worry! This is absolutely normal in the period of adaptation. But this is not something that will continue forever. Here I will once again use my favorite example, with the alcoholic, who goes for treatment. During the first couple weeks, when he is not drinking alcohol, he won’t feel good. He will probably have headache, he will be tired and etc. But it won’t be because this is harming him, but because he needs more time in order for his body to adapt.
It is the same with fats. If until this moment, carbs were your main fuel source, this would mean that in your body there are more enzymes, which help in the digestion of carbs… and the once, which help in the digestion of fat, are not in quantities which could keep up with your increased fat intake.
This takes some time. And while this process is happening in your body and keeping in mind that you’ve already limited your carb intake and increased your fat intake, during the first couple weeks you will have moments, when your brain, as well as the whole active tissue, will go through a shortage of fuel. Not because the fuel itself is not available ( after all you are eating enough), but because the fats you ate, still can’t be used efficiently, because there aren’t enough enzymes to digest them.
If you’ve read enough about a high fat, low carb diet, probably you are aware that often times as an indicator that the “diet is working”, people use the ketones in the urine. Well, I am gonna tell you that this is a little bit misleading indicator. The ketones in the urine are more of an indicator that you still don’t produce enough enzymes which could digest them. You will notice that if you follow this diet for long enough, the ketones in your urine will disappear, not because the diet isn’t working anymore, but because your body already uses the ketones efficiently as a main fuel source.
Thus, all the “side effects”, which could appear during the first couple weeks, are just a result of the process of adaptation and the switch from using carbs as a main fuel source, to using fat as such.
Of course, there is a way to limit the manifest of those side effects. And it is by just making the transition from a high carb diet, to a low carb, high fat diet more gradually.
If until now you’ve been emphasizing on carbs, start gradually limiting them.
During the first week limit all sugary products. Then remove bread. Gradually exclude grains. Thus, one by one you will limit the foods with a high carb content. While you are doing this increase the consumption of eggs with the yolks, red meat and so on. Suddenly you will make the full transition to a high fat, low carb diet. And the transition won’t be so stressful and it will be easier to adapt to it, without experiencing all “side effects”.
I can’t wait to share with you a project I’ve been working on. It’s called IFS Journal- my FREE online magazine. Go ahead and subscribe for it HERE.
P.S. Don’t be a stranger and please take a minute to share this post with your friends! I’d greatly appreciate it!