Haven’t blogged for a while. That’s because I’ve been incredibly busy – about which no complaints, obviously. And I wasn’t sure if my latest attempt to lose weight was working. For a while I tried to do Paleo again. Stuck to it for about six weeks but when I didn’t seem to be losing anything, I gave up. However…
… I didn’t, as so often happens when you come off a diet, start bingeing. The one thing about Paleo, ie high-protein dieting, is that it doesn’t encourage that awful yoyo dieting so many of us are far too familiar with. So you’re always either on a diet, ie semi starving. Or you’re not, ie bingeing. It’s a vicious circle that probably does you more harm than just maintaining your weight, even if you are overweight.
I can’t do the 5:2 diet which I know so many speak of so highly. I’ve tried it many many times but I’m always defeated by dreadful low blood sugar which semi fasting causes and it affects me horribly. I don’t have Diabetes but even so, I can’t cope with hunger. I become dizzy, disorientated, irritable, tearful and I can’t concentrate. It’s not compatible with work and I don’t want to give up weekend days to feeling low and unable to do much.
5:2 for those who can’t!
So I’ve sort of come up with my own way of, kind of, doing 5:2. It’s gentler and more forgiving and I believe there is an element of 5:2 which incorporates this approach. You eat as modestly as you can manage all day and then have just one main meal in the evening. For me it’s vital this meal is in the evening as I need to keep my blood sugar levels stable overnight. There is nothing worse than going to bed disorientated and hungry. It affects my dreams – which become graphic nightmares – when I can get to sleep at all.
I find it easier to eat as little as possible all day, so a very light breakfast and a light lunch. And then go for it in the evening but crucially, it’s early evening. This way you are giving your body the same sort of rest 5:2 gives it but it’s not so drastic. If you have a late breakfast the day after an early tea you’ll be going something like 18 or even 20 hours without food. And that seems to be working!
Against the rules
Most diets say don’t eat too much in the evenings. You know that old adage – breakfast like a king, lunch like a lord and dine like a pauper. Well that doesn’t work for me. Never has. I’m a bit of a night owl and so I need sustenance in the evenings; less so during the day.
What you really want to know is though, does it work? Yes, I’d say it does. I’ve definitely lost something since I began eating this way – let’s not call it an actual diet! I’ve gone down a dress size from 18 (European 46, American 14,) to 16 (European 44, American 12). Not slim by any means but slimmer and, crucially, healthier.
I also have more energy. I’m still doing Paleo a bit, in that I’m keeping the carbs down and the protein up. But it’s not entirely Paleo. Main thing is not to have a carby lunch as that leads to afternoon slumps. A protein lunch, as carb free as you can get it, keeps me going all afternoon and if I do get hungry, I know I’ve got a nice evening meal to look forward to. This way of eating also seems to help you to eat what you need, no more. The semi fast during the day reduces your appetite for the evening, in my experience at least.
Well that’s me. It’s worked for me. It might work for you. It’s a slow way of losing weight. It’s only coming off very gradually but to lose anything at this stage in my life is a bonus. I’m also exercising more. A rigorous walk every day minimum. The key is to feel good and keep healthy, supple and fitter if not actually fit!
See you next month. Hope you’re enjoying our Indian Summer we’re having.