I have been in a continuous process of learning about weight loss since my weight first became a problem following a near-death experience from Toxic Shock Syndrome in the 1980s. This illness destroyed a lot of muscle mass, and I began to put on weight quickly. As I aged, and dieted relentlessly in the conventional wisdom (CW) mode, my weight just increased, and my cravings grew exponentially until I ultimately reached the point of having binges once or twice a month. I has taken most of the last ten years in particular to get the information I really needed about the how the process of insulin controls weight gain or loss. Dr. Atkins was my first source of good information, but still not quite what I needed, though many people have done very well on the Atkins diet. Gary Taubes is my hero for really putting the science behind the process. And now Dr. Jack Kruse (www.jackkruse.com) and others researching in the field have given us the information about an even more important hormone, leptin, which turns out to be the main driver of this hormonal engine that leads us to gain and/or lose weight. (Kruse is a hot topic over at marksdailyapple.com)
I firmly believe that different things work for different people, and it is our job as individuals to figure out where we are on the sugar-artificial sweeteners-starch spectrum. At this point in my life I am very insulin resistant, and in consequence very leptin resistant. I won’t bother to try to explain the processes, for Dr. Jack Kruse, Dr. Ron Rosedale, and others can do that far better, so check out their websites. But it made sense to me that I was struggling with leptin resistance, so decided to try Dr. Kruse’s dietary protocol: 50-70g of protein within 30 minutes of waking; less than 50g (I stay less than 25g) of daily carbs; mild or no exercise during the 6-8weeks of resetting the leptin sensitivity; and No snacking. This last I thought would be hard since I had been a grazer in recent years, and had stopped breakfast in order to control my intake.
I am happy to report that over the last week plus, I have been faithful to this program and have been surprised at how much better I am feeling. My sleep has improved which has been my major challenge of the last ten years. And I feel an inner calm that is new for me; rather like that experienced in a good meditation session.
I believe with Seth Roberts (http://blog.sethroberts.net/) that self-experimentation is good, so I’m never afraid to give something a try if it seems to make sense. In this case, while I was skeptical, it seemed to have a ring of truth that encouraged me, and now I know I will stick with it for the eight weeks to see how things progress.
Leptin was only discovered in 1994, and that it is a hormone made by the fat cells was a huge surprise, and that it turned out to be perhaps the most important hormone in the diet cycle was even a greater surprise to the scientists studying these processes. No doubt there is more yet to discover, but at least we have this knowledge now, and can use it towards dealing with the major challenges of the obesity epidemic our nation now faces.
The analogy that came to mind is that struggling with cravings/weight is like having a wonderful car, say a powerful Mercedes, filled with fuel, a trip planned with all arrangements made, but there is no key. If you can’t get anywhere with your weight-loss or weight-gain, it may be the missing key you need is resetting your leptin sensitivity.
Ever learning, Sugarbaby