zero carb diet

6 Week Cure

Posted by 12 September, 2009 As 6 week cure,diet forum,low carb,maintain weight loss,protein power,weight loss,weight loss forum,zero carb,zero carb diet (1) Comment

I pre-ordered the new Protein Power book, The 6 Week Cure for the Middle-Aged Middle. Now, I didn’t have much use for a 6 week cure myself as I have been successful in keeping my middle relatively slim. However, I was interested to see what they had to say about the cause of it.

I did get some new tidbits from the book. Like supplementing with leucine (an amino acid) and melatonin. I tried melatonin way back for sleep problems but as it didn’t help, I stopped. The Eades, however, is saying that lack of melatonin is not beneficial for fat loss, so I might start up again.

As with regards to the cause of the middle-age middle gain, there were no big surprises. Hormones. That is pretty obvious as the vast majority of people my age (50+) have problems with the middle expanding, despite eating sensibly and exercising. The 6-week cure supposedly helps to get a flat stomach back.

The cure consists of three 2-week steps.

The first step includes a liver detox phase where all substances causing the liver to work hard are to be avoided. This includes alcohol, caffeine and any unnecessary medications. The diet during these two weeks consist of 3 protein shakes per day and one LC meal with very limited vegetables.

Two things about this surprises me. First that Splenda is allowed. To me, Splenda is a chemical and while it hasn’t proved to be detrimental to the body, I don’t think it’s a good think to use when you are trying to do a detox. However, there are protein powders out there with Stevia, so perhaps that is a viable alternative.

There are also rumors in the Zero Carb community that this book promotes a “meat-only” diet. It doesn’t. There are vegetables and even berries with every meal, although in very limited quantities.

Week 3-4 are lowcarb meals, again with very limited quantities of non-starchy vegetables and berries. Alcohol and caffeine can be reintroduced.

Week 5-6 looks like a maintenance diet to me.

When it comes to exercise, they recommend only 30 minutes of weight training per week. Plus a simple ab exercise that can be done anywhere at any time.

The Eades are sharing their own experience with their middle-age middle gain and I can identify with Mary Eades. I also did not have any weight problem until I entered peri-menopause. What is disappointing though is that they say that Mary was not successful with the 6-week cure only until she got her hormones adjusted but they don’t go into detail about any of the hormone theraphy. Personally, I don’t know if it makes sense to feed your body hormones to stay at a perpetual 35 year old level for life. But then, I’m not a doctor and they are.

I have approached my middle gain differently. I maintain a relatively flat stomach by regular exercise, and it’s not enough with just 30 minutes per week. I need 30 minutes 4 or 5 times per week at the minimum. No cardio. Heavy weights. I have proven over and over again that, for me, this is the only thing that makes any difference to my “muffintop.” I don’t fully understand why. Hormones? I wish they had addressed this fact as I’m sure I am not unique.

While my review may not sound all that positive, I do recommend the book. It’s a good read and the recipes alone are worth the money. The cure is probably also a good plan for someone that quickly needs to shed some pounds and likes to follow a strict routine with given meal suggestions.

Finally, I wonder what the Eades’ target audience is. The book is not directed towards people that have a lot of weight to lose (even though it might work well as a starting point for transition into Protein Power). The book seems more directed towards people that have not been overly overweight and now find themselves with 20-30 stubborn pounds extra. If this means that lowcarb will be sold to a larger audience, I’m all for it. In my opinion, we can all benefit from lowcarb becoming more mainstream.

I wish the Eades the best of luck and great success with this book. They do a lot of free work on their blog for the lowcarb community.

Zero Carb Diet

Posted by 16 February, 2009 As diet,diet forum,zero carb,zero carb diet (6) Comment

The latest diet rage seems to be the Zero Carb Diet. The rules are:

  1. Eat only from the animal world (eggs, fish, red meat and fowl and some dairy are all animal sourced foods, i.e.: meat).
  2. Eat nothing from the vegetable world whatsoever. (Very small amounts of flavorings such as garlic/chillies/spices/herbs which may be added, are not ‘food’).
  3. Avoid milk and yogurt (heavy carbs – lactose), use only pure (not ‘thickened’- heavy) cream (read the label), cheese and unsalted butter.
  4. Don’t cook your meat very much – just a little bit on the outside – for flavor – blood – rare.
  5. Eat liver and brains only very infrequently – they are full of carbs.
  6. Be sure to have plenty of fat of animal origin at each meal and eat mostly of the fat until you feel you have had enough – you can eat more lean at this point if you like – calories are not important, nor is the number of meals/day. Vegetable oils are not good food.
  7. You do not need any supplements of any kind. Drink a lot of water and do not add salt to anything.

The hard core Zero carbers go even further. No eggs (they have carbs!). No dairy or cheese (carbs!). Not to mention “bolting” the food – swallow it without chewing it.

This is not supposed to be a crash diet, done for a short period of time. The Zero carbers see it as a way to eat for life. They are fully convinced that you can be fully healthy by eating supermarket meat only.

They base this conviction on the history of carnivorous peoples. The Inuits provide the main example. I do not understand how they fail to see the difference on a diet based on supermarket beef and a native carnivorous diet that included raw offal (brain and liver contain Vit. C, for example). Certain animal parts, raw, were greatly favored by carnivorous peoples. There surely was a reason for it. The same reason that I can crave broccoli. There must be something my body needs from it.

Even more alarming is that many with a history of ED (Eating Disorders) jump on the Zero Carb wagon. From one extreme to the other. While it might be good that they become unafraid of fat and calories, the recommendation to “eat fat until nauseous, then lean” doesn’t seem like it would lead to a healthy relationship to food.

What will the Zero Carbers do when weight loss stops? Cut the protein and risk protein deficiency? Cut the fat and end up with a Kimkins starvation diet? What other option is there?

Now, I don’t think that a couple of weeks with meat only is doing any harm. This is really Atkins’ induction, in the original 1972 diet. But Atkins never intended it to be done for life. He invented the carb ladder for a reason.