Doug’s Diet Q&A – everything you didn’t want to hear about diets — 10 Comments

  1. Unfortunately weight loss does indeed seem to be a constant struggle for most of us, although your battle certainly seems tougher than mine.

    I’m with you on the activity thing – I don’t think it has a major impact on weight loss unless you pretty much live at the gym and I’ve long ago stopped tracking my WW “activity points”. My running and workouts are for my overall health, not for weight loss. I average nearly an hour a day of workout time and I’m still struggling to lose weight. It’s not the answer.

    Here’s the official WW position on zero point fruit:

    “Fresh fruits are free because we want to encourage you to eat them. They’re filling and nutritious Power Foods and we’ve factored the caloric impact of even the highest-calorie fruits into our calculations of your daily PointsPlus Target. So go for it! Just make sure to eat until you’re satisfied, not stuffed.”

    Many folks – me for example – are unlikely to overeat fruits so it’s just not a big issue for us. When watermelons are so great in the summer I may overdo occasionally but that’s about my only risk. I’m sure some folks do sabotage themselves with too much fruit, but it’s not actually something I’ve heard anyone complain about at a meeting and the leaders do regularly remind us that zero points fruit doesn’t mean unlimited fruit.

    One question you didn’t answer was how you came up with 1277 as your calorie target. That seems really low to me from my memory (admittedly several years old) of your size. Are you perhaps trying to be too aggressive?

  2. Oh, Doug, you sound so depressed and desperate. I’m so sorry. I do have to quibble with you about one thing, though. You keep saying eating some foods triggers hunger – not physiologically possible. Unless you have some bizarre brain disease, that hunger cannot be physical, must be psychological, and you’re going to have to find a way to deal with it. I think you’re confusing cravings with hunger, and cravings can be eliminated. I’m sad to see you having such a struggle and seeming so unhappy and hopeless. I wish you’d give yourself at least 30 days (some say 30-60 days) to conquer your cravings. If you’re unsure what to do, google it, there must be books or blogs, or something helpful. I’m lucky that my occasional cravings are fixable with program meals (spaghetti is one of my obsessions, ice cream is another). Anyway, glad you posted this, have been wondering how you’re doing, wish it had been better news. Hang in. Aloha, Linden

  3. 1740 is my current net calorie target. It’s just that today it ended up being 1277. There’s no real significance of that number. It’s just the amount of calories I ended up eating today.

  4. Hi Linden. Thanks for your note. But I have to say I disagree with your comment about foods not being physiologically capable of triggering hunger. It is a well known phenomenon. See for example

    “It seems as though certain high glycaemic foods (high GI), which trigger rapid increases in blood sugar levels, act in a similar way to addictive substances in the way they impact the brain. The Boston Children’s Hospital research team found that ” Consuming highly processed carbohydrates can cause excess hunger and stimulate brain regions involved in reward and cravings” (1). The team suggest that limiting or staying away from these kinds of processed, high GI foods, could really help individuals who overeat. These foods tend to stimulate the pleasure centres in the brain, the dopamine centres – the same part of the brain which is linked to substance abuse and dependence.”

    I believe that is factually true, and a physiological response to certain foods.

  5. You’re right, it is a physiological response, but it is not hunger. The article says, as you quoted, some foods “act in a similar way to addictive substances in the way they impact the brain.” That’s not true hunger. Also, highly processed carbohydrates are given as the culprit, and I was under the impression you had been eating only unprocessed foods such as brown rice. But, I’m not going to fight with you about it. You’re no dummy, you know what you should eat and how much you should eat, and whether you do or not is between you and yourself, and not my business. I would be a lot happier if everyone would just live their lives to suit me, but ain’t gonna happen. I have to keep telling myself, “Not my circus, not my monkeys.” Think I’ll go fix myself some zucchini spaghetti for breakfast (happen to have a can of garlic diced tomatoes on hand). You’re up very late, aren’t you? Aloha!

  6. “Consuming highly processed carbohydrates can cause excess hunger and stimulate brain regions involved in reward and cravings”

    That’s certainly my experience. I was a real chocoholic before I began this weight loss journey, probably eating chocolate candy about daily. After avoiding chocolate for several years now I simply don’t have the desire to eat it and I don’t even notice the candy section in the store any more.

  7. Michael:
    I am a chocoholic. Pastries. Danishes, And anything chocolate.

    I have dealt with that by having ONE Fiber One Chocolate brownie a day. It’s enough to get me over my cravings.

  8. I just wrote you a VERY LONG reply to your problem and I guess it’s lost. There’s noway I can remember all that I wrote. Sorry!

  9. Linden, I wasn’t up that late. Just until about 1 am. But maybe later than usual.

    That article mentions high highly processed carbs, and in my experience I have the same physiological reaction to things like brown rice, soba, fruits and non-processed carbs as well. While they are not highly processed, they are all high glycemic.

    The signals that make me feel hunger are real. I was hoping to make the point that not everybody is the same. This is, in fact, what happens to me. It’s an actual hunger that is triggered by certain kinds of foods – typically high glycemic carbs. And that does include non-processed carbs of some kinds. Rice is particularly bad, including brown rice.

    Michael, I’m not a chocoholic. But I have noticed that if I do eat something sweet, like a cookie, it creates the same cravings that rice and fruits do.

    Nancy, I will imagine your long reply. Thanks for taking the time! 🙂

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