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Needing to add in some carbs

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  • Needing to add in some carbs

    So I've been doing this Primal thing since the beginning of the summer. My sister tested gluten-intolerant, which was a good reason for me to give up grains. We also have a huge garden. I like veggies anyway, and it was very easy to walk over and pick them fresh and eat them. I also like meat, and have always liked the fattier cuts of meat. It's been a good summer.

    Combined with a round of hCG (for other reasons), I lost about 13 pounds in August. And even though I feel like I have stabilized at a really good weight for me, my body is still reshaping itself. I had to go shopping last night for some new pants, because all of my old pants are 3" too big in the waist. All my excess fat was stored in my belly and now it is all gone.

    The problem is that over the past two weeks or so, I have had weird cravings for carbs. It started one night when I was frying up some potatoes for the husband and kids (to go with the sausages). They were potatoes out of our garden and they looked and smelled so good that I had to have a little taste. Normally I'd be able to cook potatoes or rice without wanting to eat any. I had a taste and that satisfied me, so I stopped there.

    But now I'll get to a point--usually late in the day--where all I want is either something sweet or something starchy. I've tried a bowl of blueberries. It helps, but doesn't kill the craving. I've tried a bowl of full-fat greek yogurt with some stevia. It helps, but doesn't kill the craving. I am pretty sure I have gotten to the point where I know the difference between a psychological craving and a physiological craving, and I am also pretty sure this is my body telling me it needs something I am not giving it.

    One night last week I made burritos. My burrito filling consists of ground meat, chiles, rice, beans, and homemade sauce. I had the filling topped with avocados, cheese, and sour cream. I was worried that it was too much starch, but it satisfied me in a way that nothing else has for a while, and the next day the scale hadn't budged. The other night I made brown rice pasta with a rich buttery clam sauce on it, and it also did the trick.

    So I am feeling a bit more confident that I can add some rice and maybe potatoes back in without messing up my weight. I will only do it for the evening meal, and only 3-4 times a week at most.

    Has anyone else experienced this? I just think it's odd that I went for almost three months with no desire for rice or potatoes, and all of a sudden these cravings hit me full-on.

  • #2
    This has happened to me too recently, even though I haven't had many notable starches since January. For the past two weeks I've wanted apples and sweet potatoes and some rice, so I'm just going with it. I don't really weigh myself daily or even weekly so I have no idea if they are impacting me, but I'm trying to stay under 100g carbs (yesterday I was at 150g). My calories are coming in fine so I'm not overly worried as long as my carb count is kept in check.


    • #3
      You and many other primals who are at their goal weight and/or are quite active are having similar findings. Check this thread out:

      You may also find the ideas from The Perfect Health Diet helpful.

      And remember, the maintenance range (for someone who is active according to PBF) for carbs is 100-150g a day.

      One more thing very worth checking out, Dr. Kurt Harris (former VLCer/PaNu, now Archevore) talks about the concept of 'safe starches'.

      Good luck! I don't see an issue w/ it at all esp if you continue to feel good and are eating primal/'safe' starches. Good luck!
      My Before/After Pics
      Are you new here? Be sure to check these links FIRST, before reading anything on the forum! Succeed & PB 101

      "I am a work in progress." -Ani DiFranco


      • #4
        I've been seeing a naturopath the past couple of months (he's primal/paleo!), and he has recently recommended that I increase my good carbs a bit. He thinks for me that trying to stick to 50 or less is way too low. He's talked to me about metabolic-typing, meaning that some people are heavy protein burners, while some are heavy fat or carb burners. We're trying to tweak my macros to stoke weight loss again after gaining some weight and then just stalling out.

        So - he says as long as I'm working out, I should up my primal-friendly carbs to 100 to 150/day. I'm going to try this for a month and see what happens. I'm about a week in, and so far it's been great. I've had more energy and less muscle soreness/fatigue on my workout days if I up my primal-friendly carbs, and I feel much more satisfied with my meals. If I skip working out for a day or have a much lighter workout, then I keep my carbs in the 50 - 100 range.


        • #5
          Thank you all for your input. June, I grew up in Cleveland.

          Fascinating article. Thanks for the link.

          I admit to being carb-phobic for most of the summer. If I had to guess, I would say that my carb intake was below 50. Interesting that you should mention metabolic typing, duckmama, as I am supposedly one of those who does better on more carbs. The problem I have had (after a lifetime of being skinny) is that I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism five years ago (after a 30-pound weight gain) and my metabolism seems to have changed to the point that I no longer recognize it. It's clear that I can't do carbs like I used to, but it's also clear that I need more carbs than I have been eating.*I am trying to find the happy medium.

          I can't say I am overly active . . . I am a medical transcriptionist and so I sit for much of the day. As soon as I am done, though, I want to be up and doing something. We do a lot of hiking during the summer and cross-country skiing when there is snow. I think 150 grams of carbs might be too much, but I will try upping it to 100 and see what happens.