My favorite diet blogger is Tom Naughton, the guy who did the Fat Head movie – not least because his family moved out to the sticks and started farming! One of the things he talks about is how biochemistry influences behavior – basically, if you’re eating the wrong things, your body goes into “storage” mode: you get fat – and you become a couch potato. In that order. Not the other way around like the calories in – calories out folks think.
Well. I have a bit of data to add to the pile. If your guts are very, very, very sick, you can be a couch potato and still be losing weight. After realizing that my implementation of a low-carb diet was killing me by inches, I decided that I would have to do something a bit different. I went for potato starch and probiotic supplements, and started eating steel-cut oatmeal for breakfast – while continuing to try to keep my intake of wheat and sugar low.
Over the course of a couple months, my guts got better – better than I can ever remember them being. It’s been weird and great at the same time, though they’re still delicate.
But one thing that’s been a HUGE difference is that for the first time in my life, I can’t sit still! I’ve always been a big reader – “Horizontal Harriet,” my grandparents would call me, for lying on a couch reading for endless hours – but ever since my guts started healing, I’ve found myself less and less tolerant of physical inactivity during the day. (In the evening after I’ve tired myself out, that’s a different story.) I just can’t sit around reading things for hours without interruption anymore – even things I find quite interesting!
SO. MUCH. ENERGY. It’s crazy – is this what being healthy feels like? Sure, I still have slow days when I’m not feeling well, especially if I’ve pushed things too far and stumbled into “typical American” diet choices. But suddenly the superwomen who are always doing all sorts of things have started to make more sense to me – they probably just have very healthy metabolisms, whereas I definitely don’t.
Now to leverage that energy into weight loss – well, that’s the hard part, since I do struggle with the temptation to overeat and eat the wrong (sugary) things. Especially at night. It’s a work in progress for sure!