Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Shangri-La Diet in a Nutshell

Reading Seth's blog post (link here) led me to this forum (link here) where on this page of that forum I found the following two summaries of the SLD:

The theory seems to be that the body finds 2-300 excess calories and can't figure out where they came from, so shuts down your hunger and resets weight setpoint over time. Kind of like your body thinks you went from eating slim pickin's in winter to having plentiful food in summer...it just knows you are getting more energy from the food you are currently eating so it can up the metabolism and lower the weight setpoint since it figures you found a good supply of chow and wants you to keep eating without getting fat.


The idea is that flavourless calories do NOT give the message of abundance, as they would in nature. So the body reduces the weight setpoint as a survival mechanism in hard times. Once your body weight is sitting above your setpoint, you naturally are not hungry, you eat less and your body loses weight to the setpoint. If your actual bodyweight is sitting below your setpoint, you are excessively hungry and eat until you regain to where your body wants to be. A protective mechanism.

How many times have we lost 5 or so lbs below where we usually sit, through a major struggle of restraint and intake reduction, then blow it all in a fit of uncontrolled appetite and eating and regain the weight? I know that 148-152 lbs is a huge sticking point for me and the first time I started SLD, I slid right past that point, going from 150-146 in a few days and then remaining with the lowered appetite for months, as I lost to my goal of 133-135 lbs. Took only 3 months. It was rather amazing.

Seth Roberts took the theory of the impact of flavourless calories on setpoint and bent it in various ways to try and "trick the brain" into lowering the setpoint. He tried things like flavour without calories, calories without flavour, using a flavour that is sometimes taken calorie free, then combined with calories at other times of the day. "Platinum Calories" as devised by one of the forum readers is a twist on the theory. It is based on the idea that fat calories provided alone will provide calories without triggering any insulin response at all - not such a strange concept around here. They are tasty (coconut oil in coffee, "oilmilk" - oil and water blended with lethicin, as examples), but I never found them as effective as the flavourless calories. Bulletproof coffee is the same concept - lots of fat without any other dietary calorie sources, and hence satiety that lasts for hours.

I want to try this one more time using Spectrum's refined coconut oil.  I think I saw a jar of this at the local Kroger, selling for about $7 or $8.

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