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Want To Lose Weight? Eat More Fat!

A "delicious diet" need not be an oxymoron. It is possible to eat plenty of tasty food and yet lose weight! Here is an account of the vegetarian low carb, high fat, high protein diet that I am on. This has lead to a significant and rapid weight loss (for me) with practically no exercise.

This is a follow-up to: How I lost weight, gained it all back and lost it again! Members of Asan Ideas of Wealth may recall that I recently shared a TEDx talk on the subject (linked below).

I would give the normal disclaimer of consulting your doctor before changing your lifestyle but doctors have their own propaganda drilled into them and if what I hears is true, "big pharma" is strong enough to control what they read in med school! So your doctor might scoff at the idea of eating more fat (qualified below). If you do take this post or the resources linked below seriously, do start slow and make small changes, let you body adapt for a couple of weeks and go to the next step if you can tolerate this.

What Does "Eat more fat" mean?

Source: Taryn

For a start, it does not mean, eat only fat. Most of our diets are high on carb. A safe guess would be 70-80% of carbs.  We also eat a lot of sugar (much of it from carbs) - often disguised.  As explained in the videos below, this puts tremendous stress on the liver, gets stored in our body (you know where!) as fat and messes up our ability to process sugar in the long term.

Eating a low-fat diet is extremely unhealthy for us! It often means a high-carb, high-sugar diet and this gets converted to fat reserves in the body.

A diet with good amount of carbs is not bad, but those who are diabetic or those genetically predisposed to become one, should definitely be eating less of it.

For normal individuals (not diabetic and no family history), a diet with about 30% fat + 30% protein + 30% carb would be well balanced in every sense of the way. Reduction of carbs from the 70-80% levels to 30% levels accompanied by an increase in fat intake is what I mean by EAT MORE FAT. Kindly do not misinterpret this.

Diabetics may consider lowering the carbs lower.

The beauty of this is that the food would get tasty! One can eat cheese and butter and not feel guilty about it!

You can refers to sources linked below for exact details, but the key idea is well known. Eating more carbs results in blood sugar swings. And if we overeat the rest gets stored as fat. Proteins take a bit longer for the stomach to process and fat the longest.  For someone who does not binge eat (meaning eat when stressed and not when hungry), eating more than what is necessary is hard. So if they eat less carbs, they would not feel hungry often.

And if they eat only when they are hungry, the fat reserves will gradually dissolve (the body will convert it into energy) and they will lose weight. It is so simple that it is ingenious! The problem is we (incl doctors) have been brainwashed into believing that fat is bad.

Before I get to my diet:

Tips for Losing Weight

  1. Do not confuse staying fit and losing weight. Exercise is for staying fit and is essential. it has nothing to do with losing weight. This depends on what you eat and how much of it you eat! Exercising, feeling hungry and eating a wrong diet will not help.
  2. Drink plenty of water. To state it bluntly, our urine should not become a dark yellow at all times of the day. This is essential for the body to work on our fat reserves.
  3. No sugar or processed food.
  4. No starving. That will result in eventual overeating and weight gain.
  5. Eating only when hungry. 
  6. Eating slowly so that the body can signal to you stop. There is a saying that slow eaters live longer!

My Diet

It is not too high on fat or protein but I get a lot more of it now. The carbs have reduced drastically. A Low Carb High Fat Diet is easier to achieve for a non-vegetarian. I love meat but can't eat when I am at home (guess why!) so I am practically a vegetarian! I initially cut sugar and all processed food. Then I gradually stopped eating rice/wheat - all staple grains. So I dropped from 85-86 ish Kgs to about 65-66 ish Kgs over the course of less than a year with not much exercise aside from an evening walk. This may not work for everyone.

LIKE ALL MY OTHER POSTS, I DO NOT CLAIM THAT THIS IS THE ONLY WAY. THERE ARE MULTIPLE WAYS TO EAT HEALTHY AND LOSE WEIGHT. JUST STATING MINE. 

Breakfast (9 am):  Coffee + Idly + Coffee (or unsweetened hot chocolate or cocoa)

The cocoa offers the proteins + fibre + iron + happiness. The coffee (plus water) wakes up the intestines.

Some days I eat ragi flakes (no sugar added).

This is a high-carb breakfast and is something I am trying to change at least for a few days of the week.

Eggs + butter is a great option low carb option. So are nuts (see below).

Breakfast falls at an extremely busy time of the day. You need to get to work, the kids have to be sent to school. So it is better not to fool around with it too much.

Morning snack (11 am) (Spot the movie: "I don't think he knows about second breakfast, Pip")

That cup of hot cocoa would fit right in here. The unsweetened taste will need some getting used to, but it can be incredibly filling. You can get milk from the office cafeteria and dunk a couple of spoons of cocoa powder (stir rapidly!)

Few almonds/walnuts/peanuts etc. also can take you to lunch time.

Lunch (1 pm):

My favorites: Spinach + coconut or Beans + coconut.

All green veggies + cheese. Will make a fine meal. It can hold for at least 2- 3 hours depending on your metabolism and activity.

Potatoes and Elephant Yam are my weaknesses (both high carb). I indulge in them once a week.

No rice; wheat bread etc. There are plenty of carbs in vegetables and it comes with fiber too.

Eating more fat can be scary if you are overweight. So you can go easy on it, watch the results and increase the intake.

Afternoon/Evening Snack (4-7 pm): This is a proper meal for me. My favorite is two handfuls of nuts mixed with warm milk + coffee.

The nuts can be pecans or almonds. Walnuts do not go well with milk. So do peanut.

Because of my Myasthenia Gravis (an auto-immune condition), I have trouble chewing. So I grind the almonds. Boy ground almond + milk tastes like heaven!  It is so soothing and calming that it would make an excellent low-carb high-fat breakfast.

Roasted peanut has more carbs than raw peanuts, but that is a wonderful snack and if eaten enough a good meal. As long as you don't eat carbs and do not overeat, the fat from nuts alone will not result in weight gain.

I love peanuts and in fact during my previous weight loss stint (see post linked at the start), had them (only them for lunch/dinner). But now I cannot seem to tolerate them due to the other meds I need to take.

In addition, I also drink a cup of coffee an hour before and a cup of cocoa an hour later, just before I head out for an evening walk.

This way the intake is spread out and I do not get hungry.

Dinner (8:30 -9:30 pm):  

On most days : Cabbage/Chayote Squash/Bridge gourd/Bottle gourd/Pumpkin/Ash Gourd/Cucumber/Zucchini cooked with moong dal to form a gravy/porridge (what we Madrasis call "kootu").

No rice/wheat.

Moong Dal is high carb, but is necessary to tolerate the green veggies 🙂

Some cheese added in, if necessary. One can eat plenty of this kootu.

Before Bed (12:30 - 1 am):  1/2 cups of curd.

Caution: I do not claim this to be healthy, nutritious, balanced or optimal. It is just a space in the diet terrain I have found some shelter in. Please do not change eating habits dramatically. Eat what suits you.

Just like not everyone will end up rich, not everyone will lose weight. Each human being is unique. We all need to find what works for us.

The main reason I share this with you is to invite comments. What is your version of a well balanced diet?

Resources

Tip:  Start with the first video first, the second, second and the third, third (!!!)

This I had shared in AIFW a few days back.

Reversing Type 2 Diabetes (important for all)

The food revolution

Sugar: The Bitter Truth. Thanks to Subra(money.com) for this source:

Low Carb High Fat resources:  http://www.dietdoctor.com

http://www.diabetes.co.uk/diet/low-carb-diabetes-diet.html

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11 thoughts on “Want To Lose Weight? Eat More Fat!

  1. Sunny

    Dear Pattu,

    Thanks for sharing your diet/meal plan. I think you missed about fruits.

    Last 6 months i have lost 10 Kgs with diet i follow which in way is less carb and more GOOD fat and proteins.

    By good fat i mean consuming desi cow ghee(yes its good fat). Also seasonal fruits like mango are misunderstood by lot of people. lot of people consumes mango with poori, roti etc which imho is not a good option. Most of the fruits are in a way , mini meal or snack hence should be take solo.

    Another thing i do differently is , as soon as I wake , I dnt drink coffee or tea and take my brkfast within 30 mins. Having brkfast within 30 mins of wake, increases metabolism.

    Now a days i am experimenting to keep track of calaries so that i know my limits I think this habit will go away eventually once I am totally aware of how much qty i need to eat.

    Thanks
    Sunny

    Reply
    1. freefincal

      True. I did not mention it because I avoid fruits due to the sugar. I am on steroids and need to watch my sugar intake as it can make me diabetic. Fruits are good but the trouble is they will not fill easily.

      Reply
  2. mekaviraj

    Sunny,

    Your diet seems interesting - Could you share it ?

    Pattu,

    I have started with low carb high fat diet , but I am unable to resist eating fruits like mangoes...so back to square one 🙂

    Another issue which I felt is bit lethargic/ bit tired when I had full fat diet.
    I think I made mistake of starving myself.

    One good thing out of this experiment, I have started enjoying coffee/tea without a pinch of sugar.

    I will once again start this diet 🙂

    Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
  3. peeyoosh gupta

    could u please mention the unsuitable mix of food like dal and lemon etc. one has been brought above as mango and roti. I wish to know the complete list of food combination which one should avoid.

    Reply
  4. Anshuman Chakrapani

    Pattu Sir,
    Everything looks fine in your food but one thing not healthy is eating curd at night. Do not take curd or buttermilk at night and never heat curd as it causes various digestive disorders.

    Reply
  5. Anshuman Chakrapani

    Peeyoosh Gupta, Here’s a short list which is not compatible foods together according to ayurveda :

    – Milk with meat

    – Salt and milk

    – Cheese and fruit

    – Fruit with milk

    – Stale food (including leftovers)

    – Fish with yogurt or milk

    – Milk and yogurt in excess

    – Excessive intake of wet, green, leafy veggies (like spinach) or salads

    – Excessive amounts of pickled or fermented foods

    – Ice cream at night

    – Improper seasonal diet

    Reply
  6. MiraD

    Pattubhai,
    I didn't know moong dal was high carb
    ...isn't it a good source of protein? Asking because this is the dal I eat the most.
    Right now experimenting with roti one meal and second meal bajri nachni...but was eating pesaratu 🙁

    Reply
  7. prasoon anand

    Dear pattu sir . Thanks once again for sharing this extremely important fact and fiction about diet .

    Our forefathers ( early man ) were hunters and gatherers for millions of years , consuming food high in protein , fat and fibres . Very recently when so called civilisation comes in , and they became farmers , started cultivating grains in field , only then the dietary habits changed to high carbohydrate .
    During 60 and 70's , Western world, under influence and with monetary aid by many pharma companies and fmcg giants , flooded the scientific literatures blaming fat and cholesterol as major culprit for cardiovascular risk , and shifted the focus from sugar to fat . Since then pharma companies have sold trillions dollors worth of statins ( cholesterol lowering drugs ) .
    It is really difficult to understand that any thing which is produced naturally by the body , can be harmful for own body . ( Majority of Cholesterol , circulating in our blood , is produced by body it self ) .
    Anyways , in the most prestigious scientific magazine " nature " , sugar has been kept under the category of poison !

    Really thought provoking and introspecting !!!

    Reply
  8. SANDEEP GUPTA

    Well done for losing wait. I find it really tough to follow.
    One question? With cocoa do you mean cocoa powder? That we use to bake cake. Brands are Cadbury, weikfield etc.
    Do you not recommend cashewnuts in nuts?
    Thank you.

    Reply

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