If I’ve done my job correctly, you should now be able to “understand” and “accept” the science behind LCHF.
Now comes the REALLY hard bit: IMPLEMENTATION! As with most things in life, it’s the psychology that’s the tough part, what’s inside your head. Giving up long-held cultural, medical or even religious beliefs demands a certain something that many of us simply don’t have. Going “against the grain”, especially when it goes against officially sanctioned government dogma is not easy. Looking back, I was no exception in this regard and I now admit that for me the psychology was the toughest part of all. Being a naturally skeptical person, I needed definitive, hard proof that LCHF would REALLY work without any major medical issues. In the end, the evidence presented itself in the form of other people that I knew.
I saw how others close to me, mainly friends and family, were losing weight rapidly on LCHF and how I, still on a high carbohydrate diet was not. In fact my weight continued to increase and in the end I had to admit that what I was doing was simply not working and what they were doing was. I relented and in October 2012 I finally started LCHF in earnest. Looking back now, I had no major physiological issues at all during the entire weight loss phase, approximately 8 months in total. It was the “getting started” and remaining strict LCHF at all times during the weight loss phase that was the hardest and most critical part of all.
Support and encouragement are key ingredients to success. I took mine from fellow LCHF practitioners, both friends and family that had gone before me. This was probably the best kind of support since not only did they understand what I was going through but they were also living examples that the science itself works, as well as being people that I knew and trusted, with one of them being a doctor. Unfortunately, others I know starting out on LCHF have not received any support from people close to them. This must be hard, especially if you are perhaps the only family member that wants to go LCHF. All I can say is take heart and don’t give up! Let them stare in wonder as your weight comes off and theirs goes up. Take courage/heart from others outside your immediate circle of friends/family via the internet, forums, social media or even this blog. Plough your own furrow and soon you will be looking and feeling so good that other people’s opinions simply won’t matter any more!
This is now a well documented and an almost universally accepted phenomenon. Sugar has been proven to stimulate the same parts of the brain as cocaine and so it is something we all need to take seriously. For many, the withdrawal symptoms of “coming off carbs” can be as great if not greater than the physiological effects. People complain of headaches, joint pains, etc when going LCHF. Personally I did not suffer from any of these but those people who I’ve read about that did have usually been on an extremely high carb intake, typically >200g/day, usually in the form of soft drinks e.g. 1.5L of Coke/day or more being typical.
Nearly 3 yrs in on LCHF and I still suffer from sugar addiction, I’m not going to deny it. Of course the cakes, sweets and ice creams are tempting and sometimes I allow myself a small treat. However, the difference between now and then is a) my cravings are minimal and b) these things are now an infrequent treat rather than a routine part of my diet. So what’s the secret to overcoming sugar addiction? Indeed what’s the secret to overcoming any addiction at all, be it alcohol, drugs or anything else for that matter? I don’t know, I’m not an expert in these things but when it comes to sugar addiction there are some tricks we can use to help wean ourselves off sugar almost entirely i.e. sugar substitutes. More on these to come..
So what advice would I give to others contemplating LCHF but are unsure about taking the plunge? Very simple: drop your fear of fat and JUST GO FOR IT!!