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{My fat journey}

Aneta Dang / Exercise  / {My fat journey}

{My fat journey}

My own fat journey started 10 months ago when I finally had enough of being fat. Sick of being sick and tired or being tired. 

Sound familiar?

I’ve been down this road before. Too many times to recount as I’m sure so many of you have been before. Looking at photos of yourself and thinking “my god, i’ve really let myself go!”, “why am I so fat?” or even “I should really get to the gym more often” etc.

Circa. 2009 190 lbs post baby no.2
Wearing a bathing suit was painful 

We all have demons inside our heads and those guys are real fuckers at the worst of times.

There are times when I simply could not care anymore. What’s another half bag of popcorn, another halloween candy from the kids stash, another slice of cake? It’s my birthday after all! So what, I’m fat already!

Demons, those fuckers.

Along my fat journey I have discovered that it wasn’t just the demons inside my head that were at war with my body, it was actually my own body at war with itself. My body was fighting a losing battle all due to the chemical shit storm that I had created out of my own food addiction (more on this later).

All good fat journeys have a beginning…

As I have mentioned earlier, my story started roughly 10 months ago in the spring of April 2017. I had gained and lost over 40 lbs in the span of 8 years over and over like a hamster on a wheel.

First, I had my babies. I gained over 40 lbs with the first one, lost 20lbs then put on another 20lbs with the other one. I was 210 at my heaviest with my second baby. Lost another 20 lbs and sat at roughly 190 lbs for a few months. Hamster on a bloody wheel.

This is where the story starts. But first, a little background…

In the winter of 2009, I had started attending Zumba classes. I did very hesitantly due to peer pressure from a friend I no longer have. We are no longer friends due to peer pressure, the irony.

I lost 10 lbs in the first month. I did Zumba for almost 3 years, sometimes 5-6x/ week. I lost 10 lbs. I sat at 180 lbs for years. I also started a baking business at home. I consumed everything I ate, as did my hubs.

Maybe, this should have been my first clue that trying to out exercise your diet was futile. But it wasn’t. I continued to consume what I thought was healthy foods all in “moderation”. That’s the secret sauce right? It’s not what we eat, it’s how much we eat. It’s your fault you’re fat. You have no control.

Those fucking demons are back.

I took the red pill and my fat journey began…

I was introduced to the Keto-Fied Ruled.Me cookbook by a co-worker who also started her own journey. I am not one to shy away from friendly competition, so I signed up.

This was the red pill I took. For 2 months I followed the recipes to the tee, I was diligent and committed. It was not easy but I lost 25 lbs in the first month.

Although I am no stranger to weight loss, this was miraculous because it was solely based on diet and diet alone.

No need to workout. No need to run a single mile. No need to lift a single weight. I ate all my fat, protein and kept my carbs under 25g. My fat journey was just beginning.

From April to September 2017, I kept losing weight. I consumed literature from MD’s, psychiatrists, nutritionists (CNS), journalists, trainers, average people would write blogs about their own fat journey and how they felt better by simply decreasing and in most instances removing carbs from their diet. Listened to podcasts (will post links to my favourite at the end). Was this the real truth?

My rabbit hole kept getting bigger and deeper.

During my time of transitioning from a very SAD (standard american diet), the irony with this diet is a paradox in and of itself, I went through so many physical, emotional and social changes.

Primarily losing weight was a huge bonus. I was trying to shut up my demons after all but the process itself proved to be far more rewarding then I ever thought possible.

Circa 2018 140 lbs 10 years post baby
Wearing a bathing suit is freeing 

The red pill benefits

In continuing down this path it has led me to believe that the choices we make in regards to what we feed our bodies is the ultimate modifier of health.

Working as a massage therapist is a very physically demanding job. There were days when I would need to take a nap in the afternoon, would need to schedule a break every 2 hours for a least 30 min to “recharge”, would have to pack copious amounts of food to keep me going throughout the day.

Shakes, supplements, some new “detox” tea I would have to prep for a week, count my macros, my calories…I threw all that shit in the compost along with my spinach and kale that went bad after a day.

Freedom. Freedom from food addiction is the single most freeing thing that I have acquired from this new “unhealthy” high fat, low carb diet.

Bearing witness to my own transformation has made me question everything we have been told by our trusted health professionals. I see clients every day with the same complaints, over and over again like hamsters on a wheel. And I always ask about their diet. What are you consuming? What are you feeding your body?

Afterall, the body is a masterpiece comprised of many moving parts and it all starts with your diet. So are you fueling it or are you depleting it?

Follow these links to the best podcast on living a low-carb/keto/zero carb lifestyle:

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/fitness-confidential-with-vinnie-tortorich/id521811037?mt=2

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/carnivore-cast/id1431449603?mt=2

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/2-keto-dudes/id1086736152?mt=2

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/human-performance-outliers-podcast/id1363389413?mt=2

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/the-keto-diet-podcast/id1059573987?mt=2

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/the-obesity-code-podcast/id1297803164?mt=2

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/peak-human-unbiased-nutrition-info-for-optimum-health/id1393265937?mt=2

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/the-low-carb-cardiologist-podcast/id1255009497?mt=2


I got my own back

Maya Angelou

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

The following has been posted with permission from Carnivore Aurelius


Cholesterol is one of the most feared molecules in the world today.

Yet new research shows it’s one of the most beneficial molecules for your health.

How does everyone have it so backwards?

First off, this is not medical advice. If your LDL is above the reference range, you should work with a doctor. Before making any dietary changes, always consult with a healthcare practitioner.

How Did We Get Here?

Why did cholesterol get put into the penalty box? Three main studies damned cholesterol:

  1. 1913 Russian study on rabbits showed that cholesterol caused lesions. 
  2. Ancel Keys and his CORRUPT seven countries study showing a correlation b/w saturated fat & heart disease
  3. A study in Framingham, MA 60 years ago claimed cholesterol led to heart disease .

All three ultimately led to the diet-heart hypothesis and Food Pyramid.

Cholesterol was the critical second link of the diet-heart hypothesis. The hypothesis was that saturated fat increased cholesterol. And based on the studies above, that cholesterol then caused heart disease.

Screen Shot 2020 02 16 at 9.35.30 PM

After cholesterol was found to be present in artery walls in patients with heart disease, cholesterol was blamed as the cause of the disease.

But we convicted the wrong enemy.

The Truth About Cholesterol

All three studies used to convict cholesterol would turn out to be flawed and corrupt.

The 1913 study on cholesterol by the russian scientist was on rabbits. Rabbits are herbivores. Of course they react negatively to cholesterol.

Ancel Keys cherry picked seven countries out of 22. After including all the countries there was no correlation.

Screen Shot 2020 02 16 at 9.35.35 PM

There was not a shred of truth in any of the three studies. 

A 30 year follow up to framingham actually showed a negative correlation between cholesterol and disease.

“There is a direct association between falling cholesterol levels over the first 14 years and mortality over the following 18 years (11% overall and 14% CVD death rate increase per 1 mg/dL per year drop in cholesterol levels).”

So of course the USDA and health authorities backtracked on their cholesterol recommendations and saturated fat vilification right…? Of course not. They doubled down and still recommend people limit saturated fat. 

Studies Confirm LDL and Total Cholesterol Are Not Risk Factors

Now that cholesterol has been rigorously tested, more studies continue to emerge that cholesterol is not predictive of heart disease.

In 1987, a thirty year follow up to the Framingham study was conducted — the study that crucified total cholesterol in the first place.

Those aged between 48 and 57 with cholesterol in the mid range (183-222 mg/dL) had a greater risk of heart attack than those with higher cholesterol.

They also found that “for each 1 mg/dL per year drop in serum cholesterol values, there is an 11% increase in both the overall death rate and the CVD death rate.”

In fact, there are zero studies that show that high LDL is a risk factor, independent of triglyceride levels and HDL levels.

What matters is the functioning of your lipid and energy transport system.

And a big reason why there is often a correlation between LDL, HDL and heart disease is because they are potentially indicative of a broken system.

And you know what? New scientific research confirms this.

There’s not a single randomized control trial that shows people with high LDL die younger. David Diamond has done some great work here.

In fact, some studies show that higher LDL-C is associated with equal or greater lifespan. 

Screen Shot 2020 02 16 at 9.35.40 PM

When it comes to total cholesterol, a study in Hawaii found the same. Having low cholesterol for a long time actually increases risk of death:

Screen Shot 2020 02 16 at 9.35.44 PM

Instead of continuing to dig their heels in, I do appreciate the honesty of the study above: “we have been unable to explain our results”.

Whoops.

This study from UCLA showed that 75% heart disease patients had LDL below 130 mg/dl — the level at which doctors prescribe statins.

Screen Shot 2020 02 16 at 9.35.47 PM

The above data shows that saturated fat can raise cholesterol. But no evidence has shown that, independent of other factors, high  cholesterol is a cause for concern.

New evidence continues to pile up that cholesterol alone is not the culprit when it comes to heart disease. And that lowering it is not necessarily beneficial (in fact in some cases it can cause more damage). 

In 2019, the BMJ reviewed 22 interventional trials and found that “‘The preponderance of evidence indicates that low-fat diets that reduce serum cholesterol do not reduce cardiovascular events or mortality”

In the recently unearthed Minnesota Coronary  experiment researchers lowered cholesterol like they intended by 14%.

But this led to a “22% higher risk of death for each 30 mg/dL reduction in serum cholesterol”

This study was BURIED for 40 years.

Screen Shot 2020 02 16 at 9.35.51 PM

Lastly, remember the seven countries study that blamed saturated fat and cholesterol for heart disease? Well Zoe Harcombe added in 290 more countries and the correlation flipped. Cholesterol actually becomes negatively correlated with heart disease.

Screen Shot 2020 02 11 at 8.08.25 PM

What BioMarkers Are Predictive of Heart Disease?

Yes, cholesterol is present in the artery walls of heart disease patients. 

But it’s because it was there to rescue their artery walls.

It’s like condemning firefighters for starting fires just because they’re present at all fires. The logic is completely backwards.

What matters is how the fire started in the first place.

LDL, the “bad cholesterol”, is not predictive alone. Of course not. Because it is not inherently harmful. It’s only indicative of an atherogenic environment when it’s coupled with inflammation and oxidation.

What is the signature of inflammation and oxidation?

It usually rears its head as high TG / HDL ratios and high fasting insulin.

In a recent study of 103,446 men and women, LDL levels showed very minimal effect on heart disease.

But an increase in triglycerides/HDL ratio doubled the risk of heart disease.

Screen Shot 2020 02 16 at 9.35.59 PM

High triglyceride/HDL ratios are indicative of high remnant cholesterol, which is a better indicator for heart disease than LDL alone .

Dave Feldman showed below that remnant cholesterol correlated highly with all cause mortality.

Screen Shot 2020 02 16 at 9.36.02 PM

And guess what is significantly associated with remnant cholesterol? Insulin resistance .

When it comes to biomarkers, I like to see:

  • Total / HDL < 4
  • TG / HDL < 1
  • HDL > 40
  • TG < 100
  • Fasting insulin < 10
  • Fasting glucose < 5 mmol/L

LDL, the “bad cholesterol”, is nowhere to be found…Why?

Big pharma can’t make money off the REAL predictive biomarkers

Make sure to also keep an eye on fasting insulin levels.

From the great Ivor Cummins: When insulin is low, high LDL particle count and high triglycerides don’t indicate that you’re at higher risk.

Screen Shot 2020 02 16 at 9.36.06 PM

But when insulin is high, the risk of high triglycerides and high LDL is magnified.

When fasting insulin is  >15 uU/mL, your risk of heart disease with the same triglyceride levels go up 6.7x. And with the same LDL-P levels, it increases 11x.

High LDL with high insulin is much more concerning than high LDL with low insulin.

Too Little Cholesterol is Worse Than Too Much

Cholesterol is an organic molecule found in cell membranes and most tissues. It’s in the food we eat and is naturally occurring within our bodies.

Of the cholesterol present, around 75% is created in our bodies, and 25% is ingested.

Cholesterol is one of the most vital compounds in our bodies. So vital that our bodies make around 3000 mg of it every single day. We can’t leave it to chance to get it externally – it’s that important.

Without cholesterol, we would literally be dead.

Cells would disintegrate. We’d have no hormones, no brain function, and no muscles. Every cell membrane is constructed out of cholesterol.

All of the following critical body components are made from cholesterol:

  • Estrogen
  • Testosterone
  • Cortisol (anti-inflammatory stress hormone)
  • Aldosterone (regulates salt balance)
  • Vitamin D
  • Bile (required for fat and vitamin absorption)
  • Brain synapses (neurotransmitter exchange)
  • Myelin sheath (insulates nerve cells)

Not having any cholesterol is MUCH worse than having too much of it.

Screen Shot 2020 02 16 at 9.36.10 PM

Conclusion

Cholesterol is one of the most important molecules in your body. It is not a direct etiological agent in heart disease — it is merely correlative because it can indicate fundamental damage. 

We’ve talked about a lot here, and I really hope that you get a lot out of this article. It wasn’t easy for me to learn all this information – it took me years to learn about these things and improve my own health.

This article was originally published at www.carnivoreaurelius.com.

Aneta Dang

Aneta Dang RMT ART, Calgary AB

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