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Maria Grazia

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Everything posted by Maria Grazia

  1. Maria Grazia

    CR for women

    Hi ? I'm new here. I'm a 20 years old girl from Italy (forgive my eventual english mistakes, please), psychology undergraduate. I'm interested in CR for its immediate health benefits and the promise of aging well more than for increasing lifespan (and since my budget is not infinite I like the fact that buying less food would allow me to invest on quality). I would like to understand if and how it could be compatible with an optimal reproductive health, since I'm young and the goal here is to feel better, not worse, and since from what I understand women's hormones balance is more vulnerable to caloric restriction and fat loss. I'm on the high end of the healthy range of BMI (24.1) but I have a high waist to hip ratio for my age (0.78) that I would like to reduce so I'm pretty sure I could benefit from a patient, balanced, weight loss diet, but the question is: as a young woman how far should I go for optimal health (immediate physical health + hormonal balance, meaning reproductive and mental health + aging well)? Should I do a common diet limited in time and then raise my calories for hormonal balance hoping to mantain eating clean as much as my budget allows or prefer a slight chronic caloric restriction that would allow me to buy and eat only high quality food (with the exception of social occasions)?
  2. Maria Grazia

    CR for women

    Why did you suggest El Ceibo cacao specifically? I really like your specific suggestions (IN'S rye bread and canned legumes, frozen spinach, ground flaxseeds... I try to avoid canned fish though, I love IN's wild salmon). Is it just a matter of cost or a matter of good quality for some reason?
  3. Maria Grazia

    CR for women

    I'm sorry I disappeared, I had to put everything into practice, and being here is quite time consuming. Anyway, I wanted to share the follow up and what I learned. I followed a diet very similar to the one you suggested (differences were: less seeds and more nuts, sesame for calcium instead of Ferrarelle water, vit D supplement instead of vegetable milk -not a good idea that one, I should have checked my levels, I think it's one of the reasons I got an inflamed joint-, and more or less dr. Greger reccomendations for vegetable choice -so a lot of raw cruciferous vegetables and a focus on variety for example-) for 6 months last year and I got mixed results (good sleep, good mood, gradually improved body composition and skin, reduced cravings, better exercise recovery, higher energy, reduced acne BUT low immunity and some knee pain (!), and lost period again in the last month even if not restricting much nor underweigt) until I (think I) understood the problem: 1) k2 vitamin, especially in mk4 form since I was getting some mk7 from sauerkrauts. It seems implied both in hypothalamic amenorrhea and in joint health 2) I meal prepped my vegetables and I think cutting them in advance without any countermeasure (like vacuum packing? It's tricky) made me lose a lot of vit C -they were not the best quality vegetables in the world too, as I said I tried to eat cheap-, which together with stress (emotional and from cold exposure) could explain my vulnerability to illness So, after a standard italian diet I was forced to do that made me lose both benefits and disadvantages I got, I'm now able to choose what I eat again for one year. I substituted yogurt with cheese and stopped meal prepping and everything seems going well now, even if I'm split between trying a mk7 and mk4 supplement or keeping those tasty brie/camembert/emmenthal/gouda in my life (ps: Mccoy, since you are in italy I found Gouda cheese here! They sell it in IN'S markets -I moved in Rome-) Also, I checked at the end of those 6 months and I were not severely anemic for the first time in my life, I think I can thank legumes for that. I'll keep you updated
  4. Maria Grazia

    Anorexia a Bad Comparison?

    I think that CR shares a lot with orthorexia, the difference between "being obsessed with being healthy" and "having a disorder consisting in being obsessed with being healthy" is, in my opinion, in the results: is the social life of this person damaged by his/her diet? Does he/she avoid friends to avoid eating with them? Is he/she going trhough a divorce caused by his/her low libido? Is the physical health of this person damaged by this strict diet? Is the mood of this person too low or irrationally high? Does he/she have other interests than CR? Can he/she take pleasure in other activities? I also think we should ask ourselves "Why am I doing this?", "Am I using my diet as a substitute for something?", "What does it gives me that I feel lacking in my life?" Almost everything can be done in a healthy way and for healthy reasons or in an unhealthy way and for unhealthy reasons.
  5. Maria Grazia

    CR for women

    Blood donation is something I do for ethical reasons (I have a very rich type 0 blood) and because I think since it's a very safe situation of exposure it'll help to reduce my slight needle phobia. I talked about it because it's a good excuse to do basic bloodwork. I never thought it could be unhealthy, I trust professionals... More or less ?. You are right that you didn't suggest it, I was talking about bloodtests but I wasn't clear, I'm sorry. The homeostatic response you talked about would explain something. Is it the famous "starvation mode"? Some thinks it's a myth but I agree with you (and feel very validated), calories in calories out is real but how much calories are put "out" is part exercise but part up to the body and its endocrine/thermogenetic/non-exercise activity regulation. Anyway I'll stay with a friend and eat more for some days so I think this problem will disappear, and I'll not go back to such a restrictive diet (I chose 1200 because they say it's the lowest healthy but I should have studied it deeper, and probably they also talk about net calories, not absolute calories). Losing weight isn't the only reason I'm here, I think eating well will make me feel better whatever the effect on my body fat, but surely it's a nice plus. I don't have a IN supermarket where I live but I have LIDL and I think I'll run there as soon as needed. (It's incredible that you are Italian, I'd never have imagined to find Italians here.) I love sardines' taste but always forget they exist. I'm a bit worried about BPA in canned food but sometimes I eat it for convenience and generally speaking sardines are very affordable. They are better than tuna for sure. I think I will cook a good amount of beans, lentils and chickpeas, freeze them and eat a bit everyday. About yogurt I'm interested in probiotics and it's very difficult to find sugar-free probiotic yogurt in supermarkets like LIDL, but a small amount of greek yogurt seems a good idea as a protein source. I'm very, very sensitive to caffeine so I'm forced to avoid coffee/tea/cacao. I'm eating 2 eggs a day under the influence of a egg-enthusiast uncle who thinks the more the better (I saw that they are almost a multivitamin). What would be a reasonable amount and why? I eat flaxseeds but whole, chewing them before or after a meal. Isn't that enough? How do I ground them? I have a small sesame grounder but it doesn't work with flaxseeds. I love mushrooms also because I can eat them raw, like lettuces and tomatoes, and because they are nutritionally very different from other vegetables. Non pre-cut are affordable. I prefer oats to pasta because it's very flexible and if cooked with cinnamon or mixed with yogurt makes for a warm soft meal that reminds me of cuddles ? Also it's a very good source of proteins and fibers. Wholegrain pasta with tomato sauce is of course healthy, convenient, tasty and socially acceptable and I really appreciate every opportunity to add variety to my diet, for my microbiome's sake ? I generally don't consider unfermented soy products and soy milk in particular to be healthy, because they don't feel like "real food" and because of the not fully understood effects of phytoestrogens, but probably they are healthier than chicken ? I'm open to exceptions (see: tofu) and I think that would be the cheapest way to reach dietary RDA of vit D, especially if I reduce eggs. I'll give it a try. Yeah, sweets and refined grains are out, as well as cocktails. (I have to do exceptions for refined grains in social occasions though). I generally avoid to eat anything I'll not really savour nor recall I ate (like chips). I can't judge those who don't though, I ate mostly potatoes, meat and sweets until 14 years old. I'll play a bit with these ingredients and cronometer in the following weeks. You are really helping me to see some mistakes and you are giving very good ideas on how to put together my health and my wallet's.
  6. Maria Grazia

    CR for women

    Thank you for your answer ? I tracked my nutrients with Cron-o-meter for the past weeks and with a 1200 kcal diet (I upped my calories now because I understood that is much better to do things slowly and I'm seeing what happens in the 1500-1900 range, where I still feel a slight hunger but without weakness) I struggled to reach the adviced amounts of vit B1, D, E, iron, potassium and omega 6. Salmon made me reach all the RDAs but of course I can't eat it everyday both for mercury and price. I ate mostly eggs, yogurt, oat, frozen vegetables, mixed lettuce + a bit of fruit, nuts, seeds, legumes, fish, chicken, tofu, tomato sauce + wholegrain crackers for pleasure and convenience. This diet was pretty expensive for a student. My cheap calories came from olive oil, grains and legumes but they are not as nutrient-dense as the other things so I think I'll need also to try to buy local and seasonal to buy the biggest amount of nutrients for my money. Also for the same reason I think I'll avoid chicken and tofu and reduce fish, so my macro split will not be only a theoretical choice. Fewer animals killed is a big advantage too. My average macro split (protein:carb:fat) was 30:45:25, but that's not very informative because I tried different options to see how I felt. I learned that relatively low carb (60-100 g carbs/day walking a lot) isn't what I'm searching for. I see that on this forum very high carb diets are preferred (because anabolism=reduced lifespan?) but they scare me a bit for hunger management and body composition so right now I'd say I'm interested in a diet with an amount of carbs between 40% and 65% (This includes lots of possibilities I know nothing about) I'm a beginner at exercising so even with the 1200 kcal diet I think my muscle mass increased (I lost waist cm but less weight than expected. Right now I'm 61,3 kg at 1,63 cm height), and I don't really keep track of what I do, I do planks and squats when and until I feel like it ?, I horseride once a week and walk a lot. I'll start tracking it. I also will do a blood donation and maybe some extra blood exams as you suggested. BMI of 20 would mean 53 kg, and I think that's a reasonable value not to go under for my goals So I'll -take things slower and track weight better (I'm very bad at it because I always weight myself at different hours and because my weight has 2 kg fluctuations during my period and because my body is adjusting and every day feels different) -track exercise -track money spent -consume less chicken, tofu and fish and buy seasonal and local -go on using cronometer -come back ?
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