More on Eat To Live

I received a question in email asking if I felt energetic over the past 5 weeks. The short answer is yes, I do go the gym — which isn’t necessarily part of the diet. Some versions of this ask you to not exercise while you recalibrate your body’s relationship with food. Exercise makes you hungrier and there is more evidence that while it has many health benefits, you can’t exercise your way out of being overweight without changing what you eat.

I have heard other concerns that maybe eating this way means consuming too few calories to be reasonable, particularly if you start very overweight. This doesn’t seem like a concern to me. The whole point of the plan is to select the subset of food you can eat, and then eat as much of that as you need to not be hungry. The very point is to flood your body with nutrients and never be deprived of them.

I’m not schooled in the biochemistry of it, but it seems like it works because your body is almost certainly taking in fewer calories than you burn (it is difficult to eat 2000 calories worth of kale or spinach or romaine lettuce each day) but also keeping you fed at the nutrient level. Since your body knows it isn’t starving because all nutritional needs are met, fat is released pretty regularly and not hoarded.

Doing some envelope math: If I lost 25 pounds and half was water and half was fat, that means my body released 43,750 calories back into my system. Over the course of 35 days, that would be an average of 1,250 calories a day. So whatever calories I consumed, I had a good chunk of each day’s energy supplied just by the stored fat that was released. I don’t think there is much danger of lethargy on this plan, and there is no deprivation. Any time you feel hungry, you should eat. Hunger isn’t the problem, it really is more about trying to choke down giant salads. I still have the salad I made yesterday, despite eating it for both lunch and dinner.

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Dave Slusher is a blogger, podcaster, computer programmer, author, science fiction fan and father. Member of the Podcast Hall of Fame class of 2022.

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