Thank you for your patience while waiting for these posts. I had to think through the format and the depth of detail I was going to go into with the analysis. I wanted to explain things simply and will be happy to answer any questions. I will analyse the 7 days over three posts, covering 2, 3 and 2 days respectively.
Tina and I have already discussed all aspects of her diet, so she’s aware of everything that needs changing and we are hard at work.
For this first post, I will analyse the first two days only as they were very similar and I noticed two issues, which I was very eager to immediately address, but had to hold fire until now.
Day 1, Wednesday (click here to recap what I ate that day)
Summary: After the first coffee I thought Tina was in a hurry and resorted for a quick warm drink. In the meantime, I had way too much energy than I knew what to do with. I had not had any coffee for 6 weeks at that point – I could feel the difference. Breakfast was small and unfortunately wouldn’t fuel one for long. After having the second coffee and feeling extremely hungry, I realised she was replacing meals with coffee. I encouraged Tina to have a meal in the afternoon so she chose veg and eggs and I had a Greek salad. Dinner was veg and turkey.
Issue(s) detected: It is common for individuals to swap meals for drinks as a warm drink such as coffee will:
1) make you feel warm;
2) the volume of it will make you feel full;
3) caffeine tricks your brain into thinking you’ve gained energy simply because you’re more focused (or, opposite – anxious).
In the meantime, however, your stomach is still empty and your body will have to turn elsewhere – to your body – for energy.
Our bodies’ primary source of energy is carbs. Since no carbs have been eaten and with no exercise being undertaken (to utilise bodyfat), there’s a great chance one’s body will turn to existing muscle for energy.
Less muscle means:
1) slower metabolism;
2) less energy (from food) required by the body;
3) excess energy (more food than normal/necessary) will be likely stored as bodyfat (esp in the absence of physical exercise – it’s a vicious circle from here).
A low fat & low carb dinner would be perfect for muscle preservation and fat loss in optimal conditions. These are not optimal conditions and some carbs would have been welcome, even on a weight loss regime.
Moderate to high levels of coffee consumption (>200ml) pose more risks than skipped meals – such as inflammation (also increase in tumor necrosis factor alpha markers (+28%)), dehydration, heart palpitations, bad skin and anxiety. Did you know that a 200ml cup of coffee will only leave you with 54ml of fluid to keep your fluid levels up? Still don’t believe coffee dehydrates you? Although coffee counts towards the daily fluid intake, few people know that it’s only by a quarter of the actual liquid consumed.
2nd day, Thursday (click here to remind yourself what I ate that day)
Summary: Coffee to start the day. I had been feeling shaky and anxious, but, as expected, the cup of coffee made me feel calm, warm and full. The shakes were caffeine withdrawal symptoms – I couldn’t believe my body was addicted already after a day. Lunch was 350g veg and 125g turkey. The amount of meat I had was good but 350g is 4 servings of vegetables and is more per meal than I would recommend. 2-3 servings per meal max for optimal volume and easier digestibility. Decaf coffee in the afternoon – warmed me up and didn’t give me the jitters, but didn’t fill me up nor did it give me energy, which I needed. Dinner – 350g veg and 200g chicken. 8 hours since my last meal, I had turned into a monster. Another 4 servings of veg in one meal, it was very tasty but just too much. My stomach looked distended after finishing the meal, felt hard to the touch and remained this way until bedtime a few hours later.
Issue(s) detected: Tina’s food intake is very healthy and is not the issue, I realise that immediately. It is not the choice of foods but the amount eaten per meal (too much veg), the amount eaten in total (not enough) and frequency of meals (too far apart). I consumed 1200kcal in two meals. If increasing the daily caloric intake is a challenge, one could just split their calories between more meals to begin with. Even with 300 calories per meal, I would have never crashed as badly as I did as my blood sugar would have stayed more constant. Also, improved frequency of meals will allow for the metabolic fire to keep burning at an event rate, however the long gap between meals will make your metabolism slow down over time. Last but not least, this amount of food after a long break (8 hours) proved too much for my stomach. Three hours later it was still making noises as it was digesting all the food. I had put a strain on my digestive system.
Check my Instagram for more stories and explanation and come back tomorrow when I analyse the Friday, Saturday and Sunday’s food intake!
Please leave a comment to ask any questions you might have. ❤️