HCB's Journal, 12 October 2012

I started reading about carb cravings, serotonin levels, and light.

Basically, as the days shorten and we have less sunlight, we produce less serotonin (the neurotransmitter that impacts mood).

As a result, we begin to crave carbs, or as some people call it, "comfort foods." (It really does seem to happen in Fall and Winter for many of us, doesn't it?)

Science can show that carbs increase serotonin levels while spiking the insulin - so people temporarily believe they "feel better" until the inevitable sugar crash happens and the craving cycle is repeated over and over.

And, that is why carbs can be addictive to some people and they call it "emotional eating." The overeating of carbs can often be an effort to "feel better."

A more effective solution? Get more sunlight! Take a brisk walk outdoors, sit by a window as often as possible, or buy a lightbox - the type used for seasonal depression.

For me, carbs are not inherently bad - I get them from fruits, most veggies and some dairy. It is carbs from wheat products like breads, cereal and crackers, or starchy things like white potatoes, rice, corn, etc. that can trigger me.

So, I choose to work at avoiding these types of carbs because the craving cycle is NOT my friend!

And, I also have learned eating the majority of my carbs earlier in the day seems to help burn them off as energy rather than store them as fat! My body then has to burn my own fat in order to give me energy later in the day and in the evening.

The scale hit a new low today. Woot!

Still grateful for:

- The people I love who love me back!
- The good health of my loved ones
- My FS Buddies who support and encourage me to continue
- "Butt-kicking" myself to a smaller size today
- My DH - who is my greatest "cheerleader"
- My Bengal cat companions named Bodhi and Ravi
- My work - which has meaning and worth to other human beings
- My connection to the Mother Earth and its entire splendor
- My physical health

Diet Calendar Entries for 12 October 2012:
998 kcal Fat: 23.68g | Prot: 100.64g | Carb: 111.47g.   Breakfast: water, 2% Fat Milk, Coffee (Brewed From Grounds), yellow onion, Mushrooms, BabyBel light, Pace Salsa, Egg White, Eggland's Best large egg, olive oil. Lunch: All Bran Buds, Strawberries, red raspberries, pineapple, Fage 2% greek yogurt, Splenda, blackberries, water. Dinner: green beans, Garlic, olive oil, raw red bell peppers, Harvestland boneless skinless chicken breast, sweet potato, water, yellow onion. Snacks/Other: water, Trader Joe's Turkey Jerky. more...
2510 kcal Activities & Exercise: Desk Work - 6 hours, Sitting - 6 hours, Sleeping - 10 hours, Resting - 2 hours. more...
on diet HCB's own diet  


Vert interesting! And YAY on the new low :)  
12 Oct 12 by member: monika7724
And a lovely new low it is! Congrats! Interesting timing on that article; I'm very tired today & have been reading. I started feeling an almost overwhelming craving for a whole wheat English muffin with pumpkin cream cheese. I headed it off with a couple tablespoons of pistachios, whew! Not much sun; we have our first rain today, but I'll put away my Kindle. I have to stop reading things like The Lemon Meringue Pie Murderer! 
12 Oct 12 by member: crabby Kat
Hope they get that weight chart working soon - I really miss seeing how well you are doing. Thanks for the info on the serotonin - it wouldn't hurt me one bit to gt my butt outside this weekend! Have a great weekend.  
12 Oct 12 by member: BuffyBear
Thank you for your journal about this today. We are about to have a rainy weekend and I will keep all of this in mind. You are one skinny chick! Congratulations on such great weight loss - song here..."you are my inspiration"...(is that the Isley Brothers)? 
12 Oct 12 by member: Neptunebch
That is really fascinating information, thanks for sharing that!  
12 Oct 12 by member: skwhite
I am so identifying with carb cravings right now! I was thinking it was mostly hormones but I can see it being a little of SAD as well. Congrats on the new low! P.S. is anyone else finding that nobody's weight charts are loading? Every page I go to says "Error in loading data". 
13 Oct 12 by member: evelyn64
FYI: The author of the eating plan I've adopted, Insulin-Resistant Diet aka Link & Balance, Cheryle Hart, has a second book called The Feel Good Diet. Her modified eating plan in the second book takes into account serotonin and its effects. It might be worth taking a peek to see if it fits into your regimen. 
13 Oct 12 by member: jenkie5
@Evelyn64-yes, the weight graphs have not been loading since yesterday for many folks @jenkie5-oh, that is interesting. I will check her out! 
13 Oct 12 by member: HCB
Good info! I think I felt that yesterday with the dreary weather we had here in the bay. It was depressing and completely threw me off. But luckily I didn't turn to the carbos :) *high-five on the new low!* 
13 Oct 12 by member: CJT1217
I am positive this is my carb problem as well! Thanks for the tips. I bought my Dad one of those lights maybe I should give it a try as well! Cheers on your new low!!!! 
13 Oct 12 by member: Lindsay6384
That must be what has me wanting to make some "low carb pumpkin anything" right now. Great post! WTG on the new LOW WEIGHT! You are something else, HCB! PROUD as punch for you. HUG! 
13 Oct 12 by member: Mom2Boxers
So many congratulations on your new low today, HCB. I completely agree with you about the carbs. Carbs are my drug of choice. I could go all day long eating cinammon rolls, breads, potatoes, rice, pasta, and not even need to pause for some protein or vegetables. It DOES get worse with colder weather and less light. I am so with you on this! I really don't believe it when "official" sources say: A CALORIE IS A CALORIE IS A CALORIE. Like it's all just a matter of calories, and a calorie of fat or a calorie of protein or a calorie of carbs. A calorie of olive oil or a calorie of chicken breast is not going to make me do the same things as a calorie of carbs. A calorie of the right kind of juicy, delicious, starchy carbs only makes me want to do one thing - EAT MORE CALORIES OF CARBS. I STILL have to watch it now, with diabetes, with my carbs. Does anyone know how difficult it is to eat half a cup of potatoes? Or 1/4 cup of beans? Where you can't even relax and have hummus and carrots because you're afraid you will eat too much hummus? I am telling, for myself and for some people I am convinced that carbs must be treated with EXTREME caution and in my case PREPARATION. I so understand where you're coming from, HCB.  
13 Oct 12 by member: kmartdollie
Carbs give us a quick boost, and that makes us feel good. Once that is gone, we want more. Its much like drugs or what have you. Your information is great! I am sure there are seasonal things going on and never thought about it really. Enjoy those kitties, I need to lookup what Bengals look like, lol  
14 Oct 12 by member: posterchild66
This is me too! Perhaps I should pick up one of those lights!!  
14 Oct 12 by member: krystynecar
Glad you know the difference in carbs! When I had a nutritionist he was still trying to get me to eat "whole grain" (still processed and floury!) bread and stuff. I would get hungry again, or just not feel as energetic. Psh. Fat and protein is where its at. 
18 Oct 12 by member: trumpeter26


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