Just reading some new information from Dr Ray Peat and it really interested me from a number of angles. It encourages a healthy high metabolism, supports healthy thyroid function and healthy hormones.
There were stories of low carb dieters who had been low carbing for some years and their health had started to deteriorate.
Metabolism was slowing down, weight was coming back on, even though they were eating next to no carbs and no sugar. Both hormones and thyroid were out of whack, which was making them feel like crap. And they were wondering what the hell was going on!
For me, I went on to read some of the symptoms of slow metabolism and potential thyroid issues and just went… “uh oh”…
- Cold hands and feet – this is me always, I’ve had it since I was in my teens
- Low heart rate – I’m 60 bpm and apparently a healthy metabolism is supposed to be up around 75!
- Low body temps – again I vary between 35 and 36.3C (95F and 97.3F) – where as healthy again is supposed to be 36.7C (98F) waking and over 37C (98.6F) after eating!
- Dry skin – yep
And I’ve always known my digestion was slow and I generally hate the cold – it’s why I moved to Queensland! But I thought it was just me, not that there was something wrong and that it could potentially be changed!
It’s quite exciting really.
So the basis of Dr Ray’s theory is that sugar is actually a necessary component for easy conversion to glycogen for the brain, muscles and healthy hormones.
While it is true that fats and protein can be converted in the body into glycogen, it is quite a difficult taxing process for the body to do it apparently. It does it in times of survival. So if you stay in this state constantly you are stressing your body out – think premature ageing, break down of organs and affecting hormones etc.
So given that we are all currently in the mode of ‘sugar is the devil’ and it causes a list two pages long of disease, this is pretty radical information.
However Dr Ray’s explanation is that it is actually PUFAs (poly unsaturated fatty acids) which are the problem as they damage the mitochondria of the cells and ruin their ability to process sugars efficiently. So you can take the sugar away, but the cells are still damaged.
So while there is way more to this, I will write about it in small chunks in the future but here is what I am working on so far to bring the metabolism back up:-
Well, a tiny bit any way. You know me, I’m not a fan of any excessive exercise. But muscles assist with metabolism. So each day I’m doing the following – 20 knee push ups, 20 weighted squats (10kg), ‘legs passing’ exercise for the stomach. Have been doing it for a month so far and can already feel the difference.
This is an interesting one because of my past troubles with it. Read that here and here. However I was missing one important factor – you are supposed to have your caffeine with a meal or after a meal, as it needs the sugars and nutrition to help it digest properly. Not have 3 coffees before lunch and no food and wonder why your eyeballs twitch!
30g of protein within one hour of waking
I always preferred water, tea maybe a bit of fruit until about noon, so I am giving it a go to see if it has an effect. Many sources say this is important for a fast metabolism and weight loss. But the elimination part was most important for me, so we’ll see.
So I have written about the dangers of unsaturated fats here and so this one is an important component of a healthy metabolism and correct sugar processing in your cells
Apparently raw carrot is great for digestion and helps remove excess estrogen from the body. For best effect it is recommended to have it grated with coconut oil, healthy salt and a little apple cider vinegar. If you don’t have time to fuss with that, then at least a small raw carrot a day is better than none.
Raw Honey & fruit
Adding a little raw honey and fruit back in. Apparently sugars are really thermogenic. They help your metabolism greatly however some have taken Dr Ray’s advice to the extreme and adding back like a cup of sugar a day and wondering why they are putting on weight! Given my past disastrous history with sugar, I’m treading carefully with this one, so fuel with carbs according to your needs. I don’t do much in the way of exercise, so I don’t need much.
So these are a few things I am playing with at the moment and I will let you know how I go!
How’s your metabolism going? Do you have healthy hormones?
Update 2020 – After nearly 4 years on a Dr Ray Peat style diet I am now flourishing with healthy hormones and trim as ever. I’ve written two books now to help others get on the program and benefit from all my research and testing on myself. Find both the exercise guide called One Ten Toned and the eating plan – the Zen Beach Diet here.