White Coat Underground

BMI TMI update

I started this little adventure on August 5th, and at the time my BMI was over 30 and I weighed about 212#. Today, it’s 203#.

It’s an interesting journey. For the first time, I’ve found what seems like a sustainable way to eat healthy. I feel like I’m actually a good role model for my daughter and my patients. I’ve also eaten several acres of lettuce.

In the beginning I stated that if you’re not hungry, you’re doing it wrong, and was taken to task by many educated readers. And while I don’t always feel hungry, I do wonder about certain phenotypic differences between individuals. “Hunger” is a slippery term, but let’s all assume that we all mean about the same thing. I’m standing by my line, but with modification—many of us who are phenotypically fat will feel very hungry when dieting, no matter what types of foods we eat.

Either way, things are working.


  1. #1 JohnV
    September 16, 2009

    I will add that I also consume comically large amounts of lettuce (in the form of 3 dollar bags’o’salad) and that it tends to have a minimal effect on my hunger :p

  2. #2 Dan J
    September 16, 2009

    I don’t think the “hungry” thing is objective enough to say someone definitely should be or shouldn’t be. Until you can come up with an appetitometer, I think it’s going to have to be on a person-by-person basis. What you consider “very hungry” probably isn’t in line with what I consider “very hungry”.

    On the whole though, congrats on the BMI reduction. It’s been 45 days since I had tobacco. Still holding steady at 175#.

  3. #3 Kim
    September 16, 2009

    Time flies. You’re being quite the role model of 1-2lb/week weight loss.

    I’m still not convinced about the need for hunger…but if I’m reading things you’ve said about yourself correctly, even though I am certainly fatter than you are (proportionately), I think you’ve got more of a touch of the metabolic syndrome. I’m sure that makes some difference. I’m also at a much slower overall rate of loss, although I have periods of going as fast or faster than you (they’re usually followed by a small regain).

  4. #4 Michael Chase
    September 17, 2009

    I’ve been using the Paleolithic Diet and Crossfit for a year now, http://www.thepaleodiet.com/, cutting out starches. Congratulations on your journey!

  5. #5 Bridget
    September 17, 2009

    I have to disagree on the hunger thing. I’ve come to believe that it’s all about blood sugar. If you keep your blood sugar consistent by eating the right combination of food, you will not get those cravings and will only get hungry when your body needs food for sustenance. The more sugar you eat, the more sugar you will want.

    And why stick with lettuce? There are plenty of vegetables out there which are yummy – carrots, sweet peppers, cucumbers… not to mention delicious vegetable dishes like ratatouille with zuccini and eggplant. They are easy to make, just throw the ingredients in a pot with a little salt and olive oil for about an hour. Cook a bunch on Sunday, put it into tupperware containers and have one at every meal.

    I read a book about a guy who had very severe diabetes. One day he was sick and all he had in his fridge was brussel sprouts and olive oil, so that’s what he ate. To his surprise, he blood sugar improved after that meal. I’m not saying brussel sprouts are delicious but I had them once at a restaurant and they weren’t half bad – all the leaves were peeled off and were doused with lemon juice. Now that was a pleasant surprise!

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