And So It Ends

Low carb August is over and the results are disappointing. Despite a 5-6 lb. weight loss by mid-month, I ended August right where I started, possibly up a pound.

I had high hopes a month ago. The low carb diet was the only one I’ve tried that I had any success with. The initial weight loss was encouraging, 5 lbs. by mid-month. They say that safe, sustainable weight loss is about 1-2 lbs. per week, so I wasn’t expecting to continue to lose at the rate of the first two weeks of August. But I certainly didn’t expect to gain 5 lbs. in the last half of the month.

I kept a food log throughout the month. I wasn’t perfect in writing down everything I ate but my between-meal snacking was minimal and I cut out potato chips, cookies and other junk food entirely except for the one cheat day a week. All in all I thought I was doing a pretty good job, but, alas, no.

The only thing I’m waiting on to see if there was any redeeming quality for the month is the results of my blood work at my annual physical about 10 days ago. I’m particularly interested in my A1C level. That’s a measure of the amount of blood glucose, or sugar, in the blood. Levels of 5.7 and below are considered normal. Between 5.8 and 6.4 is in the pre-diabetes range, which is where I’ve been sitting for the last 15 years. Above 6.5 is considered Type 2 diabetes.

For the last few years my A1C has been right about 6.4. I’m hoping that the low-carb diet will lower that number somewhat. If it didn’t, then I’m among the millions of people who go on diets, feel deprived in one way or another because they are constantly saying “no” to whatever their particular forbidden food items are, and see no results, either from the scales or their lab tests. I’m asking myself, what’s the point? If the standard measurements of good health aren’t showing that my health is improving, why should I stay on this regimen?

For me this time around is all the  more disappointing because when I did the low carb diet the first time, back in 2011, I lost over 20 lbs. between July 24 and Halloween.  There were weeks when my weight might go up a bit over the previous week, but I never had a time when I gained it all back.

So I’m still holding out hope that there is a silver lining somewhere in this cloud that I called low carb August, but the initial result is not what was expected.