Important first week lessons. Day Five of Induction.

Team Bacon!

Progress report: Day five of Atkins induction

I went from a raving potato chip hugging maniac on day two to being absolutely not at all hungry on day five. Hello, diet. Ficklemuch?

Ever have those days when nothing sounds at all good? You’re not hungry, so you don’t want to artificially force down food if you’re truly listening to your body’s cues. At the same time, you know you need to eat more than the three slices of bacon you had today.

I decided to hunker down with an andouille topped with the good fixins, so that’s my dinner tonight and I’m enjoying it, even though I’m not hungry at all. And I am losing weight at a crazy-fast pace. I can’t wait to share those numbers with you next Thursday!

A tip: Mt. Olive splenda-sweetened sweet relish is a squeeze filled with win!

Eating clean: Egg drop soup for a cold

First Week Tips

And while I’m watching the hilariously funny show “Psych” on netflix and sipping on my Diet Hansen’s Root beer, it came to me that after years and years and years of low carb carnal knowledge, some things that come naturally to me (vis a vis, glaring, possibly embarrassing mistakes. Like the time I poured the oil down the dipstick of my car because I didn’t know where it went) might not be obvious.

First of all, I want to give you permission to be yourself. You are wonderful and unique in your life experiences, so don’t feel that what applies to someone won’t apply to you. Based on years of talking to low carbers, here are some tips that kick many a new dieter in the shins with a pair of “DRAT!” shoes:

1. If you don’t have the book for your chosen eating plan yet, get it. The true, factual information you need is there. Having the book means making the best possible, informed choices for yourself. Some cheeses are all right on Atkins induction… some are not. Some fats are OK on South Beach and some are not. Grab that information in your hot little hands, dog-eared and marked when necessary. Make the book as ugly as you please. This is your reference book– use it!

As an aside: We know the world isn’t perfect. If you have a question while waiting for your book, check online with a reliable resource. Look for south each sites for south Beach information and Atkins sites for Atkins information. Be cautious of advice since one person following a plan might not be how the plan is actually written.

For Atkins 2002 questions, I still sometimes visit and use their search feature. Look for advice from people like megs, georgiana, elizellen and 2big, all knowledgeable board members/mods I trust implicitly. I was a moderator there at one time, so I know they know their stuff. Of course, you’re welcome to ask me as well. Been there, done that, doing it again.

2. Not even a bite. Don’t think you should take the occasional bite of something verboten. I’m over here dying to sink my teefs into some cottage cheese with sunflower seeds (later on the plan) or lick a sour cream and onion potato chip (Homer Simpson guttural drool). Guess what– I can’t. I won’t. Not even one bite. I don’t want to mess up my progress. I went through hell the first few days. Do I really want to go there? Just be strong and know you’re going to enjoy healthy, delicious foods again in due time, and lose your taste for the notsogood stuff as your taste buds change (and they do).

As an aside: Keep reading to avoid at least two of the traps new low carbers fall into.

3. What’s wasting food? If you’re a parent, you probably hate seeing your kids toss parts of their meal you might have otherwise eaten (likewise spouses seeing food go to ‘waste’ on your wife’s or husband’s plate). You were raised to clean your plate, so you hate seeing those last bites of cake go into the trash–plus, they taste good. Or you went to McDonalds and you got the burger meal for the cheaper drink and burger, but you hated the idea of tossing the fries. Why throw away the good stuff? I’m saying this to you now: Let it go. Remember, food is only wasted if you ate it and it went right to your hips, and throwing it into your mouth isn’t feeding starving children in Africa anymore than tossing it in the trash. Also know that fries are the cheap part of the meal. The meat costs McD’s much more than the fries.

As an aside: We know you might still worry about being wasteful, and that’s never bad. To stop food going into the trash, serve smaller portions or don’t order it. Sorry. 🙂 Hate me now, love me later.

5. Invoke medical time-out. You’re at a party and someone is really pushing the “just one bite” on you. While thanking the hostess, just tell them the truth: “I am so sorry! It looks absolutely delicious, but my doctor said no.” They don’t need to know your doctor is Dr. Atkins (Atkins). Or r. Agatston (South Beach). Or even Dr. Thompson (Low Glycemic-Load). Or Dr. Phil. Or Dr. Oz. Or Dr. Seuss. Removing the blame and judgment from your hostess trying to ply you harmlessly with cake and putting it on a medical professional works.

As an aside: We know it’s hard to say no, even with a medical condition. Just remember: if you’re like millions of Americans, you have a food intolerance to sugar and to flour. That pretty much counts everything out you don’t want to eat anyway. Even if your hostess doesn’t care about your doctor, she doesn’t want to risk you passing out and going into convulsions on her carpet. Are you lying about a medical condition? No. You’re invoking the food intolerance clause.

5. Progress over perfection. You accidentally licked the peanut butter off of your finger before you realized–Oop! It happens! Fuggetabout it. Move on and know most of us have done that in the beginning, too!
As an aside: We know you hate to let the frosting beaters go unlicked. Lick them with your brain and go enjoy some whipped, sweetened (with no-carb sweetener) cream cheese beaters instead!

What are your first-week experiences? Please share them below and help others have a successful first seven days!

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  1. The reasons I love you just pile up every single day. You watch Psych, too? OMG. You rock. Love the tips. Especially the "My doctor said no" LOL

  2. I really enjoy your blog. I have been low carbing on and off for 2 years now. I am not heavy but after reading Taubes first book I just didn't want to eat carbs anymore. I have gained about 20 lbs in the last 10 years but was underweight to begin with so am not yet over weight.
    Following blogs like yours is so helpful for other people trying to live a low carb life. I have tried some of your recipes and think they are great.
    Keep up the good work.

  3. Jamie aka Carbarella says

    Dee– I *heart* Psych. It's Scrubs for the men in the other blue. We're on Season 2 now on Netflix. It's addicting.

    I use the doctor excuse most of the time. They don't know it's Dr. Atkins. I'm sure the good doctor would approve.

    Heather– Thank you for being so sweet and for letting me know what you think… and for sharing your experiences! I am so glad you're living a healthier lifestyle. I sometimes think I miss carbs, but after what they do to me, I don't know why I'd ever really miss them!

  4. Jamie, you are so right about the tastebuds changing.. They truly do ..if… you stick with it.. I have stayed with Atkins, for 2+ years now and I truly do not crave the OTHER FOOD.. And the best part is… I eat better, than others..
    Thanks Sweetie for all you do..

  5. Can you share the recipe for the Clean Eating Egg Drop Soup? Thanks!

  6. I lick everything with my brain.
    Well, almost everything!

    What an inspiration you are to me still…
    Last week, your going back
    inspired me to go back to induction…..
    and now you inspire me to go on with it as well!

  7. Jamie aka Carbarella says

    nana– You are absolutely fantastic. Two plus years? Woohoo!

    While I haven't been as diligent, I am glad so many of my taste buds have changed to really enjoy saturates fats and many meats, vegetables and low glycemic fruits and dairy. That makes induction now pretty tough, because even those things I have learned to love I'm now going to have to wait for. But I'm OK with it.

    DeAnnah! Hey. You bet! The recipe is here:

    Anne– Hey, miss skinny! The first week is such a roller coaster of highs and lows. It's crazy stuff, but now it's pretty wonderful because I'm over the baddy bad.

  8. I just started back on the low carb bandwagon this week. Joined a gym also. I'm on day two. Thanks for the motivation !

  9. I Love the Doctor comment! I have tried telling them it makes me sick even just a bite and I still have them shoving food down my throat sometimes. Maybe now with a doctors excuse I can get some relief 🙂

  10. You go, girl!!! I am glad you are feeling better now. I think your tips are spot on. And really why DO people try to shove things we don't want/need down our throats? Is there some deep-seated psychological issue there? 🙂

  11. Queen of the Nook says

    Great point about invoking, "the Doctor said no" clause. Hubs and I went to a Super Bowl party on Sunday at my folks and everyone raved about our weight loss when we walked in the door (they haven't seen us since Christmas). Then we had a few bites of everything offered. Chips, dip, cocktail weenies, bbq ribs, potato casserole. And finally each a small piece of chocolate cake. I was so sick that night and the next day that I realized it wasn't worth it, even for a "special occasion". None of it even tasted right.

  12. Forgive me, Jamie, because I'm sure you posted this at some point, but why Atkins 2002 over the newest Atkins book?

  13. Jamie aka Carbarella says

    bayoubabe! Way to go, not only in getting started, but in joining the gym! It's stated that every pound of muscle mass burns an extra 50 calories per day, so weight lifting is a terrific way to up your metabolism!

    Amelia– When I was actively attending a local weight loss group, I would usually just say, "I can't have sugar or flour" and that was enough. People just assume you're diabetic. Actually, you could also claim "pre-diabetic"… I mean, all of us unfortunately are, if we look at the stats in America today.

    Patricia– I honestly think for most people, to provide food is a way of showing love and comfort and providing life-giving nourishment. So Aunt Mahetabel trying to foist her cupcakes on you isn't to consciously derail you; she's trying to provide sustenance. That's why it's important to really show great appreciation for the gesture, especially when having to decline.

    If Aunt Mehetabel is trying to derail you consciously, accept the cupcake… and then dump it in the ficus.

    Queen of the Nook– Congratulations on your successes! Carb hangover is definitely the worst. It's amazing how horrible you feel the next day!

  14. Jamie aka Carbarella says

    Linda– I prefer 2002 because I feel the new Atkins is a little bit hurly whirly in terms of carbs in induction. There are now minimum protein allotments (I've never counted protein, but instead ascribed to Dr. Atkins ratios of fat:protein:carbs) and too many vegetable carbs for many of us who really need a lower carb induction.

    I can't even eat the prescribes amounts of veg in Atkins 2002 some days; the thought of adding even more would really leave me hungry and feeling like I had part of a candy bar.

    On top of this, the importance of the rungs has been somewhat minimized. Induction can be skipped. Almond milk (remember that tree nuts are a major issue for many people) is allowed in induction.

    Without the rungs in their proper order, it's hard to know if induction is making one feel awful…or the unsuspected almond milk. Most people don't look at Atkins as a plan for sussing out food intolerance. They just do what they're told to do in the book, and it could end up pushing even more people away.

    Widening the umbrella doesn't necessarily make for more success. It makes for even more lax dieters.

    While I understand the company is trying to make the diet more politically correct, and I respect the doctors who have penned the book, I'm an absolute advocate for the best plan–and for me and for many others, it's Atkins 2002.

  15. Jamie aka Carbarella says

    I want to iterate, I know there are fans of 2010 out there, and that's great, too! If it works, work it!

  16. So i have a question about the soup! I try to make my own but when i add the egg the soup goes cloudy rather than the egg forming strings (becoming solid). Any suggestions or help??

    much love, I adore your recipes

  17. Great advice, Jamie!

    Glad you are doing so well with induction.

  18. My Metamorphosis~ says

    Great post.
    I always love those "I am so not hungry" days… I just go with it.. I used to have issues with pushing myself to continue to not eat even after my appetite started to come back and I am working on that. It's part of the old "I have to starve to lose weight belief" system I have.

    Even after over 2 years of this LC journey I still fall into that and will find myself using pam instead of butter or such.

    Thanks for checking in on me!

  19. Jamie aka Carbarella says

    Hi SkinnyKitty! I am not sure what's up with the cloudy soup. I haven't had that happen. Yet. Now that you've mentioned it, it'll likely happen to me.

    Elizabeth– thank you so much!

    Metamorphosis– You bet I'm going to check in on you! We have to stick together. It's amazing how much we learn, even in two years. Putting it into practice for life is the real challenge. Thankfully, it tastes like bacon.

  20. I’m on day 5 and I have headaches. Any ideas why?

    • Your Lighter Side says

      Your body is withdrawing from sugars/carbs. It hurts, killer headaches and a not so good mood is definitely in the forecast. We have all been there and I feel for you. If you are able to take Tylenol that could curb your headaches, also be sure to drink plenty of water because dehydration gives nasty headaches too. Hang in there!!!


  1. Readers Blog says:

    Xoxo Vis A Vis Is A Pair

    […] mood is definitely in the forecast. We have all been there and I feel for you. […]

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