## Friday, April 15, 2011

### Holy Crap, That's a Lot of Fat You've Got There!

Here's my crazy-scary update on my body fat and lean calculations from Dr. Eades book, Protein Power.

So, as I mentioned yesterday, the book is a little complicated with the calculations, but like I said before, I kind of like that... except, I did my calcs this morning, and I am freaked out.  Before I give you the numbers, let me describe the technique (for women only - men have a different calculation to perform):

First, you take three waist measurements without pinching or sucking it in (around your navel), and average them out.

Second, you take three hip measurements without pinching or sucking it in (widest point - don't cheat), and average them out.

Third, you measure your height.  (Note: all measurements are in inches).

Fourth, you find these coefficient numbers on a chart for each measurement.

Fifth, you add together the coefficient for your hips and waist then divide it by the coefficient for your height, and arrive at your percentage of body fat.

Ready for the real, nitty gritty??  Here's how it went for me.

Step 1. Waist measures 39".

Step 2. Hips measure 47".

Step 3. Height is 66".

Step 4. Coefficients: Waist is 27.73; hips are 57.22; height is 40.23.

Step 5. 27.73 + 57.22 = 84.95.....  84.95-40.23 = 44.72% body fat.

Holy shit.  44.72% body fat.  That is about 94.8 pounds of body fat on my 212-pound frame.  Wake up, Kate!

Luckily, you can then calculate your lean body mass, then use that to find your ideal target weight range.  I have about 117.19 pounds of lean body mass.  Calculating that my body fat should be between 21%-27% for my age range (31-40 year old women), I should weigh between 148.34 - 160.53 pounds.  So, my goal weight of 150 pounds is actually on the low side of my ideal body weight range.  In order to weigh less than 148.34, I would have to have a much lower body fat percentage, and the likelihood is that it would be difficult to achieve unless I also lost some of lean body mass (which would not be good).

The lesson - even if I didn't realize how much fat I am truly carrying, at lease I know that my weight loss goal is healthy and realistic.  Also, I apparently could survive the artic winters, courtesy of my own fat blanket.

The feeling - well, I'm not ecstatic about these numbers, but I'm not exactly surprised either.  I mean, I'm the one who picked 150 (flying blind) as my target weight, and I was right on track with that, so some part of me realized the state I was in.  So, its not surprise, but it is just a little more real than it was yesterday.

The good news - I am on the right path!  More, better information = more tools to help guarantee my success.  I am moving towards healthy, and that makes me happy.  In fact, my regular MD was really happy with my progress when she saw me yesterday, and told me that I looked "fantastic" and was doing all of the right things (low carb, exercise, etc.) to address my health issues... and that she sees further improvement than when I visited her only weeks ago for my knee injury.  Her nurse told me, when I weighed in before my appointment, that I looked like I had been on one of those makeover shows.  (And I was like, "thank you very much").  I did have a very sharp outfit on ;)  So, I am already healthier, and as my MD said, I'm just going to feel better and better as I continue to exercise, eat right and slim down.

In related news, I am going to have a two-hour oral glucose tolerance test on Saturday morning.  Hurray.  (Not.)  So, I've decided to do this week's weigh in and measurements on Saturday AND Sunday, because I want to see how/if the GTT affects my weight and girth. I've heard that it can cause you to put on water, and can knock you out of and make it hard to get back into ketosis. That makes me a little nervous, but I've got to do what's right for my health, even if it sets your diet back a little bit.  Also, FYI, I asked my doctor whether she wanted me to eat a "normal" carb intake the week prior to the test, and she said no, she wants to know how I handle glucose based on what I actually eat, not on some idealized diet.  We'll see what happens!  I have another appointment in a couple of weeks, to go over the results.  The doctor said if I am diabetic, which she doubts because my HBa1c is 5.3, I am nevertheless keeping my glucose controlled through diet.  Anywho, let's cross that bridge if we get to it.  I'll let you know how things progress.

Peace out, y'all...and happy Friday!!!

1. Rule number 1, like it says in Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy: DON"T PANIC. They're just numbers. You're already doing something to work on it, (and doing amazingly well by the way. I can't tell you how many people I've watched exercise day in and day out for years to get results like you have and haven't even come close!) It just gives you more ammo like you said.

Also, I'm gonna try and find where I read it, but one of the many blogs that I've been reading said that those glucose tests don't work so well with low carb diets. Why, I don't know. I'll send you the link as soon as I hunt it down.

And good luck on your egg fast! I just read about that yesterday, though I don't think I'd ever try it since eggs are one of my least favorite things. Ooh! And if you think it would help, there's a protein power forum for beginners and old hats alike. www.proteinpower.com They've already helped me with a few things. Maybe they would know more about the blood glucose test?

2. Hi Bethany ;)
Thanks for the support! And don't worry about the link... I've read about it, too. Actually, Dr. Atkins wrote about low carb diets foiling oral glucose tolerance tests in DANDR (And I am a low carb book junkie, so I took note!!) I talked to my MD about it, and she wants me to do the test while maintaining my current diet. I am going to do the test next Friday, because the lab I go to is booked up solid for the next 3 Saturdays in a row. In the meanwhile, I found some good tips for lowering my fasting glucose levels, and I am going to work on that this week. I will definitely check out the protein power website. Thanks for that tip.
Kate