This post is geared for those who’ve purchased Carb Nite Solution book and would like to integrate his/her paleo lifestyle while doing it. If you haven’t and would like to, please buy it from this link* to support my friend/trainer/coach Debby K as she is the one who introduced me to this lifestyle and coaching me for the past 6-8 months. I’ve got amazing results and can’t see myself stopping anytime soon.
I hope you enjoyed reading my previous post: Carb Nite® Solution & Paleo: How They Overlap. So now you know how both of these protocols complement each other. However, they have their differences and purposes which I will cover in this post.
1. The Main Goal
When people switching from eating SAD (Standard American Diet) to Paleo style, their main goal is improving their overall health. It could be their lipid panel, metabolism, allergies etc. They also lose their weight as part of the process. However, fat loss isn’t the main goal for Paleo, CNS is. Kiefer stated clearly in the book that CNS is geared specifically for FAT LOSS. Most of weight loss programs out there don’t specify what kind of losses that you get. Yes you can lose 10lbs with a certain diet program, but that could be water weight, fat or even worse, muscle weights! The beauty of CNS is you could lose fat, preventing your body making new fat cells but still retain your muscle mass and if you do your training right, you could even build some muscles.**
2. Fructose Isn’t Exactly Your Friend
Don’t confuse this fructose specifically from high fructose corn syrup here as we all know HFCS is the type of sweetener we want to steer clear for our entire time. What I’m telling you is even fructose from natural sweetener such as maple syrup, honey, molasses, and EVEN FRUITS!
WAIT the minute! Are you telling me that even fruits are bad for us? How dare you!
Before you start throwing bricks on me, let me explain.
As you might already know (I assume you do), fructose can only be metabolized by our liver, while glucose can be metabolized by our muscles in addition to our liver. So without getting way too scientific depth, when we eat fructose, we basically are loading our liver with all this sugar, turning it into a sugar sponge, as I call it.
Paleo doesn’t explicitly specify or even limit our fruit intake although in a long stretch, it actually kinda does. However, CNS specifically states that fructose *almost* has no place in this protocol. Certain fruits that are OK to eat during CN (Carb Nite) are ripe bananas, grapes and ripe plums because of the glucose amount is a bit higher than fructose. Berries are another good ones for their lower amount of fructose compare to the other fruits. Still all fruits can only be consumed toward the end of CN, not in the beginning because we want our insulin spikes comes from glucose! However during ULC (Ultra Low Carb) Days, there’s not place for fruits nor any kinds of fructose sweetener.
This is the HUGE DIFFERENCE in making sweet treats specifically for CNS and Paleo. A lot of Paleo desserts/treats recipes out there use TONS of fructose based sweeteners (honey, maple syrups, molasses, dates, apples etc). Sometimes I think Paleo peeps are overusing fructose. Just because they are from natural source but doesn’t mean it has to be used in excess amount.
I touched based regarding sweetener a little bit on my previous post. I know many of you might not agree, but I am an OK to use pure stevia as an acceptable sweetener for making CNS treats, be it for ULC or CN. For personal reason, I chose not to make any sweet ULC treats as I’ve discussed in depth here.
3. Not All Veggies Are Created Equal
With CNS we are limited to 30 gr net carb or LESS per day during ULC days, while Paleo doesn’t specify anything regarding how much and what type of veggies we can eat. Technically speaking, the rule of thumb to stay ULC, just mainly stick to green leafy veggies.
For the ones with more net carbs such as zucchinis, bell peppers, summer squashes, tomatoes, mushrooms, eggplants just to name a few, you might have to limit your intake.
Root veggies usually have more sugar in there (beets, carrots, winter squashes) it’s best to stay away from ALL kinds of sugar and starches during ULC days.
So how the hell do we know how much nutrition facts in each veggies?
Well in the beginning, you might need to sort of weight your food and measure it accordingly and record it into some kind of food tracker. I use MyNetDiary to track my macronutrients. It’s also available as iPhone App, both free and premium. For the free version, it doesn’t break down the net carb for you so you have to calculate it yourself by subtracting the total carb with the fiber.
It might sound very intimidating with these restrictions and I could totally understand that. However, after measuring for quite sometime, I could easily eyeball things and most of the time I was quite close. Another thing is I make a good use of my own hand as a measurement tool.
- 1 cup of packed chopped raw green leafy veggies (bok choy, spinach, rainbow swiss chards) = my right full fist grab
- 1 cup of packed chopped veggie pieces such as celery, zucchini, tomatoes = 2 of my hands cupped together
- 3 oz of raw ground meat = my right hand fully closed fist
- 4 oz of raw ground meat = my right hand half closed fist
- 5-6 oz of raw ground meat = my right hand open fist
Those are just examples and everyone’s hand size is different so experiment around a bit and eventually you’ll be an expert eyeballing your own food measurement without any scale! Plus I eat mostly similar stuff from day to day so it’s quite easy to know how much I’m eating.
4. Either You are Totally In or Out – Nothing in Between
You might heard the 80/20, 95/15, 90/10 rule in paleosphere, meaning you do not need to be 100% eating paleo style all the time. This is not the case for CNS. You MUST follow the protocol exactly as it was written.
- You have to start off with 10 days reorientation, then have your first Carb Nite and afterward you could just do 5-7 ULC days
- You cannot skip once a week Carb Nite refeeding day
- You have to stay under 30gr net carb or less during ULC days
- If you slip during ULC day then you need to restart the 10 day reorientation again to reset your body
So this conclude my post regarding Carb Nite & Paleo and I hope you enjoy reading them. What do you think? Do you think CNS is hard to do? Don’t you think CNS and Paleo have more similarities than the differences? Check back my other post and let me know how many similarities these 2 protocols are and come back here and compare 🙂
I’d like to specifically thank Deborah Kaplan for educating me in this protocol. Without her guidance, I won’t have this comprehension for both protocols and how to incorporate both of them into my lifestyle.
*This is an affiliate link for Debby K. She earns a small commission if you purchase the book thru the link.
**CNS isn’t geared specifically for muscle mass building but it still can be done with proper training plan.