Tag Archives: leptin reset

50 grams protein via chicken thighs

Leptin Reset Update Part 1 – March 2012

50 grams protein via chicken thighs

One of my readers asked if I was still doing the leptin reset, and would I post an update.

I started the leptin reset on October 31st, I was apprehensive initially but I could stick with the full GAPS menu so I decided to go for it. A lot of what concerned me was the fact that at the time I was still trying to rise every morning at 4am to get to work by 6am (my commute is an hour long). I wasn't sure how I was going to do the leptin reset “correctly” if I were getting up at 4am. Dr. Kruse says he is up to see the sunrise every morning, and he says lights out by 10pm so I didn't know if I'd be messing things up by going to bed so early and getting up so early. I asked my boss on October 30th if I could start working 6 hours a day to use up some of my vacation time and she said that was a great idea and relieved that I had thought of it, and she also told me to make my own hours.

I think she's growing a little weary of the “make your own hours” bit because the earliest I make it to work now is 9:30am. She's there at 6am and I know she is throwing me under the bus to everyone about this situation but I think I need more time to heal my adrenals and sleep is on the top of the list.


In the first week my sleep went wonky. I had a few good nights, then a few nights where I had to get up to pee many times (my normal is once or twice) started to sleep better. I managed to eat by 7pm each evening (which is sometimes hard since “making my own hours” sometimes my day runs late) and was also able to wait 4-5 hours between meals with no snacking. On November 7th I began tracking all my food intake using My Fitness Pal because I started to realize how many carbohydrates I was eating on a regular basis. It was nothing for me to eat 2-3 or even four cups of vegetables with my dinner meal. Since Dr. Kruse said if you have over 30 pounds to lose go to less than 25 grams carbs I wanted to do things right, so I began tracking diligently.


During the second week because of the big protein breakfast my cravings were completely obliterated. I hadn't even realized I was having cravings! Once they were completely gone the difference was quite noticeable.


By three weeks into the leptin reset I was still trying to adjust to the big protein breakfast since I've never been much of a breakfast eater to start with. I got over it because now I have no problem whatsoever, and if you click on the link you will see a list of some of the things I was having for breakfast to meet the 50 grams protein requirement.


In November, one month on the leptin reset and staying under 25 grams carbohydrates for three weeks, I lost 5 pounds. My weight had pretty much stayed the same during the first ten months of the year, so this was a nice reward (not that being on GAPS has ever been about losing weight!). I noticed food had become less important, with more of an attitude of eating to live, rather than living to eat. I also made it through Thanksgiving without indulging in too many carbohydrates. I calculated 53 for the entire day, which was pretty darned low in comparison to Thanksgiving 2010 on GAPS (I have no idea how many I ate, but I made a lot of carbohydrate-rich dishes and dessert), and monumentally low in comparison to Thanksgiving dinner pre-GAPS (which was a typical Thanksgiving carbohydrate-laden meal).


Things went along pretty much the same during December, with the marked change in being able to skip lunch some days which meant I was going without eating for about 10 hours during the day. This was a remarkable feat. Bear in mind that I will not force myself to go without eating, so this was definitely not something I imposed upon myself, but was simply able to do. Amazing.

I was able to go some nights without eating all night long and feeling full of guilt when I had no other choice but to get up and eat. I noticed a pattern in where if I had a stressful day, it could affect my sleep at night. If I didn't sleep well, then I was less able to cope the next day, then I wouldn't sleep well. It is a vicious cycle. I lost 5 pounds more in December, and continued to track every bite of food using My Fitness Pal. I wrote a post on December 31st, thinking my eight weeks was up and I'd go off the leptin reset.

I didn't feel I'd done the leptin reset perfectly, some days I had trouble sleeping and was unable to get to work until so late in the day that I was not able to eat dinner by 7pm. I tried really hard, and one night I even stopped at Costco and bought myself a rotisserie chicken and ate that sitting in my vehicle, feeling sorry for myself. But then I read Mastering Leptin the authors of which also have their rules, one being you need to wait 11-12 hours in between meals. After reading that, I stopped trying as hard to eat by 7pm – meaning I still made a point to eat by 7pm but if I was unable to eat until 8am, then I would just wait to eat breakfast at 7am, instead of freaking out and worrying myself that I was blowing the entire leptin reset. Also, I was still having cortisol issues which were causing blood sugar issues in the middle of the night and I would wake up with the feeling that I needed to eat. If I don't eat, I cannot get back to sleep. If I can't sleep, I can't get up and go to work. I have to work, it's a fact of life.

Dr. Kruse says if you mess up on one of his rules, you set yourself back 12-14 days. But again, in reading Mastering Leptin I found something that led me to believe I wasn't doing myself that much harm. Because the fact of the matter is I'm not perfect, and if I was truly setting myself back 12-14 days each time I ate after 7pm, or had more than 25 grams carbs in a day, or ate in the middle of the night I'd be back at the start every few days. I don't need any more stress in my life than I already have to deal with, so I can't fret over doing things imperfectly. Here is what I found in Mastering Leptin that allowed me to relax a bit. Yes, they are talking about fat burning and Dr. Kruse is talking about resetting our leptin but this stuck in my mind as reason to not create anymore stress for myself than necessary:

ONCE YOU ACCESS FAT-BURNING MODE, STAY THERE! Following the Five Rules and accessing fat-burning mode creates a wonderful feeling of energy and well-being. However, when individuals have been in fat-burning mode for a few days and feel great, it does not mean their underlying issues with leptin resistance are solved. There may be numerous temptations that divert people from fat-burning mode. Such temptations cause them to violate one or more of the Five Rules. Beware: fat cells lurk in the wings, ready to refill themselves at a moment’s notice. While it may not seem like a big deal to occasionally go out of rhythm, unfortunately it is. If a person is in a good fat-burning mode and then violates one of the Five Rules, fat-burning mode will stop. However, even if the individual goes back to the Five Rules the next day, it may take two to five days for fat-burning mode to resume. During that time, the individual will have to wrestle with the additional urges of leptin resistance and previous compulsive eating patterns that did not exist in fat-burning mode. Unfortunately, when a person tries to lose weight and is in a good pattern, any violation of the Five Rules can slow progress for a few days. Sometimes extra exercise can get you back on track faster. Once in fat-burning mode, stay there!

Richards, Byron J.; Mary Guignon Richards (2009-02-17). Mastering Leptin: Your Guide to Permanent Weight Loss and Optimum Health (pp. 162-163). Wellness Resources Books. Kindle Edition.

I lost five pounds in December.

This is getting to be a pretty long post, so I'm going to share the rest tomorrow.


Here are my posts about the Leptin Reset:

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Sleepy = Leptin Sensitive?

I decided this past week that I had to do more in an attempt to sleep better. I have been putting on magnesium oil (this is the brand recommended to me: Ancient Minerals Ultra Pure Magnesium Oil 8 oz.) most nights after my shower but I wasn't sure if it was helping or not. I remembered something about taking magnesium at night to help to relax and have better sleep, so in addition to the mag oil I started to take a teaspoon of Peter Gillham Natural Magnesium Calm and finally I decided to try this time release melatonin that a friend of mine had given me a few tablets so I could try it out. Now melatonin is supposed to lower cortisol, so I had been reluctant to try it and also I had read somewhere that it's not a good idea to take melatonin since your body could become reliant upon it.

It used to be when I didn't get enough sleep I would and could simply by sheer will force myself to get up and get moving, get dressed and go to work. But in the last few months it has gotten to the point where not only can I not force myself up and at 'em but if I do manage to do so then I am a train wreck. I can't cope with any little bit of stress at work, I can't think clearly, I'm a mess. So I decided to try the melatonin, rationalizing since my cortisol saliva test showed my cortisol was high in the early morning, maybe taking melatonin at night would put a damper on that 4am cortisol and help me sleep through the night.

Also, last Monday I told my mom I'm going to just accept the fact that I may need to eat at night past 7pm, even if Dr. Kruse says it's going to mess up the leptin reset. I have to sleep. If I have to eat after 7pm to sleep, then I have to. I'll just have to be patient and wait for my body to heal so that I can go all night without eating. Also, for what it's worth the authors of Mastering Leptin say this about eating just before going to sleep:

I must eat something before bed or else I can't fall asleep. Does this mess up the Leptin Diet?

This is a sign of a stressed liver that is responding to nerves that are running too hot (too wound up). In this situation, the hormone glucagon is stimulating too much liver production of sugar – which is itself working in a stressed manner. Normal is that glucagon stimulates the release of sugar from the liver (about 60% of calories being used for energy) while simultaneously burning fat (about 40%) – which begins happening when a person hasn't eaten for three to four hours.

An uncomfortable hyper feeling (in response to stress on an empty stomach) or before bed resulting in trouble sleeping, is a sign the liver is out of shape and producing too much sugar compared to the amount of fat being burned. Eating raises insulin, which turns off glucagon, and stops the liver from doing this.

Eating in this situation is one way to get to sleep, but it is not helpful for weight management. On the other hand, not sleeping well isn't helpful for weight management either. One temporary solution is to find the smallest amount of carbohydrate that works, like a few crackers or 1/2 piece of fruit.

That helped me feel a bit less apprehensive about breaking the rule of nothing to eat past 7pm. I should also note that eating carbohydrates at bedtime, or with night waking has never helped me to get back to sleep, if anything it only made me feel worse. I have found I need to have protein and fat. Before GAPS that was some yogurt or a hunk of cheese (GAPS allows both these foods but I have been off dairy due to reactions when trying to introduce back into my diet), so it became a little harder to figure out what to have on hand so I could have protein readily available.

It was on Monday that I decided to take the magnesium oil, CALMS and melatonin. I remember climbing into bed and yawning, feeling relaxed and sleepy. I assumed it was the melatonin I'd taken twenty minutes earlier. It likely was. I slept well all night, in spite of having to get up to pee a couple times. I repeated the same routine on Tuesday night, and again slept well, even though I had to get up twice I still got back to sleep shortly after climbing back into bed. The same thing on Wednesday night, and good sleep again. This is great. I'm getting 8 hours of sleep on the nights I have to work the next day. Even though I'm still not getting to work until about 9:30 or 10. I would sure like to be able to get up at 6am and get to work by 8 but I don't want to push it yet.

So last night, Thursday night, I decided I wouldn't take the melatonin. As I crawled into bed I felt sleepy and relaxed. It must be after effects of the melatonin, I thought. Or maybe it's the CALMS. I slept well all night long from about 11pm until 7:30am.

The really awesome thing is on these nights I did not wake up with hypoglycemia and hunger. I was so pleased about that. A part of me wonders if it was psychological? Did giving myself permission to eat change everything? Somehow I don't think so. I did continue to have some mild hot flashes each night and had to throw off the covers, but usually they are much worse and then I wake up fully and I'm lying there with hypoglycemia.

Then today I remember that Dr. Kruse says as one of the signs of regaining leptin sensitivity: “B. Women will notice mood changes first (calmer/sleepy) and their sleep will improve.”

This is exciting. I hope this new trend continues.

Tonight I've felt sleepy since about 8 pm. I could have gone to bed then, but I'm trying hard to stick to a regular schedule. That means I have to get off this computer and climb into bed because it's 9:45. Nighty-night.


GAPS DIET JOURNEY is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to AMAZON.COM. GAPS DIET JOURNEY is an affiliate for several companies and may be compensated through advertising and marketing channels. Therefore, this post may contain affiliate links.

I’m Going to Continue on the Leptin Reset

Dr. Kruse tells us what to do after our leptin is reset in this blog post here: How To Eat Post Leptin Rx for An Optimum Life.

Quite by accident on Monday I followed the recommendations for the breakfast meal fairly close. Dr. Kruse says to have 25 grams protein, 20-30 grams fat with 50% of your daily carbs. My protein was 28, my fats were 25, I had no carbs as has become my habit to have few carbs at breakfast during the first eight weeks of the leptin reset.

This day I woke late, and stayed in bed later than I usually do. I've had a sore throat upon waking for the past few days and am not feeling too great. This morning I got up at 10:30.

My husband made me some homemade sausage for breakfast. I thought he said he was making it from chicken thighs, so I measured out seven ounces raw, thinking that was pretty close to 50 grams (since I had not yet decided what to do and what to eat, I tend to get stuck sometimes). It would actually have been 42 grams protein, if it had been all thigh meat, but I was to find out later from my husband that he had in fact mixed pork, beef and chicken in our grinder. So instead of getting 42 grams protein, I only got 28.

So this is only one day with some varying factors and I know I shouldn't base finding on one day. It was the first day in a long time I'd eaten so late in the morning, I had much less protein than I'm grown used to having…

But wow, within two hours of eating the sausage, I was hungry again! In Mastering Leptin the authors say if you are not able to wait for five hours, one of the reasons if you didn't have enough to eat, or enough protein at the earlier meal. It could be a number of things, even that your liver isn't functioning properly.

Since I'd eaten so late, I thought for sure I'd have no problem waiting to eat dinner seven hours later. I've been able to do that quite a few days, and that was when eating breakfast at 9am.

I couldn't wait five hours because then dinner would be in three hours, so I went with eating a few slices of Hormel natural ham at 3pm and doggone if I wasn't hungry, starving! in an hour. I ate dinner right close to 7pm and by 10:30 I was hungry again. I checked my calories for the day and I'd only had 1200 so I thought maybe that had something to do with my being hungry. I decided just to eat instead of trying to sleep while my blood sugar was all whacked out.

This indicates to me that my leptin is not reset just yet. Dr. Kruse has said in the comments at his blog that it may take longer than 8 weeks and that is okay with me.

I think I will continue with the leptin reset, but I do feel uneasy with staying at 25 grams of carbs. It supposedly can worsen a reverse T3 problem and I don't want to make things worse for myself. I think I will go up to as many as 60, as I've said I thought I would do, but I think I need to stay with the 50 grams protein at breakfast. I also think I do better with less carbohydrates at dinner so I will need to start incorporating some vegetables with breakfast in order to get more carbs in. Or I could just eat one date for breakfast. LOL, medjool dates, one date, has 25 grams carbohydrates.

Okay, so I guess I'll stay in a holding pattern for the time being with the slight tweak of having more carbs.

GAPS DIET JOURNEY is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to AMAZON.COM. GAPS DIET JOURNEY is an affiliate for several companies and may be compensated through advertising and marketing channels. Therefore, this post may contain affiliate links.

Is My Leptin Reset?

These are the signs that leptin sensitivity has returned, according to Dr. Kruse:

  1. Men will notice quick weight loss.
  2. Women will notice mood changes first (calmer/sleepy) and their sleep will improve. Their clothes will fit differently but weight may not change drastically initially because of effects on the pituitary. This will change too if they continue moving forward.
  3. You will notice a change in your sweating pattern.
  4. You will notice you have better recovery from exercise and your energy levels seem to have risen.
  5. Your hunger is gone and so are your cravings.
  6. When you awaken you will feel very refreshed like you slept well.

Generally when the signs are all present, I then really push HIIT exercise with heavy weights.

Number 1: I'm not a man, but I lost 10 pounds in eight weeks doing the leptin reset. In December 2010 I was at 181 pounds, and during 2011 I was at one time as low as 176, but by October 31st I was at 184.4. I am now at 174.2.

Number 2: I have noticed mood changes, and my sleep has improved. This got worse before it got better. My clothes are fitting differently. I'm not sure if 10 pounds would be considered drastic, but after maintaining my weight for the entire year I'm happy with ten pounds.

Number 3: I still am not sure how to notice a difference in my sweating pattern. Should I be sweating more or less? We aren't supposed to work out or exercise during the leptin reset, and it's winter here in Arizona so maybe once the summer rolls around I'll find out if my sweating pattern has changed. Again, should I now be sweating more? I've never sweated heavily so it will be interesting to see.

Number 4: My energy levels are better, not anywhere near where I hope to see them but better than before the leptin reset.

Number 5: This one, definitely yes. It has been so exhilarating to get to the point where I can skip lunch, and I'm not a slave to food. For someone who for years had to eat every few hours, and bring food with me everywhere, this is huge. Now I should say that being on GAPS for about one year brought about the freedom to eat only three meals each day, but there were often days where I needed to have a fourth “meal” or a snack, and night hunger happened fairly regularly. The night hunger is still an issue, although I have had several nights where I did not have to eat during the night.

Number 6: As I laid in bed this morning, having slept for more than nine hours, having woken only once to urinate and was not hungry during the night, I tried to assess if I felt refreshed. When I think of feeling “refreshed” after waking, I tend to think of what I've probably seen on television… the person is lying there sleeping and they wake, sit up and stretch and jump out of bed, eager to start the day. I'm not to that point yet. But I do feel better these mornings when I've had plenty of sleep. Right now I am waking up each morning with a sore throat but it seems to go away after a few minutes, so I'm not sure what is going on. Maybe my body is fighting a virus.

I have just been taking it easy today since New Year's fell on Sunday it is a paid holiday for me.

I still haven't decided how to proceed with the leptin reset… while I ponder what to do I think I will relax a bit on the carbohydrates but continue with the big protein breakfast.

I've updated my About Us page and have added a recent photo. 🙂



GAPS DIET JOURNEY is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to AMAZON.COM. GAPS DIET JOURNEY is an affiliate for several companies and may be compensated through advertising and marketing channels. Therefore, this post may contain affiliate links.

Last Day on the Leptin Reset, Last Day of the Year

It's New Year's Eve. I'm not staying up to ring in the New Year because I'm supposed to be in bed, lights out by 10pm. Thankfully I've never been one to party on New Year's Eve! A quiet evening at home, maybe doing some crocheting, knitting, watching a movie or blogging is more my speed.

So what's next? Well, Dr. Kruse outlines where to go after completing the leptin reset in this blog post here: How To Eat Post Leptin Rx for an Optimal Life. This blog post of his is fascinating reading, and I need to print it out so I can study it!

I haven't followed the leptin reset perfectly, so part of me feels like I should just continue on as I have been, since Dr. Kruse says you set yourself back by 10-12 days when you screw up on anything, and he says you should see all the signs of leptin sensitivity. But I think I have seen enough improvement that I am ready to add back in a few more carbohydrates – maybe as many as 60 in a day, which I believe is still rather low carb. Dr. Kruse also says to cut down the protein at breakfast to 25 grams, so I will see how that goes. If I'm unable to make it for five hours, then I will probably increase the amount again.

I had to work two Fridays in a row at my job and had some additional stress and that really did a number on my adrenals. When I first began using the hydrocortisone cream I started at 25mg, then for a period went up to 27mg (added in a nighttime dose). After a few weeks I was able to eliminate the late afternoon dose and went down to 24.5mg. Then my doctor was fussing at me and wanted me to try and get down to 20, so I tried, and decreased down to 22mg. I thought it would be okay at first but after a few days I could tell my adrenals just weren't ready. I started to have trouble sleeping again, and I can't cope with anything when I don't get enough sleep, then I'm crying and a basket case at work. While my boss is understanding, it's not helping my adrenals to have them constantly stressed, so I increased back to 24.5mg. I was doing fine there, but about ten days ago after going through another patch of stress at work (and working two Fridays in a row) I started waking every night with adrenaline rushes, hunger and staying awake for 2-3 hours, eventually feeling forced to get up and eat in order to get back to sleep. This went on for several nights.

Finally I learned that this indicates low cortisol and the solution is to up the daytime hydrocortisone. I reluctantly did so and for two nights in a row did not have to eat. On the leptin reset, you aren't supposed to eat after dinner but I felt I had no other choice because of the reaction my body was having.

Today will be the third day I've increased my hydrocortisone back up to 27mg. I do still wake 2-3 times a night to get up and pee but at least I'm able to get back to sleep within a few minutes.

Tomorrow I step on the scale, and will see if I've lost any weight during the month of December. My clothes are looser, so I suspect I have lost weight, but Dr. Kruse says women might not see weight loss but will see their clothes fitting differently. I'll let you know.

I've had a tooth bothering me… this could be part of the reason why my adrenals have been struggling. It's not yet painful, but it just nags at me, enough to scare me. I have a deep seated fear of teeth going bad and it happening on the weekend and no way to get help from a dentist.

On the recommendation of a local GAPS friend I am seeing a holistic dentist this coming Wednesday. The tooth I suspect is giving me trouble is in an area with teeth that are filled with amalgams. This holistic dentist is very careful and concerned about removing amalgams, while the dentist I normally see does not think they any problem at all. This was giving me a great deal of anxiety, not knowing what to do and finally in talking to my husband he told me to just make the appointment with the holistic dentist. Just going to see a dentist in itself is stressful, but I feel comfortable with this guy and believe that he will do his best to protect me if I do have to have amalgams removed. I suspect they will want to remove all my amalgams as soon as possible, but I'm going to have to go slowly, not only for my health, but financially because this dentist is not covered on my dental insurance.

As I mentioned earlier, I'm also going to request that the doctor order some more blood work. I want to see if my reverse T3 changed at all (I would love to see that it has gone down) and I would like to see if my Vitamin D levels have risen. I'm still on the fence about doing the T3 protocol, and need to know how my sodium and potassium levels are anyway before I can get started.

My doctor left the practice, so I will be seeing her partner in February for a followup to the labwork. I have talked to him once, we had quite a lengthy conversation while my doctor was on vacation, and he thinks my thyroid is fine – he thinks my adrenals are the problem, and he actually suggested that I go up on my dose. So maybe he will be more open to my taking the hydrocortisone as needed, instead of stressing out my adrenals by trying to lower myself before I'm ready.

I don't agree with him. Just for the simple fact that I have Hashimoto's Disease. This I understand indicates my thyroid has been under attack, if not now then in the past. Also, I seem to have some swelling on the left side of my throat, so I don't know if that is a goiter or what but I'm pretty sure it's my thyroid.

I can say that I feel like I'm doing better this weekend. That is a relief.

It is such a mystery how this all works, but I think I am starting to see a pattern. When I get stressed out, my adrenals try their best to cope. If I don't support them with additional hydrocortisone during stressful events, I start to feel more anxiety and depression. It's becoming a noticeable pattern.

This past week I had an incredibly stressful event at work. I literally felt that I was to be tied to a stake and set on fire. Seriously, that is how bad the situation felt to me. I was not comfortable following through with a task I had been asked to complete, so I stood up for myself and said I could not do it. That took a lot of guts on my part as I am pretty much a wimp and scaredy cat and crybaby. After I blurted out my statement, I was made to feel as if I was in the wrong for saying anything. I had to leave the building for about a half an hour to compose myself. I knew it was going to be difficult, so I stress dosed several times. I actually ended up getting only 29mg hydrocortisone that day, about 5 more than I had been getting. But that was all my adrenals needed to keep up with the stressful event. I slept without having to get up and eat, and the next day I started my new higher amount of 27.

I wish I would just get better steadily day after day. But Dr. Natasha tells us that healing is often two steps forward, one step backwards. I have to remember that.

I am grateful that I know about GAPS, and that I've learned about the leptin reset. So far, my thyroid symptoms are not as bad as they could be, and I am sure that I will continue to heal as each day goes by. I may need to begin some type of thyroid medication, but I will cross that bridge when I get to it.

I am looking forward to 2012 being the best year of my life. I am sure that more energy is in my future.

Thank you for following me on this journey. I appreciate you and am grateful to have this blog to be able to bounce ideas and share what I've learned.

Happy New Year!

GAPS DIET JOURNEY is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to AMAZON.COM. GAPS DIET JOURNEY is an affiliate for several companies and may be compensated through advertising and marketing channels. Therefore, this post may contain affiliate links.

GAPS Thanksgiving Dinner

Three Weeks on my GAPS-Style Leptin Reset

You might have come to my blog last week to find it missing in action… but everything should now be back to normal thanks to my newly hired blog maintenance guy. I decided one of the things I needed to do to decrease the stress in my life was to have someone else do the backend maintenance. Thank goodness because this problem was out of my league.

I can't believe I've been doing the leptin reset three weeks. It has always been a challenge to eat 50 grams of protein in the morning, but in the last few days it has become even more challenging. I love meat, but that's a lot of meat to eat within thirty minutes of rising and to be honest I've never been much of a breakfast eater. My mouth feels dry in the morning. I have found that eating sauerkraut helps because it is cold and juicy. Sometimes the meat is dry, even when I've soaked it with butter. Here are some examples of what I've had for breakfast to make it to 50 grams protein:

  • 10 ounces 80% 20% hamburger  = 48 grams
  • 2 eggs [affiliate link], 3 slices Open Nature uncured Canadian Bacon, 10 Aidells Chicken & Apples smoked chicken mini sausages, 1 Open Nature beef hot dog = 54 grams
  • 5 ounces salmon, 1 Foster Farms Italian Chicken Sausage = 49 grams
  • 2 Jennie-O Sweet Italian Turkey Sausage, 2 Foster Farms Chicken Breakfast Sausage links (small), 1 slice Open Nature uncured Canadian Bacon = 51 grams
  • 3.5  links Open Nature Smoked Andouille Chicken Sausage = 52.5 grams
  •  5 eggs, 10 pieces bacon = 51 grams
  • 9 ounces raw swordfish, 1 cup homemade beef broth = 54 grams
  • 3 links Costco Casual Gourmet Sausage Roasted Red Pepper and Spinach, 1 cup homemade chicken broth = 50 grams
  • 8 ounces grilled pork loin chop, 1/2 link Open Nature Smoked Andouille Chicken Sausage = 52 grams
  • 7 ounces raw salmon = 42 grams
  • 4 links Open Nature Smoked Andouille Chicken Sausage = 60 grams
  • 8 ounces salmon, 1 egg = 52 grams
  • 1.5 link Casual Gourmet Costco, 4 large eggs = 51 grams
  • 4 ounce chicken breast, 5 ounce raw hamburger = 55 grams
  • 3 chicken thighs = 51 grams

This morning I was caught without anything to eat… last night my hubby brought home Canadian Bacon and jalapeno sausages and I thought I'd have those. He's been finding “legal” things like this on clearance, but when I started examining the ingredients I saw that the Canadian Bacon contained not only nitrates and nitrites, but corn syrup, and the sausages had Monterey Jack Cheese and I'm still not having dairy. I ended up having 5 ounces of boiled chicken breast (leftover from the pot of soup I made yesterday) with 2 cups of chicken broth, 2 eggs and some green chili peppers. I made it into a soup of sorts and ugh, it was just not very tasty at all. It was all I could do to choke it down – boiled chicken breast is so dry even in broth! Thankfully it's not usually that bad. Tomorrow morning I will be having bacon and grilled chicken thighs and I will look forward to that.

I do feel I have been making some progress with the leptin reset. In Dr. Kruse's post My Leptin Prescription he says most people will notice a change in their hunger and cravings within four to six weeks. I noticed this by the second week. I had not thought I was having cravings, but it turns out I was since I no longer think about having something like this: Coconut Milk Chocolate Ice Cream Shake. They were not uncontrollable cravings, it was more like the thought would pop into my head of how yummy it would be to have a treat. Often, as long as I could figure out something GAPS legal, I would indulge. But I'm not supposed to snack on the leptin reset and with all the protein in the morning I am just not hungry for hours. It is refreshing. With no low blood sugar symptoms either! That's important.

Dr. Kruse says these are the signs that you are becoming Leptin Sensitive again:

  1. Men will notice quick weight loss.
  2. Women will notice mood changes first (calmer/sleepy) and their sleep will improve. Their clothes will fit differently but weight may not change drastically initially because of effects on the pituitary. This will change too if they continue moving forward.
  3. You will notice a change in your sweating pattern.
  4. You will notice you have better recovery from exercise and your energy levels seem to have risen.
  5. Your hunger is gone and so are your cravings.
  6. When you awaken you will feel very refreshed like you slept well.

Generally when the signs are all present, I then really push HIIT exercise with heavy weights.

Okay, so my hunger and cravings are gone. My sleep has improved! It got worse before it got better. I was up several times every night to urinate but in the last week it seems that this has calmed down. Last Monday night I got six hours sleep, then on Tuesday night I got seven. Wednesday night I was awake until 1am so not a good night, but every night since I have been sleeping well; however I was still waking up to pee. Last night I actually slept from 11:30 until 5:30am straight through without waking up even once. I was so delighted to see the time. I hope this continues. I know much of this improvement has to do with my husband being home and sleeping at now. I am no longer having to worry myself sick over him not sleeping. This takes a huge load off me.

It does seem as if I am waking feeling refreshed, at least on the days that I don't have to go to work.

I'm not sure how I'll notice a change in my sweating pattern… I think if I remember correctly if you are leptin sensitive you sweat a lot.

My clothes seem to be a bit looser, as if I've lost four or five pounds. The fat on my stomach feels looser, more fluffy, less solid.

I've also been noticing how food seems less important. Almost as if I am beginning to eat to live, instead of live to eat.

I've been thinking about Thanksgiving Dinner… how to do it and stay under 25 grams of carbohydrates for the day. Well, one thing I know, I'll be eating meat! 🙂  Last year I had a feast, with none of the standard carbohydrate items like potatoes, sweet potatoes, bread, rolls, etc., but even so they were higher in carbohydrates than I'm doing now.

Here is a picture of last year's Thanksgiving Feast:

GAPS Thanksgiving Dinner

My hubby tells me Fry's Grocery has Holiday New York Strip Roast on sale for $3.77 a pound. I think we will have one of those for our Thanksgiving dinner. I'm also thinking spinach, and mushrooms. And mashed faux-tatotes.

Last year to help plan my Thanksgiving menu I bought Heart of Cooking's Thanksgiving Limited Diet Menu Planner. It is only $5.95 and I was very pleased with the variety on the menu. I didn't get to make everything, but I was really happy with the recipes I did use. In the photo above you can see the recipes I used from her planner: Coconut Bread Stuffing, Butternut Squash and Apple Puree, Coconut Whipped Cream, and Pumpkin [affiliate link] Bars with Cashew Date Frosting, Pumpkin Pie and Spice Cranberry Sauce (not shown). There are so many great recipes in this 24 page planner that it's more like a mini cookbook than a planner. I bought it last year and Sarah has a special offer this year where you can get the Thanksgiving Menu Planner free if you subscribe to her membership site. Or you can just buy the menu planner. It's very worth the $5.95.

So how are you doing on your GAPS journey? 




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Thoughts So Far on the Leptin Reset

So I decided to just go for it… I figured what have I got to lose by trying? I'm really glad that I've only been working six hours a day because the scheduling is somewhat daunting. 50 grams of protein is a LOT of meat. I mentioned the reset to a couple of friends and they were stunned at the thought of eating that much protein for breakfast. One commented that's the RDA for the entire day! 🙂  My plan worked out pretty good. For dinner – when I need to work the next day – I always cook an extra portion so that I have leftovers for lunch. So I just cooked enough to have leftovers for breakfast and lunch. But I staggered the meals because the thought of eating one kind of meat three meals in a row was not appealing. On Sunday night I made steak, Monday night chicken thighs, Tuesday, hamburgers, Wednesday steak again. So my protein for my meals looked like this. I haven't figured out the carbohydrate part yet, because I guess I secretly would like to lose at least 30 more pounds… Dr. Kruse says limit your carbs to 25 grams or less daily, but I don't know if this is net carbs, or straight carbs. And I have never counted carbs, so I don't have any inkling how much the various veggies are. I know beets, carrots, peas and winter squash are high so I know to avoid those unless I'm measuring… so I have been eating lettuce, broccoli and zucchini squash in sparing amounts because I haven't had time to figure out how much I can have in one day. Basically it's all meat and fat for breakfast, lunch has been meat, fats and veggies, and supper has been meat, veggies/ferments and fats.

Sunday night – steak

Monday breakfast: leftover roast chicken; lunch: don't recall; dinner: grilled chicken thighs

Tuesday breakfast:  leftover steak; lunch: leftover chicken thighs; dinner: grilled burgers

Wednesday breakfast: leftover chicken thighs; lunch: leftover grilled burgers; dinner: steak

Thursday breakfast: leftover grilled burger; lunch: leftover steak; dinner: roasted chicken

I slept really wonderfully last weekend, getting to sleep by 10pm each night and staying in bed until 8:00 the next morning. Tuesday at work was pretty stressful – to the point I had to “stress dose”. Three incidents happened, a slight confrontation with my boss (always stressful no matter how small, a confrontation is a confrontation), a personal situation and then my doctor's office called about 2pm and asked if I would be available to talk to the other doctor in the office between 4pm and 4:30pm. Yes, I told them I would be available, then I stressed out waiting for the call. I will tell you about that another time. Remind me if it seems I've forgotten! 🙂

So I had four days of great sleep, and I started the Leptin Reset on Monday and I had this huge burst of energy on Monday early evening and I haven't felt an energy burst like this in months! I swept the kitchen floor, washed three loads of dishes, wiped the counters and the stove, dried and put away all the dishes, vacuumed the living room floor – which was a disaster since no one else here knows how to run the vacuum… at any rate, I was pretty excited to feel that much ambition and energy and it really gave me a boost in wanting to continue on and try the reset.

But then Tuesday was stressful at work and I got to sleep just after 10pm, but woke around 2am, hungry. I believe this to be a cortisol issue. I finally got up at 2:45 and had half a grilled burger with some butter and a glass of water with salt and apple cider vinegar. I was able to get back to sleep for a few more hours but had much difficulty getting out of bed to get ready for work. That caused Wednesday to be stressful, just because I was so tired. Even though my boss said to make my own hours, there's a limit to how flexible I can be and arrived at work at 9am (that's late enough!). And then I ended up staying at work until 5pm! But the last hour was spent talking with a coworker, catching up. I got home just after six, which left me only an hour to cook and eat!

I got to sleep around 10:30 on Wednesday night, and awoke at 3:15 and could not sleep, woke up hungry. I'm not supposed to “snack” so I just laid there, not feeling very hungry anyway… and really not too excited about the fact that breakfast was a huge grilled burger. I'm supposed to eat within 30 minutes of rising and so I finally decided to throw in the towel and get the day started at 4:45. I went right into the kitchen, heated up the burger and sat down to eat it and took my vitamins, and ended up feeling nauseated. I really didn't feel like eating, partly because I felt so exhausted, but I'm supposed to… so I did. Thankfully the nausea passed fairly quickly. I got to work at 7am, and I left at 3pm.

I'm pretty sure I got just my 24 hours, maybe 25. I'll have to figure it out later.

After work on Thursday I went to Costco because I had to buy stamps for work, and also to upgrade my phone. Actually my son will get the upgrade phone, and I'll take his “old” one. His is just a few weeks “old” so I will be pretty happy with it, I'm sure.

While at Costco, I had to deal with some feelings coming up about this new eating plan. Costco's bakery was making cinnamon [affiliate link] something or others… the smell was intoxicating. Now usually I'll just tell myself that I can go right home and make almond flour [affiliate link] cookies with cinnamon, or cupcakes with cinnamon, or heck I can probably find a coconut flour [affiliate link] or almond flour cinnamon roll. But now that I'm keen on doing this leptin reset, I can't assure myself with that. Well, I suppose I could go off the leptin reset, but it's only a short period of time that I am asking myself to abstain and then I can go back to full GAPS. My plan is to try this leptin reset for the 6-8 weeks that Dr. Kruse suggests. I will reassess at that time and see how it's going. If I'm making improvements, maybe I'll continue. At any rate, 2 months is NOTHING if I can accomplish this feat and reset my body to acting normal about food again! Dr. Kruse says when you are leptin resistant calories count, when you are leptin sensitive they don't. My body used to be “normal” about food before I had my children, so it would be awesome to get it normal about food again and I think it's worth the commitment.

So yeah, having some feelings to deal with… feeling sorry for myself that I can't have GAPS legal “goodies”. I went through that in the first months of GAPS, not being able to have SAD goodies, so it's kind of icky feeling this again. But I keep telling myself, maybe this will just be two months. And of course I feel sad about the holidays! Why am I doing this to myself again! I started GAPS December 6th two years ago. But this is going to be even rougher. At our staff Christmas party, if I'm still doing this leptin reset, I won't even be able to bring GAPS legal baked goodies, and I won't be able to eat fruit. Those are my “fun” treats that I get to have, but not this year, not if I follow through. Furthermore, since I can only eat within certain time frames… I guess I will have to find out what time the food eating will commence and then get up and eat breakfast four hours earlier… so much planning. At least they are all used to my weirdness by now. LOL.

Aside from the food feelings… I have noticed that the 50 grams of protein for breakfast effectively kills any cravings whatsoever, so that is pretty great. On just plain full GAPS I didn't have what I would call cravings, but more like thoughts of having things I know I should probably avoid. For example, it seems if I eat fruit for several days in a row I begin to start feeling like I'm sinking into depression.

I've been able to go the four to five hours recommended between meals (I've actually been okay to do this for some time after starting on GAPS), and have also managed to eat dinner by 7pm each night. Dr. Kruse says you set yourself back some horrid amount of days, like 14 to 16 days, if you mess up. So wow. That's a lot of time wasted. On Thursday since I'd eaten breakfast by 5:15, lunch could have been eaten at 10:15, but I knew I wanted to go to Costco afterwards, and dinner would have been 3:15, which would have been right when I was at Costco, so I opted to wait to eat until 12:15 and I was able to make it without eating for seven hours! And then I was late getting home and luckily my husband put two chickens in the oven to roast so dinner was pretty much ready to eat when I got home. I warmed up some leftover zucchini squash and I also had five slices of salami (cheat because it has nitrates) and two pieces of prosciutto (which I got for deep discount prices at a food clearance mart), and a pickle (also not really GAPS legal since it was commercially prepared). But I wanted something special with dinner, a couple of treats, hence the pickle and deli meats.

Oh, and about Costco again and food feelings… three years ago a trip to Costco meant one of their huge gooey pieces of pizza, or the Berry Berry Yogurt Sundae, or something else from the fast food section. Lately when I go it's after work, I'm hungry and so I rationalize that the salami is an okay treat. But I couldn't have that today, because I'm not supposed to snack! So that was a bit disappointing, but I lived through to tell the story! 🙂

The whole not snacking deal is not hard with the protein from breakfast, but there's the habitual snacking that I find myself doing that has been a bit of a challenge to curb.

Okay, I think I had better cut this short. Thank you so much for sticking around to the end. Hugs to you all. Starlene



GAPS DIET JOURNEY is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to AMAZON.COM. GAPS DIET JOURNEY is an affiliate for several companies and may be compensated through advertising and marketing channels. Therefore, this post may contain affiliate links.

Dr. Jack Kruse Leptin Reset Protocol GAPS-Style

Folks are always tweaking GAPS, there are anti-candida versions and lower carb versions, dairy-free versions and still others where people avoid oxalates or other foods that they can't tolerate yet.

Why not a Leptin reset GAPS version? 🙂   Dr. Kruse suggests following a paleolithic type diet, foods of which are included on the full GAPS list. I commented on one of Dr. Kruse's posts detailing all my “issues” and he suggested I just try the leptin reset as soon as possible and don't worry about all the minor details. It reminded me a lot of Dr. Natasha. Just do the diet and things will fall into place.

There are a few differences that I see right away. For one thing, leptin reset says eat within 30 minutes of rising while Dr. Natasha says we shouldn't eat before 10am as our body is detoxing… but I've not been able to follow that admonition since my day starts so early and I have never been able to wait that long to eat. Not that I'm a big breakfast person, but I usually have something pretty early in the morning. The Leptin reset requires the following:

  • 50 grams protein and plenty of fat at breakfast
  • Eat breakfast as early as possible from rising (within 30 minutes)
  • Follow a paleo or primal style diet
  • Less than 25 grams carbs daily for overweight persons
  • No snacking – ever again
  • 3 meals a day initially, but adapt to two ultimately (four meals allowed if needed with adrenal fatigue)
  • Do not work out before or after breakfast
  • Allow 4-5 hours in between meals and sleep time
  • If you incorporate working out, only do it after 5pm
  • Last meal of the day before 7pm

I'm not sure if I can do this or not… but I'm seriously considering it. I will still include GAPS basics, like broth and ferments, but this would at least it would be something to try in the interim while I can't get the prescription I think that I need.

To tell you the truth, when Dr. Kruse commented back and said just do the reset ASAP I felt such relief. Hope that this might work, relief that if it does work I can stop fighting to take medication <!!>, that is so not me! Relief that I can stop feeling like I'm a hypochondriac. I have never been like this and I don't like it! But I am so worn out I have to do something. On the other hand, I truly don't want to get my hopes up that this will work and I won't need to take medication. It would be nice if that would be the case though, wouldn't it? I just don't want to get disappointed. I told my mom how I felt and she could relate, asking me if I knew how many books she's bought over the years, thinking this would be THE ANSWER? LOL! Human nature, I guess. But at least we're willing to make the commitment to do something to try and get better.

I'm already ahead of the game since I eat fairly clean – meaning – I don't eat SAD. This won't be a huge leap for me. I think it might take some advance preparation… for example, I may need to start cooking enough at dinner for not only my lunch, but also breakfast. Having those extra two hours a day that I'm taking vacation time for should help.

I'll let you know how it goes.

Have you any thoughts about the Leptin reset? Would you be interested in trying it with me? I think it is going to be a bit like doing Introduction… any takers?



GAPS DIET JOURNEY is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to AMAZON.COM. GAPS DIET JOURNEY is an affiliate for several companies and may be compensated through advertising and marketing channels. Therefore, this post may contain affiliate links.