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  #1   ^
Old Wed, Jul-26-17, 09:07
VLC.MD VLC.MD is offline
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Plan: Atkins/LCHF
Stats: 209/185/185 Male 69
BF:reducing
Progress: 100%
Location: Toronto, Canada
Default [Myth?] Weight loss usually works better for Guys


I cant tell you how many times I have read or heard this lately (and steadily over the last 30 years).

Is there some truth in this statement ? It seems like a relatively commonly held belief. Is it merely based on guys have more muscle and higher Basal Metabolic Rates ?

I've been telling women to not be discouraged and "he or she that cuts the carbs the best wins" nevermind chromosomes. I say they are more determined than their husbands and that's why they'll lose lots of weight.

I'm interested in hearing what people think on this topic vs. researching myself (I'm busy researching another topic).

Thoughts ?


Please weigh in on the topic
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  #2   ^
Old Wed, Jul-26-17, 09:23
Bonnie OFS Bonnie OFS is offline
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Plan: Dr. Bernstein
Stats: 188/160/135 Female 5 ft 4 inches
BF:
Progress: 53%
Location: NE WA
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Anecdotal, no proof, but it does seem that men have an easier time losing weight. Tho it may be I'm looking at the wrong thing. My husband has never had a weight problem & tends to lose weight easily, while I've been fighting the good fight for many years (tho often with the wrong weapons) & have a hard time losing weight.
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  #3   ^
Old Wed, Jul-26-17, 09:49
honeypie's Avatar
honeypie honeypie is offline
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Posts: 6,457
 
Plan: Cycling VLC with LC
Stats: -/-/134 Female 5'10
BF:
Progress: 56%
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I have no thyroid issues, am not menopausal, and am 5ft 11 with a VERY considerable amount to lose.

On regular induction, with <20g carbs per day, a limit on dairy, and calories at 1500-1700, I could barely, and I mean BARELY lose 5 lbs per month.

I am now for the last month on NO cheese, NO cream, NO seeds, NO nuts, and carbs <10g total per day, and mostly just from pickles, cucumbers, or a couple of radishes, NO artificial sweeteners, NO diet soda, NO lc "treats" of any kind, and on a TOTAL hard limit of 1200 kcal per day. That is, the choices are: egg, or some other protein, and a very small <5g vegetable as a condiment. And I MAY hit 8 lbs loss this month, instead of 5 lbs.

Did I mention I'm 5ft 11, and that I have A LOT to lose?

I think that is as strict as anyone can go, bar <1000 kcal a day, meat only. And I've done that before, too.

I think it's not just a question of men's higher basal rate. As a species, men are not genetically programmed to hold on to fat as easily as women are.

That doesn't mean that men can't get fat, but women, even hormonally, provide a more accommodating genetic environment in which fat can accumulate.

That will partially be due to the fact that women are genetically programmed to be healthy and "strong" enough to carry babies, and to feed them all.

"Healthy and strong enough" genetically, I think also very easily translates to "easier to gain weight, and more difficult to lose it", for all of the forgoing reasons.

Sure, men can get AND stay fat.... but there is a lot more going on than just higher muscle mass resulting in a higher basal rate. Although, sure that helps a lot, too!

But the aggregate totality of all differing factors between men and women is what makes the total end results differ, even if exactly proportional amounts of equal "effort" put in could be measured.
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  #4   ^
Old Wed, Jul-26-17, 12:14
VLC.MD VLC.MD is offline
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Posts: 220
 
Plan: Atkins/LCHF
Stats: 209/185/185 Male 69
BF:reducing
Progress: 100%
Location: Toronto, Canada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by honeypie
I have no thyroid issues, am not menopausal, and am 5ft 11 with a VERY considerable amount to lose.

On regular induction, with <20g carbs per day, a limit on dairy, and calories at 1500-1700, I could barely, and I mean BARELY lose 5 lbs per month.

I could see how wt loss would be slow with that.
I'd certainly try to eat more %fat and less protein.

Quote:
I am now for the last month on NO cheese, NO cream, NO seeds, NO nuts, and carbs <10g total per day, and mostly just from pickles, cucumbers, or a couple of radishes, NO artificial sweeteners, NO diet soda, NO lc "treats" of any kind, and on a TOTAL hard limit of 1200 kcal per day. That is, the choices are: egg, or some other protein, and a very small <5g vegetable as a condiment. And I MAY hit 8 lbs loss this month, instead of 5 lbs.

Wow. Your dedication is amazing. Keep it up !!!! (Thanks for sharing your story).

As I said already, you might want to determine what are your percentages of fat and protein. I firmly believe fat keeps your insulin low and that is when the real weight loss begins. The more you reduce your low carb diet's protein ... the more weight you will lose.

I have tried a few days of "cheese only" (and a bit of salad) and I found it not entirely satisfying. But have only small experience with it.

One interesting way to look at things is Dr. Fung says you'll lose 15lbs in a month "if you fast for the whole month". 1/2 lb a day (say 1700 calories). Note: I am not advocating that, I'm just using the numbers.

For me, I did fast a bit. I fell into it and didnt do it on purpose. And I found I wasn't hungry despite fasting. YMMV.

You may consider eating windows like only eating from noon to six PM. (aka Intermittent Fasting 18:6.

You should experiment around and try various things (as you have been doing). But you can't stray too far from your comfort zone. If you think intermittent fasting is bad for you ... it will be. The mind is a powerful thing.

Quote:
...but women, even hormonally, provide a more accommodating genetic environment in which fat can accumulate.

I'd love to see if there is "proof" of this type of concept. And what hormones are different ? Do women have a higher insulin resistance ? Are carbs 4.2 cal/g for women and 3.9 cal/g for men ? Are carbs 4.3 cal/g for women who are overweight and 4.1 cal/g for men who are overweight ? Do women "feel worse" when they calorie restrict to "force them" to eat ? Do women find the power to lose weight when their relationship fails ? or is that a myth too ?
Do women actually have "more of a sugar addiction" (ie. chocolate) than men do ? Why ? or is that a stereo type in women's trashy magazines and people now believe it ?

Very complicated.

Are men and women more similar in weight loss before their hormones kick in ? Do women who become men (and take testosterone injections) find it easier to lose weight ? Do they have a higher BMR ? Does the average man dieting eat more fat and less carbs than women dieting ? Do menopausal women (with less estrogen) have a harder or easier time losing weight ? If estrogen made teenager girls more likely to gain weight, why would losing estrogen also make it harder to lose weight ?
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  #5   ^
Old Wed, Jul-26-17, 12:32
Bonnie OFS Bonnie OFS is offline
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Plan: Dr. Bernstein
Stats: 188/160/135 Female 5 ft 4 inches
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Progress: 53%
Location: NE WA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VLC.MD
Do women who become men (and take testosterone injections) find it easier to lose weight ?... Do menopausal women (with less estrogen) have a harder or easier time losing weight ? If estrogen made teenager girls more likely to gain weight, why would losing estrogen also make it harder to lose weight ?


Interesting questions! I'm post-menopausal, so less estrogen, & it's harder to lose weight now than when I was younger. Would more testosterone help me lose weight? Don't know if I want to go there - I already have more facial hair than I'm happy with. My husband is at an age (82) where I'm sure his testosterone is lower than it was, but he still isn't having any problems with his weight. For some reason I know a lot of skinny old guys.

Something is telling me that estrogen/testosterone aren't the whole story.
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  #6   ^
Old Wed, Jul-26-17, 12:40
honeypie's Avatar
honeypie honeypie is offline
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Posts: 6,457
 
Plan: Cycling VLC with LC
Stats: -/-/134 Female 5'10
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Quote:
I'd certainly try to eat more %fat and less protein

Sorry to correct you, but I don't know what gave you the impression that on less than 20g total carbs per day, and 1500-1700 kcal I was eating 'not enough fat and too much protein'? You're reading something into what I wrote, which isn't there. That's ok.

I'll also correct you though that I don't think IF is bad at all. I have no idea where you got anything like that from what I wrote, either. Most of my life I've eaten only 1 or 2 meals per day. Also, when I was at 1500-1700 kcal, my fat % was at 75%.

I have previously fasted for 30 days before, not through choice, but due to illness (pancreatitis). Most of that was dry fasting, as even 2T of water would put me into convulsions of retching and projectile vomiting (of bile, because there was nothing else in me). I lost 2 lbs in those 30 days.

Anecdotal, sure. But additional examples of how biochemical processes are not as simply explained across the entire board as calories in, calories; and neither even as high percentage of fat + IF, equals speedy and effortless weightless for all.

I think your super new found enthusiasm for IF on the boards and your positivity re LC on the board is great.

Quote:
I'd love to see if there is "proof" of this type of concept. And what hormones are different ? Do women have a higher insulin resistance ? Are carbs 4.2 cal/g for women and 3.9 cal/g for men ? Are carbs 4.3 cal/g for women who are overweight and 4.1 cal/g for men who are overweight ? Do women "feel worse" when they calorie restrict to "force them" to eat ? Do women find the power to lose weight when their relationship fails ? or is that a myth too ?
Do women actually have "more of a sugar addiction" (ie. chocolate) than men do ? Why ? or is that a stereo type in women's trashy magazines and people now believe it ?

This, though... I have to say I think you're missing the entire point. Men's and women's bodies are simply not comparable, in the way that you want them to be, in order to make the assessment that you're trying to impose upon them as a side-by-side, equal comparison.

Biologically, we are not the same. It is most definitely not a case of just higher muscle mass in men, and lower muscle mass in women.

Of course our hormones are all different... I don't even know what you mean, when you say "what hormones are different?"

We have hormones in completely differing amounts, proportions, and balances. The same hormones act differently IN the two different sexes.

Hormones affect our other organs, which means that other biochemical processes in the body happen in completely different ways, in the two different sexes. Women have larger thyroids, for a start, due to having more estrogen, and the fact that that estrogen has an anti-thyroid effect in female bodies.

Hormones also, do not act in isolation. Everything acts and reacts in the context of the aggregate environment of the human body as host organism.

I mean, I could go on with hundreds of examples of how men and women's bodies differ, in both physiology, and how all biochemical processes are different to one another. But I think there is enough here to offer some food for thought.

Nothing has anything to do with "stereotypes from women's trashy magazines and people now believe it."
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  #7   ^
Old Wed, Jul-26-17, 14:56
VLC.MD VLC.MD is offline
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Posts: 220
 
Plan: Atkins/LCHF
Stats: 209/185/185 Male 69
BF:reducing
Progress: 100%
Location: Toronto, Canada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by honeypie
Sorry to correct you, but I don't know what gave you the impression that on less than 20g total carbs per day, and 1500-1700 kcal I was eating 'not enough fat and too much protein'? You're reading something into what I wrote, which isn't there. That's ok.


I saw this list:
Quote:
Originally Posted by honeypie
I am now for the last month on NO cheese, NO cream, NO seeds, NO nuts, and carbs <10g total per day, and mostly just from pickles, cucumbers, or a couple of radishes, NO artificial sweeteners, NO diet soda, NO lc "treats" of any kind, and on a TOTAL hard limit of 1200 kcal per day. That is, the choices are: egg, or some other protein, and a very small <5g vegetable as a condiment. And I MAY hit 8 lbs loss this month, instead of 5 lbs.

And I didnt see alot of fat in your food choices. You took the time to mention vegetable as a condiment ... so I figured you listed almost everything ??
I see I was wrong.

Regardless, I'm glad you are eating more fat than I thought you were as LCHF > Low Carb, High Protien, IMO.

Quote:
Originally Posted by honeypie
I'll also correct you though that I don't think IF is bad at all. I have no idea where you got anything like that from what I wrote, either.


Quote:
Originally Posted by VLC.MD
If you think intermittent fasting is bad for you ... it will be. The mind is a powerful thing.


I did say If. Of course I didn't know what you thought about IF, but I thought I'd plug IF/F as a method, if tolerable, to accelerate weight loss, if you were interested. 30 days ?

For the record, I'm a newbie when it comes to all of this I enjoy coming to a conclusion that I am wrong, as I can prove I actually learned something ! I'm planning on making lots of mistakes.

FWIW, I think Weight Gain and Weight Loss are different between XX and XY. I do think Insulin is Insulin. I doubt men and women have different insulin. I am sure there are 100s of possible reasons (hormones, etc) why weight loss might be easier for men. I just wonder is there proof behind any theories .... and how that might relate to a low carb diet's effectiveness.

Quote:
I don't even know what you mean, when you say "what hormones are different?"

I dont have an exhaustive list ... if fact, I haven't thought about it much.

Probably these to start (in order of interest).

Insulin
Insulin resistance
cortisol
growth hormone
estrogens, androgens
leptin, adiponectin, acylated ghrelin

(Note: I am researching antipsychotics and insulin resistance (a person from the Atkin's forum inspired me)).

I guess I would be interested in what are the top 5 likely XX/XY differences in hormones/metabolism that may make it harder to lose weight. At the end of the day I am more interested in personal stories / opinions than cold medical facts. (I can drum those up myself probably).
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  #8   ^
Old Wed, Jul-26-17, 17:28
Dodger's Avatar
Dodger Dodger is offline
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Plan: Paleoish
Stats: 225/175/175 Male 71.5 inches
BF:18%
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Location: Longmont, Colorado
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Here is an analysis of weight loss studies that show that men do lose more weight than women, but men have more weight to lose.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4359685/
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  #9   ^
Old Wed, Jul-26-17, 17:37
VLC.MD VLC.MD is offline
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Plan: Atkins/LCHF
Stats: 209/185/185 Male 69
BF:reducing
Progress: 100%
Location: Toronto, Canada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dodger
Here is an analysis of weight loss studies that show that men do lose more weight than women, but men have more weight to lose.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4359685/



Men do appear to lose more weight than women during weight loss attempts, although it is possible that this is due to the greater baseline weight of men rather than the specific lifestyle interventions. Despite men showing greater weight loss than women in the majority of studies, women have still had significant weight losses meaning lifestyle interventions which include dietary and exercise prescription appear effective for both men and women. There is little evidence that men and women should adopt different weight loss strategies and the differences in weight loss seen in the short term may have little significance long term. To facilitate weight loss in overweight and obese men and women, health professionals need to focus on the inclusion of both diet and exercise in weight loss attempts and need to provide support for individuals to assist with implementation of programmes which has the potential to increase long-term success.

I see the meta-analysis confidence intervals usually overlap 1.0, meaning equal weight loss for men and women.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/ar...16-0171-sd1.pdf
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  #10   ^
Old Wed, Jul-26-17, 17:54
honeypie's Avatar
honeypie honeypie is offline
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Posts: 6,457
 
Plan: Cycling VLC with LC
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Quote:
I saw this list:

Quote:
Originally Posted by honeypie
I am now for the last month on NO cheese, NO cream, NO seeds, NO nuts, and carbs <10g total per day, and mostly just from pickles, cucumbers, or a couple of radishes, NO artificial sweeteners, NO diet soda, NO lc "treats" of any kind, and on a TOTAL hard limit of 1200 kcal per day. That is, the choices are: egg, or some other protein, and a very small <5g vegetable as a condiment. And I MAY hit 8 lbs loss this month, instead of 5 lbs.


And I didnt see alot of fat in your food choices. You took the time to mention vegetable as a condiment ... so I figured you listed almost everything ??
I see I was wrong.
I did list everything. I am on higher protein and lower fat as of two weeks ago, than I was for the previous three months. My macros, and protein consumed, are still well within acceptable range. And for me, it proving easier to get my calories in the 1200 range, with no associated hunger. Whereas the 3 months before, I was eating about 500 more calories per day, and I had a LOT more hunger.

Also as you know, macros by percentage do not equate proportionally to food as consumed by volume. Fat in the cuts of protein, and that used in cooking, easily brings fat 35% - 50%, even on the sparse list of foods I am eating from right now. While not high fat, there is also nowhere that 30%-50% of calories from fat would be considered low fat, either.

Quote:
I do think Insulin is Insulin. I doubt men and women have different insulin. I am sure there are 100s of possible reasons (hormones, etc) why weight loss might be easier for men.
This isn't really true at all. It's too simplistic to take everything at face value like that, when the body processes - by their very nature - are amongst some of the most complicated (and intricate) interdependent processes in the universe.

Metabolic processes are different in men and in women, for all of the reasons that I listed in my second post on this page, plus many more. Gender differences in biochemistry, and gender differences in hormones do cause a more insulin sensitive environment in women compared to in men. I definitely won't bore you to death with more, because obviously everyone is capable of pulling up their own studies and stats to look at, as you said. You could even consider that I'm just pointing out the obvious, if you wish.

But with all that being said ... my next comment would be to say that I have a feeling that the researchers who came up with the "men lose more than women because they have more to lose" conclusion, really took the most simplistic approach possible, and likely just wanted something, anything, published.
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  #11   ^
Old Thu, Jul-27-17, 12:19
VLC.MD VLC.MD is offline
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Plan: Atkins/LCHF
Stats: 209/185/185 Male 69
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Location: Toronto, Canada
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Food Science is close to an oxymoron.
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  #12   ^
Old Thu, Aug-17-17, 05:44
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teaser teaser is offline
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Plan: ketosis/IF
Stats: 190/158/154 Male 67inches
BF:
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I have to wonder, though. Just priming the idea that girls are bad at math can result in worse math scores for girls, in a research setting, at least. The idea that women can't fast, will have more trouble dieting--whether there are some underlying mechanisms that would make this true or not, there's also the problem of whether just thinking you're more likely to have trouble will make you more likely to have trouble. Reality is reality, but sometimes there can be an advantage to overestimating the probability of success.
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  #13   ^
Old Mon, Aug-21-17, 16:10
AeKeenLass AeKeenLass is offline
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Plan: Not sure yet
Stats: 160/152/140 Female 5'9"
BF:
Progress: 40%
Location: Northern California
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Quote:
Do women actually have "more of a sugar addiction" (ie. chocolate) than men do ?


One ounce of dark chocolate has as much iron as three ounces of ground beef. I've seen it suggested that some women crave chocolate around their periods for this reason. I can't claim to know any more than that. I do know that I'm eating a lot more beef lately and my chocolate cravings are slowing diminishing.

As for men and women and weight loss, I thought it was well known that men in general have a higher percentage muscle. Doesn't just maintaining muscle mass use up energy? That's what I've always heard. If so, then generally speaking, guys can eat more and still lose weight, compared to a woman of same size but lower muscle mass. It seems pretty straightforward to me.

Add on top of that women are dealing with constantly varying hormone levels, and maybe the day to day consistency that helps re habit forming is harder when women normally experience much more monthly fluctuation in everything affected by gender hormones. When calories go below a certain level, maybe women's bodies go into conservation mode more quickly? Traditional diets were all about calorie reduction, so all of that could play a role in making it harder for women, generally speaking.

I've never been able to stick to a diet to lose weight. I've lost weight in the past due to illness; I've lost weight due to overwhelming grief; I've lost weight when getting a lot of exercise (150+ miles of biking a week + running every morning + masters swimming workout 3x a week) and building a lot of muscle mass. I've lost weight immediately after delivering babies . That's just me personally.

I've been post-menopausal for nearly a decade now. I think it affects muscle mass, but I'm also getting a lot less exercise, and maybe that's also just general aging. My husband, who is close in age to me, seems to be going through many of the same changes. I did read that most post-menopausal women have to exercise at least an hour a day to not gain weight. But maybe that's more relevant to a traditional carb load. I'm exercising about once a week right now and seem to be slowly losing weight. But I have no idea if that will continue past the initial ten pounds or so.

If it is relatively more difficult for women to lose weight, I think it's good to acknowledge it and also be aware that specific eating plans that generally work for men to lose weight might not generally work for women. It's better to know up front than to go in with high hopes and dedication only to get no results at all because it simply won't work well for a woman. Just my rambling thoughts.
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  #14   ^
Old Tue, Aug-29-17, 09:05
CaptainRon CaptainRon is offline
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Plan: Primal/PHD
Stats: 351/188/190 Male 74 inches
BF:15.5%
Progress: 101%
Location: Chicago ‘Burbs
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I have no evidence beyond personal experience to back this up, but I was on the Ideal Protein program for a little over a year and in that time my long term average loss was 3 lbs/week. In comparing notes with folks in an active FB group, who are mostly women, it seems that most women averaged closer to 1.5 - 2 lbs per week eating the same diet. But, there are outliers with higher loss, so while I would agree that men lose faster, it is dependent and the individual as well.
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  #15   ^
Old Tue, Aug-29-17, 09:15
Sniggle Sniggle is offline
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Plan: Atkins
Stats: 220/186.2/190 Male 73.5
BF:
Progress: 113%
Location: West Virginia
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I can accept that, as men have more muscle, their bodies will tend to burn into fat reserves more when the diet is altered to induce weight loss.

That being said, I think this is more of an excuse than anything else.

I have been lifting/cardio/core 4 days a week 1.5 hours a day, running 2 days a week, and doing jujitsu 2 days a week, while cutting out all sweets, empty carbs and the like (Atkins 20/40). If anyone, male or female does this, they will effectively lose weight.

(note: I have a 15 year old son that I work out with...very few can do it alone)
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