Sunday, February 14, 2016

An update on the experiment

If you read my recent blog An experiment, in which I laid out my plan to plot the speed with which I could do a French lesson against my daily keto reading, you might be interested in this update.

At first I thought I could see some correlation, but soon the data were all over the map.  Let's face it, the complexity of the material from lesson to lesson made this a rather senseless task.

And if you read another blog, posted a week ago, The magic of family, you know that I had a houseful of kids, grandchildren and one great grandchild at my house for dinner a week ago.  Our family loves to eat, and I just decided to throw all caution to the wind.  I ate whatever I wanted all day.  By evening, after everyone left, I helped myself to a piece of apple pie and ice cream.  By then there was no salvation for Grandma Susie!

Carbohydrate heaven!

Look closely at that picture - mashed potatoes, gravy, scalloped oysters, sweet potato casserole, scalloped corn, bread dressing, Potatoes Dauphine.   If you look closely in the upper right hand corner, you will see the platter of heritage turkey.  Any doubt about what I was focused on?  

So what happened to my keto readings?  I was out of ketosis Monday . . . and Tuesday . . . and Wednesday . . .  in fact, every day until Saturday when I registered a paltry 5.  This morning I was finally in decent territory, registering 15 and logging all of my food today in an effort to hit 40 tomorrow.

And what happened with my French lessons?  They were terrible, horrible!  I skipped one day altogether, didn't finish one lesson all the way to the end all week, managed to cobble together two full lessons (in bits and pieces) instead of the seven I should have accomplished during the ensuing week.

This is not my imagination.  I had a totally negative view of the lessons.  I was telling myself it was ridiculous to think a 74 year old woman could learn to converse in French.  That's the frustration and depression side of what happens to me when I am not in ketosis.  The other thing was losing my ability to focus.  It is a separate thing from the depression and frustration.  This is more closely aligned with anxiety - black clouds looming on the horizon make it hard to finish.  That is what I couldn't do - I couldn't finish a lesson, I couldn't even finish a sentence.

Sometimes we need to fall off the wagon to remember just how important the wagon is to us.  In my case, there is a very definite medical reason for me to get on that wagon and stay there.  As for the experiment, what I learned is that this one was hard to quantify the way I thought I could, but there is a definite correlation between where that keto reading is and how well my brain functions!

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