Weight loss is HARD work. Whoever said dropping 10 pounds (or any amount of weight for that matter) is easy, was lying. There are so many reasons that shedding the pounds is difficult… whether it’s because we are surrounded by sweet and savory fattening temptations or simply that our bodies prefer to hold on to a little extra weight, it seems as if the ‘battle of the bulge’ can turn into a lifelong war within our own bodies. But today I want to discuss one of the most critical aspects of losing excess pounds and maintaining a healthy weight- consistency.
It’s one thing to deprive yourself one day and stuff yourself the next, but it’s another thing to ‘reset your hunger signals.’ When I was heavier I ate WAY more food than I do now, and the thought of cutting back actually scared me! My body was used to larger portions and I knew I did NOT like that empty, deprived feeling that accompanies any diet. So the question is, how do you lose weight without being hungry?!
To quote Mireille Guiliano, author of French Woman Don’t Get Fat, “There is no lasting glory in rapid weight loss.” I couldn’t agree more. If you want to lose weight and do so in a pleasant way that avoids hunger pains, then you need to cut back, little by little, and reset your body’s internal cues. It really should be a slow and steady process.
But who wants to wait? Sure, you can lose 5 pounds in a week by doing something extreme, but I would never recommend it because those 5 pounds come at a price. When you cut your calorie intake so suddenly, your body begins to panic. You put stress on both your body and your mind. You deprive yourself of essential nutrients and you weaken your immune system. Your metabolism lowers to maintain energy and you lose muscle tone and strength. It’s really not worth it!
Eating too little in an attempt to lose weight causes your body to go into ‘famine’ mode, so when you finally allow yourself to eat more than usual (i.e. you can’t take this dieting anymore) your body goes into ‘feast’ mode where you consume copious amounts of food because your body (and mind) believe that following the feast, you will go into another famine.
Your body and mind respond SO much better to following a consistent healthy eating plan that’s more maintainable and manageable. I know some people aren’t huge fans of counting calories, but when I was losing weight, I found the most reasonable way for me to do it was to take in roughly the same amount of calories each day. This way, my body doesn’t feel the need to ‘pig out’ at dinner because it ‘trusts’ that I will be fueling it up again tomorrow morning for breakfast. I also don’t need to eat the whole bar of dark chocolate or a whole pint of coconut ice cream like this is my last chance to ever do so. I know that I’ll get to enjoy some tomorrow, as well!
‘Consistency’ is key to eating healthy, losing weight, and keeping your sanity! So, forget about that crash diet, that ‘magic cleanse’, the ‘Eat only grapefruit…or soup…or lemonade diet’ that promises you’ll lose weight fast. Take ‘baby steps’ and make eating healthy a LIFESTYLE!
Have you ever tried to lose weight? If so, how did you do it? Do you eat ‘consistently’?