5 tips for a person who has been trying to lose weight for years, but never succeeds!

In my articles, I often emphasize that the best diet for everyone does not exist, and that therefore the goal of successful weight loss is only to find a way of eating that suits you so well that you are ready to follow it until you achieve the desired results, and then at least partially turn it into your new lifestyle.

However, theory is not always so easy to put into practice. That is why this time we will use an example that we often encounter in practice in order to guide you in a more comprehensible way through several important determinants of the successful adoption of healthier habits that you should take into account before embarking on changes.

healthier habits

Meet Valerie

For example, we will take Valerie, a 30-year-old girl who has a long history of restrictive diets and a great desire to lose 20 extra pounds once and for all.

Valerie lost and regained the kilos many times, which is why she completely lost hope that she could achieve any, let alone lasting, success. And although she has repeatedly witnessed the long-term failure of dramatically restricting calories, eliminating carbohydrates and completely giving up the food she loves, Valerie still sees no other way out, believing that all of this is necessary for success and that the problem is not in the wrong approach, but in its deficiency. will, discipline and ability to achieve his goal and maintain results in the long term.

Let’s see below which are the key methods that could help Valerie to finally find the right path of change and more importantly – to stay on it. It may or may not surprise you that these methods are actually the opposite of everything she has done so far.

1. Moderate calorie reduction

It’s no mystery that losing weight requires us to achieve a caloric deficit , but unfortunately many people take this rule too seriously and, out of a desire for quick success, create a much larger energy deficit than is necessary.

This is exactly what happens repeatedly to Anna from our example. By drastically reducing her food intake, Valerie even achieves considerable success in the first week, which can easily be explained by the increased loss of water and glycogen stores . But soon after that, the consequences come in the form of an increased appetite, weight stagnation and the familiar feeling of frustration, which all lead to giving up or even worse, to a panicked additional reduction of the already too low caloric intake.

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The solution to this problem lies in the gradual reduction of calories . If you suddenly deprive yourself of 1000 calories by cutting your energy intake in half, you may see changes on the scale faster , but your body will use its smart protective mechanisms to make sure that these changes do not last too long. So start with a maximum reduction of 20% of your total caloric intake and adjust as needed.

For Valerie and her usual caloric intake of 2000 kcal, this would mean that she would stop at an intake of 1600-1700 kcal for a certain period of time, in order to gradually and safely introduce her body to changes and leave enough room for further reductions.

kcal

2. Diet plan adapted to preferences and lifestyle

Valerie is a big fan of carbohydrates, but because of the belief that they harm her efforts with a constantly heavy heart, she gives them up. There isn’t a single low-carb diet that she hasn’t tried and at the same time failed after a while.

The problem here is not Valerie’s lack of discipline, nor that low-carb diets don’t work. In certain cases, they can even be a necessity, but what happens most often is that, due to wrong thinking, people unnecessarily and suddenly engage in a way of eating that is completely opposite to the way of life they are used to and love. Such an approach is usually impossible to maintain in the long term, and that is exactly the point.

The solution is to find a way of eating that will be as consistent as possible with preferences and lifestyle , and yet include small changes necessary for visible results . Maybe Valerie would enjoy following her menu more if she kept whole varieties of her favorite carbohydrates in it to begin with and/or just adjusted their amount? There are many approaches, the only point is that any proposed method should be one step further from old habits, but again not such a step that it fails to make it.

3. Avoidance of intensive restrictions

Valerie also likes something very much, and that is carbonated drinks. It is simply difficult for her to imagine life without them. But no matter which article you read and no matter which nutritionist or trainer you come to, the request is always the same – there is absolutely no place for that in a healthy diet. And so Valerie crosses out her favorite drinks every time because that’s obviously the only way to achieve what she wants. Until one day, an intense desire for a favorite drink works and everything goes back to the beginning.

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The same could be said for many categories of food such as cakes, biscuits and other sweets, but also for those that are a little less processed such as carbohydrates, dairy products and in fact everything that people think they have to eliminate forever if they want to be healthy and fit.

Human nature simply does not respond well to prohibitions , a much better approach is to gradually change habits, which can be manifested through the “choose just a little better” method. For Valerie, a passionate fan of Coca Cola, the first step could be regular Coke without sugar. Although it is definitely not a healthy example, it represents a small step beyond ordinary Coca Cola and a way of saving calories that would eventually become a thing of the past or just an occasional habit.

Don’t look for perfection, just choose slightly better variants than what you currently buy. Over time, it will be easier for you to choose the best one .

intensive restrictions

4. Cheat meal as part of the plan

The all-or-nothing approach requires so many unbearable sacrifices that it’s no wonder it rarely succeeds. Among all the other frustrations that come with it, it often happens that people, together with a bad habit, say goodbye to the one that served them because they see it as the only way to avoid temptation.

Thus, due to many restrictions, Valerie also has to give up regular socializing with friends over pizza because she considers it easier than resisting one of her biggest challenges when it comes to food. Such an approach cannot last long, and why should it when there are so many better solutions.

One of them is to include such a meal in your plan, consider it part of the whole process, which will reduce your level of remorse and reset your organism. However, if that seems too challenging to you, there are a number of variants that can make pizza healthier or just reduce the amount you eat by providing yourself with a filling meal rich in protein and fiber beforehand, which will balance the entire meal and, due to satiety, you will most likely eat much less pizza than What do you think.

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And that alone is progress, much more sustainable than completely giving up your favorite food and hanging out with friends.

5. Occasional breaks from diet (refeed)

Long-term calorie restriction is one of the biggest mistakes people make , especially when something like that lasts for years. In the beginning, everything goes smoothly, but over time, due to metabolic adaptations, it becomes more and more difficult to lose weight, until the whole process finally stops and goes in the opposite direction. Valerie knows this process very well, but she has not yet understood why exactly it happens.

As with cheat meals, occasional breaks from calorie restriction are essential for our mind and body, in order to mentally and physically take a short break from the stress of losing weight. Although a certain degree of metabolic adaptation occurs in any case when losing weight, your body will be calmer and cooperate much better with you if you periodically let it know that there is enough food.

If you have found yourself in a position where your kilograms are no longer going down, and you think that you are really eating too little, try increasing your food intake for a couple of days and see what happens. Maybe that’s exactly what you need instead of further calorie reduction that will only further drag you into a cycle of nutritional deficits, frustration and dissatisfaction. Just make sure that the food you choose is of the highest quality in order to reduce the possibility of regaining the lost pounds and ensure additional benefits.

Occasional breaks

Conclusion

If you recognize yourself in Valerie, and you do not have any health problems that limit you in losing weight, try to apply the advice from this text. Maybe applying just one of them will change the negative attitude you have about losing weight and finally lead you to permanent results.

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