When I got serious about changing my overeating habits, I was very aware of the odds against loss maintenance, but that didn't deter me from wanting to eat less permanently. It became so clear that a lot of my eating brought very intense but short-lived pleasure, and more hours of discomfort and even misery. I just couldn't accept that I would spend my last few decades on earth caught in that trap. (I'd been grappling with this with escalating failure for nearly four decades.) It still took a lot of effort for a long time, though there were many good moments, too, that I maximized in my thinking. I,too, aimed at increasing the ratio of quality foods, at least my definition of them. Since I had no real health issues, I also allowed some of the cruddy foods, but if I had had any poor lab readings, I hope I would have speeded up the process. I've continued to make changes for health reasons, not for weight loss, but more loss has happened, and it is rather convenient, but that's all. I would keep doing what I'm doing even without loss, and would not be willing to do a lot more for more loss. I know I eat fewer calories than I did and I do use some thought about it, but It is not a terrible struggle because for the most part, I feel better physically and mentally. It's taken many slips to establish that truth. That feeling better overall is worth the continued reasonable effort.
Belief that what you're doing is fair and will get you something important that you want seems key to me. Better health is the motivator that seems to work the best, if you can believe the data in the U.S. National Weight Loss Registry, but it has to be honest, not just a coverup for wanting to be thinner. (It's also clear that whatever you do, it has to be for five years or more to have the odds for relapse drop to 25%. But you can get there weaning yourself off unsupportive habits or plunging to them, depending on your motivation and reinforcement.) Whether eating mostly nutrient dense foods is the first piece in your puzzle or the only one, I affirm success for you! That definitely played and plays an important role in my changes.
BTW, I'm here because I live in San Diego, California, and Perth is a sister city, but there's no Spark team for Perth, so I just started browsing Australia. Warmest wishes from a similar climate!
I agree that counting calories does not seem to work for me. After losing 20 pounds on keto, I started to slide around to old habits and have been punching it out with myself these last two months. I am reconciled to eating "clean" unprocessed food, only 3 meals per day and losing the things that create weight on my body; i.e., snacking, sweets and diet soda. It has to be for life in order to last but I only need to commit to it one day at a time. 1248 days ago
Keto keeps creeping into my reading in nutrition - going to join the keto team just as a silent reader for a while but not participate in any discussions, challenges etc for a time of learning. 1248 days ago
Great Blog Richard! My sediments exactly!!!
Those articles are well said and well written. Thank you so much for sharing them.
I've totally given up on the idea of a calorie range and counting calories and or tracking food. It's just a time consuming sort of waste of time, when you know better and more about it all.
Sorry to burst anyone bubbles who loves this calorie counting thing.
I do however think periodically using the SP nutrition tracker if set up correctly to track every single vitamin, mineral and nutrient can be a good tool once in a blue moon to check when running the feedback at the end of one day. (Not for the calorie range)
But use the Feedback to tell you if you are getting all you need from your current eating plan in the way of the essential vitamins, minerals etc....
We basically just have to get back to the basics of eating healthy, less processed food, organic when and were possible, NON GMO foods, No soda / Soft drink, No alcohol, Stop Smoking, Get at least 6 glass of purified water daily get 7-8 hours good sleep each night.
We also need to make sure we are not just sitting down all day. We need to get our exercise in even if it's just in keeping our gardens done and our house clean, tidy and well organised.
We should not be doing any extra strenuous exercise as that can do more harm than good in the long run for our joint's and other parts of our body.
if one does want to do some "formal" type exercise then a 1/2 hour walk daily, or swimming or Tai Chi / Qi Gong is great for the mind, body and spirit, very beneficial and not to strenuous on our bodies.
But definitely living in a messy & cluttered house does not help. We need to live in an organised clean environment. Otherwise illness and other things can wreck havoc on our immune systems which does not help us in the long run.
Just get back to basics! Eat Real food the way nature intended. And most people over eat. Eat the correct portion size at each meal and no snacks in between. If you are hungry have a glass of filtered water and go find something to keep yourself busy.
Sometimes just skpping the "diet" word mentality and focusing on living a healthy lifestyle is all it takes.