Maintaining the weight loss that you have worked so hard to accomplish is only possible by living a healthy lifestyle, not by dieting. Sometimes when we start adding calories into our daily menus to stop losing, we choose foods that got us fat in the first place. David has said, “If you couldn’t control those foods before, what makes you think that you can control them now?” Don’t undo all your hard work by thinking that you can go back to your old way of living.
Choices That Help With Maintaining Weight Loss
We advise giving up sugar to reduce calories and inflammation in your body. When you remove the foods that contain added sugars, you naturally reduce your caloric intake. Most people “reward” themselves with sugar-laden desserts as soon as they reach their weight loss goal. Since sugar has an addictive quality, just a few days of eating it will start that addictive behavior again. It causes chemical imbalances in the brain similar to cocaine. The reward system of the brain is activated by sugar and soon you want to repeat that behavior. In no time at all, the pounds return with a vengeance.
A key factor in maintaining weight loss is to improve your food choices. Everyone likes the sweet taste. In studies in newborns, the babies were given plain water and then sugar water. After the babies got the sugar water, they no longer wanted the plain water. There’s no shame in liking sweetness in foods. What we fail to realize is we don’t have to eat added sugars to get that craving satisfied. Instead of eating empty calories, choose healthy foods with natural sweetness. When you read food labels, watch for the phrase, “Added Sugars”. That’s what you want to avoid to help maintain your weight loss. There is natural sugar in many foods that is unavoidable. Some of those foods will satisfy a sweet tooth.
My Favorite Things
Full-fat Greek yogurt that is made from whole milk, has about 4 grams of naturally occurring sugar per serving. Greek yogurt is a powerhouse of nutrition. The milk sugar in the yogurt is fine to eat. With 16 grams of protein and probiotics for gut health, it’s great for maintaining weight loss. Add fruit or berries and the 0 calorie sweetener of your choice and you have the equivalent of a sundae. Sometimes I add 0 calorie, sugar-free drink mixes to make all kinds of delicious flavors. A favorite is full-fat Greek yogurt with Tang sugar-free liquid drink mix and a little vanilla extract. This makes Orange “Dreamsicle” Yogurt. It’s wonderful!
Oats are a power food that fill you up and provide some of the best nutrition. Almost all athletes eat oats. Add a sugar-free sweetener, butter or coconut oil and some nuts, seeds, berries or fruit for a sweet treat that will do your body good. I like Swerve Brown that substitutes for brown sugar for 0 calories. It’s wonderful in oatmeal. I have eaten oats for years to assist me with weight loss and maintenance. Make sure that all of your food is nutritionally dense. Don’t waste calories on junk food that won’t benefit your body.
There are protein cookies, bars and shakes that will satisfy your sweet cravings. Avoid those that contain added sugars and experiment until you find some that you like. If you eat sugary snacks, you will get blood sugar swings that will make you hungrier. To get adequate nutrition and satisfy that hunger, you will have to eat too many calories and your weight will increase. There are many no sugar added options for all of these products.
Look at our recipe section on our menu on the Home Page here for healthy recipes that will satisfy cravings and help you in maintaining weight.
Most people accept the fact that exercise will help you lose weight. Unfortunately, most people either decrease the amount of exercise, or stop it altogether, when they reach their goal. Maintaining weight loss requires at least 40 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise at least 3 to 4 times per week. This is not strolling leisurely through the mall or cleaning your house. Weight loss and maintenance programs that lead you to think that are probably trying to keep you coming to them to collect fees. Moderate exercise is when you can talk but not sing and vigorous exercise is when you can only say a few words without pausing for a breath. Maintaining weight loss is more work than losing weight and requires a changed lifestyle. Trying to maintain weight loss while playing around with unhealthy habits will fail.
Weight Loss Maintenance “Influencers”
When you create a new lifestyle you need to consider the people in your life. We are strongly influenced by those closest to us. You must remember that if someone tries to sabotage your efforts to be healthy, they don’t have your best interest at heart. Why would you continue to appease anyone who is working against all your hard work that you put in to get to goal? If you over ate when you were with them before you got to goal, you probably will again. Seek out friends who support your new health incentives. I had a “friend” who told me that she didn’t like me being smaller than her. We are no longer in touch. I associate only with those who will help me along my way towards ultimate health.
Learn To Cook!
Something has happened in the U.S. in the last 20 years that is appalling. People have quit cooking. While I have had times in my life when I frequented restaurants, before long, I would always go back to the kitchen. After a little while, I would develop cravings that I could not satisfy at the drive-through window. Fast food is nutritionally poor and you will keep eating it in large amounts trying to get satisfied. It’s designed to make you buy and eat MORE. That’s how they make money. It’s way too easy to order whatever sounds appealing if you don’t have to cook it.
Basic cooking is simple. You learn by doing. You will spend a fraction of the money that you now spend on food. Eggs, oats, beans, chicken, Greek yogurt, apples and milk are staples that are highly nutritious and cheap. Look online for instructions to cook anything. I can buy a pound of coffee on sale for the price of one Mocha Frappuccino at a fancy coffee shop. A pound of ground coffee will make about 80 cups of coffee. Save money, calories and time by learning to cook at home. Use low calorie, sugar-free ingredients and tweak the taste to your liking while improving your health.
Notice that all of these tips will improve your life in many ways other than just maintaining your weight loss. They will finally, give you the life that you want and deserve. Get your priorities in order today for a brighter tomorrow.
Always play the long game.