Tag: weight loss

Fat Loss Versus Weight Loss

One of the things we see as a huge problem in the weight loss industry is the focus is almost always placed exclusively  on weight loss alone. You can join one of the largest weight loss groups in the country, pay your monthly fees and still not find true success in achieving a healthy body, specifically because they only concentrate on helping you in getting to a goal weight instead of a goal body fat percentage. At David’s Way to Health and Fitness, we want you to concentrate on achieving a healthy body fat level over reaching a random weight. You might reach your goal weight when following any of the popular programs, yet still have an entirely too high percentage of body fat. What you weigh is meaningless when you are what we refer to as being “skinny fat”. Being skinny fat is when by outward appearances you are at an ideal body weight, yet you are still soft and pudgy from still carrying too much fat. In fact, being skinny fat is worse than just being obese simply because most skinny fat people do not recognize they have a problem.  After all, if you are over the age of thirty and weigh what you did as a senior in high school, all is well, right?

Not necessarily!

Here in lies a humongous problem, nutrition is similar to religion in that it is visceral. People can get too caught up in what feels good over using intelligence and common sense. It feels good to lose weight, and many take it as a matter of faith that a pound lost is a pound lost, while not caring where the pound lost came from. They do not care, or do not understand, there is a huge difference in a pound of water being lost over a pound of actual fat being lost. All they want to see is the number on their scale dropping which makes them feel good. These people will always find themselves let down when that pound of water weight is replaced as soon as they begin consuming and retaining fluids. Water weight loss is meaningless when it comes to what is important. What is important is losing your body fat to a healthy level for your body.

To get at a healthy level of body fat and remain there, we need to first understand something. Obesity is not just a matter of simple weight gain.

Obesity is an accumulation of excess body fat!

If you want your weight loss to mean anything, then you must understand that your priority must be focused on achieving a healthy level of body fat over a random weight number that just “seems” to be right. Some of the major weight loss groups will help you to get to a weight that places you in a healthy range within the Body Mass Index scale, yet you might still be “skinny fat” and unhealthy. To be healthy, you have to concentrate on losing body fat, not just weight.

Through interactions with our own followers at David’s Way to Health and Fitness, and through the study of several weight loss programs, it is astounding that there are so many people who have little grasp of what makes up their weight and what to do about it. Your body weight is comprised of more than one factor; water content, fat content, muscle content and your structural components  such as bones, tendons and ligaments. If you want to simplify this, look at your body as two parts, pure body fat and lean body mass for the rest.

If you are trying to figure out your ideal weight, quit looking for a mystical number you believe is going to make you look and feel good about yourself. Concentrate on getting to and maintaining a healthy body fat percentage. You can refer to our Pictorial Body Fat Estimator  here to see where you need to be. Fifteen percent is a good goal for men, while twenty two percent is a good percentage for women.

In today’s America, the average man has 23% or higher levels of body fat, while the average woman’s body fat is 32% or higher. This means the average male is 53% fatter than he should be while the average woman is 50% fatter than what is healthy. Somewhere along the way, we Americans have become some of the fattest people on the face of the earth.  And why would this be?

This is simply because too many people, including so-called experts, have no true understanding of the relationship between diet and fat loss!

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How to Get to Your Best Weight Once and for All

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You Have “The Power”

 I know what it is to let year after year pass with all good intentions of finally, once and for all, learning to control my weight. I know what it’s like to never have anything to wear that I actually want to wear. I know what it’s like to dread swimsuit season, yet again, and live in jeans all summer, sweltering away because I felt self-conscious in summer clothes. Your life does not have to be this way. The power to change is in your hands.

Decisions, Decisions

The first thing that you have to decide is what do you truly want? This has to be a definitive decision. Because most of us live in a place where food is abundant and we can get it, this decision will be your rudder in the storms of life. Once you have made this decision, navigation is easier. You will ask yourself the question, “Does this comply with my goals?” whenever you encounter a nutritional/fitness challenge. I am frequently bombarded with nutrition bombs at work by well-meaning people who “gift” us with food, all kinds of food. I don’t have to consider whether or not I will eat 99% of that food because at least 99% simply does not meet the nutritional standards that I have set for myself. This decision will be your pivot point. Make it realistic and stick to your guns. Never allow people who are unhealthy and have unhealthy habits to sway you once this decision is made.

Be Ready

One problem that I always encountered before learning to eat David’s Way, is that I would “go on a diet” and be full of hope, promise and a giddy euphoria. I mean, after all, this was IT. I was going to get skinny! There! I decided…then, mealtime came. For some reason, we think that if we just say it, it will happen. You know, a sort of “build it and they will come” mentality. I once worked for a major weight loss company and I saw this every, single meeting and event. People would come in and buy a membership, buy the cookbooks, buy a kitchen gadget or two and God knows what else they would buy, sometimes spending a massive amount of money…and be pleased as punch that FINALLY, they were going to lose weight! The next week, and sometimes the next…, they would come to my table angry or sad, unable to understand why the scale was not cooperating. They would say, “But, I bought all this stuff!” as if buying the stuff would somehow make weight loss easy. It’s not easy. If you are addicted to sugar and refined carbs, you may experience terrible feelings of loss and depression when you give them up. I did. It was hard. I cried. I lay awake at night. Human beings are creatures of habit and when we have been medicating ourselves with excessive carbohydrates that increase serotonin, we miss those damnable molecules when we walk away. Just expect a measure of hardship going in. Get your big girl/boy panties on and grin and bear it. You can’t sport a 6-pack while guzzling a 6-pack and a pizza. That only happens in beer commercials. If you want a trim, toned body, you have to put in some work.

SLOW DOWN

I have mentioned the conversation that David and I had when I first began weight training and eating correctly. I asked the same dumb question that I always ask whenever I began a weight loss program, “How long will it take?” I wanted to get ripped FAST! While I knew that I could not build the muscle that I wanted overnight nor lose the extra body fat that was left over from my employer’s program, I still wanted a quick fix. David’s wise advice, “The rest of your life.” was exactly what I needed to hear. It made me focus on the task at hand and quickly dismiss all of those whims that we can have about just tolerating a program for a while to achieve our goals. I instantly realized that the goals that I had in mind were far-reaching and hugely demanding. I realized that the sensation of “holding my breath til I get there” that is so common in most weight loss programs, was not going to get it anymore. If our goal is to truly be the best that we can be, then shouldn’t it take the rest of our lives? We can’t be our best unless we perform at our optimum day in and day out. There will be blips on the radar. There will be tragedies and sickness and stress and all of the ups and downs that are a part of life. There will be birthday parties and vacations and Holidays. Your rudder will allow you to navigate these normal parts of daily life with finesse. Your goal is to make it to a safe harbor, a place where good nutrition and good fitness habits have designed and honed the body that you want to live in for the rest of your life. There is no rush. The harbor is not going anywhere. Just head that way. Repeat. Know that giving up is not an option and that knowledge will help you stay on course. You will get there if you never give up.

Ever Learning

Always search for more information to help you along your way. We have over 800 articles, recipes and product reviews here at David’s Way. We have the Calorie Counter Pro to help you determine your caloric needs. We highly recommend attempting to lose no more than one pound per week and always only with your doctor’s permission. We have the Body Fat Pictorial Estimator  that can help you determine about how much body fat you may be carrying. Everything on this website is free, take advantage. Our goal is to help educate the world about the dangers of obesity and self-neglect/abuse. We hope to play a part in making people more responsible for their well-being. That is our mission.

Plan to Succeed

1-The long range effectiveness of strategic planning is usually related to the practicality of the plan. (1) Keep it simple. Decide on you number of calories, track them, eat them. Don’t over-complicate your nutrition. It’s fine to try some new recipes, we have a lot of great ones, but don’t throw out all the ordinary, healthy food in your house and go buy all “diet food”. That’s too complicated. Incorporate a few workable, healthy changes at a time.

2-Look ahead. Know that as you accomplish specific goals, your goals will change. Have an idea of where you are going and as you meet each new milestone, check it off and move ahead. When I first began lifting, I went to Dick’s Sporting Goods and bought a kettlebell. I worked hard and soon I asked David if he thought that I could use a barbell. He said yes. I bought a Beginner’s Set. I used that standard barbell until I needed more weight and then got an Olympic bar and a power rack for safety. I met small goals and moved up. If I had made the investment of the equipment that I have now at the beginning, I wouldn’t have known what to do with it. I couldn’t have used the Olympic bar. It would have been easy to get discouraged at that rate. Since then I have added a few other pieces of equipment that have made my workouts more effective but I had to grow into these changes. Plan your path and work hard.

3-Be clear about your goals. Clarify your goals with yourself, your family, your physician and your nutritionist or trainer. If people don’t know what you’re trying to accomplish, they can’t help you. If you don’t know then you won’t accomplish anything. Attaining a good body fat ratio is admirable and recommended but if you work like that is your only goal then that is all you will ever get. I want a bit more and I create my entire life to accomplish those goals.

4-Remember that being healthy is not usually complicated for most people. Eat right, get some exercise and rest. See your doctor for specific recommendations. Don’t make this harder than it has to be. This is the main reason that we tell you to avoid added sugars and simple carbs. It’s a very simple thing that has a profound potential to make positive changes in your health. Refined, added sugars are a source of empty calories that provide you with no benefits so why waste your calories on poor nutrition. Don’t overthink healthy. Our bodies want to be healthy. Quit overloading them with garbage and seek out nutritionally dense foods that build and nurture your body for a lifetime of good health.

(1) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2790676/

How Long Will This Take?

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The Question

Almost every person that launches a program to lose body fat and get fit has the same initial question, “How long will this take?” This in itself sets us up for failure because the unspoken truth here is simply that we want to get this work over with so that we can go back to that to which we are accustomed and that’s what caused our problem.

Instant World

Everything in our environment is geared to instant gratification, drive-thru food, grocery delivery, cell phones that make us constantly available and always in touch and instant credit compete for space in our brain to teach us over and over that we don’t have to wait for anything. Guess again. Our bodies are complex organisms of over 37 trillion cells. Any change that is going to affect our overall body size and shape has got a lot of material to manipulate. To effect a sudden change in an organism this size requires something more traumatic than most of us want to experience. That’s why so many people either quit before they reach a satisfactory goal or even worse, resort to drugs and surgery to attain their desired results.

Compensation

A hormone called leptin inhibits hunger. Rapid weight loss disturbs the leptin balance and leaves us with insufficient levels to quell hunger. This causes us to eat more and makes weight loss almost impossible. To keep the hormones that regulate hunger and metabolism in balance simply go to the Calorie Counter Pro on the Menu here at David’s Way and input your information, which is always private, we can see nothing except whatever name you enter, and receive your free instructions concerning the desirable number of calories to lose 1 pound per week. Stick to one pound for the best results. Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither will your ultimate body be built quickly. Great architecture takes time.

All “Weight” Is Not Equal

When we lose weight too quickly we will lose lean muscle. It happens because our bodies are desperate for energy and muscle is a quick and easy resource to mine for fuel.  It’s important to eat enough to support our basal metabolism and also to fuel our workouts. Nothing is less attractive than a muscle depleted, “skinny-fat” body that has been formed through years of binge eating alternating with fad dieting. You know the look, a thick waistline and skinny arms and legs, it’s not attractive.

Brain Fog

There’s a trend to abandon carbohydrates almost entirely to promote rapid weight loss. Without adequate carbohydrate intake, our brains cannot function properly and we can’t learn new things. We also have trouble using the information that we already have. Carbohydrates are the brain’s main fuel source. I never decrease my carbs below 100 grams. I need focus to fuel my workouts and that means carbs. Balance is the key to safe weight loss. Without focus we can’t get the full benefit from our exercise program because our form will falter and without proper form we are wasting our time.

Relax Already

Read David’s Way and get involved here on the blog. You can start a topic of discussion on the “Forum”, contact us through the “Contact” button for support, get your personalized program through the Calorie Counter  Pro and experiment with hundreds of healthy, sugar free, diabetic friendly recipes. It’s all FREE. There is no charge. There is no rush. David’s Way is a lifestyle, not a diet. Simplify your life by “making your world small” (David) and focus on getting healthy. We’ll be here.

 

Why Am I Not Losing Weight?

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Before I decided to get real about health and fitness, I asked this question many times.  Having worked for a major weight loss company, I have also been asked this question many times. The answer is always the same. We are not being entirely  accountable. When we get serious about our health we will stop trying to cheat the system because we simply want results. Until we get honest about our habits we will not see them.

The most common error that we make is not tracking every bite that goes in our mouths. We advocate counting calories because too many calories will cause weight gain  and make you unable to lose. Other factors that create other methods of accountability are irrelevant if your calorie count is too high. Count them and be truthful. There is a Calorie Counter  Pro  here on the blog that will tell you how many calories that you need to eat. It’s  a free tool. Look in the Menu and you will find it.

If I eat too many carbohydrates my weight loss slows. Protein stokes the metabolic furnace and if we spend too many calories on carbs, we don’t  have enough left for adequate protein. Read David’s  recent article on Protein  Supplements  to understand  more about how important protein is in your journey to health and fitness.

Eating added sugar will sabotage your weight loss efforts by causing cravings of all sorts. Have you ever eaten something  sweet and the next thing you know, you want pizza? Or maybe a beer? Maybe both? Because sugar  is a simple carbohydrate it triggers the release of serotonin. Serotonin is made from protein but a carbohydrate is required to get it into the brain. That’s  why sugar is addictive. Serotonin  is a feel good neurotransmitter  and anything that gives us a shot of that has potential for addiction. When we eat sugar we crave more and more which translates to more calories.  Since there is sugar in all simple carbs, like pizza crust, and there is sugar in alcohol, all of a sudden we have massive uncontrolled cravings. Just don’t eat the stuff. It will sabotage you every time. Besides  causing cravings, it replaces nutritious food and soon your entire health initiative falls apart.

Sometimes  we eat too many healthy foods. I love coconut  oil. The problem is, if I eat three Tablespoons  a day, which I have been known  to  do, too many of my calories are spent on fat. Then I don’t have enough for that all important protein. I am a weight trainer. I want all the muscle that I can get and skimping on protein is not the way to get it. I have had to reduce my coconut oil to 1 Tablespoon  a day and increase my protein because I have goals, and I will achieve them.

Other healthy foods that people overeat are granola, other cereals, avocados and nuts. I have to buy individual packages of nuts or portion them out into small bags as soon as they come into my home.

A lot of people  don’t  think about the calories that they drink. I live in the South and sometimes I can’t  believe the amount of sugar sweetened  tea that people here drink. If you are going around all day with a sugar sweetened drink, you are never going to be as  fit or healthy as you could be. You may lose some weight for a while and work out but you will never be your best. Drink water or try something like Crstal Light in your water. It’s tastes great. If you don’t  like the aspartame in it, then find something similar with a sweetener that you like. There are many products like this available. You might make your own lemonade with Swerve, a natural  0 calorie sweetener, and lemon juice. It’s all natural, tasty and it won’t  give you cravings.

While some people believe  that they can out exercise a bad diet, that is not true. If you are trying to eat too much and then work it off, you will not be able to do that in the long run. While some doctor approved exercise is good to stimulate your metabolism  and improve your overall fitness,it won’t  make you lose weight if you are eating  too much.

Be accountable and truthful about your caloric intake, be active and repeat. As David says, “Trust the  process and be patient. Results will come.”

 

 

 

3 Card Monte of Weight Loss

Are you familiar with the card game 3 Card Monte? It is a common gaming scheme to separate a fool from his money. It is always without fail, a set up. A mark happens upon the game and watches as other players both win and lose. The mark will watch the other players lose track of the money card as the dealer shuffles it around with the other two cards and then becomes confident he can win at this game. He may win a couple rounds just to be sucked back in for more easy money. This is the moment a fool comes to the understanding that you should never try to out hustle a hustler at his own game. When something seems too good to be true, you can bet your ass, it is indeed too good to be true, which leads me to the meat of this article ;

The above picture was the first thing I saw on my morning news feed today. Can we say a fool, or maybe more accurately one who is desparate, will fall for this and part ways with their money?

Hustlers on every corner…

These hustlers would disappear if folks put in the hard work and discipline required to achieve and maintain a healthy body fat percentage instead of always looking for the easy way to “hack” their weight loss for rapid results.

What the hell is this diet, and where in the world did it come from? I am a retired military veteran of US Navy and Army military service. In my many years of service which began in 1981 and spanned through my retirement in 2010, I have never heard of such malarkey, yet there are people who believe if this bullshit is good enough for the military it will be good for them. Let me tell you something about being a “fatboy” in the military, if you are senior enough to live off base, then your way of eating and exercise is entirely upon you to do on your own. There is no diet plan for you. If you are a junor troop living in the barracks or aboard ship, at best, you are just not going to be allowed desserts in the chow hall, and you are going to exercise your ass off until you lose the fat. There is no special “Military Diet”, period. Never believe there is a special military diet you can buy. The only caveat to this is if you are in a military fat loss program, you are going to eat health, nutritionally well rounded meals that are not super low calorie. Rapid weight loss is not healthy and the military does not need, nor want, unhealthy troops.

Friends, if you are suffering an obesity problem, this did not happen to you over night. If you want to be at a healthy weight, you are not going to lose all of that extra body fat over night either. There are many lose weight quick schemes out there preying upon your desparation, waiting to extract as much of your hard earned money as they possibly can, and not caring a bit about you as a person. If you lose ten pounds in a week, about eight or nine of those pounds are going to be nothing more than water retention weight. You are not going to lose ten pounds of body fat in a week while keeping hold of your health. This is not going to happen, no matter how slick the packaging the newest fad program may come in. You can take this to the bank.

If you were to lose ten pounds of body fat per week, over the period of a couple of weeks, you might might as well have remained fat as you are likely to wreck your health. And if you think you are going to look good from a rapid weight loss, guess again. Rapid weght loss leads to folds of unsightly excess skin which is still not going to enable you to wear a bathing suit this summer. In fact, many people have to resort to expensive medical procedures in operating rooms to have this excessive skin surgically removed from their bodies.

There are as many weight loss plans available to you as there are huslters on the street. There are some great plans, yet the amount of plans preying on you are infinite in number. Even some of the popular weight loss plans where people do experience success and good health can string along their members as a perpetual income stream. They do this by telling you that you can still enjoy all of the same foods which got you to your obesity problem in the first place. If we are being honest with ourselves, if you had no control before, what makes you believe you can possibly have control now if you are not actually changing your nutritional habits. If you believe this, I might just have a card game for you…

At David’s Way we will never charge you for the information we put out in our articles. We do not want anyone to be a perpetual income stream for us. We truly want to help others with our work, this is a labor of love, a means of giving back. Nothing more, nothing less…

Tips To Avoid Belly Bulge

Ah, it’s that time of year…swimsuit season. While some of us are a bit obsessed with our abs year round, almost everyone thinks about their bellies come Springtime.

Through the years I have learned about a few things that make a difference in my belly.

1- Carbonation, just don’t! While those aluminum cans and plastic bottles won’t expand when those fizzy bubbles start wafting up, your gut will. Leave this stuff on the shelf.

2-Excess salt-It will make you retain fluid everywhere and that includes your belly. Whatever your belly looks like, it will look bigger if you retain fluid.

3-Sugar- Our body dilutes sugar in our blood to achieve an optimum level, so sugar causes fluid retention while our body struggles to metabolize this concentrated simple carbohydrate.

4-Excess carbohydrates- Carbohydrates break down into sugar so excess carbs will cause excess fluid just like eating sugar. For every gram of ingested carbohydrates our bodies retain three grams of water! Excess calories from carbohydrates, just like all excess calories, are also stored as fat. Do you really want a layer of fat over your abs?

5- All excess calories- They are stored as fat.

6-Alcohol- This toxic substance is a source of simple sugars and large amounts of calories. As the liver tries to neutralize the toxin, it will deposit the products of metabolism nearby in your abdomen and the excess calories are stored as fat.

7-Slow digestive system-If you do not have regular bowel movements, your belly will bloat. Stay regular with adequate fiber and water and activity.

8-Inadequate activity- Getting regular exercise, with your doctors approval, will increase your metabolism. You will burn some of those excess calories!

9-Hormones, specifically cortisol- Cortisol is secreted during stress. Make your world small. Remove as many negative influences from your life as you possibly can.

10-Sleep-Adequate sleep resets our cortisol levels and optimizes hormonal function. Get some zzz’s!

Tips to Beat Bloating

It’s been said that a flat belly is the evidence of fitness. That is entirely possible. Being lean and defined will definitely show up in the belly. It’s a good feeling to look down and like the shape of your abdomen. It’s also disheartening when you have worked hard to look great, but your abdomen is distended, and you feel miserable. Listed below are some tips from AFPA, the American Fitness Professionals & Associates, to stop bloating so that you can more easily enjoy the fruits of your labor.

Common Causes of Bloating

1-Swallowing too much air while drinking or chewing gum.

2-Eating too much or too quickly

3-Abdominal adhesions due to surgery

4-Bacteria that produce gas when they break down food in your digestive system

5-Intestinal disorders like irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease, Crohn’s disease, Leaky Gut Syndrome and small intestinal bacteria overgrowth

6-Undiagnosed stomach infections

7-Fluid retention due to a high-salt diet, diabetes or kidney failure

8-PMS or pregnancy

9-A regular smoking habit

10-Gallstones or liver disease

11-A diet high in fibrous foods (especially if it’s a new change)

12-Consuming carbonated beverages

Possible Remedies

1-Eat smaller portions for every meal and chew your food thoroughly

2-Rule out food allergies and intolerances

3-Follow a diet that is low in carbohydrates and allows 0 grams of added sugar. The body holds onto water to dilute sugar and sugar also causes inflammation which causes fluid retention.

4-Avoid carbonated beverages

5-Follow a diet that is high in soluble fiber

6-Eat probiotic rich foods such as yogurt and sauerkraut

7-Avoid salty foods and added salt at the table

8-Don’t chew gum

9-Keep a food diary so you can look back and see what you have eaten when you’re bloated.

Sometimes chronic bloating can be a sign of numerous health conditions. If these tips don’t help your bloating, see your doctor. If your bloating is paired with symptoms like unexplained weight loss, a build up of fluid in the abdomen, blood in your stools or severe abdominal pain, go to the doctor very soon. Pay attention to your body, it’s the only place that you have to live. 😉

How To Lose Weight

Most people want to lose weight.  There are Countries where this is not true but in a large part of the world, we are too heavy.  While body fat percentage is the true measure of how fat we are, we love to see that number on the scale go down.

Go to the Calorie Counter Pro on the Home Page of this blog and enter your information and you will be given the number of calories that you should eat to lose either 1 or 2 pounds per week or to maintain your weight or to gain.  Once you have this information, use it.  If that was easy for everyone, few would be overweight.  Overeating is associated with cravings and most, or all, cravings are caused by eating sugar.  If you have trouble believing that, stop eating it for a week and watch your cravings begin to disappear.

Once you have decided to commit to your calorie budget, look ahead and plan your meals.  If you know that there are saboteurs at work, go prepared with good food that you like and plenty of healthy snacks. Don’t allow yourself to be hungry for more than a few minutes.  If you do, you will feel justified to eat whatever you find.

Don’t take sugar or any other “trigger foods” into your periphery.  Don’t lie to yourself and say that those cookies are “for the kids”.  They don’t need them either.  Instead, make sure that you have food that you really enjoy, maybe something that you won’t always buy for yourself.  Go ahead, if it’s a healthy food, buy it. No matter what it costs, it’s cheaper than health care to “fix” problems caused by a bad diet.  I spring for watermelon in the Winter sometimes to fulfill my carbohydrate requirement.  It’s expensive and I love it. I feel good when I eat it, in no way deprived.  It’s sweet but doesn’t cause cravings like cookies and other sugar laden desserts.

I prefer David’s Way of eating because it works and I have plenty to eat. I have absolutely no cravings and never feel deprived.  I am at a good body fat percentage and have energy to spare. I work a high stress, full time job and have domestic responsibilities that most people my age don’t have.  I am 62 and I am a power lifter. A year ago, I could only squat 35#, to my dismay.  Now I can squat 125#. I can deadlift 145#. Yes, I know, it’s not cool to tell your numbers, but I really don’t care.  The truth is that David’s Way is making me strong and healthy and I want to tell the world. My goal is to squat 210#.

With your doctor’s permission, get active.  Find an activity that you enjoy and do it religiously.  You can never out-exercise a bad diet, but exercise will tone your body and give you a more positive mental state. A good mental state is beneficial to weight loss.  You won’t be trying to self medicate your depression with food if you don’t feel depressed.  There are circumstances where exercise is simply not enough to alleviate depression but talk to your doctor and you will most likely discover that even in those cases, exercise will most likely help the medication do it’s job if you need medicine.

Search for ways to decrease the stress in your life.  If you have less stress, you will have more energy to devote to being healthy. Don’t waste precious time and energy focusing on negative things that you have the ability to remove from your life.

The most important part of weight management is perseverance. Don’t quit. You will have good days and bad days. You will do your program perfectly sometimes and go way off track others.  Over time, if you don’t quit, your program will become your normal and then you have a new, healthy lifestyle.  Lifestyle is your victory.  Once it becomes a lifestyle, the anxiety and pressure to see that scale plummet lessens because you know that you will reach your goal.

We are always here for you.  Soon we will also begin private consultation, but the blog will always be free.  Join us. Visit often. We reply to comments and questions. 😉

My Experience with Weight Watchers

A little over a year and a half ago, my dear wife made the decision to join Weight Watchers. Me, being the thoughtful husband that I am, decided to join with her in order to be supportive of her journey. Truth be told, I was in need of losing weight too as I was a power lifter who could, and was, consuming everything under the sun to fuel my weight training. I truthfully needed to do this as much as she did, although I was strong as an ox, my blood pressure was beginning to get elevated, my cholesterol and triglycerides were jumping out of bounds, and I had a constant problem with acid reflux.

My lovely bride and I joined Weight Watchers under the Smart Points plan in place before Free Style was enacted. Before I go any further, I want to say, this article is not in any way, shape or manner meant to run down a program that I actually had great success under. If I had joined all by myself instead of with my wife, and if I had never interacted with any of the good folks on Weight Watchers social media “Connect”, I would have maybe one contrary issue with Free Style. I actually loved it when it first came out as the weight was just rolling off of my body. My only issue was even after reaching goal, I could not quit losing weight.

Now, despite my great success on this seemingly wonderful weight loss program, I was watching my dear wife flounder on it. As I watched her flounder, I was also reading sad posts daily on Connect, and realized that she was not alone in her struggles. There are a good many others out there, like her, who work totally within the parameters of Free Style, who have such issues with losing weight, they have a name for themselves. They refer to themselves as “Turtles”. So the question arises, if as a couple we are eating essentially the same foods during meal times, and we are both earning our Blue Dots, how is it I am easily losing while she was not losing anything at all? We are both faithfully following the guidelines as set forth by Weight Watchers in order to lose weight which should lead us both to healthier lives, except it was not working for her.

I know the first thing which probably comes to mind for at least a few of you is that I am an athletic male while she is not. While that sound reason could come into play to at least some extent, it is not enough of a reason for the difference in our ability to shed body fat. I weight train and hike, therefore, I eat a lot more than she does. This being the case, it could be easy for me to remain too heavy also. If your spoon moves faster to your mouth than your feet can carry you on a run, you are going to remain over weight. You can not outrun a bad diet.

After watching Loraine, and following hundreds of people on Connect who also follow the Weight Watchers dietary plan according to how it is laid out, the big difference between her and I, and the hundreds of “Turtles” I have watched on Connect, is they all still consume simple carbohydrates, and added refined sugar. While added sugars do not pass my lips into my digestive tract for any reason, the consumption of added refined sugar in meals and desserts is absolutely allowed under Weight Watchers Free Style program. Weight Watchers allows their members to eat poorly as long as they track their food and do not exceed their allowed points for the day.

From the Weight Watchers web site:

  • Our program also has over 200 Zero Point foods you never have to portion or track.
  • Spend your personalized Smart Points on any food you like.

Here in lies a huge problem, and those two, or at least similar, statements are made more than once by Weight Watchers. There are no zero calorie foods on their list of 200 plus zero point foods. There may be a few exceptions with artificial sweetners, but as for solid foods, all have a caloric value. To tell one they never have to portion or track is either mis-leading at best, or lying at worse.

No matter what you have been told, or believe, weight management is a matter of calories consumed verses calories burned. Some people can follow the Weight Watchers Free Style plan, earn their Blue Dots, and remain under the calories they need just to maintain weight. These people find success in weight loss. This is how it is supposed to work theoretically. However, many people earn their Blue Dots with poor food choices and then fill up on Zero Point foods which can very easily place them in a caloric surplus where they either can not lose weight, or they end up gaining weight. you can read about this every day on the Weight Watchers social media “Connect”.

Every human has a Basal Metabolic Rate which determines the total amount of calories their bodies require in a day just for basic functions. Activities other than basic human functions require even more calories to fuel the body. Let’s say the average woman requires 1800 calories a day to maintain her weight. A simple reduction of 500 calories a day, seven days a week will result in one pound of fat burned. One pound of fat equals 3500 calories, you must reduce your calories by this amount each week in order to lose one pound of fat per week, there is no way around it. Period.

Many people on the Weight Watchers program have serious eating disorders, such as “B.E.D or, Binge Eating Disorder”. Again, this is something commonly discussed on “Connect”. When one has a true eating disorder, does it make any sense to tell them they do not need to portion or track any type of food, even if it is a healthy one? I personally beg to differ with anyone who says they do not need to portion or track these foods. For example, it is easy to earn a Blue Dot each day by eating low nutrient, high calories treats. You can have people who do this by let’s say, Sally drove down to the local Dairy Queen and used her smart points on a soft serve ice cream dessert after consuming a meal of high carb, high fat, high calorie hamburger and fries with a large Coke. Sally could have easily have consumed 1800 calories which may be her total daily requirements and then fill up the rest of the day on zero point foods. This is totally within the scope of Free Style as it is laid out. This is how many, if not most, of their members understand it to work. They earned their Blue Dot and should still lose weight, right?

Did I mention I have a bridge for sale in Brooklyn?

So, Sally ate junk as she is allowed to eat anything she wants under the plan per Weight Watchers own words. She earned her Blue Dot for the day and then because she got hungry a little later in the evening she decided to enjoy zero point foods such as 4 ounces of skinless boneless chicken breast for 110 calories. Then as a side dish, she had a half cup of pinto beans for another 103 calories, two boiled eggs with salad greens and vinegar for another 170 calories. And then for dessert, Sally decided to enjoy another zero point food, plain fat free greek yogurt, for an additional 80 per 5.3 ounce serving. These zero point foods total 463 addtional calories on top of the 1800 Sally consumed earlier during the day for a total of 2,263 calories for the day. Now, what if she had another serving of fat free greek yogurt and an apple between breakfast and lunch too? They are zero points and do not require to be portioned or tracked. yet could add an additional 160 calories for a total of 2,423 calories for the day. Seems she might be over her requirements a little bit, would you agree?

If Sally requires 1800 calories per day or 12,600 per week in order to maintain her current weight with no loss, how much over would she be if she ate junk for her 23 smart ponts a day and then filled up on zero point foods as in the example.? If this was her typical day, then her weekly total would arrive at 16,961 calories for the week which is 4361 calories over her BMR requirements. A single pound of fat equals 3500 calories, therefore Sally should expect that despite earning her Blue Dot and being faithful to how Free Style is laid out, she should gain about 1.25 pounds during that week. This is basic human biology and there is no way around it. The plan can be easily manipulated which keeps their members floundering.

Another major issue with Weight Watchers is their Fit Points and how they can be earned in order for the member to be able to eat additional food. You can earn Fit Points even by simply doing house work such as running your vacuum cleaner your carpet, etc… Listen here, I am no rocket scientist, but if you were not working your heart pushing that vacuum cleaner with enough intensity in order to burn fat before, you damn sure are not going to now, just because you can earn points in order to shovel down more food. If your activity is going to mean anything in regards to burning body fat, then it is a must that your heart rate become elevated for at least 20 minutes or more. It takes 20 minutes of moderate activity with an elevated heart rate in order to just burn through your glycogen stores before your body can or will begin to burn fat for energy. Fit points can be great for those who are athletic, but it makes zero sense to award someone the additional points to continue nothing more than they were doing while becoming obese in the first place. If house work did not get you fit and trim before, you had damn sure better not use it as a justification to eat more food now just because you “earned the points”. I challenge anyone to tell me where I am wrong in this fact of basic human biology which should have been learned in at least 8th grade Junior High School Biology.

I had great success with Weight Watchers FreeStyle. I am athletic and I am well versed in nutrition. However, this program attracts those who are not athletic, those who do not have a well rounded knowledge of nurition, and Weight Watchers panders to their sensitivities by allowing them to continue eating the foods which made them obese in the first place. You are not going to give a recovered alcoholic a beer, you are not going to give an ex-smoker a cigarette, why in the hell would you give someone with an eating disorder permission to still eat a jelly donut? Weight Watchers is a multi-million dollar, publicly traded entity, with the educated and trained staff who should know that this plan is unworkable for so many of their members while still collecting anywhere from $20 to about $45 a month from these individuals. This makes me wonder if they truly care about helping their members to a healthier life, or are they just another corporate entity getting rich off the weak.

How To Approach Weight Loss

two woman doing exercises
Photo by Luis Quintero on Pexels.com

Many people want to lose weight but don’t know where to start. First decide on your motive. Do you just want to fit into a swimsuit for the summer or do you want a lifetime of good health? Appearance is a strong motivator because we all want to look good, but that isn’t always enough to effect long term change. Consider the overall health aspect. Consider how much time and money you may spend in the doctor’s office. Hadn’t you rather be doing something else? Consider the money spent on prescription drugs. Is there another place to spend that cash? Insurance premiums rise with increased diagnoses. Can you afford that? Imagine how you will feel when you are in control of your life, free to live life to your fullest potential, unencumbered by excess weight.

After deciding what your motivation is, then you need to decide on a method. At David’s Way we promote a lifestyle instead of a diet. When your lifestyle creates a healthy mind and body, you’re always ready for swimsuit season. With dieting, gearing up for summer is just routine. The main problem with dieting is that you are always looking for the end so that you  can return to your former ways of eating. When you  do, the weight will return, along with depression, low self-esteem  and many physical problems associated with obesity.

Keto is popular now. It will work quickly however, it’s very difficult  to maintain. Realistically no one is going to live indefinitely with such low carbohydrates. Keto is based on eating less than 50 grams of carbohydrates per day while consuming almost entirely protein and fat.

There are apps that can help you lose weight, however you must be  strongly self motivated and driven to living a healthier life, because there is little to no support with these apps. It’s all on you.

There are a few weight loss groups that charge significant monthly  fees and offer programs that may or may not work due to their ambiguous nature. Food intake is measured in units other than calories, such as points. Weight loss is usually slow or non-existent because the programs allow too many calories. They allow users to continue unhealthy dietary habits which will often lead to the same cravings and frustrations encountered before beginning the program.

At David’s  Way, we encourage a much broader food base than Keto. You will always have something that you want to eat.

We  provide the support that is missing  with the apps by replying to your comments and questions and through personal online consultation.

Unlike most of the weight loss groups that allow you to eat significant amounts of processed food and even sell it themselves, we encourage you to eat real food. By eating whole foods and cutting out refined sugar, you will lose your cravings and the frustration that accompanies them. You will detox from  sugar and in about 2 weeks your cravings for simple carbs will have dissipated. You will be free to choose the pathway to health without frustration. This is a permanent fix as long as you adhere to the principles of David’s Way.

We also promote  stress reduction as a primary goal. This will expedite weight loss because stress increases cortisol production. Cortisol is associated with weight gain, especially around  the waist.

Of these different weight management programs, only Davidsway has the goal of ultimate health because we want to help you get fixed and let you go. We do not want to keep you languishing around, miserable because you can’t lose the weight plumping up our bank account. Weight management is a necessary component of healthy living. We will help you lose, gain or maintain your weight, depending on your needs.

When you’re ready to be in control of your health, we can help help you discover your best self.