The Secret to Maintaining Weight Loss
By Carl A. Weiss, III, MD PhD FACS
Some of us know that our weight does not correspond to the diet choices we make. For some reason, even when we eat right and exercise regularly, the scale never seems to budge an ounce. What is the possible explanation for why we seem to struggle so much? Is there a reason you’re not losing weight?
To make a long story short, there really is no sure method or secret to maintaining weight loss. Several concepts, however, must be understood and put into action on a daily basis to have short-term as well as long-term success. First and foremost is a clear understanding of protein based nutrition. Oftentimes our habits and tendencies lead us back towards carbohydrate based nutrition which is basically what happens when we don't understand where carbohydrates are in our daily routine.
Unless we carefully plan our meals, more often than not, carbohydrate-based food will become the majority of what we eat for all the reasons that obesity has become such a widespread problem. 75% of what we buy in supermarkets is in fact carbohydrate based. These foods are inexpensive, easy to store for long periods of time and readily transported over long distance. Carbohydrates may be contributing to a plateau in your weight loss or worse, weight gain.
The second component to maintaining weight loss involve ways in which to regularly burn calories. This is what allows us to consume carbohydrates that are generally stored in the liver that are available for quick energy but in limited supply. If calories are burned adequately, then weight loss ensues due to the use of secondary energy source which is fat. The switch to fat for energy consumption does not occur unless both carbohydrate intake is limited AND aerobic exercise occurs on a regular basis.
Last, but not least, habits are deeply ingrained tendencies that are always lurking. They are difficult to change. If someone has gradually gained a hundred pounds or more over a period of years then the obvious tendency for that individual is to consume calories in the absence of regular exercise. Habits are what we do when we do not think about what you're doing. The best strategy to alter one's habits is to get support with either one's family or in a group setting since this is the ideal mechanism to understand one's own behavior tendencies and ultimately to change self-defeating behavior into behavior that allows you to enjoy better health and improve overall quality of life.
These three important concepts are:
1. understanding of protein-based nutrition in conjunction with
2. regular aerobic activity
3. gaining insight into ones daily habits to avoid the same pitfalls that have led one astray in the past.
In the words of Albert Einstein- Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.