Thursday, June 20, 2013

Doing It Right Can Be Wrong

I just finished an article for a local paper and thought it would be a perfect contribution to my blog. Trying to lose weight can bring on a lot of frustration when you feel you are doing it all right but not seeing results.  My article points out some common misperceptions.  If you suffer at the scale, I hope this article sheds some light.

    For the umpteenth time you’ve decided to lose weight. Despite the ups and downs on the scale, you know what you need to do to be successful.  Guess what? You don’t.  In fact, what you think will help you lose weight may in fact be impeding your success. Beware of these must-do’s for weight loss.  Get ’em wrong and those precious pounds won’t budge.

1.      Exercising (too much). There is no doubt that exercise goes hand in hand with calorie control but when it comes to weight loss too much exercise can sabotage your success.  

The less you weigh, the less calories you need to maintain that weight (e.g., a 250 pound person will need more calories to maintain their weight than a 150 pound person).  As you lose weight, your maintenance calories decrease making maintaining that lower weight more difficult, therefore you will need to increase your exercise. If you are doing an hour of intense exercise per day, it will be challenging to increase and keep up long term.  The best solution, as modify your food choices slowly boost up your exercise routine. 

2.      Eating after dinner. Most people would agree that eating after dinner is a no-no however there are exceptions.  When our blood sugar drops, cravings kick in. Our body is looking for carbohydrates to raise our blood sugar so when you eat an early dinner and go to bed late, the eating every three hours rule stays in effect.  For example, if you eat dinner at six and turn in at midnight, you will need a snack between eight and nine.  A light snack such as an apple with 1 tablespoon of peanut butter will help your blood sugar stay stable until you put your body to sleep.


3.      Using diet food to lose weight.  Diet ice creams, cookies and puddings are not real food.  They are fake foods that have been put on this earth to prevent you from losing weight while making you think that eating them will help you meet your weight loss goals.  Diet foods are full of carbohydrates and not void of calories.  The sugar or artificial sweeteners in these products make our bodies crave more.   If you are buying these foods with the expectation that they will help you lose weight, stop.  Instead, treat yourself to the real thing on occasion.


4.      Keeping a food record. There is no doubt that tracking your intake will help you be more accountable and meet your goals.  However, writing down what you eat BEFORE you eat can be even more beneficial than writing as you eat or afterwards.  Being proactive rather than reactive is all part of the planning process which is key for weight loss. This approach conquers two tasks, creating a plan for the day and keeping a record of your food intake. Don’t forget to leave space to record the foods not planned for!  


If your weight loss efforts are not yielding results, think outside of the box.  Consider that your “must do’s” for weight loss may just be the one thing you need to reevaluate.

Erin Spitzberg MS, RD is a Registered Dietitian and Creator of Ace Your Diet App available FREE on App Store. She counsels clients on nutrition in her private practice, Nutrition By Design LLC in Oradell, NJ.




1 comment :

  1. There is no ‘one size fits all’ diet that is perfect for everybody.

    We need to understand that good results don’t come easy, and we must work for it.

    Fitness Training requires a high level of self-discipline with ANY strategy we choose.