Make less of yourself
Each and every year we make the effort to slim down. Here’s how to make it permanent.
In a survey I ran of health and wellbeing goals for 2012, weight loss was number one. Just as it has been in New Year wish lists for decades. To achieve weight loss, don’t just diet. It won’t work. Dieting has a place, to assist the short term goal, but keeping a healthy weight is a lifelong issue The real goal is balance. Body Balance Your body has a natural balance: the ‘food in, energy out’ equation. I am not a fan of ‘ideal’ or ‘optimal’ bodyweight measures. In my opinion, this is a matter of personal choice and may change many times in a lifetime.
A woman in her fourth pregnancy may have a very different ideal weight to a woman preparing for IVF. Two Ironman competitors who responded to the survey have ideal body weights as different as their target race times. Decide the bodyweight you want then you can find your balance and eat appropriately. A Healthy Appetite There is such a thing as a healthy appetite, but it is a rare appetite to own. Weight loss would be easy without cravings for fat, sweet and salty snacks.
You can develop a healthy appetite in just two weeks. How? Eat no bad and fattening foods and introduce only fresh, healthy, food and drink. Two weeks later, no unhealthy food cravings. It is a tough task, but if you are up for it, ‘Go Raw’ (see panel). In my view a raw food diet is peerless for rapid, healthy weight loss.
But that needs an ironman will and if, like most of us, you lack that, follow this guide. Permanently. Eat less - processed food, salt, refined white sugar, white flour, dairy, starch, processed carbohydrates and saturated fat. Drink less - flavoured beverages and alcohol. Drink more - water, green and herbal teas. Eat more - fruits, vegetables, whole grains, brown bread, fibre, nuts, seeds, plant oils, fish and lean meats. The Secret One secret ingredient to weight loss success: a partner. We are social animals and research shows that company helps to succeed at weight loss, especially those you most often eat with, to share your healthy choice. The old cliche really ought to be adjusted to read - ‘We are who we eat with.’
Energy out is the last part of the equation and it’s social too. Exercising alone can be tough, so phone a friend.