5 Ways to Prevent Weight Rebound

5 Ways to Prevent Weight Rebound

Vanilla Cinnamon Pancake made with eggs & cream cheese!

If you just can’t take another day of dieting, try these 5 things see if they help avoid a rebound. And that horrible feeling that comes when we step on that lying, cheating scale the morning after falling off the wagon!

I’ve been struggling the past couple of months & these little tricks have helped keep me treading water. I hope they continue to work ’til spring finally decides to arrive.

  1. Eat more fat. I tend to choose fattier cuts of meat & add more pan-fried foods to my diet. Topping my greens with butter helps too. Keto & low-carb adherents will know the value of a fat bomb. Little treats that we can stuff into our faces without fear of disrupting that venerable state of ketosis. Who cares if fat has the most calories. If it stops us going through another self-destruct phase, it’s worth it. And we just might be lucky enough to carry on losing a little while we seek comfort in eating more fat. If that doesn’t work, and …
  2. When I feel like I just can’t carry on … then I don’t! Whatever diet I’m on, I try doing the opposite. On a low-carb diet? Go all carbs for a day. Or three. Sounds like heresy but it can work. If I feel guilty about it, I can make healthy choices, like broccoli, sprouts, or cabbage. Flavorful additions like garlic & onion don’t even count, right! I stir-fry these in my favorite fat. And eat ’til I’m ready to burst. This is my “Vaguely Vegetarian” routine. I try not to eat a slab of meat on such days. Maybe a tiny few bacon bits. Just for the flavor! Sometimes, I go all starch with my choices, like home-fried potatoes. A day or two eating nothing but fried potatoes or fried rice (but, sadly, not bread for me) can soothe the soul. Yes, I may see a blip on the scale next morning but likely not on subsequent mornings. Once the liver & muscle tissue is loaded with the stored form of glucose, & the necessary water that accompanies that, it’s difficult to add much more. And it usually flies off again, once I go back to low-carb. If the first two suggestions are scary, why not …
  3. Go with the creep. But cautiously. Dessert can often be a lure for those of us on a low-carb or keto regimen. And those fat bombs don’t always work for us. In fact, they’re sickening sometimes. But adding some berries doesn’t add a huge amount to the glycemic load. So I make my own ice cream! I add heavy whipping cream to a cup of frozen berries & blend. I mostly add some dark chocolate (70% is about as dark as I can tolerate & still enjoy) for chocolate chip ice cream. Very delicious & quite addictive but it can keep me going during difficult times.
  4. Pattern disruption can help too. My problem time is in the evening. On the couch. Can you relate? Skinny people tell me to just get off the couch but this is not always easy to do. Sometimes, I need help from the nuttier parts of my mind. Early in the day, when I’m most motivated & strong, I’ll place something on the couch. Maybe a suitcase, to remind me of an upcoming trip that I want to look good for. Or simply to take up all the room on the seat so I can’t sit! When it gets near my crash & relax time, that suitcase reminds me of how enthusiastic I felt that morning. And it helps me focus on finding something else to do. Somewhere else to be. Leaving a suitcase on my couch isn’t a long-term solution, but it can help me do some different things. And pattern disruption, even when not directly related to food, can often help develop some new, sometimes more positive, patterns. A new pattern might include …
  5. Going for therapy! While it may well help, I’m not suggesting that we all go book an appointment with our favorite therapist. Instead, I try shinrin-yoku! This is “forest bathing”, Japanese style. It sounds like a mystical thing but it was only studied & given this name in the 80s. It is a practice of communing with nature, gently ambling through the forest. Regardless of diet & weight loss challenges, it proved to be of great benefit for our general health & well-being. I like water therapy too. I like to spend a little time by the ocean, a lake, or a stream. Though at this time of year, in my neck of the woods, the blackflies & noseeums do their best to suggest I go elsewhere! And that’s okay too. Because I might visit my favorite coffee shop (for coffee only!), the local library, or take a walk in the mall. I may even just sit on the porch & say hello to the neighbors. And their dogs. I just added riding a loop of the local transit system to my list. It doesn’t matter what we do, just getting up & going out is the thing. Interacting with nature & humanity, even just a little, can do wonders for the soul. And we can but hope that the body comes along for the ride!

If you have any suggestions on strategies that have worked for you, & that might help keep me on the straight & narrow … please pass them along in the comments section. The comments link is just under the post title.

A Lifetime Achievement Award

A Lifetime Achievement Award

Greek Salad Fast Breaker

Was so looking forward to eating that I forgot to take the pic before diving in! Oops!

I gave myself a lifetime achievement award yesterday … and the reward was one of my childhood favourites: egg ‘n’ chips for dinner, three fried eggs and the entire basket of French fries. All for me! This was followed by an utterly decadent blueberry ice-cream, with chocolate. Then I ate the rest of the chocolate bar!

Why this self-bestowed award?

Because I did my longest fast ever. At 89 hours, I was mere hours short of having not eating anything … zero, nada, nothing … for 4 full days. I had absolutely nothing but water, carbonated water and coffee the entire time. This all came about from doing the one day fast I spoke of in the last post. I’m not sure what came over me but, having done the one day, I just felt compelled to go for the second. Somehow, that managed to turn into this four-day thing.

So how did it feel?

Day 1 was, as you might expect, a day of thinking about not eating. Which meant I was only thinking about eating! The first half of Day 2 was about the same. But by the afternoon of the second day, there were no hunger pangs. No desire to eat. Not even when smelling and seeing the curry fried rice, the pulled pork sandwiches, and who know what else I had to watch everyone else eat during that time. Once my body started supplying its energy needs from my very ample storage depots, the feeling was … one of almost ecstasy, freedom, liberation, I don’t know. But it was something that left me feeling unshackled. And I was bright, alert and doing everything I had to do. And no, I wasn’t irritable and grumpy. Though you might need to get some external corroboration on that last one!

Due to the attendant water and electrolyte losses, I was adding pink Himalayan salt to my coffee on the 2nd and subsequent days. This will sound crazy but you should try your favourite coffee with a little salt and some heavy cream, it’s really good! Or maybe not if you’re already eating the high-salt diet that comes along with eating processed foods. Though perfect for the first two days, I was sneaking in a little cream by the 3rd day. By mid-morning on the 4th day, I was feeling a little light-headed. I did a couple of salted coffees but it wasn’t working. I decided to break the fast and have lunch. I had intended to have bacon and eggs at a local diner, though I hadn’t quite decided on whether or not to have the home fried potato too. But as we took our seats, a ginormous Greek salad was delivered to an adjacent table and I switched to that. The bacon was still on my mind though, so I added a side order of bacon to be crumbled atop it! The dinner and dessert we spoke of earlier followed later.

So what was the outcome?

From a weight standpoint, you’ll have to wait and see … I only log numbers at the end of each month! But I feel I have opened a new door with this longer fast. One not only with weight-loss potential, but with other potential health benefits too. Perhaps for the body and the mind.

Fasting is Easy … NOT!

Fasting is Easy … NOT!

Dew Drops

Today’s Diet is … Dewdrops!

Intermittent fasting is a big deal these days. The real beauty of fasting is that it can be blended with whatever your favourite dietary strategy is. There may be advantages to blending it with, for example, a low-carb or keto regimen. As opposed to eating junk food on eating days! The other great thing about fasting is that it requires no careful meal planning. And it costs less to boot.

It sounds so easy, doesn’t it? Nothing but good.

Why, then, do I find it so difficult most times?

I am a really big fan of fasting. I just don’t do it very well. There are many ideas out there as to what constitutes a fast. Some define it as a water only fast. Others think juice fasting is fine. Then there are those that say you can eat very modestly, like four, five or six hundred calories a day, depending on the diet, & the sex of the dieter. One of the latest is a fast mimicking diet that allows a very modest intake of some very specific prepackaged foods that trick the body into behaving as though it were not getting any food. The idea behind this is to have something nourishing to eat, while still promoting autophagy (cellular regeneration) for health. Sounds pretty good.

Fasting is also varyingly defined by duration. You can fast for one complete wake cycle, or you can do one meal a day for a twenty-something-hour fast. Some just skip breakfast & call it a 16 hour fast. Some love the alternate day fasting approach. There are longer fasts that run for days, or even weeks. These are typically only for those that are healthy & under medical supervision. One guy, in Scotland, fasted for 382 days & lost 276 lbs. I’m not touching that kind of challenge but it is pretty incredible. Fasts of short duration seem to be given a blessing for most healthy people but I don’t worry about it too much since I mostly can’t even make it through a full day anyway!

For no real reason that I can justify, I think a fast should be for one full wake cycle. And since I typically don’t eat breakfast, it would be a 40 hour fast if I make it to lunch the next day. In my case, aside from water, I allow myself coffee with heavy cream (35% fat). Should I ever feel a little off or light-headed, I may pop a few olives or a pickle for the salts. Mostly I fail my one day fasts & I find myself eating dinner in the evening. When that happens … I congratulate myself for completing a 22 hour fast!

While I like rules in many parts of my life, I’m not a big fan of dietary rules. My sloppy approach to dieting & weight loss has transferred to my half-hearted efforts at fasting.

Today, I’m going to try doing it correctly. I just had my first two coffees of the day … & both were without cream! Today, I am trying for one real, full wake cycle, fast!

Wish me luck!

 

The Chicken or the Egg?

SunriseWhen it come to what to eat, the short answer is both. But leave the skin on the chicken! That, however, isn’t the topic. Stress eating is. Do we eat because we’re stressed or depressed? Or does bad eating cause the stress & depression? That may be as difficult to answer as to whether the chicken or the egg came first.

One thing my wife knows for sure is that I’m a far nicer guy when I’m eating well. Now my own opinion is that I’m a nice guy regardless of my diet! But I have to admit … I do feel better when I’m eating well. I don’t mean that when I’m eating less, just when I’m eating real, whole, good food. The association between depression & diet is one that has long been made. Very often, studies are done on the basis of who’s funding what. Or which dietary program is trying to prove it’s the best. But long before diets were a marketable commodity, people realised that there was a dietary influence on mood.

I’ve been eating better for a month & a half now. Is it just coincidence that I’m getting up early, and far more often, to catch more sunrises? The therapeutic benefits of those early mornings by the water give me a shot of calm that endures for the greater part of most of those days. Feeling less stressed can help with weight loss too. Which of those came first? Did I have to be less stressed & depressed in order to jump out of bed early? Or did I overcome the “stuff” to get down to the water a time or two before the stress reduction cut in?

It’s all a bit circular, isn’t it? But it probably doesn’t really matter. Because the two things I am sure of are these …

I am better for eating better.

And I am better for the water & sunrise therapy.

I can highly recommend both. And if you didn’t make it up early today, here’s a pic of my morning sunrise for you. Don’t fret if you missed it, there’s always tomorrow.

And please … take a little time to enjoy your day.

Secret Weight-loss Tip!

Clean the FridgeBet you won’t find this tip in your favourite diet book …

Clean your fridge on Saturday morning & don’t plug it back in ’til Monday!

It’s amazing. I feel like I ate anything I wanted to, & any time I wanted to, over the weekend. And it worked!

I’m just too lazy to go all the way to the back-up fridge for snacks. Okay, I admit it, it’s a beer fridge. But, I swear, there isn’t any beer in it at the moment! Anyway, that was a pretty big deal for me, especially since I spent half the weekend watching the return of the Premier League season. I watched three or four games … and all without snacks.

Boredom & opportunity are diet killers. Mindless eating in front of the TV is one of my biggest challenges. Until I lose enough weight that I feel motivated & light enough to move, I like my time on the couch. I’ll never lose enough weight for that to happen if I’m snacking non-stop while I sojourn. Not that I’m ever expecting to move enough to lose weight with exercise, I’d just like to get back to walks by the water & other little therapeutic mind-chargers like that.

Now that the fridge is back up & running, I’ll have to see if I can avoid restocking it with all those tempting goodies! 🙂