Why I Failed the First Time I Dieted

DIET
DIET (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As I went through this week’s exercises and I thought about my first diet plan that I used which worked but totally screwed up my metabolism for 5 years, I realized that I needed to analyze why I had to diet again. To me it was a success but it was a failure. I had to start over when the pounds came back.

You see, the pounds came back because I started to eat like I did before the diet. I changed nothing in my life. I even stopped the frequent exercise. Now, I started to keep the schedule up so that I do exercise again. In order to keep from expanding back to my old weight, I had to reverse my ways.

What was good was: I ate smaller portion sizes, I ate many low calorie foods, I never starved myself, I drank a large amount of water, I exercised frequently.

What I did wrong was: I ate processed frozen dinners that were low calorie but full of salt, I ate too many grains and brown colored foods that were starchy (starches eventually turn into sugars), I ate the wrong kinds of fats (processed fats like canola, lard, fake butter), I ate many chemical substances that promised to aid in my fat loss (fat burners, other supplements you buy in the health food store).

Because of my eating habits I got sick frequently and injured when I ran. I was not taking in enough protein in the right way. Protein drinks are just supplements you need other sources like leafy green vegetables.  I really did not need the supplements at my age. I should just eat well. Many people do need supplements and vitamins but I have found that less is more for me. And I like the liquid vitamins form better than pills, but that is my preference.

Also, I never checked with my Doctor before starting my first diet. I should have. A few things I learned in hind sight that could have helped me in my diet was that by speaking with my Doctor, I would have found out about a few food allergies. She would have looked into why my weight would fluctuate greatly from week to week, mostly in my arms. My heart was great, blood pressure fine, diet stable but I do have a few food allergies that contributed to my water and weight gain. It took an endocrinologist, a nutritionist, a general practitioner, and a medical intuitive to convince me that I needed to change my diet.

My life change included not eating a few things that I liked but were detrimental for me. I stopped eating dairy except Lactaid brand milk. I have a lactose intolerance that really does a number on me. I love ice cream but now it’s not something I eat a lot. I can eat yogurt strangely enough without much issue. So I eat frozen Yogurt. I cannot eat pork products because I have a bad reaction to it. That made me very sad because it was a main source of meat. Now I eat mostly chicken, turkey and fish. Occasionally, I have beef ribs (I miss barbecue ribs) or steak but not very often. I eat turkey bacon instead of pork. So now I can have a BLT. One last thing I decided to watch in my diet was soy products. They seem to make me gain water weight. I would eat sushi or edamame and poof slight swelling in the face and water weight gain. I thought it was salt, but I eat salt now without issue.

Calories are a good thing to watch but they are not everything. They are only part of the story. Moderation should be a mantra.The psychological part of the diet should be addressed as well. Why do you eat they way you do. some people can do it alone but a support group may be in order if you cannot. It does not even have to be a formal one. Anyone can assist as long as they do not enable you to keep up the things that got you to where you are. Sometimes it may be difficult for people to hear that they need to change and everyone comes to their good diet place on their own. It is a process. Unlike other issues, you have to face this one 3 or more times a day.

This was a lesson that I had to learn over one year of trial and error. After I got it correct I had amazing results when paired with proper diet and exercise. My real take away from all of this is that anyone who is telling you to lose weight without diet and exercise is setting you up to fail. The body is a machine that inevitably runs a certain way. though there are many components to a diet those two things (proper eating and movement) are key.

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