Inside Scoop: Here’s how to maintain weight loss for life, without feeling deprived.
It’s no secret, we’re not here to put you on a restrictive diet for weight loss purposes. It’s not our style, unless medically warranted… and even at that we would recommend you to a physician or specialist.
With both of us having histories with the negative portrayal of food and our body images, and both of us tuning in and turning onto every diet under the sun, the only thing that has consistently worked for us over the past couple years is not depriving our bodies of what they truly crave.
If you check out this amazing article on How To Beat Binge Eating you will learn that it takes honouring your hunger and your cravings to truly allow your body to feel at ease with food, which ultimately leads to long-term, and sustainable patterns of eating that are much healthier.
If you are wondering how you can maintain weight loss for the long run, consider these 7 tips:
HOW TO MAINTAIN WEIGHT LOSS WITHOUT FEELING DEPRIVED
1. Stop dieting to the extreme.
Maintaining weight loss for the long-term means finding balance with the healthy, whole foods that nourish your body, and those nights out, or pure pleasure foods. Instead of signing on to an extreme diet that will have you restricting foods, try observing how foods make you feel – energized, lean, tired or bloated. When you realize which foods make you feel less than awesome, you will not want eat them again anyways. *Hint: a lot of ultra-processed foods would fall in this category.
Part of dieting is abstaining from one thing or the other, but sometimes savouring the moment with your friends, family, or on vacation is more important than frantically obsessing about every single calorie or ingredient on your plate.
We see too many people saving up their calories, or going into a perpetual guilt-cycle when they eat something that doesn’t align with their strict diet. This type of mentality can leads to binge eating followed by more guilt, deprivation and ultimately mess with your body and mindset.
An amazing tool to learn what foods your body may be reactive too is our Food & Mood Diary which can help you track your food and how it makes you feel to see if there are patterns with your eating an any trigger foods or sensitivities. Download your food mood journal here:
2. Eat real food and all of your macros.
If you want to know how to maintain weight loss without deprivation, eating whole foods, as close to their natural state as possible is one of the best ways!
Foods that are high in healthy sourced proteins, healthy fats and complex carbs (your macronutrients) will not only help diminish your cravings, but they help you lose weight and detox your system naturally (and with minimal effort).
The reason we crave more when we eat ultra-processed foods is because these foods are devoid of nutrients, eventually leading your body to want more food sooner than later due to their complete lack of nourishment. In addition, most diets cut one or more whole food groups, which is very hard to successfully do long-term. To manage your weight, you need adequate protein, fats and carbohydrates.
3. Reduce your sugar intake.
Highly processed sugar is hidden almost everywhere: in fruit yogurts, salad dressings, sauces & ketchup, granola bars and even nut milks.
The fact is, most of us are eating way too much sugar, and we are not running a marathon every day to burn it off. Excess processed sugar not only leads to many health conditions such as type 2 diabetes, cholesterol and heart disease, but if unused it gets stored as fat.
As mentioned in tip #1 for maintaining weight loss – no extreme dieting. So reducing your sugar intake doesn’t involve completely removing it (again, unless medically necessary). We love our sweet treats, but in moderation. And our bodies natural cues are amazing for letting us know when too much is too much. You’ll feel it around the holidays, or Halloween, when sugar is everywhere. You may feel tired, sluggish, or your body may be craving healthy, whole foods. Listen to your body’s natural cues, and be mindful of your sugar intake.
4. Stop hating, start loving.
The biggest thing that’s going to hold you back from maintaining your weight loss is your mindset towards it.
It’s time to start loving yourself, loving your body, appreciating your journey and finding acceptance. When we let go of the comparisons, the guilt, the obsession, and we start treating our bodies as if they are something that needs to be loved and respected, the idea of weight loss for vanity goes out the window, and the idea of weight loss for health enters.
We know that mindset is one of the hardest things to tackle with ANYTHING, let alone our visual appearance, but it is definitely something that we need to tackle in order to feel happier and healthier.
6. Get your daily dose of healthy gut bacteria and fiber.
There has been a lot of recent research on the importance of gut bacteria for anything from digestive disorders to mental well-being and even weight loss. The human gut contains 10 times more bacteria than body cells (or the same, still under debate!). Nevertheless, a healthy microbiome (or gut bacteria) promotes weight loss by decreasing cravings and inflammation. Studies have shown that probiotics along with fiber can both reduce fat storage and increase the hormones that give us satiety – a win/win for sustained weight loss.
You can get your daily dose by eating probiotic-rich fermented foods such as yogurt, sauerkraut, kimchi, tempeh, sour pickles, raw cheeses and miso or taking a daily probiotic supplement. If you’re confused about all the probiotic supplements out there, our friends at Reviews.com have an awesome guide on choosing the best probiotics for gut health here.
In addition, apples (especially Granny Smith), oats and legumes contain a type of fiber (prebiotic) that promotes the growth of friendly gut bacteria.
6. Move, for life.
Don’t feel like going to the gym today? That’s ok. We used to feel guilty when we skipped the gym and then we would end up doing nothing instead. But, any form of movement is better than no movement even if it’s just going for a 30-60 minute walk around the block.
Find an exercise you love, enjoy it and forget about the ever-changing news headlines. You want something that you will stick to for life, and not the odd month or two.
7. Don’t forget to hydrate.
Your body is made up of about 65% water. Water is needed for all your organs and processes including digestion, healthy bowels and healthy skin. In addition, staying hydrated increases satiety, weight loss and your metabolism. And water is not the only way to hydrate, you can have herbal tea, soups and veggies – all contribute to your water intake.
Have you developed any other healthy habits? Share them with us below.