Ever since I was a kid, through my glorious 20’s (luckily no pun intended behind me) and into the early 30’s (before I had my son), maintaining my weight has never been a problem. I’ve always trusted that if my weight drifts up by watching my diet, a little stress-free exercise would be enough to get me back to my ideal weight.
But things are changing
After the birth of my son (and gaining 60 pounds during pregnancy) my thyroid — which has always been rocky — decided to pretty much give up. When I was about 21 years old, it was discovered that I had a hypothyroidism problem (which is the problem of gaining weight easily and other uncomfortable symptoms). I did the annual blood tests religiously and took the tiny pill every day. But that all changed after the birth. A normal thyroid is in the 0.4 to 0.6 range, mine was 10.0 – a sure sign that it has submerged and is no longer regulating my body effectively.
So enter the diet loop
Even at the age of 16, obsessed with maintaining a slim figure, I “invented” my own diets. I remember one was nothing but hard boiled eggs, toast and something to drink. And I lost 18 pounds in two weeks (eggs are the secret).
Later in life I did the Scarsdale Diet. I can tell you it really works, but over time you start to really hate tomatoes. Meat is definitely on the menu at Scarsdale, along with plenty of veg and even fruit. It’s really balanced. They just don’t lick anything that tastes like “sweet”. Oh, and I can’t stand black coffee.
Then it was on to the “Diet in a Box” variations. Sure, they work, but after a week or so, the smell of cardboard boxes along with your meal reduces appetite anyway… maybe that’s why it works. And yes, combining the right amounts of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats is the real secret.
Which led me to the Atkins diet.
I didn’t just jump into Atkins. I read the book cover to cover and did some of my own research. Good, solid science facts – along with an insightful look at the lobbyist telling us what’s good to eat and what’s not (read high-sugar grain makers threatening us that eggs aren’t good for us, only their products are… best).
Okay, with the research behind me and my stable The Atkins Diet in hand, I emptied my kitchen of all the nasty (yet wonderful) goodies and started the 14-day portion of the diet.
Sure enough, the scales moved (and still does), but more importantly, and almost immediately, my clothes start to “feel right” again.
They stay on the 14-day induction diet for (duh) 14 days. However, if you’re really overweight, you can continue on the less than 20 grams of carbs for longer. And yes, if you are overweight, it is still healthy.
I won’t go into detail about the different stages of this “lifetime change your eating habits” diet. It’s all in the book and I encourage you to read it. So many people I meet tell me, ‘Oh, but that’s not good nutrition. You eat too much of ___ or ____. And that’s not healthy.”
My very first question to people who make their negative comments is, “Have you read the book?”
The answer, when something truly ridiculous is thrown at me, is a resounding… no. However, they claim with an air of unreliable authority that they are right. I just smile and move on. I’m skinny, mostly not (and I don’t mean that harshly), they seriously need to maintain their weight.
To give you a hint about Atkins, late last year (around August 2005) I started again (yes, I know it’s supposed to be a lifelong way of eating, but when do we, the American people, ever have anything fully committed did?). unfortunate 30 pounds on my butt that had to be removed before turning 50 or over. Pretzels and high-carb snacks (where you can quickly grab a handful) are my downfall.
By February 2006 I had lost 33 pounds (and am still keeping it off). That’s seven months of eating the right combinations of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates as outlined in the Atkins diet plan. Averaging just under 5 pounds a month, or 1.25 pounds a week (give or take), this is a healthy approach to shedding your weight while actually maintaining it.
I even invented my own milkshake that works like a charm. Ice cream, Carb Hood Chocolate Drink (chocolate, of course), some Splenda and/or Torani Sugar Free Hazelnut, and a can of Atkin’s Chocolate Royale. Fills you up, is full of vitamins and minerals and works like magic, especially when it comes to losing weight.
So now you know my story about losing weight and losing weight. But before I go, I also want to bring this enchanting reality to your attention.
Why are there suddenly tons of commercials springing up saying “order a diet in a box”? What’s the first thing they tell you? All about glycemic ratio, of course, and when done in the right proportions for you, “the pounds just melt away!”
Yes, you are right. But these same people, along with all the miracle pill makers and the “health conscious” community, were until recently the same people who were yelling at you that the Atkins diet was unhealthy!
Duh… Atkins wrote about and implemented the proper carb combo diet decades ago. He has at least decades of research and true stories to back up what he’s been saying all along.
Combine the right foods for each individual and everyone can lose weight. Throw in some running to get your butt off the couch and get some exercise, and you have a surefire recipe for losing weight and keeping it off for the rest of your life.
Find what works for you, do it, stick with it, and you can be healthy and as lean and fit as is natural for YOU.
Thanks to Theresa Cahill