to think eat less, move more isn't as simple as it sounds

(223 Posts)
starshaker Sun 13-Jan-13 13:53:45

People say to lose weight you need to use more calories than you eat. This is obvious. However metabolism plays a big part too. How do you know how much calories you actually burn so you can work out how many to eat? Ive never been slim and yes, i probably need to exercise more but i have so much other stuff going on that getting the chance to isnt that simple.

So AIBU in thinking that its not as simple as what people say

InNeedOfBrandy Sun 13-Jan-13 13:58:10

Of course it's not that simple, eat less for one isn't good advice unless it's eat less crap.

FredFredGeorge Sun 13-Jan-13 14:00:12

Starshaker It is though, You eat enough to not be starving, but to continue to be a little hungry. And then once you're at your healthy weight, you just eat to hunger.

And you exercise as much as you can, and build as much activity into your life as you can. The exercise is much more important than the weight in any case. For the vast majority of people (all but a tiny percentage with various disorders) can just eat to hunger if they are fit. It's when various metabolic syndromes kick in that disrupt that, and they are typically reversed through exercise.

You don't need to know how many calories you burn, your body already has that sorted. Eat to hunger, and know the calories you get when you aren't eating to hunger (e.g. the calories that come with the caffeine you're demanding in the coke/cappucino, the calories that come with alcohol, the calories that come with the chocolate - caffeine again. Generally those that come along with a drug, although also just eating for pleasure or habit.

Purple2012 Sun 13-Jan-13 14:02:15

It's very easy to say you are too busy to exercise. I used to do that and was very overweight.I now make time to exercise. I work full time shift work, and have a family but I calorie count so I don't eat too much and make sure I exercise. On my days off I do quite a lot of exercise, on the days I am working I do a smaller amount before or after work. It's not always easy but I have a schedule and I stick to it.

The results are worth it in the long run.

KatyTheCleaningLady Sun 13-Jan-13 14:04:01

Not at all unreasonable. If it were simple (I'm not even saying easy. I'm saying SIMPLE, which is different) then it wouldn't be a fact that the vast majority of people who are overweight struggle to lose weight and fail to keep it off when they do.

I don't think nearly enough is known about weight gain and loss. Few people study why some people are skinny, but I saw a show about it. I think it was BBC... you can find it on Youtube. They encouraged a dozen naturally thin people to pig out for a few weeks. Most of them gained some weight. One guy simply did not gain weight. Period. All of them lost the weight effortlessly once they stopped purposely over feeding.

SaraBellumHertz Sun 13-Jan-13 14:05:42

I disagree - it is that simple, if not easy.

Unless you are getting significantly fatter week on week doing more exercise and eating less will result in weight loss

It really is. Let yourself be hungry.... It's amazing how quickly your stomachs starts to shrink abd you feel comfortable with smaller portions. I ate like a pig after having the kids and the more I ate, the more I wanted.

Two weeks of being hungry abd suddenly I couldn't fit the massive portions I'd gotten used to and the weight was falling off me.

starshaker Sun 13-Jan-13 14:10:46

I dont have time to exercise any more than i do. We walk to school, we walk the dog again then do the walk to school. After we get back from school that me confined to the house till the next day.

Tee2072 Sun 13-Jan-13 14:11:10

It is that simple. It's not easy, but it is simple. Lower calories in + more calories burned = weight loss. Always.

And it doesn't work because people don't actually do it. They say they are 'on a diet' and so think they are eating less but they aren't. Or think they are burning more but they aren't.

And it's easy to calculate how many calories you need and how many you burn and how many you eat. There are 1,000s of sites on the internet to help you do it.

My Fitness Pal is the one I use.

insancerre Sun 13-Jan-13 14:11:37

It is very simple to eat less and move more.
What's hard about that?

TinyDancingHoofer Sun 13-Jan-13 14:11:56

YABU. A naturally slow metabolism compared to a naturally fast one is not hugely different. Naturally fast, I'm not talking about olympic-ly fast.

KatyTheCleaningLady Sun 13-Jan-13 14:12:07

But, some people eat very little and don't lose weight. Some people are very active and don't lose weight. Some people sit around on the couch stuffing their faces and are skinny as a rail. (I was one of those for many years.)

The fact is, your body - your metabolism - will often compensate for whatever you do in order to maintain the weight that your body is "set" to.

Very, very strict calorie counting - particularly if it imposed upon you externally by someone controlling what you do and eat - will certainly make you gain or lose weight. I mean, everybody would lose weight in a gulag. But, counting every calorie in and out, to the point of wearing a heart monitor and using a scale for every bite of food, is not simple.

diabolo Sun 13-Jan-13 14:12:08

I think it is simple, the reason we fail is all mental and about our "wants" versus our "needs" - we want 3 chocolate biscuits, we don't need them, we don't want to go for a 5 mile run etc.

Once we sort out the willpower side of it, the weight gradually comes down.

There are only a very tiny % of people with metabolic disorders for whom this doesn't work.

TinyDancingHoofer Sun 13-Jan-13 14:12:29

You can exercise in a house!

StraightTalkinSheila Sun 13-Jan-13 14:13:17

YABU. It's not rocket science.

starshaker Sun 13-Jan-13 14:13:43

I dont eat huge portions and i do try to eat relatively healthy. I noticed the biggest change when i stopped smoking. I am trying so hard to do things better but its just not working

WorraLiberty Sun 13-Jan-13 14:14:47

Ive never been slim and yes, i probably need to exercise more

No, you absolutely definitely need to exercise more.

It's not all about calorie intake, it's about plenty of exercise least until you're slim. After that, you may be able to exercise less to keep the weight off.

But initially to get rid of excess weight, you will have to exercise more.

Anonymumous Sun 13-Jan-13 14:14:59

It's very simple. Just replace some of your eating time with exercise time. There! Job done...

Tee2072 Sun 13-Jan-13 14:15:30

Well, what is 'eat relatively healthy'? And what exercise do you do?

TinyDancingHoofer Sun 13-Jan-13 14:16:36

You probably do what i do which is eat little picky things and then completely forget you have.

diabolo Sun 13-Jan-13 14:17:00

I exercise at home. I can'r run as I have dodgy knees and loathe gyms. Being stuck at home is no reason not to find 20 minutes 5 times a week.

lljkk Sun 13-Jan-13 14:17:00

It sounds a bit like excuse making, OP, to blame metabolism. One way or another, the energy you eat needs to match the energy you expend. It's taking responsibility for each of us to find that point. It may not be fair, but we are adults who should be able to suck up a bit of unfair.

dashoflime Sun 13-Jan-13 14:17:05


Its more about the type of food than the amount. You can probably eat quite a lot and still loose weight if your eating loads of fruit and veg, little bit of lean meat, little bit of carbs and hardly any fat.

However, life doesn't make it easy: a diet like that is almost always always more expensive and less convenient. Plus, most people need a bit of instruction to get the hang of it

You might not think you eat huge portions but you almost certainly take in more than you need. Modern concepts of portion size are massively flawed, what your body needs to function and what moat people consume in one sitting are worlds apart... I'm always flabbergasted at the amount of food I'm served in restaurants or other people's houses.

Tryharder Sun 13-Jan-13 14:17:59

I agree. If it were that simple, everyone would be thin!

meadow2 Sun 13-Jan-13 14:19:41

I eat what I want when I want but I'm slim but I'm moving pretty much constantly during my waking hours.

IThinkOfHappyWhenIThinkOfYou Sun 13-Jan-13 14:19:55

It is simple. There isn't a vast amount of difference between fast and slow metabolisms but there is a vast difference in the calorific intake of someone eating 3 meals a day pus a biscuit 2-3 times a week and someone eating 2-3 large meals a day plus sweet drink plus sugar in tea and coffee plus yoghurt (cos its low fat, innit) plus a few biscuits a day plus a handful of sunflower seeds for the good fats. You don't need to know how many calories you burn to know how many to eat, if your trousers are getting tight then you are eating to much.

insancerre Sun 13-Jan-13 14:20:49

try the 5/2 diet
I have been doing it since August and have lost the extra pounds that i had put on over the years
DH has lost nearly 2 stone but he goes to the gym twice a week
i do lots of walking as I don't drive
It is easier to think of it as a lifestyle change rather than a diet

porridgewithalmondmilk Sun 13-Jan-13 14:21:39

I think it's a bit of a silly turn of phrase to be honest (and patronising.)

I am a healthy weight, but gained 3 stone over the three years I was at university (my mother had died the year before so some of it was still grief from that.)

When I left, I wanted to be a teacher and didn't want the children calling me fat. I did quite a dramatic diet to lose most of the weight (Cambridge.)

When I had a BMI of 25, I ate more than ever before - but in the form of vegetables, salads and fruits. I don't exercise because I find it boring and I don't like it - I'd rather take the car! But even when I was a member of a gym I didn't find it made any difference to my weight loss.

starshaker Sun 13-Jan-13 14:22:08

Well we dont live on salads, but i cook most meals from scratch. Im following the tescos Gi diet to the letter. Today for example i have had a small (30g) portion of special k with a banana. Lunch was carrot, spinach and pea soup and dinner tonight will be grilled chicken and veg.

EarnestDullard Sun 13-Jan-13 14:25:55

Losing weight is exactly as simple as eating less and moving more. But finding the willpower and motivation to actually start eating less and moving more can be very hard. Then you've got to factor in overcoming bad habits, sugar addiction, emotional eating etc.

There are some really good exercise DVDs out there OP. And websites/apps like MyFitnessPal which will add up your calories for you.

JumpingJackSprat Sun 13-Jan-13 14:29:17

yabu. it is simple, not easy. i lost three or so stone over the last two years by bringing about a change in my eating habits. i eat only at mealtimes usually but if i do feel hungry in between i eat a low fat snack. i have reduced my portion sizes and eat more veg and less chocolate and crisps. if i feel like eating something i ask myself if im really so hungry i cant concentrate until my next meal. if the answer is no, i dont eat. i eat things that will usually fill me up. i never eat so much now that i give myself that bloated uncomfortable feeling. i do use my fitness pal but its about identifying and changing bad habits. i also do more exercise - this doesnt mean working out at the gym but taking up dance, horse riding and cycling. theres no reason you cant go cycling or swimming with your children. it can be done it just takes some willpower and being honest with yourself. at the end of the day nobody else is going to do it for you wink

EarnestDullard Sun 13-Jan-13 14:29:23

That sounds like a very low-calorie diet starshaker, in fact I'd say you could add a bit to that, especially protein. A yogurt mid-morning and a handful of dried fruit and nuts mid-afternoon would keep you from getting hungry, keep your metabolism steadier and make you less likely to want to reach for unhealthy snacks.

thebody Sun 13-Jan-13 14:30:22

As others have said its simple but not easy.

lot of old crap about metabolism. There are no fat people in areas where there are little food and there were no fat people in concentration camps.

Eat lots of salads and veg. Cut out all cakes biscuits and bread.

Excersise as part of your daily life.

Don't lie to yourself about how much you eat and don't make excuses of why you are fat.

Your fat because you are eating too much and not burning it off. End of.

starshaker Sun 13-Jan-13 14:34:44

Thats the thing, im not hungry in this meal plan. I average about the 1200-1300 a day.
thebody i dont even have cakes and stuff in the house now. Bread is wholemeal but im not a big bread fan anyway.

starshaker Sun 13-Jan-13 14:40:48

The reason i cant go swimming or cycling with the children is dd1 cant ride a bike yet and neither can the twins and the pools around here wont allow me to take them all swimming cos 1 adult cant take 3 children

MammaTJ Sun 13-Jan-13 14:42:44

I actually eat more when sticking to Slimming world. More but the right foods!!

GiveMeSomeSpace Sun 13-Jan-13 14:51:46

Of course it's that simple. I agree it's sometimes hard to change habits, but it really is that simple.

Yes people have different rates of metabolism and those rates can change throughout our lives. BUT the differences in metabolism rates are minimal when compared to the wider factors in our lives.

Anyone who blames their metabolism for being overweight simply isn't being honest with themselves.

StephaniePowers Sun 13-Jan-13 14:52:08

Eat less: this isn't really hard. Smaller portions on your dinner plate will do it. Less processed food is better (no shit sherlock). Don't snack. Just ingest less at a healthy level. Be honest about your food intake.

Move more: I'm inclined to think this is harder because of the ways in which life has changed and because of our climate. However there is research which points out the very obvious fact that people who don't spend hours sitting around (as we are doing now, pootling on MN and FB etc) are slimmer/healthier. The more you stand in your day the better apparently.

Just planning schedules which don't allow as much time for sitting about = moving more. DO those jobs in the house which you tell yourself you don't have time for. GO for a ten-minute stroll, with no aim at the end of it. Get the right footwear so you can walk into town instead of taking the bus. Buy food which needs a lot of time standing at the chopping board. Climb stairs slowly and don't take the escalators. Don't take your most sedentary days of the week as representing your life: if you have a desk job Mon-Fr then walk a lot at weekends.

Your metabolism isn't the issue, eating less (within reason of course) and moving more is just good.

It's very individual though; my father, myself and dd only really need one meal a day and a few light snacks. My boys would starve on that little food. We're all thin.

It's about listening to your body and learning what it actually needs as opposed to what you feel you should be eating.

I have never in my life eaten 3 meals in one day other than when I was pregnant. Any other time I'd be far too full and uncomfortable to eat that much. My portions when I'm not overeating are quite small compared to most people I know.... But I'm full and know fron experience if I eat more I will gain weight.

That being said, I eat what I want.... I never calorie count or worry about fats. I just eat what I enjoy but make sure not to overeat.

Making food into an obsession is no good either, you need to rake in data ans protein or your body goes into starvation mode and begins hoarding fats.

*take in fats

MadBusLady Sun 13-Jan-13 15:09:48

YANBU. I know, for example, that exercise improves my body composition and my overall health, but I've never lost any weight doing it even in my most intense periods. Some people manage by eating like sparrows, some people by eating a lot but making most of it vegetables, some people by avoiding fat, some by avoiding sugar, and some people eat what the hell they like and spend hours in the gym.

Probably a lot of what makes a particular regimen successful is psychological - otherwise why would people (in this thread and elsewhere) be so attached to their own particular successful plan.

Unfortunately the only way to find out what works for you is to try different things.

EndoplasmicReticulum Sun 13-Jan-13 15:31:17

I don't exercise. Not in the "going to the gym" sense, anyway - which surprised my doctor when I registered at a new practice and she did my BMI (right in the middle of normal).

But - I'm a teacher - although it's not really a physical job I don't sit down much during the day and the big site we're on means I'm always walking about at speed trying to get to the next lesson. At home we do a lot of walking / geocaching - did about 5 miles this morning.

I eat big meals, but I don't snack in between - I suspect this is partly down to my job again - I just don't get the chance.

mercibucket Sun 13-Jan-13 15:38:19

yup metabolism plays a part
mine is fucked now and i can tell if i need to up my meds by the way my weight goes up - all on my stomach whuch never ever happened. it also governs how hungry i feel. mad but true.
hypothyroidism - it's a bummer

crashdoll Sun 13-Jan-13 15:38:59

I really hate "eat less, move more". I have lost 3 stone before purely eating healthily and not exercising. Some of us with mobility problems manage perfectly well without exercise thank you!

StephaniePowers Sun 13-Jan-13 15:40:54

I feel as though a lot of people take one aspect of their lives/bodies and use it to excuse a near-total lack of movement and an unhealthy amount of rich food.

I do it, I say 'I have to sit a lot at work therefore I am a sedentary person with no time to exercise' but I've just spent 3 hours sitting here doing sod all except compiling the Sainsbury's shop and MNing blush I could have walked to Sainsbury's and done half that shop in some of that time, lugged it back: a good chunk of exercise.

DH does it: apparently he does 'quite a bit' of exercise because he walks from the bus stop up a slight incline for two minutes ten times a week. And his weight has stayed the same for years therefore his extremely rich diet is just fine. I assure you it isn't grin

melliebobs Sun 13-Jan-13 15:47:00

Simple. Calculate your BMR (basal metabolic rate) that's how many kcals your body needs to maintain weight if you were to sit there and do nothing all day. Work from there u can't go wrong

scaredbutexcited Sun 13-Jan-13 15:55:08

It's not easy but it is that simple. The good thing though is that it is totally under your control to do something.

If you find change daunting, even tiny things will add up; Dance round the kitchen with the DCs while cooking, walk around while your on the phone, do a few tricep dips/squats while watching the TV etc.

Also, you can alter your metabolic rate by increasing your muscle mass. Even just a few minutes of toning exercises a day will help with this.

Not easy but worth it if it is bothering you. smile

Actually, I think it really is that easy.

There was a program on TV where families who believed they hardly ate anything but couldn't lose weight as they had slow metabolisms were spied on with secret cameras. They were horrified by the footage which showed they ate far more than they claimed, and were basically in denial.

I am thin, but I am active (as a minimum I walk 5 miles a day, and have an active outdoor job), and my portion sizes are what I call normal i.e about half a restaurant portion. That is how people who are thin and healthy live naturally.

In countries where food is scarce or in times of rationing everyone is thin. There are no random fat people with 'slow metabolisms'.

As an aside very over weight people actually need to eat more calories than slim people, just to maintain their size. So a 20 stone person will lose weight on 3000 calories a day, whereas if I ate 3000 calories I'd gain.

I appreciate this is not a popular view.....

CoteDAzur Sun 13-Jan-13 16:01:11

"some people eat very little and don't lose weight"

They should start eating more but with less sugar and fat.

Also, they should start walking & running.

If they don't lose weight while eating low-fat & low sugar foods and running at least half an hour 2-3 times a week, then we'll talk. Except we won't need to

JustAHolyFool Sun 13-Jan-13 16:06:17

It is that simple. Not easy, but simple. I walk EVERYWHERE. I don't have a car. I have to humph shopping on the bus, up hills, through the rain.

dashoflime your suggestions are NOT a healthy diet. We need fat. And we need proteins.

Like worsestershiresauce I eat what I would say are normal-sized portions. I cannot finish a restaurant portion unless I force myself.

People delude themselves. They eat shit like Special K and cereal bars thinking they'll lose weight, but it's all full of sugar. They eat shit ready made sauces, full of salt, when you can make sauce from a tin of tomatoes and some basil. You need to be eating stuff like porridge, chicken, vegetables, eggs. They might not taste great in the beginning because you're so used to processed stuff, but after a week or so you won't be able to stomach processed food. Not saying all fat people have this diet, but this is how most people I know who moan about their weigh eat.

BlackAffronted Sun 13-Jan-13 16:08:02

Most overweight people just need to cut carbs, not calories. I spent years calorie counting & exercising, and just got bigger. I cut carbs and lost 12 lbs in a week.

MadBusLady Sun 13-Jan-13 16:08:36

Yy to restaurant portions. I can finish them <greedy emoticon> but I know what's coming if I do. I wouldn't dream of putting so much meat and so little veg on my plate at home.

DeGlitterBug Sun 13-Jan-13 16:10:20

It is that simple, but fails to take into account at all the reasons people eat more than they should. Those reasons are often not straightforward at all, and not necessarily easily overcome by 'willpower' either.

CoteDAzur Sun 13-Jan-13 16:11:08

"just need to cut carbs, not calories."

Carbs have a lot of calories. You are saying the same thing.

MadBusLady Sun 13-Jan-13 16:12:53

Carbs don't have as many calories per g as fat. But I agree in principle it comes to the same thing, because people tend to load their plates with big carb portions (partly because they're supposed to be healthy, and can therefore be eaten in unlimited quantities, and partly because they're very moreish).

DeGlitterBug Sun 13-Jan-13 16:17:32

If I eat too much it is carbs. But, for me it's comfort eating. When I'm overwhelmed by all the demands on me from several small children, isolated at home and anxious about money, it's hard not to succumb. I'm overweight, but not massively so.

StephaniePowers Sun 13-Jan-13 16:19:15

Some time ago I had to give myself a good talking to and accept that if I was in a restaurant and didn't finish a huge plateful, this was FINE and NORMAL and not a waste of money.

yy to eating much less sugar and fewer carbs. It's almost unbelievable how many cheap carbs we could cram into our bodies daily if we wanted to, easy and cheap and fast.

mutantninjamyrtle Sun 13-Jan-13 16:19:28

Eat less, move more didn't work for me... but only because it emerged that my pituitary gland had died off so I was barely producing any hormones (thyroid, oestrogen, cortisol...). Now I'm on replacements, I've shed the 21lbs I gained by cutting starchy carbs - bread, pasta, potato, rice - and eating whatever fats, mea, fish and veg I want. (Yes mercibucket, I am on Erfa T3 thyroid, or else I would still be getting nowhere!)

It's amazing how much longer you stay full when eating a bit of fat as opposed to a massive plate of pasta. But you have to find what suits you. In my case it's weight training for an hour three times a week, rather than plodding along on a boring treadmill for the same. Likewise, my relationship with sugar is like an addict with crack - but now I'm back to normal I can give in a bit smile

waitingtobeamummy Sun 13-Jan-13 16:20:52

I have spent my entire life overweight. I reached "morbidly obese" two tears ago.
I used to tell people I was dieting but I wasn't because my portions were to big, I'd constantly graze but not count it (i don't think I even acknowledged the amount I was eating)
Then 15months ago I was told I needed to lose weight to get fertility treatment. So far I've lost 5stone by eating less and exercising more. It just clicked. It's true.
I know they're expensive but I bought a Wii fit. 3times a week after work.
Try going on the British heart foundations website as they have good info on changing tour lifestyle and that's what you need to do. Low gi is done for short term but if you're not careful when you go back to "normal" you'll put it back on.

starshaker Sun 13-Jan-13 16:21:19

JustAHolyFool yeah clearly im deluded and obviously since im fat i dont know how to cook a basic sauce. Slightly patronizing dont you think?

I dont snack, i follow my plan but obviously im lying.

I accept IBU so im just going to leave the thread because people are either not reading the thread or assuming im lying.

FredFredGeorge Sun 13-Jan-13 16:23:30

"cutting carbs", or "cutting fat" or whatever doesn't really matter what, the way to reduce calorie intake if you're trying to but failing is just to do something which reduces how palatable you find the food you have. So you don't overeat. Just about everyone given a completely nutritious gruel and nothing else to eat self regulates to a healthy weight, it doesn't matter if the gruel is fat or carbs for the calorie needs. But because it doesn't taste good or contain drugs which encourage eating, people don't overeat and tend to lose weight if overweight or maintain weight if not.

For a great many people, cutting carbs does a great job of reducing palatability, I think more people have sugar, bread and potato habits than do fat ones.

I eat lots of carbs, but slow release ones - wholemeal bread etc. Wholegrains are a valuable source of many vitamins, minerals and fibre. They don't make you fat, they do fill you up, and they don't overload the kidneys like excess protein does. If you eat more protein than the body needs it is simply broken down to provide energy the same as a carb, with the nitrogen being excreted in urine. This process is very hard on the kidneys.

The problem arises when people eat too much of everything, and load up the carbs they eat with fat - lots of butter on bread, fried potatoes, fatty sauces etc. It really isn't rocket science. Low carb diets work because people eat less over all.

FredFredGeorge Sun 13-Jan-13 16:24:47

starshaker Please find a way to get more exercise, particularly some high intensity exercise into your day, it'll really help probably more than any diet. Walking is okay, but getting out of breath is much better.

Watch the biggest loser - metabolism doesn't matter those people are huge and have all kinds of different metabolisms. They get their diet provided for them and they move a hell of a lot and it drops off of them.

It may be that you are just not eating enough and your body is deciding to not burn calories and hold on to them to stop you going into a malnutrative state - something that even an obese person could do if they stop eating suddenly.

JustAHolyFool Sun 13-Jan-13 16:24:58

starshaker I said I know not all fat people are like this. Wasn't getting at you in particular.

chandellina Sun 13-Jan-13 16:26:48

Holyfool is spot on, walk everywhere, reduce carbs and you will at least be on your way to better health.

specialsubject Sun 13-Jan-13 16:28:08

EndoplasmicReticulum 'I don't exercise'.....'walk five a lot of walking/geocaching'.

sounds like exercise to me. Movement is exercise.

never been in a gym in my life. Not fat. Like my food. Go figure smile

to go back to the original question; unless there is another health problem, losing weight IS that simple.

MadBusLady Sun 13-Jan-13 16:30:04

Don't feel like that, starshaker. As I said, we're all convinced of the rightness of what worked for us - and that helps keep us on the straight and narrow, but it probably also makes us dogmatic about handing out advice.

You'll find something that works for you if you stick at it smile

Chandon Sun 13-Jan-13 16:32:45

So much myth peddling on this issue.

But anyone who has worked with animals, notably mamals ( including humans) KNOWS that if, say, a horse is a hit fat and unfit, you excercise him more and feed a bit less ( or less rich food), same with dogs, cats, any creature really.

It is odd that this starvation mode people talk about doe not apply to animals, and if you lessen their food portions, the fat does not magically stay on due to this starvation mode thing holding onto the fat....

People are so deluded. There is too much mumbo jumbo.

It is SIMPLE. But it is not EASY at all, not at all easy. We could all be slim if someone else dictated our food intake, but there are so many moments of temptation in a day, it is hard to stay strong.

forevergreek Sun 13-Jan-13 16:33:13

How old are yor children? From the sounds of it your twins are poss toddlers and dd1 at school.

I would do the walk to school then either walk a long route home adding 30 mins to fast walk with double buggy or head to the park and run/ fast walk with buggy through the park for half hour min.

You say you have a dog. Walk dog twice a day. Either with youngest in buggy or in the evening with all three children after dinner/ before dinner.

Get a trailer for bike. Then twins can go in and you can use when dd1 is at school. Over the next few months try to teach her to ride bike so in the summer you can all go off for the day.

When at home and the children are in bed, try walking up and down the stairs say 10 times. Increasing as you get better.
You could also get a fitness DVD such as the shred, or a yoga DVD and mat. You could probably do these whilst children around and they will join in, or in the evening too. You could also get weights or/ and excercise ball for at home.

MadBusLady Sun 13-Jan-13 16:36:52

I've always wondered about that "starvation mode" thing too. Would welcome any info anyone has about it. It can't possibly be true that you go into "starvation mode" every time you have a hunger pang. The period in my life when I put on tons of weight was when I decided to eat "three square meals a day" like a grown-up. I just don't need that much.

Anonymumous Sun 13-Jan-13 16:37:35

I am surprised by all these people saying that exercise didn't make any difference to their weight. It makes me wonder exactly what exercise they were doing. I was walking at least 7 miles a day, 5 days a week for a year, and it didn't make any difference at all. Then I started doing an hour's exercise class 4-5 times a week, and lost a stone and a half in four months without changing my diet at all. A step class, two pump classes and a Pilates class and voila! I have the body of a lithe 17-year-old. (Sadly I still have the wrinkly, haggard head of a 39-year-old Mum-of-three, but if I wore a paper bag over that, I would look FAB!)

YouBrokeMySmoulder Sun 13-Jan-13 16:46:01

I agree that it is that simple but not easy.

Just walking isnt enough, you need to walk so fast you cant talk. And really concentrate on it, pulling your stomach muscles in etc.
Not just ambling along, you could walk a marathon like that and not lose weight.

Then when you get home, in the evening you need to find the time to Shred, its only half an hour.

If you combine that with the diet you are on then you will lose weight and get much fitter but if you make excuses that you dont have the time to exercise then you wont.

EndoplasmicReticulum Sun 13-Jan-13 16:49:55

SpecialSubject - people don't count walking as exercise though - see the post above mine from YouBrokeMy.

insancerre Sun 13-Jan-13 16:51:21

walking is execise

YouBrokeMySmoulder Sun 13-Jan-13 16:54:17

There's walking fast for a couple of miles, pushing a buggy so that when you get home you think youre going to have some sort of seizure, ie it has pushed your body so hard you can feel it and then theres ambling about. Very different things.

Its the same as people who say they go to the gym twice a week but dont break a sweat or look at all red in the face. Pointless. It takes a bit of work. Its hard.

Anonymumous Sun 13-Jan-13 16:58:28

I walk very fast while pushing a buggy (unless I am with my four year old, who is the world's only human snail) but I still didn't lose any weight walking. But I can't drive, so I've always walked a lot - my body is used to it. It wasn't until I started vigorously exercising bits of me that weren't used to it that the weight dropped off without even trying.

JustAHolyFool Sun 13-Jan-13 16:58:36

I disagree YouBrokeMyShoulder I think for a lot of people starting out just moving AT ALL is a big improvement. I don't see how saying "you have to feel like you're going to die" is going to encourage them into exercising.

Sometimes constant low-intensity exercise can work well too.

MadBusLady Sun 13-Jan-13 17:05:43

I agree on low intensity exercise if you're not used to it. No-one is going to go for the burn from a standing start - nor do they have to. I was put off proper exercise for years by gym inductions whose apparent purpose was to make me feel nauseous (exercise induced nausea of the kind you apparently get with a max heart rate and putting pressure on the stomach muscles, NOT low blood pressure as most of the "fitness consultants" insisted). Start slow. Plenty of time to become a puffing red-faced martyr later.

nkf Sun 13-Jan-13 17:07:14

What does "eat to hunger" mean?

YouBrokeMySmoulder Sun 13-Jan-13 17:08:23

Yes Just I agree, but the OP says she already walks and isnt losing weight so I was responding to that.

Also I think that if you only up the exercise slightly and you arent used to eating according to your hunger and not your habit then you can easily eat the extra cals you have just walked off but if you shock your body by doing something very high intensity then you will lose more.

And for someone very sedentary, walking around the block would be a big shock but I dont think we should accept that just because someone is very overweight that they cant exercise hard amd push themselves. Thats the same old negative thinking.

Chandon Sun 13-Jan-13 17:15:09

Youbroke, your opnion is that of a fanatic.

In real life, all exercise counts, even walking slowly. Any movement at all. Swimming, walking ccycling ( at a comfortable pace), even something lame like playing golf can get you fitter.

You do not need to suffer, to get fitter. You can ( and probably should) start with gentle exercise.

If you want a Californian Hardbody, youmay have to step it up though and follow youbrokemyshoulders advice.

exoticfruits Sun 13-Jan-13 17:15:49

It is difficult to start with but once you accept that you are changing your habits for ever it becomes much easier and just a way of life.

FredFredGeorge Sun 13-Jan-13 17:18:38

nkf eat if you're hungry, don't if you're not, and stop as soon as you're satiated not when the portion is finished - ensure you have appropriate meals available to eat whenever. ie if you're not hungry for lunch at midday, don't eat it, wait until you are and then eat. It can be a bit difficult to manage with certain jobs of course but most people still do get hungry at particular times so it's not too difficult to plan.

Hunger can go wrong as a signal when you're very unfit, which is why exercise helps so much as it improves your hunger response too.

nkf Sun 13-Jan-13 17:20:19

Oh, thanks. I see it means eat according to hunger. I was translating it as eating to the point of hunger. Which made no sense.

YouBrokeMySmoulder Sun 13-Jan-13 17:20:21

If all exercise counts chandon and the OP is already walking twice a day and eating well then why isnt she losing weight? Why are we all so bloody fat?

Am not a fanatic at all, I just know that if I want to lose weig I need to step outside what I normally do by a long way. Otherwise my body just rebalances itself and nothing happens.

I am lazy though and would much rather do 15 mins of hard slog three times a week than go swimming or running or cycling. <shrugs>

FredFredGeorge Sun 13-Jan-13 17:29:10

YouBrokeMyShoulder People rapidly become fit for what they do, that's pretty much what fitness is really, the body only changes then it needs adapt. It's lazy - if you stop exercising it doesn't bother to keep repairing the muscles, the heart, or producing more blood cells etc. - and when you increase the amount of exercise it produces more.

So it could well be that the OP is pretty fit for the walking she does, she's adapted to it so the body doesn't need to respond by building more, burning calories etc. It's one of the reasons walking isn't a great exercise once you're fit because there is a limit to the intensity you can go - most other things as you get fitter you get faster or stronger or go longer so the intensity increases. Walking has a much lower limit on what is possible to do.

MadBusLady Sun 13-Jan-13 17:36:48

I dont think we should accept that just because someone is very overweight that they cant exercise hard amd push themselves.

I do. Because the fact that they got that way suggests they really don't like exercise. So anything that encourages them to see the benefits of it, rather than immediately copping all the horrible stuff - feeling sick, out of control, heart racing and er, bowels loosening etc - is good as far as I'm concerned.

I speak as someone who has gone through this process. I hated exercise, hated PE at school, felt like utter shit and like I was about to collapse as soon as I got to any state that other people considered "worthwhile" exercise. Now, I'm happy and confident about my ability to exercise and improve my body and health, because I stopped listening to the natural gymrats that gyms naturally employ and went at my own pace. Mostly it was a result of reading the exercise-based bits of The Primal Blueprint, if anyone's interested.

In fact this thread is a useful reminder to me that I probably need to step it up a bit now (have been relying on machines and some weights so far) with a class and some more free weights. But I could never have got here without starting out doing something not-horrible on the treadmill, do you see?

BoulevardOfBrokenSleep Sun 13-Jan-13 17:47:53

starshaker , you didn't say how long you'd been on the diet for, or if you'd lost weight already? Is it possible you're just plateauing?

MrsHoarder Sun 13-Jan-13 18:06:32

What do you drink? Fizzy drinks or sugar in tea are very bad for weightloss because they're invisible calories.

Tbh, I'd be keeling over by lunchtime on your diet, I have a reasonable bowl of porridge for breakfast to try and keep me off the chocolate all morning. Then homemade soup with about 1/2 rasher of bacon per portion to make it more satisfying. And a good satisfying dinner: 1 chop, a small amount of potatoes and lot of veg; or a good thick stew. But if I'm putting weight on I cut the portions down, even if calorie counting suggests they should be fine. Because we don't all need exactly 1500 calories/day. Sometimes its more, sometimes its less. And to lose weight people need to eat a small amount less than they use.

On top of that I pop DS in the running buggy twice a week and we head out for a run (doing couch to 5k), and try to walk briskly and include hills on other days.

Ilovecoffeeandchocolate Sun 13-Jan-13 18:25:02

Yes it is really that simple, worked for me and other friends, costs nothing, no clubs or tablets. The bit which is hard is motivation. It is in the diet industry's business to make it sound more complicated but it is not. I ate better food and was careful about how much i ate and started to wlak much more no need to sign up for the gym, a pair of boots/shoes is all you need.

fuckadoodlepoopoo Sun 13-Jan-13 18:32:26

Just wanted to say that special k is awful for a diet choice. I know its marketed as a diet serial but it really shouldn't be. Its got loads of sugar in it and is so sweet that when I've eaten it I've felt really weird afterwards and wanted to eat other stuff to feel normal again . . . and I've got a sweet tooth! I tend to find that if i eat a lot of sweet stuff i then get tired quite soon after and when Im tired i want to eat for energy, so for me eating special k sabotages any good intentions.

You have to have a small portion of it because its not really low in anything whereas there are others that you could half a much larger portion for the same amount of calories etc.

I didn't realise this for a while.

fuckadoodlepoopoo Sun 13-Jan-13 18:33:18

HAVE a much larger portion!

YouBrokeMySmoulder Sun 13-Jan-13 18:44:16

But if you read one of my posts I was trying to say that you had to push yourself for you. Ie beyond what made you tired. So obvs that will be wildly different things for different people.

And very few people really like exercise surely? I cant stand it for the most part. Apart from pilates or dancing.

Yabu. It is that simple. Finding the motivation and commitment to do it can difficult though.

HopAndSkip Sun 13-Jan-13 18:50:26

Just cut back slightly, have a few mouthfuls less that usual at each meal, and avoid sugary things. It honestly is that simple.

And try to fit exercise into your normal routine, eg, walk to the shops instead of driving, or park slightly further away that you normally would. You will feel better for it even if you don't loose vast amounts of weight.

melliebobs Sun 13-Jan-13 19:33:42

I love these debates cos this area of discussion is my career. As for 'is walking exercise?' for my patients it IS if they tick all the 3 following criteria honestly

1) heart beating faster than at rest
2) breathing faster and heavier than at rest but can just manage to hold a conversation
3) starting to build up a sweat (but this one I'm dubious on anyway)

More often than not though with walking, unless you have something telling u your speed my patients over report and probably walk their normal pace rather than slightly out their comfort zone grin

fuckadoodlepoopoo Sun 13-Jan-13 19:49:07

I walk and consider it exercise, mainly for one reason . . . I used to walk a lot then got a car so stopped. I got fat. Started walking again and lost weight again.

So it must be doing some good!

I go for 2 hour walks and love it!

TalkinPeace2 Sun 13-Jan-13 19:55:27

Metabolic differences between people of the same age, weight and height account for a maximum of 5% of calorie usage

the other 95% is down to what you eat and what you do

fat people have a faster metabolism as their hearts work harder to move their bodies around

less than 1% of the population have medial reasons for being overweight
and half of them have thyroid problems that are eminently treatable

put EVERY bite of what you eat and drink into here
and check what your calorie needs are here

Chandon Sun 13-Jan-13 20:01:13

Shoulder, that does not mean walking does not make a difference.

It just means she is still eating too much, or not walking quite enough.

Or there is an underlying medical problem. Only OP knows quite how much she eats and exercises. We can only guess.

People with an active lifestyle, no matter what they do, lots of walking the dog, people without a car, fanatic gymsters, tennis players on the whole are mich less fat. That is a fact. IMO, what kind of exercise you do is just a detail.

A 10 mile walk is a 10 mile walk, whether you do it in 30 minutes, an hour or three hours.

charlearose Sun 13-Jan-13 20:03:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TheFallenNinja Sun 13-Jan-13 20:07:35

People don't exercise because its hard and they don't eat less because food is nice.

Portion control was the single biggest control I put in place and I lost a lot of weight over a medium amount of time. Fortunately, smaller portions are now my habit so it has stayed off for a couple of years now.

I'm lucky though as I love exercise smile

EuroShagmore Sun 13-Jan-13 20:23:38

Walking is beneficial exercise. Colin Firth as Mr Darcy in P&P says so, so it must be true.

My mum was slim all her life until she hit about 50 and was laid up after surgery. She never did any "proper" exercise - no running, occasional lady breaststroke (head above the water), no cycling, never been inside a gym. But she doesn't drive and used to walk everywhere. Unfortunately just before her surgery, my parents moved to the bottom of a big hill, with the shops at the top. It was too much for her, post-surgery. My dad now drives her there. She can't lose the weight. I bet she would if she started walking again. After all, it worked for 30 years! I'm also a big fan of walking. For me, it is the default mode of transport for anything up to about a mile and a half. I do other stuff too, but walking really helps to keep the joints moving and burns a couple of hundred calories a day.

BTW, 200 cals a day is 73000 a year, or 21 pounds of weight - that's a stone and a half a year of losing weight, or a decent amount of extra food for those maintaining their weight.

Purple2012 Sun 13-Jan-13 20:26:46

I like doing exercise now but I never used to.

I eat 1200 cals or less a day. I dont feel hungry. I have fruit and yoghurt for breakfast. A roll and low far crisps for lunch and tea varies. I snack on fruit or carrot and cucumber during the day.

I plan my food for each day and write it down so I can keep track of what I am eating. I have lost over a stone and a half.

Years ago I lost nearly 5 stone doing this and exercising but put a lot back on after an injury stopped me exercising.

I have recently bought the wii biggest loser game. It's great. It schedules my work outs I'm too afraid to not do it in case they tell me off . On the days I don't have that scheduled I run on my treadmill/use my cross trainer. The weight loss varies. Last week I lost 1.8 lb, this week over 6 lb

I have had a day off calorie counting today. I haven't gone mad but I have eaten more bread and potatoes than I usually do and I feel bloated. So tomorrow back to normal.

JustAHolyFool Sun 13-Jan-13 21:03:34

Euro I'm a total walking advocate. I've never learnt to drive, which some people can't believe but I just don't NEED to drive. It's really forced me to have to do a LOT of walking sometimes. I used to walk home 4 days out of 5 from central London to E2, a good hour and a half. People couldn't believe it, but I was skint and I enjoyed it. At the end of the day, people used to do that sort of length of walk day in day out.

I always have to lift heavy shopping home which has to be a good workout. I always have to walk at least to a bus stop. Even going on the tube means you are running up and down stairs. I can't imagine not walking places and I think if I had a car I'd be really tempted to just pop to the supermarket in it and I'd lose all that exercise.

SnoogyWoo Sun 13-Jan-13 21:12:51

It really is simple. Get a cross trainer and do 20 minutes 5 times a week. You will lose weight and get fitter. You do not have to leave the house and you can listen to music or watch the TV while you do it. Build it into your daily routine and you are sorted.

Lonelybunny Sun 13-Jan-13 21:22:18

I walk as much as I can , I have 3 kids I work and am really busy , my youngest is 5 months. I tell
Myself I have to walk at least 2 miles a day but usually walk about 3 , I just need to stop stuffing big plate fulls blush

TalkinPeace2 Sun 13-Jan-13 21:22:39

Back in Mr Darcy's day, houses were heated by fireplaces - if you could afford it.
Winter house temperatures were around 15-16 degrees C and as low as 10 degrees at night.
I keep my house at 18, down to 14 (because of insulation)
a warmer house makes you burn less calories.
Many people keep their houses at over 20 degrees all the time

In Mr Darcy's day, most people only ate one solid meal at the end of the day.
Even the rich only had one large and two small meals a day, and a wine glass held 75 cl, as against the 250 cl in a modern glass.

In 1970, the waistband of a pair of size ten jeans was 26 inches
in 2010 the waistband of a pair of size ten jeans was 29.5 inches

fuckadoodlepoopoo Sun 13-Jan-13 21:54:27

I saw some footage from the hillsborough disaster recently and it really stood out how slim the spectators on the pitch were. It surprised me.

JustAHolyFool Sun 13-Jan-13 22:09:37

Really fuck ? That's what you noticed? Bit tasteless to bring that up tbh.

fuckadoodlepoopoo Mon 14-Jan-13 07:57:54

Yes i suppose it might be. All i was saying was that it was footage from a while ago, although not that long ago, but the difference was that obvious that it stood out despite the terrible devastating event that it was. Strange thing to notice perhaps? But i did anyway so it must have been obvious.

I actually posted it on the wrong thread! Although similar subject.

But you can see the point i was making it, if you choose to be offended, which you clearly are then why don't you report it hmm Knock yourself out.

[wonders at all the other things and times in history we are not allowed to mention]

amimagic Mon 14-Jan-13 08:13:05

Everyone who's pontificating, saying do this and you WILL lose weight, can i ask how many of you have actually been overweight and lost it?

If you've always been thin due to your magic eating less and moving more, then i don't believe you're really qualified to comment with conviction.

Lonelybunny Mon 14-Jan-13 08:13:11

@justaholyfool be careful walking with heavy bags of shopping. I don't know how old you are but my mum did that for years walking everywhere with heavy heavy bags . She now at 56 has had to have a shoulder replacement due to carrying heavy bags ......

FredFredGeorge Mon 14-Jan-13 08:28:54

animagic I was at least 95kg probably quite a bit more from how I looked in photos, I'm now 72kg (BMI 21.5), I lost that over 18mo without any sort of diet plan etc. just by consuming less calories (mostly by changing lifestyle so less travelling for work where there was drinking etc.) and moving more. My weight has now been steady for 3 years when I eat to hunger.

BunFagFreddie Mon 14-Jan-13 08:33:25

"I'm always flabbergasted at the amount of food I'm served in restaurants or other people's houses. "

Yes, me too. Sometimes it's like about 3 days worth of food for me. I don't even starve myself and go hungry. I know a few people who say they can't lose weight and they don't eat much, but they are just eating massive portions. Even if the food's healthy and you're active, you'll gain weight like that.

herladyship Mon 14-Jan-13 08:39:04


in parts of world where food is scarce & life is physically hard, people are not overweight!

diabolo Mon 14-Jan-13 09:02:14

animagic I lost 2 stone, 2 years ago, by not eating crap and only having lean meat, veggies, salads and soups combined with walking for 5 miles each day with the dog. It took nearly 6 months - so many people want a "quick" fix and to see 5 lbs gone in a week. I think that's why many tend to give up after a week or 2.

Lonelybunny Mon 14-Jan-13 09:12:06

We way to big a portions , I really need to try and make them smaller but I still feel hungry after sad

fuckadoodlepoopoo Mon 14-Jan-13 10:03:29

I lost weight without trying some years ago and the thing that changed was that i moved out of an abusive relationship where the guy would make huge meals and sulk if i didn't eat them. He also had bad eating habits and was very fat and i guess it rubbed off on me after a lifetime of being as thin as a stick.

I was also not allowed out much because of his jealously. So once i left i was walking more and general day to day exercise and eating less.

lljkk Mon 14-Jan-13 10:12:35

I am > a stone lighter now than I was at 17-18yo, and have been for about 19 years. I imagine an extra stone counts as overweight, albeit not by much.

Agree portion sizes are ridiculous. Look around in any restaurant and see how much food people leave on their plates at end of the meal, the food waste is scandalous. I rarely order food if I go to a restaurant with DC, instead I hoover up their leftovers. And we still sometimes end up leaving food behind. Cafes are better, portion sizes usually saner.

I've had a few experiences of noticing very fat people expecting very large portions. I wonder if they've been conditioned into thinking huge platefuls are the norm.

Tiggles Mon 14-Jan-13 10:14:50

I always used to think I could eat what I liked and stay thin. It wasn't until I started a sedentary desk job a couple of years ago that I realised that the reason I could eat anything before was I was exceptionally active.
I had used to walk/run 4miles a day (carrying a baby/toddler) on school runs for example, or pre-children did a lot of cycling every weekend and gym most days even though had a sedentary job.
Within a few months I put on quite a bit of weight. I am now on the way to losing it by exercising more and eating less. I get up an hour earlier and use a cross-trainer most weekdays. At the weekends we now go out mountain biking or for a long walk with the boys. The weight is coming off slowly but surely.

earlyriser Mon 14-Jan-13 11:11:35

I think we are conditioned to think that hunger is a bad thing, but it is actually ok to feel a bit of hunger. If you are overweight and feel a little bit hungry, nothing terrible is going to happen to you if you just ignore it for a bit! Hunger doesn't need feeding immediately, and sometimes it can actually go away if you ignore it grin

disclaimer, obviously the hunger that comes with not having eaten for a good few hours should not be ignored.

wannabedreams Mon 14-Jan-13 11:23:46

I think it's partly diet and exercise but partly metabolism and genes.

CoteDAzur Mon 14-Jan-13 11:25:08

Your metabolism increases when you exercise.

gnushoes Mon 14-Jan-13 11:36:28

Eat sensibly. Get a pedometer. Do 10,000 steps a day. Find excuses to walk (buy milk, go to postbox, etc, but make sure you do it all on foot). Weight drops off and stays off.

fuckadoodlepoopoo Mon 14-Jan-13 11:40:47

I often go for a walk to get something small from the shop but choose a shop thats a 45 min walk away rather than the one 10 mins away. I really enjoy it when I've got my ipod.

TalkinPeace2 Mon 14-Jan-13 11:52:08

I dropped from 12 stone to 9 stone 11 years ago.
Last year crept back up to 10 stone
am now back down to 9 stone
because I eat less and do more
am fasting today : no food since yesterday 4pm till 7pm tonight. Lots of housework and tea.

MadBusLady Mon 14-Jan-13 12:09:17

amimagic No, I lost a stone and a half low-carbing. It's only after that initial boost I was able to concentrate on the eat less move more thing, to fine tune me down further (half a stone so far, need another 8-10 pounds). The low-carbing was absolutely invaluable for getting rid of that sick URGENT hunger I used to feel; my appetite and portion sizes reduced quite naturally with no effort on my part. I'm just not psychologically or physiologically in thrall to my food any more, and that was a necessary preparation for eat less move more.

So I do agree with the OP that it's not as simple as it sounds, and different systems (or combinations of them) will work for different people.

PostBellumBugsy Mon 14-Jan-13 12:17:49

The calories in, calories out is wrong. It is not calories that make you fat, it is refined carbohydrates & sugars. Fat storage is primarily organised by insulin. The more carbs & sugars you eat the more insulin production you stimulate, the more insulin swimming around your system, the more fat you will store.
If you eat less & do more, you are just starving yourself (to varying degrees). Yes, you will lose weight, starved people usually do, but you will lose energy & muscle tissue, as well as body fat. It requires steely will-power and means that you will often feel hungry. Even, the BMC have acknowledged that eating less & doing more has very poor long-term results for weight loss.

CoteDAzur Mon 14-Jan-13 12:34:22

How can "calories in/calories out" possibly be wrong?

Have you heard of the 1st law of thermodynamics?

BlackAffronted Mon 14-Jan-13 12:37:38

Not all calories are equal though. I suggest you read one of Gary Taubes's books, or Dr Briffa.

Lonelybunny Mon 14-Jan-13 12:57:05

I was shocked my porridge with semi skimmed milk was 400 cals! I thought porridge was supposed to be good for u!!!!

CoteDAzur Mon 14-Jan-13 13:06:02

Black - In your place, I wouldn't hold my breath for a stranger on the internet to spend weeks reading two books on your say so. So why don't you just say whatever it is you want to say? In a paragraph or less, if possible.

Yes, different foods affect the body differently, but still you will lose weight when you spend more energy than is provided by the food you eat.

Claiming otherwise just shows a complete lack of understanding about how the universe works, notably the 1st law of thermodynamics.

fuckadoodlepoopoo Mon 14-Jan-13 13:10:00

Lonelybunny. It can be surprising can't it!

atthewelles Mon 14-Jan-13 13:14:09

The thing about Porridge Lonely is that it fills you up so you are less likely to crave sugary food mid morning, so you also lose calories that way . I just make my porridge with water and stir through some honey.

OP, I wouldn't get too scientific about things. Just make an effort to cut down on unhealthy fattening food and to get out for a walk every day and use the stairs instead of the lift at work, and drink more water. You are more likely to stick to a routine like that than to a difficult regime of dull meals and spending an hour a day in they gym. That will only last for a couple of weeks and then you'll be back to your normal habits.

melliebobs Mon 14-Jan-13 13:23:59

Calories don't make you fat? So for the sake of argument every day you eat 2500kcal in pure protein and do no exercise you won't put on weight is its not fat or carbohydrate!?!?

fuckadoodlepoopoo Mon 14-Jan-13 13:26:18

You do get used to porridge with water after a while. You could try half and half for a bit?

JustAHolyFool Mon 14-Jan-13 13:35:43

fuck I never said you couldn't mention history. I do think that it is tasteless to mention that what you noticed about a horrible tragedy where scores of people were injured and killed, in an event that was then blamed on the victims themselves, is that they were thinner than us.

PostBellumBugsy Mon 14-Jan-13 13:37:19

CoteDAzur - no one is suggesting that you can't get something from nothing (1st law of thermodynamics) but it is actually the 2nd law about entropy or dissipation which is more relevant here!!!!

Each of the many chemical reactions in the body end up dissipating energy. We get our energy in the form of calories from the food we eat. This energy gets consumed in all the countless chemical reactions that go on all the time. Just like an automobile, we are not all that efficient. We don’t convert calories to energy on a one to one basis because of the loss of energy to the universe described by the second law.

If there are no carbohydrates (or few) in the diet, however, it’s a different story. In order to maintain the necessary sugar level in the blood the body is forced to make sugar out of protein, which isn’t a simple operation. Look in any basic biochemistry textbook and you can see all the reactions required to convert protein to sugar, and each one of these reactions consumes energy just to take place but loses energy to the universe in the process as well. It’s much less efficient for the body to convert protein to sugar than it is to simply take the sugar as it comes in already formed.

The second law of thermodynamics virtually mandates that there be a larger loss of energy when one has to convert protein to sugar instead of merely using the sugar as it comes in. Since there are 4 kcal of energy in a gram of sugar and 4 kcal of energy in a gram of protein, it should be apparent that less of the 4 kcal in a gram of sugar will be dissipated than will be the 4 kcal in a gram of protein if this gram of protein has to first be converted to sugar.

And, consequently, one would think that a diet low in carbohydrate and higher in protein and fat (both of which have to be converted to sugar) would bring about a greater weight loss than a diet of the same number of calories but with higher levels of carbohydrate. In fact, the second law of thermodynamics predicts this very phenomenon.

fuckadoodlepoopoo Mon 14-Jan-13 13:52:03

Holy. How about . . .

"i was watching a news story the other day which had some footage in from 1989 and i was really surprised to see how slim most people were then."

Is that better? If i don't actually mention what news story it was? Pretend it wasn't that or just don't mention it as though just saying the name is terribly wrong. Better?

TalkinPeace2 Mon 14-Jan-13 14:16:18


no muffin tops in the first one

PostBellumBugsy Mon 14-Jan-13 14:20:08

can't see any in the second one either TalkinPeace!

Samu2 Mon 14-Jan-13 14:22:59

Simple doesn't always equals easy.

I lost five stone just over two years ago. It took me ages to get in the right mind set. Weighing all my food was shocking! What I thought was a normal portion size was at least double! I was never a big eater but with quitting smoking and slowly increasing portion sizes it went over quite easily.

I am a huge believer in lowering carbs, simply because protein fills you up for longer. I know how many calories I have to eat to maintain my weight and how many I need to eat to lose, but it took quite a bit of experimenting to get it right.

I don't do low carb diets, although I do believe that lowering carbs to 100-150g makes weight loss a LOT easier. Unfortunately I love carbs and could never stick to it.

It really is that simple, unless you have a medical condition you need to eat less calories than you burn off. I can maintain on 1,400- 1,500 calories, which isn't much. If I regularly go over 1,500 I will gain.

AvonCallingBarksdale Mon 14-Jan-13 14:31:34

Well it is actually very straightforward, but not that easy. You need to lower your intake and up your physical activity. You don't have to join a gym/go and run outside, you can do a fair amount in the house. It's easy to get into a snacking habit - try keeping an honest food diary, I found that very surprising!

Samu2 Mon 14-Jan-13 14:31:38

exercis is great, but not that good for weight loss IMO.

I know that I can burn something silly like 200 calories from an hours fast walk for example and then you can go and eat a snack and eat half of that back at least. I know too many people who exercised and wondered why they weren't losing.. they felt hungrier, ate more and were still eating more calories than they burned.

Exercise is great for health, but it isn't going to help you lose weight unless you are also watching your calorie intake. People often think they can eat loads while exercising and wonder why they don't lose. The more I work out the more hungrier I become so I still have to track everything that goes into my mouth. Plus, people often over estimate the calorie burn as well.

Weight lifting is really the best exercise you can do for weight loss.

fuckadoodlepoopoo Mon 14-Jan-13 14:52:33

Talking. You can see a chubby bloke and a few chubby faces on the right hand side.

JustAHolyFool Mon 14-Jan-13 17:41:50

fuck I was personally affected by Hillsborough. Forgive me if I get a little pissy about it.

Anonymumous Mon 14-Jan-13 18:15:07

Samu, I lost weight just doing exercise and I wasn't watching what I ate at all. But then I didn't get hungrier - I still ate the same amounts of the same stuff at the same times. Agree with you about weight-lifting though - whoa! smile

fuckadoodlepoopoo Mon 14-Jan-13 18:55:17

Holy. I was being defensive, sorry. smile I posted it as i was going to bed in a hurry and didn't word it well . . . as well as putting it on the wrong thread grin

Sorry to hear you were affected by it sad

(it looks like Im trying to work my way through all the emoticons)

amimagic Mon 14-Jan-13 19:29:59

Am very happy to hear from those of you who've successfully lost weight and kept it off, it gives me hope! I've been size 14/16 for the last 10 years now, and whilst i have lost some weight in that time, I've never really cracked it.

I do hate it though when people who i know have never been overweight say how easy it is - just eat less! I think it's much harder to lose weight than to maintain a low weight that has never been high. (there's some science involving leptin i believe ...?)

FredFredGeorge Mon 14-Jan-13 19:40:20

amimagic It's not easy, and I don't think any one the thread has said it is, just that it is simple.

Leptin indeed is the hormone secreted by fat, and your body uses the levels as part of what hunger is, so if the amount drops because you've lost some fat, your body becomes hungry to make up for it to return it to the level. So to eat to hunger when overweight means it can take a long time to lose, so if you're overweight then a little hunger is probably necessary (or exercise more which can interupt some of the hunger signalling too)

TalkinPeace2 Mon 14-Jan-13 19:48:54

Its simple but requires focus.

If I swim a mile in 40 minutes I burn off the same amount of calories as are in one chop chip muffin that takes 4 minutes to eat.

You HAVE to be aware of exactly what you are eating over a period of a month (so meals out can be offset by salads another day)
and be honest with yourself
and accept that snacking was invented by the food industry to sell more product - human bodies do not need to eat every two hours.

Most non western societies eat one large meal at the end of the day.
And food accounts for over 10% of their income (or time finding it)

CoteDAzur Mon 14-Jan-13 20:29:05

PostBellum - re "no one is suggesting that you can't get something from nothing (1st law of thermodynamics) but it is actually the 2nd law about entropy or dissipation which is more relevant here!!!! Each of the many chemical reactions in the body end up dissipating energy."

You have completely misunderstood (1) what I was saying (2) laws of thermodynamics, and (3) the meaning of "dissipation" as in that definition you have just Googled. And you obviously don't know the meaning of the word "entropy".

2nd law talks about transfer of energy (hence the term "dissipation") from a high-energy environment/person/object to a low-energy one. As in, hot food taken outside the oven eventually cools down. It has nothing to do with the process of getting energy from the food we eat. (Unless you are referring to your mouth heating up because of hot soup smile)

1st law talks about conservation of energy. It doesn't just mean "You can't get something from nothing". It means that the energy you put into a system (food & drinks) equals the energy that is spent (calories you spend) plus the energy that is saved (weight/fat).

Therefore, if you eat less calories than you spend, you will lose weight. There is no other way.

Eat no carbohydrates if you like, for whatever reason. Perfectly fine with me. Just don't tell people that losing weight isn't as simple as calculating calories in vs calories out, because it actually is.

amimagic Mon 14-Jan-13 22:35:38

Thanks Fred that makes sense.

As you lose weight, does your body "re-programme" itself?

amimagic Mon 14-Jan-13 22:39:35

Cote D'Azure it makes me happy to read your post because the whole food science stuff has just got so complicated over the last few years, it just ends up confusing me.

I really like the thought that, yes, it is that simple (not easy though!)

CoteDAzur Tue 15-Jan-13 08:35:20

amimagic - I was a size 14-16. Then I started a program at a sports hospital here, where I was followed by a doctor, a dietician, and a trainer (they had an in-house gym). In three months, I lost 10 kgs and went down to size 10. That was 3 years ago, and I haven't put on any weight.

I went into 1st meeting with the dietician saying "I can stop eating carbs, no problem" and she said, "No, actually, you will eat a bit of bread, pasta, potatoes, rice etc with every meal". So I did. And I lost loads of weight. And I kept that weight off.

You should eat without depriving yourself, but being careful with the amounts you eat. She showed me that I don't actually have to eat a plate of pasta, and I don't have to have pesto sauce on it when I'm perfectly fine with a simple tomato sauce. That half of my plate should be salad or vegetables, because eating is also about volume - filling your stomach - but that I should put only a tiny bit of olive oil on the salad. That a quarter of my plate should be protein - a steak, one egg, a chicken breast. That the remaining quarter should be carbohydrates (slow sugars) like rice, pasta, 1 slice of bread and that will keep me from raiding the cookie jar later in the day.

You also have to exercise. It is not even just the calorie in/calorie out calculation. Cardio exercises increase your metabolism. I run for about half an hour, twice a week. It is not much but I can feel the effects - for the rest of the day, I breathe differently and I stand differently. And my tummy goes in.

Anyway, that is my two euro-centimes.

WillowFae Tue 15-Jan-13 08:55:03

Moving more when you are morbidly obese IS difficult. However I finally did it. I was morbidly obese when I started the NHS C25K programme in August. I hadn't ran at all in the 20+ years since leaving school and even at school I avoided it at all costs. I completed the programme in October (even inspired DH to do it as well, along with two of my cousins, and some friends), now absolutely LOVE going for a run, and am only 1lb above the overweight category (I WILL get to a 'normal' bmi!). It is totally possiible. Not easy, but possible.

PostBellumBugsy Tue 15-Jan-13 09:21:13

CoteDAzur, love the fact that you think you must be the only person that can understand thermodynamics & that I must have had to google the definition!

The problem with the calories in calories out definition for weightloss is that it leaves so much real understanding out.

For example, you wouldn't just say that an alcoholic is someone who drinks too much. Yes, that is a definition, but it doesn't answer the question why?

So, it is all very well to say that weight loss is as simple as eating less calories, but that doesn't some to work for the majority of people. If you examine the science behind what actually makes people store fat, rather than use it for energy, you start to understand that it is because our modern diets constantly stimulate the release of insulin, which is the primary fat storage hormone. What is it in our modern diets that stimulates insulin? - carbohydrates & sugar. So cut down on carbohydrates & sugar and you stop sending out the fat storage hormone insulin & you lose weight. You can still eat low carb foods, you don't have to count calories, you don't have to be hungry and you will lose weight.

Also you do not have to exercise to lose weight. Do you remember in the olden days people used to talk about "working up an appetite" by going out & chopping logs or doing heavy physical labour. Exercise stimulates the body's natural desire to eat, because it wants to replace expended energy. I am not saying that exercise isn't a very good thing - because I think it is - but I don't see the connection with weight loss, I see a connection with physical well-being.

Weightloss is very simple, but it is not about cutting calories, it is about cutting our sugar & carbohydrate.

WillowFae Tue 15-Jan-13 09:26:30

PostBellumBugsy - you make some INCREDIBLY valid points. To be honest, if it was as simple as calorie deficit then I would have lost my weight decades ago. What I have done is come to terms with the fact that I have an eating disorder and THAT is why I got the way I did. It is only through dealing with that (which includes the whole 'why' issue) that I have done what I've done.

Yes, I do believe that ANYONE can lose weight and that includes the fact that ANYONE can move more. BUT - and this is a big but - some people might need more help dealing with why they got overweight in the first place.

As for your comment on sugar and carbs - I've had no sugar (as in cakes, puddings, chocolate, sweets, etc) or white flour since May when I started losing weight. Sugar especially is a product with addictive properties.

CoteDAzur Tue 15-Jan-13 12:56:38

PostBellum - You had no idea about what I said re 1st law of thermodynamics and that was sadly obvious in your last post. That you thought the word "dissipate" in that definition of 2nd law could possibly apply to the chemical reactions that take place in the body while we turn food into energy plainly shows just how far you were from understanding it.

If you know better now, I'm happy for you.

Anyway, as I said before, if you want to eat things in a certain order or completely omit certain food groups, feel free to do so. But know that you don't have to stop eating complex carbohydrates (pasta, bread, rice, etc) to lose weight. In fact, no dietician with a real degree will recommend cutting out these carbohydrates.

What I have said is true: Energy in = energy used + energy stored. There is no other way. If you use more energy than you take in, you will have to use from your reserves. That means weight loss.

Therefore, calorie deficit will result in weight loss. Unless you are living in a parallel universe where 1st law of thermodynamics doesn't work.

WillowFae Tue 15-Jan-13 13:10:53

Yes it WILL result in weight loss but that doesn't make it easy unfortunately sad

multitask Tue 15-Jan-13 14:22:58

In the space of nine months I have lost 5.5 stone and I did no excerise at all (due to disability I can't) so it definately has a lot to do with the type of food you eat regardless if you exercise or not.

PostBellumBugsy Tue 15-Jan-13 14:28:20

CoteDAzur I'm not an expert in thermodynamics, so will bow to your superior knowledge.

Maybe, I don't need to be. Perhaps they are just not that relevant. I agree that if you are getting fatter, you’re taking in more calories than you’re using BUT the question is why?. There is another way of looking at this issue, in that you don't get fat because you’re overeating. You overeat because you’ve developed a disorder in the way your fat tissue is regulated.

How about this for a question anyway: If you consume about 2,700 calories a day, which is typical when averaging men and women together, that’s a million calories a year, or ten million calories over a decade. Over the course of a decade, you’re eating roughly ten tons of food. How accurately do you have to match calories-in to calories-out so that you don’t gain more than 20 pounds over the course of a decade? If you were to gain 20 pounds every decade, you’ll go from being lean in your 20s to obese in your 40s, which is what happens to so many of us do. And the answer is: 20 calories a day. If you take in an extra 20 calories a day and put it into your fat tissue, you will gain 20 pounds every decade. Nobody can match that kind of precision. 20 calories is a few bites of an apple, half a biscuit, a couple of bites of toast. Are you really suggesting that the laws of thermodynamics govern us so tightly that we have to be that precise about measuring our calories?

Scientists have known since the early 1960s that insulin is the primary hormone that regulates your fat tissue. This is not controversial—you can refer to an endocrinology textbook and look up what makes a fat cell fat and you will see all the ways insulin does it. What stimulates insulin more than anything else? Sugar & carbohydrates. Then you come back to your point that people get fat because people eat too much and exercise too little and there seems to be a complete disconnect between the fundamental science and the cause of human obesity.

I see obesity as a hormonal disorder and not just as a result of being a lazy lump that can't control their calorie in / calorie out consumption & expenditure.

CoteDAzur Tue 15-Jan-13 14:55:27

Willow - No it's not easy, but it is not that hard, either.

Sometimes all it takes is for a knowledgeable outsider (proper dietician, not know-all strangers on the internet like myself wink) to look at what you eat and change it a little. Plus cardio - boost your metabolism, spend energy, and tone up as you lose weight.

I thought I ate very little and was quite measured about my food intake. For breakfast, I would have a pain au chocolat and coffee. Dietician said it's better to eat two slices of bread with a bit of Nutella on it, if I so like that sort of thing. But I also like soft cheese on bread for breakfast, so since that day (3 years ago) I've been alternating different types of cheese on bread with Nutella on bread once 10 days or so.

I've also been told by a trainer guy (not dietician, obviously) that I should have fish and asparagus for breakfast shock and no bread. I have friends who train with him and have followed his advice. Until they got sick of it, went back to eating "normally" and put on all that weight back and more.

The trick is to actually change the way you eat (with less fat, sugar, and complex carbohydrates) but eating everything in moderation so you can do it in the long term without frustration, misery, and malnutrition.

WillowFae Tue 15-Jan-13 15:22:03

It's not just about WHAT you eat though. For a lot of people it's the WHY that needs to be addressed. This is what makes it so hard.

CoteDAzur Tue 15-Jan-13 15:27:51

"How accurately do you have to match calories-in to calories-out so that you don’t gain more than 20 pounds over the course of a decade?"

That is a strange question. Nobody is going to plan their calorie intake for the coming decade.

What people normally do is start eating less & moving more when they put on a few pounds or feel tight in their clothes.

CoteDAzur Tue 15-Jan-13 15:30:42

multitask - Of course you can lose weight without exercising. Look at the malnourished people in famine-stricken parts of the world.

Exercise is important because it increases your metabolism and spends energy so you spend more energy (even when you are not exercising). Also, it tones you up so skin & flesh doesn't sag when you lose weight. And it makes you feel good smile

WorraLiberty Tue 15-Jan-13 15:36:29

I see obesity as a hormonal disorder and not just as a result of being a lazy lump that can't control their calorie in / calorie out consumption & expenditure.

Didn't people have hormones in the past then?

Obesity is at an all time high and is continuing to rise at an alarming pace.

More than a third of Primary school children are obese/overweight...surely they're not all hormonal disorders?

Dahlen Tue 15-Jan-13 15:41:08

Could it be the case that modern diets (which are so heavily influenced by the massive clout of the food industry) contain so much sugar, which has created an increase in the number of people with hormonal disorders? Even so-called healthy foods can contain vast amounts of sugar.

LedZeppelin Tue 15-Jan-13 15:51:25

I'm with PostBellum on this. Sceptics may like to read the work of Gary Taubes or John Briffa before being so dismissive.

The low fat drive may have increased problems because a lot of manufacturers compensated for the loss of flavour /mouthfeel from removing the fat by increasing the sugar content of low-fat foods.

I find sugar addictive and know if I start eating sweet stuff the cravings will increase on a daily basis. I have to make a conscious effort to avoid sweet stuff for a couple of days to break the cycle.

MrsHoarder Tue 15-Jan-13 16:02:07

Why would I get diet advice from an Aerospace Engineer and Journalist at least Briffa is a medical type. Although I am amused to read his oh so very sensible critism of Rebecca Adlington's diet. It rather shows how the whole thing is bollocks if he pulls one of the fittest people in the country apart because their diet is "bad".

Its simply a matter of cutting back on high energy foods when your pants start getting tight. We're on more homemade veg soups atm after Christmas because my jeans are snug. Nothing wooly about how veg causes you to loose weight, just the knowledge that filling and hearty soups have fewer calories than our usual fare without feeling too deprived.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Tue 15-Jan-13 16:10:06

All this stuff about carbs/insulin etc may he relevant, but only if you stick to the calories in less than calories out.

You can lose weight eating nothing but refined white sugar as long as you consume less calories than you use.

Equally, if you follow a super duper low carb diet but consume more calories than you use you will gain.

Losing weight is simply calories in vs calories out. There can be no argument about that

Losing weight healthily is where everyone really starts arguing are Carbs good or bad? Can you have too much protein? Cardio or weights?

LedZeppelin Tue 15-Jan-13 16:53:17

"Its simply a matter of cutting back on high energy foods when your pants start getting tight"

Why should anyone take diet advice from you either MrsHoarder?

These books are well researched and referenced, a fact you would find out if you read them for yourself. I don't think you have reason to dismiss it as bollocks for the reasons you have given.

But, y'know, believe what you like. Hope you lose that Christmas weight easily! smile

MadBusLady Tue 15-Jan-13 16:57:12

High performance athletes famously can cope with much higher carb loads than regular people - even regular fit people. Briffa sort of alludes to this, but it isn't really spelled out very well.

Sounds like a crap diet to me as well. I'd get fat on it. Unless she's eating a bushel of vegetables with dinner she doesn't mention, the only veg in the whole thing are a few slices of tomato in the lunchtime sandwich. If she gets her five a day it sounds like most of it is fruit.

RiceBurner Tue 15-Jan-13 17:35:20

This is roughly my philosophy/method. Works me for. Might also work for some others who are struggling to lose fat?

- Look at yourself naked, to make sure that you ARE too fat/need to lose weight. (Cos kgs/BMI not the always best measure.)
- If you think that you ARE too fat, weigh yourself naked & check that weight each morning, to see which way you are heading.
- Learn to feel good about being (a bit) hungry each day, cos that means (there's a good chance) you are using some of the calories stored as fat (which is what you want to happen)
- Walk as far as you can/as fast each day, as this is a good/easy way to burn cals.
- Eat 'proper'/good food ie mostly unprocessed. (Just less than usual.)
- Avoid most "diet" foods!
- If you must have something sugary (eg cola, chewing gum) opt for a sugar-free version if possible. (Ideally you shd avoid all sugary crap & artificial sweeteners.)
- When hungry, just about everything tastes so much better than when not hungry eg plain veggies with a small amount of oil or butter can be delicious. So you will probably learn to enjoy/love simple/healthier foods which maybe didn't appeal as much before, when you were getting more daily calories?
- Oils like butter/olive oil/soya oil are fine to consume in reasonably large quantities, (esp in winter as they keep the body warm), as long as you are losing weight. (Otherwise, cut back on these more.)
- Go easy on cheese. (But a little bit is fine.)
- Plain yog/fruit = good as dessert.
- Wholefoods/extra fibre = good, so I sometimes add bran to salads/yog etc.
I find it easier to eat one large meal per day ... so I have mine in the evening. I like to have something to look forward to, (all day), and then I can enjoy it and go to bed feeling nicely satisfied.
- Most people have to feel hungry at some point in the day in order to lose weight/stay thin. Accept this.
- It isn't a big problem to feel hungry, as you will get used to eating less and then you will eventually feel less hungry. (The opp is also true ie if you are used to eating bfast/lunch/elevenses at certain times, you miss these a lot, and if you have been over-eating in the past, you will feel hungry and unhappy even if you are now eating the correct amount. Hence morbidly obese people feel very hungry all the time, when in fact they could easily go for weeks on very little food/just water?)
- It's OK, (if otherwise healthy), to feel/experience hungry. In fact it's good for you. (See the all research/results for IM - "intermittent fasting".)
- Some problems can be improved by fasting (eg type 2 diabetes) but obviously if you have some medical problems you need to be careful/check with a doctor before you make diet changes.
- I think it is easier to control your calorie intake if you have stick to ONE (biggish/main) meal, rather than lots of smaller ones. So save all your hunger for one meal?
- If I eat bfast/lunch, I tend to feel hungry/tired afterwards, whereas I usually feel fully alert and happy with just coffee/tea & milk until supper time.
- Do drink thru the day, even if you don't eat. (Water, tea/coffee etc. Avoid juices/fizzy stuff.)
- Semi-skimmed milk's fine for tea/coffee. (It helps stave off hunger.) But avoid using too much milk per drink (eg 100% milky coffee) and avoid sugar/cream.
- Use limited fresh fruit for snacks, if you need to, or a boiled egg, or small amount of nuts, or small piece of cheese. (Not roasted/salted kind of nuts.)
- Eat slowly and with a lot of pleasure when you have your main meal. This enjoyment will helps you to feel motivated to (semi) fast another 24 hrs till the next meal, & improves your mood. (Important as depression makes some people over-eat.)
- No need to weigh/measure food. Or eat 'special' foods. Just eat as well as you can reasonable afford & things you enjoy. (The scales will tell you if you are still eating too much.)
- No need to spend a lot of money. Cheap veg (of any kind) and salads are great. (I love baked potatoes with baked beans & tinned tuna salad ...2 separate meals.)
- If your weight is NOT going down after a few days, then you are probably still eating too much. (So eat less.)
- Once you DO see weight going down, you will have probably understood what works, so continue doing it.
- When the weight is NOT going down, you do need to eat less, to re-start the weight loss.
- Obviously, don't get carried away to the point of anorexia, but there are lot more people in the UK who are damaging their health and happiness by being over-fat than there are those in danger of anorexia. So embrace intermittent hunger & get rid of any excess fat. Try to be alert for any signs that could be getting too obsessed, to the point of heading towards anorexia.
- Mild exercise is really good (eg walking/stairs) but extreme exercise can be counter-productive. (Can makes you more hungry and/or make you feel more entitled to eat something calorific!)
- Keep using a full-length mirror to let you know when you have reached where you want to be. Then maintain that weight ... by using bathroom scales regularly and visual checks.
- In my case, if my weight goes up by a few kgs, I tend to try to eat less until I am back down at my ideal weight.
- When I 'free eat' (eg on hols) I often gain weight as I relax & I might be eating more than usual, as other people usually have 2 meals a day rather than one like me. This is fine. I am not obsessive. I just cut back immediately after the hols. But it's good not to go over-board on hols as it might undo a lot of self control which you need to stay slim.
- Make staying slim a way of life. (No crash diets ... just find where out how much you can eat and stick with that for life.)
- Accept you might not be able to eat the same things/amounts as some other people if you want to be/stay slim.

Hope my thoughts/experiences can help someone. (But there are many ways to successfully lose weight I am sure! So each to his/her own!)

BunFagFreddie Tue 15-Jan-13 18:06:40

I've found the most effective thing is to think in terms of body composition and not weight. A thin person can have little muscle mass and too much visceral fat around their internal organs, which can cause insulin resistance and diabetes etc. They may appear to be slim, but they aren't healthy.

On the other hand, if you chuck out the scales and concentrate on building lean muscle mass and losing fat, you will be much fitter. You will also beb more toned and shapely and will look much better. You do this with resistance training and high intensity interval training, there's no point in mucking about with jogging and the like!

This will crank your metabolism right up and you can eat more of what you fancy, without gaining weight. Within reason, of course.

Itsaboatjack Tue 15-Jan-13 21:12:41

Jeez riceburner I was with you until about half way down when you said only have one meal a day. That's seems a bit extrem. I'm not against IM, but the 5/2 way seems more reasonable than only having one meal a day. That would have to be one hell of a meal to contain enough calories to fuel you properly!

TalkinPeace2 Tue 15-Jan-13 22:35:20

One meal a day is VERY common on a worldwide basis
I tend to have one small and one medium meal a day (and of couse just the one small one on fast days)

CoteDAzur Wed 16-Jan-13 07:33:00

Yes, in places where poverty and malnutrition are also very common.

CoteDAzur Wed 16-Jan-13 07:38:42

That criticism of Rebecca Adlington's diet is actually quite funny in parts.

Who knew that a cheese, tomato, and ham sandwich could lead to "fuzzy thinking"? Now I understand DH better smile

PessaryPam Wed 16-Jan-13 07:47:47

I hate diets, I have just completed a week of average 550 cals and I have lost one pound. I have been to the gym every soddiing day bar Sunday and have completed 4 gruelling walks. Bah!!!!

EarnestDullard Wed 16-Jan-13 09:04:16

Really Pessary? On 550 cals a day (unless you've been advised by a medical professional) I'd think your metabolism would slow down to a stop, especially if you're exercising as well. Double that at least and give it a couple more weeks, then you should see results.

PostBellumBugsy Wed 16-Jan-13 09:19:21

Worra, of course people have always had hormones - what they haven't had is tonnes & tonnes of cheap sugars & refined carbohydrate to eat.

There was research done about the Pima Indians early twentieth century to try and understand how they had gone from being a healthy, lean population to very unhealthy & fat. Turned out that once they had all been herded into a reservation and could no longer hunt to nourish themselves, they also started to receive government rations of flour, sugar, coffee & some tinned foods. All of a sudden they got fat & malnourished, even though alot of them were involved in hard manual labour.

The point here is that our bodies were never designed to cope with the level of sugars & carbohydrates that we ingest nowadays. Our bodies have developed over hundreds and thousands of years & for the majority of that period we ate animals/fish and fruits, seeds, grains, leaves & tubers etc when they were available - which would have been for fairly short periods of the year. The most nourishing source of food was from animals & fish.

So, that is what our digestion & hormones have had hundreds of thousands of years to learn to cope with. It is only in the last 1000 years that modern agriculture & farming has really taken off & it is only in the last 100 years that industrial farming has become available, making wheat & sugar as cheap as they now are. If you look at statistics the consumption of sugars, high fructose corn syrup & wheat based products has trebled or more in that period!

This is why we create the hormonal disorder that leads to over storing fat. We chuck out bucket loads of insulin to try and keep our blood sugar stable every time we eat all these sugars & carbs & insulin is the primary fat storing hormone/chemical in the body - so - we get fat!!!

RiceBurner Wed 16-Jan-13 09:26:45

Hi itsaboatjack,

- I prefer to eat well (have a good amount & feel full) once a day rather than to have several mini-meals where I feel only half-satisifed
- obviously, what I eat (even if only 1 meal a day) is quite enough for me as I feel/look fine/healthy.
- people have been brainwashed into thinking 3 meals a day is 'normal', but I don't think it has been normal throughout our (long) evolution process?
- a lot of people are shocked when I say I only eat (properly) once a day in the evening
- I reckon that we just need enough calories to keep us going, and number of meals is irrelevant
- calorie intake can be averaged out per day or even per week?
- if someone is very physically active (sports or work) they probably will need to feed more often than once a day
- I do eat bfast or lunch if on a hiking hol or something like that where I am using more energy than usual
- most people eat too much/wrong sort of food hence they have weight/fat issues
- we shouldn't measure our eating compared to what other people are doing, as each of us needs a different amount of food. And some of us need/like different types of foods.
- I wish people would try not to see one meal a day as weird? (For many people it is fine as a strategy.)
- if I ate 3 times a day, (while not being very physically active), I think I would not be able to happily keep slim. (I am 55.)
- I find eating once a day (ie saving up my calories to the end of the day) really works for me (after many years of struggling), so might work for others? Maybe cos I am a night person/not a morning person?
- I think it doesn't matter how many times a day you eat as long as total is OK.
- for me, each "eating event" (ie meal) is a temptation to over-eat, hence waiting till evening to eat means there's only one event to control.
- one (good) meal a day means I feel I deserve my meal and I really enjoy it.
- enjoyment when you eat I feel is quite important, otherwise you will feel deprived/unhappy and this can make self-control harder
- I can eat anything I like in the evenings but I generally choose healthy things
- I never feel deprived
- I enjoy the feeling of (almost) real hunger before I eat
- I hate meeting people "for lunch" if they will badger me to eat (with them) for social reasons, even if I am not hungry
- hardly anyone in the UK (including me) knows what "real hunger" feels like? (We generally only ever feel "peckish"?)
- eating when it's not necessary is why most of us are fat?
- like smoking and drinking, I think we should each be free to decide when and what to eat, ie not have to eat for social reasons/not to offend or make others feel awkward
-some foods are quite addictive (eg crisps, choc, fresh bread?) so better avoided
- I have fruit or a small portion of protein as a day-time snack (if needed) which at least is good for the body
-drinking tea/coffee (with milk) throughout the day definitely helps to stave off hunger until my meal time.

Has anyone else ever tried this way of eating/getting and staying slim & healthy? <am curious now>

For me, this way of eating has just evolved. It works well for me, so I have just stuck with it.

I know that one meal a day might sound harsh or controversial, so I am wary of telling people in RL! (They generally think I am very hard on myself, but it's honestly just the easiest way for me.)

Maybe one meal a day can work for others as well as it works for me? (Might not work for "morning" people, or people who are very physically active.)

The key question is "do you want to feel full/satisfied" once a day, (and a bit hungry the rest of the day), or "can you live with never feeling full/satisfed" in order to eat more often/avoid feeling a bit hungry during the day?

starshaker Wed 16-Jan-13 09:48:23

I stuck to 1200-1300 cals this week, ran about after the kids, walked the dog, walked to school and ive put on 1lb. Im seriously pissed off

RiceBurner Wed 16-Jan-13 09:56:51

Hi starshaker,

- maybe you are under-estimating the calories?
- have you tried increasing your fibre?
- don't give up!
- just eat a bit less each day, until the weight loss begins?

Best of luck!

WorraLiberty Wed 16-Jan-13 10:02:05

starshaker walking isn't a great way of losing weight. It sounds as though you need a much more vigorous work-out.

Do you have/can you get a Wii Fit? It's a great way to exercise and a lot of fun too.

PostBellumBugsy Wed 16-Jan-13 10:07:22

starshaker - don't starve yourself any further - head over to the low carb threads & you can lose weight & still eat plenty of food.

starshaker Wed 16-Jan-13 10:09:57

If im under estimating the calories then i cant see how i can do it any differently since i weigh everything.
Maybe my only option is to just stop eating anything since i am eating what i know is healthy but its not working.

WorraLiberty Wed 16-Jan-13 10:11:20

Exercise! Seriously, it sounds as though you need to stop viewing simply walking as a way to lose weight.

2rebecca Wed 16-Jan-13 10:16:24

I'd reduce the portions, make sure your drinks aren't high in calories (most alcoholic drinks are, change to water, tea and coffee with small amounts of fruit juice.). Walking doesn't burn many calories, it burns more than sitting down but not as much as many other forms and some dogs are very dithery and you'd be faster without them.
If you exercise enough and eat little enough you will lose weight but I agree with others that you have to get used to feeling a bit hungry initially.

BoulevardOfBrokenSleep Wed 16-Jan-13 10:18:31

How long have you been on the diet for?
Have you lost weight already, and you've stopped, or did you never lose?
And are you actually overweight?!

Might be worth having a look at the eat more weigh less thread

RiceBurner Wed 16-Jan-13 10:19:18

Change what sort of things you are eating?
Are you feeling quite hungry b4 you sit down to eat?
Increase your fibre!
Eat real food/lots of veg.
Avoid bfast cereals - porridge or a boiled egg better if you (must) have bfast.
Lots of tea and/or coffee to help you avoid snacks!

MrsHoarder Wed 16-Jan-13 10:20:51

I can see RiceBurner's point. When not bfing (eating more at every meal atm else I feel faint) I eat a small light breakfast (like fruit and yogurt), a small light lunch (this one is often a sandwich or some salad and cheese) and a dinner which is bigger than the two of them put together. So I only have one "meal" and two "large snacks" as well as all the other snacks I scoff when not thinking.

WheelybodsDH Wed 16-Jan-13 10:24:13

Hi, It is really that simple I have lost 5 stone in the last 18 months by doing exactly that. I excercises for 30mins 5 times a week and I have smaller portions of food, I still eat the unhealthy stuff I just eat a lot less of it :-).

One thing I would say though is to not be fixated on weight alone, as you are exercising more you end up increasing muscle mass, and as muscle weighs more than fat you may not see much of a difference in weight, however you will notice a difference in the mirror. Also the more muscle you gain the more calories you actually burn whilst resting :-), I also found if I had something to eat when I got up (even just a smoothie) it actually made me start to feel hungry throughout the day so it did kick start my metabolism.

starshaker Wed 16-Jan-13 10:31:07

I dont drink alcohol, im 7 stone over weight, my dog is not dithery. Hes a cocker spaniel who is crazy. I am trying to eat lots of veg like in soups. Since last week i now cut out breakfast. U used to snack a lot and now i dont snack at all. I dont drink coffee or tea anymore. Ive even started just eating soup for the last few days.

I have been on this diet for 3 weeks now and have put on 1lb

2rebecca Wed 16-Jan-13 10:35:01

To me a crazy dog is a dithery dog as it sounds as though it will dart off in all directions and not just go for a brisk long walk, in the direction you want to go in for at least 30 minutes.

RiceBurner Wed 16-Jan-13 10:38:30

What do you drink, if no tea/coffee? Just water?

starshaker Wed 16-Jan-13 10:48:04

i drink water mostly, sometimes fresh fruit juice but mostly water. My dog gets off lead once we are at the castle. Thats 2 miles walk and he is very eager to get there

PessaryPam Wed 16-Jan-13 10:57:46

Star have you tried logging all you eat and drink for a week? You need to weigh and record everything carefully, it could be a portion size issue.

PostBellumBugsy is making a lot of sense here - there is absolutely no need to always be a bit hungry, nor to dedicate your life to exercise, in order to lose weight. I'm down 56 lbs/4 stone (with 17 lbs to go) since August - and I've been indulging my inner foodie by eating loads of good foods like steak, cheese, eggs etc. - yep, I'm low carbing. I eat plenty of green leafy vegetables, some tomatoes, peppers, mushrooms, onions etc. - probably more veggies than I ever ate when not trying to lose weight. My energy levels are up, I'm sleeping well, and I'm really enjoying my food.

I have, in the past, lost weight by eating low cal and low fat, and taking a lot of exercise. It made me miserable, and I felt deprived. It wasn't something I could sustain for life (there is no way I want to be hungry every day!). 30 years on, I can still tell you the calorific value of loads of foods off the top of my head - argh! My current way of eating doesn't require me to count anything and I'm happy with that.

Right now, I've gone back to basics for a couple of weeks (doing the low carb bootcamp on here) - but generally I find I can manage a few alcoholic drinks a week, include alcohol in cooking (coq au vin, chicken chasseur, venison with a red wine and berry sauce), have some fruit (berries, a bit of orange juice and zest in a duck á l'orange for example) - and still, the weight comes off. It's the perfect way of eating for a committed foodie like me smile I have duck eggs and bacon most days for breakfast. This makes me happy.

I don't 'exercise' as such - but I'm active - I have dogs that need walking, I have a bike I enjoy going out on, I have a veggie garden that needs digging over! My way of eating and moving fits into my life - and that's how it should be - you have to find something you can sustain for the long term, because there's not a diet on earth that works when you're not actually on it - any changes have to be for life, not just until you reach your target, else if you return to your previous way of eating, the weight will creep back on.

Just wanted to tell people that you do NOT have to suffer to lose weight, it's possible to enjoy the process - I just wish I'd known that when I was in my 20s, not my 50s - life would have been so much easier!

WorraLiberty Wed 16-Jan-13 10:59:37

Would you not even consider a proper fat burning work-out with a Wii Fit or a DVD at home?

PessaryPam Wed 16-Jan-13 11:05:06

EarnestDullard Really Pessary? On 550 cals a day (unless you've been advised by a medical professional) I'd think your metabolism would slow down to a stop, especially if you're exercising as well. Double that at least and give it a couple more weeks, then you should see results.

That was Net calories, my actual intake before subtracting the exercise is 1200. I am low carbing which normally works well for me. I think I have just put on a mass of muscle and I hope to see a better drop next week. If not I will up my food levels as suggested.

BoulevardOfBrokenSleep Wed 16-Jan-13 11:11:53

OK, so I'm going to be controversial here and say you might not be eating enough just to confuse the issue grin

Perhaps you've shocked your body into starvation mode? Talked about on the Eat More Weigh Less thread linked to above.
Either that or you're retaining water and are about to spend a day weeing and be 3 pounds lighter at the end of it (this has seriously happened to me!)

Worra - I have Wii Fit and don't find it's very good exercise really, none of the cardio is very challenging, and the 'muscle' exercises are a bit irritating because you can't put together a workout and have to pause between each one to select the next. Something like Wii Zumba, now, that's bloody lethal!

There is a good blog here on why listening to your body doesn't always work.

WheelybodsDH Wed 16-Jan-13 11:24:02

For anyone that has a PS3 I can't recommend Sports Active2 enough, that's the "game" I used to lose weight :-)

CoteDAzur Wed 16-Jan-13 11:40:51

"you have to find something you can sustain for the long term, because there's not a diet on earth that works when you're not actually on it"

This is the best advice I've seen on weight loss threads.

YouBrokeMySmoulder Wed 16-Jan-13 11:53:40

I find eating low calorie for a few days then having a day where you eat what you want much better than low calorie all the time as your body doesnt go into conservation mode - do the Shred as well and it will come off.

eightytwenty Wed 16-Jan-13 17:35:50

Been lurking but wanted to reply to star that wl is not always linear/ immediate. 1lb gain this could could be linked to previous week's consumption, totm, daily fluctuation. Keep going. Stay focussed. It will work if you do.

starshaker Wed 16-Jan-13 19:20:23

My mum was saying the same about totm. Im 2 weeks late so that might be it. Feel like its trying to arrive cos im in a lot of pain

MadBusLady Thu 17-Jan-13 07:57:10

Star Having heard your figures, if they are correct and you are not misjudging portion size or disregarding cheats I'd definitely say get over to the low carb bootcamp thread. It will fall off. Then you can decide to what extent you want to reintroduce foods, what exercise you want to do etc. You sound so (understandably) demoralised at the moment that I'm not sure all this advice to become even more ascetic than you are being is going to work.

MadBusLady Thu 17-Jan-13 07:59:01

Another thing, have you tried taking your waste measurement? Only works if you knew what it was before you started, but I think for some people fat loss shows in cm before it shows in lbs IYSWIM.

starshaker Thu 17-Jan-13 08:15:13

I have been measuring and have lost a couple of inches off my chest, waist and hips.

MadBusLady Thu 17-Jan-13 08:36:00

Oh that sounds better! Maybe you'll drop a load of weight in week 4 then.

starshaker Thu 17-Jan-13 09:00:23

Yeah maybe when my period finally arrives

BoulevardOfBrokenSleep Thu 17-Jan-13 09:11:08

Er, of course if you were pregnant that would make it hard to lose weight! But 'a lot of pain' doesn't sound good, maybe a trip to the GP might be in order if still no period?

And I've just remembered that if your BMI is over 30, in most areas your GP can refer you to some sort of weight loss programme or subsidised gym or something - though some of these are falling victim to the cuts.
Might be worth checking out?

starshaker Thu 17-Jan-13 09:17:40

Deff not pregnant, that would require sex and that's not happened in over 2 years. That scheme is only available in England and im in scotland. Not that i can go to classes with the twins. Thats why i do tesco online. The twins start nursery in August so things will be much easier then but i dont want to be fat anymore (not that i ever did).
I was overweight after i had the twins but after i stopped smoking i put on 3 stone very quickly. Now im confident im not going to smoke anymore i need to concentrate on losing weight

RiceBurner Thu 17-Jan-13 11:23:39

- Wishing you well/strength, as it's such hard going for you at the moment!

- Any reason why you never drink hot tea/coffee? (Liquids all thru the day are helpful, so hope you drink quite a lot of water?)

- Have you tried drinking hot water? Maybe with lemon? (Some people really like it.) Or herbal tea? I so enjoy my hot drinks in this cold weather that I can't imagine how you can go all day without! (But I guess we are all different?)

- Once you start losing weight, it should get a bit easier to push on. Keep cutting back on what you eat each week, (esp on carbs), until you start to see some results.

- Get lots of sleep, (if you can with twins!), & try to keep your morale up, as feeling negative/tired often leads to seeking comfort from (unnecessary) food.

- Well done on giving up smoking ... as this shows you have the necessary will-power to get slim. (You just need to find the best method now, one which will work for you long-term.)

starshaker Thu 17-Jan-13 11:42:34

I used to be a complete coffee addict but when i quit smoking drinking coffee made me want a cig so i stopped drinking it so much. I do have a coffee if im out but mostly drink water and fruit juice
Im cutting my calories to 1000 to see if that helps

RiceBurner Thu 17-Jan-13 12:15:45

Watch out re fruit juice! (Contains fructose ie sugar! Not good for weight loss!)

An apple or an orange a day would be much better for you than even a small amount of fruit juice, if you are worried about getting enough vit C. (Cos the natural sugars are mixed with fibre when you consume them.)

So I would completely stop the fruit juice, if I were you, and stick to water. Or try hot tea? (Normal tea with milk or herbal without milk?)

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Thu 17-Jan-13 12:36:40

Another vote for watching the fruit juice - its well over 100 Cals for a glass.

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