How to stop the yo-yo diet for once and for all
Oh not again! It happened again didn’t it? You had put in all the hard work, lost weight, gained it, lost it and then went ahead and gained it all over AGAIN! And like most people I am sure you are over this exasperating cycle. Not only are you emotionally over negotiating with your scale, it’s also really not good for your body to experience such extreme weight gains and losses. Yo-yo dieting has negative effects on your body. In fact research shows that yo-yo dieting aka weight cycling as the professionals call it, proliferates metabolic hormones, ones such as insulin. In turn you start gaining weight round the middle section of your body and all these changes lead to insulin resistance as well as heart disease, diabetes and having high blood pressure. Says the author of The Pennington Plan for Weight Success, Andrea Pennington. What are yo-yo diets? Yo-yo diets are risky diets you need to steer clear from!
Research has also shown that most people who go on yo-yo diets eventually gain back all the weight and some. Remember losing weight shouldn’t be a one-time rushed job, it should be a lifestyle switch. It should be how you live, eat and support your body. Let’s look at a couple of tips you can put in place in order to stop your no-no yo-yoing shenanigans:
Make gradual changes to your diet
I get that you are motivated and excited to see changes, no one will get in the way! Some people go to bed with old habits then wake up the next morning with completely new drastic ones. Queue in random acclaimed yo-yo diet! They immediately start living of celery and cabbage and hit the gym hard (mind you the last time they went to the gym was in high school!). It’s great, I get that you want to see changes, but calm down before you hurt yourself sunshine. If you want to lose weight and enjoy it, you have to gradually make small changes. Otherwise it will get too hard too quickly and the next thing you know you are curled around a large pizza because you cannot have another boiled carrot for lunch! Remember you are not at war, take it one step at a time. You are changing habits not a postal address, give it time and you will see lasting healthier results.
Avoid yo-yo mode and keep inspired
The first few weeks are the most challenging, but keep the end goal in mind. Remember why you started this journey in the first place. Do everything you need to do in order to keep your motivation at an all-time high. If you don’t, the chances of you giving up are significantly high. Write positive affirmations around the house, read inspiring books, watch tv shows that encourage healthy living. Surround yourself with people and things that remind you that you are more than capable of losing weight in a healthy manner.
Escape the yo-yo diet consequences-Be a conscious eater
Have you ever sat down to do something then looked down at the packet of crisps you opened 5 minutes ago and it was empty! I mean done and dust! Then thought to yourself…how on earth did that happen? And you were so sure you’d leave half the packet behind. Sometimes when we are busy or stressed we turn to food. We get so busy worrying about what is in front of us that we do unconscious eating. Therefore we are unable to keep track of what we are shoving down our throats because the food is going down very quickly. Those are yo-yo dieting dangers alarms bells ringing! Avoid stress eating, come up with techniques that you can deploy when you are in that compromising situation. Distract yourself: go for a little walk or journal your thoughts; listen to music; just long enough for your stress levels to decrease.
Prepare and plan your meals
If you are hungry but you haven’t bought or prepared the right food and you will end up eating whatever you find stashed in the cupboard (yo-yo trap alert!)! Plan your meals and snacks for the week well on time, this way you eliminate eating the wrong food out of desperation.
It’s more than just the weight
Look at your weight loss as a change of lifestyle in every aspect. Instead of counting every single calorie and feeling guilty every time you eat; rather celebrate all the benefits you are seeing from losing weight. It could be that you have more energy, maybe you sleep better, or that you actually go to the gym! Acknowledge all the success around you and how your life is changing, that alone should keep you on track.
Team up with a motivated partner
This struggle is not yours alone, there a lot other people who also need to lose weight. So instead of belligerently trying to be a one man show, team up with someone and motivate each other. This act alone will lift your spirits and encourage you when it gets tough. You will be accountable to each other which ensures that you stay on track. You can swap recipes and celebrate your victories together!
Sayonara and farewell to yo-yo no-more diets!
There are of no use to you. They mess with your self-esteem; affect your metabolism and are not good for your health in general; and keep you in an emotional vicious cycle. Break free from short cut yo-yo diets. In the beginning they may seem like quick wins but in the end they are a big fat loss. Remember healthy weight loss is a lifestyle change, it’s not a once of event. Commit to it and enjoy your body. After all, how is anyone to surprise you with a dashing outfit if you keep confusing them with your weight size! If not for you, do it for the gift buyers!