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SQUEUE Posts: 3
9/17/12 9:19 A

This is so true. I am new to "Spark" and I am so impressed with their food tracker. I've done weight watchers before but never really got the connection with nutrition. A point was a point and I lost some weight but stopped and then gained it back. I challenge myself to meet the recommended levels for potassium, calcium and magnesium. So far, I'm not getting there but I'm getting closer! The calories that I have been allotted seems really high but I am still losing weight and have enjoyed that extra room for unexpected sinful snacks such as birthday cake at work.

I am also delighted to read the posts and suggestions.

Thank you!

HAFNERBG SparkPoints: (138)
Fitness Minutes: (390)
Posts: 4
9/17/12 8:29 A

Thanks for your help Catherine! No post is too lengthy if it helps someone get beyond their NEED for food. I have to keep telling myself that the food is to sustain me.....not to entertain me.

HAFNERBG SparkPoints: (138)
Fitness Minutes: (390)
Posts: 4
9/17/12 8:27 A

Thanks so much for some very helpful hints. I've finally convinced myself that I CAN NOT have potato chips in the house because I have no will power if there is a bag in the house. One open bag of chips equals one feeding frenzy.

I now have pretzels, apples, melon, salad, radishes, carrots, etc. in my fridge and all clean and ready for munching any time.

Together......we can do this!

NANCYPAT1 Posts: 47,334
9/17/12 6:54 A

I have a lot of weight left to lose and am doing okay for a couple of main reasons. First, eating fewer calories is NOT necessarily about eating LESS food - choose things that are high in fiber, lower in calories and fat, and that have LOTS of nutrients. Also, I started slowly by deciding that going from 3000 or more calories to 1500 or 1200 was a bit unrealistic, so I went to 2500, then 2000, then 1500. It is NOT critical that (especially when you have quite a bit of weight to lose) you drop really quickly and/or all the way to your eventual calorie range. I found that I could do this without ever feeling HUNGRY. Sometimes I wanted more or different foods but very rarely did I actually feel hungry. I did not want to lose too quickly because feeling deprived and/or hungry leads ME to going back to old habits.

That said, the other thing that really helps ME is to have a PLAN and to outwit the problem areas. I often would get hungry at school, on my way home from work, after a session of exercise - so I have healthy snacks in my car, gym bag, desk at school, purse - so the temptation to stop and get fast food, candy bars, etc. that I really don't want but that are convenient when I am hungry is reduced to almost ZERO.

CATHERINELARK SparkPoints: (282)
Fitness Minutes: (0)
Posts: 8
9/15/12 10:56 A

Hi, I just started and I am no expert at this either. First, I do not know how much you have to lose, or how long you have been at this diet. For instance, I went from eating maybe 3,000 calories a day (I never counted) to eating 1,500. That is quite an adjustment for my body to make. I am losing weight quite quickly, but I am terribly hungry too. I do not know how long the body takes to adjust to the lowered food amount, but it eventually does. Exercise tends to act as an endorphin raising thing. This brain chemical "makes you happy," and is a natural anti- depressant.

The "control" issue is psychological. It is in your brain and has nothing to do with your actual physical needs. I am a person who used to be a smoker-- for 20 years no less-- and I quit, 12 years ago. I remember a lot about psychological addiction and also avoiding the impulse to charge right in there and do what you said you would never again do.

Basically, it is a matter of diverting your attention for the 2-3 minutes that you yearn for that ice cream sundae, or what ever you have an eye for. When you quit smoking, you learn that if you can control the impulse (the thing that tells you you really, really want that thing, even though you know you don't) for a minute or two, you are usually okay.

Often to control the impulse to eat, I go to You Tube and watch videos about overweight people getting bariatric surgery. That is usually enough to keep me "good" for 8 hours or so. Remembering that my overweight family members actually died or suffered greatly due to obesity also really helps. It is a way to put an image in my mind that stops me from thinking about food.

I also remember that despite how good food tastes, it is not there for the taste. Food keeps me alive and functioning, and taste is just a plus. Taste, in nature is there to check for poison, and to lure animals like ourselves into eating it. Changing your relationship to food-- seeing it as something you actually need only small amounts of, is very helpful. Work at trying to optimize nutritional value, as well as satiation in the small amounts of calories you are on. Large servings of vegetables like kale really helps to fill you up because of large fiber content. Munching on carrots and celery all day really helps keep you satisfied too. Starving until the meal will make you over eat. By eating snacks of celery or another very low calorie food, you basically are fed before going into the grocery store in a sense.

Stay away from second helpings!

Sorry for the length of the post.
Hope this helps.

Edited by: CATHERINELARK at: 9/15/2012 (10:59)
HAFNERBG SparkPoints: (138)
Fitness Minutes: (390)
Posts: 4
9/15/12 7:37 A

How do you stay motivated when it seems everything in you life is going wrong? Food seems to be the only thing that I have control over right now......am I'm losing the battle!

I'm doing well with the exercise part of the program (walking everyday for an average of 3/4 of an hour) but I'm struggling with keeping within my calories. I keep telling myself that the second helping of food isn't going to taste any better than the first helping, but it isn't working.

Help!

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