I have lost over 200 pounds and have maintained my current weight for the past 10 years. If you need to lose 20 pounds or 200 pounds this formula worked for me and others. Success requires a desire for change, a little planning, preparation and being consistent. Diets do not work. You need to be able to adopt a lifestyle that gives you flexibility and you can be happy with forever.
If you are starting a diet or making changes to your lifestyle, always consult with your doctor before beginning the new routine.
Rules of safe weight loss and weight management.
1.) Never eat less than 1200 calories per day unless you are under the supervision of a qualified health professional.
2.) The minimum goal should be a calorie deficit of 500 calories per day. This should create 1 pound of fat loss per week. Never aim to lose more than 2 pounds per week.
3.) Eat 6 times per day, 3 snacks and 3 meals.
4.) Crowd out the unhealthy foods in your life by eating the healthy nutritious ones first. If you add 2 servings of fruits and 3 or more servings of veggies to your daily diet routine, you are not going to have room for the unhealthy foods. In addition, it will gradually get rid of your cravings. Do not start out trying to eat like me. Start by adding more vegetables and healthy foods to your daily routine. Eventually the bad foods will disappear if you make the choice to follow this guide.
5.) Know your energy requirements. If you get rid of the majority of processed and refined foods in your diet you do not need to to worry about counting calories. However if you are still consuming processed foods then it is important to not consume more than you burn. This is critical!
6.) Exercise at least 6 days per week. I highly recommend multiple exercise per day. Example: if your goal is 1 hour daily, you can split the 1 hour into two 30 minute sessions. This will keep you metabolism elevated causing greater fat burn for a longer period in the day. This facilitates faster and greater weight loss. Do different types of exercise: interval, aerobic and strength training. If you are just beginning an exercise program, consult with an exercise professional to insure your safety. Do not think that you can lose weight and then keep it off with out exercising. It will not happen. Plus the whole idea of losing weight is to improve your health. Exercise partnered with a nutritious dietary routine builds health
7.) Drink at least 1/2 your weight in ounces of water per day. If you weight 200 lbs, you need at least 100 ounces of water per day. Water is required in the metabolic pathway to burn fat and to create energy. A 2% drop in body hydration can cause up to a 30% drop in available energy.
8.) Get plenty of rest and relaxation. A lack of sleep and mismanaged stress will stop weight loss and even cause weight gain. Aim for 7 to 8 hours of sound sleep per night. Practice stress reducing methods, get into a great book, get a massage, listen to soft music etc…. Turn your problems over to God.
9.) Make vegetative foods the majority of your food choices. They are low in calories, they alkaline the body, they cleanse the body, they help control blood sugar levels and cholesterol levels and they offer a wide array of nutrients that promote health.
10.) Limit your intake of simple carbohydrates. Simple carbohydrates promote cravings by causing blood sugar spikes. Eat lower glycemic foods. This does not mean you should eat a high protein diet. Select complex carbohydrates. Your brain and central nervous system (CNS) only burn glucose (sugar) for fuel. The average person needs 100 to 125 grams of carbohydrates to fuel the brain and CNS. Sugar, glucose and glycogen (stored glucose) are normally made from dietary carbohydrates. However up to 57% of protein can be converted to blood sugar when needed.
11.) Quit smoking, limit the intake of caffeine and alcohol and watch your salt intake.
12.) Do not weigh yourself more than once every 2 weeks. The best time to weigh is first thing in the morning upon waking and after you go to the bathroom. Weigh the same time each day. Your weight is just a by-product of your particular lifestyle. Change your lifestyle and your weight will change.
13) Never deprive yourself of any food. If you want it, eat it. Just don’t go crazy and eat the whole container of Oreo’s. When this happens, give your self credit for having the will power to control the amount you ate. At the next snack or meal time exercise control and make healthy selections.
14.) Keep a food journal.
My Diet Selections
I am a flexitarian. That means I eat a vegetarian diet. However, I occasionally feel a need for animal protein. I typically go 1 to 2 weeks before I have that craving for salmon or chicken. I do not eat red meat, pork or dairy. Studies show a primarily vegetarian diet promotes better health by reducing the risk of major diseases and health conditions.
At least 75% of my diet is raw vegetables. Raw vegetables provide a wide array of vitamins, minerals, enzymes, antioxidants and phytonutrients. When vegetables are cooked some of the vitamins are destroyed and all the enzymes are killed. However you do need some cooked vegetables. Leafy green vegetables contain a compound called oxalic acid. Oxalic acid binds with some minerals and interferes with their absorption. Cooking neutralizes most of the oxalic acid allowing more mineral absorption. Carrots provide more bio-available beta carotene when cooked. Tomatoes give more lycopene when cooked. A good ratio is 75% raw and 25% cooked.
If I eat out, I make wise selections and ask for variations on the menu. Most restaurants will be happy to make changes for you. For example; when ordering a salad, ask them to leave off the honey or sugar glazed pecans and dried fruit, save a couple of hundred calories, order the dressing on the side and dip your fork in the dressing before picking up the bite, you will use less dressing this way.
Understanding your calorie requirements is critical to weight loss and weight management. Read this blog to better understand your energy budget. As you lose weight you will need to adjust your calorie intake.
Understanding How Much of What to Eat
Vegetables; you can eat these in unlimited amounts, aim for at least 5 servings daily. Eat raw, steamed, grilled, sautéed or broiled. Do not fry
Serving sizes; Cooked vegetables 1/2 cup, Chopped, raw vegetables 1/2 cup, Raw, leafy vegetables 1 cup, Vegetable juice 3/4 cup
- Bell peppers
- Brussels sprouts
- Collard greens
- Cayenne Pepper
- Fennel bulb
- Green beans
- Green peas
- Mushrooms, Crimini
- Mushrooms, Shiitake
- Mushrooms, Portobello
- Mustard greens
- Romaine lettuce
- Sea vegetables
- Squash, summer; yellow, zucchini
- Squash, winter; butternut, spaghetti, delicate, sweet dumpling
- Sugar Snap Peas
- Swiss chard
- Tomato, fresh
- Turnip Greens
Root Vegetables (for potatoes and yams the total should not exceed 2 servings total combined per week)
- Beets up to 1 cup per day
- Carrots up to 1 cup per day
- Potatoes 1 medium (5”) baked per week
- Sweet potato, with skin 2 medium (5”) baked per week
- Yam 2 medium (5”) baked per week
Fish & Seafood 1 serving 3 times per week. Prepare by grilling, baking and broiling. Do not fry.
Serving size is 4 ounces
Fruits 3 servings per day and only low sugar fruits (berries, green apples, peaches pears and plums), a serving is 1 medium fruit and ½ cup juice. Dried fruit is coated with sugar so avoid it. Avoid fruit juices, they are also very high in sugar content.
- Green Apple
- Banana select with green tips and bright yellow skin without spots
- Kiwi fruit
- Lemon and Limes
- Pear, Bartlett
- Raisins high in sugar
Low Fat Dairy I do not recommend dairy products. If you must have them, goat or sheep is a better choice. I use almond breeze sugar free almond milk and rice cheeses.
Eggs, hen If you have high cholesterol limit to 1 per week otherwise 1 per day is ok. Eggs should be poached, scrambled or boiled, not fried. Select free range, organic eggs.
Beans & Legumes; eat what you want, just do not go over your daily calorie limit
Serving size is 1 cup cooked
- Black beans
- Dried peas
- Garbanzo beans
- Kidney beans
- Lima beans
- Navy beans
- Pinto beans
Poultry & Lean Meats – limit to 4 ounces per serving, 3 times per week. 4 ounces is about the size of a deck of cards. I do not recommend eating red meats or pork, however, if you do, limit your intake to 1 serving per week. Prepare by grilling, baking or broiling. Do not fry.
- Chicken; grill, bake or broil the breast without the skin
- Turkey, roast; grill, bake or broil the breast without the skin
- Venison, roast, grill, broil or bake
Nuts & Seeds Limit to 1 to 2 ounces per day due to high calorie content. Studies show people who consume 1 oz. of nuts daily lose weight and keep it off. In addition, they may cut their risk of heart disease by up to 45%. Nuts and nut butters are very healthy for us.
- Chia seeds
- Olive oil
- Pumpkin seeds
- Sesame seeds
- Sunflower seeds
Grains Limit to 2 servings per day. Grains raise blood sugar and insulin levels quickly creating cravings and weight gain. Serving sizes; I don’t recommend eating bread except only occasionally and the only bread I recommend is Ezekiel Bread. However it does contain gluten.
- Bread 1 slice
- Tortilla, roll, or muffin 1
- Bagel, English muffin or hamburger bun ½
- Brown rice, pasta, oatmeal, cooked cereal, 1/2 cup
- Ready-to-eat cereal 1 ounce (flakes or round)
- Pancake, waffle 1 (4″ diameter)
Grain choices; all of these are gluten free Go grain free if you can!
I use olive oil and balsamic vinegar; Good Seasons Balsamic with olive oil or Good Seasons Greek Vinaigrette; Serving Size 2 Tablespoons, serve on side of plate, dip fork into dressing, then into bite of salad.
I use and recommend Smart Balance Lite Original with Flax. It’s 50 calories per serving, 1.5 grams of saturated fat and zero cholesterol and taste like butter.
Spices & Herbs; herbs are naturally very high in antioxidant power
- Black pepper
- Cayenne pepper
- Chili Pepper, Red, dried
- Cinnamon, ground
- Coriander seeds
- Cumin seeds
- Dill weed, dried
- Mustard seeds
- Peppermint leaves, fresh
- Thyme, ground
- Turmeric, ground
Dark Chocolate; I eat dark chocolate every day. Only 100% dark raw chocolate is recommended. Limit to 1.5 ounces per day. Dark Chocolate has the highest antioxidant value of any food.
Natural Sweeteners; Serving Size 1 Tablespoon
Use these sparingly if diabetic;
- Blackstrap molasses a good source of B6, iron, calcium, potassium and magnesium
- Evaporated Organic Cane juice
- Honey; if possible, get local raw, unpasteurized and unfiltered honey, it will have more nutritional value.
- Maple syrup
Use as needed
- Stevia; this is my choice of sweetener. Truvia is the best commercial choice.
- Monk fruit is another of my favorites. Other
- Green tea Cold Brew your own for more antioxidant power.
Moderation is the key in your diet. If you want something, eat it but try to limit the amount. Consistency is the other very important factor. If you eat healthy 80% of the time, you will give your body the opportunity to build health. We are what we eat. Eat junk and have a junk body, eat healthy and have a healthy body!
Wally Bishop C.N.C.
The contents of this blog is not and should not be considered medical advice. This blog is for informational purposes only. Always consult with your doctor before making any dietary or lifestyle changes. Never quit taking prescription medications unless advised to do so by your doctor.
- Dr. Oz weight loss tips (examiner.com)
- Weight loss tips for kids (uclaislamicstudies.com)
- If You Wish To Lose Weight You May Want To Consider Metabolic Cooking (mykidcan.org)