Lasting Habits

It is usually the case that most people who lose weight gain the weight back, sometimes more. This is because your body has a set point whether you, your physician or society like it. The set point is the weight your body thinks is correct for you. Here are my research findings regarding essential changes for lasting weight loss.

An article from the Mayo Clinic entitled, Weight Loss: 6 Strategies For Success, has partly influenced my research for this article.

Your body’s set point is based on diverse factors, and one of those factors is your food habits. It doesn’t matter if you lose weight through surgery, dieting, exercise, or any other combination. Enduring weight loss is conditional upon fundamental habit modifications.

Change is problematic for us as human beings. We like acquaintance and convenience. So, we fall into habits. Falling into habits only becomes problematic when we try to make a new year’s resolution to change an entrenched habit or lose weight.

Another thing to contemplate is that downright willpower will only go so far. So, motivation fueled by willpower rather than sustainable habit changes tends to burn out. So, to keep off the lost pounds, you must replace old defective habits with new, more beneficial habits.

Some of these habits include:

  • Acknowledging that there is a difference between being satiated and stuffed. 
  • Identifying real hunger versus hunger initiated by food feelings or mental desires.
  • Being able to overcome cravings that food feelings, and moods cause. 
  • Practicing mindful eating and portion control.
  • Coping with food feelings like stress and negative emotions in a healthy way.

To be satiated is to be fully satisfied. It is not to gorge or stuff. So there is a vast difference here.

As kids, many of us were taught to clean our plates. To begin with, it was okay if an adult put too much on the plate. Then, we were expected to clean the plate. It was an acceptable option, but this taught many of us that full meant overfull or that we had an obligation to eat.

Understand that this is not true. It’s simply an unintentional consequence. The fact is, you are under no obligation to clean your plate. This includes when you go to a restaurant or a family dinner. Eat until you are satisfied, not until you are full.

If you eat until you are full, you will often feel overfull and uncomfortable later. Recall that it takes time for all of your food to get to your stomach, and some foods expand in the stomach.

Real Hunger versus Mental Desire

We eat for many reasons. Using food as a fuel source is only one reason we eat. Other reasons include cultural aspects and socializing. Weddings are one situation where we eat as part of a social construct derived from a cultural perspective.

We also eat when stressed, upset, excited, or celebrating. Hunger is not just about a physical need to fuel your body.

To that end, it is important to note that it’s completely okay to indulge now and then and eat in these social, cultural, or emotional situations. The key is understanding why you’re eating and healthily addressing that reason.

Identify your food feelings and situational eating habits so that you can make sound choices about when to eat and when not to. Of course, choosing to eat is a good thing. However, mindlessly eating without understanding why you’re eating or hungry is a dysfunctional habit you must trade off for lasting weight loss.

Also, coping with the positive or negative emotions that motivate you to eat when you’re not physically hungry will go a long way here because it will give you a baseline of emotions you can learn to manage healthier.

Intake Monitoring

Monitoring your food intake doesn’t mean obsessively counting calories, carbs, or points. Instead, it means focusing on portion control and practicing mindful eating.

Some restaurants serve oversized portions that nobody needs. Dinner plates designed and sold today are larger than they need to be. Since we have overly large plates and restaurants spoil us, we tend to eat more in one sitting than we need. It’s called portion distortion, and it’s worth investigating. Getting into the habit of being mindful of what and how much you eat is another supportive habit for lasting weight loss.

Mindsets

For many of us, weight loss is a physical thing. But, unfortunately, we want to take the shortcut or have the quick answer, so we resort to fad and starvation diets to lose weight without addressing the mental aspects of our set points.Habits must be addressed and permanently altered for weight loss to stick. You would be doing a great job of losing all that weight. But if you go back to eating a bag of processed chips with saturated fat in front of your television daily, the weight will return.


Categories of My Other Research Blogs

Weight Loss Mindset

The Sugar Habit

Book Summary: Superfoods HealthStyle

Presenting Superfoods

Superfoods Benefits

Superfoods Smoothies

Healthy Diets

Keto Diets


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Jeff Moji

Hi there. I'm Jeff Moji, an engineer, information technologist, and health enthusiast. I have set up this website to explore the best ways to keep fit and healthy as I grow older during this pandemic-prone time. Please keep in touch so we can exchange information and spur one another on.

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