What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

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Felipe
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What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by Felipe » Wed Nov 23, 2016 2:59 pm

Hello,

I've appreciated all your help in clarifying my other challenges so I'm curious for your wisdom about how to get healthy. I'm currently fluffy. At 5'11, I have a 40" relaxed waist at its widest point, weigh 207lbs. I'd like to get this down to a 31-32" waist, probably in the 150-170lb range while feeling stronger and more energetic. I have a friend who simply "honors her hunger" and it's worked well for her, I have other friends who eat very strict diets-like 18 hour fasts each day, and others who eat whatever they want and still have a 6 pack.

From everything I've read, the only consensus I've seen is that dark, leafy vegetables, cruciferous vegetables, vegetables in general (outside of the starchy vegetables like potatoes and beets) are healthy. Also, eating in moderation and mindfully seem to consistently produce benefit.

Meat, cheese, oils, grains, fruits, legumes, nuts-a toss up depending on the person.

I'm planning to focus on eating healthy as my next habit and I'm wondering how to do it. My best guess right now is to each week switch over 1 meal to a vegetable based meal. So I'll start with a vegetable smoothie (like the one's Ego makes) for breakfast. This may or may not include some flax seed oil or protein powder, I'll experiment to see how they feel.

Then I'll switch the next 2 meals over to a vegetable soup I already have-grill some garlic and onions in coconut oil, throw some water over this, then throw in broccoli, chard, bell peppers, carrots, collard greens, kale, whatever other dark veggies I have, pressure cook, then blend.

I'll have these meals ready before it's time to have them so it's the easy choice to grab them and eat healthy.

And I'm thinking 1 free meal per day-most days it'll be a social meal with people so let circumstance dictate it, but if not some avocado and bread and cheese or a burger or egg croissants, or what I'm craving, but in moderation.

How does this sound? What style of diet do you eat for health instead?

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Dragline
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by Dragline » Wed Nov 23, 2016 3:20 pm

It will probably work fine, at least initially, depending on how bad your diet is now. The worse it is right now, the better this will work. Expect to plateau and have to make additional changes as you go, but don't sweat it to start. Keep a food diary, even if its just a few notes. Some people take pictures instead. Without a decent record, its hard to make decent adjustments.

"Eat real food, mostly plants and not too much" from Michael Pollan works pretty well for most people (myself included), but you might have particular sensitivities to grains, dairy, legumes, certain meats or other things.

The main takeaway is to avoid all forms of processed foods, especially things that are commonly packaged in boxes or sealed up bags (cookies, crackers, cakes, potato chips/crisps, altered cereals, packaged meats, etc.), all fried foods and anything with added sugar or corn syrup, especially drinks. You'll also do a lot better if you don't eat out much and avoid drinking beverages with calories generally.

Drink water, starting with a full glass before every meal so you don't eat too much, too.

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daylen
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by daylen » Wed Nov 23, 2016 4:36 pm

I wouldn't worry so much what you eat but how much you eat.

There are a lot of claims out there for what is good/bad for us to eat, but the evidence is just not there. I use to think that I had some idea of what was good/bad to eat, but after actually looking at the studies done on this topic I have become much more skeptical. My skepticism extends to most claims in psychological research as well. Humans are just too complex and surrounded in too much complexity.

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Josué
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by Josué » Wed Nov 23, 2016 5:09 pm

To me low carb worked (Atkins I guess). But I read that it depends on the person... In any case I did lose about 5kg (71kg to 66kg) in 5 weeks and I still haven't gained weight since 3 months ago (at least the clothes still fit the same). The good thing is that now I know how to lose weight and whenever I feel chubbier I go back to low carb for a few days.

Lucky C
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by Lucky C » Wed Nov 23, 2016 6:04 pm

Find things that are easy to make, made from whole foods, and are satisfying so you'll be able to stick to the diet. For example:
- Roasted carrot and parsnip "fries" with a little olive or coconut oil
- Turkey burger without the bun
- Bell peppers stuffed with veggies, beans, eggs, etc.
- Chickpeas or lentils with squash and curry powder
- Stir fry with veggies and meat (and without sugary sauces or mounds of rice)
- Black coffee or tea instead of sugary drinks

Veggie smoothies and soups are a good idea for some meals, but the vast majority of people would reach a breaking point and give up if they tried eating that for most of their meals. If you think you'd adhere to a strict plan, go for it, but if not there are lots of hearty meals that don't feel like a sacrifice but can still help you reach your goal.

steveo73
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by steveo73 » Wed Nov 23, 2016 6:22 pm

What you are suggesting sounds good. I use ground flaxseeds and not flaxseed oil. Flaxseeds are really cheap.

I know that a tonne of people believe that the facts aren't out there in relation to healthy diet but I don't think that is true at all. A high nutrient predominantly plant based diet is healthy based on the current state of scientific study. Our current state is actually really really good as well.

The facts are only not out there if you read dodgy blogs to get your information.

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daylen
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by daylen » Wed Nov 23, 2016 7:01 pm

steveo73 wrote: I know that a tonne of people believe that the facts aren't out there in relation to healthy diet but I don't think that is true at all. A high nutrient predominantly plant based diet is healthy based on the current state of scientific study. Our current state is actually really really good as well.

The facts are only not out there if you read dodgy blogs to get your information.
So what are the facts? What even qualifies as a "fact" when the object in question is ill-defined? The best we can do is gather up a random sample and take notes on specific identifiers over time, then hope that the errors cancel and present us with a couple of descriptive statistics that we hope will give insight into a complex process that we cannot understand by our reductionistic methods. If you look at the overall collection of studies on nutrition there are conflicting results left and right.

Scott 2
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by Scott 2 » Wed Nov 23, 2016 8:29 pm

Find a hobby full of people that look like you want. Embrace it. The change will happen.

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C40
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by C40 » Wed Nov 23, 2016 8:41 pm

Your plan sounds like a good start.

In my experience, I've found that eating only non-startchy vegetables, fruit, and lean meats * is so effective for losing weight that focusing on little details like whether the meat is ok or the vegetables are ok or whatever else**. Your energy should be spent on figuring out how to actually eat those things, and not other things.

* This means no grains or legumes, or only in very small amounts. You also need to actually have a caloric deficit, but eating only those three things will make that happen unless you really go crazy gorging yourself or you "cheat" by doing things within the food list above but not serving the actual intent, like eating 5 avocados per day.
** I do think it may be useful to consider glycemic index and ph of foods, but you'd probably be fine not thinking about that at all right now.


For losing weight, you must must must have a caloric deficit. The reasons that you should eat a lot of vegetables is:
- They're healthy (and this is why you should be eating vegetables no matter what goals you have
- They have a low caloric density which makes it easier to have a caloric deficit

I think you should also be eating moderate amounts of fruit (and you may want to check lists of glycemic index and ph levels of fruits, as they very a lot). I also think eating lean meats will help you lose weight. They will help you feel satiated so you'll be less like to eat too much / eat again too soon. If you're used to eating meat, I think it's better to keep doing it, as a complete jump off the vegetable cliff will have most folks running back to steaks and cakes very soon.

Now, the most important part:
In real life, the most important component of losing weight is forming new habits. You should focus at least half of your research and effort related to losing weight on how to change habits, how to actually do what you know is "right".

There is a lot to consider in this area. Different things work for different people. It may work for you to establish a tracking system, something like this:
- Daily action tracking. Let's say you eat 3 meals every day. At the end of each day, write down write the number of "good/healthy meals" you had. So, a 1, 2, or 3. All you need to worry about each day is to get that number close to or at 3. (use something you won't lose. Not just a piece of paper that can be misplaced. Use a calendar on your fridge, or a notes app in your phone, etc)
- Weekly weight. Weight yourself on the same day each week (eg: every Monday). Do it first thing in the morning, after you go to the bathroom and before you eat or drink anything. Write it down. Make a chart of your weight each week. On this chart, add a second vertical scale going from 0 to 21. This will be the number of healthy meals you ate that week. Or use a % if your number of meals varies. On that chart you can see a result (your weight) and you can see what you're doing about it - you can see how well you're following your diet strategy. If you go quite a while (give it a month) following your strategy, but without losing much or any weight, your strategy isn't effective. If you don't lose weight and only follow your strategy 50% of the time, first focus on following your strategy (or, if your strategy isn't doable enough for you right now, change it).

steveo73
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by steveo73 » Wed Nov 23, 2016 9:39 pm

daylen wrote:
steveo73 wrote: I know that a tonne of people believe that the facts aren't out there in relation to healthy diet but I don't think that is true at all. A high nutrient predominantly plant based diet is healthy based on the current state of scientific study. Our current state is actually really really good as well.

The facts are only not out there if you read dodgy blogs to get your information.
So what are the facts? What even qualifies as a "fact" when the object in question is ill-defined? The best we can do is gather up a random sample and take notes on specific identifiers over time, then hope that the errors cancel and present us with a couple of descriptive statistics that we hope will give insight into a complex process that we cannot understand by our reductionistic methods. If you look at the overall collection of studies on nutrition there are conflicting results left and right.
I don't think that this is true or even close to true. I can't be bothered trying to convince you though because what I've found is that no matter how much evidence is put in front of people they refuse to change their opinion on diet.

If you really want to know I'd start with Dr Gregor and Dr Fuhrman.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/artic ... Dozen.html

Dr Gregor for instance recommends 2 servings of beans per day. Beans/Lentils are one of the healthiest foods available for humans.

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Dragline
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by Dragline » Wed Nov 23, 2016 10:04 pm

Take it from Dr. Greger himself:

1. Veganism does not equal health. You eat crap that happens to be vegan, don't expect to be healthy.

2. A vegan diet is incomplete nutrition. You must supplement with vitamin B12 or expect to be sick.

3. You have to exercise to succeed on the diet he recommends.

From the horse's mouth: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJP033Pge6Q

Looks/behaves like he also takes amphetamines or some other weird stimulants, but I'll leave that to your judgment. He is quite thin.

sky
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by sky » Wed Nov 23, 2016 10:28 pm

I find it important to be able to avoid temptations. I meal prep healthy meals of modest portions that are stored in the freezer and can easily be heated up.

My favorite frozen ready to eat meals are burritos with scrambled egg, refried beans, sweet potato, cheese and salsa. They taste excellent and I prefer them to eating a large meal or going out for something. I eat them for breakfast and sometimes dinner. You can meal prep your favorite food in bowls if you are not a fan of tortillas. Watch the portion size, it is worthwhile to estimate the calories and weigh the portions.

I skip a meal each day, although I allow myself fruit any time I want some. Usually a small handful of raisins, a banana or apple.

I walk or bicycle most days for one to two hours.

I eat a "normal" meal every two or three days, which is meat, starch and vegetables. I avoid restaurants as much as possible. My only beverages are water, tea and coffee.
Last edited by sky on Wed Nov 23, 2016 10:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

pukingRainbows
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by pukingRainbows » Wed Nov 23, 2016 10:36 pm

It's going to be a long and challenging journey.
And so, beyond the daily details of your meals, your general attitude will make a big difference.
Patience, perseverance and curiosity can help a lot.
I would suggest trying to make small changes you can effectively integrate into your lifestyle until they become your new normal. And then, keep going, working towards a better and better diet. For example, drink choices can be a simple way to start.
Don't be shy about trying different things and discarding them if they don't work well for you.
In the end, your diet approach will probably be as unique as you are.
Let us know how it goes!

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daylen
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by daylen » Wed Nov 23, 2016 10:48 pm

steveo73 wrote: I don't think that this is true or even close to true. I can't be bothered trying to convince you though because what I've found is that no matter how much evidence is put in front of people they refuse to change their opinion on diet.

If you really want to know I'd start with Dr Gregor and Dr Fuhrman.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/artic ... Dozen.html

Dr Gregor for instance recommends 2 servings of beans per day. Beans/Lentils are one of the healthiest foods available for humans.
I have given an argument based on logic which is used to validate experimental science. In order to discredit my argument and convience me otherwise you must provide a logical argument on how statistical techniques can provide insights into complex systems with relatively small data, not by linking me an opinionated article.

Unless you are not employing a rationalistic perspective, in which case we are not playing the same game.
Last edited by daylen on Wed Nov 23, 2016 10:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

steveo73
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by steveo73 » Wed Nov 23, 2016 10:48 pm

Dragline wrote:Take it from Dr. Greger himself:

1. Veganism does not equal health. You eat crap that happens to be vegan, don't expect to be healthy.

2. A vegan diet is incomplete nutrition. You must supplement with vitamin B12 or expect to be sick.

3. You have to exercise to succeed on the diet he recommends.

From the horse's mouth: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJP033Pge6Q

Looks/behaves like he also takes amphetamines or some other weird stimulants, but I'll leave that to your judgment. He is quite thin.
I don't think that many rational doctors that focus on nutrition state that you must be vegan because it sends the wrong message. It's about eating the best plant based foods most of the time.

Dr Gregor said a great comment when he had a patient or possibly random person tell him that he couldn't go vegan because he loves his mums chicken noodle soup. Dr Gregor said eat the chicken noodle soup. It's about eating the best foods most of the time. So Dr Gregor has his daily dozen. The idea is to eat as much good stuff as possible and leave the bad stuff out.

You should exercise on all diets.

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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by steveo73 » Wed Nov 23, 2016 10:52 pm

daylen wrote:
steveo73 wrote: I don't think that this is true or even close to true. I can't be bothered trying to convince you though because what I've found is that no matter how much evidence is put in front of people they refuse to change their opinion on diet.

If you really want to know I'd start with Dr Gregor and Dr Fuhrman.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/artic ... Dozen.html

Dr Gregor for instance recommends 2 servings of beans per day. Beans/Lentils are one of the healthiest foods available for humans.
I have given an argument based on logic which serves as the foundation of experimental science. In order to discredit my argument and convience me otherwise you must provide a logical argument on how statistical techniques can provide insights into complex systems with relatively small data, not by linking me an opinionated article.

Unless you are not employing a rationalistic perspective, in which case we are not playing the same game.
I can't be bothered going down this path. I gave you a starting point that you can investigate from that point. I think rationally if you follow that path you will see that what I said has a lot of scientific backing behind it. You can try nutrition facts if you want a lot of factual information.

I'd state that it's not relatively small data. I accept it's not perfect data. It's more the broad general consensus is at this point pretty clear cut. It could change but I think the likelihood is really low.

I would state that I definitely employ a rational perspective. Dr Gregor calls it evidence based nutrition. That is the way I see it as well.

I also don't eat perfectly myself. I don't though try and convince myself that ice cream for instance is healthy or that eating a vegan diet of beer and chips is good for you. It should be about having a conclusion and looking for evidence to support that. It should be look at the available data and then draw a conclusion.

CS
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by CS » Wed Nov 23, 2016 10:59 pm

No refined sugar.
Little to no honey.

Works like a charm. I still eat potatoes, etc, so it is not carb free, but I've weighted about the same my entire adult life. My driver's license has the same weight it always has.

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daylen
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by daylen » Wed Nov 23, 2016 11:09 pm

steveo73 wrote: I can't be bothered going down this path. I gave you a starting point that you can investigate from that point. I think rationally if you follow that path you will see that what I said has a lot of scientific backing behind it. You can try nutrition facts if you want a lot of factual information.

I'd state that it's not relatively small data. I accept it's not perfect data. It's more the broad general consensus is at this point pretty clear cut. It could change but I think the likelihood is really low.

I would state that I definitely employ a rational perspective. Dr Gregor calls it evidence based nutrition. That is the way I see it as well.

I also don't eat perfectly myself. I don't though try and convince myself that ice cream for instance is healthy or that eating a vegan diet of beer and chips is good for you. It should be about having a conclusion and looking for evidence to support that. It should be look at the available data and then draw a conclusion.
How can you be so sure though? Have you calculated the p-values yourself? Did you account for error in the model itself? Or are you relying on the general consensus of "experts"? If so, then why does the general consensus amongst "experts" lead to objective truth?

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BRUTE
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by BRUTE » Wed Nov 23, 2016 11:12 pm

nothing.

long term fasting is the quickest way to weight loss.

steveo73
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by steveo73 » Thu Nov 24, 2016 2:13 am

daylen wrote:
steveo73 wrote: I can't be bothered going down this path. I gave you a starting point that you can investigate from that point. I think rationally if you follow that path you will see that what I said has a lot of scientific backing behind it. You can try nutrition facts if you want a lot of factual information.

I'd state that it's not relatively small data. I accept it's not perfect data. It's more the broad general consensus is at this point pretty clear cut. It could change but I think the likelihood is really low.

I would state that I definitely employ a rational perspective. Dr Gregor calls it evidence based nutrition. That is the way I see it as well.

I also don't eat perfectly myself. I don't though try and convince myself that ice cream for instance is healthy or that eating a vegan diet of beer and chips is good for you. It should be about having a conclusion and looking for evidence to support that. It should be look at the available data and then draw a conclusion.
How can you be so sure though? Have you calculated the p-values yourself? Did you account for error in the model itself? Or are you relying on the general consensus of "experts"? If so, then why does the general consensus amongst "experts" lead to objective truth?
You probably need to make a judgement call. I feel that is up to you. Personally I think that the evidence is reasonably strong but you personally may require more proof.

I don't see this happening with the vast majority of people though. The vast majority who believe their special diet ("paleo", "no legumes", "no fruit","high fat" etc) is special have a tiny bit of evidence to back their opinions up and refute all the evidence against what they believe.

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Gilberto de Piento
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by Gilberto de Piento » Thu Nov 24, 2016 11:30 am

I've seen friends have success with paleo/low carb, though they were fairly healthy already.

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vexed87
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by vexed87 » Thu Nov 24, 2016 12:50 pm

I lost a couple of stone (roughly) with strict regime of low carb/paleo diet and lots of resistance exercise, didn't keep it off though. Switching to plant based helped again, but slipped back into old habits again... I think I need to lose a stone again... really I just need to cut out the processed sugar snacks then I'll be ok(*). I think one of the reasons my loss never stuck was because I wasn't really unhealthy overweight, I was losing it mostly for vanity reasons, I just wanted a six pack. After realising I couldn't be bothered being that extreme I settled for my current weight, though I could be a just a little leaner I guess, paunch is not so attractive and I think I'm starting to feel it cycling uphill, or maybe my age is catching up with me :lol: . DW says she still loves me though :D

Personally I don't think it matters which diet you choose if weight loss is the only goal, both have been effective for me, the more you have to lose, the easier it is. Plant based is healthier if properly planned based on my own research. I'm not strict vegan though I do try to avoid meat at all costs unless social circumstances makes it impossible.

I find not having the foods you want to avoid in the house really helps, also have the healthy stuff in sight, and make it simple to snack on so you're not tempted to eat junk over say, fruit that's in a prominent place on the kitchen counter. Also starting an exercise regime and other healthful activities helps to encourage you to stick to the plan, or else all other effort is wasted. It's a good way to guilt yourself into saying no. Long term, its easier to make a habit of being repulsed by the foods you used to eat. I was recently eating steak with DW and all I could think of was the poor cow that had died and how 10 calories in every 1 consumed had been wasted by feeding the cattle. My co-worker stuffs his face with corn crisps (chips in US) all day long, and I find myself cringing! I can still be tempted by chocolate, but if I'm going to the shops, I'll have the chocolate soy milk, not great for weight loss mind you, but better than what I was eating before!

*I blame DW for bringing that crap home! I can't help myself which is why I never choose to buy it and bring it in the house, I just wish she would hide it! :D :D :lol:

steveo73
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by steveo73 » Thu Nov 24, 2016 3:46 pm

Vexed - I feel the same way as you do. I'm also a healthy weight but sometimes I'd like to lose some more to get a 6 pack.

When it comes to losing weight I think a lot of diets can help because the most important point is restricting calories. When it comes to long term health though a healthy mostly vegan diet wins. I'd add that it will also do a great job in losing weight.

FrugalFred
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by FrugalFred » Sat Dec 03, 2016 2:53 pm

I try to get in a decent amount of protein (60-100 grams a day) for body composition and feeling full. Stay away from liquid calories. Intermittent fasting. Weigh myself everyday.

I don't think about it too much though as maintaining a low weight has always come easy to me. Going to work each day takes far more hustle and discipline imo.

Felipe
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Re: What Do You Eat for Weight Loss?

Post by Felipe » Sun Dec 04, 2016 5:12 pm

Thank you for all the replies. It's approaching finals and projects time so I've been preoccupied with finishing the quarter.

"Eat real food, mostly plants and not too much"

I can honestly say I'm following the first 2 points quite well. The majority of my conscious meals are real food based. I don't drink much (alcohol or beverages) outside of water. I'm almost certain I'm eating too much volume of food and snacking too much as I live with family and they always have tasty treats scattered about the house. Hopefully I can convince them to stop buying sweets and bread so much, there's almost always some type of sugar and bread in the house.

"Form new habits"-This is, I believe, my primary focus here. The challenge is I believe we can only take on 1 new habit at a time to make it truly last. I've been building habits over the last year and as I quit other vices, I let myself lean on food more. I'll put full focus into eating healthier once school's out and periodically update here.

First update:

I've been having my green juice and vegetable soup almost every day but the weight keeps slowly increasing (211 lbs now after the holidays). I think adding in intermittent fasting, stopping snacking (except on vegetables), eating mindfully and stopping when I'm satisfied not stuffed, cutting out bread/processed carbs of any kind will do the trick.

I notice I eat late at night and I feel I'm unaware of just how much I eat at these times.

So my focus now will be to convince the family to cut out bread and sugar from the shopping lists to make eating less refined carbs more natural and start eating more mindfully-don't feast mindlessly or when I'm satisfied. Get comfortable with the light feeling again. I wish I had an easier time fasting as I know how effective it is.

"Find a hobby full of people that look like you want. Embrace it. The change will happen."

Interesting choice I hadn't considered- adventure meet-ups or health classes is where I'm thinking. Good idea I'm interested in applying more.

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