1. Be patient with the new you
“Weight loss delivers all kinds of physical, mental and emotional benefits, but the reality of a sizable weight loss is often very different than the fantasy,” says Fain. “Like everything else in life, it’s a mixed bag.” For instance, it might take some time to adjust emotionally to what you’re seeing in the mirror. Shopping for clothes, eating in public or encountering old friends who haven’t seen the “new” you may spark anxiety for some people.
2. Avoid triggers
While you were losing all that weight, you may have consciously avoided certain situations, such as eating out with friends. Be mindful that you might be able to indulge once in a while now, “but your old triggers are probably still triggers,” Starkel says. “It’s sad, but many of my clients have had to change friends or say goodbye to activities they once loved.”
Starkel encourages her clients to assert themselves and offer alternatives to these sorts of triggering situations. “I had one client who was in a cupcake-decorating group. After she lost 50 pounds, she realized she was no longer able to attend cupcake-decorating parties without backsliding. So she convinced her friends to try jewelry-making instead.”
3. Focus on protein and fiber
The key here is making sure you’re eating enough whole, unprocessed foods. Ephasize on the importance protein and fiber as these foods quiet the hunger-generating hormones in your body.
4. Eat intuitively
Processed foods, desserts and alcohol aren’t totally off-limits as you work to maintain your weight, but Starkel counsels moderation and suggests that you pay attention to how your body feels before, during and after consuming them. This is called intuitive eating, and it’s a powerful tool in maintaining a healthy weight.
5. Muscle up
Of course, even all these strategies combined aren’t going to be able to offset a sedentary lifestyle. To make your weight loss permanent, you have to keep up an exercise routine that you enjoy. If you slow down, so will your body’s metabolism.
BDST: 1137 HRS, JUN 21, 2012
Edited by: Tilka Binte Mehtab, Newsroom Editor