How to Maintain Weight after Dieting?
Have you ever gone on a diet, lost the weight and then regained it plus an extra kgs? Unfortunately, many experience this, you’re not alone! It’s not the that diet wasn’t effective, because it was while you were on it, but once you stopped there wasn’t a plan in place to prevent weight regain, and we all know how easy it is to regain weight!
You may wonder, if the diet worked and I lost weight, why does the weight come back on once I stop? Couple of reasons:
- You are no longer on the diet and have re-introduced some of the foods that you were eating prior to the diet that are higher in calories
- You’re not exercising as your normally would in your diet routine.
- When you lose weight, your body can become more efficient in utilisation of calories, so it becomes adapt on surviving on a lower amount of calories even at times compared to someone at the same weight who hasn’t dieted
- Hormones, appetite, cravings for certain foods, flavours of food can all be affected when on a calorie restricted diet
So, how can you keep lost weight off after dieting? This is not always easy but should be something thought of before even starting a weight loss plan. For example, if you choose a very restrictive plan that leaves you eating hardly anything, how long are you going to stay on it and how hard will it be to control eating once you are off it?
Here’s some tips on maintaining weight:
- Choose a weight loss plan that isn’t too restrictive and that teaches you some good habits that you can use to maintain weight later
- Be careful to avoid going back to old habits that caused initial weight gain once off the diet
- Maintain or incorporate good habits can help keep weight off. For example, smaller portion sizes (fill plate up with salad or non-starchy vegetables), eat small regularly meals throughout the day, avoid excessive snacking especially at night and drink plain water rather than sugary drinks.
- Keep active and maintain an exercise regime.
- Keep busy and fuel the body properly! If you are getting cravings off your weight loss plan and feel like you want to eat everything you couldn’t before, sometimes just keeping busy so you don’t have too much time to focus on this can help. Also, fuelling your body and eating properly can sometimes be all you need to do to keep your cravings and appetite in check.
- Allow occasional treats. In saying occasional, this means not daily but also means not never. We all need a treat occasionally but done too regularly or in too large portions, can lead to weight gain. A guideline could be having a small treat 1-2 times a week.
- Don’t give up, if you have one week of unhealthy eating, it’s not the end of the world, get back onto your healthy eating regime at the next meal.