Whatever Works: Shopping Around
Thursday, July 08, 2010
I've been on my Spark People journey 2 years now. I lost 30 pounds but gained it all back until I weighed more than I had when I set out. It's a familiar story.
But I'm on the way down again now (15lbs lost: 30lbs to go.)
A few months ago, I realised I had to make dieting into a more fun project. So I decided to try out a few different diets - a week here, and a week there. See if one stuck.
I began with Atkins. Bacon and eggs, home made ice cream, mayonnaise with everything. Yum. I tested my wee for ketones as advised, using little strips I bought from the chemist. I become mildly ketonic. That was quite exciting. But I only stuck the diet for ten days, simply because it was so far from my normal way of eating. I felt I was on a tightrope the whole time, afraid to look down. There seemed a long way to fall.
Next came the Dukan, a similar diet only lower fat. Fish, meat and then more fish and meat (and especially chicken breast). I would start the day ok (with a kipper) but by the time the evening meal arrived, I would be nauseous and headachey. One evening I looked at the sirloin steak on my plate and felt sad that an animal had died to provide me with a meal that turned my stomach. I had to stop.
Also, despite a month on Atkins/Dukan, I'd only lost 4 lbs. I'd be pleased with that in normal circumstances, but the nausea and headaches seemed too high a price to pay.
Cutting carbs still seemed a good idea. I remembered a review I'd read on Amazon before ordering the Dukan book. It was for the Carb Addicts diet. It seemed to chime with the GI Diet, another blast from the past, and a diet my mother had used to talk about. I ordered it.
While I was waiting it to arrive I picked up another book in a charity shop, The Zone, thinking it could plug the gap until Carb Addicts arrived. An SP friend has always sworn by it, but I'd been put off by its technical sounding instructions.
That was three weeks ago. Although Carb Addicts has now arrived and been read, I've put it 'behind my ear' for later because The Zone has grown and grown on me.
Barry Sears' programme is out of fashion these days, but it works on the principle of eating a little more protein and fat than most dieters are used to and a lot fewer carbs. It isn't extreme. And yet I rarely feel hungry and the cravings for bread and cakes are gone. And In the first fortnight I've lost 2lbs a week - a miracle for someone in the menopause, who has been dieting on and off for 40 years. I'm able to eat my beloved fruit and veg (ok, not all of them - bananas and potatoes are frowned on) and have a small glass of wine and a piece of cheese as a snack.
So I think I'll stick with it for now.
As a dieter, I've often been a little cowed, a little prone to thinking it's my fault if a diet doesn't work. But this has made me think - perhaps it's worth shopping around for a regime that really really suits us.
It's early days. I'll keep you posted.