I've been reading a brand new book from my local library called "The State of Slim". Written by James O. Hill PhD and Holly R. Wyatt, MD, it offers a Colorado Diet intended to "fix your metabolism" and help you "drop 20 pounds in 8 weeks".
OK, big promises.
But I've gotta say, it's pretty persuasive.
The book is based upon National Weight Loss Registry research -- people who've lost at least 30 pounds and kept it off for at least 1 year. The average NWLR member has actually lost over 70 pounds and kept if off for over 6 years. There are lots of Sparky NWLR members. (I'm not a member myself: but I would qualify).
And it's further reinforced by research on how natives of the state of Colorado achieve the signal distinction of having the lowest weight of obesity in the United States: overall 21%, some counties under 15%, in comparison with a national average of 28% and 35% in the heaviest states.
So: this is a book about people who have succeeded in weight loss and weight loss maintenance and how they do it.
First of all: they exercise over 70 minutes a day 6 days a week. They don't all start there, of course: but they build up to it. (Have to admit: I don't do 70 minutes of formal exercise 6 days a week. But I do average at least 3 1 hour cardio plus ST sessions a week at the gym, plus lots of golf in the summer and XC skiing in the winter. And I stand, run to the printer, walk as much as possible: get lots and lots of "incidental" or "lifestyle" or "squeezed in" exercise).
And secondly: these are people who"fuel up on real food". The State of Slim offers an 8 week initial program to encourage fat burning by revving the metabolism. Six meals a day; always eating breakfast within an hour of waking up; controlling portions but no calories counting; ensuring the right protein/carb mix at every meal; and eating a healthy fat twice a day: these are the 5 rules throughout the program.
The first two weeks focus on leanest possible proteins plus selected "reignite" carbs (oats, almond milk, pumpkin) and lots of vegetable carbs: green and leafy and bright veggies of all descriptions. And small quantities of healthy fats: almonds, walnuts, canola and olive oil.
The second phase is six weeks of "rebuilding" the metabolism to burn fat. A few more lean proteins, plus selected "rebuild" carbs including limited whole grains, some low fat dairy, still focusing on the veggie carbs but with now a few fruits, and a few more healthy fats. Plus one weekly indulgence meal.
Phase 3 serves to "reinforce" the metabolism: slightly less lean proteins are now permitted, plus a few more whole grain bread and pasta products, sustaining lots and lots of veggie carbs, and limited quantities of nut butters or hummus.
The idea is to achieve a "mile high metabolism forever". The idea is to "unplug" the body's fat storing tendencies and to rev up the fat burning with a combination of exercise and appropriate eating. The idea is to become a permanent resident of the state of slim, wherever we're geographically located.
The book has many more terrific tips with respect to goal setting and attitude adjustment, quite a few of which were new to me. It has some delicious sounding recipes and lots of resources listed too (although Spark People is not mentioned . . . ). In general, I think it's helpful to focus on success stories: how people who have achieved and sustained weight loss have managed to do it.
I learned lots. I'm impressed with this book. It's as interesting as "Refuse to Regain" or "Making the Case for Yourself" or "The Beck Diet Solution". There's so much written about weight loss, so little about weight loss maintenance: and The State of Slim offers solid new information and techniques to help all of us for whom MAINtenance is the main thing!!