South Beach Diet - Question about maintanance on SBD

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04-16-2013, 02:42 PM
I am pretty much doing it. I tend to follow SBD principles (specifically Phase 2) very strictly for about 4.5 days of the week and then let myself eat what I like on the weekends and usually one other night a week. That sort of feast or famine approach seems to work best for me. Others might do better incorporating more restricted foods over the whole week. This reminds me of a question Gretchen Rubin asks in her books about Happiness - Are you a moderator or abstainer? I'll see if I can post the link.

04-16-2013, 02:47 PM
Someone in Excercising section mentioned this diet to me. I had a look at it (well, been reading about it for couple of days now) and it looks tempting...

BUT, here is the thing. As a way to manage my Crohn's disease, I followed something called Specific Carbohydrate Diet for 6 months few years back. It was very, very close to SBD: mainly just fruits, vegetable, oeggs, nuts, legumens, some cheese, lot of meat. No bread, pasta, rice potatoes, corn, whatsoever. If wasn't easy, but I did it because of my health and it worked wonders. I also lost quite a bit of weight (actually LOT of weight and I loved my new body).

Unfortunately, when I got back to eating "normally", I gained everything back, and some on top (thanks goodness the positive health effects stayed though). So my mjaor concerns about SBD is not whether I'd be able to follow it (I know that once I take the decision, I'll do it), but how to maintain the loss. Are there people around here who have beem maintaning successfully on SBD? Is it really possible?

04-16-2013, 04:11 PM
I maintained successfully for 4.5 years. I did gain about 20lbs back the last few months but had pretty over the top stresses the past year (death of spouse). I'm back on track and getting those extra lbs off now. I think that because I lost almost 100 lbs and had been overweight/obese almost all my life maintenance for me looks a lot like Phase 2 with a very rare off plan meal. As soon as I started adding more off plan meals I started to regain. It's obvious to me that my long-term maintenance will be Phase 2, actually still very low grain (maybe 3-4 servings/wk), with very rare off plan meals, less than once a month. Luckily I love cooking and I've found versions of almost all my favorite foods. It seems like people with less to lose and/or with late in life weight gain, have more flexibility in maintenance than those of us with long standing weight issues but that's just a guess.

04-16-2013, 05:45 PM
when I got back to eating "normally", I gained everything back, and some on top (thanks goodness the positive health effects stayed though). So my mjaor concerns about SBD is not whether I'd be able to follow it (I know that once I take the decision, I'll do it), but how to maintain the loss. Are there people around here who have beem maintaning successfully on SBD? Is it really possible?

Absolutely it is possible to maintain with SBD! No diet will work in the end if you go back to some unhealthy hyper-caloric "normal" after losing weight... most of us have had to re-define what is "normal"! Obviously eating everything you crave in vast quantities, grazing all day long [<<that was my "normal"] is not good. Making healthy food choices 80-90% of the time and making time for regular exercise sounds like a good normal to me. I hope to get to a point (below whatever arbitrary "red line" weight I finally decide on) that that will be my normal and I can enjoy mostly SBD choices with occasional off-plan indulgences, especially when out with friends.

Basically I do this diet because it is the closest to what I think is just "healthy diet". I like that SBD encourages me to eat far more veggies than I would if left to my own devices. I like the emphasis on whole foods. I like that it is very flexible in terms of amounts of grains and fruits you incorporate.

I don't even know specifically what SBD defines as maintenance/Phase 3 but I pretty much plan to live my whole life eating mostly Phase 2-style, with my personal adjustments: primarily vegetarian, whole foods, very low grains. Pretty much what Cyndi said - to me that is just a healthy diet and that's what I want. Good luck to you in sorting out what you decide to do!

[ETA: are the posts showing up in the wrong order for anyone else? First it was correct but by the time I replied, the original post from Ronja was second. And I have seen it in other threads too. Odd.]

04-16-2013, 07:33 PM
I have been off and on SB for years. What I learned about myself and the plan is that I do best long-term when I don't add back foods that are not OP even though they might be considered okay on PH3. I also have learned that I can't handle certain things well in moderation (like bread, crackers, cereal) and do best to just not keep them in the house.

For me, maintaining is pretty much the same as how I was on the plan for PH2 but allowing myself to splurge outside the house for social eating or on holidays, etc. Fortunately there are not too many of those events and typically I gain several pounds overnight and then it takes days for it to fall back off. But for me, that was doable.

I really do feel best when I stick with the plan.

04-16-2013, 07:53 PM
EmmaD, seems there were issues posting today. Ronja I am new to maintenance, but not a stranger to it. I am a lifetime member of WW, but forgot how to count lol and gained all of it back less 10 pounds then when I started SB. Tried Nutra System reached goal again, but then went right back to my old ways. Finally accepted I needed something different that I could actually live with. For me, I maintain in unofficial Phase 1.5. I do not find I am missing anything. If I want a wrap, it's whole wheat. Pizza is a treat not a norm. Dessert is enjoyed outside the house. I am learning how to balance life's ups and downs, but making my health and well being a priority. I've also learned my weight fluctuates approximately 4 pounds during the month. I attribute this to food choices, water retention, exercise or lack of. I know I am always going to need to be conscious of my food choices, but I am enjoying the choices :) Good luck

04-16-2013, 10:29 PM
I am also new to maintenance. I only had about 20 pounds to lose which took me just under 6 months. I've hovered around that weight for just over a year. Recently I have experienced a little "creep", starting with the extra indulgences over the holidays so I am being more careful about my choices.

As others have said, I think phase 2 and beyond is very individual. I rarely eat more than 1 grain in a day, most often eating none and eat 1 or 2 fruits at most. (I think the book talks about working up to 3 of each but I don't know who does that) I too like the fact that SB encourages so many veggies and the emphasis is on whole foods. For me, I know I have to be careful about how many and what type of snacks I have, limit the red wine, and not get sucked into my chocolate habit. Compared to the typical American diet it may seem restrictive but for me it really helped deal with my cravings and when I do splurge I am often strangely disappointed that my old favorite food are no longer satisfying.

04-17-2013, 05:20 PM
Thank you for all your answers and input!

I also found this link that might be interesting to read. Very encouraging!

I have decided to give SBD a go...mentally reparing to start as of Monday next week. Ordered the book, getting healthy supplies, planning my meals ahead...I hope I am able to keep up with my excercises too. One thing I am not very happy about are arteficial sweateners. I think I am going to take a more natural approach and use a little bit of honey if really necessary. See how it goes..