JohnP, brought up some excellent points. Thanks John!
I have a few more to add:
1. your BMR (basal metabolic rate) -- that is, the number of calories your body burns at rest is much higher if you are fatter. In other words, it takes more energy for your body to pump blood/fluids and to generally run a 300 pound body vs. a 150 pound body. So if you were used to eating x amount of food to maintain a 300 pound weight ... after you lose 100+ pounds ... if you go back to your eating habits that you had, when you weighed 300 pounds, you will gain weight back quickly as your body is now getting MORE of an excess in calories.
2. I think that many of us "serial dieters" who are "chronically fat" have bad food addictions; and when we "fall off the wagon" (end our diets) and start up with the whole bad food vicious cycle (that bad food, creates cravings for more bad food) ... then the bad feelings and feelings of failure when we start watching our weight climb often begets more eating (as an escape from our feelings of failure) ... so we get into a negative feedback loop. This is the major cause of yo-yo dieting and long term yo-yo weight charts (IMHO). Like my personal 40 year weight chart (talk about a classic yo-yo dieter, ME) ... (Note that only that last 60 pound "downward stroke" over the past 3 months, is the IP Diet ... all other downward strokes in my 40 yr weight chart were other various and assorted diets)
The only way to break the yo-yo cycle is to actually change the way you eat "normally" ... that is, don't allow yourself to ever "go off the diet" completely. So keep eating the 4 cups of steamed broccoli a day, keep eating the 8 oz of lean protein, supplement with a good quality protein powder (not necessarily IP), drink lots of water, and exercise. Avoid high carb foods, avoid fast food and sugars. I think that only with these "lifestyle changes" in the way we eat, do us "predisposed fat people" have any hope of keeping the weight off after a long diet.
The final important thing is to always think of plateaus and maintaining a lower weight a "maintenance success" and not a "weight loss failure" ... sometimes it's impossible for us to get our bodies to get down to the weight that we "think" we "should be" ... but at even 75% or 50% or even 25% of goal, we see HUGE health benefits. so always try to maintain your "weight loss ground" and not get caught in one of those bad negative feedback loops where we gain all the weight (that we just lost) back in what seems like a flash (but is usually similar in timeframe to the time it took for you to lose it).
I personally have been one of these yo-yo dieters for the past 20+ years, where my weight is going either straight up or straight down (and hardly ever sideways, for any length of time). And I finally "saw the light" this year, that there are tremendous benefits to even having partial success and losing some of the weight that we want -- so even a partial success is a great thing IF we a committed and motivated/dedicated to keep it off (which sometimes can be harder than losing it in the first place).
So even with me still 70+ pounds overweight (not even 1/2 way to my goal), I am seeing HUGE health benefits:
- My blood pressure is 105/60 (it was 140/85 early this summer)
- My A1C is 5.5 (it was 10.0 in 2008)
- My blood sugar range is 90-120 (it was 120-180 early this summer)
- My cholesterol is in the 100's (it was 240 earlier this year)
- I have no back pain at all ... zero ... nada ... actually I dont have ANY PAIN, ANYWHERE!
- My feet don't hurt, even when I wear high heels
- I have no lung congestion (no fluid in the lungs) after I eat (this can be an early sign of congestive heart failure)
- I have no foot and/or ankle swelling and I lost 1/2 a shoe size (foot swelling can also be an early sign of congestive heart failure)
- I have a waistline (an hourglass figure) and look 100x better
- I dont take any prescription pills other than thyroxin for low thyroid (a condition i've had since 1990)
So even if all weight loss stopped for me tomorrow ... if I can just maintain this weightloss that I have achieved over the past 3+ months ... and stay at the level I am now ... it's a medical success. It's really important to change the way we all think about ourselves and our dieting and health.
Just remember this mantra after you make some headway into your weight loss ... weightloss plateaus are a "maintenance success" and not a "weight loss failure". That was a really important mind change (for me at least). I used to get so depressed during long weightloss plateaus and they often were the catalyst for me to end my dieting effort and were typically followed by me gaining all the weight back and more. I can remember so clearly thinking (in my dieting past) after a long 3 or 4 week weightloss plateau: "I am killing myself dieting, and I am not making any headway, what's the point" -- and I would just quit. Faulty thinking!! As I was at least healthier at that lower weight -- I should have been thinking about the whole thing differently.
The other thing is steamed frozen organic broccoli florets and lean chicken/turkey are my new BFFs (best friends forever)! This is NOT JUST A TEMPORARY DIET that I am on now, but the start of a new way of eating for the rest of my life.