Anyone Try a protein bar and LC diet?

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  • I was wondering if anyone out there lost a LOT of weight by doing a type of slim fast diet where you drink 2 protein shakes, or eat 2 protein bars and then eat just a Lean Cuisine meal for supper? I guess I am always looking for a way to lose tons of weight where it is fast and easy.
  • Hey there!

    I have not tried that, but I think we do have members who've done it. Lean Cuisine meals have played a part in my weight loss because I don't cook much. I always make sure to add vegetables on the side, like a salad or green beans, however.

    The problem with some of those approaches is that people do get hungry--but if you eat on top of the shake or bar or whatever, it's easy to go over on calories.

  • No. I have not tried that and I would not try that. What do you think would happen when you started adding real food back in? There are some medically supervised programs that use meal replacements such as shakes and bars, but there is a reason they are medically supervised.

    I would suggest you read some of the success stories in the goal forum to see how others did it and read some of the accountability threads in the Maintainer forum to see how they keep it off.

    Unless you plan to be content with protein bars and lean cuisines the rest of your life. They are TOOLS only, but sustainable weight loss requires real food, healthful food, in appropriate portions.

    There are no tricks or shortcuts. Fast and easy is all in perspective. RockinRobin (my hero!!!) lost a lot of weight, some may say fast, some may say easy....I think it is clear that her loss is directly proportional to her dedication and hard work and faithfulness to her plan.
  • I think it is worth a try. The biggest motivation for me was actually losing some weight. I was on Medifast which is a similar plan where I would eat 5 of their "meals" in a day and one normal dinner. I lost 26 pounds. It was so encouraging to see the weight come off. I switched to calorie counting and lost 14 more.

    That boost was just what I needed to get some confidence back. I was always trying to lose and would get discouraged when I felt I did everythign right and then the scale didn't reflect any good news. If you try that plan and lose a few pounds and can stick with it for a few weeks, you will be so happy.

    I think you can migrate to regular food if you are careful and motivated. I have gained back 7 of my total 40 so am still struggling with that. BUt I've told myself that this time I'm not gaining it all back and it's been almost a year and at least it's only 7 pounds.
  • You need to find a plan that you can STICK with - longterm, forever in fact, because that's how long you want the weight to stay off of you for. You say that even with Weight loss surgery, you had a hard time sticking with anything. So for you, and all of us actually, that is KEY. Most "diets" will WORK as long as you stick with them.

    Do you think that this is something you can really, really, REALLY stick with? You need to ask youself this and give an honest answer.
  • inky,

    I know this is unsolicited advise but I have noticed you do seem to be struggling to figure out the right plan for yourself. Maybe you should consult with an expert that can help you keep on track and give you guidance?

    There are a couple options
    1) A nutritionist - they can help you devise a meal plan and answer any questions that you have about food.
    2) Jenny Craig - I know you mentioned you wanted something fairly easy and I know a lot of people have had success on it. They provide you with the meals, the meal plan and a counselor who you can consult with regarding any questions.
    3) A personal trainer - Personal trainers generally have some basic knowledge about nutrition and can often provide you with a meal plan as well as an exercise plan.
    4) Others ?? I am sure there are other options out there that I haven't thought of but you may find them yourself.
  • Meal Replacement Bars and Lean Cuisine
    Well, you all are right once again! I ordered $200 worth of meal replacement bars and a bought a freezer full of Lean Cuisine that had gone on sale. Well, guess what? The bars that I was planning on using as a true meal replacement to make dieting easier didn't work out....I ended up eating them while I watched tv at night and for snacks and at other times. At 300 calories a bar, I ended up gaining weight. The Lean Cuisines aren't bad, but not enough to fill you up and I got tired of eating them every single night. It is like I wanted some REAL food. Diet plan number 5 thousand and three failed, ha ha. I have been on a diet since I was 5 YEARS OLD. NO KIDDING. Here I am at 55 and after having tried everything out there, and I do mean everything published, and a few of my own creations, nothing has worked. That was why I tried weight loss surgery. That didn't work either. I tried just eating 3 healthy meals a day, but then after a while, the cravings come in for something sweet, or somebody offers me birthday cake or something blows the diet and there I am pigging out again and in this endless search for the secret of HOW TO STAY on a diet plan. I mean....the question is.....after you have been eating meats and greens for a while and somebody offers you that one tantalizing donut or cake or hot buttered bread....and your hand reaches for it while your mind is saying DON'T DO want, for that moment, that delicious bite of do you STOP YOURSELF? WHAT IS IT THAT CAN MAKE YOU JUST STOP YOURSELF? I am a noodle. I have NO willpower whatsoever. And I want to know HOW TO GET IT>
  • Pat, I don't think anyone can make you stop except yourself. You have to find the way.

    When you're really ready, you will make better choices even if they are hard. All of the folks who have successfully lost have made these hard choices, sometimes many times a day. Until you are really serious and really ready, you'll always be trying to cheat the system, and you'll eat the wrong foods or overeat.

    You must understand that it doesn't matter whether the Queen of Sheba offers you the last piece of cake in the Universe--if it's not on your plan, and you want to lose weight, then you turn it down. If you choose to eat it, you face the consequences.

    Unless someone is holding you down and forcing food between your clenched teeth, you are the one making the choices. You can choose whatever you want--you are an adult, and you have options. If you really want to lose weight, you'll find a way to make better choices.

    My question if I were you would be, How bad does it have to get for me to change?

    Have you tried counseling? It may be that you have a type of eating disorder. Lots of professionals specialize in food problems these days--maybe you can look into that.

    Good luck! We want to see you succeed!

  • Pat,

    I am with you. I was on a diet ever since I was a young child as I reached 300 lbs at 14 years old. Nothing worked for me. I tried countless diets many times. Finally, at the age of 29 something clicked for me and I had the motivation to exercise and I started eating healthier foods and I lost weight. Although it has been a bumpy ride since that initial click but I find I have to keep myself motivated. I have to find goals and things I want to achieve more than any treat you could ever offer me.

    If you offered me a piece of the world's best chocolate cake at this very moment, I could tell you that I have goals to achieve and the world's best chocolate cake won't help me achieve those goals.

    But you know what? Those treats are there, they aren't going anywhere. If you lose 100 lbs and decide to have a few bites, then you can. You need to put those treats on hold for at least the moment. Hopefully once you get to the point where you lose 100 lbs or more, you will learn how to deal with those treats and figure out that those treats really don't taste all that good. I find that the foods I eat every day that help me lose weight taste good. I try to learn how to cook things a variety of ways and I try new foods. I love the food I eat and yes I eat a lot of veggies and the sweets I eat are in the form of fruit but that is good enough for me.

    Maybe psychological counseling might help you to help figure out why you go for the treats and overeat? I think that and trying to find foods that you can enjoy that are low calorie will help you lose weight.
  • Thanks, Jay....I suppose I do have some sort of eating disorder in order for me to have gotten up to almost 300 pounds. I weighed 150 all through high school, and I can't figure out why I like to eat so much after I have gotten older. I guess I was too busy to eat when I was younger and never dwelled on food much during those years. I can remember not eating for 3 days before a date so that my stomach would be flat as a board, ha ha. I can't imagine doing that now. I am very envious of those people who never have to think about what they are going to eat today. I truly hate to cook I think because it is yet another time I have to deal with food and the problem it has caused me.
  • Pat, I really do feel for you, because weight gain can be very mystifying at times. Many 3FC members have mentioned that they didn't realize just how bad their weight was getting until one sad day when they stepped on a scale or saw themselves in a window reflection.

    I've seen some members post that when they were younger they would starve for some reason, usually having to do with vanity. Of course, that sets up really bad habits...

    A counselor might help you to understand why you want to eat so much, and that could help you with the will power. The thing is, a piece of cake may always look good to you--and you may always have an urge to eat some--I think that's true for a LOT of people. The thing is not to eat the tempting, high-cal foods mindlessly just because you want to! The desire does diminish as long as you don't give in.

  • Thanks, Nelie. Wow! You have lost a LOT of weight!!! I am so happy for you that it clicked in. For me, it does click in, but I lose the motivation and goals you were talking about. Can you share with me what works for you in goals....The only goal I can think about is I wish I weighed 150 again. I really dislike being in this body. What goal could you tell yourself at that moment when somebody is offering you that one indescribable dessert that makes your knees weak? Is it that after you stay on a diet plan for a while you lose your appetite? I have never experienced that except years and years ago when I was on diet pills. Of course, even if you could get the pills, I would never consider doing that again. The one thing I am finding out that you and Robin and other big losers have in common is that you actually enjoy your food. I can see how that would make it easier and maybe that is the root of my problem. Of course I love potatoes, corn, beans, breads, etc., which are all no-no foods.....but to actually find a non starch vegetable that is tasty (other than fried green beans in butter) would be a miracle. I think I need to know more than just adding butter and salt and cheese to a vegetable to make it taste good. But, you all do claim you like your food and that is where I wish I could be......wish I could be in your kitchen to see how you cook.....
  • You need to choose a balanced eating plan you can live with for life. Protein bars and slim fast shakes and lean cuisine is a TERRIBLE diet. It's way too lacking in proper nutrition for health and you lean absolutely nothing about how to eat for the rest of your life. Expecting to lose more than 1-2 pounds a week is totally unrealistic. Been there, done that and have been successful at maintaining 200+ pound weight loss for 30 years with healthy eating and exercise.
  • Honestly,

    I started many years ago not eating many vegetables at all. Then I started starting with things I did like, grape tomatoes and carrots. Slowly, I started incorporating more foods. I bought cookbooks and looked online at recipes. What I eat today is different than what I ate last year and last year what I ate was different than the year before. It has been a slow evolution for me.

    Does one dessert make you go weak in the knees or do all desserts make you go weak in your knees? Can you make yourself a healthy version of that one dessert or can you try to figure out how to portion control yourself with that one dessert?

    I was an ice cream addict for a long time. I'd buy ice cream and eat the entire half gallon in a couple days. Then I banished ice cream until I could deal with it better. I lost some weight, bought ice cream bars and what not so I could portion control myself but that didn't work because I can eat an entire box of ice cream sandwiches/bars without a problem. So then I limited myself to eating ice cream outside of my home, buying a small serving at McDonald's or somewhere else. That worked. I could have an ice cream treat occasionally without blowing my calories.

    Related to that. I still love ice cream. I went to the grocery store the other day and I was looking at single servings of ice cream sandwiches (a single serving, rather than a box of 6 servings). I really wanted ice cream, I saw that the ice cream sandwiches available had 220 calories or 330 calories (2 choices). I told myself that those sandwiches were so small and that they had so many calories that I could eat a lot of stuff for that many calories and I chose to pass on the ice cream. When I got home, I had an apple, it was good, filling and a lot less calories than those ice creams.

    My current motivation right now is that I am going on a trip at the end of the year and I bought a ton of clothes a size smaller for the trip. If I don't fit into those clothes, I will be in trouble. I also want to get below 200 by the end of the year.
  • Pat -

    My answer to the "how to STAY on a plan" question is always the same - choose. Make a solid, non-negotiable decision, and stick with it. Ultimately, every pound I've lost has come from a series of choices - not to eat an offered piece of cake, not to skip the gym, not to skip cooking dinner tonight in favor of eating out, not to munch on the cookies at my parents house. Those are ALL choices. Some are much harder to make than others (I always want to overeat at my parents house, I don't know why. Choosing to cook dinner is, usually, easy for me), but they are all choices I get to make.

    After you get to know your body a little better by making some of those choices, you'll be able to tweak a little more. For example, you said you don't feel like Lean Cuisines are enough food. So you'll be able to tweak your plan so you eat often, or eat a bigger VOLUME, while still staying on plan. You do that by choosing different foods or preparation methods. You'll get to learn the time of day when you feel most snacky, and can choose a strategy to deal with it - either eating a planned snack at that time, or on the other extreme, not allowing yourself to eat in that timeframe because you don't have as much self control as you'd like (a lot of people choose to do this with evening eating...they set a "I don't eat after 8pm" rule).

    Ultimately, you have some choices to make, and not all of them will be easy. The good news is, after a series of good choices, you start seeing big time rewards.