Tuesday, April 11, 2023

How I lost 100 pounds eating my favorite foods (truly!)

 Hello dear friends of this blog on how I lost 100 pounds without gastric bypass! In keeping with the weight loss challenges I began in January, in April we're doing Spring into Weight Loss and exploring ways to lose weight in healthy ways. Today I'll explain how I lost 100 pounds by eating my favorite foods. Really! 

The HAES (Healthy at Every Size) movement would have us believe that there's no such thing as overweight and that even obesity is healthy if you feel good about yourself. It's true that no amount of weight loss will help if you don't have a positive self-image. But being very overweight or even just a little can lead to low self-esteem, not because society tells me I'm fat but because excess fat is slowing me down. I sometimes wonder how much of HAES is about positivity and how much is about shielding eating habits that have lead to obesity. 

On the show "My 600-lb Life", people with morbid obesity must work to lose weight, before and after gastric bypass. One of the biggest roadblocks is "comfort food" and "comfort eating." "My 600-lb Life" patients will do anything to protect eating habits that got them to "My 600-lb Life." They are convinced, and try to convince Dr. Now that they need their "comfort food" and the tons of extra calories in it. 

So this may seem like an excursion from the point of my post on how I lost 100 pounds eating favorite foods. But that's just what I did: eat comfort foods just made differently with calorie restricting and keto food swaps. I did have to retrain my brain to appreciate subtle rather than intense sweetness or saltiness. Here are my best calorie restricting food swaps.

Refined sugar food swaps: I sub fruit (apples, bananas, berries, grapefruit) for sugar in recipes. I bake with bananas and apples and cut out refined sugar. In BBQ dishes, I use different berries, peaches, apples or pineapple instead of refined sugar. 

I swap Bragg's Nutritional Yeast for salt and cheese in dishes to boost nutrients and protein and cut sodium. I eat keto or light bread and olive oil butter for calorie restricting. I sub cauliflower for wheat, potatoes and rice. I wrap sandwiches in lettuce leaves instead of bread. I sub Greek yogurt for milk and sour cream. I add ground nuts to breads to ramp up protein and fiber. I sub blended cottage cheese for cream, sour cream, cheese and Velveeta in diet recipe versions of macaroni and cheese, Alfredo and cheese soups. I use bone broth for any kind of broth to up protein. 

There are so many ways to make diet recipes of favorite foods and best of all, I like my diet versions better than the originals! 

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