Did you know that 90 percent of people who lose weight by dieting
gain it back? In fact, many of these people gain back even more weight than they lost. That's the roller coaster effect—first your weight is up, then it's down, and then there it goes, back up and up. If you want to feel good, look your best, and maintain a healthy weight, this is one roller coaster ride to skip. back to top
What's the trouble with the weight roller coaster?
Now that your body is growing and changing, it's important that you get the nutrients
you need. Skipping meals or following fad diets
that restrict food groups like carbohydrates
can leave you tired, cranky, and starved for nutrients. If you're trying to achieve unrealistic weight-loss goals, like losing 10 pounds before cheerleading tryouts, you're setting yourself up for failure. When you starve yourself during the day, you're more likely to overeat
at dinner or make unhealthy food choices. Have you ever stood in front of the fridge eating and then later found that you can't remember what you ate? Well, that's how you begin the roller coaster ride. back to top
How can I avoid the weight roller coaster?
Being fit and maintaining a healthy weight are not the same as dieting
. When you're fit, most of the food you eat is nutritious, and you get plenty of exercise to burn calories. Here are some ways to get started on the fitness path:
- Switch from high fat foods to low-fat alternatives.
- Eat lots of fiber-rich carbohydrates like whole grains and legumes (peas and dried beans). Fiber is good for you and it makes you feel full.
- Drink plenty of water.
- Try eating six small meals instead of three big ones.
- Eat when your body signals say, "I'm hungry," not because you're bored, sad, or lonely.
- Eat a variety of foods. Think in color: green veggies, brown rice, red kidney beans.
- Choose low-calorie snacks like raw veggies and fresh fruit.
- Enjoy occasional treats like your favorite cake or pie, but eat a smaller slice than you normally would. If you deny yourself those occasional treats, you will be more likely to binge.
- Exercise every day, even if it's just walking the dog. back to top