So…you’ve had your weight loss surgery, and are gung-ho on sticking to your new plan for your healthier lifestyle. You feel confident and motivated! You can actually see your goal weight in your near future. Your team of friends, family, doctors and your dietitian are all cheering you on. Let’s recognize, so we can avoid, some of the very common mistakes that people make when tracking after WLS.
1. Don’t over-weigh yourself
Remember that the scale is not the whole story. Sometimes we lose pounds and other times we lose inches or an entire size. A loss is a loss. Any loss is a success! Set a goal to weigh yourself once a week to avoid an emotional response. Weigh yourself on the same day, at the same time of day, on the same scale, wearing similar clothing for accurate weights.
2. Don’t skip meals
Skipping meals, especially breakfast, will not set you up for a successful eating day. Eat within an hour of waking up to jump-start your metabolism and begin burning calories early in your day. Try to eat regularly, around the same time every day including weekends and holidays. Your body wants to be on a schedule. Your body doesn’t want to have large swings of hunger and fullness. It wants to stay satisfied and comfortable all day long. Eating meals spaced about 5-6 hours apart will help you avoid binge eating and feelings of “I’m starving.”
3. Don’t be bland and boring
You are eating healthy and losing weight! Spice it up! Flavor foods with fresh herbs and spices. Try growing a few of your favorite herbs to use in meals. Keep food tasting great so you do not get bored and fall off-track. Flavorful food will increase your satisfaction.
4. Do NOT drink your calories
Try not to confuse thirst with hunger. That is a common mistake most people make. Our bodies crave hydration. Hydration helps digest and process the foods we consume. Keep beverages sugar-free, calorie-free, decaffeinated and non-carbonated. Not a water drinker? Okay, try flavored water, decaf tea or coffee, infuse your own water with a crisp cucumber or piece of fruit. Track those beverages too! They are just as important as the food you are eating!
5. Catch your ZZZ’s every night
Sleep is very under-rated in this busy life. We need seven to eight hours of sleep on average, every night, for our bodies to produce enough of the hormone Leptin. This important hormone helps tell your body when it is full. We need every bit of help we can to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight. Try to follow a “sleep schedule” and track your sleep daily. Try to “unplug” every night, around the same time. No phones, computers, tablets allowed. Relax, de-stress and let sleep happen. You burn 60 calories an hour sleeping!
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