How I lost quite a bit of weight


Over the last 6 months, I lost quite a bit of weight (almost 10 kg or 22lbs since June, but I started losing weight before I kept track too). A lot of it was due to no longer being on meds that have increased appetite as a side effect (am unfortunately back on them) but some of it is due to my efforts.

One of the things I did was get healthier staples. I didn’t have any and what I ate was fairly unhealthy, so for me, almost any staple would have been an improvement. I settled on menemen, pesto sandwiches, brown bread with PB&J (very light on the jelly), protein bars and yoghurt (what I put in yoghurt I switch often depending on what’s in the fridge or what I’m in the mood for). I used these as lunch and breakfast staples. This reduced the unhealthy stuff I’d sometimes eat for breakfast, like bread with Nutella or other sugary stuff.

Additionally, when I was really in the mood for sweets, I either took a healthy-ish sweet like yoghurt/custard, or took something small but delicious like one chocolate truffle or one piece of orange and almond filled dark chocolate.

With yoghurt/custard, I bought both a healthy variant (low in sugar and high in protein) and a less healthy one. When I ate yoghurt I mixed the healthy and unhealthy variants and slowly decreased the percentage of unhealthy yoghurt in this mix. This way I was I could get used to less sweet yoghurt in a very incremental way.

I didn’t always give in to my sweet tooth either. I know my desires for food are fickle, so sometimes I waited for a healthy craving to come along and satisfy it rather than my sweet tooth.

A last thing I did was keeping track of what I ate on the website of the Voedingcentrum (a foundation subsidised by the Dutch government, with the goal of informing the public about nutrition). This helped me see what I ate so I could for example notice that one chocolate truffle is about the same amount of calories as a small bowl of yoghurt. Knowing what things cost in terms of calories helped me make more informed food decisions. It also helped me notice when
sugar consumption in the previous days was causing more sugar cravings in the present. This way I could cut back on sugar in time to prevent a slide back into heavy sugar consumption.

For people who don’t know Dutch, there might be something similar to the Voedingscentrum where you’re at. If there isn’t you can try chronometer, a for-profit company which also lets you track your nutrition. I tried it for a while too and, to me, it seems more user friendly (you can copy and paste food you ate and it gives you in my opinion better graphs) than the Voedingscentrum’s nutrition tracker, but in exchange, you have to pay if you want to download your data and there’s a lot of other features locked behind a paywall too.

I hope this was helpful to some of you and that these techniques will be as helpful to you as they were to me.

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