While losing weight is a challenging process in itself, keeping it off is a whole different story. According to Eat This, Not That, a comprehensive meta-analysis of almost thirty studies published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition revealed that “more than half of the weight lost by participants was regained within two years, and 80% was regained within five years.”
However, it’s not all hopeless, as there are ways in which you can make sure that you won’t return to your pre-diet weight. The majority of them include developing simple habits, that you can easily maintain for a long time. As most diets are very restrictive, it can become extremely frustrating to stick to them. For this reason, with the majority of diets, you are set to fail from the very start.
At the same time, dietitian Samantha McKinney also draws attention that an abrupt and temporary decrease in the intake of calories can lead to hormonal imbalances that trigger the exact opposite reactions. So, instead of losing weight, you will realize that you are actually gaining way more immediately after ending the diet.
Therefore, the wise approach to weight loss is to ask the advice of a professional nutritionist or dietitian before embarking on the journey and, most importantly, to have patience. Once you have reached your desired weight, maintaining it will be a matter of having healthy and sustainable habits.
So, here are three important guidelines for maintaining your weight in the long term.
Pay attention to how much you eat
The size of your portions does matter and it can make a huge difference both in the weight loss process and in maintaining your weight afterward.
Stock up on healthy snacks
When a craving or a hunger episode hits, make sure you always have a healthy snack on hand, which will make it easier to stick to a healthy eating routine.
Be present while you’re eating
Don’t focus on something else, like reading or watching TV, as this can lead to overeating without even realizing it.