Friday, December 27, 2013

After Christmas Weight Loss

Once again it’s time to take off a few pounds. Every year I give it a try with limited or no success. A couple of weeks of holiday eating can’t be wished off or prayed off even though a good attitude should help. I can’t blame Aunt Molly, as my mother did when she put on extra pounds. Aunt Molly was remembered for her spherical shape. Mother would groan and say, “I take after Aunt Molly.” Did she lose weight with this strategy? No. She spent less time looking into the mirror.

I turn to the books. After all, I spent a lot of my life as a librarian. When I worked in libraries, every January I made displays of diet books to enable everyone to eliminate excess holiday pounds. Maybe my co-workers noticed; I don’t know. I was doing something to help the world and maybe myself. Well, we all know that making displays is nice but it doesn’t bring about weight loss. It’s better to read them. It’s even better to do something.

I have noticed some recent weight loss trends such as intermittent fasting and the paleo diet. Goodbye Weight Watchers and the Atkins program. What became of calories? What happened to too much junk food? Low carb has morphed into low glycemic. The diets and weight loss programs all have books. Pick one and live better. Are we confused yet?

The latest weight loss wonder with book, The Daniel Plan, comes from megachurch pastor Rick Warren in collaboration with Dr. Mark Hyman and Dr. Daniel Amen. It has a different approach. Here is what says about it:  “Revolutionize Your Health ... Once and for All During an afternoon of baptizing over 800 people, Pastor Rick Warren realized it was time for change. He told his congregation he needed to lose weight and asked if anyone wanted to join him. He thought maybe 200 people would sign up, instead he witnessed a movement unfold as 15,000 people lost over 260,000 pounds in the first year. With assistance from medical and fitness experts, Pastor Rick and thousands of people began a journey to transform their lives. Welcome to The Daniel Plan. Here's the secret sauce: The Daniel Plan is designed to be done in a supportive community relying on God's instruction for living.

I’m not sure how well this works. It deals with weight loss science from Dr. Hyman, the brain connection from Dr. Amen, and grouping from Rick Warren. These three guys have appeared on several television venues to promote their program and their book. They want groups of people to lose weight as Rick Warren has. The two doctors look slim enough already. I haven’t read the book.

Intermittent fasting is interesting. It works for some people. I have read about two types and blogged about one. They are said to be very good for health, as obesity reduction should be. One type, with book, The Mini-fast Diet, is the mini-fast, from weight loss doctor Julian Whitaker, and Peggy Dace. This program works by eliminating breakfast and thus bringing about a sixteen hour fast, with no food ingested from after supper through the morning. I tried it for two and a half weeks and gave up after seeing no results. In the book people said they lost pounds immediately. The other intermittent fast challenge is the fast diet from medical journalist Michael Mosley. The book is The Fast Diet, published in the United Kingdom. This program is supposed to work when the dieter eats 500 or 600 calories per day for two non-consecutive days of the week. The dieter does not go into starvation mode when he/she separates the days or does not eat 500-600 calories every day. The difference in calories is gender related: women 500, men 600. Both the Whitaker and Mosley programs promise weight loss and better health as long as the dieter doesn’t binge on the other days and stays to a diet that is low on the glycemic load.

Here we have three dieting possibilities for the next weight loss attempt. Would it work for Mother and Aunt Molly? Since they have gone to their rewards in the next life, we’ll never know. Will it work for me? Or you? We can check in on that next year at this time, maybe.

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