ABC news did a feature on the 6 Secrets of Super Dieters, which turned out to be maintenance predictors for the National Weight Control Registry. ABC’s title does have more snap to it. Here’s what they had:
“Rule No. 1. Don’t ever cheat (no breaks for weekend or holidays)
Rule No. 2. Eat breakfast.
Rule No. 3. Get on a scale every day.
Rule No. 4. Put in the equivalent of a four-mile walk seven days a week.
Rule No. 5. Watch less than half as much TV as the overall population.
Rule No. 6. Eat 50 to 300 calories less than most people.”
They cited the failure rate of most diet efforts at 85% and mentioned things get easier after 2 years.
I guess I would rephrase these as:
Splurging programs your brain pathways and gene expression for future splurging. The more you splurge, the less likely you are to maintain weight loss.
Skipping meals makes it more likely you will overindulge later, and such overindulgence will total more calories than being reasonable twice. You should track calories if you have not observed this before. Eating regularly also keeps your mood from crashing.
Weighing is an important objective accountability. Learn the patterns that cause your weight to shift around.
Exercise not only burns calories, it conditions the metabolism and helps your mood, appetite, and sleep regulation.
Watching TV depressed metabolism, increases stress, and generally exposes you to professionally crafted temptation. You don’t have to be a monk, but cut back where possible.
Know how much you eat, and how much you really need.