Tried Everything to Lose Weight? 10 Things You Need to Know

If you think you’ve tried everything to lose weight, think again! Here are 10 things you need to know about weight loss – from vegetarian diets to 100 calorie snack packs.

Before the tips, a quip:

“I have learned, as a rule of thumb, never to ask whether you can do something,” says Julia Cameron, author of The Writing Diet: Write Yourself Right-Size. “Say, instead, that you are doing it. Then fasten your seat belt. The most remarkable things follow.”

Whether you want to lose 10 pounds or 10 inches — you have to commit yourself by saying you’re doing it! And, you have to find what works for you. I’ve heard a lot about the weight loss pills alli, but I’ve never tried them. I’ve lost 25 pounds without weight loss pills, but what worked for me may not work for you.

Check out the Alli Weight-Loss Aid if you’ve tried everything but can’t lose weight. It works for some people!

And, here are my tips for people who have tried everything to lose weight…

Tried Everything to Lose Weight? 10 Things You Need to Know

1. Figure out why you’re overweight. If you don’t know why you’ve packed on the pounds, you’ll never achieve your weight loss goals! I was overweight because I never let myself get hungry, I wasn’t taught that some fats in moderation are good, and I ate to make myself feel better about my life. I was – and still am – an emotional eater. But now I weigh 110 pounds (I’m 5 feet tall), and I feel great about my size and shape.

How did I lose weight after I thought I tried everything? By getting happy, and learning from my skinny husband’s eating habits (which I describe in The Best Ways to Lose Weight).

2. Examine why you keep falling off the wagon. “For many of us, a diet is an exercise in futility and self-flagellation,” writes Cameron in The Writing Diet. “We set a plan in motion and then we sabotage it. We take a step toward our goal and then we relapse. We undo the good we’ve done.”

Figure out why you sabotage your weight loss efforts. Do you relapse at night? What are you favorite relapse foods? Who are you with? If you’ve tried everything to lose weight, become aware of why you relapse. Then, use healthy substitutions to stay on track: hobbies, exercise, writing, and self-awareness. Write out your feelings to help you identify why you’re eating. Are you sad because of your brother? Are you stressed because of work? Writing – especially while you’re eating – can help you identify and deal with your feelings.

3. Pause for one minute before you eat anything. When I ask my husband, “Should we have some chocolate chip cookies that I just pulled out of the oven?”, my hubby pauses. He thinks for at least ten seconds. He checks in with his stomach. He checks with his head. I don’t know what he’s thinking about exactly, but he doesn’t just say “okay let’s eat the chocolate chip cookies!”

Have you tried thinking before eating? I never did.

4. Savor an indulgence every second day. I love my homemade chocolate chip cookies, and I have to keep making them because my husband (and now my friends!) demand them. Instead of denying myself, I’ve taught myself to enjoy a cookie or two every second or third day. Not every day, and not every hour. Knowing that tomorrow I will indulge helps me resist my craving today.

If you eat too much, here are the best ways to stop eating at night. My favorite tip is to eat with a blindfold on!

5. Refrigerate your canned goods. This is my favorite weight loss tip, from Dr Oz: put canned soups, stews, and other items in the fridge. When you open them, you’ll see that the fat has solidified on the surface, and you can scrape it off and throw it away. In a year, you can lose six pounds with this weight loss shortcut. If you normally eat a lot of canned soups and stews, this will help you lose weight.

6. Chew sugarless gum. If I’m craving cookies, I go for the gum. In fact, I’m chewing a wad of Bubblemint Extra right now! It satisfies both my sweet tooth and my urge to put stuff in my mouth. This tip is almost as effective as working out with yoga DVDs to achieve your weight loss goals (which is another way I lost weight permanently).

7. Step away from the scale. “Freed from the tyranny of numbers, we begin instead to focus on ourselves and our own perceptions,” writes Cameron in The Writing Diet. “When we release ourselves from the daily use of the scale, we find ourselves able to embrace a more “easy does it” approach to weight loss. We begin to see that as long as we are moving in the right direction, the speed at which we reach our destination matters less.”

If you’ve tried everything to lose weight and you weigh yourself daily, get rid of the scale.

8. Avoid those 100 calorie snack packs. Those mini snack packs aren’t a tip for losing weight permanently! They don’t work – they often contain of trans fats, corn syrups, and other unhealthy products. Plus, they’re expensive and bad for the environment (all that extra packaging). To achieve your weight loss goals, make your own 100 calorie snack packs at home with raisons, nuts, seeds, dried fruit, etc.

9. Remember that exercise doesn’t significantly affect weight loss.“Exercise has many health and emotional benefits, but it doesn’t make a huge difference when it comes to weight loss,” says James Hill, the director of the Center for Human Nutrition at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center in Denver. “You can restrict your food intake by 500 to 1,000 calories starting tomorrow, but you have to work out for a long time, or at a very high intensity, to burn as many calories.”

That doesn’t mean you should stop working out! It just means that what you eat is more important than how long or hard you exercise. If you’ve tried everything to lose weight but nothing works, remember that exercise isn’t the answer.

10. Eat a vegetarian diet and lose weight faster. Vegetarians tend to be slimmer than meat-eaters, and have lower rates of heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes. “There is evidence that a vegan diet causes an increased calorie burn after meals, meaning plant-based foods are being used more efficiently as fuel for the body, as opposed to being stored as fat,” says Dr. Neal D. Barnard of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. To lose weight permanently, lay off the burgers and fried chicken.

For more weight loss tips, read What is More Important When You Want to Lose Weight – Exercise or Diet?

What do you think – have you tried everything to lose weight – even these tips? Comments welcome below!

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4 thoughts on “Tried Everything to Lose Weight? 10 Things You Need to Know”

  1. Actually u r right about the trigger of eating at night. I found mine. I usually before sleeping watch online movies or series and I need to have some good food on my hand at that time. Well I hv either got to stop watching at night or busy my mouth with smthing not full of calories and i also do eat when i am annoyed or stressed. I will try to seprate it from eating but I do north know how. But great tips.

  2. Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen

    Thanks for your comment, Ashley. I agree – realistic, well-planned weight loss goals can keep you focused and motivated.

    I also like the volumetrics plan: eating lots of fruit and veggies to keep you full. Theoretically, the fuller you are, the less unhealthy food you’ll eat! And the more likely you’ll achieve your weight loss goals…

  3. Laurie Pawlik-KIenlen

    Thanks for your comment, Ashley — it’s great to see you here!

    New research shows that improving your mood and dealing with depression can help you achieve your weight loss goals.

    The new study, which appears in the November/December issue of the journal General Hospital Psychiatry, cites past surveys that show having a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or more — classified as obese — increases a person’s risk of depression by 50 percent to 150 percent.

    “I expect that the relationship between depression and physical activity goes in both directions,” said lead author Gregory Simon, M.D., of Group Health Research Institute in Seattle. “Increased physical activity leads to improvement in depression and improvement in depression leads to increased physical activity. We see in our study that they go together, but we can’t say which causes which.”

    Simon and his colleagues evaluated 203 women ages 40 to 65 with an average BMI of 38.3. Participants underwent baseline tests to measure their weight, depression score, physical activity and food intake.
    They placed the women into two treatment groups — one focused on weight loss and the other focused on both weight loss and depression. Both interventions included up to 26 group sessions over 12 months, and researchers followed up on participants at six, 12 and 24 months after enrollment.

    The researchers found the most significant changes happened in the first six months and then remained stable afterwards. At six months, among the women who had at least a one-half point decrease on the Hopkins Symptom Checklist depression score, 38 percent lost at least 5 percent of their body weight. This compared with 21 percent of the women who lost the same amount but had no decrease — or an increase — in their depression score.

    “Most weight loss programs do not pay enough attention to screening and treatment of depression,” said Babak Roshanaei-Moghaddam, M.D., of the psychiatry and behavioral sciences department at the University of Washington in Seattle. “This study further underscores the importance of screening for depression in such programs that can potentially lead to both physical and psychological well-being.”

  4. Ashley Miles @ Improving Your Personal Growth

    Nice Post! Well-planned weight-loss goals can help you convert your thoughts into action. Weight-loss goals can mean the difference between success and failure. Realistic, well-planned weight-loss goals keep you focused and motivated. They provide a plan for change as you think about and transition into your healthy lifestyle.