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The key to long-term weight maintenance: Reverse dieting

After reaching your desired weight, the journey to maintaining a healthy lifestyle continues beyond the scale. One strategy often overlooked but crucial for long-term success is “reverse dieting.”

Reverse dieting is not just another fad or quick fix; it's a powerful strategy that can help you sustain your achievements and embrace a more fulfilling, balanced life. It involves gradually increasing your calorie intake while strategically adjusting your macronutrient ratios to support weight maintenance or even muscle gain. It's about nourishing your body, fueling your workouts, and enjoying your food without fear or guilt.

So why is reverse dieting so important for long-term success? Let's dive into the incredible benefits it offers:

First and foremost, reverse dieting allows you to increase your food intake while still effectively managing your weight. No more feeling deprived or restricted – with reverse dieting, you can enjoy more calories without the fear of undoing all your hard work. By gradually increasing your calorie intake, you'll enhance feelings of satiety and fullness, reducing the temptation to overeat and helping you stay on track with your goals.

But that's not all – reverse dieting also has a positive impact on your energy levels and metabolic rate. By providing your body with the fuel it needs, you'll experience increased energy and vitality, making it easier to crush your workouts and stay active throughout the day. Plus, a revved-up metabolism means you'll burn more calories at rest, making fat loss and weight maintenance that much easier.

Beyond the physical benefits, reverse dieting also plays a crucial role in regulating hunger hormones and promoting better appetite control. Say goodbye to constant cravings and mindless snacking – with reverse dieting, you'll feel more in tune with your body's natural hunger signals, making it easier to make nourishing choices that support your goals.

And let's not forget about the impact reverse dieting can have on your overall well-being. By supporting normalized digestion and promoting a balanced approach to eating, it sets the stage for a healthier, happier you. No more yo-yo dieting or feeling guilty about indulging in your favorite treats – with reverse dieting, you can enjoy a more flexible and satisfying diet while still staying on track with your goals.

So how do you get started with reverse dieting? It's simple. Begin by determining the macronutrient ratios that are right for your body at your optimal weight, based on your baseline energy intake. Then, gradually increase your calorie intake by 50-100 calories per day, focusing on getting the majority of these additional calories from protein. Aim for a daily intake of 0.8-1 gram of protein per pound of your optimal weight.

Throughout this process, remember to listen to your body and adjust as needed. Pay attention to how you feel both physically and emotionally, and don't be afraid to make tweaks along the way. And most importantly, be patient with yourself. Rome wasn't built in a day, and neither is sustainable weight maintenance. Trust the process, stay consistent, and remember that every step forward is a step closer to the vibrant, healthy life you deserve.

Incorporating reverse dieting into your routine after weight loss isn't just about maintaining your achievements – it's about embracing a new way of living. It's about nourishing your body, honoring your cravings, and finding joy in every bite. So go ahead, take the leap, and unlock the secret to long-term weight maintenance with reverse dieting. Your future self will thank you for it.

Ashley Lucas has a doctorate in sports nutrition and chronic disease. She is also a registered dietitian nutritionist. She is the founder and owner of PHD Weight Loss and Nutrition, offering weight management and wellness services in the Four Corners. She can be reached at 764-4133.