How South Beach Diet Success Stories Stay on TrackArticle posted in: South Beach Diet
What comes to mind when you think about being cooped up indoors for all of those winter months? Food? Overeating on the couch? Between your favorite comfort foods, endless temptations to order out and a reoccurring theme of “I’ll fresh on Monday,” the New Year and winter months can feel like a never-ending food parade. So what’s a dieter to do? We’ve got all the answers and tricks that our very own success stories follow.
Here’s how four South Beach Diet success stories stay on track with their healthy lifestyle:
Sometimes the best advice comes from other success stories. Anh Neslon is one such success story. Anh recently turned 40 and she lost nearly 40 lbs on the South Beach Diet.* Anh was in week two on the South Beach Diet when her grandmother passed away and the whole family gathered for the funeral and a ceremonial meal. “I kept my bars and shakes close by and kept food in my stomach so I wasn’t tempted,” she says. “I reminded my family that I can’t eat because of my special diet program. They were all supportive, even though they would continually ask me to just take a bite.” After awhile—and a lot of explanation about her diet and goals—her family understood what Ahn could and couldn’t eat. “They did everything they could to help me stay focused,” she says.
26-year-old Kelsey Jackson (who lost nearly 30 lbs on the South Beach Diet*) agrees with Anh. Keeping the right foods nearby—and anytime she wanted chips, bagels or soda—helped her find success. “The moment you crave something outside of the South Beach Diet, drink a glass of water, have a South Beach Diet dish or snack, and THEN ask yourself if you still want that unhealthy item,” she says.
You can also allow yourself to have a small amount of your favorite indulgences. “Indulging in the occasional unhealthier treat—one that provides calories with little additional nutritional benefits—will not completely destroy your diet,” Registered Dietician, Courtney McCormick says. In fact, indulging can help keep you on track, as binging (which always includes a side of guilt) is much more likely to occur when “bad” foods are completely eliminated from your diet. The key to success is to not label foods as good or bad and to just find balance and moderation. “I recommend including healthier options in your diet about 80-90% of the time and treating yourself 10-20% of the time,” she says.
Husband, father and career-man, Dantonio Alvarez, lost 24 lbs on the South Beach Diet.* Finding balance and moderation has completely changed his life. He offers this advice for dieters: “Be strict on your diet Monday through Friday,” he says. “Then allow fun things in small doses during weekends.” Regardless of whether it’s a weekday, weekend or holiday, Dantonio says it’s also important to keep drinking water. It helps you feel full and keeps your body running smoothly no matter what changes the new year may bring.
If you make a mistake, blogger and photographer Dawn Castillo (who lost 16 pounds on the South Beach Diet*) says it’s no big deal. Just get back on track the next day. “Humans make mistakes,” she says. “Having your favorite foods in moderation is key. Enjoy yourself—just don’t overdo it.”
Feeling a little better about sticking to your diet? Before your family gathers together, or you agree to dining out at your favorite restaurant, think about your game plan. What foods will you mindfully eat? It’s probably a good idea to let your friends and family know about your diet and commitment beforehand. “Ask them to be mindful of your goals,” Anh Nelson says. “If you bring your own food to meals, tell them you are not insulting them, you just want to be focused on your goal. Let them know once you hit your goal, you will be able to give yourself a little more flexibility in what you eat, but right now, you want to succeed and their support will be appreciated.”
*Casting call volunteers, complimentary program provided. Expect to lose an avg 1-2 lbs per week.