Author Topic: Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"  (Read 3780 times)

Moustachienne

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Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"
« on: June 20, 2018, 11:54:14 AM »
Sharing this badassity here because I'm VERY happy about it and maybe something in my approach might inspire someone else.

tl;dr  Over the past 18 months or so I've lost about a pound per month by dialing down face punch worthy calorie expenditures and dialing up delicious food/quality.  Exactly the MMM approach to money, frugality, and life.  Spend your money, time, calories where they give you most satisfaction.  Enjoy your life right now and not just when you reach a far off money or weight goal.  But be prepared to change your habits and make some initially uncomfortable choices.  Details below if you're interested.  Tailor your own plan!

And for background - How to Be Slim
https://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2012/01/19/how-to-be-slim/

Details:

Here's what I'm doing as a new 'lifestyle", not a time limited diet:

- eating a North American middle class diet similar to what I was brought up on (but better tasting because I'm a better cook than my mom who wouldn't use butter or spices (!) and delicious recipes from world cuisines are at our fingertips)

- 3 meals a day and sometimes small snacks of nuts, fruit, crackers, or cheese, mid morning and/or mid afternoon
- smaller portions and no second helpings at meals
- cookies, desserts (other than fruit), or other sweets very rarely (as a treat not a habit)
- a few arrowroot cookies or frosted miniwheats if I really crave a sweet snack
- no soda or processed/packaged foods (except Kraft Dinner every once in awhile and tonic in the rare G&T :) )
- wine or other alcohol rarely (once a week?) and always measured (e.g. 4 oz wine is one unit, sometimes I up it to 5 oz.) and never more than one drink except for rare special celebrations (make it a treat not a habit)

- no lo-cal, no-fat or other "diet" foods
- no calorie counting, no fat gram counting or any "diet" behaviour
- eat delicious food in moderate amounts
- never feel hungry

And that's really it.  Sounds simple, right?   Ha!  The biggest shifts for me were reducing portion sizes, eliminating second helpings, and greatly reducing between meal snacking.  All of those had really crept up as bad habits.  Everything is a slippery slope...

I have a wicked sweet tooth but the less I eat sugar, the less I crave it.  I love eating a really nice dessert in a restaurant or baked at home.  What I avoid is having Oreos or suchlike in the house.  Kryptonite for me!  My goal is to make sweets a luxurious treat, not a mindless low quality habit. Stay out of the mall to avoid impulse shopping; stay out of the Oreo package/chip bag to avoid impulse eating.

I knew I'd have to "sneak up" on myself and make such easy, minor changes that my inner Rebel wouldn't kick in and sabotage me.  My motivation was initially helped by a pre-diabetic level blood sugar test result and I'm very thankful for that wake up. (Blood sugar returned to normal but has climbed again; I slacked off on consistent daily exercise ... diet is only part of the equation.)

Personal stats:  I started this life revamping when I was 59; I weighed 158-160; I had gained a pound or two a year for 15-20 years and thought it would just keep creeping up;  I retired at 60, I'm now 61;  I now weigh 140-142;  I'm 5'7".

Malkynn

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Re: Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2018, 02:01:26 PM »
Yup.

I lost 72lbs down to a BMI in the 19s with the exact same approach.
3 meals a day, minimal snacking, no junk food in the house, small portions of nutrient rich foods, etc
Repeat daily for a few years and voila: I went from obese to being a little frustrated today that my brand new size 0 capris are a just slightly too big.
No counting calories, no restricting certain food types, everything in moderation, and this lifestyle is permanent, so I have zero concern about regaining.

OtherJen

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Re: Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"
« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2018, 02:26:24 PM »
I put on 15 lbs in the last 5 years by not watching what I ate (this doesn't sound like a lot of weight, but at a height of 5'1" even 5 lbs is a visible difference). Once I decided that I didn't want to buy yet another set of larger clothing, I calculated the calories needed to maintain a weight loss of 15 lbs with light activity. Now I measure and record all foods to make sure I stay within that limit. I'm down 6 lbs already, which at my height is more than a full BMI point. A few articles of clothing fit slightly better, but the most noticeable change is the loss of puffiness in my face.

I grew up watching my parents do fad and deprivation diets and experience weight cycling after giving up and going back to their normal food habits. Before my celiac disease diagnosis, I was always underweight or very low-normal weight, despite eating whatever I could stomach (nutrient malabsorption will do that). I'd never really been exposed to portion control. This has been quite an education. It's interesting that I don't feel deprived at all, as I eat pretty much what I want in reasonable portions. I find that I mostly want high-quality, nutrient-dense foods but don't feel guilty about measuring out and enjoying a single serving of chips or having a glass of wine or an ounce of vodka with club soda in the evening. Lunch today was a grilled bratwurst, a big pile of sauteed veggies, a small dish of beet/apple/ginger slaw, and fresh mango for dessert for a total of fewer than 500 calories. An ounce of good cheddar cheese is a favorite 100-calorie snack.

DirtDiva

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Re: Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"
« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2018, 07:34:02 PM »
Nice work!

I lost 20-25 lb over 2 years from adding consistent exercise (daily walking and/or biking) but leveled off at 195ish at 5í11Ē.

Goal is more like 175, which would be a BMI of 24-25.

Sooo... I kicked the sweets habit almost 2 months ago.  So far Iíve lost about 8 lb.  Next step will be dialing down the alcohol-thatís nearly a daily thing for me.

I too had the unpleasant wake-up call of a fasting blood sugar of 123 the day after a monstrous piece of carrot cake.  And I too have a weakness for Oreos. Itís easier to say I donít eat sweets than to have ďjust a littleĒ.

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"
« Reply #4 on: June 21, 2018, 08:04:09 PM »
Fabulous report! Hearty congrats!!!!

Moustachienne

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Re: Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"
« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2018, 11:09:58 PM »
Nice to hear the success stories!  I'm especially inspired by Malkynn who's kept on track for many years.  After 18  months, I'm cautiously thinking that I'm going to be able to do the same.

Here's to "stealth health"!

Linda_Norway

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Re: Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"
« Reply #6 on: June 22, 2018, 01:37:13 AM »

I have a wicked sweet tooth but the less I eat sugar, the less I crave it.  I love eating a really nice dessert in a restaurant or baked at home.  What I avoid is having Oreos or suchlike in the house.  Kryptonite for me!  My goal is to make sweets a luxurious treat, not a mindless low quality habit. Stay out of the mall to avoid impulse shopping; stay out of the Oreo package/chip bag to avoid impulse eating.


I think (and have read about it) that sweet tooth might be due to your intestinal bacteria. If you eat a lot of sugar regularly, you increase the number of bacteria that crave sugar. They can somehow influence how you feel and make you crave sugar. If you manage to starve those bacteria by not eating sugar for a while, the craving will stop. For me, I think this is true.

I have earlier gone down in weight 8 kg/16 pounds the way you are describing. The way of healthy eating as described is how I usually eat, but sometimes I eat a lot of sugary products during the rest of the day. Earlier when I commuted by train, I used to buy a bag of candies on my way home, on a daily basis (facepunch!). Now I luckily don't have that commute anymore so I'm not tempted anymore.

What I notice in my household (DH and me) is that we eat very healthy, homemade meals with vegetables. And we typically drink 1 bottle of wine a week with the 2 of us and share it over 2 evenings. But we do tend to treat ourselves with sweets and that is becoming more of a habit, not a seldom treat. Like eating some cookies or chocolates when we drink tea after dinner.

The first time my weight went up again was after I had run a marathon. I had had my preferred weight for at least a year and had been running 3-4 times a week for a year. After the marathon my body was craving for energy. I started to buy cookies and candies every day and ate that at work. And I stopped running, because I had lost my motivation after reaching the big goal. I gained 4 kg / 8 pounds in a few months before I stopped doing damage.
Some time later, when I started working in my current job and eating in the cafeteria with fixed-price lunches, I went up a couple of kilos again. As a good Mustachian I wanted value for money and typically ate too much. After I was back at my earlier heaviest weight, I realized it and stopped it. Now I eat lunch from home. The only thing tempting now are cakes and candies provided occasionally at work, but that it not on a daily basis, just a bit often. I also walk to work (14 km / 9 miles) per day 2-3 times a week on average. That helps a bit. My weight is now somewhere in the middle between by ideal weight and my max weight, which are 8 kg/16 pounds apart. I am now comfortable with my current weight. Maintaining my ideal weight requires that I really count calories and don't eat any candies. I would find that a bit unsatisfying.


Malkynn

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Re: Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"
« Reply #7 on: June 22, 2018, 04:37:03 AM »
Nice to hear the success stories!  I'm especially inspired by Malkynn who's kept on track for many years.  After 18  months, I'm cautiously thinking that I'm going to be able to do the same.

Here's to "stealth health"!

5 years and counting.
I made very very small incremental changes until each little change became a comfortable habit. Nothing drastic, nothing uncomfortable, and nothing driven by guilt. I focus on adding good, not taking away bad. I can have ice cream if I really want it, but when Iíve had my fill of nutritious food, Iím rarely still hungry and donít usually want to put up with the resulting indigestion.

Oh, and I never see food as a ďtreatĒ. I eat really good and delicious food, and I enjoy it as an experience, but I eat it as part of a normal, boring, daily routine. The more food gets associated with being a reward, the more likely it will be used as a self medication for stress or boredom.

startbyservingothers

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Re: Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"
« Reply #8 on: June 23, 2018, 03:33:15 PM »
I'm got a couple simple diet ideas, but unfortunately I'm not ready to share them yet in a public manner.

Anyone interested in possibly giving one (Or two) of them a try feel free to send me a PM.

Kapiira

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Re: Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"
« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2018, 09:59:13 AM »
Nice work!

mspym

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Re: Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"
« Reply #10 on: June 30, 2018, 04:19:01 PM »
This sounds very much like the No-S diet approach (http://nosdiet.com/) which I discovered years before MMM and who has a lot of crossover with the mustachian ideas. I've been stopping snacking at work and it's just super effective.

lizzzi

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Re: Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"
« Reply #11 on: July 01, 2018, 11:19:19 AM »
This sounds very much like the No-S diet approach (http://nosdiet.com/) which I discovered years before MMM and who has a lot of crossover with the mustachian ideas. I've been stopping snacking at work and it's just super effective.

I had to laugh at the No-S diet. This is the way we ate at home when I was a kid in the fifties. Other than the fact that my parents treated alcohol like plutonium, and we seldom had it in the house, the rest of the "diet" is just the way we ate day-to-day, and the way my parents and mother-in-law ate their whole lives--and they never had a scrap of fat on them.

I came down with a bad pneumonia five months ago, and had the dickens of a time getting rid of it--I noticed with my poor appetite due to nauseating meds  that I was steadily losing weight--20 lbs. I realized "Eureka--Light Bulb Moment" that I was calorically eating about the same as we used to at home. As I started feeling better, I ate a more balanced diet, but kept it similar to the No-S diet--or, thinking of my mother,  what I mentally called the "Grandma" diet. It boiled down to about 1400 calories a day of nutritious food. And I continued to lose--I'm down 30 pounds now, and only 12 pounds above what my highest normal weight should be according to the charts. I have an occasional adult beverage, and sweets usually once a week or so. I don't feel like I'm dieting, I just feel like I'm eating normally, at long last. (Female, 5'4", in five months down to 157 lbs. from 189 lbs.) I do walk a lot because of my dog--I take him out four times a day.

My gut feeling is that the standard American diet these days consists of way too much food--snacking has become normalized, portions  have morphed into hugeness--and I do think there is a profit motive going on here. The food industry makes it's money by selling food--the more the better. So whether you call it the "No-S" diet, the "undiet", or the "Grandma" diet, I would say it's not a diet--it's just a return to normal eating patterns.

mspym

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Re: Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"
« Reply #12 on: July 04, 2018, 05:23:09 AM »
@lizzzi well he says as much in his very first post - also calls it the Grandma Diet. :)
A lot of his systems fit together in a way that suits my brain but my favourite is his exercise system Shovelglove which is 14 mins long only because that's non-schedulistically significant time.

Moustachienne

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Re: Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"
« Reply #13 on: July 05, 2018, 05:59:55 PM »
It is exactly like the No S Diet!  Thanks for the link.  And I think of it as the Mom diet but Grandma would work too.  No sweets, no snacks , no seconds.  Much shorter than my original post.  :)

I've told a few people about my approach when they ask but it's like frugality, only a very few really want to hear about it and make the changes.

Inzanedrop

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Re: Lost 20 lbs with an MMM inspired "undiet"
« Reply #14 on: July 07, 2018, 05:27:35 AM »
Glad to hear eating healthy is going well for you!

The biggest thing and hardest thing on your list for me personally has been cutting down processed foods and unhealthy snacks with sugar.

They're always so tempting lol