When should your diet end?
Has this ever happened to you or someone you know? You start a diet, and it goes well for a while. You lose weight and maybe even hit your goal! Then you end the diet, and 6 months later, it seems faster than even possible all the weight is back on.
How is this even possible? It was something I didn't know the answer to until I talked with Jesse Kohls on the What's On Your Table Podcast. Jesse laid it all out for me. Here's how he explained it.
"Because your body has a specific weight it likes to sit at. That's your body set point theory. You kind of acclimate your body slowly to the new weight. You need to hold that new weight for an extended period. If it takes you a year of dieting. If you want to lose 100lbs, it takes you eight months to a year to lose those 100lbs. If you lost 100lbs after a year. You need to maintain that 100-pound weight loss for at least six months. That means your diet. You need to extend your diet.
I'm done with my fat loss phase, but I can't go back to eating how I was before. I need to keep maintaining strict eating. I can bump up my calories a little bit, kind of turn more into a maintenance phase than a fat loss phase.
But I want to maintain at this 100lbs more petite than I was a year ago. Then slowly, your body will get used to that, and you can start increasing the calories without putting on body fat."
This was a big ah-ha moment for me. So the answer is the diet ends 6 months to a year after you hit your goal. That is why the Yo-Yo diet is a thing most people, me included, don't hold their weight that long. This is a massive tip to ensure your next diet is the last. Hopefully, you make real-life changes like eating healthier foods and getting food from your local farmer. That will help you stay healthier.
But I had to ask about the maintenance stage. That's something I have never heard of before. Here's what Jesse had to say about it.
"The maintenance stage is just, hey, I'm eating enough, or my body weight doesn't change. So now, instead of the calorie deficit, you're trying to keep it Dang near equal. Not a caloric deficit and not a caloric surplus. You're eating as much as my body needs for the activity level I'm currently doing."
This is some excellent advice. If you haven't listened to this podcast yet, check it out. https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/whats-on-your-table/id1625974777
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