What would you be willing to give up to get and stay thin?

If it becomes unbearable to gain another pound or live another day at your current weight, it’s time to do something about it. What are you willing to give up to get and stay thin?

Some call it a “lifestyle change” some call it a “diet” but whatever you call it, you can’t reduce your weight unless you are willing to give up some calories. You will need to create a calorie deficiency.

Creating a calorie deficit is the foundation of every successful weight loss plan that results in a lower weight. It’s that simple. Fewer calories = lower weight

You have unlimited choices when it comes to cutting out some calories. If you’re not willing to cut calories and you’re serious about getting a lot more exercise, a calorie deficit is possible by increasing your calorie burn.

  • Eat less = calorie deficit
  • Exercise more = calorie deficit*

* Most experts advise a combination of both eating less and moving more.

If you keep your eyes and ears open you’ll read and hear people sharing ways they approach their calorie-reduction diets. Some people are cutting fat, some avoid (or think they’re) avoiding carbs. Some are so blinded by a smokescreen they’ll argue they’re not cutting calories. They are “turning on their body’s fat burning engine.”

Okay, you’re not cutting calories, but your “special diet” has indeed, created a calorie deficit because that’s the only way you will weigh less. Attention to just calories and ignoring their source can impair the nutritional quality of your diet and may make it more difficult than necessary to adhere to a reduced calorie diet.

Going sugar-free is a way people are losing weight. Some people are just avoiding foods with added sugars and others are eschewing any foods with any, even naturally occurring sugars such as fructose (fruit sugar) and lactose (milk sugar.)


Would it be worth giving up sugar to stay thin? Would you give up any foods with sugar or just those with added sugars?

Another style of eating for weight loss is eating fat and protein and select fruit and vegetables but no processed foods. This plan becomes confusing because of different definitions of what exactly is a “processed food.”

For the sake of simplicity, I’m going to define a processed food as anything that has been altered from its natural state, has added ingredients, and is packaged in a factory in a bag, box, or can. That includes your favorite convenience foods as well as frozen fruit and vegetables and a perennial diet standby, the baby carrots.


Would it be worth giving up all processed foods to get thin and stay thin?

Going vegan, an extreme variation of vegetarianism, that cuts out all animal-based foods is another way people are eating for a variety of reasons including weight loss.

Vegan is more than “just a diet.” It’s a commitment to the environment and all of its living creatures. People who embrace a vegan lifestyle have deep, personal reasons and are completely dedicated to making a positive affect on the planet. It’s not about giving up eating animals and foods contain animal products (such as honey – bees make honey for their own food; humans have no right to deprive them of it – or gelatin) There is no cheat (eat meat) days for real vegans.

Becoming a vegan is a huge, HUGE lifestyle shift. When I hear people saying, “I’m losing weight by eating vegan,” I wonder how long they’ll be willing to eat that way to get to their goal. Moreover, what happens upon reaching goal?


Would it be worth giving up all foods from animal sources to get thin and stay thin?

I didn’t write this blog to try to change your mind about your approach to weight loss. I want you to understand the connection between how you lose your weight and how you maintain your goal.

Weight loss maintenance requires that you keep doing what you did to lose the weight with reasonable adjustments to switch from weight loss mode to weight maintenance mode. So if going sugar-free, for example, was your weight loss strategy, are you willing to live sugar-free?

You may be asking why would you have to stay sugar-free, or processed foods-free or vegan once you reached your goal? Maybe you don’t, but the reality is most people take back the foods they avoided to lose weight and weight gain is the result.

That’s because when they take back foods, they get the calories in those foods as well. That’s not a problem when they have learned how to eat those foods without losing control and can manage them in a healthful, calorie-controlled manner. It is a problem when eating those foods triggers guilt and leaves them feeling out of control and subsequently eating out of control.

Unless you really do want to give up certain foods forever, a better strategy for satisfaction and lasting results is to learn how to fit all foods into your weight loss plan.


Jackie Conn

About Jackie Conn

Jackie Conn is married and has four grown daughters and four grandchildren. She is a Weight Watchers success story. She's a weight loss expert with 25 years of experience guiding women and men to their weight-related goals. Her articles on weight management have been published in health, family and women's magazines. She has been a regular guest on Channel 5 WABI news, FOX network morning program Good Day Maine and 207 on WCSH.