How to Live a Low Carb Lifestyle (Instead of Just Being a Low Carb Dieter)
By: Henri Schauffler
We've all heard a great deal in the past year about the “Atkins Diet,” Low Carb Dieting,” and so on. I’m here to tell you, however, that “diets” don’t work – we need to turn our eating habits into a lifestyle. Notice the word, “habits….”
As with many people, I have tried various “diets” over the years – some worked, some didn’t. I have found low carb to be the most effective - but once I reached my weight goal, I said to myslef, "Now what? Keep on the diet?" Or, "Can I 'liberalize' a little bit now?" Here is a simple way to understand the issues at hand...
There are two basic factors in weight loss and maintenance:
- Carb/calorie intake
We can increase or decrease weight loss by increasing or decreasing in either of these two areas. Therefore, for maximum weight loss, one should exercise 4+ days per week and maintain a stringent “weight loss” level eating plan (less than 1800 hundred calories and/or 20 grams ofcarbs per day. Once one reaches a weight goal, it might be possible to decrease a little bit in exercise or carb/calorie intake, but not much!
Herein lies the challenge. Many people reach their weight loss goal and say to themselves. “Oh boy, I can eat desert now.” Or, “Great, now I don’t have to exercise anymore!” WRONG…
The key point is that to maintain our weight, once lost, we must adopt a lifestyle, in our case, a “low carb lifestyle.” How does one adopt this lifestyle?
One Key we need to develop our internal motivation – “Why do I want to reach and maintain a certain weight?” For appearance? For health? A combination of the two?”
Write down your reasons. Flesh them out a little bit. Why are you concerned about your appearance? What specific health issues are you concerned with? Keep this written motivation statement and refer to it often.
Next, just get into the mindset, “I do not eat carbs –I don’t like sugar and starchy food is unhealthy.”
Just as important, develop the idea that, “I exercise regularly.” Make these two affirmations a part of who you are. Tape them to the bathroom mirror, inside your car, to your desk at work and so on. We need to get serious about this.
There are four more Keys - Information, Fitness, Nutrition and Support. There is not enough space here to discuss each key.
To develop a low-carb lifestyle, we need to commit to restricting our carb/calorie intake and to motivating ourselves regularly and stick to it. Simple ideas – now, get to it and begin your low-carb lifestyle!
Henri Schauffler is the founder and webmaster of LowCarb-Lifestyles.com, an online community that gives low carb dieters the tools they need to succeed - for life.