First of all, congrats on your efforts, even if you feel like they aren't good enough just yet. And the following post is based on you being a normal, healthy person - have you been checked for diabetes / PCOS / insulin resistance or any other medical issues that could prevent you from losing weight? If not, I'd go get that checked out first.
Weight loss is all about calories in vs. calories out. That's it. It doesn't matter what type of food you eat, when you eat it, or how much protein vs. fat you eat. As long as you burn more calories than you consume, you lose weight. You could eat 1200 calories worth of milk duds a day, and if that was all you ate, you'd be thin. That also means that as long as you eat under the amount of calories you need to lose, then you'll never have to set foot in a gym. Now, that being said, to break it all down it become's a lot more technical.
People are supposed to eat frequently throughout the day because that helps keep your blood sugar stable. If your blood sugar is low, your body CRAVES glucose because that's what your brain needs to work. Therefore, it's **** near impossible to go all day without eating and then have a salad and be satisfied. It just doesn't work. You'd go nuts and binge on carbs because that's what your body needs to survive.
I would start by first figuring out how much calories you can eat a day to lose weight. There are a ton of calculators online that can tell you, just google it. For myself I always put my activity level as "sedentary", which gives me the least amount of calories I need. That seems to keep me in check. Then, when you eat, try to eat small portions of protein and carbs. Protein fills you up and carbs keep your blood sugar levels even. And people hear "carbs" and get nervous, but really most foods are carbohydrates - vegetables, fruits, whole grains, are all carbs. Limit fat intake because they're the most caloric. Nuts (which are very fattening) are full of vitamins and protein, but a small handful of almonds is upwards of 200 calories. For the same calories you could eat two large pears and the fiber would be much more filling. Tracking what you eat is also essential. I use the Livestrong Daily Plate app on my Iphone, and I count every little thing I eat. If I eat 8 peanuts, I write it down. It's too easy to forget or miscalculate when you're trying to keep track in your head and those forgotten calories add up.
Also, the part about exercise that's so beneficial for weight loss is the fact that it help build lean muscle, so your body is burning just fat and not muscle, and it also keeps you toned. A 120 lb person with no muscle is gonna look more flabby than a 140 lb toned, athletic person. But if you hate working out, then you don't need to just yet. You can just keep within your calorie limits and you wont have to. I for one bust my butt at the gym (and believe me - I HATEEEEEEE IT) because if my calorie limit for the day without exercise is 1500, and then I run off 600, then I get to eat 2100 but my net calories is still at 1500 and I still lose weight. That's worth it for me, because dammit I love food.
Whew, this was a long winded post. I feel like I kinda threw a bunch of stuff at you, but this is a topic that I am so familiar with. I'm currently overweight ( though I've lost 21 lbs since April when I restarted my diet) and I also have had juvenile diabetes since I was 8, so I know all about how the ups and downs of blood sugar can wreak havoc on your eating habits. I've been trying to learn everything I can about being healthy, and working with my nutritionist following the guidelines above has been working. As far as the emotional part, try not to feel overwhelmed and just start small. Everytime I tried to diet in the past, I'd get discouraged because I felt like I wasn't doing enough - if I wasn't running 10 miles a day, then it wasn't worth it, and I'd just give up after a week. So start by just limiting your calories and focusing on eating a balanced, mostly non processed diet first and go from there. Once you get the hang of things, then work in exercise. And the cravings for bad stuff DO go away, it's just hard for the first few weeks until you can really kick the habit. Whatever you do, just don't give up!!! Keep at it, because the only people who fail at weight loss are the ones who quit trying.
I've spent most of my life riding horses. The rest I've just wasted.
Last edited by EternalSun; 05-24-2011 at 12:57 AM.