Even as you’re getting comfortable with your new way of eating and feeling that the struggles with your weight is finally history, don’t forget this important point: the only constant in life is change. Some new occurrences may make it easier to maintain your weight loss or weight maintenance efforts; others will require renewed dedication. In all likelihood, at some point, you’ll need to make your adjustments to your Atkins lifestyle. As long as you know how to do so, you’ll do just fine.
Many people discover a new interest in physical fitness while losing weight on Atkins. Perhaps you join a swim team or start regularly jogging, playing tennis or engaging in another activity. Or maybe you leave your desk job for one that involves more physical labor or move from the suburbs to the city and walking becomes your usual mode of transportation. In any of these scenarios, it’s likely that you’ll increase your daily energy use, enabling you to eat a bit more—either as whole food carbs or as healthy, natural fats—to stay or achieve your current weight goal.
Let’s say that you experience other changes. Perhaps you suffer from an injury and spend several months in a cast. Or you have a new baby in the house and find yourself stressed and sleep-deprived. Maybe your doctor prescribes antidepressants to help you deal with a family crisis. Or a new job requires frequent travel, interfering with your fitness regimen. Chances are that any of the above will reduce your daily energy use, meaning you’ll need to adjust your carbohydrate intake.
The Longer View
If you’re 40 years old, exercise regularly and have no health issues, you may be able to continue to manage your weight by staying at your current level of carb intake for years to come. But numerous factors—some in your control and others not (including your genes)—influence your metabolism, which in turn determines your carbohydrate intake. Aging tends to slow your metabolism; so can certain drugs and hormonal changes. As long as you’re attuned to the implications of such changes, you can stay in charge of your weight by either eating fewer carbs, upping your activity level (which works for most people) or both.
Abide by these ten tips, and you’ll make your goal weight your lifetime weight.
1. Rely on satisfying foods. Protein, healthy fats, and lots of fiber .
2. Don’t skimp too much on calories. Starvation will lead to a slower metabolism.
3. Remember the magic number. Never, ever let yourself gain more than 5 pounds without taking action to restore your goal weight.
4. Keep sipping. Drink plenty of fluids. Don’t confuse thirst with hunger.
5. Steer clear of trigger foods. You know which are your personal trigger foods.
6. Keep moving. Staying active with some sort of exercise will increase the likelihood that you’ll keep your weight under control. Build more muscle and you will burn more calories.
7. Eat before you go. will take the edge off your hunger and make you more able to resist inappropriate items on the buffet table.
8. Take it with you. When at work, on the road, or even at a movie, pack snacks .
9. Compromise when necessary (and learn from the experience). When there are no good options, make the best choice available.
10. Prepare, prepare, prepare. If you’re eating out check the menu online beforehand.
If you are on the road, pack some hand held food like nuts to keep you fortified.