Weight loss: it takes longer than first thought

 The duration of diet you need to achieve meaningful weight loss in much longer than we used to think...

When I started on my weight loss journey I thought it would take 6 months, 18 months later and I am still going and must remain vigilant otherwise all my hard work will be for nothing. No wonder people give up and put on weight. This is really tough work.

According to a paper published last year by The Lancet, research undertaken by the US National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases have found that it takes at least 3 years for a person to reach meaningful weight-loss goals "half the loss occurs in the first year, but the remaining kilos takes another two years to lose".  If I had known this, I might have had second thoughts about starting, as it almost appears to be an impossibility to achieve.

The first few months are perhaps the easiest, you see weight drop off, but then nothing, depression sets in and you reach for the chips. Sadly you are back where you started.   Even after 18 months I watch everything I eat and make a decision . . . if I eat something unhealthy, what do I give up later in the week. But the key is not becoming obsessed, a fine balancing act to say the least. 

However, obesity is a growing problem, with two thirds of Americans (and similar for Australia) either overweight or obese and by 2030, just over 40% will be obese (that's 110 million people in the USA), we all have a choice no matter who painful. We either loose weight or our governments will have a huge health bill (adding to their debts) to pay for weight related issues that are a direct result of being over weight.

Sadly, we (most of us) have done this to ourselves . . . we eat too much . . .  too much food that contains bad fats and sugars . . . this is our own fault, we can't blame anyone.  When I first started dieting, the I made four simple changes: remove "bad fats", reduce the amount of sugar I consumed, reduce my serving size  and no longer  have seconds. Simple things that make a differences. Now, 18 months down the track I am moving to organic foods and making sure most of my grocery bill is spent on raw ingredients and very little processed foods.

As I have discovered, loosing weight when you are over 40 is much harder than loosing it when you are younger, but at my age with a tendency for high blood pressure and high cholesterol, I would prefer the hard work than taking drugs. Unfortunately, even when I reach my target, I will need to remain careful for the rest of my life. . . it is a little like given up smoking or drinking . . . one always craves the "bad" foods, but can't always have them.  If I do, I will end worse than I started in 2011.

That horrid word - weight loss: (LINK)


  1. Keep going girlfriend. You can do this. You'll be there before you know it. But I do have to agree that losing weight over the age of 40 is A LOT harder than when you're younger.
    Last year I made a decision to go off sugar and increase my exercising a little. I lost 18lbs in 5 months. I'm pretty happy with that since I only thought I needed to lose 10lbs. LOL! But being tall I guess it takes a lot more poundage lost to equal a pant size. Anyhoo, I really want to lose 5 more pounds so I'm gearing up my workout routine a little bit. I'm still off sugar and feel great.
    I've pretty much determined that this is a lifestyle that I'll have to have for the rest of my life but I really don't feel deprived.
    I could go on and on about this but I've got to boogie.
    Have a lovely night.

    1. Kim, I have just had 10 skirts made smaller (not a cheap exercise) so there is no way I am going to put all that weight back on. I never wish to see 44pounds again!! However there are times when I really miss that bad food :( but it is a life style change for ever!!

      Thanks for dropping by

  2. I've witnessed how hard it is to lose weight. It's not easy... And it really does require a change in lifestyle. But really, when it comes down to it, we don't need those extra sugar foods and the processed foods, anyway... We just think we do because we've been sucked into the lies and deceptions provided by advertising campaigns that sell "food" that really isn't much like real food at all.
    Good job, Jo! As we say around here: "I could (eat that), but I won't".

    1. Cutting out sugar is hard, but doable. But just moving to organic makes you think about things too - I really have changed my shopping and now come home with very little processed foods, therefore I have to make everything we eat so I know what is going into the food.

      PS sometime this winter I do plan to make 1 self-saucing pudding!!!!!

  3. I started exercising in 2007, then by 2009, I was at the desired weight I wanted (lost 65 pounds). Of course, by 2010, things changed because of a combination of poor eating habits and a thyroid condition. After two years of watching what I had to eat, I had enough, and eventually, 20 pounds crept on me.

    But like you said, keeping fit is hard work. It's a combination of eating healthy, exercise, consistency, and general well-being. I'm back to depraving my body of extra sugar and fatty foods. I only need to loose 15 of those 20 pounds, which won't take me two years (hopefully). I'm determined to "firm-up," stay healthy, and eventually, get back into a regular exercise routine.

    Don't give up. If I can't, you can't, got it? :)

    1. Mara - I'm not giving up and you and I will do this!!!! I've lost 44pounds thus far with only a small amount to go, the goal is in sight - but keeping it off is in fact the hardest part as you know.

      Being positive and support from others really does go along way:)

  4. I once lost 84lbs... however, I made the mistake of thinking that I had won the war on weight, and relaxed. I not only regained the 84lbs over the course of the next 15 years, but gained an extra 16! Yep, over 100lbs to lose and I can't exercise much due to heart problems. You are wise to keep an eye on your weight and not relax. Blessings, Glenys

    1. You hit the nail on the head - each time I have lost weight I reach my goal and then celebrate and for get to stay vigilant and back it all comes. This time I am not (and can not) afford to let that happen, so being vigilant is something I will have to do for the rest of my life. A pain as I would love to eat cheesecake every night, but I can't. !!

  5. Yes, it is no overnight change! I'm studying for my fitness 3 & 4 and am learning so much about foods and the right times to eat them. I'm 33 and am still battling to lose some weight after miscarriaging a couple of years ago. I've lost 7 kilos though and I'm healthy, fit and eat really well. We try to eat organic and fresh as much as we can. xxx

    1. We are moving to organic and cutting our as much processed foods and I am already feeling much better. Just the thought of less chemicals in our foods makes me happier.

  6. mm so agree with all you say i lost 22kg with weight watchers in 2005/2006 and even now still must be incredibly vigilant.
    I lost six of the kilos I put back on over summer and then on trip away put three of these back on..
    Cruel but true, we do it to ourselves - those taste buds control us rather than we control them!!! God will help us when e help ourselves - you might like this post..although not on weight loss, is a Christian one - Shaz in oz.x


    1. Being vigilant after the dieting is the part that people forget to tell you about and I think that will be the hardest part - but I am trying to find healthy options for unhealthy foods. That way I can enjoy some of my treats but with less calories.

      Thankyou for the link - I have heard non-Christians ask this question many times and I don't always have a good solid answer. I will certainly add that poem to my notebook, its beautiful. I think some things will never be understood by us, perhaps in heaven we will get our answers. I have an older sister in heaven who died from Cot Death, why God allowed it to happen I don't know, but it did. It is not my place to question God, just accept His will. Thankyou so much for share, much treasured.

  7. Being fit is a lifetime job indeed! But it can be done if we keep our motivation high.
    I found a book that changed my mind and my life: "French Women Don´t Get Fat", by Mireille Guiliano. This lovely and wise French woman compares old traditional Mediterranean way of life with the American one in a simple, motivating and inspiring way that makes you want to be healthy, beautiful and happy, even enjoying your meals. I recommend it to everyone - I think she´s got a website too.
    Thank you for your thoughts. I check your blog almost every day.
    Greetings from Spain.


    1. Rachel - I own that book but haven't read it for a long time, perhaps I should get it out and re-read it. I might learn a few things and then I can share them with others:)

      So glad you visit, I like to know who comes by.

      Have a wonderful rest of week:)

  8. Permanent weight loss is a hard task to maintain. I compare it to parenthood. Once you initiate it , it is with you for life. Good luck and don't give up now. Once you have changed your life style habits it will become easy for you. For some other ideas take a look at the banner on this page! You will see some good suggestions there and maybe you need a change in your plan to keep you motivated.

    1. Thanks - I think that is the key - it is a LIFE CHANGING event, not something that last a few weeks or months and I think that is where most dieters go wrong.

      Thanks for the link, will have a look at it.

      Thanks for dropping by.

  9. very informative.check this site out too,you can learn one or two great stuffs that you can benefit from.


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