26 May 2015

Escaping From Obesity: My Oatmeal Fast Experiment

5 Lovely Thoughts
I am honestly feeling a bit down for not losing weight on the Drop10 challenge last month. But it's ok. Like what I've mentioned in my previous post, real success is not having things, but having victory over yourself. The scale didn't move but I am one step ahead for being no longer jeopardized by mindless eating. I'm one step ahead of success for craving healthy foods now instead of junk foods!
Escaping From Obesity: My Oatmeal Fast Experiment

Weight Loss Goals for May
Dear Lord May is almost over and I accomplish nothing this month. Ahhhhh I know procrastination is my greatest enemy! You see I didn't update for weeks because of this --- my diet went offshore. I still watched what I eat, tried to eliminate junk foods but  there are times when I feel like I messed up and my weeks are gone, not consistent with my workout and so. But I don't want to get this month completely wasted. A little bit late for writing a new goal for May but let's just say this is an early weight loss goals for June.

My weight loss goal for the next 40 day is to become OVERWEIGHT. My ultimate weight loss goals is to reach my ideal weight, and to be able to wear jeans again for the first time after 5 years. But I want to go step by step so I'll feel less overwhelmed with the amount of weight I have to lose. I stand at a cute 4'10" and  based on my height my BMI says that I am worryingly obese at 80kg (BMI: 36.5) If your BMI is greater or equal to 30 you are considered obese. I don't want to rush off the weight this time. I aim to ESCAPE OBESITY first and gradually move into overweight category 55 - 65 kg (BMI 25-29.9), and achieve my ideal weight later which in my case the number between 41-54 kg (BMI 18.5-24.9) is the right weight for my height.

The Weight Loss Plan
I will undergo my first 40 day oatmeal fast start yesterday May 25, 2015 through July 3, 2015.

But first, I want to make it clear that I am not a doctor, nurse, or even a nutritionist. This is just me tracking my own weight loss progress, sharing with you my journey, what I'm doing, and my opinions regarding the oatmeal diet. It may be for you or maybe not – you do at your own risk.  It's always wise to consult with your doctor before undertaking any new diet plan.

The oatmeal fast is a partial fast which similar to Daniel fast which abstaining from certain foods for a prolonged period of time. You can eat as much as you like – but only oat. Oatmeal fast is a milder types of fasting. It's easier to do than to water fast or juice fast because you ARE relatively eating something. Oatmeal fast does offer the same benefits of healing and cleansing of the body but the speed at which detox occurs can be slower, but that also means it will be more comfortable.

Sample Meal Plan

Breakfast - A half cup of oatmeal made with a half cup of skim milk, and seasoned with cinnamon or raisins. Take note, if you make your oatmeal with milk instead of water, you’ll add more carbs to your breakfast. Your small 8-tablespoon serving of oatmeal quickly goes from 14 grams of carbohydrates, all the way up to 28 grams of carbs if you mix in milk, honey and berries.

Lunch - Eat a half cup of oatmeal and top with half cup of flavored yogurt to make oatmeals less boring. Yogurt can also help your digestion stay on track.

Dinner - Prepare half cup of oatmeal and make it more colorful by mixing in fresh berries, a banana, dried cranberries, or sliced peaches. Try this oatmeal combinations suggested by Bryn Mooth, SparkPeople Contributor.
  • 2 Tbsp dried cranberries, 1 Tbsp toasted pistachios, 1 tsp sugar (115 calories)
  • 2 Tbsp raisins, 1 Tbsp chopped pecans, 1 tsp sugar (125 calories)
  • 2 Tbsp dried cherries, 1 Tbsp chopped almonds, 1 tsp sugar (115 calories)
  • 1/4 cup blueberries, 1 Tbsp chopped walnuts, dash of cinnamon (70 calories)
  • 1/2 cup diced apple, 2 Tbsp dried cranberries (90 calories)
  • 1/2 cup diced pears and 2 Tbsp dried cherries (100 calories)
  • 1 Tbsp Nutella (chocolate-hazelnut spread), 1/2 a banana, sliced (150 calories)
  • 1 cup diced apple, 2 Tbsp raisins, sprinkle of cinnamon (140 calories)
  • 1/2 cup fresh or frozen blueberries, 1 Tbsp maple syrup,1 Tbsp chopped toasted walnuts (140 calories)
  • 1/2 cup diced apple, 1 Tbsp raisins, 1 Tbsp peanut butter (165 calories)
  • 1 Tbsp honey, 2 Tbsp raisins, 1 Tbsp chopped walnuts (175 calories)
  • 1 Tbsp honey, 1 Tbsp peanut butter (160 calories)
  • 1/2 sliced banana, 1 Tbsp peanut butter (145 calories)
  • 1/2 cup sliced peaches, 1.5 tsp. brown sugar, 1 Tbsp sliced almonds, dash of vanilla extract (120 calories)
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce, dash of cinnamon (35 Calories)
  • 1/4 cup apple butter, dash of cinnamon and allspice (or pumpkin-pie spice), 1 Tbsp dried cranberries or cherries (170 calories)
  • 1/2 cup sliced fresh or frozen strawberries, 1 Tbsp sliced almonds, dash of almond extract (75 calories)
  • 3 Tbsp of your favorite fruit spread or preserves (80 Calories)
  • 1 Tbsp dry-roasted peanuts, 1 Tbsp raisins, 1 Tbsp mini chocolate chips (150 calories)
  • 1 Tbsp chopped dried banana chips, 1 Tbsp dry-roasted peanuts, 1 Tbsp raisins (120 calories)
  • 1 Tbsp dried cranberries, 1 Tbsp raisins, 1 Tbsp chopped pecans (130 calories)
  • Italian oatmeal: 1/3 cup part-skim ricotta cheese, 1/2 cup diced tomatoes (125 calories)
I once said I hate calorie counting but I'm taking my words back. I admit that the most basic way to lose weight is to slash calories so I am going back to basic - calorie counting. Even though on oatmeal fast I can eat as much oat as I want, but for this plan I would limit my calorie to 500 a day (totally sedentary lifestyle). One serving of cooked oatmeal (about 1 cup cooked) contains 150 calories, 3 grams of fat, 27 grams of carbs, around 6 grams of protein, and 4 grams of fiber.

Benefits of Oatmeal Fast

1. Oatmeal can help lower cholesterol level -  Oats, oat bran, and oatmeal contain a specific type of fiber known as beta-glucan. Since 1963, study after study has proven the beneficial effects of this special fiber on cholesterol levels. Studies show that in individuals with high cholesterol (above 220 mg/dl), consuming just 3 grams of soluble oat fiber per day (an amount found in one bowl of oatmeal) typically lowers total cholesterol by 8-23%. This is highly significant since each 1% drop in serum cholesterol translates to a 2% decrease in the risk of developing heart disease.

2. Oatmeal is a natural appetite suppressants - Not only does it stop cravings, oatmeal is also low in calories and makes you feel full longer thus boost your weight loss effort.

3. Oatmeal is high in fiber and protein - Medical experts often recommend eating fiber to ensure that you have healthy bowel habits and prevent constipation. Fiber can also lower blood sugar, cut cholesterol, and prevent colon cancer.

4. Oatmeal also help stabilize blood glucose - Oatmeal has a pretty high glycemic index, high in soluble fiber and complex carbohydrates which makes them slower to digest meaning it could prevent spikes in your blood-sugar levels. Stabilizing your blood sugar is crucial to increase your metabolism and help you lose weight. Much of the food we eat is converted into blood sugar that circulates in your bloodstream which is used by the body for energy or be stored for future use. Problems occur, however, when we are getting too much glucose, it leads to high blood-sugar levels, which your body can’t break down and stores as fat. On the other hand, eating too little glucose can lead to a low blood sugar level, causing your body to go into “starvation mode” where it burns your lean muscle instead of the fat. 

5. Oatmeal taste good! Oatmeal is not just a breakfast cereal anymore. Oatmeal is quick and easy to prepare, and it makes a perfect meal for lunch and dinner.

Escaping From Obesity: My Oatmeal Fast Experiment
I am extremely so out of shape. I really need to help myself to get healthy! 

Drawbacks of Oatmeal Fast

Along-with benefits, oatmeal fast has several loopholes also. Let’s find out what they are.

1. Being a fad diet, oatmeal fast cannot be called a healthy diet program. Moreover, mostly nutrient dense foods such as vegetables and several other highly nutritious food items are forbidden in the plan.

2. In the beginning, it might be challenging for you to mold you with the fast schedule. You are likely to experience dizziness, nausea, headache etc. in initial days of the program.

3. No matter how favorite the food item is to you, when you are supposed to eat the same foods over and over again, you are likely to despise them.

4. You cannot continue your workout regime while abiding by the plan because you require calories and energy to continue with your workouts. However, oatmeal fast does not bestow you sufficient energy to go along with workouts.

5. Oatmeal fast like all other fad diets provides only short term benefit of weight loss. You will regain weight as you will revert to your old eating habits.

What diet plan have you done in the past? Does it work? How do you set yourself up to weight loss success? 

05 May 2015

Drop 10 Weight Loss Challenge Recap

4 Lovely Thoughts
The April's Drop 10 WEIGHT LOSS challenge is now officially over.
Drop 10 Weight Loss Challenge Recap, Non Scale Victory
I set up this weight loss challenge for myself to push myself to shed pounds, and feel better. I aimed to lose at least 10 lb (5 kg) during the challenge, but... #Drop10 is just NOT happening!

Weight loss - lose at least 10 lbs (5 kg)
Exercise - Follow the Drop 10 workout 3 times per week and cardio at home least 3 times per week
Diet - Daily intermittent fasting. Eating window between 11 am to 6 pm. Try to eliminate carbs especially rice and bread in my diet. Avoid fast food, party foods, junk food, and sweetened beverage.

Weight loss - Weight static at 80 kg.
Exercise - I follow religiously the Drop 10 workout on the first week but I lose the motivation to keep going the following weeks.
Diet - Daily intemittent fasting but sometime the eating window get extended. I ate less of rice and bread. I did not touch party foods except for weekend when I allow myself to take a rest from the plan.

I went from 76 kg to 80 kg after Christmas last year. During this #Drop10 challenge I hope to jump start my weight loss journey but weight loss does not happen as expected.

What did I learn from this #Drop10 challenge?

1. Drop10 failed because I am eating too much
I have already cleaned up my diet big time but I'm still not losing weight, it may be that my calorie intake stay the same. In order to shed pounds your body needs to burn more than you consume. In other word, create calorie deficit.

2. Drop10 failed because I'm not being consistent enough 
No fitness plan in the world works if you don't do it consistently. Focusing more on 'eating healthy foods' is not enough for significant weight loss. One of the biggest success points of people achieving their goals is consistency of training and eating. That being said, you are not necessarily spend more time in the gym to be fit. Your workouts should be intensity-dependent. Key: the harder you work, the shorter your workout time may need to be. Got that!

3. Drop 10 failed because I am eating wrong foods 
I did well in avoiding excess bread, sugar, and anything else that’s processed. Starchy carbohydrates (like potatoes, brown rice, grains) should be eaten on days of strength training but on rest days or when I'm doing light cardio, I should've try to stick to just protein and veggies and not a lot of those starchy foods.
Drop 10 Weight Loss Challenge Recap, Non Scale Victory
Not losing weight: I expect that wearing kaftan top would hide my look-alike-6 month-pregnant belly but it appeared to even convinced  others that I  were pregnant when I were not!

Is It Success or Failure?

On scale yes I'm maybe FAILED. But wait I'm NOT fail altogether. During this Drop10 challenge I've learned to develop this mindful style of eating. I've learned how to curb my cravings and avoid junk food. I'm craving healthy foods now- not junk food any more! I now find that junk food does not taste as good as it used to. To sum up, I consider myself a SUCCESS despite what the scale said.

How do you define success? 
Share your two cents in the comments below! 

Previously on Drop 10 Challenge:

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