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The No S Diet - Helen's journal and online home
In which an old dog attempts to learn new tricks.
The No S Diet
I'd noticed my weight creeping up again and I knew that I needed to diet to get it back under control, but somehow couldn't muster the willpower. Then someone on Habitica mentioned The No S Diet and I googled and found the web page. It was such a breath of fresh air and made so much sense that I rushed to buy the book just to send a few dollars to the author.

Basically it's how I ate when I was a kid and throughout my teens: 3 decent meals per day and no snacks or sweets, apart from having a little treat on S days. S days are Saturdays, Sundays and Special days such as your birthday, family celebrations, Christmas and Easter. As long as there are no more than 2 "Special" days in a month, you're sticking to the diet.

And that's it! That's all you need to know really. You don't need to buy the book, I've told you all the rules! But the book is worth having because it explains everything so clearly. You don't have to give up any of your favourite foods, just eat less of them if they're sweet or snacks. Nothing is forbidden, you're just reducing the amount you eat by focusing on when you eat. The book also has lots of useful advice on forming good habits rather than trying to rely on willpower.

Most diet books spend 90% of the book explaining the diet and just the final chapter on telling you how to maintain your weight when you've lost as much as you need. They explain how to diet, but they don't tell you how to establish a healthy relationship with food for the rest of your life. The No S Diet is basically a maintenance diet. You can live on it for the rest of your life without suffering from a sense of deprivation. You won't lose weight fast. I've been following it for just over a week and have possibly lost 1lb (the author has important things to say about the unreliability of scales!). When I've dieted previously, I've lost a steady 2lbs per week. But I know that when I was young, this is how I ate and I stayed slim. Somehow, in recent years I've lost touch with those good habits. At my age, I can't afford to just keep piling on the pounds, and this diet is simple enough to require little conscious thought to keep to the rules and lenient enough that I can enjoy my plain food through the week and look forward to guilt-free chocolate and cake at the weekend.

Current Mood: cheerful cheerful

6 comments or Leave a comment
asakiyume From: asakiyume Date: April 29th, 2016 02:15 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think the hard thing for me, with aging, is adjusting to eating less because I need fewer calories. My body even wants to guide me (I don't get as hungry; less food fills me up), but I have the habits of eating for a person with a higher metabolism.

But yeah: your book seems to have a good approach. I do think it's all about adopting a sustainable pattern.
heleninwales From: heleninwales Date: April 30th, 2016 08:14 am (UTC) (Link)
I've been blaming the fact that I have to cook for G, but there's no reason why I can't just eat smaller portions.

What was happening was that I'd have breakfast, then feel hungry mid-morning, so would have a biscuit or something, then I wouldn't feel hungry at lunch time, but would eat because G comes home for lunch and I wanted to be social. Then the same would happen in the afternoon, having a snack meaning that I didn't really want dinner but would eat a big one anyway out of habit.

Cutting the snacks means that I feel properly hungry for meals and then all I have to do is focus on reducing portion size and I should have my food intake back in balance with my energy expenditure.
asakiyume From: asakiyume Date: April 30th, 2016 12:29 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, I have a real problem reducing them! I really need to, though.

And I know what you mean about eating to be sociable.
kaishin108 From: kaishin108 Date: May 1st, 2016 10:31 pm (UTC) (Link)
That sounds pretty basic and easy to follow. It just takes willpower, I wonder if I could do it!
heleninwales From: heleninwales Date: May 2nd, 2016 09:49 am (UTC) (Link)
The author actually makes the point that it's not about willpower because relying on willpower is setting yourself up to fail. Well, a certain amount of willpower is required, but because you're not denying yourself whole food groups (such as no carbs) and you're allowed to eat sweets and snacks on S days, I've found that I can look at chocolate or crisps and think, "Not today, but I could have a little on Saturday," and it stops my inner rebellious child from succumbing to temptation.
kaishin108 From: kaishin108 Date: May 3rd, 2016 02:11 am (UTC) (Link)
That is an interesting approach, I like it!
6 comments or Leave a comment