Tuesday, February 14, 2012

What's good for the goose...

(In this case, the goose would be my father.  Also, I'm using this phrase in a positive manner.)

I mentioned previously that my father was recently diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes (which runs in my family, along with heart disease.  Super.) and began making small but significant changes to his lifestyle.  He was diagnosed 6 weeks ago and has only needed to take insulin twice - both times in the first week.  He is following his new eating plan perfectly, and has lost 12 pounds - though he was only about 15 pounds overweight to begin with.  I'm so proud of his determination and success thus far with taking care of himself. 

We spoke for an hour this morning about his daily eating plan, what types of food he can have, and how he cooks it.  After a while he commented that his new food lifestyle (he also refuses to refer to it as a diet, because it's a permanent change) is surprisingly very similar to the famous South Beach Diet.  He said he often feels very full and sometimes feels like he has to make himself eat when it's time to eat again.  I find this interesting.  To think one could lose weight eating good food at designated times and be FULL ALL DAY LONG?  Inconceivable! (I can't say that word without having Princess Bride flashbacks. Anyone else have that problem?)

I have never paid much attention to the South Beach Diet, or any other weight loss fad that has been mentioned.  I did the Atkins diet before doctors realized it isn't all that healthy for you.  I don't like Weight Watchers, can't afford NutraSystem and with my thyroid disorder am banned from taking any form of weight loss pills.   So I've always just let the diet fads pass in one ear and out the other.  However, after hearing this from my dad, I went online and read up on this diet.  It was created by a cardiologist, and is GUARANTEED (I am always suspicious of that word) to make you lose weight quickly and permanently. 

Now, the plan I've been following, which we'll call The Fantabulous Fat Loss Extravaganza, has been pretty effective thus far.  The problem I'm having, which is common about two months in, is that I'm starting to get a bit bored with it.  The only meat I've eaten is chicken breasts, tilapia and salmon - all grilled.  I've had a bajillion salads.  Don't get me wrong, I love chicken breasts and fish, and I could eat a salad every day even pre-weight loss challenge.  I just worry that I will reach a point when I am no longer creative and start slipping just to have some change.   

I'm wondering if I should buy the South Beach Diet book, read up on it and start implementing it into my weight loss plan.  After all, it's guaranteed....

Have any of you guys tried South Beach?  If so, did you find it effective, or difficult to keep up with?  I want any and all advice - positive and negative.  Also, what are your opinions on this type of weight loss plan?

P.S. Happy Lovers Day, all of you lovely, kissable, huggable cutie pies! <3


  1. well, you've got me interested now...i might have to look into this, because i feel the same way about fad diets. its only after a few years that you can see if they are legit sometimes.

  2. I've just been on the website. I have to be honest..I don't buy it. It has three phases - 1) Get rid of cravings 2) Lose weight 3) Maintain weight loss. It's not really a diet plan..I mean, anyone who is losing weight will have to follow these three steps, regardless of your diet plan.

    And the fact that it's concept guarantees 'to make you lose weight quickly and permanently,' makes it sound really unhealthy. Losing weight quickly is neither healthy nor permanent. It's something you do progressively, over time, if you want lasting results.

    When I lost weight, I learned to stay well away from these things. They always seemed to have the opposite effect on me. Saying that, I haven't actually tried this one. If you think it might work, give it a go. Would love to get read an actual review on one of these diets.

    GM x

  3. I'm intrigued. If you decide to go for it, report back, let me know how it goes and what can and cannot be eaten! I just can't see a lifestyle change working for any about of time if you get bored with the food in the first few months. And we're supposed to eat this... forever? Yeah, doesn't work for me. I've just been counting calories and so far it seems to be working fairly well.

  4. I've never tried the South Beach diet, but I have heard great things.

    Glad to hear that your father was able to maintain his new eating habits.

    Happy Valentines Day!

  5. I wouldn't go so far as to say that South Beach doesn't work (because it obviously works for your dad. P.S. GO DAD!), but it's not for me. Like my good friend gaping mind just said, some of the stuff the diet preaches should already be obvious to the average person trying to lose weight.

    Not only that, but fad diets such as south beach really turn me off. I, however, would openly listen to anything you had to say if you wanted to try the program and see if it works for you. Just be careful that you don't go overboard.

  6. I didn't do South Beach, but I did something called "Body For Life" which I think is somewhat similar. In BFL, you eat 6 small meals a day, pretty evenly spaced - breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner, snack. Each one consists of a protein and a healthy carb. It works well, but is too high in protein for me to really feel it is safe. Too much protein is hard on your kidneys, even if you drink a lot of water to keep them flushed.

    But in general the idea is good, and prob similar to what your dad is doing. You eat low fat, healthy proteins, and healthy carbs (i.e. the ones that don't break down quickly into sugars). So you avoid sugar, white flour, and white potatoes. Pasta and bread should be whole grain. And you get one "free day" per week where you can eat anything you want.

    The basic idea is to avoid the bad carbs, which are the ones that elevate your blood sugar levels and have minimal fiber, and to eat evenly throughout the day. Both of these will boost your metabolism, and if you add in exercise you get an even bigger boost.

    I followed it very closely when I first started, and lost 5 lbs in the first month, without any additional exercise. However after about 3-4 months my blood creatinine level was elevated, resulting in some really skewed ratios. So I think it's better to do a modified version of it that includes less protein.

  7. I'm curious about this thing too! I've never done the South Beach Diet myself. Mainly because I'm always leery of any "diets". They always seem to be the kind of thing that only work while you're on them and as soon as you've lost weight and try to go back to "normal" eating, you gain the weight right back. I'm a skeptic, I suppose.

    Happy Valentine's Day, Sweetie!! *hugs*

  8. Boy howdy, I don't know where to begin here...

    I have done South Beach Diet several times in the past. I have conflicting feelings about it. On the one hand it does work (and quickly), but it was a difficult lifestyle for me to adopt for more than a month or so. In the diet's defense, it does advise you to not do the super restrictive first phase for more than 2 weeks, and I did not do this because I was losing weight so gosh darn fast. I, of course, eventually burnt myself out and quit spectacularly, but for awhile the living was good.

    There are a lot of things about it I do like A LOT, and these are behaviors that have really stuck with me... like not counting and measuring and analyzing everything I eat, like having a very generalized mental list of foods that are awesome and a list of foods that are not so awesome from which to work from, like eating when you are hungry, like eliminating as much sugar and simple carbohydrates from your every day life as possible. I genuinely effortlessly do all of these things now without even trying and I think it is because of the South Beach boot camp I've put myself through on several occasions.

    If you are going to do it, make yourself try new recipes. Otherwise you will eat the same 3 things everyday and make yourself hate it. Go to websites like Kalyn's Kitchen (a great website for anyone who is trying to eat healthier) and try new things... even things you aren't so sure about.

    Oh and I found that the South Beach Diet requires a lot of extra cooking (but I think most diets do). It's not a good option for people who like convenience foods.

    Also, I'm so glad to hear your father is doing well with his diabetes. My brother passed away last year from complications from juvenile diabetes (Debbie Downer-ville... I know), so I understand what a task coping with the day in day out struggles with that jerk of a disease can be. It is so nice to hear about people winning the battle. Huzzah! :)