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Dos and Don’ts for Losing Weight Without Dieting After 50

By Shari Broder November 04, 2022 Health and Fitness

You’re trying to lose weight, maybe for the third time. Or maybe it’s the 30th.

But you really want it to be the last time. You’d love to finally put the kibosh on this post-menopausal weight gain once and for all!

You’ve been down this road before. Started a diet of some kind with the hope that this will finally be the secret sauce you need to reach your goal. You’re all gung-ho at first. You stay on track for a few days or maybe even a week or two, but then your resolve wanes and suddenly you’re back to eating the way you did that caused you to gain weight in the first place.

How do you stay motivated? How do you get off what I call the diet hamster wheel? Here are a few dos and don’ts for losing weight without dieting after 50.

A Non-Diet Approach for Staying on Track

I’ve helped many women lose weight without dieting. I teach them how to stop emotional eating so they can enjoy the foods they love while permanently losing their desire to overeat. In keeping with that non-diet approach – while losing excess weight – here are some dos and don’ts for staying on track.

The Five DOs

DO have a very clear and compelling reason for wanting to lose weight

That will drive your commitment and motivate you. Know why you want to do lose weight, and think about the reason at least once a day, preferably several times.

DO think about what the slimmer you will be like and start being that person now

Why put off living your life until you lose weight? What we think, we become! So, start thinking, acting and living like the slim person you will become. You deserve to live your best life regardless of size.

DO measure your success by markers other than the scale

Permanent weight loss is slow and not always steady, especially as we get older. It requires patience and tenacity, and development of new mental habits. Relying on the scale can be discouraging. Focusing on your success at changing the habits will allow you to lose weight and keep it off. Celebrate these accomplishments. For example, if one of the times you overeat is by snacking after dinner, each night that you don’t do that is a win. Enjoy the process!

DO think about how great you feel when you don’t overeat

Don’t you just love that wonderful light feeling of stopping before you’re too full? Not having indigestion? That great feeling of keeping your commitment to yourself to improve your health and not overeat? When you’re tempted to keep eating after your body has had enough, remember these feelings and decide that overeating just isn’t worth feeling terrible afterwards.

DO focus on the joy of being slimmer compared with the immediate pleasure of eating when you aren’t hungry

When we impulsively wolf down that candy bar, we’re sacrificing the long-term joy of being a healthy weight for the gone-in-a-moment pleasure of the taste in our mouth. Choose long-term joy.

And Five DON’Ts

DON’T diet!

You’ve heard it a million times. Diets don’t work. At least 95% of people who go on a diet gain the weight back and more! Focus on making permanent changes to your eating habits that will allow you to enjoy food without overeating.

DON’T put any food off limits

When something becomes the proverbial forbidden fruit, you’ll want it that much more, which could cause you to binge. It is much better to allow yourself to eat a reasonable serving of your favorite foods mindfully so that you really enjoy them and don’t crave them.

DON’T post photos of buff Hollywood stars in bikinis to motivate you

Hopefully, if you’re reading this, you aren’t trying to look like Beyoncé, but posting photos on your fridge or anywhere else of women with photoshopped bodies who do crazy things to stay slim will not help your cause. In fact, there’s research to support that this does not work and has a negative effect on your motivation to lose weight.

DON’T focus on your past weight loss failures

If you believe you will fail this time, you will surely prove yourself right. Instead, drop those old beliefs. Have a positive outlook for the future. Diets caused you to fail in the past, but this time, you’re approaching weight loss differently, so believe you will succeed and you likely will!

DON’T berate yourself when you slip up

We all make mistakes because we’re human. The weight loss path is a winding one. The only way you can fail is by quitting, and slow and steady wins the race. When you overeat, all you need to do is forgive yourself and get back on track by waiting until you’re hungry before eating again.

Let’s Have a Conversation:

What advice would you give to a friend who, for health reasons, is trying to lose weight? Which of the DOs have you found most helpful? How have you defined success for yourself? Please share in the comments.

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Hi! Agree that changes come in the mind and habits
Walk walk and walk! After 50 walking is essential 30 minutes at least 3 times a week ideal every day will keep you healthier and moving.
But, many of us crave for food!! That can be contain by medication as subcutaneous liraglutide or similar (Saxenda) under medical supervision can help to start. Until that brain switch connects
I’m a pediatrician and it worked for me. I lost 15 pounds and now I’m off meds, slimmer and healthier a year latter.

Terrie Kurrasch

Exercise! Walk, run, go to a gym. Toning muscles will make clothes fit better and you feel better. Keep a pair of jeans or pants with a front zipper that you really like. Make your goal being able to get into them without lying down. Use your clothes as a measure rather than a scale. Spot in comment about “forbidden fruit”. If you want a piece of candy, a cookie, whatever — eat it. Everything in moderation. Don’t think about “when I was w5 I weighed xxxx.” You’re not 25 anymore. Getting back to that weight may be a real stretch. Don’t set yourself up for failure.

The Author

Shari Broder retired from being a health coach. She recorded a whole lot of podcast episodes on her Weight Loss for Foodies podcast before she unplugged from work and decided to travel the world instead. She has extensive experience working with foodies who want to be a healthy weight. She's taught women how to ditch diets, stop emotional eating, and enjoy the foods they love while losing their desire to overeat along with their excess weight. All resources on her website are free.

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