South Beach Diet

I began on South Beach Diet January 1, 2007.   A couple weeks prior to starting I was watching Rosie O’Donnell on an interview and watched her rationalize how it was okay for her to weigh what she did as long as she didn’t hit over 200 pounds.  I sat there and realized that I wasn’t doing much different.  I had basically rationalized my weight gain, using the excuse as long as I didn’t hit a certain clothing size.  The irony is that I was at a point that I didn’t WANT to buy new clothes (and what I did buy was stretchy, grow with you type).  This was the first time I seriously set my mind to losing the weight (and decided to do it as a New Year’s resolution).  I started at 188 pounds and I was wearing a size 18/20.  I chose the South Beach Diet because it looked very well rounded.  I wanted to NOT diet but to adopt healthy eating habits.  My goal was fairly simple – to weigh 150 pounds.  I am 5’5 inches tall and can carry a bit of weight so figured this was a great goal.  By December, 2007 I had reached 146 pounds and was wearing a size 8.  At this point, I just allowed my body decide to let me know where it was happy at.  One year later I was happily sitting in maintenance land, weighing 125 and wearing a size 27 pant and struggling to figure out what size in women’s I wear (size 0 or 2).

I have been a member of SparkPeople.com for 3 years and I lead several teams over there, including the South Beach Diet teams (think of it as coaching/providing guidance).  It has been a rewarding experience and has helped motivate me with keeping myself on track.

Here is the South Beach Diet in a nutshell – this is how I learned. I also recommend purchasing the book or getting it from your local library.

Phase 1 is to be done for the first two weeks ONLY then you’ll transition over into Phase 2 slowly until you are in full throttle and have gotten a handle on things.

In Phase 1, you can lose between 5-10 pounds in 2 weeks but keep in mind that some people lose nothing and some people do…it depends on the person, how much total weight there is to lose and if you have been dieting prior to beginning South Beach.  Phase 1 weight loss is primarily water weight – this is a “detox” phase to come off the sugars and processed grains.

In Phase 2, you may lose between 1-2 pounds per week, again dependent upon your total weight loss goal.  The closer you get to your goal, the slower it comes off.  Also some folks lose in spurts (ie may lose nothing a week or two and then suddenly drop a couple pounds).

Always track your food! Tracking the foods you eat helps to keep you on track! It makes you get honest with yourself.  It also helps you see where your calories are going, what your food choices look like, and helps you tweak your menu if the scale quits moving.  There are some great sites to do your tracking at.  I use Sparkpeople.com and I still to this day track my food (with my morning coffee) so that I see how I am doing.

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PHASE 1 MEAL PLAN

BREAKFAST

Protein: Quantity is not limited. See choices
Vegetables: Minimum 1/2 cup. See choices
Fruit: None
Starch: None
Milk: None
Fat: 1 tsp mayonnaise or oil (optional) See choices

LUNCH

Protein: Quantity is not limited. See choices
Vegetables: Minimum 2 cups. See choices
Fruit: None
Starch: None
Milk: None
Fat: 1 Tbsp mayonnaise or oil. See choices

DINNER

Protein: Quantity is not limited. See choices
Vegetables: Minimum 2 cups. See choices
Fruit: None
Starch: None
Milk: None
Fat: 1 Tbsp mayonnaise or oil. See choices

SNACK

Snacks are required. Choose from the Protein or Vegetable list, or eat nuts from the Fats list.

________________________________

PHASE 2 MEAL PLAN

BREAKFAST

Protein: Quantity is not limited. See choices
Vegetables: Minimum 1/2 cup. See choices
Fruit: 1 fruit serving allowed daily (with this meal or other). Gradually increase to 3 total servings for the day. See choices
Starch: 1 starch serving allowed daily (with this meal or other). Gradually increase to 2 or 3 total servings for the day. See choices
Milk: 1 – 1 1/2 cups allowed daily (including yogurt) See choices
Fat: 1 tsp mayonnaise or oil (optional) See choices

LUNCH

Protein: Quantity is not limited. See choices
Vegetables: Minimum 2 cups. See choices
Fruit: 1 fruit serving allowed daily (with this meal or other). Gradually increase to 3 total servings for the day. See choices
Starch: 1 starch serving allowed daily (with this meal or other). Gradually increase to 2 or 3 total servings for the day. See choices
Milk: 1 – 1 1/2 cups allowed daily (including yogurt) See choices
Fat: 1 Tbsp mayonnaise or oil See choices

DINNER

Protein: Quantity is not limited. See choices
Vegetables: Minimum 2 cups. See choices
Fruit: 1 fruit serving allowed daily (with this meal or other). Gradually increase to 3 total servings for the day. See choices
Starch: 1 starch serving allowed daily (with this meal or other). Gradually increase to 2 or 3 total servings for the day. See choices
Milk: 1 – 1 1/2 cups allowed daily (including yogurt) See choices
Fat: 1 Tbsp mayonnaise or oil See choices

SNACK

Snacks are optional: Choose from the Protein, Vegetable, or Fruits list, or eat nuts from the Fats list. Plain, low-fat or fat-free yogurt is also allowed.

PHASE 1 & 2 ALLOWED FOODS LIST & FAQ can be found here (I keep it up to date): SB Hints/Tips

PHASE 3 INFORMATION Phase 3 is all about maintenance. Basically you continue to follow the same principles from phase 2 but you can occasionally indulge in other foods. This is a lifestyle way of eating so it is not expected that you will forever give up potatoes or desserts! You learn to keep things in moderation and you use the tools of the phases (indulge – do a couple days of phase 1 eating and back on track). It is the key to maintaining a healthy weight for life.

________________________________

IF YOU NEED ADVICE :

Sparkpeople’s South Beach Diet Team – my username there is Kierae

Other Resources:

SBD 3 Fat Chicks Forum – another diet forum
Kalyn’s Kitchen – Kalyn has been on SB and is an excellent resource for recipes. Can’t say enough good things about how she has helped the SB community.

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