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Our Losing Weight Experts

Dr. Mark Hyman

Dr. Mark Hyman

Physician, author and co-founder of Canyon Ranch Resort and...

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Joy Bauer

Joy Bauer

Registered dietician and best-selling author

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Dr. Arthur Agatston

Dr. Arthur Agatston

Author of The South Beach Diet

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Losing Weight for Good

Snack on Self-Esteem

Your mental approach to losing weight is just as important as your diet and exercise plan: If you believe you can succeed, you will. “Attitude is everything,” says Cindy Allison,* a 45-year-old mother of two who was able to lose more than 100 pounds.

Research supports the role of a positive attitude in weight loss. A 1996 University of Maryland study compared “believers” (who thought they could lose weight) with “disbelievers” (who did not believe they could). After nine months, believers lost 30% more weight.

“During your first 30 days, don’t judge yourself,” explains Joujon-Roche. You can build a better attitude by turning the negative statements into positive ones. Instead of saying “I can’t lose weight because it’s too hard,” try “I’m worth the effort and I will reach my goal.”

Weight Loss Shortcuts?

According to the University of Connecticut in Storrs, 65% of diet pill users think that a pill can help them lose weight. But don’t believe the hype; most diet pills are not regulated by the government, and they often have unpleasant side effects (like jitteriness or oily stools). With diet pills and other shortcut strategies, people inevitably regain weight unless they make significant lifestyle changes.

For men and women needing to lose at least 80 pounds (particularly if other serious weight-related health issues like type 2 diabetes or heart disease are present) weight loss surgery may be a viable option. Margaret Furtado, R.D., of the Massachusetts General Weight Center, a medical and surgical weight loss center in Boston, notes that surgery becomes an option only when other strategies have failed multiple times. You can learn more about these procedures through the National Institutes of Health.

Staying Motivated

It’s a great accomplishment to start losing weight, but this may only be the beginning. The most elusive aspect of weight loss is maintaining that motivation.

“Having people listen to you, not sabotage you but give you positive reinforcement when you’re making lifestyle changes can help rev you up and help you win at weight loss,” said Zied.

Personal motivation can also be inspiring. Jason Tirotta, a 28-year-old in Cleveland, lost nearly 100 pounds after watching his father’s health deteriorate. The memory of his dad continues to encourage him. “I wrote his initials on my shoes when I completed a big marathon, and I touched them every time I felt myself start to drag,” he says.

Joujon-Roche says that people need to remember that they’re losing weight to improve their overall health. “I see lots of people who are perfect when they’re filming, but after filming wraps, they fall off the wagon,” he says, referring to star clients.

Dieters often experience ups and downs. But with real commitment to a weight loss lifestyle, the next 30 days can be the beginning of achieving a slimmer, healthier you for life!

*name(s) changed.

Posted: 11/6/07

The Diet Solution Program helped me lose weight for good! I lost 50 pounds and I feel like a new woman! Here's the link if you would like to try it too.


Ok. Here I go again. I can't tell you how many times I "began" a new diet. They don't seem to last longer than 10 minutes. I need help. I'm 5'4". 225 lbs. 57 yrs old. I'm a compulsive snacker. I've never been this big in my life. I feel very unhealthy, no stamina, weakened immune system, not to mention what this is doing to my feet and knees. I'm a nurse aide in a nursing home so I'm on my feet a lot and getting slower...
I'm hoping I will be able to "do it" this time.
This web site seems SO good!
Thank You for Being Here!


My max weight was 220 by the age of 21, I managed to get back down to 145 at age 25. Since we moved back to Mississippi I have gained my weight back, I am sitting at 180 right now at age 28 and I am so unhappy. I don't like going out because I have nothing to wear, I am so worried about my weight, I hate how I look, I don't like ppl taking pictures of me now, but I can not find the motivation to lose the weight. At 145lbs I felt so free, now I feel like a prisoner in my own body ...once again!!! I have three daughters and my husband to cook for, the girls have snacks in the house, for me to diet is difficult, I can not afford to cook two separate meals... I just don't know...

  • By LwALLEY
  • on 3/27/09 9:35 AM EST

My weight has gone up and down through the years. When it reaches a certain (up) point, I have an epiphany that says "You are fat!"" and "Holy cow, you weigh as much as your DAD". Then I get depressed which starts the next part of the cycle: starvation.

I always used an "anorexic" method when it came to losing weight. I am so impatient and lazy that I would not eat, or eat very little, just to see the scale change number. I often didn't exercise. Sometimes I'd use diet pills. Not eating was a form of punishment for getting fat. Sure, I'd get headaches, dizziness, crankiness, fatigue. It worked for a while, but it was not a sustainable way of life.

This time I'm doing it differently. I started yoga practice. I cut out alcohol (something I never thought I'd do!). I've made a commitment to being active and eating healthily and regularly. I stopped weighing myself multiple times a day. I walk my dog every day. I eat a piece of fruit 3 times daily. I have a bite of something decadent now and then. I eat breakfast.

I'm hoping that being kind and forgiving to myself is something I can make a habit of.


learn to waste food. Not all the children in china will go hungry if you don't clean your plate.


I am new to this site. I heard Ariane speak at a conference for women recently and was very impressed with her. She has a winsome way of presenting herself. Humble but confident in her message.
The weight issue is one of many for me,the many 'feeding' the weight issue. I am only about 20 pounds over weight. But enough to affect my over all health...cholesterol etc. I am 58 so I am very aware of health issues. I have been pushing my doctor's appt. further forward, with the hope I will lose some weight before facing her. I definitely stress eat. From lunch onward is a problem. And I am easily influenced by anyone eating or offering food. I am again, today first of 30 days, keeping a food log which in the past lasted only a few days, and I am going to the gym. If I don't get to the gym early I get anxious about what else I should be doing and either don't go or hurry through any exercise...cardio usually gets shortened more than weights. So I am starting this road again (Halloween, oh well) I admire those with bigger weight losses ahead of them. I know it is absolutely possible, but there isn't a really easy way of changing comfortable habitual behavior.
I haven't been able to drop even 5 pounds in the last year. But I did lose more a couple of years ago, by the usual methods exercise and better food choices. Just let it creep up again. So, I begin again....Good luck to all who are heading down this road with me.


Hello ladies, I too am having the weight loss battle, I read what all of you have posted and I truly feel and understand what you are going through. I had an NDE in 1997 and was thrown immediatly into menopause. My system was in complete disorder. I weighed 360 lbs at one point but I am finaly down to 225. I started to not feel well, found out my blood pressure was 157 over 94, not good, I was off not eating well for some time and that is when the blood pressure soared up, again I am gaining weight and not feeling well. A friend referred me to a holistic health/MD and she told me that she could help me. So I am watching what I eat, salads, fruit, whole grains, etc, lots of water and hopefuly this woman will be able to detect problems and in turn help me...blessings be and good luck on your journey to health.


I am new to this site! I am happy to read some of the comments and see that I am not alone in my feelings. I just had my 50th birthday, am recently engaged and am at the 300 pound mark! I need to get motivated...I hate the way I look and feel! But typing this has made me feel better..I am tired of people saying...you are so pretty..if you'd just lose the weight...how rude..and the stares! This time is the right time...Anybody want to be friends? I can do this, I will do this!!

  • By toni708
  • on 7/10/08 10:52 PM EST

I'm new to this site, but I have high hopes! I am at my heaviest weight ever, but I'm determined to make the necessary changes once and for all.


I'm very new here, but not to weight loss and weight gain heartache.

I don't think I could calculate all the pounds I have lost and gained over the course of my life. I am currently at my absolute highest weight and least activity levels ever (nearing 300 pounds). I also have developed Type 2 diabetes and have high cholesterol.
I have an appointment scheduled this month at a weight loss management center where I will be beginning the journey toward weight loss surgery.
My mom died of diabetes and I am only 52 years old. I am old enough to know better and DO better. And deep down inside, although I forget it often, I am worth taking care of!

Thanks so much for the encouragement I need to move forward toward a new life.



Anne i been there and still there,i weight over 300lbs and they can't even determine my bmi.i am working on normal exercise clases now.i joined and had to quit because of my size i couldn't handle it.I hurt my left knee from surgery 5 years ago.My doc.gave me a note to go to a supervised exercise program,so i started last thursday.Classes is every thurs.i did good on the 1st day.i'm trying to look farwa
rd to the 2nd day.I also wan to los wt. for good healthy and able and wise. bjackson1955


I thank God and you for this article. I really feel I am on the right track now. I keep making small changes.Like eating an apple. Eating a fresh carrot and cucumber salad with less dressing and etc. Key-don't give up!