A few days ago, I sent an email to two of the dietitians at Medifast asking for help with my plan. I have been following the Medifast 5&1 Plan for a couple of months, but have not been losing much weight... 2 or 3 pounds a month. Now, that's okay, it is better than no losses, but honestly it is a pretty strict plan and I had a relapse last week that's been hard to recover from. My carbs are too high, I crave more produce which my doctor recommended to me, and I start to resent not being able to eat more veggies and some fruit over the months I've been on this plan. Considering those factors as well as my obviously slowwwwwww metabolism and lack of physical activity, the dietitians got together and came up with two options for me. One of the options includes dairy and grains. I seem to have trouble controlling my intake when I introduce grains, and some of them seem to affect how I feel physically, too. I've said for awhile that I don't really want to reintroduce grains to my eating, ever. I have mixed feelings about dairy, too... it seems milk can cause inflammation, which is one thing I don't need. That plan is also quite high in carbs, and I'd like to keep mine on the lower side permanently. So I decided that I am going with the other option they presented.
It's called the "4 & 2 & 1 Plan." With this plan, I'll get more variety, twice as many vegetable servings, AND a serving of fruit per day. My calories will stay low, but not as low as they have been; instead of 800-1000 calories (5&1 Plan) I will aim for 1100-1300 calories a day. That's below what seems to be my "maintenance" calorie level, but is also high enough to possibly help give my metabolism a boost. One of the dietitians calculated my calorie needs based on my age, height, etc and said she recommends 1200 calories a day.
So... here is what I will eat daily:
4 Medifast meals (prepackaged)
2 Lean & Green meals, each made up of 5-7 ounces of lean protein and 3 low carb veggie servings
0-2 Healthy fat servings (only added to one Lean & Green meal per day)
1 Healthy Snack, which they define as a serving of fruit, low fat dairy, or grains. I am going to be eating the FRUIT exclusively for my Healthy Snack serving.
This way, I can do what I have wanted to do for so long: eat fresh, local produce in abundance but also still have a structured plan to keep me from going over on other foods. I will eat twice as much lean protein and twice as much veggies, split up over 2 or 3 mealtimes a day.
I am going to go to the Farmer's market every week for my fruits and veggies and try to eat mostly what is in season. I will supplement with organic fresh produce from my favorite grocery store, which has a very nice produce section.
Six servings of veggies a day will be great! One cup of raw greens such as spinach, any kinds of lettuce, or spring mix is a serving; a half cup of any other low carb veggie, cooked or raw, is a serving. High carb veggies are still limited (which is how I prefer it anyway, to keep my carbs lower) so no potatoes, winter squash, corn, or peas. And for my fruit serving, I can have one piece of fruit (such as an apple, orange, small banana, pear, peach, etc) or a half cup of cubed melon or berries. Strawberries are about to come in season and I cannot wait!
I am going to keep logging my calories so I can get a handle on how to stay within the 1100-1300 range and also see if I can keep my carbs close to 100. I think by choosing lower carb veggies and fruits at least part of the time, I should be close.
That's all for now. I am starting this plan tomorrow.
Disclosure: I receive free product in order to evaluate and comment on my experiences on the Medifast Program. Medifast products and the Medifast Program are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or illness. Any medical improvements noted while on the program are related to weight loss in general, and not to Medifast products or programs.