Medifast without Medifast foods? A step above a post-WLS Diet
I've been thinking really seriously about getting the sleeve, and talking to some folks who have had it done. I have a local friend who had some kind of WLS and has had a ton of trouble (although she is thin now) and am going to talk to her about her experience tonight. This is the first time in my life that I am *seriously* considering doing this. In the past I have always been too afraid to die, leave the people I care for, etc, but I think I am entering a different mindset of making myself an at least equal priority to my family. With the kids moving out I have been sorting and tossing a lot of things I never thought I could let go of. I am starting to phase myself out of the caregiver role and into more of a role that involves taking care of ME. I still have kids with medical issues that need care, but somehow I feel differently, like I matter. That's kind of a hard thing for me to say, because it implies that I have felt like I *don't* matter. I know I matter! And yet, if I am honest with myself, that is exactly how I have acted and subconsciously felt at times. Everyone else is important, but I only matter because I am taking care of them and they need me. Once they no longer need me, I won't matter. And that's not a healthy way to think, even if it is buried under the knowledge that of course I matter. I just need to bring the "mattering" to the surface and start caring for myself with the intensity that I have always cared for others. I have been putting myself last for 26 years. This year, I am getting a promotion.
What I have been doing to avoid weighing, measuring, and counting calories and carbs (which I hate) is this: I have started using more pre-packaged foods that are already portioned and are higher in protein, lower in carbs. For a long time I have eyeballed labels looking for "Medifast substitutes"... foods that are similar in nutritional content to a Medifast meal (about 90-110 calories, 11-15 grams of protein, 8-15 grams of carbs, 4-5 grams of fiber, under 4 grams of fat). A lot of people who used to do Medifast got tired of the skyrocketing prices and have looked for alternatives such as the WonderSlim and BariWise diet foods from DietDirect.com (affiliate link... I use their products a lot), Quest bars, and other packaged foods that they could use as a meal in the 5&1 Plan, getting the same results at a lower cost. Heck, I have even seen people sub things like a low fat string cheese for a Medifast meal because the most important thing of all on that plan is to keep your carbs low, and string cheese generally has 0 carbs. Anyway, the old 5&1 Plan on Medifast was just 5 protein meals and one meat/vegetable meal per day. It was nice because you never had to track ANYTHING. You just eat the 5 meals, and all you have to measure is your meat (weigh it, 5 to 7 ounces) and your vegetables (3 servings, a half cup each but for raw greens you get a full cup for a serving). If you eat those things, it automatically will be 800-100 calories, over 72 grams of protein and under 100 grams of carbs every day without tracking. That was so easy but boring. I am thinking I could do the same thing with random protein meals and whole foods that have a similar nutritional profile, and then eyeball the dinner to be about the same as a Lean & Green meal on Medifast. I am not going to get obsessive and count and measure spices like Medifast asks you to do; instead I could make one of the meals each day a no-carb snack to allow some wiggle room for the carbs in seasonings. What do you think? Can I do "Medifast" without actually using Medifast products? Would it be easy and stress free and result in weight loss? I'd be getting a solid 900-1000 calories a day which is probably slightly more than I am eating now, and also more than I would be eating after a VSG. If I am willing to eat well under 1000 calories a day after WLS, it can't be any worse to do it now. If I can't stick to it then so be it, I will try and get the surgery and that will force me to eat that way.
Today's menu (updated after dinner):
coffee with half and half
a hard boiled egg
a small nectarine
a packet of protein pretzels with a spoonful of hummus
a bowl of fresh kale that I cooked with onions and chicken broth
a protein bar
a large heirloom tomato from the CSA box, diced, tossed with fresh basil also from the CSA box, one chopped string cheese (because I had no fresh mozzarella), a drizzle of olive oil, and salt & pepper
I will have something as a snack later, maybe protein pudding or something else around 100 calories.
Walked the dog and biked 25 minutes. Input welcome.
I am 38 years old, female, a degree-holding stay-at-home-mom, and I weigh 278 pounds. I have been obese for ten years now. Time to get out of this fat prison I have made for myself.
--This is the original introduction I wrote when I first started this blog in 2007. I leave it as a reminder to myself of where I came from. Currently, I am 46 years old and weigh significantly less...see the blog for details. I lost 103 pounds, then had a partial regain, and am once again working at weight loss and better health.
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