lifestyle changes for weight loss

Lifestyle changes for sustainable weight loss are necessary for anyone who wishes to maintain losing weight off their body.  I don’t believe there is any other way.  The way you eat needs to become your new lifestyle, otherwise you will revert back to your old ways before you know where you are.  I’m sure there is no other way, and until you come to that decision for yourself you will most probably continue with ‘weight off-weight on’ experiences.

It wasn’t until I made the decision to forget about my overall weight
and began to concentrate on making lifestyle changes,
that it brought sustainable weight loss for me.

Chiefly I’ve been working on the idea of “adding more” rather than taking away.  Seems a silly thing to say I know, but hey, it’s working.  If you put your thinking in to what you can add to your eating plan, it sure takes away from the feeling of lack you experience when you think you have to eat less.  No, more is good… just as long as it’s the right kind of ‘more’!

lifestyle changes for weight loss

I’ve added lots of lovely food to my daily intake as I’ve learned about  wonderful superfoods that do me good. I’m excited about what I eat, and thoroughly enjoy it.  I don’t have to worry about whether I’m going to end up like the side of a house anymore… LOL, in fact any excess weight goes down without me giving it a thought. Little by little, bit by bit.  I rejoice in the fact that I can become slim naturally!

Do you know I had problems with acid reflux which I didn’t particularly enjoy.  My new way of eating changed all that for me…  I don’t suffer with it anymore.  That has made me feel so much better, just that alone.

Eat real food and cut out all the junk ‘pretend’ foods and soon you won’t know yourself.  Truly.

So what are some of my results?

Well so far, as mentioned:

  • While ever I am mindful of my eating I’ve been dropping weight
  • I no longer suffer from acid reflux when I go to bed at night
  • Definitely feeling better in myself which is great.

I would like to share with you exactly what I do.  I’ve no diet plan to offer you, in fact, I’m not interested in diet plans.  I’ve just made a few adjustments so it’s not been hard for me at all.

I’m keen to hear from you… what are your experiences?  Have you made any lifestyle changes for sustainable weight loss that you’d be interested in sharing with us? What has been working for you?  What do you find is a waste of time?  Feel free to share in the comments below, as I’d love to hear from you.

Marilyn Williams of Mouthful Matters

Marilyn Williams
Nutrition & Dietary Consultant


38 Thoughts to “Lifestyle Changes for Sustainable Weight Loss”

  1. Chris

    Trying to remove excess fat is one of the most difficult tasks there is. In my experience, choosing the right food to eat will really do most of the tasks. Based on my observation, exercise has little effect on me if I don’t change my diet. I select high-protein food, high fiber, and those complex carbohydrates to slow digestion. I eat whole wheat bread instead of white rice most of the time. I drink soy milk to replace cow’s milk since I have lactose intolerance. I drink whey protein after exercise so the muscles won’t suffer. And I love chicken, mostly oven baked. 😀 It is working really. It just needs some self-discipline. Let me know if I am doing it right. I am open to suggestions. Please do share your choices of foods.

    1. Marilyn

      Hi Chris and thanks for leaving me your thoughts. It’s great you are moving in the Lifestyle direction rather than being on the latest diet. You have asked me for my thoughts:

      1. I would go easy on the whole wheat bread as it has its problems.

      3. Whey protein – I like it heaps but haven’t completed my research on it.

      4. Chicken is cool as long as it’s organic and free-range. The rest of it you shouldn’t touch with a barge pole!

      Maybe, or maybe not, you are conscious of the above things. Many people who are trying to do the right thing are still following what the media and others have been pumping out for years. I mean, are you that concerned, or do you just want to lose weight? 🙂

  2. Katrina Blackburn

    Hi I totally agree with it needing to be a lifestyle rather than a short term plan. I myself haven’t needed to diet for weight loss during recent years as I’ve been breastfeeding and seem to have the opposite problem of not being able to keep weight on, but I have made changes to improve my overall health by eliminating processed food and eating a whole food diet. Also 2 of my children have severe allergies and whilst they were being breastfed I was on a restricted diet as one bite of the wrong food would have them breaking out in hives or up all night screaming with tummy pain, definitely to get through that period I did what you talked about with focusing on what I could have, which was lots and lots still. I also found for the things I was really missing or craving that I could usually find a substitute that was just as nice if not better, I had to cut dairy and found not having yoghurt hard, which seems silly but for some reason I really missed it, so I replaced it with coconut yoghurt and even though I can eat dairy again now I prefer the coconut one.
    I’ve heard that increasing fat content is suppose to be a great way to lose weight and then maintain that loss, my understanding is when you eat fat your body burns it off as like a slow release energy giving source but when you eat carbs your body burns some of them but then stores the rest as body fat as usually the intake is more than the body needs or can use, so eating fat doesn’t make you fat, it’s excessive carb intake. Not all fats are equal though, so needs to be the healthy ones, coconut oil is all the rage and health experts are doing a u-turn on butter.

    1. Marilyn

      My goodness, what a challenge! Breastfeeding those 2 children must have been an awesome experience, just trying to get it right!

      That’s exactly right… really, there is always a substitute, and often they are better than what you are substituting! Like the coconut yogurt.

      Yes, as long as it’s the healthy fats you can’t go wrong.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts… much appreciated

  3. Ashkan

    Losing weight has become a serious issue these days. People do crazy stuff to get rid of extra fats in their body.
    The real fact is that most of the time, losing weight with strict diets is not healthy. I believe, as you mentioned in your post, they best way to lose fat in general cases is to change the lifestyle in a healthier manner.
    Thank you for your post.

    1. Marilyn

      You are just so right Ashkan! We would all like to wave a fairy’s wand and be just as we imagine, but the truth is the weight took a long time to come and no, it’s not going to fall off over night.

      But, making the decision to change your lifestyle, one little step at a time, will work just like the wand only slower. The main thing is that it’s heading in the right direction.

      Not all lifestyle changes are easy and we do have to make sure we are in the right head space so that we don’t just fall back into the old ways. That challenge tends to follow us around. 🙂

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

  4. Thomas

    I’ve got a sweet tooth and can’t think of living without desserts and sweets. What would you suggest for me? Tom

    1. Tom I understand what you are feeling. You can get rid of a sweet-tooth so it doesn’t bother you anymore, but there is also another way! If you just use alternative ingredients you can eat some sweet things that are building your health rather than knocking it down. I would suggest you visit this page: Desserts Would be good if you let me know how you get on. 🙂

  5. Jay

    Hi Marilyn, I’ve been telling people what you say here pretty much for ages. Getting them to take notice is a challenge in itself.

    I know people that goto diet clubs and some of the menus are insane, I couldn’t imagine making that a lifestyle choice. So I choose to eat real a natural food the best I can and believe me, that can be quite a challenge.

    Many people go on diets and lose a lot of weight, then they revert back to the bad eating habits and put it all back on again, what a sad shame.

    The amount of people that think fat is bad, then replace it with low fat food loaded with sugar. I hope people pay attention to this site and actually listen to what you have to say, I find it very informative.


    1. Marilyn

      Hi Jay… thanks for the vote of confidence! Yes I know, a lot of people do look at you sideways when you say you don’t wish to eat this or that. I was recently told “you’ve gotta live a little”. Well, I’m endeavouring to make lifestyle choices that do give me a life! Sickness and disease doesn’t really appeal to me. So I’m with you… let’s take the journey together. Thank you!

  6. PorfyV

    Hi Marilyn,

    Glad that you had the ‘natural’ means of losing weight, and maintaining it. I do like the way you write your article, and how you present your idea. I like short reads, and you linked your articles nicely.

    But where is your article on acid reflux? That seems to be one thing missing.

    Overall, I like the idea of being able to shed weight and maintain a slim figure – naturally!

    1. Marilyn

      Thanks for your thoughts… I appreciate them. Hmm, I’ll have to work on that one on acid reflux, thanks for bringing it to my attention! I’m actually currently going through them to see if I have any missing links or promised posts so you’ve just saved me the job of finding that one.

      Yes, you know what… it takes a load off your mind when all you need to think about is your health rather than losing weight. It’s so much more smarter to think that way with the end result being a whole lot more satisfactory.

      Thanks again!

  7. Marant

    I’m glad to see that it isn’t necessary to have a strict diet plan to drop some weight! I too believe that suttle lifestyle changes over time have the best effect. I notice you mention “super foods” as a way to get nutrients and still lose the weight. Are there any “super foods” in particular that you recommend?

    1. Marilyn

      Thanks for your comments Marant… I really do appreciate them.

      Yes, it is the subtle changes that make all the difference. I mean, weight falls off you gradually but it does fall off. That’s the main thing. And… because you’ve learned a different way of eating, it will stay off.

      Really I think all super foods are a real benefit to you. I’ve not done any research on specifics as yet, but while ever you are eating great foods and not eating junk, you can’t possibly go wrong.

      Let me know if I can help you in any way and if you like I will spend some time researching if you feel you need more specific help.

  8. Christine

    Your lifestyle changes seem to be working well for you. Your positive attitude will go a long way in keeping the changes long term. There are 4 hormones that have a major impact on weight and one of them is insulin. As an insulin dependent diabetic I find it is quite a challenge to make the right food choices. There is a lot of conflicting information on the internet and I believe you are doing a great service in telling people what is working for you.

    1. Marilyn

      Yes, the unfortunate thing is that food in general does not react the same way in everyone. I’m sure it would make it a whole lot easier if it did, but because it doesn’t we all have to make a point of listening to our bodies.

      For example, I could say that my lemon, ginger honey tea makes me feel really good whereas for you, you may be allergic to the ginger and it gives you a pain or something.

      I can quite understand the challenges you face making the right food choices but I do hope that the information I put out there helps you to at least make your choices from the “good foods” and keeps you away from those that have been tampered with, or the “food” that is just plain junk.

      I really appreciate you making this comment and do hope you’ll come in often and share from your perspective. Thank you! 🙂

  9. Teresa

    Making lifestyle changes is a very important part of sustaining weight loss. There are countless numbers of people who have been on diets to loss weight, only to gain it back again later on.

    We must make a conscious decision to make adjustments to our lifestyle so that we can keep the weight off and also enjoy this lifestyle change too.

    I think adding superfoods in your intake is good. Eating well will do good to our health.

    1. Marilyn

      You are so right Teresa! Once you become very aware of the fact that it has to be life-changing, it’s easy to know which people are going to make it and which aren’t. I mean, they tell you they are dieting and after just a little probing into what they are doing, you know instantly pretty much what’s ahead of them. Sad really. Sad because most people really do want to say good-bye to their fat but not a lot of them are open to listening to the truth. We have to be “wise as serpents and gentle as doves”.

      When you make a mental list of which superfoods you’ve eaten today, it becomes quite exciting. Just try to make sure that everything that goes into your mouth builds your health and you can’t miss it.

      I appreciate your comment.

  10. Pete

    I have heard some really great things about superfoods and its benefits for the digestive system. It’s great to see you’ve had some great results with them. And I must agree with you Marilyn, there is nothing greater than having some natural energy. I really enjoyed your website and am looking forward to learning more from all the quality information you’ve provided!

    1. Marilyn

      Thanks for that Pete! Yeap, everyday I continue to learn and apply the learning where possible. To me it’s one of the most fascinating subjects. Natural energy has got to be good as its what gives us the “get up and go” for everything we do. Love it! I’m so glad you enjoyed. 🙂

  11. Gary

    You are what you eat but you eat what you think.

    If a diet is not in unison with your thoughts about food, in other words if your diet makes you eat stuff you don’t like to eat, then that diet won’t last very long.

    Lifestyle changes start with changing your mind, reprogramming your thought forms about food, and the whole process of eating.

    What are your thought forms about food? We all have anticipation about future events and one of the most common is our anticipation about our next meal. Within that anticipation are images, smells, tastes, the whole picture, the whole experience of what it’s going to be like. It is that anticipatory imagery that has to be changed and that needs to happen slowly and consistently or it won’t happen at all.

    I think you’re on to something with your change your lifestyle first approach. I’ll be interested to see your long term results.


    1. Marilyn

      Gary, I hear you! Not only hear you, but agree with what you are saying. I will be bringing more of this type of thinking out in the near future. How you think in your mind is massively important. I’ve had some first hand experience just lately with someone who actually allows their old thoughts about certain foods to totally overrule what they will or will not eat. It’s been quite fascinating.

      I appreciate your feed back and the quality of it. Thanks. 🙂

  12. Dave Sweney

    Hi Marilyn,

    This is a subject I have been interested in and actually have done a number of activities with for years. One of my study programs way back in the day involved counseling, and one area I was involved in at the same time in my day job involved diets, fitness, and menu development.

    Although that was now over 30 years ago, things have not changed much. There are always the new wonder this or that programs that pop up, but I agree with you…Change what goes on between the ears and you can change everything else easier…

    I ran groups for losing weight and one of the things I pushed a lot was based on rational emotive therapy. For this specific purpose, I tried to get people to explore what was going on around them that caused them to eat more than they really should, and the feeling they got when they did.

    Once members determined that they were reacting to events around them, and they had the choice of how to react to the events, they could easier change their behaviors (some of which were overeating).

    There were other tools of course, but this was a central theme, and it worked. We did a weigh in at the start of each session, and people could track their progress. This worked well too. They could see and talk about their experiences during the week, and it was useful for all to hear others’ stories…

    Now as to the type of foods etc. I agree with you…It really takes a mind set reset as I like to say…Myself as I get older, I am finding my metabolism is slowing dowjn, and I no longer need the calories I did as a younger man running marathons etc.

    Plus, I am more interested in eating foods that are high in anti-oxidants, other minerals and vitamins, and also good to eat (I like them)…I find now I also eat more Asian type foods, with lots of seasoning and spices that add flavors unheard of in my earlier years…

    The old adage “moderation in everything” holds true in dieting and trying to lose weight…It did all those years ago and it is the same now…Losing weight is an outcome of changing your mindset, and learning to try and make the foods that are better for you work…That and a moderate level of physical exercise (so many ways to add more to your routine without going to the gym)….

    1. Marilyn

      Wow Dave, you’re certainly very experienced in the subject… that’s fantastic. Thank you for sharing so much of your insight and experience here with me. I’m so glad you agree with much of my writings, it encourages me to know I’m on the right track.

      Once again it shows how so many of the successes or assumed failures in our life, comes down to what is going on in our mind. If we could grasp the enormity of the potential right there in our own mind, nothing could, or would stop us. I think we would begin to leap over tall buildings!!!

      I agree with you that these days I “think before I eat”, and if a food is full of nutritional goodies, I don’t hesitate. Will it help to build me up or tear me down? This is the question I most ask myself. It makes it easy to refuse that particular food, or choose a better option when you look at it that way. Many times I said no, even when my mouth is watering! And each time I do it, I feel stronger.

      Thanks for sharing, I appreciate it so much.

  13. Gina

    In the past couple years I’ve changed my lifestyle to make me and my body much happier. Like you said, it really is about lifestyle, not just “being on a diet”.
    What works for me is counting my macronutrients depending on what I want do to with my body. It makes it very easy to do when you have an app for it. No hassle at all; It’s become a normal part of every day. I lost 30 pounds and I lift about 5x a week, still being able to eat the things I like. 🙂

    1. Marilyn

      You seem to be doing very well Gina – congratulations! Of-course, not everyone can attend a gym (presuming you do so) but there are many things you can do at home, evening in lifting. They can find something of a certain weight, like a couple of cans of fruit for example… do that for awhile and then find some heavier items. Keep building as you can handle it. Others could buy a set of barbells which makes it easier again.

      I’m sure the app must help you a lot and it would be great if you would share what it is you are using.

      Although the lifting helps you lose weight while continuing to eat whatever you desire, I’m also interested in improving the food I eat opting for healthier varieties. I really do believe that is a very important part of our lifestyle.

      Thank you for your comment and sharing what you’re doing.

  14. tamyp

    Hi Marilyn – tell me about it! I’ve been on yo-yo diets for years and I’m bigger than ever! I’m finding your pages refreshing and I’ve bookmarked you for future reference. Thanks so much.

    1. I’m so sorry Tamy that you’ve been caught up with all those diets. I really hope that you can take hold of what I’m saying and it will help you a whole heap. Let me know how you go please as I’d love to hear.

  15. rosy

    With these solutions when it comes to losing weight, people should understand that they’d eventually succeed after they become really committed
    in doing some in the solutions suggested in this article.

    Being overweight is deadly situation in which you could
    be at greater risk of developing serious health problems like non insulin dependent diabetes,hypertension,stroke and
    cardio-arterial disease.

    1. Yes I agree Rosy! It’s not simply a matter of looking overweight, it’s a matter of all the health issues that go along with that. We should all be more conscious of it but it can be easy just to think of your shape and not what’s going on internally. Thanks so much for sharing.

  16. jeddy

    Pretty! This has been an extremely wonderful article.
    Thank you for supplying these details.

    1. Thanks Jeddy. I hope you can apply the learning into your life. Let me know.

  17. jodiet

    Wanted to mention that I’ve done something similar to what you’ve suggested here and so far my results are good. Was excited to see a website mention these things. You have encouraged me. Thanks.

    1. Hey that’s fab Jodi! We much be on the same wavelength! Keep it up and come back to share some of your results.

  18. shavvy

    There are a couple of easy-to-do dishes offering tons of health benefits and cause weight loss at the same time. I’ve been looking them up online and they seem easy to do.

    1. Yes, there is a ton of recipes and information online. We are so lucky to have it all at our fingertips. Have fun and enjoy.

  19. lilywong

    Excellent advice in this article! I totally agree that lifestyle changes is the only and best way to go about sustaining healthy weight loss. Superfoods are wonderful, aren’t they? There are so many varieties that it’s never boring to eat healthy foods. Hope to read more from your blog soon!

    1. Marilyn

      Thank you lilywong, I appreciate your comments. Yes, I truly believe the only way to sustain weight loss is through the continued little changes we need to make in what we consume. To begin with it’s like paddling upstream because you are going against the flow, but when you only attempt one thing at a time it’s so much easier.

      I hope you do come back as I’ve lots more to share

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