Seeking: Weight Loss Results

Updated on August 03, 2016
J.P. asks from Ventura, CA
22 answers

I have set the goal to lose 20-25 pounds this fall. I plan to run and work out 5 days a week and to eat more healthy--I try to go with a moderate diet--reducing fat and calorie intake. I find that extreme changes to my diet--i.e. only protein and no carbs wrecks havek on my post-extreme-diet body. So question: Should I take a weight loss supplement like Alli, even though I've read about terrible side effects? Is there a better strategy? I know this is the golden question. I'm ready and willing to work hard but I know I'll get discouraged if results don't come reasonably fast. Any positive feedback is appreciated.

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So What Happened?

Thanks for all the feedback. I'm excited to start this life-change off right. You've all given me a lot of great ideas. I have concluded that I'm going to stick with a more natural diet, no insane crashes or side-effect loaded pills (or shots.) Thanks again!! And good luck to all of my fellow weight-workers.

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answers from Denver on

I found it interesting that no one who has responded thus far even mentioned Weight Watchers. I have tried many, many diets out there and have always gained the weight back because they were so restrictive that I couldn't stick with them.

I finally hit a point early this spring where I knew I had to do something for me if I wanted to be around for my family for a good long time. I am doing the online WW program and participating in the message boards for moral support. I have lost 34.5 pounds in 20 weeks on the plan. That averages out to more than 1.5 per week which is a healthy rate.

Whatever you choose to do, I hope you do it in a healthy way. Best of luck.

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answers from Indianapolis on

Alli, in prescription form, is called Xenical. I sold it in 2000 when it was first introduced to the market.
It's a good drug, but the process of being a fat eliminator means it has to go somewhere, and it's through your poop (sorry, that's the easiest way to say it).

People who have bad side effects tend to eat more than the amount of fat they should in a day. We'd hear all kinds of horror stories about someone popping a Xenical, going to a fast food restaurant, and having an embarrassing moment.

It also received a warning from the FDA last year for possible liver issues. Even though Alli is 1/2 the dose of Xenical and available OTC, you should ask your physician.

My recommendation is to see if your insurance will cover the cost of a Registered Dietician. Most will, and even if you have to pay out of pocket, it's less than most diet plans anyhow.

Every hospital has an RD on staff, and they'll help you figure out how to moderately and safely, through a balanced, diet achieve your goals and maintain your weight loss.

Most RD's I know (I dealt with them professionally for 8 years) recommend Weight Watchers or a diabetes diet (through American Diabetes Association) as they're very balanced between fat, protein, and carbs.

Healthy weight loss is ~0.5 lb/week. It can be frustrating, especially for women as we carry more water weight at certain times. Also, keep in mind as you ramp up your exercise, you'll be building lean body mass (muscle) which weighs more, but is healthier for your cardiovascular system.

Good luck!

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answers from Phoenix on

Maybe you could try the South Beach diet. It's nice because you are allowed to have 'good' carbs whereas a lot of other fad diets tell you not to eat any carbs. I hate the restrictive diets that make me feel like I'm a failure if I slip up and eat a slice of pizza or something like that. Personally, I seem to do better when I'm just more mindful of portion size and making sure that I have time to eat so I don't overdo it when I finally get a chance to sit down for a meal.

If you decide to try Alli, make sure you read all of the fine print. I think you may actually need to be more than 25 lbs overweight to take it, not sure though. My mom and sister took it for a while and they both developed gas, loose stools, and the oily spotting in their underwear from leakage-- eww. Apparently they had to wear pantiliners every day. I also work with a girl who tried it and had to stop because every time she took it, it caused her to vomit. Maybe those were isolated cases but be careful if you decide to go that route.

Best of luck! Just try to stay positive & don't focus on the numbers on the scale but rather on how you feel. Trying to follow that advice for myself too. :)

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answers from Denver on

I'm an exercise physiologist by education and practise, but still struggle with my weight, especially since having 3 children past the age of 35 and hitting my mid 40's. Even though I have exercised regularly all of my life, what I do now is no where near what I used to do, my life has changed with 3 kids and instead of training as an athlete, I now struggle to find and hour or so most days to run or hike.

Last fall I decided enough was enough. I lost 30 lbs and have kept it off by exercising 4-5 times a week and using the Biggest Loser website. I am currently back on the program to lose the last 20 lbs of my goal. The thing that attrached my to the program is that it uses real food, you have a fair amount of control (you can choose a veggie diet, no red meat, yes to red meat, low sodium, low fat, diabetic, etc) and meal choices are things we normally eat. It also has a fairly easy system for charting your diet and exercise.

For me, portion size and quick food had done me in. Now I glance at the meal plan in the am, make adjustments if I need to, plan my meals and snacks, and I'm done. It's easy, practical, and painless. It also has the advantage of helping you to deal with the real world of food, family, and long term success and is realatily inexspensive ($40 a quarter).

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answers from Colorado Springs on

I can only imagine you'll get a million different answers. Here's my take on it, and I apologize in advance for being long-winded.

You lose weight when you put out more calories than you take in. And yes, you need protein AND carbs - there are good carbs - AND even a little fat. (The operative word there is "little" and I don't like it.) If you want to lose weight fast, there are ways to lose it fast; if you want to lose it and keep it gone, you'll have to take it slower because that's what your body and mind will NEED you to do.

The first thing to do is to make a commitment to change your life, not just your weight. I find that very difficult because I'm a food addict, but I keep getting back on the wagon after I fall off and I'm determined to make it.

Then you need to get a checkup to make sure there's no physical problem you don't know about.

Then decide what you can do to expend more calories. You need to make your body work more, have your heart beat faster. Can you join a gym? Find a class? Start power walking around your neighborhood? Get some exercise DVDs? Make some small changes, such as parking at the far end of the lot, or using stairs instead of elevators? Start doing those things and keep doing them even when it gets old or when life seems to get in the way. Be deliberate!

Then you get a notebook and write down the amounts of every single thing that goes into your mouth every day. This includes all the stuff that "doesn't count." It also includes the stuff you don't notice. This is another thing you don't quit (it won't take long to do when you're in the habit), and you want to journal fearlessly even on the bad days.

Once you're doing this, find a good sourcebook (at a bookstore or online) to learn how to get a calorie measurement of what goes into you. I have a Bodybugg which comes with a program that enters both calories and carb/protein/fat counts when I do my online journal, but you can learn this from a book as well. You might check what's at your library before you buy, so you'll know what works best.

Oh, and drink water! It's a practical way to help your body achieve the goals you're setting. You'll be so surprised at what it does for you!

The idea is to become *aware* - both of what you're putting into you and of what you're putting out of you (to use up calories). You're switching your eating and movement activities from brainless/default mode to deliberate mode.

What sort of support will you need? You'll need something. An exercise buddy? A friend you can be accountable to? There are some online support sources as well - the one that comes to mind is an exercise site associated with There are others.

This sounds long, tedious, and unrewarding, but that's only because it's aimed at a lifetime change rather than a quick fix.

Look for improvement in how you feel, not just how you look or what the scale says. I happen to hate scales and have my own "feelgood" criterion. I also find it very joyful when my clothing sizes change in the right direction! Finding the good in all the journaling and careful eating and movement is important, because... you want your brain to change its mind about the rest of you, and decide that you're worth this change of lifestyle!

Hope this isn't too overwhelming.

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answers from Kansas City on

your best bet is moderation all the way around and to make sure that you are taking a GOOD multi-vitamin. Note i say good, the ones over the counter at stores are loaded with fillers and most of them are actually made so that your body is only able to absorb a fraction of them. Your best bet is to buy online are a company that specializes in it. Many people find that once they start taking a good daily multivitamin that they do start to lose weight because their body is given what it needs and you arent feeling hungry and your body isnt hoarding extra calories.

also make sure that you are doing even amount, you need both protein and carbs, make sure you are doing strength training, stretching, and cardio. your body benefits from it all!

pushing yourself to do only one thing, or only a few works against you in the long run. you may feel you lose weight faster, but once you try to get back to "normal" you will just gain it back. If you make a whole life style change, then the weight will stay off!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Denver on

Hi Julie, between having two babies in my forties and "forgetting" to stop eating whatever I wanted when I stopped breastfeeding, I found that the scale had tipped to 10 lbs over my pre-pregnancy weight and 20 lbs over my ideal weight. Here's what worked for me:
1. Started running. Never ran before in my life. Used the Couch to 5K plan (Google it) and am now running between 3-5 miles 4-5x per week.
2. Cut out desserts, cookies, and fatty snacks.Period. No cheating.
3. For the first month or so, I logged everything that I ate. Using online calorie requirement calculators, I found that if I kept my food intake to 1800 calories per day on the days I worked out and 1500 calories per day on the days I didn't work out, I would lose a pound a week.
4. I ate whatever I wanted except for sweets and processed snack foods and stayed within these calorie requirements.

That's it. No need for drugs, supplements or weird diets. I am still running 4-5 times per week and my weight is staying right on target. So, my advice would be to do your homework, find out exactly how many calories you can eat per day to lose 1 or 2 pounds per week and run, run, run! You can do it!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Salt Lake City on

My best advice would be to decide what is most important to you, losing weight, or being healthy. Make a goal that means something to you, and then decide how you will measure that. Maybe it won't be how many pounds but will be inches, or how your clothes fir (buying new jeans) or maybe how you feel. I think focusing on the doing part is only going to be dissapointment, becuas eyou're never going to do it perfect. But Chosing who you will be about your health will make a difference, and the beaty of that is that you can choose that at any moment. Again and again. Have fun!!

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answers from Denver on

congrats on your decision to start exercising and eating better. Here are some strategies that help me. Reducing carbs is actually a good thing as long as you dont go too far, especially if you are exercising. If you eat too few carbs and try to do all that you plan to do, your muscles will feel really sore.

With that said, I would cut out all sugar and seriously limit your starches and keep your carbs to just vegetables and fruit. Limit the amount of saturated fats you eat ie: keep cheese to a couple of ounces a day. Increasing your protein and also eating carbs and protein at the same time will help your body maintain even blood sugar levels also.

The other thing that helps me is to use a scale to help me control portion sizes. That way I dont have to guess how much 4oz of chicken is. Keep a food journal of everything you eat. Also eat a really big salad a couple of times a day. 8oz by weight of salad and veggies will really fill you up. A company called Walden Farms has great fat free/gluten free/calorie free dressings that taste as good as the "real thing". You can find them online or at Whole foods/Sprouts etc.

About Alli - if you eat a moderately high fat diet, then it will help you. I hear the side effects come on when diet is very high fat. If you eat low fat like chicken, fish, lean meats then it's not going to do a whole lot for you. A good fiber supp would probably do just as much - Alli is pretty expensive.

I like the protein drinks I find at - I like the powdered cold fruit drinks. They have about 70 cals, 15 g of protein, a few grams of fat and no sugar. They make a great snack between meals.

best of luck to you!

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answers from Dallas on

I am working on this myself, and not an expert. However, I can tell you what seems to be working for me. First of all - excercise motivates the diet. That's the mistake I've made every other time. I was trying to go on a diet. After I've worked so hard, it's not difficult to turn down high calorie foods. Now, I start everyday with a multi-vitamin and Bcomplex for energy. Lots of water. I replaced my 3pm coke with ice tea. I cut alcohol way down. I made myself a deal that for every alcoholic beverage I would do an EXTRA 10 min on treadmill. So that keeps me from overindulging. I cut out simple carbs and have tried to go whole grain as much as possible. I used to make lean protien, veggie, and carb for dinner. I replaced the carb portion of my dinner with salad. I go to Zumba class for an hour of dancing and sweating twice a week. Another 2 nights of week I go to the gym and rotate eliptical, treadmill, bike, and resistance machines. I set the treadmill on steep incline (so I can feel my thighs and butt getting a workout) and go fast enough to get my heartrate to the wieghtloss zone and keep it there for 20 minutes. I start there and then when my heart rate is up I go over to the machines. I hope that increasing my heart rate at the beginning of the workout will maximize benefit throughout. Another mom told me that to get ready for pageant, she does 2 weeks of benefiber or laxative to clean out all the junk that sits in our bowels along with cranberry juice to clean out the urinary system. I haven't tried that yet, but plan to. So far so good. I am seeing a steady manageable decline. 7 lbs and 1 dress size in the last 2 weeks. The thing I have finally figured out is that all systems have to be set up to work together. Just trying to make 1 or 2 changes wasn't working and was hard to stick to.

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answers from Grand Junction on

I just met with a fitness trainer after losing 28 pounds on my own. Here is the meal plan he recommended:

60% good carbs (anything that comes out of the ground. Exclude white flour from your diet. I use whole wheat flour for everything, including cakes and cookies. Switch to whole grain rice if you haven't already. It's filling and will fuel your energy.

20% protein (anything that had a face or a parent.)

20% good fats.

Also, lift weights to boost fat burning. I take a weight lifting class 3 times a week and where I was stuck in my weight loss, the weight-lifting kicked it back into gear.

When doing cardio, do intervals. For heart health as well, the trainer instructed me to get my heart rate up to 185 for 30 seconds, then drop it back down to 130, increase to 160 for 1 minute, then boost it back up.

Good luck and good health to you!!

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answers from San Francisco on

Hi Mum
Good for you for trying to lose some weight.
I believe in natural all the way and would advise against taking any weight loss supplements.I think they interfere with good mental health.
My suggestions would be porridge and fruit for breakfast,a big salad and pitta bread for lunch and a big pile of veg ,fish and small potatoes(if you need the carbs) for dinner.Cut out coffee and drink lots of water and herbal teas.I use this form of dieting,its not extreme,low in calories and will not leave you starving at the end of the day.
If you are waning have a diet free day and start again the next day.
Best of luck
Positive Vibes

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answers from Salt Lake City on

I am a health and nutrition coach. I have learned that the air we breathe, the water we drink (unless it is purified), the fruits and vegies we eat (sprayed with chemicals) have left us in a very toxic environment. we need to be cleansing every day. Not a colon cleanse however, a cellular cleanse. Fat is an organ, and there is a purpose for it. It is there to protect our vital organs from becoming toxic and making us die. If we clean out our cells, the fat is no longer needed and it goes away. You need to be drinking only purified water, and about one quart for every 50 pounds you are. Here is a list of things to avoid every day. No soda!!! No sugar, high fructose corn syrup, aspartame, MSG, white flour, milk (non hormone free) Lots of meat. If you eat meat make sure it is organic. Farmers shoot them with growth hormones that make us fat! I personally chose to be a vegetarian so I can have only the hormones I produce naturally, and I'm going through menopause and NO HOT FLASHES! The thing is, we have to alkalize our bodies. As one friend says "Alkalize or die!" Check out my web site to learn more about detoxing at Then go to Isa videos and watch "Are You Toxic?" I hope this helps, and if you want to learn more after that please send a private message. I have a friend that lost 60 pounds in 3 months, and another that lost 100 pounds in 17 weeks. It works! Good Luck

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answers from Dallas on

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answers from Provo on

Last year in 6 months I lost 50 pounds. As soon as I'm done breastfeeding the new baby that's almost here I'm going back for 100 (I gained about 30 back and am hoping 20+ of that will drop off when the baby is born). I went through a specific program, but the things I learned are easy to share.

1 - portion control. A portion should never be larger than your fist.
2 - Small "meals" more often. Never go longer than 3 hours without eating. A meal can be as simple as a cheese stick and a handful of crackers or as complicated as a small chicken breast and baked "french fries" (spices make all the difference - I can give you tips on cooking if you need them). It's a good idea to rotate the size and complexity of the meals - so maybe 3 larger and 3 smaller per day.
3 - Carbs AND proteins. Your body processes carbs very differently with proteins than without. Your body needs carbs for fuel, so don't cut them out completely. Your body needs proteins to build and maintain muscles.
4 - Cardio. Start by getting 20 minutes of cardio 3 times a week and work up to getting 45 minutes 4 times a week. Even a walk will help.
5 - strength training. Your muscles are what burn the fat. Tone and build them to burn the fat more effectively (the strength training builds the muscles, the cardio gets them burning). You should do strength training at least 3 times a week to start and work up to 4 or 5 times a week.

It's hard to stick with, especially if there are other people in the house that you are cooking for, but I promise it works. I saw immediate and impressive results in both pounds and inches. You're welcome to check out my blog on the process:

Good luck!

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answers from Denver on

I have had good success with Isagenix. Alli really scares me. I don't know anyone it has worked for, except for one friends. It totally killed her thyroid to where she almost died (I don't know all the details), but she had to have her thyroid taken out. Talk about killing the weight loss! She did not have prior thyroid problems. At the beginning of the year, our family started the "Great Taste, No Pain" eating plan for our son. I've had great success with that as well. I also drink a lot of water, and usually put some fiber in it. Makes me less hungry. Anyway, good luck!

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answers from Saginaw on

I used SlimQuick pills last yr to lose weight and it helped alot! I lost 40 pounds! I exercised and ate right, alot of fruits and veggies, whole grains, yogurt, fish, lean proteins, but I did indulge in something when I wanted to so I didnt feel deprived at all. I didnt do the rapid detox or the appetite shots, just the pills and I loved it! I didnt get any strange side effects at all! I just had my 3rd baby 9 weeks ago and am doing Weight Watchers, im breastfeeding so diet pills are out of the question. I did Weight Watchers with my 2nd child as well and loved the results! I let myself go after I lost all that weight, hence the Slim Quick! Good luck!

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answers from Dallas on

Ever since having kids I have struggled with weight. I agree that a good multivitamin will help. I also emphasize good as most that buy will not be absorbed. I take Vitality 6 which is a multivitamin that comes in an am/pm packs.
Also, I work from home. This is a double edged sword as I can just go to the kitchen and get a snack so what I do is make sure and have healthier snacks, good whole grain crackers, fruit and nuts. I am borderline diabetic so keeping my sugar level with small snacks and small meals every day has definitely helped me loose weight over the last year.
I have neglected my exercise since working from home as I get up log on to the computer and begin work. Next week kids start back to school and I plan on putting that back in my daily routine and I have some great power bars which have less calories plus they help burn fat instead of muscle (great side affect is that they also help w/ recovery which my old body will def need --LOL).
Sorry to be so long. Nutrition has become more and more important for me and family as I learn more and more.

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answers from Boise on


Well, I also wanted to lose 15-20 pounds and fast! I like to see results fast as's discouraging if not. I took the EXTREME route. I did the hCG diet, injection form. (This form is only avail thru a prescription from your dr. But the drops (not as potent) are avail online. I paid $88 for the inj and online they are $69-ish..I think) It's the 500 calorie diet that is SUPER strict. I was allowed to choose my meats, fruits, veggies from a specific list. NO fats, sugars, starches whatsoever. If you cheat on this diet you will gain weight. I heard many people losing I said I am all in. In less than 1 month I lost my 15 pounds! I am on the last day of the 500 cal, I took the hCG inj 3 days ago, last, and you have to stay on the diet 3 days after the last inj to let it run out of your system completely or you will gain weight. I will NEVER again do this diet...but I will now diet and excersize as I should to maintain my weight. You really can't excersize while on the diet, you don't get enough calories to do so. This may not be the diet for you...but I thought I would mention it because you do see results fast. You can lose up to 1 lb a day. Tomorrow I will be able to have PB, cheese, eggs...all the things my body craves, except for the suagrs and starches for 3 more weeks..then I can slowly get back into a normal diet. My stomach has shrunk, I am not starving like you would think. Never look at food recipes while on this diet, it's torture, I know! haha
I am sure I am leaving things out...if you are interested, pop me a mssg and I can give you further info.
I am glad that I lost this weight..I got my results fast! This is a good thing if you only do a 1 month run with it, I would never go longer...
There are down sides...aside from not eating much, mood changes. hCG is the pregnancy hormone (google this diet) so I experienced some very mild depression, some moods swings.
My hubby said I am not allowed to do this diet again just because of how much deprivation from food (and I LOVE food) I had and all the mood swings and depression...I totally agreed with him.
I know I am not "selling" this diet, not my intent to lie, I am giving you the facts. Thousands do this diet and some stay or go back. Now I am sure I will gain a few pounds back..water weight. But, I will not go crazy, I will learn a lesson and stay with small meals, healthy meals! Through this as well...since you are sooo limited on the things you can cook with, I have learned a few other healthy ways to cook for my family without all the fat!

Good luck with your diet!

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answers from Salt Lake City on

Just want to say, 'slow and steady wins the race' when it comes to losing weight. You can do this. My husband and I have been doing Weightwatchers for 8 weeks and both have lost 10-13 lbs. each. It is all about portion control and at least 80% of what you eat!!! So smaller portions are the key even if you work out like crazy, it won't help much unless you eat LESS!!! I would also cut out desserts but that is my vice. Also, do NOT weigh in everyday or you will get discouraged. Just pick a day and weigh in every week on that day in the morning. Right it down in a log book to keep track and it will motivate you. Really. Just remember it took you years to gain the weight so it will take a little time tolose it and it is more healthy to shoot for 1-2 lbs. a week. Best of luck!!!!! Even though I only lost 10 lbs., my clothes fit better and I feel so much better!!!



answers from New York on

Drink Mummy magic weight loss tea. I gained 35 pounds with my second pregnancy and was looking for a healthy weight loss recipe without exercise and this tea helped me losing all my required pounds.



answers from Boise on

It's NOT a diet, it's a healthy lifestyle website. And it's 100% FREE! You have made a sound decision to become healthier the right way. This site offers meal plans (including shopping lists) that are normal food (no extremes, total balance) which is easy to find in any grocery store and even on a budget. It also offers a workout plan and a variety of "support" groups ranging from budgeting to parenting to over 40 mothers to cooking to anything you could want.

It has helped me loose and keep off weight that has been lingering for a lot of years.

Best of luck. If you go to SparkPeople, let me know. I'd love to hear your story. :)

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