- Hardcover: 288 pages
- Publisher: Linden Publishing; 1 edition (October 1, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1884956939
- ISBN-13: 978-1884956935
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #138,435 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Refuse to Regain!: 12 Tough Rules to Maintain the Body You've Earned! Hardcover – October 1, 2008
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"'The best move would be to stop making excuses for your weight,' says Barbara Berkeley, MD, author of Refuse to Regain! 'That's the first step to getting healthy,' she says. Her other weight-loss strategies will help take you the rest of the way." Women's Health Magazine
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Top Customer Reviews
Fisrt, her approach is a "one size fits all" stratgey that will not work for everyone. Although she says it doesn't matter "how you lost your weight," she does propose only one approach - hers - for maintaining. Quite frankly, I have done almost exactly the opposite of what she recommends: I eat mostly whole grains, vegetables and fruit, and some dairy, with minimal animal-based protetin...and this, after losing wiehgt on a protein-based weight-loss plan (kind of a modified South Beach). So, the "one size fits all" isn't necessarily a good approach - people might think, "Well, if I can't bear to do it her way, in such an extereme manner, why try at all?"
Second, she takes an inconsistant approach, even within her own rather rigid plan. I was shocked to see that she breaks her own health-focused "Primarian" rules in odd ways...like allowing artificial sweeteners, which certainly aren't even vaguely "Primarian," and chemical-laden frozen "diet" entrees, like Lean Cuisine. I'm having a hard time picturing Og the hunter-gatherer chowing down on a Healthy Choice dinner and washing it down with a Diet Coke.
Most importantly, she rails against "moderation" as if it is more like wild abamdon. I am proof that moderation CAN work: I am careful to watch my eating and eat a very healthy, real-food based diet (no sugar, artificial sweeteners, or packaged, chemical-laden food) all week, and take a day off each week (over the Jewish Sabbath). On that day, I don't go wild, but I allow my self foods I don't eat during the week: some sugar, baked goods (no bread during the week, either), and other "treat" type foods. It's worked for me for four years, and can work for others, too. I think Dr. B's rigidity will discourage people before they even start...life need not be so bleak when maintaining a significant loss. And yes, I do exercise - but not an hour a day. I've stayed slim and fit with 25-30 minutes a day, about five days a week.
(As an aside, I'm a member of the National Weight Registry she refers to, and her characterization of what we long-time maintainers say and do is not entirely accurate...people should check out that source independently.)
Take heart, Big Losers - the maintenance picture's not as grim as Dr. B. paints it to be! Good luck to us all.
Dr. B lays out 12 Tough Rules:
Be Tough, Not Moderate - half-measures aren't good enough
Commit Yourself to a 3 month opt-out period - give this plan the "old college try"
Weigh Yourself every day - really keep tabs on it
Reverse Small Regains Immediately - no fudging or procrastination!
Eat Primarian 90% of the time - basically Paleo with tweaks
Eat One Major Meal Per Day - with mini-meals and snacks
Perform a Daily "Scan & Plan" - look ahead to what might subterfuge your food plan
Stop eating after 8 PM
Eat from a limited menu - too many choices or too much variety is intoxicating
Have one acceptable treat per day
Have a love affair with exercise
Maintain with support and support others
...all of which make sense to me.... NOW! Because, while I was initially resistant to some of what she wrote, the more I read (and the more difficulty I found in resisting holiday "treats" this past year!), the more respectful and receptive I became to Dr. B's ideas.
The first rule was what I resisted most: I hate to think that I can't be moderate - no matter that my morbidly body was ample evidence that I couldn't!? But I always hoped that I could BECOME moderate. Yet repeatedly I'm learning that just like Dr. B says, I'll have to be TOUGH to maintain my weight!! When I got to her list of "moderation strategies", I recognized myself at every turn - since I have tried every single one of them... and FAILED at every single one! I.e.:
Eliminate one food item from your diet every day. At the end of a year, all those little calories will add up to a big weight loss.
Eat only when you are truly hungry
Eat until you're full and no more
Eat anything you want, just do it in moderation.
WAIT a minute! This is where I came in! That's how I GOT to be 350 pounds... by trying to do those things!! Oh, well!!
Although popular media quotes statistics and insists that regaining weight is inevitable for most dieters, Dr. B lays out a foundation to counter-act that trend and gives a lot of support to those of us who really never want to regain what we've shed. I found her scientific explanations helpful and easy to understand, and I was convinced by the chemistry of her Primarian (essentially Caveman with some tweaks) diet. I liked her delineation between those fortunate folks who have never been overweight, and those of us who HAVE been overweight and even obese - essentially the main difference being how we metabolize food, specifically starch and sugar.
I especially appreciated her mountain-climbing analogy, comparing weight-loss maintenance to attempting an ascent on Mt. Everest. Just as we'd never start that journey without preparation and training, we need to get ready for the challenges of keeping the pounds off. Since she's been in medical practice helping overweight folks for 25 years, Dr. B has run into ALL of the obstacles that confront newly-slim people and she has many tried-and-true ideas to help us cope.
I AM curious about the inconsistency of her championing a Primarian diet for maintenance while also suggesting such products as Lean Cuisine or Healthy Choice dinners to reverse weight-gains!? I understand making certain concessions to remain accessible to many dieters, but those products and others she recommends, such as pudding cups and sugar-free jello, are pretty much co-opted, extremely processed non-foods - not health-giving in the slightest.
But that's only one small strike against what I consider Dr. B's invaluable perspective on the challenges we face as POW (previously overweight). I'm glad to have this resource for the future, and I'm gratified that I've learned enough from my own personal experience to verify so much of Dr. B has written here!