September 2020 McDougall MWL Weigh-In Group

For those wanting to learn about and follow the McDougall Maximum Weight Loss Program. You can also join our monthly weigh-ins.

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Reporting for September 25 Weigh-In is now CLOSED

Postby Mark Cooper » Sat Sep 26, 2020 1:02 pm

The window for reporting this week's weigh-in and behavioral results has officially closed.

The remainder of my replies and the weekly summary will follow.
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Mark's Replies for September 25 - Part 2

Postby Mark Cooper » Sat Sep 26, 2020 1:27 pm

oneesotericgirl - Nice loss again this week, and you are down over 10 lbs for the month! Personal issues and overwhelming emotions certainly tax our resources, don't they? Apart from going for a walk (I'm sure being able to return to that pleasant activity in a month will be a joyous occasion) do you have any other practices or tactics in your toolbox for when stressors start to feel staggering? I wholeheartedly agree that sometimes learning the hard way that those "treats" often don't treat us very well can help the lesson to stick. :nod: Be kind to yourself, refocus on the recommended behaviors, and forge ahead.

louie3084 - Down more than a pound! Your weight loss seems right on track! Many factors other than how much fat we may be losing can influence a particular weigh-in result on any given day, as Jeff explains in To Weigh or Not to Weigh; hence the recommendation to weigh oneself once a week, when trying to lose weight. I think it pays to be sanguine even in regard to the weekly weigh-in result; the prevailing pattern of behavior is paramount, and produces the outcomes over time.
louie3084 wrote:Mark how much oatmeal generally works per day on this program?
There isn't really any single, specific answer to that question, as it could vary from person to person and from one day to the next. So, the overall answer is - whatever amount of oatmeal is sufficient, when paired with an equal visual volume of fruit or non-starchy vegetables, to leave you feeling comfortably full. For some that might be a cup of cooked oatmeal with a cup of berries, for others it might be 2 cups of oatmeal and an equal amount of greens. Whenever you are hungry, at whatever meal or time of day, just eat of the recommended foods, in the recommended fashion, until comfortably full. If you finish a 50/50 portion, and you're still hungry, eat some more (still 50/50), until satiation. When preparing oatmeal from rolled oats, cook the oats in at least 2 parts water for each part oats.

Lachoffman - Congratulations on your excellent adherence for the week and 36 lb cumulative loss! Woo-hoo! :D Cheers for no issues or challenges. If that reduced sodium salt is a mix with potassium chloride, it is not recommended, for the reasons Jeff explains here. A sprinkle of salt on the surface of your food is the recommended option.

ChristinaElizabeth - Nice results and some valuable successes this week! Lesson learned for next time with that restaurant meal, right? I think it can be helpful to think of those cravings not arising from something that is wrong with us; rather, they are often a natural response to the presence of calorie rich, hyperpalatable foods in our environment. When faced with hunger, if it is easier for us to reach for those troublesome items, than the recommended foods, we're quite likely to do so. This tells us we were faced with a situation or environment for which we were unprepared - there is nothing wrong with us, and no need to "beat ourselves up;" it is just a signal that we either need to adjust our plans, practice and routine to account for that situation going forward, or make some changes in our environment, or both. Making sure you have ready access to the appropriate foods wherever you may be should go a long way toward helping with that. :)

LesleyMills - Another 2 lbs gone! Sticking to the plan, slip aside, makes for a solid week! I imagine those crackers were quite high in sodium, so I would expect the jump in weight, and accompanying rebound, were a result of water retention from that attendant high salt intake, as Jeff discusses here.

Creaky - Excellent adherence! Considering you've logged some big drops on the scale in the previous two weeks, I wouldn't worry too much about this single weigh-in result (as that Saturday morning scale reading helpfully demonstrated ;-) ). Doing an outstanding job adhering to the recommended behaviors will result in continued weight loss over time. On fruit and MWL,
Tiffany Hobson wrote:In regards to fruit, Dr. McDougall stated long ago that if you want to lose weight you may want to limit your fruit consumption to two servings per day because some people have an tendency to overindulge in fruit. That being said, fruit is very low in calorie density, and we believe that eating fruit is a great way to still achieve your weight loss goals; however, if you find yourself eating copious amounts of fruit every day and are not seeing the results you want, that is an indicator that you may want to slow down on your fruit consumption.
JeffN wrote:The limit of 2 servings of fruit is based on Dr McDougall’s personal experience and, like the limit on beans, is just a weekly average. His main concern with fruit in regard to weight is that he says he sees participants “binging” on fruit.

For the record, there is also unlimited fruit (and unlimited McDougal bean soups) served at the 10-Day program in the snack room for the participants to choose from.
Some of our earlier group discussions on fruit our excerpted in this thread.Something to keep in mind with that potential birthday deviation; a meal that substantially diverges from the level of adherence you've worked hard to establish can sometimes be a ticket back into the Pleasure Trap. We all have to make our own choices, but whatever we choose, it generally pays to be prepared for what to expect; that way a single off plan meal doesn't become just the first in a series of digressions.

Hope410 - Down nearly a pound! Kudos for making this week an improvement over the last! Keep focusing on the recommended behaviors, striving to make each day and week at least a little better, make progress where you see the opportunity to do so.

Reni - You are down over 10 pounds this month, if I'm not mistaken! I'm sorry you're still feeling ill, that certainly can't make things any easier. :) Keep doing the best you can, I hope you feel a little better every day on your way to recovering!

ladevereaux - Nearly 10 lbs lighter than in the beginning of August! Making this week better than last week is an important step in the right direction. I'm sure those pressures, both emotional and external, can feel quite overwhelming at times. Well done preparing that bag of potatoes to have at hand, and that vegetable soup should be a beneficial addition; eating the recommended foods is among the best things we can do to put ourselves in the position to meet impending challenges to the best of our ability. For me, non adherent "comforts" usually left me feeling even worse than the wounds they were an attempt to salve. Hang in there!

potatohead55 - Nice loss! You've made a great start on adopting the recommended behaviors, just keep working on improving adherence to those points that still present a challenge. Corn tortillas are relatively calorie dense at ~1000 calories / lb; they are not recommended for MWL (the only flour product acceptable for MWL is whole grain pasta.) Tahini is not recommended for MWL, since it is made from sesame seeds, and is relatively high in fat. As you work to eliminate the bread, this approach Jeff outlines below should help.
JeffN wrote:The fundamental basic principle of the MWL Program and the principles of calorie density is "whenever hungry, eat until comfortably full of the recommended foods." Because of this, there is no reason for anyone to feel hungry when following our guidelines. The recommended foods are minimally processed starches, fruits and vegetables. The most satiety, short term and long term comes from minimally processed starches and to keep the calorie density low, have them with some non-starchy vegetables. Remember, we do not have to figure out if it is true hunger, appetite, craving, etc. However, to be successful, you have to prepare for success and make sure you have availability of minimally processed starches throughout the day.

At the 10-Day program, the snack room is full of veggies (cherry tomatoes, baby carrots), fruits (apples, oranges) and starches (regular hummus, roasted red pepper hummus, potatoes, Split pea soup, Black bean soup, and Lentil Couscous soup). People choose from both the starches and fruits/vegetables. Choosing just vegetables or fruit will not be enough for most people to feel satiated. If you experience cravings for unhealthy foods, you can beat these cravings by choosing healthy foods to eat and knowing that these cravings will eventually pass and stop. However, you can not beat your biology (hunger) and your biology/hunger will eventually win.

chef16 - Yes, another pound gone, Doreen! What a great development that your supervisor has approved you bringing your own food for lunch; I expect that should make it much easier for you to make future weeks less "imperfect." :nod: This seems like a fantastic opportunity to make even more progress!

Lucas - Congratulations on your progress! Getting our behaviors into alignment with the recommendations is the surest way to send the scale in the right direction. The sort of situation you describe, involving divergent food choices and family, can be difficult to navigate. I think we all have to make what we think is the best decision for ourselves, within our own particular context. It can often help to have a "rule" that we'll always eat the recommended food FIRST, before choosing to eat something non adherent; often those temptations become less inviting when we aren't hungry, and if we do still decide to indulge, we'll probably eat less of the non adherent food than we otherwise may have. Enjoy that cooler weather and outdoor walks!

kirstykay - Being injured is no fun! May your recovery be short and easy. I applaud your poise in assessing the week; getting the food right, without being sidetracked, is significant! :thumbsup:

Gimmelean - Awesome! Averaging a little over a pound a week over the duration is great! I can totally relate to the notion that in some ways the restrictions in place for the pandemic can make adherence feel easier to attain. And it really does feel good to know that we are doing all we are able to support our health and well-being. In my experience, as I practiced the recommended behaviors, those stretches where it feels "easy" tend to get longer each time, until finally it (nearly) always feels easy; I think this is partly due to the way our routines and habits become more resilient as we continue to learn and develop. Continuing to say "yes" to the MWL points seems like an excellent goal for the week to come!

Kelly140 - I'm glad that big drop on the scale has left you feeling happy and motivated! Your attention to the checklist and diligent planning is clearly paying off! Onward!

Growing a Pear - Lurching makes for a bumpy ride, I imagine, but hang in there! The factors and forces that don't originate with us can definitely still have a big impact on how capable we feel to maintain our intended pattern of behavior. Cheers to 5 "cereal-free" days! I've found that getting back to a solid, previously successful, routine often helps me to overcome hurdles, so restocking with rice and beans seems sensible - it definitely pays to harness that automaticity where you can.
Growing a Pear wrote:Even as I'm not where I want to be, I'm not ignoring the warning signs and going willfully unconscious, as has been my pattern in the past.
I feel like this is a big, important win.

laura_delao - Kudos! I'm glad the Chubby Chips have been a "life saver;" I find them indispensable for the times when I travel. "McDougall's revenge" can make for a pretty potent lesson - learning from mistakes, and adjusting accordingly, turns setbacks into future victories.

Renestl - Down 2.2 lbs! Now is always the best time to be on the road to health and well-being!
Renestl wrote:The more compliant I am, the better I feel and the better the weight loss.
:thumbsup: Exactly right; the behaviors produce the benefits!

OrangeBird - Big result! Staying mostly on plan throughout a crazy, wonky week was a result of your ongoing efforts, I'm sure. Enjoy the wedding, give the newlyweds my best, and make your best choices!

wavingwheat - It is understandable that the onset of illness, and the fear that inspired, weakened your resolve. Setbacks inevitably happen, and can often leave us feeling out of control for a time. Today is a new day, so treat yourself with kindness, Carol; think about how you might handle things differently next time, and get right back to focusing on the basics with the MWL guidelines.

texaslil - The scale continues to heard in the right direction! Our results (and the rate at which we progress) is contingent on our prevailing pattern of behavior; to change that rate, we adjust our behavior. If eliminating higher fat foods is feeling unobtainable, perhaps it would help to aim toward ongoing progress with that guideline, with fewer and fewer exceptions each day/week, until you achieve adherence. Have a happy weekend, Laila!

Beeshell - Goodbye to 1.8 lbs! My condolences on the loss of your pet, I know from personal experience what an emotional blow that can be. When setbacks occur, and we make choices incongruent to our goals, concentrating on getting back on track directly is a valuable skill to cultivate. Making these changes is always better viewed not as a sprint, but a marathon (with all the time and immense effort that implies). The best thing to do when burdened with cravings for troublesome foods is to eat of the recommended foods, until comfortably full; having those foods (including starches) at the ready makes that choice less arduous. Is there a particular hurdle that is making it difficult to eliminate bread for lunch? Keep running that marathon, building the long term pattern that supports your goals.
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Weigh-In Report Compilation - September 25, 2020

Postby Mark Cooper » Sat Sep 26, 2020 2:16 pm

Please note - I replied to each participant individually in the two lengthy posts linked below.

Mark's Replies for September 25 - Part 1
Mark's Replies for September 25 - Part 2

By my count, 39 participants reported for our fourth September 2020 MWL weigh-in! If I neglected to include anyone, or you notice an error in the tally, please let me know (via PM so we can keep the thread as tidy as possible, or in a post here if you cannot PM).

Here are the results for the fourth Friday in September:

Week ending 9/25/2020: 39 participants reported a total loss of 51.30 pounds
VivianS +6.50
Creaky +0.60
Wavingwheat +0.20
Total gains: +7.30
Abe 0.00
Amberlina 0.00
Cathy Ann 0.00
Dot 0.00
Growing a Pear 0.00
Josietheschnauzer 0.00
Kirstykay 0.00
Laura_delao -0.40
Expat in NZ -0.50
Lucas -0.60
Texaslil -0.60
Hope410 -0.80
Chef16 -1.00
Ladevereaux -1.10
Louie3084 -1.10
Potatohead55 -1.20
PonysPlants -1.40
Wstokes -1.40
Beeshell -1.80
Gimmelean -1.80
Oneesotericgirl -1.80
Wfpb2020 -1.80
Whereamac -1.80
Jkcook -2.00
LesleyMills -2.00
Noella -2.00
ChristinaElizabeth -2.20
Renestl -2.20
Squealcat -2.40
Kelly140 -3.00
Lachoffman -3.00
OrangeBird -3.00
CindyD -3.30
Reni -3.60
Kathie -4.40
NateKruse -6.40
Total losses: -58.60
Cumulative group loss for September 2020 to date: 172.61 pounds
Average loss for week ending September 25: 1.32 pounds
Cumulative group loss for January 2020: 384.15 pounds
Cumulative group loss for February 2020: 96.60 pounds
Cumulative group loss for March 2020: 60.10 pounds
Cumulative group loss for April 2020: 218.00 pounds
Cumulative group loss for May 2020: 191.50 pounds
Cumulative group loss for June 2020: 120.63 pounds
Cumulative group loss for July 2020: 524.80 pounds
Cumulative group loss for August 2020: 240.30 pounds

Next Weigh-In is on Friday, October 2, 2020, in the new MWL group thread for October.

Let us celebrate the phenomenal effort on display in the MWL group this month! 3 cheers to all the participants who showed up and put in the work this week, and throughout September! You are inevitably finishing the month in a better state of being than when you began! Collectively, you lost 172.61 lbs!

To expand somewhat on some of the discussion this week, I think we ought to take note that all the recommendations outlined in the MWL 10-Point Checklist are behaviors, things that we do (or can do); rather than traits or qualities of our nature or personality, who and what we "are." When we are feeling challenged and depleted, taking action on those behaviors naturally feels more difficult, sometimes even impossible! When we make decisions that take us off track, or behave in a manner different than we might wish, it is nearly always the result of changes in our situation or environment. That doesn't mean there is something wrong with us, that we are weak, that we have no willpower; it means that we are confronting a situation or environment for which our plans and habits have left us unprepared. I don't think it is fair to beat ourselves up over this! In fact, we can view these occasions as a bittersweet gift - they reveal the ways we are unprepared and where our plans are insufficient; if we can think through the situation, and solve it going forward, we become stronger and more confident in our practice. As we know and understand more and more, we do better and better. However, if we let these moments pass without reflection, and keep doing what we have always done in the past, we aren't taking advantage of the gift on offer. What we have always done doesn't have to define what we will do tomorrow, and to make progress we have to make positive changes - not in who we are, but in what we do. Jeff's Reasons You May Be Struggling, relate pretty directly to this idea - it isn't about who we are, but what we are willing to do and our level of understanding in how to make the principles work. As we bring this month to a close, and begin anew, take a moment to reflect on the changes you have made and those you have yet to make, on where you've been, where you are, and where you wish to be.

I'll post the new group thread for October on Monday - I hope to see you there!

Take care and be well! :D
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Re: September 2020 McDougall MWL Weigh-In Group

Postby VivianS » Mon Sep 28, 2020 1:09 pm

VivianS September 28, 2020
Someone was struggling with sweets and triglycerides. My cardiologist was getting ready to add another prescription to my already long list. I asked her what causes triglycerides to be high. She explained, "Junk food, candy bars..." Bingo! I told her that I had been eating a candy bar daily when I started helping with a newborn and his 1 year old sister. I needed energy fast and I needed caffeine to stay alert. I told my doctor that I would NEVER eat another candy bar again. A heart attack would keep me from helping with those precious babies. The doctor didn't write the prescription and I have not eaten another candy bar. My triglyceride levels have been fine since then.
That vow, like my marriage vow, is easy to keep because it is based on love. I don't look at the candy. I think of the little ones I love. I try to teach them by example when they offer me sweets by saying, "No, thank you!" I sometimes take a tax bite, to discourage them from offering it to me or asking me to open it for them. They need to know the polite way to remove food from our mouths that is unwanted: "Napkins, please!" I also have a variety of fruit to offer them and it is on the table within their reach anytime they want it. Crowd out the bad with the good. I don't control what others buy for them, but I can try to keep them full with good things. I do the same thing for myself with the MWL guidelines.
I have been encouraged to know that the craving for fat begins to subside after about three months. It may be a daily battle for a while, but the war will be won. The sugar in candy bars comes with unhealthy fats. Reducing fat in the diet is one of the main ways that the Maximum Weight Loss program works so well.
Thinking of your WHY, your reason for choosing healthy food, helps making right choices easier. I have two little people I love and want to see grow up. I have one old lady who I want to see grow older in good health and good cheer: ME! Goodbye, candy bars and other fatty foods. Hello, good health!
My smile is bigger because my face is thinner! I hope your smile is bigger, too.
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Re: September 2020 McDougall MWL Weigh-In Group

Postby Creaky » Tue Sep 29, 2020 11:04 pm

Luckily the indulgence in Saturday didn't trigger the Pleasure Trap for me. I posted in my journal what I ate. I was able to get back on track on Sunday without any issues. Actually I wanted to eat normal foods I've been eating. I was glad it worked out well for me.
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Re: September 2020 McDougall MWL Weigh-In Group

Postby Noella » Wed Sep 30, 2020 12:39 am

VivianS wrote:That vow [to not eat chocolate bars], like my marriage vow, is easy to keep because it is based on love. I don't look at the candy. I think of the little ones I love...Hello, good health!

Thank you, Vivian. Your MWL behaviours are powered by love!
Mark Cooper: “Every day we draw breath, we have a fresh opportunity to change, grow, and make our future better than our past, right?“
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Re: September 2020 McDougall MWL Weigh-In Group

Postby Mark Cooper » Wed Sep 30, 2020 4:46 pm

VivianS wrote:My smile is bigger because my face is thinner! I hope your smile is bigger, too.

Creaky wrote:Luckily the indulgence in Saturday didn't trigger the Pleasure Trap for me. I posted in my journal what I ate. I was able to get back on track on Sunday without any issues. Actually I wanted to eat normal foods I've been eating. I was glad it worked out well for me.
I'm so pleased to hear you dodged that particular pitfall! :)
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Re: October, 2020 McDougall MWL Weigh-In Group

Postby VivianS » Fri Oct 02, 2020 12:48 pm

VivianS October 2, 2020
Weight loss- 5.5 Today I weigh 152.6 pounds.
I succeeded on points1, 2,3, 5, 6, 9 and 10.
Points on the MWL PROGRAM that need greater attention:4, 7,8

It is ragweed season. I got sick Monday night with a lung infection. I'm taking antibiotics, (Bye-bye friendly gut bacteria.) I will take probiotics as usual. I thank God it is not flu or Covid.
I have eaten very little since I got sick Monday night. The load of medicines makes my stomach hurt. 7. Crackers settle my stomach.( 4.)I ate some salsa con caso (Cheese is an animal product.)on Monday with tortilla chips (7) and I regretted it immediately. Note to self: THINK before you eat something you didn't prepare! (8) I drank Spenda tea in addition to water on Monday night. I was sleepy. When I went to the doctor Tuesday morning, one of the questions was, "Do you have trouble sleeping?" I answered, "Yes. People keep waking me up!" He laughed. Doctors get awakened all the time. Tea helps me when I am sleepy, but it does not help me with keeping enough water in my system to be healthy.
I have COPD and asthma. I have never smoked a cigarette in my life or used any other tobacco products. Allergies make sticky mucus and capture bacteria. Water balance in my body is important for keeping my lungs free of sticky mucus and keeping my guts happy.
Those soups I have prepared and keep in the refrigerator in individual portions have helped me get through this. The habit of cooking mustard greens/collard greens each night and having that ready to eat with rice and beans have made it possible for me to stay on the program for the majority of the time. Hooray for bags of salad that can be opened and eaten! My husband keeps me well supplied with fruit.
I started a journal, but I have not tried to continue it because I have to stay in bed when I am sick. I also have not learned to navigate the site. I think I am posting this report on the wrong thread, but I couldn't find anything that said October, so I changed it in the subject line. I'm sorry, Mark. You do a great job.
I will be able to spend time with the children next week on Wednesday if the antibiotic I am taking succeeds in wiping out the infection.
I live in a great country where clean water, nutritious food and great medical care are readily available. I hope all of you are well and stay that way.
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