Wish Upon A Dish: Personal Tips & Hints to Maintain a 1000 Calorie-a-Day Diet

October 6, 2015

Personal Tips & Hints to Maintain a 1000 Calorie-a-Day Diet

(6oz Marinaded & Roasted Coho Salmon with 1/2 cup Tuscan Lentil Soup Couscous)

Yes, I am still on a 1000 calorie a day diet, and while eating my way through the northwest for three weeks (including a 12 day cruise) could have seriously done some damage to the 11 pounds I lost right before, I am happy to report only a small gain of 4 pounds.

Soon as I got home, I resumed logging each morsel of food I ate and one week later I am back to were I was pre-vacation and have lost an additional 2 pounds. Yay for me!!
If I followed the experts using a 1500 calorie-a-day diet, I would simply half my usual intake and be happy with losing about a pound a week.

While not for everyone, I choose extreme dieting and consuming just enough calories to keep me full, alert and healthy.

Why am I speed dieting? My goal is to loose 40 pounds before my next pulmonary doctor visit (2/2016).
I was told that medication has done all it can for me, the rest was up to loosing 2x my BMI.
I do not want to carry oxygen in ten years.

Along the way, I have discovered a few tips to keep myself on track, exhibiting no cravings (so no cheating) while eating favorite comfort meals and a glass of wine (or 2) on the weekend.
Not a novice to the top 50 healthiest foods, my diet required careful planning of each calorie that went into my mouth and I found I needed to add new ingredients and replace others to meet my low goal.

I am not a professional nutritionist or dietitian, nor am I an expert on proper nutrition as it applies to various diets. I know my body and what my daily needs are. I base my diet on trial and error, testing and tasting along with careful comparisons to the government recommendations for daily values.
So here goes...........

1. Always eat breakfast.
My choice are -
A: a low calorie/high fiber English muffin topped with PB2 and sugar free jam or/
B. Protein shake with no more than 200 calories (for days when I hit the door running)
C. Homemade breakfast muffins (so many great choices on the Internet) with no more than 20g of carbs each
D. 100 calorie Yoplait Greek yogurt with 1/4 cup Oats N Honey granola
E. Denver Stuffed Egg Crepe Tortilla (the tortilla is a crepe of scrambled eggs)

2. Add tons of fiber to each meal even if you have to hide it -
A: Puree white beans to thicken
B. whole wheat flour replaces AP flour everywhere
C. Eat a 2 cup bowl of fruit around 3-4:00 every day
D. Twice the amount (in ounces) of high-fiber vegetables to meat/seafood (print list here)

3. Eat a snack mid-afternoon and for dessert 
A. Small salad before dinner or 1 cup of vegetable soup
hint: take one can of healthy/light soups, mix with equal amount of low sodium stocks, measure into 3 portions and refrigerate
B. Salsa/hummus and thin tortilla chips
C. 100 calorie popcorn snack packs
D. 100 calorie yogurt cup
E. A big bowl of fruit
D. Stock up on pre-measured containers of sugar-free puddings, gelatin, fruit cocktail & apple sauces 

4. Always make a menu and a shopping list!!
hint: find a great app for logging in your meals (I adore LoseIt!) with a shopping list built in and a bar code scanner

5. Measure & weigh everything and LOG EVERYTHING
A. I bought a great (& accurate) travel scale on Amazon
hint: my doctor told me something I will never forget "If I fed you under the door, you would loose weight".
If you have problems sticking to a diet but are extremely serious about loosing weight, try a gradual cut in calories. The first week make your favorite foods but put half the norm on your plate and immediately package the remaining in a container that is labeled and put in the freezer to be eaten another day. 
You may be surprised to learn you can be perfectly happy on half of what you used to eat. The second week, quarter that. 
Start to emit bad foods weekly. If you ate bread every day, limit to two days. Same with pasta and dairy. Trust me, in a few weeks you won't miss them.

6. Treat yourself on a low calorie day
A. Have a 5oz glass of wine (white is best at 120), a 1 ounce shot of liquor & diet fizzy (spiced rum and diet coke at 75 calories) or a low carb/calorie beer (Peroni is only 120 calories per bottle)
B. A scoop of frozen yogurt or sorbet
C. 1 ounce of cheese with 1 teaspoon honey or dried plums, dates or figs or/
a bowl of fruit

7. Eat each day at a time, there is no rollovers of calories 

8. Weigh yourself first thing in the AM but after you use the potty

9. Packaged dry mixes (sides, dressings, soups, spices) as well as bottled sauces and condiments are OK as long as you read and choose based on the nutrition label
hint: nowadays, there are some excellent helpers to make it easier to stay the course instead of grabbing fast food options

10. Find your favorite low calorie granola/nutrition bar and keep one in your purse/car at all times. 

I am sure there will be more tips as my diet progresses, but you need to customize your diet to your needs. I was never a big eater to begin with and always homemade. Last time I was in a fast food place (Micky D's or Burger Queen types) was over 15 years ago. If I need to eat out, I go to Panera's or a pizza place. I always read the calories in each selection and pick the lowest in a favorite (soups and salads). I take the meat out of the bread and always sub healthier versions (sweet potato fries and dressings on the side).

Hope this helps. If you have any questions, I will answer emails sent to wishuponadish@gmail.com.

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