DASH Diet Weight Loss & Maintenance

Getting Help

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My blood pressure is normal, but my pulse has been running higher than usual.  I believe this effect may be related to the racing heart feeling of worry I have had for most of the past week  about my daughter Chantelle and her boyfriend Geoff, who evacuated to Havana and had to ride out Hurricane Irma there. Irma hit Cuba as a category 5 hurricane. She then proceeded to bounce like a ball down Cuba’s coast line, taking her leisurely time moving West, destroying the island as she headed towards Havana.  It was one of the scariest 48 hours I have experienced to date and I wasn’t even there!   Moreover it was her 27th birthday on September 8th the day the hurricane hit. I can’t think of a worse birthday present.

Tonight I can officially report they are back on Canadian soil in Toronto and hopefully home tomorrow.  I spent quite a bit of time this past week using Twitter to find out news about what was happening with the storm, weather reports, pictures, country preparations, etc, because let’s face it, Twitter is where you will always hear something first.   I couldn’t text to my daughter in Cuba much at all. Even with the few texts that did get through back and forth between us, I still couldn’t know she was safe, because “massive historic hurricane” and no one could really be safe until it was over.

I thought I would screen my non hurricane related tweets out and put the complete list of Irma tweets here so I could more easily refer back to the experiences of this past week.   I am doing this partly because I tweet quite often and a month from now these tweets will be buried and difficult to retrieve.

Sept 14: Air Can super delayed again.Chany & Geoff still sitting on runway in Toronto to come back Vic from from havana, Cuba & Irma! #cdnpol #bcpoli

Sept 13: Hopefully daughter’s boarding AC plane out of #Havana!! Home in Victoria @9 tonight. Excited to hear about #Irma #cdnpoli #uspoli #cuba

Sept 12: Replying to @InfidelMedia Fuck you hurricane irma or whatever u are, my flight is now delayed 12 hours while my plane is rescuing people at cuba. Hope they ok. 10:02 PM – 12 Sep 2017
Replying to @InfidelMediaz; My daughter is there and coming home tomorrow!! So excited! I was so scared for her : (

Aw glad she ok mother nature is such a shit ay?

Reply to @InfidelMediaz: Totally!! I heard the screaming of that hurricane in video clips and boy is she furious!

Sept 12: Flight delay! Chany will be home tomorrow night at 9pm in Victoria. Should get her a I survived #Irma in #Cuba t-shirt : )) #uspoli #cdnpoli

Sept 12: Daughter reported by txt @lunch they were in Cent #Havana now & water, lights, power back on in major downtown areas! #irma #cdnpoli #uspoli

Sept 12: Hoping Havana, Cuba airport is reopening today so Chantelle and Geoff can leave tomorrow morn as scheduled. #cuba#cdnpoli#irma#uspoli

Sept 11: Rereading daughters last blog post bout climate change-so relevant 2her #Irma experience in #Cuba! #cdnpoli #uspoli
Sept 11: Msg from daughter in #Havana worried bout access 2 money. #Cuba devastated by #Irma  #cdnpoli #uspoli
 
Sept 10: Love this!! My daughter is in Havana now!! Hopefully to fly out on the 13th but from pics… : (( #irma #cuba #cdnpoli #uspoli
Sept 10: Replying to @KarenBr73718916 My daughter told me this morning they were safe in Miramar, Havana but no idea where. #cdnpoli #uspoli #cuba
Sept 10: Replying to@Havana_Expat: Take this back! Just saw video Miramar flooding : ( & that is quite high- google says 45 meters elevation : ( #cdnpoli#uspoli#cuba#havana
Sept 10 Replying to@Havana_Expat: Miramar is where my daughter was holed up from #irma! Still pretty dry! Saw evac notice & was worried! #cdnpoli #uspoli #cuba
Sept 10: Havana Expat @Havana_ExpatTrees down all over 5th Ave Miramar
Sept 10: Replying to @collinlaverty11My daughter is somewhere here in Miramar with her bf, although not sure where! #cuba#havana#cdnpoli#uspoli#irma
Sept 10: Retweeted JuanM#Cuba has been severely impacted by #HurrcaneIrma. Let´s support Cubans and demand more than ever the end of US Blockade. #UnblockCuba
Reply to JuanM: Love this!! My daughter is in Havana now!! Hopefully to fly out on the 13th but from pics… : (( #irma#cuba#cdnpoli#uspoli 

Sept 10: Hoping the water is receding #cdnpoli#uspoli#irma#cuba

Sept 10:so awful : ((  6:24 PM – 10 Sep 2017
Sept 10: Stay safe in Havana tonight Chany!! Just a disaster! #Irma floods Havana’s streets : #cdnpoli #uspoli #cuba #uspoli

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Matching the right diet to your health and medical needs is very important and one of the reasons I believe the DASH diet my Doctor prescribed me, was so effective. It was exactly what I needed, at the right time to eliminate, a whole bunch of sickness and pain I was experiencing daily.

The diet not only eliminated my hypertension, but also enabled a 90 pound weight loss, which I have maintained for more than 5 years now.  In total, by continuing to follow the diet, it has enabled me to keep 130 pounds off my body from a highest weight point, of 274 pounds in my late 20’s.

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Prior to finding DASH diet, I was hypertensive with obesity that ranged as high as class 3. To lose so much weight required 18 months of solid daily calorie restriction with DASH, ranging between 1300-1500 cals per day. I have spent 5 years now maintaining this weight loss and I notice that I dont seem to gain weight following a DASH diet lifestyle, even if I eat too much.

Over Christmas/New Years and all the weeks before that, there were days I would have sworn I should have put on weight with my food intake and I just never did.   If I do gain a few pounds, it just comes off, without much conscious effort that I am really aware of anymore. I do continue to weigh myself, almost daily to ensure I am always still monitoring things.  I continue to exercise vigorously although I didn’t as intensively or as often, over these holidays, as I was nursing a lower back injury.

Perhaps good habits, as Dr Katz (I am a fan) discusses, are just becoming more ingrained and a part of me that I do not notice them?  I used to have to watch my calories much more closely to maintain weight and these days, this is not so important for maintenance. Something has changed in a good way and I hope it continues.   Will have to keep an eye on it and see if my own aging process changes this, given calorie needs lessen as we get older.

My alternative theory is, that its a super, cold chilly, winter and I can’t stop shivering much of the time.  I have never never been as warm as I used to be before I lost all this weight, in the winter (probably the only thing I miss).  This is very unusual for my area, usually quite balmy in winter, so maybe I am just burning way more calories than usual.

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_90616191_elizaAs a woman who has suffered much of her past life in the throes of a stubborn eating disorder that took many forms and shapes, before I actually beat it, I would agree that denying someone eating disorder treatment, based on their current weight is ridiculous.

When my disordered eating patterns started at about 11-12 years of age, I was first anorexic and underweight.  This morphed into bulimia at a normal weight,  then bulimia with extreme obesity, ending up with class 3 obesity, without bulimia, before finally moving to eliminate the disorder completely with the help of the DASH diet.

The hardest part of the whole disorder to fix was probably the last piece, the obesity piece, as it lasted much longer than the other troubled eating behaviours.  It was the most difficult to change permanently, but I did finally eliminate the continuous weight regains, that always plagued me in the past.

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image-3I completely agree that using photography to chronicle a very large weight loss can help a person come to terms with negative body image issues, over the long term. My husband’s video photo journaling of my own weight loss process with DASH diet and exercise, was super helpful to me for this purpose.  It was also extremely motivating to be able see my progress over the long term, so it served a very useful, dual purpose.

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I try to keep foods that will tempt me out of the house altogether.  We tend to go out for dessert, rather than keep it in the house and usually dessert will be at a restaurant and we will share it. Typically I will take 3 bites out of my partner’s dessert and then he eats the rest.  I find after 3 bites, I am able to feel satisfied and the craving for the food is gone.  It was a strategy I used when I was losing weight and I still use it today to maintain the weight loss.

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I suffered from my early youth (11 years old) to adulthood, with first anorexia and later bulimia, finally settling into my final stage of disordered eating, as an obese, mid life, binge eater.

Then I found the DASH diet and reversed the course of my obesity, putting my disordered eating patterns behind me forever after.

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