Regaining weight after Medifast

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I have a long story - like everyone else I suppose - but in finding motivation to RE-start my weight loss, I've noticed something interesting. Notably, a comment I read on Oprah's weight gain after Medifast ( I think it was Medifast anyway). Yes, she regained the weight. Why? She regained the weight for the exact same reason ANYONE regains weight they worked so hard to loose. It makes absolutely no difference HOW you lost it to begin with. I lost 110 pounds ON MY OWN 5 years ago.

WHY?? Because we reach our goals and get really excited - but then we think "oh, now I can eat normally!!". We think we can "handle" food. Much the same as an alcoholic thinks he can handle drinking after 18 years of being sober. It only takes ONE binge to totally lose it all. Trust me - been there with a friend who was is an alcoholic and with MYSELF - a full-blown, will-never-be-able-to-eat-anything-I-want FOOD ADDICT!!! That's just the way it is.

We either accept that fact and live disciplined, healthy lives at a weight we are happy with - or we live in denial and deal forever with the depression of the weight battle. Every day we make a choice. Some days we're going to make bad choices. But somehow, we have to get to the point where are good choices far outweigh the bad ones and we can be IN CONTROL. I'm ready to make that committment - AGAIN.

Hopefully, the food demons will be a little easier to conquer this time!!..

Comments (86)

Well said. I think that applies to a majority of us...

Comment #1

Congratulations on your choice to change your life. I couldn't agree more that I am also a food addict and will never, ever, be about to eat like other people without blowing up yet again.

Good Luck on your journey,..

Comment #2

You are SOOO right! What a huge insight for you (and all of us). BTW though it was OPTIFAST that Oprah used and not this program. Vast difference in the sense that Optifast is liquid diet only with strict medical supervision. Medifast has a similar plan but it is not the 5/1 that we are doing here. I just think Medifast is SOOO much better and they get confused a lot. Congratulations on your new commitment!..

Comment #3

Having lost and gained several times over the years I have come to the conclusion that losing the weight is not all that difficult of a task. KEEPING IT OFF is another story! My last adventure of yo-yo was last year in 2008 losing 30 and gaining 41 so up 11 pounds from the starting gate. This time I am trying to figure out a way to keep it off once I get there. Well I have some months to discover how to do it. If we could only keep it off...

Comment #4

I am thinking maybe keeping the "before" picture and the "after" picture with me at all times once I reach goal and look at it everyday and make the choice to eat right. Also I have thought of having a pair of jeans that I can not let myself grow out of no matter what. That and getting on the scale at least once per week to monitor. I am beginning to think that keeping weight off is alot like someone who goes to AA and tries never to drink again. It is a mental game for certain..


Comment #5

I did Optifast when Oprah did. Transition was nil, maintenance was less. There was a discussion group... but we didn't really go through the issues that caused us to be overweight - just the issues we faced as we lost. Because we took in SO few calories, we were told constantly to NOT exercise (beyond walking). I would constantly be woozy because of the low calories..

We only had 5 shakes a day (and regular doctor check ups, blood tests, etc.).

This includes a variety of meals (puddings, soups, bars, etc) & the Lean and Green, and the transition (4 months for me) is amazing. That, plus the message boards, Health Coaches, etc... There's a HUGE difference between Optifast, 1985 and Medifast, today..

By the way - I've lost more quickly on Medifast than I did on Optifast...

Comment #6

Thanks for the clarification regarding Optifast/Medifast. Actually, many years ago, Medifast was a "medically supervised" program. It was all liquid with no "food" component...

Comment #7

Yes, I agree, but I also think what we will face is harder than what a recovering alcoholic faces in some ways. We will always have to eat, and keep it under control...

Comment #8

I have come to accept that I will never be a "normal person" with certain foods... I just avoid them totally because that "little taste" sets me up for a battle of the wills to not have more!.

I try to rely on engineering my environment and "being prepared" more than WILLPOWER..

Every person has their challenges in some form or other. I am historically an emotional eater AND a YOYO dieter.

THIS time seems to be different... Hopefully it stays that way but I know not to "let my guard down"...

Comment #9

You are so right!!! The probelm with being a food addict, is we cant avoid food, but the alcoholic can avoid the drink. We (us food adicts) have it rough...

Comment #10

I was thinking about this just today. It hit me today that I will never be able to let my guard down with food. My ex husband is an alcholic and just like he can never again have a drink I can never again eat totally what I want. For some reason it hit me this morning and I have been coming to grips with that all day. I have never thought about it like that before. That is maybe why I have lost and gained and lost and gained.

Food has been my best friend, and obviously my worst enemy. It is my comfort and support, it is non judgemental and it accepts me as I am. That is a big realization for me. I can do this...we can all do this. I just need to figure out how to replace all the things that food was to me with something healthy..

Comment #11

Wow, LouAnn....

THAt is a big thing to come to terms with for so many of us but I believe it is the first step towards finally taking control for good!.


Comment #12

You all have the right ideas,,I have maintained for 2 years now,,Dec 30 was my 2 years since goal,,,and I cringe everytime I see someone voice the idea that "that ____ (insert food of choice) will be there when I hit goal." Truth is, the foods that made us heavy to begin with can NEVER be there for us in the same manner. We have to totally see foods we love ,but know will cause us issues ,in a different way. We can do it though! I do eat a few treats now and then, but I still do only a few bites of the "bad" stuff,,,and only once every few months or a special occasion. I choose my "treat" foods carefully. I have also learned my trigger foods, and those don't exist at all for me anymore. I read once that our taste buds and brain only really register the first few bites of anything we taste, the rest is mindless eating.

Yes, you all CAN keep it off, I promise!! Best wishes all!!..

Comment #13

Louann,,,that is a great thing to face about yourself,,,let us be your best friends,,,,we can help you beat that enemy called overeating!..

Comment #14

The problem that I have is coming to grips with not being able to eat like I want and like other people do..

I'm down to around my last 10 pounds that I reset for the new year because I've been a yo-yo dieter for so long, I can't even remember how old I was when I started dieting. I really want to do this, but I'm having an extremely difficult time just getting into the mindset...

Comment #15

I am happy to read this ost and all the responses. I have not ben able to reach my goal with all my yo yoing. I too am a food addict and need to finally get my life in control. I feel miserable but ready to change once and for all...

Comment #16

Someone on these boards wrote me a quote I will never forget, "After you lose your weight, if you go back and do what you always did, you will get what you always got."..

Comment #17

Also ..... I know now;.

That losing the weight is the easy part.... It's maintaining !!! That's the hard part....

But I realize it's a battle I want to WIN...

AND accept the FACT...

It's Mind over Matter....

Comment #18

Very well put. I've actually come to the same conclusion last night as I was wondering why I gained back every pound I lost last year when I quite smoking only a few months ago. The answer - cuz the smoking merely covered up the fact that I have a serious problem with putting food in my mouth. Take that away - and something went into my mouth. It was almost as if I couldn't stop myself. But really - I lost weight, but didn't learn anything or fix my issue.

It's comforting to me that although you don't have the same exact problem - that I'm not alone and there are people who struggle similarly. Keep up the good work. The mind must be set right - and I - like you - am ready to make a life change!!..

Comment #19

Someone once told me "never over eat two days in a row". Maybe that is key for sustaining a loss once the reduction phase is accomplished. Just a thought...

Comment #20

I thank you for posting this! I started Medifast last year and lost 30 lbs on MF, a total of 40 because I lost 10 before starting MF. I was feeling so good this summer! Then, made the mistake of going on a couple of vacations and not staying OP. Then, this fall, kept trying to get back on Medifast 100%. It is very frustrating to lose the weight then gain it all back and then a little! But, I know now what my triggers are and that I am not going to let my guard down again regarding food. After reading this today, I have recommitted myself to being 100% OP, not making excuses anymore for my non-plan eating. I am here until goal and I CAN lose the weight again and then some! I am a binge eater and am finally realizing the complexities of being a binge eater. Thank you again for this post! It really has helped me get myself on track! And, this time, I WILL STAY THERE!..

Comment #21

Honestly, I never thought of myself as a food addict, and almost found it funny when I heard that term. I now, after many failed diets and money spent... have realized that food is my drug. Food doesnt get a bad-rap, because it is all around us, and socially excepted everywhere. Actually, many a good-times are built around food. I realize food in it self is not bad, but it's cheap and I can get it everywhere.

I use it for every emotion I cant handle. So medifast is like my de-tox, and I think having support is vital for my addiction. Now that I can admit that food is my addiction... the rest will start to make sense...

Comment #22

Great thread!.

A year and a half into maintenance, I know now that food and weight will ALWAYS be a challenge for me. Period.

This summer, I gained 14 lbs. over the top of my goal range... so back on 5&1 I went. I thought I was being careful with what I ate, but the truth is I need to go back to Medifast "boot camp" every now and then, to re-learn good habits!.

I know others here can maintain without any gains or needing to go back to 5&1 not me, at least so far. But for me, the core of maintenance has been to nip it in the bud and not let a little gain turn into a bigger one. With that, I feel successful..

If this means going back on 5&1 once a year for the rest of my life, so be it. I found out the hard way that it only takes a couple months of eating more "casually" for the weight to just pile back on! While I'm working on avoiding that in the future, until I achieve such mastery, I'm glad Medifast is still there!..

Comment #23


A LOT of food for thought here...(no pun intended).

It's true, food is my drug of choice..

I remember years ago, when my car got towed in Manhattan, and I disovered I was stranded at 2am, being so grateful that there was an open pizzeria next to the subway entrance! My ex-husband couldn't understand that logic, so I asked him,"have you ever been so aggravated or stressed that you just HAD to have a cigarette, or a beer?".

THAT he could understand!.

Last spring, before my wedding in June( all-time high weight - before picture on my Page ) I remember my then - fiance saying "What are you upset about? You're chewing!".

Thank all Gods that dress laced up! Otherwise, I never would have fit into it!.

The day after my wedding, my brother and SIL met us for breakfast before flying home. He had a scare, hospitalized with congestive heart failure 2 weeks before his 38th birthday. (You'd think that would have been a wake-up for me, too???).

He is 50 now, and in better shape and health than he was in his 20s! He lost over 100 lbs on his own, makes heart-healthy food choices, and is far more active now - like riding his bike to work, etc..

At that breakfast, while I was getting the crab cakes benedict, he got an egg white veggie omelet. Celebration was no excuse to make stupid choices!.

Making the right choices is the key. FOREVER! My brother also said that quitting smoking was easier, because you still need to eat to live - you can't just stop, like cigarettes..

I have lost and re-gained many many pounds in the last 30 some - odd years. The problem was always in the past, at some point, even after keeping the loss for a few years, at some point I would think "I'm DONE NOW.".

Eternal vigilance is the price of freedom!!!!!..

Comment #24

I am loving the responses to this..

Very enlightening and awe inspiring!!..

Comment #25

I, too, am loving reading the responses. Just this morning, I was realizing again that I am a food addict and alway will be. I had some slips over the weekend and ruined the two quiet days that I had planned. It started with some nuts and ended with fudge! I hardly had a memory of what I was doing. Then, I started thinking - if I hadn't talked myself into believing that nuts were OK (maybe a few are - handfuls are not!), I wouldn't have continued down the path of searching for whatever I could jam in my mouth. I was acting like a total addict and realizing that is opening my eyes. I thought that food was going to soothe the things that were bothering me - all the food did was make everything 10 times worse!!..

Comment #26

This is all so true - I made it through all the holiday gatherings staying on program and losing weight - I made the 50 pound mark on New Years day and then had a 4 day eating freenzie ... wow - 6.5 pounds gained in 4 days .... I definitely will do the T&M to gradually get to a life eating pattern when I reach goal..

Comment #27

What about foods that taste good? If it's a food I like (mainly sweets)... I can eat until I am sick. I swear, one day I ate 6-Crispy Cream donuts in a 25-min time-span, and it didnt phase me, and you know those are sweet. God... I could tell you stories, but dont want to make you all hungry...

Comment #28

I thought I was the only person capable of shoveling food in my mouth like that! LOL! And the thing about donuts after you are done eating them one feels sick. They are demonic!..

Comment #29

About 12 years ago, I started going to OA (Overeater's Anonymous) meetings and followed a foodplan recommended to me. I lost 75 pounds in 6 months.. it was the first time in my life that I was able to get the weight off.. then I got pregnant, twice in three years and here I am... In those meetings, we often discussed how it is very hard for a compulsive eater/food addict because we have to eat to survive, whereas an alcoholic doesn't... Because it doesn't matter if I chose healthy options, I can overeat anything; green beans, carrots, broccoli..

If food is what I want, I don't need sugar to overeat. I have made a firm committment to myself to not only lose this weight, but to keep it off. I dont' know if I will ever have a healthy relationship with food. I chose MediFast because I believe it will give me the break my body and my mind needs from making choices... and give me the time I need to develop a a new and better relationship with food.

As I don't ever want to have to lose 100 pounds again...

Comment #30

I loved reading the thoughts here about keeping our weight loss off for a lifetime and diligently managing our weight and health on a daily basis..

I've been maintaining for over 3 months and I agree that the real 'work' begins once we reach goal. I was a slow loser, but during that time, I did the mental and emotional work necessary for me to realize how I was using food to stuff my emotions.

Instead of using food now, I workout at the gym 6-7 days/week and have new fitness goals to keep me going. Strength, flexibility, cardio, and overall health have replaced candy, cookies, cakes and bread. The more I exercise and see my body changing; the less desire I have to eat the 'bad stuff'..

With the endorphins and feel-good chemicals pulsing through my brain and my body, I have less of a need to try to feel good with food..

Since I no longer require my estrogen patch after my hysterectomy (the soy in the Medifast products offer me the same benefits as the patch); I decided to use the money I used to spend on my prescription and put it toward a gym membership.

It does take daily vigilance and determination. There have been days when I've not made the best choices, but I counter-act the effects by mindfully choosing healthier foods and increasing my workout intensity..

Yep! The key is to monitor and to catch yourself before you fall too far over the edge...

Comment #31

I have thought about checking out an overeaters meeting, but my friend went and she said most of the people there were caught up in their issues and used the mettings as a reason to socialize and no healing ever took place. Everyone remained fat and unhealthy. maybe this is not the norm..

Like I said, I could sure tell some food stories, but will save it for a day when everyone is truly bored.

I had a hysterectomy about a year ago, and am on the patches now. I wonder if this diet will help me too..

Exercise is a must for keeping any weight loss permanant. I have to work on this now, so when the time comes; I will be ready..

Going to drink my water!!.

Good nite...

Comment #32


I think it all depends on the meeting you hit. There was a lot of physical recovery in the meetings I attended, but like anything, the program only works if you work it completely. I respected it's views, and took a lot with me when I left, but felt like I was not in the right place, for me. I have been to meetings that seemed like they were just a therapy session and there was no mention of change or of working towards a goal... you just have to find what works best for you and then fly with it..

Comment #33

This is such a great thread and very inspiring. Thank you to all of you who have responded and encouraged. It is SO appreciated...

Comment #34

As so many returnees to the blogs attest, this is usually a lifetime commitment.

I remember reading an article in Vogue some years ago that said, "Maintaining weight is like keeping a beachball underwater. Doable, but it takes focus.".

For myself, it is very clear that if I am not willing to commit to putting effort into keeping my BMI healthy, I will only regain again..

It kinda bums me out, I would love to focus on other things, but bottom line is being healthy is a top priority in my life. Hopefully I can have as much fun as possible along the way by doing it with other people!..

Comment #35

I was a "bored eater".. I'd work all day - usually not eating a thing, come home have dinner (reasonable portion) - then after DS went to bed - I'd sit on the couch, watch tv and EAT! I could easily go thru a bag of chips ( usually baked lays - but the whole bag is still 700+cal..) I didn't plan my day and that was the issue.

I think, wait it's I KNOW it was the no eating during the day and compensating at night with little to no exercise is what brought on my weight gain.. Now I know the problem, it's easy to find the solution!!!!.


Comment #36

I've been lurking, reading everyone's thoughts on the regain issue.been there done that too many times to count..

It's so clear that I can never return to how I ate before.and there is part of me that is fearful that once I hit goal, I'll forget about it. But I feel as though that, for the first time, I am really aware of all that is involved in this issue and have the support and knowledge to be successful at maintenance..

A great book to read on the subject is Thin for's inspirational and supportive on the maintenance topic. It has become part of my weight loss "bible" along with the Beck Diet Solution..

As I get nearer to my goal, this issue has started perking up to the front of my brain so I hope we can all continue this dialog as time passes. One of my success tips is daily weighing.. doesn't work for everyone, but keeps me honest. If I want to avoid the scale, I know I'm not focused!.

BTW, I tried OA a number of years ago, and did have some real success with it. But eventually found the meetings to be frustrating and at many times I felt that we needed a professional there to deal with some of the very deep issues that presented themselves. I eventually fell away from it because of the group dynamics..

Thanks again for sharing all your thoughts and for bringing up a charged topic, but one that is relevant to so many of us...

Comment #37

I always thought that the hardest part was losing weight, but after losing and gaining so many times, I now know that maintaining is key..

Many people think that losing weight rapidly leads to regaining all the weight back, and then some. However, no matter how you lose the weight; liquid diets, pre-packaged meals, exerciseone thing is for sure: you will never be able to eat like you used to..

And think about it, will you sit and eat all the stuff that made you fat in the first place? Specially after reaching a healthy weight?.

I am still very far from my goal, but I've learned that getting there is only half the battle, staying at a healthy weight will take a lot of work and effort. We need to use the time we spend in the losing stage learning the skills that will make us successful in keeping the weight off, instead of thinking of the day we are able to savor again our "old favorite" foods..

As others mentioned, the key is to monitor yourself, get on the scale regularly, put on your skinny pants...the point is to catch a slip before it gets out of control..

Good luck to all, may this be a successful year...

Comment #38

THis is such a great discussion. I have always felt that this is the type of deep thought that really helps to keep the weight off long term. I wrote this blog last month, I hope you guys don't mind if I paste it here. It is very much on this topic. I was going to put a link, but some times that doesn't work. In summary, it is worth keeping off, very doable, but for some of us a lifelong effort.


More Than A Notion.

I have been feeling angry lately. Really angry. It goes away for short periods of time, but then it comes back and takes over again. This has been going on for months, thus my absence from blogging, contributing as much, etc. It is also the reason my weight is inching up. I lost about 100 pounds from July 2006 to May 2007.

So why am I angry? I am angry because during the first year when I was actively losing the 100 pounds, I imagined what weight maintenance would look like. I imagined a maintenance that would include a daily indulgence. I imagined that as long as I ate healthy and dilligently all day, I could enjoy a dinner and dessert of pretty much what I wanted. I figured that was much better than what I was doing before. Well, as the last year and a half have proved. That is just not true.

Far lower..

Here is the deal. The calories I was consuming to maintain almost 300 pounds were high. The calories that I was consuming to lose my weight was low, about 1000-1100. So I guess I was expecting my maintenance range to be lower than the original, but not nearly as low as the weight loss phase. The truth of the matter is, they are far lower than I ever imagined..

This maintenance thing might be easy for some, but for some of us it is "more than a notion" as the older folks would say. Before beginning the Medifast program, I walked a couple of times per week. Now I work out at 6:00 am six days per week. High intensity work outs. My indulgences cannot become daily, if they last more than a day or two each month my pants get tight. Three or four weekends in a row of eating what I want .......

I am glad that I lost the weight. I am very happy with the advantages of being a thinner person, and I do not regret beggining this journey. But this is not a short term fix. This is not a quick and dirty solution. THis is a lifelong, day by day, meal by meal, hour by hour commitment. Perfectly doable, but perfectly maddening..

No matter how long it takes you to lose weight. Realize that there really is no 'destination'. This is a journey that last a lifetime. Kick it around, get comfortable with the idea of a future life that if you want to keep your weight off bears no resemblence to our old one..

Life long maintence is possible, it is nothing to be afaid of. But it is serious business. It takes commitment and stamina..

It is much MORE THAN A NOTION...

Comment #39

I just blogged about something that I think is important related to this topic ...

FOR ME ... my problem is not always OVEREATING or an addiciton to FOOD My problem, and I think for MANY others, is that I don't LOVE ME enough to make taking care of ME - meaning eating healthy, getting enough sleep, water and exercise - a priority.

We give a great deal of ourselves to others - family, children, parents, job, church, friends, causes ....

What we can learn during the 5 and 1 phase of Medifast ... is BALANCE!.

Carpe Diem Peeps,.


Comment #40

Kim- I have actually been thinkinh the same thing lately. Its about loving yourself instead of giving it all away and not being the #1 on your "to-Do" List ....... This is 2009 and it is time for us to put ourselves first .... IT IS TIME!..

Comment #41

Best thread EVER! So many of us have lost and gained so many times. Medifast is a fantastic tool for weight loss, but it's not the only one. It's all about maintenance, and Medifast seems to have a great plan..

Personally, when I hit goal, I am going to try my darndest to transition EXACTLY as Medifast recommends. I don't know whether I'm arrogant or never wanted to believe that I will have an on-going problem with weight for the rest of my life, but following directions has always been a problem for me, as in, "Oh, this is dumb. I can do it my own way." So I got back up to almost 300 pounds yet again. Hey, guess I can't!.

So many people on this thread have written such wise and compelling words - I thank you all...

Comment #42

Animalcrackers ...

YOU are so close to goal and have learned to take care of you ... T and M are critical ... I'm not real far behind you ... so lead the way and I look forward to seeing your success photos..


Comment #43

What a great thread! I too never really thought of myself as a food addict, but I am. AND I didn't care enough about myself to take care of me, although I took great care of everyone around me. Go figure!.

Well, it's MY TURN! I'm taking care of ME now. (OK, Along with everyone else!). But I have found such confidence and pride in myself during this program, that I think if I can be mindful (as SHU1 said) I will make it...

Comment #44

I am just now returning to Medifast after time away (and regaining my weight losses). Browsing the postings, and glad to find this one. There are a lot of reasons why we work so hard to lose the pounds and then gain them back again. For me it was a combination of factors that affected my yo-yo weight.

Food addict? Guilty. Especially chocolate!.

Eating out of boredom? Guilty. Luckily I am usually busy!.

Eating when depressed? Guilty. Felt like I was Life's punching bag for a while there!.

Eating what others are eating just because? Guilty. The food was there!.

No time or energy for exercise? Guilty. Plenty of time to watch TV!.


Dbbthreads talks a lot about maintenance - good points. Animalcrackers, too. Maintenance is another transition and it is so hard to tell just how adding new foods is going to affect the weight balance. Of course I never got to maintenance, because I never reached goal. Now THAT is where I made a serious mistake - thinking that you have to reach goal to attempt maintenance. Maybe I would have been better off when I realized that I was going to be taking time off from staying on MF, if I had attempted maintenance? It is amazing how little it takes to start gaining again.

So I am very glad to be recommitting once again. Nothing like a full-length 3-way mirror for a wake-up call, and nothing like finding lots of great people with inspiring thoughts for motivation!..

Comment #45

That is me in a nutshell. I would barely eat all day and then I would consume 2000 calories in a couple of hours. My rationale was that if I didn't eat all day then I should be able to gorge on a meal at Sonic for dinner and not have a problem. Or instead of dinner have a pint of ice cream. Sounds stupid now after going through MF, but I just didn't get it..

I'm in my 2nd week of transition and I still have to remind myself that it is okay to eat every couple of hours. Just today I worked out and the instructor said remember to eat within 45 minutes. I got home and was like eh, I'm not hungry. But then I thought about how I would feel 3 hours from now and how I would likely overeat because I would be starving. So I had my shake a little early and am good..

I think everyone needs reminding about healthy habits now and then and thankfully we have each other to drill it into our heads ...

Comment #46

When I was in Weight Watchers - like many of us, I have had many false starts...

I remember something they called HALT!.

Ask yourself before you eat, Are you Hungry, Angry, Lonely, or Tired?.

Hungry? Eat something sensible! Don't wait til you're ravenous, then run amok....

Angry? Not practical to confront who or what you're upset about? Vent without chewing! Write a letter and tear it up, punch a pillow. Work it off! Box, jump up and down ( have a tantrum! get it out - emotionally and physicallY! This of course is usually only a good idea if you are alone ) Go work up a sweat - dig into the garden - with a vengence! Lace up your sneakers and walk, or run, away from your stress..

Lonely? Reach out! Call or visit someone who hasn't heard from you in a long time - they'd love to hear from you! You shouldn't talk with your mouth full - you could choke! so keep talking! And, of course, we have these boards to turn to, also!.

Tired? More and more studies show the link between inadequate rest and overweight. There is a hormonal connection, as well as the fact that we're likely to eat midnight snacks (meals?) at a time when we should be dreaming! GO TO BED!!!!!! And mid-day naps are a GOOD thing, too!.

Finally, you hear it all the time: Drink up! Often the brain confuses the thirst signal with the hunger signal. Or, we just misinterpret When you feel hungry, try 8-12oz of water and see if that does it. Often it will. Besides, by the time we feel thirsty, we are already dehydrated - keep drinking water - It's good for you!.

Just some random thoughts about how and why we eat as we do......

Comment #47

WOW I needed to read this. I am waiting for my food to arrive. But I have known these things for a few years but reading it makes it more real. I am addicted to food. I love it. I love the tastes, the smells, heck I even love cooking it.

In the last 2 1/2 years I have been through my own personal hell, and I ate my weigh through it. Now that I have gotten my head above water, I am disgusted with myself! So what do I usually do eat more! Wow I think this is the first time I have put my feelings into words and it feels good! Now I just wish my food will hurry up and get here :-)..

Comment #48

Hi. My name is Michelle and I'm a food addict! Joking aside... this is a great thread. I never really thought about it until the past couple of days, but I AM a food addict! It is my drug of choice... I can't have just one M&M, one potato chip, one taste of anything, I would just keep shoveling it into my mouth. Go to the store and buy a candy bar to eat that nobody would see me eat (therefore it didn't exhist?).

I guess I am also glad that I am not alone in this... that's why I love these boards!..

Comment #49

Thanks so much for starting this thread!.

I've been slowly regaining since August when I let emotional eating start to take over my life again. Admittedly, I was ashamed to reach out to my Medifast friends because I thought I would be a disappointment. Then I finally allowed myself to be selfish and make it all about me. In order to succeed, I can't worry about what anyone on the boards think (though I'm guessing probably 99% are more than supportive ), what anyone at work thinks, what my trainer thinks, yada, yada, yada. All that really matters is that I believe I can reach AND maintain my goal this time!.

Lots of great advice here, and I bet I'm repeating or paraphrasing what someone has already said. For me, my new mind set is that the end of transition is not the end of being on MF. It is just another transition. If during the maintenance phase I need to make adjustments, I'll do so just like I would on 5/1 or in transition..

Good luck to everyone, and congrats for not giving up the fight!..

Comment #50


You are on your way to a whole new lifestyle!.

Come by and check out Team Aubergine - we are a really supportive, fun group!.

The encouragement you find here is the key! Stay in touch on these boards!.

Good LucK!..

Comment #51


Good for you!.

I remember years ago, I gained 70 lbs staying away to re-lose a small slip "on my own" *before returning* to a WW meeting. I remember when I finally re-joined (that one time of many!) the leader said "were you afraid we'd not let you back in the door? Or that we'd beat you up? Or yell at you? Why didn't you come back sooner?"..

Comment #52

I am new to these boards but my story is like a lot of yours. During the last 2 years I have lost nearly a 100 lbs with WW and then tried 6WBM and they both worked but like everything else in my life if I didn't focus on the diet I would plateau & start to gain. So here I am. My sister inlaw told me about Medifast during Thanksgiving so I decided to give it a try. I have 66 pounds to goal & I am pretty determined to get their. I have lived most of my 47 years overweight and I am determined to live the rest of it happy & thin! If you would like to become a friend on this journey just ask. I would enjoy the company...

Comment #53

Wirewitch - Karen - what is Team Aubergine? I like the image of from egglplant to elegance - right now I kind of resemble the shape of an eggplant!..

Comment #54


Good to see you - you know how to do this and you will learn more and do T & M differently this time. If not coming back is a rule, I didn't read it ...



Comment #55

What a great series of honest sharing of ideas and support in these posts!.

One thing I "learned" this time is to make sure my "goal weight" matches what is livable and doable for me longterm..

After 5/1MF, I kept losing BUT... I was exercising AT LEAST an 1 1/2 hours a day, (getting up at 4:45 AM to fit it in). I was trading compulsions of FOOD to compulsions of exercising: Marathon training. My weight got to an ALL TIME LOW. Although I was thrilled to fit into size 4 & 6's, it stopped being "worth it". My attitude started to waiver..

Last summer, I did have a setback when I lost focus, allowing myself to gain some and then ignoring that I was gaining more than what I felt was in a "healthy range"..

I couldn't ignore it when I went to get dressed and virtually NOTHING FIT!.


I did briefly return to 5/1 to get a sense of control and restructure, but this time I set the goal as what I can maintain with "normal" regular exercise and sensible eating. I can see myself doing this longterm. Therefore, since I see it as an acceptable lifestyle, I am hopeful that I will continue to maintain successfully. I am choosing to BELIEVE THIS AS A FACT. Creating the reality!.

I am certain I will have "slips" but I as long as I keep diligent overall and have acceptance, understanding, & patience with myself... I will demonstrate that I value myself by taking care to be the healthiest I can be..

Thanks for sharing your ideas/experiences. Each one gives us a chance to reflect on our own reality..


Comment #56

Boy -o boyo ! This thread and all you fine, honest folks are just exactly what I am needing to hear, right about now !.

I am nearing the end of the weight loss phase of Medifast and trying to gear up for how to live the rest of my life with a happy, healthy attitude to foooood. I went off plan a good bit over the holidays, was off and on, on purpose, but was shocked to see how quickly I fell back into bad eating patterns when I went off plan. I managed to not gain through the holidays, but - I don't know what I expected, that I wouldn't want to eat badly ???! I did want to ! Of COURSE !.

So it was actually a good 'dry run' for warning me that I wasn't really changed in some magical way by all these months on MF. And that I really need to address these issues, pronto, if I don't want to start gaining again as soon as I am done..

Perhaps I was likening it to quitting smoking - after a while the desire does go away. But rich foods and potato chips have apparently got my number, permanently (...

Comment #57


How did you get yourself back to the 5/1 and stop the gain before it was to late? My problem is when I am on the "up swing" I always tell myself I will correct this "tomorrow" & then I gain it all back. HELP!..

Comment #58

That's where having gotten rid of the "FAT CLOTHES" came in real handy! Faced with the reality that I would have to go shopping (with a closet full of new smaller clothes waiting to be used again) was a kick in the bottom to me! I couldn't ignore that something had to be done..

I definitely had done my share of "tomorrow promises" as the weight was creeping up...

I have YOYO'd so many times in the past (before the Medifast program).

Much success to you!..

Comment #59

Thanks so much for the vote of confidence and support how do I find the group?..

Comment #60

Great thread! Thinking about this before even arriving at T&M is so good. It is a form of planning just like on 5/1...

Comment #61

Did you know that the link to your photos isn't working?..

Comment #62

Congratulations! This is the best time to learn that lesson while you still have something of a safety net. As they say, old habits die hard. And we can bury some of those habits while adhering to the rigors of the program. But like you, all of us are headed toward T&M at some point and need to deal with the underlying issues first and foremost..

Congratulations on your success to date and best wishes for the journey. Bob...

Comment #63

Sorry... That link was posted before "MyPage" existed/had them..

Please feel free to visit MyPage.....

Comment #64

What an awesome thread. You have all made very valid points and have wonderful insight. I was just thinking about all of this today. WHY ever go off plan when we know it works and we know we feel so much better eating the Medifast way? I took some time to think about this and for me, food was always the center of very happy occasions. So I asked myself, was I constantly eating to try to keep myself feeling "happy?" I believe I was. Juanita is right when she said to really think about how we'll maintain BEFORE we get there.

Keep up the great work everyone!!! We CAN do this...

Comment #65

WHY ever go off plan when we know it works and we know we feel so much better eating the Medifast way?.

So well said. I feel so much better eating the medifast way. So why would we want to put all the bad foods into our bodies that give us seconds of pleasure and years of pain? I am going to remember that when a temptation arises. Years ago a friend said to me "oh, wouldn't you rather taste that yummy apple than a candy bar?" She was so right and by the way is normal wt. always. Guess that is why.

WHY ever go off plan when we know it works and we know we feel so much better eating the Medifast way? Excellent thought!..

Comment #66

I agree with you 100% on this!!! This is a great thread for everyone not matter where you are in MF....

I have been maintaing since May of 2008, and I will admit I did not do the proper transition once I hit goal. I never have had another Medifast meal.. May work for others and maybe not.. But for me it did.. I did however follow the guide line of adding in the different foods at the right stages...

My sucess comes from logging every thing I eat, good or bad and there are some bad days.. And I carry a range between 129-135 my goal was 144.. My base stays at 132-133 and it is manageable for me. I was always a member of the clean plate club growing up.. Always told you have to finish it all.. And I was overweight my entire life..

I did lose it all just after high school. My lowest weight ever was 139 When I met and married my husband now of 22 years. Two kids and and going back to school, I got lazy and thought I had no one to impress anymore.. I forgot what it was to look nice, and be noticed and accepted for who I really was. I hated to go anywhere cause I never looked good with the extra weight I had.

So I contribute my sucess to logging everything, good or bad, I continue to drink my water everyday and exercise at least three days a week. And I keep my carb level low since I know that is where my problem lies.. I eat low carb bread, and keep snacks to a minimum. Was never a big pasta fan, but breads were always a cause for concern for me esp. hot breads, pretzels, breadsticks, and garlic bread.. Now If on the rare occassion I do have them..

If I really feel I can't be satisified with just one, I choose not to have any..

I have to make consious decission about everything I eat and keep my calories and carbs in check.. And I also monitor my sodium everyday.. If I hit 135 on the scale, on any given day.. I start right then when my foot hits the floor again.. I will never allow myself to gain more than that and no one is going to monitor it for me.. It is something I have to do for myself.

For me this is doable.. It may not be the way for others. But it has worked for me.. I have eaten regular foods through transition lost an additinal 15 lbs without Medifast and have maintained for almost 8 months there, but applying the same rules and concepts of MF. I just make better choices today that I would of previously...

Thanks for starting this tread and allowing us to share what has worked, and what has'nt..


Comment #67

God love ya Paula- I did the same da*n thing. I came clean on Monday with my team. I was so freakin' embarrassed- look at my sad ticka honey!!!! All that hard work. But I will say this. I never understood how people could say "life got in the way and I gained it all back"- I would think "weak minded fool! how could that be?" guess what!! I have led such a charmed life- I never had a real emotional event happen that could cause me to be so depressed............................ until my marriage fell apart over the summer and I held on until October and then ate like I had never eaten before.

So hello!!!! So I apologize to all who (in my head) I thought bad thoughts of for not being strong. Ignorant, party of one!..

Comment #68

Don't beat yourself up too much Nat. It's often crossed my mind that I have a little bad karma because I didn't understand recommiters. I thought I'd never be in that position..

I finally got the courage to discuss the fact that I was back on Medifast with a couple of co-workers today. And you know what they said? Good for you for recognizing it and doing something about it before it got out of control. No "I told you so lectures", just understanding. In fact, each of them shared their struggles with me as well..

We are not alone in this fight!!..

Comment #69

God Bless you all for being so honest and putting it all out there!!!.

I am also an admitted food ADDICT..and outside the comforts of the 5&1 struggled mightily over the holiday season to keep it together! Food will ALWAYS and forever be an issue for me..but hopefully I can make the good days outweigh the bad and keep myself where I want to be. Lord knows it was very humbling to put the new ticker up showing my gain and I too am guilty of having bad thoughts about re-committers...hey if I can do the 5&1 problem free for over a year I can handle maintenance right? WRONG. Thanks for all the inspiration to keep at it...Nat..Paula...all of you that are my really is a comfort to know none of us is alone in this ongoing struggle...

Comment #70

BlueMagic (Laurie) has a handle on the whole thing. Be sure and read her most recent post tonight. I quote an important portion here:.

"If I hit [insert your own number] on the scale, on any given day.. I start right then when my foot hits the floor again.. I will never allow myself to gain more than that and no one is going to monitor it for me..".

This is a wonderful example of how much we need to take control of our own actions, set our own limits, and be our own governors. The key here is never wait until tomorrow to get back on plan - start the instant you realize that you have gone off course. The numbers are there on the scale, they do not lie!..

Comment #71

Wow,Ive been reading these posts all 8 pgs and I too realize I'm a food addict and I thank you all for your insightful posts ,I am a recommitter starting next wed after being off plan for over a year as I loose my 130-140 lbs and as I chart-write down why am I eating/craving afood I will overcome this addiction with your prayers and posts thanks again james...

Comment #72

This is a great discussion - glad I found it! It's been almost 8 months since I reached my goal, and although I'm still maintaining at a healthy BMI and still in my size 6 slacks, I picked up a few pounds over the holidays and noticed my 6's were a bit snug. Like Lenore, I got rid of everything as fast as I shrank out of them, so I have nothing to wear - literally nothing - if I eat myself out of my current size. So, I'm back in the saddle again to get the 8-10 pounds off..

After not cheating at all while I lost my weight, I realized that I haven't been quite as mindful about my eating since going into Maintenance. I started to think that I "deserved" this or that, and I told myself that since I was now at a healthy weight, I could eat whatever I wanted as long as I paid attention to portions. The problem was, I now realize, is that my mind disengages when I start eating sugar and sweets - if they're around, I will generally eat them until they are either gone or until I feel lousy. They are, always have been and always will be, a trigger for me. As a result, I simply cannot have sugar and sweets as part of my life.

My first reaction to this realization was, "but I LOVE chocolate, I LOVE cookies, etc." Upon careful reflection, however, I realized that while I DO enjoy those things, what I REALLY love is being healthy, not being diabetic any more, wearing small sizes, and having a lot of energy." So I am choosing to focus on what I really love, what I really want.

I'm reading Dr. Andersen's "Dr. A's Habits of Health" book and it is really terrific. He spends a lot of time talking about these very issues and reading it has caused me to re-think my priorities. If you haven't read it yet, I highly recommend it!.

I realize that I will always have to be mindful of what I eat, but that's OK. I can never go back to where I was, and I won't. This program has given me the tools I need to not only lose 126 pounds, but to keep it off for the rest of my life. It's not always easy, but it is absolutely worth it!..

Comment #73

Let me, if you will, bounce a comment off Cheryl's post reference to the comment "I love chocolate" "I love food" "I love PIZZA"........etc etc..

I read a book called You are What You Think which said that your mind cannot tell what is truth and what is fiction. It simply believes what YOU tell it. SO if you tell yourself I LOVE....(fill in the blank food) you are simply setting yourself up for a problem..

If you BRAIN THINKS you LOVE food...then the first time your feelings are hurt, or you are upset or're going to run to the one you love....for comfort. Chocolate will oblige particularly by raising your Seratonin level and leaving you craving for MORE comfort..

There should only be two targets of our LOVE.......God and people. (Love the Lord with all your heart, soul and mind and your neighbor as yourself) We substitute a right relationship with God and people by seeking the comfort we crave in FOOD..

SO...........replace "I love.....(food item)" with I enjoy _____________. Or I like the taste of ________________. Just stop telling yourself you LOVE it because if your brain thinks that, you're in trouble. It's time to 'break up ' with your lover (food).

It's just a glitch in our English!.

Hispanics say Me Gusta (or it PLEASES ME) They'd not use AMO (love)...big difference I'd say. Anyway..that's working for me!..

Comment #74

What a great post!!! you are absoultly right. The key to everything is moderation.. there is nothing you can't have unless you have the all or nothing mantra. Which that is where it leads to problems.. If you can have a handful, a bite, or piece then have it.. If don't trust yourself to stop..

I weigh daily, I put my skinny jeans on just to stay around the house and clean. My skinny jean are size 3 jrs superlows. there is no room for a muffin top on this jeans and having them on to do everyday things reminds me of that..

You have a great attitude and will have much sucess, I wish you all the best!!! Here is to a new you in 2009....


Comment #75

Dr. A's book is phenomenal. I also highly recommend it..

I also appreciate your observation that we can't go back. It didn't work then ... and it really won't work now..

Thanks for the post and best wishes for the journey. Bob...

Comment #76

Great thread!.

Having been on maintenance for a long time now, I can't tell you how glad I am that I gave away all my old fat clothes!!!!!!! Many times I've had to re-evaluate things because the jeans were getting a little bit too tight. If those bigger pants had been there to grab, I know I would be back up into the 24's by now. Those first few pounds just seem to creep back and things are still fitting and you think, I'll get those off starting on Monday. Then before you know it, you only have one pair of jeans that fit because you never put those into the dryer and they still stretch pretty good and your really glad that it's winter and you can put on those hoodies because your shirts are too tight.

Maintenance is not for sissies. It's some what constant work to keep making good choices. But it does work. If your just starting MF, don't worry about maintenance. Just be sure you get rid of "ALL" your bigger clothes as you lose out of them. That was the best thing I ever did...

Comment #77

I agree with you 100% and couldn't have said it better!!! Thanks for sharing..

Comment #78

I know I have said this before but Wendy is soooooo correct. Getting rid of my "FAT CLOTHES" saved me when I started sliding last summer!..

Comment #79

Have to agree with Eron,Wendy and Laurie on the clothes factor here,,,I too, got rid of all my clothes as I dropped out of them, and I also made sure my new clothes fit, that there was no room to "grow" in them. Sometimes, your clothes are actually your best indicators about your weight, as the scale may play it's little pound up,pound down games, but your clothes will always tell you the truth. I again use my favorite word here,,"mindful",,this is the way to eat to maintain forever. Best wishes to all either starting this journey, recommitting, hitting goal, transitioning, entering maintenance, or continuing maintenance. Keep positive thoughts, it will happen!..

Comment #80

I too got rid of my fat fat clothes.....its amazing how much these pants will hold and there is NO spandex in them!! .......I refuse to go buy new bigger clothes........this will be the test to see if that really works.......I REFUSE........but on the other sweats do fit.......I am forcing myself to get dressed each and every day.......the old me used to live in I only sleep in them and pray each morning when I go to get dressed that this last pair of jeans still fit. I am up almost 30 lbs........

Comment #81

I was just thinking this morning about choices. I think that it is a matter of examining your mindset, and from reading these posts, it seems like there is a lot of agreement with that idea. I choose whether or not to eat foods that trigger a relapse. I choose whether or not to keep those old fat clothes as a symbol of future failure (not a souvenir of old failure).

People often set themselves up to fail, because they are fearful of success. In order to succeed we need to work on that mindset, figuring out what to do to change it.

Our common goals are admirable. We may stumble at times, but that is not failure. Remember, after a stumble we pick ourselves up and start again, a renewed beginning. Each re-start can be a sign of reinforced motivation, stronger dedication to achieving our goals...

Comment #82

I agree with the alchoholic comment. I was thinking this morning about a friend that said to me, "Cant you just have a little bit of cake? A little cake won't hurt you". She doesn't realize that it's sabotage, because she doesn't have a weight problem. Then I got to thinking about it and thought, you wouldn't say to a recovering cocaine addict, "One little line won't hurt you, it's only a little cocaine", and then BAM they are hooked again. For me I have to think of overeating as my drug and I'm in recovery now. Some things are just off limits, I'm back here for the second time, knowing this program works, but I also know ME, so I can't go to a restaurant every day until I'm strong enough to get there, and even then, no "cocaine". LOL..

Comment #83

I have always thought this, too, and brought it up in one of my graduate counseling classes many years ago. An alcoholic or drug addict can easily go (and should!) the rest of his life without ever seeing, being around, or consuming their addiction. But food is our drug of choice and we must face our demons every single day of our lives AND consume our addiction daily but are still expected to stay in control. And yet obesity is often seen as a weakness where alcoholism and drug abuse are considered diseases. Where is the logic in that?..

Comment #84

I just have to say this is the finest thread I have read in a LOOOOng time!!! Yup I think I am right where a lot of you all are. I have been done with 5&1 since August and it's way harder to figure out what to eat all by myself I got down to 147 and really liked it there I am back up to 156 so not way out of goal range but enough to make my pants tight. Not cool. So Slowly I am too realizing there are just some things I need to not eat EVER. I can't stop eating them once I start. I tend to do that with many things.

I do it but I don't like it...

Comment #85

I agree that food is akin to an addictive drug. But a drug we cannot do without. That is why training the brain is so important, changing the mind-set about food and eating. I read a post about regaining weight that stated the situation very well: We should set an upper limit to what is an acceptable weight, and then when we get on the scale and see a number at or above that number, the weight loss program should begin the minute our feet touch the floor. Not "later", not "tomorrow", but RIGHT NOW...

Comment #86

This question was taken from a support group/message board and re-posted here so others can learn from it.


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