Weight Loss Top Tips

If you have opted to try the National Medical Weight loss program you should have had a consultation with one of our registered nurses.

During the consultation they will explain what medications are available and how they work as well as what to expect on your weight-loss journey. They will be there to support and assist with advice on the risks of side effects and what we can do to help you through any issues, as well as hints and tips on how to get the most out of the program.

The National Medical Weightless program uses medications such as Saxenda, Ozempic and soon Wegovy. These medications essentially help to control your appetite limiting the amount of food you consume. While that sounds amazing its important you learn some good habits during your weightless journey so that you have the tools and skills that will endure you have a longterm solution to your weight issue.

Weight loss, diet - measuring tape close-up
Woman watching her weight . Weight loss. Healthy weight.

We feel its very irresponsible to have patient loose a huge amount of weight in a short period of time. There is significant mounting evidence base which shows that crash diet can damage your metabolic rate and can sometime lead to long term weight gain so please follow the advice given by our staff.

Its not rocket science! If we use more calories than we consume you’ll loose weight. Annoying although that statement is, its unfortunately the truth, however, as anyone can tell you that’s been on a diet it’s not that simple.

Our appetite is controlled by hormones and if these are out of sync or our response to these hormones is impaired, trying to loose weigh can be an uphill struggle. This is where Drugs like Ozempic and Wegovy come in. They help the hormones become more stable and responsive which helps stop you eating more than you need.

Eating less calories will most definitely help you loose weight and its likely at the beginning of any weigh loss journey that the weight shifts fast but at some point you’ll hit a plateau this is where patience, perseverance and looking at what you eat, how often, when and what your body is doing in response to that food will really make changes happen and with a little determination you can have a permanent change.

We will come back to the food below but let start by looking at what you can do to ensure you have the best longterm solution. Its time for the E word!

Recreation for weight loss
Concept. of sport and weight loss exercises

Exercise. OMG how many times have you heard eat less move more! If only it was as simple as that! We regularly see patients in the clinic who excursive a lot but still struggle to lose weigh and to keep the weight off. During the consultation process we explore what exercise you do and what is manageable at your current weight.

If you currently don’t exercise and your BMI is above 30, start gently, walking is a great place to start. It is an inexpensive,  low-impact exercise, meaning it doesn’t stress your joints. An average person can burn around 175 calories in 30 minutes if they can walk at a moderate pace of 4mph. Daundering around the block with the dog won’t do it! Walking 3 times a week for an hour at 4mph can reduce your body fat by 1.5%. As you get fitter and lose weight, up your game – start by incorporating some steep hills into your route and watch the weight melt away!

Jogging and running can speed up your weight loss and is known to target visceral Fat (the unhealthy fat that gathers in your abdominal cavity and around your organs). However this form of exercise is not great for those who are significantly over weight and is also believed to accelerate facial ageing and reduces the longevity of aesthetic treatments such as botox! If you do choose to jog/run do so on softer surfaces such as grass or treadmills with built in cushioning.

Another few cardio based exercises you could incorporate would include cycling or rowing, both burn a good amount of calories without the impact on your joints. We love a spin class- increasing the resistance on the bikes is like cycling uphill – you burn more calories and build muscle and this is essential.

The aim with any aerobic activity is to raises your heart rate, get you slightly out of breath and causes you to break a sweat. We don’t recommend exercising so hard that you can hardly speak!

Resistance and weight training are key to a long term solution. One study found that doing less that 15 minutes of resistance/weight trying 3 times a week for 6 months increased your metabolic rate (the rate your body burns calories) by 7.4%.  However we feel the big win with weigh based training is that studies have shown that your body continues to burn calories for many hours after you completed weight based workout compared to cardiovascular exercise like jogging or running. So pick up those weights, start light and build up!

In summary both cardio and weights resistance training will benefit you on your weight loss programme.  Cardio workouts burn more calories than a weight-training however weight training boosts your metabolism making long term weightless more achievable. SO DO BOTH!

Start with small changes that you can stick to and build from there!

Some exercises can be difficult because of health related issues but speak to our staff and you’d be amazed at some of the suggestions they will come up with. Both our nurses have experienced weight loss issues so truly understand the journey.

There is so many different opinions on foods, what to eat and when to eat, and the truth is you need to find what works for you. We asked a lecturer in nutrition- Mhari Henderson, to give us her opinion on eating for weight loss. She’s given us some top tips and put together some amazing information and advice. Lets start with the top tips.

  • Eat small portions but eat regularly
  • Eat whole foods
  • Avoid processed foods If cooking with oil, use a smaller amount and add water and sauté fry instead
  • Try other methods of cooking: steam, airfry without oil, or bake Instead of rice or pasta,
  • Try using quinoa – it’s a complete protein and won’t spike your blood sugar levels in the same way. It will give you more energy and keep you feeling fuller for longer which reduces cravings and hunger pangs
  • If you feel hungry, have a drink – you may just be thirsty!
  • Aim to drink 1.5 – 2 litres a day (coffee doesn’t count in this)
  • Take a high quality multivitamin
  • Try Sprinkle cinnamon on your porridge oats/muesli in the morning – it’s great at curbing cravings!
  • Don’t stress if you eat something off plan – it’s not the end of the world. Start again at your next meal.

Mharhi has created some great receipts for breakfast, if you would like more support from Mhari she offerer consultation taking into account all your likes and dislikes and can create a food planner specific to your taste. (Link to Mharis page here)

Blood Sugar Balancing Breakfasts
Soaked Muesli – Soak overnight in a little water to produce a soft & digestible breakfast. Make sure your muesli is sugar and wheat free. Serve with a spoon of blackberries/blueberries/raspberries a grated apple or other low GI fruit and a scoop of plant protein to ensure adequate protein.

Avocado on Toast – Take slices of wholemeal or German rye bread and toast on one side. Turn the bread over and cover the un-toasted sides with a layer of sliced tomatoes. Place back under the heat and grill until the tomato is starting to cook. When ready, top each slice with mashed avocado. Sprinkle with seeds and add a drizzle of hempseed oil before serving.

Porridge & Blueberries – possibly one of the most filling breakfasts and so quick to make. Place 50g oatmeal into a pot and pour over 200ml water. Allow to boil then simmer until you have the consistency you want. Serve with blueberries or another berry of your choice. You can also sprinkle over a tablespoon of flaxmeal or nut butter for further goodness! Add some plant milk too if you wish for a runnier consistency.

Oat pancakes – blend one cup of oats with a ripe banana and half a cup of plant based milk. This should produce a gloopy (but not too runny) mixture. In a frying pan or skillet, heat a tablespoon of oil (I like coconut oil) and spoon the mixture out into pancake sizes. Flip when cooked on one side and then cook the other side. Serve with chia seeds, nut butter, berries or blended frozen cherries.

Tofu Scramble – Trust me, this does not take long to prepare. Crumble ready pressed tofu into a hot pan with coconut oil. Sprinkle over 2 teaspoons of turmeric. Add black pepper and a little Himalayan salt if required. Once warmed through and the tofu is all coated with the turmeric, serve on 2 slices of toasted wholemeal or German rye bread. Serve with cherry tomatoes and chopped avocado.

Smoothie bowl – This is always a favourite of mine. Not just because they taste so amazing, but because they can look so pretty too and they always look great on Instagram! Blend frozen berries with avocado, chocolate plant-based protein powder, and raw cacao. Top with nuts, flax, fruit, chia seeds or whatever you fancy. Enjoy!

So how does stress impact my weight? 

Finally we know stress can cause weight gain- this is because during stress we release cortisol- the flight or fight hormone. This hormone can cause higher levels of insulin, this drops your blood sugar and as we already know this increases craving for sugary and fatty foods.

Its so easy for someone to say relax but if your situation cannot be changed and you are living/working in an environment that evokes a stress response you need to develop some coping strategies. Different things help different people so try a number of these or come up with your own and let us know what it is so we can add it to the list so that others might benefit.

Heres some suggestions you can try.

OMG again with the E work! Lol
Exercise is important but don’t over do it. Prolonged High-intensity workouts are not alway helpful when examining cortisol levels. Everything in moderation- including exercise- aim for 30-60 minutes 3/4 times.

Try Meditating or other mindful breathing exercises like yoga and tai chi.These can help clear your mind and curb those comfort-food impulses.

Spend time with loving family and friends. It’s always good to have someone to talk too or lean on. If you’re feeling tense, speak with someone about it. And don’t underestimate the importance of laughter, it really is the best medicine.

You could also take up reading, listen to music, spending time outdoors, reducing stimulants such as caffeine and if you’re finding it all too much seek professional help.

Make sure you’re getting plenty of sleep, too!

The NHS has created a website that discusses some of the myths around weightless, it’s a worthwhile read, places follow the link at the bottom of the page: https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-weight/managing-your-weight/ten-weight-loss-myths/