Tag Archives: Diet

It's just a fad ... it too shall pass

It’s just a fad … it too shall pass

The following is the first of regular guest blog posts that we hope to include here.  Many of you have requested more information on diets and healthy eating so we have enlisted the aid of dietitian Vijaya Botla of Alamo Nutrition Consultants.  I look forward to many more posts!

Now that January is behind us, how have you been doing with those New Year’s weight loss resolutions? Have you been resolved to barely eating or taking pills to help drop that weight? Well stop “detoxing” your body with that juice cleanse and put down the celery stick! The number one reason people get discouraged and often fail at dieting is that they think it’s too restrictive and absolutely, positively no fun with a little bit of doom and gloom added in; but it doesn’t have to be.

Weight loss is a multi-billion dollar business and often we want quick fixes to help us achieve our goals. If fad diets or pills or shots really worked (and by worked I mean that you were able to sustain that weight loss for more than a year) why are new ones constantly popping up? Want to see how this works?

What’s your favorite food…apple pie? Well, let’s make up the Apple Pie Diet. You can have a slice of pie for breakfast, another for lunch and then for dinner. Now on this diet you aren’t allowed anything else except the pie and 6-8 glasses of water a day. I can guarantee that you will lose weight! On average, a slice of double crust apple pie has 425 calories and 4 grams of protein. Now multiply that by 3 slices per day and you will be consuming 1275 calories per day (the average American consumes over 2000 calories). You will definitely see the pounds come off! But how long can you sustain this diet before you start having dreams of sneaking some grilled steak or spicy chili into the mix? Also, what about the lack of protein to maintain muscle and skin health? In a matter of days, or if you’re really committed maybe a couple weeks, you will most likely stop eating pie and think it just wasn’t for you. So you start back to eating the way you did and before you know it, you are back to the weight you were when you started; maybe even a little heavier! Then you decide that maybe you just need to try another more popular diet that has worked for such and such celebrity. Since they look great, it will definitely work for you too, right? Welcome to the world of yo-yo dieting.

Fad diets are just that…short-lived trends that come and go because they aren’t sustainable. Over the next few months, let’s explore what really does work and how you can achieve your weight loss goals the right way. Are you ready for Nutrition 2016?

For this month, let me leave you with this great tip that I have found helps so many people: when you feel like you’re hungry, don’t automatically grab something to eat. Try drinking a large glass of water first. Our mind sometimes has a hard time differentiating between hunger and thirst. We may just continue to be hungry even after having a snack or meal because what our body really needs is some fluids. After finishing that glass of water, wait at least 15-20 minutes before deciding to get a snack. If you still feel that gnaw for food, then go for it. You may be surprised at how often you were just thirsty and not really hungry! Til’ next time…

Vijaya Botla RDN, LD

Vijaya is the lead dietitian and president of Alamo Nutrition Consultants LLC, a private nutrition counseling practice located in San Antonio. If you would like to schedule an appointment to jump start your weight loss goals, ANC can help. For more information, call 210-971-0044 or visit their website at www.ANCtexas.com


A Plastic Surgeon’s Review of the DASH Diet

So, the two week DASH Diet challenge is over.  Nobody qualified for the CoolSculpting drawing so I guess I’ll have to use it myself and Freeze My Fat.  In other words: I AM THE CHAMPION!  For those of you who are interested in my experience, read on.

To prepare, I checked out a few books from the San Antonio Public Library.  Two of them were in electronic format so they were easy to download and view on my iPad.  They didn’t take long to read and were pretty straight forward.  There were lots of recipes – but I left those to my wife.

Following the diet was pretty easy.  Really just eating a lot of fruits and vegetables, lean poultry, and fish.  I did not eat any red meat during the 2 weeks and the only alcohol I had was some red wine on the weekend.  The biggest difficulty I found was watching the sodium limit of 1500 mg per day.  I had never really paid attention to the sodium content of foods before, but it is in everything!  Even the diet Green Tea that I drink had 50 mg per serving.  After 2 weeks, I think I can pretty much go without adding salt to my food now and I my taste buds are more sensitive to salt.  Really, the only other problem I had was eating out.  It is very hard to find a place that serves low salt foods that are fresh and healthy (especially when you eat in hospitals).  We did have one good lunch brought in to the office from My Fit Foods that was full of vegetables and low in salt.

I know you are wondering about the results.  Well, I did lose a few pounds pretty easily.  I do not have high blood pressure, but my blood pressure did go down as well.  I also had my Cholesterol checked and it dropped 30 points from before the diet.  All in all, I think it is a pretty easy meal plan to follow.  For success, you really have to concentrate on eating at home and bringing your lunch and snacks to work.  Overall I would give it 4.5/5 stars just because watching salt is so difficult.

I hope that this little challenge of ours has helped to reinforce your resolutions to lose weight or has inspired you to take on the challenge yourself.  I have seen results in many of our patients, so I know success is possible.  I routinely perform Tummy Tucks and Mommy Makeovers on people that have lost a great deal of weight.  We also use CoolSculpting to take care of things like love handles and saddle bags that don’t go away despite weight loss.  If you don’t think it is possible read this RealSelf diary from one of our patients who lost about 100 pounds by watching her diet and exercising.  If she did it, you can too!


DASH Diet and Plastic Surgery

I Challenge You to a DASH

It’s no secret that at the beginning of every new year, people are focused on losing weight.  One of the most common questions I get is about what diet do I recommend.  So this year I thought we would try something new and exciting.  I challenge all of you to lose more weight than me over the first 2 weeks of February.  No, this is not a crash diet, but merely a kick start to a weight loss plan for the whole year.  So, if you are game, read on.

We will be following the DASH diet.  DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension.  It was developed and researched under the guidance of the National Institutes of Health to reduce high blood pressure, but has actually been shown to lead to weight loss.  To me it seems to be a well balanced healthy diet plan that if implemented long term can lead to a significant change in your dietary lifestyle.

Here are the general guidelines of our DASH to health contest

  • All those who wish to participate can weigh in and get their blood pressure taken by Hilda or Linda anytime after February 2nd.  I will weigh in with Hilda on that morning.
  • Follow the DASH diet plan for the next 2 weeks (see the resources below)
  • Weigh out in the office before February 13th.  I will have Hilda check my blood pressure and weight on that afternoon.

Although we will only be checking the change after 2 weeks, I am hoping that everyone will see a significant change and want to continue with the dietary modifications forever.  Everyone that loses a higher percent of weight than me during those 2 weeks will receive a DASH diet book.  In addition, as an added incentive, everyone who loses more than me will be entered into a drawing for a FREE CoolSculpting treatment.  CoolSculpting is a great way to get rid of those isolated areas of fat that just won’t go away no matter how much weight you lose.

The idea for the 2 week challenge came to me when reading The DASH diet for hypertension : lower your blood pressure in 14 days–without drugs by Dr. Thomas Moore one of the researchers that studied the diet.  This book is available at the San Antonio Public Library.  You can also view a PDF of the diet plan from the NIH.  You can also find more information at DashDiet.org and DashforHealth.com.  The latter is a site designed by Dr. Moore that has a subscription option to help guide you at a reasonable price.

Regardless of the diet plan you choose to follow this year, think of CoolSculpting for those stubborn areas of fat that you just can’t get rid of.  We have had good success treating the abdominal area (including that little pooch of Mommy fat after C section) and the love handles.  We have also begun to treat the upper abdomen with the new CoolSmooth applicator to shrink that upper fat that I see in a lot of hispanic women especially.  After losing weight the rolls around the bra strap usually become more apparent and those are perfect for CoolSculpting.  I even see women that are thin everywhere else, but just have big saddlebags and the new CoolSmooth applicator has been a tremendous advance in treating that area.

Good luck to those of you who think you can lose more than me over the course of 2 weeks.  Trash talking is welcome, but don’t try to tempt me into breaking the diet with sweets (you know who you are).  If you have to lose the pounds anyway, you might as well enter the contest for a chance to win a free CoolSculpting treatment.  Even if you did not plan on losing weight but are interested in CoolSculpting, this is a good opportunity for you to win a free treatment.  As they say – What do you have to lose?