Eating.

Hi, friends.

Just to give you a warning of sorts, this is a fairly long post, but if you can find some time to read it anyways, I’d really appreciate hearing your thoughts!

To all of my fellow Weight Watchers folks out there (or anyone counting calories or anyone who just wants to chime in, really), I have an issue that I’d like your help and advice regarding. I am having a terrible, terrible time using all of my Weight Watchers daily points allowance, and I’m beginning to really get concerned about it. So, for those of you following points plus, can you tell me how you manage to use all of your daily points? What are you eating? How many times a day are you eating?

Here’s my problem, I think. I’ve switched over to mostly healthy foods these days. I eat tons of fruits and veggies now–all of which are points plus “free” foods. Instead of eating lots of white breads and bagels and English muffins and whatever, I’m eating multigrain sandwich slims, bagel thins, light multigrain English muffins, and better quality multigrain and whole grain breads and dinner rolls–none of which usually add up to being more than 4 points plus per serving (most of my bread products are typically 3 points plus per serving, though). I eat fat free mayo (0 points plus for 1 serving), mustards (0 points plus), fat free salad dressings (1 point plus per serving), and spray butter (margarine) (0 points plus). I eat sugar free jellies and jams (1 point plus per serving). I eat lots of fish and lean poultry and veggie burgers. I eat Yoplait yogurts that are Weight Watchers endorsed (2 points plus per container).  I eat fat free or sugar free pudding cups (2 points plus per container). I eat a decent amount of eggs or egg whites. I eat turkey sausage or turkey bacon (1 point plus per piece). For breakfast a couple times a week, I’ll eat cream of wheat (2 points plus per package) made with 1% milk (3 points plus per cup) mixed with a cup of frozen fruit, which is, again, a “free” food. Or I’ll eat some sort of low point cereal with 1% milk.

Oh. And I also eat lots of Weight Watchers and Skinny Cow ice creams–all of which are between 2 and 4 points plus each. I eat ice cream at least once a day. Yesterday I had Skinny Cow ice cream twice… 😉

Throw in lots of water with lime wedges and lots of unsweetened tea with lemon wedges, and I’ve just told you my entire dietary plan basically–except for the few times a week I go out to eat and order the healthiest thing I can find off of menus.

I’m sure that this sounds great to a lot of you, and, truthfully, it is great. I’m now on week 6 of my Weight Watchers journey, and each and every day it’s becoming easier to eat like this–to eat healthy. Yes, sometimes I do get cravings (which is exactly why I had black beans and shredded chicken soft tacos from Taco Bell on Saturday night and why I went bananas when I found a “healthy” pizza a couple of weeks ago because oh my God was I ready to kill for a slice of pizza! So, yeah, cravings do still happen).

But here’s the thing. I’m a big girl–obviously. And I was eating a lot of food before I started this journey. I mean, let’s be real–you don’t get to be nearly 320 lbs. by eating well and taking care of yourself… You just don’t. So when I started Weight Watchers, in order to prevent a “starvation diet,” I was given 50 points plus per day plus 49 weekly “splurge” points for when I wanted to go over my daily 50. That’s how much food I’m supposed to be eating daily. Now that I’ve lost 18.4 lbs., I’m down to 49 points plus per day.

Here’s the thing, though: in the 6 weeks I’ve been on Weight Watchers, I have never, not even once, used all of my daily points, and since I can’t even tackle all of those points, you can forget about the splurge points. But the weird thing is, I’m not exactly being intentional in this lack of “appropriate” eating. When it comes down to it, I do eat what most people would consider to be very well and balanced during the day. The problem is that 49/50 points is just way too much to eat during the day… Or at least it’s too much for the way I’ve recently been eating: fat free, sugar free, lightened up.

Let me give you an example of a typical day. Here’s my meal plan for today, 10/21/2014:

Breakfast
1 cup Dole frozen cherry berry mixed fruit (0 points plus)
1 medium banana (0 points plus) ^mixed together to make “fruit salad”
2 eggs (2 points plus each / 4 points plus)
1/8 cup fresh mushrooms (0 points plus) ^mixed with eggs
1 Thomas’ Everything Bagel (7 points plus)
2 Tbsp. Weight Watchers cream cheese (2 points plus)
12 oz. bottle of seltzer water (0 points plus)
1 lime wedge (0 points plus)

breakfast total = 13 points plus / 36 points remaining 

Mid-morning Snack
1 Kroger bakery deli roll (2 points plus)
I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter Spray (0 points plus)

snack total = 2 points plus / 34 points remaining 

Lunch
1 Kroger brand honey wheat sandwich slim (3 points plus)
2 Tbsp. Kraft fat free mayo (0 points plus)
1 slice Sargento reduced fat Swiss cheese (2 points plus)
6 pieces Oscar Mayer Deli Fresh Chicken Breast, Rotisserie Style, Shaved (1 point plus)
^sandwich
1/8 cup Knorr Pasta Sides, Alfredo (1 point plus)
12 oz. bottle of seltzer water (0 points plus)
1 lime wedge (0 points plus)

lunch total = 7 points plus / 27 points remaining 

Afternoon “Snack”
8 oz. Gold Peak Iced Tea, Unsweetened (0 points plus)
1 lemon wedge (0 points plus)

afternoon “snack” total = 0 points plus / 27 points remaining

Dinner
1 Cajun Chicken Wrap (5 points plus because I used carb balance tortillas instead of fat free)
1 cup fresh cooked broccoli (0 points plus)
1 cup Success boil-in-bag brown rice (8 points plus)
8 oz. Gold Peak Iced Tea, Unsweetened (0 points plus)
1 lemon wedge (0 points plus)

dinner total = 13 points plus / 14 points remaining 

Dessert
1 Skinny Cow Ice Cream Cone, Low Fat, Vanilla with Caramel (4 points plus)

Daily Total = 39 points plus / 10 points plus remaining 

Is that enough food? My daily intake is right around this area. This past Friday I used 41 of my 49 points (I went out), Saturday I used 46 of my 49 points (again, I went out), Sunday I used 37 of my 49 points, Monday I used 38 of my 49 points, and then today, like I explained, I used 39 of my 49 points.

The people in my Weight Watchers meeting group freak out about this. They tell me I need to eat as close to 49 points as possible every single day. One of the girls in the group, whom I’ve formed a tentative friendship with, basically told me that I’m unintentionally starving myself and that when I actually do get down to only being allotted 38 points or so, I’ll stop losing weight because that’s what my body’s gotten used to eating. Is this true?

I’m just concerned because I haven’t been feeling well this week–twice I’ve had fainting spells. I was very ill at the beginning of the year (back in January), and I was shuffled around between tons of doctors and specialists. My little fainting spells started then–so long before I made a diet change. Unfortunately, though, none of the doctors could find the cause of my problems, but, luckily, by the time spring rolled around, I was feeling fine health-wise again. All of the sudden, though, I seem to be feeling sick again, and this week my fainting spells and my dizziness has really done a number on me. The problem is, though, that I don’t know if I’m feeling sick because I’m not eating enough or if this is just a continuation of my illness from earlier this year…

What do all of you think? Am I doing myself a disservice by not using more of my allotted points? How do the rest of you manage your eating plans? Do you go by your stomach’s signal that it’s hungry (which is what I’ve been doing), or do you make yourself eat more throughout the day?

Any advice or help or just thoughts on my situation would be much appreciated.

I hope all of your weeks are going well.

rachaelxoxo

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14 thoughts on “Eating.

  1. Well, don’t forget you need (healthy) fats in your diet. Without any fat the body has a hard time absorbing the nutrients.

    If you aren’t allergic to nuts, snack on almonds or have a slice of peanut butter and honey (delicious and good for you in moderation!). Add avacado to salads. Find an acai berry frozen smoothie packet (they sell them sweetened and un- sweetened – full of healthy antioxidants and healthy fats 4.5 per packet) and make yourself a smoothie. Or add 1% or 2% Plain Greek yogurt to a smoothie (I use plain Greek yogurt as a substitue for mayo in modest potato salads and deviled eggs).

    Just a thought. It’s been awhile since I was on WW but these guys should help. 🙂

    I typically have a hard time getting in an appropriate amount of calories myself. I’ve never eaten enough though, just used to eat the WRONG stuff… Aye. Anyway, since I started using MFP in June I’ve not once gotten to my ‘goal’ calories for the day but I do try and make sure I’ve gotten a very minimum of 1200. I usually end up around 1400-1600.

    Good luck darling!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks so much, B! Next time I go shopping, I will add some of that stuff to my list. I do eat avocados once a week-ish in a salad, and I sometimes grab a smoothie from Jamba Juice on my way to class some mornings, but that’s about it, and I guess that’s probably not enough! I was thinking about buying peanut butter when I went to the store last, but I changed my mind last second. I will make sure to get some next time! 🙂

      It’s nice to know that I’m not the only one who has trouble getting everything to add up number-wise, though. Thanks for the support! ❤

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  2. Sounds like you need to be adding healthy fats. I rarely use all my points and I’m only allowed 37 right now 🙂 I very rarely use splurge points at all and that’s okay, you don’t have to use them! A typical day is like this for me:

    Breakfast:
    Coffee with sugar free creamer
    Yoplait yogurt (though today I celebrated my weight loss with a Sausage, egg, & cheese McMuffin)

    Snack:
    Apple

    Lunch:
    Brownberry Sandwich Thin
    Laughing cow cheese wedge
    4 oz of Oscar Mayer Oven Roasted Turkey
    Carrots or cucumber (or some other veggie)

    Snack:
    Fiber One Cookie

    Dinner:
    Meat, veggie, carb, & fat (for instance tonight we’re having Taco bar – so I’ll be having taco ground beef, lettuce, shredded cheese, low carb tortilla, and a little refried beans).

    Today totals 31 pp with the McDonalds sandwich. If I wouldn’t have eaten that and had the yogurt instead, I’d have had only 21 points – so I would have added some healthy fats, like nuts or sunflower seeds – maybe trail mix to get my points up.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks so much for commenting! I was hoping someone also doing WW would comment! It can be hard to get all those points in, can’t it? When you’re being conscious about your food choices, it seems like eating so much becomes difficult.

      You basically said the same thing as B, though, which was that I needed to add healthy fats back in. I am definitely going to follow your advice and pick up some stuff when I make my next trip to the store. I am not typically a huge fan of nuts, but I will give that a try anyways. Trail mix might be a better choice for me.

      I guess I need to do a little investigating about healthy fats. I didn’t realize that I was not doing well in that department. I need to kind of figure out what would be good for me to eat that’s a healthy fat! How complicated! Haha! 😉

      Thanks again for commenting and for giving me advice! ❤

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  3. I have no advice concerning the fainting spells. Low blood sugar? But it does seem that you are eating enough starches. I don’t know about the proper amount of fats. Hmmm?
    I started Weight Watchers back in 1974 for the first time. Back then I had to eat fish (tuna) five times a week. Yuck. Interesting thing is that when I lose three more pounds I will be right back where I started in 1974. (40 years ago)
    But now I am just eating “regular food”. I only eat three meals a day, with no snacks at all. I just cut my food in half. That is what works for me. At least that is how I felt led by God to eat for me. I was a 24/7 binger, so eating three meals keeps me eating just enough necessary without eating all day like I used to. Food is my addiction.
    Lord, lead her to Your will for what she is to eat. Lead her to the correct amount of exercise for her body. We praise You for the weight she has lost. We ask that these dizzy spells stop. Amen

    Liked by 1 person

    • When I was ill earlier this year, they did check my blood sugar because diabetes runs in my family, and since I’m very, very overweight, I’ve always kind of known that becoming diabetic was a possibility. They tested me several times, though, and my sugar levels were fine. I am not a diabetic. I’ve had full blood panels, an MRI, several CT scans, EKGs, the works–the docs couldn’t figure out what was causing it. The only thing that continuously fluctuates is my BP; sometimes it gets too low, sometimes it gets a tiny bit too high, but most of the time it’s OK. My family physician said that fainting is caused by a rapid drop in BP. If I can kind of feel it coming on, he said I can stop it if I lay down and put my feet up because that will get my blood circulating and my BP will increase. Most of the time I can’t catch it in time, though. It’s the strangest thing!

      And I have heard of that version of WW, actually! One of the women in my meeting group has been a member since then, and she swears that, to this day, she still can’t eat tuna! I’m sorry you had to eat like that! Thank goodness WW is different these days! 🙂

      Thank you so, so, so much for that prayer. It’s incredibly appreciated. I really admire your commitment to faith and to God!

      Thanks so much for checking in, Deborah! ❤

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  4. I know that the last time I lost a substantial amount of weight, I lost the first 50 pounds on my own before joining Weight Watchers. When I joined WW, I actually started eating MORE than I had been before, and I lost a lot of weight that first week.

    The reason our Points allowances are so high is because our BMRs are naturally higher, due to the fact that it takes more energy to move our mass than it would for someone who weighs less. Therefore, as we lose weight, our BMR decreases, and we need to eat less food to lose weight at the same rate as before. That’s the basic premise behind the WW Points allowances.

    I also have had a hard time hitting my daily Points allowance of 44, but I’m going to echo what a lot of people have said above about adding in healthy fats, like nuts and nut butters. Also, I rarely use fat-free products (with the exception of Greek yogurt), and I always use real butter. I figure there’s no possible way that foods chemically engineered to contain less fats can actually be good for you, and you’re better off eating full-fat foods in moderation. One time, I heard that margarine is only 1 molecule away from being plastic (this isn’t remotely true… but it IS indestructible, and that is creepy enough), and I haven’t bought it since. Turkey bacon is another one that weirds me out. It’s got to be processed within an inch of its life.

    In order to get closer to my allowance, I added a granola bar to my mid-morning snack and yogurt/nuts to my afternoon snack. My basic breakdown is 3 meals/2 snacks with 2 servings of fruits per day, and I try to have a fruit/veggie with every meal/snack. I also try to balance my plate 1/4 protein, 1/4 starch/carb, and 1/2 vegetables.

    Here’s what I ate today, 3 meals/2 snacks:

    Breakfast – 9 PP (35 remaining)
    2 eggs (4 PP)
    1 whole grain waffle (2 PP)
    1 Tbsp syrup (1 PP)
    2 turkey sausage links (2 PP)
    1 pear (0 PP)

    Morning Snack – 4 PP (31 remaining)
    1 Fiber One bar (4 PP)
    1 banana (0 PP)

    Lunch – 14 PP (17 remaining)
    1 serving Skinnytaste Crock Pot Chicken Taco Chili (5 PP)
    3 oz baby carrots (0 PP)
    10 whole wheat crackers (4 PP)
    Mild cheddar cheese (5 PP)

    Afternoon Snack – 2 PP (15 remaining)
    1 nonfat Greek yogurt (2 PP)

    Dinner – 16 PP (dipped into 1 weekly)
    2 grilled cheeses with reduced fat swiss cheese and 1 Tbsp of butter (14 PP)
    2 c broccoli (0 PP)
    1 Yoplait Greek frozen yogurt bar (2 PP)

    Also, I found this chart on Weight Watchers when I was really struggling with getting all my Points in: http://www.weightwatchers.com/util/art/index_art.aspx?tabnum=1&art_id=108131

    It’s a breakdown of suggested Points targets by meal. I hope that’s helpful to you! As a side note, I prefer to eat bigger breakfasts than lunches or dinners.. though I didn’t do that in this example!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I second what Alison said. I was worried about not eating my points (something I still struggle with) and asked my leader about it and she said I could stop eating fat-free stuff, stick to regular for now. Also like Alison said, a lot of stuff is actually healthier for you the regular way, it’s not as processed and they don’t have to add a lot of salt or sugar to make it taste good. If you’re comfortable with it, I’d take the fat-free substitutes out, at least for now.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Hi, Gen!

        Thanks for commenting. I am definitely planning on taking the advice you’ve all given me. I actually really like the fat free yogurts and puddings, though, so I’ll probably stick with those, but I will add real butter and mayo back in, and I might try “light” salad dressings instead of fat free.

        I am so glad that I am not the only one that struggles to use all of the points, though! It makes me feel so much better to know that that’s a pretty common issue. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much for posting, Alison. I will definitely be adding healthy fats back into my diet this week–that’s my weekly goal. Thanks, also, for the link to that chart! That’s going to be so helpful. I lost again this week, so I’m now down to 48pp per day. I am going to work on trying to get as many points in as I can! Like you, I also try to eat a big breakfast. I like to start off by feeling like I have eaten enough to power me through the day. My smallest meal tends to be lunch. I enjoy eating big dinners, for the most part. I used to be a big late-night snacker, so I have found that eating dinners that are on the heartier side helps keep me from munching throughout the night.

      I probably need to work on being more concerned about processed foods. I do not eat pork, so I have consumed turkey products (like turkey bacon) for many years. I am sure that it IS probably processed within an inch of its life… I just like being able to enjoy things like “bacon,” and since I don’t do pork whatsoever, that’s really the only way I can do it. I should probably cut it out altogether, though…

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