James Hogan recently posted his “four principles for effective dieting,” which were developed from his personal experience with dieting. It’s a great read on what has worked for James (and as he says, this is a nine-year trend in the making). Comparing notes to my own experiences (Better Health via IF and Low-Carb), I see a lot of overlap. In particular, regular measuring, incremental change, and intermittent fasting (which somewhat translates into Johnson’s Up-Day Down Day) all worked well for me. Of all of those things, I think fasting is the best way to improve your habits because it so starkly breaks rank with existing eating habits.
I also really liked how Hogan articulates targeting the “Healthy Stretch.” I liken this to falling into the dieting “zone.”
Anyway, it’s worth the read in full, so I’m just going to excerpt James’ the four top-level principles:
- Manage your motivation — “So, the most important thing you can do while losing weight is to successfully manage your motivation.”
- Use data — “Measuring and using data helps us in two ways. It helps us understand the consequences of our actions more accurately than we’d otherwise be able to. It’s also motivating.”
- Try different approaches — “Try different approaches. Observe which pieces work (and keep them) and which don’t work (and discard them). Don’t become disheartened if an approach fails …”
- The alternate-day diet — “The structure of the diet is that you eat a very low number of calories some days (20-50% of the amount required to maintain your weight — your “break even” amount), and a higher number of calories on alternate days. If you’re trying to lose weight, you might target closer to 20% on the “down days,” and if you’re trying to maintain your weight, you might target closer to 50%.”
Finally, I like noting that I know James through Patri through the Seasteading Institute. I suppose I know Patri from having read David Friedman’s blog originally and stumbling into Patri’s works on the old Catallarchy site. What’s fun about these somewhat unpredictable connections is that my old childhood (and adult friend – he was a groomsman of mine) friend Andy happened to be the primary creator/writer for Johnson of the UDDD. The internet: making the world a smaller place a day at a time.