Embarking on a new diet can be exciting but also daunting. Anybody who is successful in life be them an astronaut, athlete, chef or teacher knows that one of the key skills to achievement is preparation. And it is no different for yourselves as you too can make preparations for your diet, which will be the first steps to a new you.
Before commencing on your journey please make sure that this is the right choice for you and consult with your doctor to make sure that this plan is suitable.
It is important to know what you may experience during the first few days once starting the plan. For some, side effects may include headaches, hunger, lightheadedness, constipation, diarrhea and nausea. These are as a result of the changes to your diet which includes a decrease in calories and carbohydrates which are the body’s preferred source of energy. For others there may be no side effects at all and will be able to achieve ketosis without any problem. Once you are in ketosis you should find that these side effects diminish as your body adjusts to your new diet.
To help you manage these side effects and stay committed to your weight loss journey here are a few helpful tips to prepare you before you embark on your weight loss plan.
1. Organising your essentials
Take the time before starting to read through the website and the database of allowed foods and also the allowed drinks list and get stocked up with all essential items such as sparkling water, Coke Zero, Hartley’s sugar free jelly, vegetables, Oxo stock cubes and any of the slim, zero or Barenaked range that you may want to include.
2. Support network
Undertaking a new diet can be an emotional roller-coaster and during this time you will need as much support as possible. We understand that not everybody is comfortable or is wanting to share the news of their new journey with loved ones, friends or colleagues but you may find this helpful if you have people who you can confide in and who will be a support for you during this time. As well as friends and family for support you can also join our official Facebook group, which is full of members who are on the same journey as yourself who can share all the day to day trials and tribulations throughout your weight loss journey. We have full-time staff available 7 days per week who are on hand for any specific questions you may have. We also offer live chat and telephone support should you so need it.
3. Reducing caffeine and carbohydrates
When starting a vlcd plan it is recommended not to have any caffeine until you are in ketosis which usually happens between days 3-5, as studies show that caffeine can slow a person getting into ketosis. So when you make the decision to start the plan and are awaiting the arrival of your parcel, take this time to start to reduce your caffeine or switch to a decaf version. This plan is based on ketosis which centres around 50-70g of carbs so if before the plan you have a heavy carb based diet you may want to look at gradually reducing down your carbs such as rice, bread, pasta or potatoes to prepare your body for the sudden decrease in carbs once you start the plan.
Our body is made up of between 50-75% water and we use up water during everyday activities such as breathing, walking, sweating and going to the toilet. It is a good idea to start to increase your water consumption if you have not already done this. We recommend between 2-3 litres per day and as caffeine has mild diuretic properties, if you are a heavy caffeine drinker you may find this helps to ease you into the plan a little easier. We do have water calculator which will work out exactly how much water you should be consuming whilst on plan, depending on your body weight via the weight tracker.
5. Weighing and measuring
The goal of embarking on this plan is to get to your ideal weight and/or clothing size so it is very good idea before starting the plan to take a before photo from the front and side which can be used as a gauge of how far you have come as you get towards your goal. Also to measure yourself: measuring your waist, hips, chest, thigh, calf, upper and forearms. These measurements as well as your photo, is merely a starting point for you so that you can track your progress. You can also log your weekly weight so you can chart your weight loss progress in a graph.
6. Plan your goals
The ultimate objective for doing this is to lose weight and you may find that by looking at the bigger picture this can be very daunting thinking that your goal is a long way off. As a way to help keep you motivated prior to starting your weight loss journey, write down reasons why you are doing this such as getting into an old outfit or a holiday you are planning on taking. Some find as well by putting photos of said outfit or destination around your home this can be a great visual aid to keep you motivated. Another fun way to get focused is write a bucket list of activities you have always wanted to do and places you may want to visit for example horse riding, scuba diving or that dream trip to Australia. The new you will be for the rest of your life and what better way to enjoy this than by fully embracing and enjoying all it has to offer.
By adapting these simple steps before you start you should find that you will adjust to the plan much easier and find before you know it you will be in ketosis and onto your first official weigh in. Good luck on your journey and as we at Slim and Save say “onwards and downwards”.
Written by Debbie Moore, Slim & Save Customer Care Department.