Have you successfully lost weight? What was your secret?

A. Formal diet program (e.g., Weight Watchers)
26% (130 votes)
B. Cooking healthier at home/delicious recipes
27% (133 votes)
C. Getting a friend or family member on board to lose with me
3% (15 votes)
D. Cool mobile app or website
3% (16 votes)
E. Exercise program
20% (97 votes)
F. Other, I'll explain in the comments
21% (105 votes)
Total votes: 496
More Diet Information and Recipes


Anonymous wrote 1 year 1 week ago

I started keeping track on my

I started keeping track on my intake. Calories, protein, fat, carbs, etc. Found an app that would help me do this. I never realized how much I was eating until it was shown to me by my own input.
Too much of everything. I started by limiting my input and increasing my output.
Protein was the first thing I would eat on my plate, then a green vegetable and dairy.

Gave up soda and yes even diet soda (Coke Zero) and changed to water. Weight started to come off

If you find an app that works for you and make yourself count those calories, you will be surprised how easy it is. But you have to force yourself to not cheat.

Give your self a treat. I could have 2 slices of Pizza once a week.

Anonymous wrote 1 year 40 weeks ago

I've always had healthy

I've always had healthy eating habits but sitting on my butt 40 years as a bookkeeper, the pounds just kept creeping on. When I retired I started exercising: alternating 3 days a week on a Bowflex for strength training for 1 hr a day, working a different muscle group each day (chest & arms/upper back & shoulders/lower back & legs) and 3 days of walking on a treadmill at varying speeds and incline throughout for 30-45 minutes. In the summer months I swapped out the treadmill for the swimming pool doing steady (but slow) laps for at least 30 minutes. I also logged all my meals and exercise on MyFitnessPal which kept me on track. At the end of 16 months I had lost 48 pounds. I had tried just the treadmill 5 days a week but got nowhere; without the strength training I didn't lose and ounce. I'm 63 yrs old and in better shape than when I was 40.

Anonymous wrote 5 years 26 weeks ago

The only time I have been

The only time I have been able to successfully lose weight and keep it off was by cutting my fat consumption per meal. I keep the total fat content per serving as low as I can and watch the trans fat portion of this is below 8 grams per serving. Also, I try to restrict my fat intake to less than 15% at each meal. This cuts out having to measure and all the crap that goes with that. Along with this dietary change, I simply walked as often as I could. This worked because I lost 80 pounds without guilt nor feeling deprived since I still had what I wanted, just less of it when that something was high in fat.

Anonymous wrote 5 years 44 weeks ago

AFTER a baby, big separation,

AFTER a baby, big separation, moved twice, two years later i found myself at 220 lbs. i did lots of research amd went by this simple chart everyday. brought a small pocket notebook to carry with me and i monitor my water intake: 4 MIN-8 MAX VEGGIE INTAKE SOMETYPE PF VEGGIE DAILY OR D\SALAD WITH SPINACH.EXERCISE OUTPUT( NEVER STEP FOOT IN GYM. I DO JUMPING JACKS RUN IN PLACE GO UP AND DOWN STAIRS FOR 30 MIN 4 TIMES A WEEK AND LAST BUT MOST IMPORTANT IS CALORIE INTAKE>. this m,akes all the difference. 1500 cal daily u have to cut down in oreder to lose simple as that but your body will get use to it than it wont bother you anymore> i started sept 2011 its nov and i weight 194lbs its coming off fast and im very proud that i will get back down to 140 before my bday next may. DNT GIVE UP DNT LOOK AT IT AS BEING PREFECT IF U MESS UP AND EAT A CANDY BAR, JUST WORKOUT FOR 10 MORE MINS HIGH INTESITY AND CHOOSE BETTER EATING HABITS FOR THE REST OF THE DAY. PRACTICE MAKES PREFECT

Anonymous wrote 6 years 42 weeks ago

exercise AND Calorie counting

exercise AND Calorie counting using

Anonymous wrote 6 years 44 weeks ago

April 30, 2010 - decided I

April 30, 2010 - decided I could not continue eating the way I was, blood sugar 289, hgbA1c 10.8, cholesterol high 300's, triglycerides high 400's. Today, November 18, 2010 - blood sugar normal, hgbA1c normal, cholesterol 150, trig 130s. I lost 45 pounds. Basically I age 1/2 bagel with coffee for breakfast, the other half for lunch, a healthy dinner, fish, low fat steak, chicken about 4 ounces, vegetables, snacks - plum or grapes. Evening snack 2 sugar free cookies - oatmeal or shortbread, 1 cup of cinnamon tea. I went from a size 14 to a size 4 and sometimes size 2 in jeans, slacks, skirts.
Coat XL and Large to XS to S. No Weight Watchers, No prepared meal diets, just common sense, cut down calories, cut down fat, sugar and carbs. I used to eat potato chips and dip instead of healthy food, doughnuts, pies, cake, whatever I felt like eating.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

Having spent years on this or

Having spent years on this or that diet, I eventually got Diabetes and so was forced to change my life style and diet. Firstly I got the help of a Dietician. This was a great help. But soon I realized that all food is good but you must eat and drink in moderation. 3 years ago I commenced my 'healthy eating plan' and I have lost 4 1/2 stone in weight and I can honestly say that I have never been hungry. If I fancy something that I know in my mind I dont need, I ask my tummy does it need any more food at this point. The answer is usually a resounding 'no' !! Sometimes, I just go ahead and eat a small amount of the 'forbidden fruits'!!

Dont think me a goodie - goodie! I always keep a bar of chocolate in my fridge and on a bad day(one where everything is going wrong), I will break off 2 squares and make a lovely cup of tea and sit and savour it! This is my fix!. On a really bad day, I might take 4 squares!!!

Exercise is very important both physically and spiritually. I attend an exercise class once or twice a week. This is not a silly, mad, jumping around class. It is a gently stretching and bending class which helps to keep one supple. I also walk my beautiful dog Amber, every day for at least 45minutes.

I am three sizes smaller than I was and have great fun purchasing clothes which give me plenty of confidence in myself. I feel well all the time now and look forward to each day and what it holds in store for me and I hope to do so for many years to come.

Thanks for all the lovely recipes.
Arlene McAllister, Glasnevin, Dublin, Ireland


Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

I have lost 40 pounds by

I have lost 40 pounds by eating more salads and fruit, and snacking on healthy popcorn, grapes, and pretzels. My goal is to lose 20 more pounds, and then keep it off by continuing to eat healthy. This is my new lifestyle, not a diet!

dnboyd72 wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

I did the HCG Diet for 1

I did the HCG Diet for 1 month, lost 30 pounds. I am adding lots of foods back to my daily diet except sugars and starches. Including lots of cheeses, whipping cream, chocolate, coconut oil and almond flour and am doing great. Making a life change in eating to not gain back. Working good for me. Reading all the healthy articles I can find

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

The key for keeping weight

The key for keeping weight off for me is a variety of healthy meals with great flavor. I try to plan ahead and cook several meals at once and then rotate them through the fridge and freezer. That way I'm only minutes away (via the microwave) from a healthy meal. Having a variety of flavors and choices helps me from getting bored with my food.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

Counting Calories with a

Counting Calories with a smart phone application makes it super simple to lose weight!

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

I basically never eat out and

I basically never eat out and cook almost all of my food. I pay close attention to calorie content in what I make, and enter what I eat every day into an online calorie counter (, now owned by I work out 40 min a day 5 to 6x per week (cardio) and try to also add a long walk at lunchtime (about 1.5 miles). I don't eat many processed foods and would never think of eating candy or cake or fried chicken. If I worked in the fields all day, I could justify eating like that, but since I spend most of my day at a desk typing on a computer--well, I just don't burn that many calories. Eating is OK, but I decided I like feeling good and wearing smaller sized clothes better than stuffing myself! has helped immensely with sensible, healthful recipes that taste good.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

Something very crushing

Something very crushing happened in my life so I decided to turn my life around. I just decided I had enough of being over weight and tired. I deserve to be in shape. So I cut out all junk/fast food, and work out at least 1 hour 5 days a week incorporating free weights, machines and a lot of cardio- preferrably on the cross trainer at the gym. I am going to start spin class one day a week. I am determined to do this. By now I would have given up but something is keeping me going. I have become stubborn and strong willed about getting into shape. My fat days are over. Cutting out fast food/junk was amazing, I did not think I could do it. I feel so much better, I dont have the fat content making me feel tired all of the time-which I thought there was a medical reason I was so tired. I have no cravings for junk. My only vice is a Coke every now and then. I tried to see what would happen if I ate fast food- let me tell you I paid for it, my system got back at me. Also I didnt like it. And this is a food I loved and I realized it tasted terrible. Anyone should try it, cut out the fast food for a fe weeks then you will realize how terrible and bland it tastes. I dont even crave chocolate- I can absolutely say no to anything.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

Losing weight is rather

Losing weight is rather simple...calories in vs. calories out. I did not diet. I did not deny myself any food, but only limited the amount of what I ate and work out at least 5 days a week. I have lost over 70lbs so far and have at least another 30lbs to go.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

I've lost almost 30 lbs.

I've lost almost 30 lbs. since February 2010 - slow and steady. I stopped eating bread, rice, pasta, potatoes in any form or fashion. Greek yogurt and some almonds or cottage cheese and fruit for breakfast, salad w/protein for lunch (cheese or meat or egg) and a sensible dinner (meat, vegetables, maybe more salad). I don't weigh or measure my food, just try to keep portions in check with the guidelines we've all read a thousand times. No sodas ever, no juice (only fresh fruit). Chocolate milk is good for a sweet treat, as is a banana topped w/ a few squirts of chocolate syrup.

Exercising 3-4 days a week - either jogging (for as long as I can stand it) or cycling at the gym - I should do more work with free weights but I am lazy-ish. I think the key is to make good food choices, maintain portion control, and exercise regularly. I was a snug 14 and am now wearing size 10 pants happily - and on the way down to a size 8, if I can just lose about 10-12 more pounds. It's about making a lifestyle change committment and not thinking about it being a "diet," and instead of "living to eat," I think of it as "eating to live."

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

EatintWell's 28 day diet

EatintWell's 28 day diet started me off as well as hitting the gym daily. After seeing the portion sizes and understanding what makes a "complete" meal, ie. whole grains with veggies and a protien, I was on my way. I now cook a weeks worth of meals on one day and portion them out into individual containers; breakfast, lunch and dinner. My reciepe resource is EatingWell's cookbooks; Diet, 500 cal dinners, Budget and on-line searches of the EatingWell website. Thanks to EatingWell's great meals and regular exercise, I have lost 30 lbs since the New Year.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

From a lifetime of almost

From a lifetime of almost perfect health (I'm 50+), I suddenly became sensitive to many foods I'd been living on: now I am allergic to many common foods, including wheat, milk, and anything in the potato/tomato/pepper family. If I eat something that I'm sensitive to, I can have negative experiences in my body: 'hot spots' in the joints of my body; loss of memory, and other brain problems that MDs don't even acknowledge. This problem is growing in the US, but most people don't realize that something like pizza can put me into a major brain fog: right now, I haven't seen my keys for at least a week! If I eat something in the tomato family, my joints will ache for days: hubby has to help rubbing my feet to help them not to cramp. Most people don't acknowledge that this family is toxic to a significant degree, and thus may end up with loss of agility of body and mind. There are pockets of people who understand what I'm talking about, but MDs have no tools to help except to push chemical 'medicines' which make the problem worse. If you have any of these problems, contact a chiropractor for muscle-testing to see if you too are allergic.

And by the way: "restless leg syndrome" is a lie: just stop eating Nightshades (family of tomato, potato, eggplant, and sweet peppers) and your symptoms will go away within days. To maintain your health, you may need to avoid these foods entirely.

So my feedback to you: GIVE US RECIPES THAT WON'T MAKE OUR LIVES WORSE! No wheat, milk, tomato etc. means no pizzas, no store-bought cookies, and no sandwiches. On the good side, I've lost 35 pounds in the last three months, and I can't fit into all my current clothes because I've gotten so skinny.

jessegilbride wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

I cut out the beer

I cut out the beer (completely, except celebrations) and unhealthy snacks like M&Ms. I've always been a gym goer, but now it's making more an impact on my overall metabolism.

daveldson wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

Gastric bypass (RNY) surgery

Gastric bypass (RNY) surgery

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

P90x- help me get the body I

P90x- help me get the body I wanted.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

Insted of eating less food, I

Insted of eating less food, I increased the amount of vegetables I eat... And stoped eating anything fried...

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

It was definitely a

It was definitely a combination of cooking at home, where it was easiest to track what was going into my food, and therefore able to track calories and eat healthier AND an exercise program. I lost 145 lbs in a year and a half. I've kept it off for two years. (I have gained about ten pounds of that back. But, I'm pregnant... so that's to be expected.)

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

Mini meals. Eat 6 small

Mini meals. Eat 6 small meals a day. Keeps the metabolic rate up.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

I had bariatric surgery and

I had bariatric surgery and eat a high protein, low carb diet. In 5 years, I have gained back 15% of the weight, but am currently maintaining the weight loss still with the high protein, low carb diet and exercise (which I now truly enjoy)

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

Healthy lifestyle, eating,

Healthy lifestyle, eating, exercise. And compromise, with your goals and your weel being.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

Exercise, such as moderate

Exercise, such as moderate walking for half an hour will provide you with a "feel good incentive" to make healthy changes to your eating pattern. Building metobolically active mussle tissue consumes calories even at rest. I know it only takes three weeks to sucessfully create new habits. Keep a food diary along with your exercise diary to get a double benefit. 21 short days are all that stand between the old you and the beginning a healthy new you! Success isn't an accident, you'll see and feel a difference in your energy and outlook. Try it, I challenge you! Start a simple exercise program along with cutting out sugary sodas and fast food. After three weeks you'll wonder why you didn't try it sooner! Claim the good life you deserve! Good Luck!

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

I have been following the

I have been following the 1200 calorie a day EatingWell meal plan knowing that a little cheating would occur. It's only my husband and I so I cook each meal for 4 and have the same meal the next day as well. Since the end of July I've lost 16.5 pounds and my husband has lost 15. I have found that my shopping budget has actually gone down. The cost of the higher priced dinners seem to be off set by the vegetarian meals consisting of beans and grains.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

Low carb, low fat, low sugar

Low carb, low fat, low sugar diet + exercise

vmsurbat wrote 6 years 51 weeks ago

I've lost 40 pounds (and

I've lost 40 pounds (and still losing) by following the simple principles of the NoS diet, found at and am thrilled by how much good food I can eat three times a day.

Principles include:

No Sweets
No Snacks
No Seconds
except on days that start with S.

Check out the website and forums--lots of good info. All our favorite foods are permissible--the key is moderation and NoS helps to quantify that--no slip-slidey slope to fall down.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 52 weeks ago

Eat a healthy breakfast and

Eat a healthy breakfast and snack on healthy items in between SMALLER meals.

I start w/ a low sodium V8 juice around 7:20am, then a Cliff Builder Bar when i get to work around 8am every morning with a multi-vitamin.

Around 10:15am I snack on some nuts (almonds, or sunflower) and I eat lunch between 12 and 1.

For lunch I have a Salad from a local grocery store's salad bar. I limit my dairy intake and try not to eat processed foods.

Form good habits!

Anonymous wrote 6 years 52 weeks ago

I simply cook for myself..

I simply cook for myself.. that way I know what is going into the recipe..I stopped going out to eat about a year ago.. but the problem was that I didn't know what the heck i was doing in the dang kitchen.. then a friend of mine bought me this hilarious beginners cookbook.. it's a bit politically incorrect so I can't tell you the name of it, but if you google "whipped and beaten culinary works" you can find it.. but seriously, don't go unless you can take a good joke or if you don't get offeneded easily.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 52 weeks ago

I also did a blog and took

I also did a blog and took pictures of every single thing i ate, i didnt go to the weight watchers meetings, i just followed the plan but the daily accountability of the blog helped me to lose 50 pounds. Turning 50 really got me to be serious about being over weight

Anonymous wrote 6 years 52 weeks ago

I have always had a good diet

I have always had a good diet and have always exercised vigorously; bicycle racing for 40 years now. After the age of 55 I found that I would gain weight faster and loose it slower than in my younger years. So when I put some weight on in the off season, at Christmas I weighed 240 lbs. So thought just eating just like I had always done, I ate smaller portions, rarely came back for seconds, and eliminated regular deserts. In a 6 month period spanning into when my spring training began, I was able to loose 35 lbs without a "traditional diet" as they call them. It's all about moderation, because I don't believe there is any magical diet. I find it interesting that the two top categories of books are, cook books and diet books.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 52 weeks ago

I lost 35 pounds by cutting

I lost 35 pounds by cutting out soda (and other sugars) and watching my fat intake.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 52 weeks ago

Mine was easy, I chucked the

Mine was easy, I chucked the western diet and went just about 100% Chinese because 4 years ago I moved from the USA to China. BUT!! Not all Chinese food is healthy. And the Chinese food that we get in the west is a western version made for western tastes. In order to get real Chinese food you need to go to a Chinese community where the locals dine.

I also do most of my cooking at home with my girlfriend, who is Chinese and helped me chuck the western diet. But I do love a Big Mac once a month and a few slices of decent pizza which is difficult to find here.

I also no longer own a car but instead depend on my feet and public transportation.

I'm 59 years old and feel healthier then I have in the last 20 years.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 52 weeks ago

Yes I have lost 30 pounds

Yes I have lost 30 pounds since February. Walking 3 to 4 miles 5 days a week and limiting my calories to 1500 per day. Keeping a total calorie count each day and weighing my food on a kitchen scale. Wearing a pedometer keeps me motivated to walk as often as possible.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 52 weeks ago

apple cider vinegar - 3x a

apple cider vinegar - 3x a day. It curbs appetite too

Anonymous wrote 6 years 52 weeks ago

lots of exercise low fat, low

lots of exercise
low fat, low calorie foods, less food but healthy
I generally don't like food. I am a picky eater and what I like, though healthy, is much less than what I dislike.
My motto is "Eat to live, not live to eat.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 52 weeks ago

The only way I ever lose

The only way I ever lose weight is to count every calorie and tally up how many calories I burn with exercise. I used to use (now at Calorie counting is a pain, but it works, and the site helps me to figure out how much I can eat and how much I need to exercise every day. If I start to slip, I go back to entering my exercise minutes and calories, and it always helps. I just naturally eat healthier meals when I do this because I can eat MORE of low-calorie, healthful foods.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 52 weeks ago

I had gastric bypass surgery

I had gastric bypass surgery in 2002, going from 250 to 106. I kept it off for close to 4 years. In 2005, one of our sons drowned and I started comfort eating and was sedentary. In May of 2009 I weighed 203. I took a very busy job in a restaurant and started eating right again and in 16 months, I've gone back down to 120. My motivation was having kept my nice small clothes, and I'm having a blast wearing them again. It was harder and slower the second time around, but I was determined to get healthy and happy again.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 52 weeks ago

I am 20 years old and I

I am 20 years old and I currently weigh 249. When I started trying to loose weight I started at 279. I was watching what I ate, eating healthier, and counting calories. I make it a point to excersize everyday whether I want to or not. I avoided eating things that I knew weren't good for me and I tried not to eat foods that I knew would be high in fat, carbs, or calories.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 52 weeks ago

Regular exercise, cutting on

Regular exercise, cutting on desserts / sweets / alcohol, eating only fruits / vegs after 1800 hour.

Anonymous wrote 6 years 52 weeks ago

learn to differentiate

learn to differentiate between "i am hungry" and "it's time to eat" or "i want to eat." i actually exercise less than i use to and loss 20lbs. hitting the gym five days a week but eating whatever and whenever you want is just not going to cut it!

Anonymous wrote 7 years 32 min ago

I use to

I use to menu plan and to count my calories. 17 pds down and it's been so easy!!!

Anonymous wrote 7 years 57 min ago

I combined a healthier

I combined a healthier lifestyle with exercise, but I did things I liked like hiking, swimming, cycling, etc... Also, I didn't make myself eat things I hated, and I still ate things I love like ice cream. However, I bought them in portion control I would buy the skinny cow ice cream in the little cups (weight watchers also makes them) and I would eat sugar free cookies. They are delicious!

I've lost 45 lbs so far this year. It's important to remember, no matter how big or small you should not lose more than 2 lbs per week, or you are not doing it in a healthy way. "The faster you lose it, the faster you will gain it back." (quote from my dietician)

I wasn't really big. I was about a size 12-14, and now I'm a 8. The bottom line is you have to remember, you gained the weight doing things you do now (lack of exercise, eating habits, etc...) so you have to change those habits for life...not for a few months. Otherwise, you will go right back to how you were before! You HAVE to commit to a LIFESTYLE change!

Anonymous wrote 7 years 8 hours ago

I lost 110 pounds, most of it

I lost 110 pounds, most of it during the first year, reduced my BMI from 33 to 21, and my body fat from over 22% to 11.5%. I used a combination of life-style changes that I devised myself, based on what I learned from reading such sources as WebMD, Prevention and EatingWell and from trial-and-error. Mostly these involved changing my eating patterns, reducing calories consumed, and increased exercise.

Anonymous wrote 7 years 8 hours ago

Weight Watchers is the only

Weight Watchers is the only successful program that works for me. I use the online version and record my meals daily without fail. This is the only way I can be successful in losing and keeping the weight off. I also record my exercise activities. I have been a Weight Watcher follower since the early 70s before you could purchase WW products. I use to spend all day Sunday preparing meals for the week including making my own mayo. But I NEVER ate the liver they use to tell us we had to have once a week!

Anonymous wrote 7 years 18 hours ago

I have lost 34 pounds on

I have lost 34 pounds on weight watchers. Have about another 34 to go to get to my goal weight. My wife has lost 24 pounds. The accountability of weighing in weekly plus thencouragement from the meeting leader ia what works for us.
Dave & Anne in SC

Anonymous wrote 7 years 1 day ago

Personal trainer who put me

Personal trainer who put me on a 6 week detox "diet" and exercise plan. You don't need a personal trainer to do what I did: cut out all sugar, alcohol, and caffeine for 6 weeks and eat 5 meals a day. Breakfast, bowl of oats or 2 pieces of whole wheat toast with all natural peanut butter, snacks two times a day consisting of one piece of fruit (apple or banana) and take away Greek yogurt. Lunch is whole wheat wrap with chicken, fish, or meat with tomatoes, and dinner is protein again with steamed veggies. No cheat days allowed. Followed with an intensive exercise program. It's tough to stick with, but if you want to see results (and quite quick) this is by far the best program possible. It involves motivation and really working for your results, none of that lazy stuff that people say you can eat more and not workout and lose weight.

FYI- The main function of the food is to satisfy function, not for taste, so everything tastes quite bland, but you get used to it.

Anonymous wrote 7 years 1 day ago

Spark People has helped me

Spark People has helped me lose 20 pounds in 3 months. I have tried every diet, pill, powder, gimmick, exercise scheme, etc. there is. Spark People has been the only thing that has been successful for me.

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