A few months ago the New York Times published an article about how ‘Biggest Loser’ contestants regained all the weight they had lost.  As a practicing dietician, I’m always asked, “is it even possible to permanently lose weight?”

The good news is that it is possible! The National Weight Control Registry is proof of that- it is a study that has tracked over 10,000 people who have lost weight and kept it off long-term. The bad news is that it does not happen overnight.

Getting to the weight you are now took time and it will take time to lose it!


Here are 9 Steps you can take to start the process:

  1. Set a long-term goal and break it down into weekly smaller goals.  For example, if you want to lose 20 lbs in 3 months, a long-term goal, break it down into a weekly goal of losing 1-2 lbs.
  2. Weigh yourself once a week. If your weight goes up one week, find out what you can do differently the next week.  If your weight is going down, reward yourself by buying yourself something nice.
  3. Eat 2 fruits and at least 3 veggies a day.  It doesn’t matter if it’s frozen, fresh or dried.  The fact is, most of us are not eating enough of the good stuff.
  4. If you are still drinking sugary drinks, eliminate them! And no, you don’t need a “sports drink” for a 30 min workout, not even for a 60 min workout. Stick to water.
  5. Get a pedometer and increase your weekly steps until you reach 10,000 steps a day.
  6. Plan to work out at least 3x a week for a minimum of 30 min.  You can walk, run, bike, play tennis, it doesn’t matter, just move more.
  7. Don’t keep any cookies, cakes, ice cream, chips etc  in the house.
  8. Get enough sleep. I know you think you only need 3 hours of sleep a day, try 8 hours and see how much better you feel.
  9. Don’t reward yourself with food. I hear this all the time, ” I just did a one hour workout, now I “deserve” to have some chips and beer as a reward.”  Sad truth is, the workout may have only burned 300 calories, but your reward may be 500 or more calories.  Keep your focus on your goal- you deserve to have a healthy and lean body. Instead reward yourself with new workout clothes or other nonfood choices.

Try not to let small setbacks throw you off course,  in order to lose weight permanently you need to learn to think and behave like the healthier, slimmer you!






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My Bircher Muesli

Cooked oatmeal with raisins, walnuts and cinnamon is a staple breakfast in our household, it’s healthy, delicious and easy.  But to be honest, I was getting tired of it and was looking for something just as easy.   In my search for oatmeal recipes,  I came across this recipe.   It originated from a Swiss physician in the 1800, who believed in the health benefits of a raw and unprocessed diet.  Not unlike what is going on with the raw movement right now.  There are many variations of this recipe and you can experiment with what you like.  You can vary the milk, the fruit and/or the nuts.

This muesli is the perfect start to a busy day.  You can make it the night before, or the morning of, either way it will taste delicious and is like ‘wellness’ in a jar!



1/4 cup oatmeal

2 Tbsp soaked almonds

1/2 cup skimmed milk, almond milk or soy milk

1 grated apple

a sprinkle of cinnamon


  1. Soak almonds overnight in water, drain and chop into pieces. You can skip the soaking if you don’t have time.  I like how soft the almonds are once soaked.
  2. Pour oatmeal and milk into a mason jar. Add grated apple and cinnamon, stir and let sit.  (You can even do this the night before).
  3. That’s it, now the great thing about this is, if you don’t have time to eat breakfast at home, you can take it with you, just add lid and go.  It will taste taste great as ingredients get to mingle in the jar.

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I’m addicted to this flatbread.  I’ve made it three times in a row.  It goes well with soup, hummus, salad or just a slice of turkey on top.  You can make the batter at the same time that you are making lunch or dinner, or you can make it ahead of time and let it sit for a while for a more complex flavor. It’s so easy to make and 100% Whole grain, you just can’t go wrong.



1 cup Whole Wheat Flour

3/4 tsp salt

1 1/2 cup water

3 Tbsp Canola or Olive Oil

1 Tbsp fresh rosemary



  1.  Pour the flour into a small bowl, add the salt and stir.
  2. Slowly add the water and stir to prevent lumps. Cover and let sit until oven is heated.
  3. Heat oven to 425 degree F.
  4. Pour Canola or Olive Oil into a 12 inch cast iron skillet, add the rosemary.  Once oven is heated place skillet in oven until oil is hot.
  5. Carefully take skillet out of oven and pour batter into skillet.  Place back into oven and cook for 30-40 min.  Outer edges should be crisp and center firm. Cool for a few minutes and enjoy!

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Banana Oatmeal Cookies

Although these are called “cookies” they are as nutritious as a bowl of oatmeal with bananas.  Your kids will love them! I pack them as a mid-morning snack with a glass of milk or an afternoon pick-me-up for my husband or myself with a cup of coffee. But they are also great as a post-workout snack, just add a cup of low-fat milk for added protein. Banana Oatmeal Cookies



3/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
1/4 canola oil
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
3 Tbsp white sugar
1 egg
1 mashed banana
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup oats
1/3 cup raisins
3 Tbsp ground flax seeds



  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk the flours, baking soda, cinnamon and salt until combined.
  3. In a large bowl add butter, oil and sugars and mix with a hand held or stand mixer on high until mixture is smooth and lighter in color.
  4. Add egg, banana puree and vanilla and mix another few seconds, then add the rest of the ingredients until combined.
  5. Line baking sheet with parchment paper and drop about  2 tablespoons of batter per cookie onto cookie sheet. You may need to press them down with back of spoon to keep flat.
  6. Continue with remaining batter and bake for 12 minutes. Let cool a bit before eating.


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Another great recipe for the entire family.  These savory pancakes are quick, easy and nutritious.



1 cup finely ground cornmeal

1/2 cup grated low fat cheddar cheese

1/2 tsp salt

1 cup milk

2 Tbsp butter

1/2 cup corn

1/4 cup thinly sliced scallions

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

2 Tbsp canola oil



  1. In a large bowl, mix cornmeal with cheese and salt.
  2. Heat milk in a small saucepan until steam rises, then add butter and stir until butter is dissolved.
  3. Pour milk into cornmeal mixture and stir.  Fold in corn, scallions and cilantro.
  4. Heat oil in a large skillet.  When hot, pour about 2-3 tablespoons of mixture into pan and flatten.  Cook for about 3-5 minutes and turn over.  Cook other side another 3 minutes or so until golden brown. Continue with rest of batter.
  5. Serve as is or with black beans.



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Banana Ice Cream with Roasted AlmondsIt’s as delicious as it sounds and the best part of it is, you don’t have to feel guilty eating it.  My 2 year old daughter devoured it, along with my husband.  The topping is from Gwyneth Paltrow’s book “It’s All Good” and it’s awesome even on its own.


4 very ripe bananas

1/2 cup unsweetened almond or coconut milk

2 Tbsp agave nectar or maple syrup



1/4 cup chopped roasted almonds

2 tsp maple syrup

pinch of coarse salt


1. Slice bananas into thin rounds and lay on a tray lined with parchment paper.  Place in the freezer until frozen.

2. Combine almonds with the maple syrup and a pinch of the coarse salt and set aside.

3.  Place the frozen banana slices, almond milk and agave nectar in a food processor and pulse until mixture is creamy.

4. Serve banana ice cream with roasted almonds and enjoy!







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You’ve been eating right and exercising for weeks now,  yet the scale just won’t budge.  You’re getting frustrated and about to throw in the towel, it must be your slow metabolism, right? Wrong!

I hear this complaint often from clients and while it may be easier to blame your metabolism,  the truth is, it’s simply too many calories eaten.  Quiet frankly,  often the metabolism of heavier weight individuals is actually higher than with normal weight individuals.  The body is carrying more weight around and requires more strength, strength means more muscle, more muscle means a faster metabolism.

So, what exactly is the problem?  Here are the three most common weight-loss mistakes people make:


Mistake #1:  Too much of a good thing.  You have been doing all the right things, eating breakfast in the morning,  having a healthy mid-morning snack, salad for lunch, then a healthy afternoon snack, followed by a nutritious dinner. But the scale will not budge.

Solution:  You may want to look more closely at the portion sizes of what you are eating.  Having a cup of almonds as a snack, although healthy, contains about 530 calories!! A salad with too many toppings can turn a low-calorie meal into a calorie bomb.

The best way to keep track of what your eating is measuring out your food portions and tracking it with a food tracker, such as Fitnesspal, Lose it or any other food tracking device you want to use.  You will learn new portion sizes and discover a slimmer you.

Mistake #2: “Rewarding” your workout with food.  Even though it was a lousy day and you didn’t feel like working out you just finished 30 minutes on the Treadmill.  Exhausted you come home, eat a healthy dinner and as a reward for making it to the gym, you have a bowl of  ice cream after dinner.  After all you worked out and the workout will “take care” of the calories.

Well, only 1/2 cup of chocolate ice cream can have 250 calories, and we all know that no one eats 1/2 cup, right?  A 30 minute workout on the treadmill may have only burned 250 calories.    In other words, you pretty much cancelled out all that hard work you did in the gym plus some, all in just minutes…

Solution: Try to reward your workouts with non-food items, such as new workout clothes, a spa treatment or a new book.

Mistake #3: You’re drinking your calories.  Your having your pumpkin spice latte for breakfast, a coke with your lunch and a Sports drink with your workout.

While liquids may seem innocent enough, you’re not even chewing, they can be huge calorie bombs.  A 16oz iced white chocolate mocha carries 340 calories!! But even sports drinks are not guilt free, one 12 oz Gatorade “Quencher” has 200 calories!  A 20 oz coke has 240 calories.  That is a total of 780 extra calories,  and they don’t even help you feel full afterwards.

Solution:  Keep your beverages simple, coffee and tea don’t have calories but watch what you add to them.  Water is perfectly adequate for a workout under 1 hr, no need to reach for designer drinks. And if you’re still drinking regular coke, switch to water or diet drinks.



Oversized portion of raw almonds

Oversized portion of raw almonds

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