My Diatribe on Weight Loss Supplements and Diets

When I was growing up I struggled mightily with my weight. I tried every diet in the world, lived on restricted calories and diet soda. I eventually graduated to more aggressive methods by trying diet pills and even spent a miserable summer at a diet camp. Nothing worked. Yet, I was so desperate to lose weight and keep it off that I routinely tried every diet, supplement or pill that promised results. In the end, all it did was leave me feeling like a failure… a failure with anxiety, hair loss and sleeplessness as side effects of some of the pills I tried. It was the worst of the vicious cycle.

Eventually I got a handle on things and I did so by abandoning the idea that there was a pill or potion out there that was going to make a difference. I also stopped dieting and instead focused on changing my habits. And there began the journey to the solution.

In today’s Motivational Monday I am going to share with you my thoughts on dietary supplements that promote the promise of weight loss. I am also going to speak about how I feel about diet fads that promise big results in little time. And then I will share with you the very best way you can go about losing weight and keeping it off. If you engage this method, it will not only help you lose weight, but will also start you on the path of lasting health.

Once you’ve watched the video, I want you to really think about and decide what change you are going to make to help start you down the road to health. One thing that you are going to commit to in order to get you closer to your goals. Whether it’s changing breakfast, quitting diet soda, or starting an exercise routine, I want to hear what you are going to do to move yourself along the path to health.

Just so you know you’re not alone, I am going to commit right here that I’m going to drink green tea rather than black tea moving forward. That’s my goal. I may not be perfect at it all the time, but it will be my practice until it’s my habit.

I can’t wait to hear what practice you choose for yourself! To help you, I’ve included a list of possible practices you can try… I’ll follow up with you down the road to hear how it’s going, and of course, report back about my own progress.

Have a great Monday everyone!

Ideas for your one single change!

  • Start your day with a protein breakfast (ideally, eggs with some green vegetables!)
  • Cut down on your sugar intake. Start making plans to move away from artificial sweeteners if those are your preference
  • Exercise every day (whether this means going for a 20-minute run or a yoga class every day, or walking around the block, or a 10-minute dance around the apartment. Choose one, and make it happen
  • Get adequate sleep
  • Cut out junk and processed food. Maybe this means a complete pantry overhaul, or maybe you just start with making replacing one prepackaged meal a day with a healthier homemade option to begin with.
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Replace soda, soft drinks, and juices with a healthier alternative. Ideally water, but if need be, naturally flavored and unsweetened water options
  • Prepare your own meals instead of relying on last-minute store options or take out. Some thought and preparation can make all the difference!
  • Learn to love and eat vegetables!
  • Eat a daily salad
  • Drink a daily green juice
  • Replace sugary and salty snacks with healthier options
  • Something of your own choosing!

Don’t beat yourself up for falling off the wagon, and simply resolve to continue your efforts. A good lifestyle is not built in a day, it’s built in a lifestyle of habits.

Share Your Thoughts...

34 comments on “My Diatribe on Weight Loss Supplements and Diets

  1. AvatarGreg Alcock

    Hi Barbara,

    I started today with my own diet that includes and will include the 8 groups you outlined.
    I get very sad when I exercise because I’m all in for the rest of the day, even after a five minute walk.
    I’m 57 and weigh 230 lbs. I have hypertension and am on meds for that.
    Thank you for your outreach to people.


  2. AvatarLisa

    Hi Barbara,
    I have been feeling so fatigued and got onto your blog. Listening to you it’s so obviously my diet.
    I love the simplicity of this….I’m going to start with changing my breakfast to eggs.
    I do always seem to fall back into old habits – toast and tea in the morning..but your blog has motivated me to change.
    Looking forward to hearing more.

    1. AvatarBarbara Mendez RPh MS Post author

      I’m so glad to hear it’s resonated for you! And the great thing about changing your diet is that the results show up immediately. I look forward to hearing how it goes for you…
      Stay well!

  3. AvatarJanik L.

    So far, I’ve had great success with getting rid of sugar and switching to the Keto diet. Protein protein protein and for some reason, supplements seem to work more in that case

  4. Avatarmarina

    I have high cholesterol.
    I have stopped all dairy (was easy to stop),
    red meat and pork (easy), sugar (extremly difficult).
    I found you on you tube, doing the oat pumpkin bars (great). I was looking for a healthy treat to eat with my tea.
    Exercise has been slow to none most days (next goal!).

    Ques.: Is coconut oil, coconut milk, & coconut flour a safe alternative to EVOO? I thought they all had too much fat, which may increase my LDL, .

    1. AvatarBarbara Mendez RPh MS Post author

      Hi Marina! Sorry for the delay~ This is an excellent question. Coconut oil is kind of a grey area. It is not supposed to elevate your cholesterol but yet some people do have that experience with it. What you would need to do is speak with a qualified health care professional that works with alternative dietary recommendations such as coconut oil and get a total body, lifestyle and diet assessment. It may be that the people who report an increase in cholesterol are combining the coconut oil with other foods that may increase their cholesterol. In any case, without knowing your exact diet it is impossible for me to recommend, so do see if you can find someone to work with. One thing I will say though is that exercise is a key element in lowering cholesterol levels. Hope this is helpful! 🙂

    2. Avatarvictoria

      Hi Barbara, you sure are motivating. I have a pile of health problem, but must do something right now to get going. I’m going to start doing a long bike ride every evening and start eating much better. I signed up for your newsletter and will be watching closely.. thanks

  5. AvatarMarianne Vitale

    Brava! !!! Absolutely motivational. I started drinking green smoothie for breakfast and get to work earlier ,park my car 2 blocks away just to get in a few extra steps. Keep these videos coming 🙂

  6. AvatarKim

    First off, I really want to thank you for your blog and videos. They are so helpful and motivating! I have been changing some things in my lifestyle such as less processed foods, more whole foods, yoga, spin class, etc. There is still more that I need to work on. What I am going to do is commit to a daily green juice. Recently, our family bought a juicer, so now is a great time to add that in! Thanks so much for the reminder!!

    1. AvatarBarbara Mendez RPh MS Post author

      Thanks Kim! So glad to know you find the information helpful! And great choice on the green drink! As I always say, it’s one of the very best things you can do for your body~ I’ll check back with you in a few weeks and see how you’re faring. Enjoy! 🙂

  7. AvatarMargot Fountain

    I’ve decided to try to stabilise my blood sugar, but I sure could use some help to know if I’m doing the right things.
    Thanks for sharing and motivating me.
    Margot Fountain

  8. AvatarRose Littlejohn

    Hi Barbara, I really enjoyed watching your video. A great reminder about the basics of developing habits for a long term healthy lifestyle. I can certainly relate with everything you said on the video and find is a never ending feat When you think you got weight management well in hand, life takes its course and find oneself on a roller coaster. Well this is a big year for me, I turn 50 and once and for all have decided to turn the corner and making better decisions/choices. We have been working together for a while now and have incorporated many of the practices already but I really like the daily green drink a day and will go back to doing that again. I always look for a snack in the mid afternoon and I like this or apple/almond butter. You should know I look forward to reading your blogs or watching your videos every Monday. They are truly motivational and great reminders! Thank you.

    1. AvatarBarbara Mendez RPh MS Post author

      Thanks Rose! So great to hear that you enjoy the Monday reminders 🙂 and I like the Juice and 4pm snack practices. Both are great for supporting great health and also maintaining a stable blood sugar. I look forward to hearing how this goes.
      Started my day today with green tea and have to say I have more energy than when I start with black tea… this is also a great reminder that too much caffeine can actually be more depleting than anything else~
      Have a great Monday and I’ll see you soon!

      1. AvatarRose Littlejohn

        Thank you for the reminder on the caffeine as I need to watch that in the amount of coffee I consume in a day. I discovered a new drink from starbucks…chai tea bag with a little steamed coconut milk and good. Tips are really helpful reminders of good it could/should be! See you soon.

  9. AvatarJudy terroni

    I eat a healthy breakfast but I do use sugar substitute in my tea and coffee. I’m going to start cutting this out today

  10. AvatarDarlene

    Recently I have changed my lifestyle by adopting an 80% plant based, whole foods diet and incorporating more movement into my day.
    I find your videos to be very informative and try to follow your advice, you have been extremely helpful, and I appreciate your motivation. My new goal: Reaching 10,000 steps daily. Also as you can see by the time of this post, getting more sleep!

    1. AvatarBarbara Mendez RPh MS Post author

      That’s great Darlene!That’s a big dietary change~ I’d love to hear how you feel on it.
      The 10K steps a day is a great goal, but sleep is incredibly important so that you then have the energy to make it happen. I wish you all the best with both.

  11. AvatarBarbara Weimer

    This is fact. I really enjoyed this video. I am trying to reduce my Diet Coke and drink more homemade lemonade which is just lemon slices in water nothing chemical. And I am trying to stop eating bread but wheat products are so hard to avoid. I also do fitness stuff like dancing and weights.

    It might not be Hollywood plastic sexy but it is real and the effort can be made just as much fun as the results.

    I also have mental illness OCD/Depression/Anxiety and I notice that eating good food makes me less anxious and I sleep better.

    I also enjoyed your blog post or enewsletter on using Thankfulness to help you through tough times. It is a good thing to realize you have important things to be Thankful for. I am not rich and don’t have much and am always struggling financially but I have a lot to be Thankful for. I need to reflect on that more often. So, Thank YOU for that reminder.

    1. AvatarBarbara Mendez RPh MS Post author

      I think you’ll find that when you eliminate diet coke altogether, you’ll feel better in a lot of ways and it will make it easier to make additional changes from there. You may also see improvements in mood. Same for wheat. I have helped countless clients come off wheat and each reports an improvement in mood. I wish you the best with both~
      Thank you for your kind words on previous posts. I’m so glad you find cultivating a sense of gratitude helpful.
      I wish you a happy week!

  12. AvatarEllie

    Great myth-busting video! Keep ’em coming! It’s wise to regard the latest miracle ancient-Samoan-tree-bark-powder weight loss supplement as a bunch of woo. Having either adopted or endeavoring to adopt the above practices, and seeing and feeling the difference, there’s one I must commit to:
    More water!!!

    1. AvatarBarbara Mendez RPh MS Post author

      Thanks Ellie! More water is a good one. I am sitting here with my warm water and lemon juice to start the day, which is a nice way to get more water too.
      I appreciate you taking the time to comment and for your idea long ago that I make a video on dietary supplements that promise weight loss 🙂

  13. AvatarLori russell

    How can I not be motivated after watching your video. I am going away in 2 days and I am going to try and choose healthy options for my breakfast. Even if it is not on the hotel supplied breakfast , I will ask for eggs, etc . I have been drinking protein shakes with spinach in them for breakfast. Then I put in the vitamins that I choose. It is always delicious and a great way to get in all I need for breakfast. Thanks again for all the healthy reminders.


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