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What lifestyle changes do we recommend when joining our program?

For this program, we want you to focus on three simple things:

1. Meals: Focus on protein first.

  1. Whatever meal you are eating, simply eat the protein first. Most meals should consist of protein, fruits/vegetables and carbohydrates. Whatever meal you are planning, focus on finishing the protein first. Then move to the fruit or vegetable, and finally the carbohydrate last if you have room.

  2. The healthiest protein options are plant sources, such as soy, nuts, seeds, beans and lentils; lean meats, such as skinless, white-meat chicken or turkey; a variety of fish or seafood; egg whites; or low-fat dairy.

  3. How much protein? We are going to use this calculator to help you figure out how much protein you need:

# of grams of protein per day: ___________________

2. Movement: Strength training: 15 minutes a few times per week

  1. This form of exercise is the most effective way to build muscle and lose fat. Try to incorporate a short strength training workout into your schedule 3-5 days per week.

  2. According to Mayo clinic: Do strength training exercises for all major muscle groups at least two times a week. Aim to do a single set of each exercise, using a weight or resistance level heavy enough to tire your muscles after about 12 to 15 repetitions.

  3. Here is an easy body weight 15 minute workout you can do at home: (we will send this to you on the portal messaging!)

3. Stay hydrated every day: set a water goal

  1. Mayo clinic suggests the following:

    • Women: 91 ounces

    • Men: 125 ounces

For example, a typical pop bottle has 20 ounces in it - which means you would need about 5 of those filled per day with water.

Other Important Tips

Managing Expectations

Question: How long did it take you to gain the weight you want to lose? How long have you held onto it?

The expectation that we are going to lose weight instantly and then being disappointed when it doesn’t happen is a toxic cycle of weight loss for everyone. Making these changes, even with the help of this amazing medication takes time. Please don’t be discouraged!

An awesome goal is losing 1 pound per week - that sounds slow, but that’s the goal. It probably took you longer than that to gain the weight and even longer that you’ve been carrying it around. Give yourself the gift of time and patience with this process!

Practice some positive affirmations daily as well as gratitude. The science behind having a positive mindset is real! It works and will help you along this journey. Reach out for help if you are feeling discouraged!


Being on this medication will naturally reduce your appetite and cravings. It’s important to continue to get an adequate number of calories so you don’t plateau, which can be very difficult to reverse when it happens. Calculating your BMR, Basal Metabolic Rate, is very helpful in figuring out how many calories you need every day. Your BMR is the number of calories you need just for your body to function. If you are going to count calories, this is a helpful tool you can use to make sure you are consuming fewer calories than your BMR for weight loss.

Here is a helpful article on understanding this:

  • Using an app such as My Fitness Pal could be helpful in tracking calories

My BMR: ______________________RMR _________________________


Poor sleep and sleep habits are a key indicator of weight gain. “People's sleep requirements vary, but research has observed changes in weight when people get fewer than 7 hours of quality sleep a night. Poor quality sleep has repeatedly been linked to a higher body mass index (BMI) and weight gain. Additionally, many sleep disorders, like sleep apnea, are worsened by weight gain.” (

  1. Stick to a regular, consistent nighttime routine

  2. Avoid ‘screentime’ at least an hour before bed time

  3. Practice yoga or exercise before bed

  4. Avoid caffeine, large meals and stress before bedtime

  5. Make your bedroom comfortable - temperature, bedding, lighting, etc.


  1. Get a water bottle that helps you track - they are everywhere. The cheapest option is to get one at TJ Maxx or Burlington Coat Factory. Also, Goodwill and other thrift stores.

  2. Make sure you have a bottle of water everywhere - car, desk, next to your bed, kitchen, etc.

  3. If you have to fill the same water bottle multiple times, put however many rubber bands/hair ties, etc. on the bottle and simply remove one whenever you fill it so you remember how many times you’ve done it.

  4. Motivation: Find your motivation for drinking water. Love cold water? Make sure to put ice in it or get it from a cold source. Love hot water? Get decaffeinate tea to include. Love fruit? Get an infuser bottle.

Mindful Eating

Did you know that eating and emotions are often related? Take some time to examine what, when and why you are eating and see if you can determine patterns to your behavior. Start a journal if needed. Focus on the following:

  • What happened before I decided to have this particular food?

  • What were my thoughts before, during and after having it?

  • How did I feel before, during and after?

  • Is this behavior health/helpful for me? Why or why not?

If you are struggling with this concept, do some research into ‘mindful eating’ and see what you learn. If needed, ask our manager to make an appointment with our social worker to discuss your relationship between food and emotions.

To Avoid (These foods will also make you nauseous)

  • Fried Foods

  • Sugars

  • “Empty” Carbs (white bread, white rice, pasta, etc)

** Never eat sugar or carbs on an empty stomach or alone, we call these naked carbs. You always want to pair them with protein, fat, and fiber.

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