Cauliflower pizza crust with tomato and spinach. Photo Credit iStock: Nata_Vkusidey

Dear Alice,

Here is my problem: I have been dieting for months and lost a lot of weight — almost 40 pounds. However, I still have over 25 pounds to lose in order to reach my goal weight, but I don’t seem to be losing any more. I don’t eat cake or cookies and don’t touch a bite of kugel, but I am still not losing any weight. Is this the dreaded “plateau”? Did my body just get used to the way I am eating? Please help!

Signed,
Stuck

Dear Stuck,

In my experience people usually get stuck for the following reason: When a person is 65 pounds overweight, or when they reach a weight that is unacceptable to them, they are desperate! This means that no matter what temptation comes their way, the desire to lose weight is stronger than the desire for whatever food is in front of them, and the diet wins every time.

After a while, even if the client still has weight to lose, the desperation is gone. Small “cheats” find their way in and portion sizes start to grow. While the basic idea of the diet remains unchanged and the client may not be eating “bad” foods such as cake and cookies, the specifics that made the plan work are no longer there.

In addition, because you are about 15 percent lighter than you were when you started dieting, your body needs 15 percent fewer calories to continue losing weight at the rate you were losing previously. So just when you may be a bit more relaxed with your diet, you need to be getting stricter in order to continue losing!

To remedy this, go back to what you were doing when you first started dieting. Weigh and measure your portion sizes. Fill up on vegetables and water. Eat according to a regular schedule. Track your food and avoid small cheats. Make the plan work by doing the work! If you still find that you aren’t losing, despite going back to what you were doing when you first started dieting, that is your cue that it is time to reduce some of the food. Hope this helps!

Best,
Alice

Cauliflower Pizza

Makes 2 servings. Count each serving as a protein and a vegetable.

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups of store-bought cauliflower rice
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3 ounces mozzarella cheese, grated/shredded
  • Cooking spray

Instructions:

  1. Defrost riced cauliflower and place in a large bowl.
  2. Whisk the egg with dried herbs, salt, and pepper for 10 seconds. Add to riced cauliflower.
  3. Add cheese to cauliflower; mix very well with spatula until combined.
  4. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat (just make sure to scrape off any bits of cauliflower) and spray with cooking spray. Transfer cauliflower pizza dough in the middle and flatten with your hands until thin pizza crust forms.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes, carefully flip with a spatula and bake for a few more minutes.
  6. Top cauliflower pizza base with your favorite toppings and bake again until cheese on top turns golden brown.
  7. Slice and enjoy.

Alice Harrosh is a nutrition counselor and manager at Nutrition by Tanya with 11 locations, including one in Five Towns near Elderd Lane. For more information on Nutrition by Tanya or the TAP (Tanya-approved products) food line, please visit nutritionbytanya.com or call 844-Tanya-Diet. For daily tips and inspiration, follow @nutritionbytanya on Instagram.

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