TT Thursday – Losing weight Norwegian style; my Weight Loss Challenge Week 22

TT Thursday – Losing weight Norwegian style; my Weight Loss Challenge Week 22

The Nordic Diet

So this week, we’ll bop over to Norway.  There is a Nordic diet that is getting some traction.  Basically, here are the rules according to Arne Astrup, MD, and his team at the University of Copenhagen.

1. Eat more produce in as close to a  natural state as possible.  Best is unprocessed, additive-free and locally grown.  Forget canned. Instead go to your local Farmer’s Market.

2. Potatoes are okay to eat — just don’t fry it.  Bake or boil potatoes which have a lot of nutrients.

3. Eat whole grain, especially rye bread.  Whole grain foods make you feel full so you eat less plus they have more nutrients like protein and antioxidants.  Yay! Bread is ok.

4. Eat protein.  Protein is another food that makes you feel full so you eat less.  The ones rich in omega3 is best like certain fishes, lean beef, lamb and venison.  Apparently eating a grasseater is good for you.  If you’re going to eat deli meat, stay away from the nitrate ones.

This Woman’s World article gives a rundown as to what you can eat for breakfast, lunch, dinner and a snack halfway down the page.  Even better, the Daily Burn gives 9 recipes inspired by the diet from various sites starting with a Berry Baked Oatmeal for breakfast that looks like it would make a great granola snack too and finishing with Bison and Mushroom Stuffed Peppers with farro (an ancient grain) and parmesan cheese.

Two-Year Norwegian study on maintaining lost weight

The other thing coming out of Norway is a recent study over a two year period of 34 patients and how well they maintained their weight loss.  The patients averaged 275 pounds in the beginning. They were admitted into a center for a 3-week obesity treatment that included exercise, nutritional training, psychological consults and various tests. Every six months, they went back for about the same amount of time. In the first three weeks, they averaged an 11 pound weight loss.  After two years, they average a 24 pound weight loss.


The problem is maintenance.  While most were able to lose weight, only about 20% were able to keep the weight off.  Ghrelin is a hunger hormone.  The expectation was that during the initial dieting, ghrelin would be at high levels and then decrease over time.  That didn’t happen.  The ghrelin levels remained high during the two years of the study.  What that means is that a person who loses weight will continue to feel hungry.  To keep the weight off, they have to get used to feeling hungry but not eating.  Yikes!  I guess that instead of relying on inner cues, one must create outer cues for when it’s okay to eat and how much to eat.  Planning regular meals and snacks will become important because impulse eating can more easily derail you.


The second problem is metabolism.  When you’re at 275 pounds, it takes more effort to walk, digest food, sleep and even breathe.  So when you lose weight, it’s easier because you’re lighter and your body doesn’t have to expend as much energy as it was used to.  Not expending as much energy, means you’re not burning as many calories.  They explain that someone who has always weighed 175 pounds burns more calories than someone who used to weight 275 but weighs 175 now — about 400 calories more per day.  Basically, you can’t go back to eating as many calories as you used to eat because your body will store the extra that it no longer needs to burn into fat again even after you’ve lost weight.  Catia Martins, an associate professor in the Norwegian University of Science and Technology’s (NTNU) Department of Clinical and Molecular Medicine, said 400 calories is basically the amount of a good breakfast or four bananas.

I think the thing to remember here is that you don’t have to eat less — you just have to eat less calories which is a different thing.  Switching to an eating plan that includes a higher percentage of vegetables can give you the a full plate without handing you your pounds back.

The other takeaway I got from this study is that once you lose the weight, you’re not done ever.  You have to treat it like diabetes or any other chronic condition.  Once your condition is “under control”, you go on a maintenance plan to keep it under control.  You have to follow the plan and monitor yourself daily to keep the weight off.  There is no going back to how things used to be.  You have to stick to your new healthier eating and living style with more vegetables and exercising.  The change has to be permanent to maintain the loss.  You are not on a diet.  You are developing a new lifestyle … forever.

Well, damn!

However, I might move from my current no carb, sugar, fat or salt (no white stuff) to try the Nordic diet since it allows bread and potatos even if it’s rye bread and not my beloved croissants.  To me, carbs and winter go together like jam and peanut butter. … well, maybe not yet.  I have a few more pounds to go and I really don’t trust that the bread and potatoes might not pack it back on.

It’s a good thing that I’m really starting to like vegetables.  Never thought I’d see that day but here we are.

You can use the Amazon search bar to do a search like I did with “Norwegian diet” and clicking the “Go” button or one of the results will take you to Amazon. Results will vary. (disclosure: “We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.”) Today on the results I didn’t see anything on a Norwegian diet but the Norwegian cookbooks look good. My paternal grandmom is half norwegian — her mom immigrated — but I’ve never learned to cook Norwegian. So yeah I am thinking of maybe getting one of these cookbooks: Scandinavian Comfort Food: Embracing the Art of Hygge (It’s that phrase “comfort food” that caught my eye. Yeah, I know. “diet” and “comfort food” are usually mutually exclusive but you never know. Maybe in Scandanavia it’s different), The New Nordic: Recipes from a Scandinavian Kitchen (I liked that at the end they include a list of substitutes for hard-to-find ingredients as I have a feeling that there maybe a lot I can’t find in Arizona plus the flaked Salmon burgers sound good), Nordic Light: Lighter, Everyday Eating from a Scandinavian Kitchen (says instead of classics, it gives you lighter modern Nordic cooking. I like that word “lighter”). Have you tried one or more of them? Which would you recommend?

10/20/19 note : I went again to Amazon and did a search and found some Norwegian diet books so I thought I’d give you a short list: The Nordic Diet: A Beginner’s Step-by-Step Guide with Recipes (Ackerman seems to put out a lot of diet cookbooks, some of them only on kindle, some both kindle and paperback. He only received one review on this one. If you are signed up on Unlimited Kindle on top of Amazon Prime, many of his are free on Unlimited Kindle), The Nordic Way: Discover The World’s Most Perfect Carb-to-Protein Ratio for Preventing Weight Gain or Regain, and Lowering Your Risk of Disease (Co-authored by leaders in obesity research [Astrup], glycemic science [Brand-Miller], and healthy living [Bitz], it seems to be a collaborative effort to bring the study results into the kitchen. Most of the 20 reviews loved it but one lamented that rather than Nordic foods, it was recipes using the results of the study to create foods like won tons and hummus. I’m ok with applying a healthy Nordic diet principles to a variety especially if it’s easier for me to buy the ingredients locally), and The Nordic Diet: Using Local and Organic Food to Promote a Healthy Lifestyle (another one that takes the principles and applies it to buying local organic foods. Most of the 20 reviews liked it. I liked that one person many recipes were not really about cooking as it advocated using fresh ingredients but more about chopping and arranging foods. That sounds good to me for when the season gets hot here. I really don’t like eating hot foods once spring hits through autumn in Arizona.)


Week 22 Weight Loss — Another one pound week

Last week we were down to 210.3 pounds.  Today, we dropped to 209.1 so I am finally under 210.  Yay!  I can officially say I lost 40 pounds now.

Yeah, disregard the lines around my ankles.  I had just taken off some warm socks to take the pick and even though they were knee highs, the elastic had fallen around my ankles so the fabric left marks there.  Those are not wrinkles!

I’ve been doing the Japanese breathing exercise of the last few days but haven’t started the back exercise one that I introduced last week.  I don’t know if the breathing exercise is helping me to lose weight but I think the oxygen is good for my brain and I do feel an improvement in my energy level. It’s an exercise I can do at the bus stop while I’m waiting for the bus so I like it.

So the HealthyWage Going for Goal Jackpot Challenge picture hasn’t changed except now it says 209.1 instead of 210.3.  I’m not going to change the picture from last week until it says congratulations which should be in a week.  Last week 202 out 537 participants have lost 6%.  Today, the success rate has risen to 245.   Tomorrow is the last day. I know people are working hard to nudge that little bit to hit the 6%.  More power to them.  It would be cool if we all succeeded.  This group already has a higher ratio of success than the previous one that I won in.

Here is how I’m doing on my current challenges.

name end date goal expected ontrack?
Poundshedders 11/26/18 209.7 212.6 yes
Big Losers 12/3/18 209.7 213.7 yes
Healthy Wager 12/4 187.1 196.3 no
Falling Pounds 12/26 206.7 214.3 yes
Big Buck Losers 1/2 202.3 210.7 yes
Healthier Holidays 1/6 202.3 211.3 yes
Scale Watchers 1/16 202.7 213.3 yes

So that’s it for this week.  I hope you enjoyed the Norwegian tips and thanks for all your ongoing support.  I really appreciate it.

References and Disclosures:

Finally: An ‘Undiet’ That Allows Meat, Cheese, and Potatoes and Still Helps You Shed Pounds
Woman’s World, October 13, 2018

The Nordic Diet: The New “It” Diet (Plus 9 Recipes to Try)
by Zahra Barnes, Daily Burn, February 16, 2015

Impact of weight loss achieved through a multidisciplinary intervention on appetite in patients with severe obesity.
Silvia R Coutinho, Jens F. Rehfeld, Jens J. Holst, Bård Kulseng, and Catia Martins. American Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology and Metabolism. 23 Jan. 2018

Why you feel hungrier after you lose weight
Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Eureka Alert, February 8, 2018

I am an affiliate for HealthyWage because I like them and I think it helps people a lot to have that extra incentive to lose weight.  In the post text, they are affiliate links only but down here you can also choose to join by a friends link.  If you join through the links above, I’ll get a small fee whether you or I succeed or fail. However, they also have a friends link where we both earn only  if we both succeed — the added motivation of social pressure! If you join up by clicking this friends link, it adds a $40 to your HealthyWager award if you complete your goal and $40 to my HealthyWager award if I complete my goal.  Neither of us gets the $40 if either person fails.   I think the $40 is for HealthyWager challenges only and not the other ones like the 6% individual challenge or the team challenge. The HealthyWage affiliate link doesn’t matter if anyone succeeds but there is no benefit for the friend, just for the affiliate no matter what kind of challenge they join. Joining through the friends link also lets you view your friend on the dashboard: you’ll see their name and what % they’ve lost so far but not the actual weight.  That’s private unless you make it public.

I am also an affiliate for Amazon: “We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.”










12 Replies to “TT Thursday – Losing weight Norwegian style; my Weight Loss Challenge Week 22”

  1. Most people who are try so hard to lose weight are finding it harder each day. Please don’t give up one step at a time eventually you will get to your desired goal.

    Remember that when trying to lose weight our bodies still needs the nutrients for it to and us to function. This is why I believe in flooding our bodies with plant based nutrients natural food that enter into our blood stream. This is why our clients are so happy with our products. It nourishes their bodies while losing excess weight. Check out the products here! There is also lots of information on the site.
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    Remember our bodies will always need the right nutrients daily. Our Products Are There To Bridge The Gap you still need to eat fruits, vegetables and berries. Exercise, sleep, healthy meals, drink more water and sex. Yes you heard right.

    1. Thanks for visiting Cheryl. I appreciate the encouragement.

      FYI, the url under your name didn’t work so I updated it by checking out your site and finding the english link to what appears to be your blog/magazine section. I also updated the link in your reply to match the url as you had a Norwegian link written in Norwegian — changed the Norwegian link to the English link using your globe icon as 95% of my readers read English. In my comment area, I allow links to blogs or sections of websites that have regular posts or articles like the community section of your website. Your product sounds interesting, especially that the nutrients are plant based, and I may try it out some day. Currently I am still losing weight but it isn’t through dieting but rather physical exertion.

    1. laughing, i’ve heard this myth of how good potatoes are and they come in rainbow colors too!

      i agree. you can get used to it. plus i think if my stomach is not grumbling and my mouth is hungry, then i’m actually not hungry but thirsty so I get a drink of water. It usually works for me.

    1. Thank you! It’s fun exploring how people in other countries take care of the same issue. Thanks for all your support!

      Have a great Feline Friday

    1. You kitties are lucky — meat and fat is ok. But I bet you can’t have too much carbs, sugar or salt either like your mom and pop.

  2. Rye bread is my favorite bread and potatoes are a good source of potassium. My husband is gone a lot for work, so it is not unusual for me to have a baked for potato for dinner. The key to the bake potato, though, is not to top it with butter and sour cream! I often top it with salsa or a couple tablespoons of leftover soup or vegie casserole of some kind.

    1. Salsa sounds good. It jazzes up a lot of things. I hadn’t thought of using leftover soup or casserole that way. What an excellent idea!

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