- Oprah’s 7-Day Food Diary
- DAY 1
- 1. She’s Got a Two-Ingredient Hack for Creamy Soup.
- 2. Make Mashed Cauliflower ‘Faux-tatoes’ Actually Taste Like Potatoes.
- 3. This One Swap Will Improve Your Meatloaf, Lasagna and Chili.
- 4. Trade Out Your Protein for This Unexpected Entree.
- 5. Lettuce Skip the Extra Carbs.
- 6. This Ingredient’s the Key to Juicy, Flavorful Turkey Burgers.
- 7. Keep This in Your Bag for Extra Swag.
- 8. Lighten Up Your Next Loaded Baked Potato.
- 9. Opt for This Instead of Oatmeal.
- 10. Invest in This Gadget If You Have a Sweet Tooth.
- Oprah shows off weight loss on latest O magazine cover
- The Failure Empire: Bob Greene Rakes It In, Oprah Fails
- Please Don’t Super Size Me
- The Bob Greene Business Model
- Bob Greene is Nutritionally Deficient
- The Ups and Downs of Oprah’s Weight Loss Journey, and What She Swears By
- The early years
- Slimming down
- Life happens
- Weight Watchers
- Setting limits
- An unexpected roadblock
- Making peace with food
- Make sure your weight loss program is the right fit
- Prioritise your reasons for slimming down
- Lose those numerical goals
Oprah’s 7-Day Food Diary
When you read through Oprah’s food diary, you’ll notice right away that her diet is healthful but far from dull. She averages about 1,700 well-balanced calories daily, and her diet is about 20 percent protein, 30 percent fat (and rich in healthy fats), and 50 percent carbohydrates (good ones like whole grains, fruits, and vegetables). Thanks to all the yogurt and calcium-enriched soymilk she consumes, she’s getting an average of about 1,100 mg of calcium daily. Lots of fresh foods prepared simply help keep her sodium levels well within recommended levels. She’s a real fiber champion, too, averaging 34g a day.
Mix for 30 seconds in the blender: 4 ounces calcium-enriched orange juice, 1 cup mixed berries, 1 banana, 1/2 6-ounce container Yoplait Original Harvest Peach yogurt.
Serve with a handful almonds (about 12).
2 slices Wasa crispbread topped with: 1 tablespoon peanut butter, 1 teaspoon SaraBeth pineapple apricot jam
1 slice Ezekiel 4:9 Organic Sprouted Whole Grain Bread with 2 teaspoons light mayo, topped with: 3 ounces smoked turkey, sliced thin 1 slice pepper jack cheese, 1/2 cup grilled onions brushed with 1 teaspoon olive oil, 1 thin slice avocado, 1 slice tomato, Lettuce
8 ounces sugar-free iced tea
6 fresh-scooped watermelon balls
Remaining yogurt from breakfast
1 cup wild rice with 2 cups mixed vegetables (broccoli, green peas, or carrots) sautéed in 2 teaspoons olive oil
2 skinless, boneless chicken breast cutlets, 6 ounces total, grilled with a little olive oil
Next: Day 2 of Oprah’s food diary
As if the 25-season run of The Oprah Winfrey Show—and the “I love breeead!” commercial so widely shared it’s become a meme—didn’t make you believe that Oprah is all of us (give or take a couple billion), this one-liner from her cookbook might sway you: “I love potatoes so much that I once attempted to make a potato cocktail.”
Her carb-loving heart just gets us, and her weight-loss struggle over the years has been all too relatable for anyone who’s ever made a resolution to eat healthier—and abandoned it for loaded fries by Jan. 12th.
The talk show queen’s admitted to trying just about every diet under the sun to keep her weight in check—including but not limited to the Grapefruit Diet, Atkins Diet, South Beach Diet, Cabbage Soup Diet and that infamous four-month-long liquid-only diet, which resulted in her hauling out a wagon full of fat on her eponymous TV show back in ’88—so when she recently admitted to losing 40 pounds on Weight Watchers, without giving up her beloved bread, the world took notice.
She also released a cookbook, Food, Health and Happiness, to help others do the same. Mixed amid the recipes and stories about her Mississippi upbringing (and the time Joan Rivers basically fat-shamed her on national TV) were a few tips anyone could borrow to lighten up their own dishes.
1. She’s Got a Two-Ingredient Hack for Creamy Soup.
When Winfrey wanted to lose weight before auditioning for a walk-on role in All My Children back in 1978, she turned to one ridiculously simple soup recipe: Boil broccoli in chicken broth and puree it. Her cookbook features a souped-up version, featuring white wine, bay leaves and cashew cream, but her original version is creamy—and lower-cal than traditional broccoli cheddar soup. (If you really wanted, you could sprinkle a little sharp cheddar on top before serving.)
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This makes me so happy. Fresh Harvest.. The Real “GreenLeaf”! Join me on Facebook live from my garden tomorrow! 4 eastern 1Pacific.
A post shared by Oprah (@oprah) on Jun 18, 2016 at 11:59am PDT
2. Make Mashed Cauliflower ‘Faux-tatoes’ Actually Taste Like Potatoes.
“Everybody always says that whipped cauliflower tastes just like mashed potatoes. Well, guess what? Whipped cauliflower tastes just like…whipped cauliflower,” Oprah writes. To fix that, she recommends mashing two boiled Yukon gold potatoes with it, which makes the whole dish take on the flavor of actual mashed potatoes. Problem solved.
3. This One Swap Will Improve Your Meatloaf, Lasagna and Chili.
Oprah’s a ground turkey convert, recommending it for just about every recipe that’d normally call for ground beef, but she says the quality of the meat itself is the key to ground turkey that doesn’t suck. She suggests buying a turkey breast—or boneless dark meat, for more flavor (crucial for chili that still tastes hearty, she says)—and pulsing it in the food processor.
4. Trade Out Your Protein for This Unexpected Entree.
Salmon’s always touted as the healthy fish for dieters, but OW would like you to give monkfish a try. The flaky white fish clocks in at 82 calories and zero carbs per 3-ounce serving, and the taste is often compared to lobster, so it’s a win-win all around.
5. Lettuce Skip the Extra Carbs.
Instead of tortillas, try making tacos and wraps with butter lettuce. The mild veggie is Oprah’s favorite type of leafy green (sorry, kale!). Her filling of choice? Grilled shrimp, shredded coconut and diced mango.
6. This Ingredient’s the Key to Juicy, Flavorful Turkey Burgers.
Oprah mixes mango chutney into her ground turkey (along with a few other seasonings) to amp up the flavor in otherwise-bland turkey burgers. Her recipe is her BFF Gayle King’s favorite, according to Winfrey—and, apparently, King’s perpetually on the hunt for The Best Burger of All Time.
Another takeaway? Use ground dark-meat turkey (using the trick from tip No. 3) instead of plain old white meat to make it taste more like a traditional, ground-beef patty.
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@oprah girl, why’d you have to go and write another book. You know I listen to your every word…. #oprah #foodhealthandhappiness I only really about shopping, religion, becoming a better parent, and food. 🙄
A post shared by Periodt Pooh (@theoriginalhollymorelock) on Jan 4, 2017 at 8:48am PST
7. Keep This in Your Bag for Extra Swag.
Beyoncé may swear by hot sauce, but Winfrey prefers to carry a more luxe condiment in her purse: Truffle Zest. “Truffles are the ultimate posh spice. But Truffle Zest only tastes expensive,” she writes. (Cost may be relative when you’re worth a reported $2.9 billion—a 50 mg jar costs about $14 at many stores, about 4.7 times what it costs for a bottle of Tabasco.)
The star loves it so much she often keeps some in her bag so she can sprinkle it on food when she’s out to eat. Instant jolt of flavor without adding a ton of calories.
8. Lighten Up Your Next Loaded Baked Potato.
Oprah confesses that when she lived in Maryland, she’d love visiting the mall food court for a giant baked potato loaded up with toppings—though all those spuds didn’t love her back. She’s come up with a lightened-up version for her cookbook, which trades the cheese sauce for about a tablespoon of grated cheddar per potato, and is loaded with a mixture of broccoli, corn and scallions.
9. Opt for This Instead of Oatmeal.
Quinoa’s been buzzed about for years, and it’s not just for dinner. Winfrey uses it as a substitute for oatmeal, toasting the quinoa first, then cooking it with apples and cinnamon. “It’s a great source of fiber, it’s gluten-free, and it’s a complete protein,” she writes.
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Is there anything better than a freshly picked tomato? #harvestday
A post shared by Oprah (@oprah) on Sep 29, 2016 at 10:00am PDT
10. Invest in This Gadget If You Have a Sweet Tooth.
If you can’t resist sweets, Oprah says you need to get on board with sorbet, which tends to be lower-calorie (and loaded with fruit). “I put it right up there with the fork and dish towel on my list of kitchen essentials,” she writes. Her gadget of choice? The Breville Sorbet Maker.
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Candace Braun Davison Deputy Editor Candace Braun Davison writes, edits, and produces lifestyle content that ranges from celebrity features to roll-up-your-sleeves DIYs, all while relentlessly pursuing the noblest of causes: the quest for the world’s best chocolate chip cookie.
When Oprah Winfrey announced her partnership and decision to invest in Weight Watchers, the company saw a 20 percent increase in shares. She’s since lost 26 pounds — all while continuing to (gasp) eat bread.
Last night on a live Web-call exclusively for Weight Watchers members, the 62-year-old revealed some of her greatest tricks for staying on track, most of which start with making simple lifestyle changes.
RELATED: Oprah unveils her weight-loss transformation
1. Go with seafood as often as possible.
“Seafood is your friend!” said Winfrey. On a recent trip to Australia, she discovered her new favorite fish: barramundi. Also known as Asian sea bass, the sustainable fish can be a little hard to find at times in the U.S., so she often opts for cod.
She’s also a fan of Chilean sea bass and salmon but doesn’t have them as often as she used to because they’re fattier fish that have higher points values on the program. Her biggest seafood epiphany: She just found out that 77 large shrimp (yes, 77 pieces of shrimp) is only six points on the program (that’s equivalent to about 3/8 pound of wild salmon).
Trending stories,celebrity news and all the best of TODAY.
2. Satisfy your craving for a savory and crunchy snack with this one vegetable.
“I love jicama because you get a crunch,” she said. Often overlooked at the market, this large, bulbous root vegetable has an inedible thin brown skin that may make it seem unappealing.
RELATED: A ‘message of hope’: Can Oprah’s Weight Watchers investment help us lose weight?
But peel it back and the juicy flesh has a sweet, nutty flavor and a satisfying crunch. If you’re like Winfrey and find that a bag of crispy chips can be a trigger food to overeat, jicama is a great replacement option.
My @weightwatchers #wwsmartpoints sexy breakfast. #ComeJoinMe https://t.co/jUgpk9ToXYhttps://t.co/GUXwdyOeXK
— Oprah Winfrey (@Oprah) January 5, 2016
3. Make spaghetti squash taste more like real spaghetti.
Let’s get real. On it’s own, spaghetti squash may resemble spaghetti. But honestly, it doesn’t really taste like or have the chewy and satisfying mouthfeel of al dente pasta.
RELATED: Oprah talks struggle in new Weight Watchers ad: ‘It’s not just about the weight’
A true foodie, Winfrey gets this and adds about 3/8 of a cup (or two points worth) of real noodles for a game-changing solution.
4. The secret to making mashed cauliflower just as good as mashed potatoes.
Instead of traditional mashed potatoes, Winfrey opts for cauliflower mash because it has a lower points value. But when she has six to eight guests over for dinner, Winfrey mashes a whole head of cauliflower and adds just one potato.
This simple addition adds so much of a rich and creamy texture that her guests don’t even realizes that they’re eating mostly cauliflower.
5. Drink more water!
Winfrey admittedly “doesn’t really like water” even though she knows she should have more. She’s tried sipping on fruit-infused water (she’s not into it) and is currently trying to trick herself into drinking more by adding ginger and a hint of vanilla to her H20 — but not very enthusiastically.
RELATED: Study offers more evidence that drinking water can help cut calories
Ever on the road to self-improvement, this is one hurdle she’s still working on to help her get to her weight-loss goal.
Oprah shows off weight loss on latest O magazine cover
March 11, 201602:51
It’s hard to like a guy who springs out of bed at 4: 30 a.m., never misses a daily workout, and has a hard time remembering the last time he ate fattening food.
But Bob Greene, Oprah Winfrey’s personal trainer, has become the homecoming king of fitness gurus.
The book he co-wrote with Oprah, “Making the Connection,” is No. 1 on the New York Times best-seller list. At the Towson Town Center yesterday, Greene’s appearance for a book signing and mall walk drew a flock of adoring, sweat-suited women clamoring for an autograph, a picture — even to have him hold their babies.
It was a chance to get a piece of the next best thing to Oprah, whose very public and painful struggle to lose weight has endeared her to millions of fans.
“Oprah is my god,” said 33-year-old Karen Paris of Catonsville, who had begged her boss at the YMCA for the day off so she could see Greene. “And he is the godmaker.”
But Greene’s appeal transcends his close personal relationship with a national celebrity. For starters, there’s his common-sense approach to diet and exercise. There’s his down-to-earth manner. And, oh, yes, his Ken-doll good looks. The 38-year-old Greene is tall and lean, with thick brown hair, blue eyes and dimples.
“He looks even better in person than he does on TV,” cooed 65-year-old Juanita Boyd of Baltimore. “No stomach.”
Greene has spent the past 15 years helping people lose weight (( in Arizona, Florida, Colorado and Chicago. He has a master’s degree in exercise physiology, which means he knows a lot about fat: which foods have it, how to lose it, how to keep it off.
His personal philosophy is simple, but tough. “I don’t negotiate exercise,” says Greene, who did an hour on the Stairmaster at his hotel before the mall event. “I value my health above almost everything else.”
Greene’s appearance at the mall, the fifth stop on a 25-city publicity tour, was almost poetic, considering that Oprah first started gaining weight 20 years ago at another Baltimore-area mall.
Winfrey was 22 and not yet a god when she landed a job as co-anchor at WJZ-TV. After every 6 o’clock newscast, she noshed at the food court at the Columbia Town Center.
“They had some of the best food stalls known to womankind,” Oprah writes in the book. “A whole booth sold nothing but potatoes, any kind you could imagine. And you know I love me some potatoes.”
She went on to try every diet known to womankind: the Atkins diet, Scarsdale diet, Weight Watchers, Diet Workshop, Nutri-Systems and the Beverly Hills diet. Still, she gained 35 pounds during her eight years in Baltimore.
She continued to put on weight after moving to Chicago and rising to stardom with her talk-show. Then she tried Optifast, a fasting and diet supplement program. Her weight plunged from 211 to 142 in just four months, allowing her to fit into a pair of Calvin Klein jeans she’d saved from her slimmer days in Baltimore.
But the weight came back — and back. When she won her first Emmy in 1992, she weighed more than ever at 237 pounds.
The very next day, she met Greene at a spa in Telluride, Colo. Later, she hired him to be her personal trainer. Under his guidance, she lost 87 pounds, hiked the Grand Canyon, completed a marathon — and kept the weight off.
“Oprah is my inspiration,” declared Janice Thaxton of Baltimore, quickly pacing around Towson Town Center with Greene and about 60 other mall walkers. “I figured if she did it, I could do it.”
It helps, of course, to have a personal chef and trainer. But Oprah attributes her success to following the 10 steps detailed in the book. They include intense aerobic exercise at least five days a week, a low-fat, balanced diet, lots of fruit and vegetables, little or no alcohol, and six to eight glasses of water each day.
“The tough part,” Greene writes, “is finding the discipline, inner strength and willpower to carry out the ten steps.”
The 240-page book is a quick read. Most of its recommendations are common sense, unless your primary exercise consists of channel surfing and the only vegetables you know are the lettuce and tomato on a hamburger. Its pop psychology isn’t new either. Be aware that we eat when we’re stressed out, Greene reminds us. Duh.
What distinguishes the book are the funny and poignant anecdotes from the country’s most famous dieter. Like the time Oprah refused to run in the rain because her hair would get wet. “You don’t understand,” she told Greene. “It’s a cultural thing.”
Or the time she gave Greene the finger when he teased her for drinking too much wine the night before. Or the time she finished her first marathon with tears in her eyes.
The book’s color photographs are also entertaining. Pictures of fat Oprah, skinny Oprah, marathon Oprah, Oprah on in-line skates, Oprah in a canoe.
Greene acknowledges that the book wouldn’t be the same without her.
“Oprah is in a whole different category from other celebrities, and I can’t think of a better client to have run into,” he said. “She is certainly a ringing endorsement.”
If Oprah can do it …
Pub Date: 10/05/96
The Failure Empire: Bob Greene Rakes It In, Oprah Fails
The scene is comic: Bob Greene sitting next to Oprah on her TV show, kicking off the New Year, as Oprah tries to explain to her viewing audience why she gained forty pounds – again. Not once did she turn to Greene and say, “Bob, I guess your program is just a bit too hard to follow, something must be wrong with it.”
This spectacle first caught my attention in December when Oprah made her weight-gain story national news by featuring her balloon ride to 200 pounds in the January issue of her Oprah magazine. As she talked about her weight problems on her TV show it became obvious that her story coincided with a sales pitch for Bob Greene’s new cookbook, which goes along with his Oprah-sponsored diet book. I see from some of the news stories that I am not the only one who thinks this is bizarre. However, it is an interesting case study for future university-level marketing classes in how to market utter failure.
As one of the top clinical nutritionists in the country, the oddities of this story began to perk my interest. After reading through the gibberish in the January Oprah magazine and sitting through my first ever entire Oprah TV show, I went out and bought a copy of Greene’s diet book. Within moments of reading the book it was easy to visualize my working title for this article, “Why Bob Greene’s Diet Fails Oprah.”
Upon further research a new question entered my mind, “Is there anything Bob Greene won’t do for money?”
I thought it was peculiar that Oprah was introducing Bob Greene as her long time friend and trainer, while allowing him to portray himself as a nutrition expert. Why wasn’t she introducing him in a factual way: “I just want to let all of you know that Bob Greene is part of Oprah, Inc. He doubles as my property manager for my 102 acre estate in Hawaii and together we have purchased a total of six other oceanfront properties nearby (one for a Bob Greene house, one for an Oprah guest house, and four to be left vacant). We have made over ten million dollars on the diet book that has resulted in my dieting failure. And Bob has made millions more promoting McDonalds and other junk food companies on my coattails. In fact, I’ve personally made Bob Greene a multi-millionaire many times over and I just can’t tell you how thrilled I am that I’ve gained back forty pounds while being an expert in, advocate of, and profiting from his advice.”
The New York Times interviewed him just before he and Oprah did their joint promotional webcast on January 12, a webcast that somehow managed an extremely accurate title: “Falling Off the Wagon With Bob Greene.” He told the paper, “It doesn’t bother me in the least, everyone knows she follows my plan, but when she doesn’t, she gains weight, and when she does, it’s the only thing that works for her. It’s a very positive thing for me and book sales aren’t suffering.”
Bob, that is not exactly what everyone knows. Oprah’s two big weight-loss experiences came on a liquid diet and by starving herself, not from following your diet and reaching an ideal weight. In fact Bob, following your diet is next to impossible – which is why Oprah so easily goes off it – and this simple fact is directly your responsibility and the fault of your diet program. Furthermore, Oprah’s following your program has resulted in her having a significant increased risk for breast cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and early death – nice friend.
Before I explain some of the many flaws in the Bob Greene diet approach, I first must get back to the subject of Oprah, Inc.
Please Don’t Super Size Me
I met Bob Greene briefly back in 2004. At the time, I did a popular one-hour segment every Wednesday morning on the local CBS radio station in Minneapolis (WCCO). The host of the program was the local media celebrity, Pat Miles. It was a very popular program as I answered non-stop call-in questions about how to use vitamins to fix your health – while continually pointing out the pitfalls of medications. The listening audience was a bit older, based on the high popularity of the radio station for many decades.
One day the show producer told me that next Wednesday we would be broadcasting from the Mall of America and I would be joined by Oprah’s trainer, Bob Greene. I’d never heard of Bob Greene and I didn’t know why he was coming – but it wasn’t long before I found myself in the middle of a rather surreal experience.
I showed up a few minutes before broadcast time. A typical WCCO crowd was filing in and taking up chairs, getting ready for the program. I asked the producer where Bob Greene was and she pointed to the children’s play area/stage about 200 yards away. There was quite a crowd of little children and their mothers – making a lot of noise.
As show time approached this crowd started moving towards the broadcast stage. In the front of the pack was Bob Greene, playing the role of the Pied Piper. And then my brain went almost numb – flanking him was none other than Ronald McDonald – dressed to the hilt.
I had no idea what was going on. The producer introduced me to Bob Greene and we sat down next to each other on stage. We had a few minutes so I attempted some shop talk. I mentioned how interesting all the new science on uncoupling proteins was, and that it was a huge breakthrough for exercise and weight loss (which I thought was his expertise). His eyes glossed over and he ignored my comment entirely, making an unrelated comment about the day. I thought to myself, “A fitness expert that doesn’t keep up with his own subject.” (Note: Uncoupling proteins are activated in muscle with a combination of sustained aerobics, healthy leptin function, and nutrients like Q10 – resulting in disposal of calories as heat without any adverse cardio effects.)
The program began and Bob launched into his promotion of McDonalds and how he was going to reach so many people with a health message and partnership. He was going to turn McDonalds addicts into salad eaters. As the audience began asking questions it was apparent that his knowledge of weight loss was extremely limited – based on exercising more and eating less fat – and mostly exercising more. His message fell on deaf ears for the WCCO crowd – who in many cases were lucky to be exercising at all.
All the while this was going on Ronald McDonald kept jumping around in the background – either suffering from hyper-stimulation from the chemical flavorings in the McDonalds food he must have eaten that morning or in dire need of some ADD medication. The whole scene was beyond comprehension.
I wonder what I might have said if I had known what the program was going to be. As it was, I bit my tongue out of respect for the radio station, which was obviously being paid by McDonalds to do this. I couldn’t believe I was sitting on stage with a phony health advocate who actually thought people would eat salad when they went to McDonalds – a place that in my opinion epitomizes the evil empire of junk food that is causing disease in America.
It wasn’t until I started doing research for this article that I even understood what happened that day. McDonalds was having a PR dilemma expecting extreme negative publicity from the film Super Size Me. They teamed up with Bob Greene to help promote his new book, offering a 60% off coupon the day he went on Oprah and promoted his new book, his salad campaign with McDonalds, and his bike trip across the Southern United States where he would be stopping at various McDonalds locations. After that day’s Oprah appearance Bob Greene sold 50,000 copies of his book – and that was just the start.
McDonalds struck a PR gold mine, using Bob Greene and Oprah to get 1 billion favorable media impressions, which completely negated the effect of Super Size Me on their sales. For its part, McDonalds produced 8 million promo flyers for Bob Greene’s book. The program was a financial win-win for McDonalds and Bob Greene – but not for little children.
The Bob Greene campaign was dreamed up to lure young mothers into McDonalds under the guise of eating a salad, who would bring their children for junk food feeding. And so it is that a pretend health expert, acting like the Pied Piper, helped keep children coming to McDonalds, and on the fast track to obesity and diabetes. On this point alone, Bob Greene should be banished from the national health scene.
The Bob Greene Business Model
Bob Greene’s business model is based on endorsement deals that provide a link to the Oprah marketing machine via Bob Greene. This is not a small-time operation. He has a lot of large corporate sponsors – which invariably means fake foods masquerading as health foods.
The foods he promotes are laden with metabolically disrupting amounts of soy (which is often genetically modified), highly processed ingredients, sugar, high fructose corn syrup, Splenda, artificial flavors, and various chemicals. There are so many anti-metabolites in the foods he promotes that it is a wonder any person’s metabolism wouldn’t gag to a halt eating the foods he promotes for profit.
His business couldn’t be better. After his recent exposure on Oprah he has now secured a new two-year deal on another product – Nestlé Pure Life brand bottled water, a line of water that is not quite so pure, as it uses Splenda as a sweetener.
Scientific evidence clearly shows that Splenda significantly alters healthy digestive balance. If Bob Greene knew anything about nutrition he would know that such a problem will help cause food cravings and obesity – as well as other potentially serious digestive problems. I guess this will now be Bob’s beverage of choice.
Bob Greene is Nutritionally Deficient
One of the themes of Bob Greene’s diet is that you walk around all day in a self-introspected condition while carrying on a psycho-babble conversation with yourself. Obviously you are an emotionally defunct, weak-willpowered individual. Therefore, you must get to the bottom of your deep-rooted emotional disturbances. Keep yourself focused: What are you hungry for? Why are you overweight? Why have you been unable to maintain weight loss in the past? Why do you want to lose weight? What in your life is not working? (This last question must have been ripped off from another Oprah weight-loss guru, Dr. Phil.)
You have to keep yourself introspected all day long because the hunger pains are never going to go away on Bob Greene’s plan. Why? When you eat all the snacks, carbohydrates, sweeteners, and artificial sweeteners he thinks you should have so that you don’t feel deprived – you will never get over your addictive problems with food.
You have leptin receptors on your taste buds and they can no longer tell which end is up. This means you are stuck craving and eating more food than you really need because you have a misguided sense of fullness based entirely on his high carbohydrate, sugar-and-sweetener-laden plan. Since you’ll never get rid of these ghosts on Bob’s plan, you better assign their cause to the lack of love you felt as a child – and if you happened to have had a great childhood then you better figure out what else is whacked out in your head. And then you can just keep focusing on that when you are hungry.
The only other alternative would be for Bob Greene to give up all of his endorsements, so that you could un-addict yourself from highly processed garbage “health” food that he promotes, which is loaded with addiction-enforcing chemicals.
Bob is trying his best to improve his neophyte understanding of nutrition. On page 152 of the January Oprah magazine he makes a rather feeble attempt to explain the pleasure of eating and dopamine levels in your brain – as if such information is brand new. I recall giving a lecture back in 2005 to the American Society of Bariatric Physicians titled, “Thyroid, Food Addiction, and the Metabolically Unfit Fat Cell.” Back then, I explained the science on how dopamine-related problems fuel food addiction and cravings, and what needed to be done to solve the problem.
The issue of dopamine and pleasure is very problematic for dietician-minded “experts” like Bob Greene. The information means that you have to have some saturated fat in your diet while you are losing weight, much more than a dietician or Bob Greene ever recommends, or the next time you are under high stress and your adrenals start crashing you will eat a bowl of ice cream, a bag of potato chips or corn chips (like Oprah), or you will be off to McDonalds or your other favorite junk food stop – so that you can get a pleasure fix to stop the acute trauma in your brain.
Diets that lack saturated fat set you up for this problem – as well as forcing you to overeat carbohydrates in an attempt to satisfy the lack of dopamine-related pleasure resulting from the lack of saturated fat in your diet. In other words, you may be able to stay with a low saturated fat diet as long as you don’t get too stressed. As soon as stress levels get too high, you must have salt and fat to calm your brain down. This relieves the feeling of stress in the short term, but it is a disaster to your weight-loss efforts. The combination of adequate saturated fat with increased soluble fiber will make you much more resistant to stress-induced binges.
After Bob Greene attempts to explain dopamine, on the next page he gives you his diet strategies for improvement, which all center on reducing saturated fat intake. His advice sounds fine on the surface, but it sets you up for eating binges. People don’t live in stress-free bubbles.
The only way anyone could lose weight on Bob Greene’s diet is if whatever they were doing before they started his plan was far worse – which lucky for Bob is a lot of people like the 237 pound Oprah of many years ago. The low protein nature of his diet means that you will lose muscle and bone while doing it, even though he has you exercising (you’ll just end up more tired rather than more fit). This sets you up for yo-yo dieting, like his prize student, Oprah.
Sure Oprah had a tough childhood. And she maintains an incredibly demanding and stressful schedule. And now her metabolism has taken another numbing hit from menopause. And she has a terrible yo-yo diet history. Bob Greene is clogging her thyroid with soy. And he has her addicted to the sweet garbage that he’s promoting. Over the years, his diet has made her insulin resistance and leptin resistance much worse. He’s increasing her risk for disease. And Bob Greene is totally out of his league.
The Ups and Downs of Oprah’s Weight Loss Journey, and What She Swears By
Oprah Winfrey’s struggles with weight have played out in the public eye for all to see. We’ve witnessed her trials and triumphs, as she has fought to maintain a healthy weight. Oprah has had success with weight loss only to experience defeat a few months later after regaining the weight. This pattern seemed to repeat itself every couple of years. After doing everything she could to lose weight, Oprah told her fans she is finally at a place of acceptance.
Here are some of the ups and downs of Oprah’s weight loss journey, and what she swears by.
The early years
Oprah’s weight loss journey has had many ups and downs. | GIPHY
Oprah first shared her ongoing struggle to lose weight when she began hosting The Oprah Winfrey Show in the 1980s. In 1988, she decided to try to lose the weight by going on a liquid diet called Optifast. Oprah was successful — she lost a whopping 67 pounds in just a couple of months. She celebrated the weight loss by going on her TV show and dragging a wagon-full of fat behind her to represent the 67 pounds she lost.
However, once Oprah began eating solid food, the weight came back quickly. She said she gained 10 pounds in two weeks. Unfortunately, the pounds continued to pile on. In 1992, Oprah said her weight had ballooned to 237 pounds, her heaviest.
Her curvy body has gone through many changes throughout the years. | Paras Griffin/Getty Images
In 2005, Oprah decided to try again to lose weight. This time, she was successful. She managed to slim down to 160 pounds. “I thought I was finished with the weight battle. I was done. I’d conquered it. I was so sure, I was even cocky. I had the nerve to say to friends who were struggling, ‘all you have to do is work out harder and eat less! Get your 10,000 steps in! None of that starchy stuff!’” said Oprah in her magazine.
Oprah understands what it’s like to struggle with weight loss. | GIPHY
However, Oprah would later learn that keeping the weight off would require more than just eating right. She also had to address some health issues she had been unaware of.
In 2009, Oprah gained the weight back. She documented her weight loss journey in the January 2009 issue of O, The Oprah magazine. She placed a picture of her at her 2006 weight next to a picture of her at her weight in 2009. Below the pictures was the caption, “How did I let this happen again?” Oprah said a crazy work schedule and thyroid problems contributed to her weight creeping up to 200 pounds.
Oprah always goes back to Weight Watchers for getting back on track. | GIPHY
Oprah swears by Weight Watchers. She said the easy-to-follow plan has helped her lose the weight and keep it off. In fact, Oprah managed to lose more than 40 pounds by sticking to the Weight Watchers diet plan.
“This is easier than any other program I’ve been on, and the reason is because the world is your menu. You can go out for tacos and no one will even know you’re on the program — that’s the best part. That, and it works,” said Oprah on the Weight Watchers website.
Her busy lifestyle and changes have led to Oprah’s weight gain and loss. | Rob Kim/Getty Images
In an interview for The New York Times Magazine titled “Losing it in the Anti-Dieting Age,” Oprah said although she believes in self-acceptance, she can’t accept herself if she is over 200 pounds. For her, that is the most she can weigh before she feels it’s time to do something about her weight.
“For your heart to pump, pump, pump, pump, it needs the least amount of weight possible to do that,” she said. “So, all of the people who are saying, ‘Oh, I need to accept myself as I am’ — I can’t accept myself if I’m over 200 pounds, because it’s too much work on my heart. It causes high blood pressure for me. It puts me at risk for diabetes, because I have diabetes in my family,” Oprah told The New York Times.
An unexpected roadblock
Oprah has been very honest about her emotional eating. | Mike Windle/Getty Images
Oprah was determined to lose 20 pounds during the summer of 2015, but an ankle injury derailed those plans. Instead of losing weight, the talk show host packed on 17 pounds. She told People that she was out of commission for one month, so she started eating jalapeno bagels out of frustration. “You are doing some serious eating and not moving. I was in yet another funk about my weight,” said Oprah.
Making peace with food
Oprah doesn’t fight her urges anymore | GIPHY
Oprah told People that she is now at peace with food. This is evident in the fact that she recently lost almost 43 pounds. Part of the reason is because of the Weight Watchers plan. Oprah said she can eat real food and never feel deprived.
Oprah said in an earlier article in O, The Oprah magazine that another key to staying healthy is having a balanced life. She became aware that exercising and eating well only keep you healthy if the rest of your life is balanced. “What I’ve learned this year is that my weight issue isn’t about eating less or working out harder, or even about a malfunctioning thyroid. It’s about my life being out of balance, with too much work and not enough play, not enough time to calm down. I let the well run dry,” said Oprah.
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Oprah Winfrey opened up about her battle with her weight, and revealed the number on the scales that she feels comfortable at these days.
Since joining Weight Watchers in 2015 (after buying a 10% stake in the same year) Oprah has lost a whopping 40lbs, or more than two-and-a-half stone.
She’s not only followed their program, she’s also spoken of how she’s shifted the focus of her goals, and said in a recent interview with New York Times Magazine that she doesn’t care if she is ever skinny again, so long as she is in control over her body and her diet.
‘So all of the people who are saying, “Oh, I need to accept myself as I am” – I can’t accept myself if I’m over 200 pounds , because it’s too much work on my heart.
‘It causes high blood pressure for me. It puts me at risk for diabetes, because I have diabetes in my family.’
The 63-year old knows that, for her, exercise is needed alongside diet… ‘For your heart to pump, pump, pump, pump, it needs the least amount of weight possible to do that’, she added
‘This whole accepting yourself as you are – you should, 100 percent. It actually is, for me, mindful eating, because the points are so ingrained now.’
Want to follow in Oprah’s healthy footsteps? Here are the secrets to her success…
Make sure your weight loss program is the right fit
Oprah has frequently talked about her struggle with her weight on her talk show, The Oprah Winfrey Show. On what would be her most viewed episode in 1988, she revealed that she had lost a whopping 30kg, and wheeled out 30kg of fat on a wagon to show exactly how hard she had worked.
At the time, Oprah had slimmed down thanks to a liquid diet, fasting and exercise.
Oprah in 1988
‘What I did was I fasted for – without cheating – for a solid six weeks’ she said at the time.
‘I want you to know whatever diet you choose – and this audience is filled with people who’ve had great successes – you can do it with the help of your family doctor and if you can believe in yourself and believe this is the most important thing in your life, you can conquer it because if I did it, you can do it.’
However, Oprah evenutally found that the lifestyle she had adopted to lose weight just wasn’t realistic in the long run, admitting that she began binge eating almost immediately after fasting.
‘In all, I have gained 17 pounds of the 67 pounds I’ve lost this year,’ she said. ‘It is still a battle I am fighting every waking moment of my life.’
Oprah at the Oscars in 2015, and in January 2017
Since then, Oprah’s weight has fluctuated, but she says nothing has worked for her as well as her current regime has. After realising that she had an addiction to food, she began looking into the psychology of what brings people to overeat, and took a look at her own approach to goal-oriented weight loss.
Prioritise your reasons for slimming down
Oprah told Weight Watchers magazine that the initial thing she needed to sort out in her weight loss journey was to find her ‘intention’ for slimming down.
‘Intention is the most powerful principle that rules my world. It’s the principle by which I rule my company and every action in my life. I do nothing without first thinking about why I’m doing it.’
Oprah winning an Emmy Award in 1991
She explained in the interview how a common mistake people make with weight loss is doing it for everything else except for themselves.
‘When the weight started to come off, I needed to get clear on my intention. I could lose weight to fit a dress size, or attend an event, or to make other people like me.
‘But I couldn’t keep it off for those reasons. I always put the weight back on.
‘This time I changed the intention to, “I want to be the healthiest I can be – physically, emotionally, spiritually”. So the process and purpose of losing shifted for me. It was easier, because my intention was clearer.’
Oprah in 2013
Lose those numerical goals
Although she says she comfortable under the 200lb mark these days for the sake of her health, Oprah previously told Weight Watchers that the moment she stopped measuring her worth by the number on the scales, her outlook was immediately freshened – leading her to live more sustainably and realistically.
Oprah in August 2016 – when she claimed she hadn’t lost weight during the entire summer
‘I lost at a steady pace and then went through this whole summer without losing a pound,’ she said in her interview.
‘That was OK because I was so happy with my life. There was no longer a sense of urgency to just lose the pounds; there was now a strong desire to be fully present and savour every meal.
‘I focused on what I was eating and appreciating my life. Isn’t that what everyone is looking for?’
Oprah in 2008
‘The fullness of life, the fullness of being, the self-acceptance – I’d never done that before. I’d always beaten myself up because I was tied to a number.’
Oprah also explained to the magazine how she grew tired of making promises to herself that she didn’t realise she could fulfil long term.
‘It was frustrating to promise myself “I’m going to do it today, I’m going to do it today” and then not stick to my plan,’ she said.
Oprah in January 2017
‘So I shifted. Now, I don’t have a goal in mind. I get to a certain weight and I’m OK, and say, “This is where I want to be. Hang in there. I’ll get there when I get there”. And my body will tell me when I am exactly where I need to be.’