Author, Tv Personality Shares Weight Loss Advice

If you watch NBCs Today, youre probably familiar with Joy Bauer. Shes the shows diet and nutrition expert, and for the past four years, she has introduced viewers to inspiring people who have lost incredible amounts of weight anywhere from 100 to 300 pounds on a regular segment known as the Joy Fit Club.

There is much to be learned from the members of the Joy Fit Club, and Bauer profiles 30 of them including Lexi Majors, a 25-year-old who dropped 122 pounds, and 43-year-old Anita Mills who lost 242 pounds in her new book The Joy Fit Club: Cookbook, Diet Plan & Inspiration.

As the title implies, the book is also full of recipes for healthy dishes.

We recently interviewed Bauer, a registered dietitian, to find out more about her book and get some diet and exercise tips.

Q: There are so many people who want to lose weight. Is there a particular segment of the population that this book is for, or will people of all sizes no matter how much weight they want to lose find it valuable?

A: This book is for everyone! The strategies and diet plan in this book can help you lose weight efficiently and effectively, whether you have five pounds to lose or hundreds of pounds to lose, like the members featured in the book.

Q: Why are so many of us overweight to some degree?

A: Theres no simple answer to that question. There are a lot of factors at play. For one, we are living in a toxic environment where food is everywhere. And the food that were eating is high in calories, fat, sugar and salt all the wrong things. On top of that, we are more sedentary than ever before not getting enough physical activity. And in some cases, genetics are working against us, too. These are all contributors and help explain why today two-thirds of U.S. adults are overweight or obese.

Q: Many people want to lose weight so that they will look better or be able to wear certain clothes. Do you think people are cognizant of the health effects of slimming down? And what kind of health transformations have you seen among the members of the Joy Fit Club?

A: Of course youll look and feel better, but thats really just the beginning. Losing weight can help increase your energy and mood, and it also helps lower cholesterol and blood pressure, manage or reverse type 2 diabetes, improves sleep quality, alleviates arthritis aches and pains it improves virtually all aspects of your health. Members of the Joy Fit Club have gone from taking five, six or more different pills a day to being completely medication-free. Theyve gone from having sky-high blood pressure to healthy, normal blood pressure. Theyve lowered their cholesterol by 100 or more points. Theyve reduced knee pain and turned around their depression, and theyve added years to their life. Its truly remarkable.

Q: How important is it for people who want to lose weight to have a hand in preparing their own food as opposed to eating out at restaurants all the time or relying on frozen food?

A: You can still lose weight if you eat out a lot provided you make the right choices. I always say that its about what you eat not where you eat. That said, by making most of your meals at home, you control what goes into your food and what stays out. By following the diet plan in the book, youll be eating meals that are perfectly formulated for weight loss. Theyre low in calories, sugar and bad fats and provide the right mix of protein, fiber, high-quality carbs and heart-healthy fats to help you feel satisfied and full. And theyre easy to prepare and completely delicious. Youre not sacrificing anything.

Q: What do you say to the person who says, Oh, but I dont know how to cook, or I dont have time to cook?

A: I totally get it. Were all dealing with hectic, overbooked schedules, juggling a million balls and totally exhausted by the end of the workday, and none of us have time to prepare gourmet, three-course meals every day. Thats not realistic, and youll never be able to make that stick. So I made sure the recipes and meals laid out in this book are easy to shop for and cook and dont require a lot of prep. So you can throw them together any day of the week, and once youve tried the plan and decided which meals are your favorite and the easiest for you to prepare, you can repeat them as often as you like.

Q: Do you have to give up dessert to lose weight?

A: Definitely not! I like to allow people one splurge meal per week when you can enjoy a dessert or any other special foods you enjoy like pizza or burgers. I even provide some slim-style dessert recipes in the book like Decadent Chocolate Mousse and Chocolate-Peanut Butter Bread Pudding, so you can satisfy your sweet tooth without derailing your diet.

Q: Can you lose weight by simply eating healthier, or do you also have to exercise?

A: If you are really tight with your food intake and follow the plan carefully, you dont have to exercise to lose weight. But I definitely recommend fitting in some form of physical activity most days of the week if youre physically able and can make the time. Exercise helps you burn calories, boosts your mood and confidence and puts you in a positive mindset so youre motivated to stick with your plan. Its a total feel-good, and it doesnt have to be fancy, expensive or intense. In fact, walking is my preferred form of exercise. Its free, you can do it almost anywhere, it doesnt require any special equipment, and its easy on the joints. Its really the perfect form of exercise. I advise walking for 30 minutes every day of the week aim for seven days, and youll end up hitting at least five.

Q: How important is it to feel like you have people on your team when you are trying to lose weight? And if you dont necessarily feel like you are getting support from your spouse or your family, where can you find it?

A: Having a solid support network in place is really critical to success. Having the support of individuals or a group of people to help keep you motivated, celebrate your milestones, reinforce good habits and troubleshoot challenges can dramatically increase your chances of success. Your support network could be a supportive spouse or family member, but it doesnt have to be. It can also include a therapist who helps you probe your relationship with food or a co-worker or friend you can buddy up with at the gym. Or find an online community to share your ups and downs with, especially if you dont feel comfortable discussing your diet or your weight with your closest friends and family members.

Q: Readers will get a lot out of your book, but what do you think the members of the Joy Fit Club get from sharing their stories with the public?

A: Every single one of them is a huge advocate for health and very passionate about helping others, and they all want to use their stories to help inspire others to lose weight and begin their own health journeys. Theyre all about paying it forward, and I think that is far and away the most rewarding part about being in the club and now The Joy Fit Club book. But several members have also told me that being a part of the club helps them with their own weight maintenance. It helps them to stay motivated and stick with their healthy eating and exercise plan, and they also find support by communicating with other successful members. And many of the members are even following the meal plan in the book to get some fresh, healthy meal ideas, vary up their routine and keep their menus interesting.

Original Story Here


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  1. Reply

    What Are Some Good Tips For Summer Weight Loss? I’m hoping to lose weight for next summer, and I’m looking for some good weight loss tips.

      • HealthNut
      • July 4, 2012

      After reading a lot of weight loss tips, I’ve caught myself saying “I’m not going to be able to do that!” I’m sure that we all have. A good summer weight loss tip is going to have to be something that you’d actually do, obviously. Keeping that mind, I hope that you’ll find the following weight loss tips helpful to you. Over the years they have helped me maintain my current weight, and they’ve also helped me lose weight as well. These are some of the easiest and most effective weight loss tips I’ve found.

      At first, when I started trying to lose weight, I went along with the traditional attitude that eating snacks in-between meals was counter-productive to an effective weight loss program. I cut out snacks from my diet altogether as a result of that belief. I found that the problem was that by the time I sat down to start eating my meal, I was so hungry that I couldn’t control my portion sizes efficiently.

      I found that I can keep my blood sugar at a decent level (and keep my appetite satisfied too) by eating more healthy and sensible snacks in between smaller meals. In fact, over the more recent years, research has shown that you can keep your body’s metabolic rate productive and steady by eating smaller meals spaced out throughout the day rather than the traditional “3 square meals” ideology. You can mix your carbs and proteins when selecting your snacks. Low-fat cheese on some wheat crackers and some grapes would be a great example of a healthy snack.

      Portion control can be better managed, and if not, it will become a large stumbling block. You can purchase smaller, single serving foods, and use plastic bags to enforce portion sizes. You can always use regular sized foods, but use small plastic bags to separate out smaller portions in case buying single-sized foods turns out to be too much of a strain on your budget. That’s a great weight loss tip, since sometimes eating straight from the original packaging will cause you to eat more than you should.

      The calories in the food will count just as much, even if the food is advertised as either low-fat or reduced in fat. Be sure to double-check your serving size by reading the food’s nutrition label. After measuring out the appropriate serving sizes, you can then store them in your plastic bags.

      Another one of the greatest weight loss tips is ice water! Place a small bottle of water in your freezer. This is a great idea to keep your water cold, and most weight loss programs recommend drinking water anyway. After some time, the water will form a small block of ice inside the bottle as it begins to freeze. That small block of ice will continue to keep the surrounding water very cold as it melts.

      Sometimes it’s boring to just drink plain water. Just for the sake of variety, you can keep low-calorie flavored waters in the refrigerator as well. Request an ice water with extra lemon slices in it when you’re dining out. Then, just add some artificial sweeteners and you’ve made diet lemonade to enjoy!

      Most of the time, the regular versions of foods that you’re used to taste a lot better than their reduced fat and low-fat equivalents. However don’t be discouraged, and continue to try the low-fat and non-fat alternatives of your favorite foods. You might be surprised to find a low-fat version of your favorite food, and there’s a chance that you’ll like it more than the original.

      You also might want to consider that there could be some places in your home that you associate with eating. You might stop and look for a snack while lingering around the kitchen – instead, leave the kitchen after eating. You might be tempted into eating a dessert if you sit longer at the dinner table after you’ve finished your meal. Instead, as soon as you’re finished eating, try getting up and going for a walk. You’ll enjoy the extra exercise, plus it will help get your mind off of eating, food, and snacks. You might need to change where you do things to stay away from these “problem areas” if you have a hard time fighting the temptation of food.

      You can help yourself lose weight by breaking the habit of using food as a comfort and as a stress-reliever. You could listen to music, read a book, go for a walk or jog, or just do some exercise. The point is that each different activity you select can be a viable alternative to eating when you need to relieve stress.

      Schedules can become hectic and full very fast. Squeezing weight loss programs in your already busy life can be a very difficult task. Sometimes it can be hard to find the time in one place, but it’s recommended to try and get at least 30 minutes of good physical activity each day. You can try to break your 30 minute block of time into smaller 10 or 15 minute blocks. You’ll be able to get some much needed exercise by spreading the smaller blocks of time throughout your evening and day.

      Exercise is cumulative, and keep in mind too that getting more and more physical activity can help you burn off calories

  2. Reply

    What Is Are Some Of Your Favorite Weight Loss Tips? What are some of your most succesfull weight loss tips?? I have my few that I live by, but I am looking for some tips on cutting down. Please only share different/ unique tips.
    I know about all the common ones…. lots of water lots of rest six small meals etc.

    thank you so much in advance!

      • HealthNut
      • July 4, 2012

      Hi CollegeGirl

      In my opinion, no weight loss tips are truly successful on their own. Lots of water is not necessarily a good way, because how much water a person needs depends on the BMI of the person. 6 small meals maybe hard at times, especially when you are stuck at school or office and have no chance to eat, and then you need to eat more when you have the chance. Well, dieting is a good way to lose weight, but then it is hard to stick to a diet. For example, something like this:

      2 egg, low fat Cheddar cheese omelette – 320 calories
      2 slices wholemeal toast with thin smear butter – 200 calories
      Large slice melon – 47 calories

      Spicy Turkey Salad recipe – 304 calories

      Muesli or honey nut Health Bar “Sainsbury” – 180 calories

      Baked potato with 100g “Heinz” baked beans &/or Cottage cheese if desired – 300 – 400 calories (350 average)
      Large helping salad fruits &/or vegetables – 100 calories

      Another weight loss tip is to do interval and turbulence exercise.

      Turbulence Training is a fresh plan that requires finishing three 45-minute exercise sessions each week with marginal equipment. It is an increasingly trend-setting fitness plan with the intention of helping you in the reduction of weight.

      Interval training is the fitness world’s equivalent of a visit to the in-laws. The shorter and more intense the visit, the better. An interval is a short period of exercise performed at a given intensity for a specific length of time. Each interval is separated from the next interval by a short rest or lighter activity. There are no strict rules on how long or how intense the interval must be, however, changing the interval length or intensity changes the way your body works and responds to exercise.

      But people have a short willpower. It may be strong at the beginning but will eventually fade as time goes on- as they realize that going on a diet is not actually as easy as they think it is. Of course, the strength of willpower differs from one person to another. This is the reason why there are people who can actually maintain a diet and exercise program for 1 year and there are people who can only maintain it for few months. Nonetheless, willpower is a big factor that dictates someone whether to continue losing weight or not.

      And in my opinion, besides sticking to a diet and exercise plan, it is the ultimate willpower to stop yourself from overeating that is the #1 tip to lose weight. But that is the hardest part if you are accustomed to eating lots of food even though your body does not need it. It is partly because of the delicious taste of the food causing a craving for more. There are certain ways to fight this craving ad I found one that maybe helpful. It is a type of chocolate that can actually suppress your appetite. It will can provide Good Energy that promotes a healthy weight by providing energy while burning fat. And it helps suppress cravings for sugary snacks.

      Good luck!

      PS: Information on the Special Chocolate that I mentioned can be found on the website in the source box. Recently, they are giving away a one month free trial.

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