Episode 163:

Show Notes 

Weight Loss Challenges and Beliefs:
Weight loss has long been perceived as a formidable challenge, with many of us associating losing weight with feelings of deprivation, constant hunger, and a state of discomfort. This prevailing belief that losing weight is, by necessity, a gruelling battle against one's own body is deeply entrenched as many people, including healthcare professionals, have been taught that restrictive dieting and calorie counting is the only way to lose weight. Although it is true that this method does cause weight loss, it is usually a short lived success followed by weight regain (and more) when returning to normal eating habits. This cycle creates a sense of inevitability that weight loss must be arduous and is inherently unsustainable.

High Satiety Nutrition and Satisfying Meals:
However, a transformative concept is gaining an audience - the notion of high satiety nutrition. This approach challenges the traditional notion that weight loss requires constant hunger and willpower. Instead, the emphasis shifts towards selecting foods that promote satiety and fullness, allowing you to lose weight without enduring persistent cravings. The scientific foundation lies in the hormonal and metabolic responses triggered by certain dietary choices. By opting for nutrient dense options rich in proteins and healthy fats, while reducing carbohydrates, hunger can be effectively managed, leading to a more enjoyable and sustainable weight loss journey.

Smart Eating and Metabolic Impact:
An intriguing paradigm shift emerges, highlighting the significance of "eating smarter, not less." Contrary to popular belief, reducing food intake isn't the sole solution for weight loss. Rather, strategic eating involves selecting high quality, satisfying foods that support metabolism and hormonal balance. The focus shifts from calorie counting to nourishing the body with meals that stabilise hunger hormones and encourage efficient fat burning. This approach challenges the traditional dogma, revealing that weight loss can be achieved without subjecting yourself to constant hunger and denial.

Nurturing a Positive Mindset for Long Term Success:
Beyond the realm of physiological factors, the psychological aspects of weight loss play a crucial role in long term success. The negative impact of punitive and guilt driven approaches can be left behind, with a compassionate and understanding mindset leading you to a healthier, happier future. Emotional eating and cravings are really manifestations of deeper trigger. Cultivating self awareness and challenging ingrained thought patterns are essential strategies for sustainable behaviour change. By shifting focus towards self compassion and addressing emotional connections with food, you can develop a healthier relationship with eating, paving the way for enduring weight loss success.

The 12 Week Mind Body Rebalance:
Our signature 3 month program is a comprehensive and transformative 12 weeks educating and supporting you to achieve long lasting weight loss. You will be guided on a journey that involves understanding the hormonal and metabolic responses triggered by different food choices, and you will be taught how to utilise food and your own hormones to burn fat and lose weight. 

We teach you how to cultivate self awareness and address emotional connections with food, and we give you the tools to self soothe, celebrate, commiserate, fill in time….all of these things, without reaching for food to do it with or for you. Through a combination of science-made-simple, practical strategies, support groups and mindset management, the 12 Week Mind Body Rebalance provides a holistic framework for sustainable weight loss. 

Our next program is starting on 2 September 2023. The waitlist is open and everyone joining the waitlist receives amazing bonuses!

Episode, show notes and transcript:

12 Week Mind Body Rebalance:


Episode 163: 


Dr Mary Barson: (0:11)
Hello, my lovely listeners. I'm Dr Mary Barson.

Dr Lucy Burns: (0:15) And I'm Dr Lucy Burns. Welcome to this episode of

Both: (0:20) Real Health and Weight Loss!

Dr Mary Barson: (0:23) Good morning, gorgeous listeners. It's Dr Lucy here from Real Life Medicine and I am super happy to be back on the real health and weight loss podcast with my beautiful, shiny, bubbly, effervescent colleague, Dr Mary Barson. Hello Miss, how are you this morning?

Dr Mary Barson: (0:41) I'm good. I'm very happy to have you back here with me. I kind of enjoyed my solo podcasting, but I enjoy podcasting with you waaay more! And I'm also really good because little Bobby is sleeping through the night. So, I know having those wonderful joined up thoughts, it's amazing. I'm thinking in cursive rather than thinking in little splatters here and there. 

Dr Lucy Burns: (1:07)  Oh, I love that! I love that analogy. That's brilliant! Well, my love, I'm going to just open up the topic this week and get cracking in on it. Because this has come up a fair bit both in my private coaching. But also just in conversations I've been having. And the general belief is that people feel weight loss is hard. So, I guess I'm gonna pose the question, “Does weight loss have to be hard?”

Dr Mary Barson: (1:35)  I firmly believe no. I used to think it had to be hard when I lived in calorie counting land and when I was a calorie counter. When much to my own personal modification for a short period of time as a doctor, where I also preached calorie counting. Because it is what we were taught and what I thought, it was hard. It's really difficult to white knuckle your way through several weeks of hunger on a 1200-calorie a day, 800-calorie diet. Whatever it is, dieting day in and day out, it's uncomfortable. It's not fun. It's also not sustainable. And you lose some weight but then when you go back to eating normally due to changes in your metabolism, and everything else, the weight just comes back on. And it feels not only hard, but impossible! Impossibly hard. And that is where I lived until I found a better way, both personally and then professionally. Coaching lots and lots of thousands of beautiful people that we can reach in this community with an easier way. That you don't have to be hungry to lose weight, you can actually eat a diet that keeps you feeling nice and full. A high-satiety diet to use a lovely jargony term. And when you pick the right high-satiety diet, you can lose weight without being hungry! 

Dr Lucy Burns: (3:12)  Absolutely! Which is easy, in a lot of ways. It's about eating smarter, not less. And in fact, sometimes you can even eat more, not less and lose weight. Like that blew my mind to me. Again, that seems like that can't be true. Because how does that work? You know, eat less, move more. How can I eat more and lose weight? I just found that impossibly hard to understand. Except, I realised that I was looking at it through the wrong lens. So, tell me, Miss. High-satiety sounds a bit like high society?

Dr Mary Barson: (3:52)  It does, I do feel like. No, I don't ever feel like I'm from high society. I take that back entirely. So, a high-satiety diet, fancy way of saying a diet like eating when you nourish your body with foods that make you feel full. And if we don't need to turn every single meal into a mathematical equation, counting calories, that isn't going to get us anywhere long term. Instead, you pick foods that nourish your body and help balance your hormones. And simply put a diet that's lower in carbs - that's the sugars, starches, higher in protein and also fat. This diet literally makes us feel fuller for longer.

Dr Lucy Burns: (4:48)  Can I just interject for a second Miss, just to explain or clarify probably, when you use the word diet, are you meaning a diet like dieting? 

Dr Mary Barson: (5:00)  No, I'm meaning like, when you pick your meals, you pick your lifestyle (it's a better word). Let's go - a lifestyle. Where the food that you choose to feed yourself and quite possibly your family, when you're choosing foods that are healthier, and foods that are naturally lower in those sugars, and starches, and higher in protein, and higher and healthy fats. When you do this, your hunger becomes much less. It just gets better controlled. And the fascinating thing here is, I love that we actually don't completely know why exactly. Why low carb diets produce hunger. We know a lot of the reasons why, but not all of them. But it is due to the fact that these foods have on our hormones that control our hunger. Because hunger is hormonal, it is not mathematical. And also the effect that it has on our gut and our brain, which I think is really cool. But if you eat this lovely food, delicious, nourishing meals, it tastes great. You have your meal, and then you are just fuller for longer. And that mental chatter of really wanting the food. Can I have the food while wanting to have the snack. “Can I have a snack” just goes away. And it does this because lower carb foods that are higher in fat and protein, they increase our fullness hormones. Those little messengers, the chemical messages that go around our brain that make us just feel happy and full. So, we just don't have to think about food or obsess over food. They're just higher, and our hunger hormones, they're just lower. So, this is happening at the level of our hunger. And also at the level of our metabolism and our metabolic health. When we eat a low carb food, our metabolism is healing. It's actually increasing and getting faster. Insulin is the main hormone that you and I love to talk about. Beautiful insulin gets lower than normal, which means that you can use your fat stores to open up that metaphorical woodshed of your fat stores. And you can burn that fat for fuel, keeping you in a lovely state of constant energy for longer. So when you've got the right tools. We're calling this our map, the right map. Then you can lose weight without being hungry. And that beautiful listener, I believe, is easy.

Dr Lucy Burns: (7:45)  It's so interesting, isn't it that nobody's talking about high-satiety food? I think we could really work with that, But high-satiety food, I'm sure if I went out and surveyed a thousand people and said, “Can you give me a list of high-satiety food.” That I have no idea what I was talking about, and they wouldn't. Even if they knew what I was talking about, they wouldn't necessarily know any. And so, this is what we're talking about when we've been given the wrong map. Because for me, I would spend my weight-watcher points on diet chocolate mousse. So, I have 20 points for the day and because I liked mousse, I'd spent two of those on some chemical, rubbishy piece of fluff. But actually, it was like chewing gum. It did not satisfy anything, it just made me want more and more. And so, I'm in this battle of myself where I've run out of points, but I still want more mousse because it wasn't real food. Whereas, we know that the satiety comes from protein with some fat. Most people aren't eating pure protein. It's quite hard to find pure protein in nature. But you know, very lean protein again, that's what a diet land, it did take out all the fat. So, I used to eat very lean protein tattoo like an old shoe. Having a little bit of fat in there is not only delicious for the flavor, but it keeps you fuller for longer. So, wouldn't you want to lose weight with delicious food that keeps you full on?

Dr Mary Barson: (9:27)  So much easier. And I was right there with you, Lucy, you had your points that you had for the day. And you know, all points were equal didn't really matter. You know what you ate, it was all about how many calories it contained. So heating the the rubbishy deity chocolate mousse fluff air-stuff seems like a great idea because it would have tasted nice and you would have got that little dopamine hit, that reward would have been quite high reward food, regards with the sweet taste, probably quite soothing. But it did nothing to help you with your hunger, in fact, it probably would have made you hungrier. And then you just had to unpleasantly white knuckle it until you are allowed to eat something else. But even taking that rather unhelpful mindset of counting points, if you had used it, eating a nice piece of salmon, then you would have been much better off.

Dr Lucy Burns: (10:26)  Totally! And so, again, this long lasting weight loss, it really just comes down that it doesn't have to be hard. But you do need to understand what's going on. So you need to really understand your body. And you really need to understand your mind. So hunger is not a sign of weakness. Hunger is a physiological drive for food. And if you eat, because you're hungry, you're not a weak, bad, horrible person. You're a person who has satisfying a biological drive that needs to be honored. But the thing that I think a lot of us have not been taught or educated or know about is that what foods are going to actually satisfy that hunger properly and long term.  I mean not long term, like forever, but at least for more than ten minutes. What food is going to do that? And it comes back to the protein and the fat. And then when you've managed to address that proper human hunger, only then can you address any other sort of what we call non-hungry drives. So the cravings. How can you address a craving, when you're physiologically hungry? You actually can't. So, solve the hunger and then solve whatever else is driving the cravings.

Dr Mary Barson: (11:57)  And that can also be easy when you've got the right tools and strategies. So absolutely getting your beautiful body into a state where it's not starving, hungry all the time, because you're eating high-satiety foods. So you're just eating lovely, delicious meals that are really nourishing. And also really fill you up. Awesome! That's great! And so that physiological hunger is just tapping right back down just to normal levels. And sure enough, dinnertime rolls around again, you haven't eaten since lunch. You get hungry, you eat dinner, that's great. But you're not starving hungry. From the moment you finish lunch to the moment you have your three o'clock snack and then starving hungry again all the way through to dinner. And when that starving hungriness is reduced, then you can start to work on your beautiful mind. And to deal with those drivers that make us want to eat the high carb foods like the chips, or the chocolate, or the donuts, or the ice cream to soothe our emotions, or because we're bored or because of habit or because we're stressed. Actually, dealing with that emotional eating can be easy as well. When you've got the right tools and just like people think perhaps that they just need to calorie count. They just need to have more discipline to eat less. People probably think that they just need to have more discipline to not soothe with food. They just have to have more discipline to not get the chocolates from the petrol station on the way home. Whereas it's not about calorie counting with the food. And it's not about discipline.  With the mindset, it can be quite easy, but you need to learn the right tools.

Dr Lucy Burns: (13:43)  Absolutely, because honestly, the only tool I ever had in my mind was just stop it. Stop it, Lucy. You just stop it. That was my tool like wow, that was helpful. So helpful. Lucy, thank you for that really incredible insight. Stop it. So the thing that would happen was that I do have a bad day. Scarf a block of chocolate. Feel terrible. Hate myself and think I'm an idiot loser. And then I go, "Oh, well! Let's just pretend that didn't happen". And we'll start again tomorrow. And so it would be like that was my tool. It was like if I pretend it didn't happen, then I don't have to feel bad about myself. And so there was some self preservation in that. Because feeling bad about yourself is horrible. So the only tool I knew to not feel bad about myself, was to tell myself a few lies like it didn't even happen. Don't worry about it. I will start again tomorrow. And so then I'd start again tomorrow. But actually really learning about myself and learning what are my triggers. What were the reasons I did that? What was going on for me? That is the gold that then helped me stop repeating the behavior, because hiding it doesn't stop anything. It just stopped you feeling bad about yourself.  So there is a win in that way. But it doesn't stop the behavior.

Dr Mary Barson: (15:04)  Yes, doesn't stop it from happening again. And you lose that opportunity to learn about yourself. But that is a skill as well to lean into that. To learn that you are human, and to be able to look at yourself with compassion and kindness, and to unpack that story. And then to develop a new way to soothe yourself, because you're totally allowed to soothe yourself. If you've had a really crappy day, or a really stressful event, or even if you just want to.  It's the end of the day, you feel like you've done a great day's work, and you want to chill and look after yourself. You're allowed to do that. And you can, and you don't need to scuff an entire block of Cadbury Caramilk in order to do that. And if you can learn the skills, it doesn't have to be hard.

Dr Lucy Burns: (15:55)  And I think the interesting thing is  to recognize that our brain, it's a pattern machine. So the thoughts always thought. Other thoughts, it’s going to think. I'm sure that's a Dr Seuss play somewhere. But it does, of course it does. And we call this, neurons. And we know that the neuron, the neuronal pathways, thoughts are just connections between two nerve cells or two neurons. And when we've thought a thought a lot, it's a very deep seated thought, it's very robust. It's so robust that we often believe it to be absolutely factually true. So is it factual, that weight loss is hard? And if you've had trouble losing weight, you may go, “Yes it's a fact”. But somebody else might go, “Well, I know I find it easy”. So it's not really a fact, it's an opinion. And opinions can change. But the way our beautiful, clever brain works is that once it thinks something is true, it then looks for evidence to confirm that. And so then if you're on a weight loss journey, and you have a stumble of some sort, which is normal. Our brain goes, “See, I told you it was hard, told you”. And it goes “Yes, you're right, it's too hard”. And so it can often give up at the very first little stumble. Or it might be that you're there. And I guess this would be one of the more challenging circumstances. And Miss, I'd be interested to know how you face this, or what your strategies are. If you're somewhere, let's say you're at a function, and there's food there that your brain is going,  “Oh, I love that! I love tiramisu. I couldn't wait. I want to scoff a whole lot of it”, or, “Oh my god, look at those roast potatoes. I really love those and the hot chips?”. And then you're there going on, “I don't want them”. What strategies have you've got around that? 

Dr Mary Barson: (18:04) I've got some good ones that really just completely knock the wind out of any of those thoughts. So first of all, and this I actually believe is true, it's really not going to taste as good as I think it does. At a conference you know the little tub of tiramisu in the plastic cup, it ain't gonna be that good. It's just not. I also know that my tastes have changed. So that really sweet food just doesn't appeal to me as much as it used to. I certainly can make myself sweets if I want to. But I just don't need to and so I tell myself that that's not going to be any good. That isn't going to taste as good as I think it will, and not only do I genuinely believe that's true. It's also really helpful because then I can go and just eat the cheese, which you know is delicious and I know that it will taste nice. But then the other part of that is that, if for whatever reason the tiramisu is just making an irresistible offer to me and I do eat it, I just very quickly will forgive myself and just move on. Like having some tiramisu at an event really isn't the end of the world. And often after I eat it, I'll be like, “Yeah, that really wasn't that good”. And you just keep going. And it doesn't mean that I'm in need to dive headfirst into an Olympic swimming sized pool of tiramisu and spend the rest of the three years eating every carbohydrate in insight, because I had a little slip. And usually I could just keep going.

Dr Lucy Burns: (19:43)  Yeah, an incredibly helpful point there. In that concept is that your brain, it really never does taste as good as you're imagining it to be. So it is this idea that you go, “Okay, isn't it interesting?”. My brain goes, “Oh my god, that tiramisu. It's amazing! I can't wait to eat it”. And then you have it you go “Yeah, i t wasn't as good.” And I always store that away for future Lucy to remind herself. Hmm, interesting. It's like this illusion of amazingness that it just disappears.

Dr Mary Barson: (20:16)  I actually think about a real life example fairly recently, Lucy. You and I were at a conference and we went out to a very sort of fancy dinner like that digger station. I've never done the gas station menu before. And as we were sort of going on the bus to this event, I sort of thought, “Oh, what will I do? Will I eat dessert or will I eat dessert?" And I thought, “You know what, I'm going to actually have the desert here”. I know that you navigated this in a different way. So you can tell them what you did. Then I ate the dessert, it was a creme brûlée.

Dr Lucy Burns: (20:50)  Isn't that good?

Dr Mary Barson: (20:53)  Well no. I had a little bit of slight palpitations from the sugar. And I was like, “Okay, listen”. But you know, I didn't hate myself for doing that at all. Just sort of moved on. And I'm going to remember that. So yeah, you know next time the dessert is offered, I can quite honestly tell myself, “Oh it’s not gonna taste that good”. And I can eat short sweet foods. It's not like I can’t go and make myself the most delicious chocolate, low carb chocolate lava cake, if I want to. I can totally do that. So it's not like my life has no cake ever. I can make cake in a more helpful way. It's just often that I don't really need it.

Dr Lucy Burns: (21:30)  Absolutely! And you know, as we are always talking about you are the boss of you. There's no right or wrong way to navigate these situations. And you're right, I did choose a different way. So for me, because it was a three course set menu, and there were two options at each course. So I spoke to the waiter and said, “Could I have a second entrée instead of dessert?” Because I really couldn't choose between the two entrées, and I wanted them both. I thought, “Oh, that's good, I could do that”. And the interesting thing is that, however many weeks it is now since that event, I can't even remember what the dessert options were. I actually can't remember any of the options. Somebody said, “What food did you eat?” Oh, I can’t actually remember. Because this is the power of it. It's like you can feel like you're missing out right at that moment. But a few weeks later, you just don't even remember. So again, it comes back to managing your mind and navigating a path that works for you in that present moment. But also for the future you. And those are learnable skills. So I think this is the key, it doesn't have to be hard. If we tell ourselves it's hard, our brain will look for confirmation of that. If we keep saying it's easy, even if at the start, we're not that convinced. But if you keep reminding yourself, this is easy, this is easy. And in fact, the question I tell myself is, “How can I make this easy?” This is going to be easy. We just keep reminding ourselves of that. And then you're again, clever brains looking for ways to make it easy. If she says it's going to be easy, then how can I make it easy? And I mean, we give you all of that. That's what we teach, we teach ease. You know, I haven't got time to be making life hard. No.

Dr Mary Barson: (23:20)  No. We're busy. I got a baby. We've got businesses, we've got things to do. And in your busy lives, absolutely. We can show you how you can lose weight. But more importantly, I think that to lose weight is to gain that lovely health. And that increased energy, that increased metabolism, you can do it easily. It really doesn't have to be hard. When you've got the right map, the right compass and the right tools. And that beautiful people is definitely what we do with our program coming up soon. The 12 Week Mind Body Rebalance is all about having the right tools and the right strategies that fit into your life.

Dr Lucy Burns: (24:06)  Absolutely! And I mean, look, you can lose weight the hard way, if you want to, go for it. Knock yourselves out. But if you want to lose weight, the easy way, the sustainable and the long lasting way, then that's what we teach. And that's what our beautiful participants are experiencing. And you know, I would love to say that I'm gonna be really upfront and say it doesn't always happen straight away in their mind management. That mind management brain for some people, we've had decades and decades of thinking a particular way and to change it overnight. I would be disingenuous to say to you, you can change your mindset overnight. I think that that's not helpful. It does require a little bit of work. It does require maybe a guide showing you, just gently pointing out, “Oh isn't it interesting that your brain thinks like that?” But you can absolutely have the biological capacity with neuroplasticity to change the way we think, if we persist at it.

Dr Mary Barson: (25:07)  Yes, so gorgeous ones. Weight loss can be easy when you know how. And if you'd like some more info on our 12 Week Mind Body Rebalance beautiful people, please check out our website, www.rlmedicine.com/12wmbr for the 12 Week Mind Body Rebalance and there's more info there. You can even join the waitlist and get access to some fabulous or waitlist goodies and bonuses. Dr Lucy, always lovely chatting to you lovely human.

Dr Lucy Burns: (25:44)  It is always chatting to you, of course gorgeous one. And lovely listeners. We are so grateful for the time in which you spent listening to us. And I hope that what we provide for you is valuable because honestly we absolutely absolutely love this job. We're so blessed to have it. We always say to ourselves a couple of weeks. We get to do this every day, and we get to share our journeys. And the way we've arrived at the destination with you.

Dr Mary Barson: (26:15)  See you later beautiful ones.

Dr Lucy Burns: (26:17)  Bye lovelies.

So my lovely listeners, that ends this episode of Real Health and Weight Loss. I'm Dr Lucy Burns…

Dr Mary Barson: (31:12)  and I'm Dr Mary Barson. We’re from Real Life Medicine. To contact us, please visit rlmedicine.com

Dr Lucy Burns: (31:23)  And until next time…

Both: (31:25) Thanks for listening!

Dr Lucy Burns: (31:27) The information shared on the Real Health and Weight Loss podcast, including show notes and links, provides general information only. It is not a substitute, nor is it intended to provide, individualised medical advice, diagnosis or treatment, nor can it be construed as such. Please consult your doctor for any medical concerns.

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