To stop the yo-yo cycle, you first must understand and expect it. No matter how dedicated you are when you first start maintaining, you’ll eventually eat more than just a few bites of dessert. Everyone does. Expect that you will do this, so you can prepare yourself for the aftermath. You’ll most likely do it on a holiday or at a birthday party. I’ve heard this story probably a hundred times. You’re going to a birthday party and you want to eat some cake. You hardly eat anything all day long, banking your calories for the cake. You eat the biggest slice of cake that you can find, and perhaps a second slice as well. The sugar and starch in the cake spikes your blood sugar and insulin. With insulin this high, the brain wants to stores these cake calories quickly, so a lot of the sugar goes straight to your liver, where it gets stored along with a generous amount of water. The liver converts some of it into fat, which settles in your fat cells.
You wake up the next morning with a food hangover. It’s very real, just like a hangover from alcohol. You’re thirsty, because your body needs water to store the excess sugar. You’re tired, hungry, and fuzzy-headed because the excessive release of insulin and other hormones has driven you into a low blood sugar state. The fastest way to feel better? Some hair of the dog, which is why you’re craving sugar in the form of a breakfast pastry, a soft drink, juice, or a doughnut. Have those choices, however, and things will only get worse.
This is where you must stop the cycle. Don’t reach for the donut. Don’t have the soft drink. Don’t berate yourself. Don’t get demoralized.