How I Stay Fit: Author of The Skinny

Louis J. Aronne literally wrote the book on losing weight, so you would think that staying fit would come naturally to him. Think again!

The author of The Skinny: On Losing Weight Without Being Hungry says that keeping within a healthy body weight has been a life long process for him.

Q: As the author of a successful weight loss book, staying healthy and fit is pretty much a necessity if you want to set a good example. Does being a role model give you added incentive to eat well and exercise?

A: There’s nothing like it! I became interested in this area from having a history of diabetes, and moderate weight problems in my family. I got interested in it because of my own weight. I was trying to lose weight and I found it was difficult. I definitely have been able to do a lot better from my own research. My own work in this area has taught me a lot about it. I remember being a medical student, and feeling like I was losing my mind because I would be trying not to eat, but I’d wake up at night and be hungry and wonder, ‘What’s wrong with me? Why is this happening?’ There was nothing explaining this. I had to figure it out for myself. That’s basically what I’ve done. I think that’s why it’s No. 3 on the New York Times Bestseller List is because people are buying it and telling other people about it because it’s been helpful to them. I feel like it’s something that will help people to feel free. The culture that has evolved of blaming people, of tormenting them or prosecuting them for being obese is not right. I think you’ve got to understand it, do the research, figure out what’s going on but at the same time try to have a much more empathetic approach and manage it that way. That’s what’s going to do something for people. Find out more about Dr. Aronne’s research into the obesity epidemic and why we can’t lose weight.

Q: What are some of your favourite foods that you typically include on your shopping list?

A: Greek yogurt, that’s really good. The big bean sprouts like you get in Chow Mein. I really like that as a carb replacement. Lots of shrimp. Berries and almonds are my snack foods.

Q. What is your workout regime?

A. I’m very busy during the week so I ride a stationary bike while catching up on the news and then on the weekend I do more.

Q: What are some of your weaknesses when it comes to leading a healthy lifestyle?

A: There are plenty! It’s very, very tough. That’s why I’m so sympathetic to patients because I realize that it’s hard to do this. You’re looking for better than before, you’re not looking for perfect.

Q: You’ve worked with plenty of people over the years who are striving for a healthier lifestyle. If they didn’t read your book and you didn’t have an hour to spend with them, what would be the one piece of advice you would give them?

A: Have a protein breakfast! Instead of having juice and cereal for breakfast, have an egg-white omelet for breakfast. I’ve treated people on that advice alone. One guy who came in with someone else heard me explain this and then went home and started eating that breakfast and he lost 40 pounds just from a greater sense of fullness. He’s maintained it over a long period of time.

Rather than Cocoa Puffs, sweet starchy cereal and juice, going to a protein for a breakfast for some people is all it takes. It’s like taking an appetite suppressant for some people. They don’t believe me initially but when they see how well it works, they’re amazing how big an impact it can have on their eating.

A very well balanced breakfast would be an egg white omelet with vegetables, green and red peppers, onions, something very colourful and tasty. You can have any kind of seasoning, it doesn’t just have to be white. It’s surprisingly satisfying and will help you not be hungry for a long period of time.