Weight before: 113.3 kg
Weight now: 90.2 kg
Lost 23 kg between Dec 2015 and March 2016
Balwinder Singh had always been on the heavier side, but at age 24, when he had touched 114 kg, he knew it was time to make some changes. “I ate whatever I felt like and paid no attention to my weight, which kept on increasing. The fact that I need to lose weight dawned on me only when some colleagues at work, who were concerned about my health, intervened, and suggested I get help and begin to take things more seriously,” says Balwinder, a Ludhiana-based professional.
Balwinder’s biggest drawback had been his inability to curb his eating, and he realised that it was a result of his lack of knowledge about calorie counting. “If someone sent me a box of gulab jamuns, I would happily eat two or three at once. I had no idea that each piece was 200 calories,” he says, adding, “I would eat parathas loaded with makhan for breakfast, and follow that up with hot jalebis at night. I’d eat a whole pizza in one sitting, which I now know is 400 calories!”
‘I was so conscientious about not exceeding my daily requirement that I ran everything I ate through the HealthifyMe calorie tracker’
A senior colleague introduced Balwinder to HealthifyMe, to help him monitor his calorie intake. After 2-3 days, Balwinder found himself hooked on to the calorie tracker. He had plugged in his age, height, weight and target weight, and figured out how many calories he needed to eat and burn. “Once I understood and applied this principle of weight loss, I began seeing good results,” he says, explaining, “I was posted in Malta at the time, and used to eat at the office mess. The menu there was fixed, so I could calculate in advance how many rotis and vegetable servings I should eat to meet my daily calorie requirement.”
For the three to four months, he was extremely diligent about maintaining an eat-to-burn ratio. “I was eating about 1200 calories, which was the minimal amount my body needed to survive, and burning about 300-400 calories by walking about 4-5 km daily,” Balwinder says. He was so conscientious that he ran everything he ate through the HealthifyMe calorie tracker. “I even checked the calorie count for tea and coffee,” he says with a laugh.
HealthifyMe helped Balwinder recognise that he had a fat and carb-heavy diet. “I made changes and introduced more protein and high fiber foods, like swapping my morning parathas for oats,” he says. The high calorie, fast food items like pizza, burgers or dosas that Balwinder would snack on were replaced with fruits. “I’d go for an apple instead, because it was healthier and full of fiber,” he says.
While he keeps his morning meals light with oats, dahi or fruit, Balwinder opts for a solid lunch comprising of two rotis, vegetable and salad, dinner is early and light, say a bowl of dal. He didn’t find it too tough to manage this diet regimen while staying away from home. “There was always something healthy to choose from on the office mess menu. If alu sabzi and dal was made, I would simply skip the potato and have the dal,” he explains, adding that he didn’t completely cut out his indulgences. “Every Sunday, I would eat one aloo paratha. But I would ensure it was made with minimal oil,” he says.
‘Just looking at my weight loss graph on HealthifyMe was a huge motivator’
Balwinder credits the HealthifyMe calorie tracker for being the catalyst that helped him lose a whopping 23 kg in just four months. “Every Sunday, I would weigh myself and update my HealthifyMe chart. Just looking at my weight loss graph was a huge motivator. It was a constant reminder that I was steadily losing 0.5 kg -1 kg every week and it encouraged me to stay on course,” says Balwinder.
The biggest benefit, he says, of HealthifyMe is that it has helped him identify the calorie counts of every single item he eats so it’s changed the way he thinks about his meals. And his efforts have paid off – when Balwinder returned home after 3-4 months, his family and friends almost didn’t recognise him. “They were shocked to see how I had transformed myself. I was half my original size,” he recalls. His waist size has gone from 45 to 37-38 inches. “I’d have to visit the tailor every week to get my clothes altered, but I felt great,” he says.
With his weight steady at 90 kg now, Balwinder hopes to lose another 5-6 kg over the coming months. “All the credit goes to HealthifyMe and the person who suggested I download the app. I’d advise anyone who wants to lose weight to give it a try,” he concludes.
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