Posted by: thebylog | January 20, 2010

The WHEN Lifestyle

I weigh about five pounds more than I would like.  One of my goals is to control my weight and stay in shape over the course of my lifetime.

Eating judiciously and working out have long been my weight control and fitness modus operandi.  I have confidence in their ability to help me meet my goals to the extent that I am reasonably disciplined in these areas.  Reasonably disciplined is difficult, however.

The other week, I read an article about a diet propounded by Todd Easton, a professor in the Industrial and Manufacturing Systems Engineering Department at Kansas State University.  He is an Operations Research type who wanted an effective, noninvasive weight loss strategy.  So he put on his O.R. hat and came up with the WHEN Diet, a weight loss strategy that tries to maximize weight loss per unit misery.  This lecture gives more information.

I like this “diet” because it is easily implemented as a lifestyle.  I am, in general, philosophically opposed to diets because they tend to be unsustainable.  Yo, yo-yo dieters, I’m talking to you.  But to implement WHEN principles, you just need to do two things late in the day: cut down on calories and exercise.  If you want to be hardcore, skip supper. If you want a gentler approach, eat less and more nutritionally for supper and cut out evening snacks.  During the rest of the day, eat normally.

And the post-dinner exercise he suggests is very minimal: push-ups or curls or crunches, for just a few minutes.  I think it would be even more effective if more extensive workouts were undertaken, but his idea is for the diet to be minimally intrusive.

In the end, losing weight still comes down to taking in fewer calories than you expend.  In my opinion, the WHEN Lifestyle (I like to call it the WHENL) offers an reasonable method to accomplish this.

Remember, hunger in the evening is just ounces leaving the body.



  1. […] while incurring as little dissatisfaction as possible. Personally, I think such a strategy is The WHEN DIET, but this post isn’t about weight […]

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