I've been losing weight off and on over the past 2 or 3 years. I had become obese at 510 pounds. I have lost 160 pounds and am currently weighing 350 pounds. I tried different diets. First was the Keto diet but for me it was far to riggid and I would end up bindge eating at the first hint of failure. 3 months ago a discovered through pain and inflamation (and xrays) that I have oseto arthritis in my knees. The best way to deal with that problem is massively reducing my weight. I had recently been doing some research on what causes the struggles i was having with bindge eating and had been moving towards striat up calorie counting as my weight loss method. The arithritus was the kick in the ass i needed to really focus on the weight loss. Well.. 90 days and 50 pounds later and im still counting calories and zero bindge eating. I treat myself to things i like every day and just add up everything i eat into the my fitness pal app on my iphone. Im on quite a roll and hope to be down close to 300 by years end. And my long term goal is to get under 200 pounds.
Binge eating is quite natural to us and is likely what we have done for millions of years before the 5-meals a day modern routine. One trick is to avoid hyperpalatable processed food (cake, sandwiches, etc.) and only binge on whole foods (steak, eggs, nothing sugary) followed by a 24h fast. You can have your binge if you do the fasting too.
A side problem of long-term calorie counting is that your body will adapt and reduce metabolic rate and burn fewer calories. Binging+fasting is much better for fat loss than calorie counting.
Recently, a second trial directly compared zero-calorie alternate-day fasting and daily caloric restriction in obese adults. The Caloric Reduction as Primary (CRaP) strategy was designed to subtract 400 calories per day from the estimated energy requirements of participants. The ADF group ate normally on eating days, but ate zero calories every other day. The study lasted 24 weeks.
What were the conclusions? First, the most important conclusion was that this was a safe and effective therapy that anybody could reasonably follow. In terms of weight lost, fasting did better, but only marginally. This is consistent with most studies, where, in the short term, any decent diet produces weight loss. However, the devil is in the details. The truncal fat loss, which reflects the more dangerous visceral fat, was almost twice as good with fasting as opposed to CRaP. In fat mass %, there is almost 6 times (!) the amount of loss of fat using fasting.