Mama June first came into the spotlight as mom to the adorable and hilarious Alana on Toddlers & Tiaras, and we got an even closer look at her life with the spin-off Here Comes Honey Boo Boo. But Mama June is making waves these days for another reason: for losing 150 pounds.
Before she got her health in gear, she weighed 352 pounds, which means that she has gone from a size 24 to a size 4. Totally remarkable!
Everyone wants to know how she shed so many pounds. While she hasn’t told us personally, we can tell a few things from her media interviews! It turns out that there have been three steps to her weight loss success:
Step #1: Mama June once said on her Instagram, “I hate greens and vegetables, so I juice 3 days a [week].” So it seems that the first step has been making good food choices. She’s no longer eating spaghetti with butter (which was one of her trademark meals) and is making sure to get vegetables into her diet by juicing (1).
Step #2: Mama June is making exercise a part of her routine. She is walking on a regular basis and also working with a personal trainer (2).
Step #3: Finally, the third step to Mama June’s weight loss success is portion control. This is especially important since she also had gastric bypass surgery and as a result, isn’t able to indulge the way that she did before.
Mama June Weight Loss Plan
So what does Mama June typically eat in a day to maintain her weight loss? She shared her regular diet with People magazine (3).
|Lunch:||Almonds, sliced meat and cheese|
|Afternoon Snack:||Grapes and cheese|
|Dinner:||“We eat chicken and beans plus whatever sides the girls want.”|
|Drinks:||Seltzer and water (but no soda, which she stopped drinking)|
It seems like Mama June can credit her weight loss success with her focus on eating protein. Protein is a macronutrient (along with fat and carbohydrates, which means that we need these in fairly large amounts). Consuming protein is extremely important to our health and makes sure that everything in our bodies is functioning. Protein is responsible for creating hormones and enzymes, it’s in our nails and hair, and it keeps our skin, blood, muscles and bones healthy (4).
The kind of protein that we consume is also crucial to weight loss success, and Mama June is doing well there. According to a 20-year long study of 120, 000 men and women done by the Harvard School of Public Health, eating beans helped study participants feel more satisfied. And eating nuts helped them lose weight because the combination of protein and fat leaves you satisfied so you don’t have to snack as much (5).
Since we’ve always heard from our moms that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, does it matter that Mama June is skipping breakfast? In a study published in a 2014 issue of The American Journal Of Clinical Nutrition, there was no change in the amount of pounds lost in a group of 300 based on whether they ate breakfast or not (6).
See also: Spirulina: Does It Work for Weight Loss?
Mama June Weight Loss Tips
We have put together some helpful tips that you can use to approach your own weight loss journey:
1.) EAT (OR DRINK) YOUR VEGETABLES: Mama June knows that vegetables are a healthful addition to our daily diets. Since she has said that she doesn’t enjoy the taste, she’s taken to juicing. Experts generally agree that if you can eat veggies and fruit in their natural, whole form, you will get the greatest health benefits… but if, like Mama June, you don’t enjoy eating your kale as a dinnertime side, then juicing is fine. As long as you’re getting those nutrients in, you are on the road to weight loss.
Here are a few of the health benefits that you will achieve from making vegetables part of your daily diet:
- You will be consuming fiber, which fills you up and also decreases your chances of suffering from obesity, diabetes and heart disease
- Vegetables have fewer calories than, say, a bowl of pasta or a sandwich, and that can help your weight loss efforts (7).
Here’s why consuming fiber is so important for your health:
- Fiber can ensure that your blood sugar is stable throughout the day
- It keeps “bad” cholesterol down as well inflammation and blood pressure
- It makes sure that you are on a regular schedule when it comes to your bowel movements because you won’t be constipated (8)
- Fiber is extremely important for your digestion: it not only keeps you regular, as discussed, but some forms of fiber (like vegetables) are “prebiotics” which make sure that the good bacteria in your gut is functioning well (9)
2.) LOWER YOUR CARB INTAKE: As Mama June has said, she is eating fewer carbs now than she was before (10). Lowering your carb intake is a well-known strategy for weight loss.
A study discovered that people who eat a lower number of carbs than most standard diets can maintain the pounds that they have shed (11), which is an important factor since, of course, you want to maintain the hard work that you have done.
The truth is that some of the most caloric foods are high in carbs. For example, 1 cup of pasta has 200 calories… but can you stop at 1 cup? Most people eat more than that. If you can replace those refined and sugary carbs with nutrient dense vegetables, you are likely to find weight loss success.
3.) NO SNACKING AT NIGHT: Mama June’s daughter Pumpkin has said that her mom no longer goes into the kitchen at night to eat junk food (12).
This is most likely contributing to her weight loss success since experts say that snacking at night really packs on the pounds. When you consume calories, your body uses those as fuel for your daily activities (and also for exercise, of course). But if you’re consuming those calories in the evening hours, then your body can’t actually use what you’re eating. Instead, the food becomes fat and you will put on weight. As Kelly Allison from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine’s Center for Weight and Eating Disorders told The Washington Post, “The studies suggest that eating out of normal rhythm, like late at night, may prompt weight gain” (13).
6.) PORTION CONTROL: The final way that Mama June has lost weight? She is watching her portions. This is not only a smart weight loss strategy but also a medical necessity since she has undergone gastric sleeve surgery. After this surgery, you aren’t able to eat the large portions that you were used to before. In fact, you will become very sick if you do. So she has no choice but to include portion control in her weight loss plan because of the gastric sleeve.
Mama June Exercise Plan For Weight Loss
Of course, there are two sides to the story of weight loss. Both diet and exercise play a part and Mama June is making sure to make movement a part of her new, healthy lifestyle.
One way that she breaks a sweat? That would be walking.
As she told In Touch magazine, “I’m just walking through the neighborhood three miles a day, and just keeping up with that and keeping up with the kids and just kind of being on the go all the time” (14).
There are many health benefits of walking. Here are some of them:
- You can turn a bad mood around
- You can better maintain your weight loss
- You will find coordination and balance easier
- You are ensuring that you don’t suffer from diabetes, heart disease or high blood pressure (15)
Another way that Mama June is working out? She has enlisted the help of a personal trainer. As she told In Touch, “I met with this trainer [Natasha Fett] through my manager… Even though she’s 3,000 miles away, she’s still very supportive through everything” (16).
We hope that these tips are helpful and will encourage you on your own weight loss journey with the Mama June weight loss plan. It’s very inspiring to see her make these lifestyle changes and we look forward to seeing her future success.