The bag of chips that changed my life

(New!) Read (or post) about people who have stuck with No-S for 10 or more months, lost 10 or more pounds, or 10 or more percent for their starting weight. Periodic updates strongly encouraged -- you can think of it as "Yearly Check In."

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The bag of chips that changed my life

Post by eyevandy » Sat Sep 26, 2015 5:02 am

Earlier this year I was reading the back of a bag of chips. No, not the nutrition facts! Reading those wouldn't have changed anything.

I know the chips were from Aldi; I'm not sure what kind. I do know that I used to make something called "the trifecta:" A plate full of Aldi nacho chips covered in both a layer of shredded cheese and jarred queso dip and microwaved for 30 seconds. As you may imagine I did not like doing this when other people were around.

On the back of every bag of Aldi chips is some utterly ridiculous copy that starts with: "We all love snacks, but getting a good one isn't easy. You need great ingredients, lots of flavor and some big, satisfying crunches." I always get a kick out of reading this. Of course getting a good snack is easy. You can stop at any store that sells anything--gas station, hardware store, even MC Sports--and find all sorts of wonderful-tasting snacks. Who wrote something so stupid? Is it really that hard to fill in the blank space on the back of a bag of fake Doritos? Anyway, I Googled the copy just for the fun of it.

This was back in April. 260 pound, five-foot-eleven me, sitting at a desk pounding chips and Googling pointless nonsense. I'd gained nearly 100 lbs since graduating college 10 years before and experienced all the joys of obesity--shortness of breath, sleep apnea, a general inability to do things the other guys could do. I'd had some success with dieting; I just never felt like sticking with it after losing a few pounds and so I'd yo-yo back.

If you Google "we all love snacks but getting a good one isn't easy" you will see something like what I saw back in April. The first couple of results come from reviews of Aldi chips where they've helpfully provided the copy from the bag in their review. The next few give suggestions for "good" (healthy) snacks. And then ... you see No S Diet.

I'd never heard of it back in April. I'd never even heard of anything remotely as simple as No S. And by some crazy stroke of luck, Reinhard's detailed discussion of snacks came up as a search hit for my chip bag text. I read the page top to bottom and started No S immediately.

Today, for the first time in years, the scale says "240." I'm thrilled. But what I'm really thrilled about is this: I don't have the slightest desire to stop living No S. It's a part of me now. I actually have more willpower, discipline, and enthusiasm about limiting what I eat than I did that first day (and I was gung ho!). It's even rubbed off on my mom, and now she's hitting milestones because of No S. Next up for me is just the other 80 lbs.

Can you believe it? All because of the back of a bag of chips!

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Post by xara » Sat Sep 26, 2015 5:39 am

What a wonderful story to the beginning of your No-S dieting! What a great way to come across the diet! You have done so well.

I just finished my sixth week of strictly adhering to No-S. I read about it for the first time on August 15 (a Saturday night) and, like you, was immediately struck by the rightness of it. I began immediately by going out for ice cream on Sunday the 16th (I read my husband the entire home page of on our way to the ice cream place!), and began my first N-day on Monday the 17th. I'm amazed at how quickly No-S has just become the way I live, and is no big deal. I don't think about food much between meals, but I do find myself noticing that I am not thinking about food! I have a lot of weight to lose, and for the first time I'm believing that it's doable.

Looking forward to updates from you!

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Post by eyevandy » Sat Sep 26, 2015 4:06 pm

Thanks xara. Like I'm sure a lot of other people will say, after a while it becomes even easier.

For me at 6 weeks I was still dealing with a few hurdles. Hunger before dinner and before bed, weekends where I'd make up for all of the things I didn't have on N days, and meal plates that looked ridiculous.

The great thing about No-S is that you have the initial guidelines that help you start seeing results over the first few weeks, but you also have this built-in timeframe to slowly absorb a whole new mentality. And it seems to just happen subconsciously. I never decided to stop maxing out on soda on S days, it just started to go that direction. My weight loss slowed down a little over the summer until the new mindset started to kick in, but the key for me was to never soften the rules for myself, and never beat myself up when I broke one.

The other thing that was a lifesaver for me was the discussion of ritual. If you are like me you have these weird random times during the day where you scan the pantry looking for something to eat, but you're not even hungry, and you don't actually take anything out because nothing passes the No-S guidelines. (Maybe if you had bottled water in there?) I realized that those were little food rituals.

Reinhard's discussion of soda and the hierarchy of alternatives was right on for me. Making coffee is a "ritual" that happens to not throw you off nutritionally. So now when I find myself cruising the pantry I realize it's time to make my favorite coffee, and it almost always does the trick.

Good luck as you keep moving forward!

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Post by reinhard » Mon Sep 28, 2015 2:17 pm

Wow, that's a great story (and tip -- just checked the search myself). seems almost providential. May no-s come up on thousand of similar stories!

Congratulations on taking advantage of this "sign" and thank you for letting us know here!

Looking forward to hearing more from you in the months and years ahead,


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Post by eyevandy » Mon Sep 28, 2015 5:09 pm

Thanks Reinhard. It's really cool to hear from you and obviously I owe you tons of thanks for developing this diet (it's hard to even call it that) and sharing it with us.

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Post by RAWCOOKIE » Mon Sep 28, 2015 8:20 pm

What a great story! I have two more people giving No S a try just through watching what's going on with me - not hard sell needed. I totally relate to all those experiences you describe. I am amazed at how strong the 'habit' and 'ritual' is! Great isn't it?!
I love Everyday Systems :3

13.6.15 124.25lbs
3.3.19 114.5lbs

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Post by oolala53 » Tue Oct 06, 2015 2:39 am

Such a great way to have stumbled on No S. Welcome to the tribe.
Count plates, not calories. Three a day. 9 years & counting
Age 65
SBMI Jan/10-30.8
Mar/13-24.9 Stayed at +/- 8-lb. for three years Sept/17 22.8 (but more fluctuation)
Mar/18 22.2

There is no S better than Vanilla No S.

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Post by r.jean » Thu Oct 08, 2015 1:02 am

Glad you found No S. It has been a lifesaver for me!
The journey is the reward.
Maintenance is progress.

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Post by BoiseFan » Wed Dec 02, 2015 8:18 pm

Love this story. I found the diet in a year-old magazine that my mother-in-law had in the recycle bin!

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Post by tkahley » Mon Mar 21, 2016 1:48 am

That truly IS a great story! FYI, I just googled, "we all love snacks but getting a good one isn't easy" and is now the #1 result :lol:

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Post by Tombo » Wed May 09, 2018 2:46 pm

Thanks for sharing your success, it is great to hear from you! I wish you all the best for the future on this diet!

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