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After losing 70 pounds, Tosca Reno unveils weight loss secrets in 'Start Here'

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Tosca Reno has become famous for her "Eat Clean" philosophy. However, she revealed in an exclusive interview on Dec. 31, she struggled with her own weight for years. Now Tosca is sharing how she lost more than 70 pounds in a new book: "The Start Here Diet: Three Simple Steps That Helped Me Transition from Fat to Slim . . . for Life."

What motivated Tosca to shed the weight? Fear that she wouldn't see her daughters become adults.

"Seventy pounds is a substantial amount of weight to gain and/or lose, so it did require a push of some sort," Tosca told me.

"For me, that was a fear that I would not be healthy enough to watch my daughters grow up to be young women and have families of their own. That and the fact that I was sick and tired of being sick and tired."

Tosca believes that weight loss requires confronting the reasons why and when you are using food for all the wrong reasons.

"The book gives you the Starting Position for recognizing when you are using food incorrectly - the Dive In is that place," she explained to me.

And part of the journey to your ideal weight means recognizing your trigger foods.

"Whenever I help someone I always ask them what the one food is they can't live without. They list one, two or several foods - often, chocolate, ice cream, wine and more - and look at me with fear on their faces as if they can't live without them, ever!" Tosca says.

"That's when I know I have hit the "hot" button and it's probably the one thing blocking that person from achieving their ideal weight or health. Just recognizing this is eye opening, even liberating."

So does losing weight and keeping it off mean saying farewell forever to your favorite foods? No, Tosca told me.

"It's just learning how to consume it responsibly! When you get the urge to dig into your hidden food, do something different first - make a cup of tea, run an errand, etc. Then see how you feel and if you really need that food," she suggests.

One particular concern that she has about most diet struggles: Sugar.

"You would be surprised to learn, for example, how much sugar you eat even when you aren't eating it (on its own). That particular ingredient is everywhere," Tosca cautions.

Ready to make New Year's resolutions to lose weight? Tosca told me that she suggests the following:

  • Set an attainable goal.
    "Can you really lose 50 pounds in a month? NO! Far better to set your sights on losing 5 to 10 pounds in a month. This is attainable."
  • Drink more water.
    "Hydration is the number one nutritional deficiency in North America. Water flushes everything out of your system and even helps you shed toxic waste."
  • Prioritize yourself.
    "Do things to support your intentions. Read helpful materials, find a friend to walk/move with, write your intentions in a journal so you can watch your progress. This is all good stuff for getting on track."
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