Diets that work? Humph. Every single diet I ever tried just ended in castigating myself because of my failure. Even worse is that I would regain all the weight I’d lost, and more.
There are no diets that work. Seriously.
In fact, studies show that dieting may put you at risk to gain even more weight, or make you put on weight if you are not already overweight.
And whatever you do, discourage your teen from thinking about dieting. Research shows that people who tried losing weight as adolescents have twice the chance of battling their weight in the long-term. If you’re thinking they were overweight to start off with, they were not.
Makes you think, doesn’t it?
Instead of putting Junior on a diet, teach him or her self-control. In a study by the US National Institutes of Health, it was proven that teenagers who practiced high self-control have healthier eating behaviors.
Which makes me wonder what kind of upbringing people with high self-control have, and whether this has an impact on their future dietary patterns…
This dieter wizens up
Having experienced failure on all the diets I tried, I eventually cottoned on to the fact that diets did not work. Duh. Once I had that pegged, I started researching what other factors contributed to poor eating habits.
What I came up with was that people who turned to food for comfort as children, whether they had experienced trauma or who became conditioned to overeating, had a tendency to become addicted to food.
This becomes a habit and over time, eventually becomes an almost unbreakable habit.
Here’s a shocker:
It’s harder to break a food addiction habit than it is to break a cocaine addiction habit.
If there are no diets that work, how do you stop a food addiction habit?
I believe this is different for everyone, but not too different to provide somewhat of a guideline:
- The first step is that you need to assess what’s missing in your life. This tends to be a spiritual thing.
- Take your mind off your weight and decide what health goal you would like to achieve, and then focus on that.
- Learn about your body and what you really need to be healthy. This was a vital step for me, because knowing the effect my lifestyle had on my body, or how my body reacted to certain foods, was a huge motivating factor. For instance, one you realize what heated oils do to you, you’ll think more carefully about chowing down on that McDonalds burger and chips (shame, McDonalds always gets a mention, don’t they?!).
- Do not attempt to make one huge sweeping change. You will fail. And you will battle to get back up again. Rather map out an action plan where you can take small steps at a time, going on to the next step when you’ve conquered one bad habit. For instance, the first step I took was to give up meat. I gave up meat when I started studying natural health and learned about Dr Colin Campbell’s China Study. The point is not to give up meat, but rather to take one small step at a time.
- Don’t give up anything before you’ve added something. One of the most powerful and life changing tips I got was from South Africa’s original and first natural health guru, Mary-Ann Shearer, when I did her “100 Days to Health” program, and it is this: add more raw fruit and vegetables to your diet before you remove anything. This started me on a path of eating a side plate of raw food before any cooked food. Starting this small habit stopped my gastric reflux and also the medication I was using for the pain, made me feel fuller, healed my problematic and inflamed knees and started boosting my immune system. At the same time, I didn’t feel deprived because I had added instead of taking away.
- Don’t only focus on what goes into your mouth. It has to be a lifestyle change. If you’re sedentary, start moving. Get more natural sunlight on your skin and through your eyes.
- Implement and practice self-control. This is where Precise Portions range of goods come in handy, because it teaches you how much you should be eating. Knowing how much a normal person ate was a revelation for me who simply ate what and how much I wanted (when I wasn’t dieting of course). Actually, I didn’t even know what hunger felt like, because I made sure I stayed full all the time! Don’t only practice self-control with your eating, but in every aspect of your life. This will develop your self-control in general, and that is a thing of great power.
End note about dieting
There are no diets that work. Dieting is a concept revered and abused by those who attempt to squeeze money out of the desperation of the obese and overweight.
Be encouraged. Do something small today that will make a difference in your life. Little by little, chip away at the habit that if left to its own devices, will destroy you. Do something – anything – about it, today. And then do a little more tomorrow, and the day after that. Until it becomes a good habit. Good eating habits always lead to better health and losing excess weight.