By Fern Tausig
On Your Mind
Which is the best diet? Which diet works? They all work…if you want to spend your life on a diet.
Diets set you up for failure. You go on and then you go off because they are unsustainable. For those of you who have dieted your whole life, you know I’m right. In fact, when you went off that diet you gained back the weight plus extra pounds.
The reason you gain extra weight is obvious. When you go off the diet, your body goes a little overboard trying to recover if it was a calorie-limited diet. If it was a diet that eliminated carbs, your body craves the sugar once it’s reintroduced. Sugar and white flour create cravings for more sugar. Many people diet for a particular occasion and then go back to poor eating habits after that event.
The secret to successfully becoming trimmer is simply to change your relationship with food and, more importantly, change your relationship with your body.
Many people who come to me for weight issues say unkind things to their body. They put stuff into their body that they call “junk.” That is, they deliberately eat stuff that they know has no nutritional value except to provide more fat. Then they say mean things to their bodies for being fat.
Most people’s bodies have been very good to them. Their body has allowed them to play, work and enjoy life. Your body requires nutrition, rest, exercise and lots of water. If you give your body what it needs, the excess fat will be used for energy and you will feel healthier and happier.
I know it sounds simple; that’s because it is. When you change your relationship with food you recognize that food is for nourishment. The food you choose should be chosen by the quality of the nourishment it provides, not the way it makes you feel while you are eating it.
Unconsciously, when you eat “junk” you actually get a high. People use food as a drug, and that’s why there are cravings and feelings of being out of control around it. It’s why you eat the whole bag of chips, the whole pizza or the whole box of cookies.
Why did I add pizza to the junk category? Most pizza is made from white flour and water. That is the recipe for paste that you used for paper mache. On top of the pizza is some sauce and cheese. Cheese is mostly fat. If you have extra fat, eating more fat is counterproductive. It’s not that you can’t ever eat fat again, but your body doesn’t need more while you have too much. If you want pizza, it should be a small part of a balanced meal, not the whole meal. That’s how to manage the amount of weight you want to have.
I always distinguish with my clients the difference between food and edible substances. Processed and packaged foods are edible, but most of them aren’t food because they don’t supply enough nutrition to qualify. If you are mindful of what you put into your body and you love, honor and respect your body, you will notice a difference in the way you look and feel.
If you eat until you are satisfied, not full, and eat for nourishment and only when you’re hungry, you will never need to diet again. Stop dieting and become trimmer.