Ditch the Diet

5 Reasons to Ditch the Diet

If you go on a “diet,” what happens after you come off your diet? Fad diets are designed to lead to rapid weight loss, which really means eating much fewer calories than your body needs. This restriction you put on yourself may actually backfires in the long run. Often times, your body wises up and compensates for getting less food by slowing your metabolism.  

The deprivation caused by dieting creates a sense of entitlement, a mindset of “I deserve something for being so good”, so you treat yourself, which in turn leads to more (over)eating. Since most diets fail, we must take a different approach. Here are 5 reasons NOT to “diet.”

  1. It’s not “all about the weight”. So your doc told you to lose some weight to get healthy right? I get it… but it’s really not all about the weight. It’s more about what is going on inside, it’s a lot deeper than what appears. Are you eating out of boredom, or to cope with feelings? Sometimes we find that we are eating out of a habit, and in absence of hunger.
  2. It places food on a pedestal. Any time you put something on a “do not eat” list, it gives the food power over you. This imbalance of power causes shame and guilt, especially when you give into the forbidden food.
  3. You don’t wanna look like a sumo wrestler. Sumo wrestlers don’t come by their shape naturally, but by intentionally skipping breakfast and not eating most of the day. Instead of “breaking-the-fast”, they keep their metabolism at a slow hum and cruise through their day until the evening when they load up. Then they eat way more than their body needs at night and purposely starve themselves all day to train their body to store fat. 
  4. Enjoy wholesome nutrition. When we are not depriving ourselves, we get better at determining which foods our bodies need. Instead of eating several slices of pizza, we may discover that pairing a slice or two with a green salad makes our tummies feel even better!
  5. You are beautiful! Loving your body and feeling gorgeous in your own skin right where you are is the first step on the journey to finding your healthy and happy weight. When weight is not the focus we can begin to accept ourselves, and choose a lifestyle that embraces the full meaning of health. 

Eating when you’re hungry, does not give you a license to gorge out, but it allows enough freedom to break down the diet mindset, building trust in your body. It’s smarter than you’d think. Since there aren’t any foods on the naughty list, simply follow your innate senses to eat when you are hungry and stop when you reach satisfaction. Find the real you by ditching the diet for a health and happiness.

Tara Collingwood
Tara is a nationally recognized expert and spokesperson on nutrition, fitness, and health promotion and is quoted in a variety of media including television, radio, newspapers, magazines, and websites.

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