Almost two decades of my life was spent going on never-ending diets in search of the Holy Grail of weight loss so I could acquire the body of a supermodel and live life happily ever after. I finally stopped this insane cycle after realizing the damage it was causing and decided I did not want to spend the rest of my life being obsessed with weight loss and being a certain size and shape. In the process of breaking free from the dieting trap, I have wondered how much time I have wasted thinking about diets, food, my body and weight loss and what I could have done differently with my time. Continue reading How Much Time Is Wasted By Dieting?
When we lose twenty pounds…we may be losing the twenty best pounds we have! We may be losing the pounds that contain our genius, our humanity, our love and honesty. ~ Woody Allen
Wow! I saw this thought-provoking quote by Woody Allen today. Messages the weight industry use to promote their weight loss strategy can be very harmful. Too often advertising talks about what we will gain when the dieter loses weight. Typical gains that are suggested include our health, energy levels, confidence, self-respect, a new career, romance with a new partner and so on. It’s rare to hear what one may have lost in the journey to lose weight. Continue reading Is Self-Worth Dependent On Your Size And Shape?
One of the things I don’t like about dieting is that many dieting programs have unrealistic standards that must be met in order to be “successful”. Having previously been on mainstream dieting programs (and some extreme ones as well!), where I was given “support” to help me achieve some goal weight, I have personally experienced the unrealistic standards that dieters are confronted with. Continue reading Not Good Enough! Why The Perfectionism Of Diets Destroys Weight Loss Goals
When the diet industry markets a weight loss program, they usually focus on the end result or comparisons between what the person was like before and after they went on the program. For example, they will show a ‘before’ picture of a person looking miserable, with no makeup and wearing daggy clothes with an ‘after’ picture of someone looking happy, dressed well and all made up, who has lost weight. This often comes with a testimonial from the dieter who may typically say something like “I’m feeling more energized, I can finally go to the beach and I’ve met a new man and we’re about to be married”. Continue reading Are You Delaying Your Dreams Because You’re Dieting To Lose Weight?
Trying to maintain your health and weight when life is throwing some major life stresses at you (such as the death of a loved one, work redundancy, relationship breakdown etc) is challenging to say the least! While some people lose weight in times of major life stress, many others tend to put on weight as comfort eating increases and physical activity decreases. Adding to this, the hormone cortisol is released in higher amounts at times of stress and this tends to slow down metabolism leading to weight gain.
2009-2010 was a period in my life where I seem to experience many major life stresses that really took a toll on my health. It would be nice to think that no further major stresses will occur in my life and I’ll go on to live happily ever after, free from stress; however, reality seeps in and tells me that major life stresses are inevitable and will occur at some point in the future – here’s hoping it’s just not all at once!
So how do you maintain your sanity and health and when going through major life stress?
Self Care, Self Care, Self Care! A common theme I have noticed in many people when they are going through major life stress, is they tend to reduce or completely stop engaging in activities they need to do to allow themselves to sooth their distress. For example, many people stop going out with friends, or they stop eating well, or they stop exercising or stop doing things that they normally give them pleasure. Looking after yourself is important at any time and in times of major life stress it is even more essential to engage in self care. Continue reading How to Maintain Your Health and Eating Habits In Times Of Major Life Stress
One of the many reasons why diets may fail people is due to the number of ‘rules’ one must follow for the diet to work. Some of these rules come with high expectations for the ‘dieter’ to change habits of a life time. While understandably if you want to reach a healthy weight, some habits require changing, if those new habits are not consistent with your belief system, personal preferences or require a dramatic change in lifestyle it can be very hard to successfully follow these dietary rules through.
An example of this is that some diets and weight loss advisors focus on the dieter having six small meals per day. Personally, one of my health obstacles has been in making sure I am sufficiently organized and get the time to make three nutritious meals per day. Having always eaten three meals per day I have absolutely no desire in changing this dietary regime. Where would I get the time to make six nutritious meals per day, when three is hard enough???? Furthermore, finding the time and opportunity to eat six times a day would not really be that easy. I have other commitments in my life, such as work, that requires me to focus my concentration on other activities besides consuming food. Continue reading Do I seriously have to eat six small meals per day?
Most people have a tipping point when they realize a health habit is no longer serving them and a change is needed. Prior to taking the plunge to change the habit, it can be helpful to think of why you are wanting to change. That is, what are you trying to achieve, how will you be different if you make the change and what will be different about your health and overall wellbeing ?
If you know the reasons why you are trying to achieve something, it can help to keep you focused and on track. It’s often too easy when you reach a stumbling block in any change in habit, to lose faith that you can continue. Knowing your why’s can give you that extra bit of motivation and focus to keep going and not let the stumbling blocks (which are bound to happen!) stop you from progressing further. Continue reading Why Change Your Health Habits?