Of the Top 10 New Years Resolutions from 2017, #1 was “Lose Weight / Healthier Eating”. I expect this particular resolution is in the top 3, if not #1, year over year.
It’s widely believed the most popular way to lose weight is to diet. While the tides are starting to shift, the diet industry is still worth about $70 BILLION dollars. Everywhere you look, especially around the holidays, there are different programs that promise quick results. Many rely on the “calories in, calories out” model, & require participants to track themselves & their food.
What many know from experience is that few diets are successful, especially long-term.
Here are a few reasons why:
- Even with fancy apps & watches, all the measuring, tracking, weighing is a lot of work for over-scheduled, busy people. Dieting adds stress when most of us are already chronically stressed. Stress causes the body to hold onto fat. Such tracking also works with our intellectual / logical brains; it doesn’t address the emotional reasons why we might overeat, binge, or make poor choices.
- A diet that works for some is often widely shared as a successful method. However, we’re all different physiologically & psychologically; we have different lifestyles & may be in a different phase of life. Dieters usually try to fit into someone else’s model, & they ultimately shed it because it feels unnatural.
- Diets typically require a level of willpower that’s not practical. They deprive us of the foods we love, the foods that give us pleasure because they look, sound, & taste wonderful. These foods provide us with more than just calories: they provide us with love & nourishment. No wonder we crave them!
Here are 4 ways you can lose weight this year without ever going on a diet:
- Slow down when you eat. If you’re a fast eater (&/or you multi-task while you eat), slowing down & paying attention could be your best ticket to weight loss.
- Maintain a healthy eating rhythm. A common reason for an evening binge is that consciously (i.e. being “good”) or unconsciously (i.e. being busy), we starve ourselves throughout the day while expending a great deal of physical, mental, & emotional energy. By evening, your body may be desperate for attention & nourishment. At this point, it hasn’t the patience to be selective.
- Eat macro-nutrient balanced meals (&snacks). Every time you eat, have some protein, carbohydrates, & healthy fats. Ideally, you’re also consuming high-quality, organic, whole foods.
- If you love chocolate, have some chocolate! People are surprised that as a Mind-body Wellness Coach, I eat 1-2 pieces of chocolate every single day. If I banned this pleasurable food, eventually I’d crave the smooth, slightly bitter taste of my Trader Joe’s Extra Dark Chocolate Wedges and 1-2 pieces wouldn’t be enough. Over-restriction of desire & suppression of pleasure often results in “out-of-control” binges. Here’s another good reason to get pleasure from your food.
These are simple techniques, and that doesn’t mean they’re easy (especially #1). Here are some next steps for you:
|Learn more about Eating a Sustainable, Healthy Diet||Check out Breaking Free of Emotional Eating — my self-study program that will help change how you think about your challenges with food, weight, or body image.||Schedule a 20-minute complimentary conversation to see if Mind-body Wellness Coaching is right for you.|
One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well. –Virginia Woolf