Why diets don’t work and why it's good to remove the word “diet” from your dictionary forever.
The weight loss industry is huge, profiting billions of dollars annually. It includes weight loss centers, weight loss coaches, weight loss books, apps and on-line communities, over the counter diet pills, supplements and shakes, pre-packaged super-meals, but also all kind of equipment from little barbells through complex home fitness machines to various electronic devices that will magically make your fat disappear.
People get so overwhelmed, and from overwhelming comes overcomplicating. We, humans, also have a great ability for self-sabotage. I guess it’s because we need an excuse for ourselves to say “it didn’t work” or “it was too complicated”, “it was unsustainable”, “my body just couldn’t handle it”, so we can get back to our old comfortable regime. And also so that we have something to talk about with our friends, as some of the most rewarding topics are the ones how stuff doesn’t work or sucks. And that’s why diets never work – because they’re either complicated, unsustainable and your body can’t handle them because it’s smart and it knows something is missing. And your mind actually can’t handle them either because it’s more convenient and pleasuring to grab a snack or ready-to-eat meal rather than bother yourself with preparing one.
There is no secret that in order to have a healthy, lean and strong body, you need to change your habits, and it goes from your attitude, through food to exercise. It mainly requires change in your everyday food choices, and to sustain the results, you need to adopt such lifestyle for good, be disciplined, actually enjoy what you eat and be content about these decisions. Sounds too difficult, doesn’t it?
Living a healthy life is actually pretty simple. All we need is some common sense. If you know something’s not good for you, why keep on doing it? You basically need to stop eating “crap” and start eating real food. Simple food in the most natural form possible, several times a day depending on your activity level and approximate metabolism speed. There’s no science behind it, no special strategies, special timing, special cooking, special restaurants, special supplements or whatever else that has been invented.
Just think about it. How many diets have you heard about and read about during your life and how many of them have you tested? Did they work? Long term? Are you still enjoying them and in great shape thanks to them, or are you back where you were before? I doubt that you’re still using any of those. Of course, short term they might be effective, because each one of them suggests a smaller or bigger caloric restriction, and if you don’t deliver sufficient calories and nutrients to your body, you’ll lose weight guaranteed—but you’ll also negatively influence your bodily functions and therefore hurt your body in some way. I also bet that every one of those diets clashed your normal life or made you go nuts. Diets are simply too intrusive and too limiting, and the majority of people cannot follow a super-restrictive diet for a long period of time. Even some truly dedicated individuals will sooner or later probably give up.
First of all, let's remove the word “diet” from our dictionary forever. Diet to me sounds like death. And not only it sounds like it, it actually means that. It kills our spirit and our mood and to many people it only brings health issues and eating disorders.
Second, we need to simplify our thinking about food and focus on other, more important things in our lives. You might think “that’s easier said than done” and you’re right, it does take a firm decision and commitment on your part. It requires discipline and yes, you’re going to fail several times, but if you’re really sick of being sick and unhealthy, you need to push through until you make it eventually. You’re going to get better and better every day, with every meal you have. And your overall health results are going to be worth it, and they’ll be your ongoing motivation.
Don't Think Food. Think Nutrition.
It’s crucial to restore your relationship to food and what it means to you, and how you can use it for your benefit. You can’t get healthy if you have unhealthy relationship to food, and until you make it clear as day, you’ll have difficulty dealing with your health and weight.
You need to stop thinking about food as guilt or pleasure. That’s how so many people think every single time they eat. They either beat themselves up for eating too much or wrong foods, or they use it as a coping mechanism to lift their spirits or “solve” their problems (at least for a moment). This way you basically live all your life in guilt – guilt about food and guilt about your body. You hate your body and to comfort that, you eat, and you probably eat more or unhealthy because usually a lettuce or a carrot is not something that will soothe your soul. And then you feel guilty about what you ate because you know it will reflect on your body, so you hate yourself and your body even more, and then again you reach for food to comfort you. It’s a vicious circle. Aren’t you tired of that?
You need to stop thinking in terms “how could I screw the system?” The thing is you can’t. You can’t screw the system of your body. It is smarter than you, and it knows what’s good and what’s bad for it. The only way to healing is to adopt a strategy of “WHAT CAN I EAT AND DO TO NOURISH MY BODY?” Because when you care for nourishment, you won’t have to worry about getting fat or obese, nor have a desire to hurt you body. It’s thinking on a whole different level. You need to start thinking about food as a tool to keep you alive, to keep your body healthy and strong and to allow you to function properly so that you can focus on other more important areas of your life. Food is here to keep you going, that’s all. Of course, make it tasty, eat what you like and really enjoy it. Eat enough to keep you full and your energy high so that you can think properly; work properly and do all the activities you want. Consume tons of healthy foods that support your body, and if you start performing like this from now on, you’ll never have to worry about diets, weight loss and eating disorder again. Living and eating responsibly is a mindset.
That’s why I love the word “discipline”; to me it radiates power, power of my mind, a warrior’s spirit. I’m a warrior at all the fronts of my life, and that’s why I need to do what supports my body—because my body will help me to move forward to anything I want to accomplish. If I hurt it, no matter how brilliant my mind is, I won’t be able to do nor enjoy anything.
So eat responsibly, enjoy it and enjoy the brand new life it will enable you. If you'd like some help with it, check out my books, schedule a consultation or follow me on Facebook to get more tips how to reclaim your health and your physique: www.facebook.com/JanaTalavaskova.