Strategies For Weight Loss
Eddie, the electrician, came to the house to do some work. We hadn’t seen him in a couple of years, a testament to the fine job he’s always done. What I saw standing before me at the front door was a much-diminished version of the Eddie I remembered. “Wow, you lost a lot of weight, Eddie, didn’t you? How did you do it?” The answer was both simple and difficult. Eddie gave up a lot of those refined starches that are found in most of the junk foods Americans love to consume. He started eating fruits and vegetables, lots of legumes, and drinking far more water. He stuck to it and slowly, over about a year’s time, he lost the pounds that brought him to what looked like a normal and natural weight for him. He probably hadn’t looked that good since he was 20. He’s now closer to 65. The hard part was giving up foods he was craving and had enjoyed. But he doesn’t seem to miss them so much right now.
Eddie didn’t diet. He didn’t count calories, give up fat or carbohydrates, or drink icky protein shakes every morning. He changed the way he eats for life. Spurred by a doctor’s warning that he was heading towards diabetes, Eddie took this news seriously and just did it. He did what he knew would get him healthy again – eating in the traditional way of his Peruvian ancestors – and the weight just dropped off his body.
The diet industry counts on you to be mortified about your weight. To be desperate, needy, and willing to run to the next crazy diet fad. How else to rid yourself of the excess weight but to diet – even if it’s never worked before? As we saw in the first installment, dieting is doomed to failure because of the body’s physiological response to radical calorie and nutrient deprivation, further complicated by the presence of extreme exercise. It is also not a normal way for people to eat, which pretty much ensures non-compliance. When a new diet arrives and claims NOT to be just another diet scam, you can be sure it is precisely that.
You need to get out of “diet mentality” – frequent dieting, depriving yourself constantly, thinking that burning 600 calories during exercise translates into 600 net less calories in your day, counting calories, counting grams of fat or carbohydrates, counting steps (you hate me now, right?), counting anything at all! Measuring portion sizes, carrying food with you for fear of being hungry, eating while walking down the street, eating while sitting on the subway, eating standing up, eating over the sink. Are you guilty of side-long glances into a shop window as you walk by to see if you’re still as fat as you were this morning? Do you weigh yourself several times a day hoping not eating lunch translated into a few ounces of weight loss? Do you obsess about food? Do you talk about dieting with your friends all the time? Do you go on food cleanses regularly? Do you read every new diet book that comes out? Are you addicted to nutritional science that keeps getting modified and reversed? Not knowing what to eat anymore? If you are guilty of more than one of these, you have the diet mentality affliction.
There are cultures all over the world that stay slim and relatively healthy without ever dieting. They eat food with great gusto, enjoy the flavors and presentations of it, allowing themselves to believe that food IS love after all. That food is part of the great celebration of life to be anticipated and savored. Wouldn’t you like to feel that way about food, too? This is what NORMAL eating is about. And if you eat NORMALLY, you will eventually reach that place of homeostasis, that place of balance where you are the right weight for YOU. It may not be the skinny vision of your dreams, but it will be the place of comfort and health.
If you keep trying to manipulate Mother Nature you will suffer her wrath. Or you can lose weight, get fit, and regain vibrant health by being willing to make changes to habits that don’t serve you. Walk this path with me. You won’t be disappointed.
P.S. – Once Eddie was able to stop eating the foods that were making him ill, he also lost his taste for those very same foods. Which is why I said he doesn’t seem to miss them anymore. We’ll talk more about this phenomenon and show you how to get to Eddie’s blissful state of being.
Disclaimer: The contents of this article are my researched opinions and are provided for educational purposes only. They are not intended to replace sound medical advice from a board certified physician.
© 2016 L-K Associates, LLC