Too often in our society people equate being healthy with dieting. I believe that lifestyle change is a much better way to stay healthy.
Here is why…
Dieting Doesn’t Work for the Long Term
My definition of dieting is something fairly extreme that usually includes taking certain food types out of your diet and is something that you intend to do short term. For example “I’m dieting until my holiday so I can look good in my swimsuit”. The problems that I find with dieting are as follows:
- Deprivation equals Binging
When I decide to deprive myself of whole food groups such as all carbs or all sugars, I tend to crave them to the point of wanting to binge on a food that I may not have eaten very much of it to begin with. I am also depriving my body of food groups that it actually needs to function optimally which can lead to fatigue and depression.
- Feast or Famine
Dieting usually involves rapid weight loss and what I find with rapid weight loss is that you rapidly put it and more back on when you finish the diet. One reason for this is that your body has kicked into “starvation mode” and will try to hold on to the next food that you put in your body and store it as fat so that it will be ready for the next “famine”.
- What’s good for the goose…
Not all diets work for all people so you may find that the latest fad diet does nothing for you body at all and you end up feeling depressed or worse because you “failed” at the diet that has been successful for everyone else.
- Cheating on your eating
Diets usually come associated with feelings of guilt when you “cheat” on them. And if you are an emotional eater, when you feel guilty, it can lead to binge eating.
Slowly Slowly Catchee Monkey
Lifestyle changes involve making a few different choices each week such as cutting down from two sodas a day to one soda a day for a little while and then maybe cutting out soda altogether. At 39 grams of sugar for one can of coke, even just cutting back one in a day is a huge improvement. “But I only drink diet coke” you say, well the bad things about artificial sweeteners in diet sodas are well documented and there’s a whole chapter on this. If you slowly make different eating choices, you will tend to stick with these changes for a longer time. It’s something you can do right no, small changes are achievable immediately and they have powerful long-term benefits.
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