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'DIET' Is A Four Letter Word!

I've tried them all - even the vanilla ice cream diet!

What is it about the word diet that makes us all cringe? Even if you don’t need a diet, when you hear the word it just has a negative connotation.

Now I have to be honest here, through my life I have probably tried them all. I think the best ever was the “vanilla ice cream diet,” no joke! 

I don’t recall what exactly the diet entailed but I do remember I was allowed to have a cup of vanilla ice cream at the end of every day. What’s that you ask, did it work? I think you know the answer, but I will answer anyway, NO!

The truth is there are a million or more diets, fads, and supplements that swear if you use them you will lose weight. But the end result always winds up the same: you might lose a few pounds but it will always come right back. Changing your eating habits has to be a life change. You cannot decide for the next month you are not going to eat carbs, sugar, or whatever, then after a month go right back to eating all those things again.

I am not a believer in “restriction” diets; I don’t think they work. It’s not realistic to say, “I’m never going to eat carbs again,” you cannot live like that. The same goes for sweets. Come on, we all love a cookie here and there, and in moderation, I believe it’s fine. Some people have trouble with that, but that is all part of the weight gain/loss issue. 

You have to find what works for you because everyone is different. The calculation is simple, keep track of the calories you take in, and exercise to work them off.

But this does not mean you shouldn’t eat all day in order to lose weight! I cannot tell you how many times I have heard, “I did well today I didn’t eat a thing!”  NO! NO! NO!  

That is not a good thing at all; your body needs fuel to function. My favorite analogy is this: Think of your body as a furnace - the more you fuel it the more it will burn. If you don’t eat, your body will begin to shut down in order to conserve energy, putting you in starvation mode, which drastically slows down your metabolism. This is not good, you need to keep that fire burning! 

Generally it’s said that you should eat lots of small meals throughout the day but realistically, for most this is hard to achieve. I say that because it requires preparation and planning, and for most, work and just life in general get in the way. So if you have your three square meals a day, making sure to keep track of your portion size, and maybe lightening up on the snacks, you’re on the road to success.

I’m not saying don’t have a snack, I’m saying maybe have them once a week instead of every day. This way you won’t feel deprived.  It will help! You need to take baby steps. The first thing you need to do is to take a step back and see where you can “tighten” your belt so to speak, on your daily intake of food. Wheat bread instead of white is a good start. Sweet potato instead of baked potato.   Baked or broiled instead of fried. These are all smart options in order to “tighten” your belt.

You can do it; you can make the change. The bottom line is you have to find what works for you. It may take some time, but in the end it’s all for a good cause, there is only one YOU, and you are definitely worth the effort! 

You are stronger than you think.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

john marra February 07, 2013 at 03:27 PM
Wonderfully written and insightful as always. Whatever the subject you tackle here, it seems you always know what points are the most important and talk about them in a way most can easily relate to. Keep up the good work.
Len February 08, 2013 at 01:48 PM
Great job Chris! This is so true in everything people do. Don't overdue anything, everything in moderation. Len

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