Annoyed at seeing your friends ‘healthy’ lifestyles in January?
This controversial advice might be correct, but you should ignore it
Why diets don’t work and other myths
This month you’re going to hear a LOT of advice from all kinds of sources…
TV adverts, magazine supplements, neighbours, your doctor…
And worst of all – FRIENDS ON FACEBOOK (or email, Twitter, wherever you might connect with them online!)
So many people will have something to say about diet.
“I tried this and it WORKS!”
“You HAVE to do this if you want to lose weight.”
“Never eat this stuff, it’s terrible for you.”
If you’re lucky, you’re either slim or happy with your weight, and you can just smile and skip along merrily, ignoring them.
If you’re less lucky, you’re secretly dying to lose a few pounds or more.
• You just can’t help checking out the latest diet article when you see the headline on the magazine.
• You eagerly listen to your best friend who’s lost a stone by eating pineapples (or whatever’s the latest fad).
• Every advert in January promising a flat tummy makes you feel simultaneously excited about the possibilities and guilty because you’re not getting there.
• You check out Facebook and you see your friends jogging, or photographing their quinoa salads, and it makes you feel like you’re lagging behind, that you’re doing it all wrong.
So I don’t blame you if you’re feeling resentful, confused, shamed, irritated and downright despairing.
The question is…
What’s the right thing to do?
Well according to some people…
Don’t do anything!
These days you’ll see just as many articles by people telling you not to bother with New Year resolutions at all.
Your diet won’t work. You’ll only fail in the long run. Don’t bother,
For instance, I have a friend who says this about January…
“Drink some wine, eat fine foods, sit by the fire in the evenings, read books and watch films… that’s the way to get through the darkest, most miserable month of the year. Why make it hard for yourself?”
To be fair, the naysayers do have a point.
How many times have you set a massive goal for yourself at the beginning of the year, only to go back to your old ways within a few months?
The trouble is, by listening to the controversial ‘DON’T DO ANYTHING’ advice you’re stuck…
If you really ARE unhappy with your eating habits and keen to lose weight, then what?
Doing nothing is not an option.
Carrying on as you were last year is not an option.
You need to start somewhere.
So, while I’m well aware I’m adding to the pile of dieting advice, I hope this is something that will genuinely help (and help you avoid all the confusion).
Stop worrying about what everyone else is doing and comparing yourself to them…
There is no “one-size-fits-all” diet.
When your friend tells you they’ve cracked the secret of easy weight loss, that might be true for them, but not for you.
The Paleo Diet, the Atkins Diet, the South Beach Diet, the 5:2 diet… how successful they are depends on your metabolism. Not only that, different bodies are more or less tolerant of different foods (gluten or dairy for instance).
In 2015 Israeli researchers led by Eran Segal and Eran Elinav of the Weizmann Institute of Science, ran tests on the different diets.
They found that different subjects showed different responses to the same food. The researchers suggested that the future of weight control would be for individuals to discover their own eating plans, based on their own bodies and experiences.
In other words, picking a diet off the shelf based on some testimonials and a slim person grinning in their leotard won’t necessarily work.
You should also bear this in mind (something the slimming industry don’t want you to know!)
Diets alone don’t work
As I mentioned on January the 1st, rushing into a sudden change in eating works well for a few weeks – and you may well see the pounds drop off – but it’s not sustainable.
You cannot permanently switch off your habits and impulses, purely through willpower.
What’s more, when you starve your body of certain food groups, the body goes into a state of emergency, storing more of your energy as fat to protect itself.
When you eventually start eating like you did before, you get fatter more quickly than you did before.
The reality is, it takes a lot of connected lifestyle changes to lose weight.
To give you a few examples:
• Eating from smaller plates and controlled portion sizes
• Regular at eating times and avoiding evening snacks
• Getting better quality of sleep
• Relieving stress and other triggers for over-eating
• Enjoying a new pastime or hobby to put your focus on
• Tweaking your diet gradually by reducing levels of some foods and introducing healthier options.
In other words, the secret of lasting weight loss is to take small steps towards the bigger goal. Change your lifestyle gradually, by addressing each of the root CAUSES of weight gain, not simply throwing yourself into a hardcore diet plan.
For instance, I revealed last weekend that you can suppress your appetite naturally using honey, garlic and vinegar supplements.
And for this coming weekend, I want to show you a way you can help yourself lose weight that has nothing to do with portion size, exercise or cutting out foods. You can do this with just a small amount of willpower each day and it’s easily achievable.
I’ll explain more on Saturday.
Until then, stay healthy!