Why do we fail with diets over and over and over again? My thoughts are the mental game is just too tough, coupled with your body fighting back. You body is like, “no more pizza? Fine then, just wait to see how I punish you for that!”
If you are one of the million Americans who try and fail at a diet each year, maybe you should step back a notch and go with baby steps. First off, you should be exercising, which is a foundation and needs to become a part of your lifestyle in any case. Then, slowly make some changes for the better – changes you can keep.
Here is a perfect example of a change: My family usually has a Mexican style meal each week, whether it is tacos, taco soup, fajitas, or quesadillas. One of the yummiest add-ons to any Mexican meal is sour cream (and/or) guacamole.
Mmmm, I could just eat that photo. What we did was find other flavor adders which were not caked with a million calories. We thaw out a frozen peppers/onion mix and get really good salsa. Both of those are darn near freebies and full of flavor. We use them to replace the sour cream. The point is we did not throw away a calorie-laden meal, we made a small alteration which allowed us to still enjoy the meal greatly, but cut out a boat-load of calories.
Think about some of your meals. Can you remove cheese, or reduce the amount? Replace mayonaise with mustard and ground pepper? Upgrade your bread to a slightly healthier choice? Because eating healthy is not just about reducing calories – It is also about getting more nutrients.
When you find a small change that works for you, keep it. And don’t make too many changes at once. Just take baby steps. Alter your meals one or two at a time. Maybe you can go from that instant oatmeal to real oats with some cinnamon and brown sugar added? Maybe you can put some energy into making your lunchtime sandwich healthier by having orange and red peppers cut up? Maybe you find a better tasting spaghetti sauce so you don’t dump all that parmesan cheese on your plate of spaghetti?
Baby steps. Small changes, but changes you can keep. As the cumulative effect takes place month after month, you will one day just realize how healthy you are eating. And you didn’t have to upset your body with a crash diet!