Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Weight Loss for Winners

Everybody knows that diets don't work. People go on the grapefruit diet, Atkins, the milk and veggie diet. Often, people on these diets lose weight. And then they go off the diet and... they gain it back.

We are the fattest nation in the world, yet we are bombarded with diets, diet aids, diet pills. Even diet shows! Our supermarket shelves are packed with processed foods that are fat free, sugar free, and low carb

Still, we're fat.

Here's why. Diets don't work. Let me say it again, diets don't work. You might think that going on all all-soup diet or a 1,200 calorie/day diet will help you to lose 10 lbs. in two weeks, and you know, it just might. But I would bet that all of the weight lost will pack right back on in just as much time. 

I think that you are smart enough to understand that all these diets deprive you of the nutrients you need, stress your body, and don't really get you anywhere. This doesn't mean that you can't lose weight, it just means that the best method to lose weight and keep it off is to do it by making long-term lifestyle changes.

Changing the way that you eat won't show results as immediately as starving yourself might, but the results will last. If you start eating more vegetables and fruits, and less processed food, you will start to see changes. Replace soda with water, whole milk with skim, fatty meats with lean protein. Be mindful of what you choose to eat and why you are eating it. Often times, we eat because we are bored, or tired, or even thirsty. 

It's important to eat often. Three basic meals with two healthy snacks. A healthy snack might be sliced apple topped with a little peanut butter, or a serving of rice crackers with two tablespoons of hummus. It might be a handful of almonds, or a serving of low fat cottage cheese. 

We have to stop fighting with food, and start to having balanced, respectful relationship with what we eat. We eat to nurture our bodies, to feed our muscles, to get the nutrients we need. When we put lots of sugar, salt, and processed foods into our bodies, we are hurting ourselves. 

If we choose to think about our bodies as our temples, we won't want to do damaging things like starve ourselves or ingest garbage. Fad diets won't be acceptable to us. We will eat foods that energize and strengthen us. We will eat foods that are good for our bodies. 

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