Do you have a favorite genre of music? How about a favorite brand of clothing? Why is it that we don’t let anyone tell us what kind of music we should listen to, what hobbies to have, what clothes to wear, or what our relationships should be like? Yet we let others tell us WHAT foods to eat, HOW much to eat, and WHEN to eat it?
Our ancestors were never told what to eat or how much to eat. They definitely never worried about calories! Animals don’t think to themselves hmm, what should I eat today and how much? They just sniff the food and use their instincts to determine whether they want to eat that food or not.
Dieting Messes Up Our Relationship With Food And Our Mind
Do you think these “Diet Guru’s” know what your body needs more than you do? Shouldn’t we be able to use our own intuition when it comes to food? We’ve lost touch with our intuition because we’ve been misguided from the diet industry, media, and society.
We’ve been taught to fight our bodies and not trust them. Because if we trust our bodies, our eating and weight will get out of control. Dieting is a total setup for a messed up relationship with our body and mind. Dieting starts “innocently.” We’ve all wanted to lose some weight at one point.
Here are three things that can happen when we diet. We all lose weight in the beginning, but when we stop losing weight and gain it all back, and more, we blame ourselves.
You think you’ve failed, which is bad for our emotional wellbeing. That’s when most people either continue the dieting cycle or give up on their body altogether. The third thing that can happen is that it can lead to eating disorders.
Believe it or not, some people take it that far. They want to lose more and more weight because it brings them a false sense of happiness. They start to develop an unhealthy relationship with food and their body. Then, they punish their body by starving/restricting it from certain foods, and forcing it through tough workouts. On top of all that, they compare themselves to others.
In fact, I fell into this exact trap. I also started with just wanting to lose weight innocently and became more and more obsessed. I lost alignment with my body because I trusted a diet book over it. I’d trust a calorie counting app on my phone over my hunger cues. Finally, my health started to suffer truly and developed Amenorrhea (lost my period for 18 months).
Here’s what I like to tell my clients when they’re being unrealistic with their body goals:
“Wanting to get to an unrealistic weight is like wanting to have a different shoe size. If you’re a size 9 you are never going to fit a size 7.” Feel free to tweet this!
Same thing with weight, if your average normal weight is 155 lbs, you won’t be able to sustain that unhealthy weight that you desire for a long period of time. If you’re big-boned, your family is big-boned and heavyset then you’re never going to be a tiny person.
A Few Ways Dieting Is Damaging Your Body
Dieting teaches the body to retain more fat when you start eating again. Due to the fact that you’ve deprived it the necessary nourishment, it automatically slows down the metabolism, and the body naturally wants to hold on to every calorie consumed to protect you.
In fact, chronic dieting slows the rate of weight loss significantly! So, if weight loss is your goal, the least effective thing you can do, is going on a diet. If you focus on something as simple as getting better sleep, your chances to lose weight (AND sustain it) are way higher than dieting. I’ve created a sleep sheet guide where I provide practical and spiritual advice to improve your sleep; if that’s something you struggle with.
Dieting increases binges and cravings. How bad do you want a food that you’ve restricted? How often do you tend to overeat that food? If you weren’t dieting, you’d have a little bit of whatever food you wanted and you’re a lot less likely to binge on it. When your body knows you’re not going to restrict it or even starve it, there’s no reason for it to make you binge or overeat.
Yo-yo dieters, who keep gaining the weight back, tend to regain the weight in the abdominal area. This type of fat storage increases the risk of heart disease. Dieting can increase the chance of a premature death. A thirty-two-year study of more than three thousand men and women in the Framingham Heart Study, showed that people who’s weight keeps going up and down, have a higher death rate and twice the risk of heart disease! In fact, chronic dieting may be as harmful to the body as staying obese!*
Stop Wasting Your Time & Energy
If you’re dieting, you can end your battle with food! I know it’s going to be hard to let go of “control” of your calorie intake and just trust your own body, but with practice, it’ll get easier. It’s normal for this process to be difficult; because you have to unlearn everything you’ve been taught. Consider asking yourself the following questions;
How much longer are you going to continue dieting and mistreat your body?
How much longer are you going to restrict, binge and repeat?
What if you freed up your mind from all those thought
Where would your energy go then? What if you replaced those negative thoughts with something that truly mattered?
I think the world would be a better place if we could stop obsessing over our bodies, calories, exercise and food.
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