You Can Lose Weight – tips for breaking ‘healthy eating’ guidelines occasionally

Highlights of this information update
00.00     Introduction
00.45     Begin diets slowly
01.12     What we eat is our choice – maintain healthy options
01.35     The guidelines for the occasional breaking of the healthy eating ‘rules’
02.21     If you must snack on unhealthy foods occasionally – do it sensibly
04.07     Sabotaging the saboteur within

Have you ever been on a diet and, not too far into it you thought, ‘heck I can’t eat anything good, so I’ll just give it up. It’s just not worth the effort?’

Well I think that happens for a lot of us. It certainly has for me.

When we go on these diets and go cold turkey, and very, very strictly cut out all the things we used to like, it’s almost like something we’re addicted to being stopped and the addiction kicking in.

Well that’s probably exactly what it is, because most of the things that we tend to like are things that are either full of sugar or produce sugar in our body and nothing, (or very few things) is more addictive to the human body than sugar.

Therefore, I’m going to suggest to you, just as a tip to help you with your weight management, that when you kick off a diet, step into it a little slowly and reflectively.

That might be a bit different from what a lot of people say, but it is important, in my opinion.

Have the intention, by all means, of sticking to a nice eating plan, getting your portions under control etc., but allow yourself a breach of the rules occasionally, because I believe if you don’t do that it’s possible to quickly develop the attitude, ‘I’m being deprived’, and no one likes to be deprived of the things they like.

Now the more and more we accept that what we eat is a choice, and we can choose to eat a little bit of cake or a little bit of chocolate occasionally, the more likely, if we’re really, really strategic about our weight loss programme (as discussed in past posts) the more likely we are to stick to just breaking the rules a little bit, and not giving up completely.

In the weight loss work I do with my clients, I always say ‘there are rules, but there are also rules by which we break the rules’.

Well, in future posts I’ll tell you what the rules are, but right now I’m going to start, because I think you’ll be more interested in these, with the rules for when you break the rules.

If you’re committed to a healthy eating plan, and you’re trying to really, really, get into the spirit of losing weight effectively and being more healthy, allow yourself occasionally to have a meal where there are no restrictions.

Maybe one in twenty-one meals or something like that – or perhaps you could start with two in twenty-one and reduce it to one.

This gives you something to look forward to until you get in the habit of simply looking forward to more healthy eating all the time.

In addition to that, if you feel like a snack because it’s been a stressful day and you haven’t quite got into the habit of full healthy eating patterns yet, go ahead and have your snack, but here’s some rules about the snack.

One, whatever it is, even if it’s a tiny biscuit or one square of chocolate, and by the way, that’s the first rule, have small portions, one biscuit maximum, couple squares of chocolate, half a cupcake.

Secondly, when you take these small portions, don’t take them direct from the refrigerator or from the pantry into the mouth. Rather, put it on a plate, close the fridge up, and go and sit down at a table or bench, and definitely not in front of the television.

This is about breaking habits, not reinforcing them, so formally take the little snack, take a small portion of it, sit down and eat it.

When you’ve finished eating it, put the plate away, clean up everything, and then off you go.

Now, if you feel like a little more, fine! Don’t deprive yourself, but, again, there’s some rules by which you earn the right to have some more, and these are those rules

  • one, wait twenty minutes between one snack and the next
  • secondly, while you’re waiting make sure you have a nice slow drink of water

Now I have some other tips in a programme we produced concerning weight loss and we’ll give you more details on that in a future post. For now, let’s stick with the simple ones….wait twenty minutes, have a glass of water, and if you still need the snack the same rules apply – small portion, on a plate, sitting down, cleaning up later, and at least another twenty minute wait before taking more.

If you follow this pattern, very quickly the mind’s going to learn the effort you go through for that small snack isn’t worth it, and the habit will break, whereas if you just stop cold turkey there tends to be this thought, ‘wow I’m being deprived’ and also there’s that strong habit or sugar addiction hopping in to sabotage you,

What I am suggesting is a way of coming in the back door and sabotaging the saboteur, so in your weight loss campaign, you win and you stay on strategy.

Good luck in using this tip.

I know it’s going to work for you but it only works when you put it into practice.

This is Transforming Minds. I’m Alan Patching.

Thank you for watching or reading.

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