Health & Food

“I Just Started Dieting”

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My next two posts will focus on two issues that have really been bothering me lately. Rather than sitting and steaming over these issues, I’ve decided to talk (or type…) about these issues and get the opinions of my loyal readers.

In honor of National Registered Dietitian Day I thought I would start with an issue that I know is on the top of many RD’s minds, and that has to do with DIETS. How many times have you talked to someone who has told you, “I just started dieting” or “I’m starting a new diet” or “I’m on a diet”?

Merriam-Webster.com defines “Diet” as this:

I’m wondering when that last definition appeared. Ten, twenty, thirty years ago, perhaps? I know the first three definitions have been around for hundreds of years, because let’s face it, they are the true definition. Our last thirty years of food obsession and weight obsession helped create that last definition, and that’s where my rant begins…

When will people learn that “dieting” doesn’t work? What will it take for people to realize that to “go on a diet” is really another way of saying “I’m going to really watch what I eat, try to be healthier, lose weight for a while, then go back to my normal way of eating and hope that the weight never returns”.

The use of the phrase, “going on a diet” implies a temporary solution to a problem that took years to develop. Right?When I talk to people who tell me they are “going on a diet” they are most often miserably dreading the idea of this impending “diet”. They have some incredibly detailed plan for losing weight by not eating “xyz” or only eating “xyz” and they know they will dread every minute of it. No one who tells me “they are going on a diet” is ever smiling when they say it. No one ever says, “Hey Gina! Guess what?! I’m going on a diet! Can you believe it?! I’m SO excited!”

But you know what?? They should be excited! Why? Because if they aren’t excited then they are doing something wrong, and they will likely fail at their attempt to lose weight. And before I go any further I would like to propose a change to the phrase “going on a diet”. I would like to call it “going on a lifelong journey to better health”. Yeah, much better (and I’m not taking credit for this phrase, it’s been around for years!). “Hey Gina! Guess what?! I’m going on a lifelong journey to better health”! Even just saying that makes me happier than “going on a diet”, but anyway, I digress. Back to what I was saying at the beginning. If someone isn’t excited about “going on a diet” then clearly they aren’t making the right changes. It’s when people make drastic and unappealing changes to their diets that the plan ends up failing in the end. If you go into your “journey” with a positive attitude, and plan meals that are tasty and delicious, and allow yourself to ease into the journey, you will succeed!

I propose that we no longer use the word “diet” or the term “going on a diet” and we all change our attitudes and focus more on health, longevity, eating anything and everything in moderation, and feeling great in our bodies, rather than focusing on “dieting” and eating “cardboard”, going hungry, being miserable, but hey…….. also losing weight!

Who’s with me?!?!?!

Enjoy good food. Enjoy feeling great about who you are. Enjoy living life not focusing on “diets” and food. Enjoy the journey of life and enjoy making your life-long journey just a bit more healthy, not just for weight purposes, but for mental and physical health purposes…. for a better quality of life!

By the way, have you noticed more companies are doing “quick weight loss” plans such as the one below?

Ummm, this isn’t unique. This is called eating a healthy well-balanced diet! Sorry Yoplait, you didn’t come up with anything special and/or different, but I do give you credit for pointing out the obvious….eating healthy and/or losing weight can be easy, and delicious!

I also thought I’d share this great article, which talks about some “diet rules that don’t suck”. Even though I just preached the fact that I hate the term “going on a diet”, I still like this article. Enjoy!

QUESTION: Are you with me? The phrase “going on a diet” signifies something that is temporary, and it’s time to get rid of it…permanently!

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