Are you always dieting? When did the agony begin — childhood I’m guessing?

dietingIs your frustration level and motivation waning?  Yet, still, after all the diets with no real, sustainable success, you’re still holding out hope “it” is out there just waiting for you?

Dieting Update: I have good and bad news for you! The bad news: “it” is not out there.  The good news:  “it” is inside of you already and you can choose to end your dieting torturous ways. You can embrace this internal “it” along with self-loving, pleasurable eating practices, and wind up with a body you love.

No, this isn’t that “woo-woo” stuff where I’ll suggest you take a 10 day retreat to some far off land, sit in an ashram and meditate for hours to become one with yourself…yadda yadda yadda (although, don’t knock meditation, it can rock your world and do amazing things for your mind, body and spirit, but that’s another topic).

Instead, the end to your dieting suffering begins with learning the principles and strategies found in eating psychology and mind-body nutrition. They are both scientifically rooted, aligning with our body’s innate functioning and powerful common sense. These are doable lifestyle practices.

WARNING: The solution to ending your dieting hell that I’m about to reveal requires open-mindedness and a genuine willingness to fully try these strategies out. And if you’ve been a long time dieter (like over 10 years or more), a heavy dose of patience.

The following practices have the power to eliminate dieting forever!

That’s a powerful statement. One I hope got your attention. IF you really are sick and tired of torturing yourself with dieting, read on.

And before I get to the list, let me define dieting:

Rusti Q Diet Definition–any means by which you:

  • unnaturally nourish yourself with diet foods, pills, shakes, etc., and/or restrict or deprive your body from certain foods and/or count anything (calories, points, grams, size) and/or
  • you exercise your body in punishing ways in retaliation for unwanted weight and/or having an appetite (code for believing you have no willpower) and/or making “bad” food choices and/or
  • you subscribe to beliefs that insist that your worth, lovability and opportunity for genuine happiness lie in the almighty power of the scale, BMI chart, dress/pant size, the media and/or what another person says you “should” weigh or look like.

Dieter side effects are always certain to include horrific negative self-talk, berating oneself in the mirror (if you can look at all), feelings of hopelessness and low self-esteem.

If you want to end dieting forever, try these 3 practices:

dietng key#1 Slow down when eating. Most people don’t know how long they take to eat a meal, let alone a snack, but it’s very common for an entire dinner to be scarfed down in under 5 minutes. I think it’s safe to say we’ve all heard that it takes the body at least 20 minutes to send the signal, hey there, I’m full, stop eating, right?

But there’s SO much more to this practice than just slowing down to know when you’re full. You’ve eaten enough meals to know upon sight whether a quantity of food you’re about to eat will make you full, whether you eat it in 5 minutes or 30 minutes. So it’s not about portions.

Without going into all the biology and physiology of why slowing down will help end your dieting deprivation way of life, focus on this:

  • your body’s digestion, nutrient absorption and metabolism function at its best when you eat slowly (start out aiming for 15 minutes/meal, then gradually increase to a regular practice of 20+ minutes per meal). When you do this, you feel satisfied, more energetic and you will not overeat. You will stop eating naturally when you’ve reached that pleasure point in the meal.

Try it – this week, every night for dinner (or whichever is your most hurried and largest meal of the day), time yourself and extend the time you take to eat. This will seem uncomfortable and you’ll likely want to give up the first or second time trying it, but don’t, keep practicing. The payoff is priceless.

Slowing down is the main ingredient in the recipe ending your dieting hell.dieting

#2  Elevate the quality of your foods using the crowd-out method and become your own food detective. So much mental anguish and money has been spent on buying diet foods or “healthy” foods and seeking out nutrition experts to tell you what to eat. This has lead many people to use misinformation, old science, or downright lies from the food industry (and others) whose focus is a one-size fits all “solution” to dieting concerns. How does anyone figure out what foods their unique body needs to maintain a healthy weight, have consistent energy, and live a pleasurable life?

Well, don’t give up hope, there is a way. Fortunately we were all born with it.

Yup, when you implement #1 above, you allow your brilliant body to give you feedback to tell you which foods work best in your body and which don’t. That’s why cookie cutter diets and good foods/bad foods lists don’t work – they’re meant simply a form of marketing.

You are a unique, lovely person whose one and only body is the only nutritionist you should listen to. Don’t get me wrong, you do have to enlist your brain in this practice and learn about real nutrition. We all also need to understand the difference between Real food and Fake food – like what is real, natural, whole, made from scratch food? Where do I find it? How do I prepare it? In what quantities or ratios do I eat it?

Before you say “whoa, way too complicated” or too expensive or whatever knee-jerk belief just zipped into your mind, I hope you can stay open to some new information.

You don’t have to become a food zealot or get a degree in nutritional science to succeed. Start with some basic swaps to elevate your food choices, i.e. fresh/frozen over canned, homemade from scratch cooking (more often than microwavable or take out meals), more water and less soda. You get the idea.

As you learn more about food quality, you can begin to swap out more of the mass produced, highly processed food-like stuff and that’s when things get really interesting. HINT: to get high quality, easy to digest information about food quality, consider subscribing to Food Matters TV at www.fmtv.com, where you’ll have access to a broad range of topics and can fuel your mind with TV/video that actually leads to better health!

In this step two you start playing detective. You’ll begin to see which foods digest best in your system, and how your cravings change. This effort in seeing which foods impact your mood, energy, weight, mental focus, and inner self-talk is an important part of your success.

And best of all, food will once again become your friend. It can give you deep satisfaction and pleasure while nourishing all of you, mind, body and soul!

Elevating your food choices over time using the crowd-out method is a loving, sustainable way of life. Gone are the days of good/healthy foods vs. bad/unhealthy foods. Drop the labels (literally, higher quality, real foods don’t have food labels) about the foods you choose to eat and instead, play detective – your body will tell you everything you need to know.

#3  Be with your food when you eat.  This is such a simple concept, but my-oh-my, such a hard practice to implement consistently.

You might say you don’t have time to be purely focused on your meal when you eat – there’s only so many hours in the day and you gotta do other stuff while eating. Sound familiar?

Being fully present with your meal may be too uncomfortable for you at first. You tell yourself that you don’t know how to do this. But you did at one time – you were designed and born that way. You can choose to be with your food when you eat. No watching TV, surfing the net, reading, working, etc.

You can simply enjoy your meal using all of your senses.

If you cannot implement this critical practice into your eating habits, you may stay in dieting hell forever.

Why? First, it will be impossible to achieve #1 and #2 above, but beyond that, you’ll remain in your head intellectualizing your food choices, which is the very foundation of a diet/deprivation mentality.

Diet programs claim that if you just follow their food plan or take their supplements as outlined, voila, you’ll get the perfect health, weight and body.

If that were true, all those diet programs out there would work and they’d have no repeat customers, which means they would go out of business. Last I checked the diet industry was thriving.

Now that you’ve learned about the 3-part recipe I recommend, it may feel like a hard sell to those looking for a weight-loss quick fix. These three behaviors take focused, consistent attention, new kinds of effort, and patience. The antithesis of dieting programs.

But that’s the beauty and brilliance of it. The payoff of putting these three practices into your everyday life is more glorious than any diet program.

Best of all, you can live life with more ease, greater pleasure, embrace your naturally healthy weight, as you kick that nasty diet monger voice in your head out for good.

 

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Holland Health Coaching thanks our guest blogger Rusti Quarles, a certified eating behavior coach specializing in eating psychology and mind-body nutrition. Today she has shared with us her protocol for stepping off the dieting treadmill. Are you ready?

Rusti Q offers one-on-one coaching via phone, skype and in-person (Westminster, CO office location); group coaching; and her signature 10-week Freedom From Diet Hell course, offered exclusively online. If you’d like to explore her coaching services, she offers a 20-minute free phone consultation (call her @ 719.924.0270) or at www.rustiqhealthcoaching.com.