Why Diets Don't Work


Happy New Year! As we are now approaching the end of January, many who set new year’s resolutions for losing weight and/or dieting may be starting to struggle or you may have abandoned your resolution and feel crummy about it. If this is you, give yourself a big hug and know that you are in good company and that there is a reason it is so difficult.

Photo by Christina Boemio on Unsplash

We live in a culture where our appearance is highly valued, so much so, many people start believing that their size is who they are, not just the body they have. To compound this belief, we constantly hear that being overweight is a destiny of chronic disease, which causes fear in many people. It causes many people to hate their bodies, and to constantly struggle with being the “right” size. Unfortunately, we learn this from a young age which is causing kids to start worrying about this as well. It also starts people on the never ending cycle of ups and downs which often last a lifetime as the desire for quick, fast results that are convenient and do not interrupt our lives is sought after.

There have been a variety of diets that have been popular. Atkins, Zone, Keto, South Beach, Mediterranean, Raw Food, Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, Cabbage, Eat for your Blood Type, and the list goes on and on. Many people try these for short term, lose some weight, and the weight often comes back, and for some even more.

People rarely think about the time it took for their weight to go up. Unless you have an extreme medical issue, usually weight gradually increases over time, even for kids. It gradually goes on and then people expect it to come off overnight. The instant gratification mindset.

I was recently at the grocery store and there were 2 clerks talking about what foods they could and could not eat. It sounded like an extreme diet, where large food groups are eliminated from their diet for a week or two in order to promote weight loss. One of the clerks asked me if I thought it would work. My answer was no, and the prime reason for this is often why diets do not work. If you feel restricted on a diet, and feel like you are missing out on certain foods, you may be able to get through the week or two, during which time you may lose some weight, but when you decide to go back to your “normal” eating, you will likely eat large amounts of the foods you felt were restricted, for some this may be uncontrollable, which will likely end up in regaining the weight you lost and in some cases, more.

Sound familiar?! It doesn’t matter if you are coming off that restrictive period of your new year’s resolution diet, if you are still struggling to maintain your “diet,” know that you are in good company and that the rebound of feeling restricted happens to everyone. If you want to get off this roller coaster, it is possible, no matter what age you are. Check in next week to find out.

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