Why You Should Never Diet For Long Term Weight Maintenence and Health (PART 1)
I’ve worked with so many women with complex health condiitons, weight maintenence issues, hormonal challenges, chronic stress and inflammation and I can honestly say one of the biggest threads that seems to intrinsically underpin a hugh amount of their limiting beliefs is dieting. Personally, I feel like being on a ‘diet’ since I was 11 years old, overcoming anorexia and bulimia and finally reaching complete health, gorgeousness and food neutrality, qualifies me to be able to talk about why dieting is absolute BS.
I really feel passionate about helping women free themselves from the jaws of the diet shark because quite frankly I have seen what absolute havoc they have wreaked with my own health AND guess what? THEY DON’T WORK FOR LONG TERM WEIGHT LOSS… but stay with me on this one.
I was the BEST dieter you coudl meet, hell, if there were diet gods, I was heading to diet heaven with all the other 6-litres-of-water-a-day, low-carb, no-sugar, eat-almonds-instead-of-chocolate diet saints. However dillusioned I was, I could not evade the actual truth when my friends were in great health with ‘normal’ diets and ‘moderate’ activity and I was in poor health, shit immune system, chonically inflammed and constantly anxious despite my hours of yoga and restriction from caffeine and sugar. And you know what? I was fatter & I didn’t even FUCKING EAT. Well, I ate, but half a cucumber, lettuce and a handful of nuts hardly consitutes for eating.
It really stuck the knife in when my PT told me that calories in vs calories out was a thing and I probably was eating more than I thought. I believe that weight loss and perfect low carb six pack health was just around the corner if only I could eat a little less, be a little cleaner. I am not even joking it drove me insane.
I felt so let down by my body, I felt betrayed by the diet industry, I felt envious of all the women who could just eat exactly what they wanted and still seemed to look incredible. What was I missing? I just needed to try another fast for a few days, I maybe needed a juice cleanse or perhaps I was just destined to be fat, thanks genetics.
I was so fortune to find Chrstina Rice’s Podcast, Wellness Realness and an amazing woman called Caroline Dooner author of The Fuck It Diet. In my journey, these were pivotal. I found out so much about why the diet industry is essentially fucked and scaremongering so many of us into food fear, yoyoing body weights and feeling generally like we are shit and failures for failing at keeping in shape… only…. it’s actually an impossible task if you DIET.
I know it makes no sense because we are constantly told by our doctors that dieting is the answer to our health challenges, different naturopaths and health coaches tell us all to start following certain macros, diet styles, keto, fasting etc etc and yes there is science and correlation to prove anything! It is so COMPLEX and i STRONGLY advise you read The Fuck It Diet to get a better grasp on this.
Why exactly is dieting BS? Dieting is a form of restriction. Physiologically, Long Term or short term restriction tells our body that there is a sort of famine or even starvation. Mentally, restriction tells us that we are somehow bad or a failure for eating certain foods. Once we begin to add in exercise and more activity to the equation we only amplify this famine signal.
I am keeping this super simplistic for now, to keep this concise, but more can be read on this if you look deeper. Whilst of course weight loss happens initially, what do you think happens after a while of the body knowing that a) food is scarce and b)more activity is coming? Our bodies are adaptation machines, and they adapt to our environmental surroundings in order to survive. So, our bodies may hold onto weight or even gain weight using all the calories incoming or any excess calories from ‘off-dieting’ for fat stores due to the iminent famine approaching. Our bodies may downregulate metabolism, that is, slow down and lower the amount of calories needed to survive. Phsychologically, our reptillian brain has to focus on food, as in, every thought comes about survival and food in order to get you to EAT and SURVIVE.
No, your brain is not trying to trick you if it is preoccupied with food. These constant thoughts about eating are actually because your body and brain are doing exaclty what they should do in order to survive. It’s biology.
Caroline Dooner explains so well that if we are hungry, the answer is EAT. The mind and body need to know that food is coming so that it can stop being in famine mode and restore normal metabolism, fat burn and so much more.
I’m gonna cut this into sections because all ready, you will probably be disagreeing with some elements of this, even be pissed off at me. Which is fine and normal. The truth feels a bit wierd and non extreme but as you read this acknowledge the part of you which is rebelling against the words but also feel the part of you that 100% knows this is truth.
Read a few times and get the most basic bits of this into your heart and mind and please comment. I’m not a scientist and I genuinely am sharing what i KNOW works in my clients when diets and everything else has failed in helping them.
Share, comment & like if you want :)