Most people that start a diet will fail. That’s a fact. Look around you. Who do you know, in the last year, that said they needed to lose weight, started doing something and then you never heard of it again?
You probably have a friend who tried that. I know I have.
Sadly, so many people will try to lose weight, get in shape, and just end up quitting. Often without even losing a single pound. Mainstream diets are full of false promises, juice detox that does nothing, and or straight up Witchcraft stuff.
What’s the problem?
There is a disconnect between our bodies, what they need, and what is being sold to us.
Of course, it would be perfect if we could swallow a pill and magically lose 5 pounds. But that is not going to happen (until it does, hah!).
We must train our bodies to change and our brains to think differently.
But hey, why put sugar in if it’s cheaper to put artificial sweeteners? Aspartame, Stevia, etc. Or just put High-fructose corn syrup in everything.
It is not normal for yogurt to have a higher content of sugar than protein and no fat. Yogurt comes from milk, which is high in protein and is fat. Look at the leading brands you can get at the supermarket. What are the nutrients like?
Probably all sugar, low fat, low protein. The only savior is Greek yogurt. But even that, if you buy any flavored type, has a good twenty grams of added sugar and often less protein per serving than the natural one. Defeats the purpose of wanting to eat healthily and cut added sugar.
Ok. Let’s get back to our diets.
Current trends include diets like the water diet, and various cleanses like “teatoxes”, and the never-ending vegan/gluten-free diet.
Aside from the fact that a diet of “water” is just dumb, water will not make you lose weight. Daily drinking of 4 percent of your weight in water does nothing. It has a no different effect on your body than if you were to drink water just like you regularly do. You need water to stay alive.
Drink water instead of soda or juices, that’s all.
Teatoxes and the other cleanses all have something in common: they do make you lose weight. How? By making you crap and lose water weight. That you’ll regain the moment, you stop the cleanse. The fact is the human body does not need to be cleansed of impurities; it can do that by itself without problems; we’d be dead if it weren’t so.
Then comes the whole being vegan or suddenly becoming celiac.
Look, unless you have a diagnostic from a doctor that categorizes you as celiac (an autoimmune disorder), you are most likely not celiac.
You are attributing symptoms like bloating to that instead of looking for the apparent reason: you eat like crap.
So diets, trends, or whatever you want to call them, all have something in common: they use our lack of knowledge to sell us something.
Not knowing what you’re getting into will lead you to failure. You need to understand why this works or why that doesn’t. Let’s see what you can do to improve your chances of success.
1. Have some critical thinking
It is not because you hear someone on the radio claim that a product will make you lose weight that it works. Ask yourself:
Why does that person claim that it works?
- What makes me think it will work for me?
- What’s the work involved with “making it work” for me?
- What have I tried before that did not work, and why is this different?
If you can answer these questions, if you know your body well, and are willing to put the work needed, then sure.
If not, then you are wasting your money, your time, and your determination to lose weight.
If you start a diet thinking it’s magical and you won’t have to lift a finger, think again.
You need to plan for that success to happen.
Last-minute reading of the meal plan to realize you don’t have half the food needed to cook what you should be eating is terrible. You’re going to end up eating something else and not sticking to the diet.
Oh, but it’s only this one time?
It will happen again; I’ve seen it too many times.
Instead, learn and think beforehand about the upcoming week.
- Make a list of everything you need to buy to cook all the meals.
- Give yourself time to prepare them.
- Freeze some of the meals if you need to. When it’s time to eat, take it out and zap it in the microwave.
You also need to plan your workout sessions.
Know which days you’ll be training and at what time. Don’t give yourself the excuse of “I’m too tired” or “shoots; I should have trained this morning, I had the time!”.
It will be much easier to stick to your diet if you know what you’re going to be doing in the upcoming days.
3. Set realistic goals
I’ve heard it before; you want to lose 150 pounds, from 300 to 150.
Yeah okay, that’s great.
But what’s your short term goal?
Ten, twenty, thirty pounds? How long do you give yourself to lose all that? What steps are you taking to make it happen?
The chances are that if your goals are too big, too far out, or too hard to achieve, you’ll fail.
Setting short term goals that you know you’ll be able to reach will help you more than you think. It will boost your self-confidence and your will to succeed.
On the other hand, if you set a goal to lose 150 pounds and a month later, you’ve only lost 10, don’t you think it’s depressing?
It’s all about positive thinking.
Smart and short term goals are where it’s at.
4. Don’t fall for “I can’t eat x type of food.”
We’ve all seen diets that take out all fat or all sugar, and they’re all equally bad.
A proper diet needs to be balanced.
It needs to incorporate all kinds of food with all sorts of nutrients. Miss one that your body needs and issues will arise.
Sure, you might lose some (water) weight at first, but when it stops, and it will at some point, you will gain it all back. That’s why we call these diets “yo-yo diets”.
Instead, aim for overall balanced diets. You can play with your nutrients and not have carbs some days if you want, but know that your body will, at some point, need some.
The same goes for fat.
Healthy diets that work will play with timings, and how you eat, but won’t deprive you of something good.
5. Get enough sleep and relax
Ah, sleep. Don’t we hear it often enough? Get a good night of sleep, and you’ll feel brand new!
Well yeah, you need sleep, good sleep.
Your body changes while you sleep. And the lack of sleep has been linked to an increase in weight, a drop in metabolism, and so many other bad things that it would take forever to write them all.
Find the time to sleep. Some people need fewer hours; some need more.
You’ll know when you are rested. You’ll feel sharper, you’ll be less likely to cheat on your meals, eat junk food, and your stress levels will be lower.
Then there is stress, and it’s essential to get that in check too.
Stress is linked to an increase in the hormone cortisol, which in turn can cause an increase in appetite, drive cravings for junk food, and more.
Finding the time to meditate or sit down and do nothing can and will help you. Twenty minutes a day will do wonders for you.
And don’t forget, it’s not just about your weight, it’s about your lifestyle too. 😊