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Are You Overwhelmed by Eating Plan Choices Like Me?

Saturday, January 05, 2013

I have been waiting to feel "ready" to "start" taking care of myself my eating better, AGAIN, since the 1st of 2013. I haven't gotten there yet.

Last night, though, I had an epiphany. With all the talk about the harm of eating processsed foods lately, I've been driving myself crazy thinking that I absolutely MUST stop eating all proceessed food. If you think about cutting ALL processed food out of your life, it seems nearly impossible--and therein lies the rub!

I know many people can do it, and have done it ... but to me, it's scary. I think the prospect of never being "allowed" to eat something like a Lean Cuisine or a McDonald's salad or all those easy-to-grab things just terrifies me. I've convinced myself that all those things are so bad that if I EVER have one, I'll have "ruined" my diet--then there comes the guilt, and there go the good intentions.

I realized last night that maybe what I need to do is forget about making myself live on "green drinks" that I whip up from fruits and veggies in my Ninja, and quinoa which requires planning and cooking, and all those other wonderful things, and just go back on Weight Watchers.

Weight Watchers works for me (I'm a lifetime member, although I reached that goal half my lifetime ago--I'm 54 now and was 27 then). I've always been able to lose weight on WW even when I was much smaller than I am now.

So why not just give myself permission to go on that plan again, and worry about not eating processed foods AFTER I get a lot of my weight off? Yes, processed foods aren't as healthy, but allowing myself to eat those and getting some of this weight off surely is more healthy than what I'm doing now.

That's the way I'm leaning right now. It might not be perfect, but if it helps me get my weight/BMI down to a healthier level, that MUST be better than PLANNING to be "perfect" and only "eat clean" and never having the courage to get started.

Do you find that you get overwhelmed trying to choose a "way to eat" like me? And does it keep you from getting started?

I wish this didn't have to be so difficult. Sigh. Where has my commitment gone??
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Everyone seems to be saying roughly the same thing. Baby steps. Trying to do it all at once is setting yourself up for trouble. (I refuse to say failure!) I asked my dietician about the processed foods contoversy-she said "as long as you are meeting your nutritional needs, it doesn't matter how you are getting your calories". It is a process and a learning experience. emoticon emoticon
    1879 days ago
  • JASI27
    The biggest obstacle I can see standing in your way is the way you think about food. It is always your choice and no option is something you CAN'T have, it is what you CHOOSE to eat. You can eat whatever you choose to eat, nothing is off limits. It all depends on how you want to nourish your body. I think with a little education, your choice would be automatic and you wouldn't miss eating those kinds of foods. At least that is how it happened for me. If you have Netflix, watch Food Matters, and Hungry for Change and that will really put those kinds of foods in perspective for you . If you don't have Netflix, see if you can get a copy at your local library or movie rental place. It really is worth watching. It helps you change your mind about the foods you put in your body.
    1895 days ago
    I wreck havoc on my physic thinking about what I should eat that is "good", because it's the only way I am going to succeed. Right? Pfff...don't know why I do that to myself. But hey, I'm always there begging the "successful" folks with the question,"What kind of foods do you eat." Yup, I'm looking to cheat and steal their menu ideas. emoticon
    1896 days ago
    I aagree with GOPINTOS. I too am like you, omg that toxins, chemicals... I just turned 56 and 2 years ago ahd to have a 2nd mamogarm for breast c. scare. was nothing there the 2nd time. Then I started taking vit d as it is good for you against cancer and living in Canada we don't get enough sun often enough. I also take a few other supplements.
    But I thought SUGAR FEEDS CANCER....... kept thinking that all the holidays as I feasted on SUGAR. But in my head I said I am going to get off it, maybe not all at once, not all of it, but I will. Jan 1 wasn't great. But since has been good, I have gone off the sugar plan 1 x a day and so far today not at all. But may have 2 grain free crackers with some jam. Yes it is my MIL jam so not a lot in it but still sugar.
    So figured I will do my best and like GOPINTOS ( although I am still learning big time) will probably bloat etc. I am learing that my body doesn't like eggs. I love them but the other day omg the pain after and bathroom so often. And we figured that is why when we go out for breakfast... same thing.
    Anyway. do what you need to do that won't drive you crazy but no matter what you chose remember it isn never all or nothing. NOW saying that I know that I cant have ONE chco graham cookie or will have way too many. Some day I may be able to, but I have my other date, almond, coconut balls I can have.
    HUGS and as you say overwhelmed yes I was, yes some days I still am, but today nope just healthy eating. perhaps it helps that I don' go to fast food but mabye 1 x a year, and I never buy lean quisine etc. to me they are just pereserved cardboard. some have some taste and some not, me rather roast up some root veggies and have a pc of fish, chicken or whatever.
    1899 days ago
    What works best for you is what you need to do.
    Everyone is different, everyone needs to face this challenge in their own way.
    Check in with your doctor if you need to and good luck with whatever you decide.

    1899 days ago
    It's all a process. One big N=1. Trying to find what you can live with and keep up with. We all just have to find our way. All I can share with you, is what worked for me and maybe you can find something in there that you can use for your own journey.

    Cutting out fast food. Does that mean never having it? No, but it is rare now.
    Cutting out soda
    Cutting out sweet tea. Again, that doesnt mean never, but it means really making sure it is worth it when I do.
    Cutting out processed and breads and breaded things, etc. Again if I have breads or sweets, I just have to accept that I will gain 3 inches of bloat on my waist almost immediately, the scale will go up 3-6 pounds overnight, and it will take me about week to get it back off. So again, I try to make sure it is worth it, like a special occasion.

    At first though, I had to cut it out cold turkey. For some that means carb flu. Withdrawals. But stick it out. Might even take a week or two of feeling really really crummy but hang in there. It is almost like a addict coming off of drugs. After that, I had more energy, I felt better than ever and the cravings were gone, for the most part. After ridding myself of it, I found that I really didnt want it all that badly after all.

    And I try very hard to keep it out of my house.

    Tracking was key for me. Still is. I treat it like a bank account and try to spend it wisely. If I do get overdrawn, the next morning is a new day to start over and my bank account is back in the black. It is more about the average over the course of the week rather than one bad or one good day. If I go over one day, I try to make up for it the next.

    Cutting out the processed and breads and sweet teas and sodas, meant cutting out all the bad carbs. It has been replaced with good carbs, good fats. I am settling into about a 3 way split on my percentages. Up to 1lb a day of fruit, up to 1lb a day of safe starches, up to 1lb a day of protein, and all the veggies my little heart desires (perfect health diet - and diet meaning foods you consume, not diet you are on)

    This journey is 80% nutrition. So while things might get in my way to keep me from a good workout for the day, no one is force feeding me so I should be able to make good food choices. :) That is not to say there are not those days, or those choices, but I make them consciously now.

    But yes, I was confused for the longest time. I just had to find my way, what worked for me. I found I can lose weight on high fat w/low carb and I am very full. I can lose weight on high carb and low fat, but I am hungrier. I can lose weight on high protein but I eventually need variety. Same with high fat/low carb. I need carb refeeds now and then. It has taken me a year to figure this all out. And along the way, I have lost almost 70lbs. It really has become a lifestyle way of eating. I just try to pay attention of how certain foods affect me and my goals.

    Best of luck to you! You will find your way also! The thing is, if one way doesnt work, don't be afraid to try an adjustment to your macros or to your calories. But DO NOT give up completely, just adjust until you find what works for you


    Smile and Enjoy the Rest of Your Day!
    Melinda (gopintos)
    Perfect Health Diet Team
    100+ pounds in 1 year
    Country Living Team
    Dr Oz Show Fans Team
    Wheat Belly Team

    1899 days ago
    I always get annoyed when someone "lectures" about how you must do things one specific way. I've read blogs where people chastise anyone who drinks diet soda, doesn't eat "clean," etc. I've got news for them: I just finished a Lean Cuisine for lunch with a Coke Zero, and had a Weight Watchers mini "Celebration Cake" bar for dessert. I have no rules in my diet except that I aim to stick to my daily calories in the recommended percentages of protein, carb, fat, fiber, sodium, and calcium. It worked fine in getting me to my goal and I continue to believe the "anything in moderation" rule of life. I think WW is a great program and very reasonable and manageable. I actually started Spark in Jan. 2011 doing WW and keeping track of stuff on Spark nutrition too for the first 4-6 weeks. Then I realized that I was basically recording things twice because if I was on target in one, I was on target with the other, so I just stuck with the Spark nutrition because it was free...but not because I'm not a fan of WW. I think it's especially GREAT when you're at the point where you need to get back into the swing of things without feeling overwhelmed. Yay you!
    1899 days ago
    Instead of thinking that "I can't have that", think that "I choose not to have that today". If you have something that's "off plan" then it will be less of a big deal as it's part of your lifetime food program and you will track it.

    Change things from what you're doing now to what you wish to do one thing at a time. Don't go all out with eating everything one way when you can do things other ways also. Do a lot of research on those foods that seem like they shouldn't be part of your diet (the noun, not the verb) and find out what thing can work. I didn't give up fast food or processed foods completely, but I try my dangest to not go to them often.

    The thing that overwhelms most people is that they try to change everything all at once and feel like a failure if they don't do everything "perfectly". Every choice is a learning experience and as long as you log everything, you'll be able to see what works best for you and what needs to be changed.
    1899 days ago
  • BOSS61
    Convenient, processed low-cal and low-sodium foods probably are better for you than wholesome, high-cal foods, if weight loss is the goal. Everything in moderation, including processed foods.

    Also, why make WW rich when you can accomplish the very same thing yourself, right here, with dedication?
    1899 days ago
  • ALICIA214

    I think it is a huge mistake to focus on what not to eat... that smacks of the word DIET
    and right off the bat you feel deprived...... think portion size that way you can eat pretty well anything fresh fruits and veggies are great try the veggies steamed or roasted...
    I am not a fan of food in boxes { too many ingredients I cannot pronounce} better to make up your own freezer dinners just cook extra and freeze.
    Hope this helps... I am a WW member too and find the meetings a great help !!!

    1899 days ago
    Ya know, I hear the "all-or-none" thing in your issue. I, too, tend to go "whole hog or no pork" about things. I have finally settled firmly on seeking sanity and ignoring the all-or-none fad crowd. Granted, gradually steering toward less processed food is wise (not a fad at all) but all-or-none thinking really gets "fed" by fads. The key for you sounds like gradual change rather than all-of-it-right-now! And especially redefining "ruining" your diet. The Spark approach is sooo different! Baby steps! No failure! Experience, experiment, learn, practice, grow, add more small changes! If WW worked, and they also have whole food/health food options, why not? You could set small challenges each week to add one non-processed food and eliminate one processed. A weekly swap-out to work gradually toward a non-processed lifestyle. It needs to be DOABLE, achievable change! Falling off the program, losing commitment, losing steam: those are all symptoms of all-or-none thinking! Now that is what you need to give up entirely: no more all-or-none! I know it can be done. Never quit - keep on Sparking!
    1899 days ago
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