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Resisting Temptation: the Training Program

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Yesterday's Globe and Mail had a terrific article on new research with respect to kids and obesity.

The results are very encouraging: kids can be trained in strategies to resist high calorie, high fat, high sugar foods.

So when I say that I can resist anything but temptation . . . . with proper training that might no longer be so true.

The downside? Temptation resistance training doesn't last. Kids who participate in the training increase their resistance skills on average for about 6 months. And then they begin to backslide. Willpower wears out. Ummmm: I know that. To my sorrow and chagrin. Which is why I don't put my own willpower to the test any oftener than I have to. I prefer to avoid temptation. The coward's way out!

Still, that six months in many instances is long enough for kids to grow taller without putting on weight such that they lean out. So despite the limitations of temptation resistance training, it's a genuine good news story. (Much better than today's short short in the Globe about the very high percentage of teens, both male and female, who try laxatives, vomiting and starvation to drop weight as fast as possible, and in the process trigger very serious health consequences. Which generally go undiagnosed. Instead, they are praised and feted for dropping the weight without much inquiry into how it happened!)

So maybe refresher temptation resistance retraining sessions every six months or so would be the answer??

(Unfortunately the on line edition of the Globe didn't publish the article, so I can't give you the link.)

But: 4A-HEALTHY-BMI found it on the Wall Street Journal!! Thanks, Anja!!

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • KANOE10
    That was interesting. I say if it works, then use it. The question of sustainability is one to work on. I tend to stay away from gong foods. I am not sure I could do that training.

    What I thought was interesting was the comment that obese people neurologically are more susceptible and reactive to the sight of food and to images of food than people of normal weight. Another POW trait to keep an eye on!

    Thanks for sharing a great article.

    1647 days ago
    Thx for sharing the link...it all makes a lot of sense. And yeah, I prefer to dodge the temptation bullet if I can...lol

    1647 days ago
    Yeah, I think I could use some temptation resistance training. Certain items (ice cream) can be resisted only so long. Then I succumb.
    1648 days ago
  • DALID414
    Queen of avoidance, hello sending the boyfriend down the ice cream isle for the frozen veggies.
    1648 days ago
    And now we have the link to the same research in the Wall Street Journal article above!!
    1648 days ago
    Resistance training. Excellent way to look at temptation. I live with a box of chocolate candy. I would never have believed I could just ignore it, but I can. Amazing! There are Reece's cups and M&Ms and who knows what else. It is my resistance training. The more I resist it, the more I can resist it. Today I didn't have any resistance training when I turned down birthday cake and ice cream. I wasn't even tempted. Not only didn't look worth the calories, it didn't even look good to me after my healthy breakfast!!
    1648 days ago
    I completely cave to temptation more often than not. My only hope is to keep the bad stuff out of the house.
    1648 days ago
    I'm sorry the online version didn't publish the story...did they talk about the strategies? If so, was there anything new?

    I would think training children to avoid temptation would be much more difficult than teaching adults. We are supposed to be less impulsive, and often have serious health issues staring us in the face, so presumably we have more motivation to avoid temptation...
    1648 days ago
  • _LINDA
    I too, am one of those ones better off not having temptation around.
    If kids were brought up on totally healthy foods they would know nothing else and have a better chance at staying healthy. Its too easy for parents working long hours to take the easy way out and throw quickly made processed foods on the table. Hopefully, the young Spark Moms will be encouraging their children to eat as healthy as they do, and a new generation will get off to a great start. More reasons to spread the Spark!
    1648 days ago
    I, too, would prefer to just avoid the temptation altogether. I can understand how that kind of training would wear off after a while. It's been about 6 months since I reached my goal, and I'm working to turn around a vacation-induced eating trend I don't like which has increased my weight. Fortunately, I'm seeing some results today.
    1648 days ago
  • PHOENIX1949
    Constant vigilance seems to be the key.
    1648 days ago
    Excellent story. I think the earlier you get kids trained in healthy behavior, the better. Like you said, six months is time to grow without gaining. Good point.

    My daughter struggled with bulimia for a few years. It's a horrible thing what these kids get in their heads! She's doing great now but it will always be there. Pretty frightening.

    Thanks for putting this out there for everyone to think about!
    1648 days ago
  • NANCY-
    Ah Critical Thinking 101!
    I think I learned about resisting temptation in Catechism, but the nuns didn't really apply the concept to food, except during Lent. It was deprivation and fear based teaching back then.
    Time to update my train of thought.
    1648 days ago
    Prevention is always better than cure. Training kids to avoid temptation is definitely much better than teaching them how to cure the results of giving into it.
    And I wouldn't call you a coward for avoiding temptation. I would call it the smart's way out!
    1648 days ago
    Shows a society focuses on the end more than paying attention to getting there in a healthy way. I've discussed these unhealthy choices with my kids and hopefully of they ever need to deal with weight they won't take the shortcuts.

    Saw another young teen yesterday cell phone in her teeny tiny bra. Reminded my kids again about the possible serious dangers of carrying your phone in the same spot against your body.
    1648 days ago
    Or how 'bout a refresher with the change of the emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    Something that fits the temperature, length of day and activities!
    1648 days ago
    1648 days ago
    Interesting thoughts... I never thought of my pep talk blogs as being temptation resistance coaching for myself, but perhaps they fit that definition, too!

    Thanks for sharing it out in the Sparkosphere!
    1648 days ago
    That is interesting!!! I will look for more information on temptation resistance training.
    1648 days ago
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