The Secrets of Success: Stop Dieting

By , SparkPeople Blogger
SparkPeople doesn't endorse "diets." We don't sell pills, and we don't have a gimmick. What we have are success stories, committed members and proven results. Last year, we reached out to the members who have lost weight (more than 100 pounds in some cases) and kept it off. We shared their 27 Secrets of Success exclusively in our best-selling book, The Spark, but then we realized that some secrets--including these--are too good to keep to yourself.

We're spilling the beans.

Secret #13: Stop dieting.

Fully 90 percent of all members said they were following a healthy lifestyle, as opposed to dieting. People on a diet actually lost less weight! There were big differences in how dieters thought. They were twice as likely to think of exercise as a chore, more likely to “beat themselves up,” more likely to cut out food groups and deprive themselves, and more likely to say that they “don’t feel good about themselves.” They got less sleep on average—between five and seven hours, versus seven to eight hours in the healthy lifestyle group. Dieters also reported lower levels of happiness.

Back in college, my friend and I were determined to slim down before Spring Break. We didn't like to exercise, so we turned to dieting to help us lose a few pounds. The Cabbage Soup Diet sounded good, so we loaded up a cart with vegetables and made two giants pots of smelly, bland soup. For three days, all we ate was the soup. By Thursday night, we were cranky, tired--and hungry. We ordered a large pizza with banana peppers, ate it all, and washed it down with a bottle of cheap rose wine. It would be a few more years before I learned a valuable lesson: Diets don't work. Healthy living doesn't feel like a punishment.

Diet starts with "die"; I don't know about you, but I like living!

Changing Our Mentality from Dieting to Healthy Living

Stop Dieting and Start Living

Cut Calories without Dieting

9 Simple Tricks to Eat Less

Start shouting from the rooftops: "These are the Secrets of Success!" Spread the Spark by clicking the green "Share" button below.

Find the 15 secrets we're sharing here (a new one is posted every day). For the rest of the secrets and to learn how to fit them into your life, check out The Spark.

Have you stopped dieting? How many "diets" did you try before starting SparkPeople?