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Not ALLOWED to??

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

I read a LOT of blogs on here that people, especially those that show up on my feed, have written. I don't always comment which I know I should but sometimes I just don't really know what to say or how to help. Today i read a number of blogs of people who confessed about eating a cheeseburger, going to mcdonalds, having a piece of chocolate or a bag of chips or a glass of soda/pop and then blogging about how they did this knowing they're not ALLOWED to do it. Um.. wait a second. I don't understand this. You're not allowed to? I understand we're all here to lose weight or maintain the weight we've lost. And to change eating habits, etc but I've never through this journey said to myself "okay self, NO more fast food, NO more extra calorie coffees, no more chocolate or soda or chips!" Why haven't I done this? Because the second I start feeling like I'm depriving myself of any kind of food I know I will fail.

I look at this more as making healthier choices daily and watching what I eat instead of constantly shoving food in my face. But if I'm out somewhere getting groceries or paying bills or w/e I am doing while I'm out and it gets close to dinner time I do pick up food before heading home (doesn't happen very often) instead of cooking when I get home which could delay dinner by an extra hour or so and can't really happen with kids who have bedtimes of 8 and 9pm. Do I feel guilty when I pick this food up and eat it? Hardly. I know it's not an every day thing and I know that when i reach my goal weight that it's not always going to be good eating, in fact, I can guarantee it won't. And yes I do have a chocolate bar every once in a while or a bag of chips, not every day like it used to be, but I refuse to cut it completely out of my life and when I do have it every now and then I don't feel bad for it either.

So I guess my question is this. Is it wrong to think like this? I did cut pop out, but again not completely but I don't drink litres of it every day like I used to and when I do have it I do see it as a treat and it usually happens when I've picked food up for dinner. I mean we eat out now maybe twice a month where before it used to be once or twice a week. Is it wrong that I'm "allowing" myself to eat chocolate, chips etc every once in a while and not feeling guilty when I do? I track it all and I can see what the result is at the end of the day when I do eat this stuff if it pushes me over my calories or just gets me too close to the end of my range but I honestly don't really feel bad for eating it. is this slowly setting myself up to fail at losing all the weight I need to lose? I don't think it is. I weigh myself daily (I know I shouldn't! Don't scold me!) and I actually have been feeling pretty good about myself even with the few rough patches I've hit emotionally but I still don't feel like I'm going to give up any time soon with losing weight.

I guess I'm confused as to whether or not I should be making myself feel guilty for "indulging" once in a while. Or how come these other women talk about how they did things they're not allowed to do, yet if it were me I wouldn't feel bad for it at all. I'd just track it and move on. If any body has any opinions I'd love to read them.

If this blog makes no sense at all I apologize for that lol.. I think maybe I rambled.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Well said!!!
    2788 days ago
    You hit it right on the head when you said that you are allowed to eat anything. It's all about balance. It sounds like you have it down! Keep up the good work :)
    2788 days ago
    "is this slowly setting myself up to fail at losing all the weight I need to lose?"


    I firmly believe that it will, in fact, help you.

    I have the same attitude, and I've lost 90 pounds.
    2789 days ago
    Forbidden foods = DIET!!

    Spark is not a diet, it's a lifestyle. What's to be guilty about?

    It always amazes me how many people on Spark blog about what diet they are on. They just don't seem to get it. They could at least call it an eating plan, but any plan with strict guidelines that don't take your preferences or medical conditions into consideration is still a DIET!!

    Education and practice are the keys to making wiser choices and living a healthier life. So make your educated choices and let the chips fall where they may, forget the guilt, and lose the weight (if that is your goal).

    Good luck and enjoy your journey.

    2790 days ago
    You are completely right. As soon as you deny yourself something you set yourself up for failure. At some point you'll eat the forbidden food and then beat yourself up over it. And nothing ruins success faster than feeling lie a failure. And for what? A chocolate bar? A cookie?

    The only thing I don't like about "bad food" is that it tends to have a heap of cals compared to the volume. So I think, "gee, I could have that small treat or and entire satisfying meal". And that usually puts me off. But that's a decision based on an awareness of my dietary requirements not me deciding I'm not ALLOWED it.

    I still have the odd treat. I just don't have them all the time like I used to. Which is nice because now they feel more like a "treat". I stick to my nutritional points as tightly as I can and tend to stay in the lower end of my daily range. That way if something pops up I know I have a few hundred "spare" cals allowance in reserved for the day and I don't have to worry about eating too much fuel.

    At the end of the day a cookie, cake, chips or chocolate is still food. It might not be the nutrient rich goodness that is best for the body but there is no reason to completely excise it from the menu.

    Keep up the good work!

    2808 days ago
    You have it figured out. You can eat anything, just in moderation. This is about making smart choices, for now and the future. We eat at a fast food restaurant occasionally too, but not anywhere like we used to. We drink water or juice now, but on occasion will have some diet pop. We are making choices, same as we did before, the difference is now we know more and are making smarter choices. They may not always be the correct ones, but we learn from our mistakes for what works and what doesn't.
    2812 days ago
    I am so with you on this.

    Even now, when I'm trying out an eating plan that restricts certain things... I'm approaching it with the mindset of "I want to give this a try, but I get to choose how strict I am about it." Guilt is a spirit-killer, and one of those emotions that at least for me, leads to a Lot of trouble. It's a hard habit to break, feeling guilty, especially about eating after being a fat-girl for so long, but one of the only reasons SP has worked for me over other tries at this...

    ... is that I don't tell myself "You can never have pizza/chips/soda/chocolate again."

    So to me, no, you're not doing anything wrong, and don't let any needless guilt get in your way!
    2813 days ago
  • no profile photo MAT5501
    All things in moderation I say! For a while I was trying to find healthy substitutes for my favorite little indulgences. When I want chocolate, a chocolate flecked granola br isn't going to cut it! Baked tortilla chips and ff salsa aren't nachos! But, I have learned that 1 am totally satisfied with 1 truffle, I don't need the whole bag. Nachos are just as wonderfully delicious on one of the kid sized plates. If they have my favorite doughnuts at church, I split it with my daughter and take the kids for a long walk in the afternoon. NOTHING is off limits, everything is available in a LIMITED supply. On that note, I do spend a little extra a pre-portioned stuff or take the time to portion it out myself ahead of time.
    2814 days ago
    You should not feel guilty. Getting healthy is all about lifestyle change. There is no written law saying you are "not allowed" to do anything. In order to live a healthy life forever you need to be able to have the things you love - in moderation of course. For instance, I am NOT going to give up wine. No way! However, I will save serious indulgence for when I get together with my friend every 3 months or so, and have 1 glass every now and again. Like the other night, I had a delicious homemade vegetarian lasagna for dinner and complimented that with 1 glass of wine.
    The thing is, if I didn't allow myself these things once in a while I would start to resent this change I'm trying to make. I'd give up, because who wants to live like that?
    You are doing great. Don't let anyone make you feel guilty!
    2815 days ago
    Well said!! I explore Spark a lot just to see what I might have missed. Nowhere in my wanderings have the terms NOT ALLOWED appeared. I've read articles explaining why mot, or seen food comparisons that make a point, high recommendations for health reasons, etc. etc. Don't we each have enough guilt without freely adding to it ourselves? If you need to feel bad, feel bad before you put it in your mouth and then don't do it. Amazingly the "bad" feeling turns into a "well done". Well that's more than enough! emoticon again for a needed blog emoticon
    2815 days ago
    I totally agree with you. I am "allowed" to eat whatever I want. Sometimes I will choose NOT to eat something if it is not good for me or costs too many calories, but there are many times I decide to eat something because I enjoy the taste, and yes, I track it, and of course I strive to eat treats yet remain within my calorie range. I pretty much have to eat chocolate at least once a day. If I tried to go without it completely, I wouldn't stick to this healthier lifestyle for two days!
    2815 days ago
    You should never make yourself feel guilty. It's good that you see this not as deprivation (because that sets us up to fail) but as a new lifestyle.

    They say there's an 80/20 rule. 80% of the time eat healthy, clean, and 20% you can have treats, etc.

    There is a balance though. I used to give myself "permission" to eat whatever I craved and never felt guilty. I still don't really feel guilty if I go over on my calorie range. Occasionally.

    Guilt is not an emotion that leads to results, positive behavior, change or a healthy outlook, but it's important to be mindful (you said you have been making changes mindfully, that is great!) about what we eat.

    "Add in more fruits and veggies and more whole grains, lean protein" is a better way of thinking than
    "You can't eat this and this and that!"

    You're doing the right thing. I think when people set unreasonable expectations, they set themselves up for self-punishment, disappointment, failure...

    And remember, we can eat anything (within moderation, portion sizes, etc) but there are foods that are more nutritious and will make us feel better

    but that doesn't mean once in a while you can't have something from the 20%

    So, yeah, it's a balance. emoticon
    2815 days ago
  • TONYA43
    You are so right!!! I've tried it the other way and it just doesn't work with me. I had an "all or nothing" attitude and would not "allow" myself anything that I thought was unhealthy and if I did slip, I would feel guilty and eat even more and guess what? I gained part of the weight back!!!

    I have found that your way works much, much better, for me anyway. I do still eat the occassional fast food meal, (I try to make it a kids meal, when I do, but not always) and just today I had a mini dairy queen blizzard and I am still within my calories. So when I started this journey over, I decided that I was "allowed" anything I wanted as long as my calories were in range and it's worked GREAT!!

    I think you are setting yourself up for failure if you are too strict and hard on yourself. When you allow yourself "wiggle room", I think you are much more likely to succeed in losing weight AND maintaing it.


    2815 days ago
    What would be the point of feeling guilty. It is choice you make. No guilt needed.
    2815 days ago
    I agree with you- I allow myself to eat a bag of chips, oreo cookies or even rum pund cake! I mean its jsut a part of life that ever once in while you are going to eat fast food, eat at a place that is not calorie friendly and so on. This journey for me is all about balance. 95% healthy food and 5% bad has been doing fine by me.
    2815 days ago
    I agree with you completely on this !! Once you make something "forbidden" it begins to exert a certain
    You are absolutely right in that this is a healthy LIFESTYLE... and treats are a part of that !!
    As you say, we are accountable for the choices we make and we must trust ourselves to make the right ones !!
    Great blog !
    2815 days ago
    Oh my. I'm totally with you on this, so I'm not going to be the scolder. I believe you are totally right. The problem with the people who feel bad about eating foods that are "not allowed" is that they come from the diet mentality. Sparkpeople is not about a diet; it is about learning how to be purposeful with your life and to live -- and eat -- in a thoughtful way that promotes your health and well-being. EVERYTHING is allowed. But the key is something you already discovered -- you have to include the calories of what you have eaten in your overall total so that you can see how it fits in with what else you have eaten that day. And be smart about your choices.

    Your attitude is much more healthy: you are making a lifestyle change and you are realistic about what that means. You have made healthy choices, but it is unrealistic in our fast-paced society to say "I'm never going to eat fast food again." I, like you, eat much much less than I used to. I drink much much less soda. I am very mindful of what I eat and drink, but there is nothing prohibited on my list because I know once I forbid myself to have something, my mind is going to zone into that one thing and obsess about it. I do have PCOS and am insulin-resistant. I know that for my health, I do much better if I avoid sugar and white flour and things that make my body pump out insulin. But -- yay! -- chocolate tends to be fairly low on the glycemic index, so I don't forbid myself to eat it. Also, when I eat things that might cause my body to produce lots of insulin, I make sure those foods are balanced with protein or something low on the glycemic index. But those are mindful choices and changes I have made. I forbid myself nothing.

    I think also that this is a journey, and different people are at different stages on the journey. Some haven't yet learned they can trust themselves to eat things they formerly thought were forbidden. We're not just changing our habits and bodies, we're changing our minds and outlooks and that takes time. You're just further along that some others on the healthier outlook.
    emoticon emoticon
    2815 days ago
    No - feeling guilty about food is not healthy. Feeling guilty about an indulgence is just one more way women torture themselves with regard to food and physical appearance.

    As long as you are eating healthy and "right" 80-90% of the time, it's more than okay to eat things you love or indulge a little bit on the side. You're still human and you still have a right to enjoy your life. Food is a part of life.

    Do NOT feel guilty. Jsut make sure you earned it.
    2815 days ago
    I look at it this way:

    I'm an adult. I'm 'allowed' to eat whatever I want. On the flip side, I also have to be responsible about it and not eat like a kid or a dumb teenager. Just like with money: I can spend my paycheque however I want, but I need to make sure I'm spending it on the right things and spacing out the treats and indulgences. That doesn't mean I can never buy myself another video game or book a short vacation, but I have to plan for it and I can't do it at the expense of other things. Food's the same way.

    I think treats are important. If there's something you can give up because you just don't care about it (for me, it's potato chips. I like them when I'm eating them, but I don't miss them if I don't), than do so. But if it means giving up something you genuinely enjoy and would miss, you're only hurting yourself in the long run. It's much better to teach yourself how to enjoy those things in a more reasonable way, like learning that half a cup of ice cream really is satisfying.

    Education is the key. I'm well aware of what I'm eating, I'm armed with the information about what it will or won't do for me, and I make a decision based on that. Sometimes I do start to catch myself going a little too far in the other direction, but because I'm always watching it, I can pull it back in. If I find I'm snacking mindlessly every day, it's in my power to stop.

    I've said it a million times before: Food is just food. Some foods are more nutritionally valuable than others, but I refuse to put anything on the forbidden list. I know this isn't a way of thinking that works for everyone, but I've found that it's taken the power away from a lot of the less healthy foods. A cupcake is just a cupcake. It's not worth spending 500 calories of my daily budget on it all the time, but some days, it is. I trust myself to make that decision.
    2815 days ago
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