Diet article on

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

I was pissing away time on the computer this morning following link after link when I came across this article. It's about 8 people who sabotage your efforts to get healthy. Check out the whole article using the link but here's the summary:

#8. People Who Think They Are Doctors
If you can't tune these people out, it can really take the wind out of your sails when you're starting out on a simple diet and exercise regimen and don't see much progress at first (which is normal), and start to doubt if you're on the right track. With people spouting specialized theories at you about how weight loss "really" works, and why what you're doing is never going to work, it's pretty easy to just stop going to the gym the first day you feel tired.

#7. People Who Are Cartoonishly Supportive About Body Image
This happens the most when someone is just slightly overweight, like by 25 pounds or so, because that segment of the population -- slightly overweight women -- is the one we think needs the most coddling in terms of self-esteem, the most prone to spiraling into self-hate and anorexia at the slightest provocation. For some people, body image is a very sensitive thing, and a lot of tact is needed, but many people are actually capable of talking about being overweight as a matter-of-fact problem, like if their roof was leaking or their car broke down.

#6. People Who Take Food Too Personally
So if you're on a diet, or you have food allergies, or you're a vegan, and you have to turn down a slice of someone's birthday cake, some people can take it as some kind of personal statement against them. Even worse are the birthday police, where it's not even their birthday, but they feel obligated to get offended on behalf of the birthday person and sometimes jokingly pressure you with, "Oh come on, it's Eric's birthday. He only has a birthday once a year."
The problem is that the 40 people in your department at work might have birthdays up to 40 times a year, and 40 days of cake (plus holidays and anniversaries and weddings and cruises) can really do some damage to a diet. And if I eat Eric's cake but not Jane's cake, that's going to send even more of an unintended social message.

#5. People Who Never Think It's Good Enough
Pretty much nobody outside of movies ever switches lifestyles overnight, suddenly cutting fat from their diet, exercising five times a week, quitting video games and TV, swapping pasta for quinoa and steak for tofu. Almost everyone who's successfully turned their weight around started out with one "useless" change, like exercising once a week or subbing water for soda. (I put "useless" in quotes because dropping one extra large soda can save you 500 calories just like that.)
Losing weight after being fat for a long time seems like a monumentally impossible task, like climbing Mt. Everest, or in some cases, a flight of stairs. Either way, going from the way you are to being a "normal" weight can sometimes seem like a ridiculous fantasy. That's why when you succeed with changing one tiny habit, it can change your whole perspective. It's not this monstrous solid mountain you have to overcome, it's just a big pile of stones, and you just easily picked one up and moved it. It's not about heaving the whole thing aside with some supernatural effort, it's just about moving one stone at a time. And the first one wasn't so bad, so you're stoked to grab a couple more.

#4. Overly Spontaneous People
Sticking to an exercise/diet routine depends a lot on planning and routine. Some plans have a once-a-week splurge worked in, maybe a Pig-out Friday to let the pressure out, so you can get back to the grind on Saturday. If you're taking exercise classes -- martial arts, boot camp, yoga, pole dancing -- you might only be able to go certain days of the week.
Once in a while, spontaneity is great, but too many free spirits, helpful parents and poor planners in your life can add up to four pig-out nights a week, a month of missing kung fu classes and a completely sabotaged diet.

#3. Family Members Who Are Not On A Diet
If you cook at home, it's not really practical to make separate dishes for each person, so in reality, you pretty much get to go vegetarian with your spouse or your spouse doesn't go vegetarian. Even if you're just cutting fat, you can't cut the heavy cream out of just your bowl of clam chowder and not the rest of the pot. (Note: If you can think of a way to do this, please let me know.)
It's not completely impossible to switch to a healthy diet without your family taking one for the team and sacrificing some delicious foods from their diet, but being able to do it usually takes some convoluted planning or just black magic.

#2. People Who Make Fun Of Your Stupid Exercise Routine
But if your friend is a perennial couch potato who's finally found the motivation to exercise through country line dancing aerobics, after failing to stick with jogging, walking, MMA and any other cool-people-acceptable exercises, you might want to think twice about whether you might be sabotaging his last chance to not die early of heart disease.

#1. Delicious People
Problems arise with Umbrella Corporation's new diet drug;)
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    What an awesome article..........unique perspective on some overly debated or discussed topics to be sure.

    2284 days ago
    You know, zombies in movies are always skinny, but the flesh of most modern Americans is probably quite fatty, since we pretty much eat the same diet as beef cattle. That's Hollywood for you, even the undead set an unrealistic body image (and don't even get me started on vampires).
    2348 days ago
    This was a comment left about this article. I thought it was great.

    People who have problems with food hear that it's all about getting a bit of self control _so_ often, when in fact self control is usually what caused their problems in the first place. Here's a truth that you don't often hear nowadays: When you have a healthy relationship to food and eating, self control is not needed. At all. If you think that food and self control belong together, then that relationship is already wonky.

    This is why people who have never had problems with food are so baffled by people who have problems, I think, and vice versa. Everybody thinks that there's one game here, everyone's playing, and "normal" people are just better at playing it than overweight or eating-disordered people. In fact there isn't a one game everyone's playing; the two different groups aren't even in the same freaking park. One group is playing a grueling game of baseball, where everyone is constantly pushed to their limit, under scrutiny, and if you don't win enough points it means you're a failure as a human being. The other group, on the other hand, are killing time in a nearby park, playing with their dogs and kids, and generally relaxing. People in the first group can't understand how the other people in the other park can talk about it like it's the easiest thing in the world and not the constant source of anxiety that it is, while in the playing-park there is much bafflement as to how one can even count points or why anyone would.

    2348 days ago
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