The ‘No Diet’ diet

No diet photoBy: Mary Marren

I recently started following a fitness guru on twitter. She tweeted about this 21-day diet where you don’t eat any sweets, chips, fast food, or drink anything but water. The first thing I thought to myself was that that would be a piece of cake (figuratively speaking of course). Normally I eat a pretty well-balanced diet, only allowing an occasional treat for myself, so I figured that I could get through this 21 days worry-free.

Day one comes along and instantly the first thing I think about when I wake up is breakfast. What I should eat? What should I not eat? How much should I eat? Over and over again I found myself obsessing about what I was eating. It was almost as if this obsessing overtook my every thought, and soon enough I found myself eating everything. Even though it had only been one day, it was like I hadn’t eaten chocolate for three years. Suddenly I NEEDED sweets and junk food.

It is a ridiculous thought, but I starting thinking that this “diet” was actually having a reverse effect on my body! The more I thought about eating healthy, the more I obsessed about eating healthy, which lead to me think I hadn’t had unhealthy food in a life time and I needed it.  Once I made this discovery I started asking my friends and family if they had felt the same way, and to my surprise most of them did.

Most people who I had talked to about dieting agreed that it more often than not lead them to over eating as well. It’s interesting how when people obsess about what they are eating they tend to eat more than people who naturally make healthier choices without the label of a “diet.”  

So I say forget the term “diet.” Just forget about it! Call me crazy, but when I wasn’t wrapped up in dieting, my actual diet was great! Sure, have a treat now and then, but when you constantly are tracking the last time you treated yourself to ice cream and the next time you can eat it, your mind becomes your diet! There is so much more to life than obsessing about what to eat and what not to eat. Needless to say I stepped away from the twitter guru’s diet, and stepped into my own diet. The “no diet” diet. I find that when I don’t feel forced into eating healthy food, I naturally do.

Now sometimes not having any rules on what to eat can be just as harmful as having too many rules. So to help guide you along try taking a few steps! For one, try limiting the amount of times you eat out. Stopping for a quick meal at taco bell may seem harmless, but trust me, it adds up. Try to look at eating out as a treat, and not a routine. Also, don’t go grocery-shopping hungry. That just says trouble. When you buy food when you’re starving, more likely than not, you’ll buy anything and everything that looks good. Make a list when you go grocery shopping and stick to it! That way you’re in and you’re out without lingering in the chips aisle. Another tip is not to drink your calories. Between soda, beer, and cocktails calories add up quick so be conscious of what you’re drinking.

Stay Healthy, Stay Strong
-Mary Marren

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