As if we didn’t have enough issues with our body image, a celebrity is sure to come along and tell us that the latest protein shake is the key to dieting right. They assure us that the pounds will just magically melt off, leaving us with a flat tummy or other weight loss benefit.
Unfortunately, a diet like this and other similar dieting fads is that they are typically restrictive, punitive and focused on weight loss. It can be hard to stick to one like this for long periods, especially if it feels like torture and you don’t see results quickly.
However, the easiest way to stop dieting and enjoy eating normally again is to identify the key characteristics of a healthy diet. So, are you ready to live healthier? If so, you can use these tips to stop dieting and begin eating normally.
- Identify the Difference Between Diets and Normal Eating Habits
- Listen to Your Body’s Signals for Hunger and Fullness
- Practice Mindful Eating
- Limit Your Sugar and Alcohol Intake
- Allow Yourself to Eat without Guilt
Before diving into the tips, let’s discuss the key characteristics of a diet that is healthy and sustainable and recognize the signs of one that isn’t.
The Deep-Down Problem with Diets
Have you recently realized that dieting doesn’t help you hit your goals for managing your weight? Or have you hit your goal weight but you’re afraid to stop dieting and gain it all back? As mentioned, the problem with diets is that they are often unsustainable. Learning how to stop dieting and eat healthily makes it possible to achieve long-term results with your weight loss plan.
Understand the Psychology of Dieting to Achieve Better Health This Year
Many diets are based upon the concept of willpower. The general idea is that you can restrict calories by simply making yourself avoid eating. The problem with this strategy is that your body is designed to generate a sense of hunger for survival reasons. When you fail to satisfy your hunger, your brain goes into panic mode. In this stressed state, you are more likely to overeat or seek out unhealthy foods that quickly satisfy your hunger.
Are You Fed Up with Trying to Stick to a Diet?
Diets tend to fail because they are too restrictive, and even someone with a large amount of willpower will eventually start to feel deprived. If you’re feeling frustrated, then know that you aren’t alone. The amount of people who are dieting is declining, and you can rest assured that there is a way to end the constant hunger pangs and feelings of guilt that you might experience when you finally succumb to your food cravings.
Learn How to Stop Dieting and Enjoy Eating Normally
The first thing you’ll want to do is start readjusting your mindset. You can learn how to end the futile dieting cycle so that you can start enjoying your meals again. The best part is that following a healthier eating plan is easier than sticking to a diet. Instead of spending hours talking yourself out of grabbing a snack, you’ll learn how to be mindful of what you choose to eat. Giving your body cues that it isn’t in starvation mode helps it to feel safer burning calories.
Why Dieting Won’t Work: The Evidence
Did you know that studies have shown that dieting can often be a strong indicator of future weight gain? While most people lose weight initially on a diet, they typically gain it all back along with a few extra pounds when they stop. The reason for this is that dieting messes with your body’s metabolism. The psychology of dieting can also cause you to go too far with trying to satisfy your cravings once you give in to them.
Follow Our Best Tips for Quitting Dieting Forever
Maintaining a healthy weight helps you to manage painful conditions such as a herniated disc because you’ll have less pressure on your spine. When you seek chiropractic care, you may be asked to practice healthier eating habits that help you to stay within your recommended weight range. We’ve put together some of our best tips for helping you to learn how to stop dieting and still lose or maintain your weight.
1.Identify the Difference Between Diets and Normal Eating Habits
It is possible that you’ve been dieting so long that you aren’t sure what the difference is between a diet and a healthy eating plan. The biggest telltale sign of a diet is that they tend to be gimmicky and restrictive.
Over the years, there’s been a wide range of diets that include rules such as only eating grapefruit or cabbage. You might have even tried the Master Cleanse in the early 2000s. Only allowing yourself to drink liquids is a sure sign that your body isn’t receiving all of the nutrients it needs to avoid falling into starvation mode (Hello, celebrity meal replacement shakes!).
Normal eating habits include having a variety of different foods on your plate. While you will need to maintain proper portions, it is perfectly normal to have a carb such as sweet potatoes in your healthy eating plan. You’ll also change up what you eat from day to day, so that you enjoy a broad range of opportunities to satisfy your brain’s cravings for diverse flavors.
2.Listen to Your Body’s Signals for Hunger and Fullness
Feeling or hearing your stomach growl is a clear sign that you are hungry. You might also notice some signs of low blood sugar such as feeling moody or tired. Recognizing when you are full can be slightly harder, especially if you are prone to overeating. Your brain needs time to recognize that you are full based upon things such as having your blood sugar levels increase and the sensation of food in your stomach. Eating slowly and with mindfulness helps you notice when you are full so that you can stop eating.
3.Practice Mindful Eating
If you’ve ever made it through a big bucket of popcorn at the movies without noticing it, then you already know how easy it is to overeat when you aren’t paying attention. Mindful eating makes your meals more enjoyable.
This practice starts by paying close attention to each item you put on the plate. Choosing fresh plant-based foods in different colors and textures makes your meals appeal to your senses. Then, you’ll spend your mealtime thinking about the flavor and other sensations you notice in each bite. Towards the end of your meal, you’ll also focus on your body cues to determine when you’ve reached the ideal state of fullness.
4.Limit Your Sugar and Alcohol Intake
With a diet, you might be told to cut out all sugars and never have a glass of wine. Eating normally means that you might occasionally have a sweet treat or a cocktail. Besides, fruit and vegetables tend to have natural sugars that are unavoidable. The key here is to avoid having unnecessary amounts of sugar or alcohol. Go ahead and have a slice of birthday cake or a glass of wine. Just keep it infrequent and only have a small amount. Limiting these items in your diet also has instant benefits such as helping you to manage headaches and mood swings.
5. Also, Don’t Use Artificial Sweeteners
There is evidence that suggests that artificial sweeteners such as sucralose and others can cause you to gain weight. These substances trick your brain and body into thinking they are sugar so when the sweetness wears off, you crave more food than before.
There are also studies that say artificial sweeteners throw off your gut flora, which can lead to problems such as glucose intolerance and a greater risk of diabetes. Synthetic sugars also tend to hang around in your tissues and can cause inflammation. If you must have an artificial sweetener, stick with Stevia since it seems to be one of the healthier options out of the bunch.
5. Allow Yourself to Eat without Guilt
Dieter’s guilt is real, and it is quite possible that you’ve developed an unhealthy relationship with food. Take this opportunity to give yourself permission to eat a normal diet again. Filling your body with nutrients is a good thing. You’ll have more energy and be able to recover from illnesses and injuries faster. Once you allow your body to eat normally, it’s easier to develop a healthier relationship with food and stop worrying about every little thing that goes into your mouth.
Do You Still Have Questions About How to Stop Dieting?
Are you beginning to see the benefits of ending diets but still worried about a few things? Making lifestyle changes is hard but going into them with a full understanding of everything that is involved helps to make it easier.
Here are the answers to a few of the most common questions people ask when they are considering switching to a healthy eating plan.
What Can I Do to Stop Myself from Dieting?
You may have several reasons why you find it hard to stop dieting. For some people, dieting provides a sense of control over their weight. Diets have a simple outline to follow, and you may like knowing what to expect each day. You can combat this by making a weekly menu. Being able to look at your daily menu that includes a varied number of foods gives you a similar sense of consistency. Even better, you won’t feel out of control since you’ll be less likely to give in to cravings and binge eat.
Will I End Up Gaining Weight If I Stop Dieting?
The answer to this question depends upon factors such as whether you are at what your body considers to be your ideal weight. Some people do gain weight once they start adding more calories to their diet, but there are ways to keep this within acceptable ranges. There is also the possibility that you’ll lose weight when you start eating healthier. Getting your body out of starvation mode can rev up your metabolism since your brain won’t be sending signals to hold on to every calorie it gets.
How Do I Quit Dieting and Avoid Gaining Weight?
If gaining weight is a reason that is holding you back from choosing to stop dieting, then you’ll benefit from learning how to eat healthy while keeping your intake of sugars and fats low.
Nutritional counseling is an option that you can use to learn how to create a balanced menu that doesn’t lead to weight gain. Figuring out the right eating schedule and portions for your body’s needs makes it possible to eat right and stay within your ideal weight range.
And if I Hate Any and All Kinds of Diets?
There are several ways to stop dieting. You can switch from a calorie-restrictive plan that encourages you to cut calories into your normal eating habits with simple adjustments. Adjustments come in many different forms, but they all include focusing on the quality of food rather than simply cutting back for immediate results.
Additionally, dieters who find it hard to stop dieting may benefit from nutritional counseling. A counselor can help you learn how to balance your meals with the right portions of healthy foods that make up a balanced diet without cutting calories or drastically changing what you eat.
How Do I Break the Cycle of Going On and Off Diets?
Yo-yo dieting is when you go on and off of diets, sometimes referred to as weight cycling. The scientific community is still divided over whether or not yo-yo dieting is actually harmful. However, the main consensus among experts is that it is very harmful to your health in several ways.
It is possible for people who feel like they are stuck in a pattern of Yo-yo dieting by switching things up and eating normally again. It can help to talk to your chiropractor about yo-yo dieting since they can help you develop a plan to break the pattern and maintain your weight in a healthy range.
Schedule a Consultation at the Cool Springs Clinic
Extreme diets can ravage your body in ways that aren’t always visible. Making a conscious choice to start changing how you eat puts you in better health that contributes to living a happier lifestyle with less chronic pain.
You can stop dieting and begin enjoying a healthier lifestyle. Stopping the diet rollercoaster allows you to stop being stressed out by food and begin enjoying sharing meals with your family and friends.
Learn more about how you can break the cycle of going on and off diets by scheduling a consultation with Dr. Hinz at Cool Springs Chiropractic today. You can contact us at 615 – 503 – 9900 or book an appointment using our online form.