Can you just quit? Is it possible to just get off the diet merry-go-round and stop dieting forever. I’ve seen lots of ads proclaiming that you can quit dieting forever and be the ideal weight and sized just by taking a supplement, or joining an expensive program. Is it true? Can you just quit? Well, that depends on your definition of diet.
According to Websters, diet is most commonly defined in four ways:
a : food and drink regularly provided or consumed
b : habitual nourishment
c : the kind and amount of food prescribed for a person or animal for a special reason
d : a regimen of eating and drinking sparingly so as to reduce one’s weight
In our blog world, we mostly focus on the last one. We go on a particular regimen of eating to try and reduce our weight with the long term goal of improving our health and fitness. What if we took that definition out of our vocabularies and focused instead on the first definition. Our diet is food we regularly consume for nutrition (and sometimes fun.) How does changing our definition of diet help us in moving from the “diet mentality” to the diet mentality.
I believe it gets us off the diet merry-go-round. Instead of whirling around trying to find some perfect idea for weight loss, we can focus on a healthy diet for our bodies. We can focus on a healthy diet for our families. And we can be part of a growing grass roots movement committed to helping reduce childhood/adult obesity. By removing the last definition from our minds, we are able to learn to eat a diet that is good for us and one that we can follow for a lifetime.
There was a sweet woman I knew back in Florida who was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. They removed the cancer, but it quickly returned. The doctor’s couldn’t even find the source of it, but told her she only had a few months to live due to the extensive nature of it. She went through the cancer treatments and tried to prepare the best she could. Along with the medical treatments she completely changed her diet. (The first definition.) She cut out most white sugars and flours. Ate whole foods and vegetables, reduced the amount of meat she ate, and cut out the majority of processed foods from her diet. To the doctor’s amazement and her family’s joy, she seemed to get stronger rather than weaker. Year one passed, year two, year three. No one could believe it. She often told me it was her faith in God, and the change in her eating habits. She said she realized that everything she put in her mouth could help or hurt her. She told me, I’m not dieting, I’m eating a diet that’s good for me.
In the end, she survived six years longer than the doctors told her. Now I’m not saying the food made all the difference, because we will never know that. But my point is that she wasn’t eating that way to lose weight but rather to stay alive. And that’s what we need to do when we think of our diets. Our food is the fuel for our bodies. What kind of fuel are your putting in it, and is that fuel appropriate for your health in the long term?
Are you learning how to plan your diet for life, and not just diet for now. What changes have you made to get off the merry-go-round, or are you still circling one day at a time? Diane