Recognizing the MANY Reasons Why Diets Simply Don’t Work
(Hint: It’s NOT your fault!)
The average woman will go on 61 diets by the time she is 45 years old.
95% of the time, those diets will cause you to gain back 100% of the weight you lost, within 1-2 years. 87% of the time, you will gain back even more weight than you lost, after EVERY diet cycle.
Teenagers who diet have been found to be 324% more likely to struggle with weight issues as an adult, including chronic obesity.
And, as our nation’s growing obsession with weight and weight loss continues to grow, so does our country’s epidemic of weight-related health concerns, such as fatty liver disease, diabetes, and heart disease. All made worse by the act of repetitive, ineffective yo-yo dieting.
The heartbreaking reality is that trying to control your weight and/or lose weight through the act of dieting is simply ineffective, regardless of which of the “latest or greatest” diets you choose!
These statistics and more have led researchers to declare, “the simple act of dieting is one of the most powerful indicators of future problems with weight.”
Because Diets Don’t Work, we created TheHealthyWeighOut Approach to Nutrition!
If you are like so many of the participants who have gone through our program, you probably have tried every diet out there in search of the “answer” to your chronic overeating.
With so many diets and so few results, it is not unusual for participants to come in feeling demoralized, shameful, and/or confused about their relationship with food. They think there is something wrong with them, that they must be “broken” due to the fact that they “failed,” once again, to conform to their latest diet.
Other times, contradictory advice about what to eat, when to eat, and how much to eat has left them feeling overwhelmed or frustrated. Once again, feeling “humiliated” by their perceived inability to “control” their eating behavior through dieting.
At TheHealthyWeighOut, we know that diets don’t work and that you certainly are NOT a failure! We felt strongly that it was time to give our determined clients a chance to be successful at meeting their health and nutritional goals, and we knew that it had to be done by creating an effective alternative to dieting!
We’ve created a way to control your food cravings and eliminate your emotional & binge eating that doesn’t include dieting…because YOU don’t fail diets. Diets fail you.
A Hopeful Solution: Sustainable Change IS Possible!
At TheHealthyWeighOut, we feel it’s important to bring our participants back to the reasonable, successful foundational science of nutrition ~ what we know from science about how the body uses food to stay healthy and function at an optimal level. Forget about gimmicks, quick-fixes, and fad diets. We are committed to teaching you the what, when, how, and why of eating so that your body can achieve – and maintain – optimal physical functioning.
Based on cutting-edge neuropsychological and biological research about the brain-gut connection, our program empowers you to understand your body’s nutritional needs so that you can become an informed and conscious (not deprived!) eater.
From Structure to Intuition
For most of our participants, restoring nutritional health first requires a structured, non-dieting approach to planning and executing meals. After years of yo-yo dieting, your body yearns for a predictable pattern of nourishment that will facilitate the replenishing of nutrients and ignite healthy metabolic functioning. Our program helps you establish a daily meal structure that consists of nutrients your body needs in foods that you enjoy.
With the continued practice of structured eating, your metabolism slowly “wakes up” and begins to naturally develop its own natural rhythm around food and eating ~ telling you what and when to eat. You are then ready to move to the next step within our program, which is learning the fundamental principles of Intuitive Eating.
What is “Intuitive Eating?” Intuitive eating is the long-term, end goal for all participants in our program and is an approach to food and eating that will bring you emotional and nutritional relief without ever having to diet again!
Intuitive Eating: Find Freedom from Food
Have you gone from diet to diet, only to find that after every diet cycle you’ve put on even MORE weight than you’ve lost?
Is your self-esteem connected to how much food you’ve eaten, how much you weigh, and/or how much weight you’ve lost?
Do you battle constantly with what you’d like to eat vs. what you are “allowing” yourself to eat?
So many people in our nation today are engaged in an emotionally draining and physically ineffective battle with food. They’re left feeling disheartened and frustrated, wondering, “What’s wrong with me?”
When Control Becomes Out-of-Control
If you are one of the 95% of people who have gone on diet after diet, only to find that whatever weight you have temporarily lost has been put right back on, you are not alone…and there’s nothing wrong with you! The very nature of dieting actually sets you up for more overeating, and it is this repetitive cycle of overeating and undereating that has been found to predict future struggles with weight.
It is human nature to want something that we are told we cannot have. The more we are restricted from something that is desirable, the more we want it. And, when we do allow ourself to have it, we tend to go overboard!
This is how a diet-overeat-diet-overeat cycle of problematic eating is created. People innocently go on the latest diet, restricting themselves from certain “bad” or “unhealthy” foods for a certain period of time, until they can no longer maintain it. Often in a moment of emotional vulnerability – exhaustion, stress, loneliness – the forbidden food now becomes the very thing you want to feel better. But after feeling deprived of this tasty treat, you don’t just want a little…you want a lot! This binge eating episode is, ironically, what then causes people to gain weight which then causes them to want to restrict their food intake once again through the next popular diet. This is the undereat-overeat cycle that traps so many well-intended people just trying to “be healthy.”
What is Intuitive Eating? Pure Freedom.
Intuitive eating is a peaceful and effective alternative to dieting behavior. It is a gentle, non-dieting approach to food that helps you to no longer feel deprived and/or restricted, which then stops the bingeing that happens when feeling deprived for too long. Intuitive Eating breaks the problematic diet-overeat-diet-overeat eating cycle!
Intuitive Eating embraces the following key principles:
- Diets are never the answer. They only set you up for eventual failure and frustration, and unwanted overeating.
- Eat when your body is hungry, just as you put on a sweater when your body is cold.
- Give yourself unconditional permission to eat all foods. “Bad” foods do not exist in Intuitive Eating.
- Respect your body’s fullness. When you are nourished and satisfied, take a break from eating. You can always have more later.
- When hungry commit to eating what sounds good, not what you think you “should” have or what is “healthy.”
- Respect and embrace your body, no matter its size or shape.
- Move your body when and how you want. Move because it feels good, not to burn or earn calories.
- Define “health” as a satisfying and balanced combination of caring for your physical, nutritional, emotional, and spiritual needs.
From carrots to cupcakes, m & m’s to apples, intuitive eating is a healthy, moderate way of eating that creates space for all foods to exist in your life. As a result, intuitive eaters experience minimal overeating, do not feel deprived or as if they are “missing out” on the special treats they love, and feel peacefully in control of their relationship with food.
At TheHealthyWeighOut, it is our mission to support each client in breaking away from the dieting mentality and embracing the calm approach of Intuitive Eating. Learning to listen to and trust your body rather than some fad diet is a HUGE step towards sustainable recovery from emotional and binge eating.
But What About the Weight?
Most of the time, our participants come to us desperately seeking a no-diet solution to their weight concerns. For some, weight loss is a personal desire that they believe will help them to live a more satisfying life. Whether they have a goal of skydiving on their 50th birthday or being able to sit comfortably in an airplane seat, living in a somewhat smaller body feels like an answer to a happier, more fulfilling life.
But for many more, weight loss has become a necessary component of their recovery process as they face medical challenges, like fatty liver disease, that necessitate weight loss for the purposes of disease reversal.
In all of these examples, supporting weight loss becomes a delicate balance of eating in ways that respect your body today while working to change your body for tomorrow. So how does Intuitive Eating accomplish this goal?
While Intuitive Eating in its truest form is a weight-neutral approach that encourages people to focus on establishing a fulfilling and satisfying relationship with food and their bodies, and not focus on weight or pursue weight loss as the end goal, the principles remain hugely beneficial for people needing or wanting to facilitate a no-diet weight loss process that is secondary to other treatment goals. With this approach, stopping dieting, honoring your body’s nutritional needs, and resolving the underlying emotional reasons behind the overeating are the primary goals of treatment; weight loss will never be the focus. But in some cases, emotionally and physically healthy weight loss can be a natural outgrowth of this process as consistent and diverse eating nutritionally restores the body allowing for improved overall physical and metabolic functioning.
At TheHealthyWeighOut, we believe that weight and weight loss are very personal matters, unique to each person. While we fully believe in our hearts that each human who walks through our doors is beautiful and perfect just as they are – no weight loss needed! – we respect the individual goals someone may have for their body. Thus, our providers work to meet you where you’re at with respect to your personal goals, and find psychologically and physically healthy ways to help you achieve these goals.
How Can I Learn to Become an Intuitive Eater?
Thankfully, Intuitive Eating is a skill that you can absolutely learn! Our dynamite Registered Dietitian, Amy Reynolds, RD, CDE, is an expert on Intuitive Eating and can help you incorporate this no-diet approach to eating into your day-to-day relationship with food. There are several options for learning this:
Join Circle of HOPE. Our global virtual community offers members an incredible amount of information dedicated to the practice of Intuitive Eating. Each week, our Registered Dietitians go live in their “Chew On This” VideoCast, where they discuss all things related to intuitive eating, including how to break out of the diet mentality, enjoy eating experiences, and connect with hunger-fullness cues. Additionally, Dr. Ashley and Amy have discussed each of the 10 principles from both a nutritional and psychological perspective; these videos are always available to our members to watch and re-watch any time.
Attend our 2-day workshops. The nutritional portion of these workshops takes an in-depth look at the principles of intuitive eating and teaches you how exactly to apply these principles to every aspect of food – from stocking the kitchen to cooking to eating. The group also has the opportunity to practice these skills together alongside the dietitian.
Work one-on-one with our Registered Dietitian. Work alongside Amy to learn how intuitive eating can be incorporated into your life. With customized support specific to your relationship with food and lifestyle, you can learn how this relaxed and pleasurable way of eating can be adopted into every meal of your life!
Still curious about our approach to helping you achieve sustainable Nutritional Health? Check out this informational video from Dr. Ashley, our program’s co-founder, “From Dieting to Intuitive Eating: Bridging the Great Divide.”
Stop Dieting and Start Loving Your Self. Your Body will Thank You:)
Messages to My Dieting Self: Eating Disorder Recovery Tips
Dr. Julie provides heartfelt awareness regarding how continuously putting your Self on a diet as an Adult, repeats hurtful messages most chronic dieters received through Childhood. Ready to start loving your Self healthy from the inside-out? Please watch this video from our YouTube channel!