So what CAN I eat?

In Diet and Weight, Don't Eat White!, Mindful Eating on June 9, 2011 at 12:59 pm
Wonder Bread Open

such simple sugar it starts digesting on your tongue!

She sounded frustrated. I’m sure she really was. We had just had the “don’t eat white” conversation and she felt like every food that she enjoyed had just been ripped away from her.

I know that frustration is a recipe for giving up hope and giving up on health, so I wanted her to hear that it could be different. I quoted St. Paul: “Everything is allowed but not everything is good for me.”

He was writing about food too, though in a little different context.  I believe that this viewpoint is completely true.  I tell my patients that the calories are what really counts, and the calories can come from anything.  Weight loss can happen even with fad diets because this is true.

The cookie diet, the juice diet, even the drive-through diet all work because they cut calories. The problem is not if they work but: 1) How you feel while on the diet and 2) If you can sustain the weight loss when you go back to “real life.”  That’s a huge catch, the fine print in many diets that means I can only live like this for a few weeks or months and then, reality.  For any diet change to have a chance to be forever, it has to be based in reality from the beginning.

That’s why I start recommending what I call the Don’t Eat White Diet, which replaces many of the simple starches and carbs in a typical American diet.  Eating the “white stuff” leads to being hungry again soon and to feeling badly when the ‘sugar rush’ is over.

In the end, it really is true: “Everthing is allowed, but not everything is good for me.” I think she understood that by the end of our conversation.  I wasn’t telling her “No!” but that she needs to think before she eats.

This is really the key to all of my health advice. It’s a free country, you can do what you want. For most of us, though, we need to think about what we eat or we’ll get what’s coming to us.

Change Your Food, Change Your Life!

  1. Thanks for this post! People seem to have a hard time understanding…OF COURSE crazy diets like Atkins & the HCG diet work. And it’s not because of the protein or the “HCG” drops…it’s because you’re eating less calories than you’re using! The “twinkie diet” professor did a great job demonstrating that. But I think it’s ingrained in people’s heads that in order to lose weight they have to eliminate all sorts of foods and they think there aren’t replacements — but thanks to the (small but growing) health movement, whole grain products have never tasted better or been easier to come by!

  2. “it’s because you’re eating less calories than you’re using!” Well said, Lady!
    From what I’ve seen on your blog, you know better than most how precise the body is at gaining or losing weight based on small changes in calories. Maybe you should branch out in your blogging…

  3. […] health and future with a real lifestyle change: exercising regularly, avoiding beef and pork, maybe cutting the “white” out of their diet.  By the time a person has succeeded with this step in affecting their health, they come to truly […]

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