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I Stopped Dieting and I've Never Been Happier, Here's Why

I Stopped Dieting and I've Never Been Happier, Here's Why


Dieting has long been touted as the go-to solution for weight loss and quick results. From calorie restriction to eliminating entire food groups, people try various methods in the hopes of maintaining a caloric deficit day after day. While these approaches may lead to short-term weight loss, they often fall short in the long run due to their lack of sustainability. Our bodies are hardwired to crave high-calorie foods, which, in our modern society, are readily available and often the cheapest option. To compound the problem, we struggle to recognize feelings of satiety when consuming highly processed foods, leading to a cycle of overeating. Like a driver on the highway who overcorrects and makes things worse, diets often lead to wild pendulum swings of extreme restriction and extreme binge-eating, leaving us worse off than before.  Rather than embracing extreme measures, it's time to find a middle ground and make gradual, sustainable changes that promote a healthier relationship with food. Let's explore a balanced approach.

Move Away from Extremes:

  1. Instead of diving headfirst into a restrictive diet and cutting the all foods you’re used to cold turkey, start with gradual steps towards sustainable change. Rather than demonizing sugar or completely eliminating it, aim for moderation. By allowing yourself to enjoy occasional treats, you can avoid building up intense cravings and the subsequent risk of a binge-eating episode. You can see this play out in children who grow up in restrictive households that completely remove sugar from their kitchens.  Once those kids get a taste -which they’re sure to do outside the home, they overindulge.  If sugar and processed foods are used in moderation, children can learn to self-regulate. Embracing a more balanced mindset allows for a healthier approach to food without falling into a cycle of guilt and shame.  

Focus on Protein:

  1. If you find yourself craving something sweet or indulgent, opt for a treat that incorporates protein into the mix. Upper Limit's Grass-fed whey protein, for instance, offers a delicious option with low calories, 20g of protein, MCT oil, and probiotics. Studies have shown that protein is the most satiating macronutrient, making protein shakes an excellent choice to satisfy sugar cravings while keeping hunger at bay. By choosing protein-rich options, you can strike a balance between enjoyment and nutritional value.

Practice Mindful Eating:

  1. In our fast-paced lives, it's easy to eat on autopilot, consuming food without truly savoring or appreciating it. Mindful eating involves slowing down, paying attention to the flavors and textures of each bite, and fully engaging with the eating experience. By practicing mindful eating, you can develop a deeper connection with your food and better recognize feelings of satiety. This approach helps prevent overeating and allows you to truly enjoy the foods you love in a more balanced way.

Embrace Whole Foods:

  1. While it's important to find a middle ground when it comes to indulgent treats, prioritizing whole, unprocessed foods is key for overall well-being. Incorporate a variety of fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, whole grains, and healthy fats into your diet. These nutrient-dense foods not only provide essential vitamins and minerals but also contribute to a sense of fullness and satisfaction. I find that I have the most willpower in the morning and it tends to wane as the stresses of the day compound.  I make a truly healthy and wholefood based breakfast a priority in the morning when I’m most likely to eat them.  Eating fermented foods for my microbiome, foods high in fiber and protein, and making dishes with single ingredients allow me to start my day off the right way which creates more wiggle room later on as the day progresses and my willpower decreases.  By focusing on whole foods, especially early on, you can create a solid foundation for a healthier eating pattern while still allowing room for occasional treats. 


Shifting away from extreme dieting and finding balance in our relationship with food is the key to long-term success and happiness.  As with exercise, consistency is more important than brief episodes of ultra-healthy eating. By making gradual, sustainable changes, embracing mindful eating, incorporating protein-rich treats, and prioritizing whole foods, we can enjoy a healthier and more fulfilling way of nourishing our bodies. Remember, it's not about strict rules and deprivation but rather finding a harmonious balance that promotes both physical and emotional well-being. So let go of the dieting mentality and embark on a journey towards a more joyful and sustainable approach to food and healthy living.  

The wild swings of dieting lead to self-deprecation and shame.  If I messed up or cheated on my diet, it lead to more cheating and more shame and you can really spiral out of control.  The biggest takeaway from dieting is that even if it still worked and you looked the way you wanted to, if you hate yourself, it’s all for nought.  That’s why I’ll never diet again, but continue on my journey to a more balanced, sustainable, and consistent approach to eating.

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