Thursday, June 26, 2008

No Deprivation, Moderation

The wonderful thing about calorie counting is that you can basically eat anything you want. Nothing is off limits. Of course that's what also brings out its critics. They're afraid you're not smart enough to eat a balanced meal. But it's not that difficult to do. And you'll discover in doing this, that the more healthy variety you have, i.e. vegetables, chicken, pork, the more of it you'll be able to eat and the better you'll feel.

Yes, there is some measuring and counting. But that's really to help you get your portions under control. We have forgotten how much of anything we should eat because over the last 30 years our plates and our portions have grown to ridiculous size.

Looking at your calories for the day as a sort of bank account that you get to write 'food checks' on makes it easy. This diet doesn't say, "no carbs" or "no sugar" or "no fat," although admittedly, cutting down on such foods because they are high in calories, will help. This diet says if you can afford it with the calories you have available, you can eat it! In fact, it's important to eat a reasonable amount of carbs, fats, and sugar, else you will crave what you can't have, setting yourself up for an eventual day (or night) of binging. The body will have what it wants, whether that's bread or chocolate.

Remember, all diets work. They do. Even that awful cabbage soup diet so popular years ago and that all-rice-all-the-time diet I did in my teens. That's because any drastic changes to the body's system for 10-days or 2-weeks will make you drop a few pounds. The problem with fad deprivation diets is that you're not meant to stay on them. And once you're done and have lost the weight you wanted, you go right back to the old habits becuase you didn't learn to make better choices. That's fine if you want to continue doing that awful weight loss and gain see-saw with your body for the rest of your life. I personally don't.

The idea is balance. Moderation in all things serves us best, I believe, and that includes the types and the amounts of food we eat. The good news is that healthy equals more food in the long run.

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