Jennifer, a middle-aged single mother with one six-year-old daughter, has been skipping sweets for a few weeks now. She’s also become a stickler for portion control. She feels as if she’s eating less than ever, and she’s been diligently exercising for an hour at a time at least four days a week. Yet, she hasn’t lost a single pound. The question is, “Why?”
This is a dilemma which affects dieters the world over. They think they are taking the steps necessary to lose weight, but nothing seems to be happening. In essence, they are trapped in a dieting rut and they don’t know how to free themselves. As a result, many people become frustrated and depressed and may then engage in binge eating.
- Cookie Cutter Approach- One of the problems with diets is that they are often standardized. As a result, they don’t take into consideration your individual physiology and metabolism. They provide a cookie-cutter approach to weight loss—an approach which may not work in your individual case.
- Lack of Support- Another reason that diet is fail is lack of support. You may have family members who can eat whatever they want and seemingly not gain a pound. As a result, they may fill your refrigerator with junk food, leading you into temptation. Also, you may feel as if you have no one to turn to in order to discuss your weight problems.
- Hidden Calories- Another reason for diet failure is hidden calories. You may literally be consuming calories and not even realize it. For instance, the frappucinos that are so popular today are loaded with calories—as many as 600 in a single serving! You may also be indulging in sugary sodas—another source of extra calories. By taking a few simple steps, such as eliminating the exotic coffee drinks from your diet and substituting skim milk for whole milk, you may be able to eliminate the hidden calories that are denying you dieting success.
You may be more successful in your dieting if you reconsider a diet and focus on nutrition and sustainable lifestyle change. This means that you must change the way you look at food. You should not turn to food to make you feel better or to provide you with a sense of comfort. A lifestyle change implies commitment; it means that you are prepared to follow the plan for the long haul. Your aim ultimately should be not simply to lose weight, but to become healthier. A fad diet will not allow you to reach that milestone.