Welcome to Part II of this installment. If you missed Part I, you can read it here.
Willpower. Willpower and food. Willpower and dieting. Willpower and resisting cravings. When we think of typical dieting, we think 'all I need is a little (or a lot) of willpower.' This is such a misconception.
Let's look at sugar for a moment. There are studies that suggest sugar is more addictive than cocaine. That is quite a bold statement. I include it to illustrate to you that reducing your sugar intake may require more than just willpower. Realize, that sugar is just one aspect here. When we recognize that there are actual physiological things happening in our bodies and brains when we eat certain foods, then we can start getting somewhere. Real progress and change can begin.
You may be thinking, 'But shouldn't I go on a diet just to lose the weight? Once the diet is over I'll be really careful not to gain the weight back.' This is tempting and possibly even logical. Realistically though, will it work? The problem lies with 'HOW'? How will you be careful not to gain it back? A clear, definitive answer is needed.
Diets focus on losing weight as opposed to focusing on how to eat to enhance our health. If we focus on the latter first, weight loss will follow. By focusing solely on weight loss, we can, without conscious intention, create a vicious cycle of yo-yo dieting. If you're constantly losing and gaining the last 10 pounds, then something is amiss. Our bodies look for homeostasis. Consistency. Dieting, in the traditional sense, can confuse the body.
Dieting is often connected with a slew of negative emotions including guilt, shame, and embarrassment. Again, let's go back to that word willpower. We feel if we just had more willpower, we'd be a better person. We'd be farther along by now and we'd be worth so much more.