25 Biggest Dieting Mistakes
By Julia Havey
Updated: Saturday, March 4, 2006
OK, you are reading a weight-loss related magazine, so it is safe to assume you want to lose weight. I bet you are anxiously looking for tips "to do" and a diet to "go on," which are essential to successful weight loss, but those aren't the only things that you need to know.
Why? Most women have spent an average of 20 years "dieting," so another safe assumption is that we know a lot about what to do right. However, little attention is usually given on what not to do. Apply this list of things NOT to do to your healthful regimen, and spare yourself many of the pitfalls that derail most dieters.
1. Having a negative defeatist attitude. If you think there is no way that you are going to succeed this time, lose the weight and keep it off, then you will be right! However, if you think positively and believe that change is at hand, you will empower your journey, and you will reach your goals!
2. Going on any diet that is NOT a manner of eating that you can adhere to for the rest of your life. Be careful when deciding what nutritional plan you want to follow, as it should be a manner of eating that matches your tastes, budget and lifestyle. You should model all of your future nutritional plans closely after how you lost the weight in order to keep that weight lost for good!
3. Believing that you will eat cabbage soup -- or any other low-cal, monotonous fare everyday for the rest of your life. If a particular odd "diet" is something that you can barely stomach, it isn't realistic to think you will eat that way for the entire time it takes to lose all the weight. It certainly won't teach you much about how to live healthfully for the long-term. Just say NO, to cabbage soup and other such funky diets!
4. Weighing in too frequently, letting the scale rule your mood and actions. Up to this point, have you been fixated on the scale? Well, if so, it hasn't really helped you lose weight, has it? Otherwise, you wouldn't be here, looking for yet another "diet." So do us both a favor, and pack the scale up, put a big red bow around it, and unwrap it after six months of consistent healthful living. It might actually show you something you want to see!
5. Not drinking enough water. You MUST drink at least 64 ounces of water everyday, and for the overachievers, drinking up to ½ your body weight in fluid ounces a day is recommended! Early man packed up all his belongings when his water supply dried up, moved and relocated to another area where water was plentiful. They knew they couldn't live without it. Yet, we modern men have water in our kitchen faucet, and ignore it all day. The difference is that they didn't have soft drinks, coffee, sugar-filled drinks and diet soda. YUCK! Water is all that you need to drink, and you MUST drink at least 64 ounces of it a day!
6. Drinking sugar-laden drinks -- including "fruit" drinks -- Fruitopia is neither a fruit nor a Utopia! Try putting your favorite non-water beverage in your pet's bowl, and see if they will drink it.
7. Consuming processed foods more often than fresh foods. Again, think how Early Man lived and what he ate. Eating as close to natural is the best way to ensure that your body is as healthy as possible.
8. Not having a plan. Leaving your actions up to chance in life is never a good idea. "We never plan to fail, we fail to plan." Get a plan and stick with it, but make sure each step is realistic and change is gradual!
9. Not being aware of the nutritional benefits or detriments of what you consume. Lettuce is a great choice to eat, but spinach and other darker leaves have more nutritional benefit than the iceberg variety. If you are going to eat, get the most bang for your buck!
10. Finishing every last bite of a meal, even after you are full. Mother was wrong! Don't clean your plate, let the dishwasher do that!
11. Going back for seconds at meals. Does the word "glutton" sound like something you want to describe you? There is no reason ever to have seconds! If you like it that much, have it as a leftover the next day! Too much of even a good thing is no longer a good thing!
12. Skipping breakfast. Mother was right on this one. It is the most important meal of the day!
13. Starving all day. When you finally get around to eating, it is usually something unhealthy (because you "can"), and it gets stored as energy later, rather than burned as energy now! You totally mess up your metabolism if you do this!
14. Bingeing after "falling off the wagon," and waiting until "tomorrow" to get back on track. Admit now that you will stumble on this journey. Make it your goal to lengthen the amount of time between stumbles, and shorten the time it takes to "get back on track." This way, you may only blow it once a year, and will get back on track in five minutes! You get to that point, and there will be no problem!
15. Thinking you are genetically destined to be fat. The only fat gene is the one left hanging in your closet after you lose your weight! You may be predisposed to a condition, but HOW you live determines how great its effect on your life will be!
16. Treating "fat" as a personality trait. Fat is NOT a personality trait; it is a physical condition. Blond isn't a trait, either; it is a hair color! Do not allow yourself to be branded by ANY physical attribute or determent! YOU are many things, but fat is not one of them. Identify some things you love about who you are, and focus on those. They will help you realize the body you want.
17. Not living each day to the fullest ... thinking that it will come when you are thinner. BE, DO and then you will HAVE! BE a healthier person, DO the things a healthier person DOES and soon, you will HAVE a healthier life!
18. Thinking pills, powders or potions are more powerful than they really are for achieving weight loss. I bought diet pills after Anna Nicole Smith's weight loss. I really thought they would work! $48 later, 30 days of pills swallowed and NOTHING! Not one pound of weight loss. If those things really worked, no one would be overweight!
19. Thinking of exercise as a chore instead of a way to improve your health and life. Not scheduling exercise as a vital part of your day and week. If today, you were in an accident, paralyzed and could never walk again, do you think you would long to be able to go for a walk? Exercise is a "GET TO", not a "HAVE TO." It is a joy to move your body and get your endorphins flowing. They truly are nature's reward for demanding physical fitness of ourselves. PUSH yourself; you will be amazed at how it feels!
20. Indulging excessively in alcohol. Bottom line: When you drink, you suck down excess calories, alter your mind and let down your guard. Stupid things happen when we drink too much. Too many calories, too much food and too many regrets. Live in control and live freely!
21. Watching sports rather than participating in sports. Would it be more fun to watch the Super Bowl or be the MVP of the game? Is it more fun to watch an amazing homerun, or actually bring home the winning run for your softball team? It is more fun to watch spoiled millionaires dribble an orange ball, or run down the court trying to guard an old friend? Sunday football is a tradition, but playing a game of it in your own front yard will provide memories that will last long after the season is over!
22. Watching too much television. New rule: NO TV viewing unless you have walked for 30 minutes! My rule is that I get on my Octane Elliptical machine and stay on it until whatever show I want to watch is over! One night I made the mistake of watching a two-hour show! I did 90 minutes on the Elliptical before throwing in the towel! "Must-see TV," means "want-to-see" body for me!
23. Thinking that "dieting" sprees -- and not a total lifestyle change -- will garner lasting weight loss results. If you aren't changing your life, you aren't making lasting changes! Add a lifestyle makeover to your eDiets.com plan. Visit www.lifechanger.us for more information.
24. Consuming fast foods on a regular basis. The fried, greasy and high- calorie fast food that dominates our society's eating habits today is the leading cause of the obesity epidemic that we now face. If you have no choice other than fast food, please order a salad with grilled chicken, one packet of light dressing w/ lemon wedges, a bottle of water and extra chicken if you are hungry, but when they say "do you want fries with that?" Say, "Do you want me to be unhealthy and die young?" Hopefully, both answers will be no!
25. Waiting for tomorrow to "get started," rather than RIGHT NOW! Right now, there are thousands of members logged on to eDiets.com, in the chat rooms, on the support boards, watching online anytime meetings and waiting to lend their support. There are teams of nutritionists to help you understand basic, healthy human nutritional needs. There is hope, and there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
YOU can do this! Or, I guess you can't do these things! Whatever, but you know what I mean, you are going to succeed this time, and the entire eDiets.com team is here to educate, motivate and inspire you to your dreams and goals!