For many of us who are former, chronic dieters, restrictive eating may have been a very negative experience. We may have had the euphoric high of shedding a few pounds with artificially sweetened desserts and beverages, processed meal replacements, protein powder drinks, or meticulous counting, measuring and recording rituals; but then ate everything in sight afterwards to make up for the inhumane deprivation of vital nutrients that our bodies so desperately needed for survival.
We may have lost 10 lbs, but then binged and gained 40.
However, when we liberally and generously flood our bodies with micronutrients, phytochemicals and rich antioxidants, it turns off the biological necessity for craving addictive, unhealthy foods and overeating. For many, it takes at least 3-6 weeks of total abstinence; replacing standard America diet foods with high-nutrient foods for the taste buds to change and to cross over to that threshold of freedom.
Eat to Live definitely scores as the only proven program out there that eradicates addictive biological cravings, which removes the strong power-struggle with food.
However, one can’t deny the fact that it is not an all-you-can-eat, no restraints way of eating either. There are guidelines to follow like eating only when truly hungry and stopping before full.
For those of us who have developed unhealthy habits over the years such as: using food to stuff negative emotions, or to celebrate happy occasions, or to eat according to the clock, or as a recreational hobby, or to socialize with others, there’s an intentional and ongoing diligence that has to be maintained for life.
Like all addictions, one can never return to destructive habits, no matter how much the cravings for unhealthy foods have ceased.
For me personally, I can never eat at the computer while skimming Facebook or the news. For me, food turns into a recreational hobby when I do that and I no longer focus on stopping before full.
Just like many recovering alcoholics can no longer hang out at bars lest they revert back to unhealthy patterns, I can’t mix food with leisure activities that trigger mindless overeating. Eating is only to nourish my body. Nothing more. It’s no longer a recreational hobby.
So for that reason, optimal health requires sensible boundaries to safeguard oneself from past engrained habits, depending upon one’s former lifestyle.
Eat to live. We nourish our bodies with high-nutrient foods; eating only when truly hungry and stopping before full.
Simple. Sensible. Effective. Permanent.
image credit: vegetables, flickr by Martin Cathrae