Do you feel like you’ve been doing everything right when it comes to your diet, but the weight just won’t budge? You’re not alone – many women find that they hit a brick wall when it comes to weight loss. But what if the problem isn’t with your diet at all? In this blog post, I’m going to explore why your diet might be stopping you from losing weight – and what you can do about it. Keep reading to find out more!
When we first evolved on this planet, we were tribal people. As tribal people, our main concern was the opposite of loosing weight. Starvation and malnutrition were the biggest killers (even as recently as 500 years ago) and our bodies came up with some pretty amazing ways to ensure that we didn’t starve.
One of the big things your incredible body does, is slow your metabolism when you have been hungry for a while. So if you have ever been on a restrictive diet, your weight loss may have plateaued and when you stopped you put it on quicker than before. Your body is doing exactly what it was programmed to do during those tribal times, to prevent you from starving, it has slowed your metabolic rate. The rate at which your body burns calories is reduced making subsequent efforts at weight loss that much harder.
There are many ways you can increase your metabolism, drinking ice water in the morning instead of coffee, adding cinnamon, chilies and coriander to your food also increases your metabolism. Make sure that what ever you are doing to lose weight, you do not subject yourself to long periods of hunger.
Today, if I don’t fancy something in the fridge, I won’t eat it. I know that it will be there tomorrow or I can pick up something else and I don’t need to eat it just because it is available.
My tribal brain however is still operating from millennia old hardwiring that cannot be easily overcome. When our ancestors saw food that was available they ate it. They could have said, “Oh great, the hunter’s have brought back deer, I don’t fancy deer” and not eaten it, and then could have gone several days before the hunters were able to find any other protein. To prevent this, we are wired to want food when we see it. Having food in your line of sight increases your appetite, and having more than 3 separate flavors also stimulates your appetite, so your body can take in as wide variety of nutrients as possible. An amazing, life saving ability when in a tribe, and food was scarce but this combination can cause you to eat a whopping 80% more food than your body needs.
Now we are subjected to an average of 400 images of food a day from adverts, billboards and in supermarkets. That’s 400 times our appetite is being stimulated by something other than genuine hunger. Traditional Diets don’t teach you how to work with this part of the brain, but instead to fight against it. The tribal mind is the emotional mind, and logic will never win against emotion – if that were true no one would over or under eat and we would all be eating kale.
If you are an emotional eater, like me, there are times when you are stressed, lonely, sad or just bored and find you crave sugar and you sabotage your weight loss efforts. If there is anything sweet in the house it feels like it is literally calling to you. That is because it is, it is calling to that tribal part of your brain again. The part of you that believes sugar is scarce, is a valuable commodity. The part that was denied sweets as a child, that part that was given treats and biscuits to quiet them when their care giver didn’t have time to play. Honey finders in Zimbabwe are highly revered members of the tribe. It is a skill not everyone has and when they find a source, they remember where it is. Sugar is scarce and valuable and the tribal part of your mind remembers this and puts huge value on high calorie, sweet food.
Here is the final way diets fail you, when you inevitably succumb to your emotional mind and eat the children’s Easter eggs (just me?), they make you feel like you have failed. They call food ‘syns’ or give it ‘points’. They make you feel bad about yourself, when you are behaving exactly as you are wired to. They give you no tools, no help to overcome the unhealthy patterns you have learnt and yet blame you for not following the plan properly when you cannot stick to the ridiculous system. 98% of diets fail, that is people who lose weight put it all back on within the first 5 years or fail to reach their goal weight at all. We wouldn’t go back to any other product that failed us as much as diets do and yet it is still a billion dollar industry.
If you are ready to try something new, innovative that doesn’t leave you hungry or impose restrictions on your life follow me on Facebook and join Radiant Balance for more information, tricks and hacks to make your weight loss dreams your reality.
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