Friday, May 14, 2010

Foodless Friday: On Dieting

Our Women's group at our church had a meeting about nutrition and exercise this past week. One of the ladies gave a great presentation on a diet - actually it is more like a life eating plan. It includes portion control and helps you make healthy choices... my problem with it? It does not allow sugar (except sugar that is baked into breads, etc - but you have to choose wisely because you only eat a certain amount per day.) It means that if I were to follow it exactly I would not eat any chocolate - what kind of a diet doesn't allow eating chocolate?!? It does allow sugar substitutes, but I'm not so keen on those - I'd rather eat something that grows naturally than that was developed by scientists - call me crazy, but that's me. My sugar substitute would be honey.

I have to admit that I don't really do diets, I can't stand the restrictions and I definitely do not do diets that tell me exactly what to eat each day and what recipes to use for each meal. They do not work for me, I cook what I feel like making and not some crazy recipe with 15 ingredients that is suppose to help you lose weight. Or some hot breakfast cereal that you have to cook for 30 minutes. As soon as I read something like that I know it won't work. Who has 30 minute in the morning to make cereal? However, I have been wanting to eat healthier lately and have been looking at some options.

So I decided that I wanted to try this portion control thing (it also requires 30 minutes of exercise per day) except I am still allowing myself one serving of chocolate/candy per week (plus a bite or two of my husbands desserts, but since they are not mine - I shouldn't have to count it, right?! I am also giving myself my 'guilt free' days - birthdays, holiday days, etc.) I feel that by doing this I will be better able to stick to eating healthier - even if I cheat! Today is only my third day of doing it, but so far it seems to be working. I feel better about myself and have more energy - I am also eating all the daily requirements of fruits and veggies.

I feel that I report my exercise every week, but I have 4 exercise DVDs that I rotate as well as walking sometimes in the afternoons.

My question for you: If you diet, do you cheat? If so, what is your justification? Also, what do you do for exercise that works for you?


  1. I feel that the key to good health is to have the things you love in moderation. If you totally love sugar, and you don't allow yourself any at all, you may end up craving it even more and then binging when you cave.

    I think you're right in practicing portion control. I don't think there is anything wrong with a small dessert once or twice a week - or on holidays or birthdays. As with everything else, moderation is the key.

    I, personally, have had a sugar addiction, so I have pulled away from the sugar as much as possible, but I do allow myself something small on special occasions. What I've found happening is that my body can no longer tolerate large amounts of sugar. It makes me sick, which helps me not to eat as much.

    As for exercise, I go to the gym early every morning for 1 hr 10 minutes. I do 30 min cardio, 30 min weights and 10 min stretching. I love it!


  2. Since I'm a white female of a particular age living in North America, I have a certain amount of body loathing, but instead of trying to diet and exercise it away, I try not to assign a value to my body's size. The link between size and health is tenuous at best. If I'm fat, I'm fat - just like I have blue eyes. My size doesn't mean I'm lazy or a bad person or what have you - it just means I wear a certain size of pants.

    I'm pretty sure you're not down with bad language, otherwise I'd point you towards Kate Harding's Shapely Prose - the place I first learned about the Fat Acceptance/Health at Any Size movement. She does tend to swear like a sailor, though, so... y'know.

  3. I don't diet. At all.

    What I do is keep the junk that I know would be a weakness out of the house. Chips? I could probably polish off a whole bag with mindless eating. So I don't buy chips, EVER. When I do have a serious salt craving (about once a month), I go out, buy a single sized bag of my favorite chips, eat the whole thing, and I'm satisfied.

    Same with chocolate. I have one really good quality bar that I might occasionally buy. I limit myself to two small squares a night after dinner, and I'm done. Cookies? One, straight from the oven when it's all gooey and delicious. Then I put the rest in the freezer.

    Life is too short not to enjoy the foods you love. At dinner I load up on veggies, and everything we eat is from scratch. Sometimes I'll use a smaller plate to keep my portions down. I also have lots of healthy snacks in the fridge, like yogurt, hummus and crackers, veggies, and fruit.

    My weakness is evening eating. I do have to watch that one. :) And yes, I admit I'm not the best at exercising. I want to rectify that in the summer when I have time off work.

  4. I found you at MMB, and I'm so excited to subscribe to this blog! My dinners could use some SERIOUS help. It's my least favorite 'mom chore'

  5. Do I diet??? I probably should...but I am horrible at it. I love to exercise though...and I agree...a diet without chocolate...ludicrous!

    I made my way here from MMB...I am following you...drop by and see me any time:

  6. For me, I don't 'cheat' on my diet, but that's because I create my own. I think portion size is a big thing, and it's important to get lots of veggies, but I dont 'disallow' sugars at all. I just limit the types (sort of... like purchased cookies vs. homemade oatmeal ones). And exercise. Important.

    Good luck on your diet!


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