Dieting is a Problem: Let’s Do Something About It

weight management; diets don't work; healthy eating; habit change
6 min read

Restricitve Dieting Leads to Lowered Self-Esteem and Unhealthy Relationships with Food. 

It is hard to argue that eating healthier is a good idea. Most stand to benefit from making positive changes to at least one area of their overall eating habits. But for many the allure of the latest quick fix diet is very tough to resist. These fad diets can work to lose weight in the short term, but typically result in eventually gaining majority of the weight back. Then this process seems to play on repeat. This vicious cycle leads to unhealthy relationships with food, lowered self-esteem, and frustration around what and how to eat. All of these are the opposite of what you should be striving for in our long-term eating habits. Restrictive eating and diets that promise unrealistic results are a serious problem.

Here are just some of the reasons restrictive dieting can be a problem:

  • Dieting doesn’t work in the long-term: Fad diets rarely focus on lasting habit change. According to the Council on Size & Weight Discrimination, 95% of dieters regain their lost weight within one to five years. Unhealthy diets are all about rules- eat this, don’t eat that, good foods, ‘bad’ foods. There is also a lack of focus on emotional ties to food, which majority have in some way. If you don’t address the underlying issues around eating, long-term success is not likely.
  • Promotes feelings of guilt around eating: Restriction leads to feelings of deprivation which leads to feelings of guilt. These strict rules often lead to greater cravings for certain ‘no’ foods on a diet. When you give into these cravings, you are left feeling like a failure or believing that you have no willpower.
  • Creates a cycle of dieting that is bad for health: Hence the cycle for so many continues for years. The emotional damage restriction and fad dieting have lead to a continued path for many. Check out this visual to better understand this unhealthy cycle of dieting:
Diet Cycle

SB Wellness’ Experience with Weight Management Programming

We have heard it for years from our clients: “Just tell me exactly what I should or should not eat.” It is the effects of dieting that gives people this belief. That they can’t do it on their own. That they are not capable of eating healthy or able to be trusted around food. Many feel the restrictive rules around dieting will help them succeed. You don’t have to continue to be a victim to these beliefs or to the cycle of dieting.

Are you ready for a better solution?
It’s time to take back control over food and your eating habits. With the right support, there is a much healthier approach to weight loss and healthy eating. Work on the following to get out of the dieting mentality for good:
  1. Before starting any diet ask yourself, “can I do this plan for the rest of my life?” If the answer is no, it’s not a lifestyle. It’s a diet. A better question to ask is ‘could I gradually make changes and arrive at a plan close to this one that still fits within my busy lifestyle?’
  2. Begin with support or coaching. Before setting out on a radical change to your diet, seek support. A health coach or dietitian will quickly be able to point out unrealistic goals or expectations and help you make smaller, more manageable changes. The accountability is a great benefit but it’s not just about being accountable to someone. It is also important to have the right support when facing difficult changes in life.
  3. Adopt a healthy at any weight perspective. Rather than making food restriction and weight loss the main goal, we emphasize positive changes to overall health. It is key to keep the goal of good health at the foundation of any weight loss goal. Our weight management program for example, takes a whole-person wellness approach to weight loss. We are not just measuring success by a number on the scale. Our health coach, dietitian and exercise and wellness professionals work together as a team to focus on all areas of well-being. We want our participants to build self-confidence, learn to get joy out of exercising, and to better manage their stress and mental well-being.
  4. Learn more about long-term healthy eating habits. Shift your focus to what you CAN eat to be healthier. Focusing on the positive changes rather than restriction can make you less likely to fall victim to food-related stress and anxiety.
We have been implementing our weight management program for our clients for more than twelve years. Our long-term success rate has remained over 45% for those experiencing at least 5% or more weight loss after one year in the program. But the real success lies in the feedback from our clients in the program. We often hear how the program changed their life or in some cases, saved their life. They begin to feel more productive at work and are happier and more patient with their families at home. This is the real magic of habit change when it is designed for long-term success. It is more about changing the mindset rather than changing the diet.

Check out these quotes from clients who have participated in our weight management program over the past few years:

“Since June I have lost 42 pounds. I feel much better about myself and I feel like the tips and tricks I learn from the health coaches stick with me. I have be able to be more active and happier.  By taking care of my health, it has also motivated me to practice more self-care and the way I present myself because I feel more confident.  Meeting with the health coaches adds a sense of accountability to the program. The health coaches have been great. They pay attention to our conversations, and they keep me motivated.”
"I like the Weight Management Program because, it helps me to recognize how to eat healthier and be accountable of the mindless eating habits I had. Therefore, I was able to recognize empty calories that I was consuming that were not beneficial for me. It is a great program and the support is phenomenal.”
"My experience with SB Wellness has been wonderful. Their health coaches are encouraging and allow clients to customize their health journey. SB Wellness focused on instilling new, helpful habits and was a constant source of motivation. My coach is patient, reassuring, and supportive during our sessions, and she checks on me daily. She created a comfortable atmosphere where I felt empowered to take charge of my health and improve myself.”
“Karli’s passion in her work is evident by the way she treats her clients. She is always accessible for questions and is full of knowledge on nutrition and disease management. She never gives up on me which motivates me to believe in myself.”
“I don’t know what I would have done without the weight management team throughout the pandemic. They motivated me and always had helpful tips. In fact, the entire department devoted their time to have mindfulness sessions and cooking segments to help us stay healthy while going through one of the toughest times in life. I am grateful for them and everything they do.
Contact SB Wellness Group if you would like more information on our Weight Managment Program and related services.  

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