One of the most common questions for dieters is, “What is the best diet for weight loss?” With so much weight loss and diet information available, it is often difficult to distinguish which is the best diet for you. Should you pick a high protein, low carbohydrate diet? What about a low fat diet? Maybe the Zone Diet, The South Beach Diet, or the Atkins Diet will be right to you? Unfortunately, despite all the hype, I am here to tell you that it’s not really that important which of these diets you pick. In fact, I will teach you why sticking to one of these diets is probably a very bad idea. Worried? Don’t be. I will also show you how you can create a diet that works best for you (and only you). Let’s begin.
The reason that these diets are successful at the beginning is that you often have initial motivation, so you want to change, and they also provide you with a BLUEPRINT. These diets are also very clever by manipulating your calorie intake despite claims that you can “eat as much as you want”. They do this by fulfilling your sensory specific satiety, meaning that when you eat the same foods over and over, your brain simply gets bored and turns your “I’m full” signal on much sooner. Basically this means you don’t eat as much and thus you lose weight.
A problem arises when you realize that the blueprint you are following simply doesn’t fit your needs. This is no surprise, because everybody has their own specific blueprint, so following a specific diet template is rarely successful. There are many reasons for this. Maybe you get bored. Maybe you feel deprived. Maybe you lose motivation. Maybe you lose some weight and get complacent (very common!). The reason is not so important (yet!). What is important right now, is that you CREATE YOUR OWN BLUEPRINT.
We all love certain foods. We all have very habitual eating behaviors. We all lead different lives. Eating is so important to our survival that when you drastically change this behavior and follow somebody else’s eating plan, you have already failed. Please, please, please stop doing this. I know that you want to cut calories and deprive yourself of the foods you love, but this simply doesn’t work.
What does work is creating your own eating blueprint. This takes time, effort and dedication and has many different aspects. In the coming weeks and months I will teach you how to create your blueprint. For this week you will be writing down everything you eat. Here is your first exercise:
Write down everything that you eat. Sounds simple right? Actually, writing down everything that you eat is very time consuming and requires attention and awareness. The goal of this exercise is to make you CONSCIOUS of what you currently eat. Most people are unaware of approximately 30-50% of the calories that they consume on a daily basis. Simply becoming aware of your unconscious eating habits and what you eat during the day will have a profound affect on your success in the future.
I’m sure that you have embarked on many weight loss campaigns where your goal was to “lose 30 pounds in 30 days”. Maybe you were successful for those 30 days, but what about after that? Remember, real change takes time.
Conner Hughes is the director of http://www.thebrainchangingdiet. The Brain-Changing Diet can teach you that, through neuroplasticity, you can change your brain to create lifelong dietary and food habits to sustain weight loss and improve your health.