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I’m Dieting But I’m Still Gaining Weight

You’re standing in front of the mirror having changed your clothes three times already this morning.  Nothing seems to fit right.  You are discouraged and start with the negative self-talk you are all too familiar with.  “Why can’t I just stick to my diet”, you say to yourself.  “I am such a failure; I will never succeed at weight loss”.  “Tomorrow I will start my diet again”.

 

Does this sound familiar to you?  If you have been battling your weight for some time, then likely you have been on countless diets that have not worked long term and you have gotten very good at berating yourself for your failures.  The commercials all sound so promising!  The radio ads promise fat burning powers of the miracle pills you just bought at the health food store.  Why aren’t you able to lose weight?

 

The answer lies in the fact that you are dieting. 

 

Let me repeat that!

 

The answer lies in the fact that you are dieting. 

 

You see, nobody lives on a diet.  One goes on a diet but eventually goes off the diet.

 

The Stats You Know

 

Forty to 50% of American women are trying to lose weight and are on a diet at any point in time.  Half of pre-teen and teenage girls are on diets. However, 95% -97% of all dieters regain their lost weight and more within 1 to 5 years.

 

These are very alarming statistics because dieting clearly doesn’t work and repeated “yo-yo” dieting has been shown to have negative health effects, including an increased risk of heart disease and long-lasting effects on the metabolism.

 

The Side Effects of Dieting

 

Dieting makes you preoccupied with food; what you ate yesterday, this morning, 1 hour ago, and what you will eat later and tomorrow.  Dieting makes food the enemy and causes guilty feelings when you don’t eat diet-type foods.

 

When you go on a diet, you are in essence putting your body into a short-term starvation state.  When given the first opportunity to really eat what you desire, you will often experience a feeling of such intensity that any initial thoughts of wanting to be thin fly out the window.  You feel out of control, guilty, and view yourself as having no willpower.

 

However, listen up!

 

This type of eating in response to semi-starvation is actually normal.  It has nothing to do with willpower!  When you are underfed, you will obsess about food.  Period!

 

The best solution to achieving peace with food and your body is to embrace an intuitive eating approach to food.  Intuitive eating is eating based on your physiological hunger and satiety cues not based on situations or emotional cues.  So, that means eating when you are hungry and stopping when you are satisfied or comfortably full.

 

Now, I recognize that for the chronic yo-yo dieter, this is not necessarily easy.  It requires you to explore how you got to where you are today in your eating habits and understand deeply what it means to become an intuitive eater.  During this process, it is important for you to begin to get rid of the diet mentality that you have, and to truly believe that you will never diet again.  If you continue to think there is “just one more diet, this time I’ll be good”, then you won’t be able to move forward to becoming an intuitive eater.   You will continue to have foods that are “good” and “bad” and you will continue to think of yourself as being “on” or “off”.

 

To help you get started on the path of intuitive eating, commit to the following 3 steps:

 

  1. Throw out all the diet books and pre-printed menus from magazines that you have tried over the years. Make a commitment to yourself that you will no longer be tempted by new diets that come out because you are committed to learning to listen to your body.

 

  1. Get rid of the bathroom scale. Do you weigh yourself every morning or even several times per day?  Does the number on the scale influence your mood for the day?  Most likely it does, even if you don’t consciously realize it.  Your weight fluctuates day to day and is a measure of more than just fat.  It includes your bones, organs, muscle and substances such as water, food and waste that pass through your system.  Begin to measure your success by other factors other than the scale such as improved blood work, blood pressure, mood, energy level and overall satisfaction with your progress toward becoming an intuitive eater.

 

  1. Seek out caring support to help you on your journey. Becoming an intuitive eater is a process and the amount of time it takes will depend on how long you have been dieting, how strong your diet mentality is, how long you have been using food to cope with your emotions and how willing you are to trust yourself.  It is very important for you to surround yourself with like-minded people who can provide positive feedback and support.

 

You were born with the natural instinct to eat when hungry and stop when full.  Chances are you lost this ability due to all the diets you tried and the media exposure to quick-fixes.  You can reclaim what you were born with and achieve guilt-free eating, a body you love and a life free of dieting.   Intuitive eating is the answer you have been looking for.

 

Reach out to me if you are interested in going from Dieter to Intuitive Eater! There’s no shame in asking for help!

 

Is Structuring My Meals Still Dieting?

This week’s Intuitive Eating Wednesday Question is:

Is it okay to have some structure around intuitive eating? Like having a basic plan to go by, with suggestions of what to eat, especially when you’re new to intuitive eating.”

 

This is such a common question, and I’m sure you have been wondering the same thing. It all comes down to 2 questions.

 

  1. What do you mean by having “structure”?
  2. Do you still possess a diet mentality?

 

Let’s tackle question number one first.

 

The definition of the word ‘structure’ according to Merriam-Webster Dictionary is:

something arranged in a definite pattern of organization.”

 

Arranging your eating pattern for the day into meals plus ‘as needed’ snacks would be putting a structure to your eating pattern. It’s basically laying down some guidelines for yourself so you have a basic idea of what you will eat for that particular day. As long as these are foods that you love and feel good in your body, then what you are doing is planning. And my motto is:

 

 

You plan vacations, you plan your children’s activities, and you plan work tasks. You plan many different areas of your life. Why wouldn’t you plan your meals?

 

However, if you break out in hives because your plan does not pan out, and you have difficulty being flexible with it, then this meal plan structure is just another diet.

 

Which leads me to question number two.

 

Do you possess a diet mentality?

 

As stated above, if the meal plan structure you’ve created for yourself leads you to feel deprived of foods you didn’t include in your plan because you think they aren’t “nutritious” for you, and this leads to overeating or bingeing on these foods when you “just can’t take it anymore”, then this structure is doing you more harm than good.

 

This is why the first step on your intuitive eating journey must be shifting your mindset. It requires you to acknowledge all the damage that dieting has done, biologically, health wise, psychologically and emotionally! And not just acknowledge it. Really get down deep to understand why you will never ever diet again. This step takes time. You must not rush it.

 

Is it scary to no longer diet, and not have a meal plan to guide your eating?

 

Absolutely. I’m not saying stop dieting and stop paying attention to what you put into your mouth. I’m saying to throw away the diet rules and relax your eating. Eat your meals, and choose foods that feel good in your body because your body needs the nutrition and the energy it gets from food.

 

It’s okay to plan, but be conscious that the planning does not become dieting.

 

Let’s discuss this further on today’s Facebook LIVE at 1:30 pm EST on my Facebook business page HERE. LIKE the page now so you get notification when I go live.

 

If you are reading this after we went live, just head on over to the FB page and you’ll find the replay under Videos. I’d love to hear your thoughts, comments and questions.

 

 

Freedom to Eat Forever Bonnie GIller

Here’s What to Do to Lose Weight Forever

Freedom to Eat Forever Bonnie GIllerAnyone who works with me knows that self-care is a major part of my work. Between taking an extra few minutes for yourself each day, fueling your body with nourishing foods, and knowing when to ask others for support, there are many ways you can put your self-care in the forefront of your life.

 

The process of improving your self-care may be slow starting and its okay to take baby steps to help yourself.

 

You may have started by giving yourself a few minutes to de-stress each day and eventually moved to learning how to prioritize your activities so you are doing what you enjoy most.

 

I have seen a lot of great turnarounds over the last year; people like yourself who have taken their self-care from the back burner to the front and center of their life. Making this shift is a major step on your intuitive eating journey.

 

Yet, what I am finding is that many of you are stopping there.

 

You are not taking the process to the next level.

 

You are seeking out free resources to help you become an intuitive eater, yet you are still spinning your wheels.

 

You are taking 3 steps forward, 2 steps backward.

 

Sure, if you continue at this pace, you may eventually get to where you want to be (an intuitive eater) but why wait that long?

 

You can accelerate the process by partnering with the right person who will guide you using an organized proven system.

 

I am that person for you.  And I have the system for you.

 

It’s the Freedom to Eat Forever™ Program, a 5 step intuitive eating process that will enable you to enjoy guilt-free eating and a life free of dieting.

 

But you know what? You have to step up to the plate and invest in yourself and your future. It’s when you invest in yourself that you see the results. I did it, and so can you.

 

Check out this cool video. Then email me or Facebook message me if you want to see if it’s your time for Freedom to Eat Forever™.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hurry. Class starts February 22, 2017. I don’t want you to be left out. Take your intuitive eating to the next level.

 

Are You Destined to Be Fat?

You know how to eat healthfully. You have heard it time and time again.

 

Eat whole foods, lean proteins, whole grains, plenty of fruits and veggies (the colors of the rainbow) and healthy fats. And, yes, avoid highly processed foods!

 

You don’t need anyone to tell you this! You know this already.

 

You actually have eaten like this. Then stopped eating like this. Then started eating like this again, then stopped again! Yikes, I’m getting dizzy!

 

Why do you NOT do what you know is good for you?

 

Well, there might be several reasons. For starters, it’s easy to fall back into old habits. Change is hard, there’s no doubt about that. And change takes time, patience and perseverance. You can do it as long as life cooperates. But once life throws you a curve ball, you haven’t learned how to juggle that curve ball while maintaining your newfound healthy habits. So, you fall back into old familiar habits that feel safe, even if they aren’t healthy for you.

 

Now, don’t feel bad about this. It happens to the best of us. What you should feel bad about is if you don’t keep trying. If you just throw in the towel and say and do one of the two following statements:

 

  • “It doesn’t matter, I’m destined to be fat, and so I might as well just forget trying. I’m going to enjoy my food and I’ll show them (by the way, who is “them”)?”

 

  • “I’m going to try the Atkins diet again, or Weight Watchers for the umpteenth time”.

 

Now, let’s discuss each of the above statements.

 

In statement number one, you are engaging in pessimistic thinking (the cup is half empty). This type of self-talk is negative messaging that only leads to more unhappiness and self-destructive thoughts and behaviors.

 

In statement number two, you know full well that diets don’t work. I don’t care what diet it is. Diets just don’t work as a ‘forever’.

 

Again, you know this. So, why do you fall for the fad diet’s false advertising time and time again?

 

I am going to explain why in full detail AND I am going to give away my 5 Step System to Break Free of Dieting so you can get the body and life you love on my upcoming Free Online Training.

 

Here are the deets:

 

Tuesday, February 7, 2017 at 8 pm EST/5 pm PST.

 

Register for free HERE.

 

You don’t want to miss this event.  I am going to shed some light on those limiting beliefs and mental blocks that are holding you back from committing to breaking free from dieting!  If you really want to lose weight and never gain it back, join me on February 7th!

 

There is no reason not to show up live.

 

Register for free HERE.

 

Did You Get Sucked in to the New Year’s Diet Scheme?

I’m sure it feels like everyone you know is starting a new diet or workout regime this month. In the past I’m sure that even YOU have fallen into the hypnosis of the “January start a new diet” trend set by the diet industry. I want to challenge you to try a different approach to your health this year.

 

The truth is that every “new diet” you see is actually the same. There is always going to be the latest trend hitting the internet or newsstands. But at the end of the day, all diets have one thing in common: someone other than yourself is telling you what to eat, when to eat, and how to eat.  And truth be told, they aren’t going to help you feel better about your relationship with food OR yourself.

 

So, let’s not kick off 2017 with a cloud of dieting thoughts over your head, okay? It’s time to jump OFF the diet roller coaster and to start listening to your inner wisdom.

 

Who better to listen to than your own body?

 

Okay, so this sounds all great, right? And the new programs that are being marketed now are calling themselves “Lifestyle Programs”. But let me let you in on a little secret. Those “Lifestyle Programs” are just fancy names for diets. They say they want to help you make lifestyle changes, but they are still giving you lists of foods to eat and not to eat.

 

Oh, by the way, don’t even get me started on those doctors with Harvard degrees that are promoting “Detoxes”. Give me a break! Anyone is going to lose weight if they drink these concoctions for a week or a month. Then what happens after the detox is over? You know what happens….

 

But I divert. Let me get back on course here.
If you are riding the diet roller coaster, you’re probably unhappy with your body and have an unhealthy relationship with food.

 

Coming next month I have a free training called “The 5 Steps to Break Free of Dieting” where I explain the 5 steps you need to get the body and life you love without the pain and restriction of dieting.

 

Come join our Facebook community group to get notified when this free training will take place, or check back to this blog next week for more information!

 

Please Tell Me What to Eat!

“Can you give me a meal plan WHILE we work on intuitive eating?”

 

This is a question I hear often from clients who are contemplating starting the intuitive eating journey!

 

The answer is NO! Giving you a meal plan goes against the core beliefs of intuitive eating which is eating based on YOUR inner body wisdom, not a pre-printed meal plan. Even if this meal plan is “calculated” and customized for you.

 

Let me explain.

 

You have been on many diets over the years. Perhaps these were formal diets such as Weight Watchers (you can have x points per day), Jenny Craig (you can only eat our prepackaged meals), Atkins (no carbs!) etc.

 

Or, you were on what I call a “Self-Designed Diet”, meaning you created rules that you told yourself you’d follow. Example:
• I can only eat carbs for lunch, never with dinner.

• I must stop eating by 7 pm every night.

• If I snack, it can only be on a fruit or veggie sticks

 

You get the picture, right?

 

Point is, these diets or your own self-designed diets gave you the rules of eating. You followed them like the good girl you are. But these diets don’t take into account what your internal body cues are telling you about when to start eating and when to stop. You eat when, what and how much the diet tells you to.

 

So, what’s the big deal?
This only “works” for as long as you “follow” it. Then when you have a bad day or an uncomfortable emotion surfaces that you’d just rather not feel, BAM….off the diet you go.

 

This cycle continues until you realize that you need off this merry-go-round. There is no joy in eating anymore. So, you hear me talking about intuitive eating and you’re like, “wow, this sounds amazing. Let’s do it. But, can you give me a meal plan too?’

 

I hope you now see why my answer is “no”. Not because I don’t want to help you. But because on the contrary, a meal plan will keep you dieting by telling you when to eat, how much to eat and what to eat. It does not allow you to relearn how to let your body guide your eating decisions.

 

Having said this, I will also say that at a certain point on the intuitive eating journey when my clients raise their hand and say “YES, the intuitive eater within me has woken up”, then we start talking about nutrition. And guess what? You are now able to make the best choices for yourself with my guidance based on what feels awesome in your body!

 

Sounds intriguing? Want in on this journey? Just reach out to me at www.TalkWithBonnie.com and let me know you want to Break Free of Dieting for good! I’m here to support you!

 

 

New Year, More Mindfulness

Whenever the New Year nears, it’s all about “New Year, New Me”.  The “new me” is usually associated with joining the gym and going on a crash diet, all to lose a few pounds.  Instead of starting your New Year off with enjoyment and ready to tackle what comes your way, you’re starting it off with food restrictions and stress about going to the gym and “needing” to lose the weight.

 

Why do you associate the New Year with weight loss?

 

Let’s try something different this New Year and reframe your thought process.  Change your “New Year, New Me” mentality into “New Year, More Mindfulness”.  By taking a step back from focusing solely on weight loss and what your body looks like, you’ll develop a greater appreciation for what your body is capable of and what it needs to be its best.

 

Here are 5 tips on how to, or continue to, be mindful in the New Year:

 

  1. Recommit to your diet-free journey. Remind yourself why you began your intuitive eating journey, or are planning to begin it. Then every time another commercial hits the airwaves, an email pops up in your inbox or your friend chews your ear off with the new diet she is on, quietly repeat this mantra to yourself “I have committed to a diet-free life. I rock!”

 

  1. State your New Year intention. Set a clear intention about what you want to experience in 2017 and what steps you will take to reach your goals. Write down your big intention and keep it in a visible spot around your home.  Reflect back on it throughout the year when you need a reminder about what you want to accomplish by 2018!!

 

  1. Listen to your body. Instead of focusing on the weight you “need” to lose and restricting your favorite foods, focus on listening to your body. What is your body trying to tell you?  Does it want you to stop dieting?  Does it want you to feed it nourishing meals?  By taking the time to listen to your body, you’ll develop a stronger relationship with it and you’ll learn to love your body.

 

  1. Practice moderation, not deprivation. You may feel like you need to deprive yourself to avoid weight gain, but that’s not true. When you deprive yourself, the backlash is overeating and bingeing.  If you take the time to listen to your body and savor each bite, you’ll find you are satisfied with smaller portions.

 

  1. Avoid celebrating with food. Whenever something good happens in life, birthday, promotion, anniversary, etc., going out to eat is the common way to celebrate. But, if you’re struggling with your relationship with food, this can be a difficult time.  Instead of going out to eat to celebrate an occasion, find another way to celebrate that makes you feel comfortable and happy,

 

By becoming more mindful of your body and what your body needs, you’ll be able to give your body what it wants.  With mindfulness, you’ll learn to become an intuitive eater.  You’ll be able to avoid overeating, feeding your emotions and loving your body once again.

 

If you want to talk, just contact me here.

 

Dieting Information Overload – When To Start Taking Action

to-do-listI’ve been a registered dietitian nutritionist in private practice for over 28 years now. Wow, hard to believe. And a lot has changed in the industry in the last 28 years. When I first got out of school and opened my business, I was mostly treating patients for medical conditions using nutrition therapy. These conditions included uncontrolled diabetes, cardiovascular disease, high cholesterol, hypertension, gastrointestinal conditions, to name a few.

 

In most of these cases, except for some of the gastrointestinal conditions, weight loss was always a part of the treatment plan. I created a nutrition plan that included a meal plan tailored to the patients’ medical condition and weight loss goals. My patients were getting better and losing weight. It all seemed so perfect.

 

At some point, I asked myself what can I do to help prevent these illnesses or the complications from occurring due to their diseases. Again, weight loss was usually part of the prevention plan and my patients wanted a meal plan to follow, which I obliged to.

 

Yet, at some point about 5-6 years ago, I realized that these meal plans are actually doing a disservice to many of these patients. The meal plan turned into a diet for them to follow and they just didn’t know how to navigate certain situations in their lives when they couldn’t “follow” the meal plan I created. These included vacations, weddings, deaths, job loss and other events and circumstances. They then felt guilty, ashamed and upset that they just couldn’t “do it”. They lost total confidence and trust in themselves.

 

Can you relate?

 

This is when I turned my attention to helping people break free of dieting to learn how to re-trust themselves and their bodies again to make the food choices that feel right for them. Yes, this is where my intuitive eating work comes in.

 

But here is what I have found.

 

As I started talking about and spreading my message about giving up dieting, all of a sudden the internet was swarming with coaches doing the same thing. It caught on like wildfire! It seems like every other day there is another summit with ‘expert interviews’ telling you how to give up dieting.

 

I’ve been on these summits, and I do believe they can be very helpful. But I also believe that there comes a point where you need to stop collecting information and start taking action. That’s when the real change happens.

 

So, in theory, yes, giving up dieting is your answer to finally achieving the body and life you want without food restriction, deprivation and feelings of guilt after you eat. But, if you don’t begin to practice this, you will continue to struggle.

 

3 Tips to Help You Start Taking Action

 

  • Stop signing up for every “end dieting” summit that pops up in your newsfeed. Choose 1 or 2 experts that you resonate most with and follow them (hint…I hope I’m one of them).

 

  • Pick one action step and focus on that for one week. Self-assess each evening to see how you feel with your progress. When you are ready, add a second action step and so on. Don’t take on too many changes at once.

 

  • See support to help you on your journey. These changes are tough! Anyone who tells you otherwise is not being truthful! There is no reason to go this alone. An RDN coach can walk the journey with you and support you. If you’d like to see how I can help you, just contact me here.

 

I am excited for you that you have made the commitment to give up dieting forever. I also know how scary that thought is. Please don’t let that fear keep you in the “gathering information” phase. Start taking action today. I am here to support you.

 

Chocolate Doesn’t Solve Your Problems

Overwt woman contemplating chocLife is hard sometimes, wouldn’t you say? Things can be going along wonderfully and then all of a sudden BAM, you get hit in the face with a situation that you are not quite ready for. What I’ve learned in my life is firstly that this is just a part of life. We become better people when we go through tough situations and we learn from them. And, secondly, I’ve learned that food (and for most people…chocolate) does not make the problem go away.

 

Now, I know you are reading this and perhaps you are saying “you are wrong Bonnie, chocolate makes it all better”.

 

And, to that I say, it makes it all better for the moment you are in your empty body, stuffing the chocolate in your mouth, pushing your feelings down deeper and deeper. But now, the chocolate is gone and what are you left with?

 

THE PAIN! The pain of still dealing with the difficult feelings you had originally, AND the pain of the GUILT of bingeing on chocolate and the PHYSICAL PAIN of eating too much of it.

 

So, what are you to do when you just don’t want to deal with the situation that has presented to you in your life?

 

You SUCK IT UP AND DEAL WITH IT!

 

WITHOUT. THE. CHOCOLATE.

 

Yes, I know that sounds harsh, and I don’t mean to be harsh. But it’s just a part of life. You are here on my blog reading my articles, following my work because you want help. You want and need someone to say to you “let’s learn how to deal with your emotions and difficult situations in life without using food. Because food is not the answer.”

 

Here are 2 steps for you to take immediately so you can learn how to turn away from the chocolate when feeling down:

 

Step 1: Make a list of the situations and/or emotions that cause you to turn to chocolate (or any food for that matter).

 

Step 2: Click on this link to request to speak to me so I can help you craft a plan to overcome emotional eating.

 

I look forward to speaking with you soon!

 

 

 

 

 

Are Negative Food Messages Causing You to Gain Weight?

Woman apple-cupcake decisionIt’s no question that obesity is a major concern in the United States. The rise in obese adults in the last few years has given authorities a reason to take action.

 

Today there are a number of campaigns out there trying to steer the public towards healthier food choices. However, some of these messages are actually backfiring. The reason? Because they’re delivering strong negative messages instead of positive ones.

 

Researchers are finding that negatives messages such as “sugary snacks are bad for you, don’t eat them” can actually cause you to choose these foods rather than ignore them. Interestingly, positive messages around sugary snacks that don’t illicit negative feelings about eating them have less of an impact in you choosing these foods.

 

One study from Arizona State University wanted to see if this theory was true. The study included 397 participants who were given a positive or negative message about sugary snacks in the form of an advertisement. Following the ad, the subjects were offered cookies on their way out.

 

What they found was that people who received the negative message consumed 29% more cookies than those who saw the positive message.

 

The researchers wanted to further explore the effects of messages on food choices. This included a negative message, a positive message and a balanced message that portrayed even-handed information about the benefits and drawbacks of consuming sugary snacks. In this study, 324 people participated.

 

The results of the study found that participants who were shown the negative message consumed 30% higher unhealthy snack choices compared to the group who received the positive message. The group that received the balanced message consumed 47% less unhealthy snacks. What this study ultimately shows us is that advertisements in the media have an effect on influencing how you perceive food and even the choices you make.

 

But let me take this a step further. The diet industry and other health gurus and experts out there who are telling you “don’t eat carbs they are bad for you (or gluten, sugar, etc… you can fill in the blank with all the negative messages you are told), are actually setting you up to crave these foods and eventually break down and overeat them. This in turn perpetuates the restriction/deprivation/dieting/feeling guilt and shame vicious cycle that so many overweight people struggle with every day of their lives.

 

Is this you?

 

Do not be fooled; be aware of the information you’re exposed to and stay alert to inaccurate information from biased sources.

 

For more information on becoming the expert of your own body, download my free e-book here

 

Your turn to take action: What negative messages have you fallen prey to that led you to overeating those foods?