Weight loss is a confusing topic. There are so many methods, so many fads, and gimmicks. The goal of all these approaches is to save time, save money, or just to look more attractive in the mirror. But does any of this work?
One thing I have learned over the years is that nothing ever works! We try the fastest, least expensive, least time-consuming approach, and in the end, our weight comes right back. Maybe it is time to turn our attention towards something a little bit more challenging.
In order to lose weight, you need to understand that you have a lot of calories in your body at any given moment. You also need to understand that some people have an automatic tendency to eat more than others. Knowing the difference between the two can be key to achieving your weight loss goals.
I recently had the opportunity to visit a conference held by the Center for Weight Control and Management in Washington DC. I listened to Dr. Clark Gee, founder of the Center and one of the pioneers in the field of diet and health, give a keynote speech. During his speech, he made reference to what he called “the gurus”. He explained that those who promote quick fixes or gimmicks are in fact the gurus of this industry.
What he meant by that was that those in the weight loss industry are often promoters of these quick fixes and gimmicks that do not deliver results, but instead contribute to a large and growing problem in our society. They are helping companies succeed by using their influence, however unprofitable, to get people to buy their products, by advertising in a way that draws in readers.
What he has done is make the world of weight loss sound so simple, even a large number of people will purchase products just because they read the advertising. If you are not careful, you can be led down a path of fat gain and then ultimately eating a healthy diet when your body has been designed to sustain fat build-up.
Now, I am not saying that those that promote the quick fix or gimmick diets are actually using unethical practices, but they are following personal responsibility. Dr. Gee pointed out that almost all of these fad diets involve cheating in some way. You are either taking shortcuts or putting yourself in a position where you may actually be cheating.
Take the new gourmet chocolate bar diet, for example. It involves the idea that you consume chocolate bars in a manner that will decrease your hunger, but they don’t actually serve any real purpose, other than to lose weight.
Once your body stores up a lot of fat, it takes time to get rid of it. It may take a long time for the body to find a way to properly break down the fat and put it back into your body. It may even take a lifetime for the body to get used to eating food without fat, so it may be that you won’t get to a point where you are ready to eat a healthy diet.
So rather than discount or ignore the fact that people cheat on their diet programs, I believe that it is best to talk about the reality of weight loss and obesity today. This is what Dr. Gee was trying to get across, that those who use diet programs and even their own bodies to achieve certain goals will likely not be able to lose weight.
If you are unhappy with your weight, don’t blame yourself, don’t go looking for help, and instead don’t get on the treadmill to set some kind of record to claim to be “out of shape”. Remember that the average person is going to cheat from time to time, whether you will or not. Just try to be the winner that is a winner by dealing with the situation and avoiding the cheaters.