Why we crave certain foods
I am going to prefaceÂ the article link at the bottom of this blogÂ with some thoughts that I think need to be addressed. The first thing I want you to do is simple. Step away from the computer and look at yourself in the mirror. Get down to yourÂ undies and really look at your body. Think aboutÂ aspects of your bodyÂ that you have control over changing and those you don’t. Now think about what you want to change, if anything. If you look at yourself and find what you see completely acceptable, read no further. If you don’t, read on.
If you want to eat, and I mean really EAT, you have to compensate with hardcore exercise and calorie burn. I’m not talking about eating a bacon cheeseburger with cheese fries and thinking you will burn it off with 60 min of walking. The punishment (and I’m not writing figuratively) needs to meet or exceed the crime in order to maintain or lose weight and keep healthy. I’m not going to beat around the bushÂ on this one. Again, assuming you want to or really like to EAT, I will flat out tell you thatÂ most people do not exercise nearly hard enough to control their weight and I would challenge anyone who thinks differently. You cannot approach exercise with the same mindlessness as the way most people eat. You are onlyÂ fooling yourself about how hard you just worked out at the gym the same way you are fooling yourself by saying that your diet is good. Now if your diet is under control (and most people who think they have it under control do not!), moderate exercise should be enough for you to maintain good body composition. But whoÂ just wants to maintain.?
Bottom line: we all want to look good.Â But it all depends on what your definition of “looking good” is.
Look at the habits of effectively thin and fit people (genetic predisposition aside).Â They are not gorging themselves and not compensating for it.Â They exercise HARD ifÂ they are going to PLAY hard.Â Â They are not “lucky” thatÂ they are fit.Â They are lucky, though,to have the ability toÂ pursue exercise aggressively. It requires a lifetime of extremely consistent and hard work to look fit and healthy.
I look at people that have waited far too long to start exercising, mindlessly eating and not exercising,Â building up layer after layer of fat every year (like a shrub that never gets pruned) and I look at their exertion levels and comparative physiques. If people could put the same effort into exercising as they do planning and talking about their next meal, we might solve some of the obesity problem. I hear complaints that people are not losing weight like they want and blame it on everyone and everything else besides themselves…. “My thyroid must be out of whack. My diet is really good. I exercise a lot. I just don’t understand!” TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOURSELF.
The only one that you have to look at at the end of the day is YOU. Decide if you really are making an effort or if your words are full of emptiness and broken promises to yourself.
TheÂ article I am including makes perfect sense to me as far as understanding why people knowingly and willfully make poor decisions when choosing to eat certain foods. Many times I have clients come to me and say “I tried, but I just couldn’t do. I had to eat it.”
We can’t be with our clients 24/7 to help them fight thought the urge to sabotage their diets. Time and time again, we hear the same story of “I tried to eat healthy, I just couldn’t help myself!”
Unfortunately it is a never ending battle (with the food winning oftentimes!) that we can still fight if we diligently keep our short and long term goals in mind. Telling someone to make smart food choices does not always help when the individual is fighting primordial and genetic urges.
One major difference,though, between us and our ancestors is our activity level compared to theirs. They weren’t lazy (and if they were, they didn’t make it) and had to hunt and gather their food. This was merely for survival. To survive, we just have to drive to the grocery store and then open the refrigerator. So when people tell me that they are on this great new “Paleo” diet to lose weight, I just bite my tongue andÂ understand that the outcome for them will be the same as it was with the diet before this one. Get real people…WE ARE NOT LIVING IN THE PALEOLITHIC ERA.
Anyway, good luck to all and please feel free to comment or email me directly.