The percentage of obesity among adults aged 20 and over in the US has risen to 31% over the last 10 years according to Statistica.
The key to healthy habits and weight loss is about fixing hunger and cravings. Hunger and cravings are controlled by your blood sugar levels and your brain. So let’s look at why DO diets fail?
If your blood sugar levels and brain chemistry is out whack, you will not be able to lose weight. It’s simple. By just going on diet is not going to fix the source of the problem. Fixing the physical changes in your body and brain as a result of years of unhealthy eating, takes more than just an average diet of 3 months.
What are some of the reasons that most diets fail long term
Your diet is failing because You try to use willpower
Fixing your hunger and cravings is about science and not will power. It’s about fixing the biochemistry in your body. It’s almost like taking an open leg fracture and put it in a cast, thinking the wound will heal itself. Just because you must put a broken leg in a cast.
Unfortunately, most diets trigger hunger. And the majority of diets teach you to grind through it. Get through the hunger pains, you’ll be fine. And if your mind is focussed on fighting the hunger pains the entire day, you can hardly think straight or do anything else. And then people are taught that there’s a sense of ‘pride’ in getting through a few days’ of hunger.
Let’s use some common sense for a moment here. Focussing all your mental energy the whole day on fighting hunger pains, is a ridiculous way to live. Imagine you must do that for 6-12 weeks?
Your diet fail because You restrict your food and focus on exercise
The mantra of calories in/calories out has never been scientifically proven. Yet, it’s the easiest marketing ploy used by food companies. It allows them to take the consumers’ focus away from the overall quality of their foods.
In this video, I explain why you’re essentially wasting your time and money, to exercise if weight loss is your goal.
We now know it’s because you’re insulin resistant, that you are unable to lose weight. Fix what is not working in your body, and you can literally fix your weight loss issues and cure chronic disease as a result of your weight issues by resetting the switch for what should really keep your weight in check – your insulin-glucagon response.
Your failing your diet because of Your environment
The food industry is spending billions of dollars to market to kids and teenagers every single year. They know it works. They know if they hook children early, it’s a lifetime valued client. It also creates what the industry calls, pester power, discussed in more detail in one of my previous blog posts.
75% of parents said they bought a product for their child because their child nagged them for it. Ever since your childhood, you’ve been seeing over 4000+ ads per year for junk food. Your mind is storing these pictures and the emotions that you’ve formed in your mind as a memory. And you are carrying all those stories with you into adulthood.
It’s hard to get rid of something that’s constantly surfacing in your subconscious, sometimes without you even knowing it. It’s tough if you walk out of the shop and you have stuff in your grocery trolley that you never intended to buy. Your brain is being programmed from a very young age and your entire environment scream “junk food, sugar and unhealthy vegetable oils”. It’s cool to live in the fast lane.
And if you dare step out of it, you become uncool. And suddenly people who make lifestyle changes for the long term, are weird.
YOu’re failing because You have no plan
Health is not something that just show up in your life. You must work for it. Most people fail because they just do what the masses do and think that’s ‘healthy’. Just because something is common, doesn’t mean it’s right.
The same way you are planning for retirement, planning for your health, especially as you grow older, should become non-negotiable.
Diets tend to approach nutrition and weight loss as a temporary state of mind but maintaining a lifestyle that encourages a healthy weight and longevity, is often a lifelong journey.
If you do not embrace the lifestyle change, you are doomed to fail. The only diet that’s successful, is the diet you can still follow one year later. Not because someone is holding a gun against your head, but because it fits your lifestyle and it’s easy to follow.
The quality of your diet
Aristotle was the first to explore our ability to detect smell, taste or flavour when food touches the tongue. In this handout, Independent researcher Gregory Sadler summarizes Aristotle’s Distinction Between flavours and Tastes. One of the tastes Aristotle identified was oily, rich – one that was on par with the range of sweet tastes like sweet, spicy, astringent.
Food controls everything. Food affects the expressions of your genes, that cause or prevent disease. I.e. food can switch on a gene to cause a disease or it can switch on a gene to prevent a disease. Food influences your hormones, your brain chemistry, your immune system and even your gut flora.
In the 1950’s, an American scientist called Ancel Keys did a study which examined the association between diet and cardiovascular disease in different countries. In short, the study was flawed. He only used the data of the countries, that supported his theory. A process known in science as cherry picking. This flawed study had a massive influence in how people till this day, embrace healthy fats.
The food industry responded by creating all sorts of low fat alternatives, which contains highly polyunsaturated vegetable oils.
Most people still believe low fat is healthy. It’s double-edged sword. If you take healthy fats out of food, the food becomes unpalatable. It will taste like cardboard. To compensate for taste, they jack it up with sugar.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that the low-fat theory is flawed. Since the introduction of low-fat products, the obesity rate has soared. More people than ever before, are now diagnosed with insulin resistance, Type II diabetes, Alzheimer’s. Majority of your metabolic disease are now all linked to the consumption of sugar and the lack of healthy fats in the diet.
So, how can you stop failing at weight loss
Don’t go on a diet. According to Dr Hyman, the average person gains 11 pounds (about 2.2 kg) for every diet they go on.
Diet is linked to calorie restriction which is something that originated from the 1st World War.
I’m not sure if I want a doctor to prescribe something to me that has not evolved since the 1917’s.
Prepare your meals at home. Really. Just buy raw ingredients and whip up your meal at home. If you’re starting off, don’t worry about what it looks like and what it’s called. Just prepare it in your own kitchen. Many people will say they don’t have time. During my corporate career, I was working 8-9 hours per day, home schooling my son for 2 hours, trained for 1.5 hours per day and still made sure I cook at home. Yes, the days you stood in the kitchen for 2 hours are over. But you can still make a decent meal in 15 min time. Throw in some prep work on a Sunday afternoon, you can even get that down to 10 min.
Remove added sugar from your food. According to Dr Robert Lustig, approximately 80% of consumer packaged foods in the US have added sugars. The rest of the world are not far behind. That’s insane. Sugar is hiding in everything. The science is clear. Sugar is poison. Sugar is linked to obesity, chronic diseases, cancer, Alzheimer’s, Type II Diabetes, Fatty Liver disease in children – a disease that was previously mainly seen in alcoholic adults. We now consume the same amount of sugar per day, that our grand parents consume in a single year, 50 years ago.
Bottom line is, there is no “how do I lose weight fast”. And if you google for reasons why most diets fail, you’re hardly ever going to get an answer that you like. Because it takes time and work, like anything else in life.
And it all starts in your kitchen.
Keep the faith,