She wanted to lose some weight.
And for 12 long months:
- she busted her butt at the gym
- replaced the junk in her diet with fruit & vegetables
- she even gave up drinking soda
The result: 12 months later, she was healthier than ever and weighed 35 lbs less.
Unfortunately, about a month ago, her cravings for sugar went completely out of control.
And her willpower was no match for her desire for ice cream, sugar, chocolate, etc…
It’s a common story.
Someone works hard to lose a ton of weight, but as soon as they let down their guard for one second…BOOM!!!…here come the cravings for junk and here comes the weight regain.
What to do, what to do???
Here’s my advice:
First off, don’t worry about the short term. Losing your focus for a month is not a big problem considering how successful you have been for the 12 months proceeding.
Weight loss isn’t going to happen in a straight line – there are going to be ups and downs. I bet that the 35 lbs lost during the 12 months didn’t happen as a consistent 3 lbs per month.
With that being said, we should nip this 5 lb gain in the bud before it becomes 10 lbs over 2 months.
Why a sugar binge?
Possible factors include:
- emotions – we use sugar to raise pleasure hormones/chemicals during times of stress/sadness/etc.
- eating sugar increases your appetite for more sugar. Sad but true. The spike in insulin sets off a whole bunch of other reactions in your body/brain that set off intense cravings for more & more sugar
- Lifestyle – consider the previous weight loss, I could assume that you have changed your lifestyle in a way that makes healthy eating more convenient, but I don’t like to assume
What to do about it?
- Regarding the emotions – the best techniques I know of for learning to tame/control our thoughts and emotions is mindfulness. Whether you take the Buddhist approach or the psychiatrist/scientific approach, mindfullness training is a powerful practice that allows you to rein in formerly untamed thoughts & emotions. It’s not an easy thing to learn for most people, but the effect is powerful and goes far beyond controlling disordered eating practices.
- Cognitive Behavior Therapy is another way to go.
- You need to tighten up your diet. Stop buying those carb dense foods that you mentioned – cereal, ice cream, chocolate. At least for a little while. If they’re not in the house, you can’t eat them. Come up with a meal plan for the week. Prepare meals and/or ingredients ahead of time to make healthy eating more convenient. I am also a big fan of using a diet/meal compliance chart.
- Look for trends in your day to day life that has influenced your recent run of bad eating. Haswork been extra stressful. Have other people been influencing your food choices. Put on your detective hat and start looking for connections. If and when you start to see any trends, look for causes (to avoid this happening again) and for ways to eliminate those problems.
Okay, that’s enough for now.Hopefully, I didn’t overload you with too much information.
Feel free to email me anytime with your questions.