Dieting: 3 Steps to Avoid the Temptation to “Cheat”

How do you lose weight without struggling with temptation? The reason that surgical weight loss procedures are so effective is because they remove willpower from the equation. Weight loss procedures reduce temptation by decreasing your appetite or yearning for food, as well as decreasing the size of the stomach, not only limiting your meal size, but – more importantly – limiting your indulgence. While you are considering which weight loss procedure might be best for you, here are three tricks you can take to avoid temptation in the interim.

  1. Avoid Supermarkets

You may have had the experience of going into the supermarket with the intention of getting healthy snacks, but having missed a meal, you find yourself throwing Pop Tarts into your cart. If that is you, make sure to eat before you do your shopping. Better yet, you might consider making someone else do your shopping. There are many grocery-delivery services in cities across the nation. Relying on these services to do your shopping eliminates the need for you to enter the den of inequity, your neighborhood supermarket. Remove temptation from the equation.

  1. Keep Healthy Snacks On You

As a doctor, I advise people to always keep healthy snacks available. If you do that, when hunger strikes, you have a healthy option right at your fingertips. Slide a Ziplock bag of crunchy carrots into your purse so that when you feel the urge to splurge on a greasy burger you have them available. Carry a reasonable portion of roasted almonds in your glove box. It doesn’t matter what healthy snack catches your fancy but having it easily available will mean that you don’t need to fight the temptation to fill up on that slice of cheese cake.

  1. Keep Junk Food Out of Sight and Out of Mind

A study from New York’s St. Bonaventure University helps show that people are inherently lazy. These researchers found that if you need to actually get up to grab an unhealthy snack, you tend to eat less of it. So, if you give into the temptation to bring a snack that is high in calories into your house, at the very least, you should keep it out of the pantry you have easy access to. One of our clients keeps unhealthy treats in her guest room and she finds that this helps her naturally eat less of them.

I hope that these simple, easy tricks help you.

Wishing you continued success on your weight wellness journey!

Dr. Waldrep

Dieting and the Willpower Myth

A new study by the Institute for Wellness Education shows that sixty-eight percent of women believe that willpower is the most important factor for losing weight. Another random sampling shows that both men and women dieters rely on their will power alone. One disheartening hidden challenge of losing weight is that weight is resistant to self-control. Unfortunately, people who rely on will power to lose weight will almost certainly fail. Talk about setting yourself up for failure. But why is that so? It seems counter-intuitive.

Social Psychologist Roy Baumeister is an expert on self-control and will power. In his book, “Willpower” he explains the willpower myth when it comes to weight loss. Self-control takes energy that comes from food. Because a diet limits our food intake….you can imagine what happens next. As soon as our body experiences an energy deficit, our self-control goes out the window and we start eating.

This is one of the reasons that weight loss surgeries are so effective on allowing people the opportunity to feel the victory of success without needing to exercise willpower. The procedures do all the “heavy lifting” for you. Once you lose the weight your body becomes acclimated to that level of energy and the sense of victory that the decline in weight engenders gives you a momentum that you can maintain.

So, the next time a well-meaning friend advises you to get some willpower and  “just exercise more and eat less.” You’ll be able to explain why that typically fails.

In an upcoming blog, we will discuss some easy tricks to make the exercise of willpower less of a priority. So be sure to subscribe to our channel. You won’t want to miss this next installment!

Wishing you continued success on your weight wellness journey!

Dr. Waldrep