Saving Calories Doesn’t Fool Your Body

LeanCuisine-007So eat a Lean Cuisine and you will save 200 calories?

True, if you eat a low calorie meal, you will have consumed less calories.  But what does that really mean?

If you eat 300 calories for dinner your body will process that, and your body will react to that amount of calories.  It will get hungry sooner.

(Unless you are on a really low calorie diet where you lose hunger because you are eating so little.  Of course the minute you eat normally, your hunger will come ROARING back.  That coupled with your lowered metabolism will cause rapid weight gain)

But back to “saving calories.”

As soon as you start counting calories or “points,” your brain is telling your body what to eat.  But, you are way better off having your body tell your brain what you should eat.

When you are hungry, listen to what your body is asking for.  Then provide it.

Do this at stage 2 hunger- when you are hungry but still feel good.  Stage 3, in case you haven’t read earlier blogs, is when you are desperately hungry.   You will make desperate decisions there.  Eat before you get this hungry.  Stage one is when your body sends the first hunger signals- just a “warning light.”  (more on all of this in my book)

So, stay in the present when you eat.  Don’t “save” calories for later if your body is hungry for them now.

I know I used to think, wow, if I eat this now, I will only have 500 calories left for the rest of the day.  But you know what? If you eat according to hunger, you never have to worry about that.  And I can tell you, that if I eat more in the day because of hunger, I am surprised by how little I need later.  I am not being “good.”  It is just that since I took care of my hunger during the day, my body is not driving me to eat a lot at night.  No more roaming the kitchen looking for a little something!!


100 Calorie Snack Packs


I wrote on Facebook today that Dr. Oz pointed said researchers found that people who eat 100 calorie snack packs actually eat more…

I thought it was excellent that he pointed that out- ha!  If you read my blog, you know I frequently don’t like what he says because he props up the diet and “magic” food mentality.

Here is my take on the snack pack situation:

Why aren’t we embarrassed that we “need” someone to portion control for us?  Are we that lame?  Can we not put a few chips on a plate and “trust” ourselves to eat until satisfied?

Apparently not.

So we pay a higher price for someone to put the “right” amount of chips or cookies or whatever in a bag for us.

Now think about that.  You think that someone outside your body knows better than your own body how much food you need.  Your body knows what you did that day, how much you “burned,” how much you ate last night, etc.

Your body knows that you worked out really hard, for example,  and few salty chips would be great.

Yet, you just grab the snack pack and eat the whole thing no matter what.  But that one size fits all doesn’t work.  Be honest, haven’t you ever eaten three of those “snack packs” in a row-  or four or five…

And those snack packs build a diet mentality by putting your portion control out of your hands and putting it in someone else’s.

People!  Take charge of your own eating.  If you crave a few chips, you are not “bad.”  Sometimes that is exactly what I want.  I used to have those stupid little bags in my pantry.  Yes, I sadly paid more for less food.

Now I have a big ole bag of those salt and pepper chips that I love in my pantry.  Literally weeks will go by and I will not have one.  I am not afraid to have them around.  They have zero power over me.

I promise that wasn’t always the case.  LIke you, (maybe) I used to only have so called healthful snacks around.  And finally, when I “broke” and binged, I tell you, nothing was safe.  I would eat all the snack packs at one sitting etc.  Ugh.  I laugh now, because I picture myself, and it was so silly and such a waste of my life.  (Actually it makes me sad too.)

I want you to get where I am- where you don’t fear food.  Where you don’t give your decision making power over what you eat to some stranger who filled those snack packs or decided how much to put on your plate at a restaurant.

You decide how much you eat, and when you eat, and what you eat by… paying attention to yourself.  Oh my this normal concept seems so revolutionary!

Someone is making a lot of money off us.  “Yes, lets put less chips in the single bag and charge more.”  Can you imagine that conversation at their marketing meeting?  “Do you really think people will pay more for less???”


Please keep faith in yourself.

You will get the thin body to match your thin mentality.  It isn’t quick but it is permanent, and it is a pleasant “journey.”  You will learn a lot about yourself.  And you too will look back at 100 calorie snack packs and sigh…


Waffle House Was Yummy

wafflehouseoutsideI went to a diner last night – a Waffle House that just opened near me.

Years ago, when I was a dieter, I would have had to negotiate this meal very carefully.  What can I eat that isn’t “bad.”  I would have had plain eggs, fruit,  dry toast and diet coke.

This is how it works for me now, with a thin mentality.

I ordered two eggs, ham, and a  waffle- because it was a new Waffle House and I had never had one of those famous waffles.  It came with hash browns.  It was a big plate of wonderful food.  I also had coffee with cream.

I ate most of the eggs and ham.  Then I ate a bite or two of hash browns and about one quarter of one waffle with syrup and butter.  I enjoyed every bit, had a wide variety of flavors etc. and it was great.

I took home a doggy bag.

If you added up the calories in what I ate, they probably would have been about 600-700.  I didn’t think about the calorie count last night.   I just am letting you know approximately how much food we are talking about here.

If I had eaten a “diet meal” like I used to, the calorie count would have probably been about 500.  I wouldn’t have enjoyed it nearly as much.  And then you know what I used to do?  When I got home after having a meal I didn’t love, I would have a bite or two of some treat when I got home.  That would easily have added another 200 calories to what I ate.

So, the point is, I would have probably eaten about the same amount of calories as a dieter as I did eating what I had last night.  But last night was way better.  I felt completely free, satisfied, experienced a fun meal, and when I got home, it didn’t even occur to me that I needed a little “treat” before bed.

You can say that fruit and dry toast would have been more healthful.  If you examine one meal of mine and compare it to a diet meal, you could make a case that that individual meal was less fatty or sugary or whatever.

But that is not how nutrition happens!  You have to look at the whole picture.  What is your next meal, and your next and your next.  And I know that my body, which is “on my side” will request that I eat some vegetables and fruit some days and waffles and syrup on others.

Yours will too!  Free yourself from your diet mentality and trust that your body wants good nutrition and will guide you to it.

As you get your thin mentality going, I know you are afraid that you will gain weight, not lose weight.

But you will never gain weight if you eat only when you are hungry, and stop when you aren’t hungry anymore.  Remember, you didn’t get fat eating when you were hungry!!

And say to yourself, as you look at the second half of the hamburger that you ordered, ate half of, and aren’t hungry for anymore, “Yes, it still looks good.  And I can eat it all- just not all at once!  When I get hungry again, I can finish it.”

It really is a fun, nice way to live-  I promise.  And way “cooler” than being a stoic dieter.  ugh-  or constantly struggling with being overweight- ugh.


So Juice is Evil?


Another response to a comment from the “Weight of the Nation.”

One of the experts said that we should NEVER drink juice.

OK, so here we go again, with a “good food” versus “bad food” mentality…

The expert said that juice is a “bad” food because it is high in calories.  So he thinks he is helping by saying that you should never drink juice, because then your calorie consumption for the day would be lower, and then you would lose weight, or at least not gain.

If you want to be a dieter for the rest of your life, following food rules instead of your own personal biology, then go ahead and follow this advice.  Count your calories and don’t waste them on juice…  You will forgo the foods you love, strengthen the disconnect between what your body wants, and what you provide.  Yes, you may diet your way down a few pounds.  But remember, what is the best predictor of the future?  It is the past.  And when you diet, you lose weight and then you gain it back.

But that kind of a life isn’t good enough for me.  And I hope it isn’t good enough for you.

Why would a wonderful, beautiful food, like fresh squeezed orange juice, be banned from my life.  I just  had a glass- and I love it.  I “crave” it.  It tastes like health to me.  It is pulpy and cold and sweet and thirst quenching and one of those simple pleasures in life.

Do I drink a gallon of it?  No!  And why not?  Because since I know that I will never diet again and that I can have OJ anytime my body asks for it (I have learned to listen, and SO CAN YOU) I drink a small glass and am completely satisfied.

And my body knows that I drank it.  By that I mean that I am not ingesting calories that go unnoticed.  And my body also knows what nutrients are in what I drank-  it is “processing” them.  So later on today, I may not crave something full vitamin C.  I may crave a protein heavy chicken salad with crunchy vegetables in it.  Who knows!  I am not worried about it.  I drank the juice I was craving, and now I move on.

But this expert would have given me big points for pouring myself a large glass of ice water instead of the juice I wanted.  How miserable!  I needed juice, so I drank it.  And now I am done, moving onto more important things.


The Pizza Machine Is Not Going to Hurt You

martin bashir

Or for goodness sake…

Martin Bashir (MSNBC commentator) going off about how “dangerous” the new fresh pizza machines are.

A smart (?) man like him falling victim to the diet industry.  I can relate, of course, because I used to be that person- the righteous dieter, who knew every calorie in every food and how to combine foods for the best nutrition, fiber, bla bla bla

Well, I got wise, and I hope you are on your way.

Martin is not.

He was outraged that a company would seek to supply offices with freshly made pizza machines.  OMG!!!

There is nothing wrong with this pizza.  It is probably very similar to other frozen pizza that we all eat.  He just was so incensed, he was really quite vitriolic, about how this temptation would be such a cross for us to bare.

Here is the thing:

If you live you life as a dieter, you will, indeed, be afraid of food.  You will work your butt off at the gym, go to the grocery store and buy perfect meals.  You will forgo food that you love and you will occasionally meet your goal weight and then bounce back up, or you will never meet your goal weight.

But you will always, always, always be afraid of gaining weight.  You will avoid a certain route so that you don’t have to walk by your favorite cookie at the bakery.  You will skip a party because the food will be fantastic.  And you will binge…

Is that how you want to live?  And has it made you comfortably thin?

Learn how to behave as a thin person, with a thin mentality if you want to be thin AND enjoy food (and your life, by the way.)

Martin is afraid of pizza because he probably is afraid he won’t resist the temptation of the smell of pizza wafting down the halls.

But, this is how I, a thin mentality person, would handle this.

I would be very excited that my office was introducing a new food for us to enjoy.  When it was delivered, if I was hungry, I would try it.  I would eat until I wasn’t hungry, and then I would stop. I would discover whether or not I liked it and then I would MOVE ON with my day.

I would not fear the machine, I would not love the machine.  I would just be happy that if I was hungry for pizza on a given day, that I would be able to enjoy it.  That is it.


Remember that more on this is available in a book that I wrote–  I don’t want to be “sales-y” but I did write it to try to help you get your thin mentality cookin’!.


Nutrition Is Important, But…

I recently posted on FB that fast food gets over-demonized.

My point was that some people hyper-concern themselves with nutrition, and miss that being disconnected with hunger and satiety are way more detrimental to health than eating some fast food.

Have you heard of orthorexia?

Orthorexia is a disorder where you becomes obsessed with the “perfect diet” and the cleanliness of food, and eating a highly regulated regime.  I call these people “righteous eaters.”

Caring about nutrition is fine, but when it turns into an obsession and a hunt for perfection, you can do permanent damage to your body and to your mental health, on several levels.

Here are some of the foods orthorexics tend to restrict, or completely remove from their diets:

Dairy, meats, and eggs: Cutting out these foods could mean you’re not getting B12, needed for proper brain function and red blood cell production.

Gluten and grains: Grains contain minerals that we need (like magnesium, which is needed for healthy bones and nerves; and manganese, which is needed for healthy heart function).

Fat: Good quality fats, found in foods like olive oil, avocado, nuts and seeds, grass-fed beef, grass-fed dairy and pasture-raised eggs are a must for the body. They keep skin healthy, cushion and protect vital organs, insulate the body against heat loss, protect nerve tissue, and help regulate women’s menstrual cycles.

Placing yourself under regular mental stress regarding making “perfect” food choices can trigger stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline. Normally, these hormones are meant to fire when you’re in a threatening situation to boost energy supply for immediately action.  But when your mind believes there is a constant threat, even low levels of these hormones, like cortisol for example, can suppress the digestive system, the reproductive system, and growth processes.

So, instead of demonizing, or sainting certain foods, focus on responding to your body.  Take the heat off of your eating decisions and relax a bit.  An Egg Mcmuffin when you crave one isn’t going to hurt you, as long as you wait for hunger.

Eat what you crave, listen to your body.  Refuse to eat without hunger.

Results of this?

Less stress on your mind, and therefore your body.

Happier relationship with food and eating

Stable lean weight

Quite a nice payoff for understanding the downside of “over worrying” about nutrition and “under worrying” about being connected to true hunger.