Tag Archives: Dieting

So you think “food” is your only enemy to weight loss? Think again….

15 Aug

Weight loss is the big topic. Everyone wants to keep up with the skinny and sexy standard that society sets for the ladies. I am more for the “feel good about yourself” method. We need to come to terms with our looks and our bodies and appreciate ourselves for the way we are. Why is it that people focus on the parts that they don’t like about themselves instead of the parts that they do like, or even love?!  We put so much pressure on ourselves to meet the standards of other people. Some of whom we don’t even like or worst, don’t even know! Nevertheless, we diet and exercise and have little to no results. Why is that?

We stress ourselves out about keeping up with the Joneses, not having enough time, not looking the way we want to…….this creates a lot of stress on our bodies. Not to mention the irregular mealtimes we inflict onto ourselves because we try to fit everything into one day. When we stress our bodies out, we produce a hormone called cortisol. Cortisol is not very good for us and in addition elevates our estrogen level. When we have a higher estrogen level, our body holds on to fat. Our body uses this fat to protect ourselves from harmful fluids such as acid build up. This creates a long domino effect. So, in short terms: if you are stressed out, it is impossible to lose weight.

In order to get positive results in feeling and also looking better, taking a yoga class, meditating, or walking would be better choices.  The body can calm down and your brain can re-focus.  It is important for your mind to trigger happy feelings and release endorphins. You will attract more happy things to yourself. It really is the thought that counts. I know what you are thinking. You are already too busy to fit anything else into your day. There are other solutions: It is amazing how refreshing and rejuvenating 10 minutes of deep breathing exercises or meditation can be. It is almost like taking a 2-hour nap! If you don’t believe it, I would like to challenge you to try it for only one week. Please leave me a comment so I see how many people are giving it a try. On your next lunch break, go to a place where you are undisturbed (I use my car) and make yourself comfortable. Then for 10 minutes just focus on your breathing. Take long deep breaths through your nose, count to five, and let your breath out for a 10-second count through your mouth. Only think of your breathing. (You can find some good breathing techniques such as diaphragmatic breathing and other relaxation exercises on tapes)  By taking in a lot of oxygen your body also burns fat and you breathe out more toxins. Plus, you also lower the amount of cortisol in your body, and you will be able to get a second wind and become more productive for the rest of the day. Sounds easy? Well, it is! 

Space-filling model of the cortisol molecule, ...

Space-filling model of the cortisol molecule, a steroid hormone that controls the body’s response to stress. Colour code (click to show) : Black: Carbon, C : White: Hydrogen, H : Red: Oxygen, O (Photo credit: Wikipedia)



Mind over Matter?

21 Jul
lactose intolerance

lactose intolerance (Photo credit: Rakka)

I went out running this morning. I love running because a lot of things go through my mind and I retrieve my best ideas and am able to solve a lot of problems.  This morning I was remembering how I feel when I eat dairy products. I am lactose intolerant. When I consume dairy food, I am physically in pain even though I love eating milk chocolate and cottage cheese. Well, pain is a great motivator to stop doing the things that cause it.  I was thinking what a waste that would be to toss it into the trash. A friend reminded me that it would all end up in the trash anyhow. Just the passage to get there was not through my body. I should not have bought it in the first place. When I like food but can’t have it, there is a battle between my head (mind) and my body cravings (matter).  Mind over Matter, right?

I graduated with a Master’s Degree in Psychology and behavior and cognition have always been fascinating to me. Maybe I could make an experiment: When people want to eat food but know it’s not making their body feel good, would they eat it anyways?   Is that what may be the problem with obesity? Oh, and then there is a third variable: the person has to KNOW it’s not making their body feel good and have to have that awareness knowing what caused them not to feel good. In my experiment I would need to control for that third variable. If I ask people before the experiment if they know which foods don’t make them feel good, I would be able to control who participates. But, then I would draw awareness to them knowing which foods will be making them feel bad and they might be able to control their consumption. Hmm, maybe that experiment would need better planning. But, is that really all it takes? Do we just need to heighten our awareness to consciously knowing which foods we should eat more of to feel better? One factor involved in which foods make your body feel better is your blood type. I am blood type O positive. That means my body feels better when I eat vegetables. That may be the reason I don’t like eating meat, let alone fish. But some people may have developed a taste for foods they should not be eating because that’s what was on the table when they were children. With our conscious awareness and knowing our blood type, we might be able to control the cravings we have. After I learned that cravings go away after a couple of months not eating the food, it made it possible to just set a short-term goal not eating the food and I noticed how my body felt without it. That sounds like a good way to master Mind over Matter. If we believe we can eat it, but choose not to, we think that we are in control and just chose not to eat something. If we think we “can’t” eat a certain food, the temptation get’s stronger and as humans we like a challenge.  I chose to believe that I can eat this food if I wanted to. But I didn’t want to and I tossed my M&M’s and cottage cheese into the trash.  My Mind won. And with that, my body also won. That’s what you call a  win/win situation.

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