It’s pretty simple.
“Diets” are about losing weight, not gaining health.
What most people need is not a diet… but a lifestyle.
Losing weight is a poor motivator because it’s superficial and assumes that there are no other reasons why one would “diet.” It’s easy to give up when motivations are superficial, more than two thirds of Americans are overweight or obese after all… it’s normal (NIH obesity stats).
When you’re eating healthy and making lifestyle changes in order to gain health, everything changes.
Suddenly that candy bar is not just that thing you can’t eat because it makes you fat. It’s an item that is full of processed chemicals and high sugar that are not contributing to your optimal health.
They are making you sick.
Whether you feel it or not, by providing your body with something that doesn’t nourish, you’re negatively influencing your health. The sugar and random artificial ingredients in that candy bar aren’t directly or immediately causing diabetes or a host of other preventable chronic diseases. But over time, the cumulative result of making the “it’s ok” choice day after day might. It’s like the analogy of the frog in the water: put a frog into boiling water and it immediately jumps out, however, slowly turn up the heat and eventually the frog will die. Slowly by slowly we are making ourselves sick. (Just to be clear, I’m not saying a candy bar here or there is going to kill you).
You want to put things into your body that bring wellness, reduce disease risk, and make you feel vibrant. Luckily, losing weight is a much appreciated byproduct. When you change your line of thinking towards wellness, your motivations change. It’s easier to be motivated by the whole picture than simply a part.
Dieting misses the mark entirely.
You can “diet” by taking weight loss pills, eating processed NutriSystem or Slim Fast meals every day. While those diets may help you lose weight, they are deleterious to your overall health.
Moving beyond food, lifestyle changes encompass so much more.
While you should nourish yourself with nutrient dense food, optimal health also requires sleeping well, living purposefully, exercising the right way, and minimizing exposure to toxins through air, water, beauty and everyday products in the home. That’s where the lifestyle comes in.
When the focus is on gaining health, it includes more than just food and that’s when true health arises. It’s amazing what diet and lifestyle changes can do to heal (and lose weight… we all know that’s a happily accepted perk!).