#16: Take the Stress Out of Losing Weight

The fitness and dieting industry is enormous and never-ending. You want to know why? Because most people are going about it all wrong. Most diet efforts are misguided. This episode will give you the insight to finally let go of that chronic stress that’s causing you to hold onto some extra pounds and start feeding yourself with healthy and NUTRITIOUS foods that fuel your body (and satisfy your cravings before they start.)

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It’s time we talk straight-up about weight loss.

Did you know chronic stress goes hand in hand with gaining and holding onto weight?

When our bodies are stressed, there’s a very primitive response. We think, ok, this is stressful, we might die, there might be a famine or an attack. We better pack weight around our middles to insulate our important organs.

The vast majority of my clients come to me because they want to lose weight.

For example, Jenny. Jenny was in her 60’s and had a mix of symptoms that I often see among my clients: digestive issues, low thyroid function and carrying around a bit more weight than she wanted to be. She’d done a ton of diets but never saw much success.

It’s by addressing this overall picture that we can figure out what’s going wrong. 

I had to ask myself and Jenny, is it POSSIBLE that the digestion problems, the thyroid and weight were all related? If so, what was the root cause? And what was continuing to trigger symptoms?

Luckily, we only had to take out a couple of food triggers. We only had to have a couple conversations about her life to see that there was obvious trauma playing out in her body. Through this work…her digestion improved, her energy skyrocketed and weight started falling off.

Which was great news because she had a big anniversary coming up with her husband – a big party planned — she got to wear the dress of her dreams and look and FEEL like a rockstar.

Diet efforts are often misguided

Early on, Jenny made a point of telling me that she used cocktail sauce – NOT tartar sauce – on her seafood. That was an interesting conversation. It’s common-knowledge-slash-misinformation that we should avoid fat if we want to lose weight. 

I had Jenny read the ingredients on her cocktail sauce. And then we talked about what’s really disrupting her body’s systems…the sugar. The artificial colors. The preservatives.

Meanwhile, you NEED fat to feel satisfied and curb cravings.

This is the sort of misguided effort that keeps women stuck…missing out on deliciousness and at the same time wondering why their weight won’t budge.

Even when diets work, they don’t work.

We all know someone who has lost weight by restricting fat, counting calories or points. 

But how many people do you know who have maintained their weight loss like that, year after year? How many can maintain their weight loss without being beholden to the calorie counting game?

It’s unusual. 

That’s why dieting is an enormous industry. We keep coming back.

Here’s the shift that punches the multi-billion dollar diet industry smack in the face.

Typical low-calorie diets emphasize foods like vegetables, non-fat dairy and lean meats. Diet-friendly meals might be frozen entrees of just the right size (think Lean Cuisine) or a meal replacement shake. Or a fairly boring salad. You’re eating things like spinach, celery, plain popcorn, skim milk.

With this setup, your body isn’t getting nourished properly. You’re missing things like naturally occurring, healthy fats. Vitamins. Minerals. And you’re likely not getting enough protein.

You’re definitely not enjoying your food very much.

So you’re hungry. Of course. Your body is literally hungry for missing nutrients.

That’s when you’ll have cravings that get translated into “I want ice cream!!!!” 

You can power through. Sure.

People fight their way through diets all the time. You can even start to find delight in Brussels sprouts and chicken breast dinners. Hey, I like those things too!

But when faced with ice cream? Or pizza?

You eventually cave. And it tastes so, so good.

But now…you’ve “been bad.” You’ve cheated. You have to somehow repent and get on the treadmill for 2 hours and direct all this negative energy into more willpower.

You are in a constant battle with yourself.

I say, forget calories for a second. Instead, focus on nutrients. I want you fully nourished, enjoying meals of real, whole, delicious food.

Throw out willpower.

I propose you eat food that satisfies cravings BEFORE they start.

And it works. Time and time again.

With this approach, there is no battle of wills.

You want to go for food with minimal processing. Nutrient-dense good stuff…like butter and steak and pork chops and a whole rainbow of vegetables. Nuts and fruit and chocolate. Not particularly restrictive, we keep all the major food groups.

With a strong combination of protein, fat and fiber at every meal, cravings go away on their own. 

I just had a client tell me that after a week of eating this way, she was traveling for work and found herself taking a brownie from the dessert tray. After one bite she said, eh, I don’t even want this. She threw it away. 

Or sometimes you’ll eat an old favorite, like an Oreo, and think…ick. It tastes like a mouth full of chemicals.

Your body chemistry literally changes and allows you to successfully lose weight.

(I know…it seems weird that butter and bacon would pave the way to weight loss.)

For many of my clients, the change comes quickly.

For others, it takes some time. Especially if they’re rejoicing in perhaps too much bacon and butter. But that’s ok. Once food QUALITY is addressed, you can fine tune food QUANTITY.

And suddenly, it’s no longer a fight.

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