Reasons why people give up on a diet plan

Mumbaigloss recently spoke to nutritionist Janvi Chitalia (jkchitalia@gmail.com) on the reasons why people leave their diet plans mid-way. Why they do not pursue their weight loss journey till the end? We all have tried to lose weight in different degrees. Some even succeed but only to regain what was lost with a vengeance. Disheartened and discouraged, we leave our efforts to remain fit mid-way. A lot of tips are written around how to lose weight but no one really reflects on why an individual gives up on his/her weight loss journey.

The most common reasons for giving up on a program starts from

• Lack of motivation

• Extreme feeling of deprivation from not eating ones favourite food

• The need to fit in socially (whist the rest of the people are eating)

• The need to keep ones weight loss effort a secret

• Emotional eating

• The need to let go and not feel responsible all the time for one’s weight

• A sense of overconfidence once the goal is achieved ( to feel that a little out of control eating won’t  harm anyone)

So, in effect, weight loss starts with your mind. When you are able to control the negative thoughts and start on a productive journey. Remember, weight loss is a personal goal and you are doing it for yourself, for your own health and no one else. Weight loss will make your feel better, agile and healthy. Self-motivation is the best motivation.

To stick to a diet and exercise programme, one should:

• Focus on lifestyle change. It is more like a marathon than a sprint.  You should not aim to lose weight as a short term goal for a wedding or birthday. You should make eating healthy and exercising regularly a habit.

zumba, anytime fitness, excercise

Image via Anytime Fitness

• Secondly, it is a must to cheat as much as it is to follow the diet. The key is to cheat with a meal of your choice 2 times a week without feeling guilty to keep you motivated. Follow the 80/20 rule. Eat healthy 80 per cent of the time, rest indulge in the 20 per cent of your eating expeditions.

• Further, it would help to shift focus on the benefits of health rather than focussing on weight loss goals. A dietary program or a dietary regimen can help increase blood circulation, help in increasing anti-ageing properties in your body, in controlling medical conditions, and reduce stress levels of the body.

Foodhall, Mexican Quinoa salad, salad

Salad need not be boring. Image via Foodhall

• Emotional eating can have adverse effects in the long run. Redirecting one’s stress to productive activities is a solution to this problem. Go run, put on some music and dance, go for a spa instead of reaching out for a pack of chips and a bottle of cola. Prepare healthy and fancy food at home like Lebanese salad from quinoa, cous cous with apricots, to satisfy your cravings.

• Lapses in the diet are a part of the journey of weight loss. One does not need to pin down or demoralise oneself due to the lapses (inability to follow the diet consistently). The aim is to get back on track immediately once you make an unhealthy choice. It is a good idea to talk to your nutritionist to ask for alternate food which can satisfy your cravings and put you back on the fitness track. Go for herbal teas to take your mind off food.

• Support from close friends and family need to be present. They need to exert polite and passive control over the individual on the diet plan rather than assertive control. It will help to motivate the individual for the consistent efforts.

• It is important to create awareness for oneself when it comes to food choices but obsessing about it is not the right thing to do. Don’t feel you are being governed. Rather think as a way to enjoy life better. Only good food need not bring you happiness, there are other ways to stimulate your environment.

• If you don’t like gym, sign up for Zumba or any other exercise classes of your choice. The idea is to move around, boosting your cardio health and in the process burn calories.

• Always keep an eye on your portion size and drink at least 2-3 litres of water.

peppermint tea

Green tea, ideal beverage Image via Foodhall

To summarize, make the journey of weight loss as effective as possible even after you have reached your ideal weight and focus on maintenance with the same vigour. A little bit of indulgence is absolutely ok.  You should enjoy good health and good food without any guilt.

 

About MumbaiGloss

Parimita Chakravorty is an author, blogger, features writer and a communications specialist. She has written for various popular magazines and websites related to beauty, fashion, jewellery and lifestyle, including HAIR India, Femina.in, BeBeautiful.in, Hello, etc. She has also contributed to various youth blogs and magazines. Her book ‘Look Stunning At Any Size’ has been well appreciated and received by the readers. Currently, she is part of India’s leading IT brand and takes care of their internal communications. Parimita is also working towards bringing awareness about Endometriosis in India; a silent epidemic which is consuming a lot of lives. She manages a page ‘Endometriosis India Files’ where patients discuss their condition and diagnosis.
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