Dieters: Living on the Edge

  • -

Dieters: Living on the Edge

Category : Uncategorized

A dear friend  and I have shared the diet journey for as long as we’ve known each other (decades of friendship). We’ve seen our weights go up and down and up again. Right now we’re both in a good place diet-wise; we’re committed to our diets and doing well.

She made a comment that struck me: “We dieters are constantly living on the edge.” How amazingly true. All dieters know that the line between diet success and diet failure can be a single chocolate chip cookie.

There are two types of dieters: Those who say they are dieting, but willingly go off their diet for that cookie – or any other favorite food. They theorize that “One cookie won’t hurt me and I’ll get back on my diet tomorrow.” This is not about you (check some of my earlier blogs about the challenges of dealing with cookies and diet demons).

This is for you dieters who are doing well. You’re successfully moving towards or are maintaining your goal weight. As you well know, it’s not easy. Every day is a challenge, but you feel good. You’re doing it; you’re staying the course of losing weight and keeping it off.

All dieters are living on that edge. What many struggling dieters may not want to know is that it never gets any easier. Reaching a diet goal does not mean that diet nirvana has been achieved forever. There’s no question that eating habits can be changed and I will admit that after a year of successful dieting, a bag of potato chips does not call my name. I can pass a plate of store bought cookies and I can live without sour cream on my baked potato. It’s okay; not a big deal.

But there isn’t a day that goes by that I’m not tempted to eat this, try that, have a taste. Every bountiful buffet table is just as tempting to me today at a size 6 as it was when I was a size 24. I lost my weight by sheer will power; I struggle daily to keep that willpower and keep the weight off.

To add to the challenge, well-meaning friends give successful dieters permission to eat. “You look great, you don’t need to lose more weight, having that dessert won’t hurt you.” Little do they realize how close to the edge – how close to eating it all – their thinner friend is. (And some of these friends urge the dieter to eat because it makes them feel less guilty as they make their own bad food choices.)

It’s probably true that if you’re where you want to be diet- wise, adding more food into your diet plan is okay. However, dieters need to know their triggers. If you can’t handle carbs, avoid them. If that single cookie will be the start of a binge – get your hand out of the cookie jar!

The struggle to lose and then maintain a weight loss is never ending. When you find yourself on the edge of succumbing to certain trigger foods, back off from that slippery slope and carefully weigh the value of that cookie against the price you will ultimately pay.