When a Little Diet Guilt is a Good Thing

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When a Little Diet Guilt is a Good Thing

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I’ve been doing well on my diet this holiday season. I’m determined that I’m going to behave and not see a weight gain on December 26th.

I’ve been  resisting  candy and cookies and when I attended a recent family brunch, I passed on the French toast, home fries, bacon and sausage and enjoyed a veggie omelet and fresh fruit.  A week to Christmas and I have survived  all temptations and I’m thinking: “Wow, I am proud of myself! I’m doing great.”

Yesterday I had a little niggle: “But I feel cheated.”

“Feeling cheated” can be one of the biggest challenges to committed dieters; i.e., the line between behaving on your food plan versus feeling you have been denied a deserved treat. Not that I especially care about  bacon or eating candy.  But still…why shouldn’t I be able to enjoy treats during the holidays? It’s not fair.

I know – some would argue “You could have eaten those foods – just in  moderation.” Maybe you could have a few pieces of candy and two sausages at brunch, but not me. A taste of this and a little of that is a serious slippery slope for me. I know from experience that there’s is no “just a taste” in my diet world.

Last night I went on a binge. The child in me (yes, even at my age) needed to go over the edge – just a little. I ate a jumbo bag of popcorn (yes, the entire bag).

You’re probably saying “Big whoop – she ate popcorn,” but all things are relative. For me to eat 10 cups of popcorn was a big deal.  For you, it might be some other food,

I realized that binging  creates a level of guilt that even the most confirmed dieters may sometimes need (lest we become too smug). There’s nothing like guilt to make a dieter reevaluate – and hopefully get back on track.

My scale this morning had inched up a little from the day before. The popcorn did not ruin a month of diet commitment.   However, that popcorn provided just enough guilt to get me back on track. I believe that without that popcorn last night, I might be checking out the holiday candy  today.

I am not recommending you go on a binge and blow several weeks of committed dieting in order to feel guilty.  However, if you do slip a bit – don’t trash the diet  – use your guilty feelings to recommit.