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All Health's Breaking Loose: The 'D' Word

April 19, 2012|By Loa Blasucci

There are words that need never be said. I am committed to avoid the use of words such as “ugly” and “fat.” Worse than hurtful, they are not useful, especially with regard to the wondrous function of the human body.

The word I most enjoyed banishing from my personal glossary—“diet,” as in, “I need to go on a diet.” Used in that context, “diet” represents restriction, frustration, and guilt. Whether the goal is to lose eight pounds or 80, these words make the process more arduous and might possibly be the nudge that sends us—butt over band box—off the wagon.

Diets have a way of making us feel bad about ourselves, like we aren’t worthy and must change in order to be accepted. It’s usually when we’ve been overtaken by frustration and guilt that we give up, and go back to our comfortably destructive  habits—only this time feeling like a quitter, bearing a little more shame.

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The online database PubMed highlights a study done through the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill  regarding women’s attitudes and behaviors  about  shape, weight, and here comes the “D” word, dieting. Of the 4023 women surveyed, ages 25 to 45, a whopping 74.5% reported that concerns about their weight and shape interfered with their happiness.  In line with recent studies, my personal field studies conducted with clients suggests the average diet lasts about two weeks. If you do the math, that’s approximately 854 days or almost two and a half years spent feeling bad about yourself.

But the thing about life is this: It’s a practice. And for every diet you’ve started and stopped, you’ve practiced self-mastery—even if only for a brief time. The March 20, 2012 Huffington Post UK tells us that by the time the average woman is 45 years old she has been on 61 diets.  So if you’ve been on several or even dozens of diets, that may not be a bad thing—after all, practice makes us better. As you look back on all the diets you’ve been on in the past, see them as training.  You may have learned a few things about yourself and self-awareness is what helps us move forward living the lifestyle that we were meant to live. It’s how we find our authentic self and end up in the body we want to have. 

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