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The following article was published in Your Health Magazine. Our mission is to empower people to live healthier.
Anne M. Rensberger, LICSW
So You Want To Lose Weight-"-"Again

So You Want To Lose Weight-"-"Again

Ever promise yourself you will stay away from that box of donuts at work and then find yourself eating some? Or feel like you could never eat just one cookieyou have to eat the whole box once you start? Or you get off your diet one day, so you get frustrated and quit dieting altogether? This unforgiving, perfectionistic, all or nothing attitude is really a form of self-sabotage. Because, when it comes to breaking some bad habits or forming some good ones, you can be certain that along the way you will blow it. We all do. A lapse or relapse is an inevitable part of the change process.
Your brain has pathways that follow old familiar routes. To get your brain to reset its fallback position to a new good behavior from your old bad habit can take 6-9 months. It doesnt matter how many times you begin again, only that you do. And keep at it until that new behavior gets wired into your brain and it becomes second nature.


Make a commitment to yourself. You dont argue with yourself over washing your face do you? Well, make healthy eating a part of a commitment.
Realize that cravings are like waves. They start small, build to a crest, then break and dissolve whether you do anything about them or not.
Stop thinking of yourself as undisciplined and lacking will power. Start thinking of yourself as a healthy eater and an exerciser in training. And of course while you are in training you develop discipline, self-confidence and skill. Would a person in training pig-out on a box of donuts? No, they would make sure their body got fuel in the form of good nutrition.
Make your goals measurable, reasonable and in action steps. For example, dont commit just to lose weight. Rather, commit to “20 minutes of exercise four days a week” or “lose four pounds by the end of April.”
Put your healthy habits on your daily planner. Literally block out time to go to the grocery store to buy healthy food, to exercise and to get enough sleep.
Keep a food diary. Write down everything you eat, healthy or unhealthy. Being self-accountable in writing is one of the hallmarks of successful dieters.
Acknowledge successes. After you lose ten pounds pat yourself on the back to focus on that accomplishment, not how far you have to go.
Make healthy behavior routine. The more you make something a part of your everyday life the more you wont even have to think about. If you start walking on your lunch breakyour colleagues and you will know that is what you do over lunch.
And here is how to resist those donuts at work. Simply offer to help a colleague who is struggling to avoid them too. By being a role model, and teaching others healthy eating habits you help yourself. You will be better able to resist “white death” food like donuts and every time you do that you are rewiring your brain and forming a good habit.

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