Food guilt and an unhealthy relationship with food (looking at food as good and bad) is a big reason behind unwanted weight gain and yo-yo dieting. I have been there! I would go weeks eating extremely strict and telling myself if I can just hold out then I can have that burger and fries on my specific “cheat day”. Well, I would follow through with this, but then that burger and fries also turned into a whole bag of candy, plus more to the point where I felt sick. I would be so bloated the next day that I would just hate myself wishing I could just enjoy these foods without over eating them.
This was my relationship with food for years! During the week with my strict diet I would never think of eating ice cream or fries, because if I did and it wasn’t my designated “cheat day” then I would beat myself up. I believe this is the core root of society’s problem with weight loss. You don’t gain weight from eating a burger on your undesignated cheat day; you gain weight from binging on your cheat day and/or eating a burger everyday because this is not moderation.
It took me a long time, but I finally got to the point where I enjoy food, both healthy and unhealthy. I enjoy eating healthy, it makes me feel good and it makes me feel healthy, which I enjoy. However, I also love potato chips, burgers, pizza and I LOVE sweets! Once the guilt was taken away from these foods and I realized that eating them in moderation did not make me gain weight that is when my relationship with food changed. Food alone is not the issue with excessive weight gain it is your relationship with it and how you look at it. How many times has there been a cake either at home or at work and you really want it, but you tell yourself this food is bad and if I eat it I will immediately get fat. So, to “eat” this cake you take a little sliver and then walk away. Then you want just a little more, so you go back for just another little sliver. This continues to the point where now you have eaten 3 servings and didn’t even know it because you were eating this cake in shame instead of really just cutting yourself a decent sized slice, sitting down, eating it and enjoying it!
This is what people need to stop doing, stop this mentality about food. I know it has been said a million times, but if you eat unhealthy foods in moderation with the majority of your food being healthy options, yes carbs and all, then you will find that this shame goes away and weight stabilizes to where it should be for your body. There is a reason this saying has been said so many times.
You will enjoy your unhealthy foods more and not over eat them because you are not restricting yourself for weeks. Get rid of the cheat days! Just live your life and enjoy food, healthy and unhealthy. If you really want a Resee’s cup on a Wednesday then go eat it! Should you eat one everyday? No, but once you start incorporating these foods into your diet when you really want them you won’t want them everyday. Get rid of the mindset that there are good foods and bad foods, stop dieting and just eat to feel good! This feeling can be from both healthy and unhealthy foods. Sometimes you want to feel healthy with the foods you eat, but sometimes you just want your soul to feel good from a delicious cupcake, so go eat that cupcake and enjoy it.