Note: Learn more about the Am I Hungry?® Mindful Eating program here or at www.amihungry.com.
Not long ago I read an article that essentially stated that once people reach adulthood, their weight is set, and that we need to focus primarily on children if we want to curb the obesity epidemic. As evidence, the author cited the statistic that only a few (5-10%) people successfully keep weight off in adulthood. He also used himself as an example, saying that he had gone on and off diets for years without any appreciable weight change.
I was horrified. I won’t argue against encouraging kids to be more active and developing habits that will help them lead long, healthy lives. I’m all for that. But how awful and defeatist is it to say that once you’re at a certain age, there’s no going back, you might as well not even bother to try because so few succeed? (Of course, it’s also a very easy out, allowing people to accept their weight without question and not affect larger changes in their lives.)
As one of the successful minority, I offer a different perspective. It’s not that people can’t achieve lasting weight loss, but it’s a matter of how they go about it. For instance, recognizing that a quick fix doesn’t work. I actually have a hard time, now, wrapping my brain around the concept that I used to think I could go on a diet, lose weight, and then go back to my old eating habits – but without gaining back the old weight. I admit it’s seductive, but I have to agree with the article’s author on this: diets don’t work.
That’s why I was so excited to discover Am I Hungry?® Mindful Eating program, which placed a name to my own method of weight loss. A no-diet approach. I hadn’t realized that others advocated this, or that it was considered valid enough to actually share with others. I wonder what the author of the article would make of that?
I know it’s hard to come to this point. For me, it took a life-changing event to shift my perspective, to come to understand that lasting change can only be achieved by making lasting changes. I only that I can help others shift their view in a gentler manner, so they, too, can lead a no-diet, healthy, and enjoyable life.