Best-selling author Dr. Don Colbert says when it comes to losing weight, people fight against their own brain and body chemistry. This conflict prevents them from shedding the pounds and keeping them off.
In his new book, Dr. Colbert's "I Can Do This" Diet, he offers a lifestyle plan that works with the body and enables those who follow it to lose excess weight and keep it off.
Colbert addresses all the factors that affect weight—emotions, behavior, mental state, diet, hormones, body chemicals and lifestyle. In addition, he offers an interactive survey at thecandodiet.com to help individuals identify what is preventing them from losing weight.
"As a medical doctor, I deal every day with getting results—verifiable results—that prove a patient is on his way to long-term health, not just fixing an immediate problem," Colbert explains. "And that is what this book is about."
The Buzz offers an excerpt from Dr. Colbert's "I can Do This" Diet. (Click here to purchase this book.)
You Have a Choice
Dieting has a way of turning life into a roller-coaster ride. You lose weight only to gain it back—or you gain even more weight—and after a while it becomes difficult to find yet another reason why you should even bother. In more than 25 years of practicing medicine, I have met countless former dieters stuck in this self-defeating mental attitude, and it was sabotaging whatever hope they once had of losing weight.The truth is, your biggest obstacle for weight loss is your thinking. If you want to lose weight but have been on this yo-yo dieting adventure I am referring to, I'm sure you could come up with 101 different excuses for not dieting. After all, who wants to be on a boring, rigid, tasteless diet? It is never fun to deprive yourself. And yet none of us want to be overweight or obese. We want to look good, feel good, and live a healthy life.
It's Your Life
Take a look at the top 10 excuses for not dieting:
"I just can't resist my favorite foods."
"My social life is just too crazy."
"I don't have time to lose weight or plan meals."
"My family and friends won't support me."
"I don't have anyone to hold me accountable."
"It's too confusing to find which diet works for me."
"I travel too much."
"Dieting is too restrictive."
"It's too expensive to diet."
Do you see the potential for a downward spiral when you start this type of thinking? It is a self-propelling trap in which so many dieters are caught. They become virtual excuse makers, first blaming circumstances and then themselves for their failures. Most reach a culminating point where they either give in to complete resignation or go see a doctor like me for some last-resort help.
The common problem I see among repeat dieters is that they do not focus on the simple lifestyle and dietary changes that are needed, but instead they focus on their weight. When their weight does not budge, they then get discouraged and many times stop the program all together. And on the other extreme, when they do hit their target weight, they abandon all reason and quickly slide back into their old eating patterns—the same ones that got them on the diet in the first place!
It's great to set your mind to something and to accept responsibility for your actions, both past and future. Yet such a radical shift in perspective can easily become just another mental pep talk that eventually fizzles out. What must accompany this change of heart is an underlying reason—one that, in fact, comes straight from the heart. To switch to a "can do" kind of lifestyle, you need something that compels you from deep within.
I have found over the years that if your motive for losing weight is for any person other than for yourself, chances are high that you will fail. You should be doing this for you, to make you healthy, and not to please someone else. Unfortunately, too many women are tempted to lose weight for their spouses or boyfriends. Inevitably, these are the women who find themselves back in the blame-shame-guilt cycle after that person ends up walking out of their lives. I hate to sound cynical, but I have seen too many women do this and wind up gradually gaining all their weight back.
Many obese people are the same way. They have heard plenty of reasons from others why they should lose weight, yet they lack a personal driving force for why they should do it. If you are overweight and have never identified this reason, I urge you to do what I suggest to my obese patients: disrobe in front of a full-length mirror at home and analyze yourself from the front and back. While looking at yourself in the mirror, ask yourself what the main things are that concern or bother you about being overweight. Is it the size of your hips, thighs, waist, or buttocks? Is it the way your clothes fit? Is it the way people treat or mistreat you? Is it the embarrassing comments people make about you? Is it the rejection from family members, friends or co-workers that affects you? Is it being passed over for promotion because of your weight? Is it because your health is being affected by your weight?
For some people these questions are answered more easily by writing in a journal. If that is true for you, take the time to do it. These are important thoughts that, if you are completely honest, may change your life. As you come to grips with why you—and only you—want to lose weight and have made the decision to do so, you are ready to take responsibility for controlling your weight. Most individuals who have lost weight and kept it off simply took responsibility for their weight loss. It was their choice, and this empowered them to lose weight by developing new healthy habits. You may have unique reasons that only come by looking in the mirror, but the important thing is that you arrive in a new place of hope, determination and purpose.
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