Why Fad Weight Loss Diets are Like Get-Rich-Quick Schemes



I don’t like the word ‘diet’. When the word is mentioned, I immediately think short term, unsustainable, desire for a shortcut without the effort just like get-rich-quick schemes.  Instead of starting the next diet or fitness fad to lose weight, would we have more luck if we explored our psychology and mindset around food, how we eat and what impact our individual personality plays into it all? Here are some juicy questions to ask yourself:

1) What does food mean to you? What emotional connection do you have with food? Do you eat when you are bored, for comfort and to relieve pain of a hard day, to reward yourself for being so good? Is the cooking process, sharing food with others, your love communication?

2) What type of eater are you? Do you have to continue eating until you feel full? Do you have to eat everything on the plate? Do you snack between meals? Are you an all or nothing eater? Is that closed packet of large salt and vinegar chips safe for one, two or no days in the cupboard? When it comes to all you can eat buffet, must you taste it and taste it all NOW!

3) What are your plans after the fad diet is over or you have reached your goal weight? Do you believe that it only takes 21 days to change a habit? What happens on the 22nd day?  Are you prepared to never end this diet and exercise regime and commit to making it part of your life forever?

4) When it comes to sticking to that diet or fitness regime, what do you need in place before you can keep this resolution? What kind of person are you according to the four Rubin Tendencies when it comes to expectations? How many diets or fitness regimes have you tried in the past and what is the common factor as to why they have failed?

Well, it’s confession time.  I snack most when I’m bored and want a distraction or to procrastinate from the task I’m doing. I also eat when it’s late at night and I’m cold. Ironically, my thoughts turn to what flavour of ice cream I have hiding in the freezer.

I don’t have to continue eating until I have the feeling of fullness however I have plenty of other bad habits around eating. Firstly, unless I consciously think about it when I’m eating, I will eat everything on the plate.  I’m also an all or nothing eater.

This realization about myself has become rather helpful. I made a personal rule for myself last year, about not eating any snacks offered at my work. I had to make this absolute rule because even accepting one small bite size of a snack I knew will be my downfall. It was definitely hard for weeks, months to not be tempted but it is now a habit. One thing I know for sure is that there is a difference between the length of time it takes to form good and bad habits. Bad habits can form within a day whilst good habits, well it’s definitely not 21 days as they like you to believe!

In regards to the four Rubin Tendencies, I’m really lucky to be an ‘Upholder’ in that once I make a decision or resolution, internally I will uphold myself to achieving it. The larger the resolution, the better as I’m very stubborn, don’t like being told I can’t do something and enjoy the challenge of a challenge that seems impossible.

Well, I dare you to make a comment on this blog post 🙂  If you are a ‘Questioner’ or ‘Rebel’, I won’t be surprised if you don’t comment (particularly if you are a Rebel). However, for all the remaining ‘Upholders and ‘Obligers’, that’s a different story 🙂

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