Thursday, May 24, 2007

CE is the Way to Be!

I stole that title from someone who posts on one of my conscious eating forums. I love it! I have been feeling very excited and grateful for conscious eating lately. A couple of days ago I was bored, so I started browsing the Weight Watcher’s message boards. I was both saddened and relieved by what I read. Sad for the posters, but relieved for myself since I am free of all that now.

I read one post from someone who ate lunch at a work function. She thought she had done so well, but when she journaled what she ate she realized that she had no points left for dinner. I am so thankful that I never again have to worry about not having any points left for dinner.

I read another post from someone who was so proud of herself because she resisted buying a candy bar. She was at the store with her husband, and he bought some candy. She really wanted to be “bad” and buy some too, but she resisted. I am so happy that I never again have to feel proud of myself for resisting food. Instead, I can feel proud of myself for things that actually matter in life, and food can be just food. I love that! It’s just food! I don’t have to get depressed or worked up over whether or not I ate something. I am forever free to buy any food I want because I am free from trigger foods or red lights foods or whatever you want to call them.

And, as usual, there were a whole slew of posts from people who are recommitting to Weight Watchers. People who had fallen off the wagon and were ready to climb back on. I will never again have to wake up in the morning guilt ridden and tell myself that I will start over yet again. I am so excited that I will never have to go on another diet EVER! I feel so free!

Two days ago Oprah had the update show for Bob Greene’s Best Life Weight Loss Challenge. I missed the previous shows about it because at that point I did not want to watch anything about dieting. But this time I was intrigued, so I watched. I was impressed with how they talked a lot about feelings and why they overeat in the first place. You don’t see that very often in diet plans, and it’s so important. However, I truly believe that dieting is in direct conflict with learning how to feel your emotions and getting past emotional eating. I don’t have a whole lot of confidence that the people on the show will experience lasting weight loss. I hope I’m wrong, but what else could I think based on the well-documented failure of all diets?

I was especially struck by something at the end of the show. One of the diet challengers had only lost six pounds, which was much less than all of the others. She said that this was because she had expected the diet to fit in with her life. She said that she now realized that she needed to change to fit the diet. If you ask me, she had it right the first time! Then Oprah gave her the following advice, “You can never eat anything you want.” Really Oprah? I only eat anything I want!


Joc said...

Your last paragraph where you mention the lady who needs to "change to fit the diet"... major bells going off in my head. That used to be me. I changed all of the things I ate because that was the only way to follow the diet, I exercised differently too. And I hated every last second of it. I was always that person who couldnt wait to finish that diet and go back to the things I loved.

I am so glad that is no longer the path I am on. How sad for Oprah to never eat anything you want.

Anonymous said...

I think WW engenders the same kind of guilt a repressive religion does. Always tempted, often falling, punishing the self, and resolving to try even harder to make amends. It is impossible. After I stopped dieting and started eating when I was hungry, at first I tried to preplan my meals, but soon realised I didn't know what I wanted until I WAS hungry.

Lily T said...

I tried intuitive eating, and it didn’t work out for me. Sometimes I wouldn’t be hungry during the time that I had available. And then I would get hungry when busy that I would end up eating. I think I might be too rigid, and understanding my intuition doesn’t come naturally to me. Right now I’m counting calories, so that I’m aware of how much I’m eating. And I’m kind of following a regular schedule of eating, but I’m also trying to be intuitive and flexible. It’s hard.

I’m glad that intuitive eating works for you.

Andrea K said...

I ranted about this Oprah episode on another person's blog. The same bells you heard went off for me, too. While I definitely liked it that they addressed emotional issues, I hated how they gave LaToya such a hard time.

It would be such sweet justice if she, taking it slower and making her new healthy habits fit in to her current life, wound up weighing less or being healthier than the other contestants, who will burn out from the intensity of what they've done and wind up gaining it all (or more) back.

Maybe we should start an email campaign to Oprah telling her to do an episode on IE! Of course, then her good buddy and pal Bob Greene wouldn't make a bunch of cash off of it. Oh well...

Jen said...

I haven't watched this episode yet, but I did Tivo it because I actually saw the first one. I don't know how much they recapped this time around, but one of the things that struck me was the number of people who were resistant to doing many of the things Bob was requesting of them. And, as you said, that's just what is wrong with diets, they require you to change, and ignore and turn away. I loved what anonymous said about WW (or, in my opinion, any diet for that matter) engendering the same kind of guilt a repressive religion does. It's so true! I may not have lost any weight since I started eating intuitively, but I haven't gained anything either...and I certainly feel one heck of a lot more free!

~C~ said...

I remember the "you can never eat anythig you want" comment. I was thinking...uh, yeah you can. Reading on the ww message board also makes me sad but happy for me.

hayley said...

yeh every couple of years Oprah has "definitely got the weight loss solution", someone should do an intervention.

always enjoy reading your blog. h.x

Tree Lover said...

Joc - That used to be me, too. I'm so happy to be free from that!

Anon - So true! That is a great comparison.

Lily - Intuitive eating takes a lot of dedication, at least at first. It certainly didn't come naturally to me. It took me a long time to get to where it all fell into place. Good luck to you!

Andrea - I'm still thinking about how bad I feel for LaToya. They just squashed what was left of her own intuition. Very sad.

Jen - They did do a bit of a recap of the beginning of the challenge, so I did see the resistance that you are talking about. Bob Greene pushed them to make a lot of changes at once. This whole boot camp way of approaching a diet seems especially sinister to me. So much more loaded than regular dieting even.

Christie - That comment made me feel sad for Oprah, and a little angry at her, too. I know she said it because she truly believes it, but it strikes me as irresponsible to say things like that considering the massive audience she has.

Hayley - What gets me is that Oprah knows about intuitive eating. She had Geneen Roth on her show several years ago, and she even had an article about intuitive eating in a recent issue of her magazine. I have no idea if she has ever tried it. I'm really curious.

Gemma said...

Hmmm - Oprah giving out diet advice? Now I don't watch Oprah, but isn't she famous for her yo-yo weight and trying lots of diets - even going to a diet boot camp?

Maybe one day she'll come to realise that the diets and not eating what she wants isn't actually working for her - she might lose weight, but it's not sustainable and it's probably causing her the same kind of heartache it's caused us. I can easily imagine her wondering why she fails in this area of her life when she's so successful in others.

Allie said...

I am not surprised because Oprah feeds into the industry. She has the same problem that we all have. It is a shame that we are made to feel guilty for trusting our instincts. WW is definitely guilt and shamed based. Oprah is a public example of the failure of dieting. Maybe someone can send her a inutitive eating book to help her out.

Tiana said...

Ooh, don't get me STARTED on Oprah. . . I am always saddened by the message boards I used to hang at. Either people were exercising themselves silly or dieting down to just eating chicken, asparagus, and oatmeal.


Tree Lover said...

Gemma – Here’s to hoping! I watch Oprah all the time, and it’s clear that she has experienced the same pain we have in regards to food and dieting. It’s clear that she is still very much wrapped up in the diet mentality.

Allie – I agree that WW is guilt and shame based. Every diet I have ever been on is guilt and shame based.

Tiana – There is nothing like reading a diet message board to make you glad you aren’t dieting anymore!