The word diet has different meanings but the most recognized meaning says that we are eating a certain way to achieve an outcome, ie: to lose weight or improve health. If you’re like me, you have spent an inordinate amount of time during your life on a diet. I personally have lost at least one small child’s worth of pounds over the years….and then gained a lot of it back. The problem with being on a diet is that we feel deprived. Being on a diet means that we have to eat a certain way and there are a multitude of things that “we can’t eat”. When someone tells me that I can’t do something, that’s all I want to do! (Kate’s inner child strikes again.)
Many years ago it was thought that people with diabetes had to eat a certain way. They had to avoid sugar at all costs and were very restricted. Thankfully, thinking has changed and now people with diabetes, all types, can eat a variety of foods. In fact, many PWD can eat just about anything! Imagine that. There is no such thing as a diabetic diet. That doesn’t mean, however, that we can just ignore the fact that our bodies don’t handle some foods very well any longer. We do have to adjust.
When someone is diagnosed with type 2 diabetes they are told that they need to change how they’re eating and that they probably need to lose weight. Ugh. “I have to go on a diet. I can’t eat my favorite foods any longer. This is going to suck.” It can be extremely difficult to change our eating habits but it doesn’t have to suck, at least not forever. In the beginning, changing what/how we eat is hard. It can be akin to stopping addicting drugs our quitting smoking or drinking. It’s. Just. Hard. The problem is that if we are thinking “I’m on a diet” we fight it and fret and complain; we hate it and dream of eating things we shouldn’t. I don’t know about you, but I sure don’t want to live the rest of my life like that!
It is easier for me to think about this new food plan as a new lifestyle, one that is healthier and will hopefully allow me to live a longer, complication free life. When I concentrate on that aspect of it I don’t feel as deprived. Sure, I still want to eat things that I shouldn’t but I simply remind myself why I’m doing it and it isn’t as difficult to accept.
I’ve been doing really well lately and I’m feeling great. That in itself is motivation. I need to remember how this feels and stick to it. I think I can.