As I finished last week’s blog, it immediately gave me the idea about what to write for this week. I have a friend named Vicki that I have played tennis with for ages, and a few years ago, she surprised us all by dropping about 60 pounds very quickly. Furthermore, she’s kept every ounce of it off since! No, she didn’t go vegan, but her advice can help vegans and non-vegans alike.
What is Vicki’s simple secret to permanent weight loss? She continually asks herself two questions before she chooses to eat something:
1. Would I be just as happy (or sufficiently happy) with a healthier choice? If not…
2. Would I be okay eating a smaller portion of this less healthy food?
Here’s how it might look: You’re dying for a piece of your old favorite pizza, which is definitely not vegan. Ask yourself:
1. Would I be happy with a vegan Tofurkey pizza (which tastes just like my childhood favorite Jeno’s pizza, if you ask me!) This is still not a particularly healthy option, but it will be leaps and bounds healthier than regular pizza, as it won’t contain nearly as much saturated fat, no cholesterol and will have much fewer calories.
2. If your answer is “Yes” then ask yourself if, instead of the Tofurkey pizza, you could have a pizza without cheese? I love pizza without cheese – I put sundried tomatoes, capers, roasted red peppers, corn and all kinds of delicious toppings on it. If you can add in a whole wheat crust, then you’re done. This is a fully healthy meal! If not, then ask yourself if you can have a bit less of the Tofurky pizza, and add a large salad to it instead?
3. If your answer is “No” then see if you can just have one piece of your old favorite, instead of having the whole pizza.
Do you see how this works? All it requires is that you are conscious before you eat. You must be conscious enough to stop, ask yourself these questions, and answer them honestly. If you are the type of person who eats half a bag of chips before you realize you’ve even opened the bag, then this requires some practice.
Once you begin asking these questions you will likely start dropping pounds and gain much better health. How? Because every time you eat, you will be conscious of what and how much you eat – you will be making decisions on what you will and won’t eat, and this will allow you to feel like you’re in control – not the food. Even if you consciously choose to eat something unhealthy, you will feel like it was your choice. This feeling of being in control – and undoubtedly making some (perhaps many) better food choices every day – will give you a greater sense of self confidence. Your weight will start dropping, and you will feel good about it – not like you had to starve yourself to drop those few pounds.
I know many of you follow my blog as you go vegan to try to lose weight. Although this tip is not relevant only for vegans, it’s one of the best tips I’ve ever seen when put successfully into action. Let me know how it goes!