The Pleasure Principle: Why Indulging Is The Key To Losing Weight
These days, we’re inundated with the latest fad diets, the top tips for keeping weight off and the fastest way to lose five pounds in seven days.
Yet, during no other time in our society have we struggled more to keep the weight off.
We are a culture obsessed with being thin, but our obesity levels are off the charts.
How can we be so saturated with nutritional information, but yet, most of us still struggle with our weight?
It’s because something is missing from our diets.
When we have difficulty losing weight, we turn to analyzing our calorie intake and evaluating how we can further clean up our diets.
When it doesn’t work, we feel hopeless, frustrated and like we’ve failed yet again.
But there’s something weight loss experts, doctors and dietitians aren’t talking about.
The one thing that’s missing from your diet?
Not more omega-3 tablets, kale smoothies or Paleo meals. What’s missing from your diet is sweet, delectable, mouthwatering pleasure.
You need more finger-lickin’, lip-smackin’, delicious meals. You need to be relishing the tastes, savoring the smells and closing your eyes in delightful satisfaction.
You need more foods that taste like scrumptious ecstasy instead of stale cardboard.
Enjoying and finding pleasure in your food is an essential component for sustaining any way of eating. If you’re trying to lose weight and survive on low-calorie, fat-free diet foods, you will never be able to eat this way long-term.
Think about creating any positive habits in your life.
If you force yourself to go to the gym every day, dread your workout, slave away on the treadmill for 40 minutes and spend every moment hating what you’re doing, you’ll never sustain your workout.
But if you add pleasure to the mix, it all changes.
Instead of forcing yourself to run for 40 minutes five times a week, go to something you'll enjoy, like a Zumba class. You will dance, get excited about shaking your buns to the uplifting music and have a blast during the workout.
Which habit do you think is more likely to stick?
The one you enjoy, of course.
This is also true with the way you eat. You don’t need to stick to a diet of bland, boring, low-cal foods to lose weight.
You certainly don’t have to follow the latest fad food plan in order to rigidly force your body to shed those excess pounds.
When you introduce more pleasure into your diet, it changes the game.
You eat less food because each bite becomes more satisfying.
You don’t need 17 cookies because the taste of one was enough.
I convinced myself I had to eat diet foods in order to lose weight. Day after day, I’d eat low calorie breakfast bars, a Lean Cuisine for lunch and a salad for dinner.
By the end of the week, I’d be knee-deep in empty icing cartons and cookie boxes because my soul was dying for pleasure.
Then, one day, I gave it all up.
I was sick of eating “perfectly” and not enjoying one bite I put into my mouth.
I introduced pleasure into my diet. I explored foods that got me excited, made meals I’d talk about for days and ate real desserts (not 100-calorie snack packs).
I ate homemade granola oat bars with some yogurt for breakfast, savored gourmet veggie pizzas for lunch and enjoyed a glass of wine with dinner. I’d sample the homemade treats at parties and sit on my couch, relishing in the taste of Dove dark chocolates.
Then, a funny thing happened.
I ended up losing weight. Since I was no longer binging or restricting myself, I was enjoying more, dieting less and finding satisfaction in each meal.
When we’re constantly trying to monitor our diets and eat to lose weight, we miss out on the amazing enjoyment food can bring us.
Find pleasure in cooking a new meal you’ve always wanted to try. Close your eyes and taste each morsel of a freshly baked piece of bread. Inhale the smell of those just-out-of-the-oven cookies, and let it permeate your whole body.
Eating is a sensual experience. You want all of your senses filled with pleasure.
Abandon your rigid, strict views of needing to eat diet foods and throw caution to the wind. Seek pleasure.
Give in to what your body really wants. It knows exactly what you need.
It desires savory flavors, mouthwatering morsels and more lip-smackin’ grunts of delightful pleasure during meals.