What is Yo Yo Dieting?
It’s been a while since Yo-Yos were cool.
Have you been jumping in and out of diets, trying to find the one that fits? Or maybe you [start diet give up start same diet]
Despite its name Yo-Yo’s have nothing to do with Yo-Yo dieting – except that both are VERY uncool.
Yo-Yo dieting is a cycle that involves stopping and starting diets in an effort to lose weight.
But not just any diet. Diets that revolve around losing weight fast – extreme diets that restrict the foods you eat.
It goes a little like this.
- You notice that you are a little chubby.
- You start a new diet in an effort to lose weight.
- You lose a few kilos before giving up.
- You put the weight back on.
- You notice that you are a little chubby (Back to step 1)
The weird thing is that on paper, this all sounds relatively harmless.
I mean, you may have friends or family that are constantly going on and off diets as they lose weight.
And that’s the strangest part about Yo-Yo dieting – just how socially accepted it is. Probably because many people consider this behavior to be a healthy response to weight gain.
Even worse, they pretend to be happy about it…
(“I am so happy on my lettuce-only diet” PHOTO)
While Yo-Yo dieting sounds harmless enough, it’s actually a slippery slope and can lead to severe self-esteem issues, bad habits and health problems.
Let’s take a closer look at the darker side of Yo-Yo dieting…
Why Yo-Yo Dieting is bad for you?
It actually makes your relationship with food worse!
I’m sure I don’t have to tell you this, but a healthy, balanced lifestyle depends on a good relationship with food.
You need to enjoy eating it, enjoy cooking it, look forward to a healthy meal time… You get the idea.
When yo-yo dieting, depending on the diet, you may be avoiding certain foods, eating things you don’t like or even starving yourself.
And when the diet is over? You binge on all those foods you were not allowed before.
Kinda the opposite of a good relationship with food, right?
The longer your yo-yo dieting cycle goes, the harder it can become to have a good relationship with food.
Yo-yo dieting is actually a cycle you can get stuck in. That’s when things get serious…
It’s a sad fact that for many, yo-yo dieting is a gateway to an eating disorder. And once you are on that slope, it’s very tricky to come back.
It makes your relationships with friends and family harder
Socialising and eating go hand in hand. In some cultures, they are basically the same thing (Looking at you, Italy).
yo-yo dieting makes catching up for a meal difficult, especially when you’re dieting.
When catching up for a dinner-date, you have two options:
You throw in your diet (again)
You avoid eating what everyone else is having.
If everyone else is tucking into their third slice of pizza, and your plate has been empty all night, you are the odd one out.
It’s downright embarrassing having to explain yourself – and people are absolutely judging you for it.
Yo-yo dieting wrecks havoc on your self-esteem!
Extreme diets are not fun.
Failure feels bad.
Putting on weight is embarrassing.
All three of those are horrible, right?
Yet that is actually the cycle you are putting yourself through when you Yo-yo diet – over and over again.
At each and every point it’s all too easy to get frustrated. Worse, it’s very possible to start to hate yourself….
“Why doesn’t my body look how I want it to?”
“Why can’t I stick to this diet?”
“Why do I keep failing?”
When you think poorly of yourself it flows into all other areas of your life. Your confidence and self-worth take a huge hit and your thoughts become a reality – you are the failure you imagine.
If left unchecked, this mindset can lead to overwhelm anxiety, and depression – once these set in, they are difficult to overcome.
Yo-yo dieting is bad for your health
Finally, we come to health issues that come from long-term yo-yo dieting.
If you have been battling yo-yo dieting, you are probably fully aware of all the health issues it can cause.
But the funny thing? Future health problems are often the least motivational factor for people to quit yo-yo dieting.
And that’s why I list them last. It’s not that they are not a huge risk – trust me, they are.
But instead, it’s hard to get people motivated to stop yo-yo dieting for a problem they have not yet experienced.
Yo-yo dieting for instance often leads to heart disease. But to someone who isn’t suffering it, it’s easy to write it off as “that health problem that happens to someone else, not me”
The list of health concerns yo-yo dieting can cause is extensive…
- Muscle Loss
- High blood pressure
- Premature aging
On their own, any one of those should be enough to scare you off yo-yo dieting for good.
But typically, it isn’t enough. Which brings me to my next point…
How do you overcome yo-yo dieting?
The solution to stopping yo-yo dieting is actually very simple:
Stop dieting and start living a balanced lifestyle – eating healthier and exercising more.
If it’s so easy, why can’t you do that?
It’s because your mind is getting in the way. And you probably don’t even realise it.
Each time you try to beat your yo-yo dieting cycle, your mind is fighting against you – drawing you back into this harmful behavior.
The excuses you use to justify yo-yo dieting.
That feeling that you can’t beat this.
That feeling that it’s not worth the effort to change.
That subconscious enjoyment of yo-yo dieting.
The fear of what happens if you actually overcome yo-yo dieting.
It’s not you. It’s your mind.
And that’s why no matter how many times you try to break the cycle, you can’t. Your mind has a hold of you, and it’s not letting go.
That’s why the first step to overcome your yo-yo dieting is actually overcoming your mind.
Mindwork is one tool that is efficient at breaking addictive cycles like yo-yo dieting.
Mindwork is a collection of tools, strategies and processes to align your mind to your goals, delivered by a registered counsellor.
It covers five key areas:
But most importantly, Mindwork is customised to you.
No two people will experience yo-yo dieting in the same way.
Your past experiences
Your work/life balance
Noticing a pattern?
Yep, they are all unique to you. Some or all of these areas will be the cause of why you can’t overcome yo-yo dieting.
Your counsellor will use mindwork to explore the unique aspects of your issue and how it affects you.
It will reveal how your mind is stopping you from overcoming yo-yo dieting.
Once you know what the obstacles are, you need to overcome them.
Through the support of your counsellor, mindwork builds on this by providing tools and strategies so that you don’t fall back into the same yo-yo dieting cycle.
Once you have overcome yo-yo dieting, you are free to achieve weightloss through a healthy lifestyle – no more extreme diets!