As a healthy cookbook author, the January diet frenzy familiar territory for me. This is one of two “seasons” in the industry, the other being bathing suit season (natch). This is when people get serious about losing weight (and when marketers get serious about selling weight loss).
And by “getting serious”, people want to lose weight now, so they go from the sensible (I’m going to cut back on desserts this month) to the ridiculous (I’m going raw, organic vegan forever). Some marketers take advantage of that desperation.
Plus, we have a socially acceptable holiday binge, followed by a weird January purge. Heck, I’ve put on a little winter weight too, but after reading this article on the Whole 30, I’ve got to believe there’s a less drastic measure to take.
There’s extreme juicing, month long cleansing, and other fads promising X pounds in Y days; some consider these socially sanctioned eating disorders.
A coaching client spoke with me about weight loss recently. She’s a smart, beautiful yoga instructor and her weight is up. Not a lot, but enough to make her uncomfortable. She winced as she told me she that purchased Roccos recent book on negative calorie consumption (sounds yummy!). Of course it called for weird ingredients she’d have to schlep all over Manhattan to find. Of course it asked her to put tomatoes in her smoothies. Of course it required a two week kickoff during which time you only drink cold smoothies and eat raw vegetable salads…
And it would make her miserable.Who would choose to drink cold smoothies and eat cold salads in January in the north east? When you’ve got a head cold? It’s not normal or natural, healthy or practicing wellness. But it is effective for weight loss (and self-loathing).
My client knows that if she starts the radical initiation, she’ll be grumpy. And frustrated. And a mom with a shorter fuse. So maybe, instead of adding cold vegetables to her diet, she could ditch her cheese and cracker snacking, limit chocolate to 1 square a day, and add Roasted Cauliflower, Black Bean Soup, and Farro Salad with Asparagus and Pecorino to her diet?
Yeah, it sounded good to her too.
[Here comes my pitch…get ready!]
On Monday, I’m thrilled to announce a new 2 1/2 hour video class that I’ve created for Craftsy called “Cook More, Weigh Less”. All the above recipes are included in the class (and more!). And right now, I’m giving away a free class for those who are interested.
To recap: Why do we get crazy about our weight in January?
- We’re a little heavier after the holidays, and with natural, healthy cold weather weight gain.
- We want a resolution.
- With less daylight hours and cold weather, we’re less likely to be exercising.
- We’re staying inside, less social after the holidays and maybe experiencing a little Seasonal Affective Disorder.
- Our kids are driving us bananas, as we’re doing some stress eating.
These fad diets, against our better judgement, promise speed, efficacy (heck, starvation works), and gives us something to do this month, a project.
But we know better. You know better. So listen to yourself:
- Exercise (bundle up, get out and take an invigorating walk)
- Eat more vegetables (fill half your plate). And roast the vegetables. It’ll warm you inside and out.
- Eat more soup, the protein kind with beans.
- Stop eating after 8PM.
- And seriously — watch the drinking. I mean, have that drink but don’t drink every day. Come on. You can do it.
No, it’s not sexy. And friends won’t pledge their support to you on Facebook. But it works. And you won’t be as grumpy or anti social as you would be with the bottomless smoothie diet, the Whole 30, or any other cold vegetable regime.
In my next posting: more recipes. We can have fun with this.
Thoughts? Comments? Would you rather do the Whole 30? Let me know!