The AIM ladies were having a discussion about moderation today. Particularly the idea that seems to be popular that eating in moderation is more of a cop out than an actual strategy. Like you say the phrase “everything in moderation” because you are unwilling/unable to give up certain items. It’s almost the implication that you are weak if you don’t do all-or-nothing type of eating.
Let me tell you – I have worked very, very hard to get rid of the all-or-nothing mentality. That was my biggest hurdle in losing weight. I was either on a diet or off, exercising or not, good or bad. No gray areas. No in between. You know where that got me? 250 pounds – that’s where. I had to redefine my relationship with food. I am about 99% comfortable with all foods now. Nothing is a ‘naughty’ food. I don’t eat a lot of the foods I used to eat, but not because they are ‘bad’ foods. I just chose different foods now.
Yes, there are some foods I have issues with having around, like say mini peanut butter cups. That’s why I don’t buy those to have in the house. That doesn’t mean I can never have them again. My sister has these at her house fairly often, especially from Halloween on, so I figure I can eat them there. I just choose not to buy them. That’s moderation for me on that food.
Or take the bagel.
You know I love my bagels. I used to eat them almost every day. For me, moderation is eating them twice a week – and always out. I very rarely buy them to eat at home. I have gotten a lot of ‘advice’ over the years that I should give them up and that I eat too many. That’s because that is their version of moderation and not mine. Moderation is a very personal thing.
Moderation does not necessarily mean elimination.
Moderation has to be learned and practiced, particularly if you are a foodie that eats with abandon. Sometimes you do have to remove a food for a little while until you can introduce it again slowly. It’s always a learning process for me.
I was talking with John about this tonight and he said moderation was basically enjoying the good things in life without going overboard. I think that is a very good analogy.