When you’ve lost weight on a low-carb diet or maintained your weight with a lifestyle of limited carbohydrates, but then you gradually start gaining (as I have recently), it’s primarily because you’ve let carbs sneak back into your diet.
Scientists have proof that carbohydrates are addictive. They include, all sugars, breads, pasta, rice, corn, beans and potatoes. Because they are addictive, they come to mind way more often than the thought of a spinach leaf or a stalk of celery does. A carb-thought turns into a carb-excuse like: “Just this once,” or “Oh, well, it’s been a while since I’ve had French Fries,” or “Hey it‘s my birthday or his birthday or the neighborhood party.” The carb-excuse ultimately turns into carb-consumption.
The solution is so simple because you’re so smart! There are two parts to the solution. One is mental and one is physical and you can do them both at the same time or separately.
The physical part is Magic!
The physical part to this solution is to have your home stocked with high-fat food that you can eat within 30 seconds of a carb-thought. Note: It’s so important not to have ice cream, sweets, breads, pastas and rice in the house at all. If you don’t buy them you can’t eat them.
When the carb-thought comes, consume a tablespoon of butter, mayonnaise, cream cheese, with a low-carb conveyance such as a celery stalk, lettuce leaf, slice of deli turkey, finger or spoon. What happens physiologically is that within 30 seconds, the fat sends a message to your brain and to a hormone in there somewhere, that everything is alright and it shuts off all carb-thoughts. If you have never tried this, you must! I discovered it on my own and when I shared the experience with my low-carb doctor who is also a psychiatrist, she was able to give me the scientific reason why this works.
The mental part
The mental part will be a piece of cake…er a piece of kale for you because you have a great imagination. So when a thought comes, ‘I want some potato chips,’ immediately jump on that thought and replace it with the best memory you can conjure up about fat (butter, mayonnaise, sour cream, cream cheese) or protein (chicken, beef, pork, fish). Take the time (about 30 seconds) to taste barbecued chicken or a sizzling flank steak fixed just the way you love it, or a salad with tomatoes, avocados and onion drenched with your favorite high-fat, homemade dressing or a stalk of celery loaded with cream cheese. That new thought will hi-jack the thought of wanting potato chips and stop the action which could have ensued like heading to the store to buy the chips.
Excerpt from The Mouth Trap: the butt stops here! by Pam Young
What do you like most about eating? Is it when the food hits your stomach? Is it the swallow and the texture of the food going down your throat? Or is your favorite part the aroma of good food and the taste while it’s in your mouth? Your answer is probably the latter. We have been given such a gift in taste. I’ll bet God thought, ‘Hmm, my little humans are going to have to eat several times a day and knowing how busy they’ll get I’d better put some kind of an alarm in their brains to remind them it’s time to eat again (I’ll call it hunger), and I’ll put a device in the hole I’ve made for the food to go in that’ll cause them to enjoy what they put in it.’ So he invented the tongue with buds all over it to enjoy the taste of sweet, salt, sour and bitter. Then he designed the nose with two holes in it so we could breathe while we chew (since it should take about a minute of chewing per bite).
Our enjoyment of food lies in the taste, which is the tongue’s job, along with its worthy partner the nose. As soon as you swallow, the duo is through working (except for sleuthing work by the tongue as it checks for stuff that’s stuck in your teeth and hiding places in your mouth). So, once the food has left the room the pleasure goes with it. Think of a bite of food as if it were a comedian you love. If you invited that comedian to entertain at your party, you wouldn’t have him come and tell one joke and leave. You’d want him to stay in the room and tell as many jokes as he could and the longer he could stay the better. Your tongue is like a person just waiting to be entertained. If you want to increase the pleasure of eating, don’t swallow so fast. You’ll be getting the biggest bang for your bite. You’ll automatically take longer to eat and you’ll eat less, because your stomach will have time to tell you it’s full.
Incidentally, the voice that tells you you’re full is very, very quiet like the one you’d use in church to tell your husband his fly is unzipped. The voice that tells you you’re hungry is loud and obnoxious like the one you’d use to tell him for the millionth time to PUT DOWN THE TOILET SEAT.
If this essay has caused you to think about what you’re doing when it comes to food, my book The Mouth Trap: the butt stops here! just might guide you to a new low-carb lifestyle.