Part 1 covered getting participants to stop eating foods they hate and also avoid stress-driven, high-calorie blowouts or using food as entertainment.

Here are two more things you might wish your participants would stop.[wlm_private 'PRO-Platinum|PRO-Monthly|PRO-Gratis|PRO-Seasonal|Platinum-trial|Monthly-trial|PRO-Military|30-Days-of-PRO|90 Day PRO|Stages-Instructor|Schwinn-Instructor|Instructor-Bonus|28 Day Challenge']

Thinking Only About Calories, Not Food Quality

I don”™t think food (or weight) is only about calories in/calories out. I”™ve even written articles and a book chapter on it because it”™s an important subject — one that has raised angry reactions.

Some nutritionists and dietitians do think that a calorie is a calorie is a calorie.

As the lead nutritionist in a weight-loss program, I worked with a registered dietitian. One participant had typed “HELP!” next to the brownie listed in her food log.

Here was the dietitian”™s reply: “This is only X calories, so I”™m not worried about it.”

The dietitian didn”™t seem to realize that the brownie might have consequences. My specialty — psychoactive nutrition — keeps me aware of those consequences. They might include increased appetite, the onset of cravings, or bingeing — any of which could last for several days.

The dietitian also seemed unaware that the brownie might have been a result of something the participant had eaten earlier that day or the day before.

Or that “HELP!” revealed the lack of control the participant was experiencing.

I have never told a client that all calories are equal — or that it”™s okay to eat a certain amount of sugar if you stay within your calorie limits. When you recognize sugar as a psychoactive drug, calories are less important than that.

And this isn”™t just about sugar. Even though we now know that saturated fats aren”™t as bad as we were told, most of my clients do realize that fried pork rinds are not a healthful option in a daily food plan. Some foods we should just avoid.

At a recent presentation, a man asked about a non-caloric butter replacement. He started using it to save calories, but the junky chemicals in it made it a poor substitute. Coconut oil, raw almond butter, even butter would be better. They have calories but also offer nutrition benefits.

Thinking about calories alone leads to eating without focus or mindful attention.

Cleaning the House Before Housekeeping Gets There

This is something my clients do frequently. I suppose they expect me to reprimand them for the “bad” stuff they”™ve been eating. (That never happens!)

They cancel, then reschedule appointments for later on, so they can get themselves together to eat well for a week or so — and keep a food log that shows how well they”™re doing.

I”™ve also had clients cancel follow-up appointments. Follow-ups are arguably the most important appointments. They give us a chance to discuss what has been working and what hasn”™t.

The clients reschedule because they weren”™t implementing the first appointment recommendations.

Yet the reasons they”™re not implementing could reveal the moments that throw them off-track. Postponing till they”™re sure they”™ll get a gold star misses those valuable discovery points.

And occasionally, unfortunately, I never hear from them, even though they”™ve already paid for their follow-up appointment — and have serious health problems that I specialize in and have studied in depth.

A final issue might be “too many cooks.” A new client came in after meeting with her physical therapist. She presented a week”™s worth of food logs, based on her PT”™s recommendations. She had already “cleaned house.”

My review of her logs indicated that this woman needed to make several nutrition changes. She was reluctant to do so, though, because the PT had suggested something else.

When it comes to nutrition, your cycling participants are free to do whatever they choose. They can wing it. They can follow steps they”™ve found on websites — there”™s more nutrition stuff online now than ever before.

They can combine different plans and follow a Paleo diet 2 days a week, the Mediterranean Diet on 2 different days, a vegan diet for 2 days, and a pepperoni pizza and beer binge the last day. Whatever they want.

But they might be eating too much of some things and too little of others, missing vital nutrients. They might skip over key brain chemical info that could make life easier if they knew it. They might find their appetite out of control and not know why. They might have intense cravings and not know why.[/wlm_private]

Food isn't as casual as we sometimes assume it is. You probably wish your participants would stop treating it as if it were. I know I do.

Joan Kent

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