Many people have trouble controlling the consumption of sweets and other favorite
foods. For many of us, it is best not to buy them when shopping, not to keep them
in the house, and not to order them when eating out. If you can’t reach it, you can’t
eat it.

The food industry has processed foods to make them as tempting and palatable
as possible by loading them with sugar, salt, and fat and engineering their mouth
feel. A Johns Hopkins guide to healthy nutrition pointed out that food manufacturers
have devised foods that “…override the body’s natural satiety-regulating
system in a way that eating handfuls of unprocessed foods—like apple slices, baby
carrots or celery stalks—simply wouldn’t.”

Some people, perhaps most people, overeat in certain situations
because they use food as a way to cope with boredom, sadness, anxiety, loneliness
and various causes of stress, including studying for an exam, work deadlines,
watching their favorite team, and lack of sleep. Too often, we use food for comfort,
to release tension or as a reward for accomplishing a task such as completing a final
exam or work project. Food does not solve problems, and overeating causes them.

Obesity experts note that behavioral therapy for weight loss should include daily
monitoring of food intake and physical activity and at least weekly monitoring
of weight. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force concluded, “…with moderate
certainty that offering or referring adults with obesity to intensive, multicomponent
behavioral interventions (i.e., behavior-based weight loss and weight loss maintenance
interventions) has a moderate net benefit.” Ideally, behavioral therapy
should include the support of a trained interventionist who provides a structured
curriculum of behavioral change, including goal setting, problem-solving, stimulus
control, regular feedback, and support. However, it is unlikely that access to
a trained behavioral interventionist will be practical for the more than 155 million
Americans who are overweight or obese. With good diet choices and physical activity,
you can lose weight and keep it off on your own.

This blog presents opinions and ideas and is intended to provide helpful general information. I am not engaged in rendering advice or services to the individual reader. The ideas, procedures and suggestions in that are presented are not in any way a substitute for the advice and care of the reader’s own physician or other medical professional based on the reader’s own individual conditions, symptoms or concerns. If the reader needs personal medical, health, dietary, exercise or other assistance or advice the reader should consult a physician and/or other qualified health professionals. The author specifically disclaims all responsibility for any injury, damage or loss that the reader may incur as a direct or indirect consequence of following any directions or suggestions given in this blog or participating in any programs described in this blog or in the book, The Building Blocks of Health––How to Optimize Your Health with a Lifestyle Checklist (available in print or downloaded at Amazon, Apple, Barnes and Noble and elsewhere). Copyright 2021 by J. Joseph Speidel