Sunday, May 31, 2009

Butterfly Wings: Rule 11 to Control Your Appetite

Are you worthy of having a different life?

Do you feel you have the power to overcome the obstacles to permanent weight control.

Do you feel competent to make the right lifestyle changes?

Are you likable and worthy of the change?

Start by believing you are worthy of having a different life, a better life. Not just that you want it, but that you deserve it.

I want to tell you a story. Afterwards, I would like you to share your thoughts with us about it.

This is the story of one woman's struggle to change, to lose weight, and handle the unexpected effects it has on her family.


Rebekah was fat. At least that‘s how she saw herself in the mirror every morning as she prepared to shower in the pre-dawn light. Her friends always said she looked great, but, as she squeezed the water off her long hair, she knew they were just being kind. Hadn’t she also told those same white lies to support a friend?

Rebekah turned 43 last Sunday. The Friday before, she used the last day of her 90-day fitness club membership. She won it at the law office where she worked as a paralegal. The coincidence of these two events started her thinking.

Rebekah’s oldest, Tom, 16, has his father’s infectious smile. He is trying to get onto the high school football team. Cassi, 13 going on 19, is more of a handful everyday. (Wow, was she that tuned-in at 13?) Then there is Franklin. The surprise child of 5, and as sweet as they come, he is every bit a daddy’s boy. Daddy was off in Baton Rouge for one more day.

Driving the long rainy commute into Memphis that morning, Rebekah became reflective. They lived in the county because it would be better for the kids. But it meant a lot of driving time with precious few moments left for herself. As she turned onto the freeway she began to think about her weight again, and how she’d lost 14 pounds the last 3 months. She was proud of that. But it had taken its toll in other ways.

She had one of those tense conversations with Luke the morning he left for Baton Rouge. He was concerned about her staying longer in the city 3 nights a week to go to the club. Then there was the extra cost of the “new” food she was buying for herself, because he and the kids preferred the “old” food. Plus, she was spending a lot of time reading after the kids went to bed. She didn’t use to do that. It all added up to less time with the family and more money. As she dropped him off at the airport she told Luke she was considering buying a one year membership to the club. With a quick flash he said they would have to “discuss it all” when he returned.

On the drive home in traffic that evening, Rebekah began formulating a letter to Luke. She needed to write it down. He was so strong and impatient when they talked about difficult things. So, in their 18 years together she had learned it would come out better if she wrote it down first.

Late that night, after the kids were in their rooms, she propped herself up in bed and thought. Then she began to write on her laptop...

My Dearest Husband, I love you and the kids so very much. Everything I ever wanted I am experiencing now with you, and them. I love taking care of you. Each of you is so special, and so different. But, somewhere along the road I lost sight of me. I’m not sure where I went, but I got lost. I have been so busy for so many years doing so much for my family, I’m not sure who I am any more. And I need to know that.

When I started losing weight, I began to see just a little glimmer of me. It was part who I was when we were young together, and who I am now. I began to wonder who I would become in the next few years. And it made me think about you, and how I relate to you, and what it is you still see in me.

When we parted at the airport, I saw this pain and boyish fear in your eyes. Plus a bit of hidden anger. I know that you have been concerned about our money issues. And my time away from the family. Plus, my late night reading. But, for the first time, really, I have needed to concentrate on me.

I feel like a caterpillar about to unfold from a cocoon after a long winter. I don’t yet know what kind of butterfly I will be, but I know I will be one. I can’t wait to find out. I know I will be beautiful.

But, looking into your eyes that morning, I sensed you were threatened by my changes… and whatever future changes may be in store.

Then I thought, does my way of being with you give you what you need? If it doesn’t, I’ll have to reevaluate how I relate to you – what I thought I meant to you. And that is where I get stuck.

My dilemma is that by discovering and choosing what is right for me may look like a threat to you. And I don’t want to threaten you.

There is the possibility that, in changing, I may not value you in the same way, that I may not need you as much. The very effort I use to change my life requires me to feel my own needs more strongly, to give them greater weight and priority. In doing this I may end-up lessening my dependence on you, as I am becoming more dependent upon myself. This doesn’t mean that I care less about you, or the kids, only that I care more about myself.

Does caring more about myself have to mean I care less about you? Do I need to think that it does? Do you have to feel that it does?

Is there some way for me to change lifestyles such that both of us see it as a positive challenge to create a deeper relationship, instead of a negative threat to whatever kind of relationship we have now?

Must I deny my need to find a greater affinity with myself, so that I have to relate to you with a former, paler version of me? A version that is less me, but more acceptable to you? If it is the old, less me you want me to be, where does that leave the full, unfolding me?

Do I have to choose between finding, discovering, experiencing a more real, meaningful me, and a peaceful existence with you?

And if the person you experience is not fully, really me, then who or what is it that you truly love?

I really love you. I faminously need your love. But I need me too. I need to invest time, a little money, some late-night reading, and a lot of unconditional conversation to discover what type of butterfly I am. Maybe I’m no type at all… maybe I’m my own original type.

Can we both find ways to have patience while I discard my cocoon and unfold my radiant new butterfly wings?

I love you.


Rebekah finished the letter, then read it all over again. Tears flowed unexpectedly. She had never been able to clearly articulate this before. Seeing it on paper, all at once… her deep breath pushed out the tears.

Would Luke understand? Would he be hurt? Couldn’t she just hold it inside and find a better way — a safer way to handle it? Maybe she shouldn’t give the letter to him.

She folded it up and put it on the nightstand. She would sleep on it. She would decide whether to give it to him in the morning, before she left to pick him up at the airport.

With that, she turned out the lights and closed her still-moist eyes.


What do you think Rebekah should do? Should she give the letter to Luke?

If you were her very close friend, and after she shared the letter with you, she asked your most honest advice, what would you say to her?

Please share your thoughts with us.

How do you control your appetite?
Conclusion 11: Unfold Your Butterfly Wings

Next article:
How do you control your appetite?
Rule 12: Lower Your Expectations – Satisfy Your Hunger
©2009 Laura Gontchar. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Be Worthy of It: Rule 10 to Control Your Appetite

For you to permanently control your appetite, to be able to lose weight and keep it off, begin with an inner journey. That journey is to prepare yourself for the challenges of changing your lifestyle.

You already know that losing weight is not just a dietary problem. But why do you keep getting stuck? Why do so many of your efforts backfire, when they seem to work for others (at least they do in the ads)? What keeps happening that makes your weight loss efforts so difficult?

Here are some things you might want to think about.

1. Do you feel you have the POWER to handle life’s personal difficulties — to overcome the obstacles to permanent weight loss — to change what you are doing that led you to this place?

If you already feel powerless to change important things in your personal life, things you ardently feel need to be changed, you are drained of the energy, the confidence, the initiative to take the steps to make new weight loss efforts.

Even if you feel confident in some areas of your life, it is often difficult to have that confidence when it comes to your own self. So, here is a question: Aren't there things you would absolutely do to protect your kids? Let nothing stand in your way? But when it comes to doing things for yourself, deeply personal things, do you sometimes falter?

Start by believing you are worthy of having a different life, a better life. Not just that you want it, but that you deserve it. Beginning there, gather the power, the fierce strength you use to protect your children, to change yourself. And insist that others let you make that happen. That is the level of energy you must muster for yourself.

If you have spent a lifetime doing things for others, sacrificing your personal desires and needs year after year for your family, this may be very unfamiliar territory. It is difficult to turn all that energy you have focused on others for so long, and tell yourself you deserve to have it now focused on yourself.

But you must. Once you do, reach deep inside yourself and find the power to make it happen. That power is there. It always has been. It is what has made so much meaningful for your family and closest friends. You have the power. Use it for yourself.

2. Do you feel COMPETENT enough to make the right lifestyle changes, the right way, at the right time — do you believe you have the ability to do better and really make it happen?

If you've tried to lose weight several times before, and in the end you gained it all back each time (plus some), it is easy to lose confidence in your ability to discriminate in selecting what to do.

It is easy getting lost in the plethora of advice, and the constant stream of new and contradictory information in the media – TV, magazines, newspaper. Plus there is all that stuff you learned from mom, with friends and family eager to offer their opinions.

Sometimes, it just seems that you are swimming in so much information that its difficult to keep up. Let alone do anything different that is meaningful.

Then there are those nagging doubts... is this the right thing? Is this really going to make a difference? How do you know? How can you sort it all out?

Plus the biggest challenge of them all – when do you get the time, the alone, quiet time, to think it all out?

So, even when you get into change mode, you can lack confidence in your competence to do something effective.

3. Are you LIKABLE and WORTHY of this change? If you are not likable, if you are not worthy of this change in your lifestyle, you can never be happy. Why?

Happiness is founded on acceptance of yourself — you need self-acceptance to be happy. So, if you’re not going to be happy anyway, because you are not likable or worthy of it, what’s the point of making positive lifestyle changes designed to make you happy?

Your lifestyle changes may be well and good, but if you are still not likable or worthy, what’s the point of the effort, the inevitable pain, your changes will cause?

Besides, if you’re not worthy of it, you probably don’t deserve success, or happiness, or fulfillment – or to weigh less permanently — you don’t deserve the things you really want.

These three things significantly affect:
–Your ability to identify what you really want to do, that would truly make you happy.
–Your belief about whether or not you can change things, or can change them in a positive way, and
–Your motivation in making changes — is it going to be worth it?

If you are going to change your lifestyle, if you are really going to weigh less permanently, you have to look past the "diet" you are considering. You have to do some interior work – go on an inner journey. You have to decide, ultimately, if you are worth it.

Once you get that far, you will find a way to make it happen.

How do you control your appetite?
Conclusion 10: Be worthy of It

Next Article...
How do you control your appetite?

Rule 11: Unfold Your Butterfly Wings

You are not going to want to miss this article. It is the story of one woman's struggle to change, lose weight, and handle the unexpected effects it has on her family. – Satisfy Your Hunger
©2009 Laura Gontchar. All Rights Reserved.

Make a Decision: Rule 9 to Control Your Appetite

When you are fat and 40, you know you are good for 40 more years. When you are fat and 50, you're not so sure any more. If you're fat and 60, you're in real trouble. And if you're fat and 70, you know what I mean.

Carrying around excess weight can seem like just an appearance thing. No one wants to look overweight. Isn't that your first reaction to unsightly, ugly bulges on your own body?

But the really ugly truth is excess weight is a symptom of something that has already started to kill you. Because it kills you slowly, you don't see it for what it is. Thus, you don't give it the same urgent priority that you would if you had an aggressive form of cancer.

Excess weight is a pernicious malady. No one needs to tell you that it leads to heart disease, diabetes, and hypertension. You may already know it increases your risk to some cancers. You know all that.

Here are some things you may not have considered about excess weight:

– For every pound you are overweight at the time of your last illness, you will cost your estate, or your family, $10,000.

– For every 20 pounds you are overweight, you will shorten your life by a year.

– Overweight is the leading cause of gallstones and kidney stones, especially in women.

– Excess weight is the prime factor in knee replacement surgery.

– Overweight has the same effect on your life expectancy as being a smoker.

But, these are just things you can face down the road. So, perhaps it is not of interest to you now – especially if you are fat and 40.

The real malevolent character of being overweight is in how if affects the quality of your life, not your body.

If you are overweight, if you are significantly overweight – especially if you have been considerably overweight for a long time, perhaps some of these may resonate with you:

• Feeling trapped by your body

• Not being seen

• Being judged by your size, not your personality, or even character

• Trying to hide your body

• Always feeling you have to make excuses for your appearance

• Feeling out of control of your life

• Being obsessed by food

• Hiding food to eat later, unseen by others

• It's better to risk your health to lose weight (with risky weight loss drugs) than to continue risking your sense of self worth by staying overweight

• Fear of food — hating food — loving food

• Feeling addicted to high fat, high sugar foods

• Losing contact with your inner feelings

• Not looking at yourself closely in the mirror

• Making less money than thin people

• Having fewer job prospects than thin people

• Seldom finding clothes you feel comfortable or attractive in

• Not doing things with your kids, spouse, and friends because they are difficult to do at your present size

• Giving up on your dreams — if you can’t control your weight, how could you ever believe you could fulfill your dreams

• Feeling kids and spouse are ashamed to be seen with you in public

• It feels good to be seen in public with a thin, attractive person — at least you can bask in the positive attention they get

• Fearing the health effects of excess weight in later life (stroke, etc.) will make you incapacitated and physically dependent on others

• Fearing that if you do lose weight your spouse will think you are out to get a new lover

• You spend so much time doing things for others, you have no time for yourself, so food is a comfort

• You might as well do things for other people, at least they deserve some attention and affection, even if you don’t

• Empty stomach = empty heart. Full stomach = full heart.

• Have failed with so many diets, there must be something wrong with you

• Loss of self confidence — if you can’t do a simple diet right, you’re really screwed up

• If you’re screwed up, you can’t possibly have the moral authority to teach your kids right, to act as a good example for them

• Losing all sense of sensuality and sexuality, knowing you’ll never feel sexy again

• Fear of physical intimacy, especially with someone new

• Fear that if you lose this relationship, you’ll never have another one

Have you ever felt any of these things? More than one?

Aren't the things on this list the real, present dangers and costs of excess weight, for you or someone you know?

Permanent weight control, on the other hand, is more than just having less weight. It is the unleashing of a more vibrant life. It is celebrating the life that was born into you – the joyful life you sensed when you were very young, but never quite got around to living as you aged.

Do you clearly see the contrast between the real costs of excess weight, and having a vibrant life – the life of your choosing?

Your excess weight, and difficulty in getting rid of it, is not a character defect. It is not that you lack self control. It is not because there is anything wrong with you.

After years of battling excess weight, you are worn down. You have done everything you knew to do, sometimes to a fault. But it always ends with you adding a few extra pounds. If everything you have been told to do fails you, then there must be something wrong with you. Right?

The real steps to rebuilding your life around a lighter you is quite literally in front of you, and well within your reach.

First, you need to understand that what you have been "taught" to do to lose weight is wrong. Wrong. Dead wrong. You need new, accurate, science-based knowledge, not some well-meaning guru who helped a celebrity get skinny.

Next, you need to know that the most powerful influences on your appetite are "caught" things, not "taught" things. (See How Do You Control Your Appetite: Rule 7: Blame it on Mom.)

Finally, and most importantly, your first step has nothing whatever to do with what you eat or not eat. It has to do with you. This entire, frustrating problem of years of creeping weight-gain has made you lose confidence in yourself. It has torn you down until your sense of self-worth is worn out. Could that be true about you?

In the end, successfully losing weight, and keeping it off, really is a decision.

That decision is: Are you worthy of having a vibrant life?

If you feel you truly have the personal worth to lead a vibrant life of your choosing, then you are on the path to solving your appetite, hunger, and craving problems. You will seek out, and keep searching for the right answers to help you control your appetite. And to eat less. You will succeed because you will not allow another reality to prevail. You will find the answer based on the science of weight loss, not on the endorsement of professionally skinny people.

But, if you feel unworthy of your own, self-directed life; if you feel you lack the incredible vibrancy born into your soul, then you will falter. You will discover obstacles that always seem to take control of your appetite. And, you will find one reason after another that forces you to continue gaining weight – forces that are always outside of your control – until you have run out of time to fix anything. At that point, you will have to leave it to the physicians to repair whatever damage they can.

How do you control your appetite? Start with a decision: Are you worth it?

Whatever you decide, once made, the rest will happen on its own.

It is not about weight. It is not about destiny. It's about deciding if you deserve to be happy.

Do you?

How do you control your appetite?
Conclusion 9: Make a Decision

Next article...
How do you control your appetite?

Rule 10: Be Worthy of It – Satisfy Your Hunger
©2009 Laura Gontchar. All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Quiet the Ghost in Your Genes: Rule 8 to Control Your Appetite

Well, if you can't blame your mom directly for your surging appetite, how about blaming your dad AND mom for your genes? That's a satisfying answer, because it doesn't blame anyone personally. Your parents are no more responsible for their own genes than the ones they passed on to you.

So, let's start there. Let's accept the fact that, if you are overweight by more than a few pounds it's probably the fault of your genes. That done, what do you want to do now? Stay overweight? Get fat?

You have a perfectly good excuse. Lean on it. Use it for all its worth. When you reach for that extra serving of mashed potatoes, say out loud, "Mom and Dad, this spud's for you!" There, you have peace in your war with food.

That having been said, were you looking for an excuse?

Or a solution?

Before we talk about potential solutions, let's take a closer look at your genes. Because, as it turns out, your fat-building genes are actually great genes. In fact, if it weren't for them you wouldn't be here.

Somewhere, far back in your ancestry, was a woman who got pregnant in the late Summer or Fall. She was genetically able to accumulate fat during the "abundant food" time of Summer and Fall. During the "starvation" time of Winter and early Spring, she was able to supplement her diet (for both herself and her unborn child) from her fat reserves.

Fat in the Winter. Thin in the Spring. Your grand-forebearers had exactly the right "fat building" genes to bring their healthy babies into this world. And you are the recipient, the direct descendant of that happy "fat building" gene.

Women who could not build fat reserves during the "abundant" time, were not as fortunate in bringing their babies to full term. In short, most Skinny-in-the-Fall women didn't pass on their skinny genes. Fat-in-the-Fall women passed on their genes more prolifically. Today, this accounts for about 80% of us. You are fortunate to be alive today because of Fat-in-the-Fall women, successive generations of them. If you're overweight in every season, chances are, you too are a Fat-in-the-Fall woman, too. Or man.

Your family survived because of fat. So, say: "Thank you mom, thank you grandma, thank you great grandma. The noisy ghost in your genes, that you bequeathed to me, made me what I am today. Alive. Just fatter than I should be."

So, how do you quiet these ghosts in your genes?

The same way your great-great-grandmother did. She feasted in the Fall. And starved in the Winter. Feast. Famine. That's the key. Eat heartily all Summer long, gorge at Thanksgiving, then eat a pittance, (barely at all) in the Winter. It really is that easy. That's what your great grandma did. Are you up for that?

If not, if living off the "fat of the land" is not your style – which involves you willingly getting fat during swimsuit season, then stop eating and getting skinny during the "put-on-a-coat-fasting-season" (I'm not talking about a Winter diet here, I'm talking about not eating at all). Are you ready for that?

If not, what can you do? In a way, all you have to do is the reverse what your great grandmother did. What she did, you should NOT do. She awakened the fat-ghost hidden in her genes, making it an active part of her dietary life in the Fall. And she put it back to sleep in the Winter.

So what should you do?

Here are two ghost quieting lessons for you.

Lesson 1: Don't eat starchy foods (potato, rice, pasta, refined grains, etc.) with protein foods (meat, fish, plus fatty foods, etc.) in the same meal.

What? What can that possibly do for your appetite? Well, as it turns out, quite a lot.

When great grandma, (and you) ate these foods together, they doubled their fat formation from that meal. Doubled it. Unbelievable, but absolutely true. Plus, it made her much hungrier at her next meal, so she would repeat the fat-building step.

Think of Thanksgiving. Lots of starchy foods (mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, pumpkin pie), and lots of meat (turkey, ham, roast beef anyone?). For great grandma, this led to the generous formation of fat that allowed grandma to be born healthy. For you, it compels you to decide between Weight Watchers and Jenny Craig.

Every culture has a tradition akin to ours, of a Fall harvest celebration, with ripe-for-the-picking starchy foods, and abundant meat – a celebration that usually lasted for days, not just one meal. Your old progenitors may not have known it, but it is what got them through the Winter, starvation season.

The lesson for you? Don't eat starchy foods with protein or fatty foods in the same meal. When eaten together they make you gain fat. They jump-start your hunger and appetite. Repeat.

Chances are, combining starchy foods and protein foods in the same meal is the reverse of what you do now. Because you have been taught to serve a "balanced" meal, do you make a point of having a starchy vegetable with your meals (hamburger and a bun, meat and potatoes, fish and rice, pasta and sausage, spaghetti and meatballs)? Those kinds of "balanced" meals are adding pounds. Do that multiple times a week, and you have a weight problem.

How do you undo the weight gain? Run great-grandma's methods in reverse: Don't eat starchy foods with protein or fatty foods in the same meal. Simple, but effective.

Lesson 2: Eat lots of raw fruit, but eat it alone.

(No, I don't mean skulking off into a corner to hide while you eat a banana.)

You see, when your great-grandma started eating the first fruits of Spring and Summer, and coupled it with eating anything else available, she was able to quickly rebuild her depleted fat stores, after a long Winter of sparse eating. That's how she successfully breast-fed grandma after she was born.

The lesson for you? Eat fruit abundantly, but always by itself.

Practicing these two lessons can go a long way toward quieting the ghost in your genes – the noisy ghost that makes you fatter than you should be. Unless you plan to get fatter, or go on a 120 day fast at the end of Summer, quit eating like great-grandma. While it made her thrive, it's killing you.

How do you control your appetite?
Conclusion 8: Quiet the Ghost in Your Genes

Next article...
How do you control your appetite?

Rule 9: Make a Decision – Satisfy Your Hunger
©2009 Laura Gontchar. All Rights Reserved.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Blame It on Mom: Rule 7 to Control your appetite

It is important sometimes to ask why you eat the way you do. The most satisfying answer to that is "Mom made me do it."

Mom may have made you do it. But, mom is not a villain, of course. Nor was she on a path to destroy your happiness. She saw her job as passing on the dietary wisdom of her mother and grandmother, while making some new traditions of her own.

Moms do that. But that is not to say mom was always right. You know that too, but what you only fleetingly understand is that her most indelible lessons were not taught to you. They were caught.

Just like mom passing on her cold to you, although she didn't realize you were catching it from her. Nor did she intend it. Nevertheless, you caught the cold from her. She sneezed. Later, you sneezed.

How we eat, what we eat, what we don't eat, when we eat it, are "caught" things. Mom could preach all she wanted about healthy eating habits, but most likely you now eat like her, healthy or not. You followed what she did, not what she said.

Now, I'm not saying you like and eat the same foods as mom. Perhaps you do, perhaps you don't. No, the real mirror image of your mom is in your attitude to food. I'll give you some examples:

--Do you feel compelled to eat just about everything that's put on you plate even today?

--Do you pick at your food?

--Or push it around with your fork while you're thinking of something else?

--Or eat absent-mindedly?

--Or eat when you are tired, or depressed, or upset, or discouraged?

--Or reward yourself with a sweet or fattening treat? (Especially late at night?)

In each case you are either following her pattern, or rebelling against it.

She didn't tell you to do any of these things, but if you remember carefully, you'll pick up the clues to how you "caught" these habits early on. And they are persistent habits, long after mom has stopped being a major influence in your daily life.

The other night I was at a quick serve restaurant with family friends. It was a bit late and the regular restaurants were all closed. We had just gotten out of the movie, and we were famished. So we loaded our plates and began to eat. Now I wasn't half way through the plate when I began feeling full. A few bites later, I was stuffed. Still I kept forking it in. I was seeing more and more plate, and less and less food covering it.

How stupid was I? I wasn't hungry. Still I ate. And ate some more. Then I realized, "Mom made me do it."
We didn't always have the most abundant or elegant food on the table when I was young, so my mom's rule was, "If you put it on your plate, eat it all. Or don't take it at all." I definitely joined the clean-plate-club at an early age. I'm still a card-carrying member. Our old mantra: "Remember all the starving children in China!"

Knowing I don't have to eat it all--knowing I shouldn't, hasn't stopped me from eating more than I should--I eat it just because it's on the plate. I'm not stupid, so how can this be?

Have you ever felt that way about eating? Do you feel compelled by a mysterious force to eat in ways that you know is not the best for you? Perhaps mom is at fault. But, that doesn't solve anything does it?

The key understanding is freeing yourself from these hidden, powerful compulsions. You do that by first understanding they are there (whether or not you caught them from mom). Next by choosing and consistently using new, more healthful habits.

Once you start that process, you will uncover layers of strangely self-defeating eating behaviors, lurking just below the surface of the most obvious ones.

The difficulty is that this process is not an easy task. It is not a fully rational task. You can't just talk yourself out of a silent, compelling behavior of which you are dimly aware. But you can flag it, so that when it happens, you can give yourself a pause, and take the quick action needed to change your behaviors.

It's sort of like a diet. But this is not a diet about food. It is a diet of ideas. You need to eliminate the caught things--behaviors, ideas--that push your hunger and your cravings out of your control.

What I have learned to do is to be aware--of what I eat, when I eat it, how I eat, and what I don't eat. These "caught things" can destroy my best of intentions if I didn't bring them out of the darkness of unquestioned habits.

Does any of this resonate with you? Have you ever felt food compulsions in any way?

You see, it is easy to blame your lack of healthy eating on mom, especially when she's not around to defend herself. But, if you are looking for a solution, look in the mirror. You really do know most of what you need to know to control your appetite and lose weight. You just have to discover the hidden "caught" things that constantly defeat you. Then implement a way of consistently doing something more healthy.

And you need to do them now. Why? Because it is the mom in you that is passing on your "caught things" to your kids and grandkids. Is that what you want?

How do you control your appetite?
Conclusion 7: Blame It on Mom

Next time...
How do you control your appetite?

Rule 8: Quiet the Ghost in Your Genes – Satisfy Your Hunger
©2009 Laura Gontchar. All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Making Love is the Antidote: Rule 6 to Control Your Appetite

A few years ago, Geneen Roth wrote a book about "Empty Heart, Empty Stomach" or something like that.

It really is true. We eat emotionally. Then use rationality to justify it.

We eat because we feel unsatisfied with so much in our life. We can't blame it on bad sex, because...well, you know the reasons we can't blame it on that.

Unsatisfied, sometimes fearful, sometimes vaguely discontented, we search for comfort. Food, especially the kind that is fattening and sugary, makes us feel comforted. At least until the first serving is gone.

But we can't tell anyone about our dissatisfaction, can we? "I am Woman", as Helen Reddy sang:

I am woman hear me roar
in numbers too big to ignore
I know too much to go
back and pretend,
cause I've heard it all before

So, you see, if we are going to be roaring, we can't be complaining. So, we eat the second serving.

Life can hurt sometimes. Disappointment can run deep. Third helpings on the way? But joy can run deep also. Deeper.

Love can hurt. But love also heals. Enlightens.

Making love creates anew a sense of fulfillment. A deepened sense of self. Satisfaction.

But in our daily lives we forget about making love. We go on a love-making diet. We become love-famished. We run on love-reserve. Run on love-empty. We are love-anorexic. So we become food indulgent. Almost food gluttonous at times. It's not because we love food more. It's because we feel less love.

Make love more. Eat less.

How Do You Control Your Appetite?
Conclusion 6: Making Love is the Antidote

Next to come...
How do you control your appetite?
Rule 7: Blame It on Mom – Satisfy Your Hunger
©2009 Laura Gontchar. All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Don't Not Eat: Rule 5 to Control Your Appetite

One more thing about big meals. Or no meals.

When you don't eat, "saving your calories" for the next meal, you're not fooling your body. You are just playing games with your mind.

When you skip a meal, so you can feel better about eating the next one, a bigger one -- your body knows. It slows your metabolism just enough to compensate for the skipped calories. So, you are already in a zero-sum calorie game. You really haven't "saved" anything.

Then when you do eat, you will end up with low blood sugar just before you eat again. Now you get a double whammy. First, you are unreasonably hungry. You eat too fast, you eat too much, and you throw down the highest calorie food in sight. And you can't help yourself. You know you are doing it, but you do it anyway.

Second, your body, knowing you may starve it again soon, says to itself, "Hey, Self, this dummy that is feeding us is doing it sporadically. So, let's just save the next 300 calories we eat, and store them as fat. That way we'll at least have some fat around to tide us over when we don't get fed on schedule."

Meanwhile your metabolism is still depressed, so you have some extra, unused calories to dispose of at your next meal. Guess what your body does with that? Can you spell "F-A-T"?

Hmmm. Skip a meal. Lower your metabolism. Eat more. Store as fat. Overeat. Store more fat.

Makes sense, this skipping a meal business. The perfect prescription for a person successfully trying to gain weight. Anyone want to get on that plan?

How Do You Control Your Appetite?
Conclusion 5: Don't Not Eat

Next to come...
Making Love is the Antidote – Satisfy Your Hunger
©2009 Laura Gontchar. All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Eat Small Meals, and Eat More Frequently: Rule 4 to Control Your Appetite

Let’s talk about your Thanksgiving meal. Or big meals in general.

Have you ever eaten a huge meal? Stuffed. Can’t eat another thing. Then, an hour or so later you are offered a piece of pumpkin pie. Or ice-cream, or other temptation. At first you refuse. But when Grandma (or other convincing character) insists, you say. “OK, but just one bite.” Next thing you know, you’ve eaten the whole thing. And are considering seconds.

Why? You couldn’t possibly be hungry. And no, it’s not because your stomach stretched. It’s because you have been smitten by the Big Meal Monster.

Big meals actually prepare your body ready for another big meal. One big meal makes your body expect another. To be prepared for the rush of more food to digest, as soon as you finish a big meal, your body creates hunger hormones waiting for the next big one. When you take that first bite of the pie, those hormones instantly jump into action. You become irrationally hungry. You find it difficult to resist this rush of “Eat more, now, dummy, I’m famished” signal your body always produces an hour or two after a big meal.

The same thing happens when you eat less grandiose meals. Ever eat a “big” breakfast because you know it will be a long haul before lunch? Sure enough, about an hour before lunch, to your surprise, your are hungry. So, you do two things.

First, you resolve to eat an even bigger breakfast next time, and then you’ll give-in and eat a before-lunch snack. All unneeded, weight-inducing calories. The Big Meal Monster strikes again.

How Do You Control Your Appetite?
Conclusion 4: Eat Small Meals, and Eat More Frequently

Next to come...
Rule 5: Dont’t Not Eat – Satisfy Your Hunger
©2009 Laura Gontchar. All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Eat A Variety of Nutritious Foods: Rule 3 to Control Your Appetite

How do you control your appetite and cut your cravings?
Rule 3: Eat a lot of different, highly nutritious foods

Remember your strong cravings?

It is one thing to get rid of your hunger. But, if you are like a lot of people, the real culprit in your weight gain is your cravings. Do you sometimes get confused between being really hungry and craving snacks?

Do you sometimes feel cravings for "something" even if you're not sure what you are craving?

Do you ever wonder if you're getting all the nutrients your body really needs?

Do you realize your cravings, and your body's need for more nutrients are all part of the same problem?

We all know we probably eat too much… too many calories… too much fat… too much cholesterol.

Yet, we eat from far too few foods. So, while we are overeating we are starving our bodies of vital nutrients that only more food variety can provide.

Your body is designed to require a lot of nutrients you are not getting in your regular diet. It knows when it needs those missing nutrients.

When your body is hungry for nutrients, and it is not getting them, your body tells you in the only language it knows:
  • Your body says, "Eat more food – perhaps I'll get what I need from your next meal."
  • Your body says, "Crave this food – perhaps I'll get the specific nutrient I really need right away."
  • Your body says, "Eat now – even if you're full, because I'm not getting what I need."

Persistent cravings are your body talking to you. It is insisting that you feed it a much wider range of nutrients. When you succumb to your body's insistent demand for more nutrition by eating the wrong foods, you consume more calories than you really need. And you gain weight. Worse, you are still under-nourished. So the craving problem keeps repeating.

Celebrate Chocolate contains the power of concentrated, natural plant nutrients from 59 whole foods. One bite. 59 concentrated foods. Day by day, your cravings fade away.

With Celebrate Chocolate™, your body is fed. It quits saying, “Eat more.” It quits insisting, “Eat now.”

No more confusion. You know when you are hungry. You can’t remember the last time you had cravings.

Less cravings. Less snacks. Less weight.

How do you control your appetite and cut your cravings?
Conclusion 3: Eat a lot of different, highly nutritious foods

Next to come...
How do your control your appetite?
Rule 4: Eat Small Meals, and Eat More Frequently – Satisfy Your Hunger
©2009 Laura Gontchar. All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Don't Eat Appetizers: Rule 2 to Control Your Appetite

How do you control your appetite and cut your cravings?
Rule 2: Don’t eat appetizers

Have you ever been to a restaurant and the menu starts out with, guess what? “Appetizers.”

Think about it. What is an appetizer? If a restaurant is selling you their “appetizers” it’s not because they want you to eat less. Can you see that?

Most “appetizer” foods are designed to make you hungrier. That is their purpose, to make you want to eat more. And every restaurant uses appetizers to make sure you buy more food than you otherwise would.

Have you ever just sat down at a restaurant and they quickly give you a hot loaf of “free” bread? Why would they do that? To kill your appetite before they can tell you the “specials of the day”?

Bread is an appetizer (as are crackers and pretzels and a lot of other foods). They quickly tell your body, “eat more and do it now, dummy.”

And here is a not insignificant point: Why is the “cocktail hour” just before mealtime?

Because cocktails are fiendishly great appetite increasers. So too are those little hors d’oevres they serve with them. Now all alcoholic beverages quickly increase your appetite, but the classic martini-type drinks just do it faster and better.

Now, back to the restaurant. Notice how they always ask for your drink order first. Here is the deal: Not only do alcoholic beverages make you eat more (plus the calories in them), but caffeinated beverages (coffee or sodas), and drinks sweetened with high fructose corn syrup also increase your appetite.

Thus, if you owned a restaurant, wouldn’t you take the drink orders first, and while you were preparing them, give the table a free loaf of hot bread?

How do you control your appetite and cut your cravings?

Conclusion 2: Don't eat appetizers, or have drinks before your meal

Next to Come...
How do you control your appetite?
Rule 3: Eat a Variety of Nutritious Foods – Satisfy Your Hunger
©2009 Laura Gontchar. All Rights Reserved.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Eat Less: Rule 1 to Control Your Appetite

If you desire less weight, then eating less has to be your goal.

All the science and advice, special diet strategies and weight loss programs, take dead aim at having you eat less. They just have different ways to get you to do that. Most fail.

So, if you are already surrounded with that key "eat less" information, why don't you do it? Why can't you control your appetite. Why are you frequently giving in to your cravings?

It's not that you lack self control. You are a responsible adult – of course you have self control. So, why can't you control your appetite?

Because what you are already eating compels you to eat more. And what you are not eating creates strong cravings.

Your diet, especially restricted calorie diets like Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, and NutriSystem, all set you up for failure, even if some give you short term results. Long term, after being on a diet, you not only regain your lost weight, if you are like most people you add an additional 10 pounds within a year.

Controlling your appetite is where successful weight loss begins. Cutting your cravings is how you keep in control of your life.

So, how do you control your appetite and cut your cravings?
Rule 1: Eat BEFORE you are hungry
Rule 1A: Always follow Rule 1

Once you are hungry you will do two things, and you won’t be able to stop yourself. First, you’ll eat more – probably about 300 calories more. Second, you’ll store those extra calories as fat. (Of course there is science that amply prove that, but we are just giving you the shorthand version here).

Why can’t you stop yourself from overeating in a meal you started when you were already hungry? Basically, real hunger is your body telling you your blood sugar is too low. And since your brain needs a constant supply of blood sugar, it puts an enzyme in your blood that COMPELS YOU TO EAT MORE, AND DO IT NOW (I don’t want to pass out, dummy)!

At that point, forget your will power. Your body is on remote control. YOU WILL EAT NOW. YOU WILL EAT FAST. YOU WILL OVER EAT. AND YOU WILL STORE THOSE EXTRA CALORIES AS FAT.

How do you control your appetite and cut your cravings?
Conclusion 1: Eat BEFORE you get hungry

Next to come...
How do you control your appetite?
Rule 2: Don't Eat Appetizers – Satisfy Your Hunger
©2009 Laura Gontchar. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Benefits of Omega-3 and Omega-6 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids are essential in maintaining healthier body and mind. Of great importance is a proper balance between these two omegas in our diet. Both play a crucial role in healthy brain function and normal growth and development.

As these fatty acids cannot be found in the body naturally, they must be introduced to the body through our food sources.

Medical research and clinical studies show Omega-3 fatty acids reduces inflammation in the body and helps prevent many chronic diseases such as heart disease, strokes, circulation problems, skin disorders, gout, ADHD, allergies, depression, and many forms of arthritis.

The most concentrated levels of Omega-3 are found in the brain and are thought to be an important part of human cognitive and behavioral development. For that same reason, it is essential that pregnant women maintain healthy levels of Omega-3 in order to prevent nerve and vision problems in their developing child.

What are the most common foods with Omega-3 fatty acids?

• Fish (go for Wild, not Farmed, fish sources to avoid mercury and other heavy metal conteminants) – Wild Salmon, Wild Trout, Wild Tuna, Wild Mackerel, Wild Flounder & many other
• Spinach
• Seabuckthorn berries
• Acai palm fruit
• English walnuts
• Wheat/Oat germ
• Some Omega-3 fortified products like Celebrate Chocolate Truffles (2 truffles = 56mg (35%) of the Daily Value for DHA
• Avocado