Ice Cream, Chocolate, Apple: Choose One

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Change is what we are want. Often we wait for a change in weight to start living again. When we use food to cope, we eat in secret, wishing it wasn’t happening, believing that we really do deserve a treat for the hard day, month or life that we have had and then blame ourselves for bingeing.

It is a cycle; but a cycle of self-loathing rather than a cycle of change. We look for road signs for guidance, words of wisdom or tools we can use.

I discovered a new tool in the Chicago Tribune article entitled Resist Temptation with All Your (muscle) Might by Ellen Warren.

Here’s the suggestion:

“Make a fist before picking your dessert. The simple act of tightening a muscle— in your hand, your calf, whatever — can help you make the healthier choice.

“It’s actually quite easy,” one of the study’s authors told me. It works because “the mind/body association is so strong,” said Aparna Labroo, associate professor of marketing at the University of Chicago. She said her study was the first to show that the body, not just the mind, can influence self-control….

So when to make the fist? At the moment of choice, when you’re deciding between the brownie and the apple.”

Instead of waiting for weight loss to start living fully again, you can experiment with this simple strategy of tightening a muscle so that your body can support you in the moment rather than waiting for the big change.

Which muscle will you choose to support healthy choices?


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About the Author

Marsha Hudnall, MS, RDN, CD

Marsha has been a guiding force at Green Mountain at Fox Run since 1986. In addition to overseeing a professional program that helps women establish sustainable approaches to healthy living, she is a respected thought leader when it comes to managing eating, emotions and weight. She has been a voice of reason for the last three decades in helping people move away from diets, an area in which she is personally as well as professionally versed. An accomplished writer and speaker, Marsha is the author of six books, including the online course Disordered Eating in Active and Sedentary Individuals (co-authored by Karin Kratina, PhD, RD, Human Kinetics), What You Need to Know about Carbohydrates (Academy for Nutrition and Dietetics [The Academy]), What You Need to Know about Vitamin and Mineral Supplements (The Academy), and The Pregnancy Cookbook (co-authored by Donna Shields, RD, Berkeley Publishing). She has worked extensively on a national basis to educate the public about nutrition and the impact of dieting on eating behaviors, including binge eating and emotional eating. Active in many organizations helping to further the cause of health and wellness, Marsha currently serves as vice chair of the Binge Eating Disorder Association and vice president of The Center for Mindful Eating and has been active in the Association for Size Diversity and Health in support of Health at Every Size(R) principles.

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