Food

 

The Myth of Moderation

diseaseproof.com | 11/24/10

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Read More: holidays, moderation, overeat

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We are now on the threshold of a beautiful holiday season that is filled with joy, family, wonderful traditions, and numerous dietary landmines. Traditional foods of the holiday season are typically the least healthy and most addictive foods that can trigger destructive cycles of overeating and binge eating.  How can one safely navigate the season ahead? By avoiding the myth of "everything in moderation."

Why do so many people find that by the first of January they have gained weight and derailed their healthy diet? One common justification, as people reach for a piece of chocolate or second piece of dessert, is that one can safely eat everything in moderation. The underlying belief is that somehow the moderate consumption of unhealthy food is okay and won't cause any harm. However, science has verified that even small amounts of these foods cause harm to the body; and for many that struggle with food addiction and disease, the moderate consumption of addictive, sugar laden and processed foods can be dangerous.

How much is too much and where does one draw the line? Without a standard, moderation is a continually moving target; motivated by cravings and desires that promote the overconsumption of unhealthy foods. The only outcome in the end is disease, guilt, and feelings of failure.

Moderation thinking ultimately depends on one's ability to accurately recall food intakes and amounts. How much was eaten today, yesterday, or last week? The preponderance of studies on dietary food recall found that people generally under-report or forget the consumption of unhealthy foods. 

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A very good book on overeating and the inability to control ourselves (and what to do about it) is:

The end of overeating - Taking Control of the Insatiable North American Appetite
by David A. Kessler, MD

Basically by correctly packing salt, fat and sugar one can get rats to balloon to 2x their body weight; one can get them to eat even when they're full; and yes you can do it with many people too.

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