Ditching the Dieting MINDSET

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Hello! I’m Tayla Russell and I am a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist. I’m here to answer any of your nutrition questions, and to help guide you along your journey to become the best you ever!


What’s your relationship with food?

  • Do you ever feel yourself labeling food as “good” or “bad”?
  • Have you rewarded yourself after a long day with food?
  • Are there dieting “rules” you follow?
  • Do you ever feel deprived of foods you enjoy?
  • Are you waiting for Monday (or next month, or the new year) to start dieting or to “get back on track”?

Did you answer “yes” to any of those questions? If so, that’s okay!

I would just like to recommend that to truly feel your best and achieve your nutrition goals, dieting is not the answer. Instead of restrictions, food rules and getting down on yourself for eating, you want to strive to develop a healthy relationship with food. Doing this will rewire your brain to remember food for what it really is – fuel for all the amazing things you do!


Ditching the Dieting Mindset

There are thousands of diets out there that all promise the same thing: lightning fast weight loss that’ll stay off for good! How often have you ever tried one of these “miracle diets” and lost a little weight, then realized that after you stopped dieting all the weight came back?

That’s because diets don’t work as a long-term weight loss solution.

Diets have you restrict calories or food groups to help you lose weight fast. After you’ve finished the diet and go back to your normal eating patterns, your body will return to the weight it was before (and might even gain a few extra pounds). Don’t worry, there are non-dieting solutions that work long term.


What To Do Instead

Make it a lifestyle: find a balanced diet where you feel like it can be sustained forever. This means no more labeling food as “good” or “bad”, no more dieting rules, and no more viewing food as something negative (we need food to live, remember?).

See food for what it is: FUEL! Give your body the foods it needs to thrive and have the most energy.

Enjoy food: when was the last time you really stopped to savor what you were eating? Eating slowly will help you feel more satisfied and allow you to listen to your hunger and fullness cues better.

Allow all foods: there should be no forbidden or off-limit foods (that just leads to bingeing later). Remember, all foods can fit into a well-balanced diet.

Don’t beat yourself up: did you overindulge on candy or dessert or anything today? Don’t let that ruin your entire day (or week, month, etc.). Just acknowledge what happened and move on! Getting down on yourself just because you ate an extra brownie won’t make you feel better! (And eating an extra brownie isn’t going to make you instantly gain 5 pounds, either).

Live life scale-free: my favorite (and most rewarding) tip is to stop letting the scale dictate whether you’re going to have a good or bad day, how much you’re going to eat that day or how good of a person you are. Don’t forget – your weight will constantly fluctuate throughout the day, with your menstrual cycle, and even depending on the last time you went to the bathroom! When you skip the scale, you become more in tune with your body, you’ll start seeing how your clothes fit better, and how good you feel – the things that REALLY matter! Pay attention to what your body is really saying, and put your scale away for good!


What Now?

Now is the time to go out and live your best life! Don’t let the scale, food, or diets hold you back! Start developing a healthy mindset around food and let it work FOR you instead of against you. I promise, this new mindset will change your life just like it changed mine.


Until next time, xoxo – Tayla
Tayla Russell, RD CD


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Article contributed by: Tayla Russell
Tayla joins the Pink Iron team as our on-staff Registered Dietitian. We are so grateful that Tayla has joined forces with us, as she shares our passion for helping women have healthy relationships with food and changing the mindset around body image! Whenever we ask the Pink Iron athletes for feedback about Tayla, they always say how it feels like they’re talking with a girlfriend they haven’t spoken to in years! She has the ability to let you know that she’s been there, she gets it, and you’re never alone. Reach out to Tayla for any questions you have!

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