Dieting, or changing how you eat

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I've said before: Many people who engage me about my weight-loss story want to know, "what's the most important action?" What many want to hear, though, is "what diet is going to work for me?"

I can relate; this is how: Once I'd finally conceded some point about myself that I'd previously denied, I typoically wanted the answer, right away. "OK, OK fine! So what do I do about it!" Alas, few things are that simple, and that's my answer to the question above. Few solutions are that simple, especially if the problems are complicated.

In fact, not only do I not think that any one diet is best for everyone, I don't think any diet is the most important thing. My history of dieting produced more than a half dozen weight losses, at least three of which totalled well more than 100 pounds, but except the last one, none of them resulted in maintained weight loss. This is, of course, the experience of the vast majority of dieters: weight regained, if lost at all.

Given that, why do people persist in thinking diets are the answer? It seems to me that all those people aren't wrong, or weak-willed. More likely, it's the "solution" that isn't right.

Now, obviously: I'm not saying that people who are overweight or obese don't have to change how they eat. The way I ate when I was 350-pounds-plus, compared to how I eat today, is vastly different.

When I speak against "diets," I'm speaking against adopting a short-term change as a means to addressing a longer-term problem. That's nuts. 

NEXT: I'll address other ways in which my change in eating approach differs from dieting, as it is generally conceived. And, as I always like to add at a juncture like this, "my" change implies I was in charge, or that I devised the changes. What I want to be sure, always, to make clear is  they are "mine" in that I did them, not that I conceived them. When I was in charge and/or devising, I got to be 350-pounds-plus.

Author and wellness innovator Michael Prager helps smart companies
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