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Dieting: A Choice or Necessity?

Did you ever take a moment to stop and think why you diet? The word diet invokes pain and sacrifice.

According to the medical dictionary, the word diet is: "A prescribed course of eating and drinking in which the amount and kind of food, as well as the times at which it is to be taken, are regulated for therapeutic purposes." The word therapeutic has an interesting connotation to it. Would you have thought a diet to be therapeutic; akin to a spa treatment or a special dose of medication? Question: Is dieting a choice or a necessity?

While there are as many reasons for dieting as there are dieters, it takes a certain amount of dedication, fortitude and will power to keep up on your diet program. If you were ever on a diet, how did you do? Were you successful in achieving your desired weight; or are you still struggling with it?

Were you aware that during the 17th and 18th centuries, physicians and patients regulated their food carefully, in order to prevent disease? Did you also know that in 1863, a gentleman by the name of William Banting was one of the first people known to have successfully lost weight by developing a diet by targeting carbohydrates? Sound familiar?

There are many ways in which you can successfully diet using the following tips: Always be seated at a table when eating. Avoid having dinner in your living room while watching the TV. Eat only when you're hungry; three healthy meals a day is the norm. Eat slowly; put down your fork between each bite. Chew your food slowly and methodically; try not to quickly chew and swallow. Never go grocery shopping on an empty stomach; not only will you buy everything in sight, but spend a fortune to boot. If you have a nine-to-five job; bring your lunch and eat outdoors, never in your cubicle.

Exercise whenever possible. If you can walk 20 minutes on your lunch hour; do it. Take a trip to your local park, and walk around the track once or twice. If you have an errand to run, and you can walk instead of drive; do it. If you enjoy music, turn on radio in your home and dance. On weekends, take your kids bike riding; or spend a day at the park playing touch football.

Whether dieting is a choice or a necessity, the key is not to allow it to take over your life. Just do the best you can, as often as you can. Focusing too much on one thing becomes an obsession; which leads to stress if not perfectly achieved; and eventually puts you in a state of depression. Nothing is worth your mental or emotional health, particularly when it comes to dieting. Perhaps it is a matter of choice.
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