Image by Steve Buissinne
Each day that you choose to eat healthfully and simply— selecting whole, unprocessed foods from the earth and balancing your foods—know that you are building a new foundation for yourself. At first, this foundation may feel wobbly, as it is new to you, but every time you make the choice to follow through and select water-rich foods as the mainstay of your diet, eating only the foods that are best for you, in balance, you are adding cement to that foundation. Soon it will be the home that you live in.
And though there are sure to be times when you will slip and make mistakes— choices that don’t support your deeper intention to live free from food addiction—your new foundation will be there to climb back up on. You will learn to trust yourself more and more and identify with this new way of living and eating as who you really are.
Staying on Track: Balance Is The Key
Balance is the key for every meal. Remember what’s true, however, with any addiction. Always be aware of the possibility of being sucked back into your old way of life either by sheer habit, laziness, or your environment and the people around you. Make a conscious decision not to let that happen.
Also keep in mind the concept of momentum. One slipup isn’t going to make much difference. But when you allow the voices in your head to convince you that you might as well continue with compulsive behavior since you’ve already made a mistake, be conscious of what’s happening. Don’t just go into a numb state and let the past dictate your current mode of behavior. You do have a choice!
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Turn yourself in the opposite direction, down the road that leads to your ultimate desire for your life: freedom from food addiction. Realize that as soon as you make the decision to turn, you switch the momentum and the direction in which you are headed. It’s like you are re-setting the GPS to where you truly want to go. In that moment you are choosing to take your destiny back into your own hands rather than leave it at the whim of your limited, shortsighted ego-mind.
So, let’s say you have an “accident” and eat some Fettuccini Alfredo. That’s OK—simply go back on the cleanse for a day or so. This will help bring your body back into equilibrium immediately, before your pendulum can really swing to the far left (leading to a full-fledged binge).
Don’t be surprised if you start craving all the old, processed foods you used to eat. Don’t beat yourself up about what happened. In fact, enjoy the fact that you got to have the pleasure of such a rich meal. But let it go, and get right back to your new way of eating.
The chemicals in food are just as dangerous as any other drug we may get addicted to. In fact, they can be even worse, because it’s often difficult for part of us to believe that the foods we used to eat regularly (and all of society is consuming) could really be so harmful when they are so prevalent.
The fact that processed fat and sugar–filled food is so common often makes it harder to buy into the reality that the foods we are eating are absolutely chipping away at the quality of our life, if not our lifespan itself.
If the high-fat, high-salt, or sugar-laden foods are out of your house, then you can’t reach for a can of creamed corn soup mindlessly because you’re feeling tired, bored, or out of sorts. You’ll have to tune in to your body and consciously decide if you are physically hungry, and if so what your body actually needs.
There is a huge difference between reaching for a food once in a while and having the same food be part of your daily regime. It’s the behaviors you repeat consistently over time—the ones that become habitual—that shape the quality of your life. It’s the behaviors that you choose day-in and day-out that create momentum and fashion the big picture of your life.
So if you happen to be visiting your Aunt Mabel, who only offers you cream of corn soup with Italian bread—and you are hungry—then you can go ahead and eat it, knowing that this is not a habit, but a deviation from the healthful way you typically eat as a result of outer circumstances. You can feel confident and have the trust in yourself that even though the soup and bread taste good and you thoroughly enjoy them, you won’t subject your body to these types of foods on a consistent basis.
There comes a point when you can’t go back to your old way of eating because you know too much. You become too self-aware. You see and feel beyond the “delicious” taste of highly processed foods to understand that such sweet tastes are a setup for food addiction and misery. You know that the sooner you return to eating water-rich foods, with healthy fat, protein, and complex carbohydrates in full balance, the easier it is and the better you feel on every level.
Unfortunately, when it comes to carbohydrate addiction, each time you reach for an offender (a food high in sugar, whether it be natural or refined), you are adding a building block to an inner state of compulsively craving carbohydrates in any form. The only way to offset this and still be able to enjoy complex carbohydrates on a regular basis, without swinging the pendulum toward compulsion, is to balance your intake of the various categories of food—healthy fat, high quality protein, and complex carbohydrate—and exercise in moderation on a regular basis.
Hypnotized by Food?
The great thing about eating in a simpler way, aside from the freedom from food cravings itself, is that it helps you to appreciate the foods that you are eating so much more. There is no more guilt associated with food. Your tastes begin to change, and you prefer the selections that nourish you, sustain you, and bring you life.
This becomes so much easier when you understand that processed foods are so “tempting” because they are very skillfully being peddled by a greedy manipulative food industry that is in bed with the diet and pharmaceutical industries.
My clients ask me, “What if I can’t be hypnotized?” The truth is these booming industries have already created a mass hypnosis on this planet. They have taken harmful foods and substances and linked them to the very emotions we all want to feel—love, acceptance, camaraderie and happiness—thus creating desire.
Once we act on that desire by consuming the food or drink, we are even more in their net because now we get hooked on the “delicious” chemical tastes they have masterfully put together, in an effort to keep us coming back, begging for more. The great news is that as individuals we can choose to not get caught in the false pleasure they are promising, by choosing what we focus on, and reminding ourselves of what’s true and our own inner power.
Exercise: Putting Your Food Urges On Paper
To increase your ability to observe yourself, begin to carry a small notebook around with you. Every time you have the urge to binge or eat foods that you know are harmful to you, write it down, whether you act on your urge or not.
First write down the outer situation that is occurring. Then jot down your thoughts about this trigger—what it means to you. Now look inside to see what your true need is. Take time to give yourself what you need.
Change your self-talk from being punishing or judging to being loving and supportive. Imagine yourself giving to yourself in a deep, nurturing way.
Using the Tools
By getting into the habit of changing your physiology, including posture and breathing— while remaining conscious of your emotional and mental state—you can begin to make new, healthier choices about how you respond to your internal and external cues.
Breathing exercises can help you to achieve a much more resourceful state of consciousness than you may typically be accustomed to. In fact, one of the most common methods of entering into deep meditation is through the breath. The breath is the bridge between the outer, physical world, maintaining our life, and the inner realms where our greatest strengths lie.
Regular power breathing will not only fill you up with oxygen and help to eliminate any toxic buildup in your system, but it will also help you to discover the greater power that resides within. Be aware of your tendency to revert back to shallow breathing. The more you incorporate the deep breathing—coupled with physical movement that you enjoy—the more you will naturally charge up your energy level and boost your mental clarity and vitality.
By practicing the deep breathing and by centering yourself with positive, nurturing imagery you can eliminate the negative effects of stress. There is a big difference between passively relaxing, as when you watch TV, and actively relaxing, where you actually turn on and engage the deep relaxation system in the body. This relaxation response, awakened through breathing meditation, visualization, and self-hypnosis, deeply rejuvenates you, soothes your nervous system, and feeds your being, even more than sleep.
It activates your parasympathetic nervous system and subdues the sympathetic fight or flight response. When the parasympathetic nervous system is engaged, all systems of your body normalize and optimize. Your blood vessels dilate, sending more blood and oxygen to your periphery. Your heart rate slows down and your muscles relax. Your brain waves slow from the chattering beta level to the alpha level, activating tranquility and serenity within. With regular practice, you can learn to truly feel the calm in the midst of the storm and live in that place.
Remember that up until now your [food] addiction has been filling needs for you. Now that you have new options for filling those needs—both your physical need for nutrients and your psychological and spiritual need for love, inner peace, safety, and connection—you can look forward to shedding your old, unproductive eating habits of the past.
What a thrill it is to find your taste for food changing so that you automatically begin to prefer and select delicious, whole foods that nourish your body and sustain your life. At the same time, you’ll continue to feel the relief of being turned off to those processed, empty-calorie items that are harmful to you.
You can truly begin to look forward to your new sugar-free, addiction-free, life and the greater future that you are creating for yourself. Say yes to this new destiny! Welcome the true longing of your spirit to feel healthy, whole, and vital!
©2019 by Rena Greenbert. All Rights Reserved.
Excerpted with permission. Publisher: Lisa Hagan Books.
Easy Sugar Break-Up: Break the Habits and Addictions That Control You
(Originally published as "The Craving Cure")
by Rena Greenberg.
Excessive consumption of sugar in all its forms--including simple carbohydrates, caffeine, alcohol--can lead to weight problems, fatigue, anxiety, depression, and other mental and physical disorders. Whatever your craving weakness, this book will give you the inner power, strategies and techniques you need to overcome it. (Also available as a Kindle edition and as an Audiobook.)
About the Author
Rena Greenberg works with people all over the world in private hypnotherapy and coaching sessions on Skype and face-to-face in Florida to help people get healthy and improve their lives. Rena holds a degree in bio-psychology from the City University of New York and a master’s degree from the University of Spiritual Healing and Sufism. She is also a hypnosis and NLP trainer and is board certified in biofeedback therapy. Rena can be reached at http://EasyWillpower.com