Why Diets Don’t Work

Ep 16: Why Diets Don’t Work

In this episode, we answer a listener question about how to understand if you’re eating out of boredom vs. true hunger, especially during the quarantine, leaving you with some practical tips you can ask yourself to determine between the two.

We take a deep delve into dieting, and cover topics, such as:
·         Why and how calorie restriction leads a stronger hyperfocus around food, often leading to a binge-restrict cycle. The psychology of restriction explains that the dieting mindset overwhelmingly leads to feelings of rebellion, guilt, shame and deprivation.
·         How the diet industry (a 70+ billion dollar industry) operates and why it is a BUSINESS, based on the idea that diets don’t work for the long term
·         How to seek out a credentialed provider and know whether you’re getting evidence-based advice
·         What the research shows about dieting in the long term, and how it can lead to weight cycling, hormonal changes, metabolism changes and more.
·         Why diets ignore your autonomy and are not personalized to your individual your nutrition needs
·         Why eating 1200 calories a day or less can be very damaging and the effects it can have on the body
·         An explanation of the results from the famous starvation study
·         How other behavioral factors, such as eating foods you enjoy, engaging in movement you enjoy, having a supportive social group, having access to healthy foods, genetics and more into your health more than your weight.

Sarah’s Hunger Ebook

Hunger Scale for Athletes (free download)


Camps, S. G., Verhoef, S. P., & Westerterp, K. R. (2013). Weight loss, weight maintenance, and adaptive thermogenesis. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition97(5), 990–994.

Greenway, F. L. (2015). Physiological adaptations to weight loss and factors favouring weight regain. International Journal of Obesity39(8), 1188–1196.
Keys, A., Brozek, J., Henschel, A., Mickelsen, O., & Taylor, H. L. (1950). The Biology of Human Starvation: Volumes I and II. Minneapolis, MN: University Of Minnesota Press. Retrieved from (The “Starvation Study”)

Mann, T., Tomiyama, A. J., Westling, E., Lew, A.-M., Samuels, B., & Chatman, J. (2007). Medicare’s search for effective obesity treatments: diets are not the answer. The American Psychologist62(3), 220–233.
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