21st Century Medicine Woman, Coach & co-author of Louise Hay’s new book: Loving Yourself to Great Health: Thoughts & Food–The Ultimate Diet

Cravings and Dieting: Myths & Truths

Cravings and Dieting: Myths & Truths

Hay House Radio Episode Recap

  • Episode Name: “Cravings and Dieting: Myths & Truths”
  • Live Broadcast: October 30th, 2018 at 12:00 pm Pacific Time
Episode Replays: Tuesdays at 9:00 pm Pacific Time / 12:00 am Eastern Time, Saturdays at 2:00 pm Pacific Time / 5:00 pm Eastern Time, Sundays at 4:00 pm Pacific Time / 7:00 pm Eastern Time

Episode Summary Re-cap

Are you addicted to food? Do you binge and then feel guilty? Are you over-exercising or starving yourself to compensate? Are you struggling to figure out how to know when your body has had enough food?  Find out how to eliminate cravings, binge eating, blood sugar problems, fatigue and eating disorders naturally. Learn to listen to your body and understand the language of cravings. Find out how to reset the important tissues and organs in your body that help you stay calm, grounded, and attracted to healthy foods.  Learn about delicious alternatives for your favorite tastes that will satisfy without setting off binge eating.

The Hidden Promoters of Cravings, Food Addiction and Weight Gain Revealed

Issue # 1: Processed Food Manufacturers Care About Profits, Not Your Health

In the book Fat Land: How Americans Became the Fattest People in the World, author Greg Critser tells us that food manufacturers were having trouble because the size of the American population was not growing fast enough for their profits to increase. So what they did is focus on getting the average American to eat at least 200 calories more each day—by doing so, they could continue to make more money. In order to increase their profit margin, processed-food companies also add toxic chemicals to make food more addictive, change packaging sizes and colors, and use advertising and other sneaky techniques.

Issue #2: Processed Food is Deficient in the Nutrients You Need for Energy and Happiness

During the Industrial Revolution in the 1800’s, the population in Europe grew so dramatically while simultaneously, people moved from farms to cities. It became so difficult to feed this growing population that something called “food shenanigans” began. Companies began adding non-food ingredients to stretch the food supply (e.g., local retailers would stretch cocoa powder by adding brick dust. Everything from mustard husks to sweepings from the store floor were added to stretch black pepper. Ash leaves were mixed into tea. And as late as 1969, an Italian manufacturer was charged with making a “Parmesan cheese” made of plastic umbrella–handle shavings!). This problem escalated to the point where 41% of British men were considered unfit for military service during World War I due to nutritional deficiencies. While the government tried to create policies around this, the larger concern was feeding people. As the British and other colonists came to the United States, Canada, Mexico, and other countries, they conquered the indigenous people and took away their healthy foodways, while bringing food shenanigans into what they liked to call “modern food systems.” These days, most packaged foods on the market are devoid of actual nutrients and full of synthetic vitamins and chemical additives that keep your body hungry and addicted.

Issue #3: Sugar is as Addictive as Cocaine, And it’s in More Than 75% of Processed Foods.

Americans consume 156 pounds of sugar per year, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). That’s 16 pounds over the 140 pounds of sugar that experts consider a “pharmacologic dose,” which causes obesity and disease.

On top of this, food manufacturers put sugar in everything because they know from studies that sugar is as addictive as heroin and cocaine. Of the 85,451 unique commercially available foods that were available for purchase between 2005 and 2009, 75 percent of them contained added sweet­eners (e.g., high fructose corn syrup, fructose, sucrose, glucose, starch, dextrose, brown rice syrup, cane sugar, brown sugar and more). High fructose corn syrup alone causes metabolic issues, obesity, increased appetite, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, energy depletion, inflammation, accelerated aging, and dementia.

Processed food companies know that the earlier they get you addicted, the harder it is to kick the addiction as you age.

Two key tips I recommend for ending sugar cravings:

Balance Your Nervous System And Digestive System With Vitamin B12

A suglingual (under the tongue) methyl B12 supplement can help reduce stress and keep you feeling grounded. This helps you stay strong and energized, even if you are picking up energy that would have once drained you. I find it helps people feel clearer about intuition and energy they are picking up on as well.

Have A Mineral-Stress & Cravings Relief Drink

When you’re deficient in minerals, it can cause increased feelings of stress, low energy, low thyroid, mood issues, and poor digestion. On top of this, cravings are often related to a need for hydration and, if it’s sweets you crave, a need for a taste of something sweet. This does the trick! Every morning and afternoon – or anytime you have a craving – before giving in to the craving — drink 8 – 16 oz. of water with 2 – 10 drops of Anderson’s Sea MD, the juice of ½ lemon and 2-5 drops stevia. The stevia is optional, and works best if you’re having a serious sweet craving because it will satisfy the sweet taste. Start with 2 drops and taste, adding one more drop at a time until it’s at your desired sweetness.

Issue #4: Willpower is Controlled by Blood Sugar and Restricting Calories Doesn’t Work

When researchers looked into the mechanism of willpower, the found that it’s not about your determination and resolve. In fact, willpower is connected to your blood sugar levels.

And what controls blood sugar? At the very simplest and most basic level, it’s the food you eat and eating when you’re hungry. While there are more complicated things involved, like the health of your gut (which determines whether you actually absorb that food) and stress levels, studies showed that eating a healthy, wholefood diet supports your willpower. Dieting and skipping meals destroys it.

Issue #5: Stress Raises Blood Sugar and Kicks Off Hunger and Cravings (Heads up Highly Sensitive, Intuitive People!)

Stress raises cortisol, a hormone that, when chronically released, contributes to aging, vitamin and mineral deficiencies, immune issues and blood sugar imbalances. For those of you who are energetically sensitive, psychic or intuitive, if you have certain vitamin and mineral deficiencies, you may experience “picking up energy” as a stressful event. If this happens, your blood sugar level can be affected. For those who are experiencing trauma or stressful life situations, the same is true. All of this can result in promoting cravings, addiction, and hunger between meals. Learn more by reading: Are You Addicted to Sugar?

Issue #6: Leaky Gut and Hidden Nutritional Deficiencies Contribute to Cravings, Addiction, and Hunger

Leaky gut is a common issue due to today’s poor diets and stressful lives. When your gut becomes leaky, it creates nutritional deficiencies from malabsorption, bacteria and yeast imbalances (think candida and SIBO), inflammation, fatigue and mood challenges. Each of these issues causes cravings and can lead to a feeling of constant hunger. Because addictions like alcoholism, eating disorders, and drug addiction are heavily tied to inflammation and blood sugar levels, many health experts are looking to the gut first for solutions. To learn more, read: Healing Leaky Gut and Leaky Brain.

Issue #7: Too Much Sugar and Processed Foods Interferes With Your Intuition

Eminent neuroscientist, Antonio Damasio studied taste perception and found it’s in the same part of the brain as our sense of self in your right brain, where your intuition is. You have 10,000 taste buds on your tongue, which signal to the reward centers of your brain. Too much sugar and processed foods promote addiction by hitting these centers too often, making your brain and body want more of them to maintain that wonderful, yet fleeting and artificial feeling of rewards. I have found that this is one of the primary reasons we have lost touch with craving foods that are healthy for us. In other words, we lost the nutrition intuition our ancestors had. This also interferes with your intuition about who you are and what you came to do in this lifetime because this interference is taking place in the part of your brain that relates to your sense of self. My clients and I have all experienced a deepening of intuition and self-worth as taste buds and the brain are reset through proper nutrition.

Your Body Has Hidden Keys to End Cravings

Your body is in a constant state of renewal. In this article, you learned that your tongue has 10,000 taste buds which communicate to your right brain – your intuition. Interestingly, your gut and your heart have brain tissue as well – again, intuitive brain tissue. This means that your body was designed to be drawn to what works for you nutritionally and in your life.

Unfortunately, modern stressful lifestyles disconnect us from our true nature and this divine design. Busy lives and fears about fitting in or paying bills tend to disconnect us from our heart, which knows what you came here to do. Processed foods, full of anti-nutrients that confuse your brain, disconnect you from the food that is your medicine. This harms your gut, causing imbalances and leaky gut. Stress, chronic negative thinking (lack of self-love) and a poor diet disconnect you from your “gut responses” or your knowing about who you are and how you ideally process or digest life and food (think third chakra).

However, you can reclaim your power and this system of intuition that I like to call your “inner GPS.” Your taste buds change every 7 – 14 days, which means that as you choose healthier foods, your taste buds will realize they are right for you and start craving more of these healthy options! Your brain takes time to recover, but as you shift your taste buds and heal your gut with healthy foods, your gut begins to heal your heart and your brain (they actually require a healthy gut to perform optimally!). All of these organs – your brain, gut, and heart, share brain tissue and chemical messengers. And all are connected by your vagus nerve, the longest brain nerve in your body that is considered an information superhighway. As you support this inner GPS, you begin to reap the rewards of better health, energy and well-being! You begin to crave what supports your best health.

For solutions on how to eat to end cravings, read:

Gut-Healing Diet Do’s and Don’ts

Boosting Your Winter Energy and Willpower (Including Mood Support)

Blood Sugar Balance and Diabetes Nutrition

More Energy, Less Stress: Balancing Your Minerals

For Blood Sugar Balance Recipes:

Delicious Blood Sugar Balancer

Louise Hay’s Favorite Bone Broth Recipe

Zero Waste Vegan Veggie Broth

Afternoon Green Vegan Smoothie for Blood Sugar Balance

Sugar Detox: Time-Honored Healing Remedies

All of my recipes are balanced across the 6 tastes in Ayurvedic medicine. You can find hundreds of free, healing recipes to support gut health, elimination of cravings, better moods and increased energy here.

It’s Not Just About Food! Deficiency of Self-Acceptance and Self-Love

Prior to my recovery 20 years ago, I searched for answers to help me recover from an intense 16-year struggle with the binge-eating disorder, bulimia. If you knew me back then, you’d see someone who was successful and optimistic on the surface. What you wouldn’t know is that I was consumed with shame and guilt for having an eating disorder. In fact, I kept this secret locked away, worried that people would never accept me or love me if they knew.

One day, I realized that the shame, guilt, and lack of self-acceptance kept me from fully enjoying my life. I began to wonder, “What if I never recover? Could I accept myself anyway? Could I maybe just enjoy precious moments in my life anyway? What if I could just love myself just as I am?” As you can imagine, it felt a little scary to think these thoughts because most of us are taught that in order to change, we can’t accept where we are. However, this was the beginning of my recovery.

The moment I decided to accept myself just as I was, something inside me shifted. I began to look at life from a more open, loving perspective. Within about a year, I was able to connect the dots that led to my recovery. Accepting myself did not stop me from looking for answers—it allowed me to love myself and my life more fully, which led to a recovery that felt miraculous and simple.

Change implies that things are shifting and moving, and it often requires you to move out of your comfort zone. It is much harder to do this if you are constricted and bound by fear, guilt, or shame. You might take action from these places, but it’s rarely sustainable.

It’s time to put aside all messages that ask you to do anything less than love yourself and focus on creating a stable foundation for lasting change.

Self-acceptance is an expansive feeling that can open you up to finding your own answers, beyond what “they” told you. The more you love yourself, the more you are guided to what is truly right for you.

Love is the Great Miracle Cure

“Love is the great miracle cure. Loving ourselves works miracles in our lives.”

— Louise Hay

How many of us have grown up learning how perfect we are? How everything about us is beautiful, unique, and wonderful? The truth is that most of us have been brought up with messages indicating the opposite: that there are many things wrong with us. Whether these messages came from family, school, religious institutions, friends, or the media, it seems that too many of us have grown up with a firm belief that we are not good enough.

So how can we be who we really are or trust our inner guidance if we feel that we’re not good enough? Let’s look at some exercises that Louise Hay recommends:

1. Write down all of the negative beliefs you have about yourself and identify where they came from. Did they come from your parents, school, church, other authority figures, friends, or the media? Identifying where you learned these beliefs is one step toward realizing that these are just thoughts and they are not true. These beliefs stand in the way of your accepting and loving yourself.

2. Imagine a three-year-old child. Look at this three-year-old and think about what it would be like to yell all of those negative beliefs you carry at this tiny child. We all have a three-year-old inside of us, and when we continue telling this child that he or she is not good enough, it’s no wonder that we don’t feel well.

What if you told yourself how much you loved yourself instead of listing everything that is wrong? How do you think your life would be if you encouraged yourself and accepted yourself just as you are every day?

This is one of the greatest steps you can take toward creating good health.

Once you’ve committed to reconnecting to self-love, there is something you may become very aware of: messages in the media. Television and radio shows, magazines, and Internet sites are often geared to make money by reinforcing that you are not good enough. Advertising focuses on making you feel like less than the perfect person you are so that you will buy certain products or services. It plays into the part of you that believes the negative messages you learned growing up.

Since the 1800s, advertisers have used fear, guilt, and shame techniques to create emotional imbalance and compliance for their intended goal: to get you to purchase something. The end result is to disconnect you from yourself so that you feel like you need something to make yourself acceptable or better in some way.

In his book Mind Programming, author Eldon Taylor describes how advertisers spent $149 billion on market research in 2007 alone, using psychologists and other experts to find out what would make people buy products. According to Taylor, they learn what makes us tick and how to manipulate our choices and behavior.

These messages of fear, guilt, and shame have shaped people’s lives, decisions, and attitudes in many ways. These negative messages often reinforce choices that are not in alignment with good health. They sell a focus on the outside—on how you look or what others think of you—rather than the inside, on who you are and what makes you wonderfully unique.

In her 2014 San Diego TEDxYouth talk, Caroline Heldman, Ph.D., shared some startling facts from her study about what happens when media ads portray women as sexual objects:

  • The number of advertisements that the average person is exposed to has increased from 500 per day in the 1970s to 5,000 per day today. In modern advertisements, 96 percent of sexually objectified bodies are female.
  • Children from the ages of 8 to 18 are attached to technology for an average of eight hours per day, where advertisers can get to them. These ads have become more hypersexualized to cut through the clutter of other ads competing for attention.
  • The more women are conditioned to feel like sex objects, the more they:
    • Have higher rates of depression.
    • Engage in body monitoring, which means being hyperaware of how they’re sitting, how their hair looks, who is looking at them, and so on. The average woman engages in body monitoring every 30 seconds.
    • Develop body shame and eating disorders.
    • Have sexual dysfunction.
    • Have low self-esteem.
    • Have a lower grade point average (GPA) in school.
    • Compete with other women.

These are exceptional reasons to stop consuming damaging media and purchasing products that promote negative messages.

The good news is that you no longer have to be subject to this conditioning and can instead focus on love. As you move away from messages of shame and reconnect to your inner guidance, you get clearer about what you really want.

You can choose to stop watching, reading, and listening to programming that only serves to reinforce negative thinking! Instead, focus on cultivating positive thoughts that remind you that you are already perfect, whole, and complete in this moment.

The thing is, you are always in a state of growing, changing, and evolving, and it’s much easier to grow when you can accept and love yourself where you are right now. Remember, you are perfect and loveable just as you are right now. The most stable foundation from which to change is a foundation of love and acceptance.

Diets, Weight, and Health: When the Outside Is More Important Than the Inside

If you were to ask the average person what good health is, what do you think they’d say? Unfortunately, most of us have been taught that how a person looks determines whether they are healthy or not. And all too often, weight is the number one focus when it comes to health.

In 2013, the weight-loss market in the United States alone was projected to be $66.5 billion, 83 percent of which is geared toward women, many of whom make four to five attempts to diet each year.

At the same time, obesity rates are growing worldwide and the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that over 1 billion adults are overweight, at least 300 million of whom are clinically obese, with the numbers continuing to grow.

With all of this spending and all of these diet attempts, why are the obesity rates increasing?

Because of the weight-loss industry, the fashion industry, and other media messages, many women find this to be their main mantra: I am not good enough. What’s the use? This kind of thinking can lead to them using their bodies as a focal point for self-hatred. Underneath all of this may be the thought, If I were only thin enough, they would love me.

If this sounds familiar to you, perhaps you grew up hearing your mother judging her body or watching your friends go on extreme diets. Maybe, you were in a competitive sport that required you to be a certain weight. Perhaps you noticed how people complimented others on weight loss or openly judged women because of weight or looks. It’s not surprising that some part of you would feel like weight is an all-important goal.

But the truth is, nothing works when one’s focus is solely on the exterior. Studies show that approximately 80 percent of all dieters regain the weight they lost.

Embracing self-acceptance and self-love are the true keys to both weight loss and lasting health. And here’s the other secret, the one that the advertisers don’t really want to tell you: what you eat matters (and we’re not talking about packaged food) because what you eat is a form of self-love.

Diets based on calorie restriction, packaged foods, and “no pain, no gain” mentalities are not sustainable.

The Only Diet that Works: A Media Diet

If you want to go on a diet, I recommend a media diet! Here, you’d abstain from any form of media that separates you from the loveable person that you are. The same principle is true for things you hear other people saying, or when you hear others judging one another based on looks. I invite you to surround these people with the energy of love.

They are responding automatically to what they learned growing up, and they are likely judging themselves just as harshly, too. What others think is never as important as what you think and how you feel. It’s the only thing you have control over, and it’s a direct route to making choices that support your highest good.

Health is Not a Measure of What You Weigh

Health is not about going through something painful for a number on a scale or a size of clothing. It’s not an outside job, it’s an inside job. Health starts with how you think and ends with how you feel. It’s about taking good care of yourself with the thoughts you think and the food you eat. And all of the little, loving things you do for yourself in between.

Instead of focusing on your weight, here are some better measures:

  • How do you feel?
  • Does your body move with ease?
  • Does your body support the life you want?
  • Does your brain function well? Are your moods stable?
  • Do you have the energy you want?
  • Are you sleeping well at night?
  • Do you trust your body’s guidance?
  • Are you comfortable in your own skin?

Your answers to the questions above are a better gauge on health than numbers on a scale.

Join Me in My Kitchen for Gut-Healing Foods and Broths!

This non-profit video class is part of The Wellness Project by Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation.

In this Gut-Healing Broths and Foods online video replay class and cooking demonstration, we are going to cover:
  • The Basics of Gut Health
  • Little-Known Gut-Health Issues and Solutions
  • Demonstrations: How to Make Gut-Healing Bone Broth and Energizing Veggie Broth
  • Gut Health and Methylation

This is a 3-hour video replay with cooking demonstrations. Registration is on a sliding scale, starting at free and you’ll receive on-demand access to the video recording.

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Tune in Next Week

Judy Mikovits

Tune in next week to 21st Century Medicine Woman, when joining Heather is renowned molecular biologist with a specialty in immunity, epigenetics, methylation, and strategies for cancer and brain health recovery, Dr. Judy Mikovits. She will reveal key solutions for strengthening your immune system naturally.

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As a coach, writer and recovered former executive, I understand the challenges of creating a balanced, healthy lifestyle when over-scheduled. In my journey to radiant health, I created a whole health system of eating, exercise, renewal and recharging -- a roadmap toward health & vitality. I empower clients to create their own whole health systems, in their own unique ways. I have seen amazing results in working with my clients!

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