Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Willpower or Realpower?

I’ve been thinking a lot about my last 2 months or so of my weight loss journey and I have noticed a trend. Whenever I get a craving for something, or a bad thought about what to eat I just cannot seem to shake it, no matter what. Case in point, Friday afternoon my wife and I went to our local grocery store to stock up on some food and all I could think about was picking up that donut or shoveling that bag of chips down my gullet as fast as possible or buying one of their coconut cream pies with real meringue. I’m not sure why. I did pass on the donut and pie, but I bought a bag of chips with the intention of woofing them down because it was Friday night baby! Why would that matter?
So we left the store with our bag of chips and some other groceries but I still wanted something. Something more. So I coerced my wife into going to the chinese buffet. Which isn’t any good, but it satiated me and satisfied my craving. So much so I still have an unopened bag of chips.
My point being that willpower will ultimately fail. It’s a sad truth for me, but a truth none the less. In my opinion it’s not real. What is real is keeping your body full by putting the proper nutritional foods into it. That way your brain doesn’t go into overdrive to try and satiate itself. You can’t beat your brain. It will always will in a fight. But you can keep you brain ‘full’ if that makes sense.
Sugar and caffeine are proven to trigger cravings. Sugar is found in almost everything that comes in a box or can or bottle. Whether it’s called sugar, fructose, corn syrup, or the ever popular high fructose corn syrup it’s all sugar and that is bad.
Willpower? No. What I do have ‘real’ power over is how I eat to satiate myself throughout the day. If I make the right choices for breakfast, lunch, and snack, that I will not get those cravings that just are impossible to stave off. The biology of the body just works that way. We are built to store fat during famine, thus naturally when we are hungry; we tend to be drawn to food high in fat so we lower our chances of starving to death. At least that is my quantification of the whole food thing.

And now I present to you the 0-16 2009 Kansas City Chiefs. Oh my.
And why do the Royals always win in September when it doesn’t matter?


  1. I just had a conversation with my husband last night about two things:

    1. Getting meals prepared on the weekend so that I have time to plan them and shop for them.

    2. Making sure the meals are delicious and flavorful and not just a hunk of meat cooked on the grill and served with a salad.

    I find when I do those things, especially preparing food that is absolutely full of flavor, I control the "junk" urges with almost no need for willpower. Obviously, some sort of satisfaction receptor is involved.

    As far as the storing fat during famine, I agree, but I also think it has something to do with craving flavor. High fat foods tend to be quite flavorful. Why do you think that a lot of fat free things have tons of sugar? Because something has to fill that gap.

  2. Man, I agree with Helen 100%. Smart lady. I know we do so much better when there is a plan and we stick with it and also have a spark of excitement along with it.
    So back to the drawing board, let's make a plan.

  3. Joe, could you get in touch with us via e-mail us at info@healthlady.com we have great articles on sugar cravings/books/affiliates etc.


    Yvan, Affiliate manager

  4. Very nice observations. Never deprive yourself or tell yourself something is off limits...that's my advice!! Your success is just incredible, and by the way....The Royals, I know...they always get hot this time of year it seems.

    my best always