Sunday, May 06, 2007


It's not that I don't eat the wrong things, understand, but that they are never allowed to brazenly go into my grocery basket, because that would somehow make me aware of them on a different level and would show the world that I am not trying.

I have to secretly acquire the things I actually eat while at the drugstore for some legitimate reason. I must skim them off the shelves as I pass through the quik stop on my way to the bottled spring water. Wrong things aren't allowed in my shopping basket. This eliminates whole aisles at the grocery store and makes shopping a breeze.

What's not allowed: cream cheese, bagels, jam, peanut butter, white potatoes, mashed potatoes, gravy, avocados, bananas, whole milk, 2% milk, cereal, bread, sugar, flour, mixes of any kind, cream, hot dogs, ice cream, frozen anything, chicken with skin, lunch meats, braunschweiger, boudain, rice, pasta, beans, butter, full fat cottage cheese, flavored yogurt, chips, saltines, ritz, any cracker of any kind, any cookie of any kind, any cake, pie, anything sweet, anything starchy, nothing with white flour or corn syrup or sugar higher than fifth on the ingredient list, barbecue, ketchup, barbecue sauce, chili, syrups, biscuits, croissants, fruit juices, corn on the cob, creamed corn, grits, hominy, peas.

What's allowed: skim milk, skinless chicken, leanest ground beef, lettuce, tomatoes, citrus fruits and berries, low fat cottage cheese, spinach, cabbage, peppers, vinegar, low fat salad dressing, celery, frozen mixed vegetables.

I stay hungry when I eat what's allowed. I usually don't. I feel guilty when I don't, shameful, as if I've done something wrong, unseemly, unacceptable. This conflict between what I think I should eat, what I actually do eat, and what meets the standards of my internal diet policewoman is exhausting. It's also expensive and it's a waste of a life to live in this craziness.

I've had over a week free of the kind of food obessed lunacy that has plagued me most of my life. I've had weeks before, that's nothing new. But the silence in my head is unprecedented. I may be kidding myself once again, but the experience of this quieting of the obsession is pretty remarkable.

I went to the store tonight and no aisle was off limits. I'm not yet brave enough to bring peanut butter into the house, but there are bagels and cream cheese and much of the rest in my kitchen right now and they are silent. They're not speaking to me, I'm not obsessing about them. Is it possible that food and I can coexist in peace? I'm hopeful.


Blogger Cindy174 said...

When I was moving back in 2005 I went through all my stuff and threw out all the food journals, diaries rambling about what I ate that day, and how fat I was,and so on. I had been "dieting" for 5 or 6 years and was heavier than I'd ever been in my life. I just wanted some peace with it all. I have more peace today than I ever had, but I cannot explain it. I still eat things that would not be allowed on any diet plan. but I get over it. I don't have rapid weight loss but have had steady weight loss with some ups and downs. I judge myself less and I feel much self acceptance. I make food plans sometimes but not always. I make them because I want to, not because I feel I have to anymore. My self worth is no longer tied to what I ate today like it used to be for so long. If I find myself obsessing I turn to meditaion and other things. I just want relief from the obsession of it all. I like the way you put it that the food is quiet.

May 06, 2007 10:44 PM  
Blogger Stephen said...

Hi, Lynette, Do you eat natural peanut butter, ie just peanuts? I eat that now and I have never binged or overeaten it. I can't even gag down the corn syrup crap kind that my DH and DD still eat. Hee hee. I used to binge on that stuff... hard to believe now!

May 07, 2007 1:18 AM  
Blogger Red7Eric said...

I only give myself a "rule" when I absolutely know I can stick to it. For instance, I don't drink regular (sugary) soda pop anymore. If I crave it, I get a "Diet Something" and it suits me just fine.

But most rules aren't possible, so I don't even create them, much less enforce them. However, a rule about the Chinese takeout place down the street might be forthcoming -- way too yummy, and waaaaaay too fattening.

May 07, 2007 7:46 AM  
Anonymous Tater said...

You know what? Sometimes it just rocks to say: "I have a fucked up mindset." I do the same shit as you, and am sometimes able to laugh it off. I have no idea what "normal" is. I rarely have a moments peace from the arguments raging in my head. It's nice to see that some one else uses rationalization as a tool in their daily lives, as I do. I rationalize my poker as "non-gambling" because I am playing people, not the stacked house establishment. Since it takes a percentage of luck to win no matter how much skill you have acquired, it is technically gambling. As long as I am a net winner (I am), the rationalization wins hands down. I do the same with food and excercise. Used to do it with booze and drugs until they severely kicked my ass. Thank you for your honesty and integrity. I swear to God we must be related.

May 07, 2007 10:17 AM  
Blogger Beula said...

You are eating like a normal person. Are you as thin as you want to be? I can't eat like a normal person until I get to 145. Then and only then can I eat bagels and cream cheese without guilt...or weight gain. Where do I get this crap? So many rules, so little energy to meet them all. I have the same lists. This thing you are doing (real life) is inspiring and scary.

May 07, 2007 10:52 AM  
Anonymous Richard said...


Having gone through the ups and downs of diets (WeightWatchers, Optifast, Low carbs, no carbs), I can sympathize with what you are going through, but do think you have come to grips with it. Having one slice of raisin bread toast, with butter, is a reasonable thing to eat. I believe having the good ice cream, and having only a small serving, satisfies the craving and keeps me from eating a gallon of the other stuff. Keep up the good work.

May 07, 2007 11:26 AM  
Blogger angelfish24 said...

I'm trying to get to that place of intuitive eating. To eat only when hungry, to only want the healthy stuff most of the time.

After being on ww for 8 months last year I fell off the wagon hard and wanted all the crap food again and couldn't seem to stop. I have finally gotten in control again and trying to figure out why in the winter I gain. I think maybe the restrictive diet I was on was setting me up for a slide. So, now I am trying to buy mostly good food but allow some of the higher fat items in my diet occasionally. Hopefully this will keep me from feeling deprived and something I can live with and get some more wt off. It is a long, hard battle and I have a feeling I will always have to watch it. Of course, upping the exercise is helping tremendously.
I wish you luck on your journey. Sounds like it is going well for you and glad to hear it.

May 07, 2007 2:28 PM  
Blogger David said...

I wish I understood where all this comes from. And I'm amazed I don't have more food issues myself, considering the dinner table was a battleground between me and my father for years. Of course it was the reverse for me. I took perverse pleasure in deciding I didn't like to eat anything but a ridiculously narrow list of foods.

I've managed to broaden it over the years, but I still can't eat to excess, it makes me feel ill. I can't plow through a bag of chips, I just don't have the stamina.

My eyes are often bigger than my stomach. On occasion I've raided a dessert table at a buffet, but I rarely get through half of what I took before I have to give up.

In some ways it's just as frustrating. I want to eat things, to be able to go to a fancy restaurant and try as much as possible; have an appetizer, an entree and a dessert, but I rarely can choke it all down.

Food is such a fraught subject, maybe because it is so elemental. Just like sex, it is a basic need, and who among us has no hang-ups about sex? So why should food be any different?

May 07, 2007 2:48 PM  
Blogger Willym said...

Lynette - food is your friend. And as for the sex and food thing: have you tried peanut butter on... never mind!

Actually looking at the list of what's allowed I started thinking of all the great things that you could do with those items.

But you got willpower Lady and you got us supporting you.

May 07, 2007 4:31 PM  
Anonymous jkd said...

Ack! What ghastly lists. I'm not capable of cutting anything out completely, so I don't even tell myself that I'll try--I know all too well the deprivation/obsession/backsliding cycle. Go make yourself some low-fat chili with ground turkey (and beans and corn) and put one nice generous slice of avocado across the top! All those things are good for you. Food boredom is your worst enemy, and your "allowed" list is deadly (actually, I like everything on it, but it's soooo limited).

Love your blog, by the way.

May 07, 2007 5:37 PM  
Blogger rodger said...

My only rule: Nothing is off limits, just the quantity and frequency.

That is how I lost nearly 30 pounds a couple years back and it's stayed off. I refuse to binge and must allow myself to enjoy anything and everything. Just not all the time.

May 07, 2007 6:38 PM  
Blogger sexy said...









March 16, 2009 2:22 AM  

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