Sunday, February 12, 2012

This is your brain on a diet

Some of you might remember that old drug PSA from the 80's that said:

"This is drugs." (showing a frying pan with hot butter in it)
"This is your brain on drugs." (showing an egg frying in the pan)
"Any questions?"

The point was that drugs are no bueno if you want a functioning brain. I am not on drugs but I am on a diet, and I am starting to wonder if my diet is affecting my brain function sort of like that egg in the frying pan.

I think this brain-fried diet feeling is common because I've had several friends say to me, "I want to go on a diet but I don't want to get all obsessive-crazy like I usually do when I diet." I think effective dieting takes a healthy mental attitude, which doesn't come without work and a lot of positive self-talk. Without that your brain can go COO COO. Anyone who's dieted knows this.

When you diet, you're constantly thinking about your diet. "Eat carrots not chips. Are you hungry or just bored? Don't forget to write down in your food journal what you ate! How much fiber is in this?Nothing tastes as good as skinny (or healthy) feels! Don't even think about cookies." And so on. Dieting takes constant vigilance. In other words, you are thinking about it all. the. time.

Why am I talking about this? Because something happened to me last night that was very telling about the way my brain has been functioning. It was in a textversation I was having with my friend Erin.

Erin's text is in gray, mine is in green.

This is my brain on a diet.


Heather said...

Funny. Very funny.And true. So true.

Kristen said...

I have a good friend who is a nutritionist, and she supports your theory that dieting is not good for our brains, besides not being good for us emotionally. She suggests a book called "Intuitive Eating." Thought I would share.

Katherine said...

How much fiber is in a shirt? And what food group would that be in? Is cotton a vegetable? It grows in the ground...

Melissa C said...

That's awesome. I start a diet a week from tomorrow. Yeah, giving myself some major time to get really out of control here, but we are going on vacation tomorrow, and you can't start a diet on the first day of vacation, right?

Elizabeth Downie said...

Kristen - I actually own that book but haven't read it yet. I should though! Dieting really does mess with the brain.

violet50 said...

Yeah, WW should tell how much fiber is in a shirt. It is for sure low in sugar and fat, unless there is fat in cotton seeds. Very funny!

Ashley said...

I'm the same way. If I'm doing a diet hardcore, I'm always thinking about it.