For the last three months, we have been developing the Laugh Out Loud diet plan and finding new and super easy things to do that will affect one’s bodily weight and general health. The only part of the diet that even vaguely resembles an ordinary diet is to not eat anything after 8 PM or anything before noon. During our meals during the day, we eat as much as we feel like eating with no attempt to control how much we eat. We are night owls and stay up until after midnight, so if you are more of an early bird it would make sense to shift the hours to an earlier schedule. Our first attempt was to not eat between 8 PM and 8 AM and then eat to our fill, but that wasn’t even interesting. So, we upped the challenge to not eating until noon. That is just enough to be happy when it’s time to eat lunch, so the only time we feel anything at all like it’s a diet is that last hour, and we usually take a twenty-minute walk just before preparing our noon meal. Our walking and conversation distract us from any possible hunger. I can barely remember ever being hungry for the last three months. We have both been weighing ourselves every day and there is a slight downward trend. I’ve lost four pounds. That may not seem like much but I doubt if it will come back and I only intend to drop about four more and then decide if there is any further need. Basically, I am in near perfect health already.
Now the problems. We have been adding fun little games to our diet. It’s the part that is the Laugh Out Loud diet plan, and that is doing our present pick from my several blog posts of lists of super easy things to do. For two months now we have been drinking a cup of water before starting our sit down meals. That is easy to do and the tiny little problem is that we sometimes forget and start eating before we drink the water. Never in my life have I drunk a cup of water before eating, so when I do sit down and everyone else is ready I start eating. No big deal, but for me it is important to do things I tell myself that I am going to do. If I don’t do what I tell myself I’m going to do I feel it is necessary to make immediate amends, somehow. Together, we manage to get those glasses of water onto the table. If one of us picks up their eating utensil without having drunk the water the other stops talking mid-sentence and immediately stares at the other. Uh-oh, and we laugh and drink our water. Somehow, drinking that cup of water makes it easier to stop eating at the end of our meals.
The other Laugh Out Loud diet technique I’m having trouble with is to intentionally not clean up my plate. The goal is to intentionally leave a small amount on the plate. This is strangely difficult for me to do because all my life I’ve been told to clean up my plate, and I did. I never thought about it as a problem, and there were lots of cute little sayings like, “Waste not, want not.” The point is to begin by intentionally leaving a very tiny amount, say a quarter-teaspoon quantity. That is, to leave an amount you consider so insignificant it isn’t worth bothering with, but after a week of doing that to up the ante a little and leave an amount that is bite-worthy. Maybe a full spoonful. Yes, it gets thrown away. And that’s the point, to develop a control over your food rather than it having control over you because of your guilt. Actually, it’s a small amount and within a short time you will be eating less, so there is a success there, and a success in your eating less.
Each of those Laugh Out Loud diet techniques is laughable, but they are so easy to do, and can be made into fun games, so they can be developed into permanent pleasant habits.
For a diet to succeed in the long run it must be fun, easy and automatic.