Wednesday, August 3, 2011

On Low Carb Willpower and Self Control

When I first discovered the low carb way of eating, I was very excited, because I could lose weight without being hungry. My hunger, I supposed, was what was driving my obesity. And there is some truth to that. But I have seen enough people try low carb, lose some weight, perhaps 20 or 30 or 40 pounds, then abandon it. If you are not hungry, and if you are losing weight, why abandon the way of eating that produced these results?

For me, sticking to the low carb diet is easy, because of a trade off between the low carb way of eating and the ravages possible from my type II diabetes if I fall off the low carb wagon (I have written about this trade off before). But it also boils down to this: willpower and self control.

You need willpower and self control to avoid the siren song of a high carb diet. In talking with people who have fallen off the low carb wagon, it usually boils down to two problems: 1) the necessity of cooking and planning to provide low carb options at mealtime (which can lead to boredom) and 2) the desire to eat favorite carbohydrates (and which are everywhere). Neither one of these problems is a deal breaker, but you have to want to eat this way, or you will eventually abandon it. And you must exert self control in your choices. You can get fat eating low carb foods if you eat too much.

So to successfully lead a low carb lifestyle, you need willpower and self-control. The low carb way of eating is not a magic weight loss bullet. Simply put, yagottawanna live this way.


  1. Keeping "food sober" has been my goal for quite a while now. Every time I think of falling off the wagon, I think about Lindsay Lohan, Charlie Sheen, or, sadly, Amy Winehouse. I wrote about it here:

    I don't want to end up like them, so I'm keeping my carbs low.

  2. I don't drink or smoke, heck, I don't even drink coffee, tea, or caffeinated beverages (and I am trying to completely break the diet drink habit as well), but I do understand food addictions. I think the main reason I feel different this time is because the low carb way of eating has effectively put my type II diabetes in remission. That is what is keeping me food sober.

    I've also discovered that, in general most people don't binge on low carb foods. Which is another great reason to stay on the wagon.

  3. My situation is similar. It's my diabetes that provides my main motivation for staying low carb. Although if I weren't diabetic, I'd probably still stay low carb, because I'm basically a carb addict and would keep eating and gaining weight if not for low carb.