Yesterday I heard somewhere that actress, Reese Witherspoon, stays slim by eating baby food. It sounded bizarre so I did a little research. I thought eating baby food was something that surely only she must be doing. I was wrong, apparently the baby food diet is employed by many people, but not as a way to lose weight.
The baby food diet is a maintenance plan. It’s a way to keep off pounds previously lost through some other weight loss method. All I can say is “wow.” Maintenance is tough. It’s one thing to monitor what you eat for the happy and exciting moment when you step on the scale and weigh less than you did a week ago.
Maintaining weight loss requires ongoing diligence, but there is no exciting moment when the scale shows a lower number. To compound the feeling of “I’m doing all of this hard work for nothing,” your body, which once felt markedly different at goal than before weight was lost, loses that new feeling. As you become accustomed to your smaller body it starts to feel like it’s getting bigger despite the number on the scale still shows the goal weight number (give or take a pound or two.)
The baby food diet as a maintenance plan isn’t clearly defined, but essentially it’s like the Slim Fast diet shake plan, in which 2 meals are baby food and one meal is, hmm, shall I say, “adult food.” The benefits are obvious. Easy shopping, lots of variety, easy meal prep, portion control, fairly portable meals that can be eaten on the run, easy cleanup. The key word is “easy.”
It sounds easy, but in practice, you might find it to be the hardest thing you ever did to lose/maintain weight. The challenges are not as obvious, until you start living it yourself. Then you discover the drawbacks are many – some obvious, and some of which you aren’t aware until later.
- For lasting success a diet must be satisfying and pleasurable. Baby food diet fails miserably on both counts.
- Expensive – one jar doesn’t cost much but the diet calls for eating 14 jars daily and they’re not cheap.
- Extreme dedication – slurping pureed meat and vegetables takes a lot or all of the pleasure out of eating. Sticking with this food plan isn’t easy.
- Unpleasant trial and error – a lot of the appetizing sounding jars of baby food are gross, some are disgusting and you don’t know that until you eat some.
- Nutritional imbalances
If indeed Reese Witherspoon really does maintain her weight with this diet, I don’t think that’s a good reason to try it. Her figure is her fortune. Most of us mere mortals do not make our money with our looks. We aren’t willing to make maintaining our appearance a full time job.
My suggestion is leave the baby food for the babies. If, by the way, you have ever tried to feed a baby that stuff you know that most babies aren’t very find of it either.