Diet Proofing Your Environment
by Patti Helsten Petrella
One of the most important parts of you weight loss management plan should be to diet proof your
environment. If bad foods are not accessible, it is much more difficult to fail at your weight loss.
Until you become really good at saying no to foods you crave, it is just easier not to have them
around. This means doing some cleaning out of cupboards and rearranging your environment.
Cravings will be diminished, as the accessibility to the wrong food is not available. Eating triggers
are stimulated by sight, smell, aroma, thoughts, activities, advertising, and so on. You can and
must control these if you are to be successful.
You should be aware of how you are being manipulated by your own eating triggers. The key is to
get rid of as many triggers as you can, and diminish your exposure to the others. This really works,
but it takes some effort on your part.
For example, if you always eat potato chips when you watch TV, it makes sense simply not to have
the potato chips in the house.
Do you keep junk food in your house? Start there and get rid of it. If you say it’s for the kids,
husband, wife, etc., that just doesn’t make a difference. They don’t need it either. Make this a
family project. Eating healthier will benefit everyone.
I have never understood the excuse: ‘I’m getting the cake or cookies for the kids.” Why? Because
they want them? You are just reinforcing a bad habit that they will have to deal with at some point
in their lives.
If your husband, wife or kids absolutely will not give up their unhealthy snacks, then relegate that
food to an area that you do not have access to. (Their room, a pantry with a lock, a refrigerator in
the garage, etc.) Ask for their help! Tell them how important this is to you.
It is far better to get your family on fresh fruits, vegetables and healthier snacks in the long run.
Start today. Clean out your refrigerator, pantry -- wherever you keep junk food.
Get rid of:
• Sugared soft drinks or other sugary beverages
• White bread, white pasta, white buns white rice all crackers except for whole-wheat low-fat
• Luncheon meat, except for the very low-fat or fat-free kind
• Ice cream and any other frozen desserts
• Potato chips, corn chips, nuts, any high fat snacks
• Entrees such as pizza, high calorie high fat frozen entrees, convenience type foods
• Any processed foods such as cheese spreads, dessert toppings,
• Whole milk, regular cheese
• Any sweet type breads, donuts, cakes, cookies, brownies, etc.
• Any food that you have a problem with overeating.
Yep, just get rid of it. Out of sight – out of mind.
The second part of this plan is to replace that food with:
• Fruits and vegetables
• Whole grain breads, crackers, buns, pasta, brown rice
• Low-fat or fat-free cheeses and luncheon meats, preferable vegetarian products
• Skim milk and milk products, such as yogurt, cottage cheese, etc.
• Diet soft drinks or other beverages
• Fat-free or low-fat snacks
• Low-fat frozen entrees.
Your taste for the unhealthy processed food will lessen, as you develop a taste for the healthier
This is a sample of what your food for the day might look like.
Vegetarians will substitute beans, soy products, tofu, tempeh, seitan, or other vegetable proteins
for any meat used in the sample diet.
Breakfast: Eggbeater veggie omelets with light cheese, coffee with fat-free creamer = 1
protein, 1 dairy, 1 veg.
Snack: baked apple with artificial sweetener and yogurt = 1 fruit, 1 dairy
Lunch: 15 bean soup, salad, and grilled cheese with low-fat cheese on whole-wheat toast =
1 veg., 2 carb, 1protein, 1 dairy
Snack: fruit smoothie with blueberries = 1 dairy, 1 fruit
Dinner: grilled swordfish, salad, stir fried vegetables, and whole-wheat roll, glass of wine = 1
protein, 2 veg., 2 carb
Total = 3 proteins, 4 carbs (starchy), 4 veg., 2 fruits, 3 dairy
This is meant as a sample.
For Your Spirit:
Everything I ever worried about turned out exactly as it was going to despite my worry moments to
~Dr. Wayne Dyer