UNITED STATES—Let’s go to something very simple and helpful to hang onto: the non-negotiable concept of out of sight. If there are foods for which we have no preference in the 30 pounds in 30 days plan, better off to keep then out of sight. Out of sight, out of mind. And this diet is a diet for both the mind and the body.
Take milk, better to keep it out of sight deep in the fridge, or cookies—if you must have them, preferably keep them not on trays under cellophane on the counter where the goodies can be seen repeatedly and exert a repeated visual seduction. Put them in a cabinet or on the top of the fridge. You are taking control of managing your environment.
The fact is, your atmosphere, which is already being managed by those who put up billboards and place ads on TV, not to mention significant others, is something for you to have a hand in managing, starting with your own table, your counter and fridge, to ensure success with your new way of eating and living.
This can apply to foods which we are maybe too fond of. In my case that would be peanut butter. And there’s nothing better than one brand of peanut butter that has listed one single ingredient on the label: peanuts. That’s the greatest, and when I start in on that stuff, it’s not easy to stop. When I found a part of a jar forgotten in the back of a cabinet shelf, after I’d hid it behind some other things to keep it out of sight, it transformed into an unexpected treat.
When plunged into an eating-out situation, you have less control than at home. It may take a bit of bravery, even with yourself, to buck the tide. You may see happy diners on every side being served heaping omelets and waffles on huge plates laden with breakfast meats and toast and hash browns, or eggs and bacon and pancakes, served on the side, that coup d’ grace of cookhouse hospitality. Given these stimulants, no wonder you are leaning toward ordering a giant omelet. Then the possibility of the default choice of fruit kicks in. When bombarded by the smell and sight of a great American breakfast, fruit may not be the first thing to make your mouth water. But when you decide on ordering a bowl of fruit, you will feel so much better to stick to this brave, independent choice.
What will help reinforce this independence when eating out is NOT looking at the menu at all, waving aside what the other people are having and coming in with a strong notion of what you want. Because you know what you want—chiefly fruit or veggies—and not shopping around and imagining all the menu possibilities. The aim is to develop fruits and veggies as your default.
Take the out of sight concept a bit further—no milk for example. No milk, no bread—in the 30 days plan we prefer not to imbibe milk at all, so why even have it in the refrigerator? Have it out of sight and out of your house. Ditto bread and other wheat derivatives; ditto that other irresistible item, such as cheese or peanut butter, that can be addictive as crack. Remember, you can freely consume vegetables and fruits, fresh and loaded with nutrients. We want them to be irresistible. Buy them in generous quantities and keep them prominently displayed.
At the same time help yourself stay on the plan by keeping problem foods out of sight, removing unwanted visual cues from you environment, and it will help you keep feeling outta sight!
Humorist Grady Miller, the author of “Lighten Up Now,” available on Amazon Kindle, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Grady Miller