Saturday, August 7, 2010

Would you give up five years of your life to lose 15 pounds?


Dr. Maggie here. I've got a bit of a dilemma and I hope you--and all of my loyal listeners on WYME--can help me. Cyrus, our esteemed station manageer, has come up with yet another wacky idea. He read about a study claiming that most women would give up five years of their life to lose fifteen pounds and now he thinks I should do a show on dieting.
Well, I have a lot of issues with this, and I wondered if you do, too. I really doubt that diets work. The diet business is a 33 billion dollar industry (yes, it's hard to believe!) and there are zillions of diet books out there, with more hitting the shelves every month. If there was a "secret" to losing weight, wouldn't someone have come up with it by now?
Cyrus wants me to have three guests on the show--with wildly different opinions--and he hopes to get a lively discussion going. Vera Mae, my producer, just rolled her eyes when I said, "lively discussion." She says it's "gonna be a train wreck." One guest believes in low carb, one in high carb and one swears by "mind over matter."

What do you think? Do diets work--and do they work for the long haul? I'm Dr. Maggie Walsh and the lines are open!

Mary Kennedy is a licensed clinical psychologist and the author of 40 books, all to major New York publishers. She writes the Talk Radio Mysteries for Penguin, and her latest release, REEL MURDER is available everywhere. Maggie Walsh is the main character in The Talk Radio Mysteries. "Dr. Maggie" is a New York psychologist who closes up her Manhattan practice to move to sunny south Florida to become a radio talk show host. And of course, she solves a murder in every book. The series has been described as "Frasier meets Murder She Wrote." You can visit read more at http://www.marykennedy.net/

15 comments:

  1. anitanoga@yahoo.comAugust 7, 2010 at 10:15 AM

    I would give up the 5 years. I was always a normal weight until I was 32 and felt the need to lose 5 pounds so I ordered a prescription diet pill online. It ended up causing a problem with my thyroid and caused me to gain 45 pounds. It has been 9 years now and I am still struggling. I watch what I eat and exercise but still nothing. Talk about depressing!

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  2. Oh no, Anita, I am so sorry to hear this. Thyroid problems are awful, I hope you can get some help with this. It must be discouraging to do everything "right" and yet the numbers don't seem to be going down. Could you try telling yourself the numbers are only part of the issue? That maybe your clothes are fitting better and you are feeling better, etc? Just a thought. Wish I had something practical to suggest. Hoping some medical and mental health professionals chime in. It is such an important issue, to so many people. Thanks for stopping by.

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  3. As someone who has struggled with her weight most of her adult life, I don't believe in diets. Finally, I've gained control of my weight, but it was not a diet, it was a life style change. You can't change the way you eat until you lose the weight and go back to your old habits expecting to keep the weight off - took me many years and lots of money to come to that conclusion. In the last 12 months I've taken off 78 lbs. I figure if I can keep it off for a year, I'll have made a true life style/habit change.

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  4. I would *not* give up five years of my life to lose weight. Not a chance. And, lest anyone claim I don't need to lose 15 pounds... I'll admit that's true right now (although I would like to lose 5). But about 11 years ago I needed to lose about 25 pounds. I'd gained weight with each of my pregnancies and was heavier than I needed to be. One day I just decided to do it. I worked hard, lost the weight, and I've kept almost all of it off since then. What worked? Low carb and a belief that I was meant to be thinner. That my small frame shouldn't be supporting the excess weight. So far, so good. I still have my ups and downs (literally).

    Now, ask me if I'd be willing to *gain* 15 pounds for an additional 5 years of (quality) life and I'd say "ABSOLUTELY!!"

    Julie

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  5. Julie, that is really good advice! I think it's interesting that only women were considered for the study. No men...hmmm. Maybe they knew men would not want to give up five years of their life to lose 15 pounds.

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  6. Bookwoman, I love the idea of a true "lifestyle/habit change." I agree, I don't think short term fixes really work.

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  7. Perfect timing. This morning I'm celebrating hitting the 50 lb. mark in my weight loss efforts. And I'm dieting (plus running) because that's the only way I know how to make it happen. But give up years of my life? Why? Makes no sense to me.

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  8. Hi Linda and congrats!! That is fantastic. A real accomplishment. I really admire you with the running. You are one energetic lady.

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  9. I wouldn't give up a minute of my life, and, trust me, I could stand to lose lots more than fifteen pounds.

    Thanks for the interesting post, Dr. Maggie. I enjoy the way you approach the issues . . .

    Paige

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  10. Thanks for stopping by, Paige. I wish they had included men in that study!! I bet the results would have been different.

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  11. Give up years of your life? No way! The whole reason I want to lose weight is so I can live longer. :)

    Do diets work? Define "diet."

    Last year (2009) I lost over 40 pounds on WW. And then, when Mr. Wendy got sick, I gained it all back (in 3 months -- I was like DeNiro prepping for Raging Bull). This last week, Mr. Wendy and I returned to WW ... I know it works, I know I can do it, and when I'm not overcome with trauma, I can keep the weight off for long periods of time. But I don't have anyone telling me what to eat (which, as a picky vegetarian, wouldn't work for me). It's just common sense, math, and a little psychology. Not sure that counts as a "diet."

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  12. HI Wendy, as a fellow vegetarian, I can sympathize! As long as I'm eating at home, it's okay, but when I go out, it's so tempting to fill up on carbs. "Common sense, math and a little psychology." I love it!!

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  13. You know, these 15 pounds never came off after I had a baby. I made a whole new person inside me from scratch. She's 9 years old now, wonderful, lovely, kind, smart and talented ... and she thinks I'm perfect. Five less years with her because I don't look as hot in a bathing suit as a used to? No way in hell!

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  14. Aimee, your daughter sounds wonderful. I think a lot of women have "baby weight" that stays with them. As you say, it's a small price for creating another human being.

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  15. Yes, I believe a lot of different diets work, but you've got to find out which one works for YOUR body. Then stick to it and EXERCISE, EXERCISE. That way you'll see losses faster. And you'll get healthier and feel SO much better. More energy, too.

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