There is no doubt that we love our celebrities.
Just look at the number of tabloids at the checkout line of any market.
Consider the entertainment magazines available including People, Us Weekly, Entertainment Weekly, Star Magazine, and so many more.
Entertainment TV shows include E! Entertainment Television, Entertainment Tonight, and others.
Then you have shows all about the Kardashians and similar “celebrity” oriented programs.
We seem to love watching “stars” shine and stumble with shows like Dancing With The Stars.
The list seems never-ending.
And, if you still have doubts about how much we love – even idolize – celebrities, consider how much you’re willing to shell out for tickets for live performances or even just to go a movie these days. To do what? Watch celebrities.
What Do You Have In Common With Celebrity Dieters?
What on Earth do you think you have in common with those celebrities?
How do they go about losing weight?
Are you really the same as the them when it comes to health and nutrition and dieting?
Are they good role models for your weight loss efforts?
Here are just a couple of differences between you dieting in real life and them dieting as “spokesdieters” for mega million dollar dieting programs.
I suppose the biggest difference between your real life and their celebrity life is that they have entourages and staffs and chefs and personal trainers at their beck and call to help and support them to stick to their diets and exercise programs.
You, on the other hand, have yourself. OK, maybe, if you’re lucky, you may have one or two family members supporting you, and maybe a friend or two. But your supporters are not being paid by you, are not there for you 24/7, and let’s face it, at the end of the day, they aren’t truly invested in your success.
In reality, the celebrities are surrounded with support and encouragement and you are pretty much alone.
The second huge difference between you and your favorite spokesdieter is that the famous celebrity is getting paid handsomely not just to endorse the diet, but also to try to convince you it actually works – their “job” is to lose weight.
You, on the other hand – unless you are incredibly unusual – don’t have a soul on Earth who’s going to pay you millions to lose a few pounds.
The celebrities have a huge incentive to stick to the diet beyond good looks and good health. An incentive that you’ll never have. A massive financial incentive.
We could go on with this list of differences between you and the celebrities endorsing diets, but I think you get the idea.
But one truth to take away is that they have a level of support and a huge financial incentive that you’ll never have.
What You Can Do
There are 2 big things you can do – as a mere mortal not a celebrity – to help yourself in your weight loss efforts.
First, don’t delude yourself. Of course you’re exactly like the celebrity spokesdieters in the sense that you’re human and so are they.
But just because they can make a diet work with all the paid support they get and all the pay they receive for doing it, doesn’t mean it’s actually any easier for them than it is for you. That’s a good truth to keep in mind.
And, another important truth is that even with the paid support and the pay they receive, even they can’t or don’t always make it work.
Case in point: Kirstie Ally as the celebrity spokesdieter for Jenny Craig a few years back.
If you remember, Ms. Ally lost something like 80 pounds right before our very eyes on television.
And then, after quitting Jenny, every one of us saw her all over the tabloids, entertainment magazines, and entertainment television shows 80 or more pounds heavier within about a year.
The truth and the lesson is that celebrities are human, too. And, if you don’t stick with your diet and healthy eating, of course it’s not going to do you a bit of good any more than it will do them a bit of good if they don’t stick with it.
Sticking to it. That’s the key. That’s the truth.
Which brings us to the second big thing you can do for yourself. Follow these 6 simple Guidelines to help you stick to your diet, weight loss, and healthy living plan.
1. The More Natural The Better.
When I say “more natural” it’s about 2 things.
First, what you eat and drink.
Simply knowing that the more fruits and vegetables as opposed to packaged goods and salty snacks, the better. The more water as opposed to sodas, beer, wine, or anything else, the better. The more “healthy” oils/fats (olive, canola, salmon, avocado, nuts) and the less trans fats (shortening and margarine) and saturated fats (red meat and high fat dairy) the better.
It’s pretty simple when you break it down and become just a little bit conscious and aware of what you’re doing. You don’t need to become a health food fanatic. Just a health minded eater.
The second thing I have in mind when I say “more natural” is YOU. You being more natural. You following your natural tendencies more.
We’ll look more in detail about this as we go along, but for now, just keep in mind and that you are not Valerie Bertinelli, Carrie Fisher, Sara Rue, or Jason Alexander on Jenny Craig’s payroll. You are not Jennifer Hudson or Charles Barkley being paid by Weight Watchers. You aren’t Marie Osmond, Dan Marino, Janet Jackson, or Terry Bradshaw raking in a bundle to endorse Nutrisystem.
The truth is that you are you. The more you get tuned in to your personal strengths, weaknesses, preferences, likes, and priorities, and the more you diet in ways that are comfortable for your natural self, the better.
Listen to you. It’s not about listening to what others have to say, certainly not the celebrity spokesdieters with whom you have almost nothing in common except being human. It’s not about listening to the advice of others who don’t know or “get” the real, natural you. It’s certainly not about listening to the criticism of others. And naturally it’s not about listening to the marketing hype that surrounds the entire weight loss industry.
The point here is to listen to yourself.
Listen to you when you are feeling good about how you’re managing your weight loss and health goals. Listen to your natural personality. The truth is that it will tell you how you should go about doing what you’re doing to manage your weight and health and looks and lifestyle in ways that will help you accomplish your goals.
At the end of the day, you are your own weight loss guru and it is your responsibility to listen to yourself if you want to be effective. And, if you listen to yourself, any diet can and will work for you just fine.
3. Eating Is Complex.
We Americans have many, varied, and complex reasons to eat what we eat. And way too many choices.
Here are a few reasons that you may have to choose to eat a particular food:
Curiosity – you just want to know what that huge piece of Aunt Sue’s homemade chocolate pie tastes like.
Emotions – we’ve all experienced emotional eating whether it’s to sooth hurt feelings, work ourselves out of depression, or celebrate a nice promotion at work.
Pleasure – you just feel like treating yourself to something sweet and gooey – to spoil yourself – for the sheer pleasure of it.
Nutrition – this is where you make the choice to eat something more nutritious and healthy in order to lose some fat or maintain a healthy weight, improve your energy, enhance your long term health, look better, feel better, and live longer.
As you are getting ready to make a food or drink choice (and remember, it’s always a choice) just take a split second to ask yourself if you’re going to choose out of curiosity, to soothe some emotional turmoil or to reward yourself for some emotional victory, just for the pleasure of it, or are you going to choose something to promote your health and good looks?
By the way, these food choice motivations are not mutually exclusive.
As you do this on a conscious basis for a little while, and if you’re serious about losing weight, you’ll notice that you will automatically start making choices that are more oriented toward good nutrition. It just happens naturally. Your body wants to be healthy if you just get out of its way and let it.
This as a another example of being your own weight loss guru – first asking yourself what you’re doing and then giving yourself the right answers. The truth is that you know the answers. Sometimes you just get distracted from them.
4. It’s Your Life & Your Personality.
The truth is that there is no diet on Earth, no matter which celebrity is acting as it’s spokesdieter, that is going to fit you perfectly.
Diets are designed in general. None is designed exactly for you. None is personalized precisely to match your unique personality, temperament, and behavioral preferences.
The problem most people have when trying to lose weight is an inability to stick with the diet long enough to achieve their goals.
Why don’t people stick with their diets? Why don’t you stick with yours?
Because you try to change yourself to fit the diet. That puts the diet, which was not designed specifically for you in the first place, in charge of you. And it gives you a ton of dieting related stress. Who wants that?
The solution is simple. Personalize the diet to fit you. Instead of changing your natural self to fit the diet, change the diet to fit your natural self. Personalize it.
That doesn’t mean you should change the diet fundamentally. It encourages you to use the diet as guidelines rather than a set of laws that you have to follow perfectly or you’ll be arrested and go to jail or something.
Here’s another truth. No matter what you are doing in life, including dieting, the more you do it in ways that are consistent and compatible with your own unique personality and behavioral preferences, the easier those things are for you to accomplish, the more fun they are for you, and the more successful you will be at them. It’s a law of nature. You do best at what you like best. You like best those things that are most natural for you.
Moderation is interesting.
Mark Twain said, “…it has always been my role never to smoke when asleep, and never to refrain from smoking when awake.”
And for many of us it seems we have the same philosophy when it comes to food…we never eat when asleep and never refrain from eating when awake.
If you’re overweight now, as 70% of Americans are so you’re certainly not alone, one thing you’re not used to is eating in moderation.
I suggest you go back for a moment and review our 3rd Guideline – Eating Is Complex.
If you become aware – consciously at first evolving into automatically – of what the purpose of your food choices are with an emphasis on nutrition whenever possible, you’ll automatically develop the moderation habit without having to use a lot of will power. It will lead you, without a lot of conscious effort or stress, to your weight loss and fitness goals.
6. Reasonableness – Common Sense.
Going hand-in-hand with the idea of moderation, is your desire and ability to face the reality that you are not going to be a super model and are not likely to ever become a highly paid celebrity spokesdieter for any diet program.
That does not mean that you cannot easily be as slim, trim, fit, healthy, and active as you want to be.
You can be. You have a right to be. And you deserve to be as healthy and as happy as you want at any healthy weight without ever appearing on national television, without ever adorning a magazine cover, without enviable, photogenic six pack abs, without bulging biceps, and without ever fitting into your skinniest ever jeans.
Don’t get me wrong.
I am an advocate of lofty goals.
I am also an advocate of realistic goals.
I am an even bigger advocate of using common sense in all things, especially in how you manage your weight which is directly related to how you manage your health which is directly related to how you look and feel.
The Bottom Line
So yes, we Americans love our celebrities. But let’s not give them god-like status. They are just people. If they do not stick to their diets, they will get fat just like you and me.
The truth is that Valerie Bertinelli, Jennifer Hudson, Marie Osmond, and all of the others smile their celebrity smiles and in 60 second spots make it seems like it’s easy. But they have to work at their diets like you and I do.
However, they have staffs that are paid handsomely to help and support them and they are being paid ridiculous sums to stick to their diets.
If you are serious about losing weight, you have to do the same thing as the celebrities. Stick to your diet. Unfortunately, you have to do it more on your own than they do and without making millions in the process.
Instead of having a cash payment from a big diet company as an incentive to stick with it, your main incentive is to look in your mirror and feel proud of yourself. It’s to look your best, feel your best, and be your best as you accomplish your goals, achieve a healthy weight, and maintain that healthy weight and lifestyle forever. No cash. Just a sense of accomplishment.
Use the 6 Guidelines outlined above and you’ll find that your weight loss success will be easier and more successful than you have ever experienced before.
Whether you like Valerie Bertinelly, Jennifer Hudson, Marie Osmond, or one of the celebrity spokesdieters, you are not them. You will not diet like them. You will not lose weight like them.
Luckily for you, you are you. You are unique. You have an individual personality, strengths and weaknesses, likes and dislikes, and behavioral preferences. The more you use those traits and characteristics to your advantage to personalize any diet you choose, the more successful you will be at weight loss and long term weight and lifestyle management.
The way you attack your diet plan, your weight loss efforts, and your long term weight management is up to you and you alone.
No matter what diet you choose and no matter what celebrity may currently be endorsing that diet, the truth is that that celebrity’s job is to try to get you to buy their diet instead of a different one. Period. He or she is not going to jump out of the TV or off the magazine page to actually help you lose even a pound in your real life.
Whether or not you actually lose weight, personalize your diet, and stick with it is entirely up to you.
The better you get at being natural, listening to yourself, sorting through the complexity of food choice motives, using your own natural personality, relying on your own common sense, and having realistic goals, the more likely you are to get exactly what you want from your weight loss efforts.
With zero help from any celebrity spokesdieter.
Dexter Godbey is the Founder of Dieting Laws. For over a decade he has worked with individuals, businesses, athletes, and sports teams in the effective recognition and use of the power of personalities to achieve goals and get what you want in simple, easy, effective, and successful ways.