How can I avoid feeling deprived after I give up junk food?

Laura Katleman-Prue
Nutrition & Dietetics
Try asking yourself, "What is it that will feel deprived if I give up an addictive food -- my body or me? Is it true that my body will feel deprived? Or is it truer that I'm fantasizing about having a certain taste experience?" The truth is that the body won't feel deprived, the ego will. The ego's Child (pleasure-seeking impulses) will. Deprivation is a conditioned idea that the Child has talked to us about so many times that we've actually come to believe it. The Child tells us that we're feeling deprived, so we deserve two slices of chocolate mousse cake and a hot fudge sundae. She uses the idea of deprivation as an excuse for overeating, and we comply. The body, on the other hand, couldn't care less. It eats whatever is in front of it.

Deprivation is a conditioned idea that tells us we should be able to expect certain taste experiences because we've had them in the past. If we're used to having dessert, we come to expect it, and when we don't have it, we tell ourselves the story of "being deprived" and get in a tizzy about it.

The body isn't deprived without dessert. It needs a certain number of calories; vitamins and minerals; and a healthy balance of protein, carbohydrates, and fats. If we're giving it these things, it's not deprived.

Deprivation is a lie that the Child tells you. It's how we characterize the Child's tantrum when her desire for pleasure food is not being met. Once you see this, you're on to the ego's game, and you can't be tricked into believing in or following the lie. You're no longer attached to getting pleasure from pleasure food. When you're free from that attachment, you still enjoy food as much as, if not more than, before, but you no longer need to get pleasure from a particular food at a particular time.
Skinny Thinking: Five Revolutionary Steps to Permanently Heal Your Relationship With Food, Weight, and Your Body

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Skinny Thinking: Five Revolutionary Steps to Permanently Heal Your Relationship With Food, Weight, and Your Body

READY TO END YOUR FOOD and WEIGHT WORRIES? If so, Skinny Thinking is for you. The only way to create a healthy relationship with food and stop battling with your weight is to change the way you think...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.