Monday, October 19, 2009

You're Kidding Me, Right?

So, I get quite a bit of what I consider spam e-mail. Granted, I allowed the companies in question to send me mail but I often don't even bother reading them unless they are related to a sale before moving them to my trash folder.

The Total Beauty newsletter is something I usually scan and then toss. However, today I noticed something worth mentioning.

Title: Could Pessimism help shed pounds?


"A little positive thinking doesn't hurt when you're trying to lose weight—but a lot may. Although we're often told to not be too hard on ourselves, a new Japanese study shows how experiencing some negative emotions can actually help us reach our weight-loss goals. Doshisha University researchers psychologically profiled more than 100 patients who spent six months attending an obesity clinic for nutrition and exercise counseling. Although most of the patients' optimism improved over this period, that increase had no impact on weight loss. However, patients who started the counseling with high levels of optimism lost less weight than other patients.The study explains that while an increase is optimism over the course of a weight-loss experience isn't necessarily a hindrance, a little negativity can serve as a motivator, as it often reflects a deeper concern for one's health and appearance.Researchers also found that the most successful patients at the clinic were those who became more self-aware, and they noted that a holistic strategy is the most successful approach to weight loss, as opposed to a psychology intervention alone."

Granted, the article doesn't tell you right out to think negatively about dieting or your weight loss goals, but it sure does suggest that it's a good idea. I'm sorry, but this is some of the worst non-direct advice I've ever heard. Yes! Let's increase negativity about us and our bodies. Let's potentially cause happy women to get depressed to help them reach their goals. Ok, and then once they reach their goals, then what? If they become happy again will they gain all the weight back?

As someone that has been on some form of a diet for several years now, yes, a little self-awareness is a good thing. But too much negativity just causes me to second guess my ability to lose the weight and then I give up. Optimism is a good thing! Also, being depressed all the time doesn't do much good for your personal life even if the scale may fall.