If you are a fan of TV talk show
host Oprah Winfrey, you probably knew about Dr. Phil McGraw some time ago. The advice guru is a favorite of Oprah’s
because of his uncanny ability to “tell it like it is.” Dr. Phil has used the same no-nonsense
approach on his own television program and has also introduced millions to a
new perspective on dieting with his ultimate weight loss solution.
Dr. Phil’s approach may not be
revolutionary, but it is instructive. He
preaches the gospel of healthy choices.
This means understanding the emotions that cause you to overeat in the
first place. He also offers tests to
help you assess your own eating patterns.
Once you understand how your mind works, you can begin the daunting task
of changing your environment.
Dr. Phil argues that, while you may
not be able to control circumstances, you can control your reaction to the
difficulties that come your way. This
means taking ownership of your responses and leaving little to chance. Such a stance can be quite empowering and can
give you the confidence you need to succeed at weight loss.
Another aspect of Dr. Phil’s plan is
to resolve to quit complaining. You need
to realize that your situation will never get better if you simply complain
about it. Rather, you need to take
decisive action. You also have to
realize that you can have an impact on your own weight—that your weight
problems are not the other guy’s fault.
Your primary task is to rid your own
personal world of the temptations that cause you to binge. After that, you need to devote your attention
to nutritional concerns. Dr. Phil also
believes in establishing a healthy system of exercise that can help you lose
weight over the long term.
Dr. Phil also believes that it is
important for you to establish a support network that will enable you to reach
your weight loss goals. The importance
of support cannot be overemphasized. It
is difficult to accomplish anything in life without someone in your corner,
cheering you on. The same is certainly
true when it comes to weight reduction.
You’ll want a partner, someone you can turn to when the desire to
overeat becomes overwhelming.
An interesting part of Dr. Phil’s
plan is the self-assessment. During his
practice, Dr. Phil has found that some individuals sabotage their own diet
success. They may actually feel
uncomfortable about losing weight; therefore, they lose weight only to gain it
back again. They may not be comfortable
with the compliments they get from the opposite sex when they lose weight, so
they hold onto their weight as a buffer against the outside world. As a result, Dr. Phil recommends that
individuals slow down and take stock of themselves before going onto a weight
loss program. During this slow-down
period, they may identify those behaviors that keep them from having weight
Dr. Phil also recommends conducting a reality check from time to time. Challenge your own beliefs and pre-conceived ideas. See if they stand up to scrutiny. If not, it may be time to change your perspective about life in general and about weight loss in particular. Dr. Phil also suggests that you seek closure for the emotional issues in your life. This might mean attacking your own anger, or forgiving someone who has hurt you. With this closure, you can ready yourself to handle the challenge of losing weight.
Supporters of Dr. Phil’s plan say that it is a common sense approach to weight loss. They applaud Dr. Phil for tackling the emotional issues surrounding weight gain. However, critics contend that there is nothing new or all that interesting in Dr. Phil’s approach, that it covers ground that has been covered time and time again. In the end, you’ll probably have to do your own research to determine if Dr. Phil’s approach will work for you, or if another method would be better. The one positive aspect of Dr. Phil’s prescription is that it is unlikely to harm you, and could actually do you a world of good.