Don’t or Can’t: What is Succes when Dieting

Sharon Rekieta, Fitness Director - 17th August 2012

Can the way you answer a question determine if you stick with your diet?

According to the results of recent research, yes it can!

When faced with temptation, 80% of those who declined by saying, "I don't eat that" were able to resist tasty treats compared to only 10% who declined by saying, "I can't eat that."

Some might wonder how the simple substitution of one word ("don't" versus "can't") could make such a huge difference in the effectiveness of the refusal. The author of the study, Vanessa Patrick, PhD explained that "can't" indicates deprivation while "don't" indicates power and determination. And when you think about the words, how would you rather feel?

A bit of preparation definitely helps. Begin by reframing your perspective when thinking about veering off course and indulging. If you can embrace the idea of feeling powerful and in control of your choices by thinking, "I DON'T eat that", you're almost certain to resist and feel good about your decision.