vWhy would someone go to a nutritionist instead of just getting a diet book from Barnes and Noble? It’s true that a diet book can tell you how to eat healthier, just like a nutritionist can. In fact, diet books are better, because they are written by the world’s most brilliant and successful nutritionists! What is the advantage of seeing a nutritionist?
You may think that the advantage is that a nutritionist will motivate you on a week to week basis. That is a mistake. If the primary function of your nutritionist is to motivate you, then you’re actually better off with a diet book! Ninety five percent of the time a person goes on a diet, they gain back every single pound they lost and more. While a person is trying to maintain the weight they lost, they are faced with an entirely new set of challenges. When that happens, they give up their diet, go back to their old habits, and gain their weight back. It’s a mistake to think that dieting is the hard part and maintenance is easy - maintenance is much harder than dieting. Therefore, if you have an external motivation during the diet, you will get lulled into a false sense of security, convince yourself that the diet you are on is sustainable long term, when in reality it’s not. It just feels that way because someone is motivating you.
External motivation, by itself, is detrimental to your success, like any other “quick fix”. In order to create a sustainable diet, it is necessary to identify what aspects of your diet are not sustainable and address them. We mentioned two disadvantages a nutritionist has. 1- Any nutritionist you’ll go to is presumably less intelligent than the ones who write the diet books. 2- A nutritionist will motivate you temporarily, give you the illusion that you’ll be able to stick to the diet long-term, prevent you from developing a diet that is sustainable, and ensure that you gain back every single pound that you lost. The reason to go to a nutritionist is because YOU are a unique individual with unique challenges. A nutritionist can take into account all the factors that make you who you are, and show you how to get to your goal weight most effectively with the least amount of deprivation possible. As you change and the circumstances around you change, a nutritionist can continue to adjust your diet to suit your needs until you have enough training to go off on your own. Let’s continue to make that happen.