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Did Abstinence make the real difference for you?


Playing the Angel
S: 14st3lb C: 8st7lb G: 9st2lb BMI: 20.4 Loss: 5st10lb(40.2%)
Now that I am nearing the end of abstinence, I have been giving a lot of thought to the whole process. This has included all the diets I have tried previously to work out what the failings were and what made this work. And trust me I have tried them all!! I realised that I was extremely bored with food, although I abused it. Might have something to do with working with it every day? But also I had very little interest or respect for myself. No doubt this is the reason for the abuse. Now the only way this was ever going to work, somewhat similar to the way it works for any other kind of addict was to TOTALLY step away from food entirely. I don't think I even realised prior LL how much I abused food or even that I abused it at all. Quite shocking to me now, but food was my medication, that and the glasses of wine in the evening. Don't get me wrong the only way it really does work is in conjunction with the councilling, which is what made me choose LL as opposed any other VLCD. But to step away was the only solution for me. I have had time to step back, re evaluate, re learn my love for food and re discover why I am a chef in the first place. I am now going to be a better, smarter chef and design menus that are not only lovely but healthy too. Just my 2 cents worth, wondered if any of you have found it to be the same?

Jez (fully enjoying my last few weeks of abstinence!)
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I could have written that Jez

I too had a similar relationship with food.
I was only saying to BL the other day that my whole identity had become submerged by food over the years.
I adored it, loved thinking, planning, preparing, sharing, sniffing, squeezing, chopping, tasting etc etc etc .............
I adored cooking for others at home and for my job. I had my own restaurant at one time, used to do catering for weddings and private parties. Had my own business called Pretty Crafty.
I lost myself in a mountain of food - inside and out.
Abstinence has given me the time and opportunity and psychological help (which I never realised I needed) to re-evaluate my whole relationship with food.
It hasn't become the enemy, but now I have a new respect for food and alcohol
and realise that abundance and quality are not the only important factors.
Control, simple, fresh ingrdients and flavours can be just as delieicios as lashings of butter and cream etc.
Thank heavens for LL.


Playing the Angel
S: 14st3lb C: 8st7lb G: 9st2lb BMI: 20.4 Loss: 5st10lb(40.2%)
Hear hear, would love to hear about your restaurant and catering business, but perhaps in our other foodie thread!

No wonder you are so fabulous in the kitchen!!!

S: 258lb C: 228lb G: 168lb BMI: 35.7 Loss: 30lb(11.63%)
Abstinanace, I know, was the key for me. I am an all or nothing kind of gal and conventional means were too daunting, and too long for me to see it through.

Removing food from the picture completely FORCED me to address alot of things I had stuffed - guilt, regret, depression, grief, dissatisfaction, dissappointment, the lsit goes on. Facing them is what freed me to be me again. In essence, I was reborn.

I know, I never would be where I am now had I gone the path of WW, SW or any other diet - as evidence by 20 years of attempts.

Food was love for me. It was how I received love, and it was also how I gave love. Now - I love ME. Food is second. Its a blessing.

I am fullly aware how easily i could fall back into bad habits - but knoiwing that also is balanced by the will NOT to.

Never again.
S: 12st6lb C: 10st8lb G: 9st7lb BMI: 28 Loss: 1st12lb(14.94%)
it was the reason i did LL and the reason LL worked for me.

i needed a complete break from food and the relief from not having to think about what to eat was amazing.

traditional diets force you to think about food 24/7 as you are always calorie counting, point watching, syn calculating etc

i needed - and loved being away from food completely

(having said that i had to cook for 4 others in my family daily and became obsessed with cookery books and programmes!)

it was because ' I ' was removed from the equation food was no longer an enemy and i enjoyed cooking again

I sometimes long for the 'empty but satisfied' feeling of abstinence but i have regained my love of cooking and i am no longer bored/afraid of food

abstinence was everything!

daisy x
daisy x

LL Gal

Beautiful day
S: 15st9lb C: 8st10lb G: 8st11lb BMI: 22.3 Loss: 6st13lb(44.29%)
Another interesting thread ...

Abstinence has been so interesting and I still have a long way to go, but the things I have learnt so far are:

1) I have been losing weight slowly compared to others in my group which has been hard at times to deal with, however I have had a sense of relief because so many years I have been on my own diets, calorie counting and being really good, but when I have lost small amounts, I've become discouraged, blaming myself for not counting calories properly or doing something wrong, when in fact I do lose weight slowly sometimes and I wouldn't have known that for sure unless I had abstinence and a group also in abstinence (but many of them cheating and still losing more than me) to compare with. If I can go 3 weeks and lose only 3lbs on the scales (I think my body shrank a bit) on only 500 odd calories a day, I can forgive myself for my past dieting experiences.

2) I am really feeling the physical benefits of drinking so much more water ... I know for sure that I spent a lot of my life dehydrated and my body translated this into hunger, therefore I know that a lot of my hunger in the past was physical rather than psychological (but I know I have psychological food issues to deal with as well).

3) I finished the milk week last week and have been a bit side-swiped by the hunger I felt again this week ... it has reminded me of the battles I will face when I am removed from the safety of abstinence.

I'm very grateful for the space and time that the abstinence is giving me.


Making it all add up
S: 20st6lb C: 13st0lb G: 13st0lb BMI: 26.9 Loss: 7st6lb(36.36%)

Everything that the good ladies above have said. I would NOT have lost anywhere near the weight without abstinence. In honesty I didn't even know I had 'issues' around food, but being away from it has certainly forced me to reconsider my relationship with food.

No-brainer in my case, I'm a black & white thinker so this really was the only way for me - and surprisingly easy once my 'head' was in the right place.

I'm only on my first day of my abstinence, but i am reading lots of threads to encourage me and reassure me that this diet will work.

You all look fantastic! I hope I can do the same, as I am scared of being around other people who will be eating...that's my biggest fear!

Did you all find it difficult to socialise whilst not able to join in with eating or drinking? And how did you adapt your mind to not wanting "just one taste" etc?

Don't get me wrong, I am determined to lose weight, but any words of wisdom would help me, I'm sure.

LB. xx :)
S: 258lb C: 228lb G: 168lb BMI: 35.7 Loss: 30lb(11.63%)
Hi Lady

I avoided social situations at the very beginning, just until my head was firmly wrapped around what I was doing, and my committment to it - which was unshakable.

And that commitment is what I used, to answer you other question - one taste of ANYTHING was not worth delaying finally being a slim woman. THere was NO WAY anything - not ONE thing was going in my mouth that was not on the plan. And it never did. :) FOr 10 months.

Once I was in 'my zone' social situations were a doddle. I jst didnt eat - simple as. That included a month long holiday for moms 90th birthday, in America - weekly motorcycle club parties at the pub, family birthdays, inclduing my own, holidas like Easter, etc, it was just fine, and completely manageable.

If you get your head in the right place - it becomes the EASIEST diet in the world.

Go for it girl!! You will never EVER regret it! :)


Making it all add up
S: 20st6lb C: 13st0lb G: 13st0lb BMI: 26.9 Loss: 7st6lb(36.36%)
Same as BL - I avoided 'social' events for the first 5-6 weeks but once I'd lost a bit of weight & knew I was enjoying abstinence rather than any feelings of depravation I was more than happy to go out etc just didn't eat/drink. Not a big deal it was just what I was doing for that short phase of my life.

Simples :)


Playing the Angel
S: 14st3lb C: 8st7lb G: 9st2lb BMI: 20.4 Loss: 5st10lb(40.2%)
Thanks for all your fantastic replies!! It is fascinating to find we all share a very similar experience :)

Blonde Logic and Sean,

thanks so much for your inspirational replies!

Blonde, you have done amazingly going on a month long holiday and not ever lapsing!

I have pretty much denied myself ANY social events for the next month, with the hope being that once I feel some weight coming off, it will motivate me to keep going!

My little dog is shatterd ~ she doesn't know why we are in the park avoiding going home at dinner time for 2 hours!!!:p

Thanks again. xx


I Can Do This!
S: 18st12lb C: 12st9lb G: 9st6lb BMI: 29.5 Loss: 6st3lb(32.95%)

like Sean and BL and others I avoided social situations for the first couple of weeks. Hubby was very supportive and did the family shopping and cooking for the first week, but after that I was more than happy to take over the reins again.

I definitely don't feel I have missed out though. I have been on holidays, to weddings (my sisters!), parties, conferences, business lunches, work outings, family gatherings, lots of cafes and restaurants, a funeral etc etc and stayed 100% abstinence throughout. It's all about your determination and focus on goal. There's loads of ways to get through events without eating and drinking and without having to announce your diet to everyone.

Some mental struggles are inevitable, but use the techniques learnt in CBT/TA to shout down those thoughts. It's all part of the learning process and will ultimately assist to keep the weight off.

Good luck with your journey.