Can You Lose Weight without Going on a Diet?

March 14, 2012

When you think of losing weight, what do you envision yourself doing?

Going on a diet and having to exercise!

It makes sense because ultimately you will have to change the way you eat and move your body more. Why? Because you need to create a deficit of calories. In other words, when you intake healthy, low calorie dense foods and increase your physical activity, you ultimately use more calories than you have absorbed. You burn the calories that you stocked in the form of fat in your body.

The problem lies in the strategy to get to this result. Most people cannot force themselves to follow a certain diet they don’t truly like. Therefore, they eventually turn back to their previous behavior.

So, what is the solution?

The solution has to come from within!

Did you consciously want to get fatter or was it a consequence of the way you handled your life? For most people, putting on weight is directly linked to their life challenges. This means that the right strategy must start from wherever you are in your lifestyle and to not ask you to instantaneously embrace a perfect weight loss diet. If your whole being dreads the change, how can you make it last? Furthermore, if handling your life implies you overeat, how can you not reach for food when something comes up?

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March 13, 2010

Today, I just started a new weight loss class, and as I was talking with my new participants, they mentioned the number one raison for overeating: stress!

Stress is a tricky trigger, because it doesn’t say anything about what really compels you to overeat. It is challenging to work on stress because, for many of us, it feels like there is always something bringing stress into our lives.

First, we need to identify the thoughts that cause stress. As you explore those thoughts, you will unveil the underlying negative beliefs that generate the pattern of negative thoughts, the negative emotions, and the overeating behavior.

Then, bring yourself into the Now.

As an example, I recently had someone tell me: “I don’t want to be in denial. I want to be aware of my problems, but, if I bring myself in the present, I don’t think of my problems anymore. I feel like I escape from them.”

What do you think of this affirmation?

Let me share with you my beliefs: It’s when we focus too long on our problems and on what might or might not happen in the future that we escape reality—not the contrary! Your life is happening now—not yesterday or tomorrow—only right now. When you worry, you are not present; you are in the future or in the past.

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I Love Criticism!

March 12, 2010

How do you feel about criticism? I’m talking about these feedbacks from your family, friends, co-workers, and sometimes strangers…when you learn that you are not as great as you thought, or that you really messed up. Do you feel a rush of anger or frustration? If so, you react like most people, but it could be totally different if you were to give this criticism a different meaning. Why would you be interested in doing that? Because feeling a negative emotion is a stressful place to be, and the first trigger to overeating and binge eating.

Feeling balanced and in harmony keeps you away from the need to cope. Anytime you feel stress, it’s a  signal that self-exploration is necessary. Your feelings are your guidance system.

People in your life are your best coaches. They really put you to work! They know all your flaws and don’t forget to let you know. They most likely are not even aware that, by doing so, they give you an amazing opportunity to grow as an individual.

Let me illustrate this point:

You come home exhausted after a hard day at work. You rapidly clean up the house and take care of the dinner: macaroni and cheese while preparing for an early meeting the following day. Your spouse and kids tell you that you could have done better! They don’t really like that dish anymore because you have made it too many times before.

Do you feel hurt, because you think you have done your best considering the circumstances? Do you explode into an argument and tell them about your day? How about simply explaining to them how mean and ungrateful they are? If you do, how does it feel for you…and for them? Remember they are the people you love and cherish… and that includes you.

Is their criticism reasonable? They are surely right, at least from where they stand. So how can reacting negatively help? It doesn’t. It brings unnecessary pain to you and to the people around you. It may feel good in that moment, but the consequences outweigh that brief moment.

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Self-Sabotage versus Self-Care

March 11, 2010

You know you should stop eating chips, cookies, and chocolate!!

You know should implement physical exercise in your daily routine.

You know you should take action, and sometimes, you do, but somehow you just can’t be consistent with your commitment to truly care for yourself.

I hear you wondering, “Why am I doing this to myself?”


This is a really good question. Indeed, you know that you can do better than get into this self-destructing pattern where you overeat, don’t exercise, gain more weight and become depressed.

You need to realize that your self-destructive behavior, even if it rationally doesn’t seem to be “the best choice”, serves you to some extent. Yes, you read this right! You sabotage yourself, because it protects you from your own fears.

For instance, you tell yourself that you can’t get that perfect job because you are too fat.  But if you were trim and you didn’t get it, then it might just mean that you were just not good enough for the position. You would take this as a personal rejection, and that hurts too much; therefore, you prefer to stay overweight, and have a more superficial excuse. This way of thinking can apply to your love life, or any of your personal relationships. The idea is that you cannot face what would happen if you were to lose the weight and be rejected while at “your best”.

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Rule Your Life or Let the Television Do the Job!

March 9, 2010

As I’m working with more and more people who overeat, it’s obvious that television plays a critical role in their overeating habit, but— surprisingly enough— also in most people’s lives.

Start thinking about how television makes you feel at the end of a busy workday or after you’re done taking care of your kids? Does it allow you to relax? Is it pleasant? Most of my clients affirm that they enjoy television because it helps them take their mind off what happened during the day. In addition, they avoid engaging into any demanding thought process. Many of them end up surfing channels or watch any TV show to relax.

The truth is that television offers you a mental journey without you having to do anything besides pressing the ON button—and that is quite convenient. So, why does TV have so many detractors? Why do people who overeat do it in front of the TV 95% of the time? I believe that it’s because of that fundamental need that we all have to get, at some point, a mental break. We need to “let go” of our mind, at least for a while. And as I mentioned, television allows us to do this. The problem is that, as we let go of the control of our thoughts, we absorb the messages the television shows send us, because we are in a very receptive state and we do not want to engage into any counter thought process! In other words, we think we switched off our mind but, in fact, we are intellectually fed by the television!

It is so addictive that when we watch television, most of us lose awareness of time, of what we eat, of tasks we planned on doing, studying, or reading we wanted to start. It also reduces the communication between family members, the time you might have to take care of yourself, go to the gym, etc.

Have you ever clearly realized this?

It surprises me when people, who have some compulsive overeating disorders, start dropping their overeating behavior because I ask them to not watch television while they eat or overeat. They become so aware of what they do to themselves that, even though they experience a food craving and might initiate a binge, they stop it way before they would have if they were watching television. Read the rest of this entry »

Power vs. Force

March 8, 2010

When you want to be successful at losing weight long term, it is really critical to understand the difference between Power and Force.


When we use force, it’s always against something, so there are always two forces playing against each other. The use of Force implies an expenditure of energy. Without energy you have no more force. This is why Bellsai doesn’t rely on a diet to help you lose weight—before you work on your beliefs—because it would imply that you force yourself to eat this specific diet. By principle, this behavior cannot be a permanent change. Your “Will Force” will impose on you to collaborate until the other part of you finds the perfect excuse and rebels!

Force is always plural; it implies disunity. In the case of overeating, it means struggle over time.


On the contrary, Power does not have an opposite. The use of Power does not demand any energy. It just requires that you are aware of it so clearly that you allow yourself to tap into it. Power is energy by definition and implies unity. Why? Because it emanates from Genuineness – from Truth. One cannot argue with it, it simply IS.

Therefore, when we seek permanent weight loss, we need to rely on a core belief based on power. You get your power from a belief that:

The Only Way Out Is In

March 7, 2010

You have hit rock bottom. You’ve done the merry-go-round; you’ve been through the revolving door. You can’t stand being overweight anymore.

It can be 15 pounds or 150 pounds. It doesn’t really matter because like for pain, frustration has no scale. It’s relative to the one who endures it.

What is your way out? What can you do to solve this problem? Your only way out is in.

Your extra weight is the expression of what you do to yourself by eating too much—we all know that, but why?  Whether you acknowledge it or not, overeating balances you in some way. You feel frustration or negative emotions and you counter balance this by overeating. Overrating makes you feel better, at least for a while.

Your only way out comes from the understanding of why you overeat.

For some of you, it is mainly about poor lifestyle; bad eating habits. But for others, it’s also about what you cover up; what you don’t want to deal with in your life.

To successfully lose weight permanently, you must be psychologically ready to unveil the why of your overeating. You must be willing to examine your life, your actions, your thoughts…and learn from them with the intent to understand your patterns. Only when you realize that the trade is not fair to you, that overeating does not solve anything, but in fact contributes to add to the challenges that triggered you to turn to food in the first place, only then you will be able to modify it in a way that supports your health.

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Sincerity Is the Key to Weight Loss and Happiness

March 6, 2010

Do you feel stressed, sad, or depressed because of your life challenges? Do you use food to unwind? It doesn’t have to be that way. This might seem surprising to you, but you don’t have to dwell into negative feelings when a challenge occurs.

Let’s imagine that your partner has just left you; someone you really liked. You feel sad. Then you start thinking how your life is ruined, how stupid you were to trust that person, or can you really believe in love?

You have a choice to make: look for a pint of ice cream or look at what causes you pain. What makes the difference?

With the first behavior, you let your gloomy emotions take over your mind. And who wants to feel depressed? Not me, not you either, right? So what is the 100% surefire way to bypass these hurtful emotions? Food—Eating a lot of food—specially your favorite food, ice cream, cookies, or chips.

Overeating is perceived at some level like a way out of that negative emotional state. Indeed, eating truly affects your body chemistry, so it really does change the way you feel. You feel more relaxed, at least, temporarily. Eating is also pleasurable, which explains why overeating is a preferable way to escape negative thoughts and emotions…and that is denial.

The reality is that if you overeat, you are insincere with yourself, because you deny looking at your life to understand your challenges.

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A New You? The Time Is NOW

March 5, 2010

Yes, you can do it! How? Want it and adopt the right strategy!

Is losing weight one of your important personal goals?

Realize that to accomplish such a goal, you need to truly want it and be ready to take the time to focus on you—and the time is now!

What has prevented you from achieving your weight loss goal in the past? Did you get overwhelmed by the thoughts you associate with your weight loss goal? In other words, is diet=frustrations in your mind? If this is the case, no wonder you haven’t reached your goal! Just the thought of those frustrations has been enough to dissuade you to attempt to lose weight again—and you are right.

Your cause is lost in advance if you try to lose weight without taking care of what triggers you to overeat.

I’m sure you know how it goes: you start a new weight loss diet and you exercise more. You keep this new healthier lifestyle until something throws you off the wagon, which sends you right back in your old, unhealthy eating pattern. Why?…because you haven’t really changed “inside”. You haven’t looked at what compels you to eat too much, so the reflex comes back when you least expect it.

I believe that anybody can truly and radically improve their lifestyle, and as a consequence, lose their extra weight. But the process has to be led from the inside out—not from the outside in—which is generally what people try to do. They self-impose a new weight loss diet and hope that they will lose the need to turn to food!

The “Thought Reversal” change is made from the inside out and is the key to your success.

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A Kick in the Rear

March 2, 2010

Today, it’s sweet and sour! Readers, please be aware—of the straightforwardness of the truth expressed in these lines

You’re going to kick yourself in the rear! Yes, you heard me: a kick in the rear!

1. From very sweet to very stupid

Some people keep telling me, “I want to lose weight, but, Isabelle, you have to be sensible and realistic. I cannot change this aspect of my life neither this other aspect because:

  • I am too busy or
  • My husband has lost his job or
  • My kids are in trouble or
  • I am not good enough…”

Basically, what I’m hearing is that they want a different result while continuing to do the exact same things!

Well, listen to this: even if it is trivial, these people need to be reminded…

1+1=2 and will never make 3. If you add up the same numbers over and over again, the result will always be the same.

Same thing with you. If you’re not ready to change your lifestyle, don’t expect to lose weight. Consider what made you put on weight in the first place? Your unhealthy lifestyle; overeating and the lack of exercise are generally responsible for excess weight.

If you’re not ready to modify the factors leading you to gain weight, how can you pretend to reach your weight loss goal?

2. Yes, but…Change is painful!

And you’re right…or, it seems that way. This is why you haven’t done it yet, or at least not on a consistent basis.

Nevertheless, the choice is yours!

You either do it yourself or you wait, until one day, the realization of the collateral damage of your overeating catches up with you! Then you realize that NOT changing can be more painful.

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