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How to Indulge Without Feeling Guilty

Forget the Guilt! Dr. V Says It's About "Preparedness and Planning"

I recently had a chance to speak with celebrity doctor Dr. Venus Nicolino, better known as Dr. V to Bravo viewers, about her work on the Green Giant Giant Difference campaign and emotions many women experience when they indulge and "slip up" on a diet.

Too often, the women Dr. V works with are riddled by issues of self-image and self-worth, especially when it comes to sticking to a strict diet that emphasizes deprivation. Dr. V explains that seeking out a pleasurable experience through food "does not make us bad. It makes us human." But I worry if it's "human" when I fantasize about devouring an entire bag of fun-size chocolate bars for Halloween. Guilty feelings creep up just from imagining all that candy!

First and foremost, Dr. V wants people to develop a new relationship with food and learn to make the "healthy stuff something to look forward to." With that said, she also believes in enjoying an occasional indulgence. Her solution to stay on track and not overindulge once you have a small taste? Dr. V says it's all about "preparedness and planning."

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When she wants to indulge, she will make a deal and say to herself, "I'm going to have two pieces of candy and that's it." Dr. V says that giving yourself this permission to indulge works for herself and her clients, "You have a plan, you set up to execute that plan, you've given yourself a little leeway, and then you tie it up with nice boundaries." When you adopt this practice, you'll find much more space and pleasure after you've eaten an indulgent food. Even more importantly, you can skip out on those guilty feelings that leave a bad taste in your mouth.

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