For health reasons, diets are often prescribed and necessary. However, in the U. S., 80% of girls, as young as 10, decide to diet without any valid health reasons other than to lose weight and alter their body image.
In the TED Talk below, neuroscientist, Sandra Aamodt explains how self-prescribed dieting is not reliable and does more harm than good. She looks at how the brain regulates body weight for survival, how it works against diets and how it tries to get your weight back to a predetermined set point. In addition, girls who diet in their early years are three times more likely to become overweight in their adult years, even if they started dieting at a normal weight.
Sandra started dieting when she was 13. For three decades, she has been on and off various diets and her weight always came back. Today, she has stopped all diets and she eats mindfully. Mindful eating is what she wishes she understood back when she was 13. Today, she encourages others to do the same—to eat intuitively rather than through the control of one’s willpower. In her talk, Sandra blends her personal experience with her scientific knowledge and encourages young girls to eat when they are hungry and to not fear their appetite.